Friday, February 27, 2009

CPSIA – Calling All “Mommies”

The two days I spent at the ICPHSO meeting (see http://www.icphso.org/ for background on this safety issues forum) drove home many messages about the CPSIA, most of them unpleasant. You will be seeing more on this topic in this space in coming days. There’s a lot to discuss. For the moment, however, I would like to comment on how we are being portrayed by the Powers That Be. I can confirm that you (and I, apparently) are “Mommy Bloggers” in the parlance of the PTBs and that we are “misleading” the public in our writings in our blogs. Yes, you are just “Mommies”, not serious people, intelligent people, business people. We are (apparently) a marginal group of trivial people, not quite smart enough to handle a law as brilliant as the CPSIA and certainly no match for the Brains at the consumer groups or in Congress. We’re just a bunch of Mommies, whiling away the hours with newfangled blogs, unable to control ourselves at the keyboard. And, boy, do we love to talk online. You get the picture. [Btw, no insult meant to Moms on my part, I should note. If you knew my Mom, you would know just how ridiculous it is to insult the intelligence or insight of Moms. Actually, anyone with a Mom probably can tell you that.]

Compounding the problem in the view of the PTBs, we are apparently guilty of “misleading” our readers. I get the impression that it is because we all appear to be “hysterical” and “panicked”. [The proffered solution to our “emotional moments” is just to TRUST the CPSC and Congress. They know what’s best for us,, don't worry. I guess they must be the “Dads”. There, there, Mommies., Congress will protect you!] The beautiful part of this slam on our intelligence and integrity is that the accusation comes from Congress and from the consumer groups. Regarding Congress, I would simply note that Mr. Waxman has caused me to be uninvited to testify on the record THREE TIMES NOW. Aha, there’s a guy who’s out to set the record straight with open debate and dialogue. I guess I must have a “bad motive” in my opposition to his perfect law. Could there really be ANY other explanation?! Can't let the riffraff pollute the discussion, now can we?

In the case of the consumer groups, it is clear that they are making considerable errors themselves (misleading accusations of travel abuse by Nancy Nord, distortions of actual testing costs, mischaracterization of the actual workings of the law and so on) but, hey, let’s not be too picky here because, DARNIT, they’re just looking after our own best interests!. Of course, Consumers Union say they fact check their blogs, which makes those blogs demonstrably better than anyone else's, especially a bunch of Mommies. No, we should all rely on those lily white and pure architects of society and while we're all it, the traditional media, well-known for being faultless. Ironically, in all the bashing, there are no actual examples of abuse or serious and misleading error, just a lot of hot air assertions. It must be nice to be able to just swing away with no accountability. I guess one doesn't have to fact check an accusation. . . .

I will put my blog upside anyone else’s blog for accuracy. Please find my errors and send them to me, consumer group factcheckers. I stand ready to correct my many misleading errors.

The tactic of marginalizing an unpopular or inconvenient message by attacking the messenger is an old trick. The way to beat this tactic is to expose it. Hey, supporters of the CPSIA, instead of maligning us, why not take us seriously and ANSWER US? If you're right, we'll be the first to admit it. Show some respect, however, and respond!

Rick

14 comments:

Jen said...

Gee Rick. I had no idea that once I used my uterus that my brain would fall out the back of my head. Too bad I wasted all that money on both an undergraduate and graduate degree. Had I known I would have saved that tuition money to pay for third party testing.

Wacky Hermit said...

I second Jen. Did my Master's degree become irrelevant with my first child (which I had before I even started it), or with subsequent children? Gee, I guess I took out all those student loans (which I'm trying to pay back with my business non-income) for nothing.

I say we should start an "Adopt A Congressman" program. Bring 'em out here into "hick country" and see how long they last when they have to walk half a mile to the nearest place they can buy a latte. I would especially love to see some of them try to keep up with my day. No help from aides, of course-- I don't have any!

Louise-OSET said...

OK, so may be, I personally, being six months pregnant have subsatantial 'mummy to be placenta brain' but that can't apply to the rest of you!
Also, the high paid corporate lawyers of the powersports industry must have got it right otherwise they wouldn't have shut down their $1 billion a year industry. But the Gov isn't even listening to them.

veronica said...

i second jen and wacky hermit.....

and the adopt a congressman program would be classic!

just wanted to chime in and say that, before i'm off to working... oops i meant before i get back to using my uterus filled brain.

tootles!

Anonymous said...

This home educating mom doesn't have a blog but she does have an advanced degree, knows how to write a letter and use the telephone. It looks like congress is the one with "baby brain" as they can't be bothered to read the bills or find out the facts and make emotion-based decisions. Dementia might be a better diagnosis--some have been in DC too long and it's time to "MOVE ON".

We like your products too. They are a nice complement to grandma's quilts and our old books.

For a bit of humor, this fellow has at least 3 cpsia spoof videos which present the facts well. I am not related to him.
http://www.youtube.com/user/dollarmovies

Lora said...

I am not offended at all by the "mommy blogger" statement.

It is absurd and I wouldn't begin to defend my intellect because I was a mother and a blogger.

Now if I were a lawyer or politician, I would spend my life trying to convince everyone how smart I was (probably to no avail).

Lora said...

Oh... not to mention, how "honest" I was.

Elisabeth said...

Once again Rick proves why he's my hero. Great - though infuriating - post. Now I feel my government wants to shut me up AND shut me down. Fantastic.

Goodies for Mom said...

