September 1, 2014

Labor Day in Amercia 2014


The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey unfurled the largest
free-flying American flag in the world
over New York's George Washington Bridge.
The flag was hung in the upper arch of the bridge's New Jersey tower,
meant to honor working men and women on Labor Day [2013].
The flag is 90 feet long by 60 feet wide,
Photo credit: Mel Evans / AP

THIS ENTRY WAS FIRST PUBLISHED ON THE YELM COMMUNITY BLOG ON SEPTEMBER 3, 2007.

“Labor Day is a United States federal holiday that takes place on the first Monday in September. The holiday began in 1882, originating from a desire by the Central Labor Union to create a day off for the "working man". It is still celebrated mainly as a day of rest and marks the symbolic end of summer for many. Labor Day became a national holiday by Act of Congress in 1894,” quoting Wikipedia.

"’Labor Day differs in every essential way from the other holidays of the year in any country,’ said Samuel Gompers, founder and longtime president of the American Federation of Labor. ‘All other holidays are in a more or less degree connected with conflicts and battles of man's prowess over man, of strife and discord for greed and power, of glories achieved by one nation over another. Labor Day...is devoted to no man, living or dead, to no sect, race, or nation,” quoting the US Dept. of Labor website.

"The Fourth of July commemorates our political freedom – a freedom which without economic freedom is meaningless indeed. Labor Day symbolizes our determination to achieve an economic freedom for the average man which will give his political freedom reality."
– President Franklin D. Roosevelt, September 6, 1936


Robert Reich is Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. He has served in three national administrations, most recently as secretary of labor under President Bill Clinton.
Read more of Reich's astute view "The Real Lesson of Labor Day" written in 2010.

The Yelm Community Blog pauses to acknowledge all laborers worldwide this day, for through all of our toils is the world a better place!


2014 Labor Day stories of note:
- "Obama On Labor Day: Don't Take Your Rights For Granted"
Read more from the AP.

- "Right wing launches misguided protest against Labor Day"
"Of all the things to protest: Labor Day? Workers have it hard enough, so leave their one day alone."
By Danny Westneat, Seattle Times
Read more

- " $15 and Change: How Seattle Led the Country’s Wage Revolution"
Seattle's path to a $15 minimum wage is a winding tale of effective organizing, smart messaging, and blind dumb luck. It is also a roadmap for bypassing partisan gridlock—one city at a time."
By David "Goldy" Goldstein, YES! Magazine.
Read more

August 31, 2014

Gardening provides us with major benefits


Photo courtesy: Dr. Mercola

- "Why Your Brain Needs a Garden"
"Mirabel Osler, an English writer and garden designer, famously said: "There can be no other occupation like gardening in which, if you were to creep behind someone at their work, you would find them smiling."

Indeed, gardening, a pastime taken up by 72 percent of US households,1 awakens a primal urge that many of us have to connect with the earth. By putting your hands in the soil, you are able to physically unite with nature on an elemental level.

At the same time, gardening gets you outdoors in the fresh air and sunshine, helping your body produce much-needed vitamin D. It gets you moving, providing important exercise, and allows you to connect socially with other gardeners.

When you garden, you're adding beauty to the landscape and habitat for birds, bees, frogs, worms, and so much more. Depending on what you garden, you can reap a harvest of fruits and vegetables to feed your family. You can also indirectly feed your brain for better mood and emotional health, and to satisfy your curiosity for knowledge."

* Spending Time in a Garden May Help Calm Dementia Patients

* Gardening May Make You Happy Via Antidepressant Microbes in the Soil

* A Free Way to Drastically Improve the Health of Your Soil

* Gardening Helps You Get Grounded

"Aside from increasing your sense of well-being and calm, keeping a garden can also improve your health by providing you with fresher, uncontaminated food; nutrient-dense food that is simply unavailable in your grocery store. It will also help you reduce your grocery bill," quoting Dr. Mercola.
Read more

August 30, 2014

Nuclear reactors here rear there ugly head - again!


