The Evening Blues - 8-20-18



eb1pt12



The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Lowell Fulson



Hey! Good Evening!


This evening's music features blues singer and guitarist Lowell Fulson. Enjoy!



Lowell Fulson - Ride Until The Sun Goes Down

“Who is more to be pitied, a writer bound and gagged by policemen or one living in perfect freedom who has nothing more to say?”

-- Kurt Vonnegut


News and Opinion


Facebook Suspended a Latin American News Network and Gave Three Different Reasons Why

On August 13, Facebook shut down the English-language page of Telesur, blocking access for roughly half a million followers of the leftist media network until it was abruptly reinstated two days later. Facebook has provided three different explanations for the temporary disappearing, all contradicting one another, and not a single one making sense. ...

Telesur was created by Venezuela’s then-President Hugo Chávez in 2005 and co-funded by hemispheric neighbors Cuba, Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Uruguay — Argentina pulled support for the web and cable property in 2016. [...] Telesur does seem to exist on a separate plane than, say, Infowars. ... Unlike RT, Telesur hasn’t been singled-out for a role in laundering disinformation for military intelligence purposes, nor is it a hoax factory, à la Alex Jones. So it was unexpected when Telesur English blinked out of existence on the 13th, and even stranger when Facebook struggled to explain its own actions. At the time of its suspension, Telesur received this boilerplate message from Facebook:

Hello,

Your Page “teleSUR English” has been removed for violating our Terms of Use. A Facebook Page is a distinct presence used solely for business or promotional purposes. Among other things, Pages that are hateful, threatening or obscene are not allowed. We also take down Pages that attack an individual or group, or that are set up by an unauthorised individual. If your Page was removed for any of the above reasons, it will not be reinstated. Continued misuse of Facebook’s features could result in the permanent loss of your account.

The Facebook Team

Later that day, a Facebook customer support agent told the network that the suspension appeared to be due to a technical glitch — a go-to explanation for the company — rather than a violation of the company’s Terms of Use, adding that the issue was “under analysis by the engineering department.” The next day, Facebook wrote Telesur again, this time saying that the company’s engineers had conducted “several tests” and assured the outlet that “technicians” continued to look for an answer. On Wednesday, after a 48-hour blackout, Facebook wrote once more to say the page had been suspended due to a mysterious “instability on the platform,” which had now been corrected. It’s unclear whether Facebook would have corrected this “instability” had Telesur not complained to them, and equally unclear why the company had initially claimed that Telesur had violated its terms of service.

But Facebook has a third reason for suspending Telesur: In an emailed statement to The Intercept, a company spokesperson said, “The Page was temporally unpublished to protect it after we detected suspicious activity.” The term “suspicious activity” does not appear in Facebook’s terms of service. The spokesperson would not explain what “suspicious activity” was observed on Telesur’s page, or define the term, or explain why it was initially blamed on rule-breaking by Telesur and then technical problems on the social network’s end. ... This is typical behavior for the company, which both touts its use of automated rule enforcement and scapegoats the algorithms when they go awry.

Lockheed Martin faces backlash over 'amazing photos' Twitter campaign

MSM Finally Concedes Defeat On Yemen, Ceases Blackout Of Coverage

Ever since the Saudi-led assault on Yemen began in March of 2015, alternative media outlets everywhere have been repeatedly and aggressively decrying the mainstream media in the US and UK for their spectacular failure to adequately and accurately cover the violence and humanitarian disaster with appropriate reporting on who is responsible for it. After the 2016 US election, journalist Michael Tracey wrote an essay documenting how throughout the entire year and a half that Americans were pummeled with updates from the mass media about candidates and their campaigns, not one single question about Yemen was ever asked by any mainstream outlet of any candidate.

This is of course outrageous, but because of how media coverage works, mainstream attention was never drawn to the problem. It hasn’t been a total media blackout, but because it only turns up in mainstream media reports every once in a while with little if any emphasis being placed on who is behind the devastation, it occupies a very peripheral place in western consciousness. ... This has all changed in the last few days. Suddenly, the atrocities being inflicted upon the people of Yemen are being pushed into mainstream attention by the mass media outlets which have been ignoring them for more than three years. The Washington Post editorial board published an op-ed titled “End U.S. support for this misbegotten and unwinnable war”. CNN did some actual, real journalism for a change with a viral exclusive documenting which American war profiteers were behind some of the more devastating Saudi bombings. And yes, MSNBC finally did cover the violence in Yemen, breaking its year-long silence to report on a US-supplied bomb which killed 40 children with such urgent condemnation of those responsible you’d never know they’d been consistently ignoring such incidents which have been going on for years. Now politicians and celebrities everywhere are shoving the horror of their government facilitating the slaughter of innocents into mainstream attention.


