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Hillary, back home from her west coast and Canada trek,  helped kick off the celebration of International  Women’s Day today at U.N. Headquarters in New York.  The event,  “Equality for Women is Progress for All”  was part of the United Nations International Women’s Day, which is celebrated tomorrow, March 8,  dates back to the beginning of the 20th Century, and has been marked at the United Nations since 1975.

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National & International News

Hillary Clinton Urges Equality for Women and Girls

Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spoke at the U.N. commemoration of International Women’s Day fighting for women’s rights.

Saturday, Mar 8, 2014

Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton declared Friday that achieving equality for women and girls is “the great unfinished business of the 21st century.”

The potential 2016 presidential candidate galvanized the U.N. commemoration of International Women’s Day, repeating her resounding declaration as first lady at the 1995 U.N. women’s conference in Beijing that “human rights are women’s rights — and women’s rights are human rights.”

Clinton said that important progress has been made, citing the increasing number of girls in school and women in elected office, and the repeal of many discriminatory laws.

“Yet for all we have achieved together, this remains the great unfinished business of the 21st century,” she said.

Read more >>>>

Update: Link to video below tweeted by Hillary. Thank you, Hillary!

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. SecGen Ban Ki-moon great to see you for yesterday. Watch here:

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This seems a little obvious.  We know that playtime for young animals often foreshadows coping skills necessary later in life and that parental guidance is frequently involved.  Anyone whose cat has ever dumped a live mouse in his/her lap has probably been exposed to the idea that the cat is training its human as it would a kitten.

Human children also engage in play activities that mirror the adult world they see around them.  Whether it is playing house, playing store,  tea time,  GI Joe or a
Superhero saving the world, the game reflects an adult world as the child perceives it and ways of behaving in that world.

The pre-school son of a colleague of mine who was our bookkeeper liked to use the leftover scrap paper I had in my office that was printed with calendar grids.  He carefully inserted what looked to him like numbers.  I asked what he was doing, and he responded, “Payroll!”  There was also an implication that I should not interrupt with inane questions when he was trying to concentrate.

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Playtime is Learning Time

If you spend any time around toddlers—on the playground, at home, or even in an airport waiting area—you’ll quickly notice how important playtime is for them. Whether experienced as a game of chase or dress-up, play is the vehicle of choice for learning, and how the young brain processes important information about the world we live in. Through play, young children learn how to get along with others, how to use their bodies, how to problem-solve, and even how to work out emotions, like stress.

According to Professor Karen Hutchison of Rowan University, “Play is actually the work of a child in which they are preparing themselves for adult roles and for society at large.”

When seen through this lens, active playtime becomes an important part of a child’s early education, rather than just a way to use up spare time. More than a decade of research has shown clear benefits of play to children, especially when children engage in pretend or “make-believe” play from the ages of about two through age six. According to Scientific American, studies have shown an improvement in the depth of language used by children who regularly engage in imaginative play, as well as an improvement in their ability to empathize with other people’s points of view. The same is not true of time spent passively watching TV or other screens.

While children often do a good job of playing if left to their own devices, parents and caregivers can help very young children to engage in play that will stimulate their imaginations. Games like peek-a-boo teach young babies about object permanence, and strengthen the bond between children and their caregivers. For toddlers, outdoor games and exploring, as well as imaginative play with puppets and costumes, can be fun and engaging.

Regardless of the game being played, playtime is most rewarding when it happens regularly and with people children know and love.

Learn More:

In The News:

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Watch parents talk about ways they play with their children—from the silly to the artistic! >>

The Alberta crowd today was somewhat differently preoccupied than the British Columbia audience last night.  Not a lot of tweets chirped forth except a string of repetitive ones on two subjects suggesting at least one preoccupation.

A.  Putin is using resources as weapons.

B.  Avoidance on commenting on the Keystone pipeline.

Nevertheless,  the Clinton charm claimed them in the end.  Of course she can do that blindfolded with her hands tied behind her back.  Here is the one twitpic I found followed by an excellent summary of the event.

