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Judi Lynn

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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 142,499

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In Venezuela, White Supremacy Is a Key Driver of the Coup

Greg Palast, Truthout
February 7, 2019

Note: Palast covered Venezuela during the Chavez presidency for BBC Television Newsnight and the Guardian. Readers of Truthout may download, for free, the film of Palast’s BBC reports, The Assassination of Hugo Chavez. This article incorporates additional reporting by William Camacaro in Caracas.

In January 23, right after a phone call from Donald Trump, Juan Guaidó, former speaker of Venezuela’s National Assembly, declared himself president. No voting. When you have official recognition from The Donald, who needs elections?

Say what?

I can explain what’s going on in Venezuela in photos.

First, we have Juan Guaidó, self-proclaimed (and Trump-proclaimed) president of the nation, with his wife and child, a photo prominently placed in The New York Times. And here, the class photo of Guaidó’s party members in the National Assembly. They appear, overwhelmingly light-skinned — especially when compared to their political opposites in the third photo, the congress members who support the elected President Nicolás Maduro.

This is the story of Venezuela in black and white, the story not told in The New York Times or the rest of our establishment media. This year’s so-called popular uprising is, at its heart, a furious backlash of the whiter (and wealthier) Venezuelans against their replacement by the larger Mestizo (mixed-race) poor. (Forty-four percent of the population that answered the 2014 census listed themselves as “white.”)

Four centuries of white supremacy in Venezuela by those who identify their ancestors as European came to an end with the 1998 election of Hugo Chavez, who won with the overwhelming support of the Mestizo majority. This turn away from white supremacy continues under Maduro, Chavez’s chosen successor.


Thanks for this outstanding link to an amazing, brilliant person who used to post here, someone many would remember, who has opted to be more involved in a large range of other projects.

The Lost World of the Maya is Finally Emerging From the Jungle


From massive fortresses to sprawling suburbs, a bold new vision of the vanished Maya civilization takes shape.
By Nathaniel Scharping|Thursday, February 07, 2019

In Guatemala’s Tikal, only the peaks of monuments rise above the forest. But lidar scans reveal a complex landscape beneath the foliage.
Top: Matthias Kestel/Shutterstock. Bottom: Francisco Estrada-Belli/PACUNAM
Thomas Garrison pauses in the middle of the jungle.

“That’s the causeway right there,” he says, pointing into a random patch of greenery in the Guatemalan lowlands.

I squint, trying to make out features in the tangled rainforest undergrowth. There’s a small lump, rising no more than a foot or two from the forest floor.

The Ithaca College archaeologist has spotted the buried remnants of a Maya road, a ribbon of limestone that once cut through the wrinkled landscape. We’re a full day’s walk from civilization, standing in the remains of a once-populous kingdom. The road before us is just one piece of a vast network leading to terraced fields, reservoirs, defensive fortifications and more, all sprawling invisibly throughout the forest.

In the 1,000-plus years since the Maya society collapsed, the jungle has returned with a vengeance. A tide of flora has swallowed up roads and temples, turning stone structures into lumps and mounds indistinguishable from the natural topography.


You Can Now Look At The Faces Of Some Of Britain's Earliest Inhabitants

Rosie McCall
By Rosie McCall
31 JAN 2019, 10:53

Thanks to an exhibition at the Brighton Museum & Art Gallery in the UK (open Tuesday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm), you can now take a look at some of Britain's oldest residents.

The museum opened the doors to their shiny new Elaine Evans Archaeology Gallery last weekend, where they are displaying facial reconstructions of those who lived in southern England (and places slightly further afield) thousands of years ago. The collection includes a young Neolithic woman, a Cro-Magnon man sporting a hipster-like beard, and a Neanderthal. Together, these individuals span 40,000 years of European history.

The man responsible for resurrecting these characters is archaeologist and sculptor Oscar Nilsson, whose previous work has included a 9,000-year-old teen and a 1,200-year-old Peruvian queen.

To create their likeness, he starts with a 3D replica of the skull and builds on it, determining the thickness of the skin and other tissue from the origin, sex, and age of the person in question. Next, he "colors it in", basing his color choices on genome studies that reveal the eye, skin, and hair color of different human populations.


