BigFatWhale has a comical take today on what it would look like if corporations were people and acted like the companies they personify.
...and, in another example of what this ruling could mean to the US electorate, there was news this week of Murray Hill, Incorporated running for Congress. You can follow its entire campaign at Murray Hill Incorporated is Running for Congress.
From Treehugger, we find the sad news of the passing of Casper the Commuting Cat. A true feline champion of public transport in Plymouth, UK, Caspar rode the bus line for four years, waiting for the bus, settling into a seat, and riding the 11-mile circuit, after which the drivers would drop him back at his original stop. Unfortunately, he was hit and killed by an auto last week at the age of 12.
This is an interesting and useful site. Real Simple magazine has something similar called New Uses for Old Items or something. AltUse is a site that stores alternative uses for everyday items. The cool part is you can even upload ideas you think of.
BoRev posted this video about the terrible things happening in post-coup Honduras. When I attended TEDx, I met someone from there who told me that the majority wanted Zelaya out of office but I find it difficult to believe that *this* is what they did want.
...and if you're wondering what has become of former President Zelaya, stop on over to The Latin Americanist, which has links to a few recent reports on his whereabouts.
Because I can:
Yesterday it was coffee; today it's cats - both are major components of my life.
I had no idea until this evening that Andy Warhol was a cat lover and, in the 50s, even published a limited edition book of his cat illustrations. An original recently sold for 10 times the price of a pound of weasel coffee (!) but you can apparently find reproductions on Amazon for a much more affordable amount. Read more about the art at Modern Cat.
Quoted in entirety, with apologies to Inca Kola for how microbloging seems to work. Inca Kola News is a fantastic blog. Please make it a point to visit them.
h/t to delacour over at Latin America News Review for this one.
Nikolas Kozloff over at Counterpunch has managed to fall for the classic trap of believing somebody else's bullshit, just because it's written down. Kozloff's latest column is all about the "story" that Chávez thinks the Haiti earthquake was caused deliberately by the USA and some secret nefarious doomsday device used by its military command. Here's how his stuff starts:
"...Chávez has another zinger: the United States intentionally created the earthquake in Haiti through means of a secret weapon.
Chávez seemingly believes he’s in the middle of the Mel Gibson movie, Conspiracy Theory. According to Spanish paper ABC Chávez has joined the ranks of the truly paranoid, declaring that the earthquake was the result of an insidious U.S. naval test. Ultimately, Chávez believes, Haiti served as a test case for further U.S. machinations.."
Unfortunately, as explained to the world by two far better and more diligent bloggers, first broken by duderino over at Abiding and then by the all-conquering Borev, the whole story was total bullshit from start to finish, created as somebody's flight of fancy and then picked up by others in a global version of the telephone game.
"This all sounds fishy, so I did some more Googling, but luckily for me I speak Mexican so I ran across this piece which had an image of the original conspiracy theory article in question.
"The conspiratorial article happens to have been briefly be posted on Venezuelan community participatory TV's website under the anonymous byline "Patria Grande". As the posting on Rebelion explains, the rightwing Spanish ABC news agency then wrote up a story claiming Chavez had made the conspiratorial claim, which then got picked up by Fox News (among others) and ended up being posted on my blog by some anonymous anti-Evo wingnut.
"Hugo Chavez said nothing of the kind. Spanish ABC news simply lied and others followed. You will remember ABC news from other such lying fiascos like when they made up the existence of a shadowy conspiracy behind the Bolivian and Venezuelan constitutions, which was later repeated by the Washington Post." continues
Amnesty International on Thursday issued a series of recommendations to newly elected Honduran President Porfirio Lobo to repair the damage done to human rights since the June 2009 coup d'état, which left hundreds seeking justice. The 13 recommendations include issues relating to investigations into the human rights abuses committed by security forces, rejecting amnesty laws for those responsible for the crimes, training judges on international human rights legislation and setting up an effective witness protection programme....
The president of Southern Poverty Law Center made a statement today on the heels of the SOTU address, in which Pres. Obama pledged a renewed commitment to prosecution of civil rights violations. Richard Cohen said that we need to be sure not to neglect the needs of our nation's youth, some of whom are the subjects of draconian laws (such as zero-tolerance policies) that result in their detention in dangerous facilities. You can read his entire statement here.
"The humanitarian aid to Haiti could not be addressed by the United States and European countries have no moral authority to do so. They are the ones pirating mankind for many years, "said the spokesman Somali.
Wow, good thing the moral pirates are on their way in to right the situation.
On a note of higher value, The Root magazine highlighted an interesting new site, Media Make Change, Inc. Their purpose is to "to support and empower under-served communities through SNEW (SOCIAL + NEW) media technology, literacy, and advocacy". One of their major projects at present is Project Haiti Speaks. They are sending digital equipment to Haiti so that people who are actually affected by the tragedy can get their stories out to YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, etc. It may seem to some frivolous to consider social media rather than food and water but I think it is important to get unfiltered news out of Haiti, rather than as much filtering as we are subject to and this could actually be very beneficial in the long run.
