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ucrdem

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Àngeles de Porciúncula
Home country: US
Current location: East of East L.A.
Member since: Sun Jan 20, 2013, 07:15 PM
Number of posts: 4,927

Journal Archives

What is Boxing Day, anyway?

For anyone who has always wondered, I can't vouch for this but it sounds plausible:

Boxing Day takes place on December 26th and is only celebrated in a few countries. It was started in the UK about 800 years ago, during the Middle Ages. It was the day when the alms box, collection boxes for the poor often kept in churches, were traditionally opened so that the contents could be distributed to poor people. Some churches still open these boxes on Boxing Day.

It might have been the Romans that first brought this type of collecting box to the UK, but they used them to collect money for the betting games which they played during their winter celebrations!

In Holland, some collection boxes were made out of a rough pottery called 'earthenware' and were shaped like pigs. Perhaps this is where we get the term 'Piggy Bank'!

The Christmas Carol, Good King Wenceslas, is set on Boxing Day and is about a King in the Middle Ages who brings food to a poor family.

It was also traditional that servants got the day off to celebrate Christmas with their families on Boxing Day. Before World War II, it was common for working people (such as milkmen and butchers) to travel round their delivery places and collect their Christmas box or tip. This tradition has now mostly stopped and any Christmas tips, given to people such as postal workers and newspaper delivery children, are not normally given or collected on Boxing Day.

Boxing Day has now become another public holiday in countries such as the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.


from: http://www.whychristmas.com/customs/boxingday.shtml

So happing Boxing Day to all!



Le Fig: L'attaque au vitriol de François

L'attaque au vitriol de François contre la curie romaine


Le pape François, lundi au Vatican, devant les prélats de la Curie à l'occasion de ses vœux au gouvernement de l'Église.

Par Jean-Marie Guénois - 22/12/2014 à 19:44

« Narcissisme », « cœur dur », perte des « sentiments de Jésus »… La charge est d'une rare violence.

C'est plutôt une douche froide, et non des vœux, que les employés de la curie romaine, tout comme ses plus hauts responsables, ont reçu lundi à Rome de la part du pape François, qui les recevaient pour une traditionnelle cérémonie de fin d'année, toujours marquée jusque-là par un caractère bon enfant.

Avec une voix grave et sur un ton très ferme le Pape a établi, en deux discours différents, un même diagnostic, celui des quinze «maladies» dont souffriraient ses collaborateurs, dont il a voulu établir «un catalogue» très précis qui n'a rien d'un portrait flatteur de la curie romaine.

Première maladie: «se sentir indispensable». C'est du «narcissisme» lance le Pape. Deuxième maladie: «l'activisme». Or, dit François, il y a «un temps pour chaque chose». Troisième problème: «l'empierrement spirituel» de ceux qui ont un «cœur dur». Ils ont perdu «les sentiments de Jésus» et «deviennent incapables d'aimer». Vient ensuite «l'excessive planification», qui fait du pasteur «un comptable» qui ne laisse plus «piloter la liberté de l'Esprit saint». Autre difficulté: «la perte de l'harmonie fonctionnelle: l'orchestre fait alors du bruit» parce qu'il n'est pas en «communion» avec lui-même.

Sixième virus: la «maladie d'Alzheimer spirituelle» qui sévit chez ceux qui ont perdu «la mémoire de leur rencontre avec le Seigneur» et qui se laissent enfermer dans leurs «caprices et manies», devenant des «esclaves de leurs idoles, qu'ils ont sculptées eux-mêmes». Septième maladie: «la rivalité et la vaine gloire» guidée par la recherche des «apparences» et des «honneurs» au prix parfois d'un «faux mysticisme». Autre difficulté: «la schizophrénie existentielle», qui conduit à «une double vie» et une «hypocrisie typique du vide spirituel que des titres académiques ne peuvent cacher». La «conversion est alors urgente» lance François.

Neuvième maladie: «les bavardages, les conciliabules, les cancans». Ce «terrorisme du bavardage» ne s'exprime «jamais en face», mais «toujours dans le dos». Dixième pathologie: celle de «la divinisation des chefs», soit un «carriérisme» et une attitude «mesquine». Autre dénonciation: la «maladie de l'indifférence vis-à-vis des autres». Douzième plaie: «la maladie des têtes d'enterrement», notamment vis-à-vis de ceux que l'on considère avec «arrogance» comme «inférieurs», mais c'est une «sévérité théâtrale» qui a perdu tout «sens de l'humour». Treizième mal: «la maladie de l'accumulation» de biens matériels. Quatorzième étape de ce chemin de croix: «la maladie des cercles fermés». Enfin, dernière maladie, celle «du profit mondain, de l'exhibitionnisme», la «recherche insatiable du pouvoir».

Le Pape a également demandé « d'aller se confesser » avant Noël « avec une âme docile » pour retrouver « la joie »
Mettant ensuite, lors d'une seconde audience, sur le même plan «ceux qui travaillent sans se faire voir» - les «jardiniers, les balayeurs», ils forment une «mosaïque complémentaire» avec ceux qui occupent de hautes fonctions -, le Pape a exigé que tous placent le Christ au centre de leur vie. Il leur a également demandé «d'aller se confesser» avant Noël «avec une âme docile» pour retrouver «la joie».

François a d'ailleurs commencé ce second réquisitoire, implacable, adressé aux employés par un jeu de mot difficile à rendre en français mais qui résumait l'esprit de ses remontrances: «très chers salariés de la curie (dipendenti della Curia, en italien) - et non pas désobéissants de la Curie (non disobbedienti della Curia), comme quelqu'un vous a récemment décrits!»

