You may not believe in God, despite the apparent existence of the "God particle," but you might believe that Brooklyn state senator Marty Golden is God's gift to women.
Well, not to all women, maybe, but certainly to women who write scathing commentary pieces and know a fat pitch when they see one tossed out in all its tempting glory.
Because it seems that Senator Golden has offered -- at taxpayer expense -- to educate women on some professional skills that will help them navigate the tricky world of the workplace. His career-development workshop, called "Posture, Deportment and the Feminine Presence," would help women cross their legs properly, walk "like a model," and climb stairs with elegance.
The story on the Golden-sponsored seminar broke yesterday in City & State, which offers a smart morning news roundup, First Read. (City & State is edited by wunderkind Morgan Pehme, who was in Buffalo last month to help moderate the YWCA's Candidate College, a daylong forum for budding politicians -- a considerably more useful event than Golden's.)
Comedy Central got in on the fun, as did Elspeth Reeve for TheAtlanticWire.com, Erin Gloria Ryan for Jezebel, and Alexis Grenell for City & State, who wrote:
"Although presentation and a working knowledge of professional standards can mean the difference between a steady paycheck and a pink slip, it’s obviously not the biggest obstacle for working women today. If you want to take paid family leave to care for a sick relative or child, Senator Golden and the Republican conference can’t help you. If you’re one of the hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers who would directly benefit from an increase in the minimum wage, according to the Fiscal Policy Institute, Senator Golden can’t help you there either. Maybe you think it should be illegal for your employer to pay a man more than a woman for the same work? Tough luck. Last month, the State Senate concluded their work for the year without so much as a hearing on the Fair Pay Act."
However intrigued they may be, Western New York women shouldn't plan to head downstate for the charm workshop. For some crazy reason, it's just been canceled.
Presidential hopeful and presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney came to Buffalo this past week to raise money for his campaign. His events, a speech and a dinner, were essentially private and about fundraising, not winning votes here. New York, in all its blueness, will not go his way -- but that doesn't mean there isn't support to be harvested locally. In fact, as News Political Reporter Robert McCarthy wrote for Saturday's paper, the effort resulted in a fundraising record for Western New York, bringing in $1.25 million in just a couple of hours.
It was coincidence, but an interesting one, that earlier in the week News Washington Bureau Chief Jerry Zremski's story described how Bain Capital's purchase of longtime Buffalo-area company Niagara Envelope adversely affected the lives of the workers there in 1999. Romney's role heading Bain, a private equity firm, has been much discussed in the campaign, and its political fallout is the subject of a New York Times story today.
Did The News plot the timing of the Bain story to nearly coincide with Romney's visit, as some commenters have suggested? Not at all. The story ran when the reporting on it was complete, and for that reason alone.
Luckily, though, getting the Bain story out of his notebook and into the paper allowed Zremski to focus on the Supreme Court's health care decision which occupied him for the remainder of the week, at first with coverage and then analysis. That includes his piece on today's front page about how the ruling will play out in the hot local Congressional race between incumbent Democrat Kathleen Hochul and former Erie County Executive Chris Collins, a Republican. Given her vulnerability in a largely Republican district, the race is one that's garnering national attention.
The political season is in full swing, with the party conventions just around the corner. And in this season, we'll do what we always do: Publish stories when they are ready -- neither planning the timing to hurt a candidate nor holding them back to protect one.
If that timing sometimes seems awkward, keep in mind that there's always -- to use the phrase from "Macbeth" -- tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow.
The tables are likely to turn, and then turn again.