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Gender: Female
Hometown: Wisconsin
Current location: Tejas
Member since: Thu Jan 17, 2008, 12:44 PM
Number of posts: 31,869

About Me

The most violent element in society is ignorance. Emma Goldman

Journal Archives

Do they know it's Christmas?

Merry Christmas to all who celebrate -

Globalism=Capitalism=Occupy the World

This is why our fight must be global. There are roughly 1200 billionaires in the world (source - wiki), and they live a global lifestyle. Along with living wherever they choose (which often includes multiple homes), they buy and sell their companies and products on a global level, and use our labor globally. "Proletarians of all countries, unite!" was true in 1848 when Marx wrote it, and even more true now. If we have any hope of fighting back it must be on that scale.

The story that sparked my post this morning -

Billionaire's Daughter Pays Record Sum for NYC Pad
ForbesBy Luisa Kroll | Forbes – 12 hours ago

Former Citigroup chairman Sandy Weill listed his 6,744-sq-ft apartment at 15 Central Park West for an astonishing $88 million in November, promising to donate the proceeds of the sale to charity.

Now comes news that Ekaterina Rybolovleva, the 22-year-old daughter of Russian billionaire Dmitriy Rybolovlev, is buying the condominium. Rybolovleva is currently studying at an undisclosed U.S. university and plans to stay in the apartment when visiting New York. According to a source familiar with the sale, she paid the full asking price of $88 million, setting a record for highest individual transaction in New York City history.

Here is the official statement from her representatives: A company associated with Ekaterina Rybolovleva, daughter of a well-known businessman Dmitriy Rybolovlev, has signed a contract to purchase an apartment at 15 Central Park West, New York. The apartment is a condominium currently owned by the Sanford Weill Family.

Entire article here: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/billionaire-s-daughter-pays-record-sum-for-nyc-pad.html


As far as I know this has not yet been signed, but could be at any moment. Thoughts?

Here's a story from the 14th -

US: Refusal to Veto Detainee Bill A Historic Tragedy for Rights
President Decides to Sign Ill-Conceived National Defense Authorization Act
December 14, 2011

(Washington, DC) – US President Barack Obama’s apparent decision to not veto a defense spending bill that codifies indefinite detention without trial into US law and expands the military’s role in holding terrorism suspects does enormous damage to the rule of law both in the US and abroad, Human Rights Watch said today. The Obama administration had threatened to veto the bill, the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), over detainee provisions, but on December 14, 2011, it issued a statement indicating the president would likely sign the legislation.

“By signing this defense spending bill, President Obama will go down in history as the president who enshrined indefinite detention without trial in US law,” said Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch. “In the past, Obama has lauded the importance of being on the right side of history, but today he is definitely on the wrong side.”


Christopher Hitchens - NY Times Obit

I wasn't a fan of this guy, but have seen many on the left memorializing him today. He was known as a socialist (Trotskyist) earlier in life, yet wound up supporting the war in Iraq. Thoughts from this group??

Christopher Hitchens, 1949-2011
Polemicist Who Slashed All, Freely, With Wit
Published: December 16, 2011

Christopher Hitchens, a slashing polemicist in the tradition of Thomas Paine and George Orwell who trained his sights on targets as various as Henry Kissinger, the British monarchy and Mother Teresa, wrote a best-seller attacking religious belief, and dismayed his former comrades on the left by enthusiastically supporting the American-led war in Iraq, died on Thursday in Houston. He was 62.

The cause was pneumonia, a complication of esophageal cancer, Vanity Fair magazine said in announcing the death, at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. Mr. Hitchens, who lived in Washington, learned he had cancer while on a publicity tour in 2010 for his memoir, “Hitch-22,” and began writing and, on television, speaking about his illness frequently.

“In whatever kind of a ‘race’ life may be, I have very abruptly become a finalist,” Mr. Hitchens wrote in Vanity Fair, for which he was a contributing editor.

He took pains to emphasize that he had not revised his position on atheism, articulated in his best-selling 2007 book, “God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything,” although he did express amused appreciation at the hope, among some concerned Christians, that he might undergo a late-life conversion.

< snip >

Mr. Hitchens, a British Trotskyite who had lost faith in the Socialist movement, spent much of his life wandering the globe and reporting on the world’s trouble spots for The Nation magazine, the British newsmagazine The New Statesman and other publications.

His work took him to Northern Ireland, Greece, Cyprus, Portugal, Spain and Argentina in the 1970s, generally to shine a light on the evil practices of entrenched dictators or the imperial machinations of the great powers...

Read the entire piece here: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/16/arts/christopher-hitchens-is-dead-at-62-obituary.html?pagewanted=all

Jury Duty

Much to my surprise I am enjoying DU Jury Duty. I have done it 5 times and nearly every time I've had to really think it out and leave an explanation for my choice. The first 4 times we voted to leave the post alone, the last one hasn't been decided yet.

Kind of a cool system, particularly since it's random and you don't know who the other 5 jurors are. Modding is a hard job when you are in that position and this makes it less stressful knowing there are 5 others working with you on each post. Bravo to the Admins for coming up with something new and more democratic.

