Serendipity SOUL | Friday Open Thread | Annie Lennox Week!

Happy Friday, Everyone. Hoped you’ve enjoyed Annie Lennox, this week’s featured artist.

AL-200px-Annie_lennox_nemahziz

Waiting in Vain

Queen & Annie Lennox & David Bowie – Under Pressure

Take me to the River

annie-lennox-hands

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38 Responses to Serendipity SOUL | Friday Open Thread | Annie Lennox Week!

  1. Ametia says:

    BWA HA HA HA

  2. Ametia says:

    OH OH Luvvie ain’t ain’t having it. SPOT ON!

    About This Whole Black Twitter Thing…

    The phrase Black Twitter started as a joke when people realized the power of Black people who use Twitter. People started noticing that we were driving hashtags and trending topics. Then Nielsen did research and found out that African American women are the most active group on Twitter.

    Since then, #BlackTwitter has become a THING that folks study and report on. Slate wrote a piece called “How Black People Use Twitter” in August 2010. It wasn’t that good and it wasn’t nuanced, nor did it talk about the complexities and power we have. BUT one great thing came out of it, and that was Inny Vinny’s brown Twitter birds.

    http://www.awesomelyluvvie.com/2013/07/black-twitter.html

  3. Ametia says:

    AIN’T THIS SOME SHIT.

  4. Ametia says:

    I want to know how much Eva got paid to write this drivel.

    BLACK TWITTER IS WORKING!

    Why So Many Angry People Protect and Define ‘Black Twitter’
    Eve Garcia

    Snip

    You ever wonder why there’s a lack of interaction from select users unless it’s their fellow ‘popular blog/twitter stars?’ …I laughed at the question as well, but it’s a reality that is about as much sense as the term ‘Online Feminism.’

    The reason for this discrepancy, is that the popular circle of ‘Black Twitter’ users have become interested in “celebrity status” and dedicate a large amount of time towards sensitive topics sure to lure emotional interest, such as portrayal of stereotypes, high profile figures, and relationship advice. They (meaning the ‘Black Twitter’ elite) tend to enforce a ‘followers minimum’ on what makes someone worthy to interact or socialize with at any time. Keep in mind, that some of the biggest offenders of this sit in a cubicle daily at an employer like the rest of American society, have had trouble maintaining social relationships over the years, and have kids out of wedlock

    snip.

    http://www.avenue1online.com/archives/2434

  5. Ametia says:

    CNN Breaking:

    Eight people were held captive in a Houston house, some for up to 10 years, police say. Details soon.

    WTF

  6. rikyrah says:

    ladies,

    we simply don’t have enough cooning graphics for this slave catcher.

    ………………..

    @ByronThomas7
    16 Jul

    I look at the
    positives in life. So if slavery never happened in the United States of
    America, I wouldn’t be here today. I love the USA! 🇺🇸

  7. rikyrah says:

    Black surgeon wins $4.5 million racial discrimination lawsuit from UCLA medical school which superimposed his head onto a gorilla
    Dr Christian Head, 51, claimed he was routinely publicly humiliated
    Two UCLA professors accused of making ‘inappropriate racial comments’

    By Anthony Bond

    A black surgeon at UCLA who was depicted as a gorilla being sodomized in a slide show presentation will receive a $4.5million settlement after filing a racial discrimination lawsuit against the university.

    Dr Christian Head, 51, filed the lawsuit against the UC Board of Regents in April after claiming he was routinely publicly humiliated.

    The head and neck surgeon had alleged that he was the victim of retaliation after filing complaints and claimed he was denied teaching opportunities.

    The lawsuit accused the university of failing to prevent discrimination, harassment and retaliation against Head.

    The complaint said that during a resident graduation event in 2006, a slide show which was created by the residents and reviewed by staff included a photo in which Head’s face was superimposed onto a gorilla which was being sodomized by a department chairman.

    As reported by the Los Angeles Times, the university said: ‘The case presented difficult issues of alleged discrimination and retaliation that were strongly contested.

