Good morning! Welcome to the DKos Sangha weekly open thread.~~~~
This is an open thread for members of the DKos Sangha and others who are interested in discussions concerning how we integrate our progressive political activism into our spiritual practice. If you have observations about the political discourse of the week, or about practice, or about anything else related to walking a spiritual path through the political world, if you wish to share, or if you seek support, or if you simply want to say hello, please do; this space is for you.
If you would like to write a diary for the DKos Sangha, please let me know.
If you care nothing for spiritual practice and only wish to denigrate and disparage, please do so elsewhere, and respect that this is a community diary for the DKos Sangha.
Welcome to Sunday Brunch. This is an open topic thread so help yourself to the goodies and sit a spell and let us know what is new with you. I love flowers and plants. I have lots of arrangements in my house. None of them are real. There are two main reasons for that. Reason number one is if it is a plant and alive I will probably end up killing it because I never know how often to water them or what needs sun and what doesn't. The second reason is simple, Pixie. She chews on my silk flowers. No way real would survive her. It also is nice that I can arrange and rearrange flowers to suit myself. Here are some of the current arrangements from my house. Some I brought over from Mom and Dad's when I cleaned out their place.
Research Findings on Medicinal Properties of Marijuana by Kevin B. Zeese, Esq
They say, write what you know! So here I am.
When Smoking Marijuana, (or other smoke-able herbs)-Please Do Not Use a butane lighter. They're for cigarettes.
Butane lighters are not meant to be used with a fine, light, easy to combust smoke-able like cannabis. You're sucking in a ton of butane gas, by lighting up with it. Use Matches! (Whether your using, a pipe or joint and even some vaporizer pens).
Better Yet, Electrically, Vaporize!
Cannabinoids are what give you that strong feeling like you can walk 40 blocks.
Although the THC is an important ingredient too, imo, Cannabinoids are the best part of the plant.
Medical Marijuana Should Be Legalized Nationally, and Federally, Now!
"Politics is the art of controlling your environment. " ~ Hunter S.Thompson
Vaping Tobacco Is Much Less Harmful Than Combusting And Smoking It!
Burning tobacco generates a smoke that is a toxic cocktail of chemicals that affect not only the smoker, but others as well.
Chemicals in tobacco cigarette smoke
Acetaldehyde: suspected carcinogen.
Acetone: irritant: can cause kidney and liver damage.
Acrolein: extremely toxic.
Acrylonitrile: suspected human carcinogen.
1-aminonaphthalene: causes cancer.
2-aminonaphthalene: causes bladder cancer.
Ammonia: raises blood pressure.
Benzo[a]pyrene: mutagenic and highly carcinogenic
1,3-Butadiene: suspected carcinogen.
Butyraldehyde: damages the lining of nose and lungs.
Cadmium: a heavy metal and highly toxic
Carbon Monoxide: decreases heart and muscle function.
Catechol: causes respiratory tract irritation and dermatitis.
Chromium: heavy metal and carcinogen.
Cresol: causes upper respiratory, nasal and throat irritation.
Crotonaldehyde: thought to interfere with immune function.
Hydrogen Cyanide: lethal poison
Hydroquinone: affects central nervous system effects.
Isoprene: irritates skin,eyes and mucous membranes.
Lead: causes brain damage
Methyl Ethyl Ketone: depresses the central nervous system.
Nickel: causes bronchial asthma and is a known carcinogen.
Nicotine: increases in heart rate and blood pressure, addictive element
Nitric Oxide: linked to Asthma,Huntington’s, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
NNN, NNK, and NAT: known or possible carcinogens
Polonium - radioactive*
Propionaldehyde: skin, eye and respiratory system irritant
Pyridine: causes eye and upper respiratory tract irritation
Quinoline: causes genetic damage and is a possible carcinogen
Resorcinol: skin and eye irritant
Toluene: linked to permanent brain damage.
Peace, Love, And Justice
God's Love We Deliver, is the tri-state area's leading provider of nutritious, individually-tailored meals to people who are too sick to shop or cook for themselves.
While cities are a relatively recent phenomenon, for most of their existence most people have not lived in them. In the past decade, however, city populations have grown to the point where most people in the world now live in cities. This raises the interesting question: Are cities really livable? Every year, a number of different groups attempt to produce a list of what they consider the most livable cities in the world.
