• New Bill Would Make Cash-Free Businesses Illegal

    Tomorrow, New York city councilmember Ritchie J. Torres will formally introduce legislation that could ban so-called cashless businesses from operating in New York City. Like lawmakers in Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and New Jersey, Torres, who represents the 15th Council District in the central Bronx, believes that cash-free establishments are discriminatory by design. If his bill is passed, any business that refuses to accept #cash will face fines — a move that would impact the many cash-free restaurants, coffee shops, and cafés that have recently emerged across New York City. On the eve of announcing his bill, Grub Street talked to him about the racism and classism that he believes are at the heart of the so called “cashless revolution.”



    Philly anarcho-punk/folk troubadours Mischief Brew celebrate their fifteenth year not with a champagne toast, but by barreling into the bar and slamming down This Is Not For Children, their fourth studio album and debut on Alternative Tentacles Records. Recorded at Permanent Hearing Damage by Steve Roche—who recorded many of the band’s early releases including “Songs From Under the Sink”—it breathes and bleeds a tough spirit that could only have been born in the streets, bars and empty warehouses of Philadelphia, PA. Songs about everything from squatting to baseball to horror director William Castle (which is how the album gets its name).
    #Mischief_Brew #anarcho-punk #bandcamp

  • How the Lebanese Became White? | Moise A. Khayrallah Center for Lebanese Diaspora Studies | NC State University

    2014, via @humanprovince sur twitter,

    In the charged environment of racial politics of the South, Alabama’s congressman John L. Burnett argued in 1907 that the Lebanese “belong to a distinct race other than the White race.” In 1914 North Carolina Senator, F. M. Simmons went further proclaiming: “These [Lebanese] immigrants are nothing more than the degenerate progeny…the spawn of the Phoenician curse.”


    ... the larger Lebanese-American community in the United States did not formulate a coherent and coordinated response until the naturalization case of George Dow, a “Syrian” immigrant living in South Carolina. George Dow, who was born in Batroun (north Lebanon) in 1862, immigrated to the United States in 1889 through Philadelphia and eventually settled in Summerton, South Carolina where he ran a dry-goods store. In 1913 he filed for citizenship which was denied by the court because he was not a “free white person” as stipulated in the 1790 US naturalization law.

    For the “Syrian” community this case was crucial because it could mean the end of their ability to become US citizens, and thus maintain their residence and livelihoods in “Amirka.” Moreover, it was a matter of equality in rights. The community’s struggle with the fluid concept of “free white person” began before George Dow, with Costa Najjour who was denied naturalization in 1909 by an Atlanta lower court because he was too “dark.” In 1913 Faris Shahid’s application was also denied by a South Carolina court, because “he was somewhat darker than is the usual mulatto of one-half mixed blood between and the white and the negro races.” In rendering his decision in the Dow case, Judge Henry Smith argued that although Dow may be a “free white person,” the legislators from 1790 meant white Europeans when they wrote “free white person.”

    The “Syrian” community decided to challenge this exclusionary interpretation. Setting aside their differences, all Arab- American newspapers dedicated at least one whole page to the coverage of this case and its successful appeal to the Fourth Circuit court. Al-Huda led the charge with one headline “To Battle, O Syrians.” Proclaiming that Judge Smith’s decision was a “humiliation” of “Syrians,” the community poured money into the legal defense of George Dow. Najib al-Sarghani, who helped establish the Syrian Society for National Defense in 1914 in Charleston, South Carolina, wrote in al-Huda, “we have found ourselves at the center of an attack on the Syrian honor,” and such ruling would render the Syrian “no better than blacks and Mongolians . Rather blacks will have rights that the Syrian does not have.” The community premised its right to naturalization on a series of arguments that would “prove” that “free white person” meant all Caucasians, thus establishing precedent in the American legal system and shaping the meaning of “whiteness” in America. Joseph Ferris summarized these arguments a decade later in The Syrian World magazine as follows: the term “white” referred to all Caucasians; George Dow was Semite and therefore Caucasian; since European Jews (who were Semites) were deemed worthy of naturalization, therefore “Syrians” should be given that right as well; and finally, as Christians, “Syrians” must have been included in the statute of 1790. The success of these arguments at the Court of Appeals level secured the legal demarcation of “Syrians” as “white.”

    What makes this particular story more remarkable is that similar ones were unfolding around the same time in South Africa and Australia, both of which had racially-based definitions of citizenship and concomitant rights. For example, in 1913 Moses Gandur challenged the classification of “Syrians” as “Colored Asiatics” before the Supreme Court of South Africa and won by arguing that although “Syrians” resided in Asia they still were white or Caucasian, and thus not subject to the exclusionary clauses of the 1885 Law. In all of these cases, the arguments were also quite similar to the one summarized by Joseph Ferris above.

    These decisions meant that the “Syrians” (and by extension today all Arabs) are considered white in the US. This entry into mainstream society–where whiteness bestowed political and economic power–meant different things for different members of the Lebanese community. Some were satisfied to leave the racial system of the South unchallenged as long as they were considered white.

    For others, the experience of fighting racial discrimination convinced them that the system is inherently unjust and must be changed. Thus, many NC Lebanese (like Ralph Johns who encouraged his black clients at his clothier store on East Merchant Street to start the sit-ins in Greensboro) participated in the Civil Rights struggle of the 1960s to end the era of the #Jim_Crow South.

    #blanchité#Libanais #Arabes #Etats-Unis #racisme

  • Opinion | The Pragmatic Left Is Winning - The New York Times

    On Tuesday, Rashida Tlaib, a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, won her primary in Michigan, and she is now overwhelmingly likely to become the first Muslim woman in Congress. In a referendum, people in Missouri voted 2 to 1 to overturn an anti-union “right to work” law passed by the Republican legislature. In an upset, Wesley Bell, a progressive city councilman from Ferguson, Mo., effectively ousted the longtime St. Louis County prosecutor, who many civil rights activists say mishandled the investigation into the police shooting of Michael Brown, the African-American teenager whose 2014 killing set off riots.

