Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog

For those of you who missed Wednesday’s show:

This week’s Halli Casser-Jayne show is all about answering the question: is feminism in porn an oxymoron? The adult entertainment business has been a male-dominated industry for so long–is it even possible that these two seemingly incompatible realms could (and, if we might say so ourselves, should) work together?

We’re joined on the show first by Ohio University’s Professor Joseph Slade. Dr. Slade is a topic expert and the author of Pornography and Sexual Representation: A Reference Guide, the definitive book on the adult entertainment business. Professor Slade opens by informing–or, perhaps, reminding–us that, “It’s virtually impossible to define obscenity any longer to anyone’s satisfaction.” He goes on to give us a rational, educated definition (and history!) of a topic so many of us are afraid to talk about.

We speak next to Lux Alptraum, the editor of Fleshbot dot com, the web’s foremost blog about sexuality and adult entertainment. She says, “My mission is about promoting positive sex and sexuality, encouraging people to talk about sex and feel comfortable about sex, and in a lot of ways porn is a really direct way of doing that.” We talk about how the internet has changed the industry, broadened the availability, accessibility and appeal of various types of adult entertainment, and how between “feminist” porn and “humanist” porn are really joint concepts.

Leena Sky, a psychology professor, mother of three, and adult film star, is our next guest. Leena has three degrees, including a PhD in education, and says that the adult entertainment industry is something she would have gotten into younger than she did if she’d had the confidence at that time. For Leena, this career represents a sexual and existential liberation she’s long been seeking–she says she’s happier doing this than she was as a professor, a therapist, or a counselor. We discuss the erroneous concepts behind why people get into this industry, and how Leena’s path led her here. “I didn’t set out to be a porn star,” Leena says, “but I’ll be honest, as much as I maybe shouldn’t have wanted it, this role fits me most.”

Next we’re joined by Petra Joy, a celebrated director, producer, author and curator of feminist pornography, and Aurora Snow, an adult film star and writer. Petra’s been producing and directing erotic films since 2004, and says, “I think it’s very important that men and women are represented as as equals in all kinds of film, and especially in porn, because porn is just a mirror to me. Porn is very political, it shows what goes on in the bedroom, it shows what goes on in relationships, and if it just perpetuates the old and dated roles that gender has.…then things can’t improve and change.” Petra’s opinions and insights on this topic are as fascinating as they are invaluable, and her considerable experience (in producing, it must be said, absolutely exquisite films) adds a tenor of permanence and importance to this discussion that is rarely achieved when working with this topic.

Finally, Aurora Snow, an adult film star and writer, talks to us about a recent film experience that was definitely more harrowing than her typical fare! It wouldn’t make sense to spoil you for what is truly a fascinating story, and, of course, this review has hardly done the episode justice. Hear Aurora’s story, and engage in a discussion that’s as necessary as it is rare, by listening to this week’s Halli Casser-Jayne Show for yourself! We promise, it won’t disappoint.


Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog


The Halli Casser-Jayne Show has an extraordinary segment waiting for you this Wednesday, June 6, 3 pm, and this Thursday, June 7, 9 pm EST: ADULT ENTERTAINMENT AND THE NEW FEMINIST WAVE. Yes, we’re exploring pornography and women. And, yes, some of you might be horrified. We hope that most of you (women and men alike) will tune in with an open-mind for a riveting hour of talk radio at its best. (Check out the show page on this site for further information.)

In the spirit of the upcoming show, I am going to post a piece that originally ran on Huffington Post. It explores a topic we will discuss Wednesday and Thursday.  Some thoughts on the subject:  HOW I WILL TELL MY DAUGHTERS I WORK IN PORN, by porn star Erika Lust.

Of all the interesting points this article brings up, I’m stuck on this one: “I truly believe that if I were a man, I wouldn’t receive the constant moral questioning I referred to initially: about what my parents think and how I’m going to tell my girls, but we already know that being a woman, even today, has it’s ups and downs.”

