July 29, 2014

Wednesday Open Thread: African-American Civil War Spies

HAPPY HUMP DAY P.O.U.!

We continue our series on African-American Civil War Spies

JOHN SCOBELL

scobell

Illustration of John Scobell and Allan Pinkerton (Credit: Ebony Magazine)

As Union forces grew and better organization was required, Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan was given command of the Army of the Potomac defending Washington. He brought with him as his chief of intelligence Allan Pinkerton, who had gained some fame running a Chicago detective agency. Pinkerton, often using the alias Major Allen or E. J. Allen, had responsibilities for collecting intelligence on the enemy and for counterintelligence activities against enemy agents. Most of the intelligence he collected resulted from an extensive and well-organized debriefing program of people crossing over from Confederate lines. These informants included merchants with business ties on both sides, deserters from the Confederate Army, prisoners of war, civilians traveling to escape the fighting or for other personal business, and former slaves. While each group provided valuable information, Pinkerton soon discovered that the former slaves were the most willing to cooperate and often had the best knowledge of Confederate fortifications, camps, and supply points.

Pinkerton instructed his operatives to focus their efforts on debriefing former slaves. He also directed them to be on the lookout for former slaves who had some education or seemed particularly skilled in observing and remembering military details. Once these individuals were identified, they were sent to Pinkerton for further assessment and evaluation. From these black Americans, Pinkerton recruited a small number for intelligence collection missions behind Confederate lines.

The best known of these Pinkerton agents was John Scobell, recruited in the fall of 1861. Scobell had been a slave in Mississippi but had been well educated by his owner, a Scotsman who subsequently freed him. He was quick-witted and an accomplished role player, which permitted him to function in several different identities on various missions, including food vendor, cook, or laborer. He often worked with other Pinkerton agents, sometimes playing the role of their servant while in the South. He worked with Timothy Webster, perhaps Pinkerton’s best agent, on missions into Virginia and also with Mrs. Carrie Lawton, Pinkerton’s best female operative.

Scobell is credited with providing valuable intelligence on Confederate order of battle, status of supplies, and troop morale and movements. Frequently, while the white Pinkerton agents elicited information from Confederate officials and officers, Scobell would seek out leaders in the black community and collect their information on local conditions, fortifications, and troop dispositions.

Scobell often used his membership in the “Legal League,” a clandestine Negro organization in the South supporting freedom for slaves, to acquire local information. League members sometimes supported Scobell’s collection activities by acting as couriers to carry his information to Union lines. On at least one occasion, as described by Pinkerton, Scobell protected the escape of Mrs. Lawton from pursuing Confederate agents. 5 He worked for Pinkerton from late 1861 until the intelligence chief closed down his operations in November 1862, when McClellan was replaced by Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside.

(SOURCE: CIA.gov)

Read More About John Scobell in The Spy of the Rebellion by Allan Pinkerton:

  • crazycanuck

    Good Morning POU. Have a great one. You all already have me laughing

    Pragmatic Obots ‏@PragmaticObot4m

    @BlackEaglePower I think Cornel West children need to come get their daddy.

    • rikyrah

      LOL

    • Admiral_Komack

      What did Corny do now?

  • TresL

    Brought this over from CamilleCamille’s post from last night:

    If you have a moment, please watch this video from the African First Ladies Summit hosted by the George W. Bush Institute in Tanzania.

    Mrs Obama has been invited into the makeshift den of wolves (Africa edition) and is participating in a chat with Laura Bush moderated by Cokie Roberts.

    (Cherie Blair -the um, liberal wife of the um, liberal Tony Blair, is there in the audience as great friend and supporter of Laura!)

    It’s really interesting to observe Cokie Roberts’ shock at just how easily relaxed and incredibly smart, witty, gracious, kind, genuine, generous, insightful, fun, inclusive and all around amazing, Mrs Obama is — even in the company of some really hostile folks who’ve managed to extend their ideological hate and contempt of her husband to her – and in such a personal way–

    Mrs Obama effortlessly charms and captivates this audience – and with such grace and humility, but certain assuredness–

    She stops to compliment her host often and even compliments and includes the African first ladies present in the audience – making them feel very much a part of the conversation. She chats with them and doesn’t talk down to them – she isn’t condescending or chest-thumping — And she very easily connects with, includes and engages them in the conversation as equals – and in their shared roles and experience as wives, mothers and First Ladies–

    http://new.livestream.com/acco

    It was also interesting to observe Laura Bush; She came off often as a tad spiteful, insecure and a bit threatened by Mrs Obama — and intent on not being overshadowed or shown up — or maybe that’s just how and who she is and we just never noticed — because we never really bothered or cared to observe-

    Laura kept revising history and indulging in a bit too much self-praise– which to so many of us who were paying attention during those 8 years, was something of a surprise -especially to find out that Laura was according to Laura, a very visible and hands-on first lady — who knew–?!

    And who knew Laura yapped so much?! And so consumed with such absurd self-congratulations too!

    Isn’t the frequent right-wing line of attack on Mrs Obama the idea that she isn’t as quiet, demure, invisible and hands-off as Laura Bush was–?

    LOL. So much for that concept!

    Laura kept talking over Mrs Obama — and Cokie Roberts kept interrupting and cutting Mrs Obama off whenever she started to comment or share wise and insightful observations which kept the audience quite spellbound–

    Cokie and Laura quickly realized that even without trying, Mrs Obama was such a hit and completely stealing what was supposed to be Laura’s thnder and show—

    Never mind that Mrs Obama spent a great deal of time trying to make Laura feel comfortable – very generously giving her compliments and quite a bit of credit for stuff she didn’t even really have to–

    I suspect that in typical fashion, Cokie Roberts and their clique had just as they do with President Obama, spent so much time creating and buying into their convenient caricature of Mrs Obama –

    I suspect they’d invited her – or quite frankly, their caricatured version of her – to participate in this summit hoping to show her up and boost Laura Bush–

    But then the real-life amazing woman that is Michelle Obama shows up — LOL.

    Elegant, sweet, brilliant, gracious, sincere, thoughtful, comfortable in her own skin, confident, warm, unassuming, caring, unaffected, engaging, captivating—

    Someone really should have told Cokie them–

    And even in spite of her grueling, jet-lagged, sleep-deprived, jam-packed schedule, Mrs Obama came, she saw and she effortlessly and thoroughly conquered—

    And in the end Cokie was left deflated — and quite in awe — as she quickly brought the chat to an end—

    Mrs Obama wasn’t supposed to come off looking this good and even without trying—

    Start watching from 34:16 if you don’t want to see the initial parts–

    And I must say just how interesting -and not in a good way – it is to see that the Bush staff who made up a huge part of the audience (only 6 African first ladies showed up by the way), still bear such a grudge and are still too petty to briefly put aside their silly partisanship to applaud Mrs Obama who took time out of her schedule to help boost their event–

    They were still doing that really childish thing of only applauding and cheering exaggeratingly loudly and only for the Bushes exactly as they did at the opening of the Bush library in Dallas. Pitiful -

    Even the African first ladies seemed surprised at how pleasant and generous Mrs Obama was to Laura; you could tell some of them were sort of cowered and thought they had to take sides and play down their excitement at seeing Mrs Obama – for fear of offending or incurring the wrath of the Bushes who were hosting and feteing them–

    But it’s fair to say that none of us would have known about this event had Mrs Obama not participated.
    Reply

    TresL CamilleCamille • a minute ago
    Poor Laura trying to compete with Michelle retroactively is not a good look. Her revisionist history will not change the fact that as first lady she was virtually invisible. I vaguely recall her promoting the importance of reading given her profession as a librarian. I wish she would have promoted reading to that idiot husband of hers. It must gall her to see how popular Michelle is and how everyone, haters included, is interested in what she’s doing, saying and wearing. She had eight years to be a great and memorable first lady and she chose not to. The fact that she’s trying to make people believe she was a better first lady than she actually was reveals that she regrets she did not do more.

