Oh, beautiful Italy! We love you!! And unlike Trump in Louisiana, we will send MONEY!!!
Greetings, fellow Dot Calm Readers, Freedom Fighters, and Truth Crusaders!
I grieved to hear of the 6.2-magnitude earthquake near Perugia, Italy. According to BBC, the death toll is already up to 159.
Dot Calm was half Italian, half Sicilian...her father's family hailed from Calabria, and her mother's hailed from Messina. She visited Italy at least twice that I know of...including once in 1995--when the first slightest twinges of MS began to cause her pain and slow her down but before she realized anything was wrong--and once some time around 2010, when the MS had already largely disabled her. That second visit was part of a cruise she took with her favorite sister, and they got to see a lot more of the beautiful Mediterranean coast than she'd seen on earlier trips. The wonderful stories she told when she came back to the states made me want to take the same cruise myself someday.
I've been to Rome and Florence myself--and I made sure to throw a coin into the glorious Trevi fountain in Rome, which must be seen in person because pictures simply cannot do it justice, to guarantee my return someday. (And yes, I stood with my back to the fountain and used my right hand to throw the coin over my left shoulder, just as our adorable Roman tour guide instructed. According to the link, they often collect some 3,000 euros daily from the fountain and use that money to fund a supermarket that benefits the poor. Glad it was a 5 lira piece I threw!)
I could sooo live in Tuscany...! Fiesole was so completely charming that I hated to leave and hope someday to go back there, too. (Pardon the weird spacing--I tried to fix the formatting, but the image, which is also a link, and Blogger had other plans.)
But I digress...*sigh*
It grieved me to see the once-lovely homes around 100 miles northeast of Rome with their tile roofs reduced to rubble by the earthquake. And it happened while everyone was asleep, too--the worst possible time. Several years ago, there was a 5.8-magnitude (IIRC) earthquake maybe a hundred miles from where I lived, but it was mid-afternoon...we were all awake, all clothed...all we had to do was throw on our shoes and run outside. That was the only time in my life I've ever used the bathroom without washing my hands afterward! I'll never forget watching the front of my house pitch toward and away from me as I stood aghast on the lawn...wondering whether the quake would get much worse and wondering how long it would last. We were fortunate--a few things in the house fell over, but not a single thing broke. Contrast that with the images from Perugia and surrounding areas, like Amatrice.
My heart goes out to my precious brothers and sisters in Italy. I'm sure my workplace will set up a fundraiser for you, and I promise to donate as much as I can afford...just as I did for the recent flooding in Louisiana.
Alas, I don't have much more in the tank to write my usual essay this time...apparently, I'm still pooped from the crazy month I've had this week.
In other words...
...let's slawg on with the blawg!
Don't forget to read Dot Calm's shadow's favorite independent sources of news and information:
Peas, friends. Please be good to yourselves and loved ones, and please and thank you for doing what you can to help our precious ones in Italy, who are hurting today.
Stick a phork in me cuz I'm dun 4real 4now. I lurves ya!
Consider the preemptive Blogger phuqued-up phormatting disclaimer to be in effect. Grrr.
-- Dot Calm's shadow
Either his poll numbers suck,
or he thinks he can sweet-talk them
into letting him reinstate slavery
for his hurtful remarks
are as non-existent as his
Holy scam, Batman--RawStory reports that, after being nominated and getting donors to finance his campaign, Donald Trump raised the rents he pays himself from $35,458 per month to $169, 758 per month for his Trump Tower offices, which he pays himself out of his campaign funds
...Good thing Republican voters aren't troubled by Trump's grift to humanity. At least we know where his campaign funds are going...cuz he sure ain't buying ads with the donations.
The Hill: Trump companies have $650M in debt: report
...For a more detailed look at the New York Times's report on Trump's $650 million debt (including owed to China), why not check out the New York Times article itself? (It's a long read, but it's interesting--you can tell they're trying not to get sued by Trump.)
