Banks suing the poor…workhouses coming next… ** edited

Well, this was sobering to read.  Just when you think banks can’t get any more greedy and low, they surprise you yet again.

Opened up the wounds again.  I miss my house every single day.  In every season, I could find happy moments on my property.  The plants coming alive in Spring.  The wonderful days of summer with my tiger lilies blooming, fresh food out of the tiny garden.  The color splash of Fall.  The beauty of newly fallen snow in the winter, blanketing trees and bushes.  Watching bunnies, hawks, cardinals, nuthatches, woodpeckers, black capped chickadees, tufted titmouses from the three sliding glass doors….

Yep. I miss it.

The stories in this report are not exaggerated, I can assure you.  Collectors are vicious and they quite frankly don’t care whether you can put food on the table, as long as you are paying them.  They will call you ten times a day. Every day.

After I lost my home through credit default swaps, I still had outstanding debt.  My wages had stagnated while my property taxes nearly doubled, my natural gas bill doubled, slowly squeezing me into living on credit.  Not good.  I take the blame for some of it, because I had not been taught how to handle money in my youth, and I wasn’t as frugal as I should have been.  It’s as if my parents, who grew up very poor during the Depression, were averse to anything that reminded them of being poor–being frugal was not in their mindset.

So….some hard lessons learned in the school of hardknocks.

The outstanding debts led me to be sued by a greedy collector.  When I read about this particular collector online, what I learned was unnerving.  They had a reputation for illegal practices such as harassing people and blindsiding them before they could work up a defense (the poor who cannot afford attorneys).

The judge hearing the case was in the town I grew up in.  In the anteroom, an attorney that was associated with my ex and his politically well-connected family, saw me and regarded me with a smirk on his face–as if he thought it were funny that I was in the predicament I was in.  I’ll always wonder what he said to the judge.

It should be noted that the judge belonged to the Catholic church I once belonged to with my ex.  You might recall I was bullied out of the church during and after my divorce.  It seemed to me that he wanted to punish me yet again for getting a divorce.

The judge noted that I was without legal counsel, and that was the last of any consideration.

During testimony, I asked the man from the collection agency how much he had paid for my debt…since it was known that this particular debt collection agency paid pennies on the dollar.

The judge shot out, “He would have no knowledge of that.”  Or something to that effect.  He answered for him and disallowed other questions.

At one point, the judge instructed the court stenographer to shut off the recording device while I testified and while I asked/answered questions of the debt collector.  At one point, after a big chunk of the court proceedings was “off the record” the court stenographer asked the judge about it, and he instructed her not to turn it back on.  (This stenographer also refused to give me information over the phone–saying I had to come down there in person.  I lived 40 minutes away and I could not afford the gas to get there.  When I asked her to justify her position, she hung up on me.)

It was clear that the judge was in favor of the debt collector, without regard to my circumstances.  At this point in time, I’m still pretty toxic, and brain function is not as rapid as it normally would have been.  I am unable to truly defend myself. Or pay for an attorney.  Not that I could find any willing to help.

Even though I was only making $100 a month as a substitute, with usually making $300 during the month of May (many substitutes used this as supplemental income, and would fly as soon as the weather turned nice), the judge ordered my wages garnished.

Unbelievable.

Truly a nightmare.

This was usury, but I had no recourse against it.

I had no money to even file bankruptcy.  A straight-jacket of a bind.

If it weren’t for my son paying to help me file bankruptcy, I would not have made it.  I would have given up hope.

**edited to add:  In my house, I had two nice Lazy Boy recliners that you could just sink into.  When I left my apartment, I gave them to my sister’s neighbor several years ago.  Now one of them is put out to trash–broken.  I see it every day with a pang of all the loss.  Yeah, not a good week by any means.  Hope you all are having better ones.

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Well, this is not good…healthcare worker tests positive **edited

…for Ebola.  Note how they immediately blame the healthcare worker for “breach in protocol”…without confirming what happened.

With what has happened with this hospital from the get-go, I’m not too confident with their assessment.

They sent Duncan home when he had a 103 degree fever…because he didn’t have health insurance.

#%&*!

This is the problem with for-profit medicine….thank you, President Nixon…and with hospitals run by CEOs instead of doctors.  Yes, young ones, doctors used to be in charge of running hospitals, before medicine became profit-driven.  Doctors used to run hospitals as they should be run–with compassion and an understanding of health issues.