The writer of the piece, Erika Lust, is talking about working in the porn industry, but isn’t this constant moral questioning part and parcel of the experience of the everyday American woman? Whether we’re writing and directing feminist adult films or working two jobs to make ends meet, there are always the questions: what are you wearing? Who are you sleeping with? Are you setting the “right” example for your daughters (though please don’t ask what the “right” example is — it does tend to make the boys uncomfortable, unpleasant, or both). If the Republican Penis Brigade has their way, those questions will be more than just awkward conversational pitfalls or implications sent along silently on judgmental looks. They’ll be government-mandated “confessions” with government-mandated “solutions,” and I don’t think we need to see that on the silver screen (X-Rated or not) to get why it’s terrifying.

There’s always something to learn from the things we don’t (or, more accurately, WON’T) talk about. This week’s Halli Casser-Jayne Show is all about feminism, porn, and how those two concepts can work beautifully together; join us on Wednesday, and see what you can learn from this taboo that we, as a society, are really old enough to grow out of.


When people around me learn of my profession, they immediately start asking morbid questions. And even if they’re liberal people, they all ask the same thing: how did you tell your parents and how are you going to tell your daughters? I realize that I have a controversial profession: I’ve written books about sex and feminism, and I also write, produce and direct porn for women.

The feminine voice is marginal in the discourse of porn, which has been expressed in masculine (and often chauvinist) terms for more than four decades. But in these last few years, other young directors and I have successfully demonstrated that another kind of adult film is possible: one where the woman is the protagonist and her pleasure has importance, where the roles that represent us aren’t those of the prostitute, Lolita, nurse, babysitter, nymphomaniac… where, finally, the men aren’t the stereotype of the f–king machine, where the styling and the locations make sense, where there are stories about feelings and passion, where the sex (although explicit) is human and beautiful, and not gynecological or athletic. We are successfully producing porn that is a pleasing experience in both aesthetics and ethics, so far beyond traditional porn, which is so often offensive, violent and displeasing.

I truly believe that if I were a man, I wouldn’t receive the constant moral questioning I referred to initially: about what my parents think and how I’m going to tell my girls, but we already know that being a woman, even today, has it’s ups and downs. I think that I was even judging myself at first, and because of it I had to resist telling my parents, who live in Stockholm, while I was safely away in Barcelona. But they had Internet and my mother, who I had believed incapable of using Google at 70 years old, searched for “Erika Lust” and forced it to come out. But both she and my father surprised me with a very positive reaction, and showed me they understood that there was a very important, very radical difference between my work and traditional porn. They would certainly have been more comfortable if I’d been a lawyer, professor or architect — at least it would have been easier to talk about their daughter’s work with their friends.

Regarding my daughters, I have to admit that I haven’t thought about it at all, since the oldest is four and the youngest is one. But I feel that when the moment arrives, there won’t be a problem: My work is honest, innovative and has a cause. Not only for the content and message of the movies I make, but also because the sex-positive feminism with which I identify, and which defends the idea that sexual freedom is an essential component to women’s rights. And I think porn that is intelligent, respectful of women, contemporary and thoughtful actually contributes to women’s full sexual liberation.

Society is always trying to control and oversee our sexuality, as it does with everything else. Sometimes it’s the state, many times it’s the church, sometimes the more radical feminists, the conservatives and the male chauvinists; all have their motives for controlling us. Their objective is to limit our sexuality to family and reproduction, with the intention that sex should never seem fun; should it, we become dangerous and unworthy of respect in their eyes.

Many times pornography is accused of being the lowest product of society, and of transmitting the worst values; but we shouldn’t forget about television, cinema, advertising, fashion, all of which quite often transmit negative messages about a woman’s body and breed confusion about gender and sexuality.

Fathers, mothers, teachers, aunts, friends, grandmothers, all of these in fact transmit values about sex and gender to children. We must all (including those in porn) think about what we say and how we say it, until the end of their childhood or early adolescence.

I want my daughters to learn that sex is life and pleasure, not just the risk of disease and unwanted pregnancy. I will tell them that I am a writer and director of films, and this my movies talk about love, about men and women who desire each other, about passion and sex. And of course I have to tell them what sex is, but this isn’t just me, it’s all of the fathers and mothers in the world! If we learn to explain what sex is to our children tactfully and in a natural, intelligent manner, we avoid that first explanation being from Nacho Vidal or Rocco Sifreddi. Or in the case of my friend, from Google, when her eight-year-old son and an older friend searched the web for “bitch”.

