Almost a fifth of China’s soil is contaminated, an official study released by the government has shown.
Conducted between 2005-2013, it found that 16.1% of China’s soil and 19.4% of its arable land showed contamination.
The report, by the Environmental Protection Ministry, named cadmium, nickel and arsenic as top pollutants.
There is growing concern, both from the government and the public, that China’s rapid industrialisation is causing irreparable damage to its environment.
The study took samples across an area of 6.3 million square kilometres, two-thirds of China’s land area.
“The survey showed that it is hard to be optimistic about the state of soil nationwide,” the ministry said in a statement on its website.
“Due to long periods of extensive industrial development and high pollutant emissions, some regions have suffered deteriorating land quality and serious soil pollution.”
I just got back from my 58th local music radio show on internet only WBKM.ORG. It started a bit mellow and rocked at the end.
Song before: Trouble’s Lament – Tori Amos
From our small city to the great big world, these are the Sounds Of Burlington. Sunday was warm in the ’60′s and Monday was almost 80 degrees. It snowed on Tuesday. In April in Vermont, snow is just an Ordinary Day. This is Milton Busker on WBKM, and this is Burlington’s Kind Of Music.
1.) Ordinary Day – Milton Busker
2.) Garden Flower – Maryse Smith
3.) Now And Then – PossumHaw
4.) New York, My Lovely – Joshua Glass
It’s getting beautiful in VT and next door in NY too. If you ever get a chance to see Josh, go! This is another PossumHaw song and is really nice. The Maryse song reminds me of the crocuses that are blooming everywhere. I finally bought a few Milton songs. Yea. Tomorrow I’m going to The Monkey House to see Phil Yates and the Affiliates.
5.) Three Cheers – Phil Yates and the Affiliates
6.) Flypaper – Persian Claws
7.) Tastes Like Nothing – Zola Turn
8.) Almost Human – Pinhead
Those were two great songs from some of Burlington’s best. Persian are playing with Phil at the Monkey tomorrow. Up next is the song Doug McAllister sings on Dancing With The Big Guy.
9.) Monkey Business – Ninja Custodian
10.) Dead Or In Jail – Crazyhearse
11.) Sunny Side Of The Couch – The Lestons
Matthew Stephen Perry rocked with the Lestons, then Party Star and now Dino Bravo VT. I love this song and it reminds me of the sun today. Another rocker from Crazyhearse. Up next is a band from Maine who have been playing some shows lately. Hopefully they will come back to town soon.
It was sunny today, but pretty cold. Another great Elephants song. Another great Lendway song. I hope you enjoyed checking out the music of our town, let’s do it again next week, shall we?
Song After: Medley (Internal Exile->The Company – Fish
President Obama April 8, 2014 “Today, the average full time working woman earns just 77 cents for every dollar a man earns… Equal pay day means a woman has to work about this far into 2014 to earn what a man earned in 2013.”
Stephen Colbert “Yes, to get the same amount of pay women’s work year is three months longer, so good news ladies. If you’re 38 years old, financially you’re just 29.”
I had a great time seeing Elephants of Scotland on Tuesday April 1st at Nectar’s. They were set to go on at 10 and I worked until 9:30. I walked in around 10:15 at the end of Full Power. That is what they opened with last time, so I was pretty pleased. The played much of the new album in the first set. I’m getting to know the songs, but am really enjoying them. They all have nice melodies and a good sweep to them. They move through different sections, but always with a sense of logic and never like they are adding in sections just to fill time. Each step in a new direction makes each song stronger. The epic suite of Endless part 1 and Endless part 2 grabbed me the first time I head them and I seem to like them more every time I hear them.
They played a nice set. It was not overly long, but was wonderful. As they wrapped up, they said they would take a short break and be right back. For set two they played the remaining songs from Execute and Breathe, and played much of their first album Home Away From Home. Starboard was nice and Errol McSquiitor was over the top magnificent. By the time they finished, I think they had played both albums except for A Different Machine. I was chatting with someone after and found that they opened the first set with that one. Rats. I love that song, but I really did put in a lot of effort to get there, and really could not have made it for that song. Oh well, it gives me something to want for next time.
Closing out a week of commemorating progress from the Civil Rights Movement, President Barack Obama on Friday sharply criticized Republicans for leading efforts in some parts of the country to prevent citizens from voting.
Obama’s administration has challenged states that have implemented voter ID laws and other restrictions in the wake of a Supreme Court decision that struck down part of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, designed to prevent discrimination at the polls.
Strict voting rights laws are said to disproportionately affect minorities and lower-income Americans, many of whom tend to vote for Democratic candidates.
“The stark, simple truth is this: The right to vote is threatened today in a way that it has not been since the Voting Rights Act became law nearly five decades ago,” Obama told a meeting of the National Action Network, a group founded by civil rights leader and MSNBC television anchor Reverend Al Sharpton.
