July 15, 2019

FREEDOM: Words of Wisdom Shared by Osho

‎"Be respectful of yourself,
and be respectful of others.
Be proud of your freedom.
When you are proud of your freedom,
You want everybody else to be FREE.
Because your freedom has given you
so much LOVE and so much GRACE.
You would like everybody else
in the world
to be FREE, loving, and graceful."
~ by Osho ♥

July 14, 2019

Let Your Life Become A Celebration! 馃槉

Let Your Life Become A Celebration

Life has the potential to become a song of bliss, but there is every possibility of missing it too. It is not a certainty, there is no inevitability about it. It depends: you can make it, you can destroy it. Out of one hundred, ninety-nine point nine percent of people destroy their song of bliss. Then their life is nothing but a cry, a scream of pain and agony. But they have chosen it that way; nobody else is ever responsible.

This is the first truth to be learned in life: that you are always responsible, nobody else. With that comes great FREEDOM, because with that all alternatives are open. If you think that somebody else is responsible then you are a slave; then nothing is open. Then you have to be what you are. If your life is a tragedy then it has to be a tragedy, because others are responsible; unless they change, nothing can be done about it. You don’t have any freedom.

And that is the reason why millions of people live in misery: they think others are creating their misery. Nobody is creating your misery, nobody can create it; and nobody can create your bliss either. It is a totally individual phenomenon. It is just your work upon yourself. And the most strange thing is: to create misery is difficult and to create bliss is easy, but people always choose the difficult thing, because the difficult thing always gives them an ego-trip.

The ego is not interested in easy things; the ego is interested only in difficult things. The more impossible a thing looks, the more attractive it feels for the ego, because the ego feels a challenge, and only through challenge can it conquer, can it prove to the world ’I am somebody special.’

Misery gives you challenge: bliss is very simple. Trees are blissful, birds are blissful. It needs no special talent to be blissful. To be miserable needs talents, one has to be really very very clever to be miserable. Bliss is innocent; you can be blissful without any education, but you cannot be miserable without any education, remember! It is very difficult. You need degrees, universities, mm? then only do you become skilful.

So the first TRUTH has to sink deep in the heart: "I am always responsible for whatsoever I am. Bliss or misery, this is my choice. If I have chosen to be miserable, then there is no need to be sad about it; this is my choice and I am doing my thing." Feel happy that you have succeeded in being miserable! If this is not your choice, drop it immediately, drop all those patterns that create it and start creating new patterns, new doors from where bliss starts flowing.

For example, the person who wants to be miserable has to think in terms of fighting with life; that is his gestalt. He is always fighting. The person who wants to be blissful has to be a non-fighter, surrendered to life, in a kind of let-go. The person who wants to be miserable has to create great ideals, has to make impossible demands upon himself. Then only can you be miserable; otherwise you will not be miserable. You have to be this, you have to be that, and when you cannot be, frustration settles in. The man who wants to be blissful has no ideals at all, he is a non-idealist; he is a REALIST. The miserable person is always an idealist. The happy person, the blissful person, is a REALIST: he lives moment to moment with no ideals. You cannot frustrate him because he has no expectations.

The miserable person always condemns himself because he is not rising high enough to fulfil the demands. He is a constant condemnor; he lives in self-condemnation.

The blissful person is very accepting of himself. He makes no demands. He is relaxed, at ease with himself; he loves himself as he is. So you have to watch: that which creates misery, drop; and that which brings bliss like a flood, create that space in you. And my whole effort here is to make each of my sannyasins a song of bliss: not miserable saints, not long faces, but celebrants! I am interested in celebrants, not in saints at all.

So let your life become a celebration; and it is up to you!

The Boss ~ by Diana Ross ❤ I Included A Bonus Track/Vid For More INSPIRATION And To Let You Know That YOU ARE NOT ALONE! :)


My mom has always been a huge Diana Ross fan. I grew up listening to her albums and dancing in the living room with my mom. I was also fortunate enough as a child to experience Diana Ross live in concert with my mom on several occasions. Diana Ross would always wear the most beautiful elaborate gowns on stage and change gowns after every set. She would also walk out into the audience and shake everybody's hand. She always without fail LEFT ME MESMERIZED! Diana Ross is an amazing entertainer! Pure CLASS.

The Boss was a huge disco hit when it came out. Nevertheless, this is actually a very powerful spiritual song if you really choose to listen. God is LOVE. Love is God. Therefore, God is The Boss! Creator and Source of ALL living things. Sending lots of love to you all. Enjoy this song and lyrics! This was me. I can totally relate to this song, as I am sure many of you can as well or soon will. ♥

This is such an AWESOME song! I can't get enough of it tonight! :) This was not released as a spiritual song. It was a dance hit in 1979. The lyrics just have more meaning for me. ♥

The Boss ~ by Legendary Diana Ross

Fancy ME
Thought I had my degree
In life and how LOVE
Ought to be a run
I had a one step plan to prove it
Guide in my pocket for FOOLS
Folly and fun
LOVE had to show me ONE THING:

I was so right
So right
Thought I could turn emotion
On and off
I was so sure
So sure (I was so sure)
But LOVE TAUGHT ME
Who was who was who was The Boss!
(Taught me who was who was The Boss)


I'D DEFY
Anyone who claimed that I
Didn't control whatever moved in MY SOUL
I could tempt
Touch delight
Just because you fell for me
Why should I feel uptight
LOVE had to show me ONE THING:

I was so right
So right
Thought I could turn emotion
On and off
I was so sure
So sure (I was so sure)
But LOVE TAUGHT ME
Who was who was who was The Boss!
(Taught me who was who was The Boss)


LOVE TAUGHT ME
Taught ME
Taught ME
Taught ME

I was so right
So right
Thought I could turn emotion
On and off
I was so sure
So sure (I was so sure)
But LOVE TAUGHT ME
Who was who was who was The Boss!
(Taught me who was who was The Boss)

BONUS TRACK
God wants you to know: If you need me, call me. No matter where you are, no matter how far. Just call my name. I'll be there in a hurry. On that you can depend and never worry.

