Sanity-saving Good News – The “Alabama Miracle” Edition

(Photo of Alexia Bravo explaining her energy project. She is 11 years old).

The kids are alright!

In the continuing series of kids who make me realize how I wasted my childhood, this one. Alexia Bravo  and her goal of creating a carbon emissions-free power plant in one deployable, self-contained kit.

Alexia Bravo 2

This kind of stuff always makes me cry…in a good way…

Interesting stories about economics for the rest of us.

Scroll through this amazing visual analysis of the obstacles millennials have had in achieving the full independent adult life that their parents and grandparents took for granted. Comes with some interesting conclusions of what can be done to address the issues.

mill 2

Three states and a number of cities have eliminated homelessness among veterans, which is really cool. The article also talks about advances against homelesness for chronically homeless single adults, families and youth.

homelessness

No, it wasn’t just a dream.. Good news in elections!

Doug Jones smacked Roy Moore, sorest-loser-in-history and awkward pony-rider, lightly on the nose, as did Trump. “The upset delivered an unimagined victory for Democrats and shaved Republicans’ unstable Senate majority to a single seat.” This victory was brought about by an army of volunteers and by the dogged determination and hours of standing by black voters, especially black women. Payback time. Sign up with and support the linked organizations that promote black women candidates.

Many people got to their vote back. Due to a new law, thousands of previously disenfranchised Americans are casting their ballot for the first time across Alabama today.

These guys used their mugshots as identification, as they reclaimed their rights as full citizens.

men

A similar effort was made by Democrats in Virginia this year, granting tens of thousands of Virginians the right to vote for the first time in November.

In related news, last Thursday, Dec. 7, the NFL’s Miami Dolphins announced that each and every player on the team was now registered to vote, fulfilling a June goal.

Only 60.2% of eligible voters cast a ballot in the 2016 presidential election. While some people decided to sit this one out, about half of all eligible nonvoters weren’t even registered. Earlier this year, Pew Charitable Trusts published a report on what keeps people from getting registered to vote. Though some just say they’re not interested in voting, Pew found that millions of people want to vote, but either haven’t gotten around to it (27% of those not registered), find the process too inconvenient (9%), or don’t know how to get registered (6%). This action by the Dophins will help.

The voter registration success follows the creation of a yearly fund for advocacy and social justice programs. The fund will provide financial support and amplify programs centered on community engagement, education and justice reform.

dophines

Good news for other battles. If we’re serious.

The news says that Democrats have an advantage now. It’s ours to lose if we let it.The thing these successful elections had in common was a huge amount of volunteer commitment. Bad poll numbers for the President don’t translate into a win without a tremendous amount of effort. And it’s done by people just like you. So why not you? Join in! Make new friends. Have fun. Find your local resistance group (or create one!) and get started. Make your calls daily. Beginners welcome.

Alabama = Inspiration! Hundreds of progressive activists, many of whom had physical disabilities, converged on Capitol Hill on Wednesday to protest the Republican tax bill with a focus on Sens. Susan Collins (Maine), Jeff Flake (Ariz.), John McCain (Ariz.) and Lisa Murkowski (Alaska).. Eighty-four of them were arrested after refusing Capitol Police requests to move from public spaces, the police agency said. Ady Barkin, who posted the tweet below, got to talk to Senator Flake on the flight back to Phoenix.

“Why not take your stand now?” Barkan implored him. “You can be an American hero. You really could ― if the votes match the speech. Think about the legacy that you will have for my son and your grandchildren, if you take your principles and turn them into votes,” he added. “You could save my life. Please, please remember this conversation.”

How do I make this into a screen-saver?

The Net freedom fighters strike back!

From our favorite one-handed Jedi master

mark hamill

Darth Cruz has a go… but is immediately smoked.

Cruz

And our hero comes in for another shot…

cruz2

…and his backup team continues the battle to the logical conclusion for Cruz.

