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The Political Carnival welcomes Amy Simon!


Amy Simon She's History

Amy Simon (@ShesHistoryAmy)  is now officially part of The Political Carnival Team o' Progressive women! Amy is a dear friend who was introduced to me by Nicole Sandler. Amy's not accustomed to daily blogging, but she will post here when she can. She's learning the ropes here at TPC, so please be patient and welcome her in with open arms.


Ever since Paddy's untimely death, I've struggled with how to pick up where she and I left off. We were the best team ever, two crazed liberal women who took on the even crazier world of politics together. I desperately wanted to keep that going, and finally, finally, I'm reviving those old feelings of camaraderie. Sher, Nicole, yours truly, and now Amy: Four crazed liberal women who are taking on the even crazier world of politics together. Team TPC is complete.

So who the heck is Amy Simon? Well... she is a mother, actress, playwright, humanist, improviser, published writer, producer, and self-proclaimed Cultural Herstorian. She has been writing, acting in and producing theater for most of her adult life.

Alarmed and inspired by her daughter’s desire to do her Women’s History Report on Cher, Amy created SHE’S HISTORY! a play, school program and speaker presentation about women who MAKE and MADE history. She performs in Los Angeles and on the road -- in theaters, schools, libraries, museums, historic sites, women’s groups, religious, political and civic organizations, and military bases.

The main objective of SHE’S HISTORY! is to educate our youth. Why do we know more about Kim Kardashian than Abigail Adams? The SHE’S HISTORY EDUCATION PROJECT is a donation-based, tax-deductible 501C program. Fiscally sponsored by, and a collaboration with The Women’s Museum of California, it is a fund set up to bring the play to low income schools at no cost to them.

Amy had me at "educating our youth." Bingo.

“Why isn't this show in the schools?” The answer is: Other than budgets, time constraints, teaching to tests, curriculum pressures, and Women’s History being low on the priority list – who knows? By the way, I went to the reading of She's History in which SNL alum Laraine Newman was a cast member (see image above). It was fantastic!

A frequent guest on local and national radio, Amy was a guest commentator for American Woman In Fact And Fiction, a three part series that aired on Pacifica Radio Archives series. She is also a weekly guest with her Fabulous Female Facts on the Nicole Sandler Show at

In fact, a little birdie tells me that Amy and I may end up working together with Nicole for yet another weekly spot at RadioOrNot. Stay tuned.

This post consists of a few random excerpts from Amy's newsletter. Take it away, Amy:

Elizabeth Warren


Yes,this is Elizabeth Warren and me. She was in L.A. on her “A Fighting Chance” book tour. I am madly, deeply, politically and philosophically in love with this fantastic Senator! Her book is a page-turning must-read.

Here is one of her inspiring stories that she shared with us. When Elizabeth Warren was on the campaign trail in Massachusetts, there were many little girls at her rallies. They had prepared questions and one little asked her, “What events in your life led you to run for the Senate?” So Elizabeth would get down on one knee, and look the little girl in the eye and say: “My name is Elizabeth Warren and I am running for the Senate because that is what little girls do.”

Can you stand it?!

Bye Bye Barbara…!

Barbara Walters “resigned” after a million years on broadcast television. A true trail-blazer for women, she goes “out” on top but here’s how she started. As the first FEMALE co-anchor, of the evening news, she was NOT welcomed by Harry (NO)Reasoner. Here’s what it was like for the trail-blazer. “I’d walk into the studio and they’d all crack jokes and ignore me. It was so lonely… “

Randi Rhodes

Another trail-blazing fabulous female bids farewell to the airwaves. Randi Rhodes, the bitchinist, most informed, fact checking, knows her stuff inside out and backwards, passionate, pissed off, kind and classy progressive talk show host, ended the Randi Rhodes radio show on Friday May 17th, leaving the gapingest hole on the air. I have had the honor of being on her show with her permanent guest host, my pal Nicole Sandler many times. A true inspiration and political powerhouse, who has interviewed Presidents and politicians her millions of fans and will miss her…..

randy and nicolaRandi and Nicole


The 8th Grade students at Horace Mann Middle School in Beverly Hills knew ALL about Kim Kardashian and did know a little about Malala Yousafzai, but learned more and were blown away by her story. Read all about her in my BLOG - WOMEN OF 2013 here. Malala is all over this horrific heartbreaking mind blowing story of Boko Haram, the Islamic barbaric men who kidnapped 270 (or more) Nigerian Schoolgirls on April 14th.


