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JHan

Profile Information

Gender: Female
Member since: Sun Sep 11, 2016, 12:18 AM
Number of posts: 10,173

About Me

Be true, be brave, stand. All the rest is darkness.

Journal Archives

"Making the perfect the enemy of the good."

"My identity as an advocate and activist remained important to me as I grew older. When I myself was lobbied and protested as a public official, it was a little like stepping through the looking glass. Whenever I grew frustrated, I'd remind myself how it felt to be on the other side of the table or out in the street with a sign and a megaphone. I'd been there. I knew that the activists giving me a hard time were doing their jobs, trying to drive progress and hold leaders accountable. That kind of pressure is not just important—it’s mission-critical for a healthy democracy. As FDR supposedly told a group of civil rights leaders, "Okay, you've convinced me. Now make me do it."

Still, there was an inherent tension. Some activists and advocates saw their role as putting pressure on people in power, including allies, and they weren't interested in compromise. They didn't have to strike deals with Republicans or worry about winning elections. But I did. There are principles and values we should never compromise, but to be an effective leader in a democracy, you need flexible strategies and tactics, especially under difficult political conditions. I learned that the hard way during our battle for health care reform in the early nineties. Reluctance to compromise can bring about defeat. The forces opposed to change have it easier. They can just say no, again and again, and blame the other side when it doesn't happen. If you want to get something done, you have to find a way to get to yes.

So I've never had much respect for activists who are willing to sit out elections, waste their votes, or tear down well-meaning allies rather than engage constructively. Making the perfect the enemy of the good is shortsighted and counterproductive.

And when someone on the left starts talking about how there's no difference between the two parties or that electing a right-wing Republican might somehow hasten "the revolution," it's just unfathomably wrong."

HRC/WHat Happened

Russia's Recent Facebook Ads Prove the Kremlin Never Loved Black People

"Evoking racial fears among Americans is an old game for Russia."

What is new with today’s Kremlin is that a new opportunity to exploit race in a different way has presented itself. Instead of siding with the oppressed black American population, Russian security services have clearly realized that it is to the Kremlin’s advantage to side with racist white people. Russia’s own rising nationalism, which views immigration from Central Asia as a threat, and Russian politicians’ support of it make for a very convenient relationship with American racists.

“The Russian leadership sees themselves as the redeemers of whiteness,” said Maxim Matusevich, director of the Russian and East European Studies program at Seton Hall University. “It is a reversal of the past when the Soviets were standing up for the oppressed and the minorities. Now all of a sudden they’re standing up for whiteness. That’s why I think Putin is so popular with segments of the American right because they see Russians as the guardians of whiteness: They’re white and they are Christian, they are anti-gay and anti-minority.”

For more than 70 years, the USSR engaged in a robust propaganda campaign to prove it was the oasis of black liberation. It was all a lie. In its current model of the Russian Federation, the Kremlin has proven that, like its former USSR predecessor state, it will use black people as a political tool whenever it suits them.

We were a tool of the USSR foreign policy then and we are a tool of Vladimir Putin’s Russia now. The Soviets didn’t love us then, and Putin’s Russia certainly proves it doesn’t love us now.


http://www.theroot.com/russia-s-recent-facebook-ads-prove-the-kremlin-never-lo-1818877990

There's an interesting article on The Daily Banter..

Featuring Bravenak - I'm still allowed mention her right?

I know I can't re-post said article here because - well we know what will happen and the AA group gets enough alert stalking as it is......

But it's an interesting example of the privilege and arrogance of those who risked Trump and argued with twisted logic that Trump would be good for America.

Some love to ho-hum anger against third party advocates, but as we learn more about Kremlin manipulation of the electorate last year, the behavior of third party advocates, in retrospect, looks even more irresponsible and reckless.

Rather than engage in a little introspection, and ponder how they were duped by propaganda or enthusiastically spread it, they lash out at those in the crosshairs of the Trump administration who remain justifiably angry at their recklessness and divisiveness.