    So it was strange to see headlines in the following days arguing that the left wing of the Democratic Party had hit a wall. “Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s movement failed to deliver any stunners Tuesday night,” said CNN. “Down Goes Socialism,” announced Politico Magazine, despite the fact that Tlaib’s victory doubles the D.S.A.’s likely representation in Congress. “Socialist torchbearers flame out in key races, despite blitz by Bernie Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez,” said a Fox News headline.

    In part, this spin might just be the inevitable backlash to Ocasio-Cortez’s sudden celebrity. Her primary victory was thrilling and hard-earned, and she’s a charismatic and rousing spokeswoman for her values. But her overnight anointment as the new face of the Democratic Party has created absurdly outsize expectations of her power as kingmaker.

    In truth, there’s nothing surprising about left-wing candidates losing their primaries. The happy surprise is how many are winning. Unsexy as it sounds, the real story of progressive politics right now is the steady accumulation of victories — some small, some major — thanks to a welcome and unaccustomed outbreak of left-wing pragmatism.

    The new generation of left-wing activists, by contrast, is good at self-multiplication. The Democratic Socialists of America alone has done more to build left political power since the 2016 election than the Green Party did in the 18 years after Nader helped elect George W. Bush.

    Just as the Christian Right did in the 1990s, the new electoral left — which also includes groups like Justice Democrats and the Working Families Party — is trying to take over the Democratic Party from the ground up. These activists have, significantly, focused on races for prosecutor, which is a way to create immediate local criminal justice reform. (In Philadelphia, left-wing organizers last year helped elect civil rights lawyer Larry Krasner as district attorney. Among his reforms is the end of cash bail for many misdemeanors and nonviolent felonies.)

    It’s true that several candidates endorsed by Ocasio-Cortez and Sanders lost on Tuesday, including Abdul El-Sayed in Michigan’s gubernatorial primary and Brent Welder in a congressional primary in Kansas. But it’s testament to how far left the Democratic Party’s center of gravity has moved that the winners in those two races — Gretchen Whitmer in Michigan and Sharice Davids in Kansas — could be considered establishment.

    Whitmer supports a $15 minimum wage, marijuana legalization and statewide universal preschool. Davids, a Native American lesbian, former mixed martial arts fighter and lawyer, is running as a bad-ass feminist. One of her ads shows her training in a boxing gym. “It’s 2018, and women, Native Americans, gay people, the unemployed and underemployed have to fight like hell just to survive,” she says. “And it’s clear, Trump and the Republicans in Washington don’t give a damn.”

    It’s certainly true that Davids’s campaign put more emphasis on identity and representation, while Welder, a 2016 Sanders delegate, stressed populist economics. The Democratic Party will likely be weighing the precise balance between those progressive priorities for a long time. But the point is, they are all progressive priorities. After Davids’s victory, Ocasio-Cortez tweeted her congratulations: “Your win is an incredible inspiration to so many, myself included.”

    #Politique_USA #Politique_identité

  • Why ’Dancing In The Street’ Gets The People Going : NPR

    Mark Kurlansky, author of the book Ready For a Brand New Beat: How “Dancing in the Street” Became the Anthem for a Changing America, says that at the time, those campaigning for equal rights were split on strategy — between Dr. King’s nonviolence, and the Black Power movements exemplified by Stokely Carmichael (aka Kwame Ture), the Black Panthers and Malcolm X’s Black Muslims. It was on the latter side that “Dancing in the Street” began to show a new potential.

    What makes the song an anthem is the ring of authenticity: a cry from the heart of summer in a big city, boiling with energy, turmoil and hope.

    “1964 was the year when Malcolm X famously said, ’We will get our rights by any means necessary. It really was the year that the black liberation movement was under a shift from the civil rights movement to the Black Power movement,” he says. “The people in the Black Power movement used this song for rallies because it got people worked up and got them going.”

    Mark Kurlansky also notes the litany of cities woven into the song: ’They’re dancing in Chicago, down in New Orleans, up in New York City ... Philadelphia, PA, Baltimore and D.C. now," and ending with, "Can’t forget the Motor City.’ “Every city they list where they were dancing,” he says, “was a city with a militant black neighborhood, and a city where, eventually riots, broke out.”

    Martha Reeves wants it to be known, “I had nothing to do with that. I just sang the song and in my heart, I was visualizing people actually dancing in the street. I wasn’t singing, you know, doom and gloom when the sun go down, let’s kill everybody and go steal their property, and break into stores and carry refrigerators home on your back.”

    But she also says the song reminds her of the trials she faced as a black teen in Detroit, before the modern civil rights movement began.

    “We couldn’t stand on street corners and sing,” she recalls, “because there was a police unit called the Big Four. It was usually four big white men, and they had clubs and guns. And if they caught a group of black people standing on the corner singing doo-wop ... they would jump out of the car and attack you, arrest you, or run to your house, because they didn’t want blacks gathering. So ’Dancing in the Street’ is all of that to me.”
    On ’Fanfare For The Common Man,’ An Anthem For The American Century
    American Anthem
    On ’Fanfare For The Common Man,’ An Anthem For The American Century

    Mark Kurlansky believes that “Dancing in the Street” has grown into an American anthem over six decades because its irresistible beat and engaging images let people find their own message in the song. He says that co-writer Mickey Stevenson “saw it as a song about integration: about how young black people and young white people could go out on the street and be together.”


  • State of Podcasts 2018: Takeaways from #podcast Movement on monetization, diversity, and discovery

    We spent last week in Philadelphia at Podcast Movement, the largest annual conference for the podcast industry. We’re big fans of podcasting, and it’s been exciting to see the conference grow from a few hundred attendees in 2014 (with a $32k Kickstarter budget) to 2,500+ attendees today. The event brought together podcasters and podcasting companies (Gimlet, Panoply), tech companies (Spotify, Google), media companies (NPR, Buzzfeed), and even consumer brands (the closing party was sponsored by Jack Daniel’s!).Over the last ten years, the percentage of people in the U.S. who reported listening to a podcast in the last month has grown from 9% to 26%, a significant jump (read more stats at Edison Research). There are more than 500,000 active podcasts on the Apple Podcasts app alone, with (...)

