viernes, noviembre 30, 2012

"Flight" director Zemeckis interviewed on NPR

'Flight' Takes On Questions Of Accountability

Fresh Air, National Public Radio

Acclaimed writer-director-producer Robert Zemeckis has worked on more than 30 films, including the Back to the Future series and Forrest Gump, for which he won an Oscar for best director.
EnlargeRobert Zuckerman/Paramount Pictures
Acclaimed writer-director-producer Robert Zemeckis has worked on more than 30 films, including the Back to the Future series and Forrest Gump, for which he won an Oscar for best director.
text size A A A
November 29, 2012
Director, producer and screenwriter Robert Zemeckis is known for the Back to the Futurefilms — which marked his arrival onto the Hollywood scene in the mid-1980s — as well asWho Framed Roger Rabbit and Forrest Gump. His latest film, Flight, stars Denzel Washington as William "Whip" Whitaker, a heroic airline pilot with a dark secret.
Early in the film, the plane Whitaker is piloting takes a terrifying plunge after a mechanical malfunction. Whitaker — in a daring maneuver that others are unable to later re-create — manages to flip the plane over, fly it upside down and successfully avert a full-blown disaster. He eventually crash-lands the plane while saving scores of lives.
This dramatic action sequence may be the scene-setter, but the movie subsequently becomes a character drama. Upon waking in the hospital, Whitaker learns that toxicology reports were taken while he was unconscious — and they've revealed that he had alcohol and cocaine in his system when the airplane malfunctioned. He then faces charges and a hearing from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).
And he has to face himself: Will he hold himself accountable?
Denzel Washington stars in Flight, the latest film from writer-producer-director Robert Zemeckis.
EnlargeRobert Zuckerman/Paramount Pictures
Denzel Washington stars in Flight, the latest film from writer-producer-director Robert Zemeckis.

"Basically what he and I spoke about was the character's level of denial," Zemeckis says about working with Washington. "That's what you're ultimately seeing in this performance, and that's what I think he did so brilliantly in his portrayal."
Zemeckis, whose films include the motion-capture animated movies A Christmas Carol, Beowulfand The Polar Express, is known for his use of new technologies. That said, he recognizes the pitfalls of jumping to embrace them too quickly.
"[Y]ou can go back and see how ... in the final years of the silent cinema, where the art of cinema storytelling was so magnificent, and then when they invented the microphone and sound, everything got really static," he says. "And it all had to be reinvented again. ... So what we do is we overuse [technologies] and call attention to them because they're just so much fun to have. And then ... we learn how to use them in the way that all tools of cinema should be used, which is to make them invisible."

Etiquetas: , , ,

Monsanto's sneak attack on the US Congress

 Follow OCA: Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest 


Congress Is Back. And So Is Monsanto’s Sneak Attack.


With the elections over, Congress has returned for a lame duck session to clear its plate of post-Thanksgiving legislative leftovers. Not surprisingly, Monsanto is back, too, pushing a rider to the FY 2013 Agricultural Appropriations Bill that if passed, would grant the biotech engineering giant immunity from Federal law.

The so-called “Monsanto Rider” would require the Secretary of Agriculture to grant a temporary permit for planting or cultivating a genetically engineered crop, even if a federal court has ordered the planting be halted until an Environmental Impact Statement is completed.

Why does Monsanto want to cut off our access to the courts? Because the courts have ruled that farmers have a right to grow non-GMO crops and consumers have a right to eat non-GMO food. Judges recognize that GMO contamination takes away those rights. So Monsanto is trying to bypass the courts.

Right now, the House and Senate Appropriations Committees are drafting an omnibus appropriations bill behind closed doors, in the hope of passing it before January. The public won’t know what’s in the bill until it’s ready for a vote. And when the bill does hit the floor, amendments won’t be allowed.

Power-hungry Monsanto is counting on a sleepy public, distracted by the holidays, to let them slip this latest outrageous power grab through Congress.

Don’t let them do it! Contact your member of Congress and urge them to stop Monsanto's rider.


Learn more

Etiquetas: , , ,

jueves, noviembre 29, 2012

Costa Rica y Chile contra los transgenicos

Caminata en Costa Rica en defensa del maíz y contra la contaminación transgénica de Monsanto

El 3 de diciembre llegará a San José una caminata de organizaciones sociales, ambientalistas, campesinas y de mujeres para reclamar el cierre del ingreso al maíz transgénico en Costa Rica, amenaza para la biodiversidad de ese país.

