May 21, 2012 archive

Today on The Stars Hollow Gazette

Our regular featured content-

These featured articles-

Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt

This is an Open Thread

The Stars Hollow Gazette

Target serves pizza. It doesn’t make it a restaurant

Adapted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

New Rules 2012 05 18, Real Time with Bill Maher

Target serves pizza. It doesn’t make it a restaurant

American Exceptionalism

Nato talks security and peace, Chicago has neither

Gary Younge, The Guardian

Sunday 20 May 2012 16.00 EDT

When the city mayor Rahm Emanuel brought the summit to Chicago he boasted: “From a city perspective this will be an opportunity to showcase what is great about the greatest city in the greatest country.” The alternative “99% tour” of the city, organised by the Grassroots Collaborative that came to Brighton Park, revealed how utterly those who claim to export peace and prosperity abroad have failed to provide it at home.

The murder rate in Chicago in the first three months of this year increased by more than 50% compared with the same period last year, giving it almost twice the murder rate of New York. And the manner in which the city is policed gives many as great a reason to fear those charged with protecting them as the criminals. By the end of July last year police were shooting people at the rate of six a month and killing one person a fortnight.

Chicago illustrates how the developing world is everywhere, not least in the heart of the developed. The mortality rate for black infants in the city is on a par with the West Bank; black life expectancy in Illinois is just below Egypt and just above Uzbekistan. More than a quarter of Chicagoans have no health insurance, one in five black male Chicagoans are unemployed and one in three live in poverty. Latinos do not fare much better. Chicago may be extreme in this regard, but it is by no means unique. While the ethnic composition of poverty may change depending on the country, its dynamics will doubtless be familiar to pretty much all of the G8 participants and most of the Nato delegates too.

(h/t lambert strether @ Naked Capitalism)

Whose Firebombs? Inside the Alleged "Conspiracy"

By Curtis Black, Truthout

Sunday, 20 May 2012 13:32

Chicago police have a long history of infiltrating peaceful protest groups and fomenting violence – it’s one reason the Red Squad was banned by a federal court order (later lifted at the request of Mayor Daley) – and infiltration of protest groups seems to be standard operating procedure for “national security events.”

And nationally since 9/11, an embarrassing proportion of “anti-terrorism” cases have involved plots proposed, planned, and enabled by police agents. That seems to have been the case – in just the past month – with the Wrigley bomber as well as the alleged bombing plot of a group of Cleveland anarchists who supposedly “discussed” disrupting the NATO summit. Sometimes you wonder whether such efforts are directed at keeping us safe or “putting points on the board” – or, when big protests are planned, generating scare headlines.

(h/t SouthernDragon @ Firedog Lake)

Men accused of plotting attacks around NATO summit

By MICHAEL TARM, Associated Press

1 day ago

Documents filed by prosecutors in support of the charges in Chicago painted an ominous portrait of the men, saying the trio also discussed using swords, hunting bows and knives with brass-knuckle handles in their attacks.

But defense lawyers shot back that Chicago police had trumped up the charges to frighten peaceful protesters away, telling a judge it was undercover officers known by the activists as “Mo” and “Gloves” who brought the firebombs to a South Side apartment where the men were arrested.

“This is just propaganda to create a climate of fear,” Michael Deutsch said. “My clients came to peacefully protest.”

On the eve of the summit, the dramatic allegations were reminiscent of previous police actions ahead of major political events, when authorities moved quickly to prevent suspected plots but sometimes quietly dropped the charges later.

(h/t SouthernDragon @ Firedog Lake)

The Preemptive Prosecution of the NATO 5

By: Kevin Gosztola, Firedog Lake

Monday May 21, 2012 2:02 pm

The alleged plot hangs on the fact that Betterly, Chase and Church allegedly went to a BP gas station for gasoline that could be used in the production of “Molotov cocktails.” However, the attorneys for the three men have been shown no evidence of any “Molotov cocktails.” Instead, it appears the FBI, Secret Service and Chicago police want to claim a home-brewing beer kit could have been used to produce “Molotov cocktails” and, therefore, these men are “terrorists.”

The authorities assert the three men charged in the first plot intended to “destroy police cars and attack four Chicago Police district stations with destructive devices, in an effort to undermine the police response to the conspirators’ other planned actions for the NATO Summit.” The prosecutor claims defendants possessed and/or constructed “improvised explosive-incendiary devices” (IEDs) and “various types of dangerous weapons including a mortar gun, swords, a hunting bow, throwing stars, and knives with brass-knuckle handles.” But, these claims made at a bond hearing were all claims the attorneys for the three men heard for the first time. To Deutsch, the charges sound like completely “fabricated charges” that came from the work of “police informants and provocateurs,” which have been used against movements before.

As for the additional two men, NLG attorney Sarah Gelsomino finds the charges are “sensational, politically motivated, and meant to spread fear and intimidation among people protesting the NATO summit,” just like the terrorism-related charges against Betterly, Chase and Church. The charges are trumped-up charges based on fabrications, as the city has not shown any “actual evidence of criminal activity or any weapons, though prosecutors have callously made several serious criminal allegations.”

Thers @ Whiskey Fire

As soon the word “ninja” appears in a story about the police, it’s a bullshit story. “Ninja knives.” Fuck you.


Rushing Roulette

On This Day In History May 21

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

Click on image to enlarge

May 21 is the 141st day of the year (142nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 224 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1881, the American Red Cross was established in Washington, D.C. by Clara Barton, who became the first president of the organization.

