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Gender: Female
Hometown: London
Home country: UK/Sweden
Current location: Stockholm, Sweden
Member since: Sun Jul 1, 2018, 07:25 PM
Number of posts: 36,928

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Journal Archives

No one's enforcing the new EPA rules. So what does that mean for climate change and our future?


This Dec. 22, 2008, photo shows the aftermath of a retention pond wall collapse at the TVA Kingston Fossil Plant in Harriman, Tenn. Workers who cleaned up the 2008 Kingston, Tenn., coal ash spill spent years working in conditions that they believe made them sick. The first worker lawsuits were filed against cleanup contractor Jacobs Engineering in 2013. But nearly a decade later, not a single case has made it through the court system. The Tennessee Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments on Wednesday, June 1, 2022. (AP Photo/Wade Payne, File) (Wade Payne/AP)

At a little after midnight on Dec. 22, 2008, over a billion gallons of coal ash slurry burst through a retaining wall next to a power plant in a small Tennessee city during what remains the largest industrial spill in United States history. The coal ash crossed the Emory and Clinch Rivers, both tributaries of the Tennessee River, and spread out over 300 acres on the edge of the city of Kingston. It destroyed and damaged dozens of homes and critical infrastructure and killed wildlife. The slurry, in this case enough to fill 22 million bathtubs, is the remnants from burning coal to produce electricity. It contains highly toxic and cancer-causing chemicals like mercury, cadmium, and arsenic.

The cleanup cost the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), the largest public power company in the country, over $1 billion and took seven years to complete. However, the toxic spill was decades in the making. The Environmental Protection Agency had warned the TVA about the safety of its coal ash pond for more than twenty years, even after a smaller blowout of the pond occurred in 2004. A 2009 Congressional Investigation noted that the bigger spill was “caused by regulatory neglect, a lack of government oversight, and irresponsible coal ash practices.”

In short, the TVA didn’t act, and the EPA didn’t enforce its warnings, a familiar pairing of regulatory and corporate inaction that has dogged communities throughout the country for decades, allowing for a dangerous increase in the pollution of the nation’s air, water and the rapid deterioration of its biodiversity. From the hundreds of coal ash ponds and landfills that exist all over the country to the numerous examples of environmental racism in Louisiana’s pollution-filled Cancer Alley to the lead water crisis that continues to harm communities in Flint, Mich and every other state in the country.

Just this week, the Supreme Court made it even worse. It narrowed the scope of the 51-year-old Clean Water Act, which governs water pollution in streams, oceans, rivers, lakes, and wetlands. The ruling means about half of the nation’s wetlands in the contiguous United States are no longer protected, threatening safe drinking water for millions of citizens. Judicial and political decisions have joined in undermining the country’s strict environmental goals and are likely to harm the two things that the EPA is supposed to protect: people and the environment.


'Pass Him': How a British For-Profit College Made Millions

Oxford Business College and others like it make millions, largely by recruiting immigrants. They operate in an opaque corner of the British education system.



College recruiters walked immigrant neighborhoods, knocking on doors or stopping people in shopping malls, selling the merits of a business-school education and adding a surprising offer: Get paid to enroll. “Money, money, money,” said Stefan Lespizanu, a former recruiter for Oxford Business College. “Everybody was saying, ‘Hey, push the money.’” News of the opportunity spread, propelled by Facebook groups and word of mouth. Whole families signed up, helping turn a vocational school of 41 students atop a Chinese restaurant into a for-profit juggernaut.

Oxford Business College, unaffiliated with the elite school nearby, now has several campuses and more than 8,000 students. That transformation made millions of dollars for its owners, company records show. Years of free-market changes to British higher education have created opportunities for for-profit schools like Oxford Business College. Through opaque partnership deals with publicly funded universities, schools can offer undergraduate degrees and get access to the British government’s student aid. Some are marketed as ways to get an easy degree and quick money, in the form of about $16,000 a year in government loans for living expenses.

“Join a university without any qualification and get up to 18,500 pounds,” one advertisement on Facebook reads, listing no school, only a phone number and the money figure, which is about $23,000. Dozens of similarly anonymous posts appear on Facebook groups for Eastern Europeans in Britain. “Do you want to study at the easiest university in U. K.?” asks another ad. “Do you need additional income?”

Higher-education experts say that partnerships between publicly funded universities and for-profit schools like Oxford Business College can prepare older students and those in underserved areas for better careers. Oxford Business College offers two-day-a-week schedules to working students and others who take non-traditional paths to higher education. Some students said the college offered opportunities that they otherwise would not have, and a national student survey showed strong approval ratings.