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Hillary Clinton charmingly avoids impolitic answers in front of Calgary crowd

By Valerie Fortney, Calgary Herald March 6, 2014

Hillary Clinton charmingly avoids impolitic answers in front of Calgary crowd

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, speaks to students at the University of California Los Angeles campus on the subject of leadership Wednesday, March 5, 2014, in Los Angeles. Clinton is delivering a speech Thursday morning in Calgary.

Photograph by: Nick Ut , AP

It was the billion-dollar question, saved, of course, for the final minutes. “Is this politics or this process?” Frank McKenna asked one of the most recognizable female faces on the planet.

Hillary Clinton explained that during her four-year tenure as U.S. secretary of state, she was indeed involved and apprised of every aspect of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline deal.

Then, in her next breath and with a demure smile, she shut the door. “I can’t comment any further on that,” she went on to say, “Because it is still an ongoing process.”

Read more >>>>

Hillary Clinton to speak in Louisville

Hillary Rodham Clinton

FILE – In this Sept. 9, 2013, file photo, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks about Syria in the South Court Auditorium on the White House Complex in Washington. The filmmaker who was making a documentary about Hillary Clinton for CNN says he is backing out of the project because few people would cooperate with him. Charles Ferguson wrote in a column posted on Huffington Post Monday that he concluded he couldn’t make much of a film. He said that of more than 100 people he approached, only two who had dealt with the former of secretary of state agreed to speak on camera. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File) / AP
Clinton discusses Arizona, Venezuela, White House ...

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will speak in Louisville on April 26 at the United Methodist Women’s Assembly at the Kentucky International Convention Center, according to the group.

She will be a keynote speaker at the assembly, which will run from April 25-27 at the center.

“Secretary Clinton is a lifelong United Methodist and a longtime advocate for women, children and youth,” Harriett Jane Olson, chief executive of United Methodist Women, said in a release. “It was almost 20 years ago when she electrified the participants at the 4th United Nations Conference on Women in Beijing by her declaration that women’s rights are human rights.”

“… Her work reflects commitments United Methodist Women and our predecessor organizations have worked toward for 145 years. We look forward to hearing what she has learned in her work with women around the world.”
Read more >>>>

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to Speak at United Methodist Women Assembly

March 6, 2014

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will deliver a Saturday morning keynote at the 19th quadrennial United Methodist Women Assembly in Louisville, Ky.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will deliver a Saturday morning keynote address April 26 at United Methodist Women’s Assembly at the Kentucky International Convention Center in Louisville, Ky., April 25-27.

“Make It Happen” is the theme for 19th quadrennial gathering of more than 7,000 women of every ethnicity, background and region across the country and international guests. The morning plenary, like the event, will focus on ordinary women organizing to make needed changes in their communities, states, nation and world to improve life for women, children and youth.

- See more at: http://pressreleases.religionnews.com/2014/03/06/former-secretary-state-hillary-rodham-clinton-speak-united-methodist-women-assembly/#sthash.0L2mAs4j.dpuf

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will deliver a Saturday morning keynote at the 19th quadrennial United Methodist Women Assembly in Louisville, Ky.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will deliver a Saturday morning keynote address April 26 at United Methodist Women’s Assembly at the Kentucky International Convention Center in Louisville, Ky., April 25-27.

“Make It Happen” is the theme for 19th quadrennial gathering of more than 7,000 women of every ethnicity, background and region across the country and international guests. The morning plenary, like the event, will focus on ordinary women organizing to make needed changes in their communities, states, nation and world to improve life for women, children and youth.