I know you must follow the sun. Wherever it leads. But remember. If you should fall short of your desires. Remember life holds for you one guarantee. You'll always have me. ♥

Happy Sunday Everybody...馃榿 Sending Some Inspiration Your Way...馃挅

USA: Leaked Private Chat Between Puerto Rico’s Governor And His Executive Team Shakes The Island. Puerto Ricans Are Calling For Governor To Resign. He Fired ALL But 2 Members Of The Chat.

El Nuevo Dia News (English), Puerto Rico
written by Dennis Costa
Saturday July 13, 2019

The full contents of a group chat between Puerto Rico governor Ricardo Rossell贸 and close associates were publicly disclosed Saturday morning, after several days of partial leaks that have rocked the Caribbean island.

The 889-page document, published by the non-profit journalism group Centro de Periodismo Investigativo and obtained from an anonymous source, details efforts by high-ranking officials and collaborators to manipulate public narrative through mass media, influence public polls to favor the administration, and operate a “troll network” to discredit negative press coverage and criticism from opposition leaders.

The document —which reveals conversations made through the messaging app Telegram from late 2018 to January 20 of this year— also reveals several comments of a sexual, misogynistic and homophobic vein from Rossell贸 and other members of the chat group, as well as profanity.

Some of the targets of such comments include San Juan mayor Carmen Yul铆n Cruz; Popular Democratic members Roberto Prats and Eduardo Bhatia, with the latter being a particular target of homophobic comments, as well as members of the Fiscal Oversight Board (FOB), especially its president, Jos茅 Carri贸n, and its executive director, Natalie Jaresko.

The chat also targeted El Nuevo D铆a journalist and columnist Benjamin Torres Gotay and lawyer John Mudd (both of whom were called a “c**ksucker”), CBS news correspondent and anchor David Begnaud, news bloggers Jay Fonseca and Sandra Rodriguez Cotto, and activist groups such as Colectiva Feminista (Feminist Collective), among others.

Former Rossell贸 gubernatorial campaign manager El铆as S谩nchez; government chief financial officer and representative to the FOB, Christian Sobrino, and former public affairs secretary Ram贸n Rosario were among the participants in the group chat. The group also includes chief of staff Ricardo Llerandi; Edwin Miranda, a publicist and owner of KOI, a local advertising firm; Alfonso Orona, a former legal advisor to the governor, and public relations experts Carlos Berm煤dez and Rafael Cerame.

Department of State secretary Luis Rivera Mar铆n and recently ousted Treasury secretary Ra煤l Maldonado also appear in the chat, although in a more tangential capacity, with the most controversial remarks in the chat being mostly attributed to S谩nchez, Sobrino, Miranda, and Rossell贸 himself.

Among the most damning moments in the chat, some of which had already been leaked publicly earlier this week, are efforts to discredit the federally-appointed monitor for the Police Department, Arnaldo Claudio, who left the post under duress last May. On Friday, Claudio revealed that he submitted copies of the group chat as evidence to the FBI, with the intention of kick startingan investigation on the matter.

The chat’s full disclosure generated a swift wave of reactions, including from fellow members of the Rossell贸 administration. On Saturday, Puerto Rico’s non-voting representative in Congress, Jenniffer Gonz谩lez, called for Rossell贸 to remove himself from running for reelection in 2020, while Senate President Thomas Rivera Schatz, himself a target of mockery in the document, called for the removal of all of the chat’s participants from public office.
CBS News
written by Staff
Friday July 12, 2019

San Juan, Puerto Rico -- Puerto Rican Gov. Gov. Ricardo Rossell贸 was in Europe with his family this week on vacation when his administration took several hits that many believe have tarnished the U.S. territory's reputation and weakened its relationship with the U.S. government. First, the FBI arrested former top officials in his government on corruption charges.

Not long after that, local media published excerpts of a private chat in which he called former New York City Council speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito the Spanish word for "whore" and in English told a federal control board overseeing the island's finance to "go f--- yourself" followed by a string of emojis with the middle finger raised.

"I'm the governor of Puerto Rico, but I'm a human being who has his faults," Rossell贸 said in a press conference late Thursday. "I ask for forgiveness."

Rossell贸 said he had been working 18-hour days and releasing tensions when he made the comments against the board and Mark-Viverito.

"None of this justifies the words I've written," he said in reference to excerpts from a chat extracted from a messaging system used by government officials that were published by local media. "My apologies to all the people I have offended... This was a private chat."

The comments drew the ire of many Puerto Ricans who said they were ashamed of his language and how it might reflect on a U.S. territory that had already come under scrutiny earlier this week with the arrests of former government officials including the island's education secretary.

Rossell贸 said he had not yet spoken to Mark-Viverito, who posted a lengthy statement on Twitter that read in part, "A person who uses that language against a woman, whether a public figure or not, should not govern Puerto Rico ...this type of behavior is completely unacceptable."

In the chat, Rossell贸 wrote he was upset that Mark-Viverito had criticized Tom Perez, chair of the Democratic National Committee, for supporting statehood for Puerto Rico.