    ‘The matter was settled to the mutual satisfaction of the parties.’

    In its statement, the university said ‘an inappropriate slide was shown’ and that it regretting the incident.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2370094/Black-surgeon-wins-4-5-million-racial-discrimination-lawsuit-UCLA-medical-school-superimposed-head-gorilla.html#ixzz2ZVaUKcmU
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

  8. rikyrah says:

    @JeffersonObama
    CATO’s Greenwald only going after Dems. His attacks are mostly on blacks and women like Pelosi, Dianne Feinstein, Obama, Booker and Holder.

  9. rikyrah says:

    Fear of the youth vote, now in North Carolina
    By Steve Benen
    Fri Jul 19, 2013 10:52 AM EDT

    Now that North Carolina Republicans hold all the reins of power in state government for the first time in over a century, they’ve making up for lost time. Just over the last few months, GOP state policymakers have gutted unemployment benefits, cut funding for struggling public schools, blocked Medicaid expansion, repealed the Racial Justice Act, and crafted TRAP laws inte3nded to close nearly every women’s health clinic in the state.

    What’s next? Voting rights, of course.

    Resurrecting one of the legislative session’s most contentious issues, Senate Republicans unveiled a new voter ID bill Thursday that would further restrict the forms of photo identification accepted at the polls.

    The new measure would require voters to show one of seven types of photo identification issued by the government, such as driver’s licenses, passports, non-driver IDs and military or veteran cards.

    There's a major exception to that list.

    Remember, as Rachel has noted on the show recently, North Carolina Republicans were prepared to scale back their proposed voting restrictions, assuming they'd never be cleared by the Justice Department under the Voting Rights Act. But now that five U.S. Supreme Court justices have gutted the civil-rights law, the North Carolina GOP is eager to do precisely what they wanted to do in the first place.

    Of particular interest to state Republicans is curbing the youth vote. My colleague Laura Conaway has reported extensively on Ohio Republicans' efforts to approve a voter-ID system that prohibits the use of student IDs — an effort that proved to be so indefensible that GOP policymakers in the Buckeye State eventually backed off.

    North Carolina appears to be picking up where Ohio left off.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/07/19/19561108-fear-of-the-youth-vote-now-in-north-carolina?lite

  10. rikyrah says:

    The Obamacare Train Still Hasn’t Wrecked

    BY JONATHAN COHN

    President Obama on Thursday touted some good news about Obamacare. And, lord knows, he’s earned the right. Republicans and conservative intellectuals keep seizing on setbacks—some real, some imagined—and predicting that Obamacare will be a catastrophe. They are almost certainly wrong.

    Ironically, one of the best reasons to believe in Obamacare may be the very issue that has inspired so much chortling on the right: The insurance premiums for people who buy on their own, because they don’t get coverage from an employer or through a government program.

    Insurers around the country have already submitted bids, describing the kind of policies they initially plan to offer under Obamacare and what they will charge for them. On Thursday, the Department of Health and Human Services released a report analyzing the data from the ten states, plus the District of Columbia, where officials have made at least a portion of the information public. None of the figures are final: Regulators must still approve the bids and, in at least a few states, those regulators are likely to insist carriers go back and offer lower premiums. But the prices shouldn’t change too dramatically between now and October 1, when, in theory, Obamacare’s insurance marketplaces open for business.

    http://www.newrepublic.com/article/113935/obamacare-insurance-premiums-rate-shock-or-rate-joy#

  11. rikyrah says:

    A tale of two narratives on Obamacare
    By Steve Benen
    Fri Jul 19, 2013 10:17 AM EDT

    Even by Washington standards, the disconnect between the left and right on health has been especially jarring this week. To hear Republicans tell it, the Affordable Care Act is unraveling before our very eyes, collapsing under its own weight, and desperately needs to be repealed.

    Meanwhile, Democrats and their allies are practically taking a victory lap, as evidenced by President Obama’s event in the White House yesterday.

