Thursday, April 30, 2015


Please share far & wide to help this fellow find his twins. They would be 47 or 48 by now and were adopted to a family in the US.

Allen Thomas added 6 new photos to the album: Searching for my twins...
South Korea, met and married their mother, had our twins, and then lost them when I had to return stateside and she would not return with me, or allow me to take the children. By the time I was able to make arrangements to go back for the children and fight for custody, she had adopted them out and would not give me any information regarding their whereabouts. I have been searching for decades, unsuccessfully; but have decided that perhaps Facebook could help me to find them. Please pass this around and help me find my children. Thank you. 
Fraternal twins – boy & girl – born in Seoul, Korea, at Songnim Gynaecology, Namyong-dong, Seoul, on September 10, 1967. 
The twins were adopted out by their mother in the late 1970's. Their names were James Allen Thomas and Sandia Lynn Thomas. The mother's name was Sun Kun Thomas, born December 5, 1942. Father, Allen Thomas, was U.S. Army. We have photo's, birth certificates, and other legal documents. Would very much like to find both children.

April 30, 2015


I grew up on the movies of the 1940's. My hero was Roy Rogers. I believed in the good guy in the white Stetson riding on a beautiful palomino to rescue an innocent maiden like me. Those early ideals permeated my psyche and even today, just short of my 79th birthday, I still hope for the arrival of heroes. I refuse to give up hope.
But reality has not escaped me. I watch news broadcasts from all over the world every day. I know what's going on from the middle east to China and points east, west, north and south..
And so I reveal to those who do not know that the American cowboy with the white hat and the six-shooter is as guilty of crimes against humanity and basic human decency as Russia, Ukraine, China, Serbia, Croatia, Germany, Japan, North Korea, North Vietnam, Rwanda, Sudan, Somalia, South Africa, Palestine, Israel, the Arab countries, India, Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Vatican.

The horror of Hiroshima may have been necessary to stop the Japanese atrocities, but Nagasaki was cruel, arrogant and gratuitous. Viet Nam was a lie. Iraq was a lie. Agent Orange was a crime against generations that continues to this day.

It is heartbreaking to see the suffering and loss greedy, fanatical men have been visiting on humanity - in the name of religion or in their hunger for more land, more money, more oil, more power.