Those who participated in the chat included Ricardo Llerandi, Puerto Rico's Chief of Staff, Christian Sobrino, executive director of Puerto Rico's Fiscal Agency and Financial Advisory Authority; and Ram贸n Rosario, former public affairs secretary. Rossell贸 said the entire chat, which has not been released publicly, has since been erased and that he doesn't know who leaked part of it.

Rossell贸 spoke a day after FBI agents arrested Julia Keleher, Puerto Rico's former education secretary, and five other people on charges of steering federal money to unqualified, politically connected contractors.

July 13, 2019

ENGLAND: Glastonbury Festival Attendees Leave Plastic Bottles And Trash Strewn Across Grounds. The Irony, Glastonbury Festival Ran On A Theme Of Climate Change And The Environment. 馃檮


The Sun published on Jul 1, 2019: Glastonbury fans leave thousands of plastic bottles and rubbish. Glastonbury Festival-goers left the site littered with thousands of plastic bottles despite this year's eco drive.
New York Post
written by Natalie Musumeci
Monday July 1, 2019

So much for being eco-friendly.

Attendees at Britain’s five-day Glastonbury Festival — which ran on a theme of climate change and the environment — left behind thousands of plastic bottles and trash, photos of the aftermath show.

Environmentalists like Sir David Attenborough praised organizers of the music fest in Somerset for going “plastic free” by banning the sale of single-use plastic bottles this year.

“That is more than a million bottles of water that have not been drunk by you. Thank you. Thank you,” Attenborough, 93, said to cheers and applause on Sunday, the last day of the festival.

Glastonbury co-organizer Emily Eavis, meanwhile, said the “most eye-opening part of the weekend for me was not seeing any plastic bottles in the bins or on the ground,” according to the BBC.

But post-festival photos told a different story — showing masses of plastic bottles and garbage strewn all over the 900-acre grounds.

Still, the on-site recycling team said it has seen “a massive reduction in the amount of plastic on the site this year — the least ever seen, by a distance,” the BBC reported.

When Glastonbury was last held in 2017, more than 1 million drinks in plastic bottles were sold. This year, there were zero, The Sun reported.

There were more than 850 water refill stations at the festival, according to reports, which noted long lines to fill up.

Festival officials said there was never a ban on the public bringing their own plastic bottles and added that all plastic and cans left behind will be recycled, according to the BBC.

“We feel that the public very much bought into our campaign to reduce, reuse and recycle and we’re very pleased with the results,” a festival spokesperson told the news site.
UPDATE 7/14/2019 at 12:59pm: For those of you wondering why I'm taking issue with Festival officials claims I'd like to explain. What I see here in the pictures shown of the aftermath of the Glastonbury Festival is the nurturing of an "entitlement" culture. On the one hand, you think you're helping the environment by solely focusing on plastic bottles. But on the other hand, you are allowing all attendees to freely throw their garbage on the ground. How is that a good role model? You're teaching them it's okay to throw your garbage on the ground because some one will clean up after you. Your attendees will take that same mindset with them when they leave your festival. So, it really doesn't matter that you banned the sale of plastic bottles. That's so superficial when you look at the totality of litterbugs you've enabled and unleashed on society as a whole.

I can't stand garbage. I literally clean up the streets and sidewalk around my home with my own broom and dustpan. I have witnessed people driving luxury cars and even "eco friendly" cars throw their garbage out the window onto the freeway and open their car door to throw out their garbage on the side of the road waiting at a red light on a freeway exit. In their minds, their garbage is some else's problem. Well, let me tell you something, your garbage is your responsibility and you've made your garbage all of our problem by being a self entitled douchbag. The garbage you've thrown onto the roads end up in the gutters get either carried away by the wind or down storm drains ENDING UP in the ocean.

I was curious to find out if England recycles their plastic waste. I'm shocked to find out that England exports their garbage overseas to be dumped in a landfill and not recycled. How selfish and hypocritical of you to make your garbage the world's problem. Plastic is not the problem. Plastic can be recycled successfully. The world has a waste management issue. Isn't China the world's worst toxic polluter on our planet? Toxic waste ends up in our ocean because of China and India irresponsibly allowing it to be dumped in their waterways. Why the heck would anyone think it's a good idea to export their garbage to China to be disposed of properly? Unbelievable. I'm sharing the article below.

The Guardian, UK
written by Nazia Parveen, North of England correspondent
Monday July 23, 2018

Millions of tons of waste plastic from British businesses and homes may be ending up in landfill sites across the world, the government’s spending watchdog has warned.

Huge amounts of packaging waste is being sent overseas on the basis that it will be recycled and turned into new products. However, concerns have been raised that in reality much of it is being dumped in sites from Turkey to Malaysia.

Every year, British households throw 22m tons of waste into the bin. Recycling rates have stagnated at about 44% and the UK is unlikely to hit its target of 50% by 2020.

Britain does not have the requisite infrastructure to recycle its own plastic waste, so it is sent abroad.

Packaging recycling obligations require more than 7,000 firms responsible for generating waste to demonstrate that a certain amount has been recycled.

But a report by the National Audit Office (NAO) criticised the Environment Agency’s oversight of the scheme in England.

Historically, British recycling has been sent to China. Its dominance in manufacturing meant that for years it was the world’s largest importer of recyclable materials. In 2016, it imported 7.3m tons of waste plastics from developed countries including the UK, the US and Japan.

British companies alone have shipped more than 2.7m tons of plastic waste to China and Hong Kong since 2012 – two-thirds of the UK’s total waste plastic exports, according to data from Greenpeace released last year.