This tweet sums it up best.https://twitter.com/manglewood/status/795322499538046981

And the article is now in General Discussion! https://www.democraticunderground.com/10029648029

This Terry Gross interview is really really really good...and gives good context to "What Happened"

It's been shared in General Discussion already but worth a repost.

http://www.npr.org/programs/fresh-air/2017/09/18/551812328/fresh-air-for-sept-18-2017-hillary-clinton

My takeaway:

It doesn't matter who Democrats run: the Right will relentlessly swiftboat and demonize them. With allies like the Mercers, Cambridge Analytica, and other arms of the RW media, (and Kremlin interference and Republican complicity ), Democrats must understand the divisive tactics of their opponents. Hillary succinctly breaks down the challenges we face, globally, from Right Wing forces.

Further, one of the many lessons of "What Happened" is the insidiousness of the dangerous supposition that the Democratic party is a failing institution. Risks were taken, with healthcare reform, and Democrats paid a massive political price for trying to fix problems courtesy the Bush Administration. Democrats may have lost the meme wars, may have been out-financed and outplayed by well-funded Right Wing think tanks and funding - funding which financed opposition and obstruction to Obama during his presidency - but that does not equal a failing party. We must never forget a minority of voters determined the course of America and they do not represent all 300 million Americans.

Another lesson of the book for me personally, and further confirmed in reactions to Hillary's recent interviews where she's described as newly "unguarded" and "real" compared to Hillary the candidate, is the fallacy of authenticity and likability politics.

We've all heard the complaints that Hillary is insincere and inauthentic, affecting her "likeability", but insincerity/inauthenticity comes with practice and one would think if there was any truth to that claim, that by now she would be good at it and it would go unnoticed, yet her detractors constantly feel the need to repeat the insincerity meme, as if to convince themselves and others. The contradictions in the Hillary critiques are mind-boggling.

The main problem with "likability" and "Authenticity" metrics is that they divert attention away from a person's actual record and their actions.

No surprises then, that an authentically horrible narcissist is in the WH.






Studies help explain link between autism, severe infection during pregnancy

http://www.koreadailyus.com/korean-american-professor-couple-identify-major-cause-autism/

A Korean couple who are both working as professors at prestigious U.S. universities proved the main cause of autism.

The couple found that certain bacteria in the mother’s digestive tract can lead to having an autistic child. Furthermore, they found the exact brain location linked to autistic behaviors, which can be used to find a cure for autism.

Science journal ‘Nature’ published the couple’s two research studies on the 14th. The couple are Harvard Medical School’s professor Huh Jun-ryeol, and MIT’s professor Gloria Choi.

The studies vividly explain the detailed process of a pregnant mouse, which is infected by a virus, having offspring that shows autistic behaviors.

The researchers found out that certain bacteria in the mother’s digestive tract can develop immune cells that directly influence the baby’s brain cells development. When the researchers removed the bacteria with antibiotics, the mouse had a normal baby mouse.


From MIT:

The researchers found that the patches are most common in a part of the brain known as S1DZ. Part of the somatosensory cortex, this region is believed to be responsible for proprioception, or sensing where the body is in space. In these patches, populations of cells called interneurons, which express a protein called parvalbumin, are reduced. Interneurons are responsible for controlling the balance of excitation and inhibition in the brain, and the researchers found that the changes they found in the cortical patches were associated with overexcitement in S1DZ.

When the researchers restored normal levels of brain activity in this area, they were able to reverse the behavioral abnormalities. They were also able to induce the behaviors in otherwise normal mice by overstimulating neurons in S1DZ.

The researchers also discovered that S1DZ sends messages to two other brain regions: the temporal association area of the cortex and the striatum. When the researchers inhibited the neurons connected to the temporal association area, they were able to reverse the sociability deficits. When they inhibited the neurons connected to the striatum, they were able to halt the repetitive behaviors..


EDIT: Changed original OP title to headline from MIT.