    • gn

      I love all of Camille’s remarks about the First Lady. There was a really really really stellar one a few weeks ago, about how the First Lady’s partnership was so crucial to the Presidents successes. Going to try to find it, because it was posted late but it was one of the most beautiful comments.

    • rikyrah

      That comment was absolutely fabulous and on point…thanks for posting it again.

    • jziglar

      I think Laura Bush was the most silent, unnoticed first lady in modern times. Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton, Nancy Reagan, Rosiland Carter, Lady Bird Johnson, Jackie Kennedy, etc. were all more noticeable and had a far greater impact on their husband’s careers.

      I can recall other first ladies talking about issues near and dear to them in forums all on their own. But Laura hardly said anything and the only time you saw her was when she was at her husband’s side.

    • Town

      Cokie Roberts is the asshole who was mad Obama was vacationing in exotic Hawaii instead of Myrtle Beach or someplace.

      Laura Bush is just mad SHE’S not First Lady anymore, she’s been forgotten & she’s trying to reclaim her shine. She can have a seat in the same corner she sat in when she was First Lady. Nobody will remember Laura Bush as First Lady because she didn’t do anything, she didn’t stand for anything, she didn’t set any trends.

      You’ll remember Michelle Obama for her style & grace.

      You’ll remember Hillary Clinton for the scandals & her political life outside Bill’s tenure.

      You’ll remember Barbara Bush for the big Wilma Flintstone pearls she always wore.

      You’ll remember Nancy Reagan for the WH parties, the astrologers, and Just Say No.

      You’ll remember Rosalyn Carter for wearing sweaters in the WH.

      You’ll remember Betty Ford for the Betty Ford Clinic.

      You’ll remember Pat Nixon just cuz she was married to Richard.

      You’ll remember Lady Bird Johnson because her name was Lady Bird and she also did gardening work.

      You’ll remember Jackie Kennedy b/c of her youth, glamour, fashion style & being the wife of the assassinated president.

      You will NOT remember Laura Bush for anything. You’ll remember George. You’ll remember the drunken twins. You’ll remember the Bush’s DOGS. You will NOT remember anything about Laura Bush.

      And that’s her OWN fault, not Michelle’s, W’s or anyone else’s. She’s the one who chose to fade into the background, she’s the one who chose to sit in the corner for 8 years. She’s an introverted person, so I get it. But don’t be mad/salty/put out because Michelle Obama’s outshining you…….you had your chance to shine and you chose to dim the lights.

      • rikyrah

        I will NEVER forget that bullshyt Myrtle Beach comment.

        • conlakappa

          I wrote in the previous thread that Cokie is every Southern woman who grew up in privilege yet seems to be pissed off. Is it because there’s a whit’s difference between her and the others? That they have access to nice things? That they can stand next to her and breath her rarefied air?

      • TresL

        PBO’s Hawaiian vacations has to be one of the most ignorant critiques ever. I remember there was a poll years ago that suggested a lot of people didn’t even know HI was one of the 50 states, which almost makes you understand why dumb Repubs don’t believe he was born in the USA. Also, what do most normal people do for Xmas? They go home to spend it with family and it’s something he’s done that predates his time in public life. It’s not PBO’s fault he was born in a beautiful tropical state where his sister still resides and where his mom and grandparents lived before they passed away. ODS is real. Let’s hope it’s terminal too.

      • PBomb

        I am always reminded of Barbara Bush whenever I look at the Quaker Oats box.

        • AxelFoley

          Oh, damn, LOLOLOLOL

        • conlakappa

          So.wrong. One of my colleagues has a great BB story. Well, great in the sense that it confirms all that you suspected about her character: when they were outfitting youngest son Marvin for grownup life,* she’d go around looking at houses for sale and take Millie with her. Millie would mark inside houses and her human would just leave whatever, not having any ounce of shame that her dog had just funked up someone’s home.

          *Including setting him up with Boston Chicken franchises.

          • TyrenM

            Conlakappa. I love your stories and I too can’t wait to read your book :)
            “Outfitting youngest son Marvin for grownup life.” “Millie would mark inside houses and her human would just leave whatever, not having any ounce of shame that her dog had just funked up someone’s home.”
            Lolol. Is that some East Coast or down south shit I ain’t up on?

          • conlakappa

            Ha! I’d have to triangulate on stuff I’ve heard about Marvin. I think he makes the previous occupant seem ambitious! He and I were at UVa during some of the same time but I didn’t know him. What I know of him from there is from another white fraternity boy [didn't know him there either; met him in a professional setting years later. He also has juice on so-called liberals on the Hill that scorched my hair hearing it] and it’s not good. The guy I knew grew up a military child and poor. Easy to see why he’d have problems with Marvin, who walked around school like a prince. What, you don’t have parents who staked you with a house and chicken joints?!

          • PBomb

            How tragic and sad. Not shocking though.

  • gn

    Spandan cuts to the chase as per usual:
    Edward Snowden is a right wing, anti-government nutjob who has managed to become the hero of so many on the reactionary Left.

    #Boom

    From: “How the Professional Left’s Blind Obama Hatred Got them Played by a Far-Right Nutjob”

    http://www.thepeoplesview.net/2013/07/how-professional-lefts-blind-obama.html

  • gn

    ‏@BloombergNews
    BREAKING: ADP says U.S. added 188,000 jobs in June

    @AP
    BREAKING: Weekly applications for US unemployment aid fell to 343K last week, a sign of steady hiring.

  • gn

    Haven’t been happy with MoveOn of late (and still not), however, credit where due: I have to applaud them for standing with Rachel Jeantel.

    http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/stand-with-rachel-jeantel?source=s.icn.tw&r_by=2225598

  • Miranda

    Snowden’s asylum options dwindle

    (CNN) — Edward Snowden’s hopes of finding asylum from U.S. prosecution on espionage charges appeared to dim Tuesday as country after country denied his request or said he would have to find a way to travel to their territory to apply.

    While Bolivia and Venezuela seemed supportive, 11 of the 21 countries he’s applied to, including Ecuador and Iceland, have said they can’t consider his request until he shows up at one of their embassies or on their borders. Three — Brazil, India and Poland — have denied the request outright.

    And Bolivia said Tuesday the plane carrying its president, Evo Morales, was denied permission to land for refueling in either France or Portugal because of “unfounded” rumors that Snowden was aboard. Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca told Bolivian television that the jet made an emergency landing in the Austrian capital of Vienna and that Bolivia wanted an explanation from Paris and Lisbon.

    more here: http://www.cnn.com/2013/07/02/politics/nsa-leak/index.html

    • rikyrah

      BWA HA HA HA HA AH AH HA

    • Kennymack1971

      “The whole town’s laughing at me…silly fool”

      • AxelFoley

        HAHAHAHAHA

    • Town
      • conlakappa

        That’s what came to my mind too! “They’re all gonna laugh at you…”

        Who wants his stank presence now any way? My husband has been joking that even the Admiral Club at the Moscow airport is like, no, really, you have to go.

  • gn

    Why the beltway press=#fail:

    @HotlineJosh
    Axelrod argues history will judge health care law kindly in @MorningJoe appearance. Similar to Bush arg on Iraq war.

    • Kennymack1971

      Yeah access to healthcare is totally the same as lying us into a war of choice behind nonexistent WMDs. The stupid burns.

