Give God His Rainbow Back! Now!

Worst example of cultural appropriation ever: LGBTs stole the rainbow from God. It’s his. He invented it. Gen. 9:11-17. Give it back.

People have been making nonstop fun of Mr. Fischer for his indignant tweet, but rather than just letting it slide, he’s back, with a double down demand.

“The rainbow is God’s,” Fischer said. “God invented the rainbow—look at Genesis 9:11-17—He invented it, it’s His thing, He put it in the sky as a promise that he would never again destroy the earth through a flood. Are you listening Al Gore? Al Gore, you do not need to worry about the planet being destroyed by floodwaters. Why? Because God has put His rainbow in the sky to let you and everybody else know, ‘I’m never going to do that again.’”

The LGBTQ community, Fischer warned, “is using something that doesn’t belong to you. That’s cultural appropriation … You’ve culturally appropriated something that doesn’t belong to you, it belongs to God, it’s His idea and you need to give it back.”

The first thought here is how any being so utterly weak as to not be able to retake a rainbow, well why bother with it? Apparently, it never bothers Christians that they simultaneously exalt the might of Jehovah, and his absolute weakness. Also, Jehovah is a latecomer in the god business, and a fair amount of the old testament stories are lifted from earlier peoples and their mythologies, so there’s no reason to think ol’ Jehovah had a lock on a rainbow. There is the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh, which the OT writers shamelessly stole from when hammering out Genesis. What about the Bifrost? That’s a whole rainbow bridge, from Asgard to Midgard, which would kind of put Jehovah’s measly rainbow to shame, yeah? What about Cuchavira, god of the rainbow? How about the Greek Goddess Iris, who is the personification of the rainbow, a messenger, and the link between the gods and humanity? Iris had long been in business before your sorry god was dreamed up, so that weak god of yours loses this one. There are plenty of other rainbow ties to various mythologies as well.

You also lose the whole “you can’t have a rainbow flag!” tantrum, too. Rainbow flags are not new, have been used for centuries. So, about that cultural appropriation business…of all people, Christians need to shut the fuck up about cultural appropriation of any kind, seriously, because the list of your crimes in that category are damn near endless.

Via RWW.

The National Park Stunt.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer, right, holds up a check during the daily briefing with Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, left, and Harpers Ferry National Historic Park Superintendent Tyrone Brandyburg. CREDIT: AP Photo/Susan Walsh.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer, right, holds up a check during the daily briefing with Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, left, and Harpers Ferry National Historic Park Superintendent Tyrone Brandyburg. CREDIT: AP Photo/Susan Walsh.

First, another photo distraction. Look at Zinke eyeballing that check – he looks like he’s about to lunge, grab it and run. The National Park stunt, it’s bullshit, so don’t swallow it. The Tiny Tyrant needed a distraction from the set of Damocle’s Swords hanging over his head, so this little stunt was staged. And it is quite little – $78,333 to the National Park Service. Given that his ideal budget strips the NPS, among many others, this is an empty gesture, and worse. Neither Trump nor Zinke give one tiny squirtle of a shit for land. They are both in favour of more pipelines, poisoned water, coal mining, strip mining, fracking, drilling for oil in protected reserves, and wholesale pollution. This tiny little check of a photo op is toxic bullshit of the highest order. While the Tiny Tyrant could not possibly care less about caring for our planet, there is one thing he sorta kinda cares about, battlefields. Yep. So incredibly important to maintain historic battlefields! What’s more important than the reminders of bloody slaughters?

…And as far as his donation, it falls well short of the cuts Trump himself would impose on the National Park Service’s supervising agency, the Interior Department.

Trump’s budget calls for a punishing 12 percent cut to the department, which manages the United States’ public lands. It would eliminate some of the department’s programs altogether, including the $13.2 million National Wildlife Refuge Fund and the $20 million funding for the nation’s 49 National Heritage Areas. It would also decrease funding for land acquisition — such as land that would be added to the nation’s national parks, and then stewarded by the NPS — by $120 million.

