Tuesday, September 30, 2008
She could not name ONE newspaper that she reads. That tells you she does not read. Period. There's no spinning that. I read the NYT in print, it's our local paper where I live. I read the AP, Yahoo and CT feeds on my computer. I read Southern Living Magazine (shocked?) I read Highlights with my kids. When you hem and haw and avoid the answer it's because you DO NOT HAVE AN ANSWER.
Think Palin is just nervous? Bullcrap. Go watch me and my family on ABC last spring. You want to talk nervous? Try going onto a live taping with three kids with autism. But I answer every question with authority, because I am confident in my knowledge of autism and I knew the answers. There was nothing Cameron (forgot his last name or is that his first name?) could have asked me about autism that would have stumped me. Palin has yet to answer any question with authority. She reads a teleprompter well - and that's certainly an aquired skill. But meeting with world leaders does not come with a teleprompter. Nor does that 3am phone call.
Watch the video - I pulled it from http://www.dailykos.com/ .
COURIC: And when it comes to establishing your world view, I was curious, what newspapers and magazines did you regularly read before you were tapped for this — to stay informed and to understand the world?
PALIN: I’ve read most of them again with a great appreciation for the press, for the media —
COURIC: But what ones specifically? I’m curious.
PALIN: Um, all of them, any of them that have been in front of me over all these years.
COURIC: Can you name any of them?
PALIN: I have a vast variety of sources where we get our news.
Kind of reminds you of another gal who wore a pageant banner, doesn't it?
Monday, September 29, 2008
"As Putin rears his head and comes into the airspace of the United States of America, where do they go? It's Alaska. It's just right over the border. It is from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there, they are right next to our state." Sarah Palin, to Katie Couric.
You can grab the photo from my blog or HERE./
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Do you wonder how parents of children with autism work to recover them? Has Jenny got the book for you! Need an uplifting, hopeful read during this insanely stressful economic/political time? Get thee to Amazon for Mother Warriors!
From Amazon: When Jenny McCarthy published Louder Than Words, the story of her successful efforts to save her son, Evan, from autism, the response was tremendous. It hit #3 on the New York Times bestseller list; and Jenny and Evan were featured on the covers of several magazines, including People. But what she hadn’t anticipated was the overwhelming response from other parents of autistic children, who sought her out to share their stories.No two autistic children heal in exactly the same way. And in her new book, Jenny expands her message to share recovery stories from parents across the country. Mother Warriors, shows how each parent fought to find her own child’s perfect “remedy of interventions” and teaches parents how to navigate safely through the many autism therapies.Along the way, Jenny shares her own journey as an autism advocate and mother as well as the progress of her son, Evan. Emotional and genuinely practical, Mother Warriors will inspire a generation of parents with hope.
Head over to Amazon to buy your copy now HERE. Check your local listings for these programs:
• Mon., Sept. 29th Good Morning America - LIVE
• Tues., Sept. 30th
Canada AM - LIVE
CNN American Morning -LIVE
• Mon., & Tues., Sept 29th & 30th
• Thurs., Oct. 2nd
KTTV/Good Day LA
• Fri., Oct. 3rd
Oh! And for those of you untouched by the current financial catastrophe known as the US economy, you can buy a signed copy (pricey but worth the donation!) of her books HERE and make a tax deductible donation to Generation Rescue at the same time - funding research that will help three little girls named Mia, Gianna and Bella and a whoooole bunch of others. Thank you!
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Well, I do love my work at Age of Autism! Jenny McCarthy is actively involved with our sponsors TACA and Generation Rescue. She's the real deal when it comes to helping families with a child on the spectrum. Anyhoo... I got a welcome surprise tonight! An email with three clips from the folks at Oprah, yes OPRAH, and permission to show them to you before the Jenny McCarthy Warrior Mother program airs tomorrow! You can check out Jenny's newest book Mother Warriors too. It debuted today. Enjoy! Kim
Watch Oprah tomorrow, Wednesday, September 24th!
Monday, September 22, 2008
How's about a little autism story today, my friends? Here's a keeper. Feel free to retell it around the water cooler, at the gym, in the waiting room as speech. I'm done with shame. It's gone. Sayonara shame.
On Sunday one of my girls wasn't feeling well. I knew she had a sinus infection. Rather than wait until Monday to see the pediatrician, I brought her to the urgent care center in town. When she is sick sometimes her bladder gets funky - and she had a tummy ache. So we went to the bathroom several times during our wait for our doctor's visit.