  • rikyrah

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

  • rikyrah

    Go behind the scenes with President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama as they visit Robben Island. From the 1960s through the 1990s, this Island housed a maximum security prison. Many of the prisoners there were activists who worked to bring down Apartheid, the South African government’s policies that discriminated against people of color including Nelson Mandela and current South African President Jacob Zuma. Narrated by the First Lady, Michelle Obama. June 30, 2013

  • Miranda

    Open Season on Black Voting Has Officially Started
    —By Kevin Drum | Tue Jul. 2, 2013 7:57 PM PDT

    Josh Marshall:

    It is simply amazing to watch how Southern states, ruled by Republicans, have moved so quickly, after the Supreme Court’s VRA decision to push through a series of new laws the only aim of which is to limit black voting: voter ID laws, ends to same day registration, early voting, weekend voting. Here’s yet another example from North Carolina. But we noted numerous other examples within a day of the decision coming down.

    Okay, sure, what did I expect? I’ve been writing about this for years. Everything I’ve written and so many other better than I could has predicted this. But still, to see it, it’s another thing again. This is supposed to be the 21st century. And yet, in a broad swath of the society we’re in an ersatz version of the late 19th century.

    more here: http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2013/07/open-season-black-voting-has-officially-started

  • creolechild

    Good morning POU.

    Antelope Valley civil rights leaders urge Baca to make reforms

    [....] Federal officials are demanding $12.5 million in payments to residents who the federal government found were victims of harassment and intimidation.[....] The leaders described a climate in which African Americans and Latinos lived in constant fear of being arrested or having their cars confiscated because of their ethnicity. They asked the Sheriff’s Department to form a citizen’s review board and to remove the “rogue individuals” who mistreated blacks and Latinos.[....]

    Read more: http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-sheriff-civil-rights-victims-20130703,0,1246462.story

    H/T Frank Shyong

  • gn

    @markknoller
    TARP update: US Treasury has so far recovered $271 billion from its bank bailout program compared to $245 billion initially invested.

  • rikyrah

    An Early Warning About Hernandez
    Before the NFL, a Personality Test .

    Shortly before the 2010 NFL Draft, a scouting service that prepares confidential psychological profiles of players for NFL teams found that Aaron Hernandez enjoyed “living on the edge of acceptable behavior” and cautioned that he could become “a problem” for his team.

    On one personality test, Hernandez, who was arrested last week on murder and weapons charges, received the lowest possible score, 1 out of 10, in the category of “social maturity.”

    The evaluation, which was done before the New England Patriots selected Hernandez in the fourth round of the 2010 draft, was produced by a North Carolina scouting service called Human Resource Tactics.

    The one-page form, reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, includes scores Hernandez received on several tests routinely administered to NFL draft prospects. The results of these tests are kept confidential.

    The Patriots declined to comment on whether they had seen the report before drafting Hernandez. Hernandez’s attorney, Michael Fee, didn’t return messages seeking comment.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324436104578581772197037576.html?mod=wsj_share_tweet

  • rikyrah

    Obama’s Brilliant Move Deals A Blow To The GOP’s 2014 Hopes

    By: Jason Easley
    Jul. 2nd, 2013

    With one brilliant political masterstroke, the Obama administration pulled the rug out from Republicans who were hoping to run against Obamacare in 2014.

    An innocent looking blog post at the Department of the Treasury has turned the GOP’s strategy for the 2014 election on its ear. Mark J. Mazur wrote, “The Administration is announcing that it will provide an additional year before the ACA mandatory employer and insurer reporting requirements begin. This is designed to meet two goals. First, it will allow us to consider ways to simplify the new reporting requirements consistent with the law. Second, it will provide time to adapt health coverage and reporting systems while employers are moving toward making health coverage affordable and accessible for their employees. Within the next week, we will publish formal guidance describing this transition.”

    Republicans have been telegraphing since they lost the 2012 election that they intended to run against the employer mandate. John Boehner mentions Obamacare every week when he meets with the media for a reason. Republicans at both the congressional and state level can’t run on their economic records. They can’t run on their legislative records. Republicans were planning on making 2014 a replay of 2010 by focusing on Obamacare, but the White House kneecapped them with an announcement that nobody expected.

    Republican former CBO director, Douglas Holtz-Eakin explained why this announcement was both a stunner and deviously brilliant, “Democrats no longer face the immediate specter of running against the fallout from a heavy regulatory imposition on employers across the land. Explaining away the mandate was going to be a big political lift; having the White House airbrush it from the landscape is way better. It helps with ObamaCare in other ways as well. The administration was flailing to find high-profile allies (e.g., the National Football League) to advertise the wonders of ObamaCare. In a single masterstroke it has given every company a reason to explain its existence (“don’t worry, you’ll be fine in the exchanges”) and created a de facto advertising campaign of enormous scale and reach. Deviously brilliant.”

    http://www.politicususa.com/2013/07/02/obamas-brilliant-move-deals-blow-gops-2014-hopes.html

    • conlakappa

      Flailing? They still don’t get strategy, eyes on the prize, and having the long term in view.

  • creolechild

    Bald eagle population expected to set record in state

    [....] This year’s eagle population — measured by the number of known nesting pairs — is expected to top the record of 1,337 pairs of birds last year, according to the Department of Natural Resources.[....] This is the 41st year that Wisconsin has conducted an annual eagle count — the longest such ongoing count in the country. Populations of osprey, another fish-eating bird of prey, also have been on the rise.

    The surge in eagles — and their spread across the state — presents a far different picture than the landscape of the early 1970s. That was
    before the pesticide DDT was banned. The chemical thinned eggshells and decimated eagle reproduction. In 1973, the DNR was able to find just 108 breeding pairs.[....]

    Read more: http://www.jsonline.com/news/wisconsin/bald-eagle-population-expected-to-set-record-in-state-b9926547z1-210664231.html

    H/T Lee Bergquist

  • rikyrah

    Media Tries to Blame the Color of Obama’s Skin for GOP’s Congressional Failure

    By: Sarah Jones
    Jul. 2nd, 2013

    When explaining why the 113th Congress is an absolute historic fail legislatively, NBC first quoted the very conservative John Samples saying the fail comes from how divided we are, and then proceeded to blame the re-election of the first African-American President for the “divided country”, among other social changes.

    This narrative sounds very Republican, seeing as it lets Republicans off of the hook for doing their job. So, somehow Obama’s skin color is partly responsible for turning Republican lawmakers into inept clowns who might be funny if only they weren’t so dangerously extreme.

    Instead of admitting the reality that Republicans are focusing on investigating Obama for fictional scandals rather than legislating — as they were directed to do by the conservatives at Heritage Action, Republicans blame the lack of action on the “divided country”.

    John Samples of the libertarian Cato Institute instructed NBC, “The country is pretty divided in a lot of different ways, and [Congress] not doing things reflects those divisions.”

    ………………………….

    Wait, okay, how does Obama’s skin color play into House Republicans’ refusal to engage in the budget reconciliation process? How did the SCOTUS decision regarding gay marriage, which just happened last week, keep Republicans from passing a jobs bill? How are minorities’ growing numbers keeping Republicans from addressing our crumbling infrastructure? Are jobs and the economy only Democratic, liberal concerns now? Or is NBC admitting that if Republicans can’t impose their cultural problems on the rest of the country, they will refuse to legislate?

    It’s fine to suggest that the “divide” is responsible for a failure on social issues, but in fact, Republicans in the House have excelled in jamming through extreme social issue legislation. The fact that this legislation is so extreme due to the gerrymandering of House districts as to never get passed by the Senate is not the fault of a “divided” nation, but rather, the fault of a party chock full of fringe extremists who are out of touch with the rest of the country.

    No, Congress’ failure can’t reasonably be blamed on the color of Obama’s skin, or minorities, or gay marriage.

    http://www.politicususa.com/2013/07/02/republicans-blame-color-obamas-skin-congressional-failure.html

    • Town

      Congress’ inability to act IS because of Obama’s skin color. They don’t like the black guy being POTUS and they don’t want to see that Negro succeed.

      • conlakappa

        That might be giving them cover but their inability to do anything is because the ruling party of the House is itself divided. They also suck at their jobs and are barely at work–one of the first things they did when they returned to power was returned to a shortened work week.