Cis woman and her disabled child were ousted from a Kansas library bathroom due to anti-trans bill


On May 20, a woman in Kansas was instructed to leave the restroom for helping her disabled son. Karen Wild is the mother to her son Ellis Dunville, who is on the autism spectrum, has a seizure disorder and is nonverbal. Part of her weekly routine is visiting the Wichita Public Library to meet up with Dunville’s grandmother, who helps Wild take care of him.

This incident comes weeks after the state signed SB180, which is informally known as the “Women’s Bill of Rights”. The law is intended to “ensure current protections for women’s spaces are not eroded,” said Republican Rep. Brenda Landwehr during the House Committee hearing on Mar. 31. Wild has been making her trips to the library for years. Not once did any library staff or patrons object to her bringing her son into the women’s restroom, let alone confronted for helping her son.

SB180 targets public facilities, including libraries like the ones Wild frequents at. In addition, the new law also requires the state to count people for data-gathering purposes as either male or female based on their birth sex. It also prevents trans Kansans from changing their sex or name on their legal forms, such as a driver’s license or birth certificate. “Everyone’s scared,” a trans Kansan told KMUW last week. Another is considering detransitioning.

Despite the fear and threats surrounding SB180, Kansas-based trans activist Jae Moyer took it to Twitter to share their persistence. “You can try to erase me from state statute with bills like SB180, but you can’t erase me from Kansas. I still exist. I am still nonbinary,” they said. On Reddit’s r/Wichita subreddit, user HimboHistrionics believes bans like SB180 are inconvenient for those outside of trans communities, too. “There’s not even a sweeping practical way to enforce stuff like this,” they said in a comment regarding Wild’s incident at the library. “Proponents of these bans think they have some internal gaydar equivalent for what looks passing, but it doesn’t translate in the real world.”


Happy Sweden National Day (it is now June 6th here as of an hour ago)

Zlatan Ibrahimovic announces he will retire from football: 'I say goodbye to football but not to you


988 topflight games for club and country

800 total goals produced: 573 goals and 227 assists

34 topflight trophies, with 14 of them being league titles

Instagram reinstates Robert Kennedy Jr. after launch of presidential bid

The prominent anti-vaccine campaigner was suspended in 2021 for spreading misleading health claims.



Instagram on Sunday lifted its suspension against the account of Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an outspoken anti-vaccine activist and nephew of the late president John F. Kennedy, who is running for president as a long shot Democratic challenger to President Biden. The popular photo-sharing platform removed Kennedy’s account in 2021 for “repeatedly sharing debunked claims about the coronavirus or vaccines,” and later in 2022 took down the account of his nonprofit, Children’s Health Defense, for spreading medical misinformation.

The accounts gained notoriety during the covid-19 pandemic as prolific spreaders of false and misleading claims about the coronavirus and vaccines. The decision follows Kennedy’s announcement in April that he plans to run for president, becoming the second Democratic candidate seeking to oust Biden.

“As he is now an active candidate for president of the United States, we have restored access to Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.’s, Instagram account,” Andy Stone, spokesman for Instagram and Facebook parent company Meta, said in a statement to The Washington Post. While Kennedy’s personal Instagram account has been restored, Facebook and Instagram are maintaining their suspensions against his organization, Stone confirmed. His personal account, which returned with a verified status, had over 760,000 followers as of Sunday afternoon.

Meta has long argued that users should be able to engage with posts from political leaders, a stance that has drawn blowback from critics calling for the platform to crack down on or fact-check misleading statements and advertisements from public officials and candidates. Kennedy tweeted Thursday that his campaign was unable to set up an Instagram account, accusing the company of seeking to “silence” him and calling the move “undemocratic.”


Why CNN's efforts to appease democracy's enemies will backfire

AUG. 23, 2022



Since 2016, MAGA propagandists like Kayleigh McEnany, Jason Miller, Jeffrey Lord, Rick Santorum, Ben Ferguson, Steve Cortes, Corey Lewandowski have at one time or another been on the CNN payroll. On one hand, they aided and abetted a figure who amplified violence against CNN, labeled the free press the “enemy of the people,” and with the other, they cashed CNN’s checks.

And yet, the powers-that-be seem to cling to this ludicrous notion that an audience in search of the “most trusted name in news” would somehow benefit from the continued elevation of these professional gas-lighters. A slew of reports have surfaced in recent weeks describing the desire of CNN’s new top brass to “dial down the prime-time partisanship.” This includes instruction to stop using the phrase “the Big Lie” when reporting on Donald Trump’s completely false claims that the 2020 election was somehow stolen. Apparently, calling something a “big lie” is now considered partisan.

Puck News recently revealed that CNN executives visited with Mitch McConnell, Kevin McCarthy and John Thune to “convince highly skeptical Republican leaders” that “they would get a fair hearing on his network, and that they should come back on its airwaves.” And last week, the network canceled its media affairs show “Reliable Sources”; the host Brian Stelter was often a target for criticism by conservatives over his coverage of MAGA lies during the Trump era.

