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Member since: Wed Sep 16, 2015, 01:34 PM
Number of posts: 1,178

Journal Archives

Taking down drones with eagles

I saw my first drone yesterday. It was hovering over homes alongside a major highway. I don't have a particularly large property, but it is mine and the only things I want spying on my from above are the birds waiting for me to refill their feeders. This article from the NY Times made me smile at the thought of an eagle swooping down on somebody's drone. I understand that our property rights can't extend up to space. However, am I the only person disturbed by the thought of having a drone watching me while I water my tomatoes? Can a stalker have a drone hovering over his victim's yard? Does someone's right to a toy override our right to privacy on our property?

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/29/world/europe/drones-eagles.html?smprod=nytcore-iphone&smid=nytcore-iphone-share NYTimes: Dutch Firm Trains Eagles to Take Down High-Tech Prey: Drones

No selfies in voting booth, West Virginia says

Source: CBS News

" If you want to share your voting experience on social media, you'll have to find some way other than taking a photo in the voting booth. West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie E. Tennant says it's forbidden.

Tennant said in a news release Friday that it's illegal to photograph any part of the voting process, and no electronic devices or cellphones are allowed in the voting booth."

Read more: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/no-selfies-in-voting-booth-west-virginia-says/

This sounds innocuous at first, but is not. I posted this in LBN because of the profound implications this news has for our Presidential election (feel free to move it if there is a more appropriate forum). If no photos are allowed in voting booths, then voters will not be able to document if/when the machines "misbehave" and report votes other than those actually made by the voter. This is a VERY dangerous trend that needs to be stamped out immediately before it spreads to other states. We already have grave concerns, based on experience, that our votes are not being correctly recorded. We must be able to take the photos that document any voting fraud if we have any hope to fix our broken system.

Donald Blankenship Sentenced to a Year in Prison in Mine Safety Case

Source: New York Times

The sentencing, in Federal District Court here, came six years and one day after an explosion tore through Massey’s Upper Big Branch mine, killing 29 people. Although Mr. Blankenship was not accused of direct responsibility for the accident, the deadliest in American coal mining in about 40 years, the disaster prompted the federal inquiry that led to Mr. Blankenship’s indictment.

In addition to the year in jail, Mr. Blankenship was fined $250,000 and is subject to a year of supervised release. (SNIP)

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/07/us/donald-blankenship-sentenced-to-a-year-in-prison-in-mine-safety-case.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=first-column-region®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

It is unbelievable that the maximum sentence that could be obtained for the deaths of 29 people is one year, and that this is considered to be exceptional in West Virginia. However, in case anyone was worried that a wealthy man like Blankenship would actually have to go to jail with the common people, he is appealing the sentence and asking for probation.

We shall see whether he actually serves a single day for this horrible crime.

Zaha Hadid, Groundbreaking Architect, Dies at 65

Source: NY Times

"Zaha Hadid, the Iraqi-British architect whose curving, elongated structures left a mark on skylines around the world, and who was the first woman to win the Pritzker Prize, her profession’s highest honor, died in Miami on Thursday. She was 65."

Read more: Link to source

For those of you unfamiliar with her work, it is well worth taking a look at some of the buildings she designed. She was a phenomenal talent, taken from us way too early.


In Santa Rosa, CA

Up here in Sonoma for a dinner that I will not enjoy, so was moping a bit as I got my case from the car. Thanks to the lady in the blue pickup for the honk, "Yay, Bernie" and thumbs up when she saw my bumper sticker. I will still not enjoy the dinner, but my mood is greatly improved!

KKK Leader endorses Hillary because he thinks she's a secret conservative

I would not suggest that Hillary supports the KKK; to the contrary. However, had the KKK leader endorsed Sanders, who thinks that Hillary would attempt to link Bernie to the Klan, as she tried with the Koch Brothers? I sure do.


Burying the lead

There was a Democratic debate last night, so what is on the main page/blogs of DailyKos? The articles, in order (only listing those post-debate):

1. Trump manages to edge out fictional rodent in picking the next Supreme Court justice
2. Marco Rubio just doesn't want to embarrass his kids. Or so he says.
3. Ted Cruz: Ignorant hicks vote for Trump, smart people vote for me
4. Rubio would rather lose to Trump on his own than form a unity ticket with Cruz
5. Donald Trump: 'Islam hates us' with 'a tremendous hatred' and therefore ...
6. Senate Republicans skew Supreme Court polling
7. Cartoon: The Republican Monster turns on its creator
8. Morning Digest: In a miraculous set of victories, Kentucky Democrats hold the state House
9. Daily Kos Radio is LIVE at 9 AM ET!
10. Cheers and Jeers: Thursday
11. Abbreviated Pundit Round-up: Gearing for the general; what happened in Michigan?
12. Open thread for night owls: Congress on the verge of snatching food from mouths of the poor

See anything about the debate? ANYTHING???? Hello?

The oligarchs are plotting to regain control of the Republican Party

According to the Huffington Post, corporate titans, Wall Street billionaires, politicians and other members of the ruling class gathered on Sea Island, GA to "take their country back." Topics discussed at the American Enterprise Institute's World Forum included ways to derail Donald Trump.


Much as I loathe Trump, the sheer arrogance of our oligarchs in thinking that it is their place to derail a candidate is just appalling. It is the absolute right of we, the American people, not the oligarchy, to choose our leader, even if it is a narcissistic, uninformed, racist jerk. The very reason Trump is leading in the Republican primaries is because this same group of oligarchs has crushed the average person to the breaking point and both political parties are in open revolt.

We've obviously gotten their attention and they are worried. If we could only turn the disaffected Republicans away from blaming minorities and towards blaming those really responsible for their problems, the political revolution would be unstoppable.

My Super Tuesday Early Birthday Present to Myself

was to get blocked from the Hillary group for the following post:

"Because Southern Democratic Votes

are really what counts in the general election. Oh, wait, if each and every Southern Democrat stayed home in December, it would matter not at all to the Democratic Presidential candidate. I guess it makes sense to have people whose vote won't count choose the candidate that people whose vote WILL count, like those of us in Blue States, will be stuck with. Good strategy...."

Some people just can't let reality intrude into their active fantasy lives........

I refuse to give up

It may be that Bernie will lose in the primaries and we will have a choice of Presidents Trump, Rubio or Clinton. Clinton, corporatist that she is, will still be 1000% better than the Republicans on social issues, if not on financial and trade. Tempting as it is to leave the carcass of the Democratic Party, that would be giving in and accepting total and final defeat. I don't see Bernie giving in and I won't, either, if only for the sake of my teenager's future. I will vote for Clinton and then I will get to work making sure we take back the Democratic Party from her and her fellow corporatist supporters. I look forward to a one term Clinton presidency, followed by 8 years of Elizabeth Warren or another progressive.
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