    #state-of-podcasts #technology #venture-capital #startup

  • The Iconic Urinal & Work of Art, “Fountain,” Wasn’t Created by Marcel Duchamp But by the Pioneering Dada Artist Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven | Open Culture

    The truth first emerged in a letter from Duchamp to his sister—discovered in 1982 and dated April 11th, 1917, a few days before the exhibit in which Fountain first appeared—in which he “wrote that a female friend using a male alias had sent it in for the New York exhibition.” The name, “Richard Mutt,” was a pseudonym chosen by Freytag-Loringhoven, who was living in Philadelphia at the time and whom Duchamp knew well, once pronouncing that "she is not a Futurist. She is the future.” (See her Portrait of Marcel Duchamp, above, in a 1920 photograph by Charles Sheeler.)

    Why did she never claim Fountain as her own? “She never had the chance,” notes See All This. The urinal was rejected by the exhibition organizers (Duchamp resigned from their board in protest), and it was probably, subsequently thrown away; nothing remained but a photograph by Alfred Stieglitz. Von Freytag-Loringhoven died ten years later in 1927.

    It was only in 1935 that surrealist André Breton brought attention back to Fountain, attributing it to Duchamp, who accepted authorship and began to commission replicas. The 1917 piece “was destined to become one of the most iconic works of modern art. In 2004, some five hundred artists and art experts heralded Fountain as the most influential piece of modern art, even leaving Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon behind.”

  • VIDEO.

    Inside Family Detention, Trump’s Big Solution.

    At first glance, it resembles a doctor’s office, or perhaps a rec center. Security footage depicts sterile gray hallways leading to common areas with office couches and rainbow-colored, child-sized chairs. At the door to an outdoor field, there are tricycles and assorted balls, and in a small chapel with wooden benches, a detainee sweeps the floor. Correctional officers, referred to as “residential counselors,” sport khakis and blue polo shirts. But the Berks Family Residential Center, located about 75 miles northwest of Philadelphia, is also a place where immigrant parents and children are held for indefinite periods of time without adequate healthcare, according to multiple complaints and lawsuits. In one 2016 case, a guard there was convicted of “institutional” sexual assault; his victim was a 19-year-old asylum seeker from Honduras who had been detained with her three-year-old son for 7 months. It is facilities like Berks — operating in a gray area between federal prison and childcare provider — that may begin to sprout up across the country following President Trump’s announcement on Wednesday that he will end his administration’s practice of forcibly separating migrant parents and children at the U.S.-Mexico border.“We are going to keep the families together,” Trump said, at a signing ceremony in the Oval Office for his executive order.

  • Alice Neel, peintre de la mise à nu

    ll est des moments plus propices que d’autres aux redécouvertes des femmes artistes négligées de leur vivant pour avoir été trop indépendantes. Libre dans son art comme dans son corps, Alice Neel (1900-1984) a longtemps été dédaignée. Par les galeries, qui ne trouvaient pas son travail assez avant-gardiste, et par les musées, qui ne l’ont que très peu acheté. Mais en 2017, l’Américaine a tenu une revanche posthume : pas moins de quatre expositions, au Musée d’art Ateneum à Helsinki, au prestigieux Musée municipal de La Haye, à la Fondation Vincent Van Gogh Arles et, jusqu’au 14 janvier, au Deichtorhallen de Hambourg.

    Alice Neel fut témoin des bouleversements du XXe siècle, de la crise de l’homme moderne comme des combats des minorités et des opprimés. Et plus encore de l’affranchissement des femmes, dont le combat se poursuit aujourd’hui jusque dans la revendication d’une écriture inclusive. L’intérêt que suscite son œuvre est sans nul doute porté par le climat actuel.
    « Je ne voyais pas la vie comme un pique-nique sur l’herbe. Je n’étais pas heureuse comme Renoir. » Alice Neel

    De son vivant, Alice Neel n’a pourtant rien pour elle. Elle est femme, à une époque où les peintres mâles ont la main. Elle est marxiste en pleine guerre froide. Sa peinture est figurative quand on ne jure que par l’abstraction. Bien qu’inscrite en 1921 à la Philadelphia School of Design for Women, une école pour jeunes filles de bonne famille, la peintre tourne le dos aux clichés. Le formalisme esthétisant, les paysages primesautiers façon Mary Cassatt, très peu pour elle. « Je ne voyais pas la vie comme un pique-nique sur l’herbe. Je n’étais pas heureuse comme Renoir », dira-t-elle. Elle résiste à une autre idéologie dominante, celle de l’expressionnisme abstrait défendue à New York. Pour rendre compte des crises qui secouent la société, Alice Neel préfère le réalisme cru inspiré de l’expressionnisme allemand et de la nouvelle objectivité.

    #invisibilisation #femmes #arts

  • Me Too Creator Tarana Burke on the Viral Movement - Motto

    But while many credited Milano with launching the movement, it was actually started a decade ago by Tarana Burke. (Milano has attributed the movement to Burke on social media.) In 2007, Burke, who is a survivor of sexual violence herself, was working as an activist in Philadelphia with young women of color who had experienced sexual violence. She was looking for a way to let them know that they weren’t alone, so she told them: “Me too.”

    Rendons à Tarana ce qui appartient à Tarana qui lança le mouvement metoo il y a 10 ans pour parler spécifiquement des violences sexuelles à l’encontre des jeunes femmes noires.

    #metoo #tarana_burke #viol #agressions_sexuelles

  • At anti-Semitism panel, Linda Sarsour asks, ’I am the biggest problem of the Jewish community?’