    Take a look at the transcript of the president’s remarks and you’ll notice he has quite a bit to boast about, starting with the checks millions of families are receiving in the mail from their insurance companies. It’s part of “Obamacare” that technically called the medical loss ratio, but the idea isn’t as complicated as the name: under the law, insurers are required to spend 80% of your premiums on actual health benefits, rather than company overhead (marketing, lobbying, executive salaries, etc.). When an insurer spends less than 80% on care, the company is required to send you a check for the difference.

    As the president asked at the event, “I’m curious — what do opponents of this law think the folks here today should do with the money they were reimbursed? Should they send it back to the insurance companies? Do they think that was a bad idea to make sure that insurance companies are being held accountable?”

    They were rhetorical questions, though I wouldn’t mind hearing the answer from the congressional Republicans who keep voting over and over again to repeal the law.

    But Obama went further, noting falling premiums and slowing costs. This line from his remarks also stood out for me: “In states that are working hard to make sure this law delivers for their people, what we’re seeing is that consumers are getting a hint of how much money they’re potentially going to save because of this law.”

    In states that are working hard. In other words, the law is proving to be quite effective in those states where policymakers are actually trying to do the right thing. It was a subtle message to Republican policymakers in states trying to sabotage the law: all you’re doing is undermining the interests of your own constituents.

    Looking at yesterday’s event in the larger context, however, we see Democrats continuing to go on the offensive on health care at a critical time.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/

  12. rikyrah says:

    With Cuccinelli, the fine print matters
    By Steve Benen
    Fri Jul 19, 2013 9:40 AM EDT
    We’ve been following Virginia gubernatorial hopeful Ken Cuccinelli (R) and the questions surrounding his role in the Jonnie Williams/Star Scientific scandal, and yesterday, there was a fairly important development. An independent investigator issued a report saying that the far-right state Attorney General did not, in fact, violate state ethics rules by failing to disclose various gifts he received from Williams.

    But if all you read is the headline — “Investigators Clear Virginia’s Cuccinelli in Ethics Probe” — you’re going to miss some key details. For example, the same report notes that Cuccinelli, far from doing nothing to help his generous benefactor, may have helped Williams after al

    Star sued the state to reverse a $1.7 million tax bill in 2011, shortly before Cuccinelli made a second, $10,000 investment in its shares and before the attorney general asked Williams if his family could stay for a third time at Williams’ Smith Mountain Lake vacation home.

    Cuccinelli has said he never talked to Williams about the lawsuit, though he has said Williams had earlier complained about the disputed taxes.

    The attorney general told the ethics investigators “that he may have suggested that Williams contact a certain attorney at a Richmond law firm ‘to assist him and his company with the Tobacco Fund,’ ” according to a report issued by Richmond Commonwealth’s Attorney Michael Herring, quoting an investigators’ findings.

    So, Williams sued Virginia, and it was up Cuccinelli to defend the state in the case. It was around this time that Cuccinelli started buying stock in Williams’ company and taking trips to Williams’ lovely vacation home. And it was also around this time that Cuccinelli “may have” offered legal advice to Williams, too.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/07/19/19560119-with-cuccinelli-the-fine-print-matters?lite

  13. rikyrah says:

    Some Voting Rights Act Fakery
    By Charles P. Pierce at 1:40PM

    As part of our Summer Of Fakery, the House allegedly has taken up the job of repairing the damage done to the Voting Rights Act that occurred when John Roberts declared the day of jubilee. One of the witnesses today was Hans von Spakovsky, who’s been scamming this particular scam for over a decade now. Anyway, this is what von Spakovsky was peddling today.

    “[That section] was an unprecedented, extraordinary intrusion into state sovereignty…No other federal law presumes that states cannot govern themselves as their legislatures decide and must have the federal government’s consent before they act.”

    Not to bring that pesky Constitution into things again, but here’s an extraordinary intrusion into state sovereignty.

