Beauty of Resistance: Surf Club, Gaza.

People are not soundbytes. The magnitude of the suffering cannot be included in sixty seconds

middle east revised

I’m all about the beauty of resistance, not just merely surviving through harsh conditions, but finding creative ways to give birth to life when you’re surrounded by (the constant glimpses of) death. That is why I love stories like Darfur Sartorialist, Syrian artists breaking world records in the midst of war, or parkour in Gaza.

It’s about finding freedom within you. It has to work within a limited physical area (like Gaza), yes, but it helps breaking the imposed restraints. Because – you choose to live and not be defeated and not be depressed. It gives you strength to go on in life and – fight back.

This is another story about the beauty of resistance.

Andrew McConnell is famous photographer whose work was featured in most of the world’s biggest publications, he has won two 1st place prizes at the World Press Photo Awards and many other…

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The Logic of Israeli Violence

Warrior Publications

A massive explosion hits Gaza Strip as Israeli forces bomb heavily populated areas. A massive explosion hits Gaza Strip as Israeli forces bomb heavily populated areas.

Israeli violence isn’t senseless — it follows a colonial logic.

by Greg Shupak, Jacobin Magazine, July 30, 2014

One could be forgiven for understanding Israel’s actions in the Gaza Strip as butchery for its own sake. That’s a plausible interpretation of the killing of 1,284 Palestinians, at least 75 percent of whom are civilians, and injuring another 7,100.

Seeing Israel as engaging in senseless bloodletting might seem an even more reasonable conclusion in light of the massacre of sixty-three people in Shujaiya after “the extensive use of artillery fire on dozens of populated areas across the Gaza Strip” that left bodies “scattered on streets,” or the bombing of United Nations shelters for those fleeing the violence. That conclusion is also tempting based on reports out of Khuza’a, a hamlet in the hinterlands of the Strip that was…

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Are you ready to read the labels in a foreign land?

Well…let’s see…cereal, chocolate, emulsifier, non-hydrogenated oil, maltodextrin, rising agent, vitamins. Contains soy, dairy…
that’s about all I can make out. Sounds gastly. Blecch.

Natural Expat

This found its way from the continent and into my cupboard in the dark of night. I blame the children…or the husband…or the fact that I’m known for allowing chocolate through the door with ingredients that I wouldn’t allow any other food to contain (I have my weaknesses). If this were to show up in your kitchen, would you know what you were eating?

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I have never been a fan of Kellogg’s anything, but I have to admit that chocolate pop-tarts look better somehow when they are in Italian. I’m almost tempted to try one. If only it didn’t say “modified” so many times on the label…

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Teens love vacation selfies, parents say it’s narcissistic distraction

Global News

NEW YORK – Jacquie Whitt’s trip to the Galapagos with a group of teenagers was memorable not just for the scenery and wildlife, but also for the way the kids preserved their memories. It was, said Whitt, a “selfie fest.”

For this generation, “digital devices are now part of the interpretive experience,” said Whitt, co-founder of Adios Adventure Travel.

Indeed, many parents love seeing their kids taking selfies and posting to social media when they travel. It shows “they are engaged and excited about where they are and what they are doing,” said Susan Austin, a photographer and Iowa mom. “To some, it might be bragging, but I think it’s more about a way today’s teens connect with and feel part of a group.”

But some adults think there’s a downside to vacation selfies. They see them as narcissistic distractions that can detract from the travel experience. And they point…

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A Jewish voice on Gaza

DN! interviewed Henry Siegman, a rabbi that represents strong Jewish organizations and what he had to say regarding the bombing of Gaza will blow you away.

For one thing, he doesn’t believe Hamas is any more a terrorist organization than Israeli fighters were when they fought to take the land away from the Palestinians to form their own state.  They killed innocents to take the land away.

And now they want to deny the Palestinians that same right to a land they can call their own without interference by Israel.

While I’m watching this segment, I’m thinking of my continuing studies on religions–just for the record–every single major religion:  Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim, has blood on their hands for killing innocents.

“Kill them all, and let God sort them out…”  seems to be a common theme throughout history.

Only, “do unto others as you wish to be done to you” doesn’t quite fit into that thinking.

Self-defense, in my view, is the only legitimate excuse for killing another.  And that is only after all other avenues have been taken–such as diplomacy.  Or poking the stick to keep one at arm’s length.   Trying self-defense without intent to kill (like martial arts).

But diplomacy is becoming a lost art.  It’s easy to just drop a bomb and believe that will end it, but in reality, it just creates more problems.  Peace isn’t easy–compromise and humility are key factors in creating and sustaining Peace.  Being humble isn’t valued in this society–it’s seen as weakness or worse–low self-esteem, when in reality, it is a recognition that we are part of Creation, and even though we are all important in that we bring our own uniqueness to the world, we are also a small part of that world and it takes all of us to make the world go ’round.

 

More on ALEC

Reading the post from Diane Ravitch the other day, this caught my eye:

The “Property Insurance Claims Act,” on which both the Civil Justice and Commerce, Insurance, and Economic Development Task Forces will vote, tilts the playing field in favor of property insurance companies. It would benefit those companies that are represented by the ALEC member Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCIAA). The bill would restrict the time frame for the insured to bring a claim, require the insured to submit to mandatory appraisal, and cut back existing law protecting property owners in many states. PCIAA’s vice president of state government relations, Joe Woods, is the private sector co-chair of the Financial Services Subcommittee of the Commerce task force, which will vote on the bill first. – See more at: http://www.progressive.org/news/2014/07/187796/alec-agenda-dallas-evisceration-medicaid-school-privatization-and-expansion-gas#sthash.yQQZCEtA.dpuf
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The thing is…they are already doing this.  Like everyone else (that is greedy), they want to up your premiums…and then not pay when there is a claim.
When I still had my house, there was an issue with brand new eaves troughs I had installed by a so-called professional.  They ended up putting water into the house instead of taking it away.  But it was so gradual (and being mercury poisoned, not as “with it” as I would normally be), the damage wasn’t discovered until I noticed mold on several pairs of shoes, a book bag I used in college, and other stuff in a dark closet.
The insurance company refused to pay for the damage, even though the whole house had spots of mold, along with the attic.  The “inspector” they sent used a penlight…read that again: a penlight…to “inspect” the attic.  After which he proclaimed that he “didn’t see anything”.  Lied through his mossy green teeth…
I knew they were lying, but like I said, I was pretty toxic at the time and didn’t have the wherewithal to even think about how to fight back.  Nor could I trust any lawyer in my town, which my ex’s family owned.
I had been with this insurance company for decades, so I trusted them.  They had an A-1 rating by the insurance rating company…
None of that mattered when the fit hit the shan.
So…yeah…this may be news to y’all, but isn’t to me.
It’s a different world, folks.  They take your money and then refuse to pay a legitimate claim….after years of paying premiums.
Now ALEC will make sure they pay even fewer claims.
…because they want it all.
The Koch brothers and their ilk want it all.