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Jilly_in_VA

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Gender: Do not display
Current location: Virginia
Member since: Wed Jun 1, 2011, 06:34 PM
Number of posts: 7,007

About Me

Navy brat-->University fac brat. All over-->Wisconsin-->TN-->VA. RN (ret), married, grandmother of 11. Progressive since birth. My mouth may be foul but my heart is wide open.

Journal Archives

It's not the best time to be a Russian oligarch

If Russia's oligarchs weren't already shaking in their custom Italian-leather boots, they probably are now.

In his first State of the Union address Tuesday night, President Joe Biden addressed Russian President Vladimir Putin's cronies directly, telling them that the United States and its allies are coming to "seize your yachts, your luxury apartments, your private jets."
The message underscored how much the ground is shifting beneath the well-heeled feet of Russia's oligarchs, a class of businessmen who amassed their billions in personal wealth by leveraging their connections to the Kremlin in the 1990s carve-up of the former Soviet Union's assets.
Since Putin's invasion of Ukraine, Western governments have sought to freeze the oligarchs' overseas assets along with Putin's, as well as prevent them from traveling. The goal is two-pronged: Sanctions act as both a punishment for Russia's ruling class and a cudgel to try to force Putin to back down.
It's safe to say the sanctions have, at least so far, successfully grabbed the oligarchs' attention.
Roman Abramovich, a 55-year-old worth an estimated $13.5 billion, on Wednesday announced he is selling his beloved Chelsea Football Club, which he acquired in 2003. Even though Abramovich has not yet been named on sanctions lists, UK lawmakers are pressuring leaders to do so. The tycoon is reportedly offloading some of his London properties in anticipation of sanctions.
"He's terrified of being sanctioned, which is why he's already going to sell his home tomorrow and sell another flat as well," British lawmaker Chris Bryant said, according to Bloomberg.

https://www.cnn.com/2022/03/02/business/russian-oligarchs-sanctions-assets/index.html

Media coverage of Ukraine shows it's time to rethink what we know about Africa

Opinion by Moky Makura

"It's very emotional for me because I see European people with blue eyes and blonde hair being killed." These were the words of Ukraine's Deputy Chief Prosecutor, David Sakvarelidze, during a recent BBC interview about the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

It wasn't so much what he said, it was more what was implied; that not all lives have equal value. And that idea -- the belief that some races are superior to others -- is a fundamental principle of racism. It's alarming to me that Sakvarelidze was left unchallenged during his interview.
As a Black, African woman without the benefit of blue eyes or blonde hair, it's been equally emotional to see the number of racist and ignorant comments in the coverage on Ukraine that have passed unchallenged by the interviewers and media platforms that have aired them. CBS, Aljazeera, France's BFM TV and ITV have all reported the invasion in ways that illustrate deep bias, informed by a belief system that screams of an old-world, White-led, order.
ITV News correspondent Lucy Watson on ITV reporting back to the studio summed up the collective hypocrisy and underlying narrative that the Ukrainian war has exposed when she said: "The unthinkable has happened...this is not a developing, third-world nation; this is Europe!"

According to the narrative she believes, "unthinkable things" happen only in "third world nations" (now an outdated and derogatory term, someone should tell her), and that narrative is perpetuated by the type of stories she and many like her, have heard about the continent.
In Africa, it's the stories of conflict in Ethiopia, insurgency in Mozambique, election violence in Uganda, and the recent coups in Mali, Chad, Guinea, Sudan, Burkina Faso and Guinea Bissau. But it's clear that far too many are not paying attention to them because the people in these stories are not rich or from the Global North.

https://www.cnn.com/2022/03/03/opinions/racist-media-coverage-ukraine-africa-makura-lgs-intl/index.html

Virginia substitute teacher suspended over Russia comments

A Virginia substitute teacher has been suspended after expressing approval of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine and urging students to read Russian propaganda outlets.

Arlington Public Schools suspended John Stanton, 65, who made the comments during a middle school Spanish class Friday, The Washington Post reported.

Stanton said he offered an opposing viewpoint and told students to read as many news sources as possible, including Sputnik News, which the FBI, CIA and National Security Agency have declared a “state-run propaganda machine.”

“The statement I think that got me was I said, ‘I personally support the logic of Putin,’ and what I meant by that is, he made a rational decision from his perception,” Stanton said.

A schools spokesperson declined to discuss Stanton’s comments or employment status.

