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Bird Lady

Profile Information

Gender: Do not display
Hometown: New Mexico
Home country: USA
Current location: Ojai California
Member since: Sun Dec 15, 2013, 01:57 PM
Number of posts: 1,476

About Me

Unapologetic progressive, retired engineering technician, breeder of birds, maker of jewelry, an opinionated woman who will not be silenced by shouting or spinning. Abakan is the name of a male green cheek conure, RIP.

Journal Archives

I see many dog and cat folks....

Are there any bird people here? I have birds and the love of a silly little dog, Gidgit. I would love to show you how beautiful she is but I have no server to load the photos to. I'll work on that.

So are there any feathered families here?

California’s Most Important Congressional Race

Source: Truth Dig



Original image by Shutterstock

If you’re voting in Tuesday’s primary, or you want to know more about the significance of one of the most important contests this term, than this is the post for you.

California’s 33rd Congressional District is currently represented by Henry Waxman, a progressive Democrat who has been in the House since 1975. The district is made up of some of Los Angeles’ wealthiest neighborhoods, including Bel Air and Beverly Hills. It stretches from Palos Verdes in the south to Malibu in the north, and it votes reliably for Democratic candidates.

In terms of national significance, the 33rd is home to many Democratic Party political donors—the ones who tend to max out their contributions—and as such is a frequent stop for anyone running for office. Whoever holds the district is likely to have extra influence with those donors and, consequently, in national politics.

There are 19 candidates running to replace Waxman, who is retiring. They are Republicans Elan Carr, Lily Gilani and Kevin Mottus; Democrats Vince Flaherty, James Graf, Wendy Greuel, Kristie Holmes, David Kanuth, Ted Lieu, Matt Miller, Barbara L. Mulvaney, Zein E. Obagi Jr., and Michael Shapiro; independents Tom Fox, Theo Milonopoulos (write-in), Brent C. Roske and Marianne Williamson; Green Party candidate Michael Ian Sachs; and Libertarian Mark Matthew Herd.

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Read the rest:
http://www.truthdig.com/eartotheground/item/in_progress_do_not_open_your_complete_guide_to_californias_most_important_c

The US has negotiated with Terrorists and Amnestied Them all through History

Source: Informed Comment

Dear GOP: The US has negotiated with Terrorists and Amnestied Them all through History

By Juan Cole
June 2, 2014

The GOP talking points in response to the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl in a trade for five former officials of the 1990s Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (Taliban) focused on a few basic premises. !. You don’t negotiate with terrorists; 2. such a swap would encourage terrorists to capture Americans; 3. these officials are the worst the worst.

Tagging movements as “terrorist” and then refusing to deal with them is frankly stupid. The Taliban in Afghanistan are not a small terrorist group like, say, the Italian Red Brigades of the 1970s and 1980s. They are guerrillas belonging to a movement that at one point had captured the state and run it. The Taliban are now a guerrilla group, holding territory.

The US has all along negotiated with the guerrillas it has fought on the battlefield. William Howard Taft (later president) in the Philippines was all for negotiation with Filipinos who rejected US rule, and he created “attraction zones” to win them over. At the conclusion of the Aguinaldo resistance to US occupation in 1902, Teddy Roosevelt declared a general amnesty for the resistance fighters. These resistance fighters had committed some atrocities, including on captured US troops, but Roosevelt just let them walk free. Talk softly, carry a big stick, and let all the terrorists go, seems to have been his motto.

The US negotiated with the Viet Cong in South Vietnam, who were very much analogous to the Taliban and whom the US would now certainly term “terrorists.” In 1973, the US used intermediaries to negotiate with the Viet Cong for release of captured US soldiers at Loc Ninh. Americans on the political right made a huge issue about 1300 US soldiers never having been released by the Viet Cong (only about 400 were), and the shame that these men were left on the battlefield by the Nixon and Ford administrations. Conservatives seem to want to have it both ways. If you negotiate the release of US captives with the enemy you are “negotiating with terrorists.” If you don’t, then you have left soldiers behind on the battlefield. The fact is that the only way to have freed them was to have offered something for them in detailed negotiations. As for the Viet Cong “terrorists,” many of them are in government now and the US has cordial relations with them.

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Read more: http://www.juancole.com/2014/06/negotiated-terrorists-amnestied.html

8 Things You Should Know About The Biggest Thing A President’s Ever Done On Climate Change

Source: Think Progress
http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/06/02/3443593/obama-historic-action-on-climate-change/

On Monday morning, the Environmental Protection Agency released its proposed rule to limit the amount of carbon pollution that existing power plants can dump into the atmosphere. This is the most significant move President Obama has made to address the direct causes of climate change.

The Clean Air Act, passed by Congress in 1970 and amended in 1990, is finally getting to tackle carbon pollution from the nation’s 491 smoke-spewing coal power plants. Contrary to what fossil fuel advocates claim, though, it does not mean that EPA will be directly shutting down coal plants. Each state would have a broad menu of carbon-cutting options, including energy efficiency improvements, adding clean energy sources, implementing a carbon tax, or instituting or joining a cap-and-trade system.

By 2020, states will have to have drop their carbon emissions from existing power plants 25 percent from 2005 levels. By 2030, according to the proposed rule, those emissions will have to drop another 5 percent — to 30 percent — from the same base 2005 level.

Here are 8 things you should know about the new rule:

This is the most significant move any U.S. president has made to curtail carbon pollution in history.

Prisoner Trade Yields Rare View Into the Taliban

Source: NYTimes
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/02/world/asia/soldier-prisoner-trade-for-five-taliban-figures-offers-rare-view.html?ref=politics&_r=0

KABUL, Afghanistan — The freeing of five senior Taliban figures in exchange for the American soldier, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, has offered both a rare insight into the insurgent group’s inner workings and a diplomatic first in the long Afghan war: a negotiated agreement between the highest levels of the American government and the pinnacle of the Taliban command.

