Thoughts on politics, religion, violence, inequality, social control, change, and random other things from an autonomous, analytical, adopted, abolitionist, anarchist who likes the letter A

Things You Might Have Missed

August 01, 2014 By: Mel Category: Misc

James Baldwin in TurkeyA lot of depressing, infuriating, and terrifying news in the last week. So I’m going to ease you into it with a heartwarming story first. Some students at UCF 3d printed a bionic arm for a six-year-old who can now do all kinds of stuff that six-year-old kids want to do. So cool. Also, instead of trying to sell it for beer or luxury car money, they are making the plans freely available so anybody can do it.

And now for the terrifying news. The Ebola outbreak that is being talked about far too little, but has already claimed hundreds of lives, is likely to claim many more now that it has moved from the countryside to the city and onto an airplane. If you have never read The Hot Zone, don’t. It is better not to know.

Also of major concern is running out of potable water by 2040. At least I don’t have to worry about my lack of retirement savings now.

Did you know that Facebook has a cop on the payroll whose job it is to harass local truant kids? Naturally, when you are trying to “help” your new community, you go straight for policing.

It isn’t like policing ever goes wrong. Nobody has ever been shot for something trivial, like parking tickets.

As long as we are on the subject of bullshit policing, the federal government is going after home distillers now.

Maybe they are seeing the writing on the wall with weed being decriminalized or legalized everywhere. Not that legalization has stopped the black market in Colorado. Probably not arrests either.

Also in Colorado is a program for lifers who are getting out on parole after decades in the system. This two part NPR series on their re-entry and redemption is a must.

Here is a quick list of the 36 orgs that are keeping private prison companies in the money. If you bank at any of these places….don’t.

Citibank has been ordered to pay up for their role in subprime loans and the housing crash. Naturally, almost none of that money will go to the actual people who suffered. All getting sucked up by the feds. Guess they need more drones.

Subprime car loans have apparently risen 130% in the last five years. If they are more frequent than back when I worked in collections…holy shit. Cause it was already a lot.

Infuriating that Indian children are being taken away from their families so casually. Still. Nothing changes.

Why do campus administrators make so much money?

If you live in a gentrifying city, you are undoubtedly in the midst of transportation wars. Rarely in the discussions about walking v. biking v. driving v. public transportation do we hear anyone center the needs of people with disabilities. In fact, most changes seem to exacerbate the challenges.

A lovely essay by James Baldwin’s nephew for his birthday celebration.

This report on Greenwood, Mississippi by the descendant of one of its refugees is what I wish more journalists would do.

Also on the civil rights era is this piece on The Sex Amendment. What’s interesting about it is how it highlights the hostility between white women and black men. It also shows very clearly how changes were made out to be the work of powerful white men, rather than the movements that actually did it.

Finally, I will leave you with some very cool food related projects around the country.

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