It must end. It must end now.
Phyllis Carter
In many ways, Nguyen Thi Ly is just like any other 12-year-old girl. She has a lovely smile and is quick to laugh. She wants to be a teacher when she grows up. She enjoys skipping rope when she plays.
But Ly is also very different from other children. Her head is severely misshapen. Her eyes are unnaturally far apart and permanently askew. She's been hospitalized with numerous ailments since her birth.
Her mother, 43-year-old Le Thi Thu, has similar deformities and health disorders. Neither of them has ever set foot on a battlefield, but they're both casualties of war.
Le and her daughter are second- and third-generation victims of dioxin exposure, the result of the U.S. military's use of Agent Orange during the Vietnam War, when the U.S. Air Force sprayed more than 20 million gallons of Agent Orange and other herbicides over parts of southern Vietnam and along the borders of neighboring Laos and Cambodia. The herbicides were contaminated with dioxin, a deadly compound that remains toxic for decades and causes birth defects, cancer and other illnesses.
To this day, dioxin continues to poison the land and the people. The United States has never accepted responsibility for these victims – it denies that Agent Orange is responsible for diseases among Vietnamese that are accepted as Agent Orange-caused among American veterans – and it's unclear when this chain of misery will end.
On Thursday, President Barack Obama will meet with Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang at the White House, only the third meeting between chief executives of the two countries since Vietnam and the United States established diplomatic relations in 1995.
The two countries share many contemporary concerns. The White House says Obama plans to discuss cooperation on regional issues and trade, plus other U.S. priorities such as climate change and human rights. The two countries share a strong common interest in countering China, which has become increasingly assertive over potentially oil-rich areas of the South China Sea.
Many Vietnamese say it's time for the United States to do more to address the issue of Agent Orange and its victims, so that the last tragic chapter of the Vietnam War finally can be closed.
Le Thi Thu's father served in the North Vietnamese army and was wounded in Quang Tri province, one of the most heavily sprayed areas of the country.
"Before he went to war, my father had two children: my older brother and sister," said Le, who was born in 1970. "They were normal. But after he came back, he had me."
"I could see the differences in myself and others right away," she recalled. "When I was a small child, I felt pain inside my body all the time. My parents took me to the hospital, and the doctors determined that I had been affected by Agent Orange."
When her daughter Ly was born, "we knew right away" Agent Orange was to blame, Le said.
The Vietnam Red Cross estimates that Agent Orange has affected 3 million people spanning three generations, including at least 150,000 children born with severe birth defects since the war ended in 1975.
"During the war, we were hostile, but after the war ended, we normalized our relations and are now building a strategic partnership between Vietnam and the United States," said retired Col. Thai Thanh Hung, the chairman of the 16,500-member Da Nang Veterans Association. "We no longer have hatred towards the Americans and the U.S. government, but we want this one lingering and remaining issue to be addressed, which is that the United States help solve the Agent Orange and dioxin problem. That's why we're keeping an eye on this issue, to see if the United States is really interested in healing the wounds or not."
The most significant event to date occurred last August – 37 years after the war ended – when U.S. contractors began a project to remove dioxin from 47 acres of contaminated soil at the Da Nang International Airport, which was one of the largest U.S. bases during the war.
The $84 million effort, which is expected to take until the end of 2016 to complete, has been hailed as an important milestone in U.S.-Vietnamese relations. The airport is one of the most heavily contaminated areas in the world, with dioxin levels measuring more than 365 times the acceptable limits set by the United States and other industrialized countries.
Observers say that while the project represents a long overdue first step, more work needs to be done. More than two dozen other known or potential dioxin "hot spots" have been identified at former U.S. bases. Also left unresolved is the thorny issue of how best to help Vietnamese who've been sickened and disabled because of Agent Orange and dioxin exposure.
U.S. aid for these people so far has amounted to a pittance. According to the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi, only $11 million of the $61.4 million that Congress has allocated since 2007 – a year after then-President George W. Bush pledged to help clean up contaminated areas – has been earmarked for public health programs in Vietnam.
U.S. officials caution that the money is to help people with disabilities "regardless of cause," and isn't specifically for Agent Orange victims. This semantic sleight of hand outrages many American veterans of the war, who say the United States has a moral obligation to help Vietnamese victims of Agent Orange, just as sick and dying U.S. veterans have received government help for the last two decades.
"There's a hypocrisy there," says Chuck Searcy, who served in Vietnam as an intelligence analyst during the war and has lived in Hanoi since 1998, heading up a project to clear battlefields of unexploded ordnance, which also continues to kill and maim Vietnamese. "It's a glaring disconnect, and it's embarrassing because the whole world can see it."
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs says that all 2.8 million Americans who served "boots on the ground" in Vietnam from 1962 to 1975 were exposed to Agent Orange and other herbicides, which were in use from 1961 to 1971. They qualify for compensation if they become sick from any of 15 illnesses presumed to have been caused by their exposure. The VA also recognizes another 18 birth defects in the children of female veterans.
In 2011, the last year for which data was published, the VA paid nearly $18 billion in disability benefits to 1.2 million Vietnam-era veterans, including 303,000 who received compensation for diabetes mellitus, the most common of the 15 diseases associated with herbicide exposure.
U.S. officials have long held, however, that there's no proof that Agent Orange is to blame for the same diseases and birth defects in Vietnam.
"Few independent studies have been conducted in Vietnam to assess possible health effects on the local population," said Chris Hodges, a spokesman for the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi. "The lack of validated data and scientific review makes it difficult to estimate accurately the number of actual or potentially affected people or the extent of related health effects."
In many ways, the fight for recognition of Vietnam's Agent Orange victims mirrors the 20-year struggle that U.S. veterans endured before Congress granted them compensation in 1991.
Hoping to emulate a case that resulted in a 1984 settlement requiring Dow Chemical, the Monsanto Corp. and other Agent Orange manufacturers to pay $197 million in damages to sick U.S. veterans, a group of Vietnamese victims sued in 2004, only to have the same federal judge dismiss their case a year later, saying the companies were immune because they were following government orders. The Supreme Court declined to hear the case in 2009.
As occurred with U.S. veterans, momentum in Congress appears to be shifting favorably toward the Vietnamese. In 2011, lawmakers directed the U.S. Agency for International Development to develop a plan for assisting Vietnam with Agent Orange programs in the coming years. The agency hasn't yet released its proposals.
For its part, Vietnam has put into motion a set of steps that it says will "fundamentally solve" its problems with Agent Orange by 2020. The document, signed in June 2012 by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, outlines preferential treatment for all ailing veterans who fought against the Americans, monthly stipends and health coverage for families with disabled members and special care for pregnant women from contaminated areas.
The Aspen Institute, a Washington-based research center, has called on the United States to spend $450 million over 10 years to clean up Vietnam's dioxin hot spots, restored damaged ecosystems and expand health care for people with disabilities....