What’s interesting here is that nothing at all has changed except for the coverage. US-supplied bombs have been dropping on marketplaces, hospitals and funerals and slaughtering civilians in far more deadly incidents for years, and the US has also been providing extensive assistance to Saudi airstrikes, as well as attacking Yemeni targets directly. The only thing that has changed is that now it’s being reported with an urgency and volume that is appropriate for such a horrific incident instead of an occasional low-profile mention with little or no mention of responsibility. ...

From what I can see right now, I think what we are witnessing is a clear instance in which alternative media successfully caused the establishment to lose control of the narrative on an important issue. ... The story kept getting pushed toward mainstream consciousness year after year, and eventually the fact that an outlet which upholds itself as the flag bearer of Trump’s opposition has been completely ignoring this administration’s facilitation of war crimes was made viral. At a certain point a Dem-voting audience which is being told day in and day out that Trump presents a unique and unprecedented level of danger to the world will lose trust in the outlets which market themselves to that demographic if they refuse to make a big deal about the fact that this administration is helping tyrants murder busloads of children.


In my opinion, we can safely call this a win for alternative media. The voices who aren’t beholden to the empire and its geopolitical agendas refused to let this story die, and eventually succeeded in overtaking the dominant narrative. Not because media-controlling oligarchs like Brian L Roberts and Jeff Bezos gave them permission to, but because unauthorized truth was spoken and carried by many ordinary people into mainstream consciousness via Facebook shares, Twitter retweets and speaking out loud and proud wherever possible. A people’s information battle was fought and won by the people.

Trump dares 'worst CIA director' Brennan to sue as security row deepens

Donald Trump continued to attack the former CIA director John Brennan on Monday, seemingly in response to the release of a remarkable open letter criticizing the president’s decision last week to revoke Brennan’s security clearance. The letter, signed by 177 former national security officials appointed by both Republicans and Democrats, accused Trump of acting against Brennan because Brennan had criticized him. The signatories stated “our firm belief that the country will be weakened if there is a political litmus test applied before seasoned experts are allowed to share their views”.

In the US intelligence community, revolt against the president is brewing. Monday’s letter followed a similar missive that was released last week by senior figures including six former directors and five former deputy directors of central intelligence and a former director of national intelligence. Trump’s move against Brennan also provoked a stinging Washington Post column by Adm William H McRaven, the leader of the operation to kill Osama Bin Laden.

On Sunday, Brennan threatened to challenge the revocation of his security clearance in court, charging Trump with wielding his power in an attempt to chill free speech.

In a Twitter rant following others about special counsel Robert Mueller and the New York Times, Trump called Brennan – previously a CIA station chief in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; acting director of the National Counterterrorism Center under George W Bush; and homeland security adviser to Barack Obama – a “political ‘hack’”.


Trump went on to accuse the 177 former national security officials who signed the open letter of being motivated by the “big dollars” he said their security clearances afforded them. “Everybody wants to keep their Security Clearance, it’s worth great prestige and big dollars, even board seats, and that is why certain people are coming forward to protect Brennan,” he tweeted. “It certainly isn’t because of the good job he did! He is a political “hack.”

Demanding End to 'Unprecedented' Secrecy, Senators Say Kavanaugh May Have Perjured Himself About Role in Post-9/11 Torture Program

Three Senate Democrats on the Judiciary Committee claimed Thursday that documents suggest "wildly unpopular" U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh lied to lawmakers about his role in the George W. Bush administration's torture program during his 2006 confirmation hearing to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.


The revelation was detailed in a letter to Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) from Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) as well as Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), and came as Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) threatened to sue the National Archives to get records about Kavanaugh's time working as Bush's staff secretary. ... Noting that "although Judge Kavanaugh amassed a substantial record during his five years in the Bush White House, to date, less than 3 percent of his record has been made available to the committee, and 98.4 percent of his record is being withheld from the full Senate and the public.

Have British Spies Been Hacking the EU?

Just after midnight on Aug. 16, I was called by LBC Radio in London for a comment on a breaking story on the front page of The Daily Telegraph about British spies hacking the EU. Even though I had just retired to bed, the story was just too irresistible, but a radio interview is always too short to do justice to such a convoluted tale. Here are some longer thoughts.For those who cannot get past the Telegraph paywall, the gist is that that the European Union has accused the British intelligence agencies of hacking the EU’s side of the Brexit negotiations. Apparently, some highly sensitive and negative EU slides about British Prime Minister Theresa May’s plan for Brexit, the Chequers Plan, had landed in the lap of the British government, which then lobbied the EU to suppress publication.

Of course, this could be a genuine leak from the Brussels sieve, as British sources are claiming (well, they would say that, wouldn’t they?). However, it is plausible that this is the work of the spies, either by recruiting a paid-up agent well placed within the Brussels bureaucracy, or through electronic surveillance. ...