        • Town

          I’m not talking about Republicans…..there’s a WHOLE LOT of Democrats who don’t want the black guy to succeed….BLACK Democrats included.

          • conlakappa

            Then I’d put them in the suck-at-their-jobs pile too. Like the President, they could be putting their heads down and working hard [think Pelosi when she's in full "this is going to happen, with or without you" mode] but they are there for all of the perquisites that come with the job.

  • Miranda

    Frederick Douglass: New Tea Party hero?!

    The right is now holding abolitionist Frederick Douglass as a symbol of self-reliance and need for small government
    BY SEAN COONS

    Last week, Frederick Douglass — who escaped slavery at 20 years old and whose words would help bring an end to the institution — was honored with a statue in the U.S. Capitol’s Emancipation Hall in Washington, D.C. In the 1960s and ’70s, far left activists like Eldridge Cleaver of the Black Panther Party and Angela Davis of Communist Party USA incorporated Douglass’ call to agitation in their various causes’ platforms. Yet in a fascinating turnaround, the brilliant abolitionist, writer and orator is developing a new – and perhaps, unexpected – political identity: Tea Party hero.

    The recent rise in interest in Douglass by conservatives stems from their belief that his life epitomizes the self-reliance they champion, and his writings help provide justification for small government. It may be surprising to some that the fiery, black radical abolitionist of the 19th century, who once called Fourth of July celebrations “a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages,” could be inspiring to a Tea Party patriot. Or that social conservatives could find common cause with the man who bitterly attacked America’s Christianity as “a lie.” But that is exactly what is happening.

    more here: http://www.salon.com/2013/07/03/frederick_douglass_new_tea_party_hero/

  • rikyrah

    North Carolina ‘trying to pull a Texas’ on reproductive rights
    By Steve Benen
    Wed Jul 3, 2013 8:00 AM EDT

    Following up on our coverage from last night, developments in North Carolina unfolded quickly and by surprise as state Republican lawmakers launched a new effort to restrict reproductive rights in the state. They did so under highly unusual circumstances.

    The state Senate was poised to consider a foolish measure, predicated on a common far-right conspiracy theory, intended to undermine Sharia law in North Carolina courts. Late in the afternoon, however, Republican state senators launched a legislative ambush, quickly amending the Sharia law bill to include sweeping new anti-abortion measures, intended to close clinics and prevent Planned Parenthood from providing legal abortion services in the state.

    “They’re doing it quietly on Fourth of July weekend because they’ve seen what’s going on in Texas and know that women will turn out,” Melissa Reed, vice president of Public Policy for Planned Parenthood Health Systems said, referring to the protests surrounding a similar bill in Texas. She said Planned Parenthood and other abortion rights advocates had no idea the measure would be taken up Tuesday.

    NARAL Pro-Choice North Carolina executive director Suzanne Buckley added, “It seems to me that they’re trying to pass under cover of darkness legislation that would not otherwise be passed. They’re trying to pull a Texas.”

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/07/03/19265900-north-carolina-trying-to-pull-a-texas-on-reproductive-rights?lite

  • creolechild

    Massachusetts Catholic church pulls art museum funding over LGBT marriage

    A Catholic church in Massachusetts says it will no longer fund a
    local art museum after it responded to last week’s Supreme Court rulings in favor of same sex marriage by offering to host weddings for gay and lesbian couples.

    Rev. Stephen M. Gemme, pastor of the St. Bernadette Parish in Northborough, told the Telegram & Gazette that the church could no longer fund the Worcester Art Museum because it had used social media to express a message of support for the LGBT community.[....]

    Read more: http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/07/02/massachusetts-catholic-church-pulls-art-museum-funding-over-lgbt-marriage/

    H/T David Edwards

    • conlakappa

      Lo, have they settled all of their child-raping-priests lawsuits? Talk about trying to stake out moral high ground while standing on wet sand.

  • rikyrah

    Key ‘Obamacare’ provision delayed until 2015
    By Steve Benen
    Wed Jul 3, 2013 8:52 AM EDT

    News from the Obama administration about the employer mandate in the Affordable Care Act caused quite a stir last night, but it’s worth pausing to appreciate the extent of the impact.

    In a significant setback for President Obama’s signature domestic initiative, the administration on Tuesday abruptly announced a one-year delay, until 2015, in his health care law’s mandate that larger employers provide coverage for their workers or pay penalties. The decision postpones the effective date beyond next year’s midterm elections. [...]

    While the postponement technically does not affect other central provisions of the law — in particular those establishing health insurance marketplaces in the states, known as exchanges, where uninsured Americans can shop for policies — it threatens to throw into disarray the administration’s effort to put those provisions into effect by Jan. 1.

    Well, maybe. Let’s back up and recap what this policy is all about, because I think some of the reactions to the one-year delay have been a little excessive. Maybe it’ll be easier to tackle this in Q&A form.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/07/03/19266626-key-obamacare-provision-delayed-until-2015?lite

  • rikyrah

    NC Senator Nesbitt busts GOP for sneak attack in war on women
    By Will Femia
    Tue Jul 2, 2013 9:48 PM EDT.

    As Rachel reported tonight, Republicans in the North Carolina are trying to sneak a set of anti-abortion measures into a bill ostensibly about Sharia Law in family courts. Below is North Carolina State Senator Martin Nesbitt’s full reaction to the revelation of what his Republican colleagues are up to. Nesbitt said, in part:

    We have a state full of people out there that don’t even know we’re doing this. And let me tell you what I think you’re doing to them.

    I think the provision having to do with ambulatory care centers is going to do away with health care as we know it for women who need help. And there are going to be more of them, not less of them. When you force these things in the ambulatory surgical centers, planned parenthood has four centers in the state — none of them comply. Out of business. Nobody told us that in committee. I scurried around and got that information myself.

    That crowd that is going to descend on you when you get back down here is going to know it. It is a frontal attack on these facilities that offer women’s health care to women — things they need, mammograms, etc.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/07/02/19257205-nc-senator-nesbitt-busts-gop-for-sneak-attack-in-war-on-women?lite

  • rikyrah

    The war on voting in a post-VRA world
    By Steve Benen
    Tue Jul 2, 2013 4:18 PM EDT

    In North Carolina, thanks to Republican gains in the 2010 state elections, the congressional district lines already drawn in such a comically gerrymandered way, the state’s delegation bears little resemblance to the actual wishes of voters. In 2012, for example, a majority of North Carolinians voted for Democratic congressional candidates, and yet, only 4 of the state’s 13 members of the U.S. House are Democrats.

    But as the Los Angeles Times reports today, that’s apparently not quite good enough for GOP state policymakers. In a story Rachel has covered on the show, now that the district lines have been gerrymandered to ensure a Republican advantage regardless of voters’ wishes, the next step is to restrict voters’ access to their own democracy.

    The GOP chairman of the state Senate rules committee, Sen. Tom Apodaca, said he would move quickly to pass a voter ID law that Republicans say would bolster the integrity of the balloting process. GOP leaders also began engineering an end to the state’s early voting, Sunday voting and same-day registration provisions, all popular with black voters. Civil rights groups say the moves are designed to restrict poll access by blacks, who vote reliably Democratic

    Up until about a week ago, this would ordinarily be the point at which voting-rights advocates, civil rights activists, and anyone concerned with voter access and election fairness would say, “Whew, it’s a good thing the Voting Rights Act still exists. There’s no way these North Carolina’s measures will pass muster.”

