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Ann Fisher in the Columbus Dispatch:

The affair wasn’t enough to convince me. The sociological question of why politicians appear so prone to petty philandering is a topic for another day.

That the relationship was with his scheduler, that Capitol Square gossipmongers have fine-tuned the tawdry stories since last fall, that Dann also ignored charges that his top employees had sexually harassed subordinates, that reflects something worse.

That’s stupidity.

I don’t want someone stupid running any statewide office. I don’t want someone who will state unequivocally, more than a year into it, that he wasn’t qualified for the job when he was elected and that he’s been winging it.

Tribune Chronicle: Dann was warned about former aides; does that make him a lawyer in charge of the state’s law office who acted with reckless disregard in his hiring practices?

New York Times:

No state party leaders came to the attorney general’s defense.

There was co comment from Mr. Dann, 46, on Tuesday. He sent a memorandum to his staff on Monday apologizing for his mistakes and promising to stay in office. “I think that there is a great chance that we can continue to do great work for the people of the state,” he wrote.

He announced a management shakeup, changes to hiring and employee fraternization policies and his intention to “set the right tone” for future success. “From here on out, we will conduct ourselves in a professional manner befitting the great work we have done,” Mr. Dann wrote.

Mount Vernon News: local voters want Dann to resign

The Plain Dealer: Dann hires a “political spokesperson” – Jason Stanford

10TV: AG Office employee says the majority of employees want Dann to resign

Columbus Dispatch poll of Ohio legislators:

Of 51 lawmakers interviewed among the 132 in the House and Senate, 44 said Dann should resign and seven had no comment. None said he should stay in office.

But most lawmakers stopped short of pledging to support an impeachment resolution, saying they need to see evidence that Dann’s misdeeds rise above irresponsible behavior.

“I don’t know whether we should impeach somebody for being stupid,” said Rep. Joseph F. Koziura, a Lorain Democrat.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 10:22 pm May 7th, 2008 in Civil Rights, Democrats, Gender, Government, Marc Dann, Ohio, Politics, Social Issues, Ted Strickland, Women | 10 Comments 

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Anyone remember memorizing Shakespeare? Or maybe thinking about Shakespearean tradegies over the last several days?

Then you should really enjoy the now-posted Carnival of Ohio Politics #116.

As always, thank you to all contributors and readers and my co-editors for their participation, patience and support!

Now, off with thee, anon, to the Carnival.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 8:11 pm May 7th, 2008 in Announcements, Blogging, Carnivals, Ohio, Politics, Writing | 1 Comment 

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Major league hattip to Bill Sloat of The Daily Bellwether for highlighting how the current Democratic governor of Kansas, Kathleen Sibelius (daughter of former Ohio Governor, John Gilligan) wanted her state’s Attorney General, Paul Morrison – also a Democrat, to resign after “a female aide with whom he [Morrison] had an extramarital romantic relationship filed federal sexual harassment charges.”

Please, go read Bill’s post.  This post he links to reads almost like a prophecy for Ohio. Oy. Come on, folks.  Do the right thing. For Ohio for cripes sake.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 1:31 pm May 7th, 2008 in Gender, Government, Marc Dann, Ohio, Politics, Scandal, Statehouse, Ted Strickland, Women | 1 Comment 

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Last brain dump before I finish the carnival comes from BNET, “CEO Candor on the (Steep) Decline.”

The Takeaway: Rittenhouse Rankings Inc. compiles an annual CEO Candor benchmark survey of 100 Fortune 500 companies, and this year’s results show those at the top of America’s biggest companies are increasingly unable to give a straightforward explanation of what’s going on at their companies:

The survey, which evaluates candor in annual shareholder letters, shows that confusing and misleading statements or dangerous fog, increased 66 percent in the survey up from 39 percent five years ago. In contrast, statements that require simple clarification or add useless clutter or benign fog, declined to 34 percent, down from 61 percent.

And the listings from Rittenhouse, “Rittenhouse CEO Candor Rankings Sink to Five-Year Low: Truthiness Gains” (I am so not surprised about Humana, News Corp. and Exxon but am a bit surprised by Merrill):

LEAST CANDID:

  1. Humana
  2. ServiceMaster
  3. Boeing
  4. Estee Lauder
  5. News Corp.
  6. Student Loan
  7. Coca Cola
  8. Dow Jones
  9. ExxonMobil
  10. Merrill Lynch

MOST CANDID (thrilled to see Eaton, Schwab and Sherwin-Williams there – but remember, everything is relative!):

  1. Eaton
  2. Entergy
  3. Wells Fargo
  4. Novartis
  5. Target
  6. Toyota
  7. Williams Companies
  8. Sherwin-Williams
  9. Charles Schwab
  10. Loews
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By Jill Miller Zimon at 1:00 pm May 7th, 2008 in Business, Cleveland+, Economy, Marketing, Ohio | 1 Comment 

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I’m in editing for the Carnival mode right now, but I must pass on a couple of things:

1. Connie Schultz’s Plain Dealer column from today. I agree with it. Some disclosure about her husband, Ohio’s junior U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D) being a signator to a letter asking for Ohio AG Marc Dann to resign could have/should have been worked in, but regardless of that, her point could not be more spot-on.

2. Lisa Rab’s column in the Cleveland Scene today about Schultz’s column from today. I do not agree with Rab. At all. I left a comment at the post but it’s not appearing yet (it’s been a few hours but hey – I’ve been sweeping out hundreds of pieces of spam every few hours and dumped some comments too so, I won’t be throwing rocks from a glass house on that).

Here’s my comment to Rab:

Lisa, I’m going to agree and disagree.

I agree that it’s not news. But I disagree that that means we treat it like we treat the same behavior as seen in a movie.