But last summer the Chinese government announced it intended to stop the importation of 24 kinds of solid waste by the end of the year, including polyethylene terephthalate (PET) drinks bottles, other plastic bottles and containers, and all mixed paper, in a campaign against yang laji or “foreign garbage”. These drastic restrictions resulted in traders looking for other countries to take in recycling waste.

A Defra spokesman said: “Since the current packaging producer responsibility regime was introduced, recycling rates have increased significantly. However, there is much more to do. We don’t recycle enough waste, and we export too much of it.

UPDATE 7/14/2019 at 2:56pm: I decided to dig a little more and this is what I found out below.

PRI.com
written by Patrick Winn
January 13, 2016

The planet’s seas are choking on our junk: Soda bottles, plastic bags and tons of cigarette butts. Distant spots in the ocean — called garbage gyres — have become vortexes where humanity’s trash bobs atop the water for miles on end.
It is a good goal to make America as a whole to aim to be the most environmentally conscious and responsible nation on the planet. We will still get blamed for the disgusting pollution in our oceans. Why? Because the guilty parties on the planet using our oceans as their dumping grounds need a scapegoat to blame for their crimes they have openly committed on all living things. Look at the elephant in the room please. (emphasis mine)
Worse yet, the filth floating on the surface accounts for only 5 percent of all the plastic trash dumped into the sea. According to Ocean Conservancy, a US environmental nonprofit, the other 95 percent is submerged beneath, where it strangles underwater creatures and wrecks the aquatic ecosystem.

It turns out that five countries are the leading contributors to this crisis. And all are in Asia.

In a recent report, Ocean Conservancy claims that China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam are spewing out as much as 60 percent of the plastic waste that enters the world’s seas.
It saddens me to read this article and others like it that share the Ocean Conservancy report blame America and our consumption for the pollution of the oceans. Consumption is not the problem. Plastic is not the problem. Waste management is the elephant in the room that every one of you "climate change" or environmentally conscious people refuse to acknowledge. (emphasis mine)
As Asian economies rise, people have more cash to blow on Marlboros and Sprites at 7-Eleven. But the junk these habits produce often doesn’t end up in legit landfills.

In the five Asian countries listed above, only about 40 percent of garbage is properly collected. Across Asia, trash is often piled up in communal dumps where stray bits are swept up by the wind and cast into the ocean.

Even sanctioned garbage dump sites are sometimes intentionally set up near rivers that flow into the sea. The reason, according to Ocean Conservancy: “Waste will intermittently be carried away by heavy rains or current, refreshing the capacity of the dump to receive more waste.”
Now I'm going to share pictures shared in this article with their caption and point out what I see that I feel is overlooked. It really pains me to believe that it's being overlooked deliberately.
(emphasis mine)
Here is their caption under this photo above: A scavenger collects plastic for recycling in a river covered with rubbish in Jakarta, Indonesia, April 20, 2009.

What do I see? The focus is merely on the picking out the plastic while completely surrounded by garbage and not caring about the garbage polluting the water. Look at that horror.
Here is their caption under this photo above: A woman washes plastic in a river in Tianjin, China, Sept. 13, 2007.

What do I see? The focus is merely on the picking out the plastic while completely surrounded by garbage and not caring about the garbage polluting the water.
Here is their caption under this photo above: A boy collects plastic near a polluted coastline to sell in Manila, Philippines April 9, 2008.

What do I see? A boy surrounded by garbage that is polluting the water. These pictures are a good analogy to the Glastonbury Festival irony.
Here is their caption under this photo above: Indonesian fishermen on a polluted beach in Cilincing, North Jakarta, Indonesia June 5, 2013.

What do I see? Exactly what they stated, a polluted beach. Plastic is not the issue. Waste management is the issue. Responsibly disposing our garbage is the issue.

**********************

UPDATE 7/14/2019 at 4:42pm: I was curious to find out if there were any penalties in the United States for littering. I wish Los Angeles County would enforce the laws on the books for littering. I'm sharing with you what I found out below.

written by Jennifer Schultz and Mindy Bridges
[source: National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL)]

States spend millions of dollars each year to clean up littered roadways, parks, and coastal areas. In addition to the direct cost of litter removal, litter also harms the environment, property values and other economic activity. The most common types of litter are food packaging, bottles, cans, plastic bags, paper and tobacco products. States can discourage littering through a variety of methods, one of which is to create and enforce criminal penalties that punish unwanted behavior. While all states have some type of litter law, penalties vary widely, based on the amount, type, and location of litter. In 10 states, for example, the weight or volume of litter determines the severity of the crime. Other states focus on the type of litter, imposing penalties for dumping large items, such as furniture or major appliances. Many states have also enacted legislation to address littering in certain places, such as public highways, coastal areas, and recreational areas.

For relatively minor cases, courts typically impose a fine and may order litter cleanup or community service. Fines range from $20 in Colorado to $30,000 in Maryland. In more serious cases, offenders may be subject to imprisonment, with sentences ranging from 10 days in Idaho to six years in Tennessee. Laws in Maryland, Massachusetts, and Louisiana also provide for suspension of a violators’ driver’s license in certain cases. Penalties in all states typically increase for subsequent convictions.

The table below summarizes state penalties for littering. Please refer to the specific state statutes for definitions of littering and other information.

Please CLICK HERE to read the table that list each state alphabetically.