McClatchy DC
Read more here:

Wednesday, April 29, 2015


Phyllis Carter and Bill Moyers shared a link.
The 1968 report's stark conclusion was that "our nation is moving towards two societies: one white, one black -- separate and unequal."

  • I think the battle is between the filthy rich and everyone else. I think it's a battle between the right wing olde south that wants to return to slave labor and moss covered mansions - cotton fields now replaced by oil wells. I think it is a battle of bigots and armed bullies versus people struggling to live peaceful lives with their neighbours. Since the end of World War 2, things have been going downhill. Mothers who went to work left latchkey kids to do as they pleased. Too often, they pleased to join gangs and drink and use drugs and vandalize and steal. When they didn't go to school, no one forced them to attend and sit still and get a decent education. And that generation raised the next generation. Promiscuity led to mothers appearing on television programs trying to decide who fathered this child and that one. The problems snowballed. Values that taught children of colour to go to church, speak politely, wash their hands, respect their elders, work for a living instead of mugging people and breaking into cash registers - these values went down the toilet. Generation after generation the problems grew and someone thought it was okay for police officers to handle the problems with tasers and guns instead of going to community leaders and working together. And now one young man after another - maybe smart aleck kids - maybe totally innocent - maybe minor thieves - have been killed by police who were either arrogant and vicious or weak and scared - or just stupid and irresponsible. When will it stop? When government puts its foot down firmly and juries start convicting criminals - even if those criminals carry a badge. The criminal in my own case stole my husband's New Jersey Deputy Sheriff's badge from my home in Canada, and the Montreal police helped the criminals. -


A Baltimore mother is fighting to hold accountable those responsible for her city's urban decay.


Supreme Court Justices Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and John Roberts (Photo: AP)
Supreme Court Justices Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and John Roberts (Photo: AP)
This post first appeared at Salon.

If you take away Prohibition (the 18th Amendment) and its repeal (the 21st), most of our constitutional amendments since the original Bill of Rights have expanded the voting rights and political equality of the people.

Our post-Reconstruction amendments have abolished slavery (the 13th), provided for equal protection of the laws and required reduction of states' congressional delegations if they disenfranchise eligible voters (the 14th), denied states the power to discriminate in voting based on race (the 15th) and shifted the mode of election of US Senators from the legislatures to the people (the 17th). They have passed woman suffrage (the 19th), given residents of the federal district the right to vote and participate in presidential elections by casting electors (the 23rd), abolished poll taxes in federal elections (the 24th) and lowered the voting age to 18 (the 26th).

