privatization is a synonym for stealing

black and white city wallpaper

black and white city wallpaper

8 Ways Privatization Has Failed America. Paul Buchheit takes a look at the ways privatization fever has given working class Americans the shaft. Those who enjoy a good argument are welcome to try debating the congregation of true believers preaching the gospel of privatize everything. I find that like most zealots, their minds are not open to either facts or humanitarian based arguments.

Worse yet, corporations profit from the very water they pollute. Dioxin-dumping Dow Chemicals is investing in water purification. Monsanto has been accused of privatizing its own pollution sites in order to sell filtered water back to the public.

Internet, TV, and Phone

It seems the whole world is leaving us behind on the Internet. According to the OECD, South Korea has Internet speeds up to 200 times faster than the average speed in the U.S., at about half the cost. Customers are charged about $30 a month in Hong Kong or Korea or parts of Europe for much faster service than in the U.S., while triple-play packages in other countries go for about half of our Comcast or AT&T charges.

The scam where corporations poison your water and offer to clean it up for a profit is ingenious.

Your phone and ISP payments – they might be little cheaper if the CEO was not pretending to provide some absolutely essential management skills for which he must make $21 million in 2012. he did not do any like saving kidney surgery, find a way to improve solar cell energy efficiency by 10%. he did not rescue any elderly couples from a burning building, he did not take urine samples to the lab or clean up your sick uncle’s puke. he did not replace the trees clear-cut for that new strip mall. He did not invent any new telecommunications technology – scientists did that. He did not dig a little ditch to bury your cable line. he did not find a cure for arthritis or diabetes. he did not even program a cool video game or write a great song or paint an inspiring painting. The basic skills anyone needs to run a company can be learned at any local community college. Yet, as Will on The Newsroom would likely say, he and other CEOs are worth what they get because it is what the market will bear. Only that is based purely on the perception of subjective value. Like many CEOs, the CEO of AT&T is a magician whose best trick is making people believe he is worth more than $55k a year.

A page from The first six books of the Elements of Euclid in which coloured diagrams and symbols are used instead of letters, by Oliver Byrne; 1847; W. Pickering, London.


beating super-bacteria with super viruses, out in the park snow is falling wallpaper, the tragedy of police over reaction

Just a few days ago Bloomberg ran this story – Superbugs Will March Unless Antibiotic Behavior Changes. As we use, over use and develop new antibiotics, bacteria has shown a remarkable ability to evolve resistance to those antibiotics. Even if the use of broad spectrum antibiotics were used less ( probably a good idea in regards the broad spectrum drugs like Zithromax or Zmax), as Bloomberg suggests, new superbugs would still continue to evolve, abet at a slower pace. One possible strategy is to get the bugs before they infect people – Beating Superbugs with a High-Tech Cleanser

Now Dr. Udi Qimron of the Department of Clinical Microbiology and Immunology at Tel Aviv University’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine has developed an efficient and cost-effective liquid solution that can help fight antibiotic-resistant bacteria and keep more patients safe from life-threatening infections. The solution is based on specially designed bacteriophages — viruses that infect bacteria — that can alter the genetic make-up of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. “We have genetically engineered the bacteriophages so that once they infect the bacteria, they transfer a dominant gene that confers renewed sensitivity to certain antibiotics,” explains Dr. Qimron.

The solution, recently detailed in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology, could be added to common antibacterial cleansers used on hospital surfaces, turning resistant bacteria into sensitive bacteria. It’s easy to prepare, easy to apply, and non-toxic, Dr. Qimron notes. He estimates that one liter of the growth medium — the liquid in which the bacteriophages are grown — will cost just a few dollars.


MIT’s Technology Review did a report on bacteriophages or microphages a few years ago. They have shown a remarkable ability to kill some of the most tenacious bacteria or render them susceptible to antibiotics. I cannot find the link, but a couple of years ago there was a middle aged man that had some kind of flesh eating bacteria that no traditional medical treatment would stop. he ordered some bacteriophages by mail order – apparently they are sold over the counter in some European countries. He applied the tiny critters to his leg – where some of his flesh had been eaten down to the muscle. Within a few days his wound started to shrink and heal.

snow, winter, soft light, city park

out in the park snow is falling wallpaper

H/t to here for this story – Botched raid costs Minneapolis $1 million

The Minneapolis City Council approved a $1 million settlement Friday after a botched drug raid in 2010 in which an officer threw a “flash-bang” grenade into a south Minneapolis apartment burning the flesh off a woman’s leg.