They shove poor patients out the door before they are truly well enough to be dismissed, and here is the prime example of why this practice should be illegal….and why medicine needs to go back to how it was before Nixon thought HMO’s would be a great idea.

**edited to add:  I also question their blaming the victim for not following protocol, because as is reported, she was taking her temps twice a day.  She was being vigilant…so why would she break protocol when she obviously was aware of the risk and was monitoring herself?

AFT making deals with Weingarten’s consent **edited

Mercedes Schneider has another great post up on the deals being made by Randi Weingarten.

I tried to reblog it, but i think with all the comments and permalinks in the box, it crashed.

Anyway, here is the comment I posted in the reblog:

I’ve had this blog up on my queue to read when I got a chance, and something can be said for patience and delay…sometimes the rewards are astounding…as the comments here.

When you start messing with knowledgeable teachers, you better bring your best game…cause you’re messing with the best.

From Allyson:
Allyson permalink

Question: what makes you think you can have access to my children’s data without my consent? My kids’ school does not act for me in this capacity-no permission from me!
~~~~~~~~~
From Dave:

Dave permalink

Hi Dan,
I’m an actual classroom teacher here working in the trenches. Nice to meet you. First, congrats on your business. I’m sure it is going to make you boatloads of money in the years to come, mainly from grants from the Gates Foundation among other. Rupert Murdoch will no doubt want to buy you out at some point, but that could be very profitable for you, too.

As a practicing teacher, I must say on behalf of those who feel as I do (and we are legion), that we have had quite enough of the promise of tech companies reforming education and making our lives and our teaching easier. You don’t. Mostly, we view you and your dime-a-dozen tech companies as leeches who are just hanging on to suck whatever profit you can out of our already stretched too thin school (and state) budgets. We’d really appreciate it if you put your considerable intellectual talents to better use, say, by joining NASA or helping find a cure for cancer. Honestly, we got this. We are going to teach the heck out of our kids every year, and we don’t need any further technology updates to do it.

You are right, however, and parents should realize this: an INCREDIBLE amount of precious learning time is flushed down the toilet because of computers, SMART Boards that don’t function correctly, software that freezes and hard drives that lock up, lost or missing passwords–the list goes on and on. Give me a black board, a piece of chalk, books and paper and I’ll turn ANYONE’s kid into a college-bound student. So will three million other educators … as long as you and other techies stay the heck out of our way. See, it’s our administration that’s the problem. They fall for the snake oil that you peddle, and they keep buying more (my district just sunk a 100 grand into a I-Ready, which now has my fifth graders matching letters to letter sounds like four year olds because of the score they got on the diagnostic. Crimony, what a mess! And now my students’ morale is low.

Just please, Dan, get out of the business and save teachers the headache, and the inevitable battle that we’re going to wage and win against you like we did against inBloom.
~~~~~~~~
And finally from Lloyd:
Lloyd Lofthouse permalink

Dan Carroll:

Pardon my language, … but it isn’t important if you do or don’t.

Before I went to college on the GI Bill, and then was a public school teacher for thirty years (1975-2005), I served in the U.S. Marines and fought in Vietnam. Before that, I was born to poverty with parents who both dropped out of high school at the age of 14. My dad actually spent time in jail as a teen for breaking and entering, and my older brother about 15 years in prison for a host of crimes.

Growing up in poverty and then ending up teaching children who lived in poverty taught me one thing. It isn’t the material that’s going to teach these kids. It’s the teacher, and a well trained teacher can teach without materiel from someone in the private sector offering material that will make that company a profit and/or pay the CEO a hefty annual salary.

In fact, the worst possible material was always the “crap” that was forced on teachers by administrators who had been convinced by someone working for a corporation that it would make a difference—and none of that junk ever did make a difference. I talk from experience.

So, cut the crap, Mr. Carroll. You aren’t doing teachers a favor by offering them “what you think” is access to materials that will help them do their job while possibly gathering cradle to grave informatory on children to sell to the highest corporate bidder or making a profit for some hi-tech company that sells tablets or laptops or software.

