Recycling

Everything I have is either trash-picked or bought used – even my TV. The only new things I have are a couple of IKEA shelves and my mattress.

I actually prefer buying used stuff. I like things to be broken in when I get them, and I can afford better quality things if I buy them used. I have some friends who think buying someone else’s stuff is quite disgusting. I tell them to me, paying full price for crappy plastic things is disgusting.

What’s your preference?

Rahm threatens CTU with injunction

Either way, this is a loss for Rahm. He’s painted the teachers as money-hungry slugs, and now he wants to file for an injunction on the basic that they ‘re not really fighting over money (which is the legal basis for the strike):

Chicago (CNN) — The week-old teachers strike in Chicago’s public schools will continue into the new week, after a special committee of the Chicago Teachers Union decided not to suspend the strike days even though union leaders and school officials reached a tentative contract deal.

The move left Mayor Rahm Emanuel vowing to go to court to force teachers back to work, calling Sunday’s actions by the union “a delay of choice that is wrong for our children.”

The mayor announced in a statement that he’s asked city lawyers “to file an injunction in circuit court to immediately end this strike.” He contended the strike is illegal because “it is over issues that are deemed by state law to be non-strikable, and it endangers the health and safety of our children.”

“I will not stand by while the children of Chicago are played as pawns in an internal dispute within a union,” Emanuel said.

Representatives from the teachers’ bargaining team detailed the proposed contract to the committee, called the House of Delegates, in a meeting Sunday afternoon. But Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis said that, after extensive debate, the delegates said they wanted more time to discuss the contract with union members.

The special committee will reconvene Tuesday, at which point delegates could decide to end the strike — or not. If they do, classes could resume at earliest on Wednesday. And even if the strike is ended, the 29,000-member union’s rank-and-file would still have the opportunity at some point to accept, or reject, the proposed contract.

As of Sunday, though, Lewis said a “clear majority” of union delegates did not want to suspend the strike given the proposed contract.

“They are not happy with the agreement,” Lewis said.

The proposed settlement includes the following:

  • 600 additional art, music, physical education and world language teachers.
  • Prep time for paraprofessionals and clinicians.
  • Teacher evaluations limited to 30% of the student test scores.
  • Up to $250 reimbursement for school supplies, which are often out of pocket for teachers.
  • Additional wrap-around services, including hiring of nurses, social workers and counselors.
  • Books on day one for teachers and students. Teachers had to wait for up to six weeks for materials to arrive
  • Defeating merit-pay for teachers. (Note – studies show merit pay does not work).

Warren ahead by 6 points

This is good. Even if it’s a post-convention bump for the most part, it shows she has momentum, and that’s what you need at this stage of the game. I’d certainly look forward to having Elizabethe Warren in the Senate:

SPRINGFIELD — With 50 days left until Massachusetts voters decide who will represent them in the U.S. Senate for the next six years, Harvard law professor Elizabeth Warren has pulled ahead of Republican U.S. Sen. Scott Brown, according to a new poll.

The survey of Bay State voters conducted Sept. 6-13 by the Western New England University Polling Institute through a partnership with The Republican and MassLive.com, shows Warren leading over Brown, 50 to 44 percent, among likely voters.

The gap among registered voters is even larger, according to the survey, which concluded Warren leads 53 to 41 percent. The poll of 545 registered voters has a 4.2 percent margin of error, while the sample of 444 likely voters has a 4.6 percent margin of error.

Tim Vercellotti, professor of political science and director of the Polling Institute at Western New England University, said Warren’s lead comes in part from the fact that she’s shored up support among Democrats to 89 percent, while losing only six percent of her party’s support to Brown.

Part of that bump, he said, may be attributable to the fact that polling started at the end of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., and just two days after Warren delivered a prime-time speech ahead of former President Bill Clinton at the event.

“This may be not just due to her speech, but the overall enthusiasm Democrats have had coming out of their convention,” Vercellotti said. “The data shows that Democrats are more fired up right now than independents or Republicans.”

If Warren’s lead is indeed a post-convention bump, Vercellotti said only time will tell if it lasts.

Quote approval

It’s not complicated: If they say it, you write it. And if you let them take it back, you’re kind of a whore. Maybe a nice person, but not a good journalist:

Journalism in its purest form is a transaction. But inch by inch, story by story, deal by deal, we are giving away our right to ask a simple question and expect a simple answer, one that can’t be taken back. It may seem obvious, but it is still worth stating: The first draft of history should not be rewritten by the people who make it.

Trying to close VA abortion clinics

Remember the old days, when the Republicans used to moan about “the rule of law”? Now they’re perfectly happy to make up their own laws on the spot, as we’re seeing in Virginia right now, where abortion clinics are now held to the same requirements as hospitals. They’re trying to prevent women from having abortions — even though they have a legal right to do so:

RICHMOND, Va. — In a reversal, the Virginia Board of Health on Friday approved abortion clinic regulations that include strict building standards that abortion-rights supporters say are aimed at closing down the centers.

Three months after the board backed clinic rules that exempted existing facilities from such strict standards, the board reinstated the provision imposing the new-hospital construction specifications.

“Shame! Shame! Shame!” some critics shouted as board chairman Bruce Edwards of Virginia Beach tried to gavel them into silence and a police officer ushered them out of the packed meeting room. After they were gone and the board recessed, abortion opponents applauded.

The board voted 13-2 to enact the regulations, including the provision requiring all abortion clinics — including the 20 already operating in Virginia — to meet the same architectural standards as new hospitals on issues ranging from doorway widths to room sizes. The board had previously voted 7-4 to exempt existing clinics from the building requirements, but some members changed their minds after Attorney General Kenneth Cuccinelli, an anti-abortion Republican, said they had overstepped their authority and refused to certify the regulations.

Abortion opponents said the regulations will improve health and safety at medical facilities that have long operated without oversight.

“Virginia’s women are better off after today’s vote,” Victoria Cobb, president of the Family Foundation of Virginia, said in a statement. “The hysterical claims of the abortion industry that today’s vote denies access to health care are simply untrue.

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