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Saturday, August 27, 2016

If the Clinton Foundation is so corrupt, why did Donald Trump donate to it?

Trump Gave 6-Figure Donation to Clinton Foundation

Image result for trump & clinton foundationDonald Trump donated at least $100,000 to the Clinton Foundation, sparking controversy in light of his recent call to “shut it down.”

Trump published a statement regarding the Clinton Foundation on his website this Monday, calling it “the most corrupt enterprise in political history:”

"Hillary Clinton is the defender of the corrupt and rigged status quo. The Clintons have spent decades as insiders lining their own pockets and taking care of donors instead of the American people. It is now clear that the Clinton Foundation is the most corrupt enterprise in political history. What they were doing during Crooked Hillary’s time as Secretary of State was wrong then, and it is wrong now. It must be shut down immediately."
Later that day, Steve Doocy of Fox News asked Trump about his statement:

Friday, August 26, 2016

Mass voters asked to renew commitment to public education

The Massachusetts Democratic Committee overwhelmingly passed a resolution opposing Question 2, which seeks to lift the cap on charter schools.

Massachusetts teacher and daily reader Christine Langhoff expands on my early report (which she kindly sent to me as soon as the resolution passed). 

Thanks to Christine, I was able to circulate the good news before the daily press. It is kind of amusing seeing the complaint by the representative of DFER, the hedge fund managers’ group. 

Hedge funds are not generally viewed as champions of those without power; they lack numbers, but they are loaded with money and power. 

Parents and educators anticipate that the hedge funds and corporate interests will pour close to $20 million into their campaign for Question 2. 

Supporters of public schools can’t match the dollars, but they can knock on every door and alert every parent that the real goal of this deceptive campaign is privatization, not helping public schools.

She writes:

The arms race for personal protection

Forget Guns, Flamethrowers Now Available To the Public 

Every so often there’s a news report about some idiot with a gun shooting himself in the crotch or a kid finding a parent’s or grandparent’s gun and killing either himself, a sibling, parent, or grandma.

Now we can look forward to sizzled and crackling family members and friends with the latest news that flamethrowers will now be available to the general public.

That’s right folks, you too can get your very own flamethrower – the weapons of war that were so controversial the U.S. military stopped using them after Vietnam.

A Cleveland startup called “Throwflame” is selling flamethrowers for the low, low price of $1,599 that can shoot fire for 50 feet.

Another company, “Ion Productions Team of Detroit,” is selling flamethrowers that can shoot flames for 25 feet for only $900.

The flamethrowers are, of course, marketed not as weapons, but as fun devices.

Trump donor rip-off

Pic of the Moment

The First U.S. Offshore Wind Farm Is Complete

By Samantha Page, Climate Reporter at @ThinkProgress.

The country’s first offshore wind farm is complete and set to start putting electricity on the grid by November, the developer announced last week.

The five-turbine, 30-megawatt Block Island Wind Farm — providing enough electricity to power roughly 18,000 homes for a year — is not going to overhaul the state’s electricity supply, but it is a powerful step forward for Rhode Island and for the country.

That’s because the electricity sector produces roughly a third of U.S. emissions. If the country wants to meet its emissions reduction goals as part of a global effort to curb climate change, transitioning from fossil fuel-powered electricity generation to clean resources such as wind is critical to that effort. 

In addition, the cost of wind energy has decreased dramatically, making it one of the most cost-effective means of electricity generation.

Calling the project’s completion “a watershed moment,” the director of the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign congratulated Deepwater Wind. “As America’s first offshore wind farm, we see Block Island Wind Farm as landmark for a better, cleaner energy future, and we happily congratulate everyone involved in making it happen,” Mary Anne Hitt said in a statement.

Quonnie solution?

SLAC, Stanford gadget grabs more solar energy to disinfect water faster

In many parts of the world, the only way to make germy water safe is by boiling, which consumes precious fuel, or by putting it out in the sun in a plastic bottle so ultraviolet rays will kill the microbes. But because UV rays carry only 4 percent of the sun's total energy, the UV method takes six to 48 hours, limiting the amount of water people can disinfect this way.

Now researchers at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University have created a nanostructured device, about half the size of a postage stamp, that disinfects water much faster than the UV method by also making use of the visible part of the solar spectrum, which contains 50 percent of the sun's energy.

More endorsements for progressives running for General Assembly seats

By Bob Plain in Rhode Island’s Future

Local picks of interest: Cathie Cool Rumsey, Teresa Tanzi, Kathy Forgarty
Moira Walsh and Susan Donovan were endorsed by all three. Marcia Ranglin-Vassell, Lisa Scorpio, Teresa Tanzi and Jeanine Calkin won the endorsement of two of the three. 

While the vast majority – 22 of the 36 endorsed candidates – were only endorsed by one of the three, so far. Such are some of the similarities and differences between the three general interest, progressive-leaning organizations making legislative endorsements this election cycle.

The RI Progressive Democrats, the Young Democrats of Rhode Island and the Working Families Party of Rhode Island have now each announced legislative endorsements.