    But all of that changed rather abruptly when five justices on the U.S. Supreme Court gutting the Voting Rights Act and gave GOP policymakers in North Carolina and elsewhere a green light to start restricting Americans’ access to the ballot box. It is open season on voting rights and Republicans throughout the South are seizing the opportunity.

    http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/07/02/19254258-the-war-on-voting-in-a-post-vra-world?lite

  • creolechild

    49 Years Ago Today, America Banned Whites-Only Lunch Counters – Posted on July 02, 2013

    The Supreme Court struck down “separate but equal” schools in 1954, later calling upon the south to end school segregation “with all deliberate speed.” Segregationists soon responded by standing in schoolhouse doors, deploying the National Guard to keep black children out of historically white schools, and launching campaigns of “massive resistance” against the Constitution. Ten years after Brown, the justices complained that “[t]here has been entirely too much deliberation and not enough speed.” The Supreme Court was unable, on its own, to break the back of Jim Crow.[....]

    Nearly half a century later, however, America has a very different Supreme Court than the one that decided Brown. Last week, five conservative justices tore out the backbone of the Voting Rights Act. One day earlier, they dealt two serious blows to civil rights in the workplace.[....] For these reasons, Americans’ civil rights are now in greater jeopardy than at any point since President Johnson signed his two great civil
    rights laws nearly 50 years ago.

    Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/07/02/2245221/49-years-ago-today-america-banned-whites-only-lunch-counters/?mobile=nc

    H/T Ian Millhiser

  • Miranda

    The Darko Ages

    How magical thinking and racism produced the NBA’s most notorious draft bust.
    By Jack Hamilton|Posted Thursday, June 27, 2013, at 8:45 AM

    Ten years ago, a young man destined to transform the sport of basketball was drafted into the NBA. He hadn’t played a single minute in college and had appeared on the cover of a national magazine before turning 18. “He’s going to own the game,” one scout declared.

    Darko Milicic did not own the game. A decade after he was chosen with the No. 2 pick in the 2003 NBA Draft, he’s not even playing in the NBA. The only player drafted above him, LeBron James, is celebrating his fourth league MVP and second NBA title; the three taken after him—Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, and Dwyane Wade—are likely bound for the Hall of Fame. Draft “busts” are a beloved sports talk topic, rich with the schadenfreude that comes when a bunch of people making a lot of money turn out to be terrible at their jobs. The common bust narrative decontextualizes its subject, with the bust seen as an isolated mistake as opposed to what it more often is—the product of widespread and deeply misbegotten consensus. The Detroit Pistons drafted Darko second overall because pretty much everyone would have drafted Darko second overall. In 2003, a scout told Sports Illustrated that one-fifth of NBA teams thought the young Serb would be better than LeBron himself.

    more here: http://www.slate.com/articles/sports/sports_nut/2013/06/darko_milicic_draft_how_magical_thinking_and_racism_produced_the_nba_s_most.html

    • Kennymack1971

      Joe Dumars…damn it man all you had to do was take Carmelo…smh.

  • creolechild

    Union Comes To An Agreement With Hyatt Hotels, Ending Four-Year Dispute

    On Monday evening, the hotel workers’ union UNITE HERE and the hotel chain Hyatt announced that they had come to a tentative agreement after a four-year battle. The agreement would give workers pay and benefits increases retroactive to 2009 and going forward to mid-2018, according to the Chicago Tribune.

    In total, about 5,000 workers would get a 4 percent annual raise in
    pay and benefits. The agreement would impact workers in Chicago, where Hyatt is based, as well as San Francisco, Honolulu, and Los Angeles. It will go into effect after union contracts are ratified by workers in those cities, according to the union’s statement.[....]

    Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2013/07/02/2245591/union-hyatt-agreement/

    H/T Bryce Covert

  • creolechild

    Bill protects volunteering physicians

    Two lawmakers, U.S. Senators John Thune (R-SD) and Bob Casey (D-PA), recently introduced legislation that could help expand the workforces at health centers across the nation. Employees and board members of health centers are currently covered under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA). Senate Bill 955, the Family Health Care Accessibility Act, would extend the FTCA to qualified volunteer healthcare providers.

    If providers want to help at a clinic now, they have to purchase their own liability insurance. [....] Currently the Federal Tort Claims Act covers providers volunteering at clinics that don’t charge patients for services. Those that charge are not covered. There is also a patchwork of coverage for some volunteers – some states and counties provide liability for entities within their boundaries.[....]

    Read more: http://www.healthcarefinancenews.com/news/bill-protects-volunteering-physicians

    H/T Tammy Worth

  • creolechild

    Michelle Obama to girls in Senegal: You are role models – Posted on June 27, 2013

    [....] Following welcoming remarks by Sall and the school’s principal, Obama spoke to the students about the importance of girls education in Senegal and throughout the world. “When girls are educated, their countries become stronger and more prosperous,” Obama said. “By making this critical investment in your education –- and in the future of your country –- you all are serving as role models not just for girls here in Senegal, but for girls in the United States and around the world.”

    [....] The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) estimates that while more than 70% of girls go to primary school, only 27% are enrolled in secondary school. The latest data from the World Bank show that the youth literacy rate for girls 15-24 in Senegal was just 56% in 2009.[....]

    Read more: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/06/27/michelle-obama-senegal/2464411/

    H/T Jennifer Lazuta

  • Miranda

    I agree with the reporter on the TJMS this morning – there COULD be a reality show of Detroit’s politicians. They stay doing reality-show type foolishness.

    Detroit City Council hesitates to replace embattled President Charles Pugh over legal concerns
    updated July 02, 2013 at 2:54 PM

    DETROIT, MI — City Council, down from nine to just six members, planned to vote in new leadership Tuesday, but postponed the vote over legal concerns.

    Council President Charles Pugh has been under fire for skipping out on work over the last two weeks as he faces a vague set of accusations surrounding an 18-year-old recent graduate of Detroit’s Douglass Academy for Young Men, where Pugh volunteered as a mentor.

    He requested a three-to-four-week medical leave last week, but was ordered to return to work or resign by Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, who eventually stripped Pugh of his pay and authority, effective July 7.

    more here: http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2013/07/detroit_city_council_hesitates.html

    • TyrenM

      Damn. Though I’ll never agree with this emergency manager bs Black Michigan is under…This shit right here, Kwame, Carolyn etc. make it real hard to argue on their behalf.

  • Miranda

    Blacks and the English Language: Damned If We Do, Damned If We Don’t
    Jul 2, 2013
    By Tonyaa Weathersbee, BlackAmericaWeb.com

    When it comes to our use of the English language, it seems that black people just can’t win, no matter what end of the mastery spectrum we fall on.

    This past week Rachel Jeantel, the last person to talk to murdered teenager Trayvon Martin, took the stand in the trial of George Zimmerman, a watchman who is accused of stalking and killing the unarmed 17-year-old in 2012 as he was walking from a convenience store in Sanford, Fla.

    Martin’s slaying and the circumstances that surrounded it – the fact that the black youth’s body lay in the morgue for three days before his family learned of his death and the fact that it took months for Zimmerman, who is white, to be charged – rubbed salt on the unhealed wounds of injustice and racism that still scar this nation’s soul.

    more here: http://blackamericaweb.com/142738/rachel-jeantel-george-zimmerman-trial/

  • creolechild

    The Value of Education

    Investing in education is the single most effective means of reducing poverty. Girls and boys who learn to read, write and count will provide a better future for their families and countries. With improved education, so many other areas are positively affected. In short, education has the power to make the world a better place. Click on a circle to learn more.

    http://globalpartnership.org/who-we-are/the-value-of-education/

    H/T Global Partnership for Education

  • creolechild

    New Type of Solar Panel Cools Buildings in Full Sunlight Without Electricity

    [....] A Stanford team has designed an entirely new form of cooling panel that chills even with the sun at high noon. Such a panel could vastly improve the daylight cooling of buildings, cars and other structures by reflecting sunlight back into the chilly vacuum of space.[...] A typical one-story, single-family house with just 10 percent of its roof covered by radiative cooling panels could offset 35 percent its entire air conditioning needs during the hottest hours of the summer.