“Across the country, Republicans have led efforts to pass laws making it harder, not easier, for people to vote,” he said.
Last year the Obama administration sued North Carolina to block rules including a requirement for voters to show photo identification at the polls. The Justice Department also sued to keep Texas from carrying out a voter identification requirement enacted in 2011.
Proponents of such rules argue they are needed to prevent voter fraud.
North Carolina Republican Governor Pat McCrory signed the state’s sweeping voting changes into law in August, saying: “Common practices like boarding an airplane and purchasing Sudafed require photo ID, and we should expect nothing less for the protection of our right to vote.”
Obama rejected that argument, saying studies showed such abuse was extremely rare.
“The real voter fraud is people who try to deny our rights by making bogus arguments about voter fraud,” he said to applause from the crowd.
“But it’s a fact this recent effort to restrict the vote has not been led by both parties. It’s been led by the Republican Party,” he continued. “If your strategy depends on having fewer people show up to vote, that’s not a sign of strength. That’s a sign of weakness.”
Obama flew to Texas earlier this week to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the landmark legislation spearheaded by President Lyndon B. Johnson that helped end America’s segregationist past.
I just got back from my 57th local music radio show on internet only WBKM.ORG. It started and ended a bit mellow, but had some rock in between. The song before was Kings by the Church in honor of the return of Game Of Thrones.
Song before: Kings – The Church Band
From our small city to the great big world, these are the Sounds Of Burlington. The temperature has gotten into the 60′s, the snow is melted, and flowers are coming out. That is one way we know that spring is here. The angle of the sun is another. Here’s Peg Tassey on WBKM, and this is Burlington’s Kind Of Music.
1.) Angle Of The Sun – Peg Tassey MUSIC
2.) Stay Away From Sarah (acoustic) – Chin Ho!
3.) If Time Was A River – Anna Padernik And Her Apologies
Anna is best known in VT and around the world in her band Vermont Joy Parade, but her solo songs are what grab me. That was a great song by classic VT band Chin Ho! I love that Peg song. We are into spring, yea!. I just had a little extra money to buy an album and picked up one I’ve been wanting to for a while.
4.) Liar – Maryse Smith
5.) Guitar – Michael Chorney And Hollar General
6.) Time To Get Out – Aaron Flinn and Salad Days
Great song by one of VT’s treasures. I hope you listened to how amazingly well Aaron played that guitar. Michael Chorney has put a lot of music into VT, and will be working on a project with Maryse. That could be cool. Here is the next song on Dancing With The Big Guy.
Sean is half of the dynamic songwriting duo, with Matt Hutton, who brought us the songs of Envy and Red Telephone. Sean also worked with Alice Austin on To A Star In The Yard and played the Burlington show for that album’s release. Part of me thinks I played Yardsale because it’s almost that time in VT, but most of me played it because it’s a great song. Flux is the most Back To The Future of the Wave songs. That was recorded at Nectar’s. I remember seeing Funky many many times at Nectat’s . Up next is another new song from Elephants Of Scotland.
To Forget About You. It was fun to get a bit proggy for that set. I hope you enjoyed checking out the music of our town. Let’s do it again next week, shall we?
Here is a song by Fish that he just released a video for. It’s about the dangers of what we are doing to our world and about not appreciating beauty in our lives
Song after: Blind To The Beautiful – Fish
Bill Maher “Of course, the other big news this week, good news for the people who need it the most, our downtrodden millionaires and billionaires. You know, the tough thing about being rich in America folks, is that you may have money and yachts, and gold toilet handles, but what you don’t really have is a voice. Nobody listens to you. It’s like you don’t exist. It’s like you’re homeless except you have many large homes. Well, luckily we have a Supreme Court that is giving voice to our millionaires and billionaires. This week they struck down the aggregate limits they have on individuals giving to candidates and parties. You know, you used to be only able to buy your Congressman, now you can buy your Congressman, and everybody else’s too. Donald Trump can drive a pickup truck to the Capital steps and say who speaks English, I need eight of you, hop in. No, those five Jurassic bleepholes that make the conservative wing, they all voted together and Clarence Thomas, always worse than any of them, Clarence Thomas says he wants no campaign finance rules at all. Clarence Thomas, I always say to myself how can a guy that never talks always makes me want to go oh shut up.”
“The court left intact how much any person can give to a single federal candidate, but it did away with the limit on how much anybody can give to all candidates put together. “
Jon Stewart “Victory. Finally we’re rid of the corrosive influence of not enough money in politics.”
Pundit “Basically, it gives people who have a lot of money at their disposal the chance to spread their influence even more widely. If you have a million dollars now, think how many chunks of $5,200 that makes. You can write a lot of checks.”
