Adoption Meetings, Russia, What are They Talking About?

I seems that almost every day there are news reports on a member of the Trump team discussing adoptions with people representing Russian state’s interests.  The news report on the adoptions meetings without giving any background on what the motivation is for the these discussions.   When there is any reference to the Trump team discussing adoptions it is really an oblique reference to the “Sergei Magnietsky Rule of Law Accountability Act” passed on November 16, 2012 by the Republican controlled House of Representatives and Senate on the Thursday, 6 December, 2012.  The Act, signed into law by President Obama, is a bill which introduces targeted sanctions on named Russian officials deemed to have violated human rights.  The Act simultaneously normalizes trade relations with Russia by repealing the Jackson-Vanik Amendment, which is legislation,  the Washington Post calls “one of the last vestiges of the Cold War,” and dates back to 1974, when the US put pressure on the Kremlin to grant Jews and other religious minorities emigration rights.

The Magnitsky Act is a new form of pressure. Its language allows the US to impose visa bans and asset freezes on Russian officials allegedly involved in the torture and death of whistleblower Sergei Magnitsky, as well as, other gross human rights abusers in Russia. Currently there are about 18 people on the list.  It does not include Putin, and his very close advisors and senior government officials.

The person who is the subject of the act was a Russian Lawyer who was arrested, tortured, abused and when he got sick, due to the extremely bad treatment due to the conditions in a Russian gaol, was left to die in 2009 from neglect.  Sergei Magnitsky only crime was uncovering a massive corrupt enterprise where he accused Russian officials of tax fraud.  He was under the delusion that Russia under Putin was ruled by the law. He paid for this mistake with his life.

The story on NPR as told by William Browder, the businessman who was screwed by the massive fraud  is found here.  He is the one who hired the lawyer Sergei Magnietsky.

Paid Maternity Leave and Health Insurance

The table shows the value placed on mothers and families.  Every county on the list has universal healthcare of one kind or another and paid maternity leave, except the United States of America. The U.S.A. tells its nursing mothers, get pregnant at your own risk. The country really doesn’t care if you have medical insurance or need any money to live while you have a newborn.  Why?

Country Weeks of paid maternity leave
Iceland 105.6
Sweden 48
Norway 36
United Kingdom 35.1
Estonia 20
Lithuania 18
Portugal 17
Czech Republic 16.8
Austria 16
Latvia 16
Italy 16
Luxembourg 16
Netherlands 16
Spain 16
Germany 14
Finland 12.6
Belgium 12.3
Switzerland 11.2
Canada 9.35
United States 0

Source: Save the Children (pdf)

QUESTIONABLE DRUG USED IN MEAT PRODUCTION

Most people have never heard of ractopamine. It is a growth drug fed to hogs and cattle to make them put on weight. (Additional weight with less feed means more money for the farmer per animal.) There are questions about the drugs safety for the animals and the humans eating them.

What is Ractopamine? It is a beta-agonist. That defines “a class of medication that relax muscles of the airways, which widens the airways and results in easier breathing”. It is a drug originally developed to treat asthma in humans. It also helps animals develop more muscle instead of fat. This helps farmers meet the consumer demand for leaner meat and makes heavier animals to market.

“The drug has triggered more adverse reports in pigs than any other animal drug on the market,” Helena Bottemiller reported for the Food and Environment Reporting Network in 2012. Ractopamine was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for use in animals. 

Have you figured out whose health the FDA is looking out for?
More on this drug and its use on animals is here: FORTUNE MAGAZINE STORY

Florida Bill Would Let Adoption Agencies Refuse Gay Couples

CBS Miami

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TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) —A bill, ready for a House vote, would allow private adoption agencies to use religious and/or moral reasons to deny gay couples wanting to adopt children.

The House Judiciary Committee approved the bill Thursday after emotional testimony that compared the legislation to Indiana’s new religious objections law.

The bill (HB 7111) was filed after the House voted to strip a gay adoption ban from state law, which upset social conservatives. Republican Rep. Jason Brodeur said if gay couples want to adopt, they can go to the Department of Children and Families or a private agency that don’t have a problem with it.

Democratic Rep. Dave Kerner said the gay adoption ban was unconstitutional, and if agencies want to discriminate against gays, they shouldn’t be in the business.

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE…

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Education Today Is Not What it Use To Be.

I received this as an email from one of the supervisors at work. It was sent by an employee to their supervisor and coworkers following said employee’s resignation.

I have edited this email to remove any reference that would identify the author and place of business.

Subject: A positive Bid Farewell…(edit)..

Ensuing greater than six years of excitement to bestow this memorable stint, I bid a positive adieu.

Good Morning….(edit)…,

I am enchanted regretfully, to further my professional career … (edited). My Tenure as an …(edit)…will flux on (date edited) at 5:PM EST.

Executing parallel-bonded relationships deemed infectious, expelling a higher level of professionalism, pride, and commitment. This motivation increases independence and persistence through aiding in the advancement of my professional career. We strive to remain sociable and optimistic in our pursuits to comply and exceed expectations, while savagely harnessed to the pressures of life. We must remain innovative and enthusiastic; thickening our comprehension, until we are all established as intricate instruments of our selected crafts.

Remain diverse and engage in challenges, for each day presents another born opportunity.

Please accept this tribute for assisting in my quest of knowledge enhancement and professional career advancement. Rest humbly assured, l am immensely obliged.

“The day we stop working towards more, Is the day we all begin to receive less.”

Charlie Hebdo Cartoons and Traditional Media, A Hobson’s Choice?

The traditional news organizations that decided not the publish the cartoons must have reporters and other assets based in Muslim countries.  They must be trying to protect them from revenge attacks because of varying degrees of intolerance demonstrated in the past.  The intolerance seems to be bolstered by the “blue” laws on blasphemy, which are enforced using draconian measures in many of the countries. The decision not to publish could be interpreted as the organizations being held hostage by their unprotected, vulnerable assets being open to attack.

Protect free speech and the right to publish or protect assets in place and keep the ability to report the news, a Hobson’s choice.

A link to an article on this subject. https://gigaom.com/2015/01/08/online-outlets-showed-hebdo-images-but-offline-media-didnt-why/