    [....] Radiative cooling has another profound advantage over other cooling equipment, such as air conditioners. It is a passive technology. It requires no energy. It has no moving parts. It is easy to maintain. You put it on the roof or the sides of buildings and it starts working immediately.

    Read more: http://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/earth/science/new-type-of-solar-panel-cools-in-full-sunlight.html

    H/T Stanford News and GNN

  • Miranda

    Isn’t Facebook a private company? If they don’t want you on there, that’s there perogative…no?

    —————–

    Facebook responds to allegation it has a ‘problem’ with conservatives
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/erik-wemple/wp/2013/07/02/facebook-responds-to-allegation-it-has-a-problem-with-conservatives/?hpid=z8

    • conlakappa

      Maybe. The airwaves are still free though, right? I think FB has a problem with the hate speech and metaphoric violence that’s directed at their enemies. If they would bring it less hatey instead of complaining about fully airing their hate and grievances…

  • Miranda

    If he had slipped……….that would have been really bad

    VIDEO ORIGINAL — Robert Gill NFL player sprints Running Run Miles Per Hours 25 mph Fast Faster on treadmill Robert Gill, a professional football player for the Arizona Cardinals, is going viral with a video of himself running 25 miles per hour on a treadmill.
    Published on Jul 1, 2013

  • creolechild

    Women’s Rights Are Human Rights: Texas Men Explain Why So Many Are Joining The Fight

    More than 5,000 Texans gathered on the lawn of the State Capitol Monday to voice their outrage about stringent new abortion restrictions that, if passed, would make it virtually impossible for women in large swaths of the state to access reproductive care.[....]
    One hallmark of Monday’s massive protest was the number of men who joined the rally for women’s rights, some even driving from as far as Houston and Dallas to attend.

    Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, remarked to ThinkProgress that their presence showed “these are not just women’s issues, they’re family issues.” ThinkProgress spoke with over a half-dozen men at the rally about what it meant for them to be there and the importance of women’s rights being a universal issue. Here’s what they told us:[....]

    Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/health/2013/07/01/2242971/texas-men-womens-rights/

    H/T Scott Keyes

  • creolechild

    Former FBI Chief Will Investigate Oil Spill Claims Against BP

    Controversy intensified over one of BP’s (BP) several multibillion-dollar settlements following the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. A federal judge in New Orleans appointed former FBI Director Louis Freeh to investigate allegations of kickbacks at the court-supervised claims fund responsible for distributing money to business owners harmed by the spill.

    BP had requested the investigation after complaining about the payment of “fictitious” claims. Freeh, a private consultant and former federal judge, recently led a university-sponsored probe of the Pennsylvania State University football coach rape scandal.[....]

    Read more: http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-07-02/former-fbi-chief-will-investigate-oil-spill-claims-against-bp#r=nav-r-story

    H/T Paul M. Barrett

  • JB20005

    Today in the Trayvon Martin murder trial:

    George Zimmerman apparently lied to Sean Hannity that he never learned about “Stand Your Ground” in his college courses.

    Instructor testifies that not only was it covered, but George got one of the best grades in his criminal justice class.

    • gn

      h/t Keith Boykin, here’s what Zimmerman told Hannity last year:

      https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BOQVUMTCEAIkXXj.jpg

      • conlakappa

        Ooooh, does that mean the meat-headed Hannity will have to testify as a rebuttal witness?! I kid but you know that would be delicious for the D.A. to call him.

        • gn

          lol he doesn’t have to—that interview was played by the state for the jury yesterday.

          • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

            How hilarious would it be if the Hannity interview helps convict GZ?

          • conlakappa

            He would be sputtering and claiming that the transcript was a lie, the interview poorly edited, some such.

  • creolechild

    Shocking Chart Reveals True Beneficiaries of Obama’s Spending

    One of the pernicious sub-themes of the Obama presidency is the view among many Republicans that Obama has used the power of the federal purse to essentially purchase the votes of millions of his
    supporters—whether through generous Medicare or Medicaid payments, food stamps and unemployment checks, or (horror of horrors) the infamous “Obamaphones.” [....]

    [....] What it shows doesn’t mirror the Romney line of attack at all.
    Unemployment benefits are plummeting, partly (one assumes) because the economy is improving, but also because states such as North Carolina are eliminating federal unemployment benefits.
    On the other hand, the government under Obama has dramatically
    increased spending on veterans, a set of beneficiaries rarely mentioned by those who hew to the idea that Obama bought the election.

    Read more: http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-07-02/shocking-chart-reveals-true-beneficiaries-of-obamas-spending#r=nav-r-blog

    H/T Joshua Green

  • GreenLadyHere

    – -GOOD WEDNESDAY MORNTIN’ Sepia♥/POU FAM♥ – -***BIG HUG**—Sepia♥ –I have been in a body that USED the PINKERTON SERVICES. — -EARLY –C.I.A.!! — Woo! Hoo!

    – —☻-The best known of these Pinkerton agents was John Scobell, – –KUDOS!!
    ————☺HIGHLY QUALIFIED:Pinkerton soon discovered that the former slaves were the most willing
    to cooperate and often had the best knowledge of Confederate
    fortifications, camps, and supply points.

    – —— –☺IN “Da STRUGGLE” F’REALZ: –Scobell often used his membership in the “Legal League,” a clandestine Negro
    organization in the South supporting freedom for slaves, to
    acquire local information.

    – –THANK U Sepia♥ —THIS is FASCINATING [annd NEW] INFORMATION!

    ENJOY YOUR -SPECIAL TREAT. –B BLESSED 2-DAY♥

  • creolechild

    Youth Scholars Win Big in San Francisco! – Posted July 03, 2013

    Five students of the Young Black Scholars (YBS) program, (an educational activity of the 100 Black Men of Los Angeles), participated in the 100 Black Men of America’s National African American Challenge Bowl Competition held in San Francisco on June 10. In its fifteenth year, the competition is designed to test the knowledge of students in African and African American History, from the 15th Dynasty to modern times.

    The Senior High School Division (consisting of Christian Ralph, Darrin Cottrell, and Sunni James) and The Junior High School Division (consisting of Corrine Adams & Brianna Goodall) defeated more than 15 other teams through the local and national rounds of the competition and brought home both Championships.[....]

    Read more: http://youngblackscholars.com/site/index.php/news

    H/T Young Black Scholars

  • GreenLadyHere

    Sepia♥ –OOps! Missed THIS yesterday: —:>)

    —- Anthony Foxx officially sworn in as transportation secretary- -

    - ——–The Transportation Department says former Charlotte, N.C., Mayor Anthony Foxx has been sworn in as President Barack Obama’s new transportation secretary.
    Foxx was sworn in during a private ceremony with his wife and two
    children Tuesday at the department’s headquarters.
    The department says he’s spending his first day focusing on transportation safety and preparedness for hurricanes and severe weather.

    Foxx says under his tenure, safety will remain the department’s top priority. He says he’ll work on efficiency and infrastructure needed to make sure the nation’s transportation system works for future generations.
    THERE IS MORE. – —CONGRATULATIONS
    – —–***NODS @ MR. PRESIDENT –:>)***

    • Town

      Perhaps Pres. Obama is grooming a new generation of black leaders?

  • gn

    h/t dannie

    @AVD911
    ABC/WAPO Poll: Americans disagree with dismantling Sec4 of #VRA 51/33% http://www.langerresearch.com/uploads/1144a24SCOTUSDecisions.pdf

  • creolechild

    Mapping children’s chances

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-22688596

    H/T BBC

  • Miranda

    Axelrod says history will judge Obama healthcare law kindly
    By Justin Sink – 07/03/13 09:28 AM ET

    David Axelrod said Wednesday that he was “not concerned” about a delay in implementing a key provision of the president’s healthcare reform law, arguing that history would validate the legislation as successful.