Trash is strewn along the sand south of the San Gabriel River in Seal Beach, CALIFORNIA, on Monday, Feb 4, 2019. (Photo by Jeff Gritchen, Orange County Register/SCNG)

The Orange County Register
After storms, Seal Beach looks like a landfill blanketed with trash
written by Laylan Connelly
February 4, 2019
This is what happens when you throw your garbage on the roads. The end result of careless self entitled people. The runoff of storm drains on the sides of the roads end up in our ocean. This is exactly what I was writing about earlier. (emphasis mine)
Shopping carts, furniture, baby strollers, suitcases and orange cones were some of the bigger pieces of trash strewn on the sand with countless plastic bottles, baby diapers, and bits of Styrofoam mixed in with tree branches and twigs.

The “heartbreaking” scene in Seal Beach on Sunday shocked Trish Gussler, who traveled from Anaheim to the San Gabriel River for a gloomy morning beach walk to bird watch between the storms.

“It was horrifying, that’s the only way I could explain it,” she said. “It was phenomenally sad.”

During dry summer months, pristine Southern California beaches draw millions of visitors. But during the wet season after heavy storms, the beaches can look more like landfills as trash travels down waterways, onto the sand and into the ocean. The trash was a familiar sight along the coast, especially where inland rivers met with the ocean.

The area along the San Gabriel River, which borders Seal Beach and Long Beach, can be especially littered after it rains. The mouth of the river funnels runoff from 52 inland cities straight into the ocean, with trash and debris flowing down storm drains.
This is just the runoff from the San Gabriel River. There are many other runoffs. (emphasis mine)
“We test for enterococcus bacteria, an indicator species for worse types of bacteria like E. coli,” Conti said. “If enterococcus is present that means these other more serious, infection causing bacteria are most probably also present.”

According to the results, the levels of bacteria were off the charts — though not surprising to Conti, who knows the levels shoot up after storms when contaminants from runoff enter the ocean.

The concentration levels of bacteria per sample are reported as the most probable number, or MPN. The state standard MPN for water quality is 104.

The results showed San Gabriel River’s MPN was 4,374, Santa Ana River’s at 1,989 and San Juan Creek’s at 6,586. 馃槺

“An MPN of higher than 104 means signs should be posted warning people of the potential health hazard,” Conti said.

No signs were visible warning the public Monday morning, despite heavy rain through the weekend.

“It’s typical to have these numbers during large storm events; all the pollution and animal feces, or possibly human, is coming down stream from cities,” Conti said.

How to help:

Monthly cleanups are held by Save Our Beach at the San Gabriel River on the third Saturday of the month from 9 a.m. to noon, rain or shine. Meet at the 1st street parking lot in Seal Beach.

ITALY: Landfills In Flames And Rats Feasting On Waste In The Streets Have Sparked Health Fears In Rome.

Yahoo News
written by Raphaelle Griffon, AFP
Friday July 12, 2019

Rome (AFP) - Landfills in flames and rats feasting on waste in the streets have sparked health fears in Rome, as doctors warn families to steer clear of disease-ridden curbside garbage and locals launch a disgusting dumpster contest online.

Crowds of summer tourists are forced to navigate overflowing bins in the stifling heat, as the pungent perfume of neglected garbage draws scavenging animals and the threat of disease to the Eternal City and locals fume over the city's refuse management.

Rome's chief physician Antonio Magi has issued a "hygiene alert", telling AFP this could be upgraded to a health warning, with disease spread through the faeces of insects and animals banqueting on rotting waste.

His warning prompted local prosecutors to open an investigation this week into the city's refuse collection.

In the meantime, furious Rome residents have launched a contest on Twitter to find the most fetid dustbins.

Discarded pizza boxes or the remains of spaghetti lunches and fruit rinds draw opportunistic seagulls, rats and even wild boars to the streets of Rome, with wolves also spotted closer to the city's outskirts than ever before.

Adding to the indignation of Rome residents is the steep price they are paying for their garbage to rot in the streets.

The city spent more than 597 euros ($670) per inhabitant on household waste treatment in 2017 -- by far the highest in the country, ahead of Venice (353 euros) and Florence (266 euros), according to a report by the Openpolis Foundation.

But the city lacks infrastructure: of its three main landfills, one has closed and the others were ravaged by fire in recent months.

And two biological treatment sites have reduced their activities for maintenance work.

- 'Degradation and abandonment' -

Some residents make matters worse by simply dumping their old mattresses, fridges and sofas next to garbage bins.

But local Salvatore Orlando, 50, told AFP the council was entirely to blame.

"Of course it's the mayor's fault. You certainly can't blame the citizens," he said.

"They produce waste, they have to throw it away, and the public services have to collect it. It's simple. We pay taxes for it".

Rome's mayor and the president of the Lazio region both assured Italy's environment minister Tuesday that the crisis would be resolved "within 15 days".

But to do so, more of the city's 5,000 tons of daily waste will have to be sent for incineration elsewhere.

"Everyone complains about waste but no one wants an incinerator. Instead, we take the waste abroad, to Austria, to Germany!", another aggrieved resident said, declining to give his name.

Even Pope Francis has commented on the decline, lamenting in June Rome's "degradation and abandonment".

Italy's Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, head of the far-right League, has jumped on the chance to use the crisis as a political weapon against mayor Virginia Raggi, who hails from the anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S).

The stench and sticky pavements have given him ammunition ahead of the next municipal elections, scheduled for 2021.

But in a city where key sectors are riddled with inefficiency and corruption, residents will wonder whether Salvini has a magic recipe for resolving a situation that has stumped parties over the years across the political spectrum.

In the meantime, rubbish is just one more daily challenge in a city with countless potholes, trees that topple at the first gust of wind and buses that catch fire -- if their engines start at all.

馃憞 RELATED NEWS 馃憞


Ruptly published on Jan 6, 2019: Italy: Rome residents express dismay over garbage on streets. Citizens of Rome shared their opinions on Sunday about the heaps of garbage that lie strewn over the streets of the Italian capital after the city's main garbage incinerator caught fire last month.

