July 6, 2015

Yes, the U.S. Really Did Have a Damp Start to Summer

July 6, 2015

Originally posted on TIME:

Early summer typically marks the start of the dry season across much of the United States. But that’s far from the case across vast swaths of the country this year, a new map from the National Weather Service shows.

us weather precipitationCourtesy of the National Weather ServiceAreas in red experienced considerably less precipitation in the last 30 days than average. Blue and purple regions experienced up to six times the average. Red regions received a small fraction of the typical rainfall.

The map compares data collected over the past 30 days from local weather centers with local averages from the same days collected over the past 30 years. Purple and blue regions received at least 1.5 times the average rainfall in the last 30 days — and the map shows large parts of the Northeast and Southwest much wetter than average.

But other regions received very little rain, like drought-stricken California…

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South Carolina Poised to Remove Confederate Flag From Statehouse

July 6, 2015

Originally posted on TIME:

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina Senate has voted to remove the Confederate flag from a pole on Statehouse grounds.

The 37-3 vote Monday allows the state to remove the flag and the flagpole where it flies as soon as it passes the House and is signed by Gov. Nikki Haley.

The bill must pass a two-thirds vote, which is likely to be held Tuesday.

Monday’s vote comes less than a week after the 15th anniversary of South Carolina taking the flag off the Capitol dome where it flew since the early 1960s and moving it to beside a monument honoring Confederate soldiers.

Lawmakers had largely ignored the flag until the killing of nine black people during a Bible study at a historic African-American church on June 17.

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Donald Trump Won’t Back Down from Immigration Remarks

July 6, 2015


I am not voting for him.

Originally posted on TIME:

Donald Trump isn’t backing down.

In a statement released on Monday, the Republican presidential contender defended his controversial comments about Mexican immigrants, saying that he doesn’t “see how there is any room for misunderstanding or misinterpretation.”

Trump has lost a slew of business partners, including Macy’s, Univision, Serta, NASCAR and NBC, since he accused the Mexican government of sending undesirable citizens, including “rapists” and criminals, to America in his candidacy announcement June 16.

But he reiterated this point in the statement. “The Mexican Government is forcing their most unwanted people into the United States,” he wrote, adding that Mexican immigrants should be considered a public health concern as they are responsible for “tremendous infectious disease … pouring across the border.”

Trump and the general public do seem to be in agreement about one thing, though: his presidential run hasn’t been great for business so far. “I have lost…

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What Meat Eaters Get Wrong About Vegetarians

July 6, 2015


I am trying to be more vegetarian in my eating, but I love BBQ ribs. Actually I am eating them tonight.

Originally posted on TIME:

I was 20 years old and working on a political campaign when I first visited a slaughterhouse. There I saw dead chickens swinging like pale acrobats on a conveyor belt suspended over a vat, and I met a man who called himself, with only a hint of irony, a “goop scooper.” I walked out with the vague idea that I might become a vegetarian one day.

Years later, I stopped eating meat and chicken. On rare occasions, I still have fish, but that grows increasingly less common as the years go by. I am not a vegetable evangelist; I happily coexist with carnivorous members of my family and have friends who worship at the shrine of cooked cow. But permit me to dispense with three myths about vegetarians on behalf of those who, like me, favor beans over beef.

[time-brightcove videoid=4247324380001]

1.Vegetarians are self-righteous. Friends, self-righteousness is a…

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Why the Greferendum Isn’t as Historic as You Think

July 6, 2015

Originally posted on TIME:

Against the predictions of many opinion polls, the so-called Greferendum scored a surprisingly resounding victory for the Oxi — or No — campaign.

Some 60% of Greek voters chose “no” on one of the most incomprehensible referendum questions in history. The vote has been heralded and mourned across Europe, with both sides agreeing that it is a “historic” occasion in European (they mean European Union) history.

It is not.

How could it be? The Greferendum was designed to be vague and inconsequential. It was on an extremely narrow question, that is whether Greeks supported a highly specific proposal from the country’s creditors.

Moreover, by the time the referendum was held, the proposal was already off the table. It is therefore completely ridiculous to celebrate it as a vote against the eurozone, let alone the EU, as many far right politicians have done, and highly optimistic to…

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Lessons From Greece as Controversial Finance Minister Exits

July 6, 2015

Originally posted on TIME:

Greece’s economy is in ruins. It is hard to imagine how things could have gone worse. Banks closed, no liquidity, very high unemployment, businesses closing down or fleeing the country, and the brain drain is accelerating.

And now the Greek people have voted No in a referendum that some cast as being about whether they would remain in the eurozone – though many were unclear about what exactly the vote meant. What it certainly means is that the Greek people are deeply wounded by the prolonged recession of the last six years.

As Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras heads back to the negotiating table in hopes of securing a new deal to save his country, he will go without his controversial finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis, who resigned a day after the vote. According to Varoufakis, Tsipras asked him to resign in order to help with the negotiations.

One reason we’re…

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Why the Rhetoric of the Past Is Still Present

July 6, 2015


Until this country wants to deal with the wrong that Yankees did Rebels in the South, and the real issues that WAR was FOUGHT, there will be no real healing that can take place in this country.

Originally posted on TIME:

This month, members of the Ku Klux Klan plan to rally in South Carolina in support of the Confederate flag. Claiming that the flag should not be taken down because “it is part of white people’s culture,” James Spears, the head of the Loyal White Knights chapter of the KKK set to host the rally, expressed support for Dylann Roof as well.

Spears told the South Carolina television station WHNS that he thinks Roof “picked the wrong target. A better target for him would have been these gang-bangers, running around rapping, raping and stealing.”

While Americans are now split on whether the flag is a racist symbol that should be removed from public spaces, the KKK’s defense of its values comes as no surprise. What is equally frightening but more surprising, however, is the return of an age-old stereotype that people of color, particular men of color, disproportionately and uncontrollably…

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Happy 4th of July Weekend

July 6, 2015


I am back from Ohio.  Had a great time.  It was worth the long drive both Thursday and today to spend it with a good friend and her family.  Ohio is really beautiful and because I have ancestors from Ohio the land really speaks to me.  It is a wicca thing and not something Catholic Christians understand.  I have always had a strong connection to the earth and the spirit.  Nature is my church.

Have a long day tomorrow.  I hope I can sleep well tonight.  Have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow, so I couldn’t stop in Iowa to visit another dear friend today.

Good night

Will end with this song

My friend’s uncle got married this 4th, and they played this.  They had known each other 33 years years before finally getting together.  I wish them the best.

Witness Scenes from Athens After the Referendum

July 6, 2015

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