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giovonni
8th November 2018, 03:36
Introducing a new thread focusing on sociology and humaneness ...

'We all need a shot of salvation baby ... Once in a while' ...

So buckle up !



http://earthpeoplemedia.com/_wp/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/BuckledRail.jpg

All Down the line


The Rolling Stones



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TtAsaDKB0eY

giovonni
8th November 2018, 04:08
Obviously this is not a political thread, but waking up this morning to this remarkably surprising news -
Put a big smile on my face ... And it is long over due !


https://www.aljazeera.com/mritems/imagecache/mbdxxlarge/mritems/Images/2018/11/7/3bfb9bba6e8a463192c052c5885a014a_18.jpg

Native Americans Deb Haaland and Sharice Davids to enter House

Pair are the first Native American to get elected to the US Congress since it was established in 1789.

Democrats Deb Haaland and Sharice Davids have become the first Native American women elected to Congress.

Haaland won New Mexico's first congressional district, while Davids won the third district in Kansas.

A member of Laguna Pueblo tribe, Haaland cruised to victory in the Democrat safe seat in Tuesday's midterm elections.

A lawyer by profession, she campaigned on a platform of tackling climate change and income inequality, as well as providing universal healthcare.

In an interview with ABC News in June, Haaland said, "In 230 years, there’s never been a Native American woman in Congress. I have never seen myself in that body of our government."

Davids is a Cornell Law School graduate and professional Mixed Martial Arts fighter, who was raised by a single mother.

She is a member of the Ho-Chunk Nation, a Native American tribe that hails from Wisconsin.

The former White House fellow under Obama, is openly gay and an advocate for LGBT issues.

There are around three million Native Americans in the United States or around one percent of the population.

Haaland and Davids will join two other Native American members of the House of Representatives, both of whom are Republican.

Tom Cole, of the Chickasaw tribe, represents Oklahoma's fourth district, and Markwayne Mullin of the state's second district represents the state's second.

Source: https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/11/deb-haaland-native-american-woman-elected-congress-181105205121876.html



Here's to the new record number of women elected from on both sides of the aisle ...

Get Loud !!!

Roadcase Royale



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TQxgiRa1DQs

In remembrance of Brook https://www.amperordirect.com/mm5/website_v3/images/emoticons/h.gif

giovonni
8th November 2018, 05:10
One of my favorite courses as an undergrad in sociology was oddly (perhaps) 'Death and Dying' ...
And when you mix it with my even greater fascination with Hollywood~Land ...
This next item most definitely combines both and is surprisingly binge worthy to watch ... https://www.smiley-lol.com/smiley/maison/television/sdevanttele.gif


Please note: The presenter and tour guide of this amazing series has over 39 tours of the most fascinating cemeteries/mausoleums in Southern California and the New York City area ...
Go here for all the video series in order: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=he-y9eFfdsI&index=38&list=PLIBayBl3YfsVwn9CXeQPtUnpzjMuTF59b

https://i.vimeocdn.com/video/628886716_780x439.jpg


FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Forest Lawn Glendale #1

Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we're exploring Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, where we'll find such stars as: Walt Disney, Clara Bow, Sammy Davis Jr, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today: Walt Disney, Clara Bow, Alan Ladd, Jeanette MacDonald, Nat King Cole, Gracie Allen, George Burns, Dorothy Dandridge, Billie Dove, Chico Marx, Larry Fine, Francis X. Bushman, Spencer Tracy, Hugh O'Brian, Errol Flynn, Clayton Moore, Sammy Davis Jr, Sam Cooke, Samuel Goldwyn, George Cukor, Joan Blondell, Natalie Cole.

16:30 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J-FNSIwGvls&index=5&list=PLIBayBl3YfsVwn9CXeQPtUnpzjMuTF59b




FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Forest Lawn Glendale #2 (Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor, etc.)

Full list of stars visited today: Louis L'Amour, The Dolly Sisters, Elizabeth Taylor, Clark Gable, Carole Lombard, David O. Selznick, Jennifer Jones, Lon Chaney, Russ Columbo, Red Skelton, Sid Grauman, Marie Dressler, Jean Harlow, Irving Thalberg, Norma Shearer, Theda Bara, Jack Carson, The Andrews Sisters, Harold Lloyd, Wallace Reid, Ben Turpin, Jean Hersholt, Ed Wynn, Keenan Wynn, W. C. Fields, Michael Jackson, James Arness, William Boyd, Joe Barbera, Alfred Newman, Max Steiner, Paramahansa Yogananda.

20:20 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=thpUhrk7_NY&index=6&list=PLIBayBl3YfsVwn9CXeQPtUnpzjMuTF59b



FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Forest Lawn Glendale #3 (Humphrey Bogart, Mary Pickford, etc.)

Full list of stars visited today: L. Frank Baum, Joe E. Brown, Wallace Beery, Robert Young, David('s Twin Brother), Danny Gans, Humphrey Bogart, Mary Pickford, Ted Knight, Vincente Minnelli, Carole Landis, Jimmy Stewart, Tom Mix.

14:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VzODsozW5zI&index=7&list=PLIBayBl3YfsVwn9CXeQPtUnpzjMuTF59b

giovonni
8th November 2018, 06:21
An alternative modern lifestyle ...

How these penny-pinchers retired in their 30s

"Eschewing consumer culture, Pete Adeney, also known as Mr. Money Mustache, practices an extreme frugality that allowed him to retire at age 30. Avoiding car use, DIYing and investing in stock market index funds are among the tactics he and his fellow F.I.R.E. (Financial Independence Retire Early) devotees espouse. Paul Solman reports from Colorado in this installment of “Making Sense.”

PBS NewsHour

Published on Oct 26, 2018

9:28 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RyF40JydVNU

Dreamtimer
8th November 2018, 13:02
I gotta go visit those graveyards next time I'm out west. Thanks for that, Gio.

giovonni
9th November 2018, 20:46
Abbondanza di austerita ...


Squeezed Like Lemons: Italy In Crisis (Political Documentary) - Real Stories

Published on Nov 6, 2018

"The economic crisis and consequences of the strict austerity policies have hit the Italian people hard. Tax offices are being occupied while business people are taking their own lives in despair. We document the current mood in Italy from the point of view of those whose existence is threatened by this crisis.

Giorgia Frasacco, 33, is determined to save her family’s company from bankruptcy after her father killed himself. In her spare time, she runs a support group for the families of business people who, like her father, committed suicide in the last months.

Franca Stefani, 37, has been unemployed for over a year and is trying to raise her six year old daughter on 250€ a month while Piero Lospi, 47, recently lost his job. He struggles to adapt to this new reality and feels he has lost his dignity, social recognition and the sense of having a useful role in society. Finally, Gian Luca Brambilla, 50, runs a consulting business specialising in cutting costs in big companies. His problem is not getting work but being paid and his clients owe him almost an entire year’s turnover."

51:22 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EYOQf99fNiI

Dreamtimer
9th November 2018, 23:11
My son spent a couple of weeks in the south of Italy. They pay as little taxes as possible because the government is so corrupt. They never see return from their taxes.

Politicians get into office long enough to pay for their kids college and then they leave.

It'll take a lot of work to change that.

giovonni
12th November 2018, 20:56
https://img.myswitzerland.com/mys/48618/images/buehne/Pierrefeu_Swimming_pool-1.jpg

'The canton of Vaud was once a capital of finishing schools. Today only one remains.'



https://media.newyorker.com/photos/5bad0c8f38fffa7aecaab2eb/master/w_1626,c_limit/181008_r32939web.jpg

Lessons from the Last Swiss Finishing School


"An abundance of wealth and time are de-facto prerequisites
for admission at the Institut Villa Pierrefeu."

By Alice Gregory

Click here to listen to or read the article (https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/10/08/lessons-from-the-last-swiss-finishing-school)

giovonni
15th November 2018, 04:11
hmm ...

https://img.apmcdn.org/d5030dcd671ee7eb82fa6134893629dfc5bd86d5/uncropped/7ee3e7-20180920-lakesucess01.jpg

A cross-country bus trip helped Gary Shteyngart understand American happiness


PBS NewsHour

"Who is happy in America? Author Gary Shteyngart took a bus trip across the country to find out -- and the answer surprised him. Hedge fund managers, some of the most successful Americans by standards of economic achievement, tended to be miserable. College professors, meanwhile, enjoyed “the feeling that they were a part of something bigger.” Shteyngart shares his findings in - My Humble Opinion."

Published on Nov 14, 2018

2:54 minutes



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ewENmEZabTg

giovonni
16th November 2018, 01:57
My city now has this new inter-city transportation mode in operation ...

Where the rubber hits the road when it comes to electric scooters

PBS NewsHour

"Electric scooters have been rolled out in scores of cities around the country. Now, city officials are struggling to balance the needs of the companies that are offering eco-friendly transportation and residents who are worried about their safety. The Washington Post's Catherine Rampell reports from Santa Monica, California."

Published on Nov 15, 2018

1:52 minute


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RMgI3InguI

giovonni
18th November 2018, 01:14
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - New York #1
(Lillian Gish, Montgomery Clift, etc.)

"Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we're exploring New York City, and the surrounding areas, where we'll find such stars as Lillian Gish, Montgomery Clift, Whitney Houston, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today: Whitney Houston, Bobbi Kristina Brown, Dudley Moore, Jerry Orbach, Ralph Ellison, Estelle Bennett, Cuba Gooding, Richard Sands, Clement Clarke Moore, John Jacob Astor (I, IV, III), Gloria Swanson, John Lennon, Lillian Gish, Dorothy Gish, Adrienne Shelly, Alexander Hamilton, Leonard Bernstein, Florence La Badie, Henry Steinway, Laura Keene, Jean-Michel Basquiat, William S. Hart, Frank Morgan, Montgomery Clift."

Published on Oct 23, 2018

30:54 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PuINlhlOJp8


New ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - New York #2
(Mae West, Houdini, etc.)

Hollywood Graveyard

"Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we continue our tour of New York in Brooklyn and Queens, to find such stars as Mae West, Harry Houdini, Louis Armstrong, and more.

Full list of stars visited today: Winsor McCay, Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, Bert Lahr, Edward G. Robinson, Harry Houdini, Victor Moore, Mae West, Jackie Robinson, Lucky Luciano*, Vito Genovese*, Carlo Gambino*, John Gotti*, Dom DeLuise, Louis Armstrong, Joyce Brothers, Bernard Herrmann, Abe Vigoda, Andy Kaufman, Martin Landau.
* - Organized Crime Figures" ...

Published on Nov 17, 2018

32:30 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B89gjHGXulM&feature=em-uploademail

NotAPretender
20th November 2018, 00:41
Hi Giovonni,

Just wanted to say, glad to have a good soul back in the mix... :)

giovonni
20th November 2018, 06:03
Absolutely ... (https://www.vox.com/culture/2018/11/16/18097881/my-brilliant-friend-review-hbo-series-elena-ferrante)


https://cdn.theatlantic.com/assets/media/img/mt/2018/11/4733b745c4996ffbfea4a14215a9aee1d3622d952336e03753 88fd33f25aac0e4bee3e464cdd24cab0d8617ce7a3fdec/lead_720_405.jpg?mod=1542302365


My Brilliant Friend (2018) | Official Teaser | HBO

"My Brilliant Friend, a new original series directed by Saverio Costanzo and based on the global best-selling novel by Elena Ferrante, comes to HBO this November."


Best viewed in full screen




https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wjz7ZPC7a0

giovonni
22nd November 2018, 11:19
Studies show ...


An End to Upside Down Thinking on Consciousness | Electricity of Life

Part 1

ThunderboltsProject

"For human beings on planet Earth, the ultimate mystery of life may be: how and why does consciousness exist? The unanswered question is characterized as "the hard problem,” which is essentially the mystery of why any physical state is experienced consciously. Of course, the neurosciences have provided extraordinary understandings of the human brain and its relationship to conscious experience. But is this physical matter and its complex electrochemical processes the generator of consciousness? This is the question that author Mark Gober explores in his book, “An End to Upside Down Thinking: Dispelling the Myth That the Brain Produces Consciousness, and the Implications for Everyday Life.” In part one of this two part presentation, Mark begins laying the foundations for the evidence that consciousness is more than the brain."

Published on Nov 17, 2018

15:56 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TK4ezkrTa6Y&feature=em-uploademail

"Above Mark Gober began an exploration of the unresolved scientific puzzle: how and why does consciousness exist? In Mark’s book "An End to Upside Down Thinking," he summarizes some of the voluminous scientific evidence which suggests that consciousness is not generated by nor confined to the brain. A major focus of this evidential summary is the amazing abundance of scientific studies, dating back more than half a century, into psychic phenomena, such as telepathy, ESP and precognition."


Scientific Evidence of PSI and Survival of Consciousness | Electricity of Life

Part 2

A parallel field of investigation is survival of consciousness – that is the study of near-death experiences and even purported communications with the dead by so-called mediums. While The Thunderbolts Project takes no position on these issues, in the past we have presented for your consideration interviews and public presentations by such noted scientists as Dr. Rupert Sheldrake and Dr. Dean Radian, both of whose scientific research into consciousness Mark outlines in his book. Today, Mark offers a brief yet comprehensive overview of compelling evidence that the locus and source of consciousness is non-material."


Published on Nov 21, 2018

15:36 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=saLnYMis8JM&feature=em-uploademail

NotAPretender
24th November 2018, 00:50
Sounds like a fun read...I just ordered the book... :)

It has been demonstrated that the quantum world makes 'logical' decisions. One example is the illusion that objects in water present to the eye. The light reflected actually takes the most efficient path from the object to the human eye and it's not a straight line...it is a 'balance' between space and time and the result is the illusion. It's a longer story than that, of course, but it's been a long day...not really that long, I'm just being lazy which is kinda like me.

giovonni
27th November 2018, 07:56
By the time we got to ...

Bethel, New York


https://assets.atlasobscura.com/media/W1siZiIsInVwbG9hZHMvcGxhY2VfaW1hZ2VzLzQ4OWNhZGYxLT AzNzctNGVmNi1hODVkLTBmYjI1OWNhOThlZTRjYjNlMGRmOGY0 YTUxZTNjOV9JTUdfMjY0NS5qcGVnIl0sWyJwIiwidGh1bWIiLC J4MzkwPiJdLFsicCIsImNvbnZlcnQiLCItcXVhbGl0eSA4MSAt YXV0by1vcmllbnQiXV0/IMG_2645.jpeg

Woodstock (https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/woodstock-site-monument-museum?utm_source=Atlas+Obscura+Daily+Newsletter&utm_campaign=58a14fee43-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_11_26&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f36db9c480-58a14fee43-63041445&ct=t(EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_11_26_2018)&mc_cid=58a14fee43&mc_eid=57314563a1)

"The dairy farm in upstate New York where nearly half a million people
gathered for three days of peace and music in 1969."

Joni Mitchell



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXQmt6O9y5s

Dreamtimer
28th November 2018, 01:43
I listened to a couple of interviews of/presentations by Mark. He's good. He speaks clearly, makes his points, and doesn't hem and haw. The book is on my list.

giovonni
29th November 2018, 05:40
American prisons are hell. For women, they're even worse



PBS NewsHour
Published on Nov 28, 2018

The U.S. incarcerates more people than any other country--over two million. Roughly 200,000 of them are female. But existing American prisons are often ill-equipped to handle the specific needs of women and girls. Amna Nawaz talks to Andrea James, a lawyer and former federal inmate who founded the National Council for Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls, about her experience.

6:10 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SCT_FX88DM

giovonni
29th November 2018, 06:24
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - New York #1
(Lillian Gish, Montgomery Clift, etc.)

"Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we're exploring New York City, and the surrounding areas, where we'll find such stars as Lillian Gish, Montgomery Clift, Whitney Houston, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today: Whitney Houston, Bobbi Kristina Brown, Dudley Moore, Jerry Orbach, Ralph Ellison, Estelle Bennett, Cuba Gooding, Richard Sands, Clement Clarke Moore, John Jacob Astor (I, IV, III), Gloria Swanson, John Lennon, Lillian Gish, Dorothy Gish, Adrienne Shelly, Alexander Hamilton, Leonard Bernstein, Florence La Badie, Henry Steinway, Laura Keene, Jean-Michel Basquiat, William S. Hart, Frank Morgan, Montgomery Clift."

Published on Oct 23, 2018

30:54 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PuINlhlOJp8


New ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - New York #2
(Mae West, Houdini, etc.)

Hollywood Graveyard

"Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we continue our tour of New York in Brooklyn and Queens, to find such stars as Mae West, Harry Houdini, Louis Armstrong, and more.

Full list of stars visited today: Winsor McCay, Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, Bert Lahr, Edward G. Robinson, Harry Houdini, Victor Moore, Mae West, Jackie Robinson, Lucky Luciano*, Vito Genovese*, Carlo Gambino*, John Gotti*, Dom DeLuise, Louis Armstrong, Joyce Brothers, Bernard Herrmann, Abe Vigoda, Andy Kaufman, Martin Landau.
* - Organized Crime Figures" ...

Published on Nov 17, 2018

32:30 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B89gjHGXulM&feature=em-uploademail

The latest from the Bronx ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - New York #3 (Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, etc.)


Hollywood Graveyard

Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we continue our tour of New York City in the Bronx, where we'll find such stars as Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, Irving Berlin, and more.

Published on Nov 28, 2018

30:05 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKjAUN2Iy8w&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
2nd December 2018, 03:21
Wow ...


https://www.gmsafetynetting.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Broadmore-Hopital-Safety-Nets.jpg

Broadmoor Hospital; (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broadmoor_Hospital)
(Prison Documentary) - Real Stories

"For over 146 years Broadmoor hospital has gained a reputation as the last stop for some of the UK’s most dangerous criminals. It was thought of as the place where mentally unstable offenders would be incarcerated for the rest of their lives – until a recent and radical change."

Published on Dec 1, 2018

44:22 minutes



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_qpX0FUDzuw&feature=em-uploademail

Elen
2nd December 2018, 09:00
Compelled to watch Gio. Isn't it amazing what can happen when people are treated with a little more dignity. :love:

Aianawa
2nd December 2018, 09:13
Compelled also, amazing.

Chris
2nd December 2018, 10:38
American prisons are hell. For women, they're even worse




Just have a look at Norwegian prison system by way of comparison:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0IepJqxRCZY

giovonni
7th December 2018, 05:01
Will share this great message here ...


Theo E.J. Wilson tells the story of becoming Lucius25, white supremacist lurker, and the unexpected compassion and surprising perspective he found from engaging with people he disagrees with. He encourages us to let go of fear, embrace curiosity and have courageous conversations with people who think differently from us. "Conversations stop violence, conversations start countries and build bridges," he further says "conversations is the last tool before people pickup weapons" ...


This guy talks about Joe Six Pack, I think he says average Joe, and the alt-right and more. Most importantly, communication.

Well worth the 18 minutes.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqUaEJLfrLo

giovonni
8th December 2018, 14:04
Hidden in plain sight ...



Out of Tărtăria ... (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tfxJmF7fAk)

Stolen History, Hidden Technology

Max Igan - Surviving the Matrix -

Episode 358 - American Voice Radio, December 7th, 2018


Published on Dec 7, 2018

55:02 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=14tMbRo3tNI&feature=em-uploademail

NotAPretender
8th December 2018, 16:05
American prisons are hell. For women, they're even worse



6:10 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SCT_FX88DM

I had a weird thought the other day...Why do women even go to prison? Stupid, I know...The only crimes that they commit that are notable are killing their families.

giovonni
8th December 2018, 16:11
I had a weird thought the other day...

giggle :)

Dreamtimer
8th December 2018, 17:11
Women are often involved with the crimes of men they support. They become accessories.

I'm no expert on the incarceration of women.

Many women become enamored with men in prison. They write to these men and want to help them when they get out. That can lead to problems, obviously.

giovonni
9th December 2018, 11:43
The corporate circular takeover ...


Institutionalizing Lawlessness: Systematically Subverting Markets

TheRealNews

"Consumer advocate Ralph Nader gives the closing talk at the forum,
“Destroying the Myths of Market Fundamentalism,”
held in Washington DC, on October 19, 2018."

Published on Dec 8, 2018

28:26 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=612q9EhhDrU

giovonni
16th December 2018, 01:53
https://media.newyorker.com/photos/5c12eb5d3089175a92134d1c/master/w_2046,c_limit/Schwartz-EdouardLouis.jpg
The French writer Édouard Louis’s roman à clef “The End of Eddy” had an explosive effect in France ...
An autobiographical novel about growing up gay in a working-class town in Picardy.

***

"In recent weeks, France has been seized by the gilets jaunes, an amorphous, leaderless protest group that consists, in part, of people like Édouard Louis’s family and former neighbors" ...


https://media.newyorker.com/photos/5c1537bc666e913f4c43d182/master/w_2046,c_limit/Schwartz-LouisGiletsJaunes.jpg



To Exist in the Eyes of Others: An Interview with the Novelist Édouard Louis on the Gilets Jaunes Movement

By Alexandra Schwartz

December 14, 2018

"In 2014, the French writer Édouard Louis published “The End of Eddy,” a roman à clef based on his childhood in Hallencourt, a small town in the north of France. The world that it describes is brutal, marked by violence, prejudice, and pain. Like much of the surrounding region, Louis’s town suffers from post-industrial malaise; the vast majority of its residents vote for the far-right Front National. The novel’s protagonist, called Eddy Bellegueule (Louis’s given name, which he later officially changed), is gay, and made to suffer habitual shame and abuse. When, as a teen-ager, he finally manages to escape for the nearby city of Amiens, it is as if a canary has somehow flown out of the coal mine.

Louis’s novel centers on an unsparing portrait of his family, whose ignorance and cruelty, especially when directed toward Eddy, can be nearly unbearable. (He has said that everything in the novel is true.) But Louis also sought to expose the way that poverty and neglect by the state had deformed the lives of those around him. When he considers his mother, he thinks of the women, “torn between an absolute submission to power and an enduring sense of revolt,” who stormed Versailles at the start of the French Revolution only to salute the King. In France, “The End of Eddy” was seen as a burning letter sent from a forgotten place, and its effect was culturally explosive. Within a year of its publication, it had sold three hundred thousand copies.

In recent weeks, France has been seized by the protests of the gilets jaunes, an amorphous, leaderless group that consists, in part, of people like Louis’s family and former neighbors, who are furious with a government they feel has both forgotten and exploited them. Recently, on Twitter, Louis, who is twenty-six and lives in Paris, expressed frustration that the grievances of the gilets jaunes had been met with sensationalism by the press and disdain by politicians. “Something about the extreme violence and class contempt that is being unleashed on this movement paralyzes me,” he wrote. Earlier this week, we spoke over FaceTime about the gilets jaunes; Louis’s family; the case of Adama Traoré, a young black man whose death while in police custody, in 2016, became a flashpoint in France for issues of race and police brutality; and the political elasticity of protest movements.

The interview has been edited and condensed, and translated, in certain places, from the French.

Tell me why you decided to be at the gilets jaunes protest last Saturday.

I decided to go because I saw pictures from the movement. I was in the United States, in Providence, Rhode Island, and in those pictures I saw very poor people, people like my mother, people like my father, exhausted people, extremely poor people. I was able to read it on their faces, because I know those people. I recognized, suddenly, a body, in the noblest sense of the term. A body that I’m not used to seeing in the media. And I felt that these images were crying out to me.

There was the emergence of the kind of body that we never see, and, along with it, the kinds of words that we never hear. People are saying, “I can’t manage to feed myself, or my family. Christmas is coming up, and I can’t buy presents for my kids.” And, for me, a sentence like that is so much more political, so much more powerful, than all of this discourse about “the Republic,” the “people,” “coexistence,” “democracy.” What does any of that mean? These grand concepts that don’t really reflect anything. Nothing real, nothing corporal, at least.

Can you describe the kinds of bodies that you’re talking about?

It’s the body of social exclusion. It’s the body of poverty. It’s the body of people who are living in precarity, people from the North of France, or from the South of France, who don’t have money, who come from the kinds of families that haven’t gotten an education in five generations—families like mine. I grew up in a family of seven, and we had to live on seven hundred euros a month. Five kids and two adults. Maybe you have to really come from that world to immediately identify it.

Actually, when I started to write books, it was because I had the impression that these kinds of bodies were never depicted. And, when I was a kid, my parents, and especially my mother, always said, “No one is talking about us. No one cares about us.” One of the most violent feelings we had was this feeling of not existing in the public discourse, in the eyes and voices of others. It was like an obsession. There was not one day where my mother didn’t say, “No one is talking about us. The whole world could care less.” And so, for example, elections were the moment when she tried to fight against that kind of invisibility. Voilà.

When did you come back to France?

I came back after the first demonstration. And so I saw that as soon as these voices emerged, as soon as these people emerged, a huge part of the political field and a huge part of the media was trying to shut them down. Immediately, there were several strategies. The first strategy, and I saw it a lot in the U.S., because I read the papers in the U.S., was to say, “Ah, you know, they’re a lot of middle-class people.” Middle class in the French sense, so, not poor, not rich, but in between. I saw that on TV, among the journalists—people had a kind of pleasure in repeating that. For me, it was another strategy in order to not address the issue of poor people.

Because to say “middle class” is to legitimatize the protesters by making them seem familiar, part of the usual protests in France?

Absolutely. It’s another way of not talking about extremely poor people, or about their suffering. And, in addition to that, “middle class” is a very complicated concept. You have some people who are really suffering, you have some situations with people making two thousand euros a month but having five kids, having a wife or a husband that they are divorced from, who live in the middle of nowhere and have to pay, like, hundreds of euros for gas every month. It’s very complicated, and for me it was a way of not talking about it.

But the biggest argument to delegitimize the movement was to say, “Oh, this movement is racist, it’s homophobic, it’s anti-climate,” because people were protesting the gas tax. And what I saw was the mobilization of the bourgeoisie to try to silence this demonstration, this movement. It was, “Please, shut them up. They need to be shut up.”

That really struck me, on a personal level, because when I published my first two novels, “The End of Eddy” and “History of Violence,” which spoke about this milieu, which I grew up in—a milieu of extreme poverty, of people who have been socially dispossessed and geographically excluded—I spoke about racism and homophobia in that world. And when I published those books in France, people said, “Oh, Édouard Louis says that people in the working class are homophobic and racist, that’s not true!” And so I, who came from the working class, and who was trying to speak about it, was being told, “Shut up, it’s not true, they’re not racist, they’re not homophobic. The poor are bons vivants, they’re authentic.”

And why, do you think?

For me, it was simply a mechanism to stop the popular class from speaking. And so a few years later, now that there’s a movement that actually consists of those people, all the same people who attacked me are suddenly saying, “Oh, no, these people are racist, these people are homophobic, so we’ve got to shut them up.”

The dominant class, the bourgeoisie, doesn’t care about contradicting itself. One day, the working class were “authentic,” almost “good savages.” And the day after they were racist, homophobic, horrible people.

What you’re describing is like a mask being ripped off of society.

They were forced to say what they were, what they deeply think. I saw how much this kind of classism is ingrained in our society.

And of course I don’t deny that there have been some homophobic things in this movement, some racist discourse, some racist acts. I know that. I’ve wrote about this milieu. I’ve written about my family. So I don’t deny that. I’m a gay person. I don’t say that homophobia is not a problem. I don’t say that it’s a secondary issue. But it’s precisely because there has been some homophobia and some racism in this movement that we have to change this movement.

There is all of this pain, all of this suffering, that is expressed through the gilets jaunes. And, the question is, are these people are going to say, “We suffer because of the migrants, we suffer because of women’s rights,” as the far right says, or, “We suffer because of the violence of the dominant class, because of the government, because of Macron and Édouard Philippe”? People are trying to dismiss this movement by saying, “There’s some racism, there’s some homophobia.” But this is precisely the reason why we have to be there, because we have to struggle in order to build another vocabulary.

When I was a child—and I don’t say it in order to talk about me but just because it’s the reality that I know the best, and I have the impression that I am more honest in talking about my own past—people like my father, my mother, people around me in the village, very often hesitated, when it was time to vote, between voting for the far right or voting for the left. Never for the mainstream right-wing parties, because they were the symbol of the dominant bourgeoisie. But they were always hesitating between the far right and the left, which was a way of saying, “Who is going to support me? Who is going to make me visible? Who is going to fight for me?” And so, which vocabulary am I going to use? Am I going to say, “I am suffering because of migrants, or because of social inequalities and classism”?

We know that the same thing happened in the United States. We know that some people who would have voted for Bernie Sanders voted for Donald Trump. When you suffer from poverty, from exclusion, from constant humiliation, you are just trying to find a way to say, “I suffer.”

Of course, there were, in my childhood, and I think in general, some people who were deeply racist, who will never change. When I was a child, it was some guys who had a croix gammée on their car, you know, the Hitlerian cross, or who have them tattooed on their skin.

But most of these people who voted for the far right were right-wing because the left hasn’t cared about them for so long. In the eighties, in the nineties, in the early two-thousands, the left-wing parties stopped talking about poverty, they stopped talking about pain at work, they stopped talking about precariousness. It’s the same throughout the world. So, the poor people, the working class, had the impression that no one cared about them anymore, and they started to vote for the far right.

How, with the gilets jaunes, do you imagine that the language around this movement could be reinvented? What would that require, or look like?

I think that what is important was for the left to be there, to be present. It’s already what started to happen with the gilets jaunes. At the beginning, you had a lot of right-wing people, some of them far-right—politicians or celebrities—who were supporting this movement. And then the movement started to become more left-wing, because at the beginning they were talking only about gas, and now they are talking about social justice, equality.

I was there, last Saturday, as a part of the Comité Adama, which was created after Adama Traoré was killed by the police, two years ago. Several gendarmes stopped him—he wasn’t doing anything, he just didn’t have his I.D., and in France you can arrest someone if that person doesn’t have her or his I.D. but, obviously, they only do it against black people, people of color. It never happened to me. So, they arrested Adama Traoré. He didn’t want to be arrested, so he ran. It was his birthday, and he wanted to celebrate, he didn’t want to spend his night in jail just because he didn’t have his I.D. They stopped him, and three or four gendarmes put pressure on his body, asphyxiated him, and he died. Afterward, his sister, Assa Traoré, created the Comité Adama, which is now the most important organization that fights against racism in France, against police violence.

So, since the beginning I have been part of this movement with Assa Traoré, and we’ve been there demonstrating together the last couple of weeks. At first, when some people from the media, from the bourgeoisie, were trying to dismiss the gilets jaunes movement, Assa Traoré said, “We will be there.” Many others did, too, and it challenged the vocabulary of this movement, because it changes the face of who is seen to represent it. Our group marching looks different from the popular imagination of who the gilets jaunes are. I was walking with Assa Traoré, she’s a black woman. I’m a queer guy, I’m not very masculine. And we were part of the movement. We didn’t feel any violence from other people, except from the police.

Now the thing that they are talking about is this violence—a car burnt, or the Arc de Triomphe being attacked. But, as many people have already said, what is this violence compared to the extreme violence of social domination, of poverty? My father is fifty years old. He has trouble walking. He cannot breathe at night without an apparatus so his heart doesn’t stop. And my father is young. The state of his body is due to social violence, because he was a factory worker. At thirty-five, his back was destroyed in the factory. The French state, Nicolas Sarkozy, said, if you don’t go back to work, you will lose your welfare. And so now he’s fifty years old, he cannot walk anymore. What is a tag on the Arc de Triomphe compared to that? What is a car burning in comparison to that?

There’s been a lot of discussion of violence at gilets jaunes protests. We often see this word “casseur.” They’re vandals who show up at protests to break stuff, smash store windows, and things like that. Are they actually a part of the movement?

You have some casseurs who come to every single demonstration to break things. But there are also people who feel how unfair the world is, and they want to break everything because their lives have been broken, or because they saw broken lives around them. Some of them come from privilege, but you can come from a privileged milieu and think that all this violence around us is unbearable. So I wouldn’t dismiss it so easily. The question we should ask is not “Why are there some people breaking?” but “Why are there not more people breaking?”

My little sister was selling burgers at McDonald’s. She stopped school at sixteen, like my mother, like my father, like my grandmother, like everybody in my family. She was humiliated, she was insulted, she was treated so badly there. My little brother is an homme de menage, he is cleaning offices. People there don’t say hello, he doesn’t make any money. Why don’t people break more often? I don’t think that it’s my ideal. But, in terms of truthful social analysis, we should ask the question this way.

Do you know if any members of your family have been protesting with the gilets jaunes?

I don’t think so. I know that they are supporting it, because we talk about it. But they really live in a small village in the middle of nowhere, so for them it’s difficult to go. But I know that they feel that something is happening."


The New Yorker ~ Source page (https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/to-exist-in-the-eyes-of-others-an-interview-with-the-novelist-edouard-louis-on-the-gilets-jaunes-movement)

giovonni
17th December 2018, 19:00
The latest from the Bronx ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - New York #3 (Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, etc.)



Published on Nov 28, 2018

30:05 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKjAUN2Iy8w&feature=em-uploademail


The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - New York #4 (Joan Crawford, Aaliyah, etc.)

Hollywood Graveyard



Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we continue our tour of New York at Westchester Hills and Ferncliff Cemeteries, where we'll find such stars as Joan Crawford, Ed Sullivan, Aaliyah, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today:
George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin, Billy Rose, Judy Holliday, Tony Randall, John Garfield, Lee Strasberg, Adolph Zukor, Bela Bartok, Joe Young, Judy Tyler, Joan Crawford, Ed Sullivan, Jerome Kern, Moss Hart, Kitty Carlisle, Judy Garland, Northern Calloway, Harold Arlen, Anya Taranda, Paul Robeson, Thelonious Monk, Jam Master Jay, Malcolm X, Basil Rathbone, Cab Calloway, Aaliyah.

Published on Dec 16, 2018

34:59 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2UBhAMbclkw&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
20th December 2018, 18:45
hmm ...





https://www.telesurtv.net/__export/1508798540736/sites/telesur/img/news/2017/10/23/the_soviet_flag_over_the_reichstagx_1945_x1x.jpg_7 32189391.jpg


Russians Pine for Soviet Times Amid Economic Stagnation



In a survey by the Russian Levada polling organization, 66 percent of Russians said they regretted the break-up of the USSR, a level not seen since 2005.

"The number of Russians who regret the break-up of the Soviet Union has risen to its highest since 2005, amid rising economic concerns and nostalgia for the Soviet welfare system, the Levada pollster said Wednesday.

President Vladimir Putin famously dubbed the 1991 dissolution of the Soviet Union the greatest catastrophe of the 20th century and he and many Russians have long lamented the blow its demise dealt to Moscow's great power status.

The number of Russians pining for the Soviet past has been steadily rising under Putin since he returned to the presidency in 2012, poll data issued by the independent Levada Center Wednesday showed.

In the survey, 66 percent of Russians said they regretted the Soviet break-up, a level not seen since 2005 when Levada recorded 65 percent and Putin was on his second term in the Kremlin.

The number of nostalgic Russians fell gradually from 2004, reaching a low of 49 percent in 2012, before rising to its current level, the pollster found, on a par with the 1990s after the Soviet collapse.

Karina Pipiya, a sociologist at Levada, said that in the past such flings were often triggered by loss of international prestige and questions of national identity.

"Now the nostalgia is more determined by economic factors and regret that there used to be more social justice and that the government worked for the people and that it was better in terms of care for citizens and paternalistic expectations," she said.

Ordinary Russians have faced stagnating incomes, a weaker ruble and inflation since 2014, when the Russian economy entered recession amid falling oil prices and Western sanctions.

To help balance state coffers, the Kremlin this year raised the retirement age for both men and women in a highly unpopular measure that dented Putin's popularity rating.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov brushed off the findings of the nostalgia poll.

"Other sociologists will say that people are always inclined to retrospectively idealize what happened to them in their youth, and that everything that happened in youth was tastier, more reliable and greater," said Peskov."


Who was Karl Marx? | DW Documentary

2018 marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of German philosopher and Communist icon Karl Marx.
Is Karl Marx still relevant in the 21st century?

Philosopher, historian and economist Karl Marx is a name that’s back on everyone's lips. The documentary explores the ongoing impact of his writings in Europe and China. How should we approach the legacy of someone who - like few others before or since - not only changed the world, but divided it as well? Even though not everyone accepts his ideas, Marx's analyses and theories motivated many people to take political action. We meet activists, witnesses and experts - individuals who are able to illuminate Karl Marx's impact from the Russian revolution until today. Even in the 21st century, two hundred years after his birth, Marx has lost none of his relevance.

After the fall of the Iron Curtain in Europe and the end of the Cold War in 1989 and 1990, the sun seemed to be setting on Marx. But during the financial crisis of 2007-2008, when the contradictions of capitalism were once more laid bare, Marx was resurrected as an icon. His theories and ideas are now enjoying something of a renaissance at universities, churches, and conferences, and in mainstream broadcast and print media. The Chinese have even donated a larger-than-life statue of Marx to the city of his birth, Trier.

This thought-provoking documentary does not shy away from controversy. As well providing insight into Karl Marx’s life and work, it investigates what appealed to past and present advocates of his philosophies, bringing the story to life with a rich trove of archive material.

DW Documentary
Published on May 5, 2018

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9FaOKNpAiIM

Source: teleSUR (https://www.telesurenglish.net/news/Russians-Pine-for-Soviet-Times-Amid-Economic-Stagnation-20181220-0018.html)

giovonni
21st December 2018, 14:13
Bodies matter ...
And someone has to do it ... https://imgfast.net/users/2911/23/55/04/smiles/360865.gif


The Exhumer (Grave-Digger Documentary) - Real Stories

"The Exhumer is an observational documentary following the work of exhumation specialist, Peter Mitchell, whose profession has already seen him exhume 30,000 bodies - sometimes individuals, sometimes whole cemeteries and rebury them in new graves.

We follow Peter over several months as he supervises the controversial exhumation of a Christian cemetery in Egypt - where some of the bodies have been buried for as little as just a few months – and oversees a mass exhumation job at an old churchyard in Scotland."

Published on Dec 20, 2018

47:42 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cN-Jk39uFnk&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
25th December 2018, 16:20
A worthy look back during these political and economic uncertain times ...

“Words make you think a thought. Music makes you feel a feeling. A song makes you feel a thought.”
-- Yip Harburg



A Tribute to Blacklisted Lyricist Yip Harburg: The Man Who Put the Rainbow in The Wizard of Oz

"His name might not be familiar to many, but his songs are sung by millions around the world. Today, we take a journey through the life and work of Yip Harburg, the Broadway lyricist who wrote such hits as “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” and who put the music into The Wizard of Oz.

Born into poverty on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, Harburg always included a strong social and political component to his work, fighting racism and poverty. A lifelong socialist, Harburg was blacklisted and hounded throughout much of his life. We speak with Harburg’s son, Ernie Harburg, about the music and politics of his father. Then we take an in-depth look at The Wizard of Oz, and hear a medley of Harburg’s Broadway songs and the politics of the times in which they were created."

Democracy Now!
Published on Dec 25, 2018

58:01 minutes

Best viewed in full screen


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z_gFD8iJxuc

giovonni
25th December 2018, 17:16
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - New York #5 (James Cagney, Anne Bancroft, etc.)



Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we conclude our tour of New York, at Kensico and Gate of Heaven Cemeteries, where we'll find such stars as Babe Ruth, Billie Burke, James Cagney, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today: Lou Gehrig, Florenz Ziegfeld, Billie Burke, Ayn Rand, Tommy Dorsey, Danny Kaye, Sylvia Fine, Soupy Sales, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Olive Deering, Howard Smith, Anne Bancroft, Fred Allen, Bess Houdini, Dorothy Kilgallen, Sal Mineo, Babe Ruth, James Cagney.


Published on Dec 25, 2018

22:54 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-nwBdDnDDG0&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
26th December 2018, 18:56
A critical look ...


Richard Wolff: We Need a More Humane Economic System—Not One That Only Benefits the Rich



The partial shutdown of the U.S. federal government is entering its fifth day after a political impasse over President Donald Trump’s contentious demand for border wall funding. Funding for about a quarter of all federal programs expired at midnight on Friday, including the departments of Justice, Agriculture and Homeland Security. On Christmas Day, Trump said the shutdown will last until Democrats agree to fund his $5 billion U.S.-Mexico border wall, despite previously repeatedly claiming Mexico would pay for the wall. The shutdown is occurring as concern grows over the U.S. economy. U.S. stock markets are on pace to suffer their worst December since 1931 during the Great Depression. In response, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin held an emergency meeting with top financial regulators and also convened a separate call with top executives of six major banks. We speak to economist and professor Richard Wolff.

Democracy Now!
Published on Dec 26, 2018

17:16 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RGIStIVMwa8

giovonni
27th December 2018, 17:49
Worth the listen ...


Afro Germany - being black and German


DW Documentary

Black and German: news anchor Jana Pareigis has spent her entire life being asked about her skin color and afro hair. What is it like to be Black in Germany? What needs to change?

In our documentary "Afro Germany", Pareigis travels through Germany to speak with other black Germans, including rap and hip hop artists and pro footballers, , and find out what their experiences of racism in Germany have been. "Where are you from?" Afro-German journalist Jana Pareigis has heard that question since her early childhood. And she’s not alone. Black people have been living in Germany for around 400 years, and today there are an estimated one million Germans with dark skin. But they still get asked the often latently racist question, "Where are you from?" Jana Pareigis is familiar with the undercurrents of racism in the western world. When she was a child, the Afro-German TV presenter also thought her skin color was a disadvantage. "When I was young, I wanted to be white," she says. Pareigis takes us on a trip through Germany from its colonial past up to the present day, visiting other Black Germans to talk about their experiences. They include German rapper and hip hop artist Samy Deluxe, pro footballer Gerald Asamoah and Theodor Michael, who lived as a Black man in the Third Reich. They talk about what it’s like to be Black in Germany.

Published on Mar 29, 2017

41:57 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcfPVj5qR1E

giovonni
28th December 2018, 19:53
Will share this here ...



https://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2018/12/AP_18360851368282-1.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=600



Social worker leaves secret $11 million fortune to children’s charities

By Associated Press

December 28, 2018

SEATTLE — "Alan Naiman was known for an unabashed thriftiness that veered into comical, but even those closest to him had no inkling of the fortune that he quietly amassed and the last act that he had long planned.

The Washington state social worker died of cancer this year at age 63, leaving most of a surprising $11 million estate to children’s charities that help the poor, sick, disabled and abandoned. The amount baffled the beneficiaries and his best friends, who are lauding Naiman as the anniversary of his death approaches in January.

That’s because the Seattle man patched up his shoes with duct tape sought deals at the grocery store deli at closing time and took his best friends out to lunch at fast-food joints.

Naiman, who died unmarried and childless, loved kids but also was intensely private, scrimping, investing and working extra jobs to stockpile money that he rarely spent on himself after seeing how unfair life could be for the most vulnerable children, his friends say.

They believe a lifelong devotion to his older brother who had a developmental disability influenced Naiman, though he rarely spoke of it. The brother died in 2013, the same year Naiman splurged on a sports car — a modestly priced Scion FR-S.

“Growing up as a kid with an older, disabled brother kind of colored the way he looked at things,” close friend Susan Madsen said.

A former banker, Naiman worked the past two decades at the state Department of Social and Health Services, handling after-hours calls. He earned $67,234 and also took on side gigs, sometimes working as many as three jobs. He saved and invested enough to make several millions of dollars and also inherited millions more from his parents, said Shashi Karan, a friend from his banking days.

Thrilled when he finally qualified for senior discounts, Naiman bought his clothes from the grocery store. He loved cars, but for most of his life, drove beat-up vehicles and seemed to enjoy the solitude and savings of solo road trips, friends say.

After Naiman’s death, Karan realized how little he knew of the other aspects of his longtime friend’s life.

“I don’t know if he was lonely. I think he was a loner,” Karan said."


https://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2018/12/AP_18360725480252.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=1236&h=820&crop=1
A volunteer folds and sorts clothes at Treehouse, a nonprofit organization in Seattle that helps foster kids, and one of the nonprofits that received a large donation from Alan Naiman.

"Many of the organizations benefiting from Naiman’s gifts said they didn’t know him, though they had crossed paths.

He left $2.5 million to the Pediatric Interim Care Center, a private organization in Washington state that cares for babies born to mothers who abused drugs and helps the children wean off their dependence. The group used some of what was its largest donation ever to pay off a mortgage and buy a new vehicle to transport the 200 babies it accepts from hospitals each year.

Naiman had called the center about a newborn while working for the state more than a decade ago and its founder, Barbara Drennen, showed up in the middle of the night to get the baby.

“We would never dream that something like this would happen to us. I wish very much that I could have met him. I would have loved to have had him see the babies he’s protecting,” Drennen said."

https://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2018/12/AP_18360725210637.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=1280
Volunteers at Treehouse.


"Naiman gave $900,000 to the Treehouse foster care organization, telling them that he was a foster parent years ago and had brought kids in his care to the group’s popular warehouse, where wards of the state can choose toys and necessities for free.

Treehouse is using Naiman’s money to expand its college and career counseling statewide.

“The frugality that he lived through, that he committed to in his life, was for this,” said Jessica Ross, Treehouse’s chief development officer. “It’s really a gift to all of us to see that pure demonstration of philanthropy and love.”"