Representatives of both sides played down the idea that the exchange, long seen as a crucial prelude to any broader talks, might breathe new life into the effort to engage the Taliban in a peace effort. But the complex swap showed “each side that the other can deliver,” said one senior American official close to the effort. And it gave both the Taliban leadership and the Obama administration important political symbols.

For the Taliban, the delivery of five of its most prominent figures to freedom in Qatar was the culmination of years of effort to secure the men’s release and to receive legitimacy on an international stage. And it seemingly answered questions about whether the group’s reclusive leader, Mullah Muhammad Omar, was still in charge of its disparate factions, demonstrating “that there was a span in control that went through the representatives in Doha, to the Taliban command, and to the individuals who were holding him, presumably somewhere in Pakistan,” the American official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss Sergeant Bergdahl’s release.

For the Obama administration, too, the exchange was an important achievement: the prospect of Sergeant Bergdahl’s return to his family in Idaho after nearly five years as a hostage of the Taliban struck a humanitarian and emotional note for an administration trying to wind down the war.

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America needs 'imminent disturbance'

Source: Daily KOS
Reposted from Daily Kos Labor by Laura Clawson



The North Carolina legislature recently banned anything that might create an "imminent disturbance" in the legislative building. In other words, the legislature, faced with months of Moral Mondays protests, is cracking down, giving itself a rule under which to silence protesters.
Threatening protesters with arrest for peaceful demonstration is a hot Republican trend of the last few years, with bills proposed in Tennessee and Georgia targeting union picketing specifically.

But, as the video above points out, many of the moments that moved America forward relied on imminent disturbance. Not that North Carolina Republicans would necessarily see it that way.

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/05/31/1302860/-This-week-in-the-War-on-Workers-America-needs-imminent-disturbance?detail=hide

For all the mysoginist...Here is a gift...

Obama v. Reagan: Fun Comparison

Source: Daily Kos

Yesterday was Reagan's birthday. I share this post for with those who start dripping with sentimentality forgetting what he did, what his legacy is still doing, and worst of all, (for my conservative friends), that they wouldn't have liked him today anyway:

Imagine a world that never knew Ronald Reagan:

No Scalia, No Rumsfeld, No Cheney. No Bushes and all of their appointments and disasters. No funding of dictators like Saddam Hussein (Reagan propped him up big time) or psychopaths like Osama Bin Laden (that worked out well).

An America far less dependent on oil. A superpower respected for skilled diplomacy in ending conflicts, instead of starting them. And a healthy economy with a strong middle class instead of a world where the labor movement has been viciously attacked, and the middle class is systematically being dismantled. Under Reagan, corporations gained massive power to the point today where they have become "people". Unions, the worker's last protection, were severely weakened, and the socioeconomic gap exploded. He also bankrupted us, pouring hundreds of billions into wasteful spending, like the failed and ridiculous Star Wars missile-defense system. All in just 8 short years.

Reagan created the modern plutocracy. He introduced us to the whole "take from the poor, give to the rich" supply-side economics that we still suffer today. He turned compassion to the less fortunate to villianization... created the mythical "welfare queen", mocked AIDS patients, and let his fellow "Christians" know it was okay to belittle the homeless.

CEOs before Reagan made 78 times their minimum wage workers. Today, its almost 3500 times! Without Reagan, America might have had the same income distribution we had in the 1970s, which would mean we would be averaging $120,000 annually--not $40,000.

Reagan was the realization of Barry Goldwater's failed dream that put the GOP on the path of crazytown where it is today. He somehow managed to blend the selfish, plutocratic Ayn Randian economic philosophy with fundamental Christianity and wrap it all up into a cowboy, patriotic image that was as phony as this ranch. Bottom line. REAGAN WAS A BASTARD.

And we are still hurting. So when I hear the idiot conservatives longing for him on social media, the radio and the "specials" on Faux News, I want them to hurt. And the best way to do that? HIT THEM WHERE IT HURTS.


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http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/02/07/1275771/-Obama-v-Reagan-Fun-comparison-I-did-to-piss-off-a-wingnut-on-Reagan-s-B-day

Lest we let the canonization of raygun continue..

Hillary Clinton yes, no, maybe....

At the risk of starting something I have a question...

When Obama and Hillary were fighting it out in the primaries I was not supporting Hillary.
Now years later it looks like she is in the same place she was then, the presumptive nominee.
I still have misgivings about her and her candidacy. I know there are many here who support her.

My concerns about her are #1 the circus the rw will make out of the election if she is the candidate .
I don't want to hear another thing about Bill and what he did or didn't do in private. I don't want to feel
like I've fallen into an alternate universe where twiddle dum and twiddle dee are the norm. #2 I was very
impressed with Hillary as SoS. I think she did great work but I think her instincts are to make war, her
hawkishness has always been a problem for me. Does this concern you?

I'm not saying if she is the candidate I will not support her...I would rather cut off my hands than vote republican for anything.
If she is nominated I will support her, but I would like there to be other choices with similar experience but less militaristic.

I was going to create a pole but I'm apparently not a star member??? What ever that is.

Bumper Stickers of Truth

I have decided there are too many people out there who don't get the truth in their news. I think most of them drive, so I have started a one woman education program I call bumper stickers of truth. Whether it changes anything is not really the point, if they cause just one person to think or become curious it's a win in my book. My first sticker says this:

Anytime you vote REPUBLICAN,
you vote against your own best interest
unless you are a CORPORATION or BILLIONAIRE

I have other things I want to say and will do so but for now I'll use this one.
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