Beware of Human Rights Watch Propaganda

Here's a good two part article from New Eastern Outlook regarding the role Human Rights Watch (HRW) plays in creating and emphasizing the narratives of western imperialists. This is not new, it;s been well known in the alternative blogosphere that HRW was part of the Empire, the establishment. It exists to obscure the reality of war zones serving as an intermediary to the facts on the ground and the public while serving the Empire. Recently in particular regarding what is happening in Ukraine, Venezuela, Libya, and Syria.;

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Flight MH17 and Obama

Investigative reporter Eric Zuesse has analyzed available information concerning the crash of flight MH17 in Ukraine and has come to what he says is a definitive conclusion that the plane was brought down by an attack by Ukraine military fighter jets. He's published a good number of articles since the incident.

I can't argue with his conclusion based on available information. I certainly don't believe the non-evidence, i.e., lies, provided by my own government. Again.

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Gender Prison: Why are some people transgender?

That's a question I have been asked dozens of times.

It causes other questions pop into my head. Why is water wet? Why are blueberries purple? I spend about as much time considering each of those queries.

I've written about this in the past: Layers of Why.

After extensive introspection I basically came up with this:

If I had to pick a single step in my growth process as a human being, it would be the moment when it occurred to me that it didn’t matter why I was the way I was. What mattered was that I existed, that I was a human being and I was living my life the best way I knew how.

Bu that is not good enough for some people. That set would especially contain those who exhibit little respect for science, but still demand a scientific explanation for the existence of transpeople...which still probably wouldn't be good enough, because, you know, God.

Recently Sabrina Rubin Erdely of Rolling Stone took a stab at the science.

Once upon a time, the thought was that transgender was caused by childhood trauma of some sort. Our families were dysfunctional or we were sexually abused as children. But while our families may or may not have been dysfunctional, that is not how we came to be who we are.

That is absolutely not true at all. But I still get people in my clinic who are trying to unravel what the traumatic incident was, that caused their kid to be trans.

--Dr. Johanna Olson, medical director of the Transgender Clinic at Children's Hospital Los Angeles

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The Breakfast Club 8-5-2014

Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We're a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when we're not too hungover we've been bailed out we're not too exhausted from last night's (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Everyone's welcome here, no special handshake required. Just check your meta at the door.

 

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VotSquare paper.li for Monday, 4 August 2014

A Lead Story: Israel: Shooting Deaths after West Bank Protest, By Human Rights Watch

Or click on the headline to go to the embedded paper here at the Voices on the Square site. Note that the embed is not compatible with all devices.

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Operation Israel Massacre versus U.S. Imperialism

The reaction to Israel's heinous assault on Gaza has been met with significant opposition and disgust from most on the left, including conservative mainstream establishment progressives. It appears that the time worn excuses the Zionist government of Israel has used to justify it's regular "Operations" to further their homeland agenda are wearing mighty thin among those that value life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

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Real Times in Baltimore

I have been offline for the past month during our move to the Los Angeles area. But life has gone on for other people elsewhere, so I have a lot to report over the next week or so.

 photo henderson_zps051dee77.jpgTwo African American transwomen have been murdered in Baltimore in the past six weeks. Most recently the body of Mia Henderson was found in a northwest Baltimore alleyway.

When other folk are killed, you know all about it,. But where are the flowers, where are the candles and cuddly toys for Mia? Where are the leaflets asking people to come forward with information? There’s none of that.

--Michele Moore, 31

As usual media reports revealed Henderson's birth name and past criminal history.

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The Breakfast Club: 8-4-2014

Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We're a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when we're not too hungover we've been bailed out we're not too exhausted from last night's (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Everyone's welcome here, no special handshake required. Just check your meta at the door.

Join us every weekday morning at 9am (ET) and weekend morning at 10:30am (ET) to talk about current news and our boring lives and to make fun of LaEscapee! If we are ever running late, it's PhilJD's fault.

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This Day in History


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Sunday Train: Fast and Slow Transit Should be Friends

As noted this week at The Overhead Wire:

There has been a lot of chatter recently on the issue of fast vs slow transit. This week is the perfect time for this discussion as two major United States transit projects of differing stripes opened up; the Metro Silver Line in Washington DC and the Tucson Streetcar.

On the one hand you have neoliberal Matthew Yglesias as the neoliberal "let us explain to you why There Are No Alternatives (TINA)" site Vox saying:

Without a dedicated lane, a streetcar can't really run much faster than a bus under ideal conditions. And since unlike a bus, a streetcar can't shift out of its lane to avoid an obstacle, in real-world circumstances it's likely to move slower than a bus. There are some objectives related to real estate development and tourism that this kind of project can serve, but they're nearly useless in terms of transportation.

And on the other hand you have the piece by Robert Steuteville at Better Cities and Towns, Place Mobility: Sometimes good transportation is slow, which observes:

The Portland streetcar has been a catalyst for $4 billion-plus investment and up to 10,000 housing units in the Pearl District and other neighborhoods close to downtown. All of these people and businesses have Place Mobility. They use the streetcar for quick trips and to make connections — it doesn't matter that it moves very slowly because they don't have to go far. But the new people and businesses in the Pearl and downtown are not the only beneficiaries. All of the existing businesses and residences also benefit from rising Place Mobility.

When a streetcar -- or other catalyst -- creates a compact, dynamic place, other kinds of mobility become possible. The densest concentrations of bike-share and car-share stations in Portland are located in the area served by the streetcar. That's no coincidence. You can literally get anywhere without a car.

Of course, much of the "debate" falls into the logical fallacy of the false dichotomy, as if there is a choice between either having slow transit or having fast transit, when the reality is that we not only need both, but that improving either one improves the utility of the other.

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