Moreover, many of these amendments have directly responded to Supreme Court decisions denying the political rights of the people. For example, the 19th Amendment overturned the Court's decision in Minor v. Happersett (1875), which held that Equal Protection did not protect the right of women to vote, affirming precedents finding that women's proper place is in the domestic sphere. Similarly, the 24th Amendment banning poll taxes in federal elections overturned the Court's 1937 decision in Breedlove v. Suttles upholding such taxes.

Jamie Raskin and Katrina vanden Heuvel on the One Percent Court

But if you listened only to some of my colleagues in the legal establishment, you might never know that our unfolding Bill of Rights is a dynamic chronicle of the democratic struggles of the people for participatory political equality nor would you know that the people have often had to override reactionary decisions of the Supreme Court in the process.

A lot of lawyers today react with horror to US Reps. Marc Pocan (D-WI) and Keith Ellison's (D-MN) excellent push for a constitutional amendment to establish an affirmative and universal right to vote against recurring state efforts to disenfranchise people. And a lot of academics were aghast last summer when every Democratic United States senator supported a constitutional amendment to reverse Citizens United, McCutcheon v. FEC (2014) and Arizona Free Enterprise Club's Freedom Club PAC v. Bennett (2011).

The amendment, backed by the vast majority of Americans and a surging national campaign that 16 states and more than 650 cities and towns have joined, would restore the people's power to stop CEOs from spending corporate treasury wealth on political races, to impose reasonable campaign finance limits such as caps on aggregate contributions, and to develop public financing laws with matching grants that help empower poorer candidates to be heard over the roar of big money.

Yet we are constantly invited to believe that, however much big money comes to dominate our politics and control public policy, we must never touch our Constitution. It must be hidden away in the attic where it will be tended by wise Supreme Court justices and law professors who know that the people's constitutional values will always be inferior to those of the judiciary and the experts. This attitude betrays our progressive democratic heritage and Thomas Jefferson's important warning:

Some men look at constitutions with sanctimonious reverence, and deem them like the arc [sic] of the covenant, too sacred to be touched. They ascribe to the men of the preceding age a wisdom more than human, and suppose what they did to be beyond amendment. … But I know also, that laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths disclosed, and manners and opinions change with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also, and keep pace with the times.

The country's most prolific voting rights scholar and blogger, Richard Hasen - a colleague and friend of mine — is the most recent legal academic to pour cold water all over the movement for a constitutional amendment to rebuild the statutory wall protecting democratic elections from the flood of plutocratic and corporate wealth. This is the wall that has been mostly demolished by the Roberts Court in both Citizens United and the McCutcheon decision.

While Citizens United turned every corporate treasury in the country into a potential political slush fund, McCutcheon wiped out all aggregate limits on federal campaign contributions so that tycoons can now max out to every incumbent Member of Congress — plus all their opponents! The top half of the top 1 percent can now pretty much bankroll all federal campaigns, which is one reason why run-of-the-mill Republican millionaires and bundlers are complaining to the Washington Post that they have been bypassed in the nation's wealth primary by "multi-multimillionaires and billionaires." The bottom half of the top 1 percent is getting a sense of what it is like to be a political spectator in the country's exclusionary wealth primary.

The Post also reports that public anxiety about plutocracy is becoming a key issue in the presidential election — not just among Democratic activists for whom it is "red meat," according to Professor Hasen, but for Republicans and Independents too — pretty much everyone who lacks the strategic advantages of Sheldon Adelson and the Koch brothers. Earlier this month, Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham also pointed to the need for a constitutional amendment to fix the damage done by Citizens United. Indeed, if you don't think the accelerating takeover of our politics by big money affects public policy in the real world, you may or may not be an academic, but you are definitely too innocent to be let out of the house by yourself.