Chile: Convocatoria a Jornada Nacional por Semillas Libres de Transgénicos, Plaguicidas y Patentes

El día Lunes 3 de Diciembre es el Día Internacional por el NO uso de Plaguicidas y en torno a esa fecha, como campaña YNQT en Chile, realizaremos una Jornada Nacional por Semillas libres de Transgénicos, Plaguicidas y Patentes.
Para la convocatoria, hemos adaptado el afiche que RAPAL utilizará en América Latina, insertando los logos de la campaña y de las organizaciones que enviaron su logo. Las acciones pueden ser en torno a esa fecha si es que no es posible realizarlas todas ese mismo día.
La idea es que, como en otras oportunidades, todas las organizaciones que forman la campaña y las personas también, nos aboquemos a realizar diversas acciones, que pueden ser instancias informativas, exhibición de documentales, intercambio de semillas (donde sea posible y pertinente), volanteo, funas, intervenciones urbanas, manifestaciones artísticas cartas a medios de prensa, correos a parlamentarios, alusiones en Twitter, viralización de campaña en redes sociales, etc...
Apuntamos a que ese día todos quienes estén trabajando al respecto puedan sumarse y generar un día para visibilizar el tema desde los diversos medios disponibles. Las estrategias e insumos necesarios deben ser autogestionados. Otro punto importante es el registro fotográfico de cada actividad e ir subiendo las fotos al facebook.
Comenzar a sembrar ya!!!!!!

Etiquetas: , , , ,

Puerto Rico durante la segunda guerra mundial

Mapping the Commons in Athens and Istanbul, by David Bollier

miércoles, noviembre 28, 2012

All songs considered: The Albums We Missed This Year

We're getting close to the end of the year, thinking about songs we loved and — inevitably — getting turned on to great music that escaped us. It turns out there was a lot of music released in 2012, and while we do our best to feature much of it on All Songs Considered, we're really able to share only the tiniest fraction of what's out there. So before it's too late, we thought we'd take a moment to pause and check out some of the albums we missed. To help us out, we asked Sami Yenigun, Otis Hart, Lars Gotrich, Frannie Kelley and Anastasia Tsioulcas of the NPR Music team to share their own favorites that never made it on the show. It's a pretty broad mix, from classical composer John Adams and Ethiopian jazz pianist Samuel Yirga, to electronic artist Acid Pauli, the doom metal groupPallbearer, rapper Kendrick Lamar and more.

Etiquetas: , , ,

La Batalla de Argel, ESTA NOCHE

Little War on the Prairie

479: Little War on the Prairie

479: Little War on the Prairie

NOV 23, 2012
Growing up in Mankato, Minnesota, John Biewen says, nobody ever talked about the most important historical event ever to happen there: in 1862, it was the site of the largest mass execution in U.S. history. Thirty-eight Dakota Indians were hanged after a war with white settlers. John went back to Minnesota to figure out what really happened 150 years ago, and why Minnesotans didn’t talk about it much after.


Etiquetas: , ,

Venezuela: transgénicos responden a intereses capitalistas


Alimentos transgénicos responden a intereses capitalistas

20 noviembre 2012 

El investigador del IVIC señaló que hasta la fecha se ha demostrado que los transgénicos no son más productivos ni más rendidores que los cultivos tradicionales, lo cual es evidente porque la problemática del hambre no se ha solucionado

Etiquetas: , ,

martes, noviembre 27, 2012

Paraguay: Ejecutivo defiende transgénicos

Por Gustavo Torres
Envíe un comentarioImprima el texto de esta página

Gobierno de facto acelera permisos para nuevas variedades importadas

La celeridad con que el gobierno del presidente Federico Franco, designado por el Congreso tras el golpe parlamentario que destituyó al presidente Fernando Lugo (2008-2012) el 22 de junio, ha autorizado la liberación comercial de cinco variedades de maíz y dos de algodón transgénicos, está provocando reacciones diversas en la sociedad.


Defensa transgénica hasta en el púlpito
La acérrima defensa de los OGMs por parte de Franco lo llevó incluso a interrumpir la homilía del obispo Mario Melanio Medina durante una misa el 6 de setiembre en la iglesia de Villa Florida, en el departamento suroccidental de Misiones.

En el momento en que el titular del arzobispado de los departamentos de Misiones y Ñe’embucu, un reconocido prelado defensor de la Teología de la Liberación, se refería a la nocividad de su uso sin agotar las investigaciones científicas, las consultas y los debates con la ciudadanía, Franco salió del protocolo litúrgico interrumpiendo el sermón del obispo para defender el uso de las semillas transgénicas, un hecho anormal para una sociedad acostumbrada a los rituales católicos, fe que comparte la mayoría de la población paraguaya.

Franco pidió incluso al prelado una explicación científica que confirme el daño de las semillas transgénicas: “Si usted presenta un solo documento de una autoridad que demuestre que los transgénicos van a perjudicar la vida o la salud, nosotros vamos a cambiar de actitud”, agregando que “los transgénicos son semillas que Dios y la ciencia permitieron que sean modificadas para beneficio de los productores (…) Mediante los transgénicos, los agricultores van a usar menos insecticidas y habrá mejor producción”.