Photo courtesy: NuScale Power, LLC

"Nuclear reactors may have future in Washington state"

"A legislative task force exploring the possibility of nuclear reactors in Washington state is preparing to visit an Oregon plant with a promising new product.

Task force chair Sen. Tim Sheldon, D-Potlatch, says NuScale is finding the answer to all the problems posed by nuclear power plants. The company, operating on a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy, is producing Small Nuclear Reactors. They are much smaller, less expensive to construct and produce less waste."

"The eight-member task force is supposed to have recommendations for the full Legislature by Dec.1 about whether to invest in nuclear energy again.

Washington has one reactor: the Columbia Generating Station north of Richland which is owned and operated by Energy Northwest. The state has a troubled history when it comes to nuclear power," quoting KING-5 TV News in Seattle.
Read more

August 29, 2014

The Case for LD 2 candidate Steven Nielson


Steven Nielson, Candidate,
State Rep. LD 2, Pos. 2

Making inroads to defeat Rep. J. T. Wilcox

Editor's note:
I find newspapers most disingenuous to their readers when they do not perform a proper "due diligence," as in the case of The Olympian this week, because LD 2 candidate Steven Nielson said his "campaign was never contacted for comment or question prior to the editorial board’s decision to print the August 27th article."
Further, The Olympian story says Wilcox is from McKenna, where in his previous terms he said he was from Yelm, though actually never residing in Yelm, rather in rural Pierce County.
Wilcox's stated residency is even on "shifting sands," so how is he in the state legislature? hmmm.

Press Release
THE CASE FOR NIELSON AS STATE REPRESENTATIVE
Nielson Recommends a Second Look at 2nd Legislative District Race

"In response to an editorial of The Olympian released on August 27th, titled “Wilcox has earned re-election in 2nd District”, Libertarian Candidate Steven Nielson was dismissed as being an unserious candidate in the race, inferred by low primary results as well as an inability to meet with the editorial board of The Olympian in a timeslot interfering with Nielson’s regular job. Nielson, a 35 year old Quality Engineering Management Supervisor, is not a full-time politician and balances work, family, commute, and community service with his campaign activities, all of which he takes very seriously. After reviewing the article and conferring with his campaign team, Nielson strongly urges the Olympian to take a harder second look at his campaign, aimed at vertical politics, creativity, and a government that inspires instead of punishes.

Nielson is a serious candidate with innovative solutions to the perennial problems perpetuating from the capital, especially transportation. He believes that under current funding and private incentive major roadway projects can commence more quickly, resolve more timely, and result in a lower tax burden to the citizens of the state. Nielson, in a recent candidate forum on SR-167 completion, was the only candidate providing innovative solutions that actually work. All other candidates from the two major parties mutually agreed on immediate gas tax increases or a social engineering project to convince voters, first, that they want or need a gas tax; comparatively not an innovative or effective solution.

Nielson has a plan to stimulate all sectors of the economy, from small business to construction. There is a multilayer plan of property tax-holidays for home-buyers in the state, B&O tax relief, and a creative solution to carbon-emissions that inspires the community to action rather than the partisan drum-beating of carbon-tax (Democrats) or nothing at all (Republicans). His proposal would create an X-Prize style reward for regional energy independence, funded by the state and private ventures. He believes that government should inspire greatness, not punish behaviors.

On education, Nielson is an advocate for whole-student curriculum (funding of the arts and music), and supports competitive pay increases for educators. The catch, he says, is that the administrative structure is truly the problem and the people of the state of Washington need the courage to step beyond the partisan talking points and solve the real problems so our teachers can get paid and our students can perform better on a global stage. Nielson advocates competitive curriculum and competitive pay, two main components that would fundamentally improve the ability of the education system to inspire innovative education solutions, allowing teachers to own and evolve their career field.