Politicususa: Trump appoints Sam Brownback as fiscal advisor so he can turn all of America into the sunken, bankrupt ship that is the Tea Party policy incubator known as Kansas. Here's an excerpt:
"In July the unemployment rate kept up its steady rise and grew by 1.3 percent in June. In the past 12 months Kansas lost 4,500 existing jobs. The Kansas economic growth rate over that same period came in at a minus 0.3 percent. Add to those disasters the revenue shortfall in May and June totaled over $109 million on top of the $45 million already lost in fiscal 2016. These are the results Republicans claim they want the whole nation to experience and Trump will aid is making it happen at the federal level if he is elected president."
Vox: Donald Trump's black outreach isn't for black voters. It's for wavering white Republicans.
BuzzFeed: Trump Often Claimed To Be "The Largest Real Estate Developer In New York. He Isn't.
...Spoiler: Trump isn't even in the top 10 of real estate developers in New York.
Vox: Donald Trump is what happens when you don't know many black people. Michelle Obama has a solution.
Vox: Nigel Farage, Brexit's biggest booster, is speaking at a Trump rally in Mississippi
Vox: We asked 6 experts if Donald Trump's unpopularity will doom congressional Republicans
Vox: America's bail system punishes poor people — even if they're innocent of any crime
BuzzFeed: People Are Horrified That French Police Forced This Muslim Woman To Remove Her Clothes
...Let me paraphrase one commenter's brilliant tweet: it's no more feminist to force women to wear burkas than it is to force them to take them off. It's also veddy intedestink that they left the similarly-garbed nuns alone. I wonder how the nuns would have felt if they'd been subjected to the same treatment. Hm.
*Sigh*...this is so sad...
Vox: "Wine. Immediately." The depressing reason so many women today drink
...I've seen my Tea Party Christian friend attack women and tell them that they are not who they are and that they have not had the experiences they have had. Highly educated women, too. Does my Tea Party Christian friend even realize that there's a difference between a GED and a PhD? Nah...!
Vox: I went to Italy to eat, and learned an ugly truth about the Italian diet
...Hum. I went to Italy in 1995, and the food in Rome and Florence was delightful. Reasonable meal portions, lots of fresh produce, light and tasty fare...delicious. What a shame that Italy has started following in our fat footsteps. I remember visiting my Australian cousin in 2000, and she said that fast food joints had popped up all over Sydney and that, with them, wider waistlines. She had never seen an overweight person until McDonalds and their ilk showed up. *Sigh*
Vox: It's hard to talk about climate change. This storytelling project wants to make it easier.
Vox: The Olympics left Rio with a few improvements. And a frightening police violence problem.
...Ugh. They shoot Blacks, don't they?
From National Partnership--make Congress work to fight Zika
The Zika virus is spreading, and public health officials are warning of increased risk to those in flood-ravaged areas of the Gulf coast. Meanwhile, funding to continue fighting the disease is running out — and Congress has failed to take appropriate action.
That’s why I am resending my email below and encouraging you to make your voice heard today.
Tell members of Congress to end their vacations and get back to work to pass emergency funding to combat the dangerous Zika virus!
The video is below in todaze m00bies, friends.
I made a pernt of hunting it down.
-- Dot Calm's shadow
From schools that close in the middle of the year to companies that put profits above the well-being of students, the segment should make you angry at the lack of oversight and accountability at institutions our students should be able to rely on. As we know from our work, in too many states oversight is becoming even more lax.
People need to know about this. John Oliver has put the spotlight on bad actors in the charter industry; now it’s up to us to make sure people see the truth. Click here to watch and share his video.
Every child has the right to a free, high-quality public education. Education gives our kids building blocks for a successful life. Education propels our economy, anchors our citizens in democratic values and gives America’s youth a path toward achieving their dreams.
Education matters too much to let bad practices by unethical, incompetent profiteers undermine our public schools.
What John Oliver exposed underscores why we need to hold charter schools accountable to the public. Charter schools must be transparent, centered on the needs of students, and held to the standards we expect of any publicly funded institution.
Some charters meet these standards, and make sound use of public dollars.
This isn’t about them. This is about the rampant growth of charter schools that put profits over pupils—and the lax oversight that lets those schools undermine our communities and our students.
Let’s make sure everyone sees the truth. Watch the video (you’ll be horrified) and share it with your friends.
