What is Going On in the DRC?

Blood on Your Handset
Is your cellphone made with conflict minerals mined in the Congo? The industry doesn’t want you to know.

Gold miners form a human chain while digging an open pit at the Chudja mine near Kobu, Congo, in 2009. Civil conflict in Congo has been driven for more than a decade by the struggle for control over the country’s vast natural resources, including gold, diamonds, and timber. Photo by Finbarr O’Reilly/Reuters

The Dodd-Frank Act, passed in 2010, is primarily known as the law that tries to tighten regulation of the financial services industry and improve aspects of corporate governance. It also requires companies to track and report the conflict minerals used in their products. These minerals are tantalum (used in cellphones, DVD players, laptops, hard drives, and gaming devices), tungsten, tin, and gold, if they are mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo and surrounding countries including Rwanda, where the mineral trade has fueled bloody conflicts.
Two months after the SEC acted, the NAM, along with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Business Roundtable, sued to try to stop the rule from taking effect. The trade groups argued that complying with the rule would be costly, that it is unclear whether Congolese people would benefit, and that the rule violates companies’ First Amendment rights by compelling them to speak. (Some big companies, including Microsoft, General Electric, and Motorola Solutions, have publicly opposed the business groups’ stance on the conflict minerals rule.)

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The Most Dangerous and Savage Group in the Country

The Paul Ryan Republicans, who in my view, are the most dangerous and savage group in the country are busy implementing programs that they have talking about quietly for years. Very savage programs which have very simple principles. One, make sure you offer to the rich and powerful gifts beyond the dreams of avarice and kick everyone else in the face. And it is going on step by step, just behind the bluster. …
Every cabinet official was chosen to destroy anything of human significance in that part of the government. It’s so systematic that it can’t be unplanned. I doubt that Trump planned it. …
Whoever is working on it, is doing a pretty effective job and the Democrats are cooperating, cooperating in a very striking way. Take a look at the focus in Congress. It’s on the few decent things that Trump has been doing. So maybe members of his transition team contacted the Russians. Is that a bad thing? …
Meanwhile the parts of the governmental structure that are beneficial to human beings and to future generations are being systematic destroyed and with very little attention.
~ Noam Chomsky

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Seven Magazine: Stop Mass Incarceration & Endless War

Stop Mass Incarceration & Endless War

Jeff Sessions ordered federal prosecutors to “charge and pursue the most serious, readily provable offense” — a move that marks a significant reversal of Obama-era policies on low-level drug crimes.
The two-page memo, which was publicly released Friday, May 12th, lays out a policy of strict enforcement that rolls back the comparatively lenient stance established by Eric Holder, one of Sessions’ predecessors under President Barack Obama.
“This is a disastrous move that will increase the prison population, exacerbate racial disparities in the criminal justice system, and do nothing to reduce drug use or increase public safety,” Michael Collins, deputy director at the Drug Policy Alliance, said in a statement emailed to NPR. “Sessions is taking the country back to the 1980s by escalating the failed policies of the drug war.”

Attorney General Jeff Sessions addresses the Sergeants Benevolent Association of New York City at an event Friday, May 12, in Washington, D.C. During his speech, Sessions said federal prosecutors “deserve to be unhandcuffed and not micromanaged from Washington.” Win McNamee/Getty Images

The memo also drew a long, scathing rebuke from Holder himself.
“The policy announced today is not tough on crime. It is dumb on crime,” he said in a statement. “It is an ideologically motivated, cookie-cutter approach that has only been proven to generate unfairly long sentences that are often applied indiscriminately and do little to achieve long-term public safety.”
Ask, and it will be given to you;
Seek, and you will find;
Knock, and it will be opened to you.
~ Matthew 7:7

Click the image above for
A rough draft of Seven Magazine.

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Tell Trump to Stop Mass Incarceration & Endless War

“Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.
~ Luke 24: 26-27

Live The Resurrection

Support our t-shirt Fundraiser for Seven Magazine

Click the image above for
A rough draft of Seven Magazine.
“And all things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.”
Matthew 21:22
Don’t try to interpret faith
in terms of science and logic.
Religious imagery is
telling you what is becoming.