Méditant sur la notion de «soin», qui consiste à «prodiguer du soin», mais aussi à accepter la nécessité de «se faire soigner», François, à propos de la curie, a pris l'image d'une mère de famille veillant «sur son enfant malade» et qui «ne regarde jamais la montre, ni ne se plaint jamais de ne pas avoir dormi et qui ne désire qu'une chose, c'est de le voir guéri à tout prix».

http://www.lefigaro.fr/actualite-france/2014/12/22/01016-20141222ARTFIG00332-l-attaque-au-vitriol-de-francois-contre-la-curie-romaine.php

Maybe forking over shitloads of cyber intel to China wasn't such a good idea.



Ya think?

How will Democracy Now twist Cuba normalization into something embarrassing?

The possibilities are endless but here are a few:

Bust of José Martí, Cuban poet and patriot



1975 sculpture by Sergio Lopes Mesa in Echo Park between Sunset and the Hollywood freeway.

Historic.

One of the greatest!



Just had to post this, hope you don't mind!

Senate breaks without vote on $1.1 trillion spending bill

Source: CBS

11:07 p.m. EST December 12, 2014

WASHINGTON (CBS) -- It will be Monday at the earliest before the Senate votes on a $1.1 trillion government funding bill passed by the House on Thursday night.

The Senate was expected to hold a voice vote Friday night to pass a short-term bill, approved by the House earlier in the day, which funds the government through Wednesday night, December 17.

Senators will return to work Monday with a cloture vote expected on the larger spending package, which would end debate and move the legislation to a vote by the full Senate, perhaps Monday night.

Democrats object to several items in the bill, although the one raising the biggest outcry is a banking provision that rolls back a Dodd-Frank rule requiring the separation of most derivatives trading from traditional banking.

Read more: http://www.wtsp.com/story/news/politics/2014/12/12/senate-breaks-without-vote-on-11-trillion-spending-bill/20341977/



Reid's comment:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, who will soon be giving up that title, said he wouldn't have added the provision, but added, "I didn't write this bill. The Senate Democrats didn't write this bill alone. It's a compromise. That is what legislation is all about."

Dodd-Frank push-out provision: Volcker rule already makes it unnecessary

The Dodd-Frank push-out rule rolled back in the current spending bills says banks can't invest in derivatives and similar risky funds and have to "push out" such investments to non-federally insured affiliates. But removing it doesn't permit banks to invest in such funds again, because the "Volcker rule" -- requested by President Obama -- already says banks can't use their proprietary (FDIC) funds to make such investments:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volcker_Rule

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-10-20/did-bank-rules-kill-liquidity-volcker-frank-respond.html

Per NPR, Barney Frank, one of Dodd-Frank's authors, supported elimination of the push-out rule:

http://www.npr.org/2014/12/11/370156241/controversial-budget-bill-would-roll-back-dodd-frank-provision

Long and short: removing this provision won't cause the sky to fall.

...............
edit to fix subject line.

Obama Nominates Ashton Carter For Defense Secretary

Source: HUFFPOST

12/05/2014 10:33 am EST

President Barack Obama on Friday nominated former Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton Carter to replace outgoing Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.

Obama said Carter is regarded "as one of our nation's foremost national security leaders."

"He knows the Department of Defense inside and out," Obama said. "On Day One, he's going to hit the ground running."

Carter said he "discussed the challenges and opportunities" of the role with Obama before accepting the nomination. He said he accepted the role in part because of the respect he and his wife Stephanie have for the troops.

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/12/05/ashton-carter-nominated_n_6275524.html





President Barack Obama shares a laugh with Ashton Carter, his nominee for defense secretary, on Friday, Dec. 5, 2014, during the announcement in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington.

http://www.military.com/daily-news/2014/12/05/obama-names-ashton-carter-as-his-next-pentagon-chief.html


It isn't over: DOJ still has two investigations into Michael Brown shooting open,

including one into Wilson and another into the conduct of the Ferguson police, and other civil rights groups are also investigating possible civil actions:

Ferguson Indictment: Officer Darren Wilson, Ferguson Police Department Could Still Face Civil Charges
By Alessandria Masi@alessandriamasia.masi@ibtimes.com on November 24 2014 10:42 PM


Officer Darren Wilson was not indicted by a grand jury Monday, but the battle for justice in the fatal Ferguson shooting is far from over. The U.S. Department of Justice is conducting its own investigation, the state could revoke Wilson's law enforcement license and several civil rights groups could file civil suits against both Wilson and the Ferguson Police Department.

{snip}

There are currently two open Department of Justice investigations related to Brown’s death: One probe into Wilson and the other into the Ferguson Police Department’s practices, according to McClatchy. The first could find Wilson guilty of violating Brown’s civil rights. The DOJ must prove “without a reasonable doubt” that Wilson knowingly and intentionally “deprived” Brown of “a right or privilege protected by the Constitution of laws of the United States,” according to federal law via McClatchy. However, experts don’t believe this is a likely outcome.

“Criminal enforcement of constitutional rights is not something that is easily pursued, Samuel Bagenstos, a University of Michigan law professor, recently told the Associated Press. It really requires building a case very carefully, very painstakingly.”

The DOJ and several civil rights organizations are investigating a possible case against the Ferguson Police Department for mistreatment of protesters who have been almost daily fixtures on Ferguson's streets since August. The DOJ is also investigating the department's practices and relationship with constituents prior to Brown’s death. When protests began, some police officers were seen wearing “I am Darren Wilson” bracelets.


http://www.ibtimes.com/ferguson-indictment-officer-darren-wilson-ferguson-police-department-could-still-face-1728858
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