Read more >>>>

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to Speak at United Methodist Women Assembly

March 6, 2014

- See more at: http://pressreleases.religionnews.com/2014/03/06/former-secretary-state-hillary-rodham-clinton-speak-united-methodist-women-assembly/#sthash.0L2mAs4j.dpuf

04-09-10-08

For the sake of those who have been chanting mindlessly about Hillary’s reset with Russia, here is a link to her last speaking visit to Louisville.  April 9, 2010 she spoke at the McConnell Center as she patiently waited for the Senate to ratify the New START Treaty she crafted with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.    She and Lavrov worked very well together on the treaty (i.e. the reset went just fine) and ratification stalled until December 22, of that year.   When it finally came, it was a great Christmas present.

No one was more invested in today’s Senate ratification of New START than Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. The treaty was her baby. She won Sergei Lavrov’s cooperation and respect. Their teams and they negotiated this treaty together, and Secretary Clinton has worked very hard behind the scenes to achieve those Senate votes.

Read more and see pictures >>>>

Arriving to a standing ovation, and departing to another as admirers rushed the stage to touch her,  Hillary Clinton made a rock star impression on her Canadian audience last night.  Speaking, as usual,  without benefit of notes or teleprompter, she addressed the Vancouver Board of  Trade on the issue of women in business and the benefit to all when women fully participate in all facets of society – business included.  Societies hurt themselves when women are not given full opportunity for participation, she told them, and advised that women should be empowered as peace-makers.  Not nurturing any illusions among female listeners,  she told them to dare to compete,  to expect to fall down, but to be ready to get up and continue the climb.

At a more general level,  she explained that the U.S. has a robust – even boisterous political system.   She took a swipe at the 24/7  news marathon saying it thrives on bombastic conflict and counseled her audience not to vote for candidates who will not compromise.  While asserting that our countries need to work together  – with Mexico as well – on climate change, she avoided comment on the Keystone pipeline.

Briefly addressing foreign policy and events in Ukraine in particular, she provided a quick  history of events leading to the current situation and mentioned that she and Bill Clinton attended a conference in Ukraine last fall.  She said she had worked cooperatively with Yanukovych as secretary of state but that he was not a visionary leader.

Ending her visit with affirmation of our long amicable relationship with our neighbors above the border, she could not resist mentioning the exception: ice hockey – and the crowd roared.

Here are some twitpics I snagged.

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Hillary didn’t say this but note silver medal winners:  There’s no crying in ice hockey.  Just dust yourselves off and try again.

Hillary Clinton coming to United Fresh

03/05/2014 01:42:00 PM
Mike Hornick

Hillary Rodham ClintonClintonFormer Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will be the keynote speaker June 10 at a joint general session of the United Fresh Produce Association and Food Marketing Institute in Chicago.

The keynote session is scheduled for 3:30 to 5 p.m. in the Arie Crown Theater at McCormick Place.

Read more >>>>

Hillary delivered her Luskin Lecture at UCLA this afternoon and was awarded the UCLA Medal, their highest honor.  The front of the medal has the UCLA seal with a banner of the school’s motto: “Let there be light.”  The back has a picture of Royce Hall, the venue where this event took place, as presenter, university Chancellor and CEO Gene Block explained.

She began her address with an anecdote telling the audience that when she and Bill Clinton were younger they were in LA and visited Campbell’s bookstore where they purchased a few botanical prints which have made the rounds with them and now are in their Chappaqua home.  She said every time she looks at them she thinks of UCLA.

Moving on, and before getting to the main messages of her lecture, she took a few moments to speak about the situation in Ukraine and clarify previous remarks and actions.  Voicing support for President Obama’s position, she stated unequivocally that Putin has violated international law.   She called on all parties to work toward reconciliation and support for all Ukrainian citizens.

Calling Putin a “tough guy with thin skin” whose vision of a greater Russia is a re-Sovietized Russia, she said he is squandering Russia’s potential.  She encouraged her fellow Americans to recognize the complexity of the situation and support diplomacy as we all seek a path toward deescalation.

Then she launched into her lecture proper which concerned the dilemma of ensuring college graduates find jobs after graduation. Saying that one-third in the 16-24 age group is out of both work and school she told the audience that a generation is being deprived of rights and opportunities that earlier generations took for granted.