It seems the “most trusted name in news” is eager to pander to a political party that’s completely detached from reality, whose elected officials have declared war on truth and fact and promoted lies about everything from a free and fair election to a deadly pandemic. Setting all of that aside, I keep coming back to the question, why? What’s the prize for CNN?


Erdoğan, ultranationalists and 'family values'

The victorious Turkish president is likely to pursue a hardline conservative agenda with his ultranationalist allies.


After a bitter and hard-fought campaign that went to a second, run-off vote, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has retained the Turkish presidency in an election some deemed ‘free but not fair‘. Having first won power in 2003, Erdoğan has been able to extend his rule for a further five years by creating an alliance with ultranationalist parties. A key aspect of the next term is likely to be a hardline conservative agenda. In an agreement between Erdoğan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) and his hardline Islamist New Welfare party (YRP) ally, he has pledged to re-evaluate existing laws to ‘protect the integrity of the family’.

Potential discrimination

Turkey’s LGBT+ community is likely to be a target. Erdoğan and his allies ramped up anti-LGBT+ rhetoric during the election campaign. This is by no means a new part of Erdoğan’s programme but it has intensified in the last few months. For instance, the AKP and its YRP coalition partner signed a declaration which suggested potential discrimination against the LGBT+ community could follow. The YRP has previously called for the closure of LGBT+ organisations. Immediately after his victory was announced, Erdoğan accused the opposition of promoting LGBT+ rights while stressing that ‘LGBT forces’ had not been able to infiltrate the AKP.

Women’s rights are also at risk. The 6284 law, which aims to protect women, particularly from domestic violence, was introduced by the AKP government in 2012. Both radical Islamist parties within Erdoğan’s coalition, YRP and Huda Par, have called for it to be repealed and made their support for Erdoğan conditional on a pledge to amend this law. This comes against a backdrop of high levels of violence against women in Turkey. In 2022 at least 116 women were murdered by their partners. Huda Par has also proposed criminalising extra-marital sex and adultery and getting rid of alimony rights for women, as well as arguing for single-sex education.

The Erdoğan-led majority in parliament was propped up by another of AKP’s coalition partners, the ultranationalist Nationalist Movement party (MHP). It also received backing from the extreme nationalist presidential candidate, Sinan Oğan of the ATA (Ancestral) Alliance party, who won around 5 per cent of the vote in the first round before declaring his support for Erdoğan. When it became clear that anti-immigrant views had been popular in the first round, the opposition leader, Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, pivoted to a hardline anti-immigration stance in the second. Billboards promised Syrian refugees would have to leave the country, if he was elected.

Anti-Syrian rhetoric...............


Chick-fil-A diversity executive was hired over a year ago - Fact check

The claim: Chick-fil-A 'just hired' a new vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion


A May 31 Instagram post (direct link, archive link) shows a screenshot of a tweet about fast food restaurant Chick-fil-A. "Chick Fil-A just hired a VP of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion," reads the tweet. "Is this just checking off a corporate box or do they believe in this Marxist nonsense?"

The tweet includes a link to Chick-fil-A's diversity, equity and inclusion page. A similar claim shared on Instagram garnered more than 2,000 likes before it was deleted. Other versions of the claim have been shared on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Our rating: False

Chick-fil-A did not "just hire" a vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion. The chain has had someone in that position for over a year and a half.

Vice president isn't new hire

The webpage linked in the original tweet features a photo of Erick McReynolds, the vice president in question, alongside a statement from him about respect in the workplace. McReynolds wasn't recently hired, however. Web archives show he's been featured on the restaurant's website since at least September 2022.


Sheila E. and Prince - A Love Bizarre (1985)

Label: Paisley Park – PRO-A-2387
Format: Vinyl, 12", 33 ⅓ RPM, Single, Promo
Country: US
Released: 1985
Genre: Electronic, Funk / Soul
Style: Minneapolis Sound

The moon up above, it shines down upon our skin
Whispering words that scream of outrageous sin
We all want the stuff that's found in our wildest dreams
It gets kinda rough in the back of our limousine

That's what we are, we all want a love bizarre
That's what we are, we all want a love bizarre

A strawberry mind, a body that's built for two
A kiss on the spine, we do things we never do
Swallow the pride and joy of the ivory tower
We'll dance on the roof, make love on a bed of flowers

That's what we are, we all want a love bizarre
That's what we are, we all want a love bizarre

The moon up above, it shines down upon our skin
Whispering words that scream of outrageous sin
We all want the stuff that's found in our wildest dreams
It gets kinda rough in the back of our limousine

That's what we are, we all want a love bizarre
That's what we are, we all want a love bizarre

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