Tuesday, March 15, 2011


I've read so many interesting things lately that it's roundup time again. A lot of these links come from tumblr, so if we follow the same people you may have already seen these.

Random Picture:

From Say Hello to the New Permanent Underclass.


1. Guatemalans sue US over syphilis tests:
Hundreds of Guatemalan prisoners, psychiatric patients and orphans were infected without their consent in a program to study penicillin. A class action lawsuit was filed by lawyers for the Guatemalans and their relatives.
2. Wis. GOPer Scott Fitzgerald: Dems In Contempt, Not Allowed To Vote In Committees:
Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald wrote this afternoon in an email to his caucus that Senate Dems remain in contempt of the Senate and will not be allowed to vote in committees despite returning from their out-of-state boycott of the budget repair bill vote.

"They are free to attend hearings, listen to testimony, debate legislation, introduce amendments, and cast votes to signal their support/opposition, but those votes will not count, and will not be recorded," wrote Fitzgerald, R-Juneau.
3. Subsidizing O'Keefe's Pranks and Koch's Yacht
For James O'Keefe, "defunding NPR is obvious." He hasn't expanded on his reasoning, but the Republican line on NPR funding, in general, is that our deficit-ridden nature can't afford these kind of luxuries.

What we can afford, apparently, is to subsidize O'Keefe's work. He's applied for a 501(c)3 designation for his organization, Project Veritas, which would make all contributions to the group tax-deductible.
4. On Being Feminism’s “Ms. Nigga” by Latoya Peterson:
Then I found myself at a crossroads – do I start talking about what I intended to and let her statements go unchallenged? Or do I once again have to represent for folks who aren’t in the room, to people who would most likely repeat the mistakes of their fore-mothers because they never learned anything different?

So once again, I swallowed what I wanted to say and instead talked about race, class, and structural injustice.

I felt like I had to take the loss for the greater good of team POC. Why? Because tokens are inherently disempowered, no matter how much we want things to be different. To not represent is equally as painful as the knowledge that I am silencing myself when I do so. But these are the terrible choices we are forced to endure when people are willing to accept tokens in lieu of equity.
5. 'Frontal attack' on education:
The $75-per-student budget cut proposed by Gov. Sam Brownback at the start of the 2011 legislative session set a tone.

Republican lawmakers followed with proposals to require all school district employees to be Kansans, block automatic withdrawal from paychecks for union political activities, prohibit retired teachers from working part-time in schools and assert complete control over education financing with a constitutional amendment.

The tidal wave of education reform legislation left Democrats soaking wet and wary of the next blast from the GOP majority. "The only proposal we've not seen is vouchers," said Senate Minority Leader Anthony Hensley, D-Topeka. "We've seen everything else to undermine public education. It's a frontal attack."

Black Snake Moan Blues:

Fixing No Child Left Behind:

GOOD: Kissing:

 Random Quote:
"[People] find themselves surrounded by hideous poverty, by hideous ugliness, by hideous starvation. It is inevitable that they should be strongly moved by all this. Accordingly, with admirable though misdirected intentions, they very seriously and very sentimentally set themselves to the task of remedying the evils that they see. But their remedies do not cure the disease: they merely prolong it. Indeed, their remedies are part of the disease.

They try to solve the problem of poverty, for instance, by keeping the poor alive; or, in the case of a very advanced school, by amusing the poor.

But this is not a solution: it is an aggravation of the difficulty. The proper aim is to try and reconstruct society on such a basis that poverty will be impossible. And the altruistic virtues have really prevented the carrying out of this aim. Just as the worst slave-owners were those who were kind to their slaves, and so prevented the horror of the system being realized by those who suffered from it, and understood by those who contemplated it, the people who do most harm are the people who try to do most good. Charity degrades and demoralizes. Charity creates a multitude of sins. It is immoral to use private property in order to alleviate the horrible evils that result from the institution of private property. It is both immoral and unfair.” -Oscar Wilde


  1. I'm currently reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and it deals a lot with unethical medical research done around the same time as the syphilis testing in Guatemala. If you haven't read it I highly recommend it. It baffles my mind because it seems that there were stricter rules for testing on corpses and animals, but when it came to live humans, there were no laws protecting them. There was a cancer researcher injecting live cancer cells into people (and at one point inmates), both sick and healthy, without their consent. The only reason he was stopped was because he tried to do it at a Jewish hospital in Brooklyn and some of the doctors refused to administer the shots since this was not too long after the Nuremberg Trials and subsequent Nuremberg Code. The doctors ended up resigning and the man was eventually taken to court by a lawyer on the hospital's board of directors where his only punishment was having his license revoked for a year. Soon after, he was named the president of the American Association for Cancer Research.

  2. That syphilis story made me want to vomit.

    After reading that story, I spent a good while reading Latoya's post and then many of the links within that post. Definitely some very, very good reads.

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. Solangel: I've never heard of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks but it sounds super interesting. Definitely adding it to my tbr list. Thanks!

    April: I got lost in Latoya's post one day too. lol Glad you liked it!


What's on your mind?