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/virginia-substitute-teacher-suspended-russia-comments-rcna18481

House to vote on bill to help veterans exposed to burn pits

The House is poised to pass legislation that would dramatically boost health care services and disability benefits for veterans exposed to burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The bill set for a vote on Thursday has the backing of the nation's major veterans groups and underscores the continued cost of war years after the fighting has stopped. If passed into law, it would increase spending by more than $300 billion over the next decade, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

"If we're not willing to pay the price of war, we shouldn't go," said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.

The bill would open up Department of Veterans Affairs health care to millions of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans exposed to toxic substances during their service even if they don't have a service-connected disability.

https://www.npr.org/2022/03/03/1084114117/house-to-vote-on-bill-to-help-veterans-exposed-to-burn-pits
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Watch all the RepubliQans vote NO.

They survived car crashes only to lose life-saving care

A coalition of faith groups held a memorial service in Lansing Tuesday for car crash survivors who died after losing care that was keeping them alive.

Members of the Michigan Interfaith Coalition said the deaths are a consequence of changes to Michigan's auto no-fault insurance law.

The Reverend Timothy Flynn of St. Michael's Episcopal Church began the ceremony, held at the Central United Methodist Church — just a block away from the state capitol building.

“We pray for all of us gathered here, especially for the families and the loved ones of those that have departed this life," he said, as mourners held flickering (flameless) candles. "We pray that our legislators and our governor be blessed with courage and a thirst for justice.”

Across the state, more than 1,500 people who suffered catastrophic injuries in car crashes have lost their care, according to an independent study conducted by the Michigan Public Health Institute.

Changes to Michigan's auto no-fault insurance law have slashed insurance company payments to long-term care providers by nearly half. People rely on those providers to stay alive after their crashes, but the cuts are so deep that some are going out of business.

https://www.michiganradio.org/health/2022-03-02/car-crash-survivors-who-died-after-losing-care-are-memorialized-in-service-at-lansing-church

The other members of Ukraine's resistance

Tymofii Brik and his girlfriend spent Friday evening walking around their neighborhood in Kyiv, looking at the ground, at walls, and up at roofs. They were searching for special markings left behind by Russian saboteurs, who Ukrainian officials warned had infiltrated cities and may have been marking buildings to target for strikes.

It is not clear Russian forces actually marked buildings, but Brik said the local government had asked civilians to go out and search, and they felt they had to do something, even a small thing like this. Brik’s girlfriend, a climber, wanted to scale the side of their nine-story apartment building to investigate. Brik talked her down from that idea, as did the climbing buddies she texted for advice. It wasn’t worth the risk, they said, and Brik and his girlfriend went inside without uncovering any signs of Russian saboteurs.

Russia invaded Ukraine a week ago, beginning a war that, to some Ukrainians, felt improbable until the first explosions went off. When the attacks began, “the activation was immediate,” said Brik, a sociologist and researcher at the Kyiv School of Economics, who spoke Sunday evening from the shower in his apartment bathroom in Kyiv, where he and his girlfriend were sheltering.

That activation happened all across Ukraine, drawing on some of the lessons of 2014, during the country’s Euromaidan uprising and, later, Russia’s annexation of Crimea and incursions into eastern Ukraine. Eight years later, civilians have signed up to fight, joining the Territorial Defense Forces to defend cities. But the resistance extends far beyond that. Citizens are using their skills and their contacts to fill in the gaps for the government and the armed forces, and are finding ways, many of them informal and improvised, to contribute to the war effort.

“All the nation is involved, not only the army,” said Viktoriya (who is being referred to by a pseudonym for safety reasons), who helps supply medicines to Kyiv.

https://www.vox.com/22956752/ukraine-resistance-volunteers-russia-invasion
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Slava Ukraini!

'My MMA Gym Will Be Empty': Chechens Head To Ukraine To Fight Kadyrov

When Kyiv announced it disrupted a plot by Chechen warlord Ramzan Kadyrov to assassinate Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, young Chechen men already preparing to head to fight for Ukraine took it as confirmation they’d have another chance to fight Vladimir Putin’s Russia and his key henchman at the same time.

With a population of two million under Kadyrov’s semi-autonomous rule, Chechnya’s two vicious civil wars in the 1990s and increasingly brutal rule by Kadyrov have combined to create a Chechen diaspora community across Europe and Turkey in the hundreds of thousands. Hundreds of them now appear ready to join the fight to defend Ukraine.