Zinke, in his remarks thanking the president, said he would put the money towards the department’s $229 million shortfall in maintenance of the United States’ historic battlefields. According to Spicer, Trump chose to give the money to the NPS himself, specifically because he was interested in restoring the battlegrounds.

“It’s a decision he made. Counsel presented him with several options. He believed… some great work is being done there, especially work being done to restore our great battlegrounds,” Spicer said.

Right. Fuck you, Trump. Think Progress has the full story.

The Farce That Is “The Wall”.

Ryan Zinke (Twitter).

Ryan Zinke (Twitter).

Just when you think rethuglicans really could not possibly go lower or more regressive, *bam*. Ryan the fink Zinke has a problem with the stupid wall – placing it on U.S. land would cede the Rio Grande, oh no wtfbbq!!!11!1 The solution? Doesn’t seem to be one right now, outside of making sure endangered animals are endangered right into extinction. It seems the only way to keep the Rio Grande would be to either steal land from Mexico, or build it on Mexico’s land and claim it for uStates. Or something. Jesus Fuck. There’s that Colonial mindset at work.

E&E News reports that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke talked about the logistics of building a border wall while speaking at an event held by the Public Lands Council this week, and he said the Trump administration didn’t want to build the wall on American soil because it would mean ceding the entire Rio Grande river to Mexico.

“The border is complicated, as far as building a physical wall,” Zinke said. “The Rio Grande, what side of the river are you going to put the wall? We’re not going to put it on our side and cede the river to Mexico. And we’re probably not going to put it in the middle of the river.”

Zinke didn’t elaborate on how the wall would get built if it wasn’t located on America’s side of the Rio Grande or in the middle of the river, which implies that it would be built on the Mexican side of the border.

Elsewhere in his talk, E&E News reports Zinke said the Trump administration will seek a waiver to the Endangered Species Act so it can build the wall in jaguar habitats that are for now protected from “destruction or adverse modification.”

Via Raw Story. And, Ryan fucking idiot Zinke has now said there’s no such thing as clean energy. Nope.

Sunday Facepalm.

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Today, we have the Compleat Batshit Sweepstakes! Who will win? Will it be Rick Wiles, Cindy Jacobs, Wayne Allen Root, or Lance Wallnau? This is also the S word alliteration contest: pick the winner: from Wallnau, we have sabotaging, sniping and snarling enemies, and from Wiles, we have a slithering cabal of seditious snakes. I think, on pure word performance, Wiles has to take the trophy on S alliteration. The overall winner in the Batshit stakes I will leave up to the reader.

We’ll start with the master of hyperbolic bullshit, Rick Wiles, who is on quite the tear over the Satanistic Cabal of Pedophile Baby Sacrificers. (Why Lucifer comes into this, I don’t know. Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones. – Psalms 137.9).

Rick Wiles dedicated his radio program yesterday to warning that a secretive pedophile ring is working to destroy President Trump before he can expose their murderous global network.

Wiles said that Trump is “besieged by a slithering cabal of seditious snakes” who are attempting to carry out a coup against him at the behest of the “perpetual war and pedophilia party that has ruled America since they assassinated John F. Kennedy in 1963.”

Huh. I really think someone is confused, because conservatives have always been the ones in favour of war. Pedophilia too, actually. I did not listen to the broadcast, that’s simply asking too much, so I don’t know if he expounded on this “perpetual war and pedophilia party” business, or how they managed to assassinate Kennedy. It really is true, isn’t it, that conspiracies never die. They just get twisted about now and again.

They’re fighting like cornered animals to prevent their pedophile network from being exposed. … It’s about the darkest, most disgusting, vilest corruption you can imagine. And if the American people ever find out the truth about their politicians and their celebrities in Hollywood and their TV idols and their favorite TV anchormen and women, and they find out all these great famous people and they find out that they’re just child molesters—not only molesters, but child murderers, sacrificing children to Satan. When they find out, they will drag their bloody carcasses down Constitution Avenue in Washington, D.C., with meat hooks! They’ll have meat hooks in their carcasses.

