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Truthout Daily Digest February 16, 2014

Any National “Conversation About Race” Must Include Black Radical Tradition

Adam Hudson, Truthout: Black radicalism has taught that any serious “conversation about race” must address the systemic racism that results in patterns of racial inequality in the judicial system, the national and global economies, policing, the education system, religion, popular culture and a war machine that predominantly kills non-Europeans around the world.

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Political Economist Answers: What’s So Dangerous About Austerity?

C.J. Polychroniou, Truthout: In this interview with Mark Blyth, author of Austerity: The History of a Dangerous Idea, we learn that austerity policies are called “a class-specific put option” in finance and are dangerous because they don’t achieve their purported goals and harm the least politically powerful.

Read the Interview

The Invisible Hands That Do All the Work

Eleanor J. Bader, Truthout: The stories in Corinne Goria’sInvisible Hands paint a horrifying portrait of the impact of rampant consumerism on communities and individuals from Bangladesh to Zambia. But while the workers experience profound disrespect, they dream of equity, fairness and workplace decency.

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Corporations? Corporations? Nobody Here but Us Chickens

Donald Lazere, Truthout: In Why Higher Education SHOULD Have a Leftist Bias, author Donald Lazere surveys the means by which American corporations render their own political and economic power invisible while diverting blame for social ills to “the government.”

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Feds Won’t Enforce Money-Laundering Laws Against Banks Doing Business With Pot Stores

Rob Hotakainen, McClatchy Newspapers: The move was hailed as a step forward by proponents of marijuana sales, but banking organizations warned that accepting the deposits was still illegal and said it was unlikely to widely change banks’ business practices.

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Left Out of the Narrative: LGBTQ Undocumented Detainees

Erika L. Sánchez, Truthout: Undocumented LGBTQ people are caught in a double bind of belonging neither in white mainstream LGBTQ narrative nor in the mainstream immigrant narrative. The consequences can range from difficult to deadly.

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Truthout Interviews Greg Palast on the Koch Brothers and Chris Christie

Ted Asregadoo, Truthout: In the Citizens United era, it can be more difficult to follow the money because of the anonymity 501(c)(4) super PACs afford their donors. But that hasn’t stopped Greg Palast, who shares some of what he has uncovered.

Watch the Interview

Quit Talking About Equal Pay and Do Something

Elizabeth Schulte, Socialist Worker: It’s a hallmark of the Obama presidency: talk about change, but not deliver any. Will the president’s pledge on equal pay suffer the same fate?

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Documents Reveal Calvert County Signed Non-Disclosure Agreement With Company Proposing Cove Point LNG Terminal

Steve Horn and Caroline Selle, DeSmogBlog: Documents reveal that the government of Calvert County, Maryland signed a non-disclosure agreement with Dominion Resources, raising concerns about transparency between the local government and its citizens.

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On the Money: What a Tangled Web We Weave

Gail Ablow, Moyers & Company: Gail Ablow provides a critical reading list for the issues that made the headlines this week, including deceptive political ads, industry ties in the fight over minimum wage and billionaires using super PACs to advance pet causes.

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This week in Speakout:

Dr. James Zogby discusses Black History Month and the extent to which racial inequality still persists; Leslie Thatcher is wowed by Sigrid Unset’s first novel, Marta Oulie, now released in English for the first time; David Swanson talks about how communities across the country can survive the oncoming military downgrade, and, in another post, lends support to military veterans and family members who will travel to ten west-coast cities promoting GI outreach; Brad Friedman sheds a light on the media’s anti-Snowden sentiments; former Thai Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya analyzes the US influence on Thailand’s government in three stunning op-eds; Edward Erikson offers a plan towards returning to a democracy ruled by the people instead of corporate interests; James Kwak provides an example of how the national debt cannot be cut; and more.

Read the Articles


The Buzzflash commentary for Truthout will return soon.

