Archive for March, 2011

There is enough money but we choose not to allocate it correctly

Friday, March 25th, 2011

There is enough money out there but we choose not to allocate it correctly.

The 1994 Pulitzer Prize winning photograph of a girl trying to get the energy to continue her journey to a food station in the midst of the Sudan famine.  Photo is located here

In March 1993 Carter made a trip to Sudan. The sound of soft, high-pitched whimpering near the village of Ayod attracted Carter to an emaciated Sudanese toddler. The girl had stopped to rest while struggling to a feeding center, whereupon a vulture had landed nearby. He said that he waited about 20 minutes, hoping that the vulture would spread its wings. It didn’t. Carter snapped the haunting photograph and chased the vulture away.[5] However, he came under criticism for just photographing — and not helping — the little girl: Photo of Sudanese girl and vulture

The St. Petersburg Times in Florida said this of Carter: “The man adjusting his lens to take just the right frame of her suffering, might just as well be a predator, another vulture on the scene.”[6]

The photograph was sold to The New York Times where it appeared for the first time on March 26, 1993. Practically overnight hundreds of people contacted the newspaper to ask whether the child had survived, leading the newspaper to run a special editor’s note saying the girl had enough strength to walk away from the vulture, but that her ultimate fate was unknown.

On April 2, 1994 Nancy Buirski, a foreign New York Times picture editor, phoned Carter to inform him he had won the most coveted prize for photojournalism. Carter was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Photography on May 23, 1994 at Columbia University’s Low Memorial Library.

Alternate account-

Portuguese photojournalist based in South Africa João Silva, who accompanied Carter to Sudan, gave a different version of events in an interview with Japanese journalist and writer Akio Fujiwara that was published in Fujiwara’s book The Boy who Became a Postcard (????????? – Ehagaki ni sareta sh?nen).[7]

According to Silva, they (Carter and Silva) went to Sudan with the United Nations aboard Operation Lifeline Sudan and landed in Southern Sudan on March 11, 1993. The UN told them that they would take off again in 30 minutes (the time necessary to distribute food), so they ran around looking to take shots. The UN started to distribute corn and the women of the village came out of their wooden huts to meet the plane. Silva went looking for guerrilla fighters, while Carter strayed no more than a few dozen feet from the plane.

Again according to Silva, Carter was quite shocked as it was the first time that he had seen a famine situation and so he took many shots of the children suffering from famine. Silva also started to take photos of children on the ground as if crying, which were not published. The parents of the children were busy taking food from the plane so they had left their children only briefly while they collected the food. This was the situation for the girl in the photo taken by Carter. A vulture landed behind the girl. To get the two in focus, Carter approached the scene very slowly so as not to scare the vulture away and took a photo from approximately 10 metres. He took a few more photos and then the vulture flew off.

More about the photographer being haunted and later killing himself.  Story is located here

100th Anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory

Friday, March 25th, 2011

Today marks the centennial anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, the deadliest workplace accident in New York City’s history and a seminal moment for American labor.  By keeping Unions out of the Garment Industry that led directly to unsafe working conditions and to the deaths of these workers.  Video is located here

But those deaths did not end the issue of unsafe working conditions.

Last April, 99 years after the Triangle disaster, 29 miners were killed at West Virginia’s Upper Big Branch mine in an explosion that the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) says could have been prevented if the mine had been in compliance with federal mine safety rules. Massey Energy, the mine’s owner, had a significant history of safety violations.

Even during the Massey Coal Company tragedy killing 29 miners, Rush Limbaugh KNEW that Unions would have made the working location safer as he raised this question.

When Unions lose you lose.

US waking up to class warfare.

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

A great article on the class warfare going on with the anti Union Republicans who themselves are workers and many Union members.  The article is a good one and located here but possibly a better article was written by a comment to that real article.  The comment is posted below en total.

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I’ve been trying to warn folks for years. It’s no use. They’re too thoroughly indoctrinated. It is virtually impossible to get elected without shouting at the top of your lungs how christian you are and how god guides your life. Say anything stupid you want, just be sure to say god told you. It’ll be fine.