Recounting her personal experiences with her first job at 13 which, she said, gave her a sense of responsibility and moving on to her law school job with the Children’s Defense Fund,  she stressed the personal skills that develop from a first paid job.   While internships can be valuable, she stated that unpaid internships need to give way to on-the-job training and that industries need to move interns into positions of paid employment.

Recalling some of her experiences as secretary of state, she told her audience that in countries where young people cannot find employment the economies also suffer, but she also stressed that government alone cannot solve this problem and explained how the Clinton Foundation is working on programs that bring young people into the work force.  She also pointed out the importance of training people for the jobs that are actually there and cited a Clinton Global Initiative effort that aims to draw talent into the burgeoning healthcare industry.

Calling for workforce training and cooperation, she reiterated her support for compromise and an end to policy-making in evidence-free zones.  She closed her prepared remarks with a call for her audience to bring the light from UCLA with them when they graduate.

The Q&A session began with more questions about the Ukraine situation.  Specifically the question was whether leaders who do not stand up to Putin will face the same kind of  disapproval as those who did not stand up to Hitler.  Hillary said there is not one right way to respond. Clarifying her remarks from yesterday regarding Germany’s 1938 claims of protecting German minorities outside its borders, she stated that she was not making a comparison between Hitler and Putin but rather adding perspective.

She went to to specify that when the USSR dissolved there was a commitment to leave European borders alone, and that while there was an agreement to maintain the Black Sea Fleet in place,  it was clear that the location was within Ukrainian borders.  The commitment, she went on, was violated with Russia’s 2008 invasion of Georgia where Russian-seized territories have not been relinquished.  She called Germany key in resolving the crisis due to its fuel dependence on Russia and the path delicate.

Asked about the effectiveness of her 2009 “reset” with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, she specifed that there were clear objectives, accomplishing the New START Treaty and achieving rights of transit that were indeed  met by that reset and that progress made with Medvedev was primarily with regard to those goals.

Questions then turned to elections – presidential elections particularly – and the likelihood of a woman president.  Hillary pointed out that many countries have preceded the U.S. down this path but also pointed out that the hardest, highest glass ceiling is somewhat easier to crack in parliamentary democracies where the head of state is not the head of government and allowed that the diminishing of resistance to the idea of a woman president is a sign of progress.

A follow-up question addressed the nomination process.  Hillary said the hybrid process works differently for different people and did not predict any changes there.

On the issue of the Affordable Care Act, she took a two-pronged approach saying people need to appreciate what has been accomplished and that perhaps things need to be better explained citing parents’ ability to keep adult children on their plans to age 26, emphasis on preventive care, ending preexisting condition discrimination, a new transparency on disparities in cost for services and medications, and the inclusiveness of Medicaid expansion where it has been implemented.   Challenges to ACA, she said were ideological, political, and commercial.

In response to a question about her evolution on marriage equality she gave credit to Chelsea saying her activism was greatly responsible for enlightening her view but did remind her audience that very early in her tenure as secretary of state she extended spousal benefits to partners of Foreign Service officers (we should not forget that, either).  She told the audience that much of the world is far behind the U.S and Europe on this issue.  Many world leaders deny that there are any LGBT people in their countries and gay people are persecuted in many nations.

The final question was what can liberal arts graduates do to change the world.  Hillary encourage them to pursue exposure to all that is available to them, believe that they can effect change, and, as her hero Eleanor Roosevelt said, “grow skin like a rhinoceros.”

She advised them to take criticism seriously but not personally and to attend to the source.  She told the women that there is still a double standard that will manifest itself in comments about appearance.  She advised them to learn how they want to present themselves and to be persistent.

Closing with advice from her own mom (one of my favorite people), she quoted Dorothy Howell Rodham telling her that you can be a bit walk-on in someone else’s play or you can be a star in your own.  Great advice for young people!

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