Michael Dunn’s License to Kill: The Murder of Jordan Davis and Florida’s Perverted Justice

Read the Article at Salon

Spying by NSA Ally Entangled US Law Firm

Read the Article at The New York Times

Volkswagen Works Council Says It Will Pursue Labor Representation at US Plant

Read the Article at Reuters

The US Calls Him a “Global Terrorist”, but He Still Has Counterterrorism Advice for Washington

Read the Article at The Washington Post

Germany and France to Mastermind European Data Network, Bypassing US

Read the Article at RT News

Environmentalists Offer $5,000 Reward for Info on North Carolina Coal Ash Spill Leading to Charges

Read the Article at Facing South

North Dakota Oil Spill Cleanup to Last at Least Two More Years

Read the Article at The Bismarck Tribune

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NorthPoint Astrology Journal February 17 to 23, 2014 Pam Younghans

Today‘s photo: Auroras over Fairbanks, Alaska on February 7, 2013 (photo by Marketa S. Murray, posted on Spaceweather.com)

WHEN ATTEMPTING to explain a Mercury retrograde phase, I often compare our experience to being like Alice’s adventures in Wonderland — and truth be told, this particular Mercury retro period is already feeling quite surreal, much like the world Lewis Carroll created.

I especially like the title of Mr. Carroll’s second book about Alice: Through the Looking Glass, and What Alice Found There. It feels very appropriate to think about Mercury retrograde as a time when we enter an alternate reality, one that is something like a mirror to our normal life.

THIS CONTINUATION of Alice’s adventures uses unexpected changes in time and space to further the plot, and contains many mirror themes, such as words being printed backward on a page and time running backward. Sounds a lot like Mercury retrograde to me.

Perhaps it will help us see the humor in our experience this week to remember Alice’s journey through the looking glass — especially if someone’s email to us seems just about as comprehensible as the “Jabberwocky” poem. We can also find comfort in the fact that Alice emerges at the end of each book to rejoin her regular life — although, if we want to benefit from our Mercury retrograde experience, we will do our best to read each day’s events symbolically, rather than merely waiting (impatiently) for this phase to be over.

MONDAY AND TUESDAY may be our most enigmatic days this week, since Mercury is involved in aspects with Uranus and Saturn on those two days. Monday’s Uranus-Mercury semisquare challenges us to think outside of normal parameters, while Tuesday’s Saturn-Mercury square brings us back down to “reality,” making it clear where our far-out plans and ideas need more research before they can be considered viable.

Then, with the Sun entering mystical Pisces on Tuesday and moving into alignment with Neptune by Sunday, our definitions of what is possible continue to be in flux through the rest of the week.

THE MONTH OF PISCES is our last month of the zodiac year, marking a time of completion and letting go of the past. This clearing prepares us for the new beginning represented by the Aries Equinox on March 20.

Pisces also supports us in our exploration of other realms — the worlds of our imagination, our creativity, and our spirituality. We can get lost more easily in these realms when Pisces energy is strong. Meditations may be enhanced and the voice of our creative muse may be more seductive than usual. The only caution with Pisces is to notice when we’re avoiding reality in detrimental ways, rather than expanding our connection with nonphysical reality in life-enhancing ways.

ONE FINAL NOTE: Although there are no major triggers to the grand cross energies this week, the Moon will once again interact with all four planets in the configuration. If you’re monitoring these energies and watching how they manifest in your life, here are the times (in Pacific Standard Time) when the Moon forms aspects with the grand cross planets:

  • Tuesday: Moon opposite Uranus 6am, Moon square Jupiter 7:18am, Moon square Pluto11:04am
  • Wednesday: Moon conjunct Mars 1:52pm

Have a blessed week,


NorthPoint Astrology Blog: To read my latest post, “Comments on this week’s Journal,” please visit http://northpointastrology.blogspot.com/. I look forward to your comments!

