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Friday, October 20, 2017

VIDEO: Lies piled on top of lies

Trump tax plan is more of the same, failed “trickle-down economics

To watch this video on YouTube:

Trump and conservatives in Congress are planning a big tax cut for millionaires and billionaires. To justify it they’re using the oldest song in their playbook, claiming tax cuts on the rich will trickle down to working families in the form of stronger economic growth. 

Baloney. Trickle-down economics is a cruel joke. Just look at the evidence:

Coping with the un-copable.

For more cartoons by Tom Tomorrow, CLICK HERE.

Is there anybody out there?

Astrobiologist Paul Davies to speak Oct. 24 at URI
Olivia Ross

Image result for life on other planetsThe next speaker in the University of Rhode Island Honors Colloquium will deliver a lecture that prompts a thought-provoking question: “Are We Alone in the Universe?” Paul Davies will explore this daunting question in depth during his lecture Oct. 24 at 7 p.m. in Edwards Auditorium, 64 Upper College Road.

Davies is Regents’ professor and director of the Beyond Center for Fundamental Concepts in Science and co-director of the Cosmology Initiative at Arizona State University, where he also runs a cancer research program.

Astrobiology is a relatively new field of study established by NASA. Its focus is to determine where and when life on Earth began, and whether there is life beyond Earth. Davies, who helped create the Australian Centre for Astrobiology, said that prior to 3.8 billion years ago, the record of life on Earth was obliterated due to our planet being bombarded by comets and asteroids.

Four young seals released from Charlestown’s Blue Shutters Beach

Mystic Aquarium does it again!

This morning, Blue Shutters Beach in Charlestown, RI was greeted by the warm sun, calm surf and encouraging crowd as Mystic Aquarium’s Animal Rescue Program released four harbor seals. 

The four pups - Flax, Larkspur, Sunflower and Buttercup - were rescued by Marine Mammals of Maine before being transferred to Mystic Aquarium’s Animal Rescue Clinic.

Flax was rescued from Bustin’s Island, Freeport, ME, and was considered to be abandoned shortly after birth, arriving at Mystic Aquarium on May 28. 

Larkspur was rescued in Harpswell, ME, and Sunflower was rescued from Isle of Springs, ME. Both pups were also considered to be abandoned shortly after birth and arrived at Mystic Aquarium on June 1. 

Buttercup was rescued in Little Diamond Island, Portland, ME, and was found malnourished and suffering from pneumonia, arriving at Mystic Aquarium on July 15.

Following months of rehabilitation, the four pups, now approximately 4 – 5 months old, were deemed healthy and prepared for life at sea.

Mystic Aquarium’s animal care specialists have also been making waves in Alaska and North Carolina as well.

Want some pesticide with your Wheaties?

Weed killer for breakfast.
WhitewashEditor's note: The below piece is excerpted from Carey Gillam’s new book Whitewash: The Story of a Weed Killer, Cancer, and the Corruption of Science, published by Island Press.

For many people, a toasted bagel topped with honey might sound like a healthy breakfast choice. 

Others might prefer a bowl of oatmeal or cornflakes or a hot plate of scrambled eggs. 

Few would likely welcome a dose of weed killer that has been linked to cancer in their morning meal.

Yet that is exactly what private laboratory tests in the United States started showing with alarming frequency in 2014: residues of the world’s most widely used herbicide were making their way into American meals.

Testing since then, by both private and public researchers, has shown glyphosate residues not only in bagels, honey, and oatmeal but also in a wide array of products that commonly line grocery store shelves, including flour, eggs, cookies, cereal and cereal bars, soy sauce, beer, and infant formula.

Indeed, glyphosate residues are so pervasive that they’ve been found in human urine. Livestock are also consuming these residues in grains used to make their feed, including corn, soy, alfalfa and wheat.

Glyphosate residues have been detected in bread samples in the United Kingdom for years, as well as in shipments of wheat leaving the United States for overseas markets. 

“Americans are consuming glyphosate in common foods on a daily basis,” the Alliance for Natural Health said in its April 2016 report, which revealed glyphosate residues detected in eggs and coffee creamer, bagels and oatmeal.