When they are adolescents and a boyfriend shows them a porn film, I want my daughters to be able to decide what they like and what they don’t: to be critical, to laugh if necessary, and ideally, to show the boys a different kind of film, one that they prefer instead.

Follow Erika Lust on Twitter:
As originally posted on Huffington Post dot com


Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog

With all due respect for the state of Florida and its current influx of zombies, you are not alone. We are a nation of zombies. We don’t need drugs like the au courant bath salts that allegedly led a naked, zombie-like man to nibble on the face of a homeless man for a late night Draculean snack to prove it. In fact, in a play on words, a bad one, forgive me, I’m wondering if what this country doesn’t need isn’t a long, hot bath laced with…ah…bath salts.

If I hear one more person tell me how exhausted they are and how they feel like a zombie, like the walking dead, I think I’m going to scream like a banshee!

Wide-eyed and bushy-tailed ain’t the current mantra of most Americans who, if you haven’t noticed, lately are looking zombie-like. Today’s kids have an otherworld look in their eyes, and the pasty skin of vampires. Take a look around and you’ll see that the average Joe and Joanie have deep purple pockets etched beneath their tired eyes and lumber along like old Frankenstein Monsters from working too many jobs and sleeping too little.

According to too many studies too exhausting to name here, over 35 million Americans suffer from sleep deprivation. Yikes! Are Americans the living dead?

Is it any wonder that prescription drug use and consequential deaths are up? That we’ve turned into the most obese nation in the world? That approximately fifty percent of all marriages end in divorce? That although the crime rate is down statistically in the U.S., it ain’t for the zombies trying. Rather law enforcement has all sorts of technology at its disposal that they are quick on the draw to use like zombies enraged. Taser, anyone?

Our sleep-deprived (or is it depraved?) society is near hysteria. There appears to be a doomsday mentality amongst the many, when it used to be amongst the few. We’ve become a nation of zombies riveted to ugly news. What used to pepper the papers of the tabloids has become mainstream drama in our few remaining dailies.

Take the somnolent state of Florida where high-profile murders continue to titillate the nation in a state governed by a creature created by an unorthodox scientific experiment — modern-day Republicanism. That creature? Governor Rick Scott who, by the devil and the deep blue sea bears an uncommon resemblance to the product of that experiment, Frankenstein’s Monster.

Included in the long list of sensational dramas splashed across the Florida papers like the incoming tide thrashes against a barnacled wooden jetty is this delicious headline: Florida Doctor Spits Blood at Highway Patrolman.

OK, so it’s not just Florida. Illinois: Man Bites Women in Westchester. California: Man Bites Cousin’s Nose Off. It’s a regular feeding-frenzy out there by the sleep-deprived, mal-nourished soulless walking corpses that are too many Americans.

On Tumblr, the social networking site, the many cases of cannibalism and related dramas are listed under the I vant to suck your blood sensational heading: “Zombie Apocalypse Coming Soon.”

Guess what folks, it’s here.

Most of us are just too tired to care. 


Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog

These days, heart and politics seem to be anathema to one another. That is the American political reality. While we like to think that our elected officials seek office for the greater good and sacrifice their personal lives in order to serve, more of us know that the truth is that in these cynical times, far too many of our politicians are self-serving. Or, as I like to say, too many of them pledge their allegiance to their parties rather than to their constituents’ needs.

To a generation of Americans the naïve and sentimental Jefferson Smith, the dedicated politician so brilliantly portrayed by that regular guy actor Jimmy Stewart in the film Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, might appear to be a bit of a buffoon. In today’s times, does any politician really give a hoot about anything? Is there even one honest politician out there in the sea of many deceitful ones? I suppose it would be fair to say that they each have their moments, but the moments seem few and far between. If you can’t tell, I’ve been feeling down in the dumps about our country’s politics of late and have been close to losing all hope in our tarnished system.

But just when my cynicism reached full-bore, along came a moment in political history that deserves a shout-out and restores my hope that there is still some heart left in our politicians. In the case of Vice President Joe Biden there is a heart so big the Great and Powerful Wizard of Oz would be proud. We Americans should be, too.