They're leaping higher, swimming faster, and lifting others up both on and off the field (or track) to achieve greatness. The U.S. team arrived in Rio with the largest women's contingent in Olympic history, and they left with a record 61 medals.
That's had me thinking a lot about Title IX recently -- the federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally-funded education program or activity -- because it's such a huge part of why our women's team had the most members and the most medals.
Now more than ever, it's time to protect that legacy: Add your name to commit to strengthening and protecting Title IX for years to come.
Since its passage 44 years ago, Title IX has given so many women and girls the opportunity to compete and to excel. Women and girls' participation in sports has increased by almost 900 percent in high school, by almost 500 percent in college, and the number of women and girls whose lives it touches continues to grow every day.
So many of our women Olympians are going home to college (and in some cases, high school!) programs that depend on Title IX, so if you love watching these U.S. women compete and win as much as I do, you know how important this is.
That's why today, as we celebrate the U.S. women's team's success in Rio, we should take the time to recommit to continuing the fight for equality and ensuring those doors of opportunity stay open for generations of women to come.
We have to protect this landmark law -- add your name to show your support for Title IX today.
People for Patty Murray
From Cartwright for Congress--Support equal rights for women
Privatizing that system might pad the profits for some very large health care providers, but it would severely under-fund the Department of Veterans Affairs and leave many veterans with service-connected injuries out in the cold.
With Republicans looking at large losses in November, we're worried they are going to take one more shot at getting Congress to vote on privatizing veterans' health care. We have to stop them:
Sign our petition telling telling Congress veterans' care is NOT for sale, and that you oppose any efforts to privatizing the VA. Once you sign, you'll get a look at our new ad with this message running in congressional districts across the country.
Veterans depend on their VA care. Oftentimes, VA centers are equipped to deal with specialized care, amputations, and traumatic brain injuries in a way a local doctor or hospital may not be.
For far too many veterans in need of specialized care, both physical and mental, they may not have a caregiver to turn to in their area.
And with a new generation of service members returning home from overseas, this is precisely the wrong time to put the profits of a few large companies over the care of those who served.
Sign our petition telling Congress veterans' care is NOT for sale, and that you oppose any efforts to privatizing the VA. Once you sign, you'll get a look at our new ad with this message running in congressional districts across the country.
Thank you for adding your name. Of course we are doing everything to stop Donald Trump from becoming Commander in Chief this November, but we cannot ever afford to take our eye off of the Koch Brothers' and other ultra-conservatives campaign to privatize veterans care.
All my best,
From Keystone Progress
Mifflin County Commissioner Lisa Nancollas (Republican) was caught posting bigoted Facebook posts on her campaign site. She has since taken them down, but they are available on news sites, including her hometown paper (http://act.keystoneprogress.
She still has anti-Islam posts on her personal Facebook page (https://keystoneprogress.
Will you sign our petition?
"We demand that Mifflin County Commissioner Lisa Nancollas resign for her bigoted Facebook posts. An elected official who holds these views can not represent all of the people."
The first post was a meme of a mosque with a red “no” symbol covering it. It also said “No Islam Allowed.” The commissioner followed the post with the following posts:
“If you don’t like what I post on my wall then don’t look at my wall,” the second post said. “Also, I believe in the Christian God. I don’t believe in Islam, sharia law nor do I believe in Allah.”
She said people “are only allowed in the kingdom of God if they accept God as their savior not Allah,” in a third post.
She has since deleted the meme but has continued posting about Islam on here personal Facebook page, which includes images supporting Donald Trump for President.
|Tell Republican officials: Stop promoting anti-trans bigotry|
|The petition to Republican attorneys general, governors, and state officials reads:
“Stop promoting hate and discrimination against transgender children. Drop your bigoted lawsuit against extending civil rights protections for transgender people.”
Add your name:
From Daily Kos--Stop killing civilians in Yemen
The Obama administration has notified Congress of intent to sell $1.15 billion of weapons to Saudi Arabia, including tanks which would replace tanks destroyed in Saudi Arabia's war against Houthi rebels in Yemen.