Etiquetas: , ,

lunes, noviembre 26, 2012

Are GMO's safe?

Is the Long-Term Safety of Genetically Engineered Food Settled? Not by a Long Shot.

One of the most contentious issues surrounding the controversy about genetically engineered (GE) foods is whether there may be long-term safety risks, and whether current regulations are sufficient to prevent such risks from occurring.
As I briefly discussed in my last post, major science organizations have said that some GE foods produced by current methods could be harmful, and have provided some examples of the kinds of harm that might occur.

The current situation

Most corn, soybeans, and cotton in the U.S. are engineered to contain one or several genes for insect or herbicide resistance. Many more types of engineered genes are in the works. Photo by danellesheree.
No long-term safety tests in animals are required by any regulatory agency. In some circumstances, 90-day, so-called sub-chronic tests may be required in Europe. But 90 days is far short of the one to two years that usually satisfy long-term safety test requirements.
Long-term experiments are required for products like drugs and chemical pesticides, and sometimes for food additives. They are considered important or necessary for determining harm that may take years to develop, such as cancers, Parkinson’s disease, and so on.
Recently, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Board of Directors cited a review of several long-term and multi-generational studies by Snell and colleagues in support of their claim that GE foods are safe and well tested.
The study cited by the AAAS Board has made the rounds in recent months, being used to claim that long-term studies show that GE is safe, and that shorter-term tests are sufficient.
The study authors extrapolate from the reviewed research that GE crops can be safely used in foods, based on currently required tests. For example, at the end of the paper’s abstract they write: “The studies reviewed present evidence to show that GM plants are nutritionally equivalent to their non-GM counterparts and can be safely used in food and feed.” They also conclude that 90-day tests are usually sufficient, and even these may not always be needed.
The study makes some useful contributions, but a careful reading shows that it contains some serious flaws. These limitations — some of which involve the interpretation of the results by the authors — eliminate the value of this study for drawing general conclusions about the safety of GE foods, or the adequacy of current shorter tests to reveal long-term risks from engineered foods.

Cincinnati Passes Resolution Requiring GE Food Labeling

Yesterday, the city of Cincinnati became the first in Ohio to pass a resolution to require the labeling of 
genetically engineered (GE) foods, citing that consumers should have the right to know what is in their food. The consumer advocacy organization Food & Water Watch brought the resolution to city council as a part of their "Let Me Decide" campaign to make GE labeling the law. GE foods have not been fully tested for their impacts on human health and the environment.

Alison Auciello, Ohio-based organizer for Food & Water Watch said, "genetically engineered foods are potentially unsafe, and consumers should have the right to decide for themselves if they want to eat GE foods. It took regulation to get food processors to label ingredients and nutrition facts on labels, and now we're calling for federal lawmakers to require the labeling of GE food."

The majority of processed foods are genetically engineered, but unlike fat, sodium and sugar content, 
labels do not disclose which foods contain genetically engineered (GE) ingredients. Biotechnology companies submit their own safety-testing data, and independent research is limited on GE foods because licensing agreements that control the use of patented seeds prohibit cultivation for research purposes.

Genetically engineered foods are made by inserting the genetic material from one organism into another to achieve a desired characteristic such as resistance to herbicides or pesticides. 
Roundup Ready varieties of corn, for example, are engineered to withstand treatment with the Roundup herbicide. But, the unintended consequence of increased use of herbicides has been a rise in "superweeds," aggressive weed species like ragweed and pigweed that have become immune to Roundup.

Cincinnati Council Member and resolution co-sponsor Wendell Young said, "this is about transparency, about ensuring that people can make informed choices about what they feed themselves and their families. Consumers have a right to know what is in their food, especially until we know for certain whether genetically engineered foods are truly safe."  

Etiquetas: , , , , , ,

domingo, noviembre 25, 2012

Dedicado a Tony Alvarez

Hoy, domingo 25 de noviembre 2012, continúa el Festival de la Montaña en la Plaza de Aibonito, este año dedicado a la memoria deTony Alvarez, quien falleció hace unos meses. Tony era hijo del muy querido Don Toño Alvarez, jefe de la empresa boricua Pollos Picú. La última vez que ví a Tony y conversé con él fue una noche hace como un año en la casa del amigo mutuo aiboniteño Manuel López Gay, quien es uno de los principales organizadores del Festival de la Montaña de este año. Yo mencioné a Tony y su padre Don Toño en un artículo que escribí en 2010, titulado "Más Allá de lo Orgánico". Cito aquí algunos pasajes:

"Desde mucho antes de surgir el pretencioso y rimbombante concepto de "responsabilidad social empresarial", ya Don Toño estaba poniendo en práctica un modelo de capitalismo social, solidario y patriótico del cual pueden dar fe las comunidades de Aibonito y Coamo, los avicultores del país, y quienes fueron sus empleados.