    Amendment XIII:

    Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction. Section 2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

    Here’s another.

    Amendment XIV:

    Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” Section 2. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and Judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State.” Section 3. No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.”Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.” Section 5. The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.”

    And a third.

    Amendment XV:

    Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. Section 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

    If you want to understand why modern conservatives seem so impatient with settled law, remember that they owe their modern ascendancy to the people who refused to accept any of these three Amendments because they didn’t believe the freaking Civil War changed anything.

    http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/Voting_Rights_Fakery

  14. rikyrah says:

    GOP lawmaker: The Obamas use Air Force One as ‘personal toy’
    By Pete Kasperowicz – 07/18/13 10:40 AM ET

    Rep. Howard Coble (R-N.C.) said Thursday morning that President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama are using Air Force One and other official aircraft as their “personal toys.”

    “I’m not suggesting … that we compromise safety or security,” Coble said on the House floor. “But the first family, it seems to me, treats Air Force One and related aircraft as their personal toys — a very expensive toy, I might add.”

    Coble’s comments drew a warning from presiding officer Rep. Doug LaMalfa (R-Calif.) not to make improper references to the President.

    “I will admit … that Air Force One belongs to President Obama and his wife, but Air Force One also belongs to you and me, and to every taxpayer in America,” Coble continued. “I simply ask the president and his wife to exercise more prudence and discipline regarding their aircraft activities.

    http://thehill.com/video/house/311969-gop-lawmaker-obamas-using-air-force-one-as-personal-toy#ixzz2ZV3RmZCQ

  15. rikyrah says:

    TOWN on Governor Ultrasound:

    Town

    McDonnell & his family need to go on somewhere.

    Not only does the Commonwealth of Virginia now know that you are a broke ass busta, the entire country knows you are a broke ass busta.

    He owns 4 houses and he’s underwater on all 4 of them. Didn’t the Republicans claim the people who were underwater with their homes are a bunch of deadbeats?

    He’s so broke he can’t afford to pay for his daughters’ weddings, which means they should’ve just went around the corner to Richmond City Hall, had a cake & punch reception and called it a day.

    He’s so broke, his wife is begging another man to buy her clothes. Bitch better skip down to Carytown and hit up one of the consignment shops to get her clothing fix.

    He’s so broke, his wife had to get free dental care. Why? Wouldn’t the GOVERNOR and his wife, of ALL people, get health and dental insurance from the state?

    Isn’t McDonnell retired Army? Don’t they still get insurance benefits? At any rate, why is his wife getting free dental care as if she was a resident of the projects five minutes away? You the wife of the governor and you have to get free dental care? This is a prime example of why we need Obamacare.

    If he’s so broke, how are his son’s tuitions at UVa getting paid? Somebody needs to check into that, too.

    Didn’t I tell y’all NEVER to trust a man with perfect hair?

  16. rikyrah says:

    The Other Health Care Reform Law Of Obama’s Presidency Is A Runaway Success

    By Sy Mukherjee on Jul 17, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    It’s not talked about too often, but Barack Obama actually signed two health care reform bills in his first term. Obamacare may get all the media attention — but the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, passed as part of the stimulus bill in 2009, also took important steps to fix the broken American health care system. And now, it’s paying off big time as doctors flock to electronic health records (EHRs) that save money and improve Americans’ medical care.

    The HITECH Act appropriated about $35 billion to expand the use of health information technology and implement a countrywide system of EHRs. This was seen as vital for overcoming the massive number of problems fostered by paper medical records, which ranged from the mildly inconvenient to the potentially fatal.

    For instance, paper records are extremely susceptible to breaches of patient privacy, since their security is entirely dependent on the doctors and nurses who handle them. They’re also unwieldy, can get lost, contribute to significant backlogs in claims processing systems, and can lead to redundant tests and procedures. A particularly damning series of reports in 2006 and 2007 further indicated that paper records kill over 7,000 Americans every year and injure another 1.5 million through “unclear abbreviations and dosage indications and illegible writing” that doctors write for prescription medication.

