I Want the World Fixed Already

I want to exile most politicians and their backers and ‘bosses’ and corporate assholes.…to a fema camp. That’ll be good. They can eat their GMO garbage and wipe their butts with their garbage money and stop hurting people and messing up lives and the world. I want them on trial for treason. Then, we can fix our world. It would be awesome.

afloweroutofstone:

For my part-time Summer job this year, I earned $995. I’m exempt for state or federal taxes because I’m a minor and a low-income earner, but because of payroll taxes, I payed a 7.1% tax rate. I spent $71 on taxes.

Between 2008 and 2011, Duke Energy made $7,234,000,000. Because of tax loopholes, they payed an effective corporate tax rate of -3.5%. Duke Energy was given $253,000,000 by the federal government.

Between 2008 and a 2011, Verizon made $19,783,000,000. Because of tax loopholes, they payed an effective corporate tax rate of -3.8%. Verizon was given $758,000,000 by the federal government.

Between 2008 and a 2011, General Electric made $19,616,000,000. Because of tax loopholes, they payed an effective corporate tax rate of -18.9%. General Electric was given $3,705,000,000 by the federal government.

In 2011 alone, just 30 companies received $4.1 billion dollars in tax rebates through the use of tax loopholes. If they would have payed the full corporate tax rate, the government would have gotten $78.3 billion in revenue.

Just remember, while teachers are being laid off and medicare’s being cut, transnational corporations are receiving your tax money.

Source.

anarcho-queer:

U.S. Federal Judge Allows Chevron To Spy On Activists After Being Sued For $18 Billion For Polluting Ecuador Rainforest
It’s not just the NSA that’s collecting massive amounts of personal data with judicial approval. In a ruling publicized by EarthRights International, a federal judge in New York approved a subpoena by Chevron to obtain any documents Microsoft has related to the identity of 30 anonymous individuals allegedly of interest in the litigation, including every IP address over a period of nine years.
The case involves an $18.2 billion judgment against Chevron in an Ecuador court, for massive environmental contamination from oil drilling. The Ecuadorian court found that Chevron had dumped toxic waste into Amazon waterways used by indigenous groups for drinking water and caused massive harm to the rainforest. Chevron responded by filing a lawsuit in U.S. court alleging that the plaintiffs engaged in a conspiracy to defraud the company.
As part of this lawsuit, Chevron has subpoenaed Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo to request all information related to the email addresses of more than 100 advocates, journalists, lawyers, and others. These individuals are not parties to the suit, but Chevron alleges that they are involved directly or indirectly in the litigation, and may have been outspoken critics of Chevron’s conduct. U.S. District Judge Lewis A. Kaplan explains the scope of what Chevron was seeking from Microsoft:

To summarize, if Microsoft still has and were to produce the requested information, Chevron would learn the IP address associated with every login for every account over a nine-year period. Chevron could identify the countries, states, or even cities where the users logged into accounts, and perhaps, in some instances, could determine the actual building addresses. 
Chevron would not learn who logged into the accounts. That is to say that Chevron would know who created (or purported to create) the email accounts but would not know if there was a single user or multiple users for each account. Nevertheless, the subpoenaed information might allow Chevron to infer the movements of the users over the relevant period (at a high level of generality) and might permit Chevron to make inferences about some of the users’ professional and personal relationships.

Late last month, the court granted the first of these subpoenas in full, holding that the anonymous individuals were not entitled to First Amendment protection because they may not be U.S. citizens. As human rights lawyer Marissa Vahlsing explains:

The account-holders in this case were proceeding anonymously, which the First Amendment permits. Because of this, Judge Kaplan was provided with no information about the account holders’ residency or places of birth. It is somewhat amazing then, that Judge Kaplan assumed that the account holders were not U.S. citizens. As far as I know, a judge has never before made this assumption when presented with a First Amendment claim. We have to ask then: on what basis did Judge Kaplan reach out and make this assumption?

Given similar suggestions that NSA data collection is limited at least in some ways to non-U.S. citizens, this decision – much more public and available than the secret but reportedly expansive rulings of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court – should give serious pause to those who think that limiting data collection to non-U.S. citizens protects the rest of us. It is worth noting that this case involves only the First Amendment, and not the Fourth, because parties in civil suits have a whole lot of leeway to access data via administrative subpoenas, which are typically not considered “searches” (and/or seizures) under the Fourth Amendment. Nonetheless, their speech, associations, and political activities, remain protected under the First.

anarcho-queer:

U.S. Federal Judge Allows Chevron To Spy On Activists After Being Sued For $18 Billion For Polluting Ecuador Rainforest

It’s not just the NSA that’s collecting massive amounts of personal data with judicial approval. In a ruling publicized by EarthRights International, a federal judge in New York approved a subpoena by Chevron to obtain any documents Microsoft has related to the identity of 30 anonymous individuals allegedly of interest in the litigation, including every IP address over a period of nine years.

