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Gender: Male
Hometown: Detroit, MI
Member since: Fri Oct 29, 2004, 12:18 AM
Number of posts: 74,622

Journal Archives

'We work non-stop': LA garment workers toil for top brands and earn paltry rate

(Guardian UK) Thousands of garment workers in Los Angeles who make pants, shirts, blouses and other clothing for a variety of well-known fashion labels are paid less than minimum wage through a piece-rate payment system that compensates workers just a few cents per article of clothing.

Works say they typically work from 7am to 6pm Monday through Friday, and an additional five hours on Saturday – about 60 hours a week with no overtime pay, which results in overall wages at $5 an hour or less, far below California’s statewide minimum wage of $14 an hour for companies with more than 26 employees.

“We work non-stop. We don’t take any breaks, but make anywhere from $250 to $300 per week,” said one worker who requested to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation and to protect her undocumented status.

During the pandemic, the worker explained that her employer and several other factories in the garment industry continued operating without enforcing Covid safety protocols, moving sewing machines into a windowless basement to hide production from regulatory authorities. ............(more)


Dixie fire rages amid threat of strong winds and possible power shutoffs

(Guardian UK) Firefighters battling flames in northern California were preparing for fresh bouts of windy weather, as a utility warned it might cut electricity for thousands of people to prevent new fires from igniting.

Conditions that suppressed the huge Dixie fire overnight were expected to give way late in the day to winds that could push flames toward mountain communities, in a region where drought and scorching summer heat have turned vegetation to tinder.

Information officer Jim Evans said: “In this environment, any type of wind, no matter what direction – especially the way the fire’s been going – is a concern for everyone.”

The Dixie fire has scorched 890 sq miles (2,305 sq km) in the northern Sierra Nevada and southern Cascades since it ignited on 13 July and eventually merged with a smaller blaze called the Fly fire. ............(more)


Mute swan showdown: Genoa Township under fire for move to remove birds

(Detroit Free Press) Animal rights activists are targeting the Genoa Township Board of Trustee's Monday meeting to protest what they contend is a planned "swan massacre."

Noting that the birds — an invasive species in Michigan — have become a "problem" and are attacking residents, township officials approved a resolution last month that allows for the mute swan population to be removed by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

According to the DNR, mute swans are an invasive species that endanger wildlife, destroy wetland habitats and threaten humans. Mute swans are not to be confused with trumpeter swans, which DNR say are a quieter and less aggressive species.

“If we do nothing, the damage and conflicts mute swans create across the state will have long-term effects,” a DNR document says. ..............(more)


California boy dies of rare brain-eating amoeba after swimming in lake

RED BLUFF, Calif. — A child infected with an extremely rare brain-eating amoeba while swimming in a Northern California lake died in a hospital, his family confirmed Friday.

David Pruitt, 7, of Tehama County, died from primary amoebic meningoencephalitis, or PAM, on Aug. 7, said his aunt, Crystal Hayley.

The boy was rushed to the emergency room on July 30 and then flown to UC Davis Medical Center where he was on life support with severe brain swelling, Hayley said in a fundraising site she created for the family to raise funds for his care and funeral.

The infection is extremely rare, and there have only been 10 cases reported in California since 1971, the Tehama County Health Services Agency said in an Aug. 4 news release. It said the boy was likely infected in a lake in Tehama County but didn’t identify the boy or say where he got infected. ..............(more)


Hot days mean worse air. So why are climate and smog seen as separate?

(Grist) Jorge Osvaldo Heredia lives in the San Bernardino foothills in a valley at the foot of the San Bernardino Mountains, a stunning backdrop on most days. But come summer, the air pollution in San Bernardino gets so thick, like a “hot blanket of smog” that it obscures the view of the mountains from Heredia’s working-class, predominantly Latino neighborhood near the San Bernardino International Airport.

“It’s unlivable,” Heredia, 30, told Grist. “The people accommodate [the smog] to survive here, but it’s an area where, really, you can’t walk outside and enjoy the air; you can’t enjoy the outdoors here because the pollution, the air quality has really made it an unlivable space.”

