Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Help is long overdue.

The Presidential candidates need to visit public housing. These are the public programs that are cut by a majority Republican House and Senate while they pay for multi-billion dollar F35 Strike Fighter that can't even protect their pilots yet alone a nation.

There is interest in public housing in the US House.

April 12, 2016
By Deborah Barfield Berry

Washington – Small public housing authorities (click here) in rural towns shouldn’t have to comply with the same regulations that apply in large urban areas, Rep. Steven Palazzo said Tuesday.
“This one-size-fits-all approach is bad for everyone involved,” Palazzo, a Republican, told housing authority officials from around the country attending a national conference in Washington.
Palazzo used the event to promote his bipartisan bill that would reduce red tape and inspections for smaller public housing authorities. Palazzo, a former public housing official in Biloxi, said such authorities are subject to the same rules as larger ones, but don’t have the same resources....

Some of the most needy in our country live in public housing including the elderly that have no other options. These people are aged and will have limited income and will receive food stamps for the rest of their lives. At the very least the federal government should be funding this housing to give them dignity and comfort. Make sure the heating works, make sure there are options for the heat of summer, make sure there are no molds or yeasts growing (which is usually controlled when the heat works) and paint the apartments as the law requires and keep the elevators in excellent repair. 

Children grow up in public housing as well. They don't have the amenities their suburb peers enjoy. There are no play grounds or soccer coaches or little league baseball. There needs to be a czar in Washington, DC to seek the help for these COMMUNITIES. 
Ted Cruz is desperate. He is modeling his words after those spoken by Donald Trump against Cruz. Donald Trump calls Ted Cruz "Lyin' Ted." Recently, Ted Cruz came up with a name similar for Trump. Ted Cruz is on defense and he is on the ropes. He has reverted to making up fantasies about Donald Trump in calling him a gangster. A member of the Italian underground. That is a presidential candidate confident of his outcome? It sounds pretty desperate to me.

It takes guts to walk a picket line, but, when a political leader shows up to march too, it becomes so much easier.

Union members don't ask that much. They ask their employers to give them a contract deserving of the dignity an employee should have. In the case of Verizon they need to have a good contract with it's employees. Verizon needs the middle class and it needs it's union. Good salary and good benefits provide for longevity in employment. Longevity of employment provides an employer with a rock solid product. The employees need Verizon as much as Verizon needs them. A contract should honor both of them.

Bernie Sanders (click here) is holding a celebrity-studded rally and indie rock concert that will stream live from Washington Square Park in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City on Wednesday, and thousands were standing in line for the event early in the afternoon even though no one would be admitted until 5 p.m.; the star-packed roster of speakers and performers is not scheduled to hit the stage until 8 p.m. Eastern Time....

As to Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, the polls are tightening. In March Hillary Clinton has a lead of 21 percent. Today, that lead is half, now 10 percent. Bernie Sanders is a force to contend with and the people love him.

Bernie is not going anywhere. He isn't on the campaign trail because he simply wants to win the Presidency. Bernie is running for President and building a movement. He is not going anywhere.

They are valuing their souls and lives again. It takes a world.

April 12, 2016
By Joby Warrick

Two years after proclaiming a new “caliphate” (click here) for Muslims in the Middle East, the Islamic State is seeing a steep slide in support among the young Arab men and women it most wants to attract, a new poll shows.
Overwhelming majorities of Arab teens and young adults now strongly oppose the terrorist group, the survey suggests, with nearly 80 percent ruling out any possibility of supporting the Islamic State, even if it were to renounce its brutal tactics.
A year ago, about 60 percent expressed that view, according to the 16-country survey released Tuesday.
“Tacit support for the militant group is declining,” concludes a summary report by the poll’s sponsor, ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller, a public relations firm that has tracked young Arabs’ views in annual surveys for the past eight years. Other recent surveys have found similarly high disapproval rates for the Islamic State among general populations in Muslim-majority countries....
...The 2016 ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller Arab Youth Survey offers a cleaner example of  Paar’s flattery because it simply asked young Arabs
an aspirational question: “If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live?” For the fifth consecutive year, young Arabs gave the same answer – the United Arab Emirates. The United States and Germany are a distant second and third, and only two other Arab countries cracked the top ten....

Is that what all young men want? Opportunity?

...leaders have failed to deliver the goods for their citizens, especially young people. Of these ‘goods’ the one most prized by young Arabs is simply opportunity: the opportunity to reach their potential in a secure, safe environment, free of corruption, and open to innovation and creativity. This opportunity offers the dignity of succeeding or failing on your terms, not because of wasta (connections) or lack thereof, or any other factor.

When the Tunisian vegetable vendor Mohammad Bouazizi set himself on fire in December 2010 to protest a predatory government that had taken away his means of making a living – his opportunity – he likely had no idea that he would ignite uprisings across the Arab world; uprising driven by a “burned generation” of Arab youth fed up with corruption, dictatorship, and lack of opportunity....

Ms. Woodcraft sees a world that still doesn't appreciate women and opportunity.

Clare Woodcraft (click here)

It is shocking that in the 21st century we still need to justify why women should be given equal opportunities in the workforce and public sphere, given they comprise 50 per cent of the world’s population. While we see progress around women in senior governance and decision-making roles through, for example, legislation in the UAE and quotas in countries such as Norway, the targets are still modest. A campaign in the UK to get women on FTSE boards targets just 33 per cent rather than 50 per cent. Meanwhile, feminism has gone out of fashion even though it just means equal rights for men and women.