    The prominent feminist activist and controversial anti-Zionist speaks out against anti-Semitism and the importance of ’organizing at the intersections of oppression’

    Asher Schechter Nov 29, 2017
    read more:

    Minutes before Palestinian-American activist Linda Sarsour took the stage at The New School’s Alvin Johnson Auditorium as part of a panel on anti-Semitism, one of the organizers went up to deliver a number of key instructions to audience members in case protesters would try to shut down the event.
    But the fears that the event would be disrupted by right-wing protesters turned out to be for naught. Despite two weeks of a media frenzy, a petition signed by more than 21,000 people and loads of criticism from both left and right, the panel concluded with only two very minor interruptions.
    skip - fb

    >> American Jews, lay off Linda Sarsour | Opinion
    skip - A video of the panel on anti-Semitism at The New School

    “Apparently I am the biggest problem of the Jewish community? I am the existential threat, Apparently? I am confused, literally, every day,” said Sarsour, addressing the controversy that preceded the event.
    Sarsour, a prominent advocate for Muslim Americans, criminal justice reform and civil rights, is the former executive director of the Arab American Association of New York and co-chaired last January’s National Women’s March. During the past year, particularly as her profile in progressive circles increased after the march, Sarsour has raised the ire of conservatives, Zionist activists and so-called alt-right figures who accuse her of supporting terrorists and promoting anti-Semitism – largely due to her support of the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement and her criticism of Israel.
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    >> Extremists on left and right empowering BDS on U.S. college campuses | Opinion
    “I am deeply honored and humbled to be here on this stage with people who have been some of the staunchest allies of the communities that I come from,” Sarsour said during the panel. “We cannot dismantle anti-Black racism, Islamophobia, homophobia, transphobia, every phobia and -ism without also dismantling anti-Semitism.”
    “Intersectionality is not about black and white people organizing together or Jews and Muslims organizing together. It is all of us organizing at the intersections of oppression and seeing oppression [as] connected. Anti-Semitism is one branch on a larger tree of racism,” she added. “You can’t just address one branch, you need to address all branches together so we can get to the root of the problem.”

    In her remarks, Sarsour spoke at length about her criticism of Zionism. “Just in case it’s not clear, I am unapologetically Palestinian-American and will always be unapologetically Palestinian-American. I am also unapologetically Muslim-American. And guess what? I am also a very staunch supporter of the BDS movement. What other way am I supposed to be, as a Palestinian-American who’s a daughter of immigrants who lived under military occupation and still has relatives in Palestine that live under military occupation? I should be expected to have the views that I hold,” she said.
    Regardless of their feelings toward Israel, said Sarsour, Jews and non-Jews alike “must commit to dismantling anti-Semitism. The existential threat resides in the White House, and if what you’re reading all day long in the Jewish media is that Linda Sarsour and Minister [Louis] Farrakhan are the existential threats to the Jewish community, something really bad is going to happen and we are going to miss the mark on it.”
    skip - A tweet from Jonathan Greenblatt

    Apart from Sarsour, the panel also featured Rebecca Vilkomerson, the executive director of Jewish Voices for Peace, Leo Ferguson of Jews for Racial and Economic Justice and Lina Morales, a member of Jews of Color and Mizrahi/Sephardi Caucus of JVP. The event was moderated by journalist and author Amy Goodman, the host of the alternative news program “Democracy Now!”
    The panel, organized by JVP, Haymarket Books, Jacobin magazine, Jews for Racial and Economic Justice and The New School’s Creative Publishing and Critical Journalism program, was preceded by great controversy over Sarsour’s participation. Jonathan Greenblatt, the CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, tweeted that “Having Linda Sarsour & head of JVP leading a panel on antisemitism is like Oscar Meyer leading a panel on vegetarianism.” Writing for Tablet Magazine, Phyllis Chesler, a New School alumni, wished that she could give back her diploma.
    “Antisemitism is harmful and real. But when antisemitism is redefined as criticism of Israel, critics of Israeli policy become accused and targeted more than the growing far-right,” read the event’s description.
    The other panelists were similarly critical of Israel and of the Jewish American community that rebukes activists like Sarsour yet embraces far-right figures like Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka. “I am angry at the profound hypocrisy of the institutional Jewish community, which has taught us that loving Israel does not mean that you love Jews,” said Vilkomerson. “Because I care about Jews, I am anti-Zionist,” said Morales. “Nothing can be more counterproductive or hurtful to Jews than to be intentionally confusing the issue of anti-Semitism by spreading false charges of anti-Semitism,” said Ferguson, in reference to the “smearing” of pro-Palestinian activists by Jewish-American organizations. Lobbing false accusations of anti-Semitism, he argued, “slowly erodes our ability to accurately assess threats.”
    Two hours before the debate was scheduled to begin, over 15 policemen and security guards and multiple police cars were already surrounding the venue where it was to be held. A small protest took place across the street, with some demonstrators holding signs and chanting against Sarsour and JVP.
    “This panel is spitting in the face of Jews – four anti-Semites talking about anti-Semitism,” Karen Lichtbraun, one of the demonstrators and head of the New York chapter of the Jewish Defense League told Haaretz. JVP, she charged, wanted to “drive a wedge between Jews” by inviting Sarsour. “[Sarsour] wants to bring Sharia law to America. She is brainwashing a lot of young Jews,” she claimed.
    “Nobody has a monopoly on talking about anti-Semitism,” Rabbi Alissa Wise, deputy director of Jewish Voice for Peace and one of the event’s organizers, told Haaretz. “As a rabbi and a Jew, I feel safer in the world knowing that there are more people, non-Jewish allies, Muslims, Christians, people of no faith, who are taking up the question of anti-Semitism seriously.”
    When asked about the commotion in the media that surrounded the event, Wise said: “There’s something particular about the role that Linda plays in the psyche of the American Jewish community. We’ve done these anti-Semitism events in Indianapolis, Chicago, the Bay Area, Philadelphia, and this is not the only one where a Muslim is speaking. Never before have we seen this kind of frenzy. It just seems like a witch hunt of sorts.”
    Tuesday’s event was not the first time a planned appearance by Sarsour caused controversy: Her invitation to deliver the commencement address at the City University of New York School of Public Health in June raised the ire of pro-Israel activists. The uproar included a protest rally against her speech outside CUNY’s main office building, headed by far-right provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos, who called Sarsour a “Sharia-loving, terrorist-embracing, Jew-hating, ticking time bomb of progressive horror.”
    “When I spoke at the CUNY graduate center back in June, something really disturbing happened,” said Sarsour during the panel. “I don’t care if people protest against me. What was confusing to me at that moment was, how is it that people that are Jewish are standing in a really against me with Milo Yiannopoulos, Richard Spencer, and Gavin McInnes? Why are they there with them? I hope the Jewish community stands up and says that’s wrong, that under no circumstance should Jewish people align with people like Milo or Pamela Geller or Richard Spencer or Gavin McInnes.”
    When asked about her previous statement that feminism is “incompatible with Zionism,” Sarsour said: “I am not as important as I am made out to be. I am not the one that actually gets to say who gets to be in the movement and who doesn’t. Let’s stop talking about the civil rights movement that happened 50 years ago because there is a civil rights movement happening right now. We live under fascism, and we need all hands on deck.”