Speaking of the wait, the staff was incredibly kind. My daughter sat nicely, speaking very little, mostly reading her "Brown Bear" book. I didn't mind the furtive glances from the twenty something girl who was wrapped around her boyfriend like a snake. Or the "tsk tsk" look from the older woman. Or even the infomercial that featured Mr. T telling me he wanted a steak dinner fast - and then cooking a frozen block of steak in 8 minutes in some contraption that looked like a Sony radio from 1972.
Oh, the bathroom. Well, my daughter said, "Go to bathroom." for a third time. When she got up, there was a small spot on her seat. Uh Oh. We went into the bathroom, and sure enough, she was a bit wet. And none too happy about it.
Think fast, Kim. We were next in line for the doctor. Her nose was running like a faucet (in Church I turned to look at her and saw a stream of snot pouring out of her nose. I declined that whole "peace be with you" handshake thing to the great relief of my older friend Delores and Mr. Fox who were seated behind us.) I was not going to miss our checkup.
I knew she would not remain in her wet underwear. In fact, she kicked off her shoes and started to change. Except the cupboard did not hold any dry underwear. Thinking fast, (well, I paused for one second, I must admit.) I whipped off my shoes, pulled down my cream colored jeans, wriggled out of my panties (oh how I remember when tearing off your underwear in a small room meant FAR more fun) and said, "Here, honey. Put these on." She did. I got her dressed, shoes on, tied and two seconds flat. I pulled up my own jeans and slipped back into my shoes, sans underwear. Hey, what do you think we all did before thongs?
We saw the doctor, who was a sheer delight. I swear, he asked me more concerned questions about my daughter and her sisters and autism than 99% of the specialists we've ever seen. Dr. Lopez, you are a good doctor.
I sashayed out of the office, confident in my daughter's quick recovery and that I was NOT going to have to worry about VPLs. (Young people, those are visible panty lines.)
Got home, unzipped and flashed my fanny to Mark. "Um, what happened to your underwear?" I pointed to my daughter. "She needed it more than I did."
Yeah, I'd also give her the shirt of my back.
Sunday, September 21, 2008
I'm watching 60 minutes. "Obama's plan cut taxes for the middle class. Raises taxes on those earning over $250,000. McCain's plan cuts taxes for everyone."
Cut taxes for everyone? Is it Christmas everyday? So, um, where does the $700B for this latest bailout come from???? How do we pay for Iraq? People earning $250K are probably not worrying about how to pay their heating bills this winter. $250K is decent money. It's not wealth, not any longer. But it's a fair chunk of change. And people earning $400K+ surely can make a small sacrifice while we're in such trouble.
My husband had a great idea - in addition to the financial/mortgage bailout, which the world economy needs, how about if Washington says to credit card companies, "OK, you now have a ceiling interest rate of 12% - you can no longer charge Americans 26%, 29.9% even with a late payment."
This would allow average Americans who carry debt (like the investment and morgage companies we're bailing out) to pay OFF their debt faster, or at all, and put that savings back into the economy. How is that bad? So credit card companies wouldf earn less money. Here's a thought, stop paying that nice man in India to call me every night. How's that?
A few years ago, I was late on a credit card payment over the holidays. Late as in about 2 days. Late as in, "Oh shit! I didn't send that bill in and it's 12/23!" My rate went from 9.9% to 29.99% and remained there for six months. I'd been a loyal, paying customer for over a decade. That's USURY - and we shouldn't allow it.
Oh, and I'm trying to research further the info I've read that McCain's healthcare plan makes your company paid healthcare benefits part of your taxable income. Part of your taxable income. That means if your company pays $10,000 a year toward your health premium, you pay taxes on an additional $10K. Much like salespeople pay tax on some of their benefits, like a company car. Younger people will opt out further of healthcare to save taxes, leaving older sicker people in the plans - and rates go up again.
Here in CT, well-to-do CT, you mention winter and people's eyes grow WIDE with fear. I can't fathom what our gas bills are going to be like, even though we've downsized from our downsizing. My husband makes a salary that I used to think was a fortune - after rent, $1000 that we pay in health insurance premiums, car insurance, misc. payments and that luxury I like to call "breakfast, lunch and dinner" we struggle. We don't save as much as we should. I worry for how we will pay for our older years - and the girls' too.
