HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » TBF » Journal
Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 ... 55 Next »

TBF

Profile Information

Gender: Female
Hometown: Wisconsin
Current location: Tejas
Member since: Thu Jan 17, 2008, 01:44 PM
Number of posts: 31,849

About Me

The most violent element in society is ignorance. Emma Goldman

Journal Archives

US Water Crisis

Coming on the heels of the water crisis in Flint Michigan in which 100,000 residents, over 9,000 of them children, have been poisoned by lead contaminated water from the polluted Flint River, the Guardian investigation has exposed the national scope of the crisis, as well as the scope of illegal activities on the part of various municipal governments.


Investigation reveals signs of nationwide US water crisis
By Genevieve Leigh
6 June 2016

The results of an investigation by British newspaper the Guardian reveal that, in the last decade, 33 major US cities have employed water testing “cheats” deliberately aimed at hiding dangerous levels of lead in their water supply.

The investigation identified three test manipulation methods known to hide actual lead levels: “pre-flushing” water pipes before testing, removing aerators from spouts, and deliberately running water slowly prior to collecting samples in order to prevent more lead from being dislodged from pipes. Each of these methods is in violation of recent US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidelines.

The documents examined by the newspaper also revealed further unethical practices carried out by many state governments, in addition to these three testing methods. In some states, like New Hampshire, water departments were reportedly instructed to perform tests in a manner that allowed enough time to retest, and remove the previous results, if lead levels in the initial samples were found to be too high.

Another example comes from Howell, Michigan, where an official from the department of environmental quality (MDEQ) is recorded in an email instructing a water department director to remove a sample with an unacceptable amount of lead in a deliberate attempt to conceal unsafe levels ...

Much more here: http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2016/06/06/lead-j06.html

The Math for Bernie -

Found this on Twitter - if anyone has corrections let me know.

Brother Muhammad

1942-2016 Rest in Power, Muhammad Ali


Rumble, young man, rumble

A black and Muslim radical, at a time when being either came with great risk, Ali not only survived, but flourished... and in the process, lifting the bowed heads of black people, Muslims, the downtrodden and underdogs the world over. He was not only the most famous man in the world, but by a far stretch, its most loved.

He meant so much to so many people, across generational, racial and national boundaries. Ali embodied Black Power before the Black Lives Matter Movement, providing a blueprint for today's activists protesting for racial justice.

He offered a model of religious pride for Muslims at a time of heightening Islamophobia, and especially for non-black Muslims, a perpetual reminder that Islamic piety cannot be reconciled with racism.

Muhammad Ali is, after all, the most famous Muslim American ever, and indeed, a black man whose commitment to anti-racism led him to Islam.

http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2016/06/muhammad-ali-rumble-heaven-earth-160604084353582.html



After announcing his retirement from the ring in 1974, Ali lost no time in throwing right hooks at Zionism and embracing the Palestinian cause. Talking to reporters in Beirut, Lebanon, at the start of a tour of the Middle East, Ali said that “the United States is the stronghold of Zionism and imperialism.”

On a subsequent visit to two Palestinian refugee camps in southern Lebanon, the former heavyweight boxing champion was quoted by a news agency as saying: “In my name and the name of all Muslims in America, I declare support for the Palestinian struggle to liberate their homeland and oust the Zionist invaders.”

read more: http://www.haaretz.com/jewish/news/1.723042



With Brother Malcolm:



With Brother Martin:



Neoliberalism a Failure

“(P)lanned misery,” as Naomi Klein’s Shock Doctrine vividly demonstrates, was the neoliberal agenda the IMF has pushed for decades.


After Empowering the 1% and Impoverishing Millions, IMF Admits Neoliberalism a Failure
by Benjamin Dangl ~ June 1, 2016

Last week a research wing of the International Monetary Fund came out with a report admitting that neoliberalism has been a failure. The report, entitled, “Neoliberalism: Oversold?” is hopefully a sign of the ideology’s death. They were only about 40 years late. As Naomi Klein tweeted about the report, “So all the billionaires it created are going to give back their money, right?”

Many of the report’s findings which strike to the core of the ideology echo what critics and victims of neoliberalism have been saying for decades.

“Instead of delivering growth,” the report explains that neoliberal policies of austerity and lowered regulation for capital movement have in fact “increased inequality.” This inequality “might itself undercut growth…” As a result, the report states that “policymakers should be more open to redistribution than they are.” ...

More here: http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/06/01/after-empowering-the-1-and-impoverishing-millions-imf-admits-neoliberalism-a-failure/

Titanic

Hang loose, Berners. This isn't over yet.

:large

Memorial Day

On Memorial Day, socialists honor the victims of war and struggle for a world free of it.

“The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles." — Eugene Debs


In June 1918, Eugene Debs gave a speech that would land him in prison. Speaking in Canton, Ohio, the Socialist Party leader denounced President Woodrow Wilson and the Great War he had led the United States into.

For Debs, the mass slaughter that had raged across Europe for four bloody years was a conflict waged in the interests of capitalists, but fought by workers. In each country it was the rich who had declared war and stood to profit from it; but it was the poor who were sent to fight and die by the millions.

This, Debs told his audience, was how it had always been, as long as armies had been sent to battle one another in the name of king or country. “Wars throughout history have been waged for conquest and plunder,” he said. “The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and all to lose — especially their lives.”

Debs’s message to workers was a simple one: their enemy was not the people of Germany, the working-class soldiers they were being shipped off to murder; it was the rulers, on both sides, who ordered the troops into battle. It was the capitalists and their representatives in the American and German governments, whose wealth and power gave them control over the fates of millions ..