    Asher Schechter
    Haaretz Columnist

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  • Nearly 4,000 US communities have higher rates of lead poisoning than Flint - World Socialist Web Site

    Nearly 4,000 US communities have higher rates of lead poisoning than #Flint
    By Jerry White
    16 November 2017

    In an updated study, Reuters news agency has identified 3,810 neighborhoods where recently recorded child lead poisoning rates are at least double those found in Flint, Michigan during the height of that city’s water crisis in 2014 and 2015. In some 1,300 of these “hotspot” communities, the percentage of children six and under with elevated lead levels was at least four times the percentage in Flint during the peak of the crisis.

    In pockets of Baltimore, Cleveland and Philadelphia, where lead poisoning has spanned generations, Reuters reported that the rate of elevated tests over the last decade was 50 percent or higher. An interactive map released with the study shows one census tract in Buffalo, New York—a former steel and auto center that, like Flint, has suffered decades of deindustrialization—where 68 percent of the children had high levels of lead.

    #eau #états-unis #Pollution #plomb #flint

  • Why are so many new and expectant mothers dying in the US? — Quartz

    one of the US’s most shameful statistics. With an estimated 26.4 deaths for every 100,000 live births in 2015, America has the highest maternal mortality rate of all industrialized countries—by several times over. In Canada, the rate is 7.3; in Western Europe, the average is 7.2, with many countries including Italy, Norway, Sweden, and Austria showing rates around 4. More women die of childbirth-related causes in the US than they do in Iran (20.8), Lebanon (15.3), Turkey (15.8), Puerto Rico (15.1), China (17.7), and many more.

    #santé #maternité #accouchement #femmes #États-Unis

    • When it comes to pregnant women, this manifests itself in a focus on the child, at the cost of a focus on the mother, as highlighted in a recent investigation by NPR and ProPublica into the issue. Health-care professionals spend their time and energy on the baby. This was the experience of the Logelin family—in the end, it was a case of the woman not being fully seen or heard by the US medical system.
      Newborn Maddy Logelin.
      Newborn Maddy Logelin. (Photo courtesy of Matt Logelin)

      Jen Albert, a communications professional from Philadelphia who nearly died after developing polyhydramnios (excess of amniotic fluid) and being induced, says her experience taught her that “no one expects that someone could die in childbirth.” The only potential risks that are taken seriously, she says, are the child’s, while “the mother is only a vehicle to bring the baby.”

      #réification #mépris #sexisme

  • You Are the Product

    The ads work on two models. In one of them, advertisers ask Facebook to target consumers from a particular demographic – our thirty-something bourbon-drinking country music fan, or our African American in Philadelphia who was lukewarm about Hillary. But Facebook also delivers ads via a process of online auctions, which happen in real time whenever you click on a website. Because every website you’ve ever visited (more or less) has planted a cookie on your web browser, when you go to a new site, there is a real-time auction, in millionths of a second, to decide what your eyeballs are worth and what ads should be served to them, based on what your interests, and income level and whatnot, are known to be. This is the reason ads have that disconcerting tendency to follow you around, so that you look at a new telly or a pair of shoes or a holiday destination, and they’re still turning up on every site you visit weeks later. This was how, by chucking talent and resources at the problem, Facebook was able to turn mobile from a potential revenue disaster to a great hot steamy geyser of profit.

    #facebook #surveillance #advertising #longread

  • Droits de l’homme : Montée du racisme et de la xénophobie aux Etats-Unis | Radio des Nations Unies

    Un groupe d’experts des droits de l’homme des Nations Unies a prévenu mercredi que le #racisme et la #xénophobie étaient en hausse aux #États-Unis. « Nous sommes indignés par les violences à Charlottesville et la haine raciale affichée par des extrémistes de droite, des #suprématistes blancs et des groupes #néo-nazis », ont déclaré ces experts dans une déclaration conjointe.

    De son côté le Secrétaire général de l’ONU a lui aussi declaré que Le racisme, la xénophobie, l’#antisémitisme et l’#islamophobie sont des poisons pour nos societés.

    Ces experts sont Sabelo Gumedze, Président du Groupe de travail des experts sur les personnes d’ascendance africaine, Mutuma Ruteere, Rapporteur spécial sur les formes contemporaines de racisme, de #discrimination raciale, de xénophobie et d’intolérance qui y est associée, et Anastasia Crickley, Présidente du Comité pour l’élimination de la discrimination raciale.

    Hate Crimes Rise in Major US Cities in 2017

    Hate crimes have jumped by nearly 20 percent in major U.S. cities through much of this year, after increasing nationally by 5 percent last year, according to police data compiled by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University at San Bernardino.

    The number of hate crimes in 13 cities with a population of over 250,000 rose to 827 incidents, up 19.9 percent from 690 reported during the same period last year, according to the study. Only two cities - Columbus, Ohio, and Riverside, California - posted declines.

    Among the nation’s six largest cities, including New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago, the number of hate incidents increased to 526 from 431 last year, up 22.4 percent, according to the study.

    In New York City, hate crimes jumped 28.4 percent; in Los Angeles by 13 percent; in Philadelphia by 9 percent; in Chicago, by 8.3 percent, and in Phoenix, Arizona, by a whopping 46 percent. Houston, the nation’s No. 4 city, bucked the trend, reporting five incidents through July 31, the same number as last year.