Maybe if they did a little RESEARCH, then knew how to write a law so it actually made business sense, common sense, and was intrepretable into basic practice we wouldn't have such trouble understanding and doing what they request. Maybe they should read their own bill for a change. If they are anything like half the people I work with it's unlikely most of them read the whole law before voting beyond reading an executive summary of it and whatever they are told before the vote. "Safe products for children - ok I vote for it." Boy, that was exhausting, let's call for a recess.

My MBA didn't teach me to interpret B.S.!!!!

Jen, love your comment "...had no idea that once I used my uterus that my brain would fall out the back of my head."

Valerie Jacobsen said...

MOMMIES (and DADDIES) are the real protectors of America's children.

What these consumer groups cannot comprehend--and I just wrote about this at bookroomblog.com--is that American businesses are positively good for American children. We're the real deal. We're the ones who work hard to create the wealth that has provided--up until now--a good standard of living for American children.

The Mommy bloggers of America are steamed because these pseudo-protectors are busy building a wall between our children and some of the best educational products ever manufactured. We are steamed because these pseudo-protectors are trying to shrink the parental purse--and rapidly succeeding.

We MOMMIES and DADDIES are doing the REAL protective work for America's children. We understood, we could see immediately, that when these consumer groups came after us, when Congress came after us, they came after our kids.

It's too bad that no one warned them that when you get Mama Bear riled up she WILL STRIKE BACK to defend her little cubs, the children of America.

Blue Wings said...

That absolutely leaves me flabbergasted. I knew they were sexist, but to that degree? I can't wait for them to show us all how unintelligent they are with their next thoughtless comment.

Tristan Benz - Maiden America - www.maidenus.com said...

Hah, I agree with Jen - after learning three languages, acting, directing, designing a set; earning degrees in journalism and fashion design; working in both manufacturing and corporate; studying broadcast journalism, art history, English; learning to sing, dance and play the flute; learning about cultures first-hand by travelling to foreign lands; and now managing to raise three quality human beings (who WILL question things and think independently - which I declare, they'll HAVE TO with this kind of "leadership" that is intent on TAKING THEIR FUTURE FROM PROMISE TO DISASTER while, at the same time, replacing our parental authority with that of Big Brother), start and run a business, keep an organized home, manage two websites, five blogs, all the while driving kids to sports and other events - and, oh yes, at the same time, let's toss in the fact that I'm homeschooling all three of my children to a degree of learning our public schools are simply too burdened to manage, generally speaking...GEE....


oh - I just can't resist - I'm on a ROLL - let's toss in this one - since I have tits that have been used to suckle my offspring, then I guess I have no choice but to go along with the "powers that be" and declare myself no longer qualified to be a smart, vivacious, take-me-serious-kind-of-woman anymore...

Ladies, is THIS WHAT OUR MOTHERS and GRANDMOTHERS FOUGHT SO HARD TO OFFER US, AS WOMEN IN AMERICA?

Ah, then, I guess.....................

Yes, I must be REDUCED to the "inferior" role of "Mommy" by those who are a) clearly NEEDING to use an old tactic (best form of defense is offense) and b) clearly of the opinion that they are in a position SUPERIOR to that of WE, the "mommies" and PARENTS (dads should be outraged for not being included in this insult just because they've been so disadvantaged as to LACK a uterus!) and - ah, let's not forget, we fill some other pretty big shoes in AMERICA - that of being CITIZENS.

Our PUBLIC SERVANTS need a stern reminder (as in my video on YouTube under Power2Parents) of just who it is that PAYS THEIR SALARIES.

The best way to beat those who believe their authority is above that of WE the PEOPLE is to ensure that they NO LONGER HAVE JOBS in SERVICE of US. If they fail to hear our growing voice, ALL citizens of Whoville here ought to be outraged by this, ALONE.

Again - as I sent note out on Twitter, mark my words - only when all citizens are informed will they unite against tyranny - against those who have decided they are "above" We the citizens of this great nation.

I don't care if they're donkeys or elephants - if they aren't listening without demeaning WE the people in the process, they aren't serving OUR interests at all.

I end this comment with three fabulous quotes:

1) "Moral cowardice that keeps us from speaking our minds is as dangerous to this country as irresponsible talk. The right way is not always the popular and easy way. Standing for right when it is unpopular is a true test of moral character." - Margaret Chase Smith

2)"The only title in our democracy superior to that of President is the title of Citizen" - Louis D Brandeis, former US Supreme Court Justice.

3)"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage - to move in the opposite direction." - Albert Einstin

For more great quotes like these visit http://www.maidenus.com/MaidenAmerica2008quotesoftheweek.php

It's time to hit the streets with petitions folks! Shall we create a "master" to download? With information, a place to sign? I know there's been an online petition going but not all of us "regular folks" who care about America are online.

Cheers,
Tristan Benz

Lora said...

Ladies, ladies! LOL

Why let this "mommy blogger" thing get you in a tizzy?

Really, the statement is quite interesting if you think about it.

It is similar to saying, "No one has complained about the smell except that nose."

Saying that mothers are outraged over a law intended to "protect children" speaks volumes.

After all, who would know better about foul aromas than one who possesses a nose?

We "mommy bloggers" smell and tell.
It is time for Congress to use its ears and listen.

Headmistress, zookeeper said...

I am a mommy, but there are only seven human beings in the world who have the right to call me that. The PTB may call me Mrs. and when they do, they could quote those portions of the law that refute what I have said. Meanwhile, as Lora said, these 'advocates' might note that when Mommys don't even like their protectionist Nanny law, something is seriously wrong with it.

But that would require some logic.