Vice President Biden has served his role as Vice President of the United States admirably. There are some who say that it is a vice president’s job to play the role of America’s buffoon. There’s a long history of vice presidential fall guys, with the poster child for the silliest veep, being, of course, Dan Quayle. Biden has given us some rare performances himself, and taken a few on the chin for his President, Barack Obama. As is our nation’s history, the opposition has played Biden with finesse. Any gaff, however small used to torture the president and vice president with glee.

But here’s the deal: Joe Biden ain’t like other vice presidents. Dumb like Quayle, he is not. Surreptitious like Aaron Burr, he is not. A crook like Spiro Agnew, he is not.

What Vice President Joe Biden is a mensch. For those of you who don’t understand Yiddish, a mensch is a person of integrity and honor. Biden honored us, last Friday, when addressing a group associated with the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors, a national nonprofit that supports friends and family of service members killed in action. Biden delivered what some might call the speech of our lifetime, an emotional retelling of his own family tragedy, the death of his wife and daughter in a car crash 40 years ago, saying the experience helped him understand why people commit suicide.

Biden described the shock and sting of the deaths in 1972, shortly after he was first elected to the Senate, as a “black hole you feel in your chest, like you’re being sucked back into it.”

“It was the first time in my career, my life, I realized someone could go out – and I probably shouldn’t say this with the press here, but – no, but it’s more important. You’re more important. For the first time in my life I understood how someone could consciously decide to commit suicide,” Biden said. “Not because they were deranged, not because they were nuts; because they’d been to the top of the mountain and they just knew in their heart they’d never get there again, that it was never going to be that way ever again. That’s how an awful lot of you feel.”

The vice president has previously spoken about his personal tragedy, although he rarely describes the emotional aftermath in such gut-wrenching detail. Biden recounted how he heard the news while in Washington.

“I was down in Washington hiring my staff, and I got a phone call saying that my family had been in an accident. And just like you guys know by the tone of a phone call – you just knew, didn’t you? You knew when they walked up the path. You knew when the call came. You knew. You just felt it in your bones something bad happened,” Biden said.

“And I knew. I don’t know how I knew. But the call said my wife was dead, my daughter was dead, and I wasn’t sure how my sons were going to make it. They were Christmas shopping, and a tractor trailer broadsided them and in one instant killed two of them and – well.”

Biden, an ardent Catholic, said he was so angry he cried out in the Capitol. “I remember being in the Rotunda, walking through to get to the plane to get home, to get to identify the – anyway. But I remember looking up and saying, ’God!’ It was if I was talking to God myself: ’You can’t be good! How can you be good?’”

Biden said he credits his return from his grief to the help of his mother, his sister and, eventually, his second wife, Jill Biden, whom he married five years later. “This woman literally saved my life,” he said.

“There will come a day, I promise you, and your parents as well, when the thought of your son or daughter or your husband or wife brings a smile to your lips before it brings a tear to your eye. It will happen,” he said. “My prayer for you is that day will come sooner or later. But the only thing I have more experience than you in is this: I’m telling you it will come.”

And so, out of tragedy comes something good: a vice president with heart, just when America needed a lot of heart.



Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog

S.E. Cupp is a Conservative pundit who has had a humdinger of a week, literally, thank you, Hustler magazine.  Flynt, by the way, is one hustler.

In what Flynt calls a satirical photo, the nubile Cupp who presents herself as the repressed, cultured, brainiac who beneath the façade of propriety is one sexy babe whose glasses men want to rip off before they throw her to the ground and have their way with her, is portrayed in Flynt’s raunchy girlie magazine as doing something conservative young women like the branded New York Daily news writer aren’t supposed to do, in yes, one humdinger of a photograph.

The photo appears next to the headline “Celebrity Fantasy” with the caption “What Would S.E. Cupp Look Like With A D— In Her Mouth?”

The blurb beneath this reads: “S.E. Cupp is a lovely young lady who read too much Ayn Rand in high school and ended up joining the dark side. Cupp, an author and media commentator, who often shows up on Fox News programs, is undeniably cute. But her hotness is diminished when she espouses dumb ideas like defunding Planned Parenthood. Perhaps the method pictured here is Ms. Cupp’s suggestion for avoiding an unwanted pregnancy.”

A disclaimer revealing the illegitimacy of the photo follows: “No such picture of S.E. Cupp actually exists. This composite fantasy is altered from the original for our imagination, does not depict reality, and is not to be taken seriously for any purpose.”

