Happy Birthday, Rosa Parks…

She would have been 108, today.

On Dec. 1, 1955, after working as an assistant tailor at a Montgomery, Ala., department store, a 42-year-old woman named Rosa Parks got on the Cleveland Avenue bus, sat down and was told to give up her seat for a white man who was standing. Parks calmly refused. When the driver threatened to have her arrested she replied, “you may do that.” The police were called and Parks was arrested for violating Montgomery’s racial segregation laws.

The “quality of life” in the America when I grew up. Racism and bigotry was perfectly acceptable in much of our politics…as they still are in much of our society.

Contemptible.

Dubai recycles 50,000 gallons of cooking oil every day

Every single day, 14,000 eateries across Dubai discard roughly 80,000 gallons of cooking fats, oil and grease from some of our most favourite kitchens, enough to fill 1,600 average-sized bathtubs.

But thanks to a public-private partnership called Envirol inked in 2006 between Dubai Municipality and Blue — an eco firm owned by Al Serkal Group — up to 50,000 gallons of the contaminated greasy waste in Dubai are being collected from 7,000 eateries and transported to Blue’s recycling plant in Al Warsan.

For every gallon of oil and grease recycled, that’s one less gallon being dumped in Dubai Municipal landfills and the city sewer system, lessening the threat of it permeating groundwater or making its way into the sea…

The Blue recycling process converts 70 per cent of the oil waste to clean water to be used for irrigation, a further 20 per cent is converted to fertiliser for farming and gardening with the final 10 per cent turned into a refined oil to be converted to environment-friendly biodiesel.

Even small nations dependent upon producing crude oil for their GDP can sort out the need for recycling the stuff from a useless retail residue into more than one form for re-use.

Poverty and Racism have a dual impact on upward mobility


Click to enlarge

❝ The defining feature of the American Dream is upward mobility – the aspiration that all children have a chance at economic success, no matter their background. However, our research shows that children’s chances of earning more than their parents have been declining. 90% of children born in 1940 grew up to earn more than their parents. Today, only half of all children earn more than their parents did.

The American Dream maintains its mythic status even as it declines steadily. Political charlatans, self-described as conservative more often than not seem to have offered the best lies. The liberal flavor [in my lifetime] can be moved by the courage of citizens to grow backbone. Sometimes.

Most Americans Want to Pick Our President by Popular Vote

❝ There has long been support for using the popular vote over the Electoral College, but this recent poll marks its highest level of support in recent years with two-thirds who said the US should use the popular vote and the other third who believe in the Electoral College…

❝ Changing the US system from the Electoral College to popular wouldn’t be easy for those who are in favor of it.

A number of states have signed onto something different, the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, by which states would essentially agree to use the popular vote. It’ll take effect when states totaling 270 electoral votes sign on. But it would certainly face court challenges and most of the states that have signed on tilt toward Democrats. Republicans have won the White House twice since 2000 because of the existence of the Electoral College. So don’t look for a change anytime soon.

Some folks think it’s funny – watching Republicans weasel their way around the issue. It’s sad, in fact contemptible in my opinion. Party loyalty has nothing principled to bear on opposition to small-d democratic principles. That goal goes back centuries before the founding of these United States. Unfortunately, hypocrisy goes back further.

Trump appointed a judge who actually pays attention to the Constitution

❝ A federal district judge who was appointed by President Donald Trump has upheld Robert Mueller’s appointment and constitutional authority in the special counsel’s case against Russian social media propagandists.

❝ “The appointment does not violate core separation-of-powers principles. Nor has the Special Counsel exceeded his authority under the appointment order by investigating and prosecuting Concord,” Dabney Friedrich wrote in an opinion published Monday morning. She was one of the first judges Trump placed into a federal court position.

Friedrich cited opinions by three other federal judges — Amy Berman Jackson, who oversees Paul Manafort’s criminal foreign lobbying case; T.S. Ellis, who oversees Manafort’s financial fraud case; and DC District Court Chief Judge Beryl Howell — to back up her decision.

All three judges also denied requests to invalidate Mueller’s authority…

Trump really has a problem with folks well enough educated to quality for their jobs. Especially when that education tends to support historic progress rather than regressive class-based retreat.