    Major hate crimes reported this year included the stabbing of an African-American man in New York City in March; the fatal stabbing of two men protecting a hijab-wearing Muslim woman in Portland, Oregon in May; and the killing of a protester in Charlottesville, Virginia last month.

    All were committed by “avowed white supremacists,” said Brian Levin, director of the hate and extremism studies center in California.

    If 2017 ends with an overall increase, it would mark the third consecutive annual rise in hate crimes, something not seen since 2004, according to Levin said.

  • Snoozers Are, in Fact, Losers | The New Yorker

    If we could just synchronize our sleep more closely with natural light patterns, it would become far easier to wake up. It wouldn’t be unprecedented. In the early nineteenth century, the United States had a hundred and forty-four separate time zones. Cities set their own local time, typically so that noon would correspond to the moment the sun reached its apex in the sky; when it was noon in Manhattan, it was five till in Philadelphia. But on November 18, 1883, the country settled on four standard time zones; railroads and interstate commerce had made the prior arrangement impractical. By 1884, the entire globe would be divided into twenty-four time zones. Reverting to hyperlocal time zones might seem like it could lead to a terrible loss of productivity. But who knows what could happen if people started work without a two-hour lag, during which their cognitive abilities are only shadows of their full selves?


    • Digression. Puisque Cochet, une anecdote. J’ai ouïe dire de bonne source que lors d’une réunion intello fort restreinte durant les années 90 sur l’enjeu du revenu garanti et sa faisabilité économique (ah ah ah) avec des topos d’économistes hétérodoxes supposés polliniser le programme politique des Verts le monomaniaque du pétrole qui va manquer était super d’accord et avait par chance déjà sur la question des idées la principale étant d’utiliser le fric Unedic c’est-à-dire les allocs chômage et une partie du fric CAF dont le RMI et les allocations logement pour financer un revenu de bas niveau sans avoir trop fait attention il faut bien le dire à ce qu’exigeaient les mouvements de précaires qui existaient alors à savoir plutôt un machin au moins au SMIC pour n’importe qui avant de commencer à discuter de la suite dans des conditions différentes juste pour voir comme ça si cette intuition venue du ventre et du besoin de chaleur allait pas pourquoi pas mettre suffisamment à distance le plus froid de tous les monstres froids et ce que chaque jour il s’attache à fabriquer d’acceptation du malheur que c’est de devoir produire pour la production.
      Avec cette histoire et d’autres du même genre où ça gouverne et ça gouverne c’est à se demander si réellement on peut dormir et même à quoi ressemblerait l’éveil.

      #revenu_garanti -> #rdb

  • #TEU tokens and #blockchain may shape the future of container shipping contracts - The Loadstar

    Blockchain initiative 300cubits has created a new type of cryptocurrency to solve liner shipping’s US$23bn “booking shortfall” conundrum.

    Named TEU, the de-facto industry currency is distributed as tokens on the Ethereum network and will be tradeable on various global cryptocurrency exchanges.

    300cubits claims the tokens will help to eliminate shipping’s “trust issue” by reducing the counterparty default risk, caused by shipper ‘#no-shows’, and by carriers ‘rolling’ cargo.

    According to New Jersey Institute of Technology’s Professor Michael Erlich, the impact of this booking shortfall can be quantified as 5m teu a year, which costs the industry $23bn when knock-on effects, such as carriers’ lost revenue and shippers’ additional inventory costs, are calculated.

    300cubits’ solution is to use TEU tokens as booking deposits. The tokens are coded with a set of immutable conditions to create blockchain-enabled smart contracts to govern the booking transaction.

    Once committed, neither party can alter what has been agreed,” said 300cubits.

    Both the container lines and their customers will be given TEU tokens that will be held as deposits with conditions, and paid out later, upon the execution of the shipment booking.

    The container lines will be compensated with the TEU tokens if the customer does not turn up with cargo. Likewise, the customer will be compensated with the TEU tokens if their cargo is rolled.
    After a first batch of TEU tokens are given to some early adopters, 300cubits plans to offer an ‘initial token sale’ to monetise the new currency. Use of the tokens by industry players will validate and enhance its value, it said, adding that only 100,000,000 tokens would be created to ensure their long-term value.
    The ‘initial token sale’ is planned for November, after trials are completed.

    • FAQ - 300 Cubits

      Who is behind 300cubits?
      ETH Smart Contract Tech Ltd, a company incorporated and headquartered in Hong Kong.

      ETH Smart Contract Tech Limited - Hong Kong Company Formation Search

      ETH Smart Contract Tech Limited
      (CR No. 2553818)

      ETH Smart Contract Tech Limited was incorporated on 10 Jul 2017 as a Private company limited by shares registered in Hong Kong. The date of annual examination for this private company limitedis between Jul 10 and Aug 21 upon the anniversary of incorporation. The company’s status is listed as “Live” now.

    • Hong Kong startup launches blockchain project designed to transform container shipping - Splash 247

      300cubits is a project initiated by ETH Smart Contract Tech (ESCoT), a company founded in Hong Kong by Johnson Leung and Jonathan Lee. Leung started his career with Maersk. Later on he moved into the finance world, as regional shipping analyst at JP Morgan and then a senior shipping analyst for Tufton Oceanic, before joining Jefferies as the head of regional transport and industrials research for the Asia Pacific region. Lee, meanwhile, worked for a variety of Chinese, European and American banks in his career before founding ESCoT with his old university friend, Leung.

      J. Leung est vice-président de l’association des anciens élèves de son université HKUST (Hong Kong University of Science and Technology)

      HKUSTAA - The Executive Committee - Know More About Us

      Deputy President
      Johnson LEUNG
      1994 BSc (Bio)

      I am Johnson Leung, graduated in 1994 with a Biology degree from UST. During my undergraduate days I spent as much time in sports such as track & field and basketball as I did in organizing various student interest clubs and associations.