Bloody carcasses! Meat hooks! Meat hooks in their carcasses! Jesus Fuck, the bloodthirstiness of some christians is truly frightening. At least you know where all the projection is coming from, although that’s not at all comforting. Honestly, I’d think that if such a cabal existed, and were descended from the amazing perpetual war and pedophilia party, they’d just quietly carry out another assassination, rather than attempt to ‘destroy’ the Tiny Tyrant, which I read here as discredit. No one at all has to work at discrediting the Tiny Tyrant or his regime, they are bumbling about, doing a fine job of that themselves. The full story is here, complete with soundcloud.

Up next, in the Seriously Eeeuuuuw! category, is Wayne Allen Root, with his praise of just how very much Trump loves business…

[Read more…]

Indigenous Activism Roundup.

Protesters gather outside of the White House. CREDIT: Natasha Geiling.

Protesters gather outside of the White House. CREDIT: Natasha Geiling.

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Mni wiconi—”water is life”—appear to be empty words to the federal government, but they now constitute a battle cry for Native nations as they rise together in the U.S. capital today to voice their discontent with the Trump administration’s policies regarding indigenous rights and power.

[…]

Organizers also want the public to know that this gathering is not just about the Dakota Access Pipeline, even though it now serves as the symbol of all that’s wrong with the government-to-government relationship that tribes and the federal government are supposedly involved in. Tribes point to the Trump administration’s fast-track actions on the pipeline sans meaningful consultation and environmental review serving as the tipping point for Indian country by making a mockery of free, prior and informed consent—the right of every other sovereign nation in the world. They hope to make the point that the federal government, in going forward with the pipeline against the tribes’ wishes, abdicated its role as trustee to protect the tribes’ rights and resources, and violated their sovereignty and self-determination.

Full Story at ICMN. Think Progress also covers this story.

Tipis on the National Mall, near the White House, as water protectors gather for a march advocating for indigenous rights and a halt to environmental destruction. Kandi Mossett/Facebook.

Tipis on the National Mall, near the White House, as water protectors gather for a march advocating for indigenous rights and a halt to environmental destruction. Kandi Mossett/Facebook.

“The Standing Rock movement is bigger than one tribe,” the Standing Rock Sioux said. “It has evolved into a powerful global phenomenon highlighting the necessity to respect Indigenous Nations and their right to protect their homelands, environment and future generations. We are asking our Native relatives from across Turtle Island to rise with us.”

Full story at ICMN.

There is No O’odham Word for Wall.

TUCSON, ARIZONA—The Tohono O’odham Nation Executive Branch is firm on their stance against a border wall being built.

“[It’s] not going to happen,” said Tohono O’odham Nation Chairman Edward Manual. “It is not feasible to put a wall on the Tohono O’odham Nation…it is going to cost way too much money, way more than they are projecting.”

TON Chairman Manuel went on to say, “It is going to cut off our people, our members that come [from Mexico] and use our services. Not only that we have ceremonies in Mexico that many of our members attend. Members also make pilgrimages to Mexico and a border wall would cut that off as well.”

ICMN has the full story.

This Is My Body.

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This Is My Body. A figure stands in the middle of the image with arms outstretched. A red headband covers the forehead and long, loosely braided dark hair, parted in the middle. White streams down the face, and the eyes are red and swollen. The body has a bleeding wound on its side, a hole in each palm, and three rubber bullet wounds. Dark figures with riot gear border the figure to the right, while water from a vehicle cannon shoots down at the figure. (Art done by Joann Lee Kim).

Joann Lee Kim has a stunning body of work, do yourself a favour and wander over for a long look. I came across Ms. Kim’s work at The Establishment, specifically an article by Dae Shik Kim Hawkins Jr., about the days when 500 ministers descended on the NoDapl camp. I was there for that, and talked to several of the ministers. The ones I spoke with all seemed rather dazed and overcome by everything happening at the camps. The particular perspective of the article is an interesting one, and quite important, I think: Christianity Is Co-opting The Justice Movement. It’s an excellent article. Solidarity is more important than ever, as is making sure that solidarity is intersectional and inclusive. When it comes to christian involvement in major social justice fights, particularly indigenous ones, it is very important that attention is seriously paid to the colonial roots and colonial mindset which still rules most peoples’ thinking and actions, especially those of churches.