Yo, siendo socialista, rindo homenaje al legado de ese señor quien siendo capitalista y patrono nos dio a todos nosotros cátedra de éxito empresarial, afirmación nacional y desprendimiento solidario. Fue una pena y una tragedia para todos nosotros los puertorriqueños ver cómo esa empresa, que una vez fue orgullo de nuestra nación, se fue al infierno tras la salida de Don Toño, no solamente debido a la mala fe de los yanquis sino también en gran medida a la incapacidad e ineptitud (o peor) de sucesivos administradores.

En el curso de una investigación sobre la historia de la avicultura en Puerto Rico en 2009 tuve el placer de concocer a Tony Alvarez, hijo de Don Toño, quien tuvo la gentileza de darnos a una colega (la cineasta Carla Cavina) y a mí un día entero de su tiempo, contándonos la saga de Picú y enseñándonos las fincas que una vez suplieron a la empresa. De todas las personas que entrevistamos en el curso de la investigación, Tony Alvarez fue prácticamente el único que entendía la necesidad de trascender el sistema de producción avícola actual y dar el paso acertado hacia una avicultura ecológica, que trate con dignidad y ética a los animales que nos alimentan."


Etiquetas: , , , ,

HOY domingo

Etiquetas: ,

Remembering Richard Grossman

sábado, noviembre 24, 2012

Festival de la Monta~na en Aibonito, en la plaza del pueblo, ENTRADA GRATIS

Etiquetas: , ,

Afiche del Festival de la Montaña

Maestro artesano Héctor L. Burgos junto al afiche conmemorativo del 32do Festival de la Montaña de Aibonito. El afiche fue develado anoche, 26 de octubre de 2012, por su creador, el artista Aiboniteño Miguel Ángel Fernández en una emotiva ceremonia en la Cooperativa de Ahorro y Crédito Aiboniteña (BoniCoop) .

Etiquetas: , ,

viernes, noviembre 23, 2012

Miguel Fernández y su serigrafia

El artista aiboniteño Miguel Fernández trabaja en la serigrafía conmemorativa del 32do Festival de la Montaña de Aibonito dedicado a nuestro gran amigo Antonio (Tony) Alvarez. (Foto tomada de la página FB del Festival)

Etiquetas: , ,

jueves, noviembre 22, 2012

My friend Richard Grossman passed away one year ago today

For information about him and his life go to this link:

Image courtesy of Robert Shetterly and


WAL-MART WORKERS- Why are we standing up to live better?

The fight moves to Washington State

 Follow OCA: Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest 


GMO Labeling Fight Moves to Washington State

Activists in Washington State have been hard at work on I-522, a November 2013 ballot and legislative initiative to require mandatory labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). And they need our help!

Building on our Movement's near-victory in California (where we got 48% of the vote, despite being outspent five to one) the Label It WA team is rushing to meet a December 31, 2012 deadline for signature-gathering. They’ve already collected 230,000 signatures. But they need 100,000 more by December 31 to make sure they have the 241,153 valid signatures required to get on the ballot in 2013.

This is another critical battle for GMO labeling, one with some strategic advantages we didn't have in California. I-522 already has strong support from Washington farmers, ranchers, and dairies, both organic and conventional, who are up in arms about the economic and environmental threats posed by genetically engineered wheat, apples, and alfalfa.  Plus, Washington is far smaller than California in terms of population and registered voters and boasts a powerful network of co-ops, independent natural food stores, and grassroots organizations who are already fully on board with the campaign.

In addition, Washington's new Governor, Jay Inslee, is a longtime Congressional supporter of GE food labeling and organic agriculture. According to Washington State law, if the state legislature feels there is majority support for a ballot initiative, in this case mandatory GE food labeling, they can pass it into law before it goes for a statewide vote in November 2013.

If you live in Washington and can help collect signatures, or are willing to set up a meeting with your state legislator in December to convince him or her to support GMO labeling and I-522, sign up here.

Label It WA also needs money, for paid signature-gatherers, for public education, for coalition-building and to counter the inevitable attacks from Monsanto and Big Food.  The Organic Consumers Fund has donated an initial $60,000 to the campaign, but we need to raise more. To support the campaign, donate here.

Monsanto and Big Food would love to see us go away, but the millions of people in California and across this country who fought for Prop 37, the California Right to Know GMO labeling initiative, have made it clear: we are here to stay. How is it that in 60 other countries, citizens have fought for and won this basic right, yet here in the U.S. we continue to let dirty corporate money corrupt our food and our politics?

Let’s get I-522 on the ballot in Washington, let's help Washington voters convince their legislators to enact I-522 into law even before November 13, and let’s win.

Volunteer in Washington

Follow 'Label It WA' on Facebook

Etiquetas: , , , ,