      After my undergraduate studies, I had a short stint in drama production and then I spent most of my last ten years abroad through several international assignments at a shipping company, for which I have lived in places such as Beijing , Sao Paulo , Copenhagen , Lisbon , Fontainebleau and Philadelphia . My career choice brought me back to Hong Kong early 2004. Now I am practicing corporate finance in a boutique investment bank.

      In my spare time, I do sports such as hiking and basketball, reading in subjects such as biography and history, and hanging out with my friends. I had three fantastic years in UST and always love the UST community. I thinkalumni association is effective as well as essential in the development of an institution and I am grateful to have this chance to serve a term in the Ex-co of the UST Alumni Association.

    • Ça démarre aujourd’hui.

      TEU tokens – first cryptocurrency for container shipping is launched - The Loadstar

      Container shipping could see the first widespread use of a cryptocurrency this week.

      Hong Kong-based blockchain developer ETH Smart Contract Tech will tomorrow start handing out its bespoke TEU tokens to shippers, forwarders and 3PLs under its 300cubits project.

      The company will release some 20m TEU tokens, “custom-designed as digital shipping booking deposits, using smart contract blockchain technology, to solve the no-show and rolling problems plaguing the container shipping industry”, to container line customers for free – but on a first-come-first basis.

      Interested shippers and forwarders need to demonstrate their eligibility for 300cubits, and are currently restricted to those that bought slots in 2016.

      After passing the eligibility test, container line customers will allocated TEU tokens based on how much they have spent with the lines, which cumulatively saw sales of $150bn in 2016.

      For example, if the eligible participant has paid $50m as freight payment directly to container lines during 2016, the eligible participant would be entitled to at least 0.03% [$50m as a % of $150bn, the revenue of the entire container shipping industry] of the TEU tokens to be distributed to the customers of container liners – about 6,667,”according to its prospectus.

      300cubits said the total supply of TEU tokens will be fixed at 100m.

  • Quelques références trouvées dans le livre Violent Borders de Reece Jones (excellent, par ailleurs), sur les #statistiques des décès de migrants (certains, voire beaucoup déjà signalés sur seenthis):

    Humanitarian Crisis: Migrant Deaths at the U.S.-Mexico Border

    This report is the result of a cooperative agreement entered into by Mexico’s National Commission of Human Rights and the American Civil Liberties Union of San Diego and Imperial Counties to explore and use binational strategies to protect the human rights of immigrants in the border region. The report describes the unacceptable human tragedy that takes place daily in this region. The study was conducted and written by immigration and border policy advocate Maria Jimenez who resides in Houston, Texas.

    Fatal Journeys: Tracking Lives Lost during Migration

    In October 2013, over 400 people lost their lives in two shipwrecks close to the Italian island of Lampedusa. While these two events were highly publicized, sadly they are not isolated incidents; the International Organization for Migration (IOM) estimates that in 2013 and 2014 nearly 6,500 migrants lost their lives in border regions around the world. Because many deaths occur in remote areas and are never reported, counts of deaths fail to capture the full number of lives lost.

    Despite recognition that actions must be taken to stop more unnecessary deaths, as yet there remains very little information on the scale of the problem. The vast majority of governments do not publish numbers of deaths, and counting lives lost is largely left to civil society and the media. Drawing upon data from a wide range of sources from different regions of the world, Fatal Journeys: Tracking Lives Lost during Migration investigates how border-related deaths are documented, who is documenting them, and what can be done to improve the evidence base to encourage informed accountability, policy and practice.

    Regionally focused chapters present most recent statistics and address a number of key questions regarding how migrant border-related deaths are enumerated. Chapters address: migration routes through Central America to the United States, with a focus on the United States–Mexico border region; the southern European Union bordering the Mediterranean; routes from sub-Saharan Africa to North Africa; routes taken by migrants emigrating from the Horn of Africa towards the Gulf or Southern Africa; and the waters surrounding Australia.

    Numbers have the power to capture attention, and while counts of border-related deaths will always be estimates, they serve to make concrete something which has been left vague and ill-defined. In a way, through counting, deaths too often invisible are given existence. More complete data can not only serve to highlight the extent of what is taking place, but is also crucial in guiding effective policy response.

    Beyond Walls and Cages: Prisons, Borders, and Global Crisis

    The crisis of borders and prisons can be seen starkly in statistics. In 2011 some 1,500 migrants died trying to enter Europe, and the United States deported nearly 400,000 and imprisoned some 2.3 million people―more than at any other time in history. International borders are increasingly militarized places embedded within domestic policing and imprisonment and entwined with expanding prison-industrial complexes. Beyond Walls and Cages offers scholarly and activist perspectives on these issues and explores how the international community can move toward a more humane future.Working at a range of geographic scales and locations, contributors examine concrete and ideological connections among prisons, migration policing and detention, border fortification, and militarization. They challenge the idea that prisons and borders create safety, security, and order, showing that they can be forms of coercive mobility that separate loved ones, disempower communities, and increase shared harms of poverty. Walls and cages can also fortify wealth and power inequalities, racism, and gender and sexual oppression.As governments increasingly rely on criminalization and violent measures of exclusion and containment, strategies for achieving change are essential. Beyond Walls and Cages develops abolitionist, no borders, and decolonial analyses and methods for social change, showing how seemingly disconnected forms of state violence are interconnected. Creating a more just and free world―whether in the Mexico-U.S. borderlands, the Morocco-Spain region, South Africa, Montana, or Philadelphia―requires that people who are most affected become central to building alternatives to global crosscurrents of criminalization and militarization.

    The Human Costs of Border Control (2007)

    This article outlines the relationship between irregular immigration, increased border control, and the number of casualties at Europe’s maritime borders. The conclusion is that the number of fatalities is increasing as a result of increased border control. The author argues that States have a positive obligation under international law to address this issue, and formulates concrete proposals to monitor the number of border deaths.

    #migrations #asile #réfugiés #chiffres #décès #morts #rapport #USA #Etats-Unis #frontières #Mexique

  • Not Everyone Gets Family Support

    Those in desperate poverty often have to turn to a private safety net, frequently made up of family members, to meet basic needs, as many jobs fail to pay a living wage. But in my research on people living in poverty in Philadelphia, I found that many of the most vulnerable had no family members they could turn to, which meant any crisis could lead to homelessness. Others had family ties, but those relationships were often negative, characterized by long histories of unsupportive, mistrustful behavior.

