recent articles by theresa amato

Some Articles Written by Theresa Amato

On Civic/Consumer Advocacy:

The Los Angeles Times, "What banks owe you: clarity" - January 13, 2015, with Lauren E. Willis: If financial literacy education isn't the answer, what is? The financial marketplace must be structured so that ordinary people — people with limited time, math skills, attention and willpower, and an abundance of those wonderful American traits of trust and optimism — can navigate it safely and effectively. Read more....

The Washington Post "Elizabeth Warren: ‘Wicked smart’ and on her way out" - July 18, 2011: President Obama has decided to name former Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which is set to launch this week. In doing so he bypassed Elizabeth Warren, the Harvard professor who has been one of the nation’s leading champions for reform on behalf of those ripped off by high credit rates and shady mortgages. Not to mention the bureau was her idea. Read more....

Chicago Tribune "If You're About To Lose Your Home..." - February 2, 2012: Quickly spreading in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Miami, Minneapolis, Boston and New Orleans, the Occupy people are joining with community groups that believe many homeowners in foreclosure, or about to be taken over, have a strong, equitable and often legal case to physically stay in or occupy empty homes in order to stave off eviction or keep people in their houses. Read more....

The Washington Post "Work for New Lawyers" - January 22, 2011: To the Editor: The placement of two articles on the front page of Sunday Business (“Is Law School a Losing Game?” and “$2.6 Billion to Cover Bad Loans: It’s a Start,” Jan. 9) suggests at least a short-term solution to the problems described in both. Read More...

Privacy Rights Clearing House "A Fingerprint to Rent a Car? A Customer Says No" - December 21, 2001: At Dollar Rent A Car ("Dollar Makes Sense.®") in Midway Airport, Chicago, I tried to rent a car but was refused only because I would not give the corporation my thumbprint. According to the "Frequently Asked Questions About Thumb Printing Procedures" sheet the representative pulled out when I started to ask why I had to provide a print of my anatomy to rent a car, I was told this procedure was to identify those who engage in fraudulent rentals and theft. Read More...

Consumer and Worker Safety, a Statement from Theresa Amato to the Senate Minority Leader's Task Force - February 23, 1995: Mr. Chairman and members of the Task Force, I am Theresa Amato, executive director of the Citizen Advocacy Center in Elmhurst. The Citizen Advocacy Center is a non-partisan, not-for-profit organization dedicated to building democracy in the western and far western suburbs of Chicago by developing the public's capacities, resources, and institutions for selfgovernment. We teach people about participatory tools, like the open government laws, access to the airwaves, and access to the courts, to strengthen participation in civic affairs. Read More...

Computer Professionals of Social Responsibility "Governing the Commons: The Future of Global Internet Administration" - September 24, 1999: Civis Romanus sum, Ich bin eine Berliner (sic), I am an Internet user. Today, the global boast of freedom is "I am online." I am an Internet user. I don't own a domain name. I don't know about addresses and protocols. I don't sell anything online. I don't belong to CPSR or ISOC. And, I don't work for NSI. I am just an individual who uses the Internet to work, to play, and to live better. Read More...

On Politics:

The Washington Post "Michele Bachmann escapes her media narrative" - June 20, 2011: Prior to Rep. Michele Bachmann’s performance in the first Republican debate of the 2012 presidential primary season, the mainstream media and the liberal blogosphere’s narrative of Bachmann almost began and ended with descriptions of her as a “crazy,” “homophobic” and “extremist” Tea Party leader—one prone to gaffes about historical events and consequently unfit to represent a Minnesota district, much less be president. After the debate, the media now brands Bachmann as a serious GOP contender following her “breakout performance” in a field of seven candidates. Read more... "Santorum, Gingrich Belong on Virginia Ballot" - March 5, 2012: January provided another glaring example when federal courts rejected the efforts of Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum to appear on the Virginia ballot in the state's Republican primary. Virginia voters who go to the polls Tuesday are left with only two Republican primary options: Mitt Romney and Ron Paul. Read More...

Harvard Law Record "Two-Party Ballot Suppresses Change" - December 3, 2009: In October 1958, Ralph Nader, then arecently-graduated, former editor of theHarvard Law Record, co-authored anarticle decrying the monopolistic prac-tices of the Democratic and Republican parties on state ballot laws and their illeffects on minor parties. In defense of political dissent and the engagement of new proposals, Nader noted the “manytimes in our history” minor parties had“deeply stirred opinion.” It was easier in the 19th century for regional or smallstart-up parties to get on the ballot andinfuse elections with ideas such as theabolition of slavery, a woman’s right tovote, worker and farmer reforms—allof which we take for granted today,though the minor parties first advocat-ing these rights did not win the presidency. Read More..

Testimony from Theresa Amato on Financing Presidential Nominations - January 31, 2003: Good morning and thank you for the invitation to provide a third-party perspective on the public financing system. I should probably begin with the disclaimer that on March 1, 2000, when I began as campaign manager for Nader 2000, I was a public interest lawyer, but a novice to the world of campaigns, much less presidential campaign financing. As I became familiar with the morass of regulations concerning the campaign finance system, I was shocked at the burdens imposed for small budget, grassroots, third-party campaigns. Read More...

On Parenting:

Amato writes a monthly column for the subscription magazine, Fra Noi, see

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  • Amato elected to the American Law Institute in 2014.
  • A new book for The New Press in 2015.
  • Amato published in Italian Women in Chicago, Madonna mia! QUI debbo vivere?
  • Amato & Main, LLC host Bob Sullivan, co-author of The Plateau Effect, July 31, 2013.
  • Amato appears on The Stossel Show with John Stossel on Third Parties on Fox Business, Thursday, 9 p.m. ET, September 13, 2012.
  • Amato & Main, LLC host Joseph Costello, author of "Of, By For, The New Politics of Money Debt and Democracy," June 23, 2012.
  • Arab Spring in Oak Park! Amato & Main, LLC host Young Revolutionaries, Legislative Fellows, and Emerging Leaders from Egypt and Morocco visiting on a Heartland International Exchange Program, April 29, 2012.

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  • Italian Women in Chicago, Madonna mia! QUI debbo vivere?
  • Only One Thing Can Save Us by Thomas Geoghegan.
  • The Third Coast by Thomas Dyja.
  • Keynes's Way to Wealth: Timeless Investment Lessons from the Great Economist, by John Wasik.
  • The Plateau Effect, a book by Bob Sullivan and Hugh Thompson.
  • Electoral Dysfunction, a book by Victoria Bassetti and the award-winning movie by Bennett Singer and others.
  • The Power of Habit, Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business, a book by Charles Duhigg.
  • Setting the Table, a book by Danny Meyer.
  • Elegy for Dead Languages, a book by poet, translator and new media artist, Francesco Levato.
  • World Wide Rebel Songs, by Tom Morello, The Night Watchman.