Most conservatives don’t bother to look at all the issues. Most are a one issue voter. I firmly believe that if the Republican party ran on 1) completely eliminating Social Security and all other social programs, 2) eliminating public education, 3) allowing only rich landowners to vote, 4) eliminating the minimum wage, 5) repealing all child labor laws, 6) raising taxes on the poor so the rich wouldn’t have to pay taxes, not that that many pay taxes now, and, oh, by the way, they’ll make abortions illegal, the only thing conservatives would hear is making abortion illegal and every conservative would vote for them. Conservatives have been schooled to live poor and vote rich. Even when you take the time to explain to them how they are voting against their own economic interest they won’t believe you and they will remind you of what a horrible crime abortion is. Don’t even attempt to explain that a womans uterus does not belong to either the church or the government. You’ll get nowhere.

The right wing ‘christians’ declared war on science under St. Raygun (Reagan). Now they have declared war on education in general and the ignorant drop-outs see this as a good thing. The Texas school boards are actually rewriting history books, leaving out Jefferson and claiming that all the founders were devout christians that intended to create a christian nation. I’m in one of the most redneck states in the union, Alabama. These folks still worship their confederate heritage and want things to return to the antebellum south.

The rich corporations have learned how to drive conservatives to vote against themselves by using wedge issues such as abortion, school prayer, ten commandments in courthouses, evolution, intolerance, bigotry and a whole host of other silly, childish issues. Educated people are demonized as ‘elites’ and lack of education is worn as a badge of honor. With more and more dropping out of high school it’s only going to get worse. America was a great experiment in democracy. But democracy works only when the people take an interest in it. While conservatives were fighting over school prayer, the rich turned America back into a feudal system.

FCC digital TV coverage maps

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

Maps are located here

36 million people were uninsured for the whole year last year and at any time 50 million lack health insurance

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

And we were told we have the best health care (not insurance nor payment program) in the world.  Sorry…but for average people we do not.

Video is located here

Shady Dealings Helped Qaddafi Build Fortune and Regime

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

In 2009, top aides to Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi called together 15 executives from global energy companies operating in Libya’s oil fields and issued an extraordinary demand: Shell out the money for his country’s $1.5 billion bill for its role in the downing of Pan Am Flight 103 and other terrorist attacks.

If the companies did not comply, the Libyan officials warned, there would be “serious consequences” for their oil leases, according to a State Department summary of the meeting.

Many of those businesses balked, saying that covering Libya’s legal settlement with victims’ families for acts of terrorism was unthinkable. But some companies, including several based in the United States, appeared willing to give in to Libya’s coercion and make what amounted to payoffs to keep doing business, according to industry executives, American officials and State Department documents.

Story is located here

Republicans show true colors by saying striking Union members cannot receive food stamps

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

Nor can anyone in their home including children.

All around the country, right-wing legislators are asking middle class Americans to pay for budget deficits caused mainly by a recession caused by Wall Street; they are attacking workers’ collective bargaining rights, which has provoked a huge Main Street Movement to fight back.

Now, a group of House Republicans is launching a new stealth attack against union workers. GOP Reps. Jim Jordan (OH), Tim Scott (SC), Scott Garrett (NJ), Dan Burton (IN), and Louie Gohmert (TX) have introduced H.R. 1135, which states that it is designed to “provide information on total spending on means-tested welfare programs, to provide additional work requirements, and to provide an overall spending limit on means-tested welfare programs.”

Much of the bill is based upon verifying that those who receive food stamps benefits are meeting the federal requirements for doing so. However, one section buried deep within the bill adds a startling new requirement. The bill, if passed, would actually cut off all food stamp benefits to any family where one adult member is engaging in a strike against an employer:

Story is located here

The Whitewashing of the Reagan legacy

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

Other inconvenient facts about Reagan have disappeared into the memory hole: he provided aid to Saddam Hussein after his unprovoked attacked on Iran and despite Saddam’s known use of chemical weapons; he funneled money and arms to the Islamist mujahidin fighters in Afghanistan who later morphed into al Qaeda; his sending Marines ashore in Lebanon led to the deaths of 241 Marines; and, he invaded tiny Grenada on the flimsiest of pretenses.