More here: https://www.jacobinmag.com/2016/05/war-socialists-debs-vietnam-internationalism/

Still I Rise

Every now and then we need some inspiration -


You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may tread me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard
'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin' in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I'll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history's shame
I rise
Up from a past that's rooted in pain
I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

Maya Angelou

World's Greatest Democracy

This is a "democracy" in which the two likely presidential candidates, Trump and Hillary Clinton, are disliked by 60 percent of the people--and where a majority think we should have a major third party, but the Democrats and Republicans have a Super PAC-funded monopoly every bit as strong as whichever corporate giant provides horrible Internet service to your area.

Every election year, we're urged to exercise our sacred right to vote. But actions speak louder than words. The pathetically low priority given to making sure we have clean and fair elections sends a clear message that our votes don't actually count for much--which turns out to completely correct ... even when people are eligible to vote in this "democracy," it often turns out they can't--because they encounter hours-long lines at voting sites or find out they are among the hundreds of thousands who have been mysteriously purged from the voting rolls.


The world's greatest democracy? Really?
Danny Katch ~ May 26, 2016

DONALD TRUMP doesn't think much of democracy.

The man who the Republicans will nominate to be president of the United States publicly admires authoritarians like Russia's Vladimir Putin. He encourages mob violence against protesters and then offers to pay their legal fees. He and his allies have threatened critics in the media by vowing to cancel FCC licenses and changing libel law to make it easier to sue them if Trump becomes president.

Trump's message is that he's running not for the job of president as we understand it but for a new position of strongman who will disregard legal niceties to get his way. That's what makes him appealing to those who think he stands for them--and scary for those who know he doesn't.

But as frightening as he is, Trump isn't a new threat to a healthy political body, but the latest tumor--though an especially malignant one--on a corrupt, wheezing system that can only be called a "democracy" if we use ironic quotes ...

More here: https://socialistworker.org/2016/05/26/the-worlds-greatest-democracy

Against Crowdfunding

TBF note: like many of you I have donated to these "kickstarter" and "go fund me" requests, in hopes of pitching in with others to make someone's life just a little easier. But overall as a society is this the best way to handle inequality? And do we all suffer as a result of art being reduced to simply content?

Perhaps it’s fitting then that Patreon describes its affiliates as “creators” making “content,” rather than “artists” making “art.”

Art and content are not the same. Content is produced with a specific, marketable goal in mind. Patreon turns artists into content-makers whose creativity is moderated by their patrons. Patrons with more money have more clout, and the ability to withhold funding shapes what creators make.

In this sense, Patreon reproduces key elements of the old patronage model, in which the power to commission and influence artists rests in the hands of those who can pay.


Against the Crowdfunding Economy
by Keith A. Spencer 5/17/16

In the art world, as elsewhere, success is often tightly correlated with pedigree and acceptance into elite institutions. Simpsons writers are likely to be Harvard grads; musician and writer Leonard Cohen purchased his Greek artist’s retreat with his trust fund; Lena Dunham’s debt-free college education gave her the financial freedom to make her first film.

Of course most artists aren’t so lucky. And amid the increasing consumption of digital media, the conditions for success have become ever more fraught. Instant access to media — and the massive amount of free content online — makes many feel they should be able to watch, listen, or read whatever they want, whenever they want, at no cost to them.

Tech companies, in turn, rely on free content to get eyeballs on their advertisements, and make a tidy profit in the process. Hence, while Silicon Valley profits from our collective free labor, many once-remunerated artists are now paid in exposure.

<snip>

The concept of crowdfunding began with platforms like Kickstarter (the inaugural crowdsourced fundraising platform) and IndieGogo, both of which allow entrepreneurs, start-ups, and nonprofits to solicit fundraising through small online donations ...

Much more here: https://www.jacobinmag.com/2016/05/crowdfunding-kickstarter-gofundme-charity-taxes/

Puerto Rico's Debt

Meanwhile, the island's 3.4 million residents face a crushing combination of economic meltdown and government dysfunction.


Puerto Rico's debt crisis: Made in the USA
Puerto Rico needs debt relief as it struggles to contain an unfolding economic and social crisis. But its creditors want to tighten the screws, explains Eric Ruder.
May 16, 2016

THIS WEEK will be a crucial one in the battle over the debt crisis strangling Puerto Rico. The U.S. Supreme Court and Congress are both wading into the political and legal clash over a multibillion-dollar debt that is, in the words of the New York Times, "not payable."

On one side stand the institutions that loaned the island nation billions of dollars because Puerto Rico's bonds paid better returns than other municipal issues and were tax-exempt for U.S. investors. These creditors, a collection of Wall Street hedge-fund managers and vulture capitalists, want to use U.S. laws and courts to force Puerto Rico to repay every last penny of its debt burden, no matter the economic and social consequences.

They are counting on the U.S. government not to grant any form of debt relief for Puerto Rico, since the commonwealth, as it is officially designated, is legally barred from filing for bankruptcy like U.S. cities. That's why some hedge funds took on even more of Puerto Rico's debt recently, figuring that they could buy it for pennies on the dollar and use their political connections and various legal levers to make a windfall.

On the other side are the people of Puerto Rico, who for the last decade have endured a steady deterioration of their economy and living conditions ...

Much more here: https://socialistworker.org/2016/05/16/puerto-ricos-debt-crisis-was-made-in-usa

Go to Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 ... 55 Next »