Conservative women and progressives alike are outraged by the photo-shopped image. The women on The View, mostly progressives, blew a gasket in defense of the maligned Cupp, coming together in a rare singular voice.

“This is really going to piss a lot of you women off and I hope you’re going to make your voices heard,” Whoopi Goldberg said when she introduced Cupp, who appeared on the program to discuss the controversy.”

No mention, by the way, that the feature, which Hustler runs every month, has previously depicted such male luminaries as Mario Cuomo, Dan Rather and, most recently, Bill Maher. How misogynistic or sexist is that?

The conservative single wing-nut engine of  The View, Elizabeth Hasselbeck, pointed out that the National Organization for Women (NOW) has remained silent on the issue, and called the group, “the National Organization for Some Women.”

Smarmy, disgusting, over-the-top, funny, dumb, outrageous–call Larry Flynt’s attack on conservatism what you will. Surely the attack bears discussion, and is, indeed, being discussed. The politically correct words for outraged women are being typically bandied about: misogynistic, well, we all know the, ah, drill.

But lost in the tenor of the discussion is first, the outrage in the conservative programmed response of Ms. Cupp. And warranted is a further conversation as to whether S.E. Cupp’s image, not just politics, didn’t loan itself to Larry Flynt’s purpose.

First, Cupp’s weird response. Of course there are PR folks who would have advised her not to respond at all, as to respond would lend credence to Flynt’s ploy. But after all, what self-respecting, self-promoter wouldn’t respond? Oh, so clever, the demure conservative media maven was when she praised the Hustler publisher. “I have to commend them for their honesty. They don’t like my Conservative voice.”

Commend them for their honesty?

How polite, and also an acknowledgement that this was a purely political attack.

Unwittingly or not, Larry Flynt played into the hands of the Republican War on Women and Cupp, who in the same interview said she is not a victim, then went on to portray her phony outrage, at the phony photo, in a decidedly phony manner, before she ejaculated her conservative talking points, attacking The National Organization of Women (NOW), and saying that Flynt would never try this on a progressive woman.

Flynt won’t, but The Penis Brigade of the Republican Party has, on the other hand, attacked both conservative and progressive women. And, by the way, not a word about it from the likes of GOP Babe S.E. Cupp planted in the audience on The View set, dressed like a 1950’s society wife, her pretty neck adorned with cultured pearls that only Barbara Bush would wear, her lips luscious with the appropriate gloss to catch the camera’s light, which might have been something that could have enhanced the poorly photo-shopped Hustler image of S.E. Cupp.

“By the end of the day [after the photo’s release]” Cupp said, her voice quivering, “I felt ashamed, as if I had…”

Had, what, Ms. Cupp? Debased yourself  as the photo suggests? Gimme a break! Do you really think so little of yourself? I think not. You didn’t get on the pages of Larry Flynt’s Hustler magazine because you’re a weak, sniveling, insecure fool.

You got there in a quid pro quo: You got what you gave. You kept your mouth shut when members of your Conservative Movement, Rush Limbaugh for one, debased a fellow woman. In order to further your conservatism and your career, you sexualized your contrived image. You should not have done either.  And for that, I’m spitting mad.


Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog

Here’s a shocker: in April, President Obama held a 49 percent to 43 percent lead over Republican presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney amongst women. That has now flipped to 46 percent backing Mr. Romney with 44 percent for Mr. Obama — an 8-point swap, according to the latest CBS-New York Times poll.

I feel raped, surely by the Republican Party and their vagina defiling antics, but moreover by those 46 percent of American women who are backing Romney and who clearly suffer from Stockholm syndrome.

Just in case you don’t know what Stockholm syndrome is, here is a definition from Wikipedia: “In psychology, Stockholm syndrome is an apparently paradoxical psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and have positive feelings towards their captors, sometimes to the point of defending them. These feelings are generally considered irrational in light of the danger or risk endured by the victims, who essentially mistake a lack of abuse from their captors for an act of kindness.”

Yes, the definition is applicable here and it appears, at least according to the CBS-New York Times poll, that fully 46 percent of women voters have bowed to their captors, the Republican Party, and are in need of some serious psychological help.