While all three groups say they will be making more endorsements in the days, weeks and months to come, to date it seems each group has different criteria for winning their endorsement.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Club names its picks in “key primaries”

By Bob Plain in Rhode Island’s Future

EDITOR’S NOTE: September 13 is the date for the Rhode Island primary election for seats other than US President. While Charlestown voters will not see any local seat on the ballot, there is a primary choice to be made by Democrats for US House of Representatives, District 2.

Rep. Jim Langevin has been endorsed by the Charlestown Democratic Town Committee. So please, get out and vote.

The RI Chapter of the Sierra Club has endorsed 17 legislative candidates – 12 running for a seat in the House of Representatives and 5 running for Senate seats.

“Our political committee based these decisions on a shared questionnaire with Clean Water Action, sent to every candidate, that focused heavily on what the two groups see as the top challenges and goals of the upcoming legislative season,” according to a news release from the Sierra Club. 

“The candidates below are the ones the Sierra Club believes are both willing and capable of creating a truly resilient, renewable and environmentally responsible Rhode Island.”

The Sierra Club said it will be “adding more endorsements in the days to come for those unopposed or facing/posing a November challenge. The below list of endorsements is specifically focused on the candidates involved in races we have determined to be key primaries.”

Not the pivot you were hoping for

The progressive web comic about Trump's political pivot.

"In Trump We Trust?"

Pic of the Moment

Compromise nearly guaranteed when a woman is involved in decision-making pairs

Boston College

More isn't necessarily better when it comes to men making decisions together, especially if you want a middle-of-the-road compromise. 

That's according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research which finds that compromise always occurs among two decision makers when a woman is involved (female-female pairs or mixed gender pairs), but hardly ever when the pair of decision makers are men. The findings could be pertinent to marketers, managers, and consumers alike.

Another reason why camels do not make good house pets

German Center for Infection Research

Cheezburger funny kids yikes camelsThere are four globally endemic human coronaviruses which, together with the better known rhinoviruses, are responsible for causing common colds.

Usually, infections with these viruses are harmless to humans. DZIF Professor Christian Drosten, Institute of Virology at the University Hospital of Bonn, and his research team have now found the source of "HCoV-229E," one of the four common cold coronaviruses -- it also originates from camels, just like the dreaded MERS virus.

The Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus was identified in humans for the first time in 2012. It causes severe respiratory tract infections that are often fatal. Dromedaries were confirmed to be its animal source some time ago.

An actual doctor dissects Trump’s “medical report”

Highlights eight key problems indicating the letter was faked

Dr. Harold N. Bornstein (
Dr. Harold N. Bornstein ( from The Raw Story
Dr. Jennifer Gunter, a Canadian OB/GYN and pain medicine physician, is speaking out about Donald Trump’s medical letter in a detailed article on her website that was cross-posted on Huffington Post.

Dr. Gunter begins her piece, writing that: “Donald Trump is talking about Hillary Clinton’s health as are two doctors who have never evaluated Clinton

Screen shot 2016-08-16 at 5.08.11 PM
When Trump released this letter on Twitter last December, he
thanked Dr. Jacob Borenstein for writing it. The problem is
Dr. Jacob Borenstein died at age 93 in 2010,
five years before heallegedly wrote this letter.
They have apparently diagnosed her with all kinds of ailments using the long disproven Fox-Drudge equation.”

“This attention on Clinton has renewed some interest in the letter Donald Trump released last year from his personal physician,” she continued.

Dr. Gunter then explains that while “many outlets” have picked the letter apart, she wants “to tell you as a doctor exactly how bad it is.”

I would never write anything this terrible for a Jury Duty excuse or a back to work note, never mind something that half the country (and possibly half the world) might see or could possibly end up one day in a Presidential Library!

Writing that “there are so many issues with the letter,” Dr. Gunter details 8 key issues she finds with the letter.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Preview of things to come?

Historic Larchwood Inn in South Kingstown demolished; Shelter Harbor Inn up for foreclosure
By Will Collette

CREDIT: Narragansett-South Kingstown Patch
Charlestown made a mistake in June by voting down a citizens’ initiative to buy the iconic General Stanton Inn, thus preserving it for future generations.

It was bad enough that Charlestown voters listened to the whispering campaign and defeated the initiative by a large margin in the town’s financial referendum.

Now the ruling Charlestown Citizens Alliance (CCA Party) has taken steps to try to inhibit future citizen petition-driving ballot initiatives. They are asking voters in November to approve an anti-democratic (small “d” democracy) Charter Revision that would stifle citizen petitions.

I thought it was a great idea for the town to make its first major venture into valuing the town’s history as much as its open space by making sure the General Stanton Inn has a chance to survive and thrive as Charlestown’s historic heart.

Supporters of the measure noted the grave danger faced by other important historic buildings in South County could face the General Stanton Inn and drew comparisons with other successful efforts to save iconic buildings.

In recent days, two unrelated events make the dangers faced by the General Stanton Inn clearer still.

Pretty birdie

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