    “We tend to judge these things along the way,” Axelrod, a former White House senior adviser and the architect of the president’s campaign, said during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “Every day in Washington’s Election Day. We tend to judge these things on the basis of what’s happening at that moment.

    Axelrod said that President Obama’s “view is that we ought to plow forward, make sure this can work, and we’re going to look back at it and it’s going to be our proudest accomplishment.”

    Read more: http://thehill.com/video/policy-areas/309085-axelrod-says-history-will-judge-healthcare-law-kindly#ixzz2XzvFVbze

    • TyrenM

      From Zander v. the Stupid:

      Ezra Klein argues (as he has for years now) that the Obamacare employer mandate was a terrible idea, always had been a terrible idea, and always will be. So he’s outright gleeful to see the Treasury Department direct the IRS to delay implementation of the mandate until 2015.

      The irony is that the worker-based employer mandate got passed in part because employers preferred it to a payroll-based mandate — a fact that puzzled Senate health aides at the time, but that they made peace with in order to pass the bill….

      There’s a better way, but it’ll never happen as long the GOP controls the House and an overwhelming majority of states. The bigger issue is Ezra’s wrong about the “lot of employers”. It’s one percent, people. One. Perspective.

      http://zandarvts.blogspot.com/2013/07/ezras-mandate-with-destiny.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ZVTS+%28Zandar+Versus+The+Stupid%29

      • Miranda

        Ezra has a hard time grappling with not being smarter than PBO. I know he takes pride in his wonkiness – they all do – but nevertheless, they aren’t smarter than “that one.”

        • conlakappa

          Or just not being smart. I think he wears glasses just to appear to be smarter than he is.

          • Miranda

            LOL!!

          • qosine

            I do, too!

          • conlakappa

            He’s the Sally Jessy Raphael of the blogging world!

            [Hope this doesn't post twice; Disqus ate my comment]

  • Miranda

    Reuters Insider ‏@ReutersInsider2m
    Egypt president’s national security adviser says military coup under way@Reuters

  • creolechild

    BRAVO, little ones! You deserve the credit for coming up with the idea and seeing it through to the end. Well done.

    An inner city neighborhood rallies around a long-neglected park

    [...] Before Coleman arrived on the scene, the park was piled with nearly 30 feet of rubble that had evidently been hauled in from building and demolition projects elsewhere in the city. The city’s social problems were dropped off there and forgotten too, along with the poor and the homeless: The area that became the playground was known as a place where people would wander off to overdose.

    It was the kids’ idea to turn the little clearing into a playground.
    To get things started, they first had to collect more than 15,000
    hypodermic needles that had been dumped on the grounds, Coleman says. The trash went to legitimate landfills, and workers felled invasive trees. The project then attracted $400,000 in donations from Playworld Systems, Kompan, Playcore, and Surface America.

    Today, in addition to the playground, the park boasts a natural
    amphitheater with a performance stage, providing excellent sightlines for crowds of up to 1,000 people. There’s also a weekend farmers market. Both venues were pioneered by neighborhood children, quietly subverting a dystopian drug bazaar that Coleman said didn’t quite have a response prepared for little kids having fun.[....]

    Read more: http://grist.org/cities/nature-gets-and-gives-a-leg-up-in-a-rough-urban-neighborhood/

    H/T David Richardson

  • GreenLadyHere

    Sepia — THIS SLEAZE!! —”WAR on WOMEN”– geesh! —
    —-Rubio Plans To Introduce Texas-Style Abortion Ban In The Senate – -
    ——— Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) is planning to introduce a bill in the Senate that would ban abortion after 20 weeks, the Weekly Standard reported on Wednesday. The bill is meant to mirror anti-abortion legislation passed last month by the House of Representatives.
    Under the plan reportedly being proposed by Rubio, a woman would be unable to get an abortion beyond 20 weeks gestation. And though the bill does include exceptions in cases of rape, incest, and if the life of the mother is at risk, it doesn’t appear to make exceptions if a woman’s health is at stake.

    The foundation for this legislation is a scientifically disputed idea
    that fetuses can feel pain after 20 weeks. It is the same motivation
    that has driven such bans at the state level. Most recently, Texas has taken the national spotlight for its proposed 20-week ban, and eight other states have passed ‘fetal pain’ laws.

    If Rubio really does move this bill forward, it would be more for the purposes of political showmanship than real policy-making. The bill doesn’t stand a chance of passing through the Democratically-controlled Senate.
    THERE IS MORE — — – -

    — —MORE H2O??? – LOL

  • gn

    @RT_com:
    BREAKING: #Egypt president’s national security adviser says military coup under way http://on.rt.com/wr11dk

    • http://pragmaticobotsunite.blogspot.com/ Sepia

      This won’t end well.

  • Alma98

    Morning all

    • qosine

      Good Morning, Alma!

      • Alma98

        Morning qosine.

        • qosine

          I saw your daughter’s – um – trees. lol
          She slept through a tornado? I’m like that. lol
          I know she’ll be glad when the movers arrive.
          It’ll feel more like home in SC.

          • Alma98

            She got the trees from facebook lol. She’ll be glad to get her furniture, she’s sleeping on an air mattress for now.

    • GreenLadyHere

      - – -GOOD WEDNESDAY MORNTIN’ -Alma98 -***BIG HUG*** :>) – -

      —-SUCH a –LOVELY SUN. – –It — WARMS my♥. :>) —

      SUNNY WISHES 2 U/YOURS- – -

      — —-STILL LAFFIN’ – - – -**HUGD** –2 “DAUGHTER” Alma. :>) – -

      • Alma98

        Morning GLH I needed the sun today it’s cold & rainy here. Daughter is doing good she’s just waiting on her furniture to be delivered from the movers.

        • GreenLadyHere

          Awww — -O.K. – — Alma♥ – - -:>) My pleasure 2 SHARE. :>)

          —LOL – -I ♥ HER!! –:>) — - Daughter says hugs to all at POU and a booty drop. lol

          — —YA MEAN —LIKE THIS?? – –ENJOY :>)

          THIS is 4 her. >) -

          • Alma98

            She’s a ham GLH always has been, that’s what I miss the most about her, her bubbly personality.

          • GreenLadyHere

            LOL — -I can C U 2♥ –2-gether — -A HOOT! :>)

    • rikyrah

      Good Morning, Alma:)

      • Alma98

        Hey rikyrah! It’s a dreary cold rainy day here. How bout you?

        • TyrenM

          Better weather is coming.

          • Alma98

            I don’t need it to be sweltering just a little bit warmer lol. I can’t take any more heatwaves.

        • rikyrah

          cloudy day here, but nice temperature

          • Alma98

            Daughter slept through a tornado. I told her girl you sleep so heavy you’re gonna wake up to a tree limb in your bedroom. I guess she has to get used to the different atmosphere.

  • creolechild

    Bikeshare rolls into Chi-Town, spreading transportation bliss

    [....] I rode a Divvy to all 68 of the new docking stations, and witnessed only a few problems, most of them minor. I also spoke to plenty of satisfied customers, and walked away from my 12-hour, 40-mile Odyssey mostly unscathed.[....] Divvy is part of several large-scale sustainable transportation initiatives in the works under Mayor Rahm Emanuel. These include a complete overhaul of the south branch Chicago Transit Authority’s Red Line, bus rapid transit projects, construction of 100 miles of protected and buffered bike lanes, and The Bloomingdale elevated greenway, which promises to put New York City’s High Line to shame.

    Chicago’s bikeshare program will eventually include 400 docking
    stations and 4,000 bikes, clunky-but-comfy three-speeds painted the powder-blue shade of the Chicago flag’s stripes. A $7 daily pass or $75 annual membership entitles users to an unlimited number of half-hour trips. To encourage turnaround, a $2 late fee applies for the next 30 minutes, with charges rising steeply for subsequent half hours. But it’s an open secret that you can keep a bike as long as you like without late fees, as long as you check it into a station every half hour.[....]