    Providers and health information technology companies alike realized that the era of paper records had to end in order to curb these inefficiencies and preventable injuries and deaths. But upgrading to the new digital systems would require a massive up-front investment — and that’s what made the HITECH Act vital. Now, new government data shows that the law has fostered an environment where doctors’ use of EHRs has gone up by more than 250 million times compared to 2011. As The Hill reports, this included 200 million electronic prescriptions, 13 million appointment reminders, and four million care summaries.

    http://thinkprogress.org/health/2013/07/17/2315061/other-health-care-reform-obama-presidency/

  17. Ametia says:

    Mining Company Deploys More Masked Militiamen Against “Eco-Terrorists”

    Welcome to the scary new world of mining in Scott Walker’s Wisconsin.
    —By Kate Sheppard

    | Tue Jul. 16, 2013 3:00 AM PDT

    Debate over a proposed open-pit iron ore mine in northern Wisconsin went from heated to outright bizarre last week when masked guards brandishing assault rifles showed up at the site in the remote and scenic wilderness of Penokee Hills.

    Local activist Rob Ganson, 56, first came upon three heavily armed guards while leading a small group on a hike to view the mining site. (The drilling site is on private land, but the owner has been given a tax break in exchange for keeping it open to public use.) The guards, said Ganson, carried semi-automatic guns, were dressed in camouflage, and wore masks covering their faces. “As you can imagine, it was quite a shock for five middle-aged people out for a walk,” he said. Ganson tried to engage the guards, but was “met with stony-faced silence.” He was alarmed but managed to grab a few photos of the men. “I was thinking if the worst scenario happened, at least there would be photos on my camera.”

    http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2013/07/walker-backed-mine-hires-militiamen-intimidate-protesters

  18. Ametia says:

    Fla. governor refuses to revisit “stand your ground” law

    TALLAHASSEE, Fla. Protesters who set up camp in the state Capitol building earlier this week finally got to meet with Gov. Rick Scott late Thursday, and they urged him to push for the repeal of Florida’s “stand your ground” law and to take steps to combat racial profiling.

    In a conference room near his office suite, Scott met for nearly an hour with seven leaders of the protest, which began Tuesday. They described their frustration about last weekend’s acquittal of George Zimmerman in the death of Trayvon Martin and their own experiences of being racially profiled.

    Zimmerman was acquitted of second-degree murder and manslaughter charges in the shooting death of Martin, who was unarmed. His attorneys argued that he shot Martin in self-defense, but the case sparked an outcry because Martin was black and Zimmerman identifies himself as Hispanic. 9THIS IS A LIE. GZ IDENTIFIES AS WHITE-HISPANIC)

    Saying the 17-year-old’s death happened on Scott’s watch, the protesters renewed their request that the Republican governor call state legislators into special session to repeal the law that justifies the use of deadly force when a person’s life is in danger.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-201_162-57594497/fla-governor-refuses-to-revisit-stand-your-ground-law/?tag=nl.e875&s_cid=e875&ttag=e875&ftag=TRE497675b

  19. rikyrah says:

    Voting-rights remedies face long odds on Capitol Hill
    By Steve Benen
    Fri Jul 19, 2013 8:39 AM EDT

    The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on the Voting Rights Act did not actually strike down the entire civil-rights law, but rather, gutted it by rejecting Section 4 of the VRA. The burden then shifted to Congress to find a remedy, adopting a new formula that would meet judicial muster.

    In the aftermath, there was some debate as to just how despondent voting-rights advocates should be, with some arguing this might be an issue where bipartisan cooperation is possible, while others predicted congressional failure. (I was in the latter camp.)

    Yesterday, the House held its first hearing on the VRA since the court ruling, and if the public comments were any indication, the odds of success in the near future appear long.

    If House Republicans are interested in patching the Voting Rights Act, they aren’t showing it.