"I've been living in Rome for 60 years. I have never seen Rome in this way," said Susanna, a local citizen.

"This garbage is really indecent. We are talking about one of the European capitals with the largest concentration of art and cultural goods. It is a horrible show for tourists, and a question of health for Roman citizens," citizen Piergiorgio said.

Teachers from several schools have reportedly written a letter to the mayor of Rome, Virginia Raggi, stating that if the situation doesn't change schools would be closed on Monday for health and safety reasons.


WOW, great documentary!

Journeyman Pictures published on Sep 5, 2016: The Mafia Are Still Dumping Toxic Waste In Naples. Toxic Napoli (2012): In Southern Italy, the illegal dumping of industrial toxic waste has become a big business for the Naples mafia. As the trade continues, the environment continues to suffer and the death toll rises.

"In Acerra, people have been dying for over 20 years. They don't even live to 50", says one woman. In the Campania region some of the most polluted areas are being used for agriculture and grazing, allowing highly toxic compounds like dioxin to enter the food chain. "My daughter has already had three high-risk pregnancies and one miscarriage", says a father who is forced to live 700 meters from toxic garbage bales. Almost a million tons of rubbish are stockpiled throughout the region and behind it all is the largest criminal organization in Italy, the Neopolitan Camorra. A culture of illegality within industry and the inability of the authorities to curb the mafia's influence means that little is being done to halt this deadly toxic trade.

For similar stories, see:
Immigrants Murdered Under Mafia Silence
Mafia clan's reign of terror in corrupt Naples
Uncovering Italy's Modern Mafia Groups

[source: GlobalSecurity.org]

The word “Camorra” means gang, a word used for the Neapolitan Mafia (based in Naples). The Camorra first appeared in the mid-1800s in Naples, Italy, as a prison gang. Once released, members formed clans in the cities and continued to grow in power. The Camorra has more than 100 clans and approximately 7,000 members, making it the largest of the Italian organized crime groups. In the 1970s, the Sicilian Mafia convinced the Camorra to convert their cigarette smuggling routes into drug smuggling routes with the Sicilian Mafia's assistance. Not all Camorra leaders agreed, leading to the Camorra Wars that cost 400 lives. Opponents of drug trafficking lost the war.

Campania is home to one of Italy's most powerful Mafia mobs, the Camorra, which is enmeshed in the politics of the region. The public image is of a mob that makes most of its money from drugs and prostitution. But anti-Mafia prosecutors say that while narcotics and sex trafficking are both highly important revenue streams for the Camorra, the big money is made in public-sector fraud, construction contracts and waste management. The longer the public service, the more likely a politician has had to make deals with the mobsters.

By the end of the 19th Century the Camorra waa an association of persons, having for its object an illicit control of any lawful or unlawful trade, obtained by forcibly excluding other people from taking part in it. In the broad sense it meant the vast organization of thieves, high and low, by which daily life in Naples was controlled, by which the city was swayed in political matters, and with the existence of which the Italian government was obliged to reckon. The social effects of the Camorra do not extend much beyond the limits of the city; politically, the whole province is affected by it. In private life, it meant that all who acted in such a way as to be considered members of the Camorra were quite safe from depredation, so that if anything is stolen from them by mistake it is at once returned; it means also that whoever is willing to help the Camorra in its ends will be helped by it.

It had no regular organization, no place of meeting, no elected officers; it was everywhere and it is nowhere; its members recognize each other by their conduct rather than by signs or words, and the commands of its chiefs were given verbally and transmitted in like manner. It might be described as a society for preserving a monopoly in stealing and illicit trades, were it not that many apparently respectable officials, men of business, and trades people protect it, or were under its protection. So far as it can be said to be organized at all, it managed itself by a sort of natural hierarchy and affiliation; the officers of each grade are self-created, and depend on force of character for the power they exercise. It might be called a system of bullying, in which every ringleader who can impose himself upon his companions is in turn forcibly controlled by one of higher standing than himself, who again is subject to others, and so on, from the street boy who gets a living by selling the stumps of cigars, to the high official and perhaps to the member of Parliament.

The real end and object of the Camorra was always profit, gained by any means, good or bad. It constrained all pickpockets, thieves, and burglars in the city to render an account of their robberies to their superiors, on pain of being at once handed over to justice; and there was no city in the world in which it was so easy to recover stolen goods, provided the application be made in the right quarter. A part of its regular practice consisted of robbing all foreigners, both directly, when possible, and indirectly by extortion.

The Sicilian Mafia of this the 19th century differed from the Neapolitan Camorra in almost every respect, and whereas the latter was based on criminal practices, the former had its foundation in lawless principles.

The groups that operate in Campania are traditionally known as the Camorra, but, as one expert, former MP Isaia Sales, reports, the label mistakenly gives the impression that there is some unified structure. In fact, many different rival clans operate in Campania, mainly in the provinces of Naples, Caserta and Salerno. There is no central organization or even a confederation; attempts by some bosses to unify some of all of these clans have failed miserably. Because the Camorra in Campania is not one organization, but a multitude of armed gangs, there is no one boss whose capture could cause a significant blow to organized crime in the region. Thus, there is no single "Camorra"; in fact, mobsters do not even use the word, preferring "O Sistema," Neapolitan for "The System."

The clans' enterprises are conducted within territorial boundaries, which are constantly being tested, leading to almost continuous gang violence. Unlike the Cosa Nostra, membership in Camorra clans is open to virtually anyone, as each family seeks to build an ever-larger army. The "soldiers" come from the lowest socio-economic echelons (the "urban sub-proletariat," according to Sales), who often find crime to be their only avenue to regular employment. Many wind up in prison or die violently, factors that contribute to Camorristas' risky behavior.