Protesters shut down Washington DC lobbying firms

Once again we turn to Europe for reporting of resistance in our country - this is the first I've seen of this story. Excellent idea to obstruct the lobbyists. Back when I did legal support in Washington I saw the process in action. One way corporations can sway the government is through these lobbyists. The lobbying firms (and/or associations) hire lawyers to write suggested legislation and send it to folks on the hill. This used to involve running things back and forth manually - but may well be done electronically now. Turning the spotlight on these folks and explaining how they work is important.

World Protesters shut down Washington DC lobbying firms
Thursday 08 December 2011
by Our Foreign Desk

Police arrested more than 60 people in Washington on Wednesday for shutting down the heart of the US corporate lobbying industry as part of a week-long union-backed campaign.

Over 1,000 protesters, including hundreds of trade unionists, unemployed people and clergy, staged the sit-in on rain-sodden K Street at midday to highlight the corrupting influence of big capital on the political process.

They chanted: "We Are The 99 per cent" and waved union banners and placards reading: "Democracy is not for sale."

Members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which represents health and public-sector workers, are playing a leading role in the Take Back the Capitol campaign, which aims to remind members of Congress that they are meant to represent ordinary US citizens, not huge corporations.

"No amount of rain can faze those battered by the storm of economic injustice and corporate greed," the SEIU declared as protesters shut down K Street.

Police threatened to arrest the protesters for obstruction. They moved in when hundreds stayed put and officers hauled 62 into waiting police vans.


Read entire article here: http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/index.php/content/view/full/112915

What if you lost everything you owned? Would it matter?

This is an interesting perspective that was actually written a few years ago for the CSM, and I found it on my Christian Left page on FB. I have actually been through something like this many years ago. I was young and left my apartment in the middle of the night. It was a domestic situation rather than a fire, but same sort of thing. Sometimes you don't even have time to think about what "stuff" you want to take. You take your purse/wallet and get the hell out. See what you think -

Santa Barbara, Calif.


At one point, I noticed my BlackBerry blinking at me. I saw I had five missed calls from my husband Ryan. And two messages. That's not like him. I stepped outside to call him; he sounded strange.

The news was dire. A huge fire had broken out in the foothills of Montecito, which we can see from our porch. The Santa Ana winds, blowing uncharacteristically late in the season – and particularly ferociously – combined with unseasonably hot temperatures, and my town was in flames, my street under evacuation. Those winds change direction unpredictably; there was no way to know if we'd be OK. Ryan had corralled the cat and the dog, and wanted to know what to take from the house. I said I'd let him know.

Back inside, I downloaded the news. Jenny, a left-brained attorney with control freak tendencies, whipped out a notepad and pen. "Let's make a list," she said.

I just sat there.

"Paperwork," she said, mainly to herself. "Pictures. Journals. Heirlooms? Jewelry? Do you have a 'stuff box?'" I could swear she even asked me if I had any doilies. Doilies?

Another friend, asked, "What about your passport?"

"Yeah," I said, munching on some pita. Jenny wrote it down.

The three of them exchanged looks. "She's handling it really well," somebody said to someone else.

Finally, I looked up. "It's so ironic," I said. Jenny put down her pen. With thoughts of New Orleans stirred up from the book reading, there I sat, on the brink of losing everything.

Ultimately, my passport was all I came up with for Jenny's list. Later, I thought of this, amused at my logic. So, in case my house burned down, I'd be able to get out of the country? But in the face of disaster and with no time to prepare, how do you choose? What do you take? At the end of the day, isn't it all just junk?


I realize those who lost everything are likely feeling anything but calm, anything but comfort. And yet. That moment had something to teach me. This culture, encouraging us to accumulate, to upgrade, telling us there is no such thing as enough, may be responsible for its own undoing.

And maybe the gift of disaster, of floods, of fires, of unprecedented economic unraveling, is the opportunity to start over – and to do it differently.

• Shannon Kelley is a columnist at the Santa Barbara Independent. She is also a freelance writer.

Read the entire piece here: http://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/Opinion/2009/0109/p09s02-coop.html

Google celebrating Diego Rivera's 125th Birthday

Thank you to Starry for posting this elsewhere this morning - lovely to see Google honoring one of the 20th century's best artists (and he was a communist too of course)

“SINCE ART IS ESSENTIAL for human life, it can’t just belong to the few.”

So demanded Diego Rivera, the leading Mexican muralist whose creative ambitions swept across the 20th century as large as his class-spanning public art. And Thursday, Google does what it can to spotlight Rivera’s essential art for an audience of millions.

Today, on the 125th anniversary of Rivera’s birth, Google’s homepage ”Doodle” celebrates the artist with a mural rich not only in color, but also in biographical detail.



9 October 1940 – 8 December 1980 - We miss you.

Imagine lyrics
Songwriters: Lennon, John

Imagine there's no heaven, it's easy if you try
No hell below us, above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today

Imagine there's no countries, it isn't hard to do
No need to kill or die for and no religions too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one

Imagine no possessions I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger a brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing for the world

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
Take my hand and join us
And the world will live, will live as one

[ From: http://www.elyrics.net/read/j/john-lennon-lyrics/imagine-lyrics.html ]
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