Tag Archives: Friday

Friday the 13th …


To be sure, we have all thought about the history of Friday the 13… right

just another rant … on this 2nd Friday 13th of 2017

 I think we have all used it as an excuse, but if you take everything our POTUS has had to address over the last eight years you hope that other superstition about everything happening in sevens is right around the corner.  The 114th and now the 115th Congress, controlled by Republicans meets less, holds more hearings all paid for by taxpayers, debates and votes on legislation that does NOT always support their constituents or their best interests. They are the epitome of what Friday the 13 is all about and while voters were warned, we had eight years of experiencing the wrath of the party of no … why? because people continue to stay home instead of exercising their right to vote … #MidTermsMatter

In addition, the 2017 calendar is giving us 2 Friday the 13ths which happens more often than not but reports are that our fellow Americans in the northeast apparently get more snow blizzards with extreme cold … which can lead to flooding, while the NW is experiencing more than enough rain to make up for some drought

We must all remember that this is not only disaster weather season it is also when Republicans go into full campaign mode.  We used to think that government is there when all else has failed.  The fact is the Party of No says one thing does another hoping the voter sees nothing.  Unfortunately, unlike the tornadoes, hurricanes and flooding that happens mostly Republican States, we see the disaster that seems atypical of the Republican Party of No. We all need to question those States with Republicans in control who have not in my opinion invested enough money or effort in making sure all their constituents are safe, have an emergency plan, a place to go or transportation to evacuate. Though, if you listen they want and advocate less government, less taxes, less debt, less spending unless their state needs money to plug their budgets or women who dare want need reproductive rights …  just a few of several examples of why in this election year people need to be more aware.

We all know a vote for Rand Paul is a vote for going back in time when a certain group treated Women and Minorities like things or inanimate objects. In fact, the current class and culture warfare is enough to see why we the People should not vote for any Republican until they stop the racism, discrimination and that family values platform that takes women back to a time when being seen but not heard and producing babies all the time was the norm. It is not a healthy way to live and all I have heard from Republicans are unhealthy attitudes toward women, gays, children, and people of colour, who they really want to control and or disenfranchise at the ballot box. We only have to look at the number of brown and black men in our jails and or prisons, who more often than not are charged excessively compared to white defendants.

I think we all agree that this has to be the worse time or moment to be President of the US yet, if folks would do their research, the improvements or changes are moving us into the right direction but change takes time.  Though we all heard about the meetings and requests for money from Wall Street and Banks by Republicans as reported by talking heads on cable or hearing Speaker Boehner made a visit and held a presser which showed him shaking hands with one if not both Koch brothers.

Speaking of Money, it is important to be reminded of the stimulus, which Republicans voted down but knew they were all going to get for “their” constituents anyway, gave out big checks and took credit for the money while bashing and stating the Obama Administration is spending excessively.  Who knew that Republican Governors would plug their budgets, give the stimulus to their “special interest groups”, or make big bold statements at ribbon cuttings. I guess it should have been obvious to us that Republicans had an agenda that included eliminating social programs or persons employed by the State or Federal government. They say the best middle class jobs are created by small business people but the fact is most are public service positions.  It is important to remind folks that Republicans say stop spending, stop entitlements and continue to be the Party of No while being pro-Wall Street, pro-Banks; maybe doing backroom deals or fund-raising with folks like the Koch bros for the upcoming elections; in spite of We the People.  The question is …why if in the right state of mind anyone would vote Republicans into Political Office in the upcoming midterms knowing that it will be bringing back the status quo. The change in 2014 means voting for members of Congress who will have the courage in this vile environment to put People before Profit and Party, at this moment it is a Democratic Party. We all know that did not happen so our next attempt to get the positive change we need is to vote for the Democratic Party all down the ballot in 2016.

In my utopia, those wanting to be in public service would be required to believe in equal rights for everyone, true Reforms of entities that gamble while creating products meant to fail that impact or demolish our economy locally and globally.

Nevertheless, that is just my dream and ok, it’s Friday the 13th

ClearWaterProject: Building a movement for clean water & cultural survival


“Without clean water, we cannot survive,” Emergildo Criollo told me recently. See How We Work

You may have heard of Emergildo. An indigenous leader of the Cofan Nation in Ecuador’s northern Amazon, he has been a relentless advocate for his people, speaking out about oil giant Chevron’s toxic legacy in his territory. But today, even as he continues the fight to hold Chevron accountable, Emergildo isn’t waiting for a cleanup that seems always on the horizon.

Emergildo is taking matters into his own hands, helping to bring clean water to thousands of indigenous people who have suffered without for decades. And today, I want to ask you to support Emergildo, and the other indigenous leaders who are part of an effort that Amazon Watch is deeply proud to support:

It’s called The ClearWater Project.

ClearWater

Established in late 2011 by long-time Amazon Watch campaigner Mitch Anderson, ClearWater was a response to Emergildo’s clarion call for clean water, where access to this basic necessity can be a matter of life and death.

ClearWater began with a big goal: provide safe, sustainable access to clean water for every indigenous family in the region, whose ancestral waterways have been poisoned by oil production and ensuing industrialization.

In just two years, ClearWater has installed more than 500 family-sized rainwater harvesting and filtration systems that serve thousands of people in communities who have long suffered an epidemic of cancer, birth defects, and other illnesses that numerous health studies in the region blame on a lack of access to safe sources of water for drinking, bathing, and cooking.