The clans' principal sources of income are the protection racket, illegal transport and dumping of toxic waste, drug trafficking, production and distribution of pirated and counterfeit products, illegal construction and trafficking in persons. Money laundering is rampant, consisting largely of investments in hotels, restaurants and small stores that also serve as a sort of life insurance policy for family members. Franco Roberti, the top anti-Mafia prosecutor in Naples, reports that the powerful Casalesi clan, based in Caserta, has huge interests in the construction industry in northern Italy. Roberti adds that Camorra clans are making more money than ever from drug trafficking, partly because of purer and less expensive cocaine, and partly because they have eliminated middlemen and now deal directly with Colombian suppliers. The Camorra pays cash for drugs, or trades cocaine for hashish and heroin.

The Camorra made a fortune in reconstruction after an earthquake ravaged the Campania region in 1980. Now it specializes in cigarette smuggling and receives payoffs from other criminal groups for any cigarette traffic through Italy. The Camorra is also involved in money laundering, extortion, alien smuggling, robbery, blackmail, kidnapping, political corruption, and counterfeiting. It is believed that nearly 200 Camorra affiliates reside in the US, many of whom arrived during the Camorra Wars.

A 2005 FBI intelligence assessment reported that "Criminal interaction between Italian organized crime and Islamic extremist groups provides potential terrorists with access to funding and logistical support from criminal organizations with established smuggling routes and an entrenched presence in the United States." In a public statement given on April 19, 2004, Italy's national anti-Mafia prosecutor, Pierluigi Vigna, indicated a link between Islamic militant groups and the Camorra, stating that evidence existed implicating the Camorra in an exchange of weapons for drugs with Islamic terrorist groups.

A report issued on 30 September 2009 by the Rome-based research institute Censis, and funded by the Italian Parliament's Anti-Mafia Committee, concludes that organized crime was on the rise throughout Italy but constituted "a true national emergency" in the greater Naples area. The report was based on statistics (mostly from 2007, the most recent available) compiled by the Italian Interior Ministry, prosecutors' offices and other law enforcement entities. In the province of Naples (which includes Naples city and some surrounding suburbs), 95 percent of the population co-exists with active organized crime gangs, the highest percentage of any province in the country.

In the past three years, 25 municipal governments had been dissolved due to Mafia infiltration, eight of them in Naples province. In 2007, 119 homicides nation-wide were attributed to organized crime; of these, 85 occurred in the region of Campania, with 80 of them in Naples province. Naples's overall murder rate was more thirteen times the national average: 2.6 per 100 residents in Naples, as compared to 0.2 for the country as a whole. (For comparison, the homicide rate for Detroit, which had the highest rate for big cities in the United States for the same period, was 0.46 per 100 residents.) Naples also has the highest rates of extortion, arson and loan sharking, according to the number of arrests and complaints to the police.

The Censis report describes the situation in Naples and its suburbs as "a true emergency... [in which there has been] an increase in all organized crime-related felonies, especially the most violent and heinous." In fact, over the last four years, the region of Campania has registered a whopping upsurge of 61.3 percent in Mafia-related crimes. The region also leads the nation in drug-related offenses, both in absolute and per capita terms. Although a small number of victims denounce extortion (1230, or 21.2 per 100,000 inhabitants), the extorters are more than capable of exacting revenge; arson in Campania is up a whopping 322.8 percent and in some provinces over 700 percent.

The economic crisis strengthened Camorra clans, as the liquid revenues they take in from the drug trade allow them to offer jobs and credit to those who can find neither legitimately. The prospect of another trash crisis loomed, as garbage and construction waste have begun to reappear on sidewalks and streets around the city as well as in suburban areas; only one of four planned incinerators had actually been built. No one doubts that the Camorra could shut down the disposal process and plunge Naples into another crisis. In the meantime, the central government's decision in August 2008 to deploy army troops to help police tackle crime in Campania appears to have had little impact on the Camorra's grip on the region or on the growing crime rates.

According to Roberto Saviano, author of a best-selling book about the Camorra, industries can save up to 80 percent of the cost to legally dispose of their toxic waste by hiring the Camorra to dispose of it clandestinely. This actually makes many factories (virtually all of which are located in northern Italy) more competitive, but at a terrible environmental cost (the brunt of which is paid by residents in the South, where the waste winds up). In 2006, the World Health Organization found rates for stomach, liver, kidney, lung and pancreatic cancer to be up to 12 percent higher than the national average in areas just north of Naples where the Camorra as dumped thousands of truckloads of toxic waste.

According to former MP Isaia Sales, an expert who has written two books on the Camorra, organized crime sometimes lowers agricultural and food prices, too, by favoring certain business owners who are able to produce more efficiently due to increased business. The Camorra also lowers real estate values, by forcing property owners to sell at ridiculously low prices through intimidation.

The Camorra runs an estimated 2,000 illegal bakeries (two thirds of the region's total), using expired flour and ovens which emit toxic fumes (the "wood" is often old doors covered in paint). Caserta has illegal cheese factories which mix buffalo milk with powdered milk from Bolivia, cutting retail mozzarella costs by a third; they also use lime to help ricotta "keep" longer. The most flourishing business is recycling expired products. The Camorra also passes off low-quality imports with made-in-Campania labels, from pesticide-laden Moldovan apples to E. coli-infested Moroccan industrial salt.