Dolores Huerta: The Civil Rights Icon Who Showed Farmworkers 'Si Se Puede'

Huerta was 25 when she became the political director of the Community Service Organization, run by influential community organizer Fred Ross. That's where she met Chavez, and in 1962 the two teamed up to form what became the UFA, organizing farmworkers who toiled for wages as low as 70 cents an hour, in brutal conditions.

"They didn't have toilets in the fields, they didn't have cold drinking water. They didn't have rest periods," Huerta tells NPR.

In 1965, the grape workers struck, and Huerta was a leading organizer. She faced violence on the picket lines — and sexism from both the growers she was staring down and their political allies, and from within her own organization. At one point, a lawmaker is seen referring to Huerta as Chavez's "sidekick." At a time when the feminist movement was taking root, Huerta was an unconventional figure: the twice-divorced mother of 11 children. "Who supports those kids when she's out on these adventures?" one of her opponents is shown asking in historical footage.

Now grown, her children provide some of the most moving accounts in the film. They speak with great admiration for their mother, but are also candid about the price her tireless dedication to the cause exacted on the family. As one daughter puts it, "The movement became her most important child."


Snip

And yet, her role in the farmworkers movement has long been overshadowed by that of Cesar Chavez, her longtime collaborator and co-founder of what became the United Farm Workers of America union. That's true even when it comes to credit for coining the movement's famous slogan, Sí se puede — Spanish for "Yes, we can" — which inspired President Obama's own campaign battle cry and has often wrongly been attributed to Chavez. (Obama acknowledged Huerta as the source of that phrase when he awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012. She talks about its origins below.)


http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/09/17/551490281/dolores-huerta-the-civil-rights-icon-who-showed-farmworkers-si-se-puede

more links:

http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/09/15/movie-review-why-activist-dolores-huerta-wont-shut-up/

Trailer:



Hillary Clinton: A Vox Conversation on What Happened.

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/9/12/16291416/hillary-clinton-vox-interview-what-happened

On page 239 of What Happened, Hillary Clinton reveals that she almost ran a very different campaign in 2016. Before announcing for president, she read Peter Barnes’s book With Liberty and Dividends for All, and became fascinated by the idea of using revenue from shared natural resources, like fossil fuel extraction and public airwaves, alongside revenue from taxing public harms, like carbon emissions and risky financial practices, to give every American “a modest basic income.”

Her ambitions for this idea were expansive, touching on not just the country’s economic ills but its political and spiritual ones. “Besides cash in people’s pockets,” she writes, “it would be also be a way of making every American feel more connected to our country and to each other.”

This is the kind of transformative vision that Clinton was often criticized for not having. It’s an idea bigger than a wall, perhaps bigger even than single-payer health care or free college. But she couldn’t make the numbers work. Every version of the plan she tried either raised taxes too high or slashed essential programs. So she scrapped it. “That was the responsible decision,” she writes. But after the 2016 election, Clinton is no longer sure that “responsible” is the right litmus test for campaign rhetoric. “I wonder now whether we should’ve thrown caution to the wind, embraced [it] as a long-term goal and figured out the details later,” she writes.


The whole interview is worth the watch. It's seriously good.

I went to medical school in Charlottesville. I know white anger well

For four years, my task was to learn to treat people who were sick. Even the ones who wore their Confederate pride openly, even the ones who threatened to shoot me on home health visits. My task was to learn from experienced physicians how to help people get well. Even when they witnessed racist behavior directed toward me. Even when they glossed over that bigotry.

The response to the violence in Charlottesville has had its fair share of denial — people saying, this is not the city I know, the protesters came from elsewhere, this is not the America I know.

Such statements are infuriating.

In Charlottesville, this was exactly the America I knew. This was the Virginia I knew. This was the medicine I knew. Even on graduation day, one the happiest days of my life, my family broke bread at a restaurant I later learned was owned by a man affiliated with the University of Virginia who had made controversial and racist statements.

This is the quiet racism of every day — the small transgressions that we gloss over in our daily lives. The outrage that only comes when men carrying tiki torches march openly. The America I know tolerates racism as long as it’s quiet, as long as it doesn’t cause a scene. Until it kills an innocent protester.