The lawyers are coming too. State attorneys from California, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland. Massachusetts, Mississippi, NY, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia and Washington are suing the FCC too. Your state not on the list? Find the information to calll your attorney general here.

Good news if you’re not a Nazi!

James Alex Fields Jr., the 20-year-old neo-Nazi who allegedly injured 35 people and killed peaceful counter-protester Heather Heyer when he plowed his car through a crowd of anti-fascists at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia in August, has been charged with first-degree murder.

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Good News for the Mueller!

Some bi-partisan support

Good news for Education!

Lyft has partnered with Guild Education, a female-founded startup that helps companies offer college education and tuition reimbursement to its workforce. Under the new initiative, Lyft drivers would have access to tuition discounts at thousands of instutions in Guild’s network to earn a GED or college degree online. Even better? Drivers could also receive up to $5,920 in federal financial aid while saving from 5% to 20% off their tuition bill.

Good News for the Environment!

Native Americans, conservation groups, and Patagonia sue over Bears Ears NP decision.

Here’s a video the park land theft from Yvon Chouinard.

An appeals court ruled Tuesday that a 20-year ban on new uranium mining along the Grand Canyon will remain. Zinke has the authority to rescind this, but let’s make a note that our oligarchs-charge-for-the-moment were going to f**k up the GRAND CANYON for uranium and all its poisonous side effects.

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Vacation CO2 tradeoffs explained…

It’s a good-news party from the global Climate Summit in Paris!

  • World leaders, investors and other Americans assailed Trump Tuesday for rejecting the Paris climate accord and announced more than $1 billion in investments to make it easier for countries and industries to give up oil and coal.
  • Bill Gates, Richard Branson and other energy executives and investment fund leaders announced a dozen international projects that will inject money into efforts to curb climate change.
  • World Bank President Jim Yong Kim announced that his agency would stop financing oil and gas projects in two years.
  • The projects announced Tuesday include a program for eight U.S. states to develop electric vehicles, an investment fund for the hurricane-hit Caribbean and money from Gates’ foundation to help farmers adapt to climate change and develop low-carbon technology.
  • Michael Bloomberg, mayor of New York, said the private sector coalition called “America’s Pledge,” that promises to honor the climate goals set in 2015, “now represents half of the U.S. economy.”
  • On Monday, Macron awarded 18 climate scientists — most of them based in the U.S. — multimillion-euro grants to relocate to France for the rest of Trump’s term.

There’s probably a regulation about this. Oh, wait a minute… NOT ANY MORE!

The powerful conservative lobby group, ALEC, has “scrapped a measure declaring that climate change is not a risk after opposition from Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp.” And “Exxon Mobil Corp. has agreed to regularly disclose analyses of the impacts to its business from climate change and policies meant to fight it.”

Good news in nominations and resignations…the circle of life!

Brett Talley’s nomination to a lifetime federal court position has been withdrawn from consideration in response to complaints of nepotism and racism.

“Transgender children are part of Satan’s plan” judicial nominee Mateer has also been withdrawn as a candidate for a lifetime judicial appointment. Yay! Here’s a quick rundown on the bullet we missed, and why we need to put Trump’s horrid judicial picks first on our senators’ speed dial.

Yay! Matthew Peterson, quickly cut from the herd as someone who’d never tried a case ever, has mercifully withdrawn his name from consideration as a federal district court judge. Maybe Trump thought he had a lifetime to learn on the job on our dime. After all, he was white, male and conservative.  If you missed this painful, yet illuminating interview, here it is.

DoRightCast

Michael Dourson, Trump’s pick to destroy the EPA, and real-life double for arch-villian Snidely Whiplash, has removed his name from consideration. Dourson had spent decades conducting “research” that chemical manufacturers used to downplay the risks of hazardous substance, such as a carcinogenic chemical that contaminated the drinking water at a North Carolina military base. Critics have argued that his work on behalf of the industry posed a threat to public health and presented a conflict of interest if he were to lead the EPA office, where he would have overseen the regulation of chemicals used in everything from children’s toys to pesticides.