    “Historically I fully understand why they addressed the situations they did,” Republican Rep. Trent Franks of Arizona, who chairs the House judiciary subcommittee that would handle new voting rights legislation, said to reporters after the hearing. “I am just of the opinion today that we should do as the court said and that is to not focus on punishing the past but on building a better future.”

    Most of the Republican members of the panel apparently didn’t think the hearing was especially important — which is to say, they didn’t show up — and the witnesses GOP lawmakers called reinforced fears that the party simply isn’t interested in a constructive debate.

    The Heritage Foundation’s Hans von Spakovsky, for example, was called by Republicans to offer his “expert” testimony on voting rights, despite the fact that von Spakovsky is best known for the loathsome voter-suppression tactics he championed during his tenure in the Bush/Cheney Justice Department. If this is the guy GOP lawmakers are turning to for guidance, the future of the Voting Rights Act is bleak.

    ——————————————————————————–

    Indeed, von Spakovsky assured the Judiciary Committee panel that the “the systematic, widespread discrimination against blacks has long since disappeared.”

    Sure, Hans, whatever you say.

    Anyone predicting congressional Republicans might do the right thing on voting rights should probably adjust their expectations accordingly. GOP policymakers at the state level are rushing to impose new restrictions to keep voters from participating in their own democracy, and GOP policymakers at the federal level appear content to do nothing to stop them.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/07/19/19559318-voting-rights-remedies-face-long-odds-on-capitol-hill?lite

  20. rikyrah says:

    Investigators looking into whether Va. first lady got free dental work, 2 people say
    By Laura Vozzella and Rosalind S. Helderman, Published: July 18

    RICHMOND — Investigators looking into gifts to Gov. Robert F. McDonnell and his family have asked questions about whether first lady Maureen McDonnell received cosmetic dental work for free, according to two people familiar with the probe.

    Federal officials have been investigating allegations that a dentist within the large Richmond-area practice of W. Baxter Perkinson Jr. provided cosmetic dentistry services at no charge to the first lady, according to the two people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

    Questions about gifts to the McDonnell family expand, two people familiar with the investigation say.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/virginia-politics/investigators-reportedly-looking-into-whether-va-first-lady-got-free-dental-work/2013/07/18/d53e5646-efdf-11e2-bed3-b9b6fe264871_story.html?hpid=z3

  21. rikyrah says:

    Why the EPA’s Gina McCarthy matters

    By Steve Benen
    Fri Jul 19, 2013 9:12 AM EDT
    In March, when President Obama chose Gina McCarthy, who previously served as the EPA’s chief air quality regulator, to lead the entire Environmental Protection Agency, Brad Plumer said she might well be the administration’s “most significant” nominee.

    I still think that’s right, and now that McCarthy has been confirmed — she overcame Republican opposition was approved late yesterday — it’s worth pausing to appreciate why McCarthy is so important.

    The success or failure of President Barack Obama’s climate agenda now rests squarely on Gina McCarthy’s shoulders.

    She’s charged with doing the things that Republicans warned she would do: Sweeping crackdowns on toxic pollution from power plants, a massive expansion of federal greenhouse gas regulations, and steps to stem the increasingly controversial water pollution problems caused by coal and minerals mining. Her work as EPA administrator may determine whether Obama’s legacy on climate change is a historic shift in carbon pollution or a fizzled effort, lost to lawsuits and bureaucratic fumbling.

    No pressure.

    Just last month, President Obama unveiled a sweeping policy on combating the climate crisis, using his authority under the Clean Air Act to, among other things, sharply reduce carbon pollution from power plants. It now falls on McCarthy to sharpen, defend, and enforce those public protections.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/07/19/19559759-why-the-epas-gina-mccarthy-matters?lite

  22. rikyrah says:

    Morally Depraved Cowards Accuse African Americans of Race Baiting Over Trayvon Martin

    By: Sarah Jones
    Jul. 18th, 2013

    Even Godwin’s law has its day.