Source page (https://nypost.com/2018/12/28/social-worker-leaves-secret-11-million-fortune-to-childrens-charities/)

giovonni
31st December 2018, 16:48
"A book of technology predictions makes distressing reading at the end of a year that ...
a golden anniversary ago, looked positively thrilling."


https://media.newyorker.com/photos/5c1d5c436e94e9409146726a/master/w_1626,c_limit/190107_r33520web.jpg



What 2018 Looked Like Fifty Years Ago


By Jill Lepore

"Prophecy is a mug’s game. But then, lately, most of us are mugs. 2018 was a banner year for the art of prediction, which is not to say the science, because there really is no science of prediction. Predictive algorithms start out as historians: they study historical data to detect patterns. Then they become prophets: they devise mathematical formulas that explain the pattern, test the formulas against historical data withheld for the purpose, and use the formulas to make predictions about the future. That’s why Amazon, Google, Facebook, and everyone else are collecting your data to feed to their algorithms: they want to turn your past into your future.

This task, like most things, used to be done by hand. In 1968, the Foreign Policy Association, formed in 1918 to promote the League of Nations, celebrated its fiftieth anniversary by publishing a book of predictions about what the world would look like, technology-wise, fifty years on. “Toward the Year 2018” was edited by Emmanuel G. Mesthene, who had served in the White House as an adviser on science and technology and who ran Harvard’s Program on Technology and Society. It makes for distressing reading at the end of 2018, a year that, a golden anniversary ago, looked positively thrilling.

Two things are true about “Toward the Year 2018.” First, most of the machines that people expected would be invented have, in fact, been invented. Second, most of those machines have had consequences wildly different from those anticipated in 1968. It’s bad manners to look at past predictions to see if they’ve come true. Still, if history is any guide, today’s futurists have very little credibility. An algorithm would say the same.

Carlos R. DeCarlo, the director of automation research at I.B.M., covered computers in the book, predicting that, in 2018, “machines will do more of man’s work, but will force man to think more logically.” DeCarlo was consistently half right. He correctly anticipated miniature computers (“very small, portable storage units”), but wrongly predicted the coming of a universal language (“very likely a modified and expanded form of English”). One thing he got terribly wrong: he expressed tragically unfounded confidence that “the political and social institutions of the United States will remain flexible enough to ingest the fruits of science and technology without basic damage to its value systems.”

Reporting on the future of communication, J. R. Pierce, from Bell Labs, explained that “the Bell System is committed to the provision of a Picturephone service commercially in the early 1970s,” and that, by 2018, face-to-face communication across long distances would be available everywhere: “The transmission of pictures and texts and the distant manipulation of computers and other machines will be added to the transmission of the human voice on a scale that will eventually approach the universality of telephony.” True! “What all this will do to the world I cannot guess,” Pierce admitted, with becoming modesty. “It seems bound to affect us all.”

Sharp-eyed observers in 1968 were already concerned about the warming of the oceans and the changing of the climate, but the atmospheric-science contributor to “Toward the Year 2018,” Thomas F. Malone, was excited by new technologies that would allow scientists to take control of the earth’s weather and climate. Malone served as the chairman of the Committee on Atmospheric Sciences of the National Academy of Sciences, which, in 1966, had issued a report endorsing “a long-range program of weather control and climate modification,” to be implemented by way of manipulating fog, cloud-seeding, and the “suppression of lightning.” He thought “the probability of success in broad climate modification is likely to exceed 50 percent by the year 2018.” Standing in the way of this objective, he warned, were political obstacles—the international coöperation required for a global climate-change program—and the possibility that, before such a thing could be fully executed, “large-scale climate modification will be effected inadvertently,” because, he had to admit, it appeared that the climate was already changing all on its own. “Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere since 1900 has caused surface temperatures to rise 0.2 degrees C,” he acknowledged, hastening to reassure his readers that, while global temperatures could conceivably keep rising all the way to 2018, there was only “a small probability that these effects will not be tolerable.”

The only real doomsayer was the demographer Philip M. Hauser. He calculated that, by 2018, the world’s population would reach 9.7 billion (he was two billion over), with the steepest growth in Asia and Latin America, and the slowest in Europe. Also, that the distance between the rich and the poor, and between wealthy nations and poor nations, would widen. “Given the present outlook, only the faithful who believe in miracles from heaven, the optimistic who anticipate superwonders from science, the parochial fortunate who think they can continue to exist on islands of affluence in a sea of world poverty, and the naïve who anticipate nothing can look to the future with equanimity,” Hauser concluded.

But the most prescient contributor to “Toward the Year 2018” was the M.I.T. political scientist Ithiel de Sola Pool, whose research interests included social networks and computer simulation. “By 2018 it will be cheaper to store information in a computer bank than on paper,” Pool wrote. “Tax returns, social security records, census forms, military records, perhaps a criminal record, hospital rec-ords, security clearance files, school transcripts . . . bank statements, credit ratings, job records,” and more would, by 2018, be stored on computers that could communicate with one another over a vast international network. You could find out anything about anyone, without ever leaving your desk. “By 2018 the researcher sitting at his console will be able to compile a cross-tabulation of consumer purchases (from store records) by people of low IQ (from school records) who have an unemployed member of the family (from social security records). That is, he will have the technological capability to do this. Will he have the legal right?” Pool declined to answer that question. “This is not the place to speculate how society will achieve a balance between its desire for knowledge and its desire for privacy,” he insisted.

And that was the problem with 1968. People went ahead and built those things without worrying much about the consequences, because they figured that, by 2018, we’d have come up with all the answers. Toward 2019!" ♦


Source: The New Yorker (https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/01/07/what-2018-looked-like-fifty-years-ago)

NotAPretender
31st December 2018, 17:46
My prediction is that by 2068 this will no longer be true... :)

"2018 was a banner year for the art of prediction, which is not to say the science, because there really is no science of prediction." But really it will be more like 2118 because it is such a Huuuggge change. And it won't be machines doing the predictions. God will relent and say, "Ok, I wasn't serious". Likely he will let us know through the words of the then current Prophet that it was all a misunderstanding.

giovonni
1st January 2019, 19:32
Human baggage ...
Are we from what they carried ...


Was there a Civilization that Predates all other known Ancient Civilizations?

Narrated by BuzWeaver

The Lost History Channel TKTC
Published on Feb 1, 2018

7:12 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rfktsVEcF90

giovonni
4th January 2019, 01:50
Society/Civilization ...

https://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/dorito-ancient-bag.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=1236&h=820&crop=1

Decades-old Doritos bag washes ashore in North Carolina

"You probably never spare a thought for your trash once you haul your trash to the curb and it’s whisked away to a magical land dump where nobody ever has to look at it, but not all garbage ends up where it’s supposed to. As humans, we do a terrible job of keeping the Earth clean and we’ve been littering for a long, long time.

A great reminder of that sad fact is this decades-old Doritos bag which was recently found washed ashore off the coast of North Carolina. At some point, likely several decades ago, this thin plastic container found its way into the ocean, and aside from some faded colors and a few holes it’s in remarkable shape.

The bag was discovered by National Park Service employees on the shore and the logo on the bag along the trademark helped them identify it as being from the late 1970s.

Plastic lasts a long, long time under just about any conditions — that’s why it’s so incredibly harmful when thrown away with no regard — but some questions about this particular find remain.

Plastic is certainly tough, but if this bag had been floating around in the ocean for four decades you’d expect it to be at least a bit more mangled. Some have suggested that the bag had spent the bulk of its life elsewhere before ending up in the ocean more recently, but that’s impossible to trace.

Others have questioned whether the bag really is as old as it seems. Doritos does do “throwback” designs for its bags on occasion, but while you can get a retro-styled Doritos bag in the “taco” flavor, no nacho cheese Doritos are offered in bags like this one.

Whatever its origins, it’s a timely reminder that we need to do a better job of cleaning up after ourselves if we don’t want the Earth to turn into one big dump."

Source page (https://nypost.com/2019/01/03/decades-old-doritos-bag-washes-ashore-in-north-carolina/)

giovonni
6th January 2019, 19:26
Speaking of washing ashore ...

As seas continue to rise, New Jersey buys residents out of flood zones

"Hundreds of thousands of New Jersey residents live in flood zones that can become inundated with storm water. But the state is trying to move some of them out of harm's way in one of the biggest home buyout programs in the nation. NewsHour Weekend's Ivette Feliciano reports. This story is part of our ongoing series, "Peril and Promise: The Challenge of Climate Change."

PBS NewsHour
Published on Jan 5, 2019

9:57 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cpAMNUC7PpM

giovonni
6th January 2019, 19:35
A world without ...

How cash is becoming a thing of the past | (Banking documentary)

DW Documentary

"Cashless payments are on the rise. They are fast, easy and convenient. Worldwide, cashless transactions have become the norm.

But Germany’s central bank and government are still clinging on to cash. Can they stop the move towards a cashless society? Our documentary shows who is behind the worldwide anti-cash lobby. Banks want to get rid of coins and bills for cost reasons, and politicians think less cash will cut the rug out from under criminals and terrorists. Central bankers want to abolish cash because it would make it easier for them to enforce negative interest rates. And digital payment companies like Paypal or Visa simply want to profit from money transactions and collect as much financial data about consumers as they can. Their aim is to gain complete control over our buying behavior. For example, the "Better than Cash Alliance" in New York is supported by financial corporations such as Visa or Mastercard. They say the more people that are integrated into the international financial system, the more growth and jobs it will promote. But as our financial behavior becomes more and more transparent, states are also using payment data to find out more about us. The ordinary citizen’s view of cash as a store of value, independent of third party interests, is being increasingly ignored. But for them, cash is and will remain a symbol of freedom."

Published on Nov 21, 2018

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GbECT1J9bXg

giovonni
9th January 2019, 01:56
A Day in South America’s “Most Humane” Prison

VICE INTERNATIONAL

"Prisons in Latin America have the reputation of being the most violent and dangerous in the world; overcrowded concrete spaces where corruption, gangs, and drug cartels reign. By contrast, Punta de Rieles offers a different reality. Located in the Uruguayan capital of Montevideo, it's known as "the prison from which nobody wants to escape".

The almost 100-acre property features ample outdoor space where inmates can live, work, do yoga, have pets, and play music. Here, the focus is on helping prisoners re-acclimate to society before they've even left confinement. VICE en Español spent the day at Punta de Rieles, talking to inmates and learning about Uruguay's progressive "open" prison."

Spanish language with English captions

14:07 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Q2EvXu12E0

Maggie
9th January 2019, 04:43
A worthy look back during these political and economic uncertain times ...

“Words make you think a thought. Music makes you feel a feeling. A song makes you feel a thought.”
-- Yip Harburg



A Tribute to Blacklisted Lyricist Yip Harburg: The Man Who Put the Rainbow in The Wizard of Oz

"His name might not be familiar to many, but his songs are sung by millions around the world. Today, we take a journey through the life and work of Yip Harburg, the Broadway lyricist who wrote such hits as “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” and who put the music into The Wizard of Oz.

Born into poverty on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, Harburg always included a strong social and political component to his work, fighting racism and poverty. A lifelong socialist, Harburg was blacklisted and hounded throughout much of his life. We speak with Harburg’s son, Ernie Harburg, about the music and politics of his father. Then we take an in-depth look at The Wizard of Oz, and hear a medley of Harburg’s Broadway songs and the politics of the times in which they were created."

Democracy Now!
Published on Dec 25, 2018

58:01 minutes

Best viewed in full screen


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z_gFD8iJxuc

Bumping this in case missed because Yip Harburg is now one of my heros.

W3phiNL2bZ0

giovonni
10th January 2019, 08:43
By the time we got to ...

Bethel, New York


https://assets.atlasobscura.com/media/W1siZiIsInVwbG9hZHMvcGxhY2VfaW1hZ2VzLzQ4OWNhZGYxLT AzNzctNGVmNi1hODVkLTBmYjI1OWNhOThlZTRjYjNlMGRmOGY0 YTUxZTNjOV9JTUdfMjY0NS5qcGVnIl0sWyJwIiwidGh1bWIiLC J4MzkwPiJdLFsicCIsImNvbnZlcnQiLCItcXVhbGl0eSA4MSAt YXV0by1vcmllbnQiXV0/IMG_2645.jpeg

Woodstock (https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/woodstock-site-monument-museum?utm_source=Atlas+Obscura+Daily+Newsletter&utm_campaign=58a14fee43-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_11_26&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f36db9c480-58a14fee43-63041445&ct=t(EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_11_26_2018)&mc_cid=58a14fee43&mc_eid=57314563a1)

"The dairy farm in upstate New York where nearly half a million people
gathered for three days of peace and music in 1969."

Joni Mitchell


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXQmt6O9y5s


The latest ...

Three-Day Woodstock Festival From Original Organizer Coming This Summer

“Woodstock ’99 was just a musical experience with no social significance,” Michael Lang says of Woodstock 50. “With this one, we’re going back to our roots and our original intent”

After months of rumors, Woodstock co-creator Michael Lang has confirmed to Rolling Stone that a three-day festival honoring the 50th anniversary of the original event is coming to Watkins Glen, New York on August 16th, 17th and 18th. Organizers won’t be announcing specific acts until tickets go on sale in February, but Lang says that over 40 performers have been booked already across three stages, including some big-name headliners. “It’ll be an eclectic bill,” Lang says. “It’ll be hip-hop and rock and some pop and some of the legacy bands from the original festival.”

He wouldn’t delve into specifics, but Lang did say that some “newer bands” will stage “celebrations of artists from the original Woodstock” that will likely include tribute performances to Janis Joplin, the Band, Jefferson Airplane and Joe Cocker, among others. “Having contemporary artists interpret that music would be a really interesting and exciting idea,” he says. “We’re also looking for unique collaborations, maybe some reunions and a lot of new and up-and-coming talent.”

Unlike most festivals that exclusively target a young audience, Lang hopes to bring in people of all ages. “I want it to be multi-generational,” he says. “Woodstock ’94 was a nice mix of young and old and that’s kind of what we’re going for here.”

That may be a challenge given Watkins Glen’s far distance from hotels, but Lang promises attendees will have options far superior to the original festival’s famously muddy field. “There will be ‘glamping’ tents and stuff like that,” he says. “There will be those types of experiences in various forms where there’s a real bed, and there’s a chair to sit in and a light bulb. There will also easier access to portable toilets.”

Filthy, overflowing portable toilets were major problems at previous Woodstocks, but Lang swears that he’s found a solution for that too. “There’s a new dimension in portable toilets now,” he says. “They are clean and airy and sizeable. They also don’t get pumped during the event, so you don’t have these wagons running around smelling everywhere. And then the end product is fertilizer.”

Sanitation was just one of many major problems at Woodstock ’99, a disastrous event held on a former Air Force Base in Rome, New York that culminated in fires and riots. It was held on a brutally hot weekend with few places to find shade. Water was sold at $4 a bottle. There was also a death resulting from a drug overdose and reports of sexual assaults in the mosh pits. Promoters dealt with a wave of lawsuits in the aftermath and for a while, it seemed like there would never be another Woodstock. (Lang’s original Woodstock co-promoter John Scher absorbed some of the blame for the fiasco. He is not involved with Woodstock 50.)

Twenty years later, Lang is able to look back at Woodstock ’99 and see where things went wrong. “I shouldn’t have left the booking to others,” he says, noting that he’s booking many of the acts himself this time. “And the water situation was ridiculous. As soon as I saw that, I tried to get everyone to lower the prices and I couldn’t. I did order tractor trailers of water and put them out for free. I do think a lot of people had a good time, but the fires at the end became the imagery of it. It was just about 200 kids who went on a rampage. They exploded some of the cooling systems in the tractor trailers and just wreaked havoc.”

https://www.rollingstone.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/michael-lang-woodstock-50.jpg?w=1024
Woodstock 50 organizer Michael Lang.

"Lang goes on to dismiss Woodstock ’99 as an “MTV event” and says that Woodstock 50 will be its antithesis. “Woodstock ’99 was just a musical experience with no social significance,” he says. “It was just a big party. With this one, we’re going back to our roots and our original intent. And this time around, we’ll have control of everything.”

They aren’t, however, going back to the site of the original Woodstock in Bethel, New York. The former farm was transformed into a 15,000-seat concert venue in 2006. That venue will host its own Woodstock 50th celebration there this summer, though bringing the actual event back there just wasn’t an option. “They’re good stewards of the original site and they built a beautiful performing arts pavilion,” says Lang. “But it’s a 15,000-seat shed. That’s not a Woodstock.”

Finding a place that did fit their needs became a huge challenge. “I was desperate to keep it in New York,” he says. “I looked everywhere because I needed 1,000 acres of clear land with access and infrastructure. Frankly, we weren’t finding it. We had talked about Watkins Glen over the years and I decided on a whim to look at it since having it at a racetrack didn’t appeal to me. But when I looked, I knew it was the perfect facility for what we had in mind. It was reminiscent to me of finding Max [Yasgur]’s field.”

The festival site is no stranger to enormous concerts. In 1973, a reported crowd of 600,000 people flocked there to see a one-day event featuring the Allman Brothers Band, the Grateful Dead and the Band. The exact headcount has been disputed over the years, but it was almost certainly larger than even the original Woodstock four years earlier.

Phish held their Superball IX at Watkins Glen in 2011, but they were forced to cancel their Curveball Festival last August because the water supply had been contaminated. According to Lang, that sort of catastrophe will be impossible at Woodstock 50. “At Woodstock ’94 [in Saugerties, New York] we had a different sort of water issue since the town didn’t have a big enough reservoir,” says Lang. “We had to put up two 1 million gallon temporary tanks and filled them over the time. That’s the solution we’re going to use this time to make sure the water is potable.”

Lang and the other organizers are still mapping out the site and haven’t settled on an exact capacity yet, but he says it’ll likely be in the six figures. Bringing in that many people may seem like a big challenge, especially since this is the first Woodstock since Bonnaroo, Coachella and nearly every other major festival landed on the scene, but Lang hopes this one will stand out. “We are looking for unique performances,” he says. “A lot of festivals these days are kind of cookie-cutter. Very few of them have any sort of social impact [and] that’s a wasted opportunity.

“Woodstock, in its original incarnation, was really about social change and activism,” he adds. “And that’s a model that we’re bringing back to this festival. It’s a gathering for fun and for excitement and for experiences and to create community, but it’s also about instilling kind of an energy back into young people to make their voices heard, make their votes heard.”

But for now, most people simply want to know who’s playing. And although Lang is talking about “reunions” and “bands from the original Woodstock,” he clamps up when pressed for details. Is there even a slight chance, say, that Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young would put aside their differences for a single night? “I’ve talked to them all individually,” he says. “And it’s a mess.”

What he can say is that they’re going to livestream the event online, bring in clowns and jugglers to roam the grounds, play movies on an enormous screen and, most important to Lang, bring in various NGOs to tell attendees how to get involved in various political causes. “Things on the planet are critical at this point, especially when it comes to global warming,” says Lang. “Everyone has a stake and ignoring it is ridiculous. I really want people to explore how they can get involved. That’s one of my main motivations for doing this.”"

Source:RollingStone (https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/woodstock-50th-anniversary-michael-lang-775588/)

giovonni
11th January 2019, 01:44
Very interesting ...

Brexit debate: What young people really think

Channel 4 News

"These people were just too young to vote in the referendum –
so how do they think Brexit is going"?

Published on Jan 10, 2019

22:01 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCiCcF47RhQ

giovonni
12th January 2019, 11:16
Contradicting modern times ...

Is this the world's most dangerous commute?

BBC News

"One way to travel in the Philippine capital, Manila, is by trolley. Passengers choose this unofficial transport service because it's quicker and cheaper than other options. For the homeless community that runs the illegal service, it puts food on the table. But it's also incredibly dangerous."


Published on Jan 12, 2019

4:39 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xiBu9AkmcA

giovonni
15th January 2019, 01:50
#Payingheed ...

https://zh-prod-1cc738ca-7d3b-4a72-b792-20bd8d8fa069.storage.googleapis.com/s3fs-public/styles/inline_image_desktop/public/inline-images/india%20strike%201.jpg?itok=D2ZPW6YJ

India Just Staged The Biggest Strike In History
As 200 Million Workers Took To The Streets

"In what may be the largest worker strike in history, last week India came to a halt for two days when at least 200 million workers - about 16% of India's 1.25 billion population - in the country's public, services, communications and agriculture sectors staged a strike across the country organized by ten labor unions against what they called the anti-national and anti-worker policies of the BJP-led government, and against a new labor law that would undermine the rights of workers and unions.

The strike is a protest against new legislation that passed on 2 January, and is a de facto verdict on Prime Minister Narendra Modi providing an opportunity for millions of workers to protest against high prices and high levels of unemployment, something we touched upon in "The Indian Railway System Announced 63,000 Job Openings... 19 Million People Applied."

John Dayal, general secretary of the All India Christian Council, told AsiaNews that the event was exceptional, "one of the largest ever organised in the country, planned in advance in every detail." In his view, the most important thing is that it "is taking place on the eve of general elections that will mark the fate of the prime minister".

While the massive strike took place in an overall context of calm, there were numerous incidents confirming that social anger in the world's second most populous nation is also approaching a breaking point: protesters blocked several cities, clashes broke out and damage were reported; a 57-year-old woman died in in Mundagod, a city in northern Karnataka, during a local protest. In Maharashtra more than 5,000 workers blocked the Mumbai-Baroda-Jaipur-Delhi highway. In Puducherry (Pondicherry), on the east coast, protesters hurled stones at a Tamil Nadu state bus. Transport services closed and rail services were disrupted in Kerala. In Odisha (Orissa), shops, schools, offices and markets shut down for 48 hours. In West Bengal, protesters burnt effigies of Prime Minister Modi.

The national strike was an initiative of the Central Trade Unions (CTU), which is an India-wide labor federation. Unions are opposed to the Trade Unions (Amendment) Bill of 2018 which modified the Trade Union Act of 1926.

Under the law, trade union recognition is mandatory at both at national and state level. However, workers believe that the new law grants the government discretionary power in recognizing labor organizations, effectively eliminating the current bargaining process involving employees, employers and the government.

Unions demanded the enactment of the Social Security Act to protect workers and a minimum wage of 24,000 rupees (more than US$ 340) for the unorganised transport sector."

https://zh-prod-1cc738ca-7d3b-4a72-b792-20bd8d8fa069.storage.googleapis.com/s3fs-public/styles/inline_image_desktop/public/inline-images/india%20strike%202.jpg?itok=qfsmP4Pt

"Workers in banking, insurance, healthcare, education, transport, electricity and coal mining also joined the strike. Student groups also protested as did farmers’ associations that have threatened to call a gramin hartal, a rural strike. Farmers have been protesting for months over the harsh conditions in the countryside, burdened by debt and an wave of suicides.

Tapan Sen, secretary general of the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), one of the striking labor organisations, criticized Prime Minister Modi's government for killing the work culture in the country's public sectors by favoring private players in major manufacturing contracts.

Unions also alleged the government had failed to create jobs and grossly ignored unions' 12-point charter of demands besides aggressively pushing for fixed-term employment and amendment to the Trade Union Act, all of which is against the interest of the workers, according to the Economic Times.

Addressing the media after the 2-day strike, Amarjeet Kaur of AITUC said around eight states witnessed a complete shutdown, largely in the northeast, Kerala, Bihar and Goa. There were over 20 crore workers who had joined the strike.

The massive strike comes at an critical inflection point for India, which is one of the world's fastest growing economies, yet isn’t generating enough jobs for its educated young populace.

A recent Washington Post article estimated that the number of people in India between age of 15 and 34 is expected to hit 480 million by the year 2021. They have higher literacy levels and are staying in school longer than any other previous generation. The surge of youths could be an immense opportunity for the country, if it can find a way to put them to work. But the employment trends in the country remain gloomy.

An analysis performed by Azim Premji University shows that unemployment between 2011 and 2016 in nearly all Indian states was rising. The jobless rates for younger people and those with higher education also increased sharply. For instance, for college graduates, it grew from 4.1% to 8.4%."

https://zh-prod-1cc738ca-7d3b-4a72-b792-20bd8d8fa069.storage.googleapis.com/s3fs-public/styles/inline_image_desktop/public/inline-images/india%201_0.png?itok=zXqrlZig

"Ajit Ghose, an economist at the Institute for Human Development in Delhi, said that the country needs to generate jobs not just for the 6 million to 8 million new workforce entrants annually, but also for people like women who are working less than they would be if they could get jobs at a decent wage. The same economist notes that India has about 104 million "surplus" workers.

Expanding the labor market that much is a tall task for any government, not just India. Modi's track record of job creation also remains somewhat of a mystery, as the country hasn’t offered nationwide employment data since 2016. The ministries of labor and statistics have conducted surveys of Indian households, but the results have not been made public.

Amit Basole, an economist at Azim Premji University, said: “It’s anybody’s guess whether we’ll see any employment statistics come out before the 2019 elections.”

https://zh-prod-1cc738ca-7d3b-4a72-b792-20bd8d8fa069.storage.googleapis.com/s3fs-public/styles/inline_image_desktop/public/inline-images/india%202_0.png?itok=JJM8CVzQ

*"What happens after this unprecedented show of force by India's workers? Probably more of the same: unions threatened to follow last week's strike with an indefinite strike if government does not heed to their demands. The general secretary for one of the labor unions, HMS, said the unions collectively decided to go on indefinite strike if the government does not respond to the “historic” strike this time.

If that happens, India's record as one of the world's fastest growing economies will soon be tarnished. As for the bigger picture, one where general popular - and populist - discontent around the globe is rapidly spreading and affecting not only developed nations (Trump, Brexit, most of Europe), but also the developing world.

Whether the unions will get what they want is unclear, but one thing is certain: India's even more populous neighbor, China, is very closely following these restive worker developments and doing everything in its power to stop its own population from getting similar thoughts."

Source: Zeroghedge.com (https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-01-14/india-just-staged-biggest-strike-history-200-million-workers-took-streets)

giovonni
17th January 2019, 08:34
Taking it like a man ...

https://media.newyorker.com/photos/5c3f67edf92c694343cc7485/4:3/w_446,c_limit/DC011619edit2.jpg


Gillette's Ad Proves the Definition of a Good Man Has Changed

Once again, the country seems divided. This time, it’s not a border wall or a health care proposal driving the animus, but an online ad for a men’s razor, because, of course. But underneath the controversy lies something much more important: signs of real change.

On January 13, Gillette released a new ad that takes the company’s 30-year-old slogan, “The Best a Man Can Get,” and turns it into an introspective reflection on toxic masculinity very much of this cultural moment. Titled “We Believe,” the nearly two-minute video features a diverse cast of boys getting bullied, of teens watching media representatives of macho guys objectifying women, and of men looking into the mirror while news reports of #MeToo and toxic masculinity play in the background. A voiceover asks “Is this the best a man can get?” The answer is no, and the film shows how men can do better by actively pointing out toxic behavior, intervening when other men catcall or sexually harass, and helping protect their children from bullies. The ad blew up; as of Wednesday afternoon it has more than 12 million views on YouTube, and #GilletteAd has trended on Twitter nationwide. Parents across Facebook shared the YouTube link in droves, many mentioning how the ad brought them to tears."


https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=koPmuEyP3a0

"And then, with perfect internet timing, the backlash came. The ad played differently with men’s rights activists, Fox News, and the Piers Morgans of the world. People shared videos and photos throwing disposable razors into the toilet (not a good idea—they aren’t exactly flushable). Men argued that the ad was anti-male, that it lumped all men in together as sexists, and that it denigrated traditional masculine qualities. But whatever noise has surrounded it, the fact that "We Believe" exists at all is an undeniable sign of progress.

“Advertising reflects society,” says Henry Assael, professor of marketing at NYU Stern School of Business. They’ve also become yet another battleground in the country’s larger culture wars. Though some people have made hay on Twitter about never using Gillette again, Assael says buying habits, particularly with something as habitual as a razor, are hard to break. He estimates most people don’t really follow through with their threats to abandon a brand over controversies like this. Take Nike and its ads featuring Colin Kaepernick last year: While there were vocal calls for boycotting the company at the time, it wound up reporting stronger than expected growth in its most recent earnings report.

Gillette’s ad plays on the feeling that men right now want to be better, but don’t necessarily know how. When Gillette was researching market trends last year, in the wake of #MeToo and a national conversation about the behavior of some of the country’s most powerful men, the company asked men how to define being a great man, according to Pankaj Bhalla, North American brand director for Gillette. The company conducted focus groups with men and women across the country, in their homes, and in online surveys. What Bhalla says the team heard over and over again was men saying: “I know I'm not a bad guy. I’m not that person. I know that, but what I don't know is how can I be the best version of ourselves?”

“And literally we asked ourselves the same question as a brand. How can we be a better version of ourselves?” Bhalla adds. The answer is this ad campaign, and a promise to donate $1 million a year for three years to nonprofits that support boys and men being positive role models.

There's broader evidence as well that the mainstream concept of masculinity is evolving. Last summer, the American Psychological Association issued guidelines saying that “traditional masculinity ideology” can be harmful for boys and men. When the guidelines got media attention last week, they received a fair share of criticism from conservatives, who viewed them as an attack on long-standing male traits.

Since the #MeToo era ramped up in 2017, the question has been: Will this change anything? Advertising can be a litmus test for where a culture is—an imperfect one at times, but a useful one. Companies run ads to make money, so they wouldn’t knowingly risk espousing beliefs that the majority abhor. Advertising is not so much about creating a new desire as it is about playing into what people already want.

“Advertising is in the business of reading cultural trends, that's what they do,” says Lisa Jacobson, professor of history at the University of California Santa Barbara who focuses on the history of consumer culture. “They spend a lot of time reading culture, thinking about culture, focus-grouping cultural shifts, so they are attuned to it.”

Gillette's Bhalla acknowledges that the company would not have made this ad a decade ago. “The insight that ‘I am not the bad guy but I don't know how to be a great guy,’ that insight wouldn’t have come 10 years ago, because this wasn’t in our ether. It wasn't in our society at the time,” he says.

Even today, Bhalla and his team knew the ad would not please everyone. An ad addressing such overtly controversial ideas is inherently risky. It could backfire and appear craven, as Pepsi’s Kendall Jenner ad did when it seemed to trivialize Black Lives Matter, and it could alienate existing and future customers. “We Believe” has about 713,000 dislikes on YouTube.

At the same time, thousands of people are talking about the ad online, and the campaign has prominent coverage in media outlets like this one. “It's a calculated gamble,” says Jacobson. Even if Gillette does lose a few MRA activists, it stands to gain more new customers than it will lose.

Daniel Pope, a historian who has written extensively about advertising in America, says that although this ad is clearly speaking to certain anxieties and desires in the culture, it’s a classically segmented or targeted ad. “Given the hostility that it's brought forth from conservatives and anti-feminist circles, [it’s clear] they are not appealing to everybody here. They are looking to a particular demographic based on perhaps political beliefs, education levels, feelings of gender equality.”

Jacobson also notes the tropes of the ad appear to make an explicit play for millennial and Generation Z men, who are the generations most embracing and driving the change in masculinity. It's similarly an appeal to the mothers who buy their sons their first razors. Going after women is a smart business move, since women often do a majority of the household shopping, and Pope notes women also make up a good percentage of Gillette’s customer base. (Bhalla told WIRED the gender breakdown of Gillette customers is roughly 60 percent to 70 percent male, but that doesn’t necessarily capture cases where women are buying products for the men in their lives.)

Though Gillette didn’t say this outright, the ad also works as a sort of corporate prophylactic against allegations of sexism or insensitivity, which many corporations have faced lately. Gillette is a subsidiary of Procter & Gamble, which sells many family and women-focused products in its other brand lines. “I have a feeling it was very much a corporate decision,” says Assael.

Gillette’s older ads showed clean-shaven men kissing women, sending the message that the right shave can win you the girl. In 2013, the company launched a campaign called “Kiss and Tell,” which asked couples to make out before and after the man had shaved and then report back.

The company is not alone in abandoning ad campaigns based on this kind of “women as object and reward” messaging. In fact, it’s following in the footsteps of Axe Body Spray, which for years relied on the idea that if you sprayed the stuff on women would come running. In 2017, Axe parent company Unilever unveiled a new ad campaign called “It’s OK for Guys,” which fought the idea of toxic masculinity by making it clear that it's OK for men to have emotions, or be skinny, or not like sports. Like Procter & Gamble, Unilever has many family brands under its umbrella, and it was perhaps no longer appropriate to have Axe’s brand out there selling stereotypical machismo.

It’s not only stereotypical gender roles that the Gillette ad attempts to dismantle; it also subverts harmful racial stereotypes. The ad opens with an African American man contemplating his face in the mirror, and it highlights Terry Crews’ congressional testimony in which he advocated for men to stand up and intervene in toxic culture. It goes on to show African American fathers supporting their daughters, educating other men about sexist behavior, and protecting women from catcalling.

“I think this is a subconscious reason why this is getting under the skin of Piers Morgan and Fox and Friends," says Jacobson. "It's because this is inverting an old narrative in which white supremacists or just casual racists have attributed toxic masculinity to African American men.”

She’s talking about the racist stereotypes that paint African American males as prone to criminal behavior like sexual assault, or as absentee fathers. By showing black men intervening to stop these behaviors—which the ad shows largely being undertaken by white men—it subtly rejects those harmful tropes.

This careful treatment of race is not necessarily the norm in advertising. According to Assael, the industry was slow to adopt racial inclusiveness and diversity even after the civil rights movement. Gillette’s ad was handled with uncharacteristic thoughtfulness.

Much of the reaction to Gillette’s ad has been positive. Across the board, media and ad experts WIRED spoke to agreed the commercial was clever and as emotionally moving as an ad can really ever hope to be. Though the backlash to it clearly shows that the cultural divisions in America persist, its very existence is proof that the old definitions are masculinity are changing."



Source: Wired (https://www.wired.com/story/gillette-we-believe-ad-men-backlash/amp)

giovonni
18th January 2019, 23:52
Something i am totally for ...

https://proxy.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fsecondnexus.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2017%2F03%2Fmaxresdefault.jpg&f=1

Death on demand: has euthanasia gone too far?

Countries around the world are making it easier to choose the time and manner of your death ...
But doctors in the world’s euthanasia capital are starting to worry about the consequences

By Christopher de Bellaigue

"Last year a Dutch doctor called Bert Keizer was summoned to the house of a man dying of lung cancer, in order to end his life. When Keizer and the nurse who was to assist him arrived, they found around 35 people gathered around the dying man’s bed. “They were drinking and guffawing and crying,” Keizer told me when I met him in Amsterdam recently. “It was boisterous. And I thought: ‘How am I going to cleave the waters?’ But the man knew exactly what to do. Suddenly he said, ‘OK, guys!’ and everyone understood. Everyone fell silent. The very small children were taken out of the room and I gave him his injection. I could have kissed him, because I wouldn’t have known how to break up the party.”

Keizer is one of around 60 physicians on the books of the Levenseindekliniek, or End of Life Clinic, which matches doctors willing to perform euthanasia with patients seeking an end to their lives, and which was responsible for the euthanasia of some 750 people in 2017. For Keizer, who was a philosopher before studying medicine, the advent of widespread access to euthanasia represents a new era. “For the first time in history,” he told me, “we have developed a space where people move towards death while we are touching them and they are in our midst. That’s completely different from killing yourself when your wife’s out shopping and the kids are at school and you hang yourself in the library – which is the most horrible way of doing it, because the wound never heals. The fact that you are a person means that you are linked to other people. And we have found a bearable way of severing that link, not by a natural death, but by a self-willed ending. It’s a very special thing.”

This “special thing” has in fact become normal. Everyone in the Netherlands seems to have known someone who has been euthanised, and the kind of choreographed farewell that Keizer describes is far from unusual. Certainly, the idea that we humans have a variety of deaths to choose from is more familiar in the Netherlands than anywhere else. But the long-term consequences of this idea are only just becoming discernible. Euthanasia has been legal in the Netherlands for long enough to show what can happen after the practice beds in. And as an end-of-life specialist in a nation that has for decades been the standard bearer of libertarian reform, Keizer may be a witness to the future that awaits us all.

In 2002, the parliament in the Hague legalised euthanasia for patients experiencing “unbearable suffering with no prospect of improvement”. Since then, euthanasia and its close relation, assisted dying, in which one person facilitates the suicide of another, have been embraced by Belgium and Canada, while public opinion in many countries where it isn’t on the national statute, such as Britain, the US and New Zealand, has swung heavily in favour.

The momentum of euthanasia appears unstoppable; after Colombia, in 2015, and the Australian state of Victoria, in 2017, Spain may be the next big jurisdiction to legalise physician-assisted death, while one in six Americans (the majority of them in California) live in states where it is legal. In Switzerland, which has the world’s oldest assisted dying laws, foreigners are also able to obtain euthanasia.

If western society continues to follow the Dutch, Belgian and Canadian examples, there is every chance that in a few decades’ time euthanasia will be one widely available option from a menu of possible deaths, including an “end of life” poison pill available on demand to anyone who finds life unbearable. For many greying baby boomers – veterans of earlier struggles to legalise abortion and contraception – a civilised death at a time of their choosing is a right that the state should provide and regulate. As this generation enters its final years, the precept that life is precious irrespective of one’s medical condition is being called into question as never before.

As the world’s pioneer, the Netherlands has also discovered that although legalising euthanasia might resolve one ethical conundrum, it opens a can of others – most importantly, where the limits of the practice should be drawn. In the past few years a small but influential group of academics and jurists have raised the alarm over what is generally referred to, a little archly, as the “slippery slope” – the idea that a measure introduced to provide relief to late-stage cancer patients has expanded to include people who might otherwise live for many years, from sufferers of muscle-wasting diseases such as multiple sclerosis to sexagenarians with dementia and even mentally ill young people.

Perhaps the most prominent of these sceptics is Theo Boer, who teaches ethics at the Theological University of Kampen. Between 2005 and 2014, Boer was a member of one of the five regional boards that were set up to review every act of euthanasia and hand cases over to prosecutors if irregularities are detected. (Each review board is composed of a lawyer, a doctor and an ethicist.) Recent government figures suggest that doubts over the direction of Dutch euthanasia are having an effect on the willingness of doctors to perform the procedure. In November, the health ministry revealed that in the first nine months of 2018 the number of cases was down 9% compared to the same period in 2017, the first drop since 2006. In a related sign of a more hostile legal environment, shortly afterwards the judiciary announced the first prosecution of a doctor for malpractice while administering euthanasia.

It is too early to say if euthanasia in the Netherlands has reached a high-water mark – and too early to say if the other countries that are currently making it easier to have an assisted death will also hesitate if the practice comes to be seen as too widespread. But it is significant that in addition to the passionate advocacy of Bert Keizer – who positively welcomes the “slippery slope” – Boer’s more critical views are being solicited by foreign parliamentarians and ethicists who are considering legal changes in their own countries. As Boer explained to me, “when I’m showing the statistics to people in Portugal or Iceland or wherever, I say: ‘Look closely at the Netherlands because this is where your country may be 20 years from now.’”

“The process of bringing in euthanasia legislation began with a desire to deal with the most heartbreaking cases – really terrible forms of death,” Boer said. “But there have been important changes in the way the law is applied. We have put in motion something that we have now discovered has more consequences than we ever imagined.”

Bert Keizer carried out his first euthanasia in 1984. Back then, when he was working as a doctor in a care home, ending the life of a desperately ill person at their request was illegal, even if prosecutions were rare. When a retired shoemaker called Antonius Albertus, who was dying of lung cancer, asked to be put out of his misery, Keizer found that two sides of himself – the law-abiding doctor and the altruist – were at odds.

“Antonius wasn’t in pain,” Keizer told me, “but he had that particular exhaustion that every oncologist knows, a harrowing exhaustion, and I saw him dwindle before me.” In the event, Keizer, who as an 11-year-old watched his mother suffer an excruciating death from liver disease, went with the altruist. He injected 40mg of Valium into Antonius – enough to put him in a coma – then gave him the anti-respiratory drug that ended his life.

Keizer was not investigated after reporting an unnatural death at his own hand, and his career did not suffer as he feared it might. But what, I asked him, had prompted him to break the law, and violate a principle – the preservation of life – that has defined medical ethics since Hippocrates? Keizer paused to brush away a spider that had crawled uninvited on to my shoulder. “It was something very selfish,” he replied. “If ever I was in his situation, asking for death, I would want people to listen to me, and not say, ‘It cannot be done because of the law or the Bible.’”

Over the past few decades the Bible has been increasingly sidelined, and the law has vindicated the young doctor who put Antonius to sleep. As people got used to the new law, the number of Dutch people being euthanised began to rise sharply, from under 2,000 in 2007 to almost 6,600 in 2017. (Around the same number are estimated to have had their euthanasia request turned down as not conforming with the legal requirements.) Also in 2017, some 1,900 Dutch people killed themselves, while the number of people who died under palliative sedation – in theory, succumbing to their illness while cocooned from physical discomfort, but in practice often dying of dehydration while unconscious – hit an astonishing 32,000. Altogether, well over a quarter of all deaths in 2017 in the Netherlands were induced."

"One of the reasons why euthanasia became more common after 2007 is that the range of conditions considered eligible expanded, while the definition of “unbearable suffering” that is central to the law was also loosened. At the same time, murmurs of apprehension began to be heard, which, even in the marvellously decorous chamber of Dutch public debate, have risen in volume. Concerns centre on two issues with strong relevance to euthanasia: dementia and autonomy.

Many Dutch people write advance directives that stipulate that if their mental state later deteriorates beyond a certain point – if, say, they are unable to recognise family members – they are to be euthanised regardless of whether they dissent from their original wishes. But Last January a medical ethicist called Berna Van Baarsen caused a stir when she resigned from one of the review boards in protest at the growing frequency with which dementia sufferers are being euthanised on the basis of a written directive that they are unable to confirm after losing their faculties. “It is fundamentally impossible,” she told the newspaper Trouw, “to establish that the patient is suffering unbearably, because he can no longer explain it.”

Van Baarsen’s scruples have crystallised in the country’s first euthanasia malpractice case, which prosecutors are now preparing. (Three further cases are currently under investigation.) It involves a dementia sufferer who had asked to be killed when the “time” was “right”, but when her doctor judged this to be the case, she resisted. The patient had to be drugged and restrained by her family before she finally submitted to the doctor’s fatal injection. The doctor who administered the dose – who has not been identified – has defended her actions by saying that she was fulfilling her patient’s request and that, since the patient was incompetent, her protests before her death were irrelevant. Whatever the legal merits of her argument, it hardly changes what must have been a scene of unutterable grimness.

The underlying problem with the advance directives is that they imply the subordination of an irrational human being to their rational former self, essentially splitting a single person into two mutually opposed ones. Many doctors, having watched patients adapt to circumstances they had once expected to find intolerable, doubt whether anyone can accurately predict what they will want after their condition worsens.

The second conflict that has crept in as euthanasia has been normalised is a societal one. It comes up when there is an opposition between the right of the individual and society’s obligation to protect lives. “The euthanasia requests that are the most problematic,” explains Agnes van der Heide, professor of medical care and end-of-life decision-making at the Erasmus Medical Centre in Rotterdam, “are those that are based on the patient’s autonomy, which leads them to tell the doctor: ‘You aren’t the one to judge whether I am to die.’” She doesn’t expect this impulse, already strong among baby boomers, to diminish among coming generations. “For our young people, the autonomy principle is at the forefront of their thinking.”

The growing divisions over euthanasia are being reflected in the deliberations of the review boards. Consensus is rarer than it was when the only cases that came before them involved patients with late-stage terminal illnesses, who were of sound mind. Since her resignation, Berna Van Baarsen has complained that “legal arguments weigh more and more heavily” on the committees, “while the moral question of whether in certain cases good is done by killing, threatens to get snowed under”.

In this new, more ambiguous environment, the recent dip in euthanasia numbers doesn’t seem surprising. Besides their fear of attracting prosecutors’ attention, some doctors have been irked by the growing public perception that they are no-questions-asked purveyors of dignified death, and are pushing back. For Dutch GPs, fielding demands for euthanasia from assertive patients who resent the slightest reluctance on the part of their physician has become one of the more disagreeable aspects of their job.

“In the coldest weeks of last winter,” Theo Boer told me, “a doctor friend of mine was told by an elderly patient: ‘I demand to have euthanasia this week – you promised.’ The doctor replied: ‘It’s -15C outside. Take a bottle of whisky and sit in your garden and we will find you tomorrow, because I cannot accept that you make me responsible for your own suicide.’ The doctor in question, Boer said, used to perform euthanasia on around three people a year. He has now stopped altogether.

Although he supported the 2002 euthanasia law at the time, Boer now regrets that it didn’t stipulate that the patient must be competent at the time of termination, and that if possible the patient should administer the fatal dose themselves. Boer is also concerned about the psychological effect on doctors of killing someone with a substantial life expectancy: “When you euthanise a final-stage cancer patient, you know that even if your decision is problematic, that person would have died anyway. But when that person might have lived decades, what is always in your mind is that they might have found a new balance in their life.”

