From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE?
The skies over Providence were blue and the sun was---[checks notes]---yellow last Sunday for the "Day of Service." It's an annual event that caps the Netroots Nation convention by allowing attendees the opportunity to give something back to our host community, and this year it was in partnership with the groups Clean Water Action and Save the Bay. This was the first year Michael and I were able to participate, and it was a lot of fun.
With organizer Emilie Aries as our guide, a couple dozen of us were first shuttled to Roger Williams Park---a 435-acre swath of beauteousness that once belonged to Rhode Island's founder---where we spent some time picking up plastic wrappers, cigarette butts, bottles, bottle caps, cigarette butts, aluminum cans, cigarette butts, cigarette butts and cigarette butts. To be fair, the park is really clean, and most of the litter we found was trapped underneath bushes and leaves. Except the butts, which were everywhere. Smokers: we need to have a little chat about that.
While walking along a sidewalk, I came across something unexpected: a metal WPA shield embedded in the cement that looked similar to this one. Turns out Franklin Roosevelt's depression-era Works Progress Administration gave jobs to the unemployed building sidewalks and bridges there. It worked out well: the park was beautified for generations, and the workers got to, y'know, feed their families.
I ran my fingers across that WPA shield and felt a sense of pride in how our country responded during those tough times with pubic works projects that are still highly visible today. And I wondered: in 75 years, what evidence of our collective response to the Crash of 2008 will people stumble upon as they perform their Day of Service at NN87? Probably nothing. Nothing big, anyway. Nothing grand, nothing enduring. Thank you, Do-Nothing Republicans. This extended middle finger salute is for you.
Anyway. After we'd filled several trash bags, we were greeted in the parking lot by a gaggle of appreciative VIPs, including Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (who comes across as the guy everyone would love to have as their next door neighbor), Congressman Jim Langevin, and Providence Mayor Angel Taveras. It was yet another sign that they appreciated us having our convention in their back yard as much as we appreciated their hospitality.
Having left the park a little cleaner than we found it, we moved on.
Tomorrow: wind turbines and green roofs and methane pumps?oh my!
Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]
One state poll has some suggesting that Barack Obama has a problem among his African-American base, but that notion isn't justified by the survey.
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You heard about the almost 40% drop in household wealth caused by the Great Recession. How bad was it compared to past recessions? Take a look. [...]
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I was perusing an old photo book recently and came across Stanley Forman’s 1977 Pulitzer Prize winning photo of an anti-busing protestor using a flag as a lance to attack a black attorney in Boston. It was a photograph that shook the nation into the realization that segregation was not just a Southern issue. In [...]Related posts:
This is one of nine short interviews I made while at Netroots Nation last week. The series is called "Five Questions" (to keep it short and simple). I asked the same four questions of each respondent, and tailored a fifth question to the person I was speaking with. Except for my own performance (I was occasionally froggy) I like the way this turned out. I certainly like the intelligence...
Want the scoop on hot races around the country? Get the digest emailed to you each weekday morning. Sign up here.Leading Off:
? MT-Sen: Denny Rehberg had better look in his "Rearviewmirror," because Jon Tester is getting some big-name fundraising help in the Montana Senate race from Pearl Jam. The legendary band is providing VIP status and an onstage seat at their Sept. 30 concert in Missoula for one lucky Tester contributor. (If you're wondering why I didn't go with a more obvious joke about Jon Tester still being "Alive" or being the "Better Man," Roll Call's Kyle Trygstad already beat us to the punch on both of those.) The Jon Tester/Pearl Jam partnership goes way back to Tester's previous Senate campaign in 2005, when they played a similar benefit concert for him; bassist Jeff Ament is, in fact, a neighbor of Tester's, having grown up in Tester's small farming community of Big Sandy.
Along these lines, there's also a benefit concert on tap in IL-08, to help out the Democratic candidate there, Tammy Duckworth. The featured entertainment? Joe Walsh! That's right... apparently the former Eagles guitarist and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer doesn't take kindly to seeing his name hijacked by a right-wing loudmouth. (David Jarman)
Welcome to Justiceline, ThinkProgress Justice?s morning round-up of the latest legal news and developments. Remember to follow us on Twitter at @TPJustice
A round-up of the top climate and energy stories. Please post additional links below.
Solar installations in the United States jumped 85 percent in the first quarter of 2012 from the previous year, according to an industry report that prompted a research firm and a lobbying group to raise their capacity forecasts for the year. [Reuters]
In a paper published June 12 in the journal Nature Communications, UCLA researchers and colleagues reveal that not long after the last ice age, the last woolly mammoths succumbed to a lethal combination of climate warming, encroaching humans and habitat change — the same threats facing many species today. [Science Daily]
Mitt Romney slams President Barack Obama for using taxpayer dollars to pick ?winners and losers? among green energy firms rather than allowing them to rise or fall in the free market. Yet as governor of Massachusetts, Romney backed a state program that targeted investments to individual green startup companies in hopes of boosting jobs and the state?s revenues. [Washington Post]
Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), an influential energy policymaker, appeared to reverse his position on renewable energy in a debate with GOP challenger Jack Hoogendyk on Sunday, telling a Western Michigan University audience he believes in government support for “all the alternative energy policies.” [Huffington Post]
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will lead a delegation of officials to the United Nation’s sustainability conference in Rio de Janeiro from June 20-22, the State Department said Tuesday, signaling a stronger U.S. commitment to the summit. [Reuters]
The world?s most prestigious cancer research group on Tuesday classified diesel engine exhaust as carcinogenic to humans and concluded that exposure is associated with increased risk of lung cancer. [Los Angeles Times]
Twenty years after trying and failing to halt humanity’s destruction of our planet, the governments of the world will gather again in Rio this month for a “once-in-a-generation” Earth Summit that will open with great fanfare but low expectations of success. [Guardian]
The Reaction: Ignoring the right-wing noise machine is exactly the wrong thing to do.
Politics Plus: Yes, the Republicans are sabotaging the economy.
The Grey Matter: The latest Republican efforts to defend austerity policies are just as much nonsense as ever.
Politicus USA: Ron Paul's cultists talk a lot about "liberty", but they're actively undermining support for one of the most basic freedoms of all.
Blog round-up by Infidel753. Tips to mbru [at] crooksandliars [dot] com.
A variety of links to articles/interviews/speeches on current issues that may be of interest.[...]
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