Women in MENA (Middle East and North Africa), however, are leading the charge and becoming as vocal and active as their international counterparts in calling for more empowerment, equal opportunities, pay and voice. They are also increasingly taking up senior leadership roles and providing the much needed role models that can be game changing for young women across the Arab world....

Emma Watson, the actress, has begun the identification of feminism. She has recognition and is popular. She should continue to be that voice so many women still need to hear.

...Research shows that young Arab women can be inspired by just one person – one person who is able to demonstrate that women can break down barriers and taboos....

That is wonderful news and I am not sure that is true of women and not just Arab women. I was to a gathering yesterday evening where film clips were used to illustrate the relationship of women leaders to those they lead. It was simple to the point with a panel of about six women and a man. After each film clip the panel members commented on their responsibilities to their employers or their own business. It only took once and the audience 'got it.' Women leaders can be nurturers if it works, but, when it doesn't they have to be firm and expect respect. Nurturing environments have a lot respect within them, but, there is a limit and holding softer leadership values beyond that limit is a folly for both the leader and the employee. 

I am glad to hear a women leader state Arab women listen to peers and can be elevated by one other person. I wish them all the wholesome success they desire.

There is little to no water vapor at the surface of Earth. It is evaporated to a higher altitude.

The best defense a forest has is it's full canopy. There is a 30 minute video about the rainforests and the first scene is about the tree canopy. Full and letting little to no light shine through to the Earth's surface.

There are few rainforests on the North American continent, but, there are a few. They are important for the same reasons any forest is important, they are a carbon sink and PRODUCE soil when they die and fall to the forest floor. Trees become soil when they die. 

The forest floor is not quite as important, but, when covered with dead leaves and the like insulate the forest floor from evaporation.

What exists today is a very dry troposphere where water vapor has moved upward in altitude. That creates a hostile world for forests. Forests transport their nutrients from the soil to the very top of it's canopy through a water transport system. Every millimeter of a tree is serviced by a water transport system no different than the water pipes of modern America. The system is simple, but, at the same instance very complex in it's transport.

This water transport system has it's final destination the very tip of the tree leaf.

To the right is a Beech tree leaf. It is very easy to see in this system as is the case with every tree leaf the VEINS that carry the nutrient dense water.

The tree actually let's it's water transport system flood and then the water leaving the tree leaf due to abundant water, evaporates into the air surrounding the tree.

This life process of trees is called "evapotranspiration" (click here). Evapotranspiration provides water vapor to the atmosphere and in some FOREST systems, such as those found on the California coast, create their own clouds.

That water vapor is very important to the forest. When the air is very dry the evaporation of the water at the tip of the leaves is quick. The water vapor does not LINGER to provide still yet another buffer to fire.

Those defenses on a hot planet are very challenged. Is it not so much the tree processes have changed in ABRUPT CLIMATE CHANGE, it is the water vapor that has changed. That is why there is now a 24/7/365 danger to forests. 

I remind forests are not only extremely valuable carbon sinks, they are the home to wildlife vital to life on Earth. 

April 12, 2016
By Matt Richtel and Fernanda Santos

The first Alaska wildfire of 2016 (click herebroke out in late February, followed by a second there just eight days later.

New Mexico has had 140 fires this year, double the number in the same period last year, fueled by one of the warmest, driest winters on record.

And on the border of Arizona and California this month, helicopters dumped water on flames so intense that they jumped the Colorado River, forcing the evacuation of two recreational vehicle parks.

Fires, once largely confined to a single season, have become a continual threat in some places, burning earlier and later in the year, in the United States and abroad. They have ignited in the West during the winter and well into the fall, have arrived earlier than ever in Canada and have burned without interruption in Australia for almost 12 months.... 

President Obama in his first or two focused on military acquisitions as a place where government efficiency needed to focus.

US House Representative Mica (click here) states the military doesn't leave personnel in these jobs long enough to be a reliable partner in system reform. He also stated there are vacancies in the entire line of command in the acquisitions process. These vacancies have existed for years and due to those absences the entire acquisition process is compromised.

Rep. Mica was visibility upset at the Oversight Committee (click here) meeting this AM. 

It sounds as though China is not interested in the death of a British teacher.

April 13, 2016
By Reuters

Hilary St John Bower

A 60-year-old British man (click here) who went missing for several weeks in late March, has been confirmed to have been killed in China, the Hong Kong police said in a statement after being notified by Chinese authorities.
Hilary St John Bower, who had worked as an English language instructor at the Polytechnic University in Hong Kong, had been dead for more than a week by the time he was reported missing on 30 March, according to a police statement.
“The victim was killed on the evening of March 22 in mainland China,” the Hong Kong police said, after receiving notice from their Chinese counterparts.

It sounds like an ambush to me.
The police statement included no specifics, however, on how he was killed, a possible motive, or why it had taken so long to confirm Bower’s death.
Hong Kong media reported that Bower had a longtime girlfriend and a son in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, and had often travelled between the two places.

I hope the family is alright. They didn't travel with him, did they?
The Chinese Public Security Bureau in Shenzhen said they had no information on the case when contacted by Reuters....