In November 2016, Monique and Bert de Gooijer, a couple from Tilburg, became minor celebrities when a regional paper, the Brabants Dagblad, devoted an entire issue to the euthanasia of their son, an obese, darkly humorous, profoundly disturbed 38-year-old called Eelco. His euthanasia was one of the first high-profile cases involving a young person suffering from mental illness. Of the hundreds of reactions the newspaper received, most of them supportive, the one that made the biggest impression on the de Gooijers came from a woman whose daughter had gone out one day, taking the empty bottles to the store, and walked in front of a train. “She envied us,” Monique told me as I sat with her and Bert in their front room, “because she didn’t know why her daughter had done it. She said: ‘You were able to ask Eelco every question you had. I have only questions.’”

Privately, even surreptitiously undertaken, suicide leaves behind shattered lives. Even when it goes according to plan, someone finds a body. That openly discussed euthanasia can cushion or even obviate much of this hurt is something I hadn’t really considered before meeting the de Gooijers. Nor had I fully savoured the irony that suicide, with its high risk of failure and collateral damage, was illegal across Europe until a few decades ago, while euthanasia, with its apparently more benign – at least, more manageable – consequences, remains illegal in most countries.

Whatever the act of killing a physically healthy young man tells us about Dutch views of human wellbeing, the demise of Eelco de Gooijer didn’t traumatise a train driver or a weekender fishing in a canal. Eelco was euthanised only after long thought and discussions with his family. He enjoyed a good laugh with the undertaker who had come to take his measurements for a super-size coffin. He was able to say farewell to everyone who loved him, and he died, as Monique and Bert assured me, at peace. There might be a word for this kind of suicide, the kind that is acceptable to all parties. Call it consensual.

“You try to make your child happy,” Monique said in her matter-of-fact way, “but Eelco wasn’t happy in life. He wanted to stop suffering, and death was the only way.” Eelco came of age just as euthanasia was being legalised. After years of being examined by psychiatrists who made multiple diagnoses and prescribed a variety of ineffective remedies, he began pestering the doctors of Tilburg to end his life.

Euthanasia is counted as a basic health service, covered by the monthly premium that every citizen pays to his or her insurance company. But doctors are within their rights not to carry it out. Unique among medical procedures, a successful euthanasia isn’t something you can assess with your patient after the event. A small minority of doctors refuse to perform it for this reason, and others because of religious qualms. Some simply cannot get their heads around the idea that they must kill people they came into medicine in order to save."

Those who demur on principle are a small proportion of the profession, perhaps less than 8%, according to the end-of-life specialist Agnes van der Heide. The reason why there is no uniformity of response to requests for euthanasia is that the doctor’s personal views – on what constitutes “unbearable suffering”, for instance – often weigh decisively. As the most solemn and consequential intervention a Dutch physician can be asked to make, and this in a profession that aims to standardise responses to all eventualities, the decision to kill is oddly contingent on a single, mercurial human conscience.

A category of euthanasia request that Dutch doctors commonly reject is that of a mentally ill person whose desire to die could be interpreted as a symptom of a treatable psychiatric disease – Eelco de Gooijer, in other words. Eelco was turned down by two doctors in Tilburg; one of them balked at doing the deed because she was pregnant. In desperation, Eelco turned to the Levenseindekliniek. With its ideological commitment to euthanasia and cadre of specialist doctors, it has done much to help widen the scope of the practice, and one of its teams ended Eelco’s misery on 23 November 2016. A second team from the same clinic killed another psychologically disturbed youngster, Aurelia Brouwers, early last year.

Ideally euthanasia is a structure with three struts: patient, doctor and the patient’s loved ones. In the case of Eelco de Gooijer, the struts were sturdy and aligned. Eelco’s death was accomplished with compassion, circumspection and scrupulous regard for the feelings of all concerned. It’s little wonder that the Dutch Voluntary Euthanasia Society, or NVVE, vaunts it as an example of euthanasia at its best.

After leaving the de Gooijers, I drove northwards, bisecting hectares of plant nurseries, skirting Tesla’s European factory, to a conference organised by the NVVE. Apart from being the parent organisation of the Levenseindekliek, the NVVE, with its membership of 170,000 (bigger than any Dutch political party) and rolling programme of public meetings, is one of the most powerful interest groups in the Netherlands. The conference that day was aimed at tackling psychiatrists’ well known opposition to euthanasia for psychiatric cases – in effect, trying to break down the considerable opposition that remains among psychiatrists to euthanising disturbed youngsters like Eelco and Aurelia.

The conference centre on the outskirts of Driebergen stood amid tall conifers and beehives. I was offered a beaker of curried pumpkin soup while the session that was underway when I arrived – titled “Guidelines for terminating life on the request of a patient with a psychiatric disorder” – came to an orderly close in the lecture hall. Precisely three minutes behind schedule, the Dutch planned-death establishment debouched for refreshments.

I had met my first NVVE member quite by chance in Amsterdam. After watching her mother die incontinent and addled, this woman of around 70 signed an advance directive requesting euthanasia should she get dementia or lose control of her bowels. These conditions currently dominate the euthanasia debate, because so many people in their 60s and 70s want an opt-out from suffering they have observed in their parents. When I mentioned to the woman in Amsterdam the reluctance of many doctors to euthanise someone who isn’t mentally competent, she replied, bristling: “No doctor has the right to decide when my life should end.”

At any meeting organised by the NVVE, you will look in vain for poor people, pious Christians or members of the Netherlands’ sizeable Muslim minority. Borne along by the ultra-rational spirit of Dutch libertarianism (the spirit that made the Netherlands a pioneer in reforming laws on drugs, sex and pornography), the Dutch euthanasia scene also exudes a strong whiff of upper-middle class entitlement.

Over coffee I was introduced to Steven Pleiter, the director of the Levenseindekliniek. We went outside and basked in the early October sun as he described the “shift in mindset” he is trying to achieve. Choosing his words with care, Pleiter said he hoped that in future doctors will feel more confident accommodating demands for “the most complex varieties of euthanasia, like psychiatric illnesses and dementia” – not through a change in the law, he added, but through a kind of “acceptance … that grows and grows over the years”. When I asked him if he understood the scruples of those doctors who refuse to perform euthanasia because they entered their profession in order to save lives, he replied: “If the situation is unbearable and there is no prospect of improvement, and euthanasia is an option, it would be almost unethical [of a doctor] not to help that person.”

After the Levenseindekliniek was founded in 2012, Pleiter sat down with the insurance companies to work out what they would pay the clinic for each euthanasia procedure its doctors perform. The current figure is €3,000, payable to the clinic even if the applicant pulls out at the last minute. I suggested to Pleiter that the insurance companies must prefer to pay a one-off fee for euthanising someone to spending a vast sum in order to keep that person, needy and unproductive, alive in a nursing home.

Pleiter’s pained expression suggested that I had introduced a note of cynicism into a discussion that should be conducted on a more elevated plane. “There’s not an atom in my body that is in sympathy with what you are describing,” he replied. “This isn’t about money … it’s about empathy, ethics, compassion.” And he restated the credo that animates right-to-die movements everywhere: ‘I strongly believe there is no need for suffering.’

That not all planned deaths correspond to the experiences of Bert Keizer or the de Gooijer family is something one can easily forget amid the generally positive aura that surrounds euthanasia. The more I learned about it, the more it seemed that euthanasia, while assigning commendable value to the end of life, might simultaneously cheapen life itself. Another factor I hadn’t appreciated was the possibility of collateral damage. In an event as delicately contractual as euthanasia, there are different varieties of suffering.

Back in the days when euthanasia was illegal but tolerated, the euthanising doctor was obliged to consult the relatives of the person who had asked to die. Due to qualms over personal autonomy and patient-doctor confidentiality – and an entirely proper concern to protect vulnerable people from unscrupulous relatives – this obligation didn’t make it into the 2002 law that legalised euthanasia.

This legal nicety would become painfully significant to a middle-aged motorcycle salesman from Zwolle called Marc Veld. In the spring of last year, he began to suspect that his mother, Marijke, was planning to be euthanised, but he never got the opportunity to explain to her doctor why, in his view, her suffering was neither unbearable nor impossible to alleviate. On 9 June, the doctor phoned him and said: “I’m sorry, your mother passed away half an hour ago.”

Marc showed me a picture he had taken of Marijke in her coffin, her white hair carefully brushed and her skin glowing with the smooth, even foundation of the mortuary beautician. Between her hands was a letter Marc had put there and would be buried with her – a letter detailing his unhappiness, resentment and guilt."

"There is little doubt that Marijke spent much of her 76 years in torment, beginning with her infancy in a Japanese concentration camp after the invasion of the Dutch East Indies, in 1941, and recurring during her unhappy adulthood in the Netherlands. But Dutch doctors don’t euthanise people because of depression – even if the more extreme advocates of the right to die think they should. As a result, it isn’t uncommon for depressives or lonely people to emphasise a physical ailment in order to get their euthanasia request approved. During his time on the review board, Theo Boer came across several cases in which the “death wish preceded the physical illness … some patients are happy to be able to ask for euthanasia on the basis of a physical reason, while the real reason is deeper”.

In Marijke’s case, the physical reason was a terminal lung disease, which, Marc told me, she both exacerbated and exaggerated. She did this by cancelling physiotherapy sessions that might have slowed its progress, bombarding her GP with complaints about shortness of breath and slumping “like a sack of potatoes” whenever he visited. “To be sure of being euthanised,” Marc said drily, “you need above all to take acting lessons.”

What torments him today is that his mother died while there was hope that her illness could be slowed. “If she had cancer and was feeling pain and it was the last three months of her life, I would have been happy for her to have euthanasia. But she could have lived at least a few more years.”

Defenders of personal autonomy would say that Marc had no business interfering in his mother’s death, but beneath his anger lies the inconsolable sadness of a son who blames himself for not doing more. Marijke’s euthanasia was carried out according to the law, and will raise no alarms in the review board. It was also carried out without regard to her relatedness to other human beings.

For all the safeguards that have been put in place against the manipulation of applicants for euthanasia, in cases where patients do include relatives in their decision-making, it can never be entirely foreclosed, as I discovered in a GP’s surgery in Wallonia, the French-speaking part of Belgium.

The GP in question – we’ll call her Marie-Louise – is a self-confessed idealist who sees it as her mission to “care, care, care”. In 2017, one of her patients, a man in late middle-age, was diagnosed with dementia and signed a directive asking for euthanasia when his condition worsened. As his mind faltered, however, so did his resolve – which did not please his wife, who became an evangelist for her husband’s death. “He must have changed his mind 20 times,” Marie-Louise said. “I saw the pressure she was applying.”

In order to illustrate one of the woman’s outbursts, Marie-Louise rose from her desk, walked over to the filing cabinet and, adopting the persona of the infuriated wife, slammed down her fist, exclaiming, “If only he had the courage! Coward!”

Most medical ethicists would approve of Marie-Louise’s refusal to euthanise a patient who had been pressured. By the time she went away on holiday last summer, she believed she had won from her patient an undertaking not to press for euthanasia. But she had not reckoned with her own colleague in the practice, a doctor who takes a favourable line towards euthanasia, and when Marie-Louise returned from holidays she found out that this colleague had euthanised her patient.

When I visited Marie-Louise several months after the event, she remained bewildered by what had happened. As with Marc, guilt was a factor; if she hadn’t gone away, would her patient still be alive? Now she was making plans to leave the practice, but hadn’t yet made an announcement for fear of unsettling her other patients. “How can I stay here?” she said. “I am a doctor and yet I can’t guarantee the safety of my most vulnerable patients.”

While for many people whose loved ones have been euthanised, the procedure can be satisfactory and even inspiring, in others it has caused hurt and inner conflict. Bert Keizer rightly observes that suicide leaves scars on friends and family that may never heal. But suicide is an individual act, self-motivated and self-administered, and its force field is contained. Euthanasia, by contrast, is the product of society. When it goes wrong, it goes wrong for everyone.

Even as law and culture make euthanasia seem more normal, it remains among the most unfamiliar acts a society can condone. It isn’t enough that the legal niceties be observed; there needs to be agreement among the interested parties on why it is taking place, and to what end. Without consensus on these basic motivations, euthanasia won’t be an occasion for empathy, ethics or compassion, but a bludgeon swinging through people’s lives, whose handiwork cannot be undone.

Two years ago the Netherlands’ health and justice ministers issued a joint proposal for a “completed life” pill that would give anyone over 70 years of age the right to receive a lethal poison, cutting the doctor out of the equation completely. In the event, the fragmented nature of Dutch coalition politics stopped the proposal in its tracks, but doctors and end-of-life specialists I spoke to expect legislation to introduce such a completed-life bill to come before parliament in due course."

Assuming it could be properly safeguarded (a big assumption), the completed-life pill would not necessarily displease many doctors I spoke to; it would allow them to get back to saving lives. But while some applicants for euthanasia are furious with doctors who turn them down, in practice people are unwilling to take their own lives. Rather than drink the poison or open the drip, 95% of applicants for active life termination in the Netherlands ask a doctor to kill them. In a society that vaunts its rejection of established figures of authority, when it comes to death, everyone asks for Mummy.

Even those who have grave worries about the slippery slope concede that consensual euthanasia for terminal illness can be a beautiful thing, and that the principle of death at a time of one’s choosing can fit into a framework of care. The question for any country contemplating euthanasia legislation is whether the practice must inevitably expand – in which case, as Agnes van der Heide recognises, death will eventually “get a different meaning, be appreciated differently”. In the Netherlands many people would argue that – for all the current wobbles – that process is now irreversible."



Source: theguardian.com (https://www.theguardian.com/news/2019/jan/18/death-on-demand-has-euthanasia-gone-too-far-netherlands-assisted-dying)


Christopher de Bellaigue will chair a discussion on euthanasia at the Dutch Centre in London EC2 on 23 Wednesday Jan at 7pm. See dutchcentre.com. This article was supported by funding from the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting

Aragorn
19th January 2019, 00:29
A great article -- thanks, Gio. This is indeed an ethically very complicated issue. One of my close family members was euthanized, albeit that I had no knowledge of that until after it had come to pass. And when I then learned about it, all I could think was "I'm glad I didn't have to be involved in making that decision." :hmm:

Kathy
19th January 2019, 20:49
A great article -- thanks, Gio. This is indeed an ethically very complicated issue. One of my close family members was euthanized, albeit that I had no knowledge of that until after it had come to pass. And when I then learned about it, all I could think was "I'm glad I didn't have to be involved in making that decision." :hmm:

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(Human rights documentary)


Violence against women is a violation of human rights, but it happens around the world. The documentary gives a voice to women from Asia, Africa and Europe. [Online until: 18.02.2019]

We meet women in Benin, Bangladesh and the Democratic Republic of Congo who have been victims of horrific violence, yet fought their way free. Across the world, violence against women is commonplace. Women aged between 15 and 45 are far more likely to be beaten to death or crippled by their husbands than die from cancer or malaria, in a traffic accident or as a result of war. The United Nations estimates that in some countries of the world, up to 70 percent of all women are victims of physical or sexual violence at least once in their lifetime - mostly inflicted by their husbands or partners. Meanwhile, many men describe violence against women as a normal part of their daily lives. If the woman is beaten, she deserves it. They see a strong, confident woman as a threat. If a wife stands up to a husband, he can take her children away from her and throw her out - penniless. Violence against women is not restricted to specific parts of the world and has nothing to do with levels of education. It can happen in all cultures and all countries."

Published on Jan 19, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NMuviV9oZiE

Aragorn
20th January 2019, 15:15
"For all the world to see" ...


Violence against women around the world | DW Documentary

(Human rights documentary)


Violence against women is a violation of human rights, but it happens around the world. The documentary gives a voice to women from Asia, Africa and Europe. [Online until: 18.02.2019]

We meet women in Benin, Bangladesh and the Democratic Republic of Congo who have been victims of horrific violence, yet fought their way free. Across the world, violence against women is commonplace. Women aged between 15 and 45 are far more likely to be beaten to death or crippled by their husbands than die from cancer or malaria, in a traffic accident or as a result of war. The United Nations estimates that in some countries of the world, up to 70 percent of all women are victims of physical or sexual violence at least once in their lifetime - mostly inflicted by their husbands or partners. Meanwhile, many men describe violence against women as a normal part of their daily lives. If the woman is beaten, she deserves it. They see a strong, confident woman as a threat. If a wife stands up to a husband, he can take her children away from her and throw her out - penniless. Violence against women is not restricted to specific parts of the world and has nothing to do with levels of education. It can happen in all cultures and all countries."

[...]


As a tribute to all women everywhere on Earth...




https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O5-c79LQ3aM

giovonni
20th January 2019, 19:44
Withdrawal ...
A growing worldwide social phenomenon ...

Rent-a-sister: Coaxing Japan’s hikikomori men out of their bedrooms

BBC News

"At least half a million young men in Japan are thought to have withdrawn from society, and refuse to leave their bedrooms. They’re known as hikikomori.

Their families often don’t know what to do, but one organisation is offering ‘sisters for hire’ to help coax these young men out of their isolation.

A film by Amelia Martyn-Hemphill for BBC World Hacks."

Published on Jan 20, 2019

12:55 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9IRmUEsz6g

giovonni
22nd January 2019, 11:07
Great idea/announcement ...
And looking forward to its fruition ...


Hollywood Graveyard/ Your Video Here:


"Do you live near a famous grave or cemetery?
To celebrate two years of Hollywood Graveyard, we're creating a "Viewers Special," consisting entirely of footage submitted by you, the Hollywood Graveyard community from around the world."

Published on Jan 21, 2019

3:38 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P02j676TKJE&feature=em-uploademail


Click the link below, read our submission guidelines, and fill out the form to submit your videos. https://www.hollywoodgraveyard.com/community ... I can't wait to see where you take us. Don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions. The deadline is (extended to) March 30th (for those in snowy areas).

FAQ: Will you still be adding narration and music? - Yes, this will look and sound just like a regular HG video. No need to narrate when you film, I'll still be doing that. Just send the raw footage. And don't worry about noise, I will be removing the audio from your clips. Do I need to edit the video in any way? - No. Send me the video unedited (no filters, or anything fancy added, unless you're a pro editor and want to create something unique for artistic b-roll), I'll be editing the clips as I do all my videos. What Cemeteries do you already have in the pipeline? -

After finishing the Inland Empire (Forest Lawn Cathedral City, Coachella Valley, Sunsest Hills), we also have Evergreen, and a re-visit to Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills already in development. So if you submit footage we already have, it won't be used. We also have other "themed" editions in the works with various people already filmed. Email if you want to ask about anyone specifically.

giovonni
26th January 2019, 17:22
Now that this mess-hap is temporary settled ...

Published January 20, 2019


https://truthout.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/2019_0120-fed.jpg
People line up to get a free lunch at a pop-up eatery for furloughed government
employees and their families, on January 16, 2019, in Washington, DC.

Shutdown Exposes How Many Americans Live Paycheck to Paycheck

"Today marks the two-year anniversary of Donald Trump’s inauguration, and we have learned some hard lessons in the interval. The ongoing, historically unprecedented shutdown of the federal government has exposed Trump as one of the worst deal-makers ever to stand up in two shoes.

It has further exposed the Republican Party’s bottomless disdain for marginalized people through its craven refusal to contain the man who has unleashed all this misery. It has exposed deep fissures in Trump’s once-unbreakable base as more and more of his supporters — battered by tariffs and now the shutdown — come to correctly believe they’ve been played for chumps.

The shutdown has exposed something else far more personal and uncomfortable, something most folks don’t like to talk about because it is too frightening to contemplate, something they can’t see an easy way to fix. It is this simple, terrible truth: A great many people in the US are one missed paycheck away from complete financial calamity.

This has proven true for many of the federal workers and contractors furloughed by the shutdown. The end of the month is less than two weeks away, and those furloughed workers will collectively owe more than $400 million in mortgage and rent payments, to say nothing of utility bills and child care expenses. Throw in food and gasoline, and the math becomes grim in a big hurry.

This crisis is not limited to furloughed federal workers, however. According to a report by Forbes Magazine, a full 78 percent of all US workers are living paycheck to paycheck. One quarter of workers are financially unable to set aside any money for savings after each pay cycle. Three quarters of workers are in debt, and half of those believe they always will be. Most minimum wage workers are required to work multiple jobs to make ends meet.

“What do professors, real estate agents, farmers, business executives, computer programmers and store clerks have in common? They’re not immune to the harsh reality of living paycheck to paycheck,” reports Danielle Paquette for The Washington Post. “They’re millennials, Gen Xers and baby boomers. They work in big cities and rural towns. They’ve tried to save — but rent, child care, student loans and medical bills get in the way.”

The situation becomes more concerning when considering the average worker’s inability to financially cope with an injury, emergency or turn of bad luck. “Can you cover an unexpected $400 expense?” asks Anna Bahney of CNN. “Four in ten Americans can’t, according to a new report from the Federal Reserve Board. Those who don’t have the cash on hand say they’d have to cover it by borrowing or selling something.”

And it’s all a great big secret, a problem most people struggle with but seldom discuss, because we have been trained to be embarrassed about such things. This is the greatest country in the world! With the greatest economy! Rugged individuals and bootstraps! If we are failing to amass a personal fortune, it’s because of our own inherent laziness or lack of incentive. Shame on us, right?

Wrong.

This situation has been created by decades of Reagan-born trickle-down capitalism and the moral cowardice of bought politicians of every stripe. These unbalanced economic policies favor the wealthy and shun the rest with deprecating propaganda that parks the fault for financial struggle squarely on the shoulders of the very workers who have been taken advantage of for generations.

Many millions of people in the US spend their lives sprinting to stand still, financially speaking, desperate to squeeze every ounce of value from a dollar whose purchasing power seems to diminish with each passing year. It’s a damned expensive country to live in, especially if you reside with most of the population on the coasts. We don’t seem to get very much for the money we spend or the hard work we do, and our social safety net is weakening more each day.

It’s a feeling and an experience the Donald Trumps of the world have never known. There you lay, the clock yelling 3 a.m. and you know your alarm is going off in two hours, but you haven’t slept because you have $46 in the bank, no savings to speak of, a fistful of maxed-out credit cards, bills coming every day. You need to eat, need to commute, need medicine and clothes and shoes, and the rent or mortgage is due next week. After paying for all that, you’ll be lucky to still have that $46 left over. Your stomach is a crater inside you, and you lie there, waiting to work another day and maybe break even so long as absolutely nothing goes wrong.

The shutdown has shoved this stark reality in our faces, and it is high time we talked about it instead of pretending it isn’t there or being embarrassed by it. Those furloughed federal workers telling their stories of struggle on the nightly news are part of a huge majority in this country, the kind of super-duper majority that can bring wholesale change virtually overnight if we look each other in the eye and remember that this is not our fault. We are not the ones who have stolen the dream of upward mobility and replaced it with a treadmill, all the while preaching austerity so those who do fall behind have nowhere to turn for help.

We did not create this situation. We are the grist in someone else’s mill. This is what happens when unions are broken, when “right to work” laws are allowed to stand, when the social safety net is stripped, when the minimum wage is stuck in the past and the only important people are the ones who are already flush and can afford to buy some pet politicians to lock down the status quo.

Because it has been this way does not mean it always has to be this way. We did not do this. This was done to us, and we are legion. It is time we remembered that, and acted accordingly."


By William Rivers Pitt
Source: truthout.org (https://truthout.org/articles/shutdown-exposes-how-many-americans-live-paycheck-to-paycheck/)

Dreamtimer
27th January 2019, 01:31
Wages have been stagnant for many years and yet profits have gone up and the economy has grown.

Money before people.

giovonni
27th January 2019, 09:45
Now that this mess-hap is temporary settled ...

Published January 20, 2019


https://truthout.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/2019_0120-fed.jpg
People line up to get a free lunch at a pop-up eatery for furloughed government
employees and their families, on January 16, 2019, in Washington, DC.

Shutdown Exposes How Many Americans Live Paycheck to Paycheck

"Today marks the two-year anniversary of Donald Trump’s inauguration, and we have learned some hard lessons in the interval. The ongoing, historically unprecedented shutdown of the federal government has exposed Trump as one of the worst deal-makers ever to stand up in two shoes.

It has further exposed the Republican Party’s bottomless disdain for marginalized people through its craven refusal to contain the man who has unleashed all this misery. It has exposed deep fissures in Trump’s once-unbreakable base as more and more of his supporters — battered by tariffs and now the shutdown — come to correctly believe they’ve been played for chumps.

The shutdown has exposed something else far more personal and uncomfortable, something most folks don’t like to talk about because it is too frightening to contemplate, something they can’t see an easy way to fix. It is this simple, terrible truth: A great many people in the US are one missed paycheck away from complete financial calamity.

This has proven true for many of the federal workers and contractors furloughed by the shutdown. The end of the month is less than two weeks away, and those furloughed workers will collectively owe more than $400 million in mortgage and rent payments, to say nothing of utility bills and child care expenses. Throw in food and gasoline, and the math becomes grim in a big hurry.

This crisis is not limited to furloughed federal workers, however. According to a report by Forbes Magazine, a full 78 percent of all US workers are living paycheck to paycheck. One quarter of workers are financially unable to set aside any money for savings after each pay cycle. Three quarters of workers are in debt, and half of those believe they always will be. Most minimum wage workers are required to work multiple jobs to make ends meet.

“What do professors, real estate agents, farmers, business executives, computer programmers and store clerks have in common? They’re not immune to the harsh reality of living paycheck to paycheck,” reports Danielle Paquette for The Washington Post. “They’re millennials, Gen Xers and baby boomers. They work in big cities and rural towns. They’ve tried to save — but rent, child care, student loans and medical bills get in the way.”

The situation becomes more concerning when considering the average worker’s inability to financially cope with an injury, emergency or turn of bad luck. “Can you cover an unexpected $400 expense?” asks Anna Bahney of CNN. “Four in ten Americans can’t, according to a new report from the Federal Reserve Board. Those who don’t have the cash on hand say they’d have to cover it by borrowing or selling something.”

And it’s all a great big secret, a problem most people struggle with but seldom discuss, because we have been trained to be embarrassed about such things. This is the greatest country in the world! With the greatest economy! Rugged individuals and bootstraps! If we are failing to amass a personal fortune, it’s because of our own inherent laziness or lack of incentive. Shame on us, right?

Wrong.

This situation has been created by decades of Reagan-born trickle-down capitalism and the moral cowardice of bought politicians of every stripe. These unbalanced economic policies favor the wealthy and shun the rest with deprecating propaganda that parks the fault for financial struggle squarely on the shoulders of the very workers who have been taken advantage of for generations.

Many millions of people in the US spend their lives sprinting to stand still, financially speaking, desperate to squeeze every ounce of value from a dollar whose purchasing power seems to diminish with each passing year. It’s a damned expensive country to live in, especially if you reside with most of the population on the coasts. We don’t seem to get very much for the money we spend or the hard work we do, and our social safety net is weakening more each day.

It’s a feeling and an experience the Donald Trumps of the world have never known. There you lay, the clock yelling 3 a.m. and you know your alarm is going off in two hours, but you haven’t slept because you have $46 in the bank, no savings to speak of, a fistful of maxed-out credit cards, bills coming every day. You need to eat, need to commute, need medicine and clothes and shoes, and the rent or mortgage is due next week. After paying for all that, you’ll be lucky to still have that $46 left over. Your stomach is a crater inside you, and you lie there, waiting to work another day and maybe break even so long as absolutely nothing goes wrong.

The shutdown has shoved this stark reality in our faces, and it is high time we talked about it instead of pretending it isn’t there or being embarrassed by it. Those furloughed federal workers telling their stories of struggle on the nightly news are part of a huge majority in this country, the kind of super-duper majority that can bring wholesale change virtually overnight if we look each other in the eye and remember that this is not our fault. We are not the ones who have stolen the dream of upward mobility and replaced it with a treadmill, all the while preaching austerity so those who do fall behind have nowhere to turn for help.

We did not create this situation. We are the grist in someone else’s mill. This is what happens when unions are broken, when “right to work” laws are allowed to stand, when the social safety net is stripped, when the minimum wage is stuck in the past and the only important people are the ones who are already flush and can afford to buy some pet politicians to lock down the status quo.

Because it has been this way does not mean it always has to be this way. We did not do this. This was done to us, and we are legion. It is time we remembered that, and acted accordingly."


By William Rivers Pitt
Source: truthout.org (https://truthout.org/articles/shutdown-exposes-how-many-americans-live-paycheck-to-paycheck/)


Wages have been stagnant for many years and yet profits have gone up and the economy has grown.

Money before people.

Yes, like glimpsing a view of the U.S. economic underbelly ...

Here's a very well researched/complied PDF that tells the tale of 'Going Nowhere' ? (https://tcf.org/assets/downloads/tcf-GoingNowhere.pdf)

Dreamtimer
27th January 2019, 13:03
Thank you, and that's so depressing. How much do we really care about hard work? We say we do. But when the rubber meets the road profits come first and people are like what my brother said:

"They're like pennies. You could just throw them away and you wouldn't miss them. They don't matter. They don't make a difference."

He was paraphrasing the 20th century industrialist who described workers as "bolts on the warehouse floor".

giovonni
2nd February 2019, 00:33
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Inland Empire (Roy Rogers, Rock Hudson, etc.)

Hollywood Graveyard


Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we conclude our tour through the deserts of the Inland Empire, where we'll find such stars as Roy Rogers, Dale Evans, Rock Hudson, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today: Dinah Shore, Alice Faye, Phil Harris, Harold Robbins, George Montgomery, Buddy Rogers, Jane Wyman, Jerry Vale, Vicki Draves, Guy Madison, Patsy Garrett, John Phillips, George Nader, Rock Hudson, Frank Capra, Alan O'Day, Roy Rogers, Dale Evans.

Published on Feb 1, 2019

19:33 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2IlGNlDtEok&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
2nd February 2019, 08:43
"Social values create society. This is what a society based on social wellbeing does; why can’t America do this? And please don’t tell me we can’t afford it, the usual conservative crap response. This is not about money it is about values.

The Theorem of Wellbeing is very clear. Policies based on wellbeing are always easier to implement, more productive, more efficient, nicer to live under, longer lasting, and much, much cheaper." Stephan A. Schwartz



https://proxy.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fassets.weforum.org%2Feditor%2FGy-X6DULF2MVv5V-GZT40Szb0dt_doPdYZkhBxRbSkI.jpg&f=1

How Finland Solved Homelessness
With one ridiculously simple policy, it has almost completely eradicated street homelessness ...


"Four years ago, Thomas Salmi was drinking to forget. He was homeless and living on the streets of Finland’s capital city Helsinki.

He had a rough start in life. He wasn’t able to live at home because his father had problems with aggression. He ended up going to nine different children’s homes, before falling through the cracks of the system in his late teens. By 21 he was homeless. “I lost the sense of a normal life. I became depressed, aggressive, angry and I abused alcohol a lot.” He would drink up to half a gallon a day and then get into trouble. “I thought why would I care if I go to jail? I don’t have to be out there in snow and cold.”

Salmi was sleeping in Helsinki train station when a social worker found him and told him he could help. He was put in touch with Helsinki Deaconess Institute (HDI), a Finnish nonprofit that provides social services. A year later he moved into Aurora-Tola, a 125-unit house run by HDI.

Now 25 years old, he lives in his own studio apartment, works as a janitor and life is getting back on track. “I know that if I am in my house nobody is coming to get me out or telling me what to do,” he said, ”If I want to dance in my home, I can.”

https://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/5c50876e2400000902486cb2.jpeg?ops=scalefit_2560_no upscale
Thomas has decorated his apartment with things he has found in his work cleaning other apartments of the building, after someone has moved or passed away. Each item carries a story.

"Salmi is a beneficiary of Finland’s much-lauded “housing first” approach, which has been in place for more than a decade.

The idea is simple. To solve homelessness you start by giving someone a home, a permanent one with no strings attached. If they want to drink, they can; if they want to take drugs, that’s fine too. Support services are made available to treat addiction, mental health and other problems, and to help people get back on their feet, from assisting with welfare paperwork to securing a job.

The housing in Finland is a mix of designated standard apartments sprinkled through the community, and supported housing: apartment blocks with on-site services, built or renovated specifically for chronically homeless people. A Salvation Army building in Helsinki, for example, was converted from a 250-bed emergency shelter to an 81 apartment supported housing unit.

Formerly homeless residents have a rental contract just like anyone else. They pay rent from their own pockets or through the benefits afforded by Finland’s relatively generous welfare state.

The approach is working. As homelessness rises across Europe, Finland’s numbers are falling. In 1987, there were around 18,000 homeless people. In 2017, there were 7,112 homeless people, of which only 415 were living on the streets or in emergency shelters. The vast majority (84 percent) were staying temporarily with friends or relatives. Between 2008 and 2015, the number of people experiencing long-term homelessness dropped by 35 percent.

The reason? Finland approaches homelessness “as a housing problem and a violation of fundamental rights, both solvable, and not as an inevitable social problem resulting from personal issues,” said an analysis from Feantsa, a European network that focuses on homelessness.

Traditionally, homeless people are told to straighten up and quit drinking or doing drugs as a precondition to housing. But critics point to the grinding difficulty of shaking addiction from the streets or from temporary shelter beds.

“If something happens and you aren’t successful, like it always happens, it’s the nature of addiction, then you are back on the street,” said Heli Alkila, service area director at HDI which housed Thomas Salmi."


https://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/5c5087d2250000b5017db9f3.jpeg?ops=scalefit_2560_no upscale
A Salvation Army building in Helsinki was converted from a 250-bed emergency shelter to an 81-apartment supported housing unit.

"Finland’s approach ultimately comes down to values, said Juha Kaakinen, an architect of the housing first approach and CEO of the nonprofit Y-Foundation. “The Finnish attitude is that we have to help people who are in the most difficult position, whatever the reason they have become homeless,” he said. “We understand very well that the main reasons behind homelessness are structural reasons.”

In Espoo, a city two miles west of the Finnish capital, a housing unit sits overlooking a lake. This is Väinölä, a small development built in 2014, which is home to 35 formerly homeless people in 33 apartments.

Eight nurses work on shifts to ensure someone is available 24 hours a day, and a work activity coach and coordinator organize work for those who can and want to do it. This could be anything from cooking meals to packing reflectors and it earns residents €2 ($2.30) a day.

Teams of residents also collect trash locally. “The neighborhood loves it because they think this area is now cleaner than ever,” said Jarkko Jyräsalo, who runs Väinölä. “Sometimes housing units like this have problems with their neighbors, but we don’t.”

Despite the different, sometimes severe, needs of residents, Väinölä is mostly peaceful. Jyräsalo credits weekly community meetings between residents and staff. “They are people who are used to solving their problems with fists or fighting. But now we have learnt to discuss things.”


https://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/5c5163e8260000d001faefe2.jpeg?ops=crop_5_340_1275_ 1360,scalefit_2560_noupscale
Väinölä, a supported housing unit in Espoo, Finland.

"Finland’s success at cutting homelessness has attracted a huge amount of international attention, and the Y-Foundation’s Kaakinen is often asked to explain how the country mobilized such strong political will. For him, it boils down to this: “There has to be some individual politician who has the social consciousness.”

In Finland’s case it was Jan Vapaavuori, now Helsinki’s mayor but then the housing minister, who drove the housing first approach. Vapaavuori’s politics – he’s in the center-right National Coalition Party – were important, said Kaakinen. When a radical idea is championed by a conservative politician, “it’s very difficult for others to oppose it,” he said. Since then, politicians of all stripes in Finland have continued to support the approach.

It’s not just central government, either. It has been a huge collaborative effort also including cities, businesses, NGOs and state-owned gambling company Veikkaus, formerly Finland’s Slot Machine Association, whose profits go to social causes.

While it’s expensive to build, buy and rent housing for homeless people, as well as provide the vital support services, the architects of the policy say it pays for itself. Studies have found housing one long-term homeless person saves society around €15,000 ($17,000) a year, said Kaakinen, due to a reduction in their use of services such as hospital emergency rooms, police and the criminal justice system."


https://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/5c5164c420000001016bbeed.jpeg?ops=scalefit_2560_no upscale
Inside one of the apartments at Väinölä.

"The housing first approach has its critics. There are those who balk at the idea of people getting free housing when they are seen as having made bad choices. There are accusations that allowing people to continue using alcohol and drugs normalizes the behavior. “But no we don’t,” said Alkila of HDI. “Drugs are here, all these things are here, and we are just trying. It’s a human dignity question, you have to have a place to stay.”

There are also criticisms from some of the formerly homeless people who benefit from the policy. Jyri-Pekka Pursiainen is one of them. A divorce and sudden unemployment knocked him off balance, and he found himself on the streets. For the last two years, he has lived in a studio apartment in a supported housing block in Helsinki, carved out of a former retirement home.

But he is unhappy. “The place I am living now, you can’t call it home ... The whole building is moldy, it’s in really bad shape. People get sick there,” he said. He was told the apartment would be short term. But nearly two years down the line, he is still there with no clue when he might move on. He wants somewhere safe where his three children can visit him.

Still, Pursiainen admits his situation is better now than when he was homeless. He has his own place, and he lives in the center of Helsinki paying a monthly rent of €331 ($379), less than a third of what a standard studio apartment would ordinarily cost there."


https://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/5c50b8e423000059011fa302.jpeg?ops=scalefit_2560_no upscale
A street in the center of Helsinki, Finland. More than half of the country’s homeless people live in the city.

"None of the housing first advocates suggest that the approach is problem-free, but it’s a base from which people can start to rebuild. “Maybe it’s not perfect, maybe it’s not the dream you had when you were young but this is your own place,” said Alkila.

Finland is not alone in following a housing first approach. It’s already being used in countries such as Denmark, Canada, Australia and also the U.S.

Breaking Ground, a homelessness NGO that operates 4,000 housing units across New York and Connecticut, was one of the pioneers of a housing first approach, said CEO Brenda Rosen.

They hear from critics all the time, she said, who argue people should need to address their issues before they get housing. “We fundamentally feel that that is backwards … rather than expending all your energy and trying to get through each and every day and figure out how you will eat your meals and survive another night through a cold winter, the most decent, humane and cost-effective way is to bring folks inside.”

Housing first is effective in America, said Nan Roman, president and CEO of the National Alliance to End Homelessness, but the scale of the U.S. problem is just so much bigger and the political context is different. “The strategy works,” said Roman. “That’s not the issue. The issue is how much of it are you going to do, and all credit to Finland for having the social safety net and for having the commitment to say they’re going to go to scale or for going to scale. We haven’t done that.”"


https://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/5c50894c3b0000850268944e.jpeg?ops=scalefit_2560_no upscale
Thomas says his apartment is his sanctuary.

Finland still has challenges. The demographics of the homeless population are shifting as new groups of people find themselves slipping through the cracks. Alkila points to women as a growing group, now making up around 23 percent of homeless people. Domestic violence and increased use of substances are among the reasons for women becoming homeless, according to a Y Foundation report. Some young people, too, are finding it hard to get a footing when affordable housing is so scarce.

“We didn’t solve homelessness, we solved some part of it,” said Sanna Tiivola of the nonprofit No Fixed Abobe (VVA). But, she added, when she goes to other countries and sees they are still leaning heavily on emergency shelters as a solution, “I always think, ahhh you’re still here. Why? Why are doing this shelter thing, no, no, no don’t do it! So that’s a visible change ... and that’s why I think people say that Finland solved homelessness.”

For Salmi, Finland’s housing first approach has changed his life. He has ambitions, he wants to retrain as a pipefitter. He still drinks but only on the weekends. He still struggles with mental health problems, but far less severely and far less often than he used to, and he said he no longer has suicidal thoughts.

“My apartment is kind of a sanctuary … Before I lost my home I didn’t understand how much it meant, and when I lost it, within those three years, I kind of understand the little things in life make you happy,” he said. “I mean if I have dinner, little things, like if I have bread in my fridge later. Normal things.”"



By Laura Paddison
01/30/2019
Source/additional links
huffingtonpost.com (https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/homelessness-finland-housing-first_us_5c503844e4b0f43e410ad8b6)



HuffPost’s ‘This New World’ series is funded by Partners for a New Economy and the Kendeda Fund. All content is editorially independent, with no influence or input from the foundations. If you have an idea or tip for the editorial series, send an email to thisnewworld@huffpost.com

giovonni
6th February 2019, 08:25
Dream empire - China’s real estate bubble | DW Documentary

"In 2012 the Chinese real estate market was booming, but only a few years later that dream is threatening to evaporate.

This documentary film takes a look behind the Chinese real estate industry’s glamorous facade. It focuses on Yana, a young woman from the countryside who has come to Chongqing to live her own personal "Chinese Dream." Attracted by the glamour and the fast money of the historic real estate boom, she and a friend founded a company that provides foreign actors for big PR events - often recruiting them on her journeys through Chongqing's nightlife. The more international they looked, the more popular they were with Yana's real estate clients. Yana gave her actors identities that were adapted to meet her clients' preferences, and marketed them directly at industry fairs. The actors were booked for dance and music shows at house-opening events. Ability wasn’t important; all that mattered was their foreign appearance, adding an international touch to the apartments advertised. Now, just a few years later, the chronic overcapacity of China’s real estate companies is slowly making itself felt. As the cities become saturated, construction companies are moving into the countryside to throw up modern, international metropolises there in next to no time. But instead of lively housing estates, more and more of them are becoming ghost towns. The system’s facade is crumbling, buyers who feel cheated out of their money are protesting, and the real estate bubble is threatening to burst. When Yana realized why her actors were being booked, she was shocked and began to have doubts. In the end, she had no choice but to sell her stake in the company."


DW Documentary
Published on Feb 3, 2019

42:25 minutes

Best viewed full screen

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dkof7HlMmM&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
7th February 2019, 02:04
Reminds me of my old catholic boarding school ... :p


A school for Russia's young offenders | DW Documentary


A boarding school in the village of Serafimovka in the Urals aims to re-educate juvenile offenders.

Vadim is one of 70 teenagers who live in a boarding school in the village of Serafimovka in the Ural mountains. None of them are here voluntarily. The school is a re-education facility for juvenile offenders.

17-year-old Vadim caused an accident with a stolen car, and was sent to a re-education facility for juvenile offenders in the village of Serafimovka in the Ural mountains. All the boys here have criminal backgrounds, from pickpocketing and assault to drug-dealing and even murder. They're here to be rehabilitated. Most of them spend about two years in Serafimovka. The teachers use both discipline and kindness, effectively standing in for the boys' parents – many of whom are alcoholics, drug addicts, or behind bars. Back in the outside world, many of the boys end up joining the Russian armed forces. A Report by Juri Rescheto.

DW Documentary
Published on Feb 4, 2019

12:31 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qx46iJsEm70&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
12th February 2019, 12:06
California ...

"The sole surviving relic of the San Francisco neighborhood cobbled together from old horsecars and streetcars."



https://proxy.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fcdn.thebolditalic.com%2Fpaperclip% 2Fhtml_images%2F31468%2Fimages%2Fthree_column%2FKU BIK-20131025-CARVILLE_0012.jpg%3F1389160710&f=1
Carville today


Last Known Carville House



https://proxy.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.foundsf.org%2Fimages%2Fe%2Feb% 2FSunset%24carville-resident.jpg&f=1
Back in the 1920's living on the beach

"When cable cars and streetcars began replacing San Francisco’s old horsecars, the Market Street Railway Company needed to purge their outmoded horse-drawn inventory. So in 1895, they began selling the old horsecars for $20, or $10 without the seats. Some creative individuals purchased these horsecars and converted them into houses, offices, clubs, and shops on the outskirts of town.

A Civil War veteran named Colonel Charles Dailey began renting three such horsecars from his friend, then-mayor Adolph Sutro, out near Ocean Beach and not far from Sutro’s Baths. Sutro hoped to lure people out toward the beach to sell what was largely undesirable property at the time, made up of sand dunes as it was. Dailey turned the three horsecars into the “the Annex,” a coffee bar decorated with items washed up from the beach.