Have a read, highly recommended. And when you’re done, have a look around at the rest of The Establishment, a lot of good writing going on there.

Norway’s Storebrand Goes NoDAPL.

NorSR

© C. Ford. All rights reserved.

More and more efforts are directed at divestment, and Norway’s largest private investor has decided to go No DAPL.

The largest private investor in Norway has pulled out of three companies connected to the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) because of the conflict at Standing Rock.

Storebrand, an Oslo-based financial-services company that specializes in sustainable, socially conscious investing, has sold off nearly $35 million worth of shares in Phillips 66, Marathon Petroleum Corporation, and Enbridge, the company announced on March 1.

“Storebrand has made the decision to withdraw all investments from the controversial Dakota Access pipeline, including positions in the North American companies Marathon Petroleum Corporation, Enbridge Inc. and Phillips 66,” said Storebrand in a statement on March 1.

“Our conclusion is that these are poor long-term investments, both for our pension customer and from a sustainability point of view,” the company said.

Storebrand had investments of $11.5 million in Philips 66, $7 million in Marathon Petroleum Corp. and $16.2 million in Enbridge Inc., for a total of $34.8 million, said the company. According to its website, it has been in operation since 1767 and was managing pension funds since 1917, pre-dating Norway’s social security system by 50 years.

“There is too much uncertainty, for us as an investor, as to whether there has been a good process that ensures the rights of all parties in the conflict,” said Matthew Smith, Head of Sustainable Investments. “There has been involvement by the United Nations, by President Obama, and President Trump. Caught in the middle are the people directly impacted by the pipeline.”

[…]

Storebrand tried numerous tactics to enact change, Smith said in the statement, but none of them worked.

“Generally, it is our belief that we can have a more positive effect on companies and situations by using our position as an owner to effect change. We have successfully done so on many occasions, but it doesn’t always work,” Smith said. “Storebrand has been in direct contact with the companies, and has worked with international groups of investors. Our most recent initiative is an investor letter, representing 137 investors with $653 billion assets under management, that encourages involved banks that have lent money to the project to use their position and influence to engender positive change and a reconsideration the routing of the pipeline.”

Storebrand was forced to conclude that “active ownership is not going to deliver a better outcome,” he said. “We do hope that this can give a final indication to the involved companies to reconsider the routing of the pipeline.”

The investor joins a growing number of companies and entities that have pulled funds from Wells Fargo and other banks that are financing DAPL, ranging from the City of Seattle to individual account holders. Others, such as New York City, have put DAPL banks on notice.

The decision was not easy, Smith told The Guardian.

“Divestment is a last resort,” he said. “When you divest from companies, you give up your possibility to influence companies to come to a better solution.”

Full story at ICMN.

Back to the 1970s.

Burning Discarded Automobile Batteries, 07/1972.

Burning Discarded Automobile Batteries, 07/1972.

Trash and Old Tires Litter the Shore at the Middle Branch of Baltimore Harbor, 01/1973.

Trash and Old Tires Litter the Shore at the Middle Branch of Baltimore Harbor, 01/1973.

Clark Avenue and Clark Avenue Bridge. Looking East from West 13th Street, Are Obscured by Smoke from Heavy Industry, 07/1973.

Clark Avenue and Clark Avenue Bridge. Looking East from West 13th Street, Are Obscured by Smoke from Heavy Industry, 07/1973.

Something else people had to protest about, and fight tooth and nail to implement change – the utter disregard and damage being done, not only to our environments, but to all life. People fought like hell for change, and it took time, but change was effected. The photos? Life pre-EPA. It was wasn’t pretty. It was a choking stink. It was piles of garbage everywhere. Now the EPA has been gutted, and the Tiny Tyrant has been busy rolling back every single bit of fucking progress made in this area. A lot of people reading this weren’t born yet in the early ’70s. Unfortunately, you’re going to get a right taste of what it was like, and not in a good way.

More photos? See here. Feel like a bit of reading? See here.

Water, What Is It Good For?

Oh, who needs clean water, I mean that stuff isn’t good for anything at all, right? It’s not as if life is dependent on it or anything, after all, we can adapt to drinking toxic sludge.