"Miracles happen" ~ Pope Francis

Being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, he answered them, “The kingdom of God is not coming in ways that can be observed, nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or ‘There!’ for behold, the kingdom of God is in the midst of you.”
~ Luke 17: 20-21

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Prince Tribute Concert – Charlotte

It’s not a crime to murder Black organizers in an operation run by the national political police.
~ Noam Chomsky

Prince Tribute Concert

The sky was all purple
There were people runnin’ everywhere
Tryin’ to run from their destruction
You know I didn’t even care
They say two thousand zero, zero
Party over
Oops, out of time
So tonight I’m gonna party like it’s 1999
In 1999 worldwide music revenue was $27 billion, in 2014 it had dropped to $15 billion. Most blame Napster for this decline, but if you dig deeper you will find that Wall Street and government policy are the actual cause of the steep decline in music revenue. The death of Prince is a metaphor for the death of music and especially Black music.

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Can Hospitals and Health Systems Heal America’s Communities?

New York State largest private sector employers (in alphabetical order)
  • Columbia University
  • Home Depot
  • JPMorgan Chase Bank
  • Montefiore Hospital & Medical Center
  • Mount Sinai Hospital
  • North Shore-LIJ Health System
  • New York-Presbyterian University Hospital
  • University of Rochester
  • Walmart
  • Wegmans Food Markets
New York City largest private sector employers (in alphabetical order)
  • Columbia University
  • Consolidated Edison
  • JPMorgan Chase Bank
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • Montefiore Hospital & Medical Center
  • Mount Sinai Hospital
  • New Partners Inc.
  • North Shore-LIJ Health System
  • New York-Presbyterian University Hospital
  • NYU Hospitals Center
4 out of 10 of the largest private sector employers in New York State and 7 out of 10 of the largest private sector employers in New York City are healthcare providers.

nyc life expectancies

Physicians, healthcare administrators, and hospital trustees face an important and historic leadership opportunity that our country and our communities desperately need. Hospitals and health systems throughout the country are beginning to build on their charitable efforts, beyond traditional corporate social responsibility, to adopt elements of an anchor mission in their business models and operations.
For most Americans, the term “healthcare” connotes accessing good quality doctors and getting treatment once ill, with a smattering of lifestyle actions that can be taken to try to prevent illness, such as exercise, diet, and supplements. Hospitals, many believe, exist to take care of sick people.
But in recent years, the healthcare sector has expanded its focus beyond illness treatment alone to what creates health in the first place, tackling the challenging social, economic, and environmental issues that, to a large extent, determine our health status, our outlook, and our life expectancy. These are the “social determinants of health,” a complex of factors related to where people are born, grow, work, live, and age. They represent the wider set of forces and systems shaping the conditions of daily life that drive health outcomes, such as inequality, social mobility, community stability, and the quality of civic life.
For over two decades, overwhelming evidence from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and other sources suggests that social, economic, and environmental factors are more significant predictors of health than access to care. The University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute found that over 40 percent of the factors that contribute to the length and quality of life are social and economic; another 30 percent are health behaviors, directly shaped by socio-economic factors; and another 10 percent are related to the physical environment where we live and make day to day choices—again inextricably linked to social and economic realities. Just 10 to 20 percent of what creates health is related to access to care, and the quality of the services received.

sdoh2
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Stop Mass Incarceration & Endless War

We are raising money to help close the achievement gap.

Stop Mass Incarceration & Endless War

“Stop Mass Incarceration & Endless War” T-shirts will be:
  • Grown in the USA with organic cotton
  • Made in North Carolina
  • Transparent supply chain
  • Water-based inks
The Achievement Gap
For decades, educators have struggled to close the “achievement gap,” the persistent differences in test scores, grades and graduation rates among students of different races, ethnicities and, in some subjects, genders.

Creating computer games

Psychologists are finding evidence that short, simple interventions can make a surprisingly large difference. Terrance Jackson, the publisher of Pistis, adopted some of these simple interventions in a class called “Creating Computer Games with Terrance Jackson” that was offered to local 5th-8th graders at Larchmont Library. We are raising money to expand this program.
Students will also learn to code by helping us build a mobile app:
We need a theology of abundance equal to the grace and generosity found in the blood of Jesus poured out for many…. Unfortunately, our economics is built on a model of scarcity, and our theology feels equally impoverished.
Click on the image below to learn more about CHHE.

CHHE

The Community Health & Holistic Eating mobile app will be based on the fact that community and autonomy are very important elements in determining health and also on the idea that the production, marketing, and consumption of food is key to nearly everything.
The production, marketing and consumption of food is key to nearly everything. (It’s one of the keys to war [including the war on crime], too, because large-scale agriculture is dependent on control of global land, oil, minerals and water.)

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