VIDEO: We do not need to further pad corporate profits

Six Reasons Why American Corporations Shouldn’t Get a Tax Cut
By Robert Reich

To watch this video on YouTube:

Trump and Republicans are trying to sell you the idea that American corporations need a tax cut in order to be competitive. That’s rubbish. 

Here are 6 reasons why:

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Is there anyone left who doesn’t think Trump is racist?

Trump’s naked bigotry toward Puerto Rico laid bare
By Ann Werner 
Image may contain: 2 people, people walking, people standing and outdoorIn a series of tweets on October 12, Donald Trump displayed his unabashed disdain for the American citizens of Puerto Rico.

No matter that the number of people on that beleaguered island without electricity is still rising. 

No matter that people without access to clean drinking water are breaking into government toxic waste sites so their families won’t die of thirst. 

No matter that all those supplies and personnel are languishing on the docks and in offices without the benefit of a leader to organize a response.

According to Donald Trump, the people of Puerto Rico have no one but themselves to blame, and we can’t be there FOREVER – even though the hurricane that leveled the island that is part of this country, whose citizens are American citizens, was only three weeks ago. 

Donald Trump is sick and tired of their whining. After all, he managed to distribute supplies. Remember when he threw all those paper towels at the crowd? I mean, really, what more do those people want?

In another universe, far far away

For more cartoons by Ruben Bolling, CLICK HERE.

From the Worm Ladies of Charlestown

Your best resource for everything vermiculture!

The Worm Ladies of Charlestown, Inc. 

Change your world!  

October Events

Reception and exhibitor showcase immediately following program
The Worm Ladies will join us for discussion and panel presentations on important energy, ocean, and environmental issues, and how these issues affect Rhode Island residents, businesses and communities.
With keynote addresses by: and
Sam Waterston, stage, film and television actor, and board member of Oceana
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., radio host, author, attorney, and President of the Board of Waterkeeper Alliance
Todd Stern, United States Special Envoy for Climate Change and chief negotiator at the 2015 Paris COP21 climate change conferenc

North Carolina State's 18th Annual Vermiculture Conference  October 26-27, 2017
The James B. Hunt Jr. Library
Duke Energy Hall, 1070 Partners Way
   Raleigh, North Carolina 27606
Registration is now open.

Volunteers are needed to help with the worms and the castings as well as with social media.  Call 401-742-5915 or email

Ready to begin vermicomposting--let us help you.

Ready to begin making your own aerated compost tea--we are here to help.


The Worm Ladies are located in the fourth hoop house on the west side of the property 4W

161 East Beach Road Charlestown, Rhode Island 02813 


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It’s not just Trump or Harvey Weinstein or Roger Ailes

Employers and Sexual Harassment
By Phil Mattera for the Dirt Diggers Digest

Image may contain: 2 people, textThe Harvey Weinstein scandal is bringing necessary attention to the problem of sexual harassment. But that problem is not limited to abusive behavior on the part of big-time movie producers and a few other powerful men. Women are confronted with sexual predators in a wide variety of workplaces.

Evidence of this can be found in the cases resolved by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In addition to enforcing anti-discrimination rules regarding hiring, pay levels, etc., the EEOC brings lawsuits (or joins existing ones) dealing with harassment.

In Violation Tracker I have collected data on a total of 1,393 resolved EEOC cases since the beginning of 2000 that together have resulted in about $1 billion in penalty payments by employers. Of these, about 300 involved sexual harassment (often in conjunction with other allegations). They have resulted in about $135 million in employer penalties. 

Here are some of the more significant cases:

Our Health Care System Is a Corporate Care System

Why is health system flailing? Because its guiding ethic is profit, not care.

Image result for profit over healthRather than a health care system, our country’s leaders have kept us shackled to a “corporate care” system.

This allows insurance giants, drug company gougers, hospital chains, and other profiteers to ration our care based on whether a family can pay whatever outrageous price the corporations demand to maintain their exorbitant profits.