The case involves an $18.2 billion judgment against Chevron in an Ecuador court, for massive environmental contamination from oil drilling. The Ecuadorian court found that Chevron had dumped toxic waste into Amazon waterways used by indigenous groups for drinking water and caused massive harm to the rainforest. Chevron responded by filing a lawsuit in U.S. court alleging that the plaintiffs engaged in a conspiracy to defraud the company.

As part of this lawsuit, Chevron has subpoenaed Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo to request all information related to the email addresses of more than 100 advocates, journalists, lawyers, and others. These individuals are not parties to the suit, but Chevron alleges that they are involved directly or indirectly in the litigation, and may have been outspoken critics of Chevron’s conduct. U.S. District Judge Lewis A. Kaplan explains the scope of what Chevron was seeking from Microsoft:

To summarize, if Microsoft still has and were to produce the requested information, Chevron would learn the IP address associated with every login for every account over a nine-year period. Chevron could identify the countries, states, or even cities where the users logged into accounts, and perhaps, in some instances, could determine the actual building addresses.

Chevron would not learn who logged into the accounts. That is to say that Chevron would know who created (or purported to create) the email accounts but would not know if there was a single user or multiple users for each account. Nevertheless, the subpoenaed information might allow Chevron to infer the movements of the users over the relevant period (at a high level of generality) and might permit Chevron to make inferences about some of the users’ professional and personal relationships.

Late last month, the court granted the first of these subpoenas in full, holding that the anonymous individuals were not entitled to First Amendment protection because they may not be U.S. citizens. As human rights lawyer Marissa Vahlsing explains:

The account-holders in this case were proceeding anonymously, which the First Amendment permits. Because of this, Judge Kaplan was provided with no information about the account holders’ residency or places of birth. It is somewhat amazing then, that Judge Kaplan assumed that the account holders were not U.S. citizens. As far as I know, a judge has never before made this assumption when presented with a First Amendment claim. We have to ask then: on what basis did Judge Kaplan reach out and make this assumption?

Given similar suggestions that NSA data collection is limited at least in some ways to non-U.S. citizens, this decision – much more public and available than the secret but reportedly expansive rulings of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court – should give serious pause to those who think that limiting data collection to non-U.S. citizens protects the rest of us. It is worth noting that this case involves only the First Amendment, and not the Fourth, because parties in civil suits have a whole lot of leeway to access data via administrative subpoenas, which are typically not considered “searches” (and/or seizures) under the Fourth Amendment. Nonetheless, their speech, associations, and political activities, remain protected under the First.

(via theyoungradical)

"American Capitalism is preserved by two essential and integral factors: fraud and force. Fraud is the ideological and cultural hegemony of the capitalist creed: that enterprise is free and competition exists for all in the marketplace; that success is available for all who work hard, accumulate capital, and participate as voters in the electoral process; that democratic government is dependent upon the freedom to own private property. Blacks, Latinos, and white workers are barraged daily with illusions about the inherent justice and equal opportunity within the American System. The educational institutions, churches, media and popular culture all in their own way participate in creating the logical framework for a system that remains irrational and inhumane. Beneath the velvet glove of fraud exists the iron fist of force. For reasons of history, Black people are more aware than whites of this delicate dichotomy between consensus vs. coercion. The essence of slavery was coercion of the most primitive kind - the relationships between master and slave were characterized by mutual distrust, fear, hatred and undisguised force. All slaves, whether the proverbial Uncle Toms or Nat Turners, recognized that production could not take place without the daily use of physical or psychological violence. Even the most paternalistic master had to divide Black families occasionally or employ the whip to get the crop to market on schedule. Under industrial capitalism, however, the essence of production involves force of a different kind: the extraction of surplus value from the labor power of the worker. Force is generally disguised within capitalist societies with democratic forms of government. The worker never receives the actual or real value of his/her own labor, but is technically “free” to sell his/her skills or services to the highest bidder, or employer. Blue collar and service workers are “less free” than professional workers, but all are forced to accept the conditions of employment that the owners of capital are willing to grant."

— Manning Marable, How Capitalism Underdeveloped Black America (via howtotalktogirlsdialectically)

(Source: goneril-and-regan, via theyoungradical)

161crew:

Трафаретное граффити от Шарика из города Симферополь / Stencil Art by Sharik from Simferopol city, Ukraine

(via theyoungradical)

US law says no ‘oil’ spilled in Arkansas, exempting Exxon from cleanup dues
April 3, 2013

The central Arkansas spill caused by Exxon’s aging Pegasus pipeline has reportedly unleashed 10,000 barrels of Canadian heavy crude - but a technicality says it’s not oil, letting the energy giant off the hook from paying into a national cleanup fund.

