Red And Black Anarchists.
Anarchists People Of Color.
Somethin N Common
Americans United Again.
Antifa and the homeys at the Chicago Branch.
And Chicago Socialist Alternative.
1. Social Dissonance – This is the audio blog of the day and the text can be found at socialdissonance.wordpress.com
Anti-LGBT man verbally attacks Tempe church employee
–A Tempe church is warning all Valley religious organizations about a man storming into its office using inflammatory, graphic language about the LGBT community, citing Donald Trump’s presidential win as permission.
Tempe police said the stranger saw the rainbow flag hanging outside the Community Christian Church on Wednesday and went inside the office to voice his disgust.
“It made me so angry and afraid for our country,” Pastor Doug Bland said.
Aside from the man voicing his hatred for the LGBT community, he threatened to pay people to protest outside the church and spread lies about pedophilia among the congregation.
“He said that if Hillary would have won he would have driven right on by the church without stopping, but because Trump won he felt he had permission to say and act the way he wanted to expressing the hate that he had for this particular group of people,” Bland said.
The pastor said his employee kept her composure and didn’t escalate the situation. The man eventually left without further incident.
“I think it’s a challenge to us to make sure we respond with love and with grace instead of responding hate for hate,” Bland said.
Church officials said a new banner saying “Lovers in a Dangerous Time” put up beside the rainbow flag is a perfect response to the incident. According to Bland, the phrase is in reference to the 1984 Bruce Cockburn song.
“No matter when we’re living there’s always going to be some kind of cloud hanging over us, conflict we have to face,” Bland said. “Right now the division in our country over what does a real democracy look like and how can we be citizens together and move forward as a nation is sort of the cloud that we’re facing.”
Bland posted information about the incident on social media which has gone viral as a “prayer chain” to promote love and tolerance.
“This is a good opportunity for us to really practice what we preach,” Bland said.
“I hear it as this is really the heart of who we are, that the hate-filled language and acts are an exception to the rule,” he said.
According to Tempe police, the incident was documented but detectives said the man didn’t commit a crime. He threatened to spread lies and picket the church but didn’t cause bodily harm. If he returns, the man could be cited with trespassing.
Feds ban mountaintop mining in Tennessee
WASHINGTON — The federal government on Wednesday banned mountaintop coal mining from more than 500 miles of ridges in East Tennessee’s Cumberland Mountains, handing a victory to the state and to conservationists who have long sought to protect the region’s forests and streams.
The Department of Interior said it is designating nearly 75,000 acres of mountain ridges as unsuitable for surface mining, in essence barring a controversial form of mining known as mountaintop removal.
“Today’s action honors Tennessee’s request to protect the Cumberland Plateau’s majestic forests, mountains and streams for future generations,” Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said in a statement.
“This is great news for the hunters, anglers, hikers and birders who come, year after year, to enjoy this incredible place. I applaud the state for their forward-looking vision that will help strengthen the local economy and help protect a critical watershed.”
The National Mining Association called the decision “yet another unwarranted blow to our ability to responsibly utilize this nation’s domestic resources.”
The designation is based on “a flawed petition” that failed to make the case for why the vast area in East Tennessee is more deserving of protection than others and uses a part of federal law that never contemplated land withdrawals of this size, said Ashley Burke, the mining association’s spokeswoman.
“The U.S. already has the toughest, most comprehensive environmental regulations in the world, and there is therefore no need to resort to arbitrary and unwarranted land withdrawals,” Burke said. “This sets a dangerous precedent for administrative overreach that risks placing otherwise eligible lands off-limits to mining without any fact-based justification.”
The decision comes in response to a petition filed in 2010 by then-governor Phil Bredesen, a Democrat, just three months before he left office.
In its petition, the state said mountaintop coal mining would be incompatible with existing local and state plans and would affect fragile or historic lands that would result in significant damage to cultural, scientific, aesthetic values or natural systems.
The land that will be declared off-limits to mountaintop mining is in Scott, Morgan, Anderson and Campbell counties and falls within the North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area and the Emory River Tract Conservation Easement.
The state’s original petition asked the federal government to declare a 1,200-foot buffer — 600 feet on each side of the ridgelines — as unsuitable for surface mining. The petition included about 67,326 acres.
Based on public comments and improved aerial mapping technology that more accurately reflected the state’s objective, the federal designation actually impacts 74,968 acres associated with 569 miles of ridgeline, the Interior Department said.
The area is an important wildlife corridor, providing habitat for black bear, elk and numerous songbirds like the cerulean warbler, the Interior Department said. The New and Emory Rivers also run through the designated area and provide clean drinking water to thousands of Tennesseans.
The designation does not impact existing mining operations within the area. Mining below the protected rides would still be allowed as long as companies obtain all of the necessary permits and authorizations.
The decision to declare the ridgetops off-limits to mining brought praise from the state and from conservation groups who have been pushing for the designation for years.
Tennessee appreciates the “thoughtful approach” by the Interior Department’s Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement in handling the state’s petition, said Bob Martineau, commissioner of the state Department of Environment and Conservation.
Don Barger of the National Parks Conservation Association called the decision “an intelligent compromise to allow access to minerals while protecting the State of Tennessee’s economic investment in the wildlife management area.”
Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander, an opponent of mountaintop removal mining, said the decision will help safeguard the state’s mountains without affecting mining operations in other parts of the impacted counties or elsewhere in Tennessee.
“This means these ridgetop landscapes — and the rivers, streams and forests that surround them — can continue to bring millions of tourists and thousands of jobs to Tennessee,” Alexander said.