And our efforts have been able to make this impact because from the beginning, ClearWater has been a collaborative partnership between the five indigenous nationalities here – the Cofan, Siona, Secoya, Kichwa, and Waorani – and international supporters, such as water engineers, humanitarians, activists, philanthropists, and people like you.

ClearWater believes in collaborative, integrative, community-led solutions, where someone like Emergildo is coordinating amongst the different indigenous nationalities to install new water systems, local youth are using GPS to map their biological and cultural resources, and frontline leaders are learning new media techniques to broadcast their concerns to the world.

Clean water, health, and dignity. From this foundation, Emergildo and the indigenous people of Ecuador’s northern Amazon, are building a movement for rainforest protection and cultural survival.

I’m proud that Amazon Watch is a founding partner in this project, and I hope you’ll join us too.

In solidarity,

Han Shan
Han Shan
Amazon Watch Advisory Board Member

P.S. Explore ClearWater’s impact by navigating around this cutting-edge interactive map designed by another Amazon Watch family member, Gregor MacLennan, now Digital Democracy’s Program Director.

In the Library: Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies


fruit&veggiesThis book is an ethnographic witness to the everyday lives and suffering of Mexican migrants. : Migrant Farm workers in the United States (California Series in Public Anthropology)

Based on five years of research in the field (including berry-picking and traveling with migrants back and forth from Oaxaca up the West Coast), Holmes, an anthropologist and MD in the mold of Paul Farmer and Didier Fassin, uncovers how market forces, anti-immigrant sentiment, and racism undermine health and health care. Holmes’ material is visceral and powerful—for instance, he trekked with his informants illegally through the desert border into Arizona, where they were apprehended and jailed by the Border Patrol. After he was released from jail (and his companions were deported back to Mexico), Holmes interviewed Border Patrol agents, local residents, and armed vigilantes in the borderlands. He lived with indigenous Mexican families in the mountains of Oaxaca and in farm labor camps in the United States, planted and harvested corn, picked strawberries, accompanied sick workers to clinics and hospitals, participated in healing rituals, and mourned at funerals for friends. The result is a “thick description” that conveys the full measure of struggle, suffering, and resilience of these farm workers.

Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies weds the theoretical analysis of the anthropologist with the intimacy of the journalist to provide a compelling examination of structural and symbolic violence, medicalization, and the clinical gaze as they affect the experiences and perceptions of a vertical slice of indigenous Mexican migrant farm workers, farm owners, doctors, and nurses. This reflexive, embodied anthropology deepens our theoretical understanding of the ways in which socially structured suffering comes to be perceived as normal and natural in society and in health care, especially through imputations of ethnic body difference. In the vehement debates on immigration reform and health reform, this book provides the necessary stories of real people and insights into our food system and health care system for us to move forward to fair policies and solutions.

from amazon.com


Vote with Your Fork, Chem Free Pesticides & Acid Ocean … it’s now 2016


Vote with Your Fork

vote with your fork

Feel that crackle?

Okay, okay. Stand still. Right here in front of me. Close your eyes. Extend your arms out. You feel that? That light crackle across your fingertips?

Change is in the air.

American agriculture is not sustainable. Our food is overloaded with pesticides, growth agents and all the trappings of modern chemical warfare. As a result, the produce we put on our plates … is lacking. We don’t taste the robust flavors in the juices bursting from our salad tomatoes. We cannot grasp the complex fullness of authentic, fresh herbs over rich potatoes for a multilayered flavor the way we would experience in less agriculturally destroyed countries.
READ MORE »

1st posted in 2014

Washington​: Stop the approval of GMO apples! a repost


I’m Peter Stocker of the organization Friends of the Earth, and I started a petition to U.S. Department of Agriculture, which says:

The USDA should not approve the genetically engineered Arctic apple. 

If approved by the USDA, genetically engineered apples could end up everywhere from school lunches to grocery stores, posing risks to our health, our environment, and apple farmers across the U.S.

Unlabeled genetically engineered apples could contaminate conventional and organic foods, including fruit slices, juice, baby foods, and applesauce—products predominantly consumed by children and babies, who are at increased risk for any adverse health effects.

GMO apples may contaminate nearby organic and conventional apple orchards and could potentially cause valuable export markets to reject U.S.-grown apples, as happened in the past when wheat and rice crops were found to be contaminated by GMOs. The U.S. Apple Association, Northwest Horticultural Council, British Columbia Fruit Growers’ Association, and other apple grower groups have repeatedly stated their disapproval of these GE apples due to the negative impact they could have on farmers growing organic and non-GE apples and the apple industry as a whole.

This product is unnecessary and poses numerous risks to apple growers, the food industry, and consumers. The USDA should not approve this genetically engineered apple.

The USDA is poised to approve the first genetically modified apple. 

If approved, these genetically engineered apples could end up everywhere from school lunches to grocery stores, posing risks to our health, our environment, and apple farmers across the United States.

Like other GMOs, they won’t be labeled and won’t have undergone independent safety testing—regulators will rely on the company’s sole assessment that the apple is safe for human consumption. 

Worse yet, this GMO apple was genetically engineered via a new, virtually untested experimental technique called RNA interference, which many scientists are concerned may have negative, unintended impacts on human health and the environment.

We need your help today, right now, to tell the USDA to say no to GMO apples.

Click here to add your name to this petition, and then pass it along to your friends.

Thanks!

–Peter Stocker