Camorra clans have been known to "get out the vote" for local political figures, but often prefer bribes and kickbacks to trying to influence elections. If they want someone elected, though, they will buy votes; up until this year, when Parliament banned the use of cellphones and cameras in voting booths, the cost of a vote was reportedly a $75 cell phone. According to sociologist Amato Lamberti, the Camorra can move up to ten percent of the vote in Naples province.

FRANCE: Hundreds Of Illegal African Able Bodied Male Migrants Stormed And Defile The Pantheon Church One Of The Most Sacred Places Houses Graves Of National Heroes. Disrepect Host Nation.

They don't have the right to DEMAND anything from anyone. France doesn't owe them shit. Most especially after they have defiled one of their monuments in their host nation. They're disrupting tourism that brings revenue to the country. Last month they disrupted a terminal at an airport in France. These ARE NOT PEACEFUL PROTESTS. This is so wrong. (emphasis mine)
News.com.au, Australia
written by AFP staff
Saturday July 13, 2019

Tourists were evacuated from a Paris landmark on Friday as hundreds of illegal immigrants stormed in demanding “papers”.

Hundreds of illegal immigrants surged into the Pantheon in central Paris on Friday, briefly occupying the vaunted memorial complex to demand talks with the prime minister on regularising their status, activists said.

Around 700 migrants and their supporters joined the demonstration, with some pushing into the historic complex at around midday on Friday, a member of the Chapelle Debout collective said.

Footage posted on Twitter from inside the building’s main dome showed hundreds of people waving papers in the air shouting “Black vests, black vests!” and “What do we want? Papers!”

The so-called “Black Vests” is a Paris-based migrant association that takes its name from the “yellow vest” anti-government protest movement.

As they went inside, tourists were evacuated from the Pantheon, which is the final resting place of France’s greatest non-military luminaries including the writers Voltaire, Victor Hugo and Emile Zola.

Outside, hundreds more were gathered under the watchful eyes of a heavy police presence.

In a statement, the Black Vest protesters said they wanted “papers and housing for everyone”, describing themselves as “the undocumented, the voiceless and the faceless of the French Republic”.

“We don’t want to negotiate with the interior minister and his officials any more, we want to talk to Prime Minister Edouard Philippe now!” they wrote.

They stayed there for several hours until they were calmly evacuated through a back entrance midafternoon, AFP correspondents said.

“All of the people who gained entry to the Pantheon have been evacuated,” Philippe tweeted early evening as a police source said 37 arrests had been made.

‘RULE OF LAW’

“France is a country based on the rule of law which means respect for the rules that apply to the right to remain, respect for public monuments and for the memory they represent,” he added.

Some leftist politicians came to the site to offer moral support to the migrants but Marine Le Pen, leader of the far-right National Rally, tweeted her indignation.

“It is UNACCEPTABLE to see protesting illegal aliens occupy, with wholesale impunity, this is the centre of the Republic,” Le Pen said. “Expulsion should be the immigrants’ future — that is the LAW,” she said.

“The Pantheon is a symbol of great men. Inside there are symbols representing the fight against slavery. We are fighting against modern-day slavery,” said Laurent, an activist from French rights group Droits Devant.

“Many people have been living without rights for years. We have done this to ask the prime minister for an exceptional regularisation. There has never been such a thing since (Francois) Mitterand took power (in 1981). It’s about time we had one.”

The “Black Vests” are known for staging headline-grabbing protests in support of illegal immigrants. In June, they briefly occupied the headquarters of the Paris-based Elior Group which works in contract catering and property.

And a month earlier, its activists occupied terminal 2F at the city’s Charles de Gaulle Airport against “Air France’s collaboration” in the deportation of illegal immigrants. 馃憞

Jamie Sky published on Mar 2, 2018: Migrants Invade Paris Train Station.
Notice how nicely dressed these poor able bodied African male "refugees" are? (emphasis mine)

Medeea Greere published on May 21, 2019: Disturbing: ‘France Does Not Belong to The French!’ 500+ African Migrants Storm Paris Airport. Footage posted on Twitter shows roughly 500 migrants chanting in Terminal 2 of the Charles de Gaulle airport as about a dozen police officers in tactical gear look on. “France does not belong to the French! Everyone has a right to be here!” one person can be heard yelling into a loudspeaker.

The protest was organized by the migrant support group La Chapelle Debout, which said their members call themselves “Black Vests.”

馃憞 RELATED INFO BELOW 馃憞


euronews (in English) published on Sep 16, 2016: Paris police clear more than 1,500 migrants from street camp. Police in Paris have evacuated a camp holding around 1,500 migrants who have been living on the streets of the French capital for weeks.

"Most of the illegal migrants relocated were from Afghanistan, Eritrea, and Sudan." 

Two operations, one for women and children and another for men, were launched on Friday morning on a stretch of pavement between Jaur猫s and Stalingrad Metro stops just west of Montmartre.

Most were transported to temporary shelters, where they are expected to receive food and medical treatment.
FRANCE 24 English published on July 7, 2017: France: Police evict thousands of migrants camped in northern Paris.

RT published on June 1, 2018: Migrants moved to wealthy Paris neighborhood, what do locals think? Thousands of migrants in Paris are being cleared from their make-shift shelters along the city's canals.Roughly 200 of them have been resettled in a wealthy district in the French capital. Charlotte Dubenskij went to find out what the residents thought about their new neighbors.

DW News published on March 24, 2019: France: Migrants in a race against Brexit. Hundreds of migrants in France are rushing to cross over to Britain before the Brexit deadline. While smugglers are raising their prices, some refugees are putting out from Calais into the Channel - the world's busiest shipping lane - in dinghies.