U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to sign a measure on Wednesday aimed at rescinding a major Obama administration water regulation and direct an end to the government’s defense of the rule, a Trump official briefed on the plan said on Friday.

Trump is expected to direct the Environmental Protection Agency to withdraw the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule, which expands the number of waterways that are federally protected under the Clean Water Act.

The rule was finalized by the EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in May 2015, and was blocked by a federal appeals court pending further court challenges.

The rule has faced intense opposition from Republicans in Congress, farmers and energy companies.

Critics contend the rule vastly expands the federal government’s authority and could apply to ditches and small isolated bodies of water. The EPA under President Barack Obama said the rule protects waters that are next to rivers and lakes and their tributaries “because science shows that they impact downstream waters.”

Full story here.

The Trump Regime is also busy attempting to hasten the death of everything in every way possible. Here’s reading:

Former member of Trump’s EPA transition team suggests air pollution doesn’t kill people. 4.2 million people died prematurely from air pollution in 2015.

Trump’s EPA policies risk more Alzheimer’s cases, doctors warn. Two new studies support findings that polluted air causes dementia.

Trump’s allies have some of the worst environmental voting records in Congress.

There’s much more here.

This Is Our Land.

Water Protectors Leave Oceti Sakowin Reluctantly.

‘Absolutely False’: No Contact From Trump Administration, Archambault Says.

marty-two-bulls-cartoon-dapl-020717
NODAPL; The Last Stand © Marty Two Bulls.
 
marty-two-bulls-cartoon-dapl-020117_WEB
No DAPL; Beware the Early Thaw © Marty Two Bulls.

Arctic Hysteria.

A still from Arke’s 1996 video Arctic Hysteria shows the artist naked and crawling across a photograph of Nuugaarsuk Point in Greenland. Photo courtesy of the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. Acquired with funding from Anker Fonden 
Poul Buchard/Brøndum & Co.

A still from Arke’s 1996 video Arctic Hysteria shows the artist naked and crawling across a photograph of Nuugaarsuk Point in Greenland. Photo courtesy of the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. Acquired with funding from Anker Fonden 
Poul Buchard/Brøndum & Co.

Most people have never heard of Pia Arke, which is a shame, because she was an artist who took on one huge subject: the colonial takeover of indigenous peoples by those who termed themselves “explorers” and “discoverers”. There’s a great deal of horror inherent in any indigenous peoples experiences with colonialism. Unsurprisingly, indigenous women got the worst of it.

In the spring of 1995, Danish-Greenlandic artist Pia Arke was digging through the archives of New York City’s Explorers Club. She was searching for maps, ethnographic images, and scientific miscellany that she could repurpose into collages that confront Greenland’s colonial past. Arke knew early 20th-century adventurers often, by turns, demeaned and romanticized her Inuit ancestors. Even so, one photo from American explorer Robert E. Peary’s collection shocked her: a native woman, topless and screaming, restrained by two fur-clad and seemingly untroubled white men. A curator told Arke the woman could have been suffering from a madness called Arctic hysteria.

More than 20 years later, Arke’s mesmerizing film Arctic Hysteria, which she created the year after she found that dark photo, was looping endlessly in an alcove at Denmark’s Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. Situated in a small town along the Baltic Sea about 50 kilometers north of Copenhagen, the Louisiana Museum enjoys the kind of international acclaim that makes it a dream exhibit space for most artists. Arke’s work was part of last year’s star-studded exhibit Illumination, which featured such luminaries as Ai Weiwei, Cindy Sherman, Jeff Wall, and Gerhard Richter. The flashiest Arke piece on display was Legende I-V, a series of five collages of Greenlandic maps and sepia-toned family snapshots layered with imported commodities such as rice, sugar, and coffee. Legende I-V is physically imposing—it dominated an entire gallery wall—and hauntingly beautiful. The foodstuffs function both symbolically and texturally, the photographs evoke the warmth of kinship, and the cartographic lines of Greenland, stamped with place names referencing colonial explorers (Peary Land, Humboldt Glacier, and Kane Bassin, for example), loom insistently over everyone.