Reagan illegally traded weapons to Iran for American hostages (which led to more Americans being kidnapped) and repeatedly lied about it. On March 4, 1987 he finally admitted he had lied. He diverted the profits of this criminal trade to illegally fund the murderous, drug-running Contras in Nicaragua (”The moral equal of our Founding Fathers”) and lied about that, too. Eleven of his co-conspirators were nonetheless convicted, making a total of 138 Reagan administration officials indicted for various offenses, according to Richard Reeves, making it the most corrupt administration ever.

The public gave Reagan a pass, however, probably because they thought he was too dense to understand what an impeachable offense was; even his official biographer Edmund Morris calls him an “apparent airhead” who depended heavily on his staff. Margaret Thatcher echoed the claim: “Poor dear, there’s nothing between his ears.” Richard Pipes, the conservative historian and a senior NSC official under Reagan wrote: “RR is totally lost, out of his depth, and uncomfortable. All of this–both the substance and human conflict–is above and beyond him.”

No corporate-funded whitewash of Reagan’s presidency can change those historical facts.

Story is located here

Japanese tsunami got scarier and scarier

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

This video just goes from bad to worse through the whole 10 minutes.  Video is located here

Explaining the Teabaggers to children

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

“OK, let’s see if I understand what told me. You said the Tea Party was created before Obama became president to protest tax increases that hadn’t happened. Yet after he cut most people’s taxes to the lowest they had been in over 60 years, the Tea Party held rallies all over the country protesting non-existent tax increases. And they complained about the economic stimulus adding to the national debt even though they had said deficits didn’t matter when Bush was adding more debt than all other presidents combined. And now they want to cut taxes for rich people again even though it increased the deficit under Bush and didn’t create jobs.”

Story is located here

Neo-Feudalism on a Global scale

Sunday, March 20th, 2011

Excellent view of what is happening in the world with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer.  Video is located here

Several long form interviews with Ayn Rand

Sunday, March 20th, 2011

Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman speak with Phil Donahue here

Ayn Rand speaks with Ton Snyder here

Ayn Rand speaks with Mike Wallace here

Here is the trailer for the movie based on her book Atlas Shrugged is located here

Stephen Colbert and Bill Maher look at Ayn Rand’s philosophy.  Video is located here

Tsunami arrives in San Francisco Bay

Saturday, March 19th, 2011

Here is a story about the tsunami from Japan hitting the San Francisco Bay area.

Video of tsunami is located here

Tornado in the San Francisco Bay area

Friday, March 18th, 2011

This tornado was spotted at Ocean Beach in the south west corner of San Francisco’s coast.

Video is located here

Interesting map showing parallel between voting and education and income

Saturday, March 5th, 2011

The map shows interestingly that the education level equals income level and that pretty much equals voting pattern.  Map is located here

Top Conspiracy movies for 2010

Saturday, March 5th, 2011

A number of movies and videos came out trying to explain something.  Videos are located here

Glenn Beck continues the right wing attack on Michelle Obama and again he is proven wrong

Friday, March 4th, 2011

So to summarize, Michelle Obama has a staff of 25, not 43 as Beck claimed. Nancy Reagan had a staff of about 15 (not 3, as Beck claimed). The size of Michelle Obama’s staff is similar to that of her immediate predecessors. And she did not just hire a new personal shopper. In short, Beck’s outrage is based on numbers that are wildly off the mark. We rate his claim Pants on Fire.

Story is located here

Jon Stewart Nails Fox News Hypocrisy On Teachers Vs. Wall Street Pay Levels

Friday, March 4th, 2011

Given how much Fox News has called teachers unions greedy for their pay and benefit packages, Jon Stewart expected them to have a consistent record of calling out greed in other sectors as well — perhaps even in the financial sector.

