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Shell buys its first electric car charging station firm in Europe

Even oil companies have begun to realize the future will not be nearly as reliant on fossil fuels, and Royal Dutch Shell is moving to safeguard its future business.

The Dutch oil company acquired NewMotion, an electric-car charging station firm, for an undisclosed price.

NewMotion, also based in the Netherlands, has more than 30,000 electric-car charging stations in Europe, according to CNN.

The company specializes in converting normal parking spaces into charging points for electric cars.

via Green Car Reports Shell buys its first electric car charging station firm in Europe

Donald Trump tests the waters for his “declare victory and resign” strategy

Yes, it’s fairly subtle. But when you look at the overall context of a day in which Donald Trump probably figured out that Special Counsel Robert Mueller is going to be able to take him down after all, and then he began trying to complete his own warped political priorities as fast as possible, it stands out that Trump is now indeed trying to declare victory on his presidency. He’s testing the waters for a “declare victory and resign” strategy that was always going to be his endgame

via Donald Trump tests the waters for his “declare victory and resign” strategy – Palmer Report

The Unfolding Hypocrisy of Sonoma County

A couple days ago I wondered about how many inmates are fighting these fires and I received my answer when a friend posted this article today.  In it, we learn that around thirty percent of the brave firefighters are inmates (they receive two dollars a day and two dollars an hour while on fire lines).  We also learn from a different article that around two hundred female inmates are fighting these fires on our behalf and are being paid a dollar an hour.  During the revolutionary war slaves were forced to fight for, and often times in place of, slave owners.  The quality of this analogy is disturbing.  Are we so shallow that this comes down to a uniform?  What is the difference between a slave and a slave in a military uniform?  What is the difference between an inmate in a jumpsuit and one in a firefighter’s uniform?

Yet these events aside, perhaps what pushed me to write this morning was when I read this article.  What we learn here is that ICE has “suspended operations” in the disaster areas.  They will only “pick someone up” if said person is a “serious criminal presenting a current public safety threat.”  The irony of ICE being a public safety threat aside, the fact that it took five days for this to happen—and in a “sanctuary state” no less—is noteworthy.  Likely thousands of non-citizens are working in vineyards and farms right now without adequate safety in this toxic air; many lost their residences in the fires.  Yet here our government effectively says that a dead immigrant is the same as a deported one.  Such a perspective is not new, it’s been official US policy in regards to American Indians for centuries.

Speaking of American Indians, has there been any coverage on the status of reservations and the Indian population during these fires?  California has the largest self-identified indigenous population at just under 700,000, and there exist around a hundred reservations in the state.  How many are threatened or damaged by the fires?  It’s hard to say because there has been no coverage on this topic, yet we will jump at the opportunity to donate a generator to the Snoopy Ice Rink that was in ‘danger’ of melting.  Is an ice skating rink more important than indigenous peoples?  Sadly, it would seem so.

All told, I am disheartened by the fact that we will collectively bend over backwards to house, cloth, feed, shelter, and support thousands of people who had homes and lost them, while we scream and cry and dig our heels in refusing to address the fact that thousands of people don’t have homes.  Why will we help people who had but not those who have not?  What, exactly, is the difference between the two?  The answer seems to be nothing other than judgement on our part.  The truth is that people always need shelter but we collectively see and act upon this fact only in certain situations: those in which we feel morally comfortable.  This is called hypocrisy.

via The Unfolding Hypocrisy of Sonoma County — The Westwardness of Everything

As California’s labor shortage grows, farmers race to replace workers with robots

Driscoll’s is so secretive about its robotic strawberry picker it won’t let photographers within telephoto range of it.

But if you do get a peek, you won’t see anything humanoid or space-aged. AgroBot is still more John Deere than C-3PO — a boxy contraption moving in fits and starts, with its computer-driven sensors, graspers and cutters missing 1 in 3 berries.

Such has been the progress of ag-tech in California, where despite the adoption of drones, iPhone apps and satellite-driven sensors, the hand and knife still harvest the bulk of more than 200 crops.
Now, the $47-billion agriculture industry is trying to bring technological innovation up to warp speed before it runs out of low-wage immigrant workers.

California will have to remake its fields like it did its factories, with more machines and better-educated workers to labor beside them, or risk losing entire crops, economists say.

via As California’s labor shortage grows, farmers race to replace workers with robots – Los Angeles Times

I went to school with the Vegas shooter

No, Steve’s brain was too big to end up on the tracks. He lived in empty apartments in crappy buildings he bought, then in a barren tract house outside Reno. I laugh when they say he was “rich.” He wanted to be THEM, to have their stuff. He got close.

It’s reported that Steve was a “professional gambler.” That’s another laugh. He was addicted to numbing his big brain by sitting 14 hours a day in the dark in front of video poker machines. He was a loser. Have you ever met a gambler who said they were a Professional Loser?

It’s fair to ask me: Why didn’t I end up in a hotel room with a bump-stock AR-15 and 5,000 rounds of high velocity bullets?

Because I have a job, a career, an OBSESSION: to hunt down THEM, the daddy-pampered pricks who did this to us, the grinning billionaire jackals that make a profit off the slow decomposition of the lives I grew up with.

But I’m telling you, that I know it’s a very fine line, and lots of crazy luck, that divided my path from Paddock’s.

via Greg Palast | Investigative Reporter

Transformational News In 60 Seconds; What Works For Seven Future Generations Without Causing Harm?

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