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Name: Mom
Gender: Female
Home country: Earth
Current location: SF Bay Area
Member since: Sat May 8, 2004, 01:56 AM
Number of posts: 13,445

Journal Archives

Strafgesetzbuch Section 86a - Important reason why it exists. Time for the US to wake up.

While a majority of Americans are in shock right now and trying to digest what they are witnessing in the last several days with images of torches and nazi emblems, nazi salutes from Charlottesville, VA and the shocking response from Trump since then, imagine what is going through the minds of Holocaust survivors and anyone who has family who died at the hands of nazis or died fighting the nazis.

My family has members who bravely fought the Nazis and yes, some who died. I grew up keenly aware from both my German and Danish family why they died, what evil the Nazi's perpetrated and how it could never be allowed ever again. My family came to America and saw America as the "Land of the Free" and the country that liberated the world from the Nazi's and Nazism. Today, the ones who remember the War or those who died at the hands of Nazis or fighting the Nazis, would be in shock. I am in shock right now. My family and friends in Germany are in shock right now seeing the emblems of the Nazi's and the Nazi salutes being used in 2017 in America. And being defended by the President of the United States. And hearing that President state that the opposition is a moral equivalent or worse.

In Germany, the very symbols and emblems that were being paraded down the streets of Charlottesville, VA and the torch lit images of the nazi salute of stretched arms and the words of "Blood and Soil" (Blut und Boden) are forbidden in Germany and can result in not just arrest, but imprisonment for up to 3 years. That may seem "against freedom of speech" or extreme. I say it isn't extreme enough.

There is a reason it exists and the Germans understand all too well. Symbols and the evil meaning that they represent can destroy a society and kill people.

I believe these symbols, including the confederate flag and symbols of the Klu Klux Klan should be banned from being publicly displayed in the United States. I believe anyone who defends their use, or defends anyone who follows their hateful and evil beliefs is a Nazi and an enemy of our Nation, an enemy of humanity. I believe the US Congress should pass a law that bans these symbols and salutes from being used, similar to how the Germans have done in their country. Stop this evil from growing while we still can.

Today in Germany, Nazi emblems and other emblems and symbols of hate, Nazi salutes in written form, vocally, and even straight-extending the right arm as a saluting gesture (with or without the phrase), are illegal. It is a criminal offence punishable by up to three years of prison as per Strafgesetzbuch section 86a. Some exceptions in the usage for art, teaching and science is allowed.

This is my 10,000th post on the Democratic Underground. Never did I ever believe in my wildest dreams that I would be posting on this topic after watching the President of the United States defend people who use these symbols of hate and live by those symbols of hate and criticize the people who speak out against that hate.

7 Key Lessons To Be Learned from the 2012 Election:

Regardless of the political party you support, regardless of where you think this country should go, the following lessons learned from the 2012 election:

1) Math Matters:

Nate Silver and the Mathematicians predicted it to the tee - why? Math. Polls are nice, but math and statistics are nicer. Math and statistics are a science. Science is real. Anyone that says "the numbers don't matter" is just WRONG.

2) Women Matter:

"Hell hath no Fury like a Woman scorned"....ALL of the Republican candidates that made stupid comments about rape went from leading their races to defeat. They GUARANTEED Democrats would expand their hold on the Senate. Women VOTE.

3) Demographics Matters:

The Republican base are scared, angry old white men. And every year, their are fewer of them. In every OTHER demographic - blacks, Hispanics, immigrants, women, young people, LGBT, etc. Democrats have a huge advantage - and those groups are GROWING while the scared, angry old white men group is SHRINKING. If Republicans don't get this basic concept, they will truly be extinct as a party.

4) Number of People Matter, Not Number of Money:

Money may influence elections but money can't buy them - people matter more than dollars.

Republicans out-raised and outspent the Democrats in every Senate race and in the Presidential race - and they got their asses handed to them. It turns out the better predictor of success is not how much money you raised, but how MUCH of that money came from large numbers of small donors ($200 or less).