Here is my segment on about this and the Feminist Majority Protest of the Beverly Hills Hotel whose owner – the Sultan of Brunei just enacted some new laws -including amputations, and stoning of gays and lesbians and women who have abortions or commit adultery.

Read about the protest and boycott here.


The Political Carnival welcomes Nicole Sandler!


nicole sandler radio or not smallernicole sandler radio or not logo

My dear friend, one of my favorite people, and my weekly radio host, Nicole Sandler, is now officially part of The Political Carnival Team o' Three (now Four)!

If you're a regular TPC reader, then you already know that Nicole and I have been working (more like playing) together for years. We decided it would really annoy the trolls if we "merged" our two sites, and so we did. This way we can reach a larger audience of progressives while pissing even more people off at the same time! Oh but I kid the RWNJ.

Nicole has put a "Laffy's Place" (meaning, TPC) tab at her site, and we are adding two new tabs in our navigation bar: "Nicole Sandler" and "Radio Or Not." The Radio Or Not tab will take you directly to Nicole's site, which is a terrific place to land, by the way. And the Nicole tab (which will be up asap) will lead you straight to all of her posts here at TPC.

Nicole suffers no fools, she's sharp as a tack, thorough, astute, and a crack-up. As Mr. Laffy says, Nicole Sandler is "not unassuming," or as I like to put it, she's direct and fearless. And now she's a member of The Political Carnival family!

So please welcome Nicole Sandler to TPC with open arms. She's a one-of-a-kind treasure.


She's also one of the best socialist Marxist French gay Kenyan liberal commies I know, a perfect fit for this site, and together, we'll take on anyone who tries to stop Team Radio Or Not.

Nicole Sandler, me Netroots Nation 13 broadcast boothAt Netroots Nation June 2013, video here


The Political Carnival welcomes Sherry Howarth Hardy (@FreeRangeTalk)!


welcome to the political carnival

Guest contributor Sherry Howarth Hardy (aka "hardybear" of the wonderful Free Range Talk site, @FreeRangeTalk on Twitter) is now officially part of The Political Carnival Team o' Two (now Three)!

If you're a regular TPC reader, then you're already familiar with Sher's posts. Sher's writings are smart, astute, and charmingly witty. She also happens to be really, really nice. And now she's a member of The Political Carnival family!

We invited her on board because, since my dad's passing I've been ordered by my doctor to cut back, orders I haven't exactly obeyed. I'm barely able to keep up my weekly spots on radio shows, TPC posts, my now-rare BLUNT videos, and of course, my family.

Paddy's untimely death not only left huge shoes to fill and a huge hole in our hearts, but also a huge blogging void here at TPC. One that I cannot fill alone.

Hence (and yes, I just wanted to say "hence"), lwdgrfx (who is our webmaster and part-time saint who posts when he can) and I asked Sher if she'd be interested in writing regularly, and to my delight (and relief), she said she'd be thrilled to jump in. Her style and P.O.V. are already a great fit.

So please welcome "TPC Sher" in by throwing some encouraging words her way so she stays here for a good long run.

welcome to the political carnival Sher hardybear


Blog headline o' the day: "Boehner drops bombshell as Scar Jo rocks epic sideboob."


read first blog headline

I don't know how Garry Trudeau does it, but he always does what he does well, including his latest Doonesbury strip. In this Sunday's snark fest, Trudeau concentrates on how to word a blog headline, something with which we here at The Political Carnival are all too familiar.

In fact, I wrote an entire post about that: "This could be a totally misleading headline. Please read the entire post." Here are some excerpts:

I can't count the times I've posted links to TPC on Twitter and Facebook and gotten responses from readers who only read the blog headline and then commented on what they assumed the post was about. I then spend time I don't have explaining, correcting, soothing, or redirecting right back to the post.

Blog titles and headlines are often misleading, sometimes intentionally. [And sometimes unintentionally]... I mistakenly presume that people will link over to see what we've taken the time, effort, and even thought (I know, right?) to write, including further explanation of a premise, pertinent information, commentary, snark, quotes from original articles, visuals, videos, and links to other sites that go into more detail.