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A short update on the energies

Thank you Aisha! Another amazing synchronicity for me in this message. I had just figured out for myself that the constant disruptions and random oddness were likely happening to throw us off our habit patterns and feelings of safe normal life so we had to reach beyond for more of ourselves to achieve balance and the peace that feels so valuable even more in its elusiveness!

aisha north

As many of you have already noticed, these incoming energies make themselves announced in all sorts of ways. Perhaps the best way to describe them is how they seem to fluctuate in wildly erratic patterns, and these seemingly unpredictable patterns of energetic transmissions will also affect you at many levels. And so, you will find yourself as if floating blissfully in a tranquil sea of good vibrations if you will, for suddenly to feel as if your raft has been toppled over, and you flail about in choppy waters, unable to find what is up or down. So yes, these are indeed times that will be marked as extremely unpredictable, as you will never know just what they will bring around the next corner.

You see, this is indeed a carefully orchestrated event, and everything that is being set into motion, will be set into motion in such a way…

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Green Media

Thank for sharing this. When I first read about the Green party in Germany in 1981, I jumped around my house dancing and laughing. I thought with the innocence of the adolescent mind that such a wonderful thing would quickly spread to all countries and rapidly change the dynamic in politics and industry to respect for all living beings.
The reality, tho a great deal slower than my childish hopes, is transforming public discourse in many ways.
I have not yet been lucky enough to encounter any other political druids in person-and would joyfully settle for a few ReClaiming Dianic Wiccans instead of the depressing masses of apolitical sex obsessed pagans:-) but I am very grateful for the chance to read your blog and know I’m not alone in feeling my spiritual principles demand a greater responsibility than simple self gratification. (No offense at all intended to the many responsible caring active pagans who may see this-my disappointment is entirely related to a relatively small number of people who are just another facet of Carl Hiaasen’s Florida-which some people think exists only in his novels but which in fact millions of us actually live in:-)

Druid Life

This afternoon I’m teaching Green Party folk about media work. You may have heard about media training, how it teaches you to spin, bluster, avoid awkward questions, and take over the subject to talk about your agenda, not what was asked? That’s not what I’m teaching, because that’s not Green media policy. I think this is worth sharing.

The very first thing I learned when I became a press officer for the local Green Party, is that we do not do spin. We do not lie or wilfully mislead. This is very much at odds with the norms of the modern political world. It means I take pride in being able to do my job honourably and honestly.

Green politics explicitly does not go in for the shouting, braying, name calling and rude rubbishing tactics favoured by mainstream politics. If we can manage it, we’ll have a quiet, civilized debate…

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Life’s A Beach~

Thank you Cindy! How beautiful and how amazing the difference in colors of the ocean between places. Its a dark green here usually in the gulf but I guess it changes. The Bay can look brown to deep blue. The San Juan pictures make me think that water is deep while the pale green blue of the other seems shallow and likely bathtub warm like the bayou in August:-)

At least in the Caribbean it is! Please click to enlarge and check out the beautiful beaches of San Juan Puerto Rico~



And St Croix…..

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I grew up by the ocean, and get alarmed sometimes at the risks some people take. Look closely in the above shot for the two people standing on the rocks…YIKES!



And last, but surely not least, Tortola!


I know it is important to stay out of the sun, but this man’s castle seemed a bit pinched. Still, a man’s beach-castle is never the less his castle and nothing to be trifled with, besides, maybe this was for his kid? I didn’t see the kid though……

Laughing and sending sun, sand, and silliness, your way from the sunny (but buggy) Caribbean! Even paradise ain’t perfect after all, and I have the no-see-um bites to prove it! Cheers and sunshine to you~

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Michael Dunn, Murder Of Jordan Russell Davis, Trial Verdict….

Thank for sharing this. I am so grateful that this time at least some form of justice was given. My mind cannot even get around arguing with people in public and then shooting them over loud music at a gas station, texting in a theater or simply walking thru a neighborhood while not white. Defense of life is not defense of ego or the right to boss others.