The New York Times joined a bipartisan group of Congresspeople, including Senator Chris Murphy in urging Congress to put the Saudi arms deal on hold until Saudi Arabia stops targeting civilians.
Add your name! Click here to email your Representative and ask them to support the bipartisan effort to put this arms deal on hold.
Just in the last several days, a Saudi airstrike on a school in Yemen killed 10 children, and a Saudi airstrike on an MSF (Doctors Without Borders) hospital in Yemen killed 11 people. Amnesty International has documented airstrikes by the Saudi Arabia-led coalition across Yemen that appear to have deliberately targeted civilians and civilian facilities, such as hospitals, schools, markets, and places of worship.
Continued U.S. arms sales to Saudi Arabia could make the U.S. complicit in potential war crimes committed by the Saudi-led coalition.
|Stand with Rep. Waters: The Justice Department must prosecute banking giant HSBC|
|Petition to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch:
"Revoke the deferred prosecution agreement with HSBC that allowed the bank to escape criminal prosecution on charges of money laundering and violating U.S. sanctions."
Add your name:
'TRUMP IS A LIAR;
BECAUSE HIS TAXES
ARE HIGHLY SUSPICIOUS'"
"Trump is getting audited year after year
"IRS Chief John Koskinen
controls his returns.
By the way, President Obama only went to Louisiana when the governor was ready for him--not before--because he did not want to sap their already-overstretched resources. Another crazy story today features New Jersey's police, who traumatized an unarmed 10-year-old boy by chasing him to kingdom come with guns drawn. Click on the headline for details.
-- Dot Calm's shadow
On Tuesday, President Obama visited Louisiana for the first time since the devastating floods that killed 13 people and damaged 60,000 homes. The Red Cross has called it the ... Read More →
A new article in the medical journal The Lancet has concluded much of the Northern Hemisphere will be too hot by 2085 to host the Summer Olympics. Researchers are ... Read More →
A new study has found that without action on climate change, the millennial generation as a whole will lose nearly $8.8 trillion in lifetime income dealing with the economic, ... Read More →
Last week, Donald Trump once again upended his campaign team and named Stephen Bannon, the head of Breitbart Media, to be his campaign chief. Breitbart ... Read More →
saying, "What do you have to lose?"
"It could not be clearer how much African-Americans have to lose under Donald Trump," Marlon Marshall, Clinton's director of state campaigns and political engagement, said in a statement.
Death by global warming, anyone?
How about nukes?
Alas, this video is not from Last Week Tonight itself...so it may get taken down soon. Watch it before it goes away! John offers teh Dumbald such a nice, fat, juicy,
John Oliver on charter schools--muy importante! My Tea Party Christian friend thinks charter schools are ever so much better than public schools because FUX Noise has brainwashed him to think that private profiteering is ever so much better than accountability. He forgets that he is paying for these private institutions and that, by allowing or accepting them as private institutions, he is abdicating his oversight into how they are established, accredited, or run on a daily basis. As for me, I was much more aware of the problems--like siphoning off talented students--than I was of even one of the success stories John mentions. But I think I was closer to the truth than my Tea Party Christian friend: charter schools open up a world of hurt...gobbling up millions of dollars in taxpayer money without necessarily even providing one school year's worth of education--let alone decent education. America, it's time to save our public schools. Let the charter schools go back to being incubators for new ideas that can transition into the mainstream. If it's being funded by public dollars, then it had damn well better be a public institution. I keeps sayin': some things should NEVER be for profit, including (but not limited to) education, insurance, and health care...in short, anything where the business profits more by providing less--basically by ripping you off. Bleah!
Ruh roh, Reorge...I'm apparently back to Mr. Deity!
Personally, I find mythicism to be a very plausible explanation for the origin of Christianity. But unlike Trump, I'm no "Christain"...which sounds to me like what the artist painted on the hoax shroud of Turin....
Ooh ooh, Mister Kotter--Jaclyn Glenn, my fave!!! I had to watch this one twice to catch all the goodness. You have been warned.
'Til next time, check out these great channels:
You made it all the way down here!!
Here's a funny for you, then!!!