The guiding ethic of physicians, nurses, and other caregivers is “First, do no harm.” The corporate owners of the system impose a contrary ethic: “First, maximize our profits.”

Dan Rather on Trump’s lies about calls to war widows

Trump does not understand basic human empathy
I have covered many presidents and many wars. Some of these wars were just and others not.

All wars are bloody and full of pain, but some of the conflicts were mismanaged, leading to thousands of unnecessary deaths.

Despite all of this, I do not know of any president who did not at his core feel the solemn burden of young Americans dying in service to country.

But now we have a Commander in Chief who many feel does not understand this most basic human empathy.

President Donald Trump's assertions - more accurately his lies - about whether or not his predecessors, particularly President Obama, called or  wrote to the families of the fallen has rightly been broadly condemned for its mendacity and insincerity.

It should not be surprising coming from a man who mocked a war hero, John McCain, and attacked a gold star family, the parents of slain United States Army Captain Humayun Khan.

I cannot see into President Trump's heart. Nor can I measure his motives.

But we can see that one of the most solemn roles of the office of the presidency has once again been subjected to his instinct for bombast, obfuscation, and self-congratulatory denialism.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Win for Charlestown in water/power plant fight

Coverage of Charlestown’s success at winning a place at the table documented by several sources
By Will Collette

My thanks to Tim Faulkner at ecoRI and Steve Ahlquist of Rhode Island’s Future for the great coverage of last night’s hearing.

Last night, the Energy Facilities Siting Board ruled on a number of motions, including Charlestown’s motion for formal intervenor status in the case involving the proposed Invenergy fossil fuel power plant in Burrillville.

Charlestown has a direct stake in the power plant at the far end of the state because a single official of the Narragansett Tribe apparently signed a contract with Invenergy to provide cooling water pumped from the aquifer that serves all of us.

The water would then be trucked from Charlestown by Ashaway’s Benn & Son Water to the Invenergy plant in Burrillville, presuming that plant gets built.

The Narragansett contract has been vigorously protested by many Narragansetts who say the deal is illegitimate because it was never presented for tribal approval. They vow to prevent any such water removal. Read more here and here.

There’s a lot of detail to the story of last night’s hearing. If you only have a Twitter-sized memory, you probably won’t read in all (in fact, you’ve probably moved on already).

But for those who still read things, I present two firsthand reports from our friends at ecoRI and RI Future where you can get the full story about what happened and what it means.

You should also read Catherine Hewitt’s report in the Westerly Sun or the ProJo’s coverage.

Golfing is more fun

Image may contain: 2 people, text

At the Mystic Aquarium

SRF MA logo

An Evening with Bill Nye
University of Rhode Island Ryan Center | October 20

Friends of Mystic Aquarium are invited to see Bill Nye the Science Guy at the University of Rhode Island this Friday! URI and presenting partners are pleased to welcome the famous scientist, comedian author and inventor as part of URI Alumni & Family Weekend 2017 at the Ryan Center.

Saturday, October 21 & Sunday, October 29

Start a new spooky tradition at our Halloween-themed Pancakes with Penguins breakfast! Come in costume as you devour yummy pancakes drizzled in your choice of ooey, gooey toppings. Plus, you'll enjoy a visit from one of our African penguins. This breakfast sells fast, so reserve your spot now!

Sea Scare: Sea Witch & Wizards
Weekends in October

One weekend has passed, but there are still many adventures to be had! Sea Scare continues every weekend in October with Tails of the Deep, fortune telling, wizardly spells, live entertainment and so much more.

Cedar the Loggerhead Sea Turtle Ready for Release!

As part of the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores Sea Turtle Awareness Program, Mystic Aquarium helps to raise Loggerhead sea turtle hatchlings. For the past year, staff at Mystic Aquarium have cared for Cedar, allowing the turtle to grow strong enough to rejoin the sea turtle population off the coast of North Carolina. Learn more about the Sea Turtle Awareness Program here.

Tune in to our social media channels and follow Cedar's trip to North Carolina's open ocean where Cedar will be released on October 18th.


Mystic Aquarium | 55 Coogan Blvd., Mystic, CT 06355