November 20, 2008

Barack Obama and the World's Expectations

I discuss this issue on Press TV

as part of a round table, November 19, 2008.

November 14, 2008

Senator Clinton as Secretary of State?

There are rumors that President-elect Obama is vetting Senator Hillary Clinton for Secretary of State. Taking Clinton out of the Senate and putting her in this position would be a major loss for New York, and no gain for Obama's foreign policy team.

It is true that Clinton has met many international leaders - mostly during her time as first lady and not in a policy making capacity. She has also traveled abroad as Senator - mostly to Israel voicing her unwavering support. She has tried to boost her foreign policy credentials over the years by joining the Senate Armed Services Committee - mostly to support her candidacy for President. Not one of these examples makes her a diplomat.

Clinton, unlike Obama, is hawkish on national security issues. May I remind you she voted to go to war with Iraq and repeatedly said she thought nothing of using nuclear weapons on Iran.

Making Clinton Secretary of State is not what the US needs especially when it is trying to repair its relationships in the world, end two wars and get the Middle East peace process back on track. Further, trying to bring a more balanced civilian component into foreign policy is nothing she has ever purported to support.

So I ask you, will putting her in the top diplomat position encourage a better foreign policy and change? I don't think so. What will she say to the Iranians, "oh that bombing threat was just for constituency consumption"?

If Obama is serious about turning America around, Chuck Hagel would be a much wiser choice. He has spoken out against the war, supported many of Obama's initiatives in the Senate and, as a Republican, would be the right choice to build the bridge between party lines.

Hagel also understands the importance of leveling our civilian leadership in the foreign policy equation, taking into account international interests and working to improve the status of this country throughout the world. Clinton would serve everyone better by staying in the Senate and it would serve Obama much better if he left her there.

October 7, 2008

Tricia on the Laura Flanders Show

Me and Robert Fisk on GritTV! Check it out.

GRITtv with Laura Flanders airs Mon-Thurs, at 8pm & 1 am ET, on Free Speech TV (DISH Network ch. 9415), on public stations and online at and

August 27, 2008

The H Factor: Could Hillary Clinton save Women?

Like most political wonks, I’m spending my week watching the Democratic National Convention and, like most Obama supporters, I am tired of hearing all the hoopla around Hillary Clinton. After all, whose convention is this anyway? It is certainly not hers, but in true Clinton fashion she is not opposed in the least to having the spotlight shine directly on her.

Let us be clear. Although she gave Obama a run for his money, she is not the candidate. He is. And furthermore, you can bet that if the shoe were on the other foot, Clinton would give Obama walking papers. My gut tells me she’d no sooner have Obama on the stage than George W. Bush himself. I wonder if America would be shouting out and sending delegates to vote for him – doubtful.

I completely understand that there is a group of women out there who think that putting her in the White House is somehow going to be the nail that shatters the glass ceiling, but I’m sorry to say they are wrong. Hillary Clinton is no more going to get women equal standing in the world than the Taliban.

Despite the fact that women have risen to be CEOs of PepsiCo, Avon, Xerox, Hewlett-Packard and other companies, their women employees are still making seventy cents on the dollar. Not one of these CEOs ‘saved’ women.

Martha or Operah haven’t cracked that glass and neither have the notable Secretaries of State Madeleine Albright and Condi Rice. And although the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, is third in line for the Presidency, her aspirations to help women gain more power in Congress are consistently undermined by men.

So, if all these amazing women can’t, as Hillary supporters say, “give us our due,” what makes us think Hillary can? Just having a woman in the White House will not solve all our ills. That is something, all women and, dare I say men, are going to have to do together.

Our first steps should be to ensure that as we gain power we bring women with us, as we gain authority we must ensure women get equal benefits and pay, as we gain influence we need to educate men on how important women’s contributions are in all areas.

We must also be accountable to ourselves and each other making sure we do not discriminate against women with children, women who have gaps in their lives because they nursed a loved one and women who missed work time because of their own trials with poverty or illness.

It is ‘we the women’ who need to band together in order to ensure that our everyday actions persuade our husbands, daughters, sons and selves to ‘give us our due’ never allowing our future to be reliant on one person or in this case one woman.

No doubt Hillary should be congratulated on her accomplishments. Her everyday trials of working in a male dominated Congress should never be diminished. We women however should not allow her minor defeat to deter us. We should alternatively embrace it, use it and move forward never allowing it to consume us and overlook the momentous success of another.