    As awful as it is for people to deny the Holocaust, and in many countries it is a hate crime to do so, imagine what it would be for Germans to accuse German Jews of not only making up the Holocaust, but actually baiting the Nazis and the mass murders if they bring up the Holocaust. Not only are they denying history and the real victimization of an entire class of people, but blaming those people for creating the problem Nazis had with Jews by accusing them of Jew-baiting.

    That’s what the Right is doing when they accuse anyone trying to discuss the very real problem of racism of being “race-baiters”.

    It’s obscene.

    The practice of transatlantic slavery was genocide. The death toll from four centuries of slave trade is estimated at around 10 million. (2) Between 1.2-2.4 million Africans died on their way to becoming slaves.(3) That’s not even including the numbers who died due to the harsh working conditions or the massive numbers murdered in the “gathering” and procurement (theft) of them from their homeland. So, it is appropriate to make this comparison to the Holocaust.

    I say this repeatedly, but apparently not enough. Racism is not something that white Americans can claim as equal to racism experienced by black Americans, and other minorities, but specifically in this case, African Americans and black Americans.

    Racism is more than prejudice. An honest discussion about racism will include historical context, just like an honest discussion of discrimination against Jewish people will include the lead up to the Holocaust, and the atrocities of the Holocaust itself. You see, suggesting that all Jews run the banks doesn’t seem so bad without the historical context, just like suggesting that black Americans are violent criminals without the historical context that they were the victims of massive, unspeakable crimes perpetrated by white Americans upon them doesn’t sound so bad.

    To speak about Trayvon Martin’s hoodie making him a thug (thanks Fox News) is not only ignorant for modern day reasons, but it also obscenely ignores the fact that if things were really equal, then African Americans and black Americans would not statistically be more likely to be impoverished than white Americans. Because it’s poverty, not skin color, that increases crime rates.

    However, Trayvon Martin was not a criminal. He was a kid, not yet 18, doing things kids do. Wearing a hoodie like kids do. He got shot down because George Zimmerman profiled him as black and therefore possibly a criminal.

    http://www.politicususa.com/2013/07/18/trayvon-race-baiting.html

  23. rikyrah says:

    Detroit is Paying Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr a Quarter Million to File for Bankruptcy

    By: Black Liberal Boomer
    Jul. 18th, 2013

    The surprise is not that Detroit is filing for bankruptcy. The road signs have been pointing toward this conclusion at least since Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr took the job – and the leash – offered to him by Gov. Rick Snyder.

    Strike that.

    Detroit has been headed toward bankruptcy for years, because Detroit’s accounts have been screwed for years. Management of Detroit’s finances has been the equivalent of a shell game for quite some time, so those who say that the bill has come due are correct on that point. I am 100 percent opposed to Orr’s appointment, and I will never stop saying that his presence here is illegitimate. Gov. Snyder’s decision to disregard the will of his own voters and force them to accept an EM was nothing short of criminal.

    But it would be a lie to say that Orr is responsible for the bankruptcy. As a matter of fact, I suspect the only reason he didn’t move to file on his first day behind the desk was because he had to at least appear to be trying alternative strategies. Strategies like offering to take Detroit’s creditors on a bus ride through the Detroit ghettoes so they could see firsthand how bad things are here. And then, after a good cry, find it within their hearts to forgive all debts because surely no creditor would have the heart to collect on a debt after seeing that the debtor is having a hard time, right?

    Yeah. Strategies like that. Well thought-out strategies. Brilliant strategies. Strategies that make it so wonderfully clear why Michigan is paying this man Orr his $275,000 salary; to offer bus rides to creditors. And then, when the creditors decide they’d rather not take the ride because they don’t want their pictures taken and because they would have to sign a form that basically lets the city off the hook in case they get shot or killed or whatever (because, after all, they were going to the ghetto and chances are they would indeed stand out just a tad), then Orr moves forward on what was most likely the plan all along.