A 15-year-resident of San Bernardino, Heredia volunteers his time to create more green spaces in his neighborhood, and over the past several years has joined his community’s battle to address the environmental impacts of the sprawling warehouse industry in the region, which has brought congestion and traffic from heavy duty trucks, construction, airport flights and freight trains.

The combination of the oppressive heat and record bad air pollution days in the summertime has changed the very way Heredia lives his life, planning his schedule around traffic congestion and avoiding walks on the streets because the traffic is too dangerous. Some neighborhoods lack sidewalks, and it concerns Heredia to see residents walking on roads next to big rigs and heavy duty trucks. ............(more)


10 Busiest Metro Systems in the World. (2019, pre-pandemic)

Man Stabbed, 2 Reporters Attacked As Violence Erupts At Los Angeles Anti-Vaxx Rally

A man was stabbed and at least two journalists attacked Saturday as vicious fighting erupted between anti-vaxx protesters, many of them Proud Boys in American flag and Donald Trump MAGA garb, and counterprotesters outside Los Angeles City Hall.

Police didn’t immediately have information about the stabbing victim, who was treated on the scene by Los Angeles Fire Department personnel. They reported no arrests by late afternoon, but an investigation was continuing.

Frank Stolze, a reporter for the National Public Radio station KPCC, was screamed at, then shoved and viciously kicked by anti-mask protesters while he was trying to conduct an interview, The Los Angeles Times reported. He filed a police complaint, the LAPD confirmed.

He later tweeted that he was “mad, but fine,” and noted that he had never experienced anything like that in his 30 years as a reporter.


Journalist Tina-Desiree Berg was also photographed being attacked, and she posted a tweet of being rushed by a group of Proud Boys. It wasn’t immediately clear if she filed a police report. ............(more)


Farmer who helped escaped slaves to be honored with historical marker in Ottawa County

OTTAWA COUNTY, MI – A prominent farmer who helped freed and escaped slaves through the Underground Railroad will be officially recognized with a state historical marker on a bridge that bears his name.

Hezekiah Smith will be honored with the city of Ferrysburg’s first Michigan Historical Marker. A dedication ceremony will be 2 p.m. Friday, Aug. 13, at the north end of Smith’s Bridge.

Ferrysburg Mayor Rebecca Hopp told MLive she completed the research into Smith and application for the marker in July 2020. .............(more)


Why more women are deciding not to have kids

(CNN)Dyanna Volek was never someone who dreamed of becoming a mother.

From an early age, she knew deep down that she didn't want children. Maybe it stemmed from seeing her mother sacrifice her dream of becoming a flight attendant and work three jobs to raise two kids alone. Or maybe it was that other endeavors interested her more.

"I'm always looking forward to the next thing," said Volek, who works in local government in San Francisco. "Being a parent was never one of them."

Still, the idea of not having children seemed taboo, so she didn't dwell on it much. It wasn't until a few years ago when she started getting serious with her partner that she really reckoned with her feelings. By the time she and her husband got married last November, they had reached a conclusion: They didn't want kids.

Volek is now 37, and doesn't see herself changing her mind.

Not having children gives her a sense of freedom that her friends who are parents don't have. Now that they're vaccinated, she and her husband have been able to eat at restaurants, attend concerts and travel without worrying about risking their child's safety. ...........(more)


Florida man wanted for car theft tries hiding from K-9 under mattress, gets bit on face

A wanted Florida man’s effort to hide underneath a mattress from sheriff’s deputies hot on his trail was thwarted by a K-9 who sniffed out the car theft suspect and caught him in his "Jaws of Justice," authorities said Tuesday.

Deputies in Hernando County on Monday learned of the location of a wanted man, identified as 59-year-old Michael Lewis, and requested the assistance of the K-9 unit, the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.

K-9 Justice and his handler Cpl. Steve Miller arrived at the residence and Miller announced himself before sending in Justice to find Lewis, the sheriff's office said.

Upon reaching a bedroom, authorities said Miller again announced their presence but received no response. Justice entered the bedroom and began circling the bed in an excited manner. .....................(more)


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