The real reason Dilma Rousseff’s enemies want her impeached – By David Miranda

Ultimately, Brazil’s elite political and media classes are toying with the mechanics of democracy. That’s a dangerous, unpredictable game to play anywhere, but particularly so in a very young democracy with a recent history of political instability and tyranny, and where millions are furious over their economic deprivation.
~ I’m pleased to see that the foreign press has awakened to the “legalized coup” (my description) underway in Brazil.

Guyanese Online

The real reason Dilma Rousseff’s enemies want her impeached

Dilma Rousseff Dilma Rousseff

Corruption is just the pretext for a wealthy elite who failed to defeat Brazil’s president at the ballot box

The story of Brazil’s political crisis, and the rapidly changing global perception of it, begins with its national media. The country’s dominant broadcast and print outlets are owned by a tiny handful of Brazil’s richest families, and are steadfastly conservative. For decades, those media outlets have been used to agitate for the Brazilian rich, ensuring that severe wealth inequality (and the political inequality that results) remains firmly in place.

Indeed, most of today’s largest media outlets – that appear respectable to outsiders – supported the 1964 military coup that ushered in two decades of rightwing dictatorship and further enriched the nation’s oligarchs. This key historical event still casts…

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Film Review: ‘Dear President Obama’ slaps America’s Establishment over the harm caused by Fracking

Our ignorance and shortsightedness as a species are incomprehensible.

The Secular Jurist

By Robert A. Vella

Last night, Viceland aired the anti-fracking documentary Dear President Obama – written and directed by Jon Bowermaster and narrated by Mark Ruffalo.  Although I’ve been closely following the use of hydraulic fracturing technology to produce oil and natural gas domestically in the U.S., the revelations presented in this extraordinary film were nevertheless quite shocking.  I was most disturbed by the complicity of the American political, bureaucratic, and judicial establishment which enabled powerful energy corporations to callously destroy the lives of millions of citizens with little-to-no recourse.  Their lands were seized or devalued, their vital water resources ruined, and the health and safety of their families were sacrificed all in the pursuit of short-term profit.  In addition to the well-known association between Big Oil and Republican politicians, it was surprising to learn how involved and hypocritical the Democratic Party has been in this corporatist energy scheme –…

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Earth Day 2016: Trees for the Earth

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Earth-Day-2016-Poster-Earth-Day-Network

Earth Day 2016: Trees for the Earth
Image Credit: Earth Day Network

Friday, April 22nd, is Earth Day 2016. The theme is: Trees for the Earth. In the five-year countdown to their 50th anniversary, the Earth Day network has initiated an ambitious goal of planting 7.8 billion trees by 2020. In planting a tree for every person on our planet, we will contribute to:
~ mitigating climate change and pollution;
~ protecting our planet’s biodiversity; and
~ supporting communities and their livelihoods.

With our superior technological tools and weapons, we humans continue to kill trees and entire forests in the name of human progress and economic growth. Rooted to the ground, trees are helpless against our onslaught.

Like so much in our lives, we take trees for granted. We forget or ignore their vital role in storing the carbon dioxide we produce and releasing the oxygen we breathe. Earth without trees will not sustain human life.

I like to think of trees as quiet, reliable heroes. Do you have a relative or friend that’s always there when you need a shoulder to cry on, a lending hand, an attentive ear, a generous heart? Trees are like that. When they see us coming, they don’t run away or hide. They are well grounded and face whatever adversity comes their way. They provide shade, shelter, and security to all creatures seeking refuge.

Avenue in Georgetown - Guyana

Tree-lined Avenue – Georgetown – Guyana

Plant a tree today and it will outlive you and your grandchildren. The trees that line the avenues in the main streets of Georgetown, Guyana, where I was born and grew up, existed before I was born. If not destroyed to build parking lots, they will still be providing beauty and shade long after I’m gone.

Methuselah - California - Oldest Living Tree in the World

Methuselah – California – USA

The world’s oldest living tree is a bristle-cone pine, named Methuselah, in California’s White Mountains. Over 4800 years old, it was around when the Egyptians were busy building pyramids. To think we consider ourselves the crown of creation!

Hyperion - California Redwood Forest - World Tallest Tree

Hyperion – California Redwood Forest – USA

When it comes to height and built, trees also outdo us. Rooted in California’s Redwood Forest, the giant sequoia named Hyperion towers over us at 379.1 feet. That’s nearly six times taller than the Statue of Liberty! Next to such trees, we humans are puny.

We need trees for our survival on Earth. Lots of trees. Plant a tree. It’s easier than you think.

Lula: ‘The Brazilian Elite Do Not Like Democracy’

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Brazil Former President Lula da Silva

Brazil’s Former President Lula da Silva (left) – Brasilia – Brazil – April 16, 2016
Photo Credit: Reuters

My heart bleeds for Brazil and the majority working class. Rosaliene.

Brazil’s popular Former President Lula da Silva joined social movement leaders in the capital of Brasilia to denounce efforts to oust his successor.

Source: Lula: ‘The Brazilian Elite Do Not Like Democracy’

Democracy Spring: Liberty Arrested

UPDATE ON “DEMOCRACY SPRING” IN WASHINGTON D.C.
Have you seen any coverage of this major people’s peaceful protest on the national mainstream news?

Views àla JoAnn

A haunting image from the Democratic Spring protest in Washington D.C. ? Liberty arrested.

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Democracy Spring is protesting money in politics and voter suppression. Learn more in the following video featuring Redacted Tonight?s Lee Camp and Democracy Spring organizer Kia Newkirk.

Democracy Spring: Liberty Arrested was originally published on Aware & Fair

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Another Side of Suicide: The Strange History of Punishing the Deceased

My blogger friend, Dr. Gerald Stein, has posted an interesting summary on the strange history of suicide. Despite religious and other prohibitions to what was once termed “self-murder”, those who sought to end their lives found a way.

Dr. Gerald Stein - Blogging About Psychotherapy from Chicago

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Would you talk to a casual acquaintance about suicide? Probably not. Such weighty conversations most often occur with someone intimate  — a therapist or close friend. Without such discussion, full knowledge of suicide becomes difficult. Moreover, even those who understand the psychology of suicide are unlikely to know its history. They are unaware, for example, that suicide victims in Europe during the Middle Ages were often punished for the act of self murder.

I imagine you are asking, how can a person who is already dead be punished? Leaving a body unburied was one way. An ancient example is found in the Sophocles play Antigone, where Polynices is prohibited from burial because he participated in a failed revolt against Thebes. The rationale for this disrespect went beyond the expectation of a corpse ravaged by animals: the absence of proper burial would prevent him from going to the Underworld, the…

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“Sugar” – Poem by Guyanese Poet Ruel Johnson

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East Indian Cane Cutter - Guyana - Photo by John Gimlette

East Indian Cane cutter – Guyana
Photo by John Gimlette (2013)

In honor of Guyana’s fiftieth Independence anniversary on May 26th, my Poetry Corner April 2016 features an excerpt from the poem “Sugar” by Guyanese poet and award-winning short story writer Ruel Johnson. His work largely focuses on social and political issues facing Guyana. In the long, multi-sectional featured poem, he addresses the legacy of colonialism on the enduring divide between the two major ethnic populations: the descendants of African slaves and East Indian indentured laborers.

In section 1—stalk, Johnson recalls his boyhood days growing up in the capital. Sugarcane was a sweet treat. His imagery of his mother whacking the stalk along the joints with her best knife takes us into the canefields. The sweet juice comes at a great price. Continue reading

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