Image: Michael Dourson

Congressman Blake Farenthold will not seek re-election following reports that he used taxpayer money to settle a sexual harassment complaint by a former staffer, who was fired after she confronted him about his behavior.

texas-gop-republican-house-candidate-blake-farenthold

Could this story about Paul Ryan be true? Has he really reached his goals of social safety-net destruction? Paul Ryan is considering retirement. A number of his colleagues, congressional and administration aides, conservative columnists and lobbyists believe Ryan will leave Congress after the 2018 midterm elections – and possibly even sooner than that.  Or maybe he just wants to leave before he loses to this guy…

Good news for women!

Update: 53% of voters think Trump should resign over the allegations of sexual harassment. 42% think he should remain in office. 53% of voters believe the women who have accused Trump of harassment compared to 31% who think they aren’t telling the truth. (Public Policy Polling)

Five senators have called for the president’s resignation over allegation of sexual misconduct.

The women harassed by the president are asking for a congressional hearing, a sentiment echoed by over 50 lawmakers.

Trump’s attempts at revisionist history about the Access Hollywood tapes appears to be a non-starter.

In a surprise announcement, Nikki Haley defended the president’s accusers right to be heard.

A federal judge on Friday temporarily blocked a Trump administration rule that allows virtually any business to cite religious or moral objections and opt out of a federal requirement that they cover contraception as part of employee health plans. The judge sided with the state of PA that such a rule was harmful to working women and would force the state to shoulder the costs of their birth control and unplanned pregnancies. Duh.Good (and really weird) news for immigration!

Charles Koch spoke in support of Dreamers and immigration. “Cook and Koch said both their businesses had benefited from employing dreamers, and the U.S. has a responsibility to allow talented people the ability to work in the country.” It could also be that the estimated $280 BILLION DOLLAR loss their exit would cost the country in the next 10 years will bring the pitchforks closer to the estates of the mega-wealthy.

Southern Poverty Law Center is suing over unconstitutional ICE raids in Atlanta. ICE agents entered the homes of immigrant families without warrants, consent or probable cause – in violation of the Fourth Amendment – solely to detain and deport families, mostly women and children, according to a lawsuit filed by the SPLC.

Good news for civil rights!

Transgender people will be allowed to enlist in the military (the president’s efforts to delay were blocked by a federal judge).

Are you one of the over 500,000 marijuana arrest statistics from the last 10 years? Convicted of a marijuana crime in California? It might go away, thanks to legal pot. “California is offering a second chance to people convicted of almost any marijuana crimes, from serious felonies to small infractions, with the opportunity to have their criminal records cleared or the charges sharply reduced. State officials hope to reverse decades of marijuana convictions, affecting estimates of up to a million people, that can make it difficult to gain meaningful employment and disproportionately affect low-income minorities.

Embed from Getty Images

Resistance issues and keeping track of what’s happening…

Keep in touch with your local resistance groups. The work we do matters.  Indivisible is now in the news for assisting in Alabama! Bannon told Breitbart’s editor-in-chief, Alex Marlow, “You’ve gotta give the devil its due.”

Week 57: Experts in authoritarianism advise to keep a list of things subtly changing around you, so you’ll remember.

Don’t be confused or misdirected as to why this is happening to us. The test results are in. It really is about racism.

“Fake News” or “elaborate spoof”? The Washington Redskins denied the team would be renamed the “Redhawks” beginning next year after an activist group posted a series of fake news stories on Web pages doctored to resemble legitimate news sources like Sports Illustrated, ESPN and The Washington Post, among others, using “Redhawks” in place of their actual name…

What nice people do.

(Thanks to Jen Hofmann, Rogan’s List, Alison & Stephanie, Marla’s Good News, What went right, the great people on my feed and the currently free internet.)

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