When did the kangaroo hop? Scientists have the answer

By Helen Briggs
BBC News
1 hour ago


Reconstruction of ancient tree-climbing kangaroo (left)

Scientists have discovered when the kangaroo learned to hop - and it's a lot earlier than previously thought.

According to new fossils, the origin of the famous kangaroo gait goes back 20 million years.

Living kangaroos are the only large mammal to use hopping on two legs as their main form of locomotion.

The extinct cousins of modern kangaroos could also hop, according to a study of their fossilised foot bones, as well as moving on four legs and climbing trees.


Giant prehistoric kangaroo

~ ~ ~

Scientist Smackdown: Were Giant Kangaroos Hunted Into Extinction?
By Eliza Strickland | June 23, 2009 8:56 am

The giant, prehistoric kangaroo that once hopped over the Australian landscape may have been wiped out by the first human settlers on that continent, a new study argues. In making this claim, the researchers are entering into a long-running debate over whether Australia’s “megafauna,” which also included marsupial lions and hippo-sized wombats, were driven extinct by the changing climate or by overzealous hunting. And while the new study, which will be published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, makes an interesting case for the latter hypothesis, some researchers are not convinced.

Researchers analyzed the teeth of the nearly seven-foot-tall kangaroo, known as Procoptodon goliah, to determine what it ate and drank. Different sources of water and food leave trace amounts of particular types, or isotopes, of hydrogen and carbon atoms, which are deposited in the teeth like a recorded diet. Additionally, tiny patterns of wear give clues about the type of food a given creature chewed. The team concluded that the giant kangaroos fed mainly on saltbush shrubs [BBC News]. These hardy bushes thrive in arid conditions, which makes it less likely that the kangaroos ran out of food as the continent’s climate got hotter and drier.

P. goliah is thought to have gone extinct about 45,000 years ago–that’s 5,000 years after humans are thought to have first arrived in Australia. The high intake of saltbushes would have meant the giant kangaroo drank more water and would have been frequently found at waterholes and therefore vulnerable to hunters. These combined factors led the scientific team to determine that “human hunting was a more likely extinction cause”. Unlike its modern-day relatives, the giant kangaroo was very big and imposing and not as agile. “These were a lot slower and gravitated towards waterholes, so they were basically sitting ducks for the humans,” [The Times], says lead researcher Gavin Prideaux.

Archaeologist Judith Field is one of the skeptics of the new study. Her main concern is that there is no direct evidence showing the kangaroo was hunted by humans. “If you’re going to make any case about humans and these megafauna then you’ve got to have them in the same place in the same time,” she says. “You’ve got to find archaeological sites that have megafauna in them with evidence of butchering. And we just don’t have these,” [Australian Broadcasting Corporation].


Exploding e-cigarette kills 24-year-old Texas man

Source: BBC News

8 hours ago


William Brown died after a vape pen exploded while he attempted to use it.

An exploding vaporiser pen resulted in the death of a 24-year-old Texas man, a post-mortem examination has ruled.

The pen's battery blew up when William Brown tried to use it, sending shards of metal into his face and neck and severing an artery.

He died two days later in hospital of a stroke, in what is at least the second such death in the US.

Malfunctioning e-cigarette batteries have caused hundreds to thousands of similar injuries, US reports say.

The Tarrant County Medical Examiner's Office found on Tuesday that shrapnel from the vape pen's exploding battery impacted Mr Brown's skull, severed his carotid artery and ultimately caused his death on 29 January.

Read more: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-47136678

Costa Rica ex-President scar Arias faces sex claim

20 minutes ago

Óscar Arias denies the allegations

Former Costa Rican President Óscar Arias has been accused of sexually assaulting a woman in 2014.

Mr Arias, who is 78 and has won the Nobel Peace Prize, categorically denied the allegations and said he had always treated women with respect.

His accuser, a peace activist, has filed a formal complaint with police.

She told local media and the New York Times that he had groped her after they met at his home to discuss his support for a campaign against nuclear weapons.