At least legally speaking, diluted bitumen like the heavy crude that’s overrun Mayflower, Arkansas is not classified as ‘oil.’ While the distinction might normally not mean much, in the case of the disastrous spill in Arkansas it ensures that ExxonMobil will not have to pay into the federal Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund.

According to ThinkProgress, which has brought attention on the strange legal exemption, ExxonMobil has already confirmed that the compromised pipeline was transporting “low-quality Wabasca Heavy crude” from Canada’s Alberta region. That particular form of crude must be diluted with lighter fluids to evenly flow through a pipeline - it also contains large quantities of bitumen (commonly known as asphalt).

The end result is that both the US Congress and the Internal Revenue Service do not consider tar sand oil as oil at all, and thus exempt any company transporting the crude from paying an $0.08-per-barrel tax - which is the primary source of cash for the federal government’s oil spill cleanup fund.

The strange exemption of heavy bitumen crude from classification as oil dates back to a time when the extraction of tar sands on a large scale was thought improbable with then-contemporary technology. However, as oil companies developed the means to develop Canadian tar sands into a booming energy sector, the legal definition of oil has remained the same.

Funds from that same fund have already helped to clean up another spill caused by a ruptured pipeline. In 2010, more than 1 million barrels of diluted bitumen (crude oil) were spilled into the Kalamazoo River. To make matters worse, unlike conventional crude oil, bitumen heavy crude sinks. The ensuing environmental impact has made that Michigan spill the most expensive in US history, as toxic substances seeped into the surrounding soil.

There is also the fear that bitumen heavy crude could be more corrosive to pipelines than conventional crude. Lorne Stockman, research director at Oil Change International, told ThinkProgress that it’s past time for the law to be changed:

“The question is why we should continue this exemption given that it’s clear tar sands oil is more likely to spill because it’s more corrosive… and more and more tar sands is coming into the US.”

For its part the oil industry disputes the claim, and has produced scientific impact research that does not reflect higher corrosion by transporting bitumen heavy crude.

Judge Allen Dodson of Arkansas’ Faulkner County seemed to reflect the concerns of those impacted by the latest spill of heavy bitumen crude, saying: “Crude oil is crude oil. None of it is real good to touch.”

Source
Photo 12

As the Obama administration deliberates on the Keystone XL, two spills happened in the past week: this one in Arkansas & another in Minnesota, where 15,000 gallons of tar sands spilled from a derailed train. 

(Source: thepeoplesrecord, via theyoungradical)

thepeoplesrecord:

Tar Sands Blockade published new videos today (4/7) showing oil from the Arkansas pipeline rupture diverted from a residential neighborhood into a wetland area to keep it out sight and, most importantly, out of the media & public view.
April 7, 2013

While it’s not clear if the oil was intentionally moved into the wetland, the company says it is cleaning pavement with power washing devices, which could cause some of the oil to be pushed off neighborhood streets and into other areas.

Activists also interviewed a local resident who claimed the oil has continued “flowing” into Lake Conway since the spill happened.

“I don’t have allergies,” the man said. “But now my sinuses are bothering me. My throat’s bothering me. My eyes water constantly. But Exxon acts like nothing’s wrong. They don’t have to live here, we do. And we’re not moving just because of them.”

The activists noted that they were turned away from the area several times before by police and Exxon spill cleanup workers, but they returned on Saturday just before sundown and managed to sneak in to capture footage of the oiled wetlands. In two separate videos, nearby residents say they’ve been made sick by the spill, which has tremendously affected their air quality.

This footage has largely remained out of the media due to the lockdown that’s descended upon Mayflower nearly a week since the spill. Reporters touring the damage with Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel were allegedly turned away by Exxon workers. One journalist, Inside Climate News’s Susan White, was even threatened with arrest when she asked a question of Exxon’s “public affairs” desk inside the spill cleanup command center. The company has also secured a no-fly zone over the spill area.

Video of Lake Conway’s wetlands shows thousands of what Exxon called “absorbent pads” — which appear to be nothing more than paper towels — littering the blackened landscape as thick, soupy crude bubbles across the water’s surface. The company insists that air quality in the affected region is being measured by the Environmental Protection Agency, and that tests show “levels that are either non-detect or that are below any necessary action levels.” Exxon also says that the area’s drinking water remains unaffected.

A phone number given by Exxon to reach the company’s “downstream media relations” team did not appear to be correct, and a spokesperson was not available for comment.

Don’t let Exxon sweep this thing under the rug! Share this now, far & wide, with everybody you know! We cannot allow these corporate-committed environmental tragedies to continue to claim people, land & our future as victims in the wealth-owning, corporate elite’s illogical profit-making endeavors.

Source

Oil companies/any companies, shouldn’t have this kind of power. Exxon should be shut down and held accountable.

(Source: thepeoplesrecord, via politicsd00d)