    Read more: http://grist.org/cities/bikeshare-rolls-into-chi-town-spreading-transportation-bliss/

    H/T John Greenfield

    • rikyrah

      where are the stops on the South and West Side?

      • creolechild

        This is what I found, there’s probably more information on the various transportation websites in Chicago.

        [....] The Red Ahead program is a comprehensive initiative for maintaining, modernizing, and expanding Chicago’s most-traveled rail line. The program includes three major improvement projects on the Red and Purple Lines between Linden terminal on the north and the proposed 130th Street terminal on the south.[....]

        http://www.transitchicago.com/redahead/

  • GreenLadyHere

    Sepia —–WATCHIN’ —-”JUSTICE 4 TM” — -

    –Here’s da DEAL Defense Attorney: — That RACIST MURDERER – –PROFILED –STALKED –annnd SHOT UNARMED TM[a BLAH young man].

    — –YA C!!!? — geesh!

  • Miranda

    *facepalm*
    ———————————-
    Texas State GOP Rep. Sanford Says Pro-Choice Demonstrators Are Chanting “Hail Satan”
    Batshit nuts in Texas

    Meanwhile, Texas State Republican Rep. Scott Sanford says pro-choice demonstrators at the State legislature are chanting “Hail Satan,” and forming human pentagrams. Yes, really.
    http://littlegreenfootballs.com/article/42217_Texas_State_GOP_Rep._Sanford_Says_Pro-Choice_Demonstrators_Are_Chanting_Hail_Satan

    Update: Sanford deletes tweets

    • Alma98

      The people that get elected to office just boggles the mind it really does.

  • Miranda

    I was only gonna watch the first half hour since I was recording this…ended up watching the whole thing. I really liked it…and black twitter had me cracking up through it too.

    —————————–

    BET delves into the drama that is ‘Being Mary Jane’
    Bill Keveney, USA TODAY6:16 p.m. EDT July 1, 2013

    Tuesday’s 90-minute film will set the stage for an eight-episode series in January.

    Mary Jane Paul is a successful, single black woman,but the woman who created her says there’ssomething universal about her that everyone will understand.

    “She’s human. That’s what I wanted to show, (that) this woman is a person that we all can relate to,” says Mara Brock Akil, the creator of Being Mary Jane, a BET movie airing Tuesday (10:30 p.m. ET/PT) that will become the cable network’s first original drama series with an eight-episode run due in January.

    more here: http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/tv/2013/07/01/being-mary-jane-bet/2479525/

    • rikyrah

      this is a show made for Black twitter..LOL

  • Miranda

    Pic from Reuters of what’s happening right now in Egypt:

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BOQzFpgCQAIoc9z.jpg:large

    • creolechild

      This is what a march on Washington should look like…

  • GreenLadyHere

    Sepia – —Da “AXE” — -SPEAKS: – —:>)

    – - – -Axelrod says history will judge Obama healthcare law kindly – –
    - – —David Axelrod said Wednesday that he was “not concerned” about a delay in implementing a key provision of the president’s healthcare reform law, arguing that history would validate the legislation as successful.

    “We tend to judge these things along the way,” Axelrod, a former White House senior adviser and the architect of the president’s campaign, said during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “Every day in Washington’s Election Day. We tend to judge these
    things on the basis of what’s happening at that moment.

    Axelrod said that President Obama’s “view is that we ought to plow forward, makesure this can work, and we’re going to look back at it and it’s going to be our proudest accomplishment.”
    THERE IS MORE —— TRUTH!! :>)-

    — -WELL DONE – –”Da AXE” :>) – -

  • Miranda

    Mary Fitzgerald ‏@MaryFitzger14m
    BBC Arabic correspondent cites Egypt army sources saying Morsi is not under house arrest but is currently a “guest” of the army…

    • Alma98

      Wha! Huh what’s the difference?

    • rikyrah

      ‘guest of the Army’
      LOL

      • TyrenM

        You’re hear on my time…

      • AxelFoley

        LOL, that’s like being the guest of the mafia.

  • GreenLadyHere

    Sepia – –MR. PRESIDENT – -CALLED President Morsi – yesterday –

    – — –
    Obama Calls Embattles Egyptian President Morsi

    – — – –President Barack Obama is encouraging embattled Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi (MOHR’-see) to respond to concerns being voiced by throngs of protesters seeking his removal from office.

    The White House confirmed in a statement Tuesday that Obama called Morsi on Monday while traveling in Africa. The call came as Egypt’s military said Morsi must meet the demands of millions of protesters who have taken to the streets.

    The statement said Obama told Morsi that the United States is committed to the democratic process in Egypt and does not support any single party or group. The statement also said Obama underscored to Morsi that the current crisis can only be resolved through a political process.

    Obama also told Morsi he’s particularly concerned about violence in the demonstrations, especially sexual assaults against women. -
    THERE IS MORE – — – — WORD from —”the WISE”. . . :>)

  • Miranda

    Oh looky! Per Rasmussen (that honorable polling operation don’t cha know)……..its you COLOREDS that are the real racists.
    —————————-
    More Americans View Blacks As Racist Than Whites, Hispanics

    Americans consider blacks more likely to be racist than whites and Hispanics in this country.

    Thirty-seven percent (37%) of American Adults think most black Americans are racist, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey. Just 15% consider most white Americans racist, while 18% say the same of most Hispanic Americans. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

    http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/lifestyle/general_lifestyle/july_2013/more_americans_view_blacks_as_racist_than_whites_hispanics

    • rikyrah

      Um…ok….sure

    • Alma98

      I’m guessing the only people they polled are white. Also from the percentage numbers I’ll take a guess that these people are teabaggers & libertarians. And I wonder if they realize they make it seem that blacks and Hispanics are not American. Whatever dumbasses!

      • conlakappa

        The same Southern white men over 55 typically interviewed by CNN, no doubt.

      • Town

        Because to them, Hispanics and Blacks are NOT American.

    • GreenLadyHere

      Good MornTin’ Miranda. ***BIG HUG** :>)

      — BWAHAHA — –YA MEAM –THIS Rasmussen??- –LOL – –

      – - –Scott Rasmussen Tries To Explain Why His 2012 Polling Was So Bad
      —- Rassmussen Reports was among the least accurate pollsters of the 2012 Election Cycle, tying for 24th with Gallup out of 26 pollsters ranked in one post-election study. The main reason for this, of course, is the fact that Rasmussen went into his polls with a pre-conceived notion of what the electorate was supposed to look like and, based on those assumption, weighted his polls according to Party ID to fit into the model, something that practically no other pollster does. Four years ago, Rasmussen Reports was among the most accurate pollsters of the bunch this year it what among the worst. So, what went wrong?
      THERE IS MORE – —

      – — -Ummmm — -WHA’ HA’ HAPPENED. . .– -LOL

      Good 2 C U Miranda. :>)

    • GOVCHRIS1988

      Ok, I’ll set this poll aside with the, John McCain is one point ahead of Barack Obama polls.

  • GreenLadyHere

    Sepia – - -Ohhh — -As reported by –”ACE HOST” –

    —–Ms. JOY-d’ANN[ihilator] ♥- –:>) – -

    Morsi advisor says coup is underway in Egypt – - -Woo! Hoo! :>)

    – - -A military deadline has expired and Egyptian
    President Mohammed Morsi has yet to step down from power.NOW guest host Joy-Ann Reid is joined by P.J. Crowley in Washington. NBC News’ Ayman Mohyeldin and Richard Engel report the latest from Egypt.

    -BEAUTIFUL —annnnd BRIGHT -ANALYST♥–PROUD of U♥-

  • Miranda

    Afternoon thread is up!

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