Community Articles from 2019
Weapons of War On Our Streets: A Guide to the Militarization of America’s Police
By Sam Jacobs
Posted October 25, 2019
The claim often heard from those attempting to pass more gun control legislation is that all they’re trying to do is get the “weapons of war off our streets,” but it’s simply untrue that “weapons of war” are available to the general public. You’d last about three minutes in a conventional war with an AR-15, even with one of the most aggressive builds you can get your hands on (that doesn’t mean it’s impossible for guerilla uprisings to defeat powerful enemies). The truth is that the only people with “weapons of war” on America’s streets are, increasingly, the police.
Thanks primarily to the Pentagon’s 1033 program which allows law enforcement agencies to get their hands on Department of Defense technology and the Bush-era War on Terror, American police have received a startling amount of heavy-duty, military-grade hardware. Between 1998 and 2014, the dollar value of military hardware sent to police departments skyrocketed from $9.4 million to $796.8 million. More…
The New American Homeless
By Brian Goldstone
Posted September 19, 2019
If the term “working homeless” has not yet entered our national vocabulary, there is reason to expect that it soon will. Hidden within the world of homelessness has always been a subset of individuals, usually single parents, with jobs; what’s different now is the sheer extent of this phenomenon.
For a widening swath of the nearly seven million American workers living below the poverty line, a combination of skyrocketing rents, stagnant wages, and a lack of tenant protections has proved all but insurmountable. Theirs, increasingly, is the face of homelessness in the United States: people whose paychecks are no longer enough to keep a roof over their heads. More…
Offering Choice but Delivering Tyranny: The Corporate Capture of Agriculture
By Colin Todhunter
Posted September 13, 2019
Many lobbyists talk a lot about critics of genetic engineering technology denying choice to farmers. They say that farmers should have access to a range of tools and technologies to maximise choice and options. At the same time, somewhat ironically, they decry organic agriculture and proven agroecological approaches, presumably because these practices have no need for the proprietary inputs of the global agrochemical/agritech corporations they are in bed with. And presumably because agroecology represents liberation from the tyranny of these profiteering, environment-damaging global conglomerates.
Monsanto had a leading role in drafting the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights to create seed monopolies. The global food processing industry wrote the WTO Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures. Whether it involves Codex or the US-India Knowledge Initiative on Agriculture aimed at restructuring (destroying) Indian agriculture, the powerful agribusiness/food lobby has secured privileged access to policy makers and sets the policy agenda. More…
Nature has provided humanity with seeds with which to sustainably regenerate its food supply. Now corporations using genetically mutated seeds are effectively placing toll booths in the way of that system that has worked for millenia.
What will our world look like when the corporations own all of the ability to produce food and no one can grow any food, even a small garden without paying tribute to these giants?
Harley Shovelhead Exhaust Leak Solution
by Rudy Avizius
Posted September 1, 2019
After decades of enduring what may arguably be one of the weakest links in the design of the Harley Shovelhead engine, I believe that I may have a solution that most Shovelhead riders will appreciate.
I have found a solution to Shovelhead exhaust pipe leaks and I want to share this with the Shovelhead loving community. While I am targeting this article to Shovelheads, it is not limited to this and is a solution that could also be utilized for other motorcycle and automotive applications.
Due to there being only a single bolt to hold the exhaust flange, most Shovelhead riders have experienced the annoying exhaust leaks where the pipes connect to the heads. This results in exhaust blow collecting on pipes, frame, and other places, a muddled exhaust tone. However, the worst part is probably the very annoying popping and backfiring one gets when they let off the throttle. More…
The Key to a Sustainable Economy Is 5,000 Years Old
by Ellen Brown
Posted August 30, 2019
We are again reaching the point in the business cycle known as “peak debt,” when debts have compounded to the point that their cumulative total cannot be paid. Student debt, credit card debt, auto loans, business debt and sovereign debt are all higher than they have ever been. As economist Michael Hudson writes in his provocative 2018 book, “…and forgive them their debts,” debts that can’t be paid won’t be paid. The question, he says, is how they won’t be paid.
Mainstream economic models leave this problem to “the invisible hand of the market,” assuming trends will self-correct over time. But while the market may indeed correct, it does so at the expense of the debtors, who become progressively poorer as the rich become richer. Borrowers go bankrupt and banks foreclose on the collateral, dispossessing the debtors of their homes and their livelihoods. The houses are bought by the rich at distress prices and are rented back at inflated prices to the debtors, who are then forced into wage peonage to survive. More…
Most people are aware that our societies have reached a level of debt that cannot be repaid.
The system is failing and perhaps it is time to consider following the wisdom of the ancients since what we are doing now is not working. Who would be the people pushing back against using this wisdom and do they have their own agendas?
Governments, Scientists and Doctors Worldwide Call For a Ban on 5G
By Nikki Harper
Posted August 27, 2019
As the world braces for the 5G rollout, we’re being sold a vision of a wonderful, tech-enabled future. Smart homes, smart business, smart highways, smart cities, smart cars – what’s not to love? Except that governments, scientists and doctors worldwide have been stating the obvious for years now: it’s not very smart to deliberately endanger the health and wellbeing of every citizen on earth, and to endanger life on earth itself. Why are the powers that be not listening?
If you’re reading this, you probably already knew the above. But unless you’ve been following closely, you may be unaware of the scale of the evidence against 5G or indeed the scale of the efforts to stop it. It’s quite breath-taking to see how much has been ignored, ridiculed or sidelined. More…
Georgia’s New Election System Raises Old Computer Security Concerns
By Timothy Pratt
Posted August 16, 2019
Earlier this year, Georgia’s Secure, Accessible, and Fair Elections Commission held a public meeting at the state capitol to answer a pressing question: What should Georgia do to replace its aging, touchscreen voting machines, as well as other parts of its election system? In the preceding years, security vulnerabilities in the state’s election system had been repeatedly exposed: by Russian operatives, friendly hackers, and even a Georgia voter who, just days ahead of the 2018 midterms, revealed that anyone could go online and gain access to the state’s voter registration database.
Computer scientists and elections experts from around the country had weighed in during the seven months of the commission’s deliberations on the issue. They submitted letters and provided testimony, sharing the latest research and clarifying technical concepts tied to holding safe, reliable elections. More…
How to Make Public Space for People Living Out of RVs
by Graham Pruss
Posted August 15, 2019
Since 2005, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has asked communities throughout the U.S. to report the number of people who sleep in shelters, transitional housing, or public spaces on odd-numbered years, as part of a national count of the homeless.
However, there is no official method for counting people who live in their vehicles. Some cities’ counters simply look for condensation on windshields early in the morning, while others suggest that “you’ll know it when you see it.”
For many people, living in their vehicles is the best they can do. Here’s how cities can help. More…
The gap between the 1% and the 99% keeps growing wider and wider. One sympton of this is the dramatic rise of homelessness and people living in their vehicles.
What kind of wisdom is it to impound vehicles that are providing shelter to people who mwould other wise be homeless and forcing them into homelessness on the streets?
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