AOC's two minute speech in response to Rep Sean Duffy's [R-WI] characterization of environmental concerns as a matter for coastal elites is inspired and heartfelt, and entirely on point: the people at greatest risk from environmental degradation are the poorest and most vulnerable in society, and moreover Duffy -- a wealthy lawyer and TV commentator -- has no business lecturing AOC (a working class New Yorker who was working in a taco joint a year ago and got her first-ever health insurance plan when she was elected to Congress) on what is and isn't of concern to working people. Read the rest
In 2009, the bipartisan HITECH Act pledged $36 billion to subsidize the adoption of Electronic Health Records throughout America's fragmented, profit-driven health system, promising that the system would modernize American health care, save $80 billion (and countless lives), and deliver a host of other benefits; a decade later, the EHR industry has blossomed from $2B to $13B, and adoption is up from 9% to 96%, and it's a catastrophe. Read the rest
The city of Flint, Michigan notoriously poisoned a generation of its children with lead in the water supply, having ignored and covered up reports from whistleblowers and denied complaints from residents. Read the rest
In her final hours, mum's death sleep grew louder. Morphine lost control of her body. Murmurs rose into a harrowing whine, swelling with each unconscious breath.
The nurse said she wasn't there, not really, but I wondered otherwise. Between her cries, during the bouts of apnea where she did not breath at all, in the terrible silence before she gasped back to life, I begged her to let go. I joked about her refusal to do so—anything to end the pain. Then her face, for hours a mask of frozen yellow wax, screwed up in what seemed a sudden awakening of incredible agony. She tensed, relaxed and sputtered, but did not wake. It happened again. And then she was quiet.
Whether she had fled hours ago, or had been aware and trapped in her body, she was gone now.
There is a pond full of life, fed by a brook and watched from a wooden bridge by a young mother and her child. It is so far away you will not find it on this world, but it exists all the same in the truth of another.
Amanda Johnson was born August 26, 1953, in Long Newton, England, the second of three girls (Jeanette older, and Sandra younger), with an older brother, Crosby. Their beloved mother, Kathleen, died of cancer when they were all teenagers, turning their lives upside-down. Their father, Bob Johnson, was a professional drummer who often performed in smoky clubs in Newton Aycliffe, the planned community where they settled. Read the rest
Lead pipes have a lifespan of about 75 years -- and America's lead pipe are about 75 years old. 3,000 American municipalities have 1.2m miles of lead pipe, and it's all overdue for replacement, but there's no plan in hand to do so, and any workable plan will cost about $1 trillion to execute. Read the rest
Rogue archivist Carl Malamud writes, "In keeping with best practices for major Internet providers to issue periodic transparency reports, Public Resource would like to issue two reports. Read the rest
We have a new leader in America. Known for his distinct regional accent and often seen wearing a baseball cap at rallies, he starred in a show on NBC, and holds strong opinions about guns and the NRA. He may not be the leader you saw coming, but you're going to see a lot more of him: Michael Moore. The documentary filmmaker shuns the activist label he is often given. In a recent LA Times interview Moore asserted, "I'm not an activist, I'm a citizen. It's redundant to say I'm an activist. We all should be active." Moore has been very active, and has made films that take on some of America's most complex and controversial topics -- globalization, gun violence, 9/11, our healthcare system, the economy, war, and most recently, Donald Trump, someone he did see coming. Unlike the Democrats.
Moore tried to warn the left in July, when he wrote a piece titled simply "5 Reasons Why Trump Will Win. In it, he did not mince words: "Go ahead and say the words, 'cause you'll be saying them for the next four years: 'PRESIDENT TRUMP.' Never in my life have I wanted to be proven wrong more than I do right now." With his midwestern directness and efficiency, Moore then proceeded to list how and why Donald Trump was going to win.
Liberals feel aimless and powerless, falling all over each other trying to figure out what happened. Like teenagers at a party that went off the rails, some are locked in the bathroom crying, some are fighting amongst themselves, others are telling everyone it's going to be fine, and some are standing on the kitchen table yelling, trying to restore order in futility. Read the rest
Last month, a controversial political machination at the top levels of Brazil's government saw the removal of its elected left-wing president, Dilma Rousseff, and her replacement with an appointed, neoliberal "interim president" President Michel Temer, who has now been convicted of committing election fraud and barred from holding elected office in Brazil for 8 years. Read the rest
An independent investigation by The Guardian found 33 cities in 17 US states (including Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Detroit and Milwaukee) are systematically cheating on the tests to monitor lead levels in the municipal water. 21 of those cities used the same cheating techniques that led to criminal charges in the Flint water scandal. Read the rest
When Marc Edwards was a young Virginia tech engineer, he landed a job with Cadmus Group, an EPA subcontractor who'd been hired to investigate problems with the DC water-supply, but when he discovered a lead contamination crisis and refused to stop talking about it, he was fired. Read the rest
Years before the complaints from Flint's citizenry about their water provoked action from the state, Governor Rick Snyder spent $440,000 to supply better water to the GM factory, where the new water supply was corroding the car parts on the assembly line. Read the rest
Michael Moore, perhaps Flint, MI's most famous son, has written an open letter to people who are heartsick at the thought of a whole generation of mostly poor, mostly black children being given permanent brain damage through lead poisoning, thanks to the deliberate indifference of the state's Republican administration and the greedy people who elected them. Read the rest
On Crooked Timber, John Quiggin has been rehearsing the arguments from an upcoming book called "Economics in Two Lessons," and the latest installment asks why, if there's no such thing as a "free lunch," we're not all still living in caves? Read the rest