Arke’s Arctic Hysteria is equally magnetic. The performance, which lasts six minutes, is silent and consists almost entirely of one scene: Arke crawling naked across a giant black-and-white photo of Nuugaarsuk Point, a spit of land at the terminus of a C-shaped bay. The artist lived there, outside the small town of Narsaq, Greenland, with her parents and siblings in the late 1960s. In the video, Arke strokes the artificial landscape, rolls across it, and sniffs it like an animal. Then she methodically rips the entire thing to shreds, gathers the curled shards of paper, and lets them fall across her shoulders and thighs. The intimacy of the performance and the title’s historical allusion are classic Arke.

[…]

Historical context points to alternative interpretations. Inuit women labored at the very bottom of the social hierarchy on Peary’s expeditions and in his camps, expected to sew, fish, carry wood, and submit to the Americans’ sexual desires. Peary, for example, fathered two sons with his Inuit laundress, Ahlikasingwah. His navigator, Robert Bartlett, viewed one woman’s hysteria as simple protest, or “pure cussedness.” Accounts described women who seemed intent on escape or dissent leaping over the ship’s railings or shouting for a knife. Expedition member Donald MacMillan recounted finding a woman named Inawaho naked and screaming, presumably unaware of her surroundings and out of her mind. But as soon as MacMillan pulled out his camera, Inawaho hurled huge chunks of ice at him and later begged him to destroy the photos. Were these women, in fact, crazy? Or were they reacting perfectly rationally—even bravely—to their circumstances?

You can read and see more here.

Oh, that fucking wall.

An agent of the border patrol, observes near the Mexico-US border fence, on the Mexican side, separating the towns of Anapra, Mexico and Sunland Park, New Mexico, on January 25. CREDIT: AP Photo/Christian Torres.

An agent of the border patrol, observes near the Mexico-US border fence, on the Mexican side, separating the towns of Anapra, Mexico and Sunland Park, New Mexico, on January 25. CREDIT: AP Photo/Christian Torres.

The projected cost for President Donald Trump’s border wall continues to rise, and Trump has no good plan to contain it.

On Thursday, Reuters reported that the border wall will be much more expensive than the $10 billion figure Trump repeatedly cited during his campaign or the $12–$15 billion cited by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) last month.

“Trump’s ‘wall’ along the U.S.-Mexico border would be a series of fences and walls that would cost as much as $21.6 billion, and take more than three years to construct,” Reuters reported, citing a U.S. Department of Homeland Security document the outlet obtained.

And it could end up costing even more than that.

“Bernstein Research, an investment research group that tracks material costs, has said that uncertainties around the project could drive its cost up to as much as $25 billion,” Reuters reports.

On Saturday morning, Trump responded to that news by assuring Americans that costs of constructing the wall will come “WAY DOWN” as soon as he gets involved in the negotiations.

<Tweets snipped.>

But Trump’s citation of the reduced cost of F-35s should give no one confidence he’ll be able to bring down the exorbitant cost of his border wall.

That’s because on January 30, Trump took credit for cost cuts to the fighter jets that were already put in place before he got involved. A Washington Post fact-check gave Trump’s claim that he was responsible for cutting $600 million from the F-35 program “Four Pinocchios.”

[…]

Trump has repeatedly taken credit for deals that were in the works long before he won the election or became president. For instance, he’s overstated his role in deals with Intel, General Motors, Fiat Chrysler, Ford, and Sprint to take credit for saving American jobs.

[…]

Last year, Reuters reported that U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents don’t think the type of border wall Trump has long supported is necessary for national security. Instead, they seek better equipment and technology.

Not only is this wall idea the epitome of idiocy, people tend to forget a different cost of such idiocy – the high cost imposed on animals, the environment, and various ecologies. This sort of arrogant assholery is little more than a chest-pounding display of cruelty, a game for bully boys. Unfortunately, such people don’t much give a shit about the planet which gives them life, or the diversity of life on our earth, which has no use for the concrete idiocy of naked apes intent on warring with their neighbours. You can read a bit about this high cost here.

Full story at Think Progress.