How is it that any self-respecting woman could align herself with a political party who is hell-bent on eroding women’s rights in every way possible? Even if for religious reasons a woman is anti-abortion, no woman who loves her vagina can love the current Republican Party.

Clearly, there are a number of women in the United States who don’t like their own vaginas, anatomy that they should solemnly swear (or affirm) that they will faithfully execute their rights over as women of the United States, and will within the best of their abilities preserve, protect and defend, as the president of the United States does the Constitution of the United States when he (so far no she!) affirms when taking the Oath of Office.

Instead, too many American women as seen in the CBS/New York Times poll continue to be submissive to the Testosterone Power of male lawmakers – and in a few cases such as that of estrogen deficient Arizona Governor Jan Brewster misaligned in a strange sisterhood.

Are these women misogynistettes who seek to disassociate themselves from their cruel and deceitful gender?  Are they religious zealots? Are they dumb? Are they ignorant? Are they mental cases? Do they, indeed suffer from Stockholm syndrome? Whichever, it is unfathomable that any woman worth her vagina agrees with a political party that is engaged in a four-point assault on women’s health that include prohibiting the right of a woman to choose abortion within the framework of Roe v. Wade  and actually go so far as to omit reasonable exceptions for a woman’s health or cases of rape, incest or grievous fetal impairment which would actually require that a woman be near death before she is allowed medical care, according to the New York Times.

Or that a women worth her weight and her vagina would demean herself by aligning herself with a political party that denies a sister access to affordable health care,  as recently occurred in Arizona as signed into law by the penis-envying  Gov. Jan Brewer.

Under The Republican Penis Brigade even equal pay for women is under attack. Consider Republican Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin who signed the repeal of a 2009 law that allowed women to bring lawsuits in state courts against pay discrimination. When asked to defend his idiocy, Walker actually said that he didn’t want the courts clogged by lawsuits, apparently justified or not.

But the penis de resistance is the battering of the Senate approved reauthorization of the Violence against Women Act, legislation meant to protect victims of domestic and sexual abuse, and bring their abusers to justice by the House of Misogynists-representatives.  Just two GOP congresswomen voted against it: Reps. Judy Biggert (Ill.) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (Fla.). The House version rolls back critical provisions to help victims of abuse.

Yes, we are engaged in a great civil war, a war against women and the control of their vaginas. In this case we know the enemy. It is the Republican Party, and some vaginas themselves. As the great Sun Tzu said in The Art of War, “If you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss. If you only know yourself, but not your opponent, you may win or may lose.”

I say that if you know neither yourself nor your enemy, you will always DIS-ENGENDER or is it DIS-MEMBER yourself.  Some women are their own worst enemies.

UPDATE:  A must read: Romney Puts Women’s Lives at Risk


Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog

“Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation”…thus began another chapter in the history of the United States, a country conceived in testosterone and dedicated to the possibility that all boys are created equally (by their mommies).

In the last eight years, this country already suffering from male locker-room overload, has been turned into The Testosterone Nation. Tush and Cheney have so penis-lized this country that women have begun to click their Jimmy Choo high heels together in descent. And, as the world turns, The Pink Brigade is finally showing some eggs. Imagine, a woman is Speaker of the House of Representatives and now Hillary Clinton is running for president of  The Testosterone Nation. My eighty-five year old mothers eyes are wide in disbelief, having grown up in a time when men wore the pants in the American family.

Miss Tammy “I’m not” Whine-ette, vying to lead The Testosterone Nation back down its path to glory isn’t like other women, and most certainly never was. Barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen was hardly a song she would sing as she politely peeled white potatoes. “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen,”  was more Hillary’s tune.

I’ve heard people say that Hillary hatched Chelsea rather than birthed her. And that she was probably standing up when she did on her way to another meeting. “A Mommy Warrior” may best describe this new breed of candidate. But since she voted for the war, but was really against the war, maybe the term Warrior doesn’t exactly SUIT her, anymore than mommy is a word that would be her optimal description. Nevertheless, I like Hillary in all her incarcerations or is it incarNATIONS? Still, I have to ask myself, is Hillary the right woman to be the MAN for the job?