5) The Supreme Court Matters:

This election was about a lot of things, but one of the big ones was the Supreme Court and all of the Women and demographics mentioned above in Lessons #2 & #3, greatly outnumber the scared, angry old white guys knew that and voted. Which goes back to Lesson #1.

6) Moderates Matter:

The "Republic Party" of Teabaggers and Rush Limbaugh are screaming about having lost their country. That country in their minds existed when slavery existed and before suffrage - that country died along time ago. Or they are saying that they lost because Mitt Romney "wasn't conservative enough." Bullshit. He lost because he wasnt moderate enough... Mitt Romney lost because there aren't enough scared, angry old white men, and the more conservative he got (especially during the primaries) the more he lost the support of all the other demographics. If the GOP decides to go even further to the right, they will never have another shot at the White House or other elected office again. Only real Moderates in the GOP will ever have a chance if they want to save that party. See Lesson #1.

7) Climate Change Matters:

Sandy reminded everyone of that and that who sits in the White House or on "science" committees in Congress matters. Climate change deniers need not apply.


Sailing Fans Reeling Over Yacht Race Death- 4 still Missing

Source: San Francisco Chronicle


The Bay Area's tightly knit sailing community was reeling Sunday after one of the region's most catastrophic boating disasters in decades - the wreck of a racing yacht near the Farallon Islands that killed one sailor and left four missing.

The wreck happened Saturday when 12-foot waves pummeled the sailboat during the Full Crew Farallones Race and hurled it onto rocks at the Farallon Islands, pitching most of the crew overboard. Three sailors were rescued from the scene, but one, Marc Kasanin, 46, of Belvedere died in the water and four more disappeared in the waves.

The 38-foot racing craft, named the Low Speed Chase, was one of 49 boats competing in this year's contest, which began at 9:30 a.m. Saturday at the St. Francis Yacht Club in San Francisco. The race has been held annually since 1907 and is sponsored by the Offshore Yacht Racing Association in Alameda.

Lynch identified the missing sailors as Alan Cahill of Tiburon, a boat technician in his mid-30s who has a wife and two children; Alexis Busch of Larkspur, who is in her mid-20s; Jordan Fromm, 25, of Ross; and Elmer Morrissey, early 30s, of Ireland.

Several boats turned back Saturday when 25-knot winds and waves as high as 15 feet churned up the waters near the Farallones, but otherwise the race conditions were typical for that area and this time of year, participants said.

Then, as racers were rounding the islands at 2:45 p.m., the Low Speed Chase was slammed by a powerful wave that washed five crewmates over the gunwale near the edge of the main Southeast Farallon Island - which, like the other islands, is formidably surrounded by steep, jagged rocks.

The remaining three on board turned the boat around to rescue their comrades when another wave heaved the boat onto the rocks on the northeast corner of the island, authorities said. Two sailors fell over the side on this second assault but managed to scramble to the shoreline, and the one left on board suffered a broken leg.

Too close to rocks

At least one other yacht was within eyesight, and its horrified crew watched the tragedy unfold but was unable to help in the tumultuous waves.

"If anyone can turn that corner, it would have been them," Church said. "These were some of the best sailors around."


No link yet.

PS: i knew the confirmed dead sailor Marc Kasanin and have raced in the past with him. Three of the currently missing sailors that the coast guard has called off the search for as of last night I know, including Alexis Busch, the only woman on board who is a remarkable young woman, who in addition to being a great sailor, was a Woman Baseball Player - (see Ladybaseball.com). When I used to race, this was one of the races I competed in twice.

Please refrain from making judgments of sailing being a race of the 1 percent and privileged. Any one on DU who sails knows that to be a sailor and part of the sailing community is more than that. There are many who sail and love sailing who aren't rich and often these yachts, while owned by wealthy, will be crewed by people who aren't, both professional and amateur sailors, who sail and race for the love of the sport and of the water.