You know what I really, really hate? I hate when somebody adapts a Jane Austen novel for stage or screen and thinks they can improve on her dialogue. They can't. And furthermore -- oh, strike that. Wrong peeve. Start again.
You know what I really, really hate? Prayer breakfasts, that's what. I don't mean internal Baptist or Catholic or Episcopal (they seem to be mostly Christian) prayer breakfasts. No, I'm talking about the quease-inducing amalgam of politics and religion embodied in the political prayer breakfast. These, starting with the National Prayer Breakfast, have multiplied like you-know-what and now have their own website. Idaho, Hawaii, Texas, Missouri, Washington state, South Carolina, Louisiana, California (et tu???), Delaware, Minnesota, Montana, and Tennessee and their cities and towns and water districts all have them and that's just in the first three pages of the Googlesearch. They've even gone international, from Sydney to Saskatoon.
As we enter another election cycle, one dominant theme is the idea that Republican Candidates are beholden to Christians. In several reports I've heard or read this idea is coupled with the representation that 70% of Americans are Christians. This creates a syllogism that leads to a false conclusion. I don't know if this is lazy reporting or purposeful deception, but in the end this habit misrepresents the beliefs of a majority of Christians and I believe it needs to be shot down.
That terrible warning to the USA, often attributed to the first American writer to ever win the Nobel Prize in Literature (1930), the great Sinclair Lewis, is now more terribly applicable than EVER; “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross.”
That time has come, my friends, and it’s BEEN coming for quite a while now.
The United States Military has undergone a slow-motion fundamentalist Christian coup d'état. On perhaps no other occasion has this been made clearer than in the brazenly illegal, anti-Constitutional, and wholly theocratic speech delivered on Capitol Hill by United States Air Force Major General Craig Olson to the assembled guests at a 2015 National Day of Prayer Task Force event on May 7, 2015. Unbeknownst to most Americans, yet broadcasted internationally via fundamentalist evangelical television (seriously, it’s actually called “GOD TV”) and internet streams, the uniformed Major General’s insipid 20-minute sermon revealed the frightening face of viciously intolerant, Christo-fascistic religious extremism run amok throughout the U.S. Armed Forces. The worldwide and national security implications of such a Christian supremacist force unleashed throughout our armed service branches is staggeringly high, yet the issue mournfully remains largely ignored by the lassitude and willful ignorance of mainstream press outlets.
No! Poverty is not to be blamed for the murder of Michael Brown. Lack of opportunities did not take the life of Freddie Gray. The "absent black father" was not responsible for killing Walter Scott. Police officers, armed with the legal authority of the state and under the aegis of their departments, murdered those men.
In addition to changing the laws, we must also change the culture that allows police officers to think that they are a law unto themselves; that they are lords and masters of those whom they swore to serve and protect. To make that change we need outside agitation for sure; but even more importantly, we need those on the inside to make a stand against the lawbreakers in their midst.
Are there any Frank Serpicos to be found anywhere? Who will step forward? The problem is even worse than it was in the 1970s.
Today the Blue Wall of Silence endures in towns and cities across America. Whistleblowers in police departments — or as I like to call them, “lamp lighters,” after Paul Revere — are still turned into permanent pariahs. The complaint I continue to hear is that when they try to bring injustice to light they are told by government officials: “We can’t afford a scandal; it would undermine public confidence in our police.” That confidence, I dare say, is already seriously undermined. (Frank Serpico, October 23, 2014).
[Frank Serpico is a retired New York City Police Department officer who is famous for blowing the whistle on police corruption in the late 1960s and early 1970s, an act that prompted Mayor John V. Lindsay to appoint the landmark Knapp Commission to investigate the NYPD. Much of Serpico's fame came after the release of the 1973 film Serpico, which starred Al Pacino in the title role. (Wikipedia)]
I am pleased to report that all is not lost. There is some glimmer of hope. Bravery and honor are not only to be found in our history books. There are two examples of that which we need that should be getting a lot more publicity than they have thus far: Joe Crystal and David C. Couper. David C. Couper was Madison’s chief of police from 1972 to 1993 and is now an Episcopal priest in Wisconsin:
When I talk publicly about the problem of deadly force and disrespect, many white people look at me with puzzled eyes. They don’t know what I am talking about because, as it turns out, they have had little, if any, contact with police. Not so for those men and women of color in my audience. They know—and they know all too well. Recent discussions have helped us understand that “unconscious bias” is inherent in our species; what is needed is being able to identify and manage it. (A Police Chief's Call for Reform by David C. Couper)One of the voices that stood out for me during the Baltimore Uprising for Justice was that of Joe Crystal. He was being interviewed by someone on MSNBC and my reaction was, “now you come forward?” Turned out I spoke too soon.