    Funny thing is, we really didn’t need to pay Orr all this money to file bankruptcy. I’m pretty sure that’s a course of action our own elected leaders could have figured out how to do on their own. And once the bankruptcy is in place, once again, why exactly do we need Orr? Because we’re the biggest municipality to file bankruptcy means we need an emergency manager to make sure everything goes OK?

    http://www.politicususa.com/2013/07/18/detroit-paying-emergency-manager-kevyn-orr-quarter-million-file-bankruptcy.html

  24. rikyrah says:

    Texas’ Perry signs new restrictions on reproductive rights
    By Steve Benen
    Thu Jul 18, 2013 12:38 PM EDT

    The result was not in doubt, but today’s bill-signing ceremony on Austin was nevertheless disappointing for proponents of reproductive rights.

    Texas Gov. Rick Perry has signed sweeping new abortion restrictions that sparked weeks of protests at the state Capitol into law.

    Perry signed the legislation at a ceremony Thursday morning. The bill will require abortion clinic doctors to have hospital admitting privileges, restrict abortions to surgical centers, dictate when abortion-inducing drugs can be taken and ban abortions after the 20th week of pregnancy.

    During prepared remarks, Perry spoke about the bill’s intent to “support life.”

    “In signing House Bill 2 today, we celebrate and further cement the foundation on which the culture of life in Texas is built,” Perry said.

    The talking point is more compelling if we overlook the women who’ll be forced to put their health in jeopardy as a result of the legislation (and if we ignore the hundreds of Americans executed by Texas’ government in recent years).

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/07/18/19542276-texas-perry-signs-new-restrictions-on-reproductive-rights?lite

  25. rikyrah says:

    PARDON Abused Mother Marissa Alexander for Standing Her Ground

    Target: Florida Governor Rick Scott
    Sponsored by: Susan Vaughan

    The Stand Your Ground Defense failed domestic abuse victim Marissa Alexander – who didn’t shoot anyone.

    Only after enduring a year of violence from her husband Rico Gray, who has a documented history of abuse, did she arm herself for protection.

    The next threat came just nine days after giving birth to their daughter. Gray, in a rage, cornered her and threatened to kill her. But instead of shooting him, she aimed upward. The only thing she hit was the ceiling.

    Gray ran into the street, claiming she threatened to kill him and his boys. Marissa, on his word alone, was arrested and charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

    For protecting her life and children she was just sentenced to twenty years in prison, even though Gray has since admitted his intention to harm her. There’s no excuse for Florida to deny this responsible mother her freedom.

    Marissa is currently in the process of appealing her conviction. Tell Governor Scott to PARDON Marissa NOW!

    http://www.thepetitionsite.com/503/600/056/dont-imprison-marissa-alexander-for-standing-her-ground/

  26. rikyrah says:

    TheObamaDiary.com: Michelle Obama at Urban Alliance Chicago

    http://youtu.be/3IIbkHcgbnI

  27. Ametia says:

    Obama is the wrong person to lead discussion about race
    By Eugene Robinson, Published: July 18

    We should talk honestly about unresolved racial issues, such as those exposed by the Trayvon Martin case, but President Obama is not the best person to lead the discussion. Through no fault of his own, he might be the worst.

    The need for what diplomats call a “full and frank exchange of views” is obvious. Many Americans don’t even agree that there are unresolved racial issues, much less that such issues played a role in George Zimmerman’s acquittal. It’s as if some of us live on different planets.

    I find it impossible to imagine the outcome would have been the same if the protagonists’ roles were reversed — if Zimmerman had been the victim and Martin the defendant. I know, however, that many people believe the hoodie-wearing African American teenager would have been accorded the same benefit of the doubt his killer was given. I also know that one’s beliefs about race and racism tend to be highly correlated with one’s experience of race and racism.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/eugene-robinson-obama-is-the-wrong-person-to-lead-discussion-about-race/2013/07/18/d64d372c-efc2-11e2-bed3-b9b6fe264871_story.html?wpisrc=nl_opinions

  28. Ametia says:

    Good Morning, Everyone! :-)

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