a PSA: Reuters Graphics of West Coast Wildfires

(h/t Mr. wd)

Thick smoke is seen above Salem City, Oregon, U.S., September 8, 2020. Zak Stone/REUTERS

A devastated West Coast; Major blazes continued to wreak havoc across vast tracts of California, Oregon and Washington, covering much of the western United States in a thick blanket of smoke blocking out the sun and turning skies orange’, graphics.reuters.com, Sept. 10, 2020

They've included huuuge satellite images of the West Coast, fires named an captioned, aerial photos, and ground photos.

Autistic child gunned down by Salt Lake City Police

Linden Cameron, 13, recovering in the hospital after being shot multiple times by an unidentified Salt Lake City Police officer

‘Salt Lake City police engage in a cover-up after shooting autistic 13-year-old boy multiple times, Jacob Crosse, 10 September 2020, wsws.org (with permission)

“Sparking international outrage, 13-year-old Linden Cameron remains in serious condition at the Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah, after a still unidentified police officer with the Salt Lake City Police Department shot him multiple times Friday while he was suffering a mental health crisis in his home.

Friday Open Thread ~ "What are you reading?" edition. Volume 9

John Barry: The 1918 ‘Spanish Flu’ Was a U.S. Export, But Don’t Call It the Kansas Virus

"The final lesson of 1918, a simple one yet one most difficult to execute, is that...those in authority must retain the public's trust. The way to do that is to distort nothing, to put the best face on nothing, to try to manipulate no one. Lincoln said that first, and best. A leader must make whatever horror exists concrete. Only then will people be able to break it apart."

Don’t say we weren’t warned. As President Trump’s subversion of science wreaks havoc with American society, the reappearance on bestseller lists of John Barry’s 2004 classic work, “The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History,” is a reminder that presidential irrationality is not unprecedented. On this week’s installment of “Scheer Intelligence,” Barry joins host Robert Scheer to compare the two pandemics and the United States’ response to each.

Back in 1918, Woodrow Wilson was deprived of the jingoism card played by Trump in labeling the current worldwide scourge “the China virus” because the first wave of massive fatalities was exported from a huge military base in Kansas. Wilson relied on the patriotic fervor of war to play down the health risk in dispatching huge numbers of likely infected US troops to Europe and on to the rest of the world, leading to the death of between 50 to 100 million people, far exceeding the direct human cost of the “Great War” itself. The name “Spanish flu” derived from the first news of the global influenza pandemic being reported by the media in Spain.

“I think that it was clear that in 1918, people died, and in many cases their society began to fray–in some cases, worse than that–because the government was lying,” Barry tells Scheer. “Now, the motivation in 1918 was entirely different than it is today. We were, of course, at war. And going into the war, [Woodrow] Wilson had some legitimate reasons to be concerned about what would happen […]so he created an infrastructure to intensify patriotism, more so than at any other time in our history.

Hot Air

Propagating Propaganda

It is one of the most important aspects of our media system, and yet hardly known to the public: most of the international news coverage in Western media is provided by only three global news agencies based in New York, London and Paris.

The key role played by these agencies means Western media often report on the same topics, even using the same wording. In addition, governments, military and intelligence services use these global news agencies as multipliers to spread their messages around the world.


Courtroom Drama - update

For engaging and compelling, there's nothing like courtroom drama for me – in reports, books, movies, plays, and television, fiction and non-fiction (including embellished reconstructions), criminal and tort, dramatic and comedic – except for when I was in a jury box and on a witness stand (both are stressful) and I didn't watch one second of the OJ trial and have avoided the all the “Judge Judy” type TV fare.

Papa Bear Numbers on The Asteroid Virus

With public life abolished, to the extent we have politics now, it takes place here in cyberspace. There is an election coming up and weather extremities continue to portend a very bad future, but both of those prominent topics are vague abstractions compared to the daily reality of the plague that I call The Asteroid Virus. Everybody's life is changed, everybody's future now is utterly different from what was planned as of just six months ago.