Times are tough out there in The Testosterone Nation. Really, is anything right with America? Our kids are losing their life and limbs in a war that isn’t a war; the charge for a gallon of gasoline is a galling three dollars as the price of a barrel nears one hundred smackeroos; the cost of food is obscene; the crime rate is up; kids earning high school diplomas is down…blah…blah…blah…

What America needs now is a Mommy, a mother to comfort, to guide, nurture, bolster, encourage, and soothe our 9/11-seared nerves. We need someone to pat us on the head and tell us everything is going to be all right and “that we have nothing to fear but fear itself.”  What we need is a Franklin Roosevelt in a skirt, yet I fear that Hillary is more Eleanor in pants. But now that I think about it, maybe that isn’t so terrible…sort of a new, New Deal!  ~ November 11, 2007

From A YEAR IN MY PAJAMAS WITH PRESIDENT OBAMA , The Politics of Strange Bedfellows by Halli Casser-Jayne


Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog

That word: Vagina! Yes, that word. The word that has caused more than a stir, and which brings men to their knees – no pun intended — and copy editors to their hives. Vagina. Yes, I’m saying it, V-A-G-I-N-A and here we go: Giggles among young girls when they see the name in print, acne outbreaks among the Holden Caufield set, visions of sugar plums in male heads … scorn among Republican men and Republican VAGINAS alike.

The vagina is under attack and not just from the cigar-smoking crowd that sits in smoky, backrooms and conjures up ways to control women’s, yes, vaginas. But leave it to that Annie Oakley throwback with an apparently sun-scorched, Southwest Arizona, dried-up Vagina, Governor Jan K. Brewer, Republican*, that rootin’ tootin’ she-really-ain’t-no-Annie-Oakley-who-by-the-way-must-be-rollin’-in-her-grave, leader of the “God Enriches-Ditat Deus” State” (no kidding that is the state’s motto, and, yes some believe that Gd did, indeed, create the vagina!) to take her phallic pen to paper and sign a bill that vetoes all funding to the vagina incorporated and protector of all things women, most notably their vaginas, Planned Parenthood. Is Brewer out to prove that the pen-IS mightier than the vagina? Give me eggs to breath!

The bill known as the “Whole Woman’s Health Funding Priority Act,” more than halves the availability for health care services for poor women.

“This is a common sense law that tightens existing state regulations and closes loopholes in order to ensure that taxpayer dollars are not used to fund abortions, whether directly or indirectly,” Brewer said in a statement. “By signing this measure into law, I stand with the majority of Americans who oppose the use of taxpayer funds for abortion.”

More like common sense-LESS law.

While the new law, signed last Friday excludes only those abortions that are “necessary to save the life of the mother or if the pregnancy is the result of an act of rape or incest,” because those circumstances are covered by Title 19 of the Social Security Act, being cut off from state funding would affect nearly 20,000 women in the state who turn to Planned Parenthood for preventative health care and family planning services.

“We are most concerned about the women and men who could be forced to go without health care as a result of this bill,” Bryan Howard, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Arizona, said in a statement.

Fewer than one in 10 of visits to Planned Parenthood are for abortions, the Arizona Republic reported.

“For many women, we are the only doctor’s visit they will have this year,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “This ruling affirms what women have known all along: Politics simply doesn’t have a place in women’s health.”

And certainly not in women’s VAGINAS! It’s time we had not a Vagina Monologue, but rather a Vagina Dialog among America’s women, those with Vaginas and those without.

*Republicans, Get Into My Vagina


Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog

On Wednesday’s The Halli Casser-Jayne Show I was joined by psychotherapist Jonathan Alpert to discuss his new book Be Fearless: Change Your Life in 28 Days. We had quite a discussion about fearlessness, a conversation I hope that you will listen to, if you haven’t already.  In talking to Jonathan, I learned quite a lot about being fearless as I’m sure you will. I hope that you get a kick out of  my turning the tables on the therapist, getting him to admit some of his own fears in front of all of  you. I gotta say, nothing turns me on more than taking my guests out of their comfort zone. Does that make me fearless? Listen in to The Halli Casser-Jayne Show with celebrity therapist Jonathan Alpert and you’ll hear what Jonathan had to say about me. Oy!

Below are tips from Jonathan on how you can become fearless in dealing with work-related issues. The three issues: 1. Fear of being unemployed forever, 2. Fear that gets between you and your dream job, and 3. Fear of the dreaded Monday morning return to work.