Stewart “Yup, lots and lots of $5,200 checks. The last great hope of preserving our democracy from the corrupting influence of money, is carpal tunnel syndrome. All right, what rationale did the court use to justify this 5-4 split decision. Let’s hear some dissent from liberal justice Kagan.”
Justice Kagan “If you take off the aggregate limits, people will be allowed, if you put together the national committees and all the state committees and all the candidates in the House and Senate, it comes to over $3.5 million.”
Stewart “OK, here’s the conservative rebuttal, first Antonin Scalia speaks from the bench in his hot tub full of money.”
Justice Scalia “Just to put that in perspective how much money is spent by political parties and PACs in all elections throughout the country? When you add that up, I don’t think $3.5 million is a heck of a lot of money.”
Stewart “Antonin Scalia, the strict constructionist justice, his argument seems to be OK sure, $3.5 million sounds like a donor is making it rain, until you compare that to the monsoon season of money that we unleashed in our previous Citizens United decision allowing corporations and unions to donate to Super PACs, I believe the limit there was, whatever the bleep they want. Now, you may think even though there are billions of dollars in politics, surely millions can still have some corrupting effect, no? And, aren’t we, by attempting to limit contributions just trying to limit the corrupting influence money, or at least the appearance of the corrupting influence of money? You shouldn’t have said that, because it turns out you were bleeping wrong. ‘Cause according to this Supreme Court the only kind of corruption that matters is the narrowest possible Thomas Nast like monocled, top hatted man who hands a bag of money, labeled money for bribes to a literal fat cat while the American public stands behind them wearing a barrel, known as quid pro quo corruption.”
Justice Alito “Unless the money is transferred to, you have to get it to the person who wants to corrupt to the person who is going to be corrupted, and unless the money can make it from A to B I don’t see where the quid pro quo argument is.”
Stewart “So, let me get this straight. Justice Alito doesn’t see how money corrupts politics unless you can draw a straight line from I am giving you this money to do this thing for me. Well, let’s see if we can find Justice Alito a broader, non-literal, quid pro quo, like an historical example of the corrupting influence of money in politics. What if we reached back in history to like, this weekend.”
Pundit “The Republican governors are heading west to Las Vegas. They’re speaking at the spring meeting of the Republican Jewish coalition, but more important, their private talks with one man, Republican super donor Sheldon Adelson.”
Stewart “I would respectfully like to approach the bench, and remind the court that when the media refers to Sheldon Adelson as a super donor, they’re not talking sperm, I hope. So, A pack of Republican presidential hopefuls just flew all the way to Las Vegas just to kiss the scooter riding ass of one 80 year old billionaire. It doesn’t prove anything though, right? I mean people on Fear Factor speed eat a plate of bull testicles for $50,000, it doesn’t mean the two are connected. It doesn’t mean that money changes their behavior. “
Pundit “Later, according to NBC news, Christie did apologize to Adelson.”
Pundit “He ended up having to apologize for referring to the West Bank as quote occupied territories.”
Stewart “Still don’t think money has a more general corrupting influence on politics? ‘Cause I can tell you this, my family is full of 80 year old Jews, who would very much like to tell politicians what words they can and cannot use to describe Israel. But, as of this taping, no presidential hopefuls have flown to their house to solicit that opinion…In who’s delusional mind is democracy made better by letting wealthier people control more of it?”
Sen Mitch McConnell “I can understand why the political left doesn’t like decisions like Citizens United and McCutcheon because they expand the playing field. They enable more citizens to be involved. More citizens to contribute to the candidates and causes they believe in. That’s good for America.”
Stewart “Bullsh*t. How the bleep does this decision enable more citizens to contribute? According to the AP, in 2012, 646 individuals bumped up against the campaign contribution limit that this case just struck down. McCutcheon doesn’t get more people involved, it lets those 646 individuals get themselves more involved. You know, how did the Supreme Court handle voter ID laws?”
Pundit in 2008 “The Supreme Court said that states can require a voter ID at the polls to prevent voter fraud.”
Stewart “So, the Court conveniently ignores the real effects of the donor lobbyist industrial complex under the guise of making our democracy more inclusive, yet they’re perfectly OK with voter ID laws which, under the guise or protecting us from mostly nonexistent in person voter fraud, actually makes our democracy less inclusive. Corruption that actually happened (holds hands over eyes), voter fraud that doesn’t happen (moves hand away from one eye to peek out). Justice is blind, but only in one eye.”
I just got back from my local music radio show on internet only WBKM.ORG. I played a lot of bands who have, or just about to release new albums. I played a couple who are not.