“Kadyrovtsy are in Ukraine fighting alongside the Russians, that makes it every Chechen man’s responsibility to confront the enemies of Chechnya and our faith,” according to Ramzan, a former jihadist fighter in Syria from Chechnya quietly living in exile in Turkey, speaking under a pseudonym. “Kadyrov and his clan control the [Russian-loyal security services] and hunt his political opponents in Russia, in Chechnya, and in Europe.”

“But now they are in Ukraine for Putin and we can hunt them again,” he said. “We know these men [sent to kill Zelenskyy] who work for Putin’s dog [Kadyrov].”

Ukraine has requested foreign volunteers, particularly those with specific military skills. It has already has received more applications than it can immediately vet for links to criminal or terrorist organisations, according to a Ukrainian Defence Ministry official interviewed by VICE World News.

https://www.vice.com/en/article/5dgjn8/chechnya-fighters-ukraine-russia-ramzan-kadyrov

Russian oligarchs moving yachts as U.S. tracks down assets

Yachts owned by Russian billionaires are on the move as the U.S. and its allies seek to hunt down the assets of Russia's wealthiest in direct response to the invasion of Ukraine. The wealthiest Russian money – including Russian President Vladimir Putin's — has pushed to sea.

Data from MarineTraffic, a global intelligence group, shows yachts owned by oligarchs are on the move, including aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska's $65 million Clio and oil executive Vagit Alekperov's $80 million Galactica Super Nova.

"No self-respecting oligarchy exists without a super yacht. And so what we're seeing now is a hightailing it on the high seas," financier and anti-corruption activist Bill Browder told CBS News.

A super yacht is typically over 40 meters long. The Clio and Galactica are each over 70 meters long.

In response to Putin's war against Ukraine, the Biden administration created a task force to go after Russian oligarchs' "yachts, luxury apartments, money and their ability to send their kids to fancy college[s] in the West."

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/russia-ukraine-putin-oligarchs-yachts/
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It doesn't really matter where they put them, because this nifty little app called Maritime Tracker tells where they are. And anyone can access that......

RootsTech 2022 begins tomorrow, March 3

Anyone here participating? I don't really care that the Mormons sponsor it, just as I don't care that they own the Family History Library in SLC. They let anybody in for free. I participated in the virtual RootsTech last year, and besides learning a lot, found a gang of relatives and some good info. I found out. for instance, that one brother of my great-great-grandfather became a Mormon, settled in Idaho, had 10 kids, and supplied me with a whole arm of the family I had hitherto known nothing about. Also found second cousins I didn't know.

How the era of travel nursing has changed health care

In 2016, I was working as an ICU nurse in Reno, Nevada. But I didn’t live in Reno. In fact, I hadn’t trained as a nurse in the US at all; I’m from Canada and went to nursing school there. My initial contract was for just 13 weeks. I was what was called a travel nurse — someone who was brought in from a different city, and sometimes even from a different country — to meet a hospital’s temporary staffing needs.

At the start of my contract, we had a couple of days of onboarding and were then expected to hit the ground running. Every morning, I would report to the trauma ICU, one of four ICU units in the hospital, and only then find out where I was assigned, which was sometimes outside the ICU entirely.

Six years ago, travel nursing jobs like my Reno gig were a fringe part of the nursing landscape. But that’s changed. During the pandemic, the need for travel nurses has soared, and so have the wages paid them. Because I was a former ICU and travel nurse, I received frequent emails from travel nursing agencies when the pandemic first erupted, offering upward of $6,000 per week and occasionally as high as $10,000, if I were willing to relocate on as little as 48 hours notice to one of the cities experiencing a Covid-19 surge.

This was a steep increase from the average US ICU travel nurse’s salary of $1,800 per week, per this 2019 report. (I didn’t accept any of them, but I have to admit it was tempting.)

The rise of the travel nurse in the time of Covid-19 isn’t that surprising. From the earliest days of the pandemic, registered nurses bore the brunt of the increased strain on the health care system. With ICUs across the country overflowing, hospitals were forced to open specialized Covid-19 wards and staffing was strained. Nurses were often required to work grueling hours with heavy patient loads, a shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE), and limited access to Covid-19 testing.

https://www.vox.com/22936455/travel-nurses-health-care-covid
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I was a travel nurse prior to Covid and this reflects only some of my experience. The last paragraph is particularly revealing. Ask me.
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