Why Did Isis King Show Up in Court on the arm of Taylor Murphy, who was Convicted of assaulting another Trans-woman?

Years ago I decided that much of the Trans-Community of Hollywood was really a toxic waste dump due to the silicone pumping, and hard core drug addiction.  But there was one real click moment.  Maybe there were others but I let them be excused.

My click moment was when I looked for support from some of my sisters after having been brutally raped.  An incident in which I could have easily lost my life.  They just blew it off.  One actually had the nerve to ask me If it wasn’t secretly thrilling.

Too many of my friend thought it was perfectly okay to sleep with my boyfriend.  And yes I held him just as responsible.

The behavior of so many sisters when it comes to men is really trashy.

Too many sisters think getting a good hot piece of dick is the be all and end all of being a woman.

Isis King has been held up as some sort of spokeswoman for “The Community”.

So why is she showing up in court on the arm of this convicted thug?

Spare me the rap that goes, “But he is such a hunk.”

I heard that one about Chris Brown after he beat up on Rihanna.

What ever happened to treating men who rape, men who beat women up like pariahs?

With being a spokeswoman comes responsibility.

See New York Daily News:

Taylor Murphy, eying return to FDNY, loses retrial bid after assault conviction involving transgender model

The former firefighter, convicted of assaulting one-time ‘America’s Next Top Model’ hopeful Claudia Charriez, showed up at court with two-time contestant Isis King, the first transgender competitor to appear on the show.

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I’m a college graduate who had to go on food stamps

From The Guardian UK:  http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/sep/15/food-stamp-republican-cuts-stigma

The GOP wants to cut welfare again. Too often, we talk about poverty in the abstract, rather than people with ordinary problems

theguardian.com, Sunday 15 September 2013

When I first heard a friend of mine from college was on food stamps, I was shocked. We were both recent graduates of a top liberal arts college, and I could not fathom that someone from my school was in such a “desperate” situation. Not long after, I was on food stamps as well.

The past year since I left graduate school has pretty much been: job application, job application, job application, interview, rejection, another job application, temp work, job application, another temp job, more job applications. For nearly eight months, I was unable to secure opportunities that weren’t sporadic or temporary, making it difficult to pay rent and buy food. I remember the night I decided to apply for food stamps: I put my hand into my change jar – the one I used to casually toss coins into so I wouldn’t have to carry them around in my pockets – and I felt the bottom of the jar. I was taking my final quarters, dimes and nickels to a fast food restaurant, hoping I had enough for a burger and fries.

With Congress now back in session, House Republicans – with Eric Cantor leading the charge – are pushing hard for more than $40bn in cuts to food stamps (officially dubbed Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or “Snap”). If they get what they want, 4-6 million Americans could lose benefits.

Social welfare programs are always a political flash-point. When President Clinton’s administration passed “welfare reform” in the 90s, the left strongly criticized him for gutting the social safety net, and high-ranking officials in the department of health and human services resigned, including two assistant secretaries. During the 2012 election, then GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich referred to President Obama as “the food stamp president“. Many pointed out that, without explicitly mentioning race, Gingrich was trying to leverage existing racial prejudice by accusing a black president of allowing poor people who lack “personal responsibility” – that is, in rightwing terms, black people – to swell the US welfare rolls.

The rhetoric advocating cuts to programs like Snap – and, in fact, the broader discourse over anti-poverty and social assistance programs – carry racial overtones and a stigma about the kinds of people who use these programs: “lazy”, “freeloading“, “welfare queens” who drive Cadillacs and have plasma TVs. Lately, young white people on Snap are criticized for what they buy. Apparently, there are “hipsters” on food stamps who purchase organic, grass-fed hamburger or other items deemed too “bourgie” for someone on welfare.

The most shocking thing for me this past year was not the harshness of the current economy or the level of competition for jobs I coveted, but when I realized that I, too, used to view myself as different from and better than people on food stamps. I have long been an advocate for a strong safety net, but I never thought I would be “one of those people” on it. Too often, we talk about people in poverty in the abstract, rather than as Americans with ordinary problems.