The bar became very popular, particularly among the bohemian crowd, and more people followed Dailey out to the end of the Park and Ocean railway line (at what is now 47th Avenue and Lincoln Way), buying their own various cars to live, work, or play in. The neighborhood that sprang up became known as “Carville” (or “Carville-by-the-Sea”), and was described by one historian as the “the oddest village in the world.”



https://4.bp.blogspot.com/-VfWFZabOYEI/XAvW0PtHQ_I/AAAAAAACeV8/y-IXZ0tnKFY_IQH0yESzvJpMPlWliBRuACLcBGAs/s1600/carville2.jpgThe Bar/restaurant


"Carville was a very active community for many years, having an estimated population of 2,000 people in 1900. A decade later, in 1910, realtors began to take notice of the area and tried to lure people into normal houses. Pamphlets were made with the title “From Carville to Real Homes” and a symbolic public burning of a horsecar (which was previously used as a clubhouse for the all-female Falcon Bicycle Club) signified the beginning of the end of Carville. The Carville community then gradually shrunk as the “real homes” around them expanded, until it disappeared altogether a couple decades later."



https://proxy.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.foundsf.org%2Fimages%2Fd%2Fda% 2FMrs._Gunns_Home_Cooking_restaurant_at_Carville_n ear_Ocean_Beach_nd_AAB-9837.jpg&f=1
Some Americana


"All of the known horsecars, streetcars, cable cars, and rail cars of Carville have been lost to history, except for one nondescript house along the Great Highway. Although you wouldn’t notice from the outside, the residence is made up two joined cable cars and one horsecar. The house was built in 1908, but the two cable cars that make up the second story date from the 1880s, and the side room is a horsecar from the 1870s, all of which were previously a part of the historical oddity that was Carville."



https://assets.atlasobscura.com/media/W1siZiIsInVwbG9hZHMvcGxhY2VfaW1hZ2VzLzk4OGQwZjhiLT c5MjgtNGQ5NC1iZmFjLTNjOWRhZjIxMTE4OTYwZWZlOGU5ZWVj ZGQ1N2U2Yl9QaS4xNDE1OTI2NTM1LkpQRyJdLFsicCIsInRodW 1iIiwieDM5MD4iXSxbInAiLCJjb252ZXJ0IiwiLXF1YWxpdHkg ODEgLWF1dG8tb3JpZW50Il1d/Pi.1415926535.JPG
The last one


https://c-5uwzmx78pmca09x24ax2eplvcfx2ekwu.g00.sfgate.com/g00/3_c-5eee.anoibm.kwu_/c-5UWZMXPMCA09x24pbbx78ax3ax2fx2fa.plvcf.kwux2fx78pw bwax2f99x2f09x2f22x2f0219044x2f3x2f708f708.rx78ox3 fq98k.uizsx3dquiom_$/$/$/$/$/$/$/$
A look inside





Original source: atlasobscura.com (https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/last-known-carville-house?utm_source=Atlas+Obscura+Daily+Newsletter&utm_campaign=a65edbf76b-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_02_11&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f36db9c480-a65edbf76b-63041445&ct=t(EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_02_11_2019)&mc_cid=a65edbf76b&mc_eid=57314563a1)

giovonni
13th February 2019, 05:25
An up close look ...

France's yellow rebellion - a movement against Macron | DW Documentary

"Who are the "yellow vests” that have plunged France into crisis? Hundreds of thousands have been demonstrating to demand lower taxes and higher pensions. [Online until: 11.02.2020]

What began as a spontaneous protest against high gasoline prices swiftly evolved into a mass movement that has caused a major crisis in France. The "yellow vests” have become synonymous with the widespread anger at the reform policies of President Emmanuel Macron - and constitute his greatest challenge since he took office. The protesters accuse Macron of being a representative of the rich while ignoring the plight of ordinary citizens. The wave of demonstrations was triggered by Jacline Mouraud and her video tirade on social media. Her subsequent fame has enabled her to continue criticizing politicians on TV talk shows. The "yellow vest” demonstrations have been organized almost exclusively online and without the involvement of opposition parties or unions.

The protesters have a range of demands, from lower taxes to high pensions and a greater say in the running of the country. They feel neglected by the Paris elite, who they see as showing no interest in their economic duress and fears of social decline."

DW Documentary
Published on Feb 12, 2019
_______

28:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i55t0WZFtBA&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
15th February 2019, 10:53
Heart warming ...


Finding Fukue (Long-Lost Friend Documentary)

Real Stories

"They were best friends, then pen pals — until one day, the letters stopped coming. Almost 30 years later, Jessica Stuart returns to Japan to try and solve the mystery of her long-lost friend, Fukue.

It’s a mystery that spans decades, continents and cultures, and bridges one Toronto woman’s life with her childhood in Japan: what happened to Fukue?"

Premiered 2/14/2019

20:30 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nza96WBvdak&feature=em-lsp

giovonni
17th February 2019, 13:17
When (if ever) that levee breaks ...



Inside the horrifying, unspoken world of sexually abusive nuns


https://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/nun-abuse.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=1236&h=820&crop=1Mary Dispenza and Cait Finnegan, who was sexually abused by nuns.

"It’s the line from scripture that stayed with Cait Finnegan for nearly half a century as she tried to suppress the painful memories of the sexual abuse she says she suffered at the hands of her Catholic clergy educator.

“God is Love,” Sister Mary Juanita Barto told Finnegan as she repeatedly raped her in classrooms at Mater Christi High School in Queens in the late 1960s.

The abuse began when Finnegan was 15 and continued throughout her high school years — on school buses to out-of-town sporting events, at religious retreats in upstate New York, at Finnegan’s childhood home in Woodside and at a Long Island convent.

“She was obsessed with me 24 hours a day,” Finnegan, now 67, told The Post. “The woman owned me.”

After graduating high school in 1969, Finnegan struggled to deal with the abuse and tell her story, but her efforts fell on deaf ears.

“Nobody wanted to hear about the Vestal Virgins back then,” she said.

But after Pope Francis recently made the bombshell admission that some nuns were abused by priests and even used as sex slaves, dozens of Catholics have come forward to report a tangential, and just as evil, phenomenon — sexual abuse by nuns.

“This is the next big thing for the church — the biggest untold secret,” Mary Dispenza, a director at Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP), a St. Louis-based advocacy group.

“In the past, victims were very much ashamed and afraid to tell their stories, but they are starting to come forward and we are expecting that this may be as big as the priest abuse scandal.”

The group has heard from 35 people in the last several days who claim they were physically and sexually abused by nuns, said Dispenza, a former nun who claims she was abused as a young girl by both a priest and a nun. Finnegan told The Post she approached SNAP for support a few years earlier.

Dispenza, 78, has fought for more than two decades for justice for victims of clergy abuse and plans to take her fight to the Vatican on Monday. She and her group are demanding the Pope help victims of nun abuse and fire anyone who has covered up crimes by Catholic clergy.

“We want them gone immediately,” she said.

She also wants the Vatican to require Catholic leaders to contact police right away if they are confronted with abuse, rather than alerting local bishops or other church hierarchy first.

And in states where the statute of limitations has been amended to allow victims of sexual abuse to file complaints, SNAP is urging them — some now in their 60s and 70s — to file claims against their alleged abusers.

“Finally, they will have a chance at justice,” she said.

Last week, New York opened up a window for old cases with the passage of the Child Victims Act. The measure, which had languished in Albany for more than a decade, allows a one-year window for alleged victims to file lawsuits against their attackers, no matter when the abuse occurred.

Before the new law, New York had one of the most restrictive statutes of limitations for childhood sexual abuse. Victims now have until age 55 in order to file civil suits and can press for criminal charges until age 28. The old statute capped lawsuits at age 23.

Dispenza, who spent 15 years in a habit before becoming an activist against the Catholic church, is bracing for an onslaught of cases against nuns, who typically run schools and orphanages, and spend exponentially more time with children than priests.

“They are with kids at school every day from nine to three,” she said.

They also far outnumber priests. There are 55,944 nuns in the US and 41,406 priests, according to statistics compiled by SNAP."



https://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/dispenza.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=620
Mary Dispenza when she was a nun


"Eight years ago, when a handful of victims of nun abuse came forward to SNAP, Dispenza urged the Chicago-based Leadership Conference of Women Religious, an association of the leaders of congregations of Catholic nuns, to address the issue and reach out to victims of nun abuse. The group refused to put the issue on the agendas of their annual meetings, Dispenza told The Post.

A spokeswoman for LCWR refused to discuss how many victims of nun abuse had reached out to them, and referred to a statement on the group’s web site that reads in part, “We encourage persons with grievances involving allegations of sexual misconduct by a woman religious to approach the individual religious congregation involved. We believe that it is at this level that true healing can begin.”



https://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/juanita-finnegan.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=640
Sister Mary Juanita Barto and Cait Finnegan in high school


"In her 2014 memoir, “Split: A Child, a Priest and the Catholic Church,” Dispenza details the sexual abuse she endured at the hands of a Catholic priest in the gritty East Los Angeles neighborhood where she grew up. Despite the childhood rapes by the priest — who was trusted by her family — Dispenza decided to become a nun, only to be faced with similar abuse from a superior sister while she was a novitiate.

“She took my face in her two hands, and kissed me all over my face,” she recalled of the encounter in a convent she would not name. “And then I just remember leaving. I felt the same way I felt as a child. I felt lost, I felt abandoned, I felt confused, I felt alone.”

Finnegan said she also felt alone, and was unable to speak of the abuse she endured by Sister Mary Juanita who “vowed to chastity as she raped me.”

Finnegan, a widow whose husband was a former Catholic priest, now lives in Pennsylvania where she has run a group home for needy children and is the minister of the Celtic Christian Church.

Although her alleged abuser died in 2014, Finnegan said she still cannot bring herself to discuss the abuse openly, even after years of therapy and writing in her “Abuse by nuns” blog.

“Well, the little girl in me wept because that kid had longed for Juanita to be a spiritual mother to me … that’s how I loved her, as a mother,” she wrote. “I remember when I met her I thought she was so smart and holy, oh yeah, and funny. Wrong.

She said she never told her father — “I was afraid of what he would do to the nun when he found out” — and only summoned up the courage to tell her mother of the trauma just before her death in 2002.

“Sexual abuse leaves scars that last for life,” she wrote on the blog. “Dealing with those wounds and scars, and surviving through daily life is a challenge for many of us. Silence sometimes is a kind of defense which allows victims to hide from the pain (for a while).”

Some of her therapy was paid for by the Sisters of Mercy, Sister Mary Juanita’s religious order that has its origins in 19th century Ireland and now ministers to the poor around the world. The Sisters of Mercy taught the girls at her high school; the boys were taught by the Christian Brothers. In 1981, the school became the co-ed St. John’s Prep.

Finnegan said she has suffered with PTSD and anxiety for most of her adult life and has turned to prayer and research on sexual abuse to try to forgive what was done to her. She will not describe in any detail how she was raped.

“More than 14 percent of nuns have been sexually abused themselves,” said Finnegan. “It’s this unattended rage they live with. It’s going to come out as physical abuse of children and sexual abuse. I believe it’s what turns so many of them into nasty bitches in the convent.”

When Finnegan finally summoned up the courage to confront Sister Mary Juanita in the early 1990s — more than 20 years after graduating high school in 1969 — she found herself tongue-tied.

“I froze and became that 15-year-old kid again,” she said. “I couldn’t speak, I couldn’t move.”

She was even too nervous to enter her office at a Long Island convent.

“Sorry, I have to go,” she told the nun who had terrified her. And then she left."


By Isabel Vincent
Source: nypost.com (https://nypost.com/2019/02/16/inside-the-horrifying-unspoken-world-of-sexually-abusive-nuns/)

palooka's revenge
17th February 2019, 17:55
well, a year to come forward... this will surely add to the DISGUST load currently runnin' rampant thru our bones 'n blood!!!

but it's about damn time!!!

Dreamtimer
17th February 2019, 20:02
It's so sad. The poor children. The poor people. Even those in the system who couldn't get out, couldn't stop it, couldn't control themselves... So tragic.

palooka's revenge
17th February 2019, 21:27
It's so sad. The poor children. The poor people. Even those in the system who couldn't get out, couldn't stop it, couldn't control themselves... So tragic.

problem is... the beast in the system is our own denials and mis-guided judgements...

Dreamtimer
18th February 2019, 13:10
Denial drives me nuts. Because people have the chance to see and know and do, and instead they go into denial.:mad::ireful::frantic:

giovonni
20th February 2019, 07:57
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Evergreen (Eddie Anderson, Louise Beavers, etc.)

Hollywood Graveyard

"Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we're exploring Evergreen Cemetery, where we'll find such stars as Eddie "Rochester" Anderson, Louise Beavers, and a Little Rascal named Styime.

Full list of stars visited today: Eddie "Rochester" Anderson, John Larkin, Louise Beavers, Katherine Grant, Johnny St. Cyr, H. T. Tsiang, Mathew "Stymie" Beard, Bobby Nunn, "Showmen's Rest," Bob Relf, Frank Braxton, George Ralphs, Francis Quinn, Isaac Lankershim, Isaac Van Nuys, Louisa Earp, Jesse Belvin, Phillip Walker, Everett Brown, Florence Barker."


Published on Feb 19, 2019

20:58 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T048gtdhAPQ&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
21st February 2019, 22:11
A real eye opener ...


The Crystal Meth Epidemic Plaguing Fresno

VICE



Fresno is experiencing a meth epidemic.

Located in California’s Central Valley, the city is a hub for many major highways and is surrounded by vast farmlands. And while now, most meth is smuggled from Mexico, the valley was once an ideal location for meth manufacturing labs in the 1990's.

Today, methamphetamine is the number one threat for the Central Valley Drug Task Force, and, because latinos make up half of Fresno's population, they are also being affecting by this epidemic.

VICE's Paola Ramos traveled to Fresno to explore the history, factors and the ongoing relationship between the Latino community and methamphetamine use.

Published on Feb 21, 2019

18:57 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxhyumdiVtw

palooka's revenge
22nd February 2019, 08:25
A real eye opener ...


The Crystal Meth Epidemic Plaguing Fresno

VICE



Published on Feb 21, 2019

18:57 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxhyumdiVtw




https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxA-Me-zGJU

giovonni
22nd February 2019, 09:42
Ah thanks, they mess well together.

giovonni
24th February 2019, 19:38
This docu report is focused in Germany, but it is really a reflection on
of a fast moving global phenomenon that is quickly gaining control of
the future of humankind's destiny...

Watch & Learn.


Inequality - how wealth becomes power

(Poverty Richness Documentary) DW Documentary

(1/2)

DW Documentary
Published on Aug 18, 2018

"Germany is one of the world’s richest countries, but inequality is on the rise. The wealthy are pulling ahead, while the poor are falling behind.

For the middle classes, work is no longer a means of advancement. Instead, they are struggling to maintain their position and status. Young people today have less disposable income than previous generations. This documentary explores the question of inequality in Germany, providing both background analysis and statistics. The filmmakers interview leading researchers and experts on the topic. And they accompany Christoph Gröner, one of Germany’s biggest real estate developers, as he goes about his work. "If you have great wealth, you can’t fritter it away through consumption. If you throw money out the window, it comes back in through the front door,” Gröner says. The real estate developer builds multi-family residential units in cities across Germany, sells condominium apartments, and is involved in planning projects that span entire districts. "Entrepreneurs are more powerful than politicians, because we’re more independent,” Gröner concludes. Leading researchers and experts on the topic of inequality also weigh in, including Nobel-prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz, economist Thomas Piketty, and Brooke Harrington, who carried out extensive field research among investors from the ranks of the international financial elite. Branko Milanović, a former lead economist at the World Bank, says that globalization is playing a role in rising inequality. The losers of globalization are the lower-middle class of affluent countries like Germany. "These people are earning the same today as 20 years ago," Milanović notes. "Just like a century ago, humankind is standing at a crossroads. Will affluent countries allow rising equality to tear apart the fabric of society? Or will they resist this trend?”
_______

41:50


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AFIxi7BiScI


***



Inequality: how wealth becomes power

(2/2)

"Christoph Gröner is one of the richest people in Germany. The son of two teachers, he has worked his way to the top. He believes that many children in Germany grow up without a fair chance and wants to step in. But can this really ease inequality? Christoph Gröner does everything he can to drum up donations and convince the wealthy auction guests to raise their bids. The more the luxury watch for sale fetches, the more money there will be to pay for a new football field, or some extra tutoring, at a children's home. Christoph Gröner is one of the richest people in Germany - his company is now worth one billion euros, he tells us. For seven months, he let our cameras follow him - into board meetings, onto construction sites, through his daily life, and in his charity work. He knows that someone like him is an absolute exception in Germany. His parents were both teachers, and he still worked his way to the top. He believes that many children in Germany grow up without a fair chance. "What we see here is total failure across the board,” he says. "It starts with parents who just don’t get it and can’t do anything right. And then there’s an education policy that has opened the gates wide to the chaos we are experiencing today." Chistoph Gröner wants to step in where state institutions have failed. But can that really ease inequality? In Germany, getting ahead depends more on where you come from than in most other industrialized countries, and social mobility is normally quite restricted. Those on top stay on top. The same goes for those at the bottom. A new study shows that Germany’s rich and poor both increasingly stay amongst themselves, without ever intermingling with other social strata. Even the middle class is buckling under the mounting pressure of an unsecure future. "Land of Inequality" searches for answers as to why. We talk to families, an underpaid nurse, as well as leading researchers and analysts such as economic Nobel Prize laureate Joseph Stiglitz, sociologist Jutta Allmendinger or the economist Raj Chetty, who conducted a Stanford investigation into how the middle class is now arming itself to improve their children’s outlooks."

_______

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cYP_wMJsgyg

giovonni
4th March 2019, 20:22
Will share this here for your entertainment and inspection ...


Rick Steves' The Story of Fascism

"In this one-hour special, Rick travels back a century to learn how fascism rose and then fell in Europe — taking millions of people with it. We'll trace fascism's history from its roots in the turbulent aftermath of World War I, when masses of angry people rose up, to the rise of charismatic leaders who manipulated that anger, the totalitarian societies they built, and the brutal measures they used to enforce their ideology. We'll see the horrific consequences: genocide and total war. And we'll be inspired by the stories of those who resisted. Along the way, we'll visit poignant sights throughout Europe relating to fascism, and talk with Europeans whose families lived through those times. Our goal: to learn from the hard lessons of 20th-century Europe, and to recognize that ideology in the 21st century."

"Richard Steves is an American travel writer, author, activist and television personality. Since 2000, he has hosted Rick Steves' Europe, a travel series on PBS. Steves also has a public radio travel show called Travel with Rick Steves and has authored numerous travel guides" ... More here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rick_Steves)

Published on Mar 4, 2019

56:19 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JU1IVW6uqM0

NotAPretender
4th March 2019, 20:38
A real eye opener ...


The Crystal Meth Epidemic Plaguing Fresno

VICE



Published on Feb 21, 2019

18:57 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxhyumdiVtw

I find this 'interesting'. My brother and sister-in-law have lived in Madera/Fresno for 30 years and have never mentioned Meth. (They were both peripheral to Law Enforcement in the 2nd half of their careers). I can't stand methamphetamines. Walter White look-alike. I can believe the part of the work aspect though. Meth has always been an American product.

If his quote about laws is true...why go to the problem of smuggling from Mexico...no need, just cook it in your back yard.

NotAPretender
4th March 2019, 20:45
Most drugs have been associated with urban life — acid in San Francisco, Prohibition in Chicago, cocaine in the New York nightclubs of the 80s. But meth is a completely different animal: It's rural, consumed not by monied elite on the East and West Coasts, but by white working-class Americans in the Mid and Southwest.

Meth is a blue collar drug, and you can make it at home. Over the years, its manufacture has been more refined, to the point where it can now be cooked in a bathtub or basement, or a self-made lab.

Methamphetamine is a synthetic chemical, unlike marijuana, which grows naturally. The person making the meth takes ingredients from common cold pills (hence the new restrictions on buying medicines that contain pseudoephedrine). The initial synthesis process is actually very easy, according to Breaking Bad's chemistry adviser, Dr. Donna Nelson. Making a pure and high quality product is the hard part, she said.

To increase the product's strength, the meth "cook" combines the substance with chemicals such as battery acid, drain cleaner, lantern fuel and antifreeze. These dangerous chemicals are potentially explosive, and because the meth cooks are potentially drugged out and disoriented, they are often severely burned and disfigured or killed when their preparations explode.

Still, this hasn't kept meth from taking America by storm. Since exploding onto the American drug scene in the 1980s, meth has spread rapidly across the U.S, but we haven't nailed down a single stronghold for it. In 2005, an analysis by Slate.com showed that U.S. newspapers had used the title “Meth Capitol of the World” to describe over 70 different American towns, cities, and countries, from California to New York.

Perhaps one of the most well known and highly acclaimed books about meth in Middle America is Nick Reding's Methland, for which he spent two years immersing himself in meth-stricken Oelwein, Iowa. The New York Times book review wrote that Reding's book was an "unnerving investigative account of two gruesome years" and describe the town "a railroad and meatpacking town of several thousand whipped by a methamphetamine-laced panic whose origins lie outside the place itself, in forces almost too great to comprehend and too pitiless to bear. The ravages of meth, or 'crank,' on Oelwein and countless forsaken locales much like it are shown to be merely superficial symptoms of a vaster social dementia caused by ... iron dominion of corporate agriculture and the slow melting of villages and families into the worldwide financial stew."

Reding wrote that meth had a "seeming distinctiveness among drugs" because of “the general resistance to associating narcotic use with small towns."

So where are these "small towns?"

The below maps show where meth labs have been identified and seized. Indiana, Tennessee, and Missouri have the highest rates of lab incidence.

In Tulsa County, Oklahoma, police identified 979 contaminated meth lab sites — the most of any county in the nation. In a 26-month period, The Tulsa Police Dept. cleaned up 690 labs at a cost of $118,560,000.

Next up on the graph is Jefferson, Missouri, where there were 472 sites. Outside of labs, the Missouri State Highway Patrol seized 37,295 ounces of methamphetamine in 2011.

Other notable sites of lab concentration include: Summit, Ohio (353 labs); Kanawha, West Virginia (235 labs); and Kalamazoo, Michigan (318 labs.)

Breaking Bad takes place in Bernalillo county, New Mexico. Of all 33 counties in New Mexico, Bernallilo has the highest number of illegal meth labs (97), even though it’s the third smallest in terms of area: 1,1666 square miles. (The county has the largest population, at around 670,000.)

Methamphetamine transportation routes.

Aggregate responses from local law enforcement when asked which drug posed the largest threat. (Over a quarter of them answered meth, over cocaine, heroin, marijuana, and prescription pills.)

(Source: National Drug Intelligence Center.)

According to the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), approximately 1.2 million people (0.4% of the population) reported using methamphetamine in the past year alone, and 440,000 (0.2%) reported using it in the past month. The average age of new methamphetamine users in 2012 was 19.7 years old.

Reuters columnist Jack Shafer, who has written extensively on the drug, said in an interview with PolicyMic that he has never adopted the word “epidemic.” First of all, he said, stimulants of the same sort have a 70-year history in the country. “I don’t think that meth is a mystery drug,” he said. And if we’re not calling alcoholism use or tobacco use an “epidemic,” why would we use the word for another drug?

But the thing is, it doesn’t matter what we call it. It's a problem, yes, but it’s not about meth — it’s about something greater. As Reding writes in Methland, “In truth, all drug epidemics are only in part about the drugs. Meth is indeed uniquely suited to Middle America, though this is only tangentially related to the idea that it can be made in the sink. The rise of the meth epidemic was built largely on economic policies, political decisions, and the recent development of American cultural history."

The Washington Post wrote of Methland that “it makes the case that small-town America is perhaps not the moral and hard-working place of the public imagination, but it also argues that big city ignorance — fueled by the media — toward small-town decay is both dangerous and appalling.

Reding summed it up. “If there was a chance to see the place of the small American town in the era of the global economy, the meth epidemic is it.”

giovonni
4th March 2019, 21:25
I find this 'interesting'. My brother and sister-in-law have lived in Madera/Fresno for 30 years and have never mentioned Meth. (They were both peripheral to Law Enforcement in the 2nd half of their careers). I can't stand methamphetamines. Walter White look-alike. I can believe the part of the work aspect though. Meth has always been an American product.

If his quote about laws is true...why go to the problem of smuggling from Mexico...no need, just cook it in your back yard.

The access to the chemical (ingredients) is easily (unregulated) and readily available outside the U.S. in nearby Mexico ... With the poverty level along with other cheaper (less risky) manufacturing conditions makes perfect sense to the Cartels.

PS ~ I lived in the Midwest for over a decade, and as you probably already know Tweekers cooking meth is nothing new ...Though much more risky (with U.S. law enforcement) to be conducted in such large scale.

giovonni
5th March 2019, 01:20
:Bump: ...



Will share this here for your entertainment and inspection ...


Rick Steves' The Story of Fascism

"In this one-hour special, Rick travels back a century to learn how fascism rose and then fell in Europe — taking millions of people with it. We'll trace fascism's history from its roots in the turbulent aftermath of World War I, when masses of angry people rose up, to the rise of charismatic leaders who manipulated that anger, the totalitarian societies they built, and the brutal measures they used to enforce their ideology. We'll see the horrific consequences: genocide and total war. And we'll be inspired by the stories of those who resisted. Along the way, we'll visit poignant sights throughout Europe relating to fascism, and talk with Europeans whose families lived through those times. Our goal: to learn from the hard lessons of 20th-century Europe, and to recognize that ideology in the 21st century."

"Richard Steves is an American travel writer, author, activist and television personality. Since 2000, he has hosted Rick Steves' Europe, a travel series on PBS. Steves also has a public radio travel show called Travel with Rick Steves and has authored numerous travel guides" ... More here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rick_Steves)

Published on Mar 4, 2019

56:19 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JU1IVW6uqM0

Elen
5th March 2019, 10:13
How timely is that Gio! A lot of food for thought here. :cool::love:

Aragorn
9th March 2019, 21:35
This could just as easily have gone on the Lounge Thread, but then I thought of Gio's intent for this thread, and that's why I'm sharing it here.

I hadn't seen this interview yet before tonight, and I had already often been wondering what had become of Barry after all three of his younger brothers ─ first Andy, the youngest, and then Maurice, followed a few years later by his twin brother Robin ─ had come to pass away.





Barry Gibb, the last Bee Gee

When the Bee Gees put the Fever into Saturday Night, they became one of the most successful pop groups in history. Born in England but raised in Queensland, this band of brothers - Barry, Robin and Maurice - were musical geniuses.

When Robin died, eldest brother Barry became the sole surviving Bee Gee - or, as he puts it, "the last man standing". He spoke about it for the first time four months after the tragedy, coming to terms with his loss as he spoke to Rahni Sadler.

This story originally aired on the 23 September 2012.


Duration: 18 minutes





https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpp3YQ3B0n0

NotAPretender
9th March 2019, 22:13
The interesting thing about Mussolini's 'supreme Italy' there was still the undercurrent that the 'light skinned' Italians (Northerners, Neapolitans) were better than the dark ones...southern Italy and Sicily...

giovonni
9th March 2019, 22:32
The interesting thing about Mussolini's 'supreme Italy' there was still the undercurrent that the 'light skinned' Italians (Northerners, Neapolitans) were better than the dark ones...southern Italy and Sicily...

Please do note the term Neapolitan's refers to the inhabitants of Naples ...

And it is no secret that the Italian government (over the course of its short historic history),
has neglected the people and economy of its poorer southern regions ...

Still, i am very proud of my southern roots and relatives in the Calabria region ( San Giovanni in Fiore).

By the way my father's (family) skin is (was) white ...

If that really matters much ... :)

NotAPretender
9th March 2019, 22:35
of course it does, Giovonni, no disrespect meant...Your reflection on your roots is essentially universal...Spain, Mexico, India, Italy, Native American...we all 'fight' the same urges...

But since you brought it up...I don't suppose you have any Coccos floating around back there... :)

giovonni
9th March 2019, 23:07
But since you brought it up...I don't suppose you have any Coccos floating around back there...

I imagine so, though my paternal grandmother was French (and my maternal was Welsh/German ) ...

Though i would venture to say all Euro/trash have some - 'all down the line' ... :)

giovonni
10th March 2019, 01:17
:Bump: ...


This could just as easily have gone on the Lounge Thread, but then I thought of Gio's intent for this thread, and that's why I'm sharing it here.

I hadn't seen this interview yet before tonight, and I had already often been wondering what had become of Barry after all three of his younger brothers ─ first Andy, the youngest, and then Maurice, followed a few years later by his twin brother Robin ─ had come to pass away.





Barry Gibb, the last Bee Gee

When the Bee Gees put the Fever into Saturday Night, they became one of the most successful pop groups in history. Born in England but raised in Queensland, this band of brothers - Barry, Robin and Maurice - were musical geniuses.

When Robin died, eldest brother Barry became the sole surviving Bee Gee - or, as he puts it, "the last man standing". He spoke about it for the first time four months after the tragedy, coming to terms with his loss as he spoke to Rahni Sadler.

This story originally aired on the 23 September 2012.


Duration: 18 minutes





https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpp3YQ3B0n0

Christopher
10th March 2019, 11:32
See thread about Aussie man in India walking around but wearing no clothes .
Records such as Tragedy and Staying Alive now seem like glimpses of his future .

giovonni
10th March 2019, 18:11
The UK series (on Netflix) 'Can't Pay? We'll Take It Away!' (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Can%27t_Pay%3F_We%27ll_Take_It_Away!) introduced me to this growing phenomenon in Britain ... Though it probably can occur anywhere in the Western world today.



No Place To Call Home (Poverty Documentary) - Real Stories

Real Stories

"Over a period of 18 months, we see two families evicted by their private landlords, trapped for over a year in a homeless hostel, and sofa-surfing with friends and family for months on end.

Throughout this ordeal, eleven-year-old Ellie and ten-year-old JJ remain cheerful and resilient, trying to see what they are going through as an adventure that they will one day look back on and laugh about – when they finally have a home they can call their own once again."

Published on Mar 7, 2019

58:50 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B1IziIrfCp4&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
12th March 2019, 01:55
Been looking forward to this one ...


FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Viewers Special #1 (Selena, Ava Gardner, etc.)


Hollywood Graveyard
Published on Mar 11, 2019
Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard. Today, I turn the camera over to you, the Hollywood Graveyard Community, as we travel the world to visit famous and historical graves in your neck of the woods. Together we’ll cross the country, and eventually the oceans, to pay our respects to legends around the globe, like Selena, Jayne Mansfield, Ava Gardner, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today: D. W. Griffith, Gene Tierney, Howard Hughes, Selena, Greer Garson, William Hootkins, Mickey Mantle, David Koresh, Susan Hayward, Big Boss Man, Jane Addams, John Shedd, Brian Piccolo, Matt McGrory, David Brenner, Jim Croce, Nick Adams, Jayne Mansfield, Wiley Post, Leon Russell, Roy Clark, Sam Kinison, Red Prysock, Frances Bavier, Eng & Chang Bunker, Alicia Rhett, Shoeless Joe Jackson, Gram Parsons, Louis Prima, Gia Maione, Marguerite Clark, Al Copeland, Stan Rice, Mel Ott, Pete Fountain, Al Hirt.

30:13 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vYGWzC7pG9Q

giovonni
12th March 2019, 12:50
What if the future of housing means accepting that a home isn’t permanent?


https://cms.qz.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/20180808_SeeBoundless_London274.jpg?quality=75&strip=all&w=3200&h=2136

"Generally speaking, you don’t want to end up at a place like Hope Gardens. The housing development, located at Meath Court in the west London borough of Ealing, is temporary accommodation (https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/homelessness/rules/emergency_housing_if_you_are_homeless)for people who have found themselves without secure or long-term housing. It is, for many people, the last resort before sleeping on the street.

In London, more than 56,000 families were living in temporary accommodation in the second quarter of 2018 (roughly 2,100 of those were living in Ealing). London’s figure represents nearly 70% of England’s total, a testament of the acute housing crisis that London has been facing for years. Half-empty luxury skyscrapers seem to sprout up with increasing regularity, while government-funded public

While the residents of Hope Gardens wait for their application for long-term, secure housing to be assessed by the council, the temporary structure they’re living in is a novel way to meet the demand in London’s housing crisis. It could point to a future strategy for cities that need to tackle crises of housing, migration, and land development.

Ship shape

The idea of inhabitable shipping containers, like the ones the residents at Hope Gardens live in, generally brings a certain demographic to mind: young, gentrifying professionals who view minimalist living as a lifestyle choice rather than a function of circumstance. This is largely thanks to hip developments such as the Boxpark chain of shopping malls in London’s gentrifying neighborhoods of Shoreditch and Croydon or the quirky-luxe residential units presented at design shows, like those created by German company Containerwerk."


https://cms.qz.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/20180808_SeeBoundless_London239.jpg?quality=75&strip=all&w=2520
Colorful panels and murals make Hope Gardens more cheerful than other types of public housing.

"While they are bright, colorful, and modern-looking, compared to the austere style of much of Britain’s public housing, the tenant-ready units at Hope Gardens are not what one might call “hip.” The containers are built for purpose—meaning they are built to be lived in, not converted from old containers—their fittings are basic and designed to be easily swapped in and out in case of damage or repairs. The focus is on modularity, easy transportability, and speed of both setup and dismantling. The studio, one-bedroom, or two-bedroom units—which range from 12 to 36 square meters—come equipped with simple beds, a couch, a wardrobe table, and basic kitchen appliances as well as standard utilities.

Hope Gardens was developed by QED Properties, a sustainable urban developer, in partnership with ISO Spaces, a company that specializes in converting shipping containers. It can accommodate roughly 216 such tenants, or roughly 60 families.

The Hope Gardens development was built and assembled in 24 weeks; its residents first arrived in December 2017. It was built on what’s called a “meanwhile site,” or land that’s been earmarked for future development, but its ultimate use has not been finalized. The units will be inhabited on their current site for seven years after installation, then moved elsewhere when the land they’re situated on is ready to be used for its intended purpose.

In the UK, local government councils are responsible for housing people, in their boroughs, who say they are at risk of homelessness. While their application is assessed, these tenants are generally placed in temporary accommodation and charged rent according to their ability to pay (often with the help of government benefits) until they can be permanently housed.

Like other temporary accommodation setups, people arrive at Hope Gardens from a range of circumstances. Some have been living in private rented accommodation that, for one reason or another (often a rent hike), they can no longer live in. Government statistics (pdf) say that in 2017-2018, 31% of Londoners who were at risk of homelessness said the end of a private tenancy agreement was the cause. In Ealing, the figure in 2018 was 59%. Few can afford to re-enter London’s private rental sector.

Others may have been living in other temporary accommodation setups that offer little privacy or security or may have found themselves with nowhere to go after a relationship ended. In a testament to how acute London’s housing shortage is, Ealing council says the average stay in temporary accommodation in the borough is four years. Tenants range from single individuals to families or parents with their children. All hope to be placed in a secure, long-term housing option.

While few people would want to be in such a situation, Peter Mason, cabinet member for housing, planning & transformation at Ealing Council, says that the setup at Hope Gardens is better than many alternatives the council can offer, such as placing residents outside of London, far away from their communities or support networks.

“We can’t pretend that anyone entering into temporary accommodation is anything but going through a difficult period of their lives,” Mason told Quartz. “But what these modular homes allow us to do is to give people some stability in their lives very quickly rather than having to pick a family up from the community that they know.”

Housing people at Hope Gardens costs the council slightly less than a typical hostel or B&B accommodation setup. But the council says they don’t see this marginal cost saving as the reason for creating them. “Giving tenants more privacy and control over their lives,” is the priority, Mason says; residents routinely report that simply having a front door is major perk of the setup, compared to bed-sit style hostels or bed and breakfasts, where bathroom and kitchen facilities are shared."


https://cms.qz.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/20180808_SeeBoundless_London265.jpg?quality=75&strip=all&w=2520
About 60 families can live in the modular housing at Hope Gardens.

"That’s not to say that tenants haven’t reported downsides. Temperature control seems to be an issue; though the units contain radiators, some residents have complained they are too cold (https://www.bbc.com/news/av/uk-england-london-43334953/ealing-families-living-in-freezing-shipping-containers) in the winter, and scorching (https://londonist.com/london/housing/what-s-it-like-to-live-in-a-shipping-container) in the summer, both thanks to structures’ metal exterior. A rep from the council said since the complaints, “no changes have been made and after investigation, [the units] have not found to be wanting.” All in all, though, the bright and clean units are nicer than what many a would-be London tenant has likely come across in their search for affordable housing.

Some critics take issue with building housing on “meanwhile sites.” It is a symptom of a broken system, they say, not a solution to be celebrated. Anna Minton, an academic and author whose work is focused on London’s housing crisis, notes that meanwhile sites are very much known to be part of the “hipsterization around the corner” transition where “a site which is earmarked for a big development or a luxury apartment block will take on a more temporary use while it’s empty which satisfies the area as well.” In other words, making use of meanwhile sites for temporary accommodation may seem innovative, but it is really a symptom of a system that prioritizes speculative investment over the needs of current residents. (It should be noted that the slated purpose of the Hope Gardens site is a public park, not luxury flats).

She adds that in a country that already has homes with the smallest average floor area in Europe, according to Cambridge University researchers, she’s wary of solutions that are predicated on having people live in ever-smaller units. “While the aims of the people behind it are laudable, it’s sort of trying to find ways of sneaking in good social outcomes within existing socio-economic structures which are broken.”

The future is modular

Modular, responsive structures can help shape a future defined by a less permanent attitude toward housing.

That said, councils are not tasked with fixing the housing crisis that everyone agrees the city is mired in—they’re supposed to help prevent people from ending up on the streets. There is an argument to be made that modular, responsive structures can help shape a future defined by a less permanent attitude toward housing is the kind we need to meet the needs of the changing city and world.

Ross Gilbert is the managing director of QED Properties, the developer of Hope Gardens, as well as two other similar developments in Ealing and one in Brighton, UK. He describes the built environment in London as “slow and unresponsive,” meaning it takes ages to make change and get projects off the ground, adding “it’s very inaccessible for small developers and self builders.”


https://cms.qz.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/DJI_0511.jpg?quality=75&strip=all&w=2520
Hope Gardens was assembled in 24 weeks.

"That means the new stability when it comes to housing, he says, may just be adaptability.

“Access over ownership is very much what we’re really interested in,” Gilbert said. “How you can provide a housing solution that is about access—not just for the most vulnerable, but also for younger professionals, key workers? There are huge number of groups that would benefit from an increase of housing of this kind.”

He describes a situation where “a common language or a network of construction” means that shipping container units like those at Hope Gardens can be plugged in to various places around the world and added onto or subtracted from based one’s stage of life.

“How far away are we from, rather than moving house, you actually move your house?” Gilbert says. “We have this global infrastructure of transport networks that moves hundreds of millions of these things round every year. Having a much more flexible and dynamic built environment has got to be the future.”


By Rosie Spinks in LondonFebruary 27, 2019
Source: qz.com (https://qz.com/1542887/london-provides-low-income-housing-in-modular-shipping-containers/)

giovonni
15th March 2019, 00:50
Growing up can be a challenge even in paradise ...


New Zealand's Teenage Offenders and their Journey to Stay out of Juvenile Detention

VICE Asia

"In New Zealand’s rural Taranaki region (https://www.newzealandnow.govt.nz/regions-nz/taranaki), adolescent boys growing up in poverty often end up turning to crime, some racking up criminal convictions before they hit 16. Most young offenders find themselves locked up—but a lucky few get a chance to avoid juvenile detention by participating in START Taranaki, an early intervention program designed to give them a second lease on life. Through individualized counseling, spending time in the wilderness of the Taranaki bush, and taking a guided transition back to their communities, START works to make sure kids don’t wind up back in court once they leave the program.

VICE tagged along as one group of boys went through START, hearing what got them in trouble, how they handled the intensive program, and if it'll be enough to get them to change their ways."

Published on Oct 3, 2018

23:29 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L1TKnHezfiM

giovonni
24th March 2019, 14:27
It's becoming the norm ...


Mongolia: A toxic warning to the world


BBC News
Published on Mar 24, 2019

All over the world cities are grappling with apocalyptic air pollution but the small capital of Mongolia is suffering from some of the worst in the world.

And the problem is intrinsically linked to climate change.

The country has already warmed by 2.2 degrees, forcing thousands of people to abandon the countryside and the traditional herding lifestyle every year for the smog-choked city where 90% of children are breathing toxic air every day.

Population Reporter Stephanie Hegarty finds out why.

8:13 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KmFAJivap1w

giovonni
30th March 2019, 19:46
Working hard for Kim's money ...

North Korea - All the dictator's men | DW Documentary


North Korea is one of the poorest countries in the world, but its leader Kim Jong Un has still found the money he needs to finance a nuclear weapons program, despite the country's fundamental poverty and international economic sanctions.

This documentary looks at how, and introduces the men who have helped Kim Jong Un keep his dreams of reaching nuclear power status alive. North Korea has not reined in its nuclear program, despite a number of UN resolutions that have tried to force it to do so. So how has the isolated country kept the program going despite sanctions? Every year Pyongyang sends millions of North Korean workers abroad, selling their services to over 40 countries around the world. And their salaries flow directly into Kim’s treasury. The only ones who know exactly how the system works are the men who have helped the North Korean government carry through the program for years. A film team spent years researching these men and their secrets - from bankers and diplomats to the laborers and specialists who worked abroad and whose wages flowed into the regime's coffers. Come and meet all the dictator’s men.


DW Documentary




Video no longer available

giovonni
31st March 2019, 03:29
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Viewers Special #2 (James Dean, Katharine Hepburn, etc.)



Hollywood Graveyard

Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard. Today, I turn the camera over to you, the Hollywood Graveyard Community, as we travel the world to visit famous and historical graves in your neck of the woods. Together we’ll cross the country, and eventually the oceans, to pay our respects to legends around the globe, like James Dean, Katharine Hepburn, Bruce Lee, and many more.

Published on Mar 30, 2019

35:31 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tTrENS6NedA&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
3rd April 2019, 04:30
Imagine and listen ...

New nuclear weapons in Europe - The return of the Cold War? | DW Documentary



DW Documentary
Published on Apr 2, 2019

Nuclear rearmament is back in full swing and the INF treaty between the USA and Russia has been suspended. East and West seem to be on a collision course again.

Are we looking at a return to a scenario such as the balance of terror in the 1980s? In the 1980s, millions of people in Europe took to the streets to demonstrate against the nuclear arms race. After the Cold War ended, thousands of nuclear weapons were pulled out of Europe. Since then, however, the political situation has worsened dramatically, and a new nuclear arms race between the USA and Russia is already in full swing. Many experts think nuclear conflict is more likely now than it was during the Cold War and are talking about a second nuclear age. Both the Russians and the Americans have apparently been breaking the INF treaty signed by US President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, which was designed to prevent nuclear escalation. The deployment of nuclear weapons has once more become a possibility, and that could have fatal consequences for Europe. The modernization of US nuclear bombs on European soil, the debate about the development of a separate European deterrent and constant military maneuvers on both sides of NATO's eastern border in the Baltic States are exacerbating the situation considerably.

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QtdvNx51JVs

giovonni
10th April 2019, 18:23
Will share this here ...

Portugal's Heartland


Rick Steves' Europe
Published on Apr 10, 2019

Portugal has an oversized history, fascinating culture, and boatloads of sardines. Saving the capital city of Lisbon for another episode, we'll dance on the beach at Nazaré, marvel at a medieval abbey in Batalha, visit a royal library and revel with university students in Coimbra, savor port wine with the people who made it along the Douro River, and get to know Portugal's gritty and fascinating second city, Porto.

25:01 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0IvZOZtjMYM

giovonni
14th April 2019, 05:18
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Viewers Special #3 (Greta Garbo, Jim Morrison, etc.)


Hollywood Graveyard
Published on Apr 13, 2019

Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard. Today, I turn the camera over to you, the Hollywood Graveyard Community, as we travel the world to visit famous and historical graves in your neck of the woods. Together we’ll cross the country, and the oceans, to pay our respects to legends around the globe, like Marlene Dietrich, Jim Morrison, Greta Garbo, and many more.

19:33 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1fb5nugcRHU&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
15th April 2019, 02:54
Growing nationalism and a ongoing threat from Russia ...


Georgia between Europe and Stalin | DW Documentary



Writer Davit Gabunia travels through his native Georgia to visit the grave of his cousin, who was killed in the war against Russia in 2008. He gives us a profound and moving picture of how his country ticks.

On his journey, Davit talks to demonstrators in the capital Tbilisi, the curator of the bizarre Stalin Museum and with a convinced Stalinist who would like to see the statue of the Soviet dictator returned to its plinth in the city from the industrial wasteland where it was dumped. He also visits places that have a great personal meaning for him. Davit’s cousin Shalva died in the Georgian-Russian War of 2008 and he visits the grave in his hometown of Poti on the Black Sea for the first time. For ten years, he didn't dare come back here. Born in 1982, the writer looks at the conflict in his home country through the lens of the so-called "administrative frontier” between Georgia and the breakaway region of South Ossetia. Russia has occupied South Ossetia, which is internationally recognized as part of Georgia, ten years. Davit meets an old farmer's wife and learns how the conflict here affects her everyday life. There’s lots of material for Davit's black notebook, where he meticulously notes down everything that happens during the journey and so creates a panorama of contemporary Georgia.

DW Documentary
Published on Apr 13, 2019

25:55 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rw1bz_hi9kY&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
20th April 2019, 04:25
A hike in Central/Fun/Park with ...

Kevin Nealon & SNL's Colin Jost ...


During a 'wandering hike' in Central Park, SNL's Colin Jost chats with Kevin Nealon about life on SNL, Staten Island, his bout with Michael Che on WWE, being messy and easily distracted, the idea of being a waiter, pitching ideas to SNL hosts, Weekend Update, Michael Che, deadlines, being forgetful, being in a relationship with a movie star, stand up, performing drunk, unhealthy eating habits, anxiety, his mother whom is a hero, sleeping habits at 30 Rock, Harvard merch, comedy writers from Harvard, his constant state of being in fear, his favorite hosts, the SNL after-parties, plus more....