Nielson, a professional innovator and problem solver, has a knack for targeting the root of problems and providing solutions with measures of effectiveness. He is educated, creative, and active. His run represents a break from a two-party system dating back to the civil war. He says that as soon as we refuse to accept the partisan problems we stand a hope of realizing solutions that benefit the people, not the parties.

'So long as the voters agree that the path we are on in Olympia, attempting to solve the same old problems in the same old way with the same old outcomes, then I agree with the recommendation of the article. Re-elect JT Wilcox,' Nielson said. 'If the voters want more than party loyalty, choosing instead to demand accountability and reform, and want effective solutions that inspire greatness in our state, please elect an innovator to the State House. Elect Steven Nielson.'

Nielson reminds the editorial board and his followers that his campaign was never contacted for comment or question prior to the editorial board’s decision to print the August 27th article.

More about Steven Nielson for State Representative can be found at www.stevennielson.com.

August 28, 2014

"Americans’ Optimism Is Dying" & Economic Chart proof


Photo courtesy: Liberty Crier

- "Americans’ Optimism Is Dying"
"It is the very essence of the American Dream: an irrepressible confidence that our children will live better than we do.

And now it is gone.

It has been slipping for some time, really, but a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll this month put an exclamation point on Americans’ lost optimism.

When asked if “life for our children’s generation will be better than it has been for us,” fully 76 percent said they do not have such confidence. Only 21 percent did. That was the worst ever recorded in the poll; in 2001, 49 percent were confident and 43 percent not.

When you look closer, things seem even worse, if that’s possible," quoting Liberty Crier.
Read more

- "Wal-Mart cuts profit outlook"
"The Tough Road Ahead for Wal-Mart"
"The world's largest retail store cut its profit outlook as its customers continue to spend cautiously," by Anne D'Innocenzio, AP Retail Writer.
Read more

Editor's note: Yelm's retail sales, which rely on Wal-Mart, have been flat or eked out negligible gains recently.

- "How Did the Suburbs Become the Zip Code From Hell?"
"For most of the 20th Century, suburbia was the great imaginative engine driving the American Dream. A home in the 'burbs was the place you could sit back in safety and security and watch the great capitalist parade roll by."

"Somehow, while everybody was grilling hotdogs, the demons slipped in. Then they kicked back and made themselves at home."
By Lynn Stuart Parramore, AlterNet.
Read more

Editor's note: The leaders here for the last decade-plus have crafted Yelm as a suburb and bedroom community of the Olympia, Tacoma, JBLM Metroplex. This story is so pertinent here.

- "The Scary Economic Trend Making Americans More Job-Insecure Than Ever"
"Under-the-table, off-the-books has become the work for many"
By Lynn Stuart Parramore, AlterNet.
Read more

- "Fake Economic Recovery Exposed With One Chart – Mike Maloney"
Read more

August 27, 2014

Oregon denies permit for coal terminal -
"The Time for Burning Coal Has Passed"

"Despite President Obama’s climate policy urging less reliance on coal at home and abroad, the federal government has taken a hands-off approach to proposals to build northwest terminals capable of exporting more than 100 million metric tons of coal annually. It’s been left to the states of Oregon and Washington to determine the future of coal exports for America.

Gov. Jay Inslee and Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber pleaded with the federal government to undertake a broad and comprehensive analysis of exporting coal, including its transportation by rail, pollution of air and water, and the long-term impacts of greenhouse gas emissions.

There’s been nothing but deathly silence from Washington, D.C.

So it was good news last week when the Oregon Department of State Lands denied a vital permit to Ambre Energy, effectively shutting down its application to build a coal terminal at the Port of Morrow on the Columbia River. It would have shipped about 9 million tons of coal to Asian markets annually.

The state of Washington should follow suit and reject Ambre’s plans for a larger terminal at Longview, being proposed under the subsidiary Millennium Bulk Terminals," quoting The Olympian.
Read more

Editor's note:
I concur!