Instead, people often base their opinions on one sentence, one that may not even represent what's in the body of the post. At all. Or maybe a little bit. Or maybe a lot, but there's still much more information than one measly line will telegraph.

So, to repeat myself, and to state the obvious, it's always a good idea to follow links and not take headlines at face value.

Trudeau takes that premise and runs with it:

doonesbury blog headline


Note to Readers: Everyone needs a day off now and then


note to readers smaller


Dear Everyone Reading This,

Since Paddy's passing, Lucian and I have worked day and night to keep The Political Carnival going. We've invited a number of very generous, very talented guest bloggers in to help fill the painful void, we've been working like crazy behind the scenes to introduce a new format (while still keeping the old one, so no worries, longtime readers!), and we've been doing all of this while experiencing a roller coaster of emotions.

Today, we're taking the day off. Lucian has actual work to do, and I managed to screw up my neck again. Trying to relax newly pulled neck muscles that are pressing on 3 slipped discs while my kitchen and front yard are simultaneously being demolished and renovated is nearly impossible. So instead of grabbing the nearest bottle of wine (which I'll get to later, trust me), I'm going to back off for the day.

Again, we apologize for the light posting, but our blogging schedule will have to be like this for several weeks.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.



we love you


Blog Grounded This A.M.


I'm having serious problems. Sorry.

ADDED, Laffy Note: Paddy's been under the weather and won't be around for a day or two, I'm guessing. David has a new job (!!), but has submitted a couple of posts that I'll put up later. I'm off to the doctor, but will try to post when I get back. We apologize for the slow day(s).



Blogger interrupted: Apparently I'm suffering from "complicated grief"


writer interrupted
doctor's orders

So as some of you recall, this happened last May: Final Dad Report: To the so, so many of you kind enough to ask and care.

Since my dad passed away, I haven't been doing all that well, and as it turns out, worse than I thought. Now before all my well-meaning pals tell me that I should have been taking care of myself, I promise you, I have been. Having been brought up by a truly superb doctor, I'm hyper-aware of how to stay in the best possible health. But despite being good to myself, resting, taking breaks when I can, and cutting back, my blood pressure's up and I'm not myself, as I told you here: Note to Readers.

In the past two days I've been to two doctors. Both were concerned about my stress level, both ordered me to stop doing what I do, at least for awhile, and to take a very mild, children's dose of anti-depressant until I get past this.

Did I mention I hate meds? But in this case I didn't argue. Well, maybe a little.

I have what they call "complicated grief depression" which is when grief symptoms persist for longer than six months. I had pretty much self-diagnosed, but didn't realize that what I was going through was a real "thing" with an actual name. Via the Harvard Medical School website:

[I]f the symptoms linger and become increasingly debilitating, the condition turns into what is now being called unresolved, protracted, traumatic, or complicated grief. It has features of both depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). ...

The most characteristic symptoms are intrusive thoughts and images of the deceased person...

Bingo. Thankfully, most of the symptoms described in the article didn't apply to me.

Yes, this is really personal stuff, but I'm sharing it with you in case anyone else out there who is dealing with the death of someone close to them feels as confused as I've been feeling lately. It's a relief of sorts to get a handle on what the hell is going on in my tiny, rattled little noggin.

So, until I'm given different marching orders, I won't be posting much, if at all. Mandatory down time.

However, I will be paying close attention to politics, and will likely keep up with my Tuesday radio spot with Nicole Sandler. I will also still be on the Twitter Machine (albeit not as much), mostly commenting, snarking, and tweeting Paddy and David's always excellent posts. Actually, my "Miss This?" automated tweets will take care of most of that, but I'll make every effort to bring attention to the most newsworthy TPC items when I can.

I admit, I don't quite know how to do this, and I'm sort of floundering. For the first time in my life, I have no real direction, at least for the moment, having been forced to ease up on the pace and intensity I've become accustomed to over the past seven years covering politics... and before that, decades passionately immersed in show biz.

But health comes first. Period.

Thank you for all the support you've given me since May, and for always understanding and caring. You guys rock.

And please be good to Paddy and David!

drunk wine doctor