Kevin Nealon
Published on Apr 18, 2019


19:49 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_AUxtMChmQ

giovonni
23rd April 2019, 00:25
The history of the human race is a continual struggle from darkness towards light. It is, therefore, to no purpose to discuss the use of knowledge; man wants to know, and when he ceases to do so, he is no longer man.

Fridtjof Nansen


How can stateless people cross borders?


DW Documentary

After the end of the First World War, millions of people in Europe became stateless refugees. A newly devised passport created by the League of Nations’ High Commissioner for Refugees was their salvation.

In the aftermath of the First World War, more than two million people fled the Russian Revolution and the Armenian massacres. To prevent them from returning to their home countries, their respective governments revoked their citizenships. These permanent exiles had no choice but to start anew elsewhere and spread out around the world. To deal with this fraught situation, Norwegian diplomat Fridtjof Nansen, the League of Nations’ first High Commissioner for Refugees, worked hard to create a passport for these "stateless" persons. The so-called "Nansen Passport" was introduced on 5 July 1922. It was a symbolic document that made history as the first international legal instrument for the protection of refugees. This identity card and travel document allowed them to enter all the member states of the League of Nations at a time when many European states were closing their borders because of fascism, anti-Semitism and war and paying increasing attention to the legal status of both residents and foreigners. Famous artists such as Anna Pavlova, Vladimir Nabokov, Marc Chagall, Igor Stravinsky and Robert Capa, as well as more than a million other stateless persons, mostly refugees from Russia and the Ottoman Empire, received these precious passports. States have not used collective deprivation of citizenship as a weapon since 1945, but the UN General Assembly did not officially ban it until 2012.

Published on Apr 21, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUGO_T1T-yQ&feature=em-uploademail

Elen
23rd April 2019, 09:48
I met a handful of refugees from the Russian Aristocracy as a child. My overall impression of them where that they were very gentle spirits, gentle people that appreciated being given food and shelter for some time, however short, as they were on the move...on the move. I feel fortunate having had this experience. :love:

giovonni
24th April 2019, 13:25
The continuous election cycles only distract from ongoing problems ...
and the politicians know it oh so well ...
Always promising ...



Better Days

♪ Trust me, I can help you
Feel free, we can save you
Join us in the good life
And better days, better days

Campaign for a new life
Champagne and the bright lights
Make way for the right way
And better days, better days ♪

Supertramp

5:08 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xE_dA479MCs

giovonni
26th April 2019, 19:25
"The Growing Thing" ...

Black women in South Africa after the apartheid | DW Documentary




Twenty-five years after the end of apartheid, black women in South Africa are looking for their chance in society. Jabulile Ndaba was one of many who had no education and little chance of ever changing that.

The documentary "The Growing Thing" portraits Jabulile Ndaba who was hardy 11 years old when she left school. The South African is now a tall, strong woman with a strong sense of humor that rarely fails her - even though she has to look after a family of ten. Her life seemed to be a dead end. Her husband was drinking away his pay and her son had dropped out of school - Jabulile found out he had started using Nyaope, a highly addictive street drug. Also known as Whooga, it’s a mixture of rat poison, prescription drugs and heroin that destroys the lives of unemployed youths in the townships. Jabulile decided to do whatever it took to help him stop. Her chance came with Kopanang, a women's project founded by Sheila Flynn, a Dominican sister from Ireland. The project aims to enable women to earn money from sewing and embroidering. But for Jabulile it was also an opportunity to learn management and office skills. Yet when Sister Sheila announces that she’s moving to Australia, Jabulile and her colleagues are expected to take over the running of the project themselves. Are they up to the challenge?

DW Documentary
Published on Apr 26, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pen3mR4IAUg&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
1st May 2019, 20:06
While i do not necessarily agree that the global warming phenomena is entirely human caused ...
I do sense and believe our solar system is (and has been) warming up due to normal galactic
circular conditional reasons - But with no doubts this human climate migration will continue.

giovonni



Fleeing climate change - the real environmental disaster | DW Documentary



How many millions of people will be forced to leave their homes by 2050? This documentary looks at the so-called hotspots of climate change in the Sahel zone, Indonesia and the Russian Tundra.

Lake Chad in the Sahel zone has already shrunk by 90 percent since the 1960s due to the increasing heat. About 40 million people will be forced to migrate to places where there is enough rainfall. Migration has always existed as a strategy to adapt to a changing environment. But the number of those forced to migrate solely because of climate change has increased dramatically since the 1990s. It is a double injustice: after becoming rich at the expense of the rest of the world, the industrialized countries are now polluting the atmosphere with their emissions and bringing a second misfortune to the inhabitants of the poorer regions. One of them is Mohammed Ibrahim: as Lake Chad got hotter and drier, he decided to go where the temperatures were less extreme and there was still a little water, trekking with his wife, children and 70 camels from Niger to Chad and then further south. The journey lasted several years and many members of his herd died of thirst. Now he and his family are living in a refugee camp: they only have seven camels left. Mohammed is one of many who have left their homelands in the Sahel - not because of conflict and crises, but because of the high temperatures. He's a real climate refugee.


DW Documentary
Published on May 1, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cl4Uv9_7KJE&feature=em-uploademail

NotAPretender
1st May 2019, 20:16
really interesting and appropriate, Giovonni

giovonni
4th May 2019, 05:03
A weekend treat ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Viewers Special #4 (Bram Stoker, Amy Winehouse, etc.)


Hollywood Graveyard
Published on May 3, 2019
Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard. Today, I turn the camera over to you, the Hollywood Graveyard Community, as we travel the world to visit famous and historical graves in your neck of the woods. Together we’ll cross the country, and the oceans, to pay our respects to legends around the globe, like Bram Stoker, Amy Winehouse, Alec Guinness, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today: Arthur Shields, Michael Collins, Thomas Andrews, Wallace Hartley, Frederick Fleet, Benny Hill, Alec Guinness, Florence Nightingale, Arthur Conan Doyle, Lewis Carroll, Eleanor Rigby, Stuart Sutcliffe, George Formby, Anne Bronte, Little John, John Ray, Ebenezer Scrooge, Diana Dors, Alan Lake, George Orwell, Dusty Springfield, Robin Gibb, Andy Gibb, Agatha Christie, John Mills, Roald Dahl, William Penn, Brian Jones, Karl Marx, Douglas Adams, Corin Redgrave, George Eliot, Malcolm McLaren, Patrick Caulfield, Ralph Richardson, Edith Evans, Ellen Terry, Thomas Arne, Michael Redgrave, Alan Jay Lerner, Anna Neagle, Margaret Rutherford, Boris Karloff, Gracie Fields, Hattie Jacques, Charlie Chaplin, Noel Coward, Peter O'Toole, Richard Beckinsale, VIvien Leigh, Marc Bolan, Keith Moon, David Gest, Larry Adler, Hughie Green, Robert Harbin, Ivor Novello, Peter Sellers, Anna Pavlova, Ella Shields, Bram Stoker, Karl Mannheim, Sigmund Freud, Amy Winehouse.

47:22 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cyEGZ-0RSmE&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
15th May 2019, 20:45
Who still needs the EU ?

"Passionate supporters, angry critics and a neutral majority ...
The EU elicits a range of reactions" ...

Europe ahead of elections | DW Documentary




What’s behind the preconceptions and skepticism? Our reporters go looking for answers in in Germany, Poland, Italy and Brussels.Is it really the case that hardworking countries pay for the less industrious ones? Reporter Jo Schück asks Ingo Egloff from the Hamburg Port if Germany really is the EU’s paymaster. In Poland, journalist Aleksandra Rybinska explains why many people see the EU as a bossy super-state, while judges and activists in Warsaw explain why the country’s judicial reform is alienating it from the EU.

In Italy, reporter Katty Salié meets Yvan Sagnet, a political activist born in Cameroon who accuses the EU of failing to address urgent issues - chief among them, the distribution of refugees across member states. As a result, new arrivals in Italy, often without papers, have to stay in overcrowded camps in appalling conditions, and work as day laborers in the agricultural sector.

The Center For Research on Right-Wing Extremism in Jena has observed how euro-skeptics are undermining European ideas from within, with far-right parties gaining traction in the European Parliament. In Brussels, the two reporters discover what the infamous bureaucratic behemoth looks like from the inside. They catch up with Damian Boeselager, co-founder of the first pan-European party, and gauge the mood in the heart of the bloc ahead of the European elections.

DW Documentary
Published on May 14, 2019

28:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbiRALyi9o4&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
18th May 2019, 09:56
Some enjoyable reminiscing ...

Hiking with Kevin and Al Franken


Humorist, comic and former Minnesota Senator, Al Franken hikes with Kevin Nealon at Los Angeles' Will Rogers State Park. Al chats about his foray into stand up with Tom Davis (https://www.rollingstone.com/movies/movie-news/tom-davis-al-frankens-comedy-partner-dead-at-59-244674/), how they got on Saturday Night Live, a run in with a Canadian hiker, the original SNL cast coming together, the Chris Farley Chippendale sketch, remembering Chris Farley, Tom Davis' life-farewell party, writing for SNL's Weekend Update, being disappointed he never got the anchorman position, being a senator, his first days in Washington DC, dark comedy, ,explaining a 3am rewrite, his favorite part of the country, being a grandfather, the SNL parody commercials he wrote, negative political voice overs plus more...


Kevin Nealon
Published on May 16, 2019

18:08 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cpp1YaN4MOY




A classic ...:thup:

Chippendales Audition - SNL (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=stqG2ihMvP0)

giovonni
21st May 2019, 06:09
https://proxy.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fmedia.npr.org%2Fassets%2Fimg%2F20 19%2F05%2F19%2Fgettyimages-877279736_wide-5e3b7ea6d6404eae8fad1a91e8d4f5f35f702b57.jpg%3Fs%3 D1400&f=1

America Is In Full Employment, So Why Aren't We Celebrating?

Listen/Read - Here (https://www.npr.org/2019/05/20/722650602/america-is-in-full-employment-so-why-arent-we-celebrating?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=20190520&fbclid=IwAR0iNgo2pd3BFkqCnxhuEjVXWVP3nGHepEcIzKXnD PfvGd3qhGed-yc9lSc)

giovonni
22nd May 2019, 23:42
Will share this here ...

The rainforest hermit who stepped out of the wild | Australian Story



Beetles, worms and lizards — Gregory Smith ate just about anything to stay alive in the forest.

From a homeless hermit to a university lecturer, he's proven you can overcome anything in
your search for a safe place. He shares his story with Australian Story.

ABC News (Australia)
Published on Sep 3, 2018

29:20 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9fnm_xFD3cQ

giovonni
24th May 2019, 06:17
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Viewers Special #5 (Elvis, Aretha Franklin, etc.)



Full list of stars visited today: Aretha Franklin, Rosa Parks, Henry Ford, John DeLorean, R. E. Olds, Cole Porter, Johnny Appleseed, Hoagy Carmichael, Frances Farmer, James Baskett, Sandy Allen, James Pierce, Joan Burroughs Pierce, Shannon Hoon, Emmett Kelly, Bobby Helms, Henry B Adams, Charles Jenkins, Robert Prosky, Upton Sinclair, Adrienne Ames, Gladys McClure, Rod Roddy, Pimp C, The Big Bopper, Sandra West, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Russell Stover, Jeanne Eagles, Kate Spade, Walter Cronkite, Chuck Berry, Mickey Carroll, Tennessee Williams, William S. Burroughs, Bruno Sammartino, Honus Wagner, Lillian Russell, Stephen Foster, Billy Mays, Andy Warhol, Mr. Rogers, Jim Thorpe, Bonzo, Tammi Terrell, Bessie Smith, Muhammad Ali, Victor Mature, Sidney Blackmer, Suzanne Kaaren, Reggie White, Randolph Scott, Tony Curtis, Redd Foxx, Robin Leach, Wild Bill Elliott, Sonny Liston, Hank Williams, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, Lynn Anderson, Liz Anderson, Little Jimmy Dickens, Chet Atkins, Donna Summer, Johnny Cash, June Carter, Maybelle Carter, Minnie Pearl, Red Rector, Elvis Presley.

Hollywood Graveyard
Published on May 23, 2019

46:28 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEnRaEi-Uhw

giovonni
24th May 2019, 14:33
In the news ...

Analysis: What does Theresa May's resignation mean for the UK? | DW News


British Prime Minister Theresa May has announced that she will be resigning as leader of her Conservative party on June 7th. In her speech outside Downing Street, May said she had tried her best to honor the Brexit result. She has been under growing pressure to step down over her failure to get MPs to support her Brexit deal. There'll now be a Conservative leadership contest with some of her colleagues already saying they will be trying to get her job.

DW News
Published on May 24, 2019

12:24 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sr0E32paohQ

Aragorn
24th May 2019, 18:13
In the news ...

Analysis: What does Theresa May's resignation mean for the UK? | DW News


British Prime Minister Theresa May has announced that she will be resigning as leader of her Conservative party on June 7th. In her speech outside Downing Street, May said she had tried her best to honor the Brexit result. She has been under growing pressure to step down over her failure to get MPs to support her Brexit deal. There'll now be a Conservative leadership contest with some of her colleagues already saying they will be trying to get her job.

DW News
Published on May 24, 2019

Regardless of her political orientation and whether one is in favor or against the whole Brexit affair, one has to admire and respect the courage that Theresa May put into these difficult negotiations. She tried her best to uphold the outcome of a poll in which the vast majority of the British people voted in favor of Brexit, but as it goes in politics, she was met with lots of opposition and hurdles, both from the EU and from within the British political establishment, including her own party.

By resigning, Mrs. May is assuming the political responsibility for her failure to negotiate a satisfactory Brexit deal, but I personally don't think she should be taking the fall, because she put a lot of time and energy into this difficult phase, and the matter was contentious from the get-go. I don't think she ever really had a chance. :hmm:

NotAPretender
24th May 2019, 18:19
Great point, Aragorn...there's a ready made word for that...scapegoat...They are amazingly handy.

giovonni
27th May 2019, 09:17
In search of ...

Money, happiness and eternal life - Greed

(director's cut) | DW Documentary



Can money and power ever make us happy? How much is enough? Our constant desire for more is part of our human nature.

Some call it a useful dowry of evolution, others a fault in the human genetic make-up: The old mortal sin Greed seems to be more ubiquitous than ever. Why can't people ever get enough, where is this self-indulgence leading - and are there any ways out of this vicious circle of gratification?

"People like to have a lot of stuff because it makes them the feeling of living forever," says American social psychologist Sheldon Solomon, who believes today's materialism and consumerism will have disastrous consequences.

Anyone who fails to satisfy his or her desires in this age of the Ego is deemed a loser. But with more than 7 billion people on the Earth, the ramifications of this excessive consumption of resources are already clear. Isn’t the deplorable state of our planet proof enough that "The Greed Program," which has made us crave possessions, status and power, is coming to an end? Or is the frenzied search for more and more still an indispensable part of our nature? We set off to look for the essence of greed. And we tell the stories of people who - whether as perpetrators or victims or even just as willing consumers - have become accomplices in a sea change in values.

DW Documentary
Published on Jun 23, 2017


1:31:13 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVuVlk2E_e4

giovonni
30th May 2019, 21:19
Solutions in our Battle for Humanity - Catherine Fitts

Forum Borealis

"Let's explore preserving civilization. Some themes raised: Why is it crucial to maintain, own, & enjoy art, beauty, & culture? Creativity: Antidote to negativity obsession? Cryptocurrency: Solution or trap? Universal Basic Income: Freedom or enslavement? Mind control: Key to slave labour? Which economic model serve citizens? Can intention influence reality? How to fix the Black Budget? What of the Pentagon audit? How to build a happy life amidst gloom? Is the Space Force a whitewash of the Classified Space Program? Is false dichotomy & identity politics a distraction? What did Voyager mission detect in Saturn's rings? + Hear Al's tourist prospect of Norway."

Published on May 30, 2019

2:14:01 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5QU0-KTFlw

giovonni
1st June 2019, 23:57
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Viewers Special #6 (Lucille Ball, Mary Tyler Moore, etc.)




Hollywood Graveyard

Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard. Today, we conclude our tour filmed by you, the Hollywood Graveyard community, visiting famous and historical graves in your neck of the woods. Together we’ll cross the country, and the oceans, to pay our respects to legends around the globe, like Lucille Ball, Mary Tyler Moore, Rick James, and many more.

Published on Jun 1, 2019

37:58 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cOpuQgGdDmY&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
7th June 2019, 10:07
Mogadishu a city existing in a perpetual state of war ...

The Infamous Warlords Of Somalia

(Crime Documentary)



Real Stories

Somalia has the perfect ecosystem for endless war: European mercenaries, pirates, Al Qaeda jihadists, weapon smugglers, drought and hunger. We enter an absurd, anarchic reality where warlords will switch allegiances to gain security and stability, again to make profit and perhaps again for religious conviction. We meet with one of ‘good’ warlords whose troop of mercenaries are working for the local government for now. His militia was the only one that could win the Islamists from Al Shabab, but in Somalia, loyalty is with the clan and not with the State. We venture into one of the refugee camps for the internally displaced, the result of an exodus that has displaced almost two million Somalis. With the highest child mortality rate in the world – Islamists prohibited vaccinations as they considered them part of a Western conspiracy – to add to their troubles, alongside war, hunger, disease and the threat of kidnap – Somalia can be considered the most dangerous country in the world.

Published on Jun 6, 2019

Note in Spanish with English subtitles

50:48 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uyFqeKFwaQk&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
8th June 2019, 15:02
Coming to a country near you ...

Third World Man

Steely Dan


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r9r9daGEy3E

giovonni
8th June 2019, 15:23
https://www.coneyisland.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/nbmermcrowd.jpg?itok=KTZzpoHE

Brooklyn, New York

Coney Island Mermaid Parade

"The famed amusement district marks the beginning of summer with a wild procession of nautical creatures.

For many of the devoted visitors to Coney Island, summer doesn’t really start till the Mermaid Parade marches down Surf Avenue. Promoted as the United States’s largest art parade, the Mermaid Parade encourages parade participants and bystanders to dress up in a dazzling array of costumes, usually nautical themed.

The parade started in 1983 by the “unofficial mayor of Coney Island” Dick Zigun with the intention of fostering community pride and artistic expression. The Mermaid Parade has since grown to be one of the major parades in New York City, with over 3,000 people participating from all over the city and beyond.

An early forerunner to the modern Mermaid Parade were the Mardi Gras parades that amusement promoters hosted in Coney Island from 1903 to 1954. The current promoters of the Mermaid parade also cite traditional African water festivals and ancient Greek and Roman pagan revelries as inspiration.

Much like other parades, the Mermaid Parade features floats, antique cars, marching bands, and costumed parade goers. Trophies are given to parade attendees for various categories. The competition is friendly, but the judges heavily encourage bribing.

A King Neptune and Queen Mermaid are crowned as part of the festivities. Past honorees include hip icons such as Deborah Harry and Chris Stein from Blondie, Amanda Palmer, Neil Gaiman, Lou Reed, and Laurie Anderson. The king and queen start the parade by throwing fruit off Steeplechase Pier into the ocean as an offering to the gods of summer. The royal couple later dance the night away at the Mermaid Ball after the parade" ...

More pics and info here (https://www.coneyisland.com/programs/mermaid-parade)



https://www.coneyisland.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/filip.jpg?itok=IC0xg5Xt

Source: atlasobscura.com (https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/coney-island-mermaid-parade?utm_source=Atlas+Obscura+Daily+Newsletter&utm_campaign=a468d40bbb-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_06_07_Not_Chicago&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f36db9c480-a468d40bbb-63041445&ct=t(EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_06_07_2019_Not_Chicago)&mc_cid=a468d40bbb&mc_eid=57314563a1)

giovonni
10th June 2019, 08:33
Living at the top ...


Germany: The discreet lives of the Super-Rich | DW Documentary



The rich in Germany been never been as well-off as they are today and assets have never been so unevenly distributed. But who are they? How do they live? And what do they think of their country? A journey into the discreet world of the super-rich.

One percent of Germans own over a quarter of the country's assets, whilst half of the country’s citizens have no assets at all. But while the German media report on the growing poverty in the country on a daily basis, little is known about the super-rich. They keep a very low profile and can walk the streets unrecognized. "Manager Magazin” says there were around 200 billionaires living in Germany in 2018, and their numbers are increasing. The documentary "Top of the World" asks why rich Germans are so unwilling to talk about their wealth. Its author immerses himself in the discreet world of big money and meets financial advisors with 800 years of family tradition behind them and billionaires such as drugstore king Dirk Rossmann and mail-order company heir Michael Otto - as well as a self-made businessmen such as Rainer Schaller. They talk about their notions of money and justice, the origins of their wealth and their fear of social envy.

DW Documentary
Published on Jun 9, 2019

42:31 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXaVLXSZdEw&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
11th June 2019, 20:30
This problem is occurring even in my neck of the woods ...

A very eye opening and interesting report ...




What to do about rising rents? | DW Documentary



Housing shortages and rising rent costs: a growing problem for big European cities like Amsterdam. We accompany Amsterdam locals as they search for a place to live, and find out what impact rising rents are having on the development of our cities.

Wendy Bijwaard is looking for a place to live after separating from her husband. For years she’s lived in Amsterdam-Oost, where she has her job, her two children’s schools, her friends and hobbies. But will she be able to stay there? The 52 year old earns well and could afford an apartment in the Dutch metropolis. The only problem is - she’s been unable to get anything. For the sake of her children, Wendy isn’t giving up. For now, she’s found a temporary abode with friends. But by the summer she will have to have found a new place to live.

DW Documentary
Published on Jun 11, 2019

28:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLOmZCUr7BQ&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
14th June 2019, 14:33
Language is a Weapon


"In our time it is broadly true that political writing is bad writing" wrote George Orwell 70 years ago, and the observation remains true today. But bad writing is not just bad writing; the language employed by politicians (and their string pullers) can literally be a matter of life and death. Join James today on the podcast as he delves into the tyrants' linguistic weapons and how we can arm ourselves against them.

corbettreport
Published on Jun 14, 2019
SHOW NOTES AND MP3: https://www.corbettreport.com/?p=31585

46:48 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BHaT1svvz_U&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
16th June 2019, 09:08
Did you know ...

https://static01.nyt.com/images/2019/06/16/magazine/16mag-Universal-image01/16mag-Universal-image01-superJumbo-v6.jpg?quality=90&auto=webp

The Day the Music Burned


"It was the biggest disaster in the history of the music business — and almost nobody knew.
This is the story of the 2008 Universal fire" ... Read the rest here (https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/11/magazine/universal-fire-master-recordings.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share)

giovonni
17th June 2019, 10:25
Empathy? In Denmark they’re learning it in school

"A compulsory subject of study which is taught an hour a week in the “Klassens tid”,
where students learn to help their classmates and compete only with themselves" ... More here (https://www.morningfuture.com/en/article/2019/04/26/empathy-happiness-school-denmark/601/?fbclid=IwAR1cfYglGCfOnqCVK9MqwRMRZI6oj-35bc_bnV_juP7P_CHJEuf4eWWI9G4)

Dreamtimer
17th June 2019, 12:45
This is common sense to me. Of course we would work together to help each other. That is how societies become strong.

When folks are expected to just do things themselves we end up with the kind of suicide rates we now have among men who should have plenty of opportunity.

We have elevated competition to a level which causes us to undermine our own selves.

We can learn a great deal from the Danish, imo.

giovonni
20th June 2019, 17:03
A very good watch ...

Pakistan's first female mountain guides | DW Documentary


In the heart of the Karakorum, the highest mountain range in the world, Muslim women are turning Pakistan's traditional gender roles upside down. In the remote mountain village of Shimshal, women are training as mountain guides for the first time.

Shimshal is a small village close to the Chinese border in the far north of Pakistan. The village is 3,100 meters high in the middle of the Karakorum, the world’s highest mountain range, and is known among climbers as the "village of mountaineers.” Since time immemorial, local mountain guides have taken tourists to the snow-capped peaks of the region - a domain traditionally reserved exclusively for men. But one of Pakistan's best-known climbers Qudrat Ali has now turned these gender roles on their heads and is training female mountain guides for the first time at the Mountaineering School.

Bano, Samreen and Zubaida have decided to take the demanding course, hoping to make a good living for their families as fully qualified mountain guides. But they face a steep and rocky learning curve: in addition to mountaineering skills, the young women must learn to stick together in dangerous situations and make the right decisions to ensure their survival. At the end of their training, they have to pass a final examination. They have to ascend the 5,300-meter-high mountain Shifkteen Sar. But their determination to pass the course is greater than any mountain and their message is clear: If they can conquer the Karakorum’s highest peaks, then every Pakistani woman can make her own dream come true.


DW Documentary
Published on Jun 20, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rzo5dKGMyJk&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
21st June 2019, 14:09
A must watch ...

The 5G Dragnet

corbettreport




Telecom companies are currently scrambling to implement fifth-generation cellular network technology. But the world of 5G is a world where all objects are wired and constantly communicating data to one another. The dark truth is that the development of 5G networks and the various networked products that they will give rise to in the global smart city infrastructure, represent the greatest threat to freedom in the history of humanity.

TRANSCRIPT AND SOURCES: https://www.corbettreport.com/5g/

Published on Jun 21, 2019

25:43 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXbvL0uZkrY&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
26th June 2019, 06:29
hmm ...


In Secret, Seniors Discuss ‘Rational Suicide’

By Melissa Bailey June 25, 2019


https://khn.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/05/suicide_1350.jpg

"Ten residents slipped away from their retirement community one Sunday afternoon for a covert meeting in a grocery store cafe. They aimed to answer a taboo question: When they feel they have lived long enough, how can they carry out their own swift and peaceful death?

The seniors, who live in independent apartments at a high-end senior community near Philadelphia, showed no obvious signs of depression. They’re in their 70s and 80s and say they don’t intend to end their lives soon. But they say they want the option to take “preemptive action” before their health declines in their later years, particularly due to dementia.

More seniors are weighing the possibility of suicide, experts say, as the baby boomer generation — known for valuing autonomy and self-determination — reaches older age at a time when modern medicine can keep human bodies alive far longer than ever before.

The group gathered a few months ago to meet with Dena Davis, a bioethics professor at Lehigh University who defends “rational suicide” — the idea that suicide can be a well-reasoned decision, not a result of emotional or psychological problems. Davis, 72, has been vocal about her desire to end her life rather than experience a slow decline due to dementia, as her mother did.

The concept of rational suicide is highly controversial; it runs counter to many societal norms, religious and moral convictions and the efforts of suicide prevention workers who contend that every life is worth saving.

“The concern that I have at a social level is if we all agree that killing yourself is an acceptable, appropriate way to go, then there becomes a social norm around that, and it becomes easier to do, more common,” said Dr. Yeates Conwell, a psychiatrist specializing in geriatrics at the University of Rochester and a leading expert in elderly suicide. That’s particularly dangerous with older adults because of widespread ageist attitudes, he said.

As a society, we have a responsibility to care for people as they age, Conwell argued. Promoting rational suicide “creates the risk of a sense of obligation for older people to use that method rather than advocate for better care that addresses their concerns in other ways.”

A Kaiser Health News investigation in April (https://khn.org/news/suicide-seniors-long-term-care-nursing-homes/)found that older Americans — a few hundred per year, at least — are killing themselves while living in or transitioning to long-term care. Many cases KHN reviewed involved depression or mental illness. What’s not clear is how many of these suicides involve clear-minded people exercising what Davis would call a rational choice.

Suicide prevention experts contend that while it’s normal to think about death as we age, suicidal ideation is a sign that people need help. They argue that all suicides should be avoided by addressing mental health and helping seniors live a rich and fulfilling life.

But to Lois, the 86-year-old woman who organized the meeting outside Philadelphia, suicides by older Americans are not all tragedies. Lois, a widow with no children, said she would rather end her own life than deteriorate slowly over seven years, as her mother did after she broke a hip at age 90. (Lois asked to be referred to by only her middle name so she would not be identified, given the sensitive topic.) In her eight years at her retirement community, Lois has encountered other residents who feel similarly about suicide. But because of stigma, she said, the conversations are usually kept quiet.

Lois insisted her group meet off-campus at Wegmans because of the “subversive” nature of the discussion. Supporting rational suicide, she said, clashes with the ethos of their continuing care retirement community, where seniors transition from independent apartments to assisted living to a nursing home as they age.

Seniors pay six figures to move into the bucolic campus, which includes an indoor heated pool, a concert hall and many acres of wooded trails. They are guaranteed housing, medical care, companionship and comfort for the rest of their lives.

“We are sabotaging that,” Lois said of her group. “We are saying, thank you very much, but that’s not what we’re looking for.”

Carolyn, a 72-year-old member of the group who asked that her last name be withheld, said they live in a “fabulous place” where residents enjoy “a lot of agency.” But she and her 88-year-old husband also want the freedom to determine how they die.

A retired nurse, Carolyn said her views have been shaped in part by her experience in the HIV/AIDS epidemic. In the 1990s, she created a program that sent hospice volunteers to work with people dying of AIDS, which at the time was a death sentence.

She said many of the men kept a stockpile of lethal drugs on a dresser or bedside table. They would tell her, “When I’m ready, that’s what I’m going to do.” But as their condition grew worse, she said, they became too confused to follow through.

“I just saw so many people who were planning to have that quiet, peaceful ending when it came, and it just never came. The pills just got scattered. They lost the moment” when they had the wherewithal to end their own lives, she said.

Carolyn emphasized that she and her husband do not feel suicidal, nor do they have a specific plan to die on a certain date. But she said that while she still has the ability, she wants to procure a lethal medication that would offer the option for a peaceful end in the future.

“Ideally, I would have in hand the pill, or the liquid or the injection,” she said. She said she’s embarrassed that, as a former nurse, she doesn’t know which medication to use or how to get it.

Maine recently became the ninth state to allow medical aid in dying, which permits some patients to get a doctor’s prescription for lethal drugs. That method is restricted, however, to people with a terminal condition who are mentally competent and expected to die within six months.

Patients who aren’t eligible for those laws would have to go to an “underground practice” to get lethal medication, said Dr. Timothy Quill, a palliative care physician at the University of Rochester School of Medicine. Quill became famous in the 1990s for publicly admitting (https://www.nytimes.com/1991/03/07/us/doctor-says-he-gave-patient-drug-to-help-her-commit-suicide.html) that he gave a 45-year-old patient with leukemia sleeping pills so she could end her life. He said he has done so with only one other patient.

Quill said he considers suicide one option he may choose as he ages. “I would probably be a classic [case] — I’m used to being in charge of my life.” He said he might be able to adapt to a situation in which he became entirely dependent on the care of others, “but I’d like to be able to make that be a choice as opposed to a necessity.”

Suicide could be as rational a choice as a patient’s decision to end dialysis, after which the patient typically dies within two weeks, he said. But when patients bring up suicide, he said, it should launch a serious conversation about what would make their life feel meaningful and their preferences for medical care at the end of life.

Clinicians have little training on how to handle conversations about rational suicide, said Dr. Meera Balasubramaniam, a geriatric psychiatrist at the New York University School of Medicine who has written about the topic (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29500824). She said her views are “evolving” on whether suicide by older adults who are not terminally ill can be a rational choice.

“One school of thought is that even mentioning the idea that this could be rational is an ageist concept,” she said. “It’s an important point to consider. But ignoring it and not talking about it also does not do our patients a favor, who are already talking about this or discussing this among themselves.”

In her discussions with patients, she said, she explores their fears about aging and dying and tries to offer hope and affirm the value of their lives.

These conversations matter because “the balance between the wish to die and the wish to live is a dynamic one that shifts frequently, moment to moment, week to week,” said Conwell, the suicide prevention expert.

Carolyn, who has three children and four grandchildren, said conversations about suicide are often kept quiet for fear that involving a family member would implicate them in a crime. The seniors also don’t want to get their retirement community in trouble.

In some of the cases KHN reviewed, nursing homes have faced federal fines of up to tens of thousands of dollars for failing to prevent suicides on-site.

There’s “also just this hush-hush atmosphere of our culture,” said Carolyn. “Not wanting to deal with judgment — of others, or offend someone because they have different beliefs. It makes it hard to have open conversations.”

Carolyn said when she and her neighbors met at the cafe, she felt comforted by breaking the taboo.

“The most wonderful thing about it was being around a table with people that I knew where we could talk about it, and realize that we’re not alone,” Carolyn said. “To share our fears — like if we choose to use something, and it doesn’t quite do the job, and you’re comatose or impaired.”

People who attempt suicide and survive may end up in a psychiatric hospital “with people watching you all the time — the complete opposite of what you’re trying to achieve,” Quill noted.

At the meeting, many questions were practical, Lois said.

“We only get one crack at it,” Lois said. “Everyone wants to know what to do.”

Davis said she did not have practical answers. Her expertise lies in ethics, not the means.

Public opinion research has shown shifting opinions among doctors (https://khn.org/news/as-doctors-drop-opposition-aid-in-dying-advocates-target-next-battleground-states/) and the general public about hastening death. Nationally, 72% of Americans believe doctors should be allowed by law to end a terminally ill patient’s life if the patient and his or her family request it, according to a 2018 Gallup poll (https://news.gallup.com/poll/235145/americans-strong-support-euthanasia-persists.aspx).

Lois said she’s seeing societal attitudes begin to shift about rational suicide, which she sees as the outgrowth of a movement toward patient autonomy. Davis said she’d like to see polling on how many people share that opinion nationwide.

“It seems to me that there must be an awful lot of people in America who think the way I do,” Davis said. “Our beliefs are not respected. Nobody says, ‘OK, how do we respect and facilitate the beliefs of somebody who wants to commit suicide rather than having dementia?’”

Source: khn.org/ (https://khn.org/news/rational-suicide-seniors-preemptive-death-medical-aid-in-dying/)


If you or someone you know has talked about contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, or use the online Lifeline Crisis Chat (https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/chat/), both available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

People 60 and older can call the Institute on Aging’s 24-hour, toll-free Friendship Line (https://www.ioaging.org/services/all-inclusive-health-care/friendship-line)at 800-971-0016. IOA also makes ongoing outreach calls to lonely older adults.

giovonni
26th June 2019, 09:08
A worthy watch to keep an eye out for ...


Preview | World War Speed | Secrets of the Dead | PBS


Synopsis

Stories about drug use by Hitler and German forces during World War II have been widely told. What’s less well known is the Allied commanders’ embraced pharmacological “force enhancers” as well. By 1941, rumors about Nazi soldiers using a “super-drug” identified as the methamphetamine Pervitin were confirmed, and Allied commanders launched their own classified program to find the perfect war-fighting drug.

During the war, one in three Allied soldiers were incapacitated without a physical scratch on them. Modern weapons and warfare proved so terrifying that almost as many men were shredded by combat fatigue and shell shock — now known as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) — as by bullets and shrapnel. Allied commanders believed Benzedrine, an amphetamine similar to Pervitin, was the answer, hoping the amphetamine would defeat not just the need for sleep, but anxiety and fear among troops. How this drug affected the course of World War II is an ongoing controversy.

In Secrets of the Dead: World War Speed, join historian James Holland on his quest to understand how the use of amphetamines affected the course of World War II and unleashed “the world’s first pharmacological arms race.”


Noteworthy Facts

Created in the 1930s by a German pharmacologist and manufactured by Temmler Pharmaceutical, the methamphetamine Pervitin was marketed for use by the general public using a campaign modeled on Coca Cola’s global strategy. The stimulant was then given to Luftwaffe pilots to keep them awake and alive if their plane was shot down.

In May 1940, German troops under the influence of Pervitin had conquered Poland and were preparing for an attack against France. Ahead of the battle, 35 million Pervitin pills were delivered to 3 million Wehrmacht soldiers within 10-12 weeks. The Wehrmacht soldiers then managed to fight and march for 10 days straight, covering an average of 22 miles per day. The Wehrmacht were able to trap the entire British army on the beaches of Dunkirk in what is considered one of the greatest feats in military history.

For Allied soldiers, caffeine was the primary stimulant of choice. Coffee was so closely associated with American soldiers, also known as GI Joes, that the term ‘Cup of Joe’ became synonymous with the drink.

In 1940, the British army discovered Pervitin in a downed German plane in the south of England, unlocking the secret to the German troops’ boundless energy, and leading the Allies to consider the same tactic for their troops. The Allied troops decided to use the amphetamine Both drugs make users intensely alert by flooding them with a sense of euphoria. With its added methyl-group molecule, Pervitin races across the blood-brain barrier a bit faster than Benzedrine. Otherwise, the two drugs have virtually the same impact.

Following the British victory in El Alamein, American soldiers entered into ground combat in North Africa in November 1942. The troops carried with them packs of Benzedrine after U.S. General Dwight Eisenhower orders some half million tablets for them.

The German Navy’s mini-subs, used to torpedo Allied ships moving supplies and troops across the English Channel, required soldiers to sit in a confined space for 48 hours without sleeping or much movement. Searching for a solution to keep these submariners awake and alert, the German Navy tested out combinations of cocaine and methamphetamines by forcing prisoners of the Sachsenhausen concentration camp to take the stimulant and carry sacks of rocks around its infamous shoe-testing track.

Following World War II, the usage of Benzedrine and Pervitin continued. By the 1950s, amphetamines were marketed as a diet pill and mood enhancer with celebrities like Marilyn Monroe and Jack Kerouac using the stimulants.

Buzzworthy Moments

To test whether or not the Wehrmacht soldiers needed Pervitin to pull off their stunning 1940 victory in France, James Holland and a group of fellow history fanatics recreate the plight of soldiers by attempting to cover 22 miles in a single day while carrying 60 pounds of combat load with only coffee and tea as stimulants.

In 1942, commanding officer Bernard Montgomery is brought in to Northern Africa to boost the morale of British troops fighting in the region. In the film, Holland discovers a document from Montgomery’s medical officer, Q.V. Wallace, revealing that troops involved in the opening stages of the battle of El Alamein were given Benzedrine, providing evidence that orders for the drug came straight from the top of British command. The memo also makes clear that the British 24th Armored Tank Brigade soldiers were prescribed 20 milligrams of Benzedrine per day — twice the amount recommended to RAF pilots — prior to the second battle of El Alamein in Egypt.

Seventy years after going down in battle, a German Heinkel HE-1-1-5 bomber is pulled from a Norwegian fjord. The only aircraft of its kind ever recovered, the plane is remarkably intact and a rescue pack is found inside. A Pervitin pack is discovered, but dissolves when an attempt was made to clean it.
viewers.

PBS
Published on May 20, 2019

30 seconds

The teaser ...


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOQpQ-5iibo


Premieres Tuesday, June 25 at 8 p.m. on PBS (check local listings), pbs.org/secrets and the PBS Video app

giovonni
26th June 2019, 15:56
Will bump this ...


hmm ...


In Secret, Seniors Discuss ‘Rational Suicide’

By Melissa Bailey June 25, 2019


https://khn.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2019/05/suicide_1350.jpg

"Ten residents slipped away from their retirement community one Sunday afternoon for a covert meeting in a grocery store cafe. They aimed to answer a taboo question: When they feel they have lived long enough, how can they carry out their own swift and peaceful death?

The seniors, who live in independent apartments at a high-end senior community near Philadelphia, showed no obvious signs of depression. They’re in their 70s and 80s and say they don’t intend to end their lives soon. But they say they want the option to take “preemptive action” before their health declines in their later years, particularly due to dementia.

More seniors are weighing the possibility of suicide, experts say, as the baby boomer generation — known for valuing autonomy and self-determination — reaches older age at a time when modern medicine can keep human bodies alive far longer than ever before.

The group gathered a few months ago to meet with Dena Davis, a bioethics professor at Lehigh University who defends “rational suicide” — the idea that suicide can be a well-reasoned decision, not a result of emotional or psychological problems. Davis, 72, has been vocal about her desire to end her life rather than experience a slow decline due to dementia, as her mother did.

The concept of rational suicide is highly controversial; it runs counter to many societal norms, religious and moral convictions and the efforts of suicide prevention workers who contend that every life is worth saving.

“The concern that I have at a social level is if we all agree that killing yourself is an acceptable, appropriate way to go, then there becomes a social norm around that, and it becomes easier to do, more common,” said Dr. Yeates Conwell, a psychiatrist specializing in geriatrics at the University of Rochester and a leading expert in elderly suicide. That’s particularly dangerous with older adults because of widespread ageist attitudes, he said.

As a society, we have a responsibility to care for people as they age, Conwell argued. Promoting rational suicide “creates the risk of a sense of obligation for older people to use that method rather than advocate for better care that addresses their concerns in other ways.”

A Kaiser Health News investigation in April (https://khn.org/news/suicide-seniors-long-term-care-nursing-homes/)found that older Americans — a few hundred per year, at least — are killing themselves while living in or transitioning to long-term care. Many cases KHN reviewed involved depression or mental illness. What’s not clear is how many of these suicides involve clear-minded people exercising what Davis would call a rational choice.

Suicide prevention experts contend that while it’s normal to think about death as we age, suicidal ideation is a sign that people need help. They argue that all suicides should be avoided by addressing mental health and helping seniors live a rich and fulfilling life.

But to Lois, the 86-year-old woman who organized the meeting outside Philadelphia, suicides by older Americans are not all tragedies. Lois, a widow with no children, said she would rather end her own life than deteriorate slowly over seven years, as her mother did after she broke a hip at age 90. (Lois asked to be referred to by only her middle name so she would not be identified, given the sensitive topic.) In her eight years at her retirement community, Lois has encountered other residents who feel similarly about suicide. But because of stigma, she said, the conversations are usually kept quiet.

Lois insisted her group meet off-campus at Wegmans because of the “subversive” nature of the discussion. Supporting rational suicide, she said, clashes with the ethos of their continuing care retirement community, where seniors transition from independent apartments to assisted living to a nursing home as they age.

Seniors pay six figures to move into the bucolic campus, which includes an indoor heated pool, a concert hall and many acres of wooded trails. They are guaranteed housing, medical care, companionship and comfort for the rest of their lives.

“We are sabotaging that,” Lois said of her group. “We are saying, thank you very much, but that’s not what we’re looking for.”

Carolyn, a 72-year-old member of the group who asked that her last name be withheld, said they live in a “fabulous place” where residents enjoy “a lot of agency.” But she and her 88-year-old husband also want the freedom to determine how they die.

A retired nurse, Carolyn said her views have been shaped in part by her experience in the HIV/AIDS epidemic. In the 1990s, she created a program that sent hospice volunteers to work with people dying of AIDS, which at the time was a death sentence.

She said many of the men kept a stockpile of lethal drugs on a dresser or bedside table. They would tell her, “When I’m ready, that’s what I’m going to do.” But as their condition grew worse, she said, they became too confused to follow through.

“I just saw so many people who were planning to have that quiet, peaceful ending when it came, and it just never came. The pills just got scattered. They lost the moment” when they had the wherewithal to end their own lives, she said.

Carolyn emphasized that she and her husband do not feel suicidal, nor do they have a specific plan to die on a certain date. But she said that while she still has the ability, she wants to procure a lethal medication that would offer the option for a peaceful end in the future.

“Ideally, I would have in hand the pill, or the liquid or the injection,” she said. She said she’s embarrassed that, as a former nurse, she doesn’t know which medication to use or how to get it.

Maine recently became the ninth state to allow medical aid in dying, which permits some patients to get a doctor’s prescription for lethal drugs. That method is restricted, however, to people with a terminal condition who are mentally competent and expected to die within six months.

Patients who aren’t eligible for those laws would have to go to an “underground practice” to get lethal medication, said Dr. Timothy Quill, a palliative care physician at the University of Rochester School of Medicine. Quill became famous in the 1990s for publicly admitting (https://www.nytimes.com/1991/03/07/us/doctor-says-he-gave-patient-drug-to-help-her-commit-suicide.html) that he gave a 45-year-old patient with leukemia sleeping pills so she could end her life. He said he has done so with only one other patient.

Quill said he considers suicide one option he may choose as he ages. “I would probably be a classic [case] — I’m used to being in charge of my life.” He said he might be able to adapt to a situation in which he became entirely dependent on the care of others, “but I’d like to be able to make that be a choice as opposed to a necessity.”

Suicide could be as rational a choice as a patient’s decision to end dialysis, after which the patient typically dies within two weeks, he said. But when patients bring up suicide, he said, it should launch a serious conversation about what would make their life feel meaningful and their preferences for medical care at the end of life.

Clinicians have little training on how to handle conversations about rational suicide, said Dr. Meera Balasubramaniam, a geriatric psychiatrist at the New York University School of Medicine who has written about the topic (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29500824). She said her views are “evolving” on whether suicide by older adults who are not terminally ill can be a rational choice.

“One school of thought is that even mentioning the idea that this could be rational is an ageist concept,” she said. “It’s an important point to consider. But ignoring it and not talking about it also does not do our patients a favor, who are already talking about this or discussing this among themselves.”

In her discussions with patients, she said, she explores their fears about aging and dying and tries to offer hope and affirm the value of their lives.

These conversations matter because “the balance between the wish to die and the wish to live is a dynamic one that shifts frequently, moment to moment, week to week,” said Conwell, the suicide prevention expert.

Carolyn, who has three children and four grandchildren, said conversations about suicide are often kept quiet for fear that involving a family member would implicate them in a crime. The seniors also don’t want to get their retirement community in trouble.