Joe Crystal had been doing the right thing even while he was a member of the Baltimore Police Department. He went up against his brethren in blue and in so doing, put his life on the line. BuzzFeed did an extensive piece on Crystal in what one of our members described as a "bloody awesome story." What he had to reveal was both "gripping and nauseating." You can read the whole sad account for yourself, but just one paragraph that captures a culture out of control...from top to bottom:
Is there any help to be had anywhere? How about a lieutenant?Crystal turned to the police union. He told Baltimore City Fraternal Order of Police president Bob Cherry about the harassment, and he said that Cherry told him the department “was blood in blood out, and that’s why [the violent crimes unit] was mad at me,” and maybe he should consider going to another department. (Cherry didn’t respond to interview requests for this story.) Crystal hoped to transfer out of his unit. He asked a sergeant, the old family friend, where he could go. As Crystal wrote in his journal, the sergeant told him that no supervisor wanted him because he was “a rat.” The sergeant then said, “You better pray to God you’re not the star witness against Gialamas, ‘cause your career is already fucked, but if you are the star witness against him you should just resign.” (Breaking Baltimore's Blue Wall of Silence, Buzzfeed)
On the advice of another sergeant, Crystal met with the lieutenant in charge of a violent repeat offender squad about a possible transfer. The lieutenant told him, he wrote in his journal, that he didn’t want him on the squad because he had snitched. The lieutenant said, “’When you are on the VRO squad you have to do things in the gray area,’ and he did not think I could do that.”We need more than two good men. We need hundreds of good men to make a difference. To change the culture from within. We thank Joe Crystal and David Couper for following in the grand tradition of Frank Serpico.
Where are the others?
Hello, welcome to my weekly offering to the Great Orange Satan.
This week I'm just tossing a few photos from my trip to the mountains along the Czech - Polish border. There's a lot going on in the world of politics these days and I'm all too glad to ignore it for a bit and share a few photos with you. I've chosen a few photos I took of old wood, rotting stumps, bridge supports and so on... while walking through the woods of one of the Czech Republic's prettier national parks. Maybe next week when I'll have more time I'll share a few landscapes and wildflowers, but this week I'm focusing on wood, old wood.
After we drove back to Asheville, we met up with DawnN and SteelerGrrl and Guy and had a nice meal at Rosetta's kitchen, Asheville's premier hippy vegetarian food and love cafe. I am hoping that some of us can get together again today. SteelerGrrl is attending a conference in Asheville this week so I was able to pick up a pair of tie dye sox from her for Celtic Lassie on the way to Tennessee Wednesday.
Please join us below the fold for a few photos. Thanks for being part of this community and please keep Chuck and Brandi and their family in your thoughts and prayers.
Welcome to Thursday Coffee Hour. This is an open topic thread so help yourself to the goodies and sit a spell and let us know what is new with you. I have always been owned by cats. We had cats growing up and I've always gotten on great with them. The ones I've had all had distinct personalities.
Les Beastiables ("Les Bez"): Because beasties say the darnedest things!
NOTE: This is the first of a cartoon series that is planned to appear with a new beastly drawing every Wednesday at 1:30 PM.
They're cute, they're funny, they're outrageous! They are Les Beastiables ("Les Bez"), and they say beastly things. They represent those who represent us in the public discourse. They might be politicians, CEOs, "journalists," or anyone who caught the media's attention. They're the beasties who think "free speech" means fact-free speech.
For too long, Les Beastiables have gotten away with saying beastly things because most people forget so quickly. Well, we will never forget. Dessins Les Beastiables will keep these memories in the public eye; hopefully the public will respond and hold public figures accountable. So please go to the brand-new Les Beastiables Web site and have a look around. Then spread the word about Les Beastiables via social media. Thank you!
A note about our previous cartoon: Joe Squirrel has been updated. I noticed that the real Joe has a tendency to fist one hand while gesturing out with the other. Thus:
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