Friday, January 30, 2009

Boy Scouts Looting the Forest for a Foul Play Badge?

This is not to be believed - Boy Scout leaders selling redwoods from land they control - shameful!
[Stumps of 300-year-old redwood trees that were logged three years ago rest in front of a Boy Scouts sleeping structure during the off-season on the grounds of Camp Masonite-Navarro. (Mike Kepka / The Chronicle)]Stumps of 300-year-old redwood trees that were logged three years ago rest in front of a Boy Scouts sleeping structure during the off-season on the grounds of Camp Masonite-Navarro. (Mike Kepka / The Chronicle)
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Is a Future withou War Possible - Si, se puede!

“…we need to end it at the point of where it is created each day anew: in our daily living conditions, in the constant stress of mindless and monotonous work, in the methods of profit maximizing and distribution, in offices and factories, in schools and families, in the tragedies of love, in our ideas about being either man or woman, in sexuality and love and in the cages of our professional, social and sensual life which are all far too small.
Do we want that the youth of the world no longer goes to war?
If so, we need a higher aim in life, a life worth living and better opportunities to put the power of the youth into meaningful action.
Do we wish to end the worldwide sexual violence?
If so, we have to create living conditions under which sexual joy is experienced without violence, without humiliation and without unnecessary restrictions.
Do we want to free the world from despotism, betrayal and lies?
If so, then let us build up concrete conditions under which despotism, betray


Objective of this project – developed over the last 30 years – together with its worldwide cooperation partners is to free the earth from violence and war.
This is not a ‘great dream’ but a real historical possibility. The key aspects of our work: healing the collective trauma, building applicable prototype models, establishing an efficient global network, and helping in crisis areas. Previous operations include Bosnia, Middle East, Colombia, India.

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Thursday, January 29, 2009

Un-common Good Sense About the Death Penalty in Colorado

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Bill targets Colorado's death penalty

A bill to be introduced next week would let Colorado use the savings on investigating more than 1,300 cold cases.
By Jessica Fender
The Denver Post
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Women 2 Women Peace in Our Time!

Go here and read the views of real women on the front lines of peace!
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January 29, 2009 11:01am 

Every day, you think about the women across the globe who are "living on the edge." You care deeply but feel so overwhelmed that you shut down and push the feeling away.

You want to reach out, but how?

Share your own breaking news and peaceful actions, your story and pictures here. Or, step deeper inside our site where women from the Amazon to Europe, the Middle East and Africa are waiting to connect with you.

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The Old Ways of Development Don't Work - Here's a Way that Does Work

Good read about an on-the-ground way for meaningful and appropriate technology to spur development and provide much needed water for drinking and for agriculture.
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Martin Fisher. © Lemelson-MIT ProgramMartin Fisher. © Lemelson-MIT ProgramThe water pumps and other products bought from Fisher's company KickStart generate over $80 million of extra income each year for farmers in some of the poorest countries of the world. More than 350,000 people have moved out of poverty thanks to the products they've bought from KickStart.

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Playing for Change - Peace Now

Video is at - a social space that I belong to. Everyone needs a little peaceful and uplifting music today - grin.
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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Merciful Peace for Gaza and Israel?

Let's take the opportunity to change the road to peace and pave it with mercy.

Beyond Gaza:  An Abrahamic Peace

By Rabbi Arthur Waskow

Beyond anguish, what can we say about the massive death and destruction in Gaza and the traumatic fear of falling rockets in Israel?  How do we shape not just the temporary palliative of “cease-fire” but a true alternative? Not just in pretty theory, but in political practicality?

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Antibiotics given to Animals Ends Up in Fresh and Canned Vegitables

Bummer! There's just no getting away from facts that industrialized animal farming has bad effects on people, and the planet. When there were thousands of small farmers, instead of hundreds of mega-industrialized farms animals did not get so stressed and disease prone. Forget if you are a vegan, it still gets to you. Let's hear it for going back to small farms!

For half a century, meat producers have fed antibiotics to farm animals to increase their growth and stave off infections. Now scientists have discovered that those drugs are sprouting up in unexpected places.

Vegetables such as corn, potatoes and lettuce absorb antibiotics when grown in soil fertilized with livestock manure, according to tests conducted at the University of Minnesota.