    Un article extrait du blog « Families as They Really Are », qui reprend des contributions de chercheurs visant à dresser un portrait des familles contemporaines aux USA.

    #pauvreté #familles #etats-unis #solidarité #isolement #violences

  • 13 villes publient les infos sur le climat purgées par l’administration Trump | tech and berries

    Mais toutes les statistiques ne sont pas perdues. Depuis le 11 juin, 12 municipalités ont pris le relais. Comme l’avait fait Chicago début mai, ces localités (Atlanta, Boston, Evanston, Fayetteville, Houston, Milwaukee, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Portland, Seattle, and Saint. Louis) ont posté sur leur site officiel les pages que l’EPA avait reléguées aux archives numériques avec une mise en garde : « Ce site n’est plus mis à jour ». (

    « Les Américains ont droit aux recherches de l’#EPA sur le #climat financées sur fonds publics, a expliqué Ed Lee, le maire de San Francisco. A l’heure où le gouvernement fédéral continue à nuire aux progrès réalisés sur le climat, les villes prennent position. San Francisco continuera à prendre des mesures énergiques pour protéger ses habitants et la planète ».
    La ville de San Francisco s’est engagée à générer 50 % de l’énergie consommée en renouvelables d’ici 2020 et 100 % dix ans plus tard. Cela dit, elle est confrontée à nouvelle réalité : l’afflux de voitures Lyft et Uber, qui viennent de toute la région profiter de la manne de la Silicon Valley, met en danger les progrès accomplis dans la réduction de la pollution…

    Les 13 villes publient les pages purgées (, dans leur exacte forme initiale (, en reprenant les données diffusées en #open_source par le département d’innovation de la ville de Chicago (

    #information #censure #résistance

  • The Last Person You’d Expect to Die in Childbirth - ProPublica

    That’s the approach in the United Kingdom, where maternal deaths are regarded as systems failures. A national committee of experts scrutinizes every death of a woman from pregnancy or childbirth complications, collecting medical records and assessments from caregivers, conducting rigorous analyses of the data and publishing reports that help set policy for hospitals throughout the country. Coroners also sometimes hold public inquests, forcing hospitals and their staffs to answer for their mistakes. The U.K. process is largely responsible for the stunning reduction in preeclampsia deaths in Britain, the committee noted its 2016 report — “a clear success story” that it hoped to repeat “across other medical and mental health causes of maternal death.”

    The U.S. has no comparable federal effort. Instead, maternal mortality reviews are left up to states. As of this spring, 26 states (and one city, Philadelphia) had a well-established process in place; another five states had committees that were less than a year old. In almost every case, resources are tight, the reviews take years and the findings get little attention. A bipartisan bill in Congress, the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act of 2017, would authorize funding for states to establish review panels or improve their processes.

    New Jersey’s review team, the second-oldest in the U.S., includes OB-GYNs, nurses, mental health specialists, medical examiners, even a nutritionist. Using vital records and other reports, they identify every woman in New Jersey who died within a year of pregnancy or childbirth, from any cause, then review medical and other records to determine whether the death was “pregnancy-related” or not. Every few years, the committee publishes a report, focusing on things like the race and age of the mothers who died, the causes of death, and other demographic and health data. In the past, the findings have been used to promote policies to reduce postpartum depression.

    But the New Jersey committee doesn’t interview the relatives of the deceased, nor does it assess whether a death was preventable. Moreover, like every other state that conducts such reviews, New Jersey “de-identifies” the records — strips them of any information that might point to an individual hospital or a particular woman. Otherwise, the medical community and lawmakers would refuse to go along. The goal is to “improve care for patients in general,” said Joseph Apuzzio, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School who heads the committee. This requires a process that is “nonjudgmental” and “not punitive,” he said. “That’s the best way to get a free discussion of all of the health care providers who are in the room.”

    Yet the result of de-identification, as Larry soon realized, is that the review is of little use in assigning responsibility for individual deaths, or evaluating whether some hospitals, doctors or nurses are more prone to error than others. To Larry, this seemed like a critical oversight — or perhaps, willful denial. In a preventable death or other medical error, he said, sometimes the who and the where are as important as the why. “Unless someone points the finger specifically,” he said, “I think the actual cause [of the problem] is lost.”

  • Retour sur le 13 mai 1985 : la police de Philadelphie bombarde une maison et interdit aux pompiers d’éteindre le feu… 11 morts, dont 5 enfants, 60 logements détruits. Pas une sanction, sauf contre les victimes du « raid ».

    Ramona Africa Talks MOVE, Liberation and Surviving 1985 Bombing

    And not one single official, on any level, was ever held accountable, ever charged with a single crime against MOVE. But yet, you have the MOVE 9 being called murderers and being imprisoned for 38 years, working on 39 years now. Meanwhile, the people that murdered 11 of my family members, publicly on May 13 of 1985, not one of them was ever held accountable.

    #répression #États-Unis #racisme #prisonniers_politiques #histoire (récente)

    Philadelphia’s Osage Avenue police bombing, 30 years on : ’This story is a parable’ | The Guardian

  • What Bullets Do to Bodies - Highline

    The first thing Dr. Amy Goldberg told me is that this article would be pointless. She said this on a phone call last summer, well before the election, before a tangible sensation that facts were futile became a broader American phenomenon. I was interested in Goldberg because she has spent 30 years as a trauma surgeon, almost all of that at the same hospital, Temple University Hospital in North Philadelphia, which treats more gunshot victims than any other in the state and is located in what was, according to one analysis, the deadliest of the 10 largest cities in the country until last year, with a homicide rate of 17.8 murders per 100,000 residents in 2015.

    Over my years of reporting here, I had heard stories about Temple’s trauma team. A city prosecutor who handled shooting investigations once told me that the surgeons were able to piece people back together after the most horrific acts of violence. People went into the hospital damaged beyond belief and came walking out.