I am very shook up about this and what isn't in this story which every sailor in the Bay Area and sport knows is that the area where they died is the feeding grounds of the Great White Sharks and near their breeding grounds. Its not in the article and the coast guard isn't saying it and neither are they on television, but their bodies will never be found. I wish nothing more than a miracle that the missing sailors be found alive. But I know better. I know from sailing this area that the risk of hypothermia is so great within minutes if not drowning should you fall in water. its why the crew did the emergency maneuver to retrieve the 4 sailors who were knocked over board, despite being close to the rocks. But if they are dead. i pray this is how they died or were knocked unconscious. Because the alternative is the horror us sailors never want to talk about. And we know their bodies wont be recovered. I pray for their families this morning and send them my love and condolences....

We have been in a Depression the last year & worst to be felt is coming in 2012.

While there have been some signs of the economy improving, they are fragile at best & being hindered from being better by the GOP blocking efforts by the Obama administration to provide economic stimulus. But what Krugman chillingly points out is the situation in Europe that is a grave danger not only to itself, but to the US economic & political situation.

The world economy & stability politically is teetering on the edge & dangerously close to authoritarian leanings and yes, revolution. Global revolution.

My family comes from Europe and I spend time there every summer. This last summer was very telling. Discussions in the Biergartens with my German family & friends were of wanting to go back to the Deutsch Mark & closing borders. Some feel very much pangs of Nationalism and others fear of memories from Germanys past. No one I spoke to either in Germany or from Spain, Italy, France or UK felt ok with the austerity measures being proposed & in fact the outrage expressed towards the banks, the EU and their own governments were filled with discussion of revolution & protest should things go that direction.

I fear that in the next 12 months that there could be a breakout of not only mass protests and revolt, but all out revolution both across Europe but also the US. I believe that groups with right-wing authoritarian leanings like the ones growing with power in Sweden, Finland, Norway, Austria, Italy, Spain etc have plans to take things in the direction similar to what Krugman described happening in Hungary. And if any one questions if it could happen here or that the US could become a police state or authoritarian establishment, I suggest looking at where we currently are and the response to the OWS protests around the country.

And dont kid yourself - the various Governments including our own know this is what we are teetering on.

Bad Week for 1% Family here in my neighborhood....

The Spirit of the Miwok Indians must be agitated and at work....this in our local paper....The 1st article is about one of the Pritzker Brothers who just finished a building of an 18,000 sq ft home & wanted a waiver that was a condition of his building permit. After spending over $18mm to buy the property and another $10MM to "fix it up", he complained about not wanting to have to spend another $500k to do something to save the steelhead that spawn there...Meanwhile, his brother up the road had a major fire hours later after the local town council denied Mr Pritzker his "hardship request".

Wealthy Ross family told to remove fish barrier in Ross Creek

The Ross Town Council has denied a request by the owners of the largest house in Ross, an 18,000-square-foot mansion on Glenwood Avenue, to rescind a requirement that they remove a barrier preventing endangered steelhead trout from passing through Ross Creek to spawn.

The five-member council voted unanimously Thursday to deny the request by John and Lisa Pritzker, members of one of America's richest families, according to Forbes magazine. The family is best known as owners of the Hyatt Hotel chain; John Pritzker is listed as No. 227 on Forbes' list of the 400 richest Americans, with a net worth of $1.9 billion.


No one hurt in $1 million fire at Kent Woodlands billionaire's estate

A fire that may have been triggered by electrical circuitry ripped through a carriage house at a Kent Woodlands billionaire's estate early Friday, causing as much as $1 million in damage.

The fire in a two-story "carriage house" or second unit on the three-acre Woodland Road property owned by Daniel and Karen Pritzker was reported at about 4:10 a.m., and Kentfield firefighters arrived promptly to find flames licking at the outside of the building.

Pritzker, a Hyatt Hotel heir, is a philanthropist and musician. He was listed as No. 273 in this year's Forbes magazine ranking of the 400 richest Americans, with a net worth of $1.6 billion.


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