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Gender: Male
Hometown: Detroit, Michigan
Home country: Citizen of the world whose address is in the U.S.
Current location: Detroit, Michigan
Member since: Fri Oct 29, 2004, 12:18 AM
Number of posts: 64,685

Journal Archives

Bill Maher Blasts ‘Useless Obama Hacks without a Shred of Intellectual Honesty’ (NSA spying)

Published on Jul 11, 2014

Bill Maher went after the left over NSA spying on Friday night; specifically, liberals who have refused to criticize surveillance under President Obama as opposed to, you know, when George Bush did it. Maher said, "If this was happening under Bush, liberals would be apoplectic. I'm sorry, but liberals are just sometimes useless Obama hacks without a shred of intellectual honesty."

Congresswoman Donna Edwards jumped in to make clear she's very apoplectic, saying Congress needs to set more limits on the NSA's dragnet and arguing for more privacy advocates who can take on the government in the name of individual liberties.

Ron Suskind added that for years, the government kept sneering at critics and asking where their proof is, and so the one great thing Snowden did was provide the proof.

Noam Chomsky on Free Market Capitalism

10 Things You Should Know About the American Seafood Supply

from Civil Eats:

10 Things You Should Know About the American Seafood Supply
By Paul Greenberg on July 8, 2014

The United States seafood supply is a marvel to behold in its illogic. In spite of the fact that we control more ocean than any country on earth, more than 85 percent of the fish and shellfish we eat is imported. But drill down deeper and it gets even weirder. Here are 10 things that you may not know about the fish on your plate.

1. Some Alaska salmon make a round trip to China.

Because of the incredible cheapness of Chinese labor, it is more cost-effective for seafood companies to freeze the salmon they catch in Alaska, send it to China, defrost it, bone it, and send back to the United States. This is also true of a large amount of our squid and the “white fish” and “fake crab” rendered from Alaskan pollock.

2. A portion of the bay scallops we import from China originally came from Martha’s Vineyard.

About half the bay scallops we consume come to us from Asia. But it’s fishier than that. In 1982, a Chinese seafood farming scientist came to Martha’s Vineyard’s Tisbury Pond and took 120 bay scallops back to Qindao. On the way, most of them died. But 26 survived. Those surviving scallops went on to become the genetic basis for a multimillion dollar industry, a portion of which is exported back to the United States.

3. The sixth most popular seafood in America is a fish that can breathe air and that you’ve probably never heard of.

The pangasius catfish is grown mostly in Vietnam and is primarily an export product. When its ponds get too low in oxygen because of overcrowding, the fish can stick its mouths above the surface of the water and take a breath of air. It is one of the few fish species that can do this.

4. Thailand, the largest producer of shrimp for export to the United States, has some serious problems.

In the last year, Thailand, which provides us with a huge quantity of shrimp every year, was struck by a new shrimp disease called Early Mortality Syndrome. It wiped out a billion dollars worth of shrimp. Then, last month, The Guardian revealed that a portion of the fish meal used to feed Thai shrimp is caught by vessels using slave labor. ..................(more)

- See more at: http://civileats.com/2014/07/08/10-things-you-should-know-about-the-american-seafood-supply/#sthash.5n0QOJWU.dpuf

Professor Richard Wolff: Global Capitalism July 2014 Monthly Update

by Richard Wolff.

The lecture begins with 30 minutes of short updates on important economic events of the last month. Then Professor Wolff analyzes several major economic issues. For July 9, these include: 1. Americans’ falling household wealth expose “recovery” 2. New global debt bubble threatens 3. Most large US companies evade taxes by off-shore “havens” 4. GM’s scandal: 30 million vehicle recall, $50 billion subsidies.


The Corporation: "Mindset"

excerpt from the documentary "The Corporation"

Facebook Has All the Power

from the Atlantic:

Facebook Has All the Power
Media critic Jay Rosen says a controversial mood study shows how few rights and how little control Facebook users actually have.

JULIE POSETTI | JUL 10 2014, 10:49 AM ET

Amid growing calls for formal investigations into Facebook's disturbing mood manipulation research, media scholar Jay Rosen has a reminder for journalists, editors, and personal social media users alike: "Facebook has all the power. You have almost none."

The experiment, conducted without users' knowledge or consent, manipulated the News Feeds of nearly 700,000 Facebook users with the purpose of testing mood responses to content alteration.

The Federal Trade Commission is considering two formal complaints about the 2012 Facebook research, published contentiously in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal—one from US Senator Mark Warner and another from the Electronic Privacy Information Centre. Meanwhile, in the UK, the Information Commissioner's Office is investigating.

I caught up with Rosen, who teaches Journalism at NYU and is also an advisor to First Look Media.


While we know that Facebook has access to our content and our rights as users are increasingly being diminished, there is something particularly creepy about the knowledge that, without our consent, in an Orwellian fashion, we can be unwitting participants in psychological experimentation. What should this reality signal to Facebook users? Is it time to pull-back?

You have (almost) no rights. You have (almost) no control. You have no idea what they're doing to you or with you. You don't even know who's getting the stuff you are posting, and you're not allowed to know. Trade secret! As the saying goes: "If you're not paying for the product, you are the product." As long as you understand and accept all that, then proceed. With caution. .....................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2014/07/facebook-has-all-the-power-you-have-almost-none/374215/

The Corporation: The private taking of the commons

from the documentary "The Corporation"

We used to regard many areas as too essential to the public good to be commercialized; they were protected by tradition and regulation. Now, everything is
becoming fair game in the private taking of the commons -- land, oceans, air, water, education, health, energy and social assistance. Where do we draw the line?

Fly swatter in 21st century America (cartoon)


Sweet Jeezus......NRA goes off the deep end.....again.

NRA News commentator Dom Raso compares gun control to racist Jim Crow laws

NRA News commentator Dom Raso recently compared laws to regulate guns to laws that enforced segregation and outlawed interracial marriage.

Raso, a U.S. Navy SEAL veteran, said in a video uploaded to YouTube on Sunday that gun control laws were like Jim Crow laws because owning and carrying a firearm was a civil right.

“Just because someone makes a law that says you can’t buy, own, or carry a weapon doesn’t make it lawful,” he remarked. “Jim Crow laws were also passed and enforced and those were equally unconstitutional.”

“Too many Americans don’t think of the Second Amendment as a civil rights issue,” Raso continued. “And that’s dangerous, because all of those rights together define freedom. If you’re free to speak but not worship, you’re not free. If you’re free to vote, but not to speak, you aren’t not free either.

“And if you’re free to do everything but defend yourself with a firearm, you’re not going to feel very free when you’re holding the phone waiting on the cops to save you from a home invader.” ................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/07/08/nra-news-commentator-dom-raso-compares-gun-control-to-racist-jim-crow-laws/

Grow It and They Will Come


The first and only recreation pot store in the Evergreen state was forced to close on Friday after running out of stock just three days after Washington became the second U.S. state to allow pot sales to adults. But Seattleites shouldn’t fret. The shop is set to re-open soon.

Reuters reports via the Guardian:

Cannabis City opened in Seattle on Tuesday with at least 4.5kg (10 pounds) of marijuana for sale, and by close of business on Thursday it was all gone. A message on the store’s phone line said it would re-open on 21 July.

There were widespread concerns that shortages of pot would afflict retailers this week after the state issued its first 25 licences to outlets, under a heavily regulated and taxed system approved by voters in November 2012.

Some business owners planned to limit the amount of marijuana early customers could buy to try to make stocks last.

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