Today, close to 70 percent of the total antibiotics and related drugs produced in the United States are fed to cattle, pigs and poultry, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists. Although this practice sustains a growing demand for meat, it also generates public health fears associated with the expanding presence of antibiotics in the food chain.

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Tet and Bird Flu risk - Word is Finally Out

Dr. Olive of the World Health Organization, has let the bird out of the bag. Tet brings millions of birds and people in close contact and that means there is an increased chance for bird flu and mutation of traditional flues into more dangerous versions. The unintended consequence of breeding millions of birds for live market during a short period of time is that all sorts of flu variants can mutate under such conditions - even a pandemic version.
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Avian Influenza

With the surge in the sale and slaughter of poultry for family feasts at Tet, there is a corresponding escalation in the risk of avian influenza.

This is exacerbated is by low winter temperatures in the north of the country, as this weather seems to be conducive to the spread of the virus.

Dr. Olivé also introduced some key actions such as: avoiding contact with sick or dead poultry, reporting sick or dead poultry immediately to the authorities, slaughtering all poultry safely (wear masks and gloves and use disinfectant), cooking poultry thoroughly (do not eat pink meat, runny eggs or raw duck blood) to protect the community from this very serious threat.

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Monday, January 26, 2009

French "Invent" Novel Protest of Capitalism and Materialism

It's in-house shop lifting and inviting shoppers to a free lunch - grin - which we all know capitalism does not offer - "there's no free lunch." But the current bailouts of banks and companies across the world seem like "free lunch" for those who say no free lunch to the rest of us.
[Workers enjoy a picnic among shoppers using food taken from the aisles a giant super market in Bagnolet, near Paris, during a protest action October 25, 2008. Several dozen people from a French group, Workers enjoy a picnic among shoppers using food taken from the aisles a giant super market in Bagnolet, near Paris, during a protest action October 25, 2008. Several dozen people from a French group, "L'Appel et la Pioche" (a play on words - Shovel and Pick) entered a supermarket, selected food items without paying, and ate a picnic amongst shoppers to protest global capitalism, rampant consumerism, bank bail-outs, poor housing, expensive food, profit margins and pretty much everything else that is wrong in the world. (Reuters Photo)
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Calls for Positive Intervention in Zimbabwe

Calls are growing for the international community to do more about Zimbabwe, and now global human rights leaders including Desmond Tutu are engaging in a "relay fast" and other nonviolent acts to pressure neighboring countries -- particularly South Africa -- to support the Zimbabwean people's struggle for democracy and human rights.
Villagers collect food aid in Chirumanzu district, 250 kilometres from the Zimbabwean capital Harare. Southern African leaders opened fresh talks to end Zimbabwe's political crisis amid a new threat by President Robert Mugabe to form a government excluding his arch rival from power.(AFP/File/Desmond Kwande)
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Militarization of the Mexico/USA Border Is Not the Answer

USA and Mexico should be working together over treatment in US of those who want to leave Mexico and work to improve Mexican economy so migration is not due to despair over not being able to feed and care for families.
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Bishops urge President-elect Obama, Mexican
President Calderon to protect rights of migrants, address root causes of migration

WASHINGTON — Bishop John C. Wester of Salt Lake City, Utah, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Migration, urged President-elect Barak Obama and Mexican President Felipe Calderon to work together to end abuses against migrants - both in the United States and Mexico - and to address “push” factors that compel migrants to undertake dangerous journeys to the United States. President-elect Obama and President Calderon were scheduled to meet in Washington on Monday, Jan. 12.

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Friday, January 23, 2009

President Obama to State Department Employees

George Mitchell announced as new peace envoy to Middle East, as well as closing of Guantanamo.

The inheritance of our young century demands a new era of American leadership. We must recognize that America's strength comes not just from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from our enduring values. And for the sake of our national security and the common aspirations of people around the globe, this era has to begin now.

This morning, I signed three executive orders. First, I can say without exception or equivocation that the United States will not torture.

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Thursday, January 22, 2009

A welcome action for those who were not welcomed

We have forgotten: For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'

37"Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'

40"The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'

Mass marks start of Catholic ministry to help deportees to Mexico

Initiative kicked off by Tucson bishop at Nogales church

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Two Time Veteran of Iraq, Tired, Tried and Angry

Drop your liberal, conservative, left, right labels and just give it a read and learn a bit.
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Kareem Lawrence is trying to adjust to his daily life after returning wounded, and angry, from two tours of Iraq.

