Guess who gets to live and die downwind from pollution sources?


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University of Washington researchers have found that air pollution from electricity generation emissions in 2014 led to about 16,000 premature deaths in the continental U.S. In many states, the majority of the health impacts came from emissions originating in other states. Interactive map of the U.S. where the states are colored according to the number of premature deaths per 100,000 people in that state. Darker colors represent more deaths.

No surprises here for me. Growing up downwind from 2 of the 3 largest factory complexes in my hometown – one of which even generated electricity from its own powerhouse – we would wake in the morning, throw open the windows, scrape the soot from the windowsill and close the windows back up till the following morning.

Fortunately, we moved upwind from the whole city by the time I was 12.

Nuclear Colonialism in New Mexico

❝ A proposal for New Mexico to house one of the world’s largest nuclear waste storage facilities has drawn opposition from nearly every indigenous nation in the state. Nuclear Issues Study Group co-founder and Diné organizer Leona Morgan told state legislators last week the project, if approved, would perpetuate a legacy of nuclear colonialism against New Mexico’s indigenous communities and people of color.

❝ Holtec International, a private company specializing in spent nuclear fuel storage and management, applied for a license from the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission to construct and operate the facility in southeastern New Mexico.

❝ The proposal, which has been in the works since 2011, would see high-level waste generated at nuclear power plants across the country transported to New Mexico for storage at the proposed facility along the Lea-Eddy county line between Hobbs and Carlsbad. Holtec representatives say the facility would be a temporary solution to the nation’s growing nuclear waste problem, but currently there is no federal plan to build a permanent repository for the waste.

No Plan, BTW, for permanent storage ANYWHERE ELSE!

Master of Creatures


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❝ It’s the middle of a Saturday afternoon, and the 63-year-old Tippett is doing what he typically does on Saturday afternoons: working on his animated film Mad God in his Berkeley studio, using the venerable stop-motion animation technique popularized by Gumby and the Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer holiday special.

Two members of Tippett’s crew are arranging scores of characters on the miniature set as he fine-tunes the lighting. The naked, faceless puppets are about 5 inches tall, and each has screws in its heels allowing it to be anchored in place. Their elongated humanoid bodies are coarse, lumpy, and brown. There’s no getting around it — they look like they’ve been molded out of excrement. They’re supposed to look that way. Tippett calls them “Shit Men.”

Phil Tippett does what he does best – on his own time, nowadays. He still makes a living showing producers of films using computer-generated-images, CGI, for their special effects – how to do it. How to make them lifelike. Even if they are scripted as something that doesn’t exist in our reality. The article is the story of his growth, leadership, and carrying on with stop-motion animation. You’ve all seen his work. Here’s his story.

The 1619 Project

In August of 1619, a ship appeared on this horizon, near Point Comfort, a coastal port in the English colony of Virginia. It carried more than 20 enslaved Africans, who were sold to the colonists. No aspect of the country that would be formed here has been untouched by the years of slavery that followed. On the 400th anniversary of this fateful moment, it is finally time to tell our story truthfully.

Here’s the link. Forgive me, but, I don’t presume that very many Americans have ever read – or studied – this tale and its effects down to this day.

Civil Rights groups oppose Comcast trying to beat civil rights law that goes all the way back to 1866


Byron AllenChris Carlson/AP

❝ A coalition of civil rights organizations this week accused Comcast of undermining Reconstruction-era protections against racial discrimination, weighing in on a lawsuit against the company that is now before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Comedian and media mogul Byron Allen is suing the cable television provider for $20 billion under an 1866 law ensuring newly freed African Americans the same right to enter into contracts as any white citizen…

❝ Allen, who is black, alleges that Comcast discriminated against him in its refusal to carry cable channels by his company, Entertainment Studios Networks. Comcast said it made a business decision to reject Allen’s general-interest channels based on what it thought viewers want.

The question before the court is whether, as Comcast contends, Allen must show that race was the sole motivating reason for Comcast’s decision to reject his channels.

A coalition of more than 2 dozen groups committed to civil rights have filed briefs supporting Allen and his suit.

Trump had his flunkies file a brief defending Comcast.