In some of the cases KHN reviewed, nursing homes have faced federal fines of up to tens of thousands of dollars for failing to prevent suicides on-site.

There’s “also just this hush-hush atmosphere of our culture,” said Carolyn. “Not wanting to deal with judgment — of others, or offend someone because they have different beliefs. It makes it hard to have open conversations.”

Carolyn said when she and her neighbors met at the cafe, she felt comforted by breaking the taboo.

“The most wonderful thing about it was being around a table with people that I knew where we could talk about it, and realize that we’re not alone,” Carolyn said. “To share our fears — like if we choose to use something, and it doesn’t quite do the job, and you’re comatose or impaired.”

People who attempt suicide and survive may end up in a psychiatric hospital “with people watching you all the time — the complete opposite of what you’re trying to achieve,” Quill noted.

At the meeting, many questions were practical, Lois said.

“We only get one crack at it,” Lois said. “Everyone wants to know what to do.”

Davis said she did not have practical answers. Her expertise lies in ethics, not the means.

Public opinion research has shown shifting opinions among doctors (https://khn.org/news/as-doctors-drop-opposition-aid-in-dying-advocates-target-next-battleground-states/) and the general public about hastening death. Nationally, 72% of Americans believe doctors should be allowed by law to end a terminally ill patient’s life if the patient and his or her family request it, according to a 2018 Gallup poll (https://news.gallup.com/poll/235145/americans-strong-support-euthanasia-persists.aspx).

Lois said she’s seeing societal attitudes begin to shift about rational suicide, which she sees as the outgrowth of a movement toward patient autonomy. Davis said she’d like to see polling on how many people share that opinion nationwide.

“It seems to me that there must be an awful lot of people in America who think the way I do,” Davis said. “Our beliefs are not respected. Nobody says, ‘OK, how do we respect and facilitate the beliefs of somebody who wants to commit suicide rather than having dementia?’”

Source: khn.org/ (https://khn.org/news/rational-suicide-seniors-preemptive-death-medical-aid-in-dying/)

Bob
26th June 2019, 16:22
To me this is a complex issue.

Everything from feeling lack of worth or being done or believing that there is something else to move on into..

Or that it's better 'over there'.

Or that sadness instead of joy becomes more prevalent.

Or tracking a vibe that say 'move on' (a group think).

In my experience, creating a goal that one could have generally gets one out of a funk especially when one then can say, OK, with what I have at the moment what is it that I can do.

Lastly, what if aging can be stopped, and lives enhanced, memory improved and memory skills and "visionary experiences" made rich and with detail.

When the beauty around one can no longer be perceived, I can see someone believing it is more beautiful elsewhere.

giovonni
4th July 2019, 08:33
Will share this here on this 4th of July ...

The History of Europeans in America | DW Documentary



Thirty million Europeans emigrated to the USA in the 19th Century to realize their American dream. But the continent was settled at the expense of its original inhabitants.

The United States is always seen as the land of dreams and unlimited possibilities. Our starting point for this account of the settlement of America’s eastern seaboard by European pioneers is Florida, where the Spaniards first settled in the early 16th Century.. Their legacy today is 50 million Americans who speak Spanish as their first language -more than in Spain itself. But it was the largely Protestant British who made up the second wave of immigrants. They founded Jamestown in Virginia and settlements in Massachusetts and pushed northwards into Canada. While the southern states largely lived from the proceeds of slavery, the northern states developed into booming industrial centers that would ultimately defeat them in the civil war. It was here that the American dream of dishwasher to millionaire originated.

Published on Jun 26, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x6TOvt01h9M&feature=em-uploademail

Dreamtimer
4th July 2019, 15:39
I'm not a senior but I'm pretty sure I don't want to fade away slowly while others help me with basic body functions.

It's shocking to have a loved one die suddenly or quickly. It's not necessarily better to have a loved one suffer, fade away, lose their mind, lose everything due to health, etc.

Perhaps it is because the senior generation to me is passing now so it is on my mind.

We have no rituals for bringing peaceful death. Perhaps we're missing something.

I know one family member who has been 'ready to die' for years, and yet she's still hanging in there.

I know another one who is ready to be healed and cured from the effects of aging. Which won't happen.

Physical immortality would be a curse.

We need better tools for aging and death.

We have a lot of old folks now, maybe that will happen.

giovonni
7th July 2019, 19:52
Would you pay $1200 a month for a bunk bed in a shared space?
Renters in Los Angeles and San Francisco are opting for pods
in communal home with a desk, locker and personal TV (https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7218067/Renters-Los-Angeles-San-Francisco-paying-1200-month-bunk-bed-shared-space.html)

https://proxy.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fi.dailymail.co.uk%2F1s%2F2019%2F0 7%2F05%2F21%2F15688236-0-image-a-156_1562359250046.jpg&f=1

giovonni
7th July 2019, 23:06
Stop Building a Spaceship to Mars and Just Plant Some Damn Trees ...




https://www.motherjones.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/Trees-7-4-19.jpg?resize=1300,731


When it comes to climate change research, most studies bear bad news regarding the looming, very real threat of a warming planet and the resulting devastation that it will bring upon the Earth. But a new study, out Thursday in the journal Science, offers a sliver of hope for the world: A group of researchers based in Switzerland, Italy, and France found that expanding forests, which sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, could seriously make up for humans’ toxic carbon emissions.

In 2018, the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the world’s foremost authority on climate, estimated that we’d need to plant 1 billion hectares of forest by 2050 to keep the globe from warming a full 1.5 degrees Celsius over pre-industrial levels. (One hectare is about twice the size of a football field.) Not only is that “undoubtedly achievable,” according to the study’s authors, but global tree restoration is “our most effective climate change solution to date.”

In fact, there’s space on the planet for an extra 900 million hectares of canopy cover, the researchers found, which translates to storage for a whopping 205 gigatonnes of carbon. To put that in perspective, humans emit about 10 gigatonnes of carbon from burning fossil fuels every year, according to Richard Houghton, a senior scientist at the Woods Hole Research Center, who was not involved with the study. And overall, there are now about 850 gigatonnes of carbon in the atmosphere; a tree-planting effort on that scale could, in theory, cut carbon by about 25 percent, according to the authors.

In addition to that, Houghton says, trees are relatively cheap carbon consumers. As he put it, “There are technologies people are working on to take carbon dioxide out of the air. And trees do it—for nothing.”

To make this bold prediction, the researchers identified what tree cover looks like in nearly 80,000 half-hectare plots in existing forests. They then used that data to map how much canopy cover would be possible in other regions—excluding urban or agricultural land—depending on the area’s topography, climate, precipitation levels, and other environmental variables. The result revealed where trees might grow outside of existing forests.

“We know a single tree can capture a lot of carbon. What we don’t know is how many trees the planet can support,” says Jean-François Bastin, an ecologist and postdoc at ETH-Zürich, a university in Zürich, Switzerland, and the study’s lead author, adding, “This gives us an idea.”


https://www.motherjones.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/Screen-Shot-2019-07-03-at-3.50.46-PM-e1562194332994.png

They found that all that tree-planting potential isn’t spaced evenly across the globe. Six countries, in fact, hold more than half of the world’s area for potential tree restoration (in this order): Russia, the United States, Canada, Australia, Brazil, and China. The United States alone has room for more than 100 million hectares of additional tree cover—greater than the size of Texas.

The study, however, has its limitations. For one, a global tree-planting effort is somewhat impractical. As the authors write, “it remains unclear what proportion of this land is public or privately owned, and so we cannot identify how much land is truly available for restoration.” Rob Jackson, who chairs the Earth System Science Department and Global Carbon Project at Stanford University and was not involved with the study, agrees that forest management plays an important role in the fight against climate change, but says the paper’s finding that humans could reduce atmospheric carbon by 25 percent by planting trees seemed “unrealistic,” and wondered what kinds of trees would be most effective or how forest restoration may disrupt agriculture.

“Forests and soils are the cheapest and fastest way to remove carbon from the atmosphere—lots of really good opportunities there,” he said. “I get uneasy when we start talking about managing billions of extra acres of land, with one goal in mind: to store carbon.” Bastin, though, says the study is “about respecting the natural ecosystem,” and not simply planting “100 percent tree cover.” He also clarified that planting trees alone cannot fix climate change. The problem is “related to the way we are living on the planet,” he says.

Caveats aside, Houghton sees the study as a useful exercise in what’s possible. “[The study] is setting the limits,” says Houghton. “It’s not telling us at all how to implement it. That’s what our leaders have to think about.”

Source: motherjones.com (https://www.motherjones.com/environment/2019/07/stop-building-a-space-ship-to-mars-and-just-plant-some-damn-trees/)

Related video report ...

Climate change: UK 'needs one billion trees'

Sky News
Published on Jul 7, 2019



A fifth of land used for farming in the UK may have to be transformed into
woodland to help meet tough new climate change targets.

7:02 minutes



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vqbussAMWyI

Elen
8th July 2019, 08:12
It's a great idea...just make sure the trees are not planted with fear in mind. :swing:

giovonni
9th July 2019, 19:25
My very first ...
1967 biege Volkswagen bug

https://live.staticflickr.com/5812/30066462236_6593278bc3_b.jpg

From Nazis to hippies: End of the road for Volkswagen Beetle (https://www.apnews.com/53243665f30f4d97a2a292e3c7e76a41)

Chris
9th July 2019, 21:46
Jonathan Pie on the current (election) Tory Leadership Contest which decides who will (run the country) report to the person that actually runs the country.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R-CIggoU4VM

giovonni
9th July 2019, 23:33
The latest ...

Hollywood Graveyard Enters THE TWILIGHT ZONE

Hollywood Graveyard


“You unlock this door with the key of remembrance; beyond it is another dimension:
a dimension of nostalgia, a dimension of entertainment, a dimension of grief.
You're journeying into a land of both life and death, of mourning and celebration.
You've just crossed over into... The Hollywood Graveyard.”

Hollywood Graveyard host, Arthur Dark, remembers some of the stars who made the Twilight Zone great... and stumbles into the Twilight Zone himself along the way.

Published on Jul 9, 2019

51:10 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJawgFCSC9s&feature=push-u-sub&attr_tag=Y53N92U5a-THWiLM%3A6

giovonni
11th July 2019, 15:23
Living in the highlands ...

Tradition vs. modernity: the Kolla in Argentina | DW Documentary




High in the Andes, the Kolla are fighting to preserve their traditions. Argentina’s indigenous Kolla people live an austere life in the high desert plains. This is their home where they thrive.

Maria and her sisters Norma and Nelly are Kolla. They share an inheritance that they have looked after ever since their mother passed: a piece of land and a herd of llamas. Nelly and Norma live with their families in the village El Moreno, Maria's family lives farther away in the small town of Tilcara in the Quebrada de Humahuaca valley. But it’s up in the Puna grasslands that the sisters really feel at home. At first, Maria was excited about city life and left the puna to study. But at the age of 31, she decided to return. Since then, she has been pushing for more responsibility for the Kolla women. While the men are often away working for weeks and months at a time, it’s up to them to safeguard their families’ way of life on the steppe. The film takes the viewer on an emotional journey of discovery into the Andes to meet these resolute women who love their country, and observe and preserve the traditions of their people their own way.


Published on Jul 10, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g7ZUPYpAXPI&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
16th July 2019, 03:14
"A brilliantly searing depiction of the culture of empire" ...

IN-SHADOW: A Modern Odyssey


Embark on a visionary journey through the fragmented unconscious of our modern times,
and with courage face the Shadow. Through Shadow into Light.

“No tree, it is said, can grow to heaven unless its roots reach down to hell.”
-C.G. Jung


http://vimeo.com/242569435

13 minutes

Written, Directed & Produced by Lubomir Arsov
Original Soundtrack “Age of Wake” by Starward Projections
Composited by Sheldon Lisoy
Additional Compositing by Hiram Gifford
Art Directed & Edited by Lubomir Arsov

Dreamtimer
18th July 2019, 16:30
The trees might be planted with a little, "Oh, my back" in mind...;) :swing:

Use good compost. :garden:

Ireland used to be covered in dense forest. You literally had to travel the forest roads, the trees were too dense. I crawled into a space in some of these trees once and the temperature went down by several degrees. It was amazing.

They are growing trees and then cutting and composting them in order to create some earth again. So much of the peat has been harvested that the land is essentially barren.


When the settlers came to America some thought that chopping down lots of trees would control and lessen the winds.:unsure::scrhd::crazy::belief:

giovonni
19th July 2019, 19:53
Bulgaria: The World's Fastest-Shrinking Country

The Atlantic



Welcome to Altimir, Bulgaria, a village on the verge of extinction in the fastest-shrinking country in the world. With the lowest birth rates and the highest death rates the world, Bulgaria is at the front lines of population decline. Here's what life is like inside a disappearing village haunted by the promises of communism and capitalism.

"Altimir" was directed by Kay Hannahan (https://www.kayhannahan.com/). It is part of The Atlantic Selects, an online showcase of short documentaries from independent creators, curated by The Atlantic.


Published on Mar 15, 2019

17:21 minutes

Note with English subtitles


https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=6&v=c9Ufhi_42h0

giovonni
20th July 2019, 18:17
A closer look ...
And it's not all sugar and spice ...



The New Silk Road, Part 1: From China to Pakistan | DW Documentary


The New Silk Road is a mammoth project intended to connect China with the West. It's a gigantic infrastructure project that Beijing says will benefit everyone. But this two-part documentary shows China’s predominant self-interest and geopolitical ambitions.

The old Silk Road is a legend, whereas the New Silk Road is a real megaproject. China wants to reconnect the world though a network of roads, railways, ports and airports between Asia and Europe. A team of reporters travels by sea and land along the New Silk Road and shows how China, with the largest investment program in history, is expanding its influence worldwide. Their journey begins in Shenzhen on the Pearl River Delta. This is where China's legendary rise to an economic superpower began 40 years ago. The private market economy experiment unleashed forces that allowed Shenzhen to grow into a mega-metropolis.

The team takes a container ship towards Southeast Asia. Its first stop is the port city of Sihanoukville in Cambodia. A joke is making the rounds there these days: you can now travel to China without a passport and without leaving your own country. Sihanoukville is now almost part of China itself! The Chinese have financed practically everything built here in the recent past: the extension of the port, new roads, bridges and factories. Many Cambodians are unhappy and feel like losers in the boom. Rising prices and rents are making the poor even poorer. But for land and house owners, on the other hand, it’s a bonanza.

In Myanmar, resistance is already growing. Locals in Kachin have successfully blocked a new dam project, asking how the Chinese could produce energy for their own country whilst leaving the locals themselves without electricity? The Myanmar government pulled the emergency brake and the huge Chinese dam project did not get beyond the first concrete piers in the river.

The Karakorum Highway from Kashgar in China across the Roof of the World to Islamabad in Pakistan is one of the most difficult and dangerous roads in this breathtaking mountain world. Once the road is finished, it often disintegrates again, and rock falls and landslides block the highway as if the Karakorum Mountains are trying to deny China strategic access to the Arabian Sea. The first part of the report ends in Islamabad.

Published on Jul 20, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cUxw9Re-Z-E&t=35s


***



The New Silk Road, part 2: From Kyrgyzstan to Duisburg


China's path to global power leads through the legendary trade road. Our authors travel west on two separate paths: One team follows the sea route, along which China is expanding its support bases, while the other follows the ancient Silk Road through Central Asia. Their journey takes them through stunning landscapes and to magical places with ancient caravanserais, where the lore of the old Silk Road lives on. At the same time, they observe China’s overwhelming new influence in immense construction sites and shipping hubs. People everywhere are hoping the new trade will bring them and their children work and prosperity, just as the old Silk Road did hundreds of years ago. But others fear that a future dominated by China will bring them no good at all. "Clean water, the mountains and nature are much more important than the money they give us," the filmmakers learn in Kyrgyzstan.

Chinese investment has not only bestowed the country with better roads, power lines and railway lines, but also with environmental pollution, corruption and crippling debt. Oman is another stop on the line, where Beijing has taken over large parts of a new Special Economic Zone in the desert city of Duqm. You can still see traditional Arab dhows in the old harbor at Sur, but they no longer have a place in today’s international trade. Instead, the horizon is dotted with huge container ships, many of them flying the Chinese flag. Meanwhile, the French port city of Marseille is aiming to become the New Silk Road’s European bridgehead. A small container village in the hills above the city is the first step. Cheap textiles from the Far East are delivered here to the "Marseille International Fashion Center”. MIF 68 for short - 68 is considered a lucky number in China - is geared towards distributing China’s products throughout Europe. The two-part documentary shows the breathtaking dimensions of this gigantic project - one where, it would seem, no stone will be left unturned.

42:26 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QyeBxcvUJIU

giovonni
24th July 2019, 17:21
Meanwhile ...

Credit or control? - Social surveillance in China | DW Documentary



China is developing a "social credit system" to evaluate its citizens' behavior. The system uses a point scheme to reward good conduct and punish bad conduct -- such as criticizing the government, or even running a red traffic light.

People who pay their bills too late or drink too much alcohol will be given penalty points, and could face travel restrictions or have their financial credit rating lowered. Good conduct could be rewarded with discounts on bookings for hotels or rental cars. The system will use the millions of suveillance cameras that have been installed throughout China -- plus facial-recognition- and motion-profile technology -- to keep track of people. The "social credit system" is now in the testing phase, and it's already become controversial. It's scheduled to be introduced in Beijing next year.

In our report, we'll meet a young woman who works as a marketing manager, and has a good behavior rating. She says it may help to get her young son into a top-quality school. We also talk to a journalist whose reports on corruption earned him a bad score. The authorities then blocked his social-media accounts, and banned him from flying on passenger jets. The "social credit system" has hit one of China's ethnic minorities particularly hard: the mostly-Muslim Uighurs, who live in the northwestern autonomous region of Xinjiang.


Published on Jul 23, 2019

27:00 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I8a8yG0uEaw&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
25th July 2019, 15:11
Will add another disturbing China news piece here ...


Beijing strikes ominous tone, saying military could intervene in Hong Kong

https://ca-times.brightspotcdn.com/dims4/default/034f813/2147483647/strip/true/crop/2048x1365+0+0/resize/840x560!/quality/90/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fca-times.brightspotcdn.com%2F4b%2Fcf%2F1d61c105279231 db0cba13460136%2Fla-fg-china-national-security-law-20150701-001 Members of a Chinese honor guard take part in a ceremony welcoming Belgium’s King Philippe to Beijing on June 23.
(Ng Han Guan / Associated Press)


By Alice SuStaff Writer
July 24, 2019
10:46 AM
BEIJING —

The latest protests in Hong Kong appear to have touched a nerve in Beijing, where officials and state media have escalated rhetoric against the pro-democracy movement, accusing the United States of interference and ominously affirming the People’s Liberation Army’s ability to intervene at the Hong Kong government’s request.

Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Wu Qian said at a news conference Wednesday morning that the protests on Sunday were “intolerable.”

“Some radical protesters’ actions challenge the authority of the central government and the bottom line of ‘One Country, Two Systems,’” Wu said, adding that the ministry would follow Article 14 of Hong Kong’s Basic Law.

“One Country, Two Systems” is China’s way of referring to its administration of Hong Kong, under which it is part of China but allowed to maintain some degree of autonomy. Article 14 states that the Chinese government’s military forces stationed in Hong Kong will not interfere in local affairs unless the Hong Kong government requests assistance “in the maintenance of public order” or for disaster relief.

As mass protests against a proposed extradition bill morphed into a desperate pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong over the last two months, the local government has denied rumors that the Chinese military might intervene. Some analysts who study Hong Kong expressed skepticism that Beijing would send its military, which could have devastating consequences.

But Chinese officials and media are now stoking nationalist anger with rhetoric that’s been used to pave the way for crackdowns in the past, specifically with accusations of foreign intervention and condemnations of “chaos” and “disorder.”

Sunday’s protests broadened the scope of conflict as protesters shifted from targeting the Hong Kong territorial government and police to directly challenging the Chinese government.

Thousands marched to Beijing’s representative office in Hong Kong, chanting a pro-independence slogan. They splattered the Chinese government emblem with eggs and black ink and spray-painted the walls with derogatory terms for China.

Later that night, organized pro-Beijing thugs rampaged through a mass transit station in the northern rural area of Yuen Long, beating civilians with metal rods and wooden sticks.

Public fury has swelled against Hong Kong’s police force, which didn’t arrive until an hour after the attacks began and then disappeared before the mob returned to continue attacking people.

Lynette Ong, a University of Toronto political scientist who’s researched the employment of “thugs for hire” in mainland China, said this is a common practice and was used against protesters during the 2014 Occupy Central movement in Hong Kong.

“Governments outsource violence to third-party agents for ‘plausible deniability,’” Ong said, adding that the thugs in this case could also have been hired by business interests who want protests to end.

During a pro-Beijing rally on Saturday, Hong Kong newspaper executive Arthur Shek gave a speech encouraging crowds to “discipline” pro-democracy protesters with canes and PVC pipes. “Caning the kids is teaching them, not violence,” he said.

Shek has since resigned, after staff of his paper signed a petition condemning his remarks.

Video has emerged of pro-establishment legislator Junius Ho shaking hands with some of the men in white, as well as of police officers speaking with them, despite official claims that the police had made no arrests that night because they “could not be sure of who was involved.”

Police have since arrested 11 men in connection with the attacks on charges of unlawful assembly. They’ve also arrested more than 120 people in connection with pro-democracy protests since early June.

Protesters trashed Ho’s legislative office Monday and damaged Ho’s parents’ gravestones, spray-painting “official-triad collusion” on a wall above them.

In response, Ho posted a Facebook video making death threats against pro-democratic legislator Eddie Chu, who has spoken up against corruption in rural areas in the past and argued with Ho on a local TV channel on Tuesday.

Ho said Chu had “two paths” before him: “One is a path of being alive, one is a path of not being alive. You must choose which path to take. Decide soon,” he said.

There is no evidence of any connection between Chu and the graveyard vandalism.

While Hong Kongers raise an outcry against the Yuen Long attack, Chinese media have fixated on protesters’ defacement of the Chinese government office.

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a news conference Tuesday that the vandalism was a “radical, illegal, violent action” and a “serious challenge to the bottom line of ‘One Country, Two Systems,’” adding that foreign powers were obviously directing these actions behind the scenes.

“Hong Kong is China’s Hong Kong. China will absolutely not allow any foreign power to intervene in Hong Kong affairs,” Hua said. “We urge America to withdraw their black hands from Hong Kong before it is too late.”

There has been no evidence of U.S. involvement in the Hong Kong protests, although the U.S.-China trade war has frayed relations between Beijing and Washington.

State media and Chinese social media, which is censored so that only state-approved content appears, shared portrayals of the Hong Kong protesters as violent mobs attacking police and threatening Chinese sovereignty while a “silent majority” of pro-Beijing Hong Kongers cried for help to protect Hong Kong from violence.

State media have said nothing about the Yuen Long mob so far, but social media posts supporting the attackers have been allowed to proliferate.

“If someone wanted to invade your homeland, wouldn’t you resist them rather than welcoming them?” wrote one commenter in defense of the white-shirted attackers. “These rioters came to Yuen Long to create riots first, then the locals in white shirts resisted them.”

It’s a turnaround from earlier media strategy in mainland China, where the peaceful million-person marches in Hong Kong in June were censored.

Only when protesters broke into the legislative building on July 1 did Chinese media begin reporting on the Hong Kong protesters, framed as troublemaking rioters under foreign influence.

“It is like what they tried to do when broadcasting images of upheavals in Western countries to portray an impression of chaotic democracy,” said Ho-fung Hung, sociology professor at Johns Hopkins University. “But such efforts could easily backfire.”

“The mobilization of thugs could further delegitimize the government and make the protest boil over further. The showing of protest footage could also encourage mainland citizens to imitate,” Ho said.

Jeff Wasserstrom, a historian at UC Irvine, said the state narrative’s portrayal of Hong Kong protesters resembles how Chinese Communist Party leadership spoke about student protesters in Tiananmen Square in the lead-up to the massacre in 1989.

“The CCP leadership promulgated the notion 30 years ago that what were, in fact, overwhelmingly nonviolent and broadly supported gatherings in Tiananmen and public squares in scores of other cities were somehow creating ‘chaos,’” Wasserstrom said.

The echoes come alongside state praise for Li Peng, the recently deceased hard-line former premier who backed a military response to the Tiananmen protests.

An official obituary said Li “made decisive moves to stop the turmoil” in 1989, playing “an important role in the major struggle concerning the future and fate of the Party and the state.”

At the same time, Chinese leader Xi Jinping seems so far determined to avoid a repeat of Tiananmen.

Willy Lam, professor in Chinese politics at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, said that Xi is hesitant to deploy troops because it would mean an end to the “One Country, Two Systems” setup, which is supposed to guarantee Hong Kong semi-autonomy until 2047.

Chinese troops in Hong Kong’s streets might also drive out the thousands of multinational businesses headquartered in Hong Kong, he said, which would be a major loss for Beijing.

Beijing seems to be using the same strategy as in 2014, Lam said: “Do nothing, make no concessions and wait for the protesters to make mistakes.”

But the current movement has far broader social support than the Occupy movement did in 2014, which means the protests may escalate rather than fade away.

The march planned for Saturday in Yuen Long may be “explosive,” Lam said.

One idea that’s gaining traction is for the government to establish an independent judiciary-led inquiry into both police and protester violence over the last two months.

Dozens of ex-Hong Kong officials and legislators, the Hong Kong Bar Assn., the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce and more than 60 family members of police officers have voiced support for such a commission.

Setting up such an inquiry would be “painful” for Beijing, Lam said, but might be the “least costly maneuver” given the alternatives of “losing face” by withdrawing the bill, especially now that domestic anger is ramped up, or escalating into military intervention.

Global attention plays a crucial role in what happens next in Hong Kong, Wasserstrom said.

“This is a pivotal moment in one of the great David and Goliath struggles of contemporary times. It has been extraordinary how often the David in this case has been able to stand up to the Goliath,” Wasserstrom said.

“That does not mean it can necessarily keep happening and that the Goliath in Beijing will not change its strategy.”

Nicole Liu and Gaochao Zhang in the Times’ Beijing bureau contributed to this report.


Source & reference links here:latimes.com (https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2019-07-24/beijing-strikes-ominous-tone-saying-military-could-intervene-in-hong-kong)

giovonni
27th July 2019, 17:45
Occurring ...

Greenwashing global logging | DW Documentary


FSC eco-certification was established 25 years ago to stop the deforestation of primeval forests by attesting that products are made from "environmentally-friendly" wood. But does the FSC really prevent illegal deforestation?

Primeval forests are shrinking at an increasing rate. Is exploitation of the well-intentioned FSC system failing to prevent illegal deforestation and thus deceiving consumers? The jungles of Cambodia have been all but destroyed since 2000, and now just 25 square kilometers remain. Deforestation is responsible for more CO2 emissions than all the world’s cars and trucks put together. The Bonn-based Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is responsible for the certification of sustainable forestry worldwide and its certification is considered to be the most important eco-label. It is supposed to help consumers to identify furniture, paper, planks and other goods made from "environmentally friendly” timber. The FSC has certified the management of more than 200 million hectares of forest to date - an area about the size of Western Europe. But what has the FSC achieved in 25 years? Manfred Ladwig and Thomas Reutter spent months filming deforestation around the world and discovered that companies accused of processing illegal timber do not necessarily lose their FSC certification and even a company condemned for illegal logging in the Brazilian rainforest can continue to use it. The film investigates the connections between the FSC, illegal deforestation and the displacement of indigenous peoples and throws an unsparing light on the global timber industry.

Published on Jul 27, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMp0IFAV41Q

giovonni
27th July 2019, 17:54
A very related environmental problem to the above post ...


Researchers link seaweed blooms to pollution in ocean water

1:41 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=10&v=CiwauBraXeE

Massive mounds of seaweed piled up along Florida’s east coast beaches in October 2017, a smelly mess that made it difficult to walk on the beach, much less enjoy the stroll.

Was it coincidence those piles of seaweed showed up after a very busy hurricane season, including a flux of rainfall from Hurricane Irma out of the rivers and inlets along Florida’s East Coast?

Maybe not, says Brian Lapointe, a research professor with Harbor Branch Oceanographic at Florida Atlantic University.

With more and more of the seaweed, known as sargassum, piling up in places like Cancun and Miami Beach, Lapointe and a group of researchers are finding some of the same factors behind the increasing appearances of algae blooms in the Indian River Lagoon and blue-green algae outbreaks in Florida waters are at least partially to blame. As the seaweed becomes more abundant, the tangled and stinky piles could show up more often and in greater amounts on beaches, even as far north as Volusia and Flagler counties.

Working with researchers at the University of South Florida and Georgia Institute of Technology, Lapointe has been looking into why so much golden brown sargassum, a type of macroalgae, has covered beaches along the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico since 2011, plaguing many popular tourist locations. And they want to know if they can forecast future blooms.

https://proxy.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.news-journalonline.com%2Fstoryimage%2FLK%2F20190721%2FN EWS%2F190729542%2FAR%2F0%2FAR-190729542.jpg&f=1

In June 2018, a blanket of sargassum extended 5,499 square miles across the Central Atlantic from West Africa into the Caribbean Sea and the eastern Gulf of Mexico, the Florida Straits and the waters off South Florida’s east coast. A study the researchers recently published in the journal Science dubs the vast and growing expanse of seaweed the “Great Atlantic Sargassum Belt,” and states it’s now the largest macroalgae bloom in the world. The USF researchers estimated the grass in that belt weighed an estimated 20 million tons.

In June 2019, the seaweed belt across the Atlantic covered an area five times bigger than it did in the years between 2011 and 2017, but not as big as in June 2018.

People who live in the Caribbean told researchers they’ve never in 50 years seen such a mass of seaweed, said Mengqui Wang, a post doctoral researcher in the Optical Oceanography Laboratory at USF and co-author on the study.

The belt is different than the Sargasso Sea, the area of seaweed in the Atlantic Ocean off Florida’s East Coast that provides nursery grounds for sea turtles that hatch on Florida beaches.

Sargassum floats on the surface and provides important habitat and foraging for sea turtles, birds and other marine life. Once it reaches the sandy shoreline it becomes a foraging area for creatures that live on the beach, and it captures drifting sand to form new dunes. But when it piles up in massive amounts on beaches, it can smother turtle nests and attract pests, in addition to the putrid aromas that waft along the beach.

After studying 19 years of satellite data to find out where the seaweed comes from, where it goes and what feeds or suppresses it, Lapointe and the other researchers said nutrients, such as nitrogen, in the water may play a bigger role than imagined in the expansion and growth of seaweed in general. The study area extended to about 50 degrees north, into the Gulf of Mexico, and from West Africa to the Amazon, including the eastern coast of Florida, said Wang.

Local observers said they haven’t yet seen the kind of piles showing up in South Florida this summer, but seaweed did make an appearance in Flagler Beach in June, not typical for that time of year. The piles appeared in North Peninsula State Park and Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area, said Matt Bledsoe, who manages two Florida state parks.

Jennifer Winters, who oversees habitat conservation on Volusia County’s beaches, finds the study interesting but not surprising, given what is known about the way nutrients cause plants to grow. Locally, Winters said she knows of no one who formally monitors the frequency or proliferation of sargassum on local beaches.

Beth Libert, president of the Volusia Flagler Turtle Patrol informally tracks the seaweed on her daily walks. She and others said seaweed historically shows up on local beaches in the fall, at the end of hurricane season. That’s when volunteers check the seaweed wrack line, to rescue any wayward sea turtle hatchlings that swam out to the ocean and were then washed back in with the seaweed.

But, in addition to the natural events, such as storms and nor’easters that wash seaweed in from the Sargasso Sea to local beaches, Lapointe said it’s probable the sargassum belt they’re researching could reappear along beaches in Volusia and Flagler counties bringing seaweed in more often and in greater volume.

That’s what they’ve already been seeing in South Florida. Just this week the largest sargassum influx every reported as seen in Palm Beach and Key West, he said. It multiplies as small fragments break off and continue to grow. And the more nutrients it receives, he said, the more it grows.

Researchers are looking to try to improve forecasts for where and when the seaweed blooms appear as they learn more about it.

In the recent study, Lapointe and his collaborators, funded by NASA, focused on how nutrients flowing from the Amazon River in Brazil fuel the sargassum blooms in a combination of natural and human causes.

The “Great Atlantic Sargassum Belt” gets it start in the nutrient-rich waters moving out of the mouth of the Amazon, fed by increasing deforestation and fertilizer use in the basin, he said, and also from an upwelling off the African Coast that churns deep, nutrient-rich waters from the bottom of the ocean up to the surface.

However, from Brazil, the sargassum circulates through the Caribbean, then into the Gulf, and then around the Florida Keys and up the East Florida coast, said Lapointe. That’s much the same way the red tide algae bloom moved last year from the Southwest Florida coast around the state and up along the coast to the southern end of Volusia County.

All along the way, runoff, agriculture, fertilizers, sewers and septic tanks, and flooding rainfall push nutrients out into large plumes that carry nitrogen into the water. Lapointe said the water — because fresh water is less dense than seawater — forms a buoyant plume offshore that enriches the sargassum and encourages it to grow.

The seaweed continues to feed on that runoff as it circulates, he said. For example, Irma’s heavy rainfall sent storm water surging into rivers across the state, sending a pulse of polluted water out into the ocean through inlets along Florida’s coasts. Along with nutrients from six sewage outfalls in South Florida, he said the elevated coastal nutrients in 2017 nourished the sargassum.

“Our research shows when these plants become enriched like this, they can double their biomass in 10 days to two weeks,” he said. “It’s just like the blue-green algae coming from Lake Okeechobee into the St. Lucie Estuary.

“All of these blooms we’re talking about here are feeding off increasing nitrogen, primarily from human activities, ” he added. “We’ve been kind of sloppy housekeepers. We aren’t controlling our human nitrogen footprint very well.”

Anyone who has ever tried to keep a clean aquarium at home knows the challenges with keeping the water clean to control algae growth, said Lapointe. And, he added, it’s the same problem causing algae blooms in Florida’s springs and estuaries and also causing problems for coral reefs in the Florida Keys.

The researchers said the dramatic increases in seagrass underscore the need to understand its ecological and chemical impacts on the coastal environment, tourism, local economies and human health.

USF researchers are studying how the seaweed blooms affect fish and other marine life and whether their arrival can be forecast in advance, Wang said. “There’s so much sargassum out there, it must have a huge impact to the ocean chemistry.”

Source: news-journalonline.com (https://www.news-journalonline.com/news/20190721/researchers-link-seaweed-blooms-to-pollution-in-ocean-water)

giovonni
30th July 2019, 23:57
Country town charm ...

Görlitz woos residents | DW Documentary


The town of Görlitz in eastern Germany needs more young residents. To attract them, it’s offering a trial stay, with a free apartment and daycare included. A young Berlin family took up the offer. Will the city’s charm win them over?

Görlitz, tucked away in the easternmost corner of Germany, is a charming provincial town. It has a beautiful old city center, affordable rents and plenty of options for recreation nearby. But Görlitz is aging: One third of its 55,000 residents are over the age of 65. And now? The Interdisciplinary Centre for Ecological and Revitalizing Urban Transformation, or IZS, has come up with a creative solution. They’re offering an apartment - rent-free for one month - and support in work and settling in to attract big-city dwellers to their home town. Kevin Kandetzki is a freelance painter willing to try his luck - along with his partner, their newborn baby and their child in daycare. They’ve already braced themselves for a culture shock. The Berlin artists are moving to a city that recently gave 30% of its votes to the far-right AfD party. Will their dream of a new life become a nightmare?


Published on Jul 8, 2019

12:30 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hdp8bU-rEXA&t=185s

giovonni
31st July 2019, 19:19
Climate change: Europe's melting glaciers | DW Documentary



It is far too late to save the Alpine glaciers. And now, the dangers caused by tons of melting ice are rising sharply. Every year, climate change is destroying two of the currently 70 square kilometers of glaciers left in the Alps.

The permafrost in the Alps is thawing, and transforming what used to be sturdy slopes into loose screes. In addition, climate change is leading to significantly more extreme weather conditions every year, while heavy rainfall causes serious erosion. The result: avalanches and landslides like those in Bondo, Switzerland, or Valsertal in Austria.

In Switzerland, residential areas are shrinking as people are forced to leave their homes forever. The disappearance of glaciers as water reservoirs is already posing a major problem. Farmers in Engadine, who have been using meltwater for irrigation for centuries, are already facing water shortages. Last summer, they had to rely on helicopters to transport water to their herds in the Grison Alps. Above all, alpine villages depend on winter tourism to survive. Yet experts are forecasting that by mid-century, there will only be enough natural snow left to ski above 2,000 meters, which will spell out the end for about 70 percent of the ski resorts in the Eastern Alps. But instead of developing alternatives, lots of money is still being invested in ski tourism. Snow cannon are used to defy climate change, and artificial snow systems are under construction at ever higher altitudes. As usual, it’s the environment that is set to lose as the unique alpine landscape is further destroyed by soil compaction and erosion. Some municipalities are now working on new models of alpine tourism for the future. As global temperatures continue to rise, the cooler mountain regions will become increasingly attractive for tourists, especially in the summer.

Published on Jul 31, 2019

43:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K9MaGf-Su9I&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
8th August 2019, 07:11
So close and so far apart ...

Inside Israel's Maximum Security Prison (Prison Documentary) - Real Stories



In the confined space of the jails Israelis & Palestinians have to co-exist. Inside Israel's highest security prisons Palestinian fighters and bombers come face to face with the coercive power of the Israeli State.

Published on Aug 6, 2019

58:56 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qw4hTN-bQNI

Dreamtimer
8th August 2019, 15:52
So many good offerings...

giovonni
8th August 2019, 21:56
History stories ...


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Naked Cooks, Excrement, Rats: The Secretly Disgusting History of Royal Palaces

Filthy residences forced European monarchs to constantly move their courts ...

In July of 1535, King Henry VIII and his court of over 700 people embarked on an epic official tour. Over the next four months the massive entourage would visit around 30 different royal palaces, aristocratic residences and religious institutions. While these stops were important PR events for the king, designed to spark loyalty in his subjects, royal households had another reason entirely for their constant movement.

They weren’t just exercising their tremendous wealth: they actually needed to escape the disgusting messes large royal parties produced. Palaces—like Henry’s Hampton Court—had to be constantly evacuated so they could be cleaned of the accumulated mounds of human waste. Livestock and farmland also needed time to recover, after supplying food for so many people. Once the tour was over, Henry and a swelling court of over 1,000 would keep moving for the rest of the year, traveling frequently between the King’s 60 residences in a vain attempt to live in hygienic surroundings.

Within days of a royal party settling in one palace or another, a stink would set in from poorly discarded food, animal waste, vermin from or attracted to unwashed bodies, and human waste (which accrued in underground chambers until it could be removed.) The hallways would become so caked with grime and soot from constant fires that they were fairly black. The very crush of court members was so dense that it made a thorough house cleaning impossible—and futile. Though cleanliness standards were subpar throughout the Medieval, Renaissance and Regency eras, royal courts were typically dirtier than the average small cabin or home.

Some of the most storied reigns in history, like that of Catherine the Great, took place against a backdrop of horrifying smells, overcrowded quarters, overflowing chamber pots and lice-filled furniture. While paintings of Louis XIV’s opulent court at Versailles show royals clad in gorgeously embroidered garments, viewers today are missing one of the main effects of their finery: the odor of hundreds of garments that have never been washed, all in one unventilated room. And Charles II of England let his flea-bitten spaniels lie in his bed chamber, where they rendered the room “very offensive and indeed made the whole Court nasty and stinking,” according to a 17th century writer.

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Louis XV's toilette at the Palace of Versailles.

But without a doubt, the most pressing health concern was caused by the dearth of waste disposal options in an era before reliable plumbing. “Feces and urine were everywhere,” Eleanor Herman, author of The Royal Art of Poison, says of royal palaces. “Some courtiers didn't bother to look for a chamber pot but just dropped their britches and did their business—all of their business—in the staircase, the hallway, or the fireplace."

A 1675 report offered this assessment of the Louvre Palace in Paris: “On the grand staircases” and “behind the doors and almost everywhere one sees there a mass of excrement, one smells a thousand unbearable stenches caused by calls of nature which everyone goes to do there every day.”

According to historian Alison Weir, author of Henry VIII: The King and his Court, the fastidious Henry VIII “waged a constant battle against the dirt, dust, and smells that were unavoidable when so many people lived in one establishment,” which was fairly unusual for the time. The king slept on a bed surrounded by furs to keep small creatures and vermin away, and visitors were warned not to “wipe or rub their hands upon none arras [tapestries] of the King’s whereby they might be hurted.”

Many of the rules laid down by the King indicate that his battle against the advancing grime was a losing one. To keep servants and courtiers from urinating on the garden walls, Henry had large red X’s painted in problem spots. But instead of deterring men from relieving themselves, it just gave them something to aim for. Calls for people not to dump dirty dishes in the hallways—or on the King’s bed—seemed to fall on deaf ears.

Amazingly, Henry was even forced to decree that cooks in the royal kitchen were forbidden to work “naked, or in garments of such vileness as they do now, nor lie in the nights and days in the kitchen or ground by the fireside.” To combat the problem, clerks of the kitchen were instructed to purchase “honest and wholesome garments” for the staff.

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Part of the Hampton Court Palace kitchen, pictured in the 1940s, which had been
kept exactly as it was in the early 16th century.

While the King had a relatively sophisticated lavatory system for himself, other waste measures intended as hygienic seem disgusting today: servants were encouraged to pee in vats so that their urine could be used for cleaning. As actual cleanliness was often unachievable, the royal court resorted to masking the offending odors. Sweet-smelling plants covered palace floors, and the fortunate pressed sachets of scent to their noses.

Once Henry and his court moved on to the next royal residence, the scrubbing and airing out of the palace began. The waste from the King’s non-flushing lavatories was held in underground chambers when the court was in residence. But after the court left, the King’s Gong Scourers, tasked with cleaning the sewers in his palaces near London, went to work.

"After the court had been here for four weeks, the brick chambers would fill head-high,” Simon Thurley, curator of Historic Royal Palaces, told The Independent. “ It was the gong scourers who had to clean them when the court had left."

Of course, filthiness in over-crowded royal establishments was not just a problem at the English court. When the future Catherine the Great arrived in Russia from her family’s relatively clean German court, she was shocked by what she found. “It’s not rare to see coming from an immense courtyard full of mire and filth that belongs to a hovel of rotten wood,” she wrote, “a lady covered in jewels and superbly dressed, in a magnificent carriage, pulled by six old nags, and with badly combed valets.”

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Bathroom Apartment of Marie-Antoinette at Versailles.

The Western European belief that baths were unhealthy did not help matters, either. Although neat freak Henry VIII bathed often and changed his undershirts daily, he was a royal rarity. “Louis XIV took two baths in his life, as did Queen Isabella of Castile,” Herman says. “Marie-Antoinette bathed once a month.” The 17th century British King James I was said to never bathe, causing the rooms he frequented to be filled with lice.

It was the Sun King himself, Louis XIV, whose choice to no longer travel from court to court would lead to a particularly putrid living situation. In 1682, in an effort to seal his authority and subjugate his nobles, Louis XIV moved his court permanently to the gilded mega-palace of Versailles. At times over 10,000 royals, aristocrats, government officials, servants and military officers lived in Versailles and its surrounding lodgings.

Despite its reputation for magnificence, life at Versailles, for both royals and servants, was no cleaner than the slum-like conditions in many European cities at the time. Women pulled up their skirts up to pee where they stood, while some men urinated off the balustrade in the middle of the royal chapel. According to historian Tony Spawforth, author of Versailles: A Biography of a Palace, Marie-Antoinette was once hit by human waste being thrown out the window as she walked through an interior courtyard.

The heavily trafficked latrines often leaked into the bedrooms below them, while blockages and corrosion in the palace’s iron and lead pipes were known to occasionally “poison everything” in Marie-Antoinette’s kitchen. “Not even the rooms of the royal children were safe,” writes Spawforth. An occasional court exodus could have reduced the wear and tear on Versailles, perhaps leading to fewer unpleasant structural failures.

This unsanitary way of living no doubt led to countless deaths throughout royal European households. It was not until the 19th century that standards of cleanliness and technological developments improved life for many people, including members of royal courts. Today, many European royals still move from residence to residence—but for pleasure, not to try and outrun squalor.


Source: history.com (https://www.history.com/news/royal-palace-life-hygiene-henry-viii?cmpid=AtlasObscura_partner_NL&utm_source=Atlas+Obscura+Daily+Newsletter&utm_campaign=10a81dcfeb-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_08_08&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f36db9c480-10a81dcfeb-63041445&ct=t%28EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_08_08_2019%29&mc_cid=10a81dcfeb&mc_eid=57314563a1)

Will add this one a personal favorite ...

King Henry VIII's toilet at Hampton Court Palace

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giovonni
14th August 2019, 21:23
For your inspection ...

Artificial intelligence and its ethics | DW Documentary



Are we facing a golden digital age or will robots soon run the world? We need to establish ethical standards in dealing with artificial intelligence - and to answer the question: What still makes us as human beings unique?