Big surprise: the record is hardly consistent.
“Regardless of the greed-based, almost slightly sociopathic job bankers did wrecking our economy, those people were there every single day, twelve months a year.” — Jon Stewart

Video is located here

Union membership decline parallels drop in Middle Class share of national economic pie

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Across the country, right-wing legislators continue their attack on labor unions, claiming that they are saving their states money. Yet in waging these anti-labor campaigns, these politicians are ignoring one very simple fact: unions were a major force in building and sustaining the great American middle class, and as they declined, so has the middle class. As CAP’s Karla Waters and David Madland showed in a report they first published this past January, as union membership has steadily declined since 1967, so too has the middle class’s share of national income, as the super-rich have taken a larger share of national income than any time since the 1920s:

Story is located here

Republicans with convoluted contradictions concerning Obama

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Rush Limbaugh says Obama is a white guy.  Story is located here

Huckabee and others say Obama is a foreigner so he is not white.  Story is located here

Palm trees in Wisconsin?

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

In a video on Bill Oreilly’s show on FOX News he played a clip of violence supposedly happening at union protests.  However the context of the video also includes the fact that there has been no violence in the Wisconsin union protests.  This was shown as the reporter at the Wisconsin camera shot was there admittedly for several days but the video shows shoving from one belligerent person at an unknown location and someone in a red jacket blabbing about something at an un-attributed location and date.

Story is located here

OReilly’s full video is located here

The problem is that juxtaposition is something FOX uses often. They used JUXTAPOSITION to propel their narrative. If I talk about THIS but show pictures of THAT the viewer will associate the two. The “out” is that he mentioned that the video was from around the nation however the “out” fails as the topic of the video contradicts the facts of the peacefulness of the Wisconsin protests…which is what they were talking about in this report. The fact is that the violence of the union protests that FOX News is trying to highlight is an extreme rarity but FOX won’t tell you that. But the viewer not fully paying attention was not told the truth that the protests were so non-violent that police who were ordered to remove protesters from the Wisconsin capitol refused and said they were so non-violent there was no reason to remove them. Juxtaposition plus reporting what simply is not the norm as the norm in order to propel a narrative equals propaganda.

Another look at this video

Colbert checks in on the topic here

FOX News trying to continue describing Union protesters as violent and the video is located here

Top 10 Clips of Jon Stewart Destroying Fox News

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011

The last few weeks have spawned some of the greatest times Jon Stewart has ever shown the American public why Fox News is the worst news channel in the world. So in honor of this, here are the latest clips, as well as 8 other recent classics of Jon Stewart using “logic” and “facts” to demonstrate why Fox News is pretty much wrong about everything. It’s not because they’re conservative, it’s because they’re dumb.  Videos are located here

Canada smartly says NO to FOX News

Tuesday, March 1st, 2011

Canada’s Radio Act requires that “a licenser may not broadcast … any false or misleading news.” The provision has kept Fox News and right-wing talk radio out of Canada and helped make Canada a model for liberal democracy and freedom. As a result of that law, Canadians enjoy high quality news coverage, including the kind of foreign affairs and investigative journalism that flourished in this country before Ronald Reagan abolished the “Fairness Doctrine” in 1987. Political dialogue in Canada is marked by civility, modesty, honesty, collegiality, and idealism that have pretty much disappeared on the US airwaves. When Stephen Harper moved to abolish the anti-lying provision of the Radio Act, Canadians rose up to oppose him fearing that their tradition of honest non-partisan news would be replaced by the toxic, overtly partisan, biased and dishonest news coverage familiar to American citizens who listen to Fox News and talk radio. Harper’s proposal was timed to facilitate the launch of a new right-wing network, “Sun TV News” which Canadians call “Fox News North.”

Story is located here

Hitler on Unions.

Tuesday, March 1st, 2011

“We must close union offices, confiscate their money and put their leaders in prison. We must reduce workers salaries and take away their right to strike.”~Adolph Hitler, May 2, 1933