How to overcome the fear of being unemployed forever:

1. Avoid late nights and sleeping in.

2. Set your alarm and be ready to start your day by 9 a.m. This allows you to mirror that of the mainstream business world and stay connected.

3. Be a go-getter. Your new job is that of a marketing executive and you are the product.

4. Take an inventory of your strengths and list them on paper and make sure they are reflected in an updated resume and cover letter.

5. Compile a list of 10 or more contacts, compose an email and attach your resume. Ask them to keep you in mind for any job they might know of and also for them to pass your information on to their contacts.

6. Schedule your day. For instance, from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., answer emails. From 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., look at job sites. From 11 a.m. to noon, send out resumes. From noon to 1 p.m., have lunch. You get the idea.

7. Consider volunteering and remember to relax.
How to overcome the fear getting between you and your dream job:

Define your dream job. Be specific. For example, what would it entail? Would you be working independently or as part of a team? Would you travel or be office-bound? Do you want something that’s analytical or creative? You get the idea. Really define all aspects of it and the qualities you seek in this dream job.
1. Surround yourself with people who can help you achieve your dream job. These should be people who inspire, support, and encourage you. Find someone who can offer guidance and mentor you.

2. Don’t reinvent the wheel. Ask other people how they got to where they are. Although your path won’t be entirely the same you might gain some valuable advice from knowing how others have done it.

3. Interview someone who has this dream job. Find out what the person did to land the job. Ask questions that will yield valuable information. Ask not only what they love about their job and what they do on a day-to-day basis, but also what they find most challenging, what they’d most like to change about it, and any regrets they might have.

4. Network, network, network. Each person you meet in the industry can potentially bring you closer to your dream job, making the impossible possible.

5. Do an internship or shadow someone at a company that you admire.

6. Apply! Even if a company doesn’t list openings, inquire about where and how they might use your skills.
How to overcome the fear of the dreaded Monday morning return to work:

  • Take a step back and look at the big picture. What makes you anxious about returning to work? Is it based on reality or on something you imagine?
  •  Decipher fact from imagination. Focus on what’s within your control, not what lies beyond it.
  • Prepare for Monday every Friday. At the end of each workweek, prepare for the next by straightening up your workspace, tying up loose ends, and making a to-do list.
  • Relax as much as you can. When planning your weekend, don’t over schedule and certainly don’t leave stressful activities for Sunday.
  • Plan your Sunday according to your mood. If you ordinarily feel depressed on Sundays, then plan a fun activity such as a special dinner out or hanging out with friends. If you typically find yourself edgy, then indulge in something relaxing such as a movie or reading.
  • Balance your sleep patterns. If you get up at 6 a.m. during the week but sleep in on the weekends, you may not be tired come bedtime on Sunday. Leave Saturday for sleeping in. On Sunday try not to deviate too far from your regular wake-up time.
  • Stop staring at the clock. Turn your alarm clock away from the bed so that you aren’t reminded of your approaching workday. Have confidence that it will wake you at the appropriate time.
  • Count your blessings. Before you go to sleep, identify three positive things about your job or day ahead. Drift off to sleep looking forward to what you like about your job rather than dreading what you don’t like. 


Reprinted with permission of  Huffington Post.

A YEAR IN MY PAJAMAS WITH PRESIDENT OBAMA, The Politics of Strange Bedfellows

Written by Halli Casser-Jayne on . Posted in HC-J Blog

The following was forwarded to me by a good friend and I thought that I would share it with you. It’s a review of my book A Year in My Pajamas with President Obama, The Politics of Strange Bedfellows by a librarian who I have never met. Here’s a quote, but I’ll link to the whole review. FYI, A Year in My Pajamas with President Obama is available on In celebration of the unsolicited positive review, we’ve just lowered the price on the e-book. Grab a copy. I promise it’s, if nothing else, a fun read!

“While the tone of the essays conjures up a late night show monologue, the words present a certain insight and comprehension of the political situation that, in retrospect, is nearly uncanny. This is a lively and interesting read, hidden among the literary essays on the 808 shelves of the library. Check it out!” ~ Recommended by Paula at Main

Do let me know what you think!

~ Halli


You can take The Halli Casser-Jayne Show with you wherever you go. Download the app and listen on the go on your mobile phone or any tablet. Get it here!