Mountaintop removal is a form of surface coal mining in which the top of a mountain is blasted away so workers can reach coal seams. The rubble is then dumped into adjacent valleys.
The process allows coal companies to economically reach coal seams otherwise too small to mine near the tops of ridges. But detractors argue the environmental effects and the impact on nearby communities can be devastating, sometimes resulting in the loss or pollution of drinking water.
Under Wednesday’s decision, haul roads that need to cross ridgelines to provide access to a permitted mining site would still be allowed.
The decision also makes a limited exception for remining activities, which will be restricted to proposals that will provide environmental benefits, such as reclaiming abandoned mine lands, and reducing the impacts of acid mine drainage and residual sedimentation.
Republican Ryan Zinke, Montana’s sole Representative in the US House, lauds Northwest coal export terminal plans and antagonizes their opponents. He wants the coal ports built posthaste and doesn’t much care about the vocal and broad-based objections to them—especially the supersized Gateway Pacific coal terminal proposed near Bellingham, Washington. But considering the large sums of money Zinke accepts from companies that would directly benefit from building those terminals, his attitude and actions are not surprising. They look very much like another case of pay-to-play politics advancing corporate agendas above public interest.
Tens of thousands in campaign cash from coal and rail interests
Campaign contribution records reveal that some of Zinke’s biggest political donors would directly benefit from the coal export project. So far in the 2016 election cycle, his second largest funder, with $11,700 in donations, is Berkshire Hathaway, the investment firm that owns BNSF Railway, which would haul the coal to the port. (BNSF is one of the most important earnings divisions for Berkshire.) What’s more, over the course his political career, Zinke has also taken an additional $17,700 directly from BNSF Railway.
Zinke’s fifth biggest funder this cycle, with $10,500 in gifts, is Cloud Peak Energy, the financially ailing western coal mining company that owns 49 percent of the Cherry Point coal export terminal project. The firm is so desperate to advance the project that it has agreed to pay up to $30 million toward the project’s permitting costs. Zinke has also taken $4,000 from now-bankrupt Arch Coal, the minority stakeholder in a proposed coal export terminal at Longview, Washington.
Influential House Committee appointments
Not only has Rep. Zinke pushed for speedy construction of coal terminals, but he has also worked to protect the industry’s profits. In 2015, for example, he defended a loophole for coal companies that allows them to avoid royalty payments assessed on export coal by first selling it to a domestic subsidiary. Sightline’s leading analysis of taxpayer losses from coal companies avoiding royalty payments shows that Cloud Peak is among the biggest beneficiaries of the loophole.
Zinke also sits, quite usefully, on two key committees in the US House of Representatives: the Armed Services Committee, which oversees the Army Corps of Engineers, and the Natural Resources Committee, which sets coal mining policy. These positions have enabled him to exert special influence on behalf of the would-be Northwest coal export industry.
Disregard for Lummi Nation treaty rights
In the case of Cherry Point, it remains to be seen whether Rep. Zinke’s political power will be enough. Last month, he publicly lashed out at the Army Corps of Engineers, calling for a federal investigation of Colonel John Buck, the district commander overseeing the environmental review process for the proposed Gateway Pacific coal terminal. Zinke was apparently incensed by rumors that the Corps was preparing to halt its review process in response to claims by the Lummi Nation that the project would violate the tribe’s constitutionally protected treaty rights.
But on April 1, the Gateway Pacific backers themselves asked to suspend work on the project’s environmental review process, apparently fearing that the Army Corps would indeed honor the Lummi’s claims and put a stop to the project. Zinke may not recognize that the prospects are dimming for coal exports, but it seems his big financial backers—coal and rail companies—can already see the writing on the wall. And, surely worrying to the first-term Congressman, once-reliable donors to his campaign coffers may soon cough up little more than coal dust.
3. Opening serious story. –
Back in June, Oklahoma passed the Humanity of the Unborn Child Act, which includes a provision that requires public restrooms — for instance, those in restaurants, public schools, and hospitals — to feature anti-abortion signs that urge pregnant women to carry their fetus to term.
Along with a link to the Oklahoma Health Department’s website, the signs would read:
“There are many public and private agencies willing and able to help you carry your child to term and assist you and your child after your child is born, whether you choose to keep your child or to place him or her for adoption. The State of Oklahoma strongly urges you to contact them if you are pregnant.”
Because the Legislature did not approve any funding for the signage, they’re projected to cost businesses a total of $2.3 million and would be required by January 2018, the Associated Press reports. As a result, the state’s Board of Health was to meet Tuesday to discuss potential regulations.
The signage cost, rather than the content, appears to be the root of the issue for businesses who oppose the measure. Jim Hooper, president of the Oklahoma Restaurant Association, told the AP, “We don’t have any concern about the information they’re trying to get out to women about their babies and their pregnancy … It’s just another mandate on small businesses.” Senator A.J. Griffin, who sponsored the bill, said she saw how it would need to be “tempered.”
“We need to make sure we have something that’s reasonable and still effective,” she added.
The bill also notably includes a measure that requires the State Department of Education to introduce materials in the classroom with “the purpose of achieving an abortion-free society.” Simultaneously, the educational materials are to “include no component of human sexuality education other than those included in science education standards.”
5. Something political. Remind folks that even though we critique the democratic party, we’re still on the left.
5.5 ***anounce mad libs*** (Maybe)
6. Mid show break.
Big Gay News
Green News Report
Black Agenda Commentaries.
7. Second hour.
Santa Claus Is Not Real
UPLIFTING VIDEO CLIP
Sanders In Trump Country