In launching her 2016 campaign, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton declared a "big fight" to fix "our dysfunctional political system" by getting "unaccountable money out of it once and for all, even if it takes a constitutional amendment," and I say good for her. Given Clinton's legislative and political experience and her own prodigious navigation of our money politics, she obviously knows how the Roberts Court's magical transformation of for-profit business corporations into political membership groups has completely distorted politics in the Citizens United era. Of course, some of the Republican presidential candidates are charging her with hypocrisy for seeking to change the plutocratic political system that shapes her campaign, along with everyone else's, and sullies everyone who touches it. But this is predictable and pedestrian. The nihilistic enemies of reform prefer nothing systemic to change just so long as they can keep denouncing Hillary Clinton.

Thankfully there is no talk of hypocrisy in Hasen's critique, but still all Clinton gets from him is a lot of negative energy. First, he faults her for not trying to fix "the nation's disclosure laws," which is strange because she supported the Disclose Act, which US Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) introduced and which Republicans killed, and she has always championed disclosure. It is also strange because Clinton is clearly treating a constitutional amendment as a last resort in a struggle against a runaway faction of five plutocrats on the Supreme Court. If I am reading her correctly, Clinton wants unaccountable corporate money — which is now spent by CEOs in our political campaigns on a secret basis and without any consumer, shareholder or citizen control over it—to be subject to public regulation "even if it takes" a constitutional amendment. That doesn't sound so reckless to me.

For Hasen, it seems sufficient to work for years or decades to mandate disclosure of the billions of dollars in corporate money coursing through the veins of the body politic, and then leave things at that. He is afraid that actually restoring the power of Congress to impose "reasonable" and viewpoint-neutral limits on corporate political expenditures would be subject to an effective judicial veto through reinterpretation by "a conservative majority on the Roberts Court" and therefore useless. Well, it is also the case that the addition of the words "equal protection" to the Constitution were effectively nullified through reinterpretation by a Jim Crow Supreme Court between Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) and Brown v. Board of Education (1954). But does that make passage of the Fourteenth Amendment a bad idea? The Supreme Court has been a conservative and reactionary institution for most of our history, but that is precisely the reason for the people to write our Constitution in a way that advances and protects strong democracy. Having the right constitutional language in place may not be sufficient to constrain the reactionary elitism of the Supreme Court, but it is certainly necessary.
If we just wait around for new justices to change things and fail to directly engage this constitutional question in the public arena, we can expect to see the few remaining bricks of campaign finance law flattened by the Right and the Court, including base limits on individual contributions, the Tillman Act's century-old ban on corporate contributions to federal candidates, the rules against "coordinated expenditures" between candidates and independent spenders, and the limits in 29 states on making campaign contributions during legislative sessions–all of them clearly at odds with the absolutist dogmas of the Right: that political money is political speech, that business corporations are First Amendment-protected political (and religious!) associations, and that the only kind of political corruption we can acknowledge and regulate are quid pro quo transfers tantamount to bribery.

But Hasen, finally, calls a constitutional amendment a "political nonstarter" because of the difficulties of passage. But here he ignores not only the success that popular movements have had in inscribing democratic values in the Constitution throughout our history, but also the way that serious constitutional movements can reshape the terrain of American politics with or without final passage and ratification. For example, the heroic movement for the Equal Rights Amendment in the 1970s not only led to widespread adoption of state constitutional amendments and significant federal statutory changes advancing the equal rights of women but also helped shock the Supreme Court into action to apply "heightened scrutiny" to official gender-based discrimination under Equal Protection doctrine. Constitutional movements can change the mind of the Court.

Whether or not we summon up the two-thirds of Congress and three-fourths of the states needed to pass a strong new anti-plutocracy amendment, the movement for such an amendment is essential to change the degraded assumptions of the Citizens United era. It will open up space for revival of the Disclose Act, for consideration of the "Shareholders United" legislation that I and other legislators have been advancing at the state level, for progress for small-donor plans like Congressman John Sarbanes' Government By the People Act, and for an honest debate about Citizens United, which turned on its head two centuries of conservative understanding of what a corporation is.
Even if the best we can hope for is some modest new disclosure rules and a few new Supreme Court justices who tilt towards democracy over plutocracy, as Hasen advises Hillary Clinton, these outcomes are far more plausible and likely with a lively popular constitutional movement on the ground than the defeatist attitude that the Supreme Court always knows best.