So if GCHQ did indeed hack the EU, it is feasible that the foreign secretary and the prime minister remained ignorant of what was going on, despite being legally required to sign off on such operations. In which case the spies would be running amok. It is also feasible that they were indeed fully briefed, and that would have been proper protocol. GCHQ and the other spy agencies are required to protect “national security and the economic well-being” of Great Britain, and I can certainly see a strong argument could be made that they were doing precisely that (provided they had prior written permission for such a sensitive operation) if they tried to get advance intelligence about the EU’s Brexit strategy.

This argument becomes even more powerful when you consider the problems around the fraught issue of the border between the UK’s Northern Ireland and EU member Ireland, an issue about which the EU is being particularly intransigent. If a deal is not made, the 1998 Good Friday Agreement could be under threat and civil war might break out again in Northern Ireland. You cannot get much more “national security” than that, and GCHQ would be justified in this work, provided it has acquired the necessary legal sign-offs from its political masters. ...

So, perhaps this is indeed a GCHQ hack. However justifiable the move might be under the nebulous concept of “national security,” this event will poison further the already toxic Brexit negotiations. As Angela Merkel famously, if disingenuously, said after the Snowden revelation that the U.S. had hacked her mobile phone: “No spying among friends.” But perhaps this is an outdated concept — and the EU has not been entirely friendly to Brexit Britain.

Greece exits bailout: there are still "long time challenges Greece needs to address"

EU says Greece can 'finally turn the page' as bailout ends

Greece has turned the page to become “a normal” member of the single currency, European Union authorities in Brussels declared as the country finally exited its eight-year bailout programme. ... Marking the official end of the third bailout programme on Monday, Pierre Moscovici, the European commissioner for economic and financial affairs, said Greece was beginning a new chapter after eight “very difficult” years. ...

EU officials say Greece is now “a normal country” because it no longer has a bailout programme with conditions imposed by international creditors. However Athens will face more exacting checks than any other eurozone member, so Brussels can monitor whether the government’s budgets are in line with EU stability and growth targets. Moscovici insisted this “enhanced post-programme surveillance” would be “much lighter” than anything imposed by the troika, the name for the three creditor institutions, which became a byword for Greece’s loss of sovereignty during the economic crisis.

However, away from the official optimism in Brussels and Luxembourg, huge questions remain about how a country scarred by austerity can recover. Almost a fifth of Greece’s working-age population is out of work. By 2023 unemployment is forecast to fall to 14%, far higher than the current eurozone average 0f 8.3%. Meanwhile, youth unemployment remains at 43.6% – the worst in the EU.

Many analysts believe it will take a decade before Greece returns to pre-crisis living standards following a slump in which its economy contracted by 25% and unemployment peaked at 28%. After wages and pensions were slashed in the first bailout, economic output dropped, small businesses folded, suicide rates increased and levels of extreme poverty jumped. The population has fallen by 3% because of emigration and a lower birth rate.

Lula da Silva: “Brazil is Undergoing a Right-Wing Coup”

Oh looky, CNN gets caught out spreading propaganda trying to defend the Koch Brothers' position on Medicare for All:

Nearly Three Days Later, Jake Tapper Admits CNN "Fact Check" on Medicare for All Was, Uh, Not Factual

After nearly three days of constant pressure, clear explanations of basic facts, and bit of healthy shaming, CNN's Jake Tapper on Sunday finally relented to the sheer force of the evidence and admitted that his Medicare for All "fact check"—which aimed to discredit Sen. Bernie Sanders' (I-Vt.) claim that a Koch brothers-funded study showed single-payer would save Americans $2 trillion—was horribly misleading and is in need of a substantial "redo."

The central falsehood of Tapper's video segment, which he has now promised to correct, was his conflation of the American people and the U.S. government. Sanders, New York congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and several policy analysts have pointed out that—according to the Koch-funded Mercatus Center study, authored by Chuck Blahous—the American public would save $2 trillion on healthcare under Sanders' Medicare for All plan. Apparently confused by the difference, Tapper declared in his segment: "Is that true? Did a study funded by the Koch brothers indicate that Medicare for All would actually save the U.S. government [emphasis added] trillions of dollars? No." ...

In an article on Monday, People's Policy Project founder Matt Bruenig—who was the first to point out that the Koch-funded study projected $2 trillion in healthcare savings—argued that Tapper's misleading video is indicative of the broader problem of fact checkers not actually understanding the issue they're analyzing, making them vulnerable to the manipulative claims of corporate-funded right-wing institutions like the Mercatus Center. ... "This is the kind of nonsense we are dealing with here. Tribal affiliations are getting in the way of basic presentations of facts and figures," Bruenig concludes. "The centrist and liberal media brand themselves as truth-tellers, but that's all it is: a brand. When the truth goes against their tribe or ideological priors, they become just as bad as Fox News."