The payout to Rickia Russell, who suffered permanent injuries, was the third largest payout for alleged Minneapolis police misconduct on record.

Flash grenades are intended to distract and intimidate, not to injure people, but during the raid the device rolled under the legs of Russell, who was seated on a sofa, and exploded. The police were looking that day for a drug dealer, narcotics and a firearm, but found nothing.

Russell, now 31, suffered third- and fourth-degree burns that caused a deep indentation on the back of one leg, requiring skin grafts from her scalp. She is still undergoing physical therapy.

“What happened in this case was an accident,” Minneapolis city attorney Susan Segal said in a statement. “It’s very unfortunate that Ms. Russell suffered serious injuries, however, accidents like this are rare.”

Yet incidents of fires, injuries and even deaths caused by the devices have led to costly settlements and policy changes in cities nationwide, including Minneapolis, where a 1989 fire started by a police grenade killed two people.

Russell’s attorney, Bob Bennett, said that Russell did not want to comment publicly, but said “she was glad to have some closure.”

On the night of Feb. 16, 2010, 18 officers were executing a search warrant on the apartment at 5753 Sander Drive based on a tip that narcotics were being sold at the address by someone named David Conley.

In what Bennett called “a cascading series of errors,” a Minneapolis police SWAT team smashed down the door with a battering ram without warning, when the search warrant police had obtained required officers to announce themselves before entering.

Police had applied for a “no-knock” warrant but did not get it, Bennett said.


No police officer was charged with misconduct. A tip that someone may have had drugs and one firearm necessitates a SWAT team. No surveillance to see if the tip had some validity. No minimum amount of force was even contemplated. The seemingly automatic use of a flash grenade. Nothing about the events leading up to the raid or the raid itself seem to make sense in proportion to either the supposed crime or the thin bit of evidence used to get any kind of warrant. It appears that the one guiding frame of mind at work was maximum response.

black and white driftwood

ancestors had sex with mysterious human cousins, elizabeth warren and adam smith on the same page, extreme arrogance and race baiting

Ancestors had sex with mysterious human cousins – Genes show Neanderthals weren’t only ones we mated with, especially in East Asia

Neanderthals weren’t the only ancient cousins that humans frequently mated with, according to a new study that finds that East Asian populations share genes with a mysterious archaic hominin species that lived in Siberia 40,000 years ago.

This group, the Denisovans, is known only by a few bone fragments: A finger bone, a tooth and possibly a toe bone, which is still undergoing analysis. The Denisovans likely split off from the Neanderthal branch of the hominin family tree about 300,000 years ago, but little else is known about their appearance, behavior or dress. But just as researchers have learned that ancient humans and Neanderthals mated, they’ve also found genetic echoes of the Denisovans in modern residents of Pacific islands, including New Guinea and the Philippines.

It is my understanding that the genetic differences between the ancestors of modern humans, Neanderthals and Denisovans are so small that this would be like sub-species ( not a derogatory term) mating with each other. Modern non-African humans have about a 2.5 percent fraction of Neanderthal ancestry while Southeast Asians have around 1 percent difference from their Denisovan-related ancestors. Wouldn’t that make modern humans ultimately mutts. Since genes have a tendency to be selected for advantages they contribute from one generation to the next, this inter-sub-spcies breeding was probably to modern human evolution’s benefit.

Renaissance era study of a left hand

Thompson Found GUILTY On Both Counts

A jury has found Spokane police officer Karl Thompson guilty of using excessive force in the 2006 death of Otto Zehm in a north Spokane convenience store. Thompson was also found guilty of lying to investigators about the fatal confrontation. Thompson, 64, was the first officer at the scene the night police beat, hog-tied and tased Zehm inside a North Spokane Zip Trip in 2006.