Will you deny that you plan to, or have an agenda, or have goals to gather information on children and sell it? If you answer is no, then please put that in writing and sign it with a promise that you will voluntarily go to prison for ten years or longer if you ever break that pledge. In addition, I want to pick the same prisons my brother served in. No white-collar criminal country club.

A dedicated teacher can teach without material, because they will create their own like I did in my early years in the classroom when there wasn’t enough textbooks to go around, And guess what, with teacher created material, many of the children I worked with soared and continued to do well year after year. And most of the material I used for thirty years was generated by me.In fact, most of the dedicated teachers I know seldom used the “crap” that came from people who thought they knew what teachers needed to do their job.

Why is it that teacher generated material works best? Easy answer: because the teacher who works with these at-risk kids usually knows what works best for their student population— that is, when the teacher can engage the students that often resist learning what’s taught.

Of course, I used the stories in the literature textbooks, but most of the support material in those textbooks wasn’t suitable for the students I worked with. To be frank, I didn’t like most of the “crappy” lesson in those textbooks that others felt would help me do a better job as a teacher.

This is where I want you to really pay attention. This is what teachers NEED most:

FIRST: A national early childhood education program—-that is part of the public schools and not run by a private sector corporation out to make a profit or pay some CEO a six figure, or higher, annual salary—-that’s available to every family and/or child as early as age 2 and specifically for children who live in poverty.

There’s a reason why the country needs a non-corporate, quality early childhood education program, and it is the fact that almost 24% of children in America grow up in poverty [more than any developed country]—-for that reason, teachers don’t need some “ignorant fool” [emphasis mine] to offer them material “that will help them do their job,” because material isn’t going to motivate a child who comes from a dysfunctional home or who is hungry or who lives in a community that’s ravaged by drugs and/or street gang violence similar to the schools where I taught for thirty years.

SECOND: New teachers starting out should be offered the best training possible and that’s a full time, paid, year-long residency with a master teacher in that master teacher’s classroom—this is the program that trained me as a teacher, and it made all the difference—and this program must include at least one full-year of follow up support after those young teachers have a classroom of their own.
~~~~~~~~
You can read Dan Carroll’s mindless comments at the blog.
I had experience with the *cough* smartboards where you really could not draw on them as you would a chalk board. Besides subjecting the kids to more electro-magnetics, it is a “shiny object” to entertain, with little value in educating children.

Like Dave in the comments,  says– give me chalk and chalkboard. The only electricity required is the electrical current running in the brain. 🙂

**edited to correct “Dave” from Dan. Meh. Must have been a “mercury” day.

Domestic abuse without raising a hand…

Order of the White Feather has a sobering post up on using technology to continually abuse and control a partner seeking to get away from her abuser.  It is just astounding that someone could think up this sh*t (probably an abuser himself), and then be able to sell it without worry of prosecution.

The companies market the tools as “safety features” to monitor your kids….it always starts out that way–marketed for something good when it’s used for something evil.  I don’t buy mSpy’s assertion that they have no knowledge or responsibility for their product being used for abuse.

Here’s why:

MSpy has a step-by-step guide — with screenshots — on how to download the app onto an iPhone or Android device, how to activate it, and then how to delete any visible trace of it. It’ll just hang out in a hidden folder, with a nondescript name like “Android.sys.”

~~~~~~~~

Why would you need to hide it if you were using it for innocent reasons?  I don’t understand the parents-as-stalkers mindset, either.  Good Grief, the poor children with such controlling parents, monitoring every single thing they do!  Suffocating.

And the online banking thing…one of the reasons I will not do it is because of security.  I had to close my free account recently because the bank insisted on a $500 balance, or I could switch to online banking and not deal with the humans at all (putting another person out of work is not my idea of doing unto others as I would have done to me…).

This story drives that point home–no matter how much they would like to assure us that technology = security…the facts speak differently.  Paper is still more secure, with less ability of someone gaining access to information that is none of their business.

And in this case, someone’s life depends on it.

In this rape culture, women are still seen as extensions of men.  As objects to be owned and possessed.  The domestic abuse represents that sense of  entitlement.

 

 

 

 

Buying our destiny…

…or selling our destiny…depending on your point of view.  Naomi Klein was on DN! today, talking about climate change and our need to change the things we value in order to save the planet.

Perhaps it would be better stated to save ourselves…the planet will survive, i.e., after the humans and animals and plant life are dead from toxicity, the planet will re-emerge clean…like a phoenix rising up from the ashes.