The views expressed in this post are the author's alone, and presented here to offer a variety of perspectives to our readers.

Jamie Raskin
Moyers and Company, PBS


A few decades ago, childen were instructed to hide under their desks in case of a nuclear attack. Have we forgotten?

So many objects are being blasted into space. Can we be sure they will all return safely or burn up in the atmosphere?

What if one explodes before it leaves earth's atmosphere?

ISS Progress 47 docked at the International Space Station.


What lies beyond the art of giving and receiving? In Perfect Strangers we meet Ellie, a kind-hearted masseuse, who decides she wants to share the gift of life with a stranger who has posted online that she needs a kidney. 

More than 98,000 people in the United States are waiting for a new kidney. Tragically, one-third of them will die before a kidney from a deceased donor becomes available. 

Five hundred miles away, Kathy endures nightly dialysis and loses hope of receiving a transplant until she hears from Ellie. They meet and form a deep and genuine friendship. Over the course of four years, however, both women face unexpected challenges. 

As their parallel journeys unfold, the film raises questions about what motivates an individual to perform an extreme act of compassion. When we learn that Kathy's body would reject Ellie's kidney, we become disheartened along with them. Ellie firm in her commitment to gift a kidney, explores new and even anonymous options. She is open to all possibilities as long as her kidney does not "go to Dick Cheney," she says half-jokingly.


Brenda Robinson 

Can't believe on Friday, I walked in to the employment office to apply for my daughter's social insurance card, went up to the lady, asked her why I was here in English & her response was "Sorry can't help you at the moment", handed me This flyer with instructions on how to get served in English, my response was "Are you serious?"... I know that there's a strong difference in languages but to reply with such ignorance, it still comes as a surprise...

April 29, 2015




These women say, "Islam has been hijacked. Women are being murdered in the name of islam."

A new crop of female Islamic scholars says there is nothing in the Koran that treats women unequally. Instead, they argue, Muslim women have been marginalized by cultural practices and patriarchal interpretations. One such advocate is Dr. Azizah Al-Hibriwho started a non-profit organization called Karamah with the goal of advancing the gender-equitable principles of Islam to Musllm women.


This story is burning up the wires. The mother of a rioter in Baltimore came out and took control of her son on the verge of becoming a criminal. My sister Debbie was such a loving Mom that she refused to discipline her daughter, Dawn. Dawn McSweeney became a criminal - an arrogant thief who destroyed our family.
Detailed reports at 



April 20, 2015



Phyllis Carter

Mothers of the World..Unite, show your kids that we brought them into this world and we'll take them out before some evil person does. This HERO Mother loved her son enough to smackdown that stupidity of rioting before he got shot or worse. You may not like her method but guarantee you in 10 years, this boy will thank her. If you don't agree, tell someone else because I don't want to hear it. Thanks Serena Burns for sharing from ABC7  Don't disappoint momma!

A suspected rioter in Baltimore gets the smackdown of his life - a beating from his own mom on live TV.

The mother saw her son on television throwing rocks at police. That's when she'd had enough, dishing up a dose of discipline he won't soon forget.

A suspected rioter in Baltimore got the smackdown of his life Monday by his mom on live television.
  • Phyllis Carter - FACEBOOK - April 28, 2015 - BRAVO MAMA ! That's the way mothers used to stop their little coloured boys from getting killed by the massa. I know this because my darling husband was once a little coloured boy. He was brought up to be a gentleman, and that is what he was - a respected gentleman. This mother may have saved several lives. She should be given a medal for good citizenship and good sense.