Zehm died two days later. When he arrived at the gas station Thompson said he saw Zehm entering the store. Thompson said he was under the impression Zehm may have robbed two women in car using a nearby ATM. That information later proved to be false. In closing arguments on Monday Federal Prosecutors said “this case is about a police officer who chose to strike first and ask questions later.”
Victor Boutros, U.S. Department of Justice Trial Attorney, said Zehm posed no threat to anyone. Boutros said Zehm was a regular at the Zip Trip who would often times go just to get a soda. Boutros said, “With his dying words, he (Zehm) never understood why the defendant had beat him: ‘All I wanted was a Snickers.’

Police work does have a tendency to attract people who have authoritarian personality issues. I’m not sure what police departments can do other than better psychological screening.

landscape, ocean, sea stacks

rocky beach horizon wallpaper

Apparently we have judges with similar issues – Texas Judge Beat 16-Year Old Disabled Daughter Repeatedly With Belt (Video)

A Texas family court judge and his wife are accused of beating their then-?16-?year old cerebral palsy-?disabled daughter in her bedroom, with what appear to be leather belts. In a video that lasts over seven minutes, recorded by the daughter and uploaded to YouTube, the father, Aransas County Texas, Court-?At-?Law Judge William Adams, and his wife, can be seen apparently beating the daughter and lambasting her for downloading music off the Internet.

“It happened years ago… I apologized. It’s not as bad as it looks on tape,” Judge William Adams has said about the video, recorded in 2004. The daughter, Hillary Adams, says she recorded the video because she had been beaten before, and the beatings were escalating.

The video, below, is extremely graphic in its violence and difficult to watch. The father literally whips his daughter many times, without much emotion after the first few times, and then minutes later the child’s mother enters the room with a belt and continues the beating.

“My father’s harassment was getting really bad, so I decided to finally publish the video that I had been sitting on for seven years,” the daughter, Hillary, told the media.

For whatever reason that judge still has his job. Judge Adams has some incredible powers of denial. Despite the video he claims that children’s testimony cannot be trusted since children tend to over embellish what they remember. That is true sometimes, this doesn’t happen to be one of those times.

Some nice research by Terrance Heath on the tube sock shaking fear Elizabeth Warren ( candidate for the Senate from Massachusetts) instills in far Right conservatives and libertarians. Adam Smith is thought of by many as the father of modern capitalism. A careful reading does find that he, like their hero Friedrich Hayek was not the social-Darwinist and pure capitalist that they believe both to be – What Would Adam Smith Say?

What Warren said that caused many a case of hyperreflexia,

“You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police-forces and fire-forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory — and hire someone to protect against this — because of the work the rest of us did.

“Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea. God bless — keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is, you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.”

What Father Capitalism said,

“The woolen-coat, for example … is the produce of the joint labor of a great multitude of workmen. The shepherd, the sorter of the wool, the wool-comber or carder, the dyer, the scribbler, the spinner, the weaver, the fuller, the dresser, with many others, must all join their different arts in order to complete even this homely production. How many merchants and carriers, besides, must have been employed in transporting the materials from some of those workmen to others who often live in a very distant part of the country! How much commerce and navigation in particular, how many ship-builders, sailors, sail-makers, rope-makers, must have been employed in order to bring together the different drugs made use of by the dyer, which often come from the remotest corners of the world!”(1)

There is a clear connection between the two passages. Both explain the cooperation required of businesses to build and sustain a functioning economy, cooperation with both government and workers. Both explain the importance of economic community.

In the reality based community is well known that China is a nuclear power and has been since 1964. Herman Cain, master of knowledge and all the uterus in the world is afraid China might develop a nuclear arsenal. I sometimes struggle to keep up with all the breaking news, but I am not 47 years behind the news curve.

“The Daily Show” takes on Ann Coulter’s race-baiting logic(Video). In a high school English class, or history where you are assigned to do a paper the form will be composed of an opening statement or thesis. That will be followed by rational and empirical evidence to prove your thesis. Coulter has made quite a nice living, if a life lacking in honor and integrity by ignoring the rule about evidence. To readers who have a tendency toward intellectual laziness I highly recommend conservatism and the right-wing brands of libertarianism. You never have to bother with rational justification. Simply stating sentences over and over again is all the magic required to make those statements true. There is no formal philosophy of hubris, but this style of public debate is based on what the speaker feels is their innate superiority over overs. They said it, that makes it true. Though I would warn against flying in any planes designed with such mental gymnastics or undergoing any surgery based on this approach to facts.

Green Day – Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)