It’s not okay and it’s never been okay. The fact that it’s written about openly doesn’t make it any more okay.

This isn’t unlike casino amendment arguments: everyone has one but us. And the parent’s retort, If your best friend jumped off a cliff, would you jump off a cliff too.

Please, do not confuse the outing of just how often this happens with it being okay for it to happen or not endangering career trajectories. I’m not sure how old you are, but I remember when the Lisa Steinberg case broke in NYC and from that point on, child abuse and domestic violence reporting was never the same, thank goodness.

This case is an enormous step backwards in sending the message that hostile work environments related to sexual harassment must not be tolerated.

I’d urge you, and the Free Times, to start reading up on study after study that show how fewer and fewer women are entering so many professions. In politics, there’s been a horrific stall in Ohio.

What are the causes? I don’t know any better than the reports coming out, but when Bill Harris says, it’s term limits you know they don’t know what they are talking about (term limits were arguably brought in to improve women’s chances!).

Anyway – you make Schultz’s column out to be histrionic and it’s not. She’s spot-on, Lisa.

I’m having a hard time understanding why you would mock Schultz’s perspective.

I’ve also solicited opinions from a couple of women for whom I have incredible respect. One outright disagrees with me and the other raised a number of other problems (all valid) related to coverage of Dann’s situation. So, no question, this is a lightening rod for women, not unlike the current Democratic presidential primary.

I don’t want to pin this yet as a generational issue but – I do wonder: if a woman has never gotten the glass shards stuck in her shoulders from what it feels like when you’re breaking through and into an all-male or mostly male bastion, can she really understand what it feels like to be embattled? Yes – that’s loaded. I’ve recently gone through several such experiences, in a variety of settings. And it’s made me absolutely livid at the thought that it’s okay to just say, “well, it happens.” Because it shouldn’t.

But am I being unfair? (Oy – does that invite a backlash! But that’s okay – I really want to hear it.)

I’ve suggested that we try to find a public venue to hold some kind of a conference/session or seminar during which women could exchange their thoughts on workplace discrimination, hostile environment and so on. If you have ideas about that, or anything else related to the columns by Schultz and Rab, please do comment or e-mail me.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 12:44 pm May 7th, 2008 in Civil Rights, Culture, Gender, Government, Law, Marc Dann, Media, Ohio, Politics, Scandal, Social Issues, Women | 1 Comment 

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I read this article in The Nation last week (hint from a listserv) and have had it in an open tab since then but haven’t had time to write about it.

Lucky for readers, because What Tami Said and Racialicious do a superb job, where I know I could only hit on half (because I’m still so early in my understanding of WOC and POC issues). And their analysis gives kudos to the author of The Nation piece, Betsy Reed, whose session at WAM!2008 I live-blogged.  She was excellent.

If you haven’t read Reed’s piece, “Race to the Bottom” yet, read it now and then read Tami and Racialicious.  Thanks to both of those excellent bloggers for taking the time to set Reed’s work firmly in reality.

If you are not familiar with the tensions running through women of all ages and colors related to support for and against Hillary Clinton and support for and against Barack Obama as that support for or against relates to race and gender, these three piece – from The Nation and the two bloggers – are mandatory.

A teaser from The Nation (hattip again to Racialicious who considers this the crux of the article):

The sexist attacks on Clinton are outrageous and deplorable, but there’s reason to be concerned about her becoming the vehicle for a feminist reawakening. For one thing, feminist sympathy for her has begotten an “oppression sweepstakes” in which a number of her prominent supporters, dismayed at her upstaging by Obama, have declared a contest between racial and gender bias and named sexism the greater scourge. This maneuver is not only unhelpful for coalition-building but obstructs understanding of how sexism and racism have played out in this election in different (and interrelated) ways.

Then, a teaser from Racialicious’ post about the article:

Dead on, Betsy. As I wrote in the Does Feminism Have to Address Race post one of the unique positions I happen to find myself in more and more is having to challenge the sexism that Hillary Clinton (and Chelsea Clinton) are subject to from progressive men, but feeling hesitant to do so – after all, I do not want to give the impression that I am giving Hillary Clinton a pass on the race baiting that has come from her camp. I have yet to hear her reject and denounce Bob Johnson or Geraldine Ferraro. So, it becomes difficult.

And a teaser from Tami’s post:

This is the clearest explanation I have read of what troubles me about the Clinton campaign. It is that Hillary Clinton–a woman, herself marginalized, a member of the Democratic Party, the party of equality and progressive values–is willing to use Obama’s racial identity against him to win. Oh, I have other problems with Clinton’s policies and campaign performance, but I can overcome them. It is the race-baiting that I find truly unconscionable and immoral. It is this that is the clearest sign to me that Hillary Clinton represents the worst politics of old: the southern strategy has been around for a despairingly long time. It is this that has moved me to declare what I once thought unthinkable–that I will not vote for the Democratic presidential nominee if it is Hillary Clinton.

I understand that Hillary Clinton is a capable candidate–far better than John McCain. I understand that her platform is not greatly removed from Obama’s. I am not being petulant, because Clinton is my candidate’s opponent. I am following principles that will not allow me to support someone that I view as morally bankrupt. I feel strongly about this. And I have to admit, I have a hard time forgiving feminists who are so eager to see a woman in the White House that they would condone race bias. I guess some folks think it is okay to step on some heads on the way to the mountain top. But those are not the principles I believe in and if those are the principles of the Democratic party, then it has surely abandoned me.

Seriously.  I wish I could think and write so clearly about this intersection of these issues.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 9:17 am May 7th, 2008 in Barack Obama, Blogging, Campaigning, Democrats, Elections, Gender, Hillary Clinton, Politics, Primary, Race, Social Issues, Women | 3 Comments 

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