If you're wealthy, stop worrying about some "poor person not pulling his weight." Sure, there are shysters at ALL levels of society. But please, just suck it up and pay a bit more in taxes. You'll survive. And with any luck, so will America.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
To enter, you have to leave a comment HERE at Age of Autism in the comments section. No registration required. You will have to prove you're not a Spambot though.
All aboard for fun! Win a copy of The Conductors' "Navigating The Spectrum" CD featuring autism Dad and Indie Rocker "Smokestack" Joe Hutchinson. We have THREE copies to give away, just leave a comment with your name.
Every kid likes trains. Every kid LOVES the Conductors. Embracing the best qualities of the Beatles, Wiggles & Raffi, a train load of memorable original songs. Gentle enough for kids with AUTISM, ADHD & Sensory Issues (AUTISM INSPIRED!)
You can see The Conductors perform at "Walk Now For Autism" at Angel's Stadium on Sunday, November 16th in Anaheim, California. Can't wait? Bring the kids to their record release party at TRAVEL TOWN, Griffith Park's Railroad Museum on Sunday, October 12th at 11:00am sharp at 5200 Zoo Drive, Los Angeles, CA. Arrive early for best parking! RSVP at TheConductorsUSA@yahoo.com.
The Conductors' leader "Smokestack Joe", is a dedicated and proud parent of a child with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (Autism). Already successful as an Indie Rock artist, (HUTCH www.myspace.com/hutch ) he started The Conductors as a way to celebrate the joys of parenthood and to deliver a fun, positive message to families worldwide while raising support and awareness for the Autism community. Believing in the magic of music to heal and bring people together for the greater good, Joe hopes The Conductors' music will continue to inspire families for generations to come.
Go to http://www.theconductorsusa.com/ to learn more and to buy copies in time for the holidays!
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
The party of big business has had a fine run, haven't they? I don't care who was captain of the ship 10+ years ago. The current administration has made the Titanic and Exxon Valdez look like Theodore Tugboat episodes. Let's invite them back to power then, shall we? Then I'll meet you at the Salvation Army. We'll share a bowl of soup and talk about when Americans had pensions for having worked hard for 40 years, health insurance that covered their needs, a chance to send their kids to college and watch them do better than their parents did. We'll chat about when Unions protected their members to ensure that we'd have a middle class. We'll fondly remember the American dream of homeownership - before homes were ATM machines and values were more inflated than Melanie Griffith's lips.
Monday, September 15, 2008
Friday, September 12, 2008
Er, scratch that. I love most things retro. And for full disclosure, I voted for one John McCain in 2000. Registered for a party (R) for the first time that year. I'd been an Independent prior to 2000. Now I'm registered as a (D) and will indeed vote for Obama. I think he will help my family and this nation in these troubling times. Watch this ad, have a laugh and let's just be glad we're not the women buried alive in Pakistan for protesting our arranged marriages to men old enough to be our fathers. Which brings me back to, aw, heck, just watch the ad if you want to.
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
".... A profiteer's dream. We've privatized profits and socialized losses." Candida Pugh, California.
Rather a brilliant statement, I thought. The mortgage industry gave away money to anyone with a pulse - remember those Ditech ads on TV 24/7? Suddenly every house was a private ATM machine for cars, vacations, autism treatments? And then the market did what markets do, it changed course. What a mess. Of course, the people who made foolish errors are suffering. Maybe that speed boat or new car or second home wasn't necessary. Caveat emptor and all.
But what about the people who refinanced just to get by? Or who didn't understand the fine print that was smaller than an amoeba on that piece of paper held by the nice young man with the broad smile?
We sold our home three years ago. Just before the market in Cleveland (such as it was) collapsed. Thank goodness we got out.
So homeowners are falling like solidiers while the companies at the top are getting a bail out. I realize we can't let the market collapse - that's catastrophic for the country. But jeez, doesn't it seem that you and I pay for our sins the hard way and the companies and the people who ran them into the ground get off with half a Hail Mary and community service, in Palm Beach?
I'm Not a One Issue Voter. Not Even for Autism.