Klein makes a point that the Green movement has been co-opted by the very targets they were fighting against.  Sadly, she states that The Nature Conservancy has been drilling.  Incredible!  Back in the day, it was one of the organizations I donated to.  That and Sierra Club, but when I found that Sierra was “partnering” with Clorox bleach…yeah, I stopped supporting them even before my life took its downturn.

She mentions the indigenous taking on the big corporations –asserting land rights.  You might recall about a year ago, with the natives of Canada protesting fracking exploration on their lands–

My posts on the events:

October 20th.   October 22nd.   November 4.   November 8.  November 24.   December 1.   December 15.

Klein asserts that those who stand to lose the most from the change in what we value–solar over oil, coal, and nuclear energy–are fighting a dirty war with the help of politicians and others who are bought and paid for.

They don’t care what ill health effects are created by the toxic environment.  It’s just mindboggling how they think that their pollution is not going to affect them–do they think they live in a bubble, immune from what happens around them?

An example–the pollen counts have been high here lately, so I haven’t been outside to jog.  I went yesterday morning, and then had problems with deep coughing.  I haven’t really had that deep coughing in awhile.  There has to be a connection.  Not only to the “normal” pollution, but from chemtrails, aka bioengineering–as I saw several trails in the sky to the East of me.  They have been spraying them above the clouds so it’s harder to see them, but they’re there.

I saw these from twenty miles away, Sunday:

chemtrails.9.14.2014

Just recently, Joe Donnelly, Dan Coats, and Jackie Walorski, Indiana politicians, have come out against EPA regulations.  The local radio station is airing commercials (surely paid for by those in the industry) stating that the EPA is a threat.  I kid you not.

Joe Donnelly here and here.

Dan Coats here–from an “EPA abuse” website, most likely being supported by the coal industry;  and here and here–this extension period was needed so they could flood the airwaves with the commercials I’m now hearing….

Notice the “job-killing” tactic–classic playbook.  Why doesn’t Sen. Coats tout renewable energy jobs that would be created if we stopped supporting the dirty coal industry?

Jackie Walorski here:  jackiewalorski.com/walorski-farm-bureau-take-aim-epa/

And here–a big thank you from the Farm Bureau. Pfft.

Note the scare tactics of “big government” and “regulating every faucet”….

Farmers need to realize their part in polluting the water.  And they need to be given some incentive for going organic, and not using chemicals in food production.  Where is the money for that?

Our water flows into the Ohio, which flows into the Mississippi, which flows into the Gulf.  It has been noted that Indiana is one of the biggest polluters (17 million pounds of toxins into our waterways EVERY YEAR), and the coral and sea life are dying because of it.

All the while, mercury in Indiana waterways is ABOVE the standards set from the USGS website.

28

Mercury contamination in water and fish throughout Indiana has routinely exceeded levels recommended to protect people and wildlife. About 1 in 8 fish samples tested statewide had mercury that exceeded the recommended safety limit for human consumption. The causes include mercury in the rain and mercury going down the drain, according to a recently released federal study.The most significant source of mercury to Indiana watersheds is fallout from the air. Much of the mercury in the air comes from human activity. In Indiana, coal-burning power plants emit more mercury to the air each year than any other human activity. In urban areas, wastewater discharge contributes a substantial portion of mercury to waterways.

Happy Labor Day, Mom

Wow. what a great piece.

When I first saw the title, I thought it was going to be a piece on the unsung workforce of women who take care of the home and children…with nary an acknowledgement by law or wages…but I was pleasantly surprised that even though it was about a mother who works outside the home, it held such a great depth and context.

I disagree with the author’s assertion, however, that the education “reformers” don’t seem to grasp the hard-won battles women have had to fight for the same rights that men enjoyed without resistance….

…the “reformers” know EXACTLY what they are doing.  They know that the teacher’s unions have protected working women with equal pay for the same work performed as men teachers, with protection of being dismissed for asserting the same equal rights enjoyed by men such as being able to be married, have children, have reasonable work hours and good pay.  You have to remember who the “reformers” are and their indifference towards women, or worse, loathing of women.

(By a weird circumstance, I belonged briefly to the American Federation of Teachers and was amazed at their strength, unity, and benefits.    It was like nothing I had seen before. )