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TBF's Journal
TBF's Journal
December 10, 2011

Protesters shut down Washington DC lobbying firms

Once again we turn to Europe for reporting of resistance in our country - this is the first I've seen of this story. Excellent idea to obstruct the lobbyists. Back when I did legal support in Washington I saw the process in action. One way corporations can sway the government is through these lobbyists. The lobbying firms (and/or associations) hire lawyers to write suggested legislation and send it to folks on the hill. This used to involve running things back and forth manually - but may well be done electronically now. Turning the spotlight on these folks and explaining how they work is important.

World Protesters shut down Washington DC lobbying firms
Thursday 08 December 2011
by Our Foreign Desk

Police arrested more than 60 people in Washington on Wednesday for shutting down the heart of the US corporate lobbying industry as part of a week-long union-backed campaign.

Over 1,000 protesters, including hundreds of trade unionists, unemployed people and clergy, staged the sit-in on rain-sodden K Street at midday to highlight the corrupting influence of big capital on the political process.

They chanted: "We Are The 99 per cent" and waved union banners and placards reading: "Democracy is not for sale."

Members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which represents health and public-sector workers, are playing a leading role in the Take Back the Capitol campaign, which aims to remind members of Congress that they are meant to represent ordinary US citizens, not huge corporations.

"No amount of rain can faze those battered by the storm of economic injustice and corporate greed," the SEIU declared as protesters shut down K Street.

Police threatened to arrest the protesters for obstruction. They moved in when hundreds stayed put and officers hauled 62 into waiting police vans.


Read entire article here: http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/index.php/content/view/full/112915

December 10, 2011

What if you lost everything you owned? Would it matter?

This is an interesting perspective that was actually written a few years ago for the CSM, and I found it on my Christian Left page on FB. I have actually been through something like this many years ago. I was young and left my apartment in the middle of the night. It was a domestic situation rather than a fire, but same sort of thing. Sometimes you don't even have time to think about what "stuff" you want to take. You take your purse/wallet and get the hell out. See what you think -

Santa Barbara, Calif.


At one point, I noticed my BlackBerry blinking at me. I saw I had five missed calls from my husband Ryan. And two messages. That's not like him. I stepped outside to call him; he sounded strange.

The news was dire. A huge fire had broken out in the foothills of Montecito, which we can see from our porch. The Santa Ana winds, blowing uncharacteristically late in the season – and particularly ferociously – combined with unseasonably hot temperatures, and my town was in flames, my street under evacuation. Those winds change direction unpredictably; there was no way to know if we'd be OK. Ryan had corralled the cat and the dog, and wanted to know what to take from the house. I said I'd let him know.

Back inside, I downloaded the news. Jenny, a left-brained attorney with control freak tendencies, whipped out a notepad and pen. "Let's make a list," she said.

I just sat there.

"Paperwork," she said, mainly to herself. "Pictures. Journals. Heirlooms? Jewelry? Do you have a 'stuff box?'" I could swear she even asked me if I had any doilies. Doilies?

Another friend, asked, "What about your passport?"

"Yeah," I said, munching on some pita. Jenny wrote it down.

The three of them exchanged looks. "She's handling it really well," somebody said to someone else.

Finally, I looked up. "It's so ironic," I said. Jenny put down her pen. With thoughts of New Orleans stirred up from the book reading, there I sat, on the brink of losing everything.

Ultimately, my passport was all I came up with for Jenny's list. Later, I thought of this, amused at my logic. So, in case my house burned down, I'd be able to get out of the country? But in the face of disaster and with no time to prepare, how do you choose? What do you take? At the end of the day, isn't it all just junk?


I realize those who lost everything are likely feeling anything but calm, anything but comfort. And yet. That moment had something to teach me. This culture, encouraging us to accumulate, to upgrade, telling us there is no such thing as enough, may be responsible for its own undoing.

And maybe the gift of disaster, of floods, of fires, of unprecedented economic unraveling, is the opportunity to start over – and to do it differently.

• Shannon Kelley is a columnist at the Santa Barbara Independent. She is also a freelance writer.

Read the entire piece here: http://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/Opinion/2009/0109/p09s02-coop.html

December 8, 2011

Google celebrating Diego Rivera's 125th Birthday

Thank you to Starry for posting this elsewhere this morning - lovely to see Google honoring one of the 20th century's best artists (and he was a communist too of course)

“SINCE ART IS ESSENTIAL for human life, it can’t just belong to the few.”

So demanded Diego Rivera, the leading Mexican muralist whose creative ambitions swept across the 20th century as large as his class-spanning public art. And Thursday, Google does what it can to spotlight Rivera’s essential art for an audience of millions.

Today, on the 125th anniversary of Rivera’s birth, Google’s homepage ”Doodle” celebrates the artist with a mural rich not only in color, but also in biographical detail.


December 8, 2011


9 October 1940 – 8 December 1980 - We miss you.

Imagine lyrics
Songwriters: Lennon, John

Imagine there's no heaven, it's easy if you try
No hell below us, above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today

Imagine there's no countries, it isn't hard to do
No need to kill or die for and no religions too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one

Imagine no possessions I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger a brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing for the world

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
Take my hand and join us
And the world will live, will live as one

[ From: http://www.elyrics.net/read/j/john-lennon-lyrics/imagine-lyrics.html ]

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Gender: Female
Hometown: Wisconsin
Current location: Tejas
Member since: Thu Jan 17, 2008, 01:44 PM
Number of posts: 32,717

About TBF

The most violent element in society is ignorance. Emma Goldman
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