I ran this at http://www.ageofautism.com/ today. Obama made a comment about not being for "selective vaccination" at an event on Friday night and the poopstorm has begun. There are more and more vaccine mandates coming down the pike, and those of us who have kids who've had reactions are concerned. We want vaccination choice. Is there any such thing as the perfect candidate? I don't think so. And here's my take on it:
Boy, the posts and the comments about the candidates have been flying fast and furious here at Age of Autism. I'd thought I'd steer clear of commentary, but that's sort of what I do, isn't it? So here I am, putting my opinion out there for you to, er, enjoy. I could say this in two sentences: I'm not a one issue voter. Not even this time around. Of course, it's far more fun to expound.
I'm worried about the cost of heating my home this winter and that my parents' budget payment for oil has doubled since last year while their income has been eaten alive by overall inflation. I wonder will Mark and I ever be able to afford anything close to the house we had to sell 3 three years ago when autism and unemployment joined forces and almost bankrupted us. I wonder if healthcare will ever include my kids for real so that I can get speech and OT and PT and biomedical treatments for them. We pay $12,000 out of pocket for insurance premiums and get precious little in return. The current autism insurance legislation in my homestate of CT does a big fat nothing for my kids. My husband's company is self-insured, which makes them exempt from having to include autism coverage.
I worry about current and future wars and terrorism and saber rattling. I worry that the tall guy in the cave is laughing at us while women in Pakistan (our ally!) are buried alive for protesting their arranged marriages. During which time we're spending billions in the general vicinity, but haven't found that cave. Or made life better for those women.
I worry about the familiar chill emanating from halfway around the world in a country that reminds me of tall fur hats and vodka. I think about Supreme Court justices retiring and what that might mean for my three daughters who, as women with autism, might face sexual assault and unplanned pregnancy. (That thought makes me want to gulp a glass of vodka.)
I lament that my little brother, who has had a faithful partner for over sixteen years and is an honest, law abiding, tax paying citizen of America, has no legal rights for his loving relationship and is considered a second (or worse) class citizen by many. I also worry about having a government that even considers mandating health care choices for me and my family. And that includes vaccination mandates, which I am against. Then I worry about what having a leader who wants to teach creationism in public schools means for our education system
I worry that some Americans actually think that voting for a woman whose birth canal is as busy as the Panama Canal automatically means she'll advocate for every child in America. I worry that having a child with a clear cut genetic difference for which there is prenatal testing is so different from having a vaccine injured child that the two worlds will never approach science in the same way. I worry that we'll drill for a whopping ten barrels of oil in a pristine state instead of making national sacrifices and cutting back and then putting American ingenuity to work on solutions to our energy needs. We have 3% of the world's oil reserves and yet we use over 25% of the world's oil. (T. Boone Pickens says so.) Even if you can't count back millions of years into evolution, you should be able to see that the math of drilling in Alaska is false campaign promise of energy security.
My God, how am I not popping Paxil like Certs? I worry a lot!
I'm definitely not a one issue voter. That said, I am looking for the candidate who tells me (s)he will look at all possible causes of autism, including our vaccination program, even if that means a shift in our public health policy, because my kids are as important as the proverbial herd. And who will help me treat my kids' autism right now. But that candidate might only exist in my dreams. So I'll have to vote for the candidate who meets the other urgent requirements on my list.
I have to have enough financial security to tend to my own flock - I need a strong economy for that. And I want to know who will help me take care of my girls throughout their lifetimes. I'm not looking for a government handout - but the reality of autism is that few parents, if any, will be able to finance the care many of our children will need and still support themselves in some sort of retirement. I think taking care of disabled Americans is as important as bailing out Bear Stearns, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. (And maybe Lehman later this week from what I'm hearing.)
I'm worried that foreclosures among senior citizens, once our most financially conservative and sound demographic, are up 125% this year as they struggle with stagnant income, anemic interest rates and skyrocketing costs of living.
Senator McCain or Obama, Senator Biden or Governor Palin, can you ease a mother's mind that when I die, my children will not be left to the mercy to a patchwork system that doesn't know what to do or make of people with autism? My kids don't HAVE bootstraps. Autism has robbed them of the ability to care for themselves. (Dammit, now I need a Paxil and a tissue.
Even worse, now I've got this horrible song running through my head. And I'm afraid no such thing exists.
Kim Stagliano is Managing Editor of Age of Autism. She doesn't actually take Paxil, although coffee and chocolate are daily requirements for sanity.