Clara Barton

Clara Barton (1821-1912) had a career as a teacher and federal bureaucrat when the American Civil War broke out. Barton liked teaching when she was younger. All of her older siblings became teachers. Her youngest sibling was 12 years of age, when Barton was born. Her brother David was always like a teacher to her. She taught her first class, at age 17. She also expanded her concept of soldier aid, traveling to Camp Parole, Maryland, to organize a program for locating men listed as missing in action. Through interviews with Federals returning from Southern prisons, she was often able to determine the status of some of the missing and notify families.

After performing humanitarian work during and after the conflict, on advice of her doctors, in 1869, she went to Europe for a restful vacation. There, she saw and became involved in the work of the International Red Cross during the Franco-Prussian War, and determined to bring the organization home with her to America.

When Barton began the organizing work in the U.S. in 1873, no one thought the country would ever again face an experience like the Civil War. However, Barton was not one to lose hope in the face of the bureaucracy, and she finally succeeded during the administration of President Chester A. Arthur on the basis that the new American Red Cross organization could also be available to respond to other types of crisis.

As Barton expanded the original concept of the Red Cross to include assisting in any great national disaster, this service brought the United States the “Good Samaritan of Nations” label in the International Red Cross. Barton became President of the American branch of the society, known officially as the American National Red Cross. Soon after the initial May 1881 meeting in Washington, on August 22, 1881, the first local chapter of the Red Cross was formed in village of Dansville, New York, where Barton kept a part-time residence between 1876 and 1886. Subsequent local chapters were established in Rochester and Syracuse. Ultimately, John D. Rockefeller, along with four others and the federal government, gave money to create a national headquarters in Washington, D.C., located one block from the White House.

Muse in the Morning

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Muse in the Morning


Late Night Karaoke

Pique the Geek 20120520: Tanning Pros and Cons

Tanning, either by the sun or by artificial means, is hugely popular in the United States and elsewhere.  The word itself is interesting, deriving from the Old English tannian which in turn is derived from the Latin tannum, meaning oak bark.  This makes sense, because the inner bark of certain oaks are rich in phenolic compounds that have been and still are used to tan raw skins into leather.

During the tanning process the skins darken, just like the human skin usually darkens when exposed to the ultraviolet light in sunlight or tanning salons.  I use the term usually because some very fair people never tan but just burn, and very dark skinned people show little or no tanning.  Albinos are not capable of tanning.

Before we get to the science behind tanning, it is of service to look at the cultural aspects of it.  There has been a sea change in attitudes about tanning in the past century.  I shall use my mum as an example.

In the Crosshairs

Pam is/was a career CNA nursing assistant.  She was fired last week for speaking out about……

You know when I say this I sound hyperbolic.  If I bring stuff like this up I sound like one of those conspiracy loons which nobody is supposed to listen to but ya know in a declining empire of declining industries historizing multi-year employees in any field of human endeavor just makes excellent predatory capitalistic sense.

Pam is prohibited from the possession of her cell phone while on company property.

Pam is prohibited from the possession of any electronic reader devices while on company property.

Pam is not allowed to exit the building during breaks.  

Why is Pam not allowed to exit the building during breaks?

Well the assumption here is that Pam might be exiting the building to have a cigarette, which in this health care oriented industry is a totally verboten concept.  But why.  The cultural concept here has gone way far beyond some concern for the health of Pam but focuses more on the potential cost of potential medical insurance claims Pam might potentially claim in getting cancer on the health insurance plan she could not possibly afford with this asshole company so her husband carries it with his company.  I happen to work with Pam’s husband so I personally know about the calculated gradual degradation  of that health plan.

Her annual raise she did not get for the last two years went towards putting secret Sam surveillance cameras and thumbprint readers to get into the building.  After a  twelve hour night shift this latest piece of corpo-crap calls her five times during the day advising about “available shifts”.  It is a creepy barely understandable computer generated voice giving Pam her “Bingo Numbers” for, big whoop, ten dollars at Dunkin Donuts.  Welcome to the infinite compassion of the health care industry.

Peruse the corpo speak yourself.

Pam, by working for AssholeCorp has legally contractually consented to, according to management dweebs, searches of herself, her pocketbook, her car for lost shit dementia patients have accused her of stealing.

Pam is not allowed to smoke.  She is not allowed to deviate from the interests of the corporation, it’s vendors, clients, attending doctors, UPS delivery guys and or any other people and or policies corporate makes up at will and published on the corporate IT system Pam does not have access to.

One can after all hire pool CNA nursing assistants who don’t speak English, deliberately ignore call lights and up their own self worth by reporting strategically significant talking points to a galactially delusional management.

I can not un-friend un-recommend this formerly premier rehab/nursing home establishment in this supposedly utopian yuppie suburban north of Boston piece of shit place for targeting purposefully and deliberately long term employees to save those health care bucks.

It is after all far easier to exploit women in the workplace than it is to exploit men.  Plus you actually don’t want older people in your workplace as they have that potential tendency to not put up with the neuvo-corporate fascisms of today’s workplace environment.  Ah, you want the very name of this establishment?  Coming real soon.

In Memoriam: Donna Summer

She will sing and dance forever in our hearts.

Sing on, Donna. We will dance forever to your voice.

Blessed Be. The Wheel Turns

May the Goddess guide her on her journey to the Summerlands. May her family, friends and the world find Peace.

Today on The Stars Hollow Gazette

Our regular featured content-

These featured articles-

our weekly features-

Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt

This is an Open Thread

The Stars Hollow Gazette