Song Before: Vale – MIDLAKE BAND
From our small city to the great big world, these are the sounds Of Burlington. It was sunny today and it’s been in the high ’30′s and low ’40′s all week and the snow and ice are melting. It feels like flowers could start blooming and the world is coming to life and musicians are set to release the new music that the have grown. Elephants of Scotland released their new album, Execute and Breathe, on April 1st and they played a killer two sets at Nectar’s that night. This is Endless part 1, on WBKM, and this is Burlington’s Kind Of Music.
1.) Endless pt 1 – Elephants of Scotland
2.) Joyless – Swale
3.) Endless pt 2 – Elephants of Scotland
I got home from work Monday and the album was waiting. I listened to it Tuesday before work, then went to see them after work. Tremendous new album from the guys. I was going to play them back to back, but my impish side had me play Joyless in between. Swale should have the new album out any time now, and played a great show at The Monkey House last week. Up next, there is a odd phenomena in Burlington where sometimes the sky glows purple.
4.) It’s Purple And It Sparkles – Zola Turn
5.) Take Your Gold Away – Lendway
6.) Blue Light Shines – The Dwellers
The Dwellers are Gabrielle Douglas‘ solo band and I love that song. The Cush have an album that’s ready to go. One of my friends has a copy, but since I don’t have a copy yet, I had to play Blue Light. I love Lendway and wish more other people did to, so they’d get out and play more. I chatted with Michael Clifford at the Elephants show and he is learning to do sound with Sergei (sp?). Go Michael. I love that song from Zola. Next up is the next song from Dancing with the Big Guy. This was recorded in 1990 and a few years later a lot of bands sounded like this.
I haven’t heard from Black Rabbit in a bit and got a message saying they are done the next recording. We’ve got that to look forward to. Great song by Envy who used to rock this town in their day. Sean Toohey and Matt Hutton are working on new songs, so maybe something will come from them in the future. Vedica have called it a day, but Luke Awtry said they might finish off and release the album they have. Next time you hear a rapper, compare him to Ninja Mike on this song, and consider that Mike was playing the drums while rapping! I ran into Ted Pappadopoulos at the Swale and Ryan Ober (I’ve got to get some of his music to play!!) show last week at the Monkey House, and he said he and Brendan Devitt have recorded a lot of new songs and may have a new album or three out soon.
11.) 1965 – The New Siberians
12.) Not A Nice Guy – ROUGH FRANCIS
13.) Mousetrap – Elephants Of Scotland
I love that Elephants song. Rough Francis finally released the video and hopefully lots of New Siberians soon! I hope you enjoyed checking out the music of our town. Let’s do it again next week, shall we?
Song after: Sunsets On Empire – Fish
Stephen Colbert addressed online calls for his show’s cancellation Monday night in a lengthy segment that took shots at some critics and news media coverage of social media outbursts.
Colbert recapped the firestorm when an online activist launched the Twitter hashtag, #CancelColbert, last week over a social media post considered to be offensive toward Asian-Americans posted on the “Colbert Report” account maintained by Comedy Central.
“After that, when the twit hit the fan, the brain trust over at my network took the tweet down, because that’s how the Internet works,” Colbert said. “You can take stuff down, and no one will ever know it happened. Just ask Mayor Weiner.”
For a moment, it seemed as if Colbert might retreat into the standard dodge of accountability for offensive remarks (“I was taken out of context,” or “It was just a joke”).
“I’m not trying to throw anyone under the bus here, mostly because I don’t go that close to public transportation,” he said. “But when I saw the tweet with no context, I understood how people were offended, the same way I, as an Irish-American, was offended after reading only one line of Jonathan Swift’s ‘A Modest Proposal.’ I mean, eat Irish babies? Hashtag cancel Swift! Trend it!”
But he dropped his TV persona for a moment to defend Suey Park, who spurred the online campaign calling for his cancellation.
“(She) has been viciously attacked on Twitter, and if anyone is doing that for me, I want you to stop right now,” he said. “She’s just speaking her mind, and that’s what Twitter is for, as well as ruining the end of every show I haven’t seen yet.”
Then it seemed as if Colbert might try to “whitesplain” to his critics why they should not be offended by his comments.
“I just want to say that I am not a racist,” he said. “I don’t even see race, not even my own. People tell me I’m white, and I believe them, because I just devoted six minutes to explaining that I’m not a racist – and that is about the whitest thing you can do.”
The comedian bashed TV and online media reports about the controversy.
“CNN even took a break from their Malaysian airline coverage to report spotting what they thought was the wreckage of my show off the coast of Australia,” he said.
Then he took aim at one particular critic.
“Most hurtful, my fellow conservatives abandoned me in my time of need,” Colbert said. “Like Michelle Malkin, who co-signed onto #CancelColbert and called me a coward. Now this cuts deep, especially since I learned everything I know about sensitivity to the Asian-American experience from reading Michelle’s 2004 book, ‘In Defense of Internment.’ It turns out, they had it coming. One less thing for me to feel guilty about.”