Continue reading at:  http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/sep/15/food-stamp-republican-cuts-stigma

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Shocking New Research Reveals Obama’s Legacy Could Be an America of Aristocrats and Peons

From Alternet: http://www.alternet.org/economy/obama-legacy-income-inequality

Inequality experts Thomas Piketty and Emmanuel Saez reveal the biggest gap between rich and poor ever recorded by economists.

By Lynn Stuart Parramore
September 12, 2013

Warning: This story is going to make you very angry.

New research from inequality experts Thomas Piketty and Emmanuel Saez has revealed that we now have the biggest gap between the rich and rest of America since economists began tracking data a century ago.

This isn’t supposed to happen following an economic crisis. After the Great Depression, Roosevelt’s New Deal programs worked to prevent wealth from piling back up at the top. And over the past two decades, the percentage of income claimed by the wealthy dropped after each recession. But in the aftermath of the Great Recession, the top 1 percent has gobbled up nearly all of the income gains in the first three years of the “recovery” — a stupifying 95 percent. Economic inequality is even worse than it was before the crash. In fact, last year the rich took home the largest share of income since 1917 with the exception of only one year: 1928.

Is this an accident?

Let’s take a look at the years from 2009 -2012. While working people were sweating it, the richest Americans have enjoyed a fabulous ride. For example, if you were in the top 1 percent in 2012, lucky you — your income soared on average by 20 percent . And if you were in the top 0.01 percent, you probably bought a bigger yacht because your income was up by more than 32 percent on average .   As for everybody else? They shared a measly 1 percent rise.

In other words, the rich are getting richer, and the rest of us are frozen in economic purgatory.

For despite all the talk of the Federal Reserve’s “quantitative easing” driving soaring stock markets and a post-crisis economic boom, 99 percenters have seen their real incomes going down and their living standards depressed. Ordinary, hard-working people are not getting a slice of the pie, they’re barely getting a sliver. (Cue Obama’s apparent pick for the next Federal Reserve chair, the crony capitalist, bank-loving Larry Summers.)

The bailouts, which handed boatloads of money to bankers, can’t be blamed entirely on President Obama. But ever since then, the policies of his administration have pretty much fixed things so that those who caused the crisis have benefited, while those who didn’t paid for it. He has surrounded himself with Wall Street apologists as economic advisors, despite the existence of extraordinary economic minds like Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz who could offer sound and sensible guidance. Every chance Obama has to correct this mistake, he seems to double down and brings on another 1 percenter.

Continue reading at:  http://www.alternet.org/economy/obama-legacy-income-inequality

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Stephen Hawking’s on the team – but why no Bruce Willis? World’s biggest brains get together to work out how to save us all from the end of the world

From The Independent UK:  http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/stephen-hawkings-on-the-team–but-why-no-bruce-willis-worlds-biggest-brains-get-together-to-work-out-how-to-save-us-all-from-the-end-of-the-world-8812919.html

Leading scholars establish centre for the study of ‘existential risk’ in order to prepare for potentially devastating events

Steve Connor 
Thursday 12 September 2013

Some of Britain’s finest minds are drawing up a “doomsday list” of catastrophic events that could devastate the world, pose a threat to civilisation and might even lead to the extinction of the human species.

Leading scholars have established a centre for the study of “existential risk” which aims to present politicians and the public with a list of disasters that could threaten the future of the world as we know it.

Lord Rees of Ludlow, the astronomer royal and past president of the Royal Society, is leading the initiative, which includes Stephen Hawking, the Cambridge cosmologist, and Lord May of Oxford, a former government chief scientist.

The group also includes the Cambridge philosopher Huw Price, the economist Partha Dasgupta and the Harvard evolutionary geneticist George Church. Initial funding has come from Jaan Tallinn, the co-founder of Skype.