- "The Time for Burning Coal Has Passed"
By Claudia Ciobanu and Silvia Giannelli, Inter Press Service.
Read more

Karla's Wild-Shop Saturday - Fermenting Foods



Are you also enjoying the bounty of your garden or the abundance of veggies and fruits at your local Farmer's Market?

That's the reason why I sneaked into my busy schedule another Wild-Shop where you will learn the basics of fermenting food. Fermented foods are not only fun to make and taste delicious, they are also very healthy for you.
We will make Sauerkraut, Salsa, Beet Kvass and much more. It's a fun class with lots of hands-on in the kitchen. Each participant will take home their self-made fermenting creations.

Saturday, August 30th from 3pm to 6pm
$35 plus $3 for material
Click here to enroll.


5 reasons why you should add fermented foods to your daily diet:
-Supports your digestion
-Improves your gut bacteria
-Helps with weight loss
-Helps against chronic diseases
-Improves your immune system

August 26, 2014

Your every move is tracked


Photo Credit: Junkee.com

- "Google Maps Has Been Tracking Your Every Move, And There’s A Website To Prove It"
"Remember that scene in Minority Report, where Tom Cruise is on the run from the law, but is unable to avoid detection because everywhere he goes there are constant retina scans feeding his location back to a central database? That’s tomorrow. Today, Google is tracking wherever your smartphone goes, and putting a neat red dot on a map to mark the occasion.

You can find that map here. All you need to do is log in with the same account you use on your phone, and the record of everywhere you’ve been for the last day to month will erupt across your screen like chicken pox," by Elizabeth Flux, Junkee.
Read more

- "Facebook owner Mark Zuckerberg wants you to pay him to stalk you."
" In a breathtakingly creepy invasion of privacy, Facebook is forcing all smartphone users to install a new messaging app. The Android version of the app -- and to a lesser extent the iPhone version as well -- allows Facebook to access your phone camera and record audio, call and send messages without your permission, identify details about you and all your contacts, and send that info on to third parties," quoting SumOfUs.
Read more

Editor's note:
I got rid of my cellphone in 1999 and have not had an issue without one.

August 25, 2014

Clearwood Communications building vandalized

"Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched Saturday morning [Aug. 23] to the Clearwood Community Communications building in the 18900 block of Blue Hills Drive S.E., following a report that the building had been broken into and vandalized.

The reporting party was Fair Point Communications, according to a Sheriff’s Office news release," quoting Rolf Boone in The Olympian.
Read more

Council member McGowan's public farewell tomorrow


Yelm Council member Mike McGowan
Photo Credit: City of Yelm website

- Yelm Council's McGowan resigns - no longer Yelm resident
"Yelm City Council member Mike McGoawn has resigned 8 months into his third term on the Yelm City Council because he is moving outside the city limits. McGowan originally ran for this seat in 2005, was reelected unopposed in 2009 and 2013, beginning his third term just last January."

"...he’ll still be working at Yelm Timberland Library."

"A farewell reception for outgoing Yelm Councilor Mike McGowan will be held 5-6 p.m. Aug. 26 at the Yelm Public Safety Building, in the council chambers, 206 McKenzie St. SE.," quoting Steven Wyble in the Nisqually Valley News.
Read more

Editor's note:
The Editorial Board of The Olympian said this October 12, 2005, when McGowan first ran for public office:
"Klein and McGowan best for Yelm"
[This writer was a candidate for Mayor of Yelm at the same time McGowan was a City Council candidate.]

While he we may have disagreed on occasion with my comments before the Yelm City Council, I commend Mr. McGowan for always listening AND for his public service. Mike fulfilled what The Olympian said about him, being THE single Council member that stood up for the public, his constituents, more than any other the last 8 3/4 years, in my view.

BEST WISHES MIKE IN YOUR NEW HOME - SEE YOU AT YELM TIMBERLAND LIBRARY!

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