(This content is produced by Rock the Vote in partnership with Wiretap.)

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Bird Flu, Pandemic, Lunar New Year Connection Made Public

I've been writing about this for three years; thank goodness the public press has made the connection and someone in the FAO has also made the connection.
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Jan. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Human bird-flu infections may rise in
Asia as people handle more poultry for next week’s Lunar New Year
celebrations, according to a United Nations veterinarian who
tracks the virus in birds.

Health authorities in China, South Korea and Vietnam have
stepped up surveillance of H5N1 avian influenza among poultry
ahead of the festival, which starts Jan. 26. Production of
chickens and ducks swells as much as three times in the run-up to
the holiday, making outbreaks more likely, said Jeff Gilbert of
the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization in Hanoi, Vietnam.

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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Human Trafficking video from Nicaragua

Shameful "industry."
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IOM, which provides vital assistance to many Nicaraguan victims of trafficking from Chinandega, a poor agricultural area northwest of the capital, Managua, has compiled some shocking facts based on the experiences of those the Organization is helping.

  • 70 per cent of victims are between 13 and 19 years of age

  • 86 per cent were trafficked for sexual exploitation

  • 50 per cent of victims live in female headed households

  • 100 per cent of the victims reported experiencing family violence

  • 90 per cent had endured rape or other abuse prior to becoming a victim

  • 70 per cent were trafficked to El Salvador, 15 per cent to Costa Rica, 10 per cent to Guatemala and 5 per cent to Honduras.

  • 80 per cent of the victims were treated for  Sexually Transmitted Diseases

  • 90 per cent reported using drugs and/or alcohol while in captivity

  • 80 per cent were recruited by friends or acquaintances; 10 per cent by family members
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New Hampshire Looking at Changing Death Penalty

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Three death penalty bills before state lawmakers

New Hampshire Union Leader Staff

Some lawmakers want all executions halted until the state's death penalty is reviewed while another wants to expand the law and have offenders executed by firing squad.

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Friday, January 16, 2009

Close Gitmo - soon as you can

Close it as soon as you can - thanks!
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Guantanamo and Beyond

Maybe not all the answers but a good piece to get you thinking about the whole problem.
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Among the many mega-headaches facing the incoming administration, the Guantánamo Bay
Detention Camp poses unique dangers, symbolically and operationally. By detaining hundreds of
prisoners there, without access to lawyers or to the courts, the United States probably has neutralized
some dangerous terrorists and acquired useful intelligence, but we also have damaged relationships
with our allies and fomented hatred against us, creating many violent extremists in the world at large
for every one that we held in Guantánamo. In this new publication from the Agenda Series, Stephen J. Schulhofer discusses how the new administration can restore domestic and international principles by relying upon the pre–September 11 institutions of military and civilian justice. Download the publication (PDF).
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Easing Gender Violence through Sport Training

Good and novel effort worthy of adaptation here in USA.
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Photo: ICRW

ICRW's Asia Regional
Office Promotes Social
Change by Targeting Game of Cricket

Program Works with Men and Boys to Reduce Gender-based Violence

ICRW's Asia Regional Office
launched a program with the Family Violence Prevention Fund (FVPF) to
gender-based violence by working with men and boys through India's
cricket system. This project continues ICRW's expansion of work to
engage men and
boys as partners for women's empowerment.

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Thursday, January 15, 2009

Chrysler's "Rockstar" Haitian-American/Canadian designer

Good interview and great story about single-mindely following your dream
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Bad Economic Times Can Heat Up Intolerance and Hate

Excellent source for teachers, aunts, uncles, and parents to help your children escape from our history of hate and intolerance against minority and recent immigrants - people different than "us."
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Teaching Tolerance Magazine Equips Teachers with Strategies for Economic Crisis

As a new president takes the helm of a country facing an historic economic downturn, the SPLC's Spring 2009 issue of Teaching Tolerance magazine offers classroom strategies to help teachers address the pressures that students, families and school systems inevitably face during harsh economic times.

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