“Many scientists are concerned that developments in human technology may soon pose new, extinction-level risks to our species as a whole,” says a statement on the group’s website.

Lord Rees said in his closing speech to the British Science Festival in Newcastle this evening that the public and politicians need the best possible advice on low-risk scenarios that may suddenly become reality, with devastating consequences.

“Those of us fortunate enough to live in the developed world fret too much about minor hazards of everyday life: improbable air crashes, carcinogens in food, low radiation doses, and so forth,” Lord Rees told the meeting.

Continue reading at:  http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/stephen-hawkings-on-the-team–but-why-no-bruce-willis-worlds-biggest-brains-get-together-to-work-out-how-to-save-us-all-from-the-end-of-the-world-8812919.html

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The USDA’s Reckless Plan

From Other Words:  http://otherwords.org/usdas-reckless-plan/

The government intends to spread a failed pilot program that decreased food safety to every hog plant in the nation.

By Sept. 11, 2013

Reposted with Creative Commons permission

My friend Jim, a farmer, jokes about bringing a bowl of manure and a spoon to the farmers’ markets where he sells his beef. “My beef has no manure in it, but you can add some,” he’d like to tell his customers.

I’m sure you’d pass on manure as a condiment. But unless you’re a vegetarian or you slaughter your own meat, you may have eaten it. And if the USDA moves forward with its plan to make a pilot program for meat inspection more widespread, this problem can only get worse.

Manure isn’t supposed to wind up on your dinner table. It’s a major risk factor for E. coli and other foodborne pathogens. And, when the animals are alive, meat and poop don’t come in contact. It’s only in the processing plant where the contamination can take place.

Since the days of Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle — a 1906 novel that brought the abysmal conditions in slaughterhouses to light — some things haven’t changed in the meatpacking industry. Companies increase profits by speeding up their operations. Once the animals enter, each worker performs one step in the process of turning the creatures into various cuts of meat, packaging them, and shipping them out. The faster this happens, the more animals the workers process, the more money the company makes.

Unfortunately, the faster the workers go, the more mistakes they make. They work quickly, often with sharp knives or next to dangerous machines. One terrible mistake can result in a lost finger or limb. More often, workers suffer from injuries related to repeating the same motions, over and over. Severe tendinitis is common.

Breakneck line speeds can result in inadvertent animal cruelty as well. A dozen years ago, The Washington Post described the problems once in an article tellingly titled, They Die Piece by Piece.

As slaughterhouse workers do their best to fly through their work, one animal after another, their mistakes sometimes result in “fecal contamination.” In simple language, that means poop gets in the meat. This can happen when manure on an animal’s hide gets into the meat, or when the animal is gutted and the contents of its intestines make a mess.

USDA regulations and inspectors are supposed to prevent this problem. The government limits line speeds so that plants can’t push for more profits at the expense of worker and food safety. And it stations inspectors in slaughterhouses to make sure sick animals don’t become part of the food supply.

That might change. Under the pilot program used in five hog processing plants for over a decade, the government reduced the number of USDA inspectors. The companies hired some of its own inspectors to replace the USDA ones. And line speeds increased by 20 percent.

The result? The company’s own inspectors were more reluctant or slower to stop the lines when they spotted problems, The Washington Post observed in a new report. That means more poop in the meat. Three of the five plants using this system are among the top 10 worst in the nation for health and safety violations.

This lousy system results in increased profits for companies, decreased costs for the USDA (since it employs fewer inspectors), and less food safety for American consumers.

So what’s our government going to do about this?

Despite the poor track record, the small number of plants involved, and concerns expressed by inspectors and the government’s General Accountability Office, the USDA’s on the verge of expanding that same failed pilot program to every pork plant in the nation. It’s also scaling up a similarly flawed poultry inspection pilot program.

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that this plan stinks. We have enough problems with foodborne illness already without making it worse.