*snip*

As for me, a few weeks ago, an angry patient kept referring to me as “that woman.” Another patient refused to look at me, a black doctor, as she believed black people, “are more prone to violence.”

This is the America I know, the medicine I know. Bigotry in a hospital gown — it’s a risk I face every day when I go into work.

But, during the first incident, a nurse intervened, reminding the patient that I was her doctor, Dr. Okwerekwu, and deserved her respect. And during the second incident, my attending spoke up, telling the patient that her views were misinformed.

And after the second incident, my attending asked me how I was doing, how I was coping. That woman hadn’t been the first patient that week to spew racism. A team social worker, an occupational therapist, and even a medical student I was working with offered their support.

What happened when I talked about what others ignore — racism in medicine
This is the America I want. The medicine I aspire to.


https://www.statnews.com/2017/08/14/charlottesville-protest-white-anger/

"to the "socially conscious" objectors who didn't vote".....

"I just saw a middle-aged man from West Africa who is living with HIV and has been in the US since the mid 2000s. He came here on asylum and has been applying repeatedly and appealing rejections each time. He works construction and got insurance to pay for his HIV meds and has been doing well.

He told me today that he was fired due to 45's initiatives trying to purge the US of non-white immigrants who are not citizens yet. He had to scramble to get the Medicaid-funded AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) so he can continue to get his meds, but missed 10 days in the process.

To those of you who pseudo-intellextualize your decision to "take a stand and not vote last year because of apathy, anger about Bernie not being the candidate, or because "Hillary was just as bad," please sit the fuck down. It's great to blog and get hundreds of "likes" for typing half-baked ideas in social media spaces as you stand defiant and stern in your decision to let this disaster happen - but what is happening to people in the US now as a result is very real and will be adversely impacting people's lives and health for years to come. This clown in the White House is systematically dismantling programs that are going to kill people. My patient's clinical outcome depends on this idiot that many Americans allowed to assume power. If you think that none of this will affect you because you're not HIV-positive, you're dead wrong.

When the Republicans destroy Medicaid, my patient won't be able to get meds because ADAP will be impacted by these cuts. He will get sick, and will likely die and/or get deported, whichever comes first. He has been a productive worker in this country for 13 years, and this is what he gets.

So spare me with your posts/articles about being an HIV advocate and "doing the work" if you didn't vote last year. You ain't doing shit - you actively contributed to setting this country back decades, just when we are starting to see a decrease in new HIV cases in many areas.

And oh yeah, the used car salesman you allowed to get in the White House just banned our transgender brothers and sisters from serving in the military.

So while you're at it, take your "LGBT advocacy" social media diatribes and shove them up your asses.
I hope you're all proud of yourselves. You really made your point by being the "socially conscious" objectors who didn't vote. Well done."


From a public status on FB.

I've zero empathy for the narcissism of those who refused to vote, the "Meh, Guess I'm With her" idiots, the faux piety of conscience voters. It was always going to be an uphill battle, especially knowing Trump would indulge in white resentment to the hilt.

Sure Clinton made tactical errors but we are left with the outcomes and that is ALL that matters in elections - not the career of a politician who ran and lost, or even a political party, but the OUTCOMES and the impact of these outcomes on our quality of life.

Nothing else matters. If you squandered the opportunity to prevent these outcomes, you are culpable and own the Trumpster fire that is this presidency.

Maybe journos should ask black voters why we vote the way we do instead of tweeting nonsense:

For a whole year countless articles about Trump supporters, maybe hundreds about Bernie supporters - The number profiling HRC supporters? - ----------------- I could count on one hand ( maybe both if I'm lucky) the number of articles profiling clinton supporters.

so shut up Matt:



this exchange...







These reasons reflect my own...



So maybe instead of trying to school someone about the motivations of african americans and our voting habits or whether there's "Over interpretation" of how we vote, Matt should do something journalists , for the most part, couldn't be assed to do last year -
...talk to us.
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