“The American People will take Socialism, but they won’t take the label. I certainly proved it in the case of EPIC. Running on the Socialist ticket I got 60,000 votes, and running on the slogan to ‘End Poverty in California’ I got 879,000. I think we simply have to recognize the fact that our enemies have succeeded in spreading the Big Lie. There is no use attacking it by a front attack, it is much better to out-flank them.”—
It’s time for cell phone companies to be up front with customers about how their personal information – including their location history and who they call and text with – is being collected, stored, and shared with the government. In an op-ed on CNN.com, ACLU attorney Catherine Crump argues that wireless carriers – “who we pay to provide a service, not to keep tabs on us for the government” – must let customers know what is happening with this sensitive information.
“Religions aren’t monolithic; if people really are involved in deep spiritual reflection on the matter of homosexuality, then they will surely be able to find an interpretation of their religious texts that allows for the kind of evolution that President Obama described. This doesn’t mean I’m not serious about practicing Judaism; it means I’m serious about finding a way to reconcile my belief in the teachings of Judaism with my belief that people should be treated equally. But, obviously, one must actually have both of these beliefs. What do we call someone who either fails to consider the alternative teaching of his or her religion or rejects that teaching because it doesn’t lead to continued condemnation of gays and lesbians, someone — in other words — who doesn’t actually have both a religious belief and a belief in equality? With apologies to Loury and Althouse, I think I have to call it bigotry.”—kohenari (via azspot)
An experimental gene therapy recently tested on mice at the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre found that by modifying a non-replicating virus to trigger production of an enzyme that repairs chromosomes, scientists were able to slow down cellular aging in the mice by up to 24 percent.
San Francisco teachers voted overwhelmingly to support a strike Thursday night, with 97 percent saying yes in what was the first of two required votes.
“Last night the teachers of San Francisco sent a message loud and clear to the San Francisco Unified School District,” said Dennis Kelly, United Educators of San Francisco President, in a statement after votes were counted Friday. “It is time for the district to stop seeking unilateral cuts and sweeping program changes, and to start treating the teachers and paraprofessionals with respect and to recognize what we have done to keep this district afloat.”
About 1,900 teachers voted. A second vote required to give union leadership the ability to call a strike has not been scheduled.
Fuck yes. The union is pushing back on more cuts to the education budget and layoffs. Way to send a message.
Richard Grenell, the openly gay former Bush administration official who was Mitt Romney’s national security spokesperson for a couple weeks before resigning under pressure from social conservatives upset with his hiring, praised President Obama for publicly supporting same sex marriage Wednesday. Grenell, who is an advocate for same sex marriage, told Metro Weekly Obama “deserves credit for finally taking a stand in favor of equality.”
We’ve been hearing a lot about the war on women, which is real enough. But there’s also a war on the young, which is just as real even if it’s better disguised. And it’s doing immense harm, not just to the young, but to the nation’s future.
Let’s start with some advice Mitt Romney gave to college students during an appearance last week. After denouncing President Obama’s “divisiveness,” the candidate told his audience, “Take a shot, go for it, take a risk, get the education, borrow money if you have to from your parents, start a business.”
The first thing you notice here is, of course, the Romney touch — the distinctive lack of empathy for those who weren’t born into affluent families, who can’t rely on the Bank of Mom and Dad to finance their ambitions. But the rest of the remark is just as bad in its own way.
I mean, “get the education”? And pay for it how? Tuition at public colleges and universities has soared, in part thanks to sharp reductions in state aid. Mr. Romney isn’t proposing anything that would fix that; he is, however, a strong supporter of the Ryan budget plan, which would drastically cut federal student aid, causing roughly a million students to lose their Pell grants.
So how, exactly, are young people from cash-strapped families supposed to “get the education”? Back in March Mr. Romney had the answer: Find the college “that has a little lower price where you can get a good education.” Good luck with that. But I guess it’s divisive to point out that Mr. Romney’s prescriptions are useless for Americans who weren’t born with his advantages.
… What should we do to help America’s young? Basically, the opposite of what Mr. Romney and his friends want. We should be expanding student aid, not slashing it. And we should reverse the de facto austerity policies that are holding back the U.S. economy — the unprecedented cutbacks at the state and local level, which have been hitting education especially hard.
Yes, such a policy reversal would cost money. But refusing to spend that money is foolish and shortsighted even in purely fiscal terms. Remember, the young aren’t just America’s future; they’re the future of the tax base, too.
A mind is a terrible thing to waste; wasting the minds of a whole generation is even more terrible. Let’s stop doing it.
“Although it is true that only about 20 percent of American workers are in unions, that 20 percent sets the standards across the board in salaries, benefits and working conditions. If you are making a decent salary in a non-union company, you owe that to the unions. One thing that corporations do not do is give out money out of the goodness of their hearts.”—