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Chevron Pollutes, Here’s What the People Did Back

From Yes Magazine:  http://www.yesmagazine.org/planet/the-heat-is-on-chevron

The oil giant is becoming notorious as shareholders, mayors, and indigenous people criticize its actions.

by Sven Eberlein
Sep 12, 2013

The heat is on for Chevron. The oil giant has for decades shirked responsibility for a multitude of toxic transgressions. Now, a diverse coalition of stakeholders burned by the oil giant’s dirty business is using people power to push back.

Last month, 3,000 protesters marched on Chevron’s refinery in Richmond, Calif., to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the explosion and toxic cloud that sent 15,000 residents to local hospitals with respiratory problems.

Seventy activist groups, as well as labor unions, nurses, and city residents, took to the front gates of the refinery, expressing outrage at Chevron for ignoring its own inspectors’ recommendations to replace the corroded steel piping and calling out the company for its continued refusal to make safety improvements.

Sunflowers in hand as symbols of soil detoxification, protesters like Doria Robinson of Urban Tilth, a local group that operates more than a dozen community gardens in Richmond, spoke about the devastating effects of the toxic plume on the local ecology.

“We had to tear out all of the food we were growing because we didn’t know if it was contaminated or not,” Robinson recalled. “It was absolutely devastating.”

A day earlier, Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin announced that the city had filed a lawsuit against Chevron, listing 14 other toxic gas releases since 1989 and accusing officials of maximizing profits and executive pay while ignoring public safety concerns.

Putting additional pressure on one of the biggest extractors of fossil fuel in the world, 350.org brought its Summer Heat campaign to the rally. They also brought author and activist Bill McKibben, who addressed the crowd and encouraged civil disobedience. More than 200 activists were arrested—including a 90-year-old grandmother. The arrests stopped only when the police ran out of zip cuffs.

Continue reading at:  http://www.yesmagazine.org/planet/the-heat-is-on-chevron

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Bill McKibben: “Being green won’t solve the problem”

From Salon:  http://www.salon.com/2013/09/15/bill_mckibben_being_green_wont_solve_the_problem/

The writer-turned-activist on leading the leaderless climate movement

Sunday, Sep 15, 2013

A self-described “average 51-year-old book author with a receding hairline” turned “unlikely and somewhat reluctant” activist, Bill McKibben these days is something of a rock star.

McKibben first stepped into the climate scene with “The End of Nature,” his first book and one of the first to bring climate change to the public’s attention. More recently, he founded 350.org, an international activist organization. In the course of 25 years, he’s gone from writing for the New Yorker to being a major player in a recent feature published there, which argues that his work “successfully made Keystone the most prominent environmental cause in America.”

His new book, “Oil and Honey,” is in large part an account of this new role. It’s bookended by two major events: a protest at the White House against the Keystone XL pipeline that he organized, and at which he proudly got arrested, and a national tour promoting his fossil fuel divestment campaign. Running counter to the campaign narrative is McKibben’s relationship with a beekeeper named Kirk, who lives, he writes, at the opposite extreme. Running a local honey business, Kirk lives off the grid, and never even goes on the Internet.

McKibben spoke with Salon about protests, beekeeping and how the climate movement has finally grown up. The interview has been lightly edited for space and clarity.

The way you approach climate change has completely changed course since you first wrote “The End of Nature.” Then, you were bringing attention to the issue, but you were reporting on it. Thirteen books later, “Oil and Honey” is the memoir of an activist. Can you talk a bit about that transformation?

Everyone believed, 25 years ago — at least I did — that people would see there’s a problem. That if scientists and the rest of us really explained to policy leaders what was going on in the world, then they would take care of the problem. I mean, that’s how the system is supposed to work, right? You identify a problem — the biggest problem the world’s ever faced, potentially — and people go to work and do something about it.

Continue reading at:  http://www.salon.com/2013/09/15/bill_mckibben_being_green_wont_solve_the_problem/

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