Mankind is still decades away from self-learning machines that are as intelligent as humans. But already today, chatbots, robots, digital assistants and other artificially intelligent entities exist that can emulate certain human abilities. Scientists and AI experts agree that we are in a race against time: we need to establish ethical guidelines before technology catches up with us. While AI Professor Jürgen Schmidhuber predicts artificial intelligence will be able to control robotic factories in space, the Swedish-American physicist Max Tegmark warns against a totalitarian AI surveillance state, and the philosopher Thomas Metzinger predicts a deadly AI arms race. But Metzinger also believes that Europe in particular can play a pioneering role on the threshold of this new era: creating a binding international code of ethics.


Published on Aug 14, 2019

42:26 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Izd2qOgOGQI

giovonni
17th August 2019, 12:50
A German public broadcast company takes a look at ...

Hitler´s book "Mein Kampf" and its secrets | DW Documentary



You can still buy Adolf Hitler’s credo all over the world, under the counter in some places, on the Internet or simply at the bookshop in others. But did Hitler actually write it himself? And was it really a blueprint for war and the Holocaust?

Hitler’s "Mein Kampf" was first published in 1925. The 700-page work has been translated into 18 languages, sold over 12 million copies and been revised numerous times since Hitler's death. Almost everyone knows of it, yet hardly anyone has actually read it. "Mein Kampf" is a book of paradoxes, famous yet unfamiliar - fascinating and repellant at the same time.


Published on Aug 15, 2019

42:26 minutes



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPdO-LnUzMI

giovonni
17th August 2019, 13:45
Paradise lost ...

Mining Peru: nature's wealth from the Andes to the Amazon | DW Documentary


Illegal gold prospectors are threatening the Manu National Park in Peru, which is a World Heritage Site. More species of wild animals and plants have been documented in Peru than anywhere else on Earth. But now their very survival is at stake.

Peru’s Manu National Park is an unparalleled hotspot of biodiversity, which is why UNESCO declared the area a World Heritage Site thirty years ago. Ten percent of all known bird species are native to this area, including gaudy parrots and iridescent hummingbirds. Jaguars and tapirs sneak through the forests, while giant otters and caimans hunt in their waters. The Manu National Park straddles an altitude difference of around 4000 meters between the eastern foothills of the Andes and the lowlands of the Amazon, encompassing mountains, alpine forests and a huge lowland rainforest.

These superlatives and the existing environmental protection laws alone should be sufficient to preserve the area, but low interest rates in the wake of the 2008 banking crisis have prompted bankers and private investors to switch to a more lucrative source of income: Gold! Since then, tens of thousands of illegal gold prospectors have been pouring into the area around the national park, stripping back the rainforests and threatening natural habitats with extinction. The mercury used to extract the precious metal has contaminated the rivers and poisoned both wildlife and humans alike, leaving an uninhabitable landscape that looks like the surface of the moon.

Illegal plantations of coca bushes for cocaine are also behind both growing environmental damage and the spread of violence. Yet, although this natural paradise is facing disaster, organized crime and corruption make it hard for the authorities to take action.

Published on Aug 16, 2019

25:56 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rLVn1K47I2g

giovonni
25th August 2019, 16:02
Brexit - Designed To Destabilise, Same For USA & EU,
Our Concentration & Memory is Kaput

108morris108
Published on Aug 25, 2019

10:33 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xY_uJaQ2DPs&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
27th August 2019, 14:42
A long, but worthy read ...



The Strange Persistence of First Languages

After my father died, my journey of rediscovery began with the Czech language.

By Julie Sedivy

Illustration by Sarah Mazzetti
November 5, 2015

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Several years ago, my father died as he had done most things throughout his life: without preparation and without consulting anyone. He simply went to bed one night, yielded his brain to a monstrous blood clot, and was found the next morning lying amidst the sheets like his own stone monument.

It was hard for me not to take my father’s abrupt exit as a rebuke. For years, he’d been begging me to visit him in the Czech Republic, where I’d been born and where he’d gone back to live in 1992. Each year, I delayed. I was in that part of my life when the marriage-grad-school-children-career-divorce current was sweeping me along with breath-sucking force, and a leisurely trip to the fatherland seemed as plausible as pausing the flow of time.

Now my dad was shrugging at me from beyond— “You see, you’ve run out of time.”

His death underscored another loss, albeit a far more subtle one: that of my native tongue. Czech was the only language I knew until the age of 2, when my family began a migration westward, from what was then Czechoslovakia through Austria, then Italy, settling eventually in Montreal, Canada. Along the way, a clutter of languages introduced themselves into my life: German in preschool, Italian-speaking friends, the francophone streets of East Montreal. Linguistic experience congealed, though, once my siblings and I started school in English. As with many immigrants, this marked the time when English became, unofficially and over the grumbling of my parents (especially my father), our family language—the time when Czech began its slow retreat from my daily life.

Many would applaud the efficiency with which we settled into English—it’s what exemplary immigrants do. But between then and now, research has shown the depth of the relationship all of us have with our native tongues—and how traumatic it can be when that relationship is ruptured. Spurred by my father’s death, I returned to the Czech Republic hoping to reconnect to him. In doing so, I also reconnected with my native tongue, and with parts of my identity that I had long ignored.

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MEMORIES: The author in the arms of her father, Ladislav Sedivy, together with her mother Vera and her older siblings, Marie and Silvester.
This photo was taken several months before the family’s departure from their Czech home.

While my father was still alive, I was, like most young people, more intent on hurtling myself into my future than on tending my ancestral roots—and that included speaking the language of my new country rather than my old one. The incentives for adopting the culturally dominant language are undeniable. Proficiency offers clear financial rewards, resulting in wage increases of 15 percent for immigrants who achieve it relative to those who don’t, according to economist Barry Chiswick. A child, who rarely calculates the return on investment for her linguistic efforts, feels the currency of the dominant language in other ways: the approval of teachers and the acceptance of peers. I was mortally offended when my first-grade teacher asked me on the first day of school if I knew “a little English”—“I don’t know a little English,” was my indignant and heavily accented retort. “I know a lot of English.” In the schoolyard, I quickly learned that my Czech was seen as having little value by my friends, aside from the possibility of swearing in another language—a value I was unable to deliver, given that my parents were cursing teetotalers.

But embracing the dominant language comes at a price. Like a household that welcomes a new child, a single mind can’t admit a new language without some impact on other languages already residing there. Languages can co-exist, but they tussle, as do siblings, over mental resources and attention. When a bilingual person tries to articulate a thought in one language, words and grammatical structures from the other language often clamor in the background, jostling for attention. The subconscious effort of suppressing this competition can slow the retrieval of words—and if the background language elbows its way to the forefront, the speaker may resort to code-switching, plunking down a word from one language into the sentence frame of another.

Meanwhile, the weaker language is more likely to become swamped; when resources are scarce, as they are during mental exhaustion, the disadvantaged language may become nearly impossible to summon. Over time, neglecting an earlier language makes it harder and harder for it to compete for access.


His death underscored another loss, albeit a far more subtle one:
that of my native tongue.


According to a 2004 survey conducted in the Los Angeles metropolitan area, fewer than half of people belonging to Generation 1.5—immigrants who arrive before their teenage years—claimed to speak the language they were born into “very well.” A 2006 study of immigrant languages in Southern California forecast that even among Mexican Americans, the slowest group to assimilate within Southern California, new arrivals would live to hear only 5 out of every 100 of their great-grandchildren speak fluent Spanish.

When a childhood language decays, so does the ability to reach far back into your own private history. Language is memory’s receptacle. It has Proustian powers. Just as smells are known to trigger vivid memories of past experiences, language is so entangled with our experiences that inhabiting a specific language helps surface submerged events or interactions that are associated with it.

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Psychotherapist Jennifer Schwanberg has seen this firsthand. In a 2010 paper, she describes treating a client who’d lived through a brutal childhood in Mexico before immigrating to the United States. The woman showed little emotion when talking about events from her early life, and Schwanberg at first assumed that her client had made her peace with them. But one day, the woman began the session in Spanish. The therapist followed her lead and discovered that “moving to her first language had opened a floodgate. Memories from childhood, both traumatic and nontraumatic, were recounted with depth and vividness ... It became clear that a door to the past was available to her in her first language.”

A first language remains uniquely intertwined with early memories, even for people who fully master another language. In her book The Bilingual Mind, linguist Aneta Pavlenko describes how the author Vladimir Nabokov fled the Russian revolution in 1919, arriving in the United Kingdom when he was 20. By the time he wrote his memoir Conclusive Evidence in 1951, he’d been writing in English for years, yet he struggled writing this particular text in his adopted language, complaining that his memory was tuned to the “musical key” of Russian. Soon after its publication, he translated the memoir into his native tongue. Working in his first language seems to have prodded his senses awake, leading him to insert new details into the Russian version: A simple anecdote about a stingy old housekeeper becomes perfumed with the scents of coffee and decay, the description of a laundry hamper acquires a creaking sound, the visual details of a celluloid swan and toy boat sprout as he writes about the tub in which he bathed as a child. Some of these details eventually made it into his revised English memoir, which he aptly titled Speak, Memory. Evidently, when memory speaks, it sometimes does so in a particular tongue.

Losing your native tongue unmoors you not only from your own early life but from the entire culture that shaped you. You lose access to the books, films, stories, and songs that articulate the values and norms that you’ve absorbed. You lose the embrace of an entire community or nation for whom your family’s odd quirks are not quirks all. You lose your context. This disconnection can be devastating. A 2007 study led by Darcy Hallett found that in British Columbian native communities in which fewer than half of the members could converse in their indigenous language, young people killed themselves six times more often than in communities where the majority spoke the native language. In the Midwestern U.S., psychologist Teresa LaFromboise and her colleagues found that American-Indian adolescents who were heavily involved in activities focused on their traditional language and traditions did better at school and had fewer behavior problems than kids who were less connected to their traditional cultures—in fact, cultural connectedness buffered them against adolescent problems more than having a warm and nurturing mother. Such benefits appear to span continents: In 2011, the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that aboriginal youth who spoke their traditional language were less likely to binge drink or use illegal drugs.

Why is a heritage language so conducive to well-being? Michael Chandler, one of the authors of the suicide study, emphasizes that a sense of cultural continuity makes people resilient by providing them with a cohesive self-concept. Without that continuity, he warns, aboriginal youth, who have typically experienced plenty of turbulence, are in grave existential danger. They risk losing “the thread that tethers together their past, present, and future.”


As my siblings and I distanced ourselves from the Czech language in our youth, a space widened between us and our parents—especially my father, who never wore English with any comfort. Memories of our early family life, along with its small rituals and lessons imparted, receded into a past that drifted ever further out of reach. It was as if my parents’ life in their home country, and the values that defined that life, didn’t translate credibly into another language; it was much easier to rebel against them in English. Even the English names for our parents encouraged dissent: The Czech words we’d used—Maminka, Tatinek—so laden with esteem and affection, impossible to pronounce with contempt, had no corresponding forms. In English, the sweet but childish Mommy and Daddy are soon abandoned for Mom and Dad—words that, we discovered, lend themselves perfectly well to adolescent snark.

I watched as my father grew more and more frustrated at his powerlessness to pass on to his children the legacy he most longed to leave: a burning religious piety, the nurturing of family ties, pleasure in the music and traditions of his region, and an abiding respect for ancestors. All of these became diluted by the steady flow of new memories narrated in English, laced with Anglophone aspiration and individualism. As we entered adulthood and dispersed all over North America into our self-reliant lives, my father gave up. He moved back home.

For the next two decades, I lived my adult life, fully absorbed into the English-speaking universe, even adding American citizenship to my Canadian one. My dad was the only person with whom I regularly spoke Czech—if phone calls every few months can be described as “regularly,” and if my clumsy sentences patched together with abundant English can be called “speaking Czech.” My Czech heritage began to feel more and more like a vestigial organ.


You lose the embrace of an entire community. You lose your context.


Then my father died. Loss inevitably reveals that which is gone. It was as if the string section of the orchestra had fallen silent—not carrying the melody, it had gone unnoticed, but its absence announced how much depth and texture it had supplied, how its rhythms had lent coherence to the music. In grieving my father, I became aware of how much I also mourned the silencing of Czech in my life. There was a part of me, I realized, that only Czech could speak to, a way of being that was hard to settle into, even with my own siblings and mother when we spoke in English.

After my father’s death, my siblings and I inherited a sweet little apartment in a large compound that has been occupied by the Sedivy family since the 1600s, and where my uncle still lives with his sprawling family. This past spring, I finally cleared two months of my schedule and went for a long visit, sleeping on the very same bed where my father and his brothers had been born.

I discovered that, while I may have run out of time to visit my father in his homeland, there was still time for me to reunite with my native tongue. On my first day there, the long drive with my uncle between the airport and our place in the countryside was accompanied by a conversation that lurched along awkwardly, filled with dead ends and misunderstandings. Over the next few days, I had trouble excavating everyday words like stamp and fork, and I made grammar mistakes that would (and did) cause a 4-year-old to snicker. But within weeks, fluency began to unspool. Words that I’m sure I hadn’t used in decades leapt out of my mouth, astounding me. (Often they were correct. Sometimes not: I startled a man who asked about my occupation by claiming to be a savior—spasitelka. Sadly, I am a mere writer—spisovatelka.) The complicated inflections of Czech, described as “character-building” by an acquaintance who’d learned the language in college, began to assemble into somewhat orderly rows in my mind, and I quickly ventured onto more and more adventurous grammatical terrain. Just a few weeks into my visit, I briefly passed as a real Czech speaker in a conversation with a stranger. Relearning Czech so quickly felt like having linguistic superpowers.

Surprised by the speed of my progress, I began to look for studies of heritage speakers relearning childhood languages that had fallen into disuse. A number of scientific papers reported evidence of cognitive remnants of “forgotten” languages, remnants that were visible mostly in the process of relearning. In some cases, even when initial testing hinted at language decay, people who’d been exposed to the language earlier in life showed accelerated relearning of grammar, vocabulary, and most of all, of control over the sounds of the language.

One of the most remarkable examples involved a group of Indian adoptees who’d been raised from a young age (starting between 6 and 60 months) in English-speaking families, having no significant contact with their language of origin. The psychologist Leher Singh tested the children when they were between the ages of 8 and 16. Initially, neither group could hear the difference between dental and retroflex consonants, a distinction that’s exploited by many Indian languages. After listening to the contrasting sounds over a period of mere minutes, the adoptees, but not the American-born children, were able to discriminate between the two classes of consonants.

This is revealing because a language’s phonology, or sound structure, is one of the greatest challenges for people who start learning a language in adulthood. Long after they’ve mastered its syntax and vocabulary, a lifelong accent may mark them as latecomers to the language. Arnold Schwarzenegger was the star of many American movies and the governor of the country’s biggest state, but his Austrian accent is a constant reminder that he could never run for president. The crucial timing of exposure for native-like speech is evident in my own family: I can pronounce the notoriously difficult “ř” sound in Czech—as in the name of the composer Dvořák—but my brother, born three years after me, in Vienna, cannot.

Phonology’s resistance to both attrition and later learning may be due to the fact that the sound structure of a language is fixed in a child’s mind very early. Before 6 months of age, infants can distinguish most subtle differences in speech sounds, whether their language makes use of those distinctions or not. But over the second half of their first year, they gradually tune their perception to just the sounds of the language they hear around them. Children who hear only English lose the ability to distinguish between dental and retroflex sounds. Children learning Japanese begin to hear “r” and “l” as variants of the same sound. Linguist Pat Kuhl, who has studied this phenomenon for decades, describes the process as one of perceptual narrowing and increasing neural commitment, eventually excluding native-like perception of other languages.

One of the most striking examples of the brain’s attunement to native sounds is apparent in languages such as Mandarin, where varying the tone of an utterance can produce entirely different words. (For instance, the syllable ma can mean “mother,” “hemp,” “horse,” or “scold,” depending on the pitch contour you lay over it.) When Mandarin speakers hear nonsense syllables that are identical except for their tones, they show heightened activity in the left hemisphere of the brain, where people normally process sounds that signal differences in meaning—like the difference between the syllables “pa” and “ba.” But speakers of non-tonal languages like English have more activity in the right hemisphere, showing that the brain doesn’t treat tone as relevant for distinguishing words. A recent study found that Chinese-born babies adopted into French homes showed brain activity that matched Chinese speakers and was clearly distinct from monolingual French speakers—even after being separated from their birth language for more than 12 years.


The brain’s devotion to a childhood language reminds me of a poem by Emily Dickinson:

The Soul selects her own Society—
Then—shuts the Door—
To her divine Majority—
Present no more—

Unmoved—she notes the Chariots—pausing—
At her low Gate—
Unmoved—an Emperor be kneeling
Upon her Mat—

I’ve known her—from an ample nation—
Choose One—
Then—close the Valves of her attention—
Like Stone—

Those of us who received more than one language before the valves of our attention closed may find, to our surprise, that our earliest language lingers on in our soul’s select society, long after we thought it had faded.

I’ve become aware of the deep sense in which I belong to the Czech language, as well as the extent to which my formative memories are tinged by its “musical key.” For me, the English phrase “pork with cabbage and dumplings” refers to a concept, the national dish of the Czechs. But hearing the Czech phrase vepřo-knedlo-zelo evokes the fragrance of roasting meat, pillowy dumpling loaves being pulled steaming out of a tall pot and sliced with sewing thread, and the clink of the nice china as the table is dressed for Sunday dinner, the fulcrum of every week.

Since coming back from the Czech Republic, I’ve insisted on speaking Czech with my mother. Even though it’s more effortful for both of us than speaking in English, our conversation feels softer, more tender this way. English was the language in which I forged my independence, the language of my individuation—but it was in Czech that I was nurtured, comforted, and sung to.

It has also gotten easier to hear the timbre of my father’s voice in my mind’s ear, especially when working in my garden. It’s no accident that many of my conversations with him, and more recently with my uncle, have been on the subject of horticulture. My father’s family has lived for centuries in the fertile wine and orchard region of Moravia, and on my recent visit, I saw my relatives gaze out at their land with an expression usually reserved for a beloved spouse or child. Throughout my own life, I’ve given in to the compulsion to fasten myself to whatever patch of land I happened to be living on by growing things on it, an impulse that has often conflicted with the upwardly and physically mobile trajectory of my life. It’s an impulse I submit to once again, living now in the lee of the Rocky Mountains; neither grapes nor apricots will thrive in the brittle mountain air, but I raise sour cherries and saskatoons, small fruits native to western Canada. As I mulch and weed and prune, I sometimes find myself murmuring to my plants in Czech as my father did, and the Moravian homestead doesn’t seem very far away.

My newly vocal native tongue, and along with it, the heightened memory of my father’s voice, does more than connect me to my past: It is proving to be an unexpected guide in my present work. I’ve recently left my job as an academic linguist to devote more time to writing, and I often find myself these days conjuring my father’s voice by reading a passage in Czech. Like many Czechs I’ve met, my father treated his language like a lovely object to be turned over, admired, stroked with a fingertip, deserving of deliberate and leisurely attention. He spoke less often than most people, but was more often eloquent. I may never regain enough of my first language to write anything in it worth reading, but when I struggle to write prose that not only informs but transcends, I find myself steering my inner monologue toward Czech. It reminds me of what it feels like to sink into language, to be startled by the aptness of a word or the twist of a phrase, to be delighted by arrangements of its sounds, and lulled by its rhythms. I’ve discovered that my native language has been sitting quietly in my soul’s vault all this time.


Julie Sedivy has taught linguistics and psychology at Brown University and the University of Calgary. She is the co-author of Sold on Language: How Advertisers Talk to You and What This Says About You and more recently, the author of Language in Mind: An Introduction to Psycholinguistics.

Source:http://nautil.us (http://nautil.us/issue/30/identity/the-strange-persistence-of-first-languages?te=1&nl=morning-briefing&emc=edit_NN_p_20190827&section=whatElse?campaign_id=9&instance_id=11930&segment_id=16506&user_id=f720a4c35094c229f8aa98a4a66b9a3e&regi_id=93567358ion=whatElse)

giovonni
29th August 2019, 15:11
A look into India's purported ...

Hidden world of modern slavery - BBC News



An estimated 40 million people globally are subjected to modern forms of slavery. Bonded and forced labour, child labour, sex trafficking and domestic servitude are still rife. India has adopted a United Nations goal to eradicate modern slavery by 2030, but how close are we to achieving that goal? How bad is the problem in India? How does caste-based discrimination play a role? How can businesses be made more accountable, and consumers more aware about the products they buy?

We speak to a leading human rights lawyer, the head of an organisation working to free supply chains of bonded labour, and an activist fighting for the rights of those at the bottom of India’s caste hierarchy. We ask them how we can eradicate modern-day slavery.

Presenter: Devina Gupta

Contributors: Dr Colin Gonsalves, founder, Human Rights Law Network and senior advocate, Supreme Court of India; Manoj Bhatt, director, GoodWeave India; Riya Singh, Dalit activist and PhD scholar

Published on Aug 29, 2019

24:26 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PAZk9lFY_s

giovonni
30th August 2019, 12:50
Here's another (modern day) form of enslavement when abused ...

"Opioid addiction has already cost nearly 200,000 lives in the US alone. But recent figures indicate the crisis is no longer a purely American problem. The use of these painkillers has also increased in Germany and France in the last few years" ...

The opioid crisis in the USA | DW Documentary



Overdoses of painkillers have been responsible for nearly 200,000 deaths in the US in the last five years alone. US pharmaceutical company johnson and johnson has just been sentenced to a fine of over 500 million dollars. These painkillers contain opioids - artificial morphine. They work quickly and reliably - and are highly addictive. The opioid epidemic has destroyed families and entire communities and paralyzed the economy in many regions, affecting all age groups and social strata. Most of the medical practices and clinics that for years prescribed millions of opioids are now closed, and physicians, pharmacists, wholesalers and manufacturers are facing a wave of lawsuits. But at the same time, there is now a flourishing black market on the streets and in the darker reaches of the Internet.

Purdue, a pharmaceutical company, made a profit of over 35 billion Euros from the opioid painkiller OxyContin. It was marketed as completely harmless, but in reality, OxyContin, like other painkillers such as Fentanyl that are prescribed on a massive scale in the USA, can become addictive after only a short time. But we can no longer write the opioid crisis off as a purely American phenomenon. In Germany, too, the amount of painkillers containing opioids prescribed by doctors increased by almost a third between 2006 and 2015. And the use of strong opioids in France has also risen sharply. The documentary investigates at first hand the health catastrophe in the USA and compares it with the situation in Germany and France.

Published on Aug 29, 2019

42:31 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9DScWyOj8lQ&feature=em-uploademail

NotAPretender
30th August 2019, 13:57
All I can say Giovonni is that you do great stuff...

giovonni
31st August 2019, 17:09
Getting to the bottom of ...

Photos from the Second World War | DW Documentary



A box full of photos from the Second World War serves as the starting point for a historical thriller. It was found by a Polish filmmaker whose grandfather had served in the German army. But what does it mean for Michal Wnuk’s family history?

The photos show prisoners of war in France and Russia - and the Warsaw Uprising of 1944 from a German perspective: Snapshots of the war in black and white. On closer inspection, however, it becomes apparent that Michal Wnuk’s grandfather could not have taken the photos himself, because he never served in those theatres, so Michal sets off to find out where they came from. He discovers that the box belonged to his great uncle, who was in the Polish Home Army. How did he get them? Booty? Evidence? And the films are also puzzling, showing an excursion in the summer of 1939. But who are the people in the pictures? Michal’s search finally takes him to Germany. This German-Polish co-production is a historical thriller, full of riddles and surprising twists, as a hoard of private material turns into a sounding board for great historical events.

Published on Aug 31, 2019

42:26 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IROFvxHLWjk&feature=push-u-sub&attr_tag=fILna-4cAdV2u-9u%3A6

giovonni
1st September 2019, 15:35
#Quality over quantity ...


https://cbsnews2.cbsistatic.com/hub/i/r/2019/09/01/ee37184a-42b7-4c27-baa4-aa0b529dc216/thumbnail/1240x700/99bc8b47004140cd8efd5b58c12ffd4a/american-giant-bayard-winthrop-john-blackstone-620.jpg

Six years ago, the apparel manufacturer Eagle Sportswear, in rural Middlesex, North Carolina, was ready to close, until Bayard Winthrop helped buy the knitwear plant.

"We've spent, nationally, much of the last 40 years moving manufacturing overseas to chase cheap labor and lower environment standards and lower regulations," Winthrop said.

In 1980 almost 80% of clothing bought in the U.S. was made in America. Today, it's around 3%. Winthrop says while globalization and trade deals made goods cheaper, they also brought decades of lay-offs and plant closures.

"I'm a free-trade person," Winthrop said. "But I also am a believer in saying, 'Wait a second, you cannot gut a bunch of communities in the U.S. and move to Bangladesh and then import all those goods back again and sell them at the local Dollar Store to all these people that now no longer have jobs'" ...


8:20 minutes

View more here:
Made in USA: Bringing manufacturing jobs back to the homeland (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/made-in-usa-american-giant-bringing-manufacturing-jobs-back-to-the-homeland/)

giovonni
3rd September 2019, 16:01
"Expectation and worry fill the days before the monsoon arrives in India" ...

https://static01.nyt.com/images/2019/09/01/world/01monsoon/31monsoon-superJumbo.jpg?quality=90&auto=webp
Waiting for the Monsoon, Discovering a Brain Tumor Instead (https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/31/world/asia/india-monsoon-rod-nordland.html)

giovonni
8th September 2019, 00:50
Will share this here ...

Life With Siberian Nomads (Survival Documentary) - Real Stories


"Kate Humble enters the deep, cold Siberian desert of snow and ice to live with
some of the strongest surviving nomads of the world."

Published on Sep 7, 2019

51:01 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kIbHN7PmWQ&feature=em-uploademail


An expanded descriptive


https://www.twofour.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/thoughtleader2-450x306.jpg


Director, producer and filmmaker Alexis Girardet specialises in working in remote communities and the harshest of climates. With both poles, the Atlantic and Everest under his belt, his latest challenge was discovering the little-known Nomadic communities in Siberia, Mongolia and Nepal with Kate Humble for Indus Films’ new series. Alexis shares some of the tales from shooting the documentary.

Integrating with the nomadic communities
Filming Indus Films’ Kate Humble: Living with Nomads for BBC2 took us to some wild and remote parts of the world. The key was to gently ingratiate our way into the nomads’ lives and this worked to varying degrees. In Mongolia we were welcomed with open arms from the start; on my first night I ended up sleeping next to the 89-year old great-grandmother in the family ger (a Mongolian yurt), but in Siberia we ended up barricading ourselves into a room as drunken Russian oil workers tried to kick our door in.

In Nepal, after an initially successful recce (reconnaissance), we got the cold shoulder and demands for cash when we started filming. That was really tricky, but we stayed the course and slowly chipped away at the difficulties and hurdles in our way. In the end there were hugs and tears when it came to leaving all of the nomads. It was a very rich and rewarding experience.

https://www.twofour.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Thoughtleader1-300x225.jpg

Memorable moments
Walking with the Mongolian family’s herd of goats, sheep, yaks and horses over the high passes and mountains to their new summer camp will always stay with me. In Nepal, unexpected festivities made for a night to remember – singing, dancing and drinking homemade hooch into the twilight. But, the memory that will stay with me the longest is eating freshly slaughtered, still warm reindeer meat in the Siberian tundra. Our hosts shared what for them is a special feast of raw liver, fresh blood and warm fat, all washed down with copious amounts of vodka, while we sat out in the snow at -25C. It was surreal and wonderful.

Lessons learnt: do talk to strangers!
The thing I’ve taken away from this year of magical journeys and experiences is the warmth, friendship and humanity of strangers – sharing lives and stories, spending time getting to know people living in far-removed places, and yet finding that deep down we all have the same joys and worries. And that life stripped back to the basics is something to be embraced.

Most importantly we need learn to live and understand these remote and wild cultures; they should be cherished and encouraged instead of all too often being pushed more and more to the margins and to the very verge of extinction. Let’s not lose these amazing, inspirational yet tough people and their ways of living; let’s embrace them and nurture them, or at least let them live as they wish to, at peace with nature and the world.

I really hope that we have helped to capture some of these amazing lives and that they come through as warm and dignified people in the series we have made. I hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it.

Source (https://www.twofour.co.uk/news/the-making-of-kate-humble-living-with-nomads/)

NotAPretender
8th September 2019, 23:29
This is a remarkable story...I guess the cold North is what is happening now...I watched a movie last night called the "Arctic" starring Mads Mikkelson...brutal weather and terrain. The book "Anathem" I'm currently reading has the characters called "Avout", monks that 7 millennia ago gave up high technology in favor of 'knowledge' and low tech. The main character is a theoretical cosmographer Avout, the Avout in general find the 'slines' as ignorant brutes. The sline are those that choose not to become avout and live on technology which are basically artefacts of the Praxic age, roughly equivalent to what our 21st technology is. The slines have technology capable of manufacturing and launching space rockets. Which they must do in order to come to terms with the 'Geomoters' an alien species that have not made contact yet. The Avout suspect it might be connected to their theories of the multiverse because the 'Hierarchs' have tried to suppress knowledge of the aliens.

The Avout are called out by the 'seculars' also knows as 'slines' to help solve the mystery. The main Avout Brain has vanished into the wild north and his followers are trying to track him down. They nearly do not survive the trip due to the harsh bitterly cold conditions and due to the usual order of things having been upset because of massive military movements and other groups trying to make contact.

giovonni
9th September 2019, 00:14
I guess the cold North is what is happening now...I watched a movie last night called the "Arctic"
starring Mads Mikkelson...brutal weather and terrain.


Yes - it looks intense ...


ARCTIC | Official Trailer


2:49 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N5aD9ppoQIo


ARCTIC | Official Story Featurette


2:12 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iS38pySnXOo&list=PLnd3Cb9i5sDlLrwlkrkNA4IVXZaqCqtVa&index=6

giovonni
9th September 2019, 00:51
And speaking extreme climate ...
Note this is an opinion piece and does not necessarly reflect my own.


What If We
Stopped
Pretending?

The climate apocalypse is coming. To prepare for it,
we need to admit that we can’t prevent it.

https://media.newyorker.com/photos/5d72702ed9dd6c00097a5b7d/master/w_4000,c_limit/Franzen-ClimateChange.jpg

By Jonathan Franzen

“There is infinite hope,” Kafka tells us, “only not for us.” This is a fittingly mystical epigram from a writer whose characters strive for ostensibly reachable goals and, tragically or amusingly, never manage to get any closer to them. But it seems to me, in our rapidly darkening world, that the converse of Kafka’s quip is equally true: There is no hope, except for us.

I’m talking, of course, about climate change. The struggle to rein in global carbon emissions and keep the planet from melting down has the feel of Kafka’s fiction. The goal has been clear for thirty years, and despite earnest efforts we’ve made essentially no progress toward reaching it. Today, the scientific evidence verges on irrefutable. If you’re younger than sixty, you have a good chance of witnessing the radical destabilization of life on earth—massive crop failures, apocalyptic fires, imploding economies, epic flooding, hundreds of millions of refugees fleeing regions made uninhabitable by extreme heat or permanent drought. If you’re under thirty, you’re all but guaranteed to witness it.

If you care about the planet, and about the people and animals who live on it, there are two ways to think about this. You can keep on hoping that catastrophe is preventable, and feel ever more frustrated or enraged by the world’s inaction. Or you can accept that disaster is coming, and begin to rethink what it means to have hope.

Even at this late date, expressions of unrealistic hope continue to abound. Hardly a day seems to pass without my reading that it’s time to “roll up our sleeves” and “save the planet”; that the problem of climate change can be “solved” if we summon the collective will. Although this message was probably still true in 1988, when the science became fully clear, we’ve emitted as much atmospheric carbon in the past thirty years as we did in the previous two centuries of industrialization. The facts have changed, but somehow the message stays the same.

Psychologically, this denial makes sense. Despite the outrageous fact that I’ll soon be dead forever, I live in the present, not the future. Given a choice between an alarming abstraction (death) and the reassuring evidence of my senses (breakfast!), my mind prefers to focus on the latter. The planet, too, is still marvelously intact, still basically normal—seasons changing, another election year coming, new comedies on Netflix—and its impending collapse is even harder to wrap my mind around than death. Other kinds of apocalypse, whether religious or thermonuclear or asteroidal, at least have the binary neatness of dying: one moment the world is there, the next moment it’s gone forever. Climate apocalypse, by contrast, is messy. It will take the form of increasingly severe crises compounding chaotically until civilization begins to fray. Things will get very bad, but maybe not too soon, and maybe not for everyone. Maybe not for me.

Some of the denial, however, is more willful. The evil of the Republican Party’s position on climate science is well known, but denial is entrenched in progressive politics, too, or at least in its rhetoric. The Green New Deal, the blueprint for some of the most substantial proposals put forth on the issue, is still framed as our last chance to avert catastrophe and save the planet, by way of gargantuan renewable-energy projects. Many of the groups that support those proposals deploy the language of “stopping” climate change, or imply that there’s still time to prevent it. Unlike the political right, the left prides itself on listening to climate scientists, who do indeed allow that catastrophe is theoretically avertable. But not everyone seems to be listening carefully. The stress falls on the word theoretically.

Our atmosphere and oceans can absorb only so much heat before climate change, intensified by various feedback loops, spins completely out of control. The consensus among scientists and policy-makers is that we’ll pass this point of no return if the global mean temperature rises by more than two degrees Celsius (maybe a little more, but also maybe a little less). The I.P.C.C.—the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change—tells us that, to limit the rise to less than two degrees, we not only need to reverse the trend of the past three decades. We need to approach zero net emissions, globally, in the next three decades.

This is, to say the least, a tall order. It also assumes that you trust the I.P.C.C.’s calculations. New research, described last month in Scientific American, demonstrates that climate scientists, far from exaggerating the threat of climate change, have underestimated its pace and severity. To project the rise in the global mean temperature, scientists rely on complicated atmospheric modelling. They take a host of variables and run them through supercomputers to generate, say, ten thousand different simulations for the coming century, in order to make a “best” prediction of the rise in temperature. When a scientist predicts a rise of two degrees Celsius, she’s merely naming a number about which she’s very confident: the rise will be at least two degrees. The rise might, in fact, be far higher.

As a non-scientist, I do my own kind of modelling. I run various future scenarios through my brain, apply the constraints of human psychology and political reality, take note of the relentless rise in global energy consumption (thus far, the carbon savings provided by renewable energy have been more than offset by consumer demand), and count the scenarios in which collective action averts catastrophe. The scenarios, which I draw from the prescriptions of policy-makers and activists, share certain necessary conditions.

The first condition is that every one of the world’s major polluting countries institute draconian conservation measures, shut down much of its energy and transportation infrastructure, and completely retool its economy. According to a recent paper in Nature, the carbon emissions from existing global infrastructure, if operated through its normal lifetime, will exceed our entire emissions “allowance”—the further gigatons of carbon that can be released without crossing the threshold of catastrophe. (This estimate does not include the thousands of new energy and transportation projects already planned or under construction.) To stay within that allowance, a top-down intervention needs to happen not only in every country but throughout every country. Making New York City a green utopia will not avail if Texans keep pumping oil and driving pickup trucks.

The actions taken by these countries must also be the right ones. Vast sums of government money must be spent without wasting it and without lining the wrong pockets. Here it’s useful to recall the Kafkaesque joke of the European Union’s biofuel mandate, which served to accelerate the deforestation of Indonesia for palm-oil plantations, and the American subsidy of ethanol fuel, which turned out to benefit no one but corn farmers.

Finally, overwhelming numbers of human beings, including millions of government-hating Americans, need to accept high taxes and severe curtailment of their familiar life styles without revolting. They must accept the reality of climate change and have faith in the extreme measures taken to combat it. They can’t dismiss news they dislike as fake. They have to set aside nationalism and class and racial resentments. They have to make sacrifices for distant threatened nations and distant future generations. They have to be permanently terrified by hotter summers and more frequent natural disasters, rather than just getting used to them. Every day, instead of thinking about breakfast, they have to think about death.

Call me a pessimist or call me a humanist, but I don’t see human nature fundamentally changing anytime soon. I can run ten thousand scenarios through my model, and in not one of them do I see the two-degree target being met.

To judge from recent opinion polls, which show that a majority of Americans (many of them Republican) are pessimistic about the planet’s future, and from the success of a book like David Wallace-Wells’s harrowing “The Uninhabitable Earth,” which was released this year, I’m not alone in having reached this conclusion. But there continues to be a reluctance to broadcast it. Some climate activists argue that if we publicly admit that the problem can’t be solved, it will discourage people from taking any ameliorative action at all. This seems to me not only a patronizing calculation but an ineffectual one, given how little progress we have to show for it to date. The activists who make it remind me of the religious leaders who fear that, without the promise of eternal salvation, people won’t bother to behave well. In my experience, nonbelievers are no less loving of their neighbors than believers. And so I wonder what might happen if, instead of denying reality, we told ourselves the truth.

First of all, even if we can no longer hope to be saved from two degrees of warming, there’s still a strong practical and ethical case for reducing carbon emissions. In the long run, it probably makes no difference how badly we overshoot two degrees; once the point of no return is passed, the world will become self-transforming. In the shorter term, however, half measures are better than no measures. Halfway cutting our emissions would make the immediate effects of warming somewhat less severe, and it would somewhat postpone the point of no return. The most terrifying thing about climate change is the speed at which it’s advancing, the almost monthly shattering of temperature records. If collective action resulted in just one fewer devastating hurricane, just a few extra years of relative stability, it would be a goal worth pursuing.

In fact, it would be worth pursuing even if it had no effect at all. To fail to conserve a finite resource when conservation measures are available, to needlessly add carbon to the atmosphere when we know very well what carbon is doing to it, is simply wrong. Although the actions of one individual have zero effect on the climate, this doesn’t mean that they’re meaningless. Each of us has an ethical choice to make. During the Protestant Reformation, when “end times” was merely an idea, not the horribly concrete thing it is today, a key doctrinal question was whether you should perform good works because it will get you into Heaven, or whether you should perform them simply because they’re good—because, while Heaven is a question mark, you know that this world would be better if everyone performed them. I can respect the planet, and care about the people with whom I share it, without believing that it will save me.

More than that, a false hope of salvation can be actively harmful. If you persist in believing that catastrophe can be averted, you commit yourself to tackling a problem so immense that it needs to be everyone’s overriding priority forever. One result, weirdly, is a kind of complacency: by voting for green candidates, riding a bicycle to work, avoiding air travel, you might feel that you’ve done everything you can for the only thing worth doing. Whereas, if you accept the reality that the planet will soon overheat to the point of threatening civilization, there’s a whole lot more you should be doing.

Our resources aren’t infinite. Even if we invest much of them in a longest-shot gamble, reducing carbon emissions in the hope that it will save us, it’s unwise to invest all of them. Every billion dollars spent on high-speed trains, which may or may not be suitable for North America, is a billion not banked for disaster preparedness, reparations to inundated countries, or future humanitarian relief. Every renewable-energy mega-project that destroys a living ecosystem—the “green” energy development now occurring in Kenya’s national parks, the giant hydroelectric projects in Brazil, the construction of solar farms in open spaces, rather than in settled areas—erodes the resilience of a natural world already fighting for its life. Soil and water depletion, overuse of pesticides, the devastation of world fisheries—collective will is needed for these problems, too, and, unlike the problem of carbon, they’re within our power to solve. As a bonus, many low-tech conservation actions (restoring forests, preserving grasslands, eating less meat) can reduce our carbon footprint as effectively as massive industrial changes.

All-out war on climate change made sense only as long as it was winnable. Once you accept that we’ve lost it, other kinds of action take on greater meaning. Preparing for fires and floods and refugees is a directly pertinent example. But the impending catastrophe heightens the urgency of almost any world-improving action. In times of increasing chaos, people seek protection in tribalism and armed force, rather than in the rule of law, and our best defense against this kind of dystopia is to maintain functioning democracies, functioning legal systems, functioning communities. In this respect, any movement toward a more just and civil society can now be considered a meaningful climate action. Securing fair elections is a climate action. Combatting extreme wealth inequality is a climate action. Shutting down the hate machines on social media is a climate action. Instituting humane immigration policy, advocating for racial and gender equality, promoting respect for laws and their enforcement, supporting a free and independent press, ridding the country of assault weapons—these are all meaningful climate actions. To survive rising temperatures, every system, whether of the natural world or of the human world, will need to be as strong and healthy as we can make it.

And then there’s the matter of hope. If your hope for the future depends on a wildly optimistic scenario, what will you do ten years from now, when the scenario becomes unworkable even in theory? Give up on the planet entirely? To borrow from the advice of financial planners, I might suggest a more balanced portfolio of hopes, some of them longer-term, most of them shorter. It’s fine to struggle against the constraints of human nature, hoping to mitigate the worst of what’s to come, but it’s just as important to fight smaller, more local battles that you have some realistic hope of winning. Keep doing the right thing for the planet, yes, but also keep trying to save what you love specifically—a community, an institution, a wild place, a species that’s in trouble—and take heart in your small successes. Any good thing you do now is arguably a hedge against the hotter future, but the really meaningful thing is that it’s good today. As long as you have something to love, you have something to hope for.

In Santa Cruz, where I live, there’s an organization called the Homeless Garden Project. On a small working farm at the west end of town, it offers employment, training, support, and a sense of community to members of the city’s homeless population. It can’t “solve” the problem of homelessness, but it’s been changing lives, one at a time, for nearly thirty years. Supporting itself in part by selling organic produce, it contributes more broadly to a revolution in how we think about people in need, the land we depend on, and the natural world around us. In the summer, as a member of its C.S.A. program, I enjoy its kale and strawberries, and in the fall, because the soil is alive and uncontaminated, small migratory birds find sustenance in its furrows.

There may come a time, sooner than any of us likes to think, when the systems of industrial agriculture and global trade break down and homeless people outnumber people with homes. At that point, traditional local farming and strong communities will no longer just be liberal buzzwords. Kindness to neighbors and respect for the land—nurturing healthy soil, wisely managing water, caring for pollinators—will be essential in a crisis and in whatever society survives it. A project like the Homeless Garden offers me the hope that the future, while undoubtedly worse than the present, might also, in some ways, be better. Most of all, though, it gives me hope for today.



Jonathan Franzen is a frequent contributor to The New Yorker and the author of, most recently, the novel “Purity.”


Source: newyorker.com (https://www.newyorker.com/culture/cultural-comment/what-if-we-stopped-pretending?source=EDT_NYR_EDIT_NEWSLETTER_0_imagen ewsletter_Daily_ZZ&utm_campaign=aud-dev&utm_source=nl&utm_brand=tny&utm_mailing=TNY_Daily_090819&utm_medium=email&bxid=5bea0b212ddf9c72dc8cc2c3&cndid=52756157&esrc=&mbid=&utm_term=TNY_Daily)

giovonni
14th September 2019, 11:06
"The man whose state surveillance revelations rocked the world speaks exclusively
to the Guardian about his new life and concerns for the future" ...

https://media.guim.co.uk/f0da7252075bed3f789218c3ea1db1a6d2a44cfd/0_43_2688_1613/2000.jpg

Edward Snowden (https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/ng-interactive/2019/sep/13/edward-snowden-interview-whistleblowing-russia-ai-permanent-record)

giovonni
16th September 2019, 01:31
The latest ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Valley Oaks & Simi Valley
(Karen Carpenter, Ronald Reagan, etc.)




Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we're exploring Valley Oaks Memorial Park, and Simi Valley, where we'll find such stars as Karen Carpenter, Artie Shaw, Ronald Reagan, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today: Jack Kirby, Vigen Derderian, Ruth Hussey, Rafael Campos, Graham Jarvis, George O'Hanlon, Jerry Scoggins, Virginia Mayo, Michael O'Shea, Keith Willingham, Harry Nilsson, Eddie Dean, Kristoff St. John, Steve Forrest, Hoyt Curtin, Josephine Dunn, Cesare Danova, Joel Hirschhorn, Artie Shaw, Karen Carpenter, Raoul Walsh, Ronald Reagan, Nancy Reagan.

Published on Sep 15, 2019

20:30 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E46f2QUcKWM&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
18th September 2019, 20:03
The Weight

"Featuring musicians performing together across 5 continents. Great songs can travel everywhere bridging what divides us and inspiring us to see how easily we all get along when the music plays. Special thanks to our partner Cambria® for helping to make this possible and to Robbie Robertson, Ringo Starr and all the musicians for joining us in celebrating 50 years of this classic song."

Published on Sep 18, 2019

5:50 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ph1GU1qQ1zQ

giovonni
26th September 2019, 04:22
"A challenge or an opportunity" ...

A polar Silk Road? | DW Documentary


Climate change in the Arctic is fueling not only fear, but also hope. Sea levels will rise and flood many regions. But the melting ice will also expose new land with reserves of oil, gas and minerals. New sea routes are also emerging.