Costa Rica ex-President scar Arias faces sex claim

Source: BBC News

20 minutes ago

Óscar Arias denies the allegations

Former Costa Rican President Óscar Arias has been accused of sexually assaulting a woman in 2014.

Mr Arias, who is 78 and has won the Nobel Peace Prize, categorically denied the allegations and said he had always treated women with respect.

His accuser, a peace activist, has filed a formal complaint with police.

She told local media and the New York Times that he had groped her after they met at his home to discuss his support for a campaign against nuclear weapons.

Read more: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-47139372

Gov. Grisham withdraws National Guard troops from New Mexico border

Source: UPI

FEB. 5, 2019 / 9:47 PM
By Darryl Coote

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has ordered the withdrawal of most of the 118 troops deployed to the New Mexico border. Photo by Mike Theiler/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 5 (UPI) -- Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-N.M., ordered the withdrawal of the majority of National Guard troops deployed at New Mexico's southern border, stating that her state will not take part in President Donald Trump's "fear-mongering."

"I reject the federal contention that there exists an overwhelming national security crisis at the southern border, along which are some of the safest communities in the country," Grisham said in a statement. "However, I recognize and appreciate the legitimate concerns of residents and officials in southwestern New Mexico, particularly Hidalgo County, who have asked for our assistance, as migrants and asylum-seekers continue to appear at their doorstep."

National Guard troops in Hidalgo County and surrounding southwestern New Mexico counties will remain to deal with the ongoing humanitarian need there as large groups of families have crossed over the border in Antelope Wells in recent months, she said.

. . .

"We will support our neighbors where the need for assistance is great, and we will offer a helping hand when we can to those vulnerable people who arrive at our border, but New Mexico will not take part in the president's charade of border fear-mongering by misusing our diligent National Guard troops. We will deploy our men and women in uniform only where there is a need, and where their presence can make a genuine difference in ensuring public safety and an easing of the humanitarian concerns at our southern border," she said.

Read more: https://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2019/02/05/Gov-Grisham-withdraws-National-Guard-troops-from-New-Mexico-border/2731549420287/

The Latest: Protesters burn flags after officer cleared

Source: Associated Press

Updated 6:53 pm CST, Tuesday, February 5, 2019

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The Latest on reaction following decision that clears officer in Alabama mall shooting (all times local):

6:50 p.m.

Protesters in Alabama have burned two American flags outside Hoover City Hall and vowed intensified protests at schools, businesses and homes in response to the state's decision against prosecuting the officer who shot a 21-year-old armed black man while responding to a mall shooting on Thanksgiving night.

As he lit a flag Tuesday evening, demonstration leader Carlos Chaverst Jr. says the symbol won't mean anything to him until black lives matter.

More than a half-dozen officers watched from a few feet away.

A report released by Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall on Tuesday says the officer mistakenly believed Emantic "EJ" Bradford, Jr. fired the earlier shots but was still justified in shooting him.

Read more: https://www.chron.com/news/crime/article/The-Latest-Protesters-burn-flags-after-officer-13592460.php

Mississippi considers abortion ban after fetal heartbeat

Source: Associated Press

Emily Wagster Pettus, Associated Press
Updated 7:23 pm CST, Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Sen. Joey Fillingane, R-Sumrall, is photographed during a Senate Judiciary Committee meeting, Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019, in Jackson, Miss. Fillingane helped usher through the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee, a bill that would ban abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected, as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. Supporters and opponents anticipate a court fight if passed into law.

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi lawmakers are considering what could become one of the strictest abortion laws in the country. Bills that passed legislative committees Tuesday would ban abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected, as early as six weeks into a pregnancy.

Republican Gov. Phil Bryant has said he will sign either House Bill 732 or Senate Bill 2116 , which are moving to the full House and Senate for more work. Supporters and opponents anticipate a court fight.

An Iowa judge struck down a similar law there last month.

Several states could consider tighter abortion restrictions to get a challenge up to the more conservative U.S. Supreme Court to try to overturn the 1973 ruling that legalized abortion nationwide.

Read more: https://www.chron.com/news/us/article/Mississippi-considers-abortion-ban-after-fetal-13592089.php
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