Category Archives: Social Activism

StoryPress: “Can we profit from your work product without compensating you?”

Much ado has been made recently about Lena Dunham’s intention to invite seven lesser known artists to warm up the crowds during her upcoming book tour, without actually paying them. More generally, it seems like there has been a growing backlash against the idea that it’s OK to offer artists “opportunities” for “exposure” without actually… Read More »

On the rationality and wrong of racism

After George Zimmerman shot Trayvon Martin, a narrative quickly emerged that Zimmerman “profiled” Martin, that he considered Martin suspicious merely because of the color of his skin and the fact that he was wearing a hoodie. Leaving aside the question of whether that narrative is accurate in the particular case of the Zimmerman / Martin… Read More »

MIT Peeps: Have you heard what JonMon is up to nowadays?

This post is mostly for the benefit of my fellow MIT alumni. Remember Jonathan Monsarrat? If so, then you may have gotten the same impression of him back at the ‘tute that I did, to wit, that he gave off creep vibes. Judging from what has been written about him online since then, he’s done… Read More »

MBTA responds to my public records request

Last month, I sent the MBTA a public records request, trying to obtain more information about how aware they are of the problem of air quality problems in the passenger compartments of their buses, and what they are doing about the problem. The Massachusetts Public Records Law requires “custodians of records” like the MBTA to… Read More »

Public Records Request to the MBTA about air quality in buses

I just sent the following letter to the MBTA. January 14, 2013 Beverly A. Scott General Manager, MBTA 10 Park Plaza, Suite 3910 Boston, MA 02116 Re: Massachusetts Public Records Request Dear Ms. Scott: This is a request under the Massachusetts Public Records Law (M.G.L. Chapter 66, Section 10). I am requesting that I be… Read More »

MBTA buses are poisoning passengers

Have you ever noticed a strong smell of diesel fumes in an MBTA bus, most strongly at the back of the bus? The smell comes from diesel exhaust leaking into the passenger compartment of the bus. It is extremely toxic. Its short-term effects include headache, dizziness, light-headedness, and nausea. Long-term effects include cardiovascular disease, cardiopulmonary… Read More »

Pittsfield judge orders local blogger to stop writing about the news

Ken at Popehat reports on Pittsfield judge Bethzaida Sanabria-Vega ordering a local blogger not only to stop writing about the daughter of a local public official who was the perpetrator of a hit-and-run accident which nearly killed someone and got off virtually scott-free after the courts “lost” some of the paperwork related to her case,… Read More »