John Morton, Asst. Secretary of ICE, gave quite an interesting address at the Migration Policy Institute. He discussed reform of detention centers, including making sure there are federal employees as, essentially, wardens. (This, as opposed to privately run detention centers.) He did make a distinction between criminal detainees and detainees who are just undocumented aliens and said that non-criminal detainees should not be in centers that are jails-like. The entire presentation, including questions and answers is 88 minutes in length but well worth the watch: http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/291598-1.
Gallup posted an opinion piece on Latin America that indicates people consider themselves socialists but don't necessarily identify with the type of socialism portrayed by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez: "in most Latin American nations, residents are far more likely to agree that their country is heading toward "a better democracy" than to say it is heading toward "a socialist revolution.". Gallup also says that there is little evidence to suggest that Chavez has poisoned the image of US among Latin Americans. Very interesting article: Opinion Briefing: Latin America’s Leftists: U.S. should respect region’s political leanings, promote accountability.
Because I can:
So, I was trying find a way to subtly give props to my blogging Twitter friend, Will Reichard of Crosscut Communications. He is the author of Technoagita, a blog you should be reading on a regular basis. I could make some vain attempt at literary flattery but it's 10:30 p.m. EST and I'm feeling punchy, so I shall instead dedicate this link to Will's and my shared love of coffee:
A year ago at Christmas, my spousal unit bought me a Keurig K-cup coffeemaker, which I will rave about at some point. I quickly tired of the inventory of K-cups we could acquire at Bed Bath & Beyond and was thrilled to find a company called Coffee for Less, that has every imaginable sort of coffee. They need to stock Chai Latte K-cups, so if someone's reading this, please and thank you. Not only are they great coffee purveyors but savvy with social media and can be found via e-mail, Twitter, and on Facebook. So enamoured am I with them, that their blog is in my RSS feed.
This week, they ran an article on Weasel Coffee (NO reflection on Will - it was the coffee, NOT the weasel, that made me think of him!). The official name of the coffee is Kopi Luwak coffee and it's made from coffee berries that have been ingested and er.. output by an Asian Palm Civet, which is a raccoon-like creature of Southeast Asia. The coffee farmers pick these particular beans because the Civets apparently have a taste for the sweetest ones, thus producing a very high quality coffee. The beans pass through undigested, thank goodness. So, you can read about weasel coffee here (and perhaps buy some yourself - if you are extremely wealthy): http://www.coffeeforlessblog.com/531/kopi-luwak/
Good news for the literary folk among you. J.D. Salinger's pieces that he wrote for The New Yorker between 1946-65 are available for free on The New Yorker website. Ain't technology grand?
J. D. Salinger has died. From 1946 to 1965, Salinger published thirteen stories in The New Yorker, including such classics as “A Perfect Day for Bananafish” and “Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters.” There will be much more to come online and in next week’s magazine, but for now, read Salinger’s stories, available to subscribers through our digital edition...
New America Media, News Feature, Valeria Fernández , Posted: Jan 26, 2010
PHOENIX, Ariz.— Miriam Mendiola-Martinez, an undocumented immigrant charged with using someone else’s identity to work, gave birth to a boy on Dec. 21 at Maricopa Medical Center. After her C-section, she was shackled for two days to her hospital bed. She was not allowed to nurse her baby. And when guards walked her out of the hospital in shackles, she had no idea what officials had done with her child.
Like Mendiola-Martinez, pregnant inmates in Maricopa County Jail are routinely denied bond because they are undocumented immigrants. That means they can’t get out of jail for their childbirth, even if they are awaiting trial for a minor offense.
In some cases, undocumented immigrants are shackled as they are transported to the jail-contracted hospital, and shackled during and after childbirth.
Hospital authorities don't control this practice and medical personnel involved in these cases declined to be interviewed.
All hospitalized inmates are treated in the same manner as Mendiola-Martinez, according to Lt. Brain Lee, a spokesperson for the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office. He said she had a “soft restraint” attached on one leg to her bed to prevent escape.
That soft restraint was a 12-foot-long chain.
“I could barely walk, I don’t think I could have escaped or even dared to run. I don’t think there was a need for them to do that,” said 34-year-old Mendiola-Martinez.
She says she was shackled during the two last months of her pregnancy too. Every time she had a pre-natal appointment, she waited in a small un-ventilated room with 20 other women. She had to sit in the floor. The chains were heavy and hurt her waist. Mendiola-Martinez often wept. She feared that her sadness could hurt the baby.
Mendiola’s story would have been different if she hadn’t been undocumented. She would have been released on bond before her baby was born because she had committed a non-violent crime, according to David Black, a criminal defense attorney who took her case pro-bono.
But in November 2006, Arizona voters approved a law that denies undocumented immigrants the right to post bail. Proposition 100 was authored by Rep. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, as a way to keep undocumented immigrants who had been charged with “serious crimes” from being released....
Little Dumb Man (one of my web heroes) is here to help debunk some of those myths that fly around and confuse us. So throw away that tourniquet that you were going to use for your next snake bite and take a look at some better advice.
...and speaking of snakes, and emergency med tech once asked a class I was in, "If you see a guy with a snake in one hand, what is most likely in his other hand?". The correct answer was beer.