Tuesday, September 09, 2008
I don't have a housekeeper. Do you? I don't have a cleaning lady either - no budget for it and frankly, when I have had one, the stress of cleaning the house for the cleaning lady and then feeling guilty that someone was cleaning my house while I was in it always made me feel terrible. Then again, I made my bed in hotels so the chambermaid doesn't think I'm a slob.
Sarah Palin. Mom to a special needs child. 44 years of age. I can flip my hair into a buggle and I have similar glasses. And yet I don't relate to her at all. I heard a talking head on MSNBC say, "In New England, she looks like trailer trash. She plays well in the rest of the country." I don't think I'm quite that shallow. She doesn't remind me of a poor, white "Southern" gal living in an easily transportable domicile. Frankly, even with my "East Coast Elite" bias (and I do have some, I admit it.) that's not why I don't relate to her.
Let's see, I went to boarding school,a top tier college (go BC!), sat behind a Kennedy in economics class freshman year (I started at Tufts), hung out with Cabots and Saltonstalls in high school. Got dragged to countless Harvard hockey games with my family, my hunky cousin Eddie was Captain of the team. You know, even with that vowel at the end of my maiden name, I still danced at The Maugus Club in Wellesley Hills. (Lord, I gag just thinking of that night which I still remember clearly, right down to my Gunne Saxe dress which is under my bed in a storage bag as I type.) BFD. I'm still Kimmy from the block! LOL!
I have probably shared more real problems and concerns with a person living on the edge in a trailer she can barely afford than I've shared with Sarah Palin. I don't want a "sassy" gal who believes in Creationism in office. Sorry. My kids need SCIENCE. I don't want a 72 year old man who doesn't know how to use the "internets." Or "The Google." I want a fresh start. Obama isn't perfect - I have real concerns as they relate to my kids. But I think he's educable. I've contacted his campaign for a chat on a serious topic where he pretty much shot himself in the foot on Friday night. Vaccine choice for families.
I wrote another piece for HuffPo - and I expect to take some heat for it. That's part of the joy of writing for me. The clash, discourse, discussion and even some disgust. Doesn't bother me much at all.
Read it HERE.
Sunday, September 07, 2008
So I'm trying to go to the Stop & Shop today (by myself, the nerve!) to buy a bag of organic carrots for lunch boxes this week. I get to the end of my street and lo and behold, there's a motorcycle parade of sorts going by. I sat for about 8 minutes, unable to get out of my street, watching cycle after cycle go by. Sidecars, Harleys, police cycles, Japanese speed bikes, BMW's, you name it.
Then I started to notice the riders. Most did not wear helmets - which astounds me as an astonishingly stupid display of hubris. Don't mess with your melon!
I called Mark to tell him I'd be later than I thought, that I was sitting there watching the parade. And it occured to me as salt and pepper haired riders went by me again and again and again (there were a few riders who appeared under 40, but not many) that the parade looked like an ad for THIS.
I arrived at the Stop & Shop and remembered that I'd taken a different purse to the Bridgeport Bluefish game (lots of fun!) on Friday night. I didn't have my wallet! I started home, only to find the damn parade was BACK - I guess they made some sort of loop? So I sat for another 8 minutes waiting to get onto my street. Sans carrots.
Saturday, September 06, 2008
You might have seen this plea and this message on many, many webpages this weekend. 23-year-old school teacher Hannah E. Upp went missing from her Harlem apartment on Friday and police are looking for anything that might lead them to her. Click through for a larger photo. If you have seen her or heard anything about her, please call Det. Perez at the 30th Precinct, at 212-690-8842, or at 212-690-8843. Someone must have seen or heard something. You do not have to give your name to give your information. Please step up and tell what you know.
Friday, September 05, 2008
Metro dance club in Boston, across the street from Fenway Park, dancing with AW. Post college. Pre-parenthood. The days when "spin" had nothing to do with autism. By the way, Dead or Alive was created as a group in response to Culture Club. Pete Whatshisname was on Howard Stern a few months ago talking about it.
Thursday, September 04, 2008
Tuesday, September 02, 2008
Monday, September 01, 2008
Is that the main concern of the Conservative dream ticket? The VP and her daughter kept their babies? WHAT ABOUT AMERICA??? Did the vetting team know this and weave it into their plan? And what about this 17 year old who is now thrust into the spotlight for her mother's (?)political ambitions? God bless her, her future husband and her baby. But I think I feel sick over all of this. I really do. It just feels like Palin is being used and now, so is her daughter. I don't like it.
Remember this charmer?