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Cheese Sandwich

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Member since: Fri Mar 27, 2015, 12:53 AM
Number of posts: 9,086

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30 Percent of California's Forest Firefighters Are Prisoners

About 4,000 inmates battle blazes in the Golden State's woodlands.

Here's a kind of crazy stat: Between 30 and 40 percent of California's forest firefighters are state prison inmates. The state has become a tinderbox of sorts from a four-year drought, and roughly 4,000 low-level felons are on the front lines of the state's active fires. Here's what's going on:

Why are prisoners fighting fires? For years, California's prison system has operated a number of "conservation camps," in which low-level felons in the state prison system volunteer to do manual labor outside, like clearing brush to prevent forest fires or fighting the fires themselves. A handful of other states have similar programs, but California's program is by far the largest, with roughly 4,000 participants. At its best, the program is a win-win situation: Inmates learn useful skills and spend time outside the normal confines of prison, and the collaboration with Cal Fire saves the state roughly $80 million a year.

Participants make $2 per day in the program and $2 an hour when they're on a fire line. That may sound paltry, though it's not bad by prison standards: Many prison jobs bring in less than $1 per hour. In addition, for each day they work in the program, the inmates receive a two-day reduction from their sentences.

So these are convicted felons? Yes—the prisoners are typically low-level felons, all of whom have volunteered to participate in the program and have demonstrated good behavior in prison. Some convictions exclude prisoners from applying, like arson (surprise, surprise) or sex crimes. One benefit of the program is that it often breaks down racial barriers: "When people are incarcerated they tend to segregate by race," says Hadar Aviram, a law professor and criminologist at the University of California-Hastings. "The fire camps are not like that. People who do not associate with each other inside a prison are willing to be friends when they're at a fire camp."

Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Mon Aug 31, 2015, 04:46 PM (80 replies)

Rebel Girls: Photos of feminists from around the world

Here is a collection of photos and it's called feminists around the world. I find this kind of thing inspiring and maybe others do too.

Many more at link.

Many more photos:

Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Sun Aug 30, 2015, 04:09 PM (1 replies)

Bernie Sanders Explains How He Would Deal With An Obstructionist Congress

TAPPER: So, that's a very ambitious agenda you just outlined there. You said this week that the biggest mistake President Obama made was thinking he could negotiate with Speaker Boehner and Republican Leader Mitch McConnell.

How can you get this very ambitious agenda through, which includes, you didn't mention, an estate tax on those who inherit more than $3.5 million, a trillion dollars spent on infrastructure - how are you going to do that without dealing with Congress?

SANDERS: And that infrastructure program, Jake, would create some 13 million jobs. I will tell you how. I have a lot of - a lot of respect for Barack Obama. He is a friend of mine. The biggest mistake I believe that he made - and I disagree with him on a number of policy issues, but his biggest political mistake is, after his brilliant 2008 political campaign, when he rallied millions of people to stand up and fight back, basically, what he said after he was elected: Well, I will take it from here. I will negotiate with Boehner and Mitch McConnell and Republicans.

Two points. First of all, these guys never had any intention of seriously negotiating. I think the president has caught onto that. But, second of all, the powers that be in Washington, Wall Street, the huge campaign donors, the Koch brothers, are so powerful, that the only way we bring about real change in this country which represents the needs of the middle class and working families is when millions of people stand up and say, enough is enough, they are organized.

And that is what I'm talking about when I speak about a political revolution. No president, not Bernie Sanders or anybody else, can do it unless millions of people say, you know what? This country belongs to all of us. Our government must represent all of us, and not just a handful of billionaires. It can't be done within the Beltway itself. We need a mass movement, and that's what we are trying to create, and are succeeding in creating right now.

Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Sun Aug 30, 2015, 02:13 PM (135 replies)

Bernie Sanders: ‘Environmentalists Deserve A Debate’

On Sunday, Democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders spoke out about the need for issue-specific debates, saying his fellow Democratic presidential hopefuls should be debating multiple issues, including the environment.

“I think environmentalists deserve a debate so we could talk about how we move aggressively to transform our energy system away from fossil fuel,” Sanders said on CNN’s State of the Union.

“Four debates and only four debates — we are told, not asked — before voters in our earliest states make their decision,” the presidential candidate said at the DNC’s summer meeting. “This sort of rigged process has never been attempted before.”

Sanders has been vocal about his acceptance of climate science and his views that the country needs to address climate change during the campaign. Sanders, a senator from Vermont, introduced a bill in July that would make it easier for low-income Americans to install solar power. He’s also said he opposes drilling in the Arctic and offshore drilling as a whole. On Sunday, he reiterated those views.

Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Sun Aug 30, 2015, 11:48 AM (11 replies)

"Democrats vs. Socialists"


Some interesting points were made
Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Sun Aug 30, 2015, 01:26 AM (5 replies)

Why are nurses endorsing Bernie Sanders for President?

Published on Aug 28, 2015
National Nurses United Endorses Senator Bernie Sanders for President

Caring, compassion, and community. These are the values at the heart of registered nursing. This is true at the bedside, as nurses advocate for patients and families—and also beyond the walls of the hospital, as RNs call for environmental, racial, and economic justice in the name of public health. National Nurses United, which represents some 190,000 nurses nationwide, seeks to uphold that positive vision for the health of this country by endorsing Senator Bernie Sanders for president. #nurses4bernie

Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Fri Aug 28, 2015, 10:45 PM (7 replies)

Bernie Sanders vs. The Military-Industrial Complex

2015 in Iowa

June 4 1992 from the floor of the House:

In the Senate:

Senator Bernie Sanders describes the workings of the MIC
Calls Out Defense Contractors and Lobbyists
Calls for Pentagon audit

One of the reasons I like Bernie Sanders is because he understands the military-industrial complex.

He sees it as a problem, talks about it regularly, and calls for modest, achievable reforms.

Sanders has his flaws like any politician.

But still he is the only major candidate willing to take on this vital issue in a direct way.

I don't think Hillary Clinton has or would ever speak against the power of the military-industrial complex, but I'll be happy if she does.

Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Fri Aug 28, 2015, 12:59 PM (33 replies)

Bernie Sanders meeting with Sumter, SC voters

Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Thu Aug 27, 2015, 10:21 PM (15 replies)

MSNBC Poll: Do you think the Democratic National Committee should organize more than six debates?


Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Sat Aug 8, 2015, 02:08 PM (49 replies)

Bernie Sanders Addresses the National Rainbow Coalition Conference 1986

Introduced by Richard Hatcher, Bernie Sanders speaks on April 19, 1986 at the National Rainbow Coalition Urban Policy Breakfast.
Posted by Cheese Sandwich | Fri Aug 7, 2015, 08:39 PM (4 replies)
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