The melting of the ice in the far north has given reason for great optimism, as newly-found mineral resources promise the Inuit a better life. But international corporations and self-proclaimed 'partners' such as China also have their eye on the treasures of the Arctic. Some even dream of a polar Silk Road. As large corporations position themselves to exploit the treasures of the far north, the indigenous people, the Inuit, are fighting for their independence.

Our film team spent four weeks with a geological expedition to the north coast of Canada - a place where no human has ever set foot before - and were present at the geologists world’s northernmost spring. A microbiologist with them also collected DNA samples that could help in the development of new vaccines against resistant germs. However, the most important resource in the far north is still fish: Greenland supplies half the world with it, yet it still doesn’t bring in enough to finance necessary investments in its underdeveloped infrastructure. And in Canada, the Inuit are also struggling with their government for the right to share in the wealth of their own land.


Sep 25, 2019

52:58 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LSe2_Bp_wB4&feature=em-uploademail

NotAPretender
28th September 2019, 14:34
"Featuring musicians performing together across 5 continents. Great songs can travel everywhere bridging what divides us and inspiring us to see how easily we all get along when the music plays. Special thanks to our partner Cambria® for helping to make this possible and to Robbie Robertson, Ringo Starr and all the musicians for joining us in celebrating 50 years of this classic song."[/B]


For some reason I thought that song was by Iron Butterfly. I saw them perform it on their 'comeback tour' for a 5.00 dollar cover charge. I watched them 2 nights in a row. Not to be proud of it but I got laid 2 nights in a row...I was on a roll...yeech... :)

It is so inspiring to see people from around the world feeling the spirit. I truly love it!

giovonni
28th September 2019, 17:21
The Weight

"Featuring musicians performing together across 5 continents. Great songs can travel everywhere bridging what divides us and inspiring us to see how easily we all get along when the music plays. Special thanks to our partner Cambria® for helping to make this possible and to Robbie Robertson, Ringo Starr and all the musicians for joining us in celebrating 50 years of this classic song."

Published on Sep 18, 2019

5:50 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ph1GU1qQ1zQ


"Featuring musicians performing together across 5 continents. Great songs can travel everywhere bridging what divides us and inspiring us to see how easily we all get along when the music plays. Special thanks to our partner Cambria® for helping to make this possible and to Robbie Robertson, Ringo Starr and all the musicians for joining us in celebrating 50 years of this classic song."[/B]


For some reason I thought that song was by Iron Butterfly. I saw them perform it on their 'comeback tour' for a 5.00 dollar cover charge. I watched them 2 nights in a row. Not to be proud of it but I got laid 2 nights in a row...I was on a roll...yeech... :)

It is so inspiring to see people from around the world feeling the spirit. I truly love it!


For the record (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Weight) and for those too young to recall.

Dreamtimer
29th September 2019, 13:04
People sometimes give me crap for liking Robbie Robertson.

He’s put out some great music. He’s quite the songwriter.

giovonni
3rd October 2019, 14:42
Some here will find this special five different case items interesting from Atlas Obscura ...


https://assets.atlasobscura.com/media/W1siZiIsInVwbG9hZHMvYXNzZXRzLzRmOWE3Y2FiLTI3NjktND E0Zi05NWQ5LWNmY2Q2YjEwNTgwMDEyMTMwNTEwODM3OWRmMDc4 Nl9Mb2dvYjQwYTUwOTU3YTc4MzNiYWNkX0FmcmljYS1Cb3JkZX ItLVN1cHBvcnRpbmctMS1GaW5hbC5qcGciXSxbInAiLCJjb252 ZXJ0IiwiIl0sWyJwIiwiY29udmVydCIsIi1xdWFsaXR5IDgxIC 1hdXRvLW9yaWVudCJdLFsicCIsInRodW1iIiwiNjAweDQwMCMi XV0/Logob40a50957a7833bacd_Africa-Border--Supporting-1-Final.jpg

Border/Lands

Borders don't really exist until we call them into the world. Then signs and pillars and fences go up, landscapes change, and people are drawn in for commerce, or for adventure, or out of desperation.

Go here (https://www.atlasobscura.com/series/borderlands?utm_source=Atlas+Obscura+Daily+Newslet ter&utm_campaign=a9467eff1e-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_10_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f36db9c480-a9467eff1e-63041445&mc_cid=a9467eff1e&mc_eid=57314563a1)

giovonni
4th October 2019, 15:35
And speaking of redefining societal/national borders ...

East Germany and the difficult legacy of the Treuhand | DW Documentary
(German history documentary)



The word 'Treuhand' still triggers stronger reactions in East Germany. For millions of East Germans, the change from a planned to a market economy meant unemployment - and an affront that still rankles today.

As President of the Treuhandanstalt, the agency charged with privatizing the old East German economy from 1991 to 1994, Birgit Breuel pushed ahead with painful privatizations and the closure of thousands of companies - and became the hated symbol of the transition to a market economy. After decades of silence, she returns to this chapter of her life and talks in detail about a time when everything was running full speed ahead and rational decisions to completely rebuild a country needed to be taken. How did she make her decisions? How does she rate them in retrospect? And what motivated her to take on such a mammoth task at all? How much leeway did the Treuhand have? Were there any other ways to turn the Former East German economy around? The filmmakers interview managers, politicians and experts about the work, goals and challenges of the Treuhand, diving back into the heady years from 1990 to 1994 and illuminating the backgrounds and consequences that still have an effect today.

Oct 3, 2019

42:25 minutes



Note: Apparently someone got cold feet on publishing this item and removed the video?


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3zkfeLahyeE&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
8th October 2019, 22:28
history

A chronological record of events, as of the life or development of a people or institution,
often including an explanation of or commentary on those events.



The King and the People (Monarchy Documentary) - Real Stories


The King and the People is a dramatic film that captures the spirit of the Swazi people’s struggle from absolute monarchism. At the heart of the story, runs a common thread where an entire nation is subjugated through various subtle means such as culture, tradition and religion; economic control; and, brutal force on all forms of opposition or dissent to royal rule.

Directed by Simon Bright, The King and the People offers an historical portrait into the ‘heart’ of the Swazi crises charting it from the pre-independence, independence, post-independence and right up to modern day Swaziland. It defines the nature and character of ‘Tinkhundla’ – the recently ‘discovered’ political ideology referred to by Swaziland’s current monarch, Mswati III, as “monarchial democracy”.

The film shines a light on a crisis forgotten or misunderstood by many and unravels the reality of the existence, in the 21st century, of a governing system that is based on royal supremacy, greed, power and zero tolerance to fundamental human rights.

Oct 8, 2019

52:29 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vC9ZOKBZVrA&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
10th October 2019, 03:38
The latest from this regular offering ...

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Santa Barbara (Alan Thicke, Suzy Parker, etc.)

Hollywood Graveyard



Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we're exploring Santa Barbara Cemetery, where we'll find such stars as Fess Parker, Alan Thicke, Suzy Parker, and many more.


Oct 8, 2019

16:38 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i_Oas518EOo&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
19th October 2019, 12:05
Culture shock indeed ...

From China to Germany - a young Chinese woman living in the Black Forest

DW Documentary



Xu Qing is training as a geriatric nurse in the Black Forest. The 23-year-old Chinese woman encounters people in the last stages of their lives, a stern boss and endless sausage sandwiches. The film follows her through three eventful years.

Xu Qing had never left her homeland before and is eager to see the world. The offer to train as a geriatric nurse in Germany is just what she is looking for. But when she arrives in the Black Forest, she experiences a culture clash between two entirely different worlds and disillusionment sets in. While Qing is still wondering why Germans insist on eating bread with cold meat every day, her employer expects her to integrate quickly. Homesickness, the language barrier - there's no time for anything like that. But at least Qing can share her problems with three other Chinese women. Cooking together and Chinese dumplings can do wonders.

For senior citizens in the Black Forest, the 'nimble Chinese girl' has meanwhile become a welcome change to everyday life at home, especially for Frau Wohlfahrt. She attributes Qing's intelligence to a diet of fish eyes. And as the 100-year-old, always in a good mood, Mr. Reiner becomes her mentor...almost an ersatz grandfather.
We spend three years with Qing, starting with her last days in China, and watch her struggle, start to settle in and mature. 'Goodbye Yellow Sea, Hello Black Forest' is a film about leaving home, wandering between worlds and finding your own way in life.

Oct 18, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cxE-H5tc6kM&feature=em-uploademail

Elen
19th October 2019, 13:14
Brave young Chinese girl. I loved the 101 year old man too! :love:

giovonni
23rd October 2019, 20:45
Filling in the blanks ...
While noting this could occur once again ...

The volcano that changed the world | DW Documentary (History documentary)


When the Tambora volcano erupted in Indonesia some 200 years ago, around 100,000 people perished. But the disaster was not over. The eruption’s ash cloud would cause crop failures, epidemics and civil disturbances across the northern hemisphere.

Around 100,000 people died on the Indonesian island of Sumbawa when the Tambora volcano erupted at the beginning of April 1815. But their deaths were just the first chapter in this catastrophe. The eruption column rose to an altitude of more than 40 kilometers, spreading a shroud of smoke and ash throughout the stratosphere. The year 1816 has gone down in history as the "year without a summer." That year, the volcanic fallout blocked the sun’s rays, and rain and cold caused dramatic crop failures across the northern hemisphere. Famine stalked large parts of Europe and hundreds of thousands starved to death or were struck down by fatal diseases. Many set sail for the USA in the hope of finding a better life - the first major wave of emigration of the 19th Century - and many who could not afford to emigrate rebelled against the system. In England, the Corn Laws, which placed heavy taxes on grain, sparked massive riots in London and other major cities. The effects of the eruption endured for decades as climatic turbulence in India paved the way for the first global cholera pandemic, which led to the deaths of millions of people. The documentary examines the global consequences of this devastating natural disaster and talks to scientists who explain how this eruption changed the course of world history.

Oct 23, 2019

42:24 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdEO5_rdoFU&feature=em-uploademail

Aianawa
27th October 2019, 01:20
Got the Chinese German vid book marked , ta Gio, Seen this yet Gio ? >


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Xj9QJA4fEY

NotAPretender
27th October 2019, 15:20
Climbing the mountain of human skulls to meet the Thunderbird.

giovonni
31st October 2019, 10:43
Their unbearable burden from birth ...


Bosnia's invisible children: Living in dignity | DW Documentary


During the war in Yugoslavia, thousands of Bosnian women were raped and many became pregnant as a result. But their children are even now not recognized as war victims. The NGO "Forgotten Children of War" aims to change that.

In Bosnia-Herzegovina, they are known as "Nevidljiva djeca"- "invisible children." Their mothers were raped, by enemy soldiers during the war in Yugoslavia - and sometimes also by UN peacekeepers. The Leibniz Institute for Social Sciences estimates that between 2,000 and 4,000 Bosnian children were born after their mothers had been raped during the war. Often marginalized and stigmatized by society, many of these "invisible children" who are now young adults have led miserable lives. Ajna Jusić is the daughter of a Bosnian Muslim woman who was raped by a Croatian soldier during the conflict. For years she knew nothing of her mother’s ordeal. But now her NGO "Forgotten Children of War" wants to bring these "invisible children" together and give them a voice. She says it is a matter of recognition and respect and is pressing the Bosnian government to officially recognize them as war victims.

Oct 26, 2019

25:55 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xIBf48PP9hI&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
3rd November 2019, 10:23
Making up for the DW video that was pulled above ...

The Berlin Wall - life 30 years after the fall | DW Documentary


What was life like in East Germany? How does the division of Germany still affect it even now? Thirty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, there are still tangible differences between East and West. How do the younger generations see them?

Siblings Franz Hildebrandt-Harangozó and Antonia Hildebrandt were born after the fall of the Berlin Wall and grew up in a reunified Germany. They study in Berlin and live not far from Bernauer Strasse, where the Wall once divided the city. On weekends, they like to party at the nearby Mauerpark. Every Sunday people from all over the world come to the former death strip between East and West Berlin to enjoy an open-air festival with live music, a flea market and street artists. But the two young Berliners still feel that the wounds left by the Cold War division have not yet healed and want to find out why. Their search for answers starts in their own family.

Regine and Jörg Hildebrandt, Antonia and Franz's grandparents, saw with their own eyes how the Wall was built in 1961, right on their doorstep. But they made a conscious decision to stay in East Berlin. They wanted to change the country from the inside out. Frauke Hildebrandt, their mother, fled to West Germany in the summer of 1989, shortly before the fall of the Berlin Wall. Grandmother Regine Hildebrandt became a politician after the fall of the Berlin Wall and tried to speak out for people from the former East.

But Antonia and Franz do not rely only on their family for information about the way the division of Germany influenced people from the former East Germany. They also travel around the eastern part of Germany themselves and see first hand how the decades-long schism is far from resolved.

Nov 1, 2019

42:26 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWpCj8jIxkY&feature=em-uploademail


'The Berlin Wall, Our Family and Us' is also available in the following languages:
German: https://youtu.be/9ZVUiviRph4
Spanish: https://youtu.be/sZXns-T0F5I
Arabic: https://youtu.be/5TAUfSZN174

giovonni
10th November 2019, 16:35
♪ So what becomes of you my love
When they have finally stripped you of
The handbags and the gladrags
That your Grandad had to sweat so you could buy
Baby ♪

Rod (the mod) Stewart


Luxury: Behind the mirror of high-end fashion (fashion documentary) | DW Documentary



This investigative documentary looks behind the shiny facade of luxury fashion. Shot with a hidden camera, it shows the brutal conditions in Chinese fur farms, and how migrants are exploited in Italian tanneries.

Fine handmade bags from Gucci, Prada and Max Mara in the displays of luxurious fashion boutiques are objects of passionate desire. Luxury labels generate over 70 percent of their turnover with leather products. But hardly anyone knows the reality of their production. The major fashion brands comply with a modern code of conduct that also applies to its direct suppliers. But who controls the subcontractors? The film looks behind the beautiful displays at where the raw material comes from: tanneries in Italy, where migrants produce the leather for luxury handbags under miserable and unsafe working conditions; and behind the scenes in China’s fur animal industry, where the animals are kept under catastrophic hygienic conditions and before being cruelly slaughtered.

Nov 9, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7hzomuDEIk

giovonni
11th November 2019, 05:55
Worried about the past folks?

You should be really worried about the present.

Aianawa
11th November 2019, 06:37
The present I love, is a lovely amazing place for me.

Worry not in the present, from experience.

giovonni
11th November 2019, 08:11
Vern, you live anywhere but the present ...

giggle :)

Aianawa
11th November 2019, 08:57
I refuse to argue on the grounds that that is being not present but as I am reacting you are now correct, bugger lol.

giovonni
11th November 2019, 15:46
:Bump:



Last one from me ...
Watch it and weep ...

♪ So what becomes of you my love
When they have finally stripped you of
The handbags and the gladrags
That your Grandad had to sweat so you could buy
Baby ♪

Rod (the mod) Stewart


Luxury: Behind the mirror of high-end fashion (fashion documentary) | DW Documentary



This investigative documentary looks behind the shiny facade of luxury fashion. Shot with a hidden camera, it shows the brutal conditions in Chinese fur farms, and how migrants are exploited in Italian tanneries.

Fine handmade bags from Gucci, Prada and Max Mara in the displays of luxurious fashion boutiques are objects of passionate desire. Luxury labels generate over 70 percent of their turnover with leather products. But hardly anyone knows the reality of their production. The major fashion brands comply with a modern code of conduct that also applies to its direct suppliers. But who controls the subcontractors? The film looks behind the beautiful displays at where the raw material comes from: tanneries in Italy, where migrants produce the leather for luxury handbags under miserable and unsafe working conditions; and behind the scenes in China’s fur animal industry, where the animals are kept under catastrophic hygienic conditions and before being cruelly slaughtered.

Nov 9, 2019

42:25 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7hzomuDEIk

Dreamtimer
20th December 2019, 17:26
Gio posted Billie Eilish on Howard Stern's show. Here she is with James Corden.

They go to her family home, still where she lives, and her brother's room where they recorded her hit album.

Yeah folks, they recorded it in their family home.

We get to see her Mom who's very sweet.

Check out 12:50 where she relates an amazing conversation with her brother, Finneus.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uh2qGWfmESk

NotAPretender
20th December 2019, 17:30
Where is Gio?

Aragorn
20th December 2019, 18:59
Where is Gio?

Hopefully alive and well. :unsure:

NotAPretender
20th December 2019, 19:18
true that...I hope so...

giovonni
4th January 2020, 21:33
Where is Gio?

On social media


https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fblueant.in%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2014%2F05%2FSCOOTER.gif&f=1&nofb=1

Pet Shop Boys



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UuNBJkLLnOs

NotAPretender
5th January 2020, 00:09
you know, I'm thinking Gio is on social media...

Aragorn
5th January 2020, 00:17
you know, I'm thinking Gio is on social media...

I suspect you could be right. :p

giovonni
5th January 2020, 03:54
Millennials raised on tech are fine with it replacing them ... (https://nypost.com/2020/01/04/millennials-raised-on-tech-are-fine-with-it-replacing-them/)

https://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2020/01/job-hunting-millennial.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=1236&h=820&crop=1

And so am I.

Dreamtimer
5th January 2020, 15:41
Lol. At least we can reboot tech. Rebooting people is a mighty challenge.


I know many millennials. The ones I know are smart, hard working, and definitely not snowflakes.

Mostly they don't want their parents' stuff, i.e. dishes, furniture, etc., even if it's quite fine.

I'm old school and I'll save stuff for my son. We'll see what he wants.

giovonni
10th January 2020, 12:18
Once a city within urban Hong Kong itself ...


https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fstatic2.businessinsider.com%2Fimag e%2F54d3d8b46da811e977a0aa13-1190-625%2F26-photos-of-hong-kongs-chaotic-kowloon-walled-city-once-the-most-crowded-place-on-earth.jpg&f=1&nofb=1

The Strange Saga of Kowloon Walled City

"Anarchic, organic, surreal, this enclave was once among the most
densely populated places on Earth" ...
More here ... (https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/kowloon-walled-city?utm_source=Atlas+Obscura+Daily+Newsletter&utm_campaign=691d0a45cf-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2020_01_08&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f36db9c480-691d0a45cf-63041445&mc_cid=691d0a45cf&mc_eid=57314563a1)


https://assets.atlasobscura.com/article_images/lg/71185/image.jpg

***

A glimpse into the city of darkness ...

A rare look inside the Kowloon Walled City in 1990

3:32 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mq4jAwPdCMw

Dreamtimer
10th January 2020, 13:28
Wow. Like something out of a movie.

Elen
11th January 2020, 08:18
I bet they would have a sense of community like no other. If nothing else, they had each other to lean on for support, I thoroughly see why they remember it with fondness.

giovonni
11th January 2020, 12:22
Yes so true Elen ...


Once a city within urban Hong Kong itself ...


https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fstatic2.businessinsider.com%2Fimag e%2F54d3d8b46da811e977a0aa13-1190-625%2F26-photos-of-hong-kongs-chaotic-kowloon-walled-city-once-the-most-crowded-place-on-earth.jpg&f=1&nofb=1

The Strange Saga of Kowloon Walled City

"Anarchic, organic, surreal, this enclave was once among the most
densely populated places on Earth" ...
More here ... (https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/kowloon-walled-city?utm_source=Atlas+Obscura+Daily+Newsletter&utm_campaign=691d0a45cf-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2020_01_08&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f36db9c480-691d0a45cf-63041445&mc_cid=691d0a45cf&mc_eid=57314563a1)


https://assets.atlasobscura.com/article_images/lg/71185/image.jpg

***

A glimpse into the city of darkness ...

A rare look inside the Kowloon Walled City in 1990

3:32 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mq4jAwPdCMw

giovonni
11th January 2020, 16:11
This channel was created by Canadian Greg Lam, who currently lives in Tokyo, Japan with his Japanese wife and equally Japanese and Canadian children. Life Where I’m From gives interesting and educational insight into the everyday, special events and uniquely Japanese aspects of life in Japan ...

Japanese Quality of Life: My Family's Experience in Tokyo

Life Where I'm From


I often get asked "How's Life in Japan?" What I think they're really asking is what is the quality of life like. I live in Tokyo, the biggest metropolitan area in the world. It's got to be a hectic life, right? The easiest answer I can give is "I bought a house".

There's a lot that factors into quality of life: health, family, education, environment, social belonging, recreation and leisure time, and a bunch of financial stuff that influences the cost and standard of living.

May 9, 2018

21:29 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqh2F9Xeqx8



Another interesting related item ...


Japan's Housing for the (Lower) Middle Class

Life Where I'm From



Ever since I moved to Japan six years ago I've had an interest in danchi, which are the housing complexes built by Japanese government agencies in the late 1950's. In this video I tour some of the original restored units as well as their modern counterparts.

A special thanks to UR for giving me access to all that they did. I was actually surprised at how helpful they were, especially since this was not a sponsored video.

Sep 15, 2019

13:23 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ave4FiC2k8I

giovonni
15th January 2020, 21:12
"Ten years from now, twenty years from now, you will see, oil will bring us ruin...
It is the devil's excrement."

Juan Pablo Pérez Alfonzo (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juan_Pablo_P%C3%A9rez_Alfonzo#Legacy_and_death)

Oil and ruin — exodus from Venezuela | DW Documentary



Venezuela is experiencing an unprecedented humanitarian crisis. Hunger is widespread and there is a severe shortage of medicines. The UN estimates that more than four million people have now fled what was once South America’s richest nation.

Venezuela is in the grips of what is now the world’s second largest refugee crisis after Syria. But unlike Syria, Venezuela is not mired in civil war, and the country is sitting on the world’s largest proven oil reserves. How could such a rich nation be driven into ruin? Where has the country’s wealth gone, and why are its people starving? Corruption and mismanagement are driving displacement worldwide. The majority of the world’s refugees and migrants are fleeing from countries in the top 10 of Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index - places like Afghanistan, Syria, South Sudan and Somalia.

Venezuela was once one of the world’s wealthiest countries and a showcase of democracy. The country enjoys an abundance of natural resources, including oil, gold, diamonds and coltan. But rather than invest in its people and economy, this wealth has been squandered. Today Venezuela is mired in corruption, and deindustrialization, debt, political conflict, authoritarianism and poverty are the order of the day. The billions in profits generated by the oil business during the boom years between 2003 and 2014 have largely ended up in private pockets. And once oil prices collapsed in 2014, Venezuela was plunged into economic crisis. Nicolás Maduro, who rose to the presidency after Hugo Chávez died in 2013, has installed loyal military officers in key economic positions. Venezuela is now little more than a state-run criminal enterprise. At the same time, the country has become a pawn in a geopolitical contest over power and natural resources, with the US, Russia and China all looking to assert their own interests.

Every two seconds, a person is forced to flee their home. Today, more than 70 million people have been displaced worldwide. The DW documentary series ‘Displaced’ sheds light on the causes of this crisis and traces how wealthy industrialized countries are contributing to the exodus from the Global South.

Jan 15, 2020

52:37 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pNDJSp8FCjI

giovonni
19th January 2020, 11:35
Will share this here ...

"A 97-Year-Old Philosopher Faces His Own Death:

The Atlantic


Herbert Fingarette once argued that there was no reason to fear death. At 97, his own mortality began to haunt him, and he had to rethink everything ...

"Being 97" was directed by Andrew Hasse (http://www.ftrmgc.com). It is part of The Atlantic Selects, an online showcase of short documentaries from independent creators, curated by The Atlantic.

Jan 14, 2020

18:12 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX6NztnPU-4


Now you may ask ...

"What Is The Point?"

"In his 1996 book about death, Herbert Fingarette argued that fearing one’s own demise was irrational. When you die, he wrote, “there is nothing.” Why should we fear the absence of being when we won’t be there ourselves to suffer it?

Twenty years later, facing his own mortality, the philosopher realized that he’d been wrong. Death began to frighten him, and he couldn’t think himself out of it. Fingarette, who for 40 years taught philosophy at the University of California at Santa Barbara, had also written extensively on self-deception. Now, at 97, he wondered whether he’d been deceiving himself about the meaning of life and death.

“It haunts me, the idea of dying soon, whether there’s a good reason or not,” he says in Andrew Hasse’s short documentary Being 97. “I walk around often and ask myself, ‘What is the point of it all?’ There must be something I’m missing. I wish I knew.”

Hasse, Fingarette’s grandson, turned the camera on the philosopher in the last months of his life. The two were very close—when Hasse was a child, Fingarette would invent stories and record them on tape to send to his grandson, who lived 300 miles away, so that he could listen to them before bed. “My grandfather was one of the most thoughtful men I’ve ever met,” Hasse told me.

Being 97 is a poignant film that explores the interiority of senescence and the struggle of accepting the inevitable. Hasse quietly observes the things that have come to define his grandfather’s existence: the stillness of time, the loss of ability, and the need to come to terms with asking for help. “It’s very difficult for people who have not reached a state of old age to understand the psychology of it, what is going on in a person,” Fingarette says.

In one scene, Fingarette listens to a string quartet that was once meaningful to his late wife. He hasn’t heard the piece since her death seven years earlier—“her absence is a presence,” he says in the film—and becomes overwhelmed with grief.

Hasse made the artistic choice to omit his voice from the film, so while he was filming the scene, he had to stifle the urge to comfort his grandfather. “It’s very difficult to watch anyone in that kind of pain and not be able to console them, especially someone you love so dearly,” Hasse said. “I found myself sitting just a few feet away from him, unable to reach out because there was a camera between us. All I wanted to do was put a hand on his shoulder, embrace him, be with him in his pain.” After what felt to Hasse like an eternity, the filmmaker handed his grandfather a tissue to wipe away his tears. The scene ends just before this happens.

Fingarette died in late 2018. Just weeks earlier, Hasse had shown him the final cut of the documentary. “I think it helped give him perspective on what he was going through,” he said. “He loved talking about what a mysterious process it had been to film all these little moments of his life and then weave them together into a work that expressed something essential about him.”

The day before he died, Fingarette uttered his final words. After spending many hours in silence with his eyes closed, Hasse said, his grandfather suddenly looked up and said, “Well, that’s clear enough!” A few hours later he said, “Why don’t we see if we can go up and check it out?”

“Of course, these cryptic messages are up to interpretation,” Hasse said, “but I’d like to believe that he might have seen at least a glimpse of something beyond death.”

In the film, Fingarette admits that there “isn’t any good answer” to the “foolish question” of understanding mortality. “The answer might be … the silent answer.”

Author: Emily Buder
source (https://www.theatlantic.com/video/index/604840/being-97/)

NotAPretender
19th January 2020, 15:55
I remember times here in the U.S. when one of the arguments to disallow immigrants was the fact that they were sending money back home to feed their families. That wasn't how it was stated by the right, they are so good at perpetuating memes and myths, and people screamed, 'Send them back!'. If anything is, that is demonic.

that's so sad...the little girl is already a casualty. Classic attachment disorder... makes me sad...

giovonni
22nd January 2020, 19:08
A compelling interview listen ...

Ziya Tong: We Are Blind to Most of Reality

The Agenda with Steve Paikin



Science journalist Ziya Tong talks about her book, "The Reality Bubble: Blind Spots, Hidden Truths, and the Dangerous Illusions That Shape Our World." In it she explores blind spots in individuals and in human existence and how being in the dark when it comes to how we survive makes it impossible to navigate our future.

Science journalist Ziya Tong talks about her book, "The Reality Bubble: Blind Spots, Hidden Truths, and the Dangerous Illusions That Shape Our World." In it she explores blind spots in individuals and in human existence and how being in the dark when it comes to how we survive makes it impossible to navigate our future.


Nov 18, 2019

23:40 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U9z_CAqhZsg

giovonni
23rd January 2020, 17:37
♪ Inside my dream ...
I hear the jungle parrots scream

Just me and you
Alone in our dugout canoe ...

Like the river we journey
Like the river we journey to the
Like the river we journey to the sea ♪


https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fthefarmatwalnutcreek.com%2Fimages %2Fparrot-blue-footed.jpg&f=1&nofb=1

AMAZON

Michael Franks



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mbD2-tnjhck

Dedicated to George of Merseyside.

giovonni
24th January 2020, 04:47
A hearty glimpse ...

Romania, Village Life in Transylvania

Jenny Parsons



live by small-scale farming producing their own honey, cheese, bread, veg and fruit, milk and meat. Water is always from the well, pure, sparkling and cold. Cows and sheep wear bells and high above the village the mountain meadows hum with insect life while the extraordinarily rich flora remains untouched by sprays and chemicals.

Szekler people, Romania's Hungarian speaking minority live in Gyimes, which now lies within Bacau county. The history of the area and its association with Transylvania, is very complicated ....

I am no historian and apologise for any errors I have made.
Enjoy the film, all taken with a little, hand-held Panasonic HC X920.


Feb 24, 2019

29:16 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoLCD3rP9DM

Dreamtimer
26th January 2020, 17:20
I watched some videos to learn Romanian needle weaving. It's beautiful work. Not so easy but I did manage to create the first step, a little flower. It was uneven, I need to practice.

giovonni
4th February 2020, 08:00
Note this report was made over a year ago, but this condition is ongoing and becoming a real thing... After viewing this video, I found reading the comment section very telling (responses) into this growing worldwide human (varietal) behavioral phenomenon ...

Japan's modern-day hermits: The world of hikikomori (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hikikomori)

Jan 18, 2019

17:35 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oFgWy2ifX5s

Dreamtimer
5th February 2020, 13:35
I recall the women who would come to be 'sisters' and try to draw the men out into the world.

giovonni
5th February 2020, 17:23
I recall the women who would come to be 'sisters' and try to draw the men out into the world.

Yes and thank you for remembering ... :)

It was previously posted here a year ago ...

But as my most recent (above post) statement extends upon ...



Note this report was made over a year ago, but this condition is ongoing and becoming a real thing... After viewing this video, I found reading the comment section very telling (responses) into this growing worldwide human (varietal) behavioral phenomenon ...



Here's the video your recalling ...


Withdrawal ...
A growing worldwide social phenomenon ...

Rent-a-sister: Coaxing Japan’s hikikomori men out of their bedrooms

BBC News

"At least half a million young men in Japan are thought to have withdrawn from society, and refuse to leave their bedrooms. They’re known as hikikomori.

Their families often don’t know what to do, but one organisation is offering ‘sisters for hire’ to help coax these young men out of their isolation.

A film by Amelia Martyn-Hemphill for BBC World Hacks."

Published on Jan 20, 2019

12:55 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9IRmUEsz6g

Dreamtimer
6th February 2020, 14:16
The hikikomori amount, in numbers, to the population of Wyoming.

giovonni
6th February 2020, 16:29
The hikikomori amount, in numbers, to the population of Wyoming.

Ah ...

But the 'hikikomori' (example) is an extreme to this growing human social isolation behavior... And it's far from being just a young Japanese man thing...


This is what i am getting at ...




Social Isolation: A Modern Plague

The best research confirms it: Americans are now perilously isolated. In a recent comprehensive study by scientists at Duke University, researchers have observed a sharp decline in social connectedness over the past 20 years.

Remarkably, 25% of Americans have no meaningful social support at all - not a single person they can confide in. And over half of all Americans report having no close confidants or friends outside their immediate family. The situation today is much worse today than it was when similar data were gathered in 1985. (At that time, only 10% of Americans were completely alone).

How could this happen? It's hundreds of little things. You can probably think of several off the top of your head: the longer work hours, the Internet, the ubiquitous iPod . . . and don't forget all the time spent sitting in traffic.

According to Robert Putnam, sociologist and author of the influential book, Bowling Alone, for every 10 minutes added to commute time, there's a roughly 10% decrease in social ties.

But we're truly not designed to live like this. For the great majority of human history, people resided in small, intimate hunter-gatherer communities. And anthropologists who spend time with modern-day hunter-gatherer bands report that social isolation and loneliness are largely unknown among them: group members spend the bulk of their time - virtually all day, every day - in the company of friends and loved ones.

Even Americans of a few generations ago used to benefit from a richness of community life that has all but disappeared, as we've witnessed a long, slow retreat into the hermetically sealed comfort of our fortress-like homes . . . deep friendships replaced by screens, gadgets, and exhausted couch-potato stupor.

The toll? Increased vulnerability to mental illness. Social isolation is a huge risk factor for the onset of major depression, which has more than doubled in prevalence over the past decade. And there's growing evidence that isolation increases vulnerability to various forms of addiction, as well.

From 2009 psychologytoday.com (https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-depression-cure/200907/social-isolation-modern-plague)


Here's a much broader look from 2016 report article...


How Social Isolation Is Killing Us ? (https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/22/upshot/how-social-isolation-is-killing-us.html)

And do note this phenomenon is just getting started in modern day China,
where there is most definitely a shortage of those so called 'little sisters' ...

Wink/wink.

Dreamtimer
6th February 2020, 18:43
Wyoming and Alaska vie for the highest per capita suicide rate in America, and a lot of it has to do with there being few folks around. Many home owners in Wyoming only live there part time because they have other homes in other states. There is a big gap between the wealthy and the rest.

Isolation is certainly a big factor along with loss of jobs and drug abuse.

giovonni
6th February 2020, 19:07
Wyoming and Alaska vie for the highest per capita suicide rate in America, and a lot of it has to do with there being few folks around. Many home owners in Wyoming only live there part time because they have other homes in other states. There is a big gap between the wealthy and the rest.

Isolation is certainly a big factor along with loss of jobs and drug abuse.

I think your skiping my post (s) point Dreamtimer ...

I'm speaking to a growing worldwide phenomenon ... :)

giovonni
6th February 2020, 19:50
And then there's this ...

So then what do i know ...

The latest ...


New High of 90% of Americans Satisfied With Personal Life (https://news.gallup.com/poll/284285/new-high-americans-satisfied-personal-life.aspx)

Elen
7th February 2020, 08:54
Ah ...

But the 'hikikomori' (example) is an extreme to this growing human social isolation behavior... And it's far from being just a young Japanese man thing...


This is what i am getting at ...




Here's a much broader look from 2016 report article...


How Social Isolation Is Killing Us ? (https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/22/upshot/how-social-isolation-is-killing-us.html)

And do note this phenomenon is just getting started in modern day China,
where there is most definitely a shortage of those so called 'little sisters' ...

Wink/wink.

I see your point Gio, initially my feeling was that this is a world wide phenomena. When people have only the digital world instead of organic friends, something has to give. Thank you for pointing it out! :cool:

Dreamtimer
7th February 2020, 19:18
I'm sorry to go off course with that, Gio. Tangental connections aren't always useful. And I was definitely going off on a tangent.

I really feel for the men in China with so few eligible women available. It's been a long tragedy which is still manifesting its consequences.



According to that poll, folks with more money are happier. The wealthy got a bunch of tax breaks recently, so that helped. It helped them, anyway.

giovonni
7th February 2020, 19:55
I know you get what i'm getting at my friend ...
And it's all good between us ... :smile2:


But really ...

"New High of 90% of Americans Satisfied With Personal Life"

Yeah right.

Dreamtimer
11th February 2020, 14:22
We'll see in a few months just how satisfied folks are...

giovonni
11th February 2020, 23:52
With so many post WWII baby boomers aging ...

It's only going to get much worse ...

https://images.wsj.net/im-152765?width=1260&size=1.5

Growing Risk to America’s Seniors: Themselves
Government agencies attribute problem in part to isolation from families and communities (https://www.wsj.com/articles/growing-risk-to-americas-seniors-themselves-11581429600)

giovonni
13th February 2020, 08:00
On a lighter note ...

Down memory lane ...

With the back story and commentary from
Beatles 'Hard Days Night' and 'Help' costar
actor Victor Spinetti (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Victor_Spinetti) and others involved ...

https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fmedia.npr.org%2Fassets%2Fimg%2F201 2%2F12%2F12%2Fbeatles1_wide-a4f2c18a9e27d4e283e5fe340d8b4f0457708b57.jpg%3Fs%3 D1400&f=1&nofb=1

The Beatles - Magical Mystery Tour Memories

(Full Documentary)



Here's a nice change of pace! Here's a documentary on the making of the Beatles' Magical Mystery Tour film. Below are the notes from the back of the case:

THE BEATLES - MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR MEMORIES is an upbeat rockumentary film featuring the vivid memories of those who witnessed the making of the cult Beatles movie, The Magical Mystery Tour, in 1967. It features a celebrity cast along with anecdotal stories and unseen 8mm home movie footage, as well as eye-witness accounts from fans, on-lookers and the cast of the movie. Enjoy!

1:14:09 minutes

Note after docu extras


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymmcyH2Zscw

giovonni
13th February 2020, 09:20
A bonus clip ...

Your Mother Should Know

2:27 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9zIEN60IYDo

giovonni
13th February 2020, 21:15
Something new on a winter's day
Nice tour with some fun information ...

'A walk through Brooklyn Heights with comedian,
tour guide, and New Yorker Tom Delgado.'


Walking NYC (Narrated) : Brooklyn Heights with Tom Delgado

(February 9, 2020)

"I walk through Brooklyn Heights with comedian, tour guide,
and New Yorker Tom Delgado."


From Wikipedia:
"Brooklyn Heights is an affluent residential neighborhood within the New York City borough of Brooklyn. The neighborhood is bounded by Old Fulton Street near the Brooklyn Bridge on the north, Cadman Plaza West on the east, Atlantic Avenue on the south, and the Brooklyn–Queens Expressway or the East River on the west. Adjacent neighborhoods are Dumbo to the north, Downtown Brooklyn to the east, and Cobble Hill and Boerum Hill to the south.

Originally referred to as Brooklyn Village, it has been a prominent area of Brooklyn since 1834. The neighborhood is noted for its low-rise architecture and its many brownstone rowhouses, most of them built prior to the Civil War. It also has an abundance of notable churches and other religious institutions. Brooklyn's first art gallery, the Brooklyn Arts Gallery, was opened in Brooklyn Heights in 1958. In 1965, a large part of Brooklyn Heights was protected from unchecked development by the creation of the Brooklyn Heights Historic District, the first such district in New York City. The district was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1966.

Directly across the East River from Manhattan and connected to it by subways and regular ferry service, Brooklyn Heights is also easily accessible from Downtown Brooklyn. Columbia Heights, an upscale six-block-long street next to the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, is sometimes considered to be its own neighborhood.

Brooklyn Heights is part of Brooklyn Community District 2 and its primary ZIP Code is 11201. It is patrolled by the 84th Precinct of the New York City Police Department. The New York City Fire Department operates two fire stations near Brooklyn Heights: Engine Company 205/Ladder Company 118 at 74 Middagh Street, and Engine Company 224 at 274 Hicks Street."

Note beginning at the 32 minute mark
there will be spectacular views
of lower Manhattan ... :scp:

Feb 12, 2020

42:51 minutes



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djApjnwAOEI

https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fimages.fineartamerica.com%2Fimage s-medium-large-5%2Flower-manhattan-map-paul-hein.jpg&f=1&nofb=1

giovonni
15th February 2020, 18:00
The latest ...
And good to see him back!

FAMOUS GRAVE TOUR - Grand View
(Edna Purviance, Harry Langdon, etc.)

Hollywood Graveyard



Welcome to Hollywood Graveyard, where we set out to remember and celebrate the lives of those who lived to entertain us, by visiting their final resting places. Today we're exploring Grand View Memorial Park, where we'll find such stars as Edna Purviance, Harry Langdon, Clara Kimball Young, and many more.

Full list of stars visited today:
Dorothy Coburn, George Wright, Madge Blake, Guy Standing, Alec Craig, Chill Wills, Manning Sherwin, Kenne Duncan, Clara Kimball Young, Edna Purviance, Lafe McKee, Harry Langdon, Clarence Wilson, Gus Meins, Helen Ford, Oscar Beregi Jr, Leo Carroll, Verna Felton, Steve Shaw, Leo White.

Feb 14, 2020

18:61 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hr5j1sSfuP8&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
19th February 2020, 09:12
Meanwhile ...
The forgotten ones ...

Iraq - The orphans of Mosul | DW Documentary


Thousands of orphans, many the sons and daughters of I-S fighters, live in refugee camps in Iraq. 45,000 children are living in displacement camps without papers. Many are the sons and daughters of I-S fighters, and now live in refugee camps in Iraq. The Iraqi authorities refuse to issue identity documents to these children. They receive no food aid, and are not allowed to leave the camps.

Tens of thousands of orphaned children - many the sons and daughters of slain Islamic State fighters -- are now housed in refugee camps in Iraq. Many more of these children are likely living homeless in villages and cities, but it's impossible to say how many. The Iraqi authorities refuse to issue identity documents to these children. That means that they can't attend school, and the older ones among them won't be able to find jobs. The children in the camps receive no food aid -- and they're not allowed to leave the facilities, either.

They live in constant fear, and are often threatened by Iraqis who seek revenge for crimes committed by I-S. Two years after the effective dissolution of the Islamic State's self-declared caliphate, neither the Iraqi authorities nor the survivors of I-S terrorism seem to accept the fact that these children are not responsible for those crimes. It's also possible that in future, when these orphans grow up, they may themselves turn to terrorism because of the indignities that they've suffered in the camps.

Feb 18, 2020

28:26 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_G2ktUBKRk&feature=em-uploademail

giovonni
23rd February 2020, 15:32
A possible great deal (https://buymylife.co/)for anyone wanting to
move (very soon) to the Big Apple ...

https://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2020/02/david-art-wales-buy-my-life-11.jpg?quality=90&strip=all&w=1236&h=820&crop=1

You can ‘buy’ this guy’s NYC luxe life for $11,000 (https://nypost.com/2020/02/22/you-can-buy-this-guys-nyc-luxe-life-for-11000/)

NotAPretender
23rd February 2020, 16:18
:) There might be a better deal to be had in Italy

giovonni
26th February 2020, 03:36
Makes you wonder if this tradition was still in place today ...
Affairs of honor ...

Alexander Hamilton's Three Duels

The History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered



Alexander Hamilton fought more than the one duel everyone remembers. The History Guy remembers three of Hamilton's duels, two pistols, and one place.

The History Guy uses images that are in the Public Domain. As photographs of actual events are often not available, I will sometimes use photographs of similar events or objects for illustration.

Jun 28, 2017

10:32 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IHFMFD2TbYM

giovonni
26th February 2020, 03:51
Trying to make a living ...

Kenya's million dollar garbage business | DW Documentary



Local gangs run the Dandora dump site in Nairobi and terrorize garbage collectors.

Richie is only 12, but already he is his family’s main breadwinner. He collects garbage at the Dandora dump site in Kenya’s capital Nairobi. It’s a dangerous job, not least because the dump – one of the largest in Africa – is ruled by local gangs.

Local gangs run the Dandora dump in Nairobi, but they answer to garbage cartels – networks of private companies competing for lucrative state contracts and not afraid of paying bribes to land them. Currently, the governor and other high-ranking city hall officials are embroiled in a garbage-related scandal that Kenya’s Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission is investigating. On the dump site itself, there is a climate of fear. Threats and beatings are not infrequent. Richie has learned to live with it; he says he has no alternative. Melanie Cura Daball reports.

Feb 24, 2020

12:31 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOtshu8Fr9c&feature=em-uploademail

Elen
26th February 2020, 09:25
Makes you wonder if this tradition was still in place today ...
Affairs of honor ...

Alexander Hamilton's Three Duels










I wonder as well :cool::love:

NotAPretender
27th February 2020, 02:37
I had not thought about Hamilton/Burr for a long time. In retrospect the practice should have been kept and the 2nd amendment gotten rid of.

Aragorn
27th February 2020, 10:39
I had not thought about Hamilton/Burr for a long time. In retrospect the practice should have been kept and the 2nd amendment gotten rid of.

I'm not an American, but I believe that it would be very unwise to get rid of the 2nd Amendment.

NotAPretender
28th February 2020, 03:22
nah, not really, unless one considers the nature of the populace. The right to bear military arms is just stupid. Hunting rifles, shotguns (even for protection) are not covered by the 2nd amendment in my brain. They are covered by the unalianable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness that the Declaration says have been given to all humans by their creator, and which governments are created to protect.

Let's be really real.

Dreamtimer
28th February 2020, 04:25
The Second Amendment is an integral part of the Bill of Rights. Folks have been making a grave error in separating it out as something special. The Bill of Rights is crucial to the Democracy that we have and we would do well to recognize the importance of all parts of it.

Some folks like to say that the Second Amendment protects the first. It doesn't when we have a President who maligns the Fourth Estate and undermines our access to accurate information and knowledge. It's not like we can point any kind of gun at him. Him, the man who brags he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not be held accountable.

It's the entire Bill of Rights we need, not just a tenth of it.

giovonni
28th February 2020, 07:47
Keep the guns locked in the covered...
And the instruments in their hands ...

Dueling Banjos - Sleepy Man Banjo Boys - Revenge of the Guitar

3:30 minutes


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFbWkL818XQ

Dreamtimer
28th February 2020, 14:12
Holy crap! Those boys were just fooling' with us! It's amazing. I've seen some high school kids play the banjo like pros. But not this age. Awesome!

Aragorn
28th February 2020, 14:32
Holy crap! Those boys were just fooling' with us! It's amazing. I've seen some high school kids play the banjo like pros. But not this age. Awesome!

Well, if you're ever out canoeing and you hear banjos playing this tune, you better get the hell out of there! :p