Demanding Wide-Reaching Reforms and an End to Slavery, Inmates in 17 States Plan Prison Strike

Incarcerated Americans in at least 17 states will go on strike this coming week, refusing to perform labor and engaging in sit-ins and hunger strikes to demand major reforms to the country's prison and criminal justice systems. The Nationwide Prison Strike is planned for August 21, the day Nat Turner led an uprising of slaves in 1831, until September 9, the 47th anniversary of the Attica prison rebellion in which more than 40 people were killed.

Organizers of the action, which is endorsed by Jailhouse Lawyers Speak and the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC), have released a list of ten demands for improvements to their living conditions, sentencing policies, and laws that allow for prison slavery.

"All persons imprisoned in any place of detention under United States jurisdiction must be paid the prevailing wage in their state or territory for their labor," reads the list of demands. The 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution allows for "slavery or involuntary servitude...as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted."

Organizers are also calling for "access to rehabilitation programs" for incarcerated people and an end to "Death by Incarceration," or life sentences without the possibility of parole. A spokesperson for the strike called on Americans to support the protest, noting that inmates produce many of the products people use every day in the outside world—including Starbucks packaging, state license plates, and furniture.

ICE Arrests Husband Taking Pregnant Wife to Hospital to Give Birth, Forcing Her to Drive Alone

Activists call for Salesforce boycott over US border patrol contract

Salesforce, the Silicon Valley cloud computing giant, is being targeted by activists hoping to force the company to end its contract with US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) amid accusations that the agency is violating human rights. Organisations including Greenpeace, Demand Progress, New York State Nurses Association and Fight for the Future, an advocacy group which is coordinating the campaign, are threatening to boycott the company if they do not end their contract.

The activists are also calling for a boycott of Salesforce’s flagship Dreamforce conference, to be held in San Francisco in September, and targeting speakers at the conference including former vice-president Al Gore, musician will.i.am, Unilever chief investment officer Jane Moran and Entourage actor Adrian Grenier, asking them to drop out.

CBP is using Salesforce products to manage border activities. The company’s involvement with CBP comes as the Trump administration continues to struggle to clear up the mess left by its policy of separating undocumented migrant children from their families once they have been intercepted.

Horror at TX Detention Center: ICE Guards Separate Fathers & Sons After They Had Just Been Reunited

Pope on sexual abuse: 'We showed no care for the little ones'

Pope Francis has publicly acknowledged the failures of the Roman Catholic church in dealing with sexual abuse by priests, attacking a “culture of death” and deferential “clericalism” that helps perpetuate evil. An unprecedented letter from “His Holiness Pope Francis to the People of God” was issued after almost a week of mounting pressure following the publication of an excoriating report into abuse by priests in Pennsylvania.

According to a Vatican official, it is the first time a pope has written to all of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics about sexual abuse. But some survivors complained the letter lacked concrete proposals and was “too little, too late”.

The letter, published in seven languages, opens with an acknowledgement of suffering endured by children and abuse of power. Francis admits the church has failed to “act in a timely manner” and promises zero tolerance and sanctions. “We have realised that these wounds never disappear and that they require us forcefully to condemn these atrocities and join forces in uprooting this culture of death,” he said. ...

The letter did not propose any specific measures or sanctions against bishops who have been found to cover up abuse or have failed to report it to police or other authorities.

Trump Administration Says Deportable Immigrants Can’t Go to the Courts — Even if Their First Amendment Rights Are Violated

If U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is trying to silence its most vocal critics by singling them out for deportation among the nearly 1 million people in the United States with final orders of removal, is there any check or remedy for that abuse of power? Is there any court, or indeed, any authority at all outside the executive branch, with the power to protect those activists’ First Amendment rights?

No. That was the position articulated by Justice Department lawyers on Tuesday before a panel of judges on the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals in New York City. The hearing was meant to determine whether the court should issue a stay preventing ICE from deporting just such a figure, Ravi Ragbir, executive director of the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City, before he has a chance to assert his constitutional claim in federal court.

Tuesday’s hearing in New York was only a small part of an already complex court battle: As The Intercept reported at the time, Ragbir is one of the plaintiffs — along with the New Sanctuary Coalition, four other immigrant rights groups, and some 79 friend-of-the-court supporters at last count — in a First Amendment lawsuit filed in February accusing ICE officials of targeting activists around the country for deportation, effectively prioritizing the expulsion of its political enemies.

The stakes of the argument are high, and not only for undocumented people, said Alina Das, a professor at New York University Law School and one of Ragbir’s attorneys. “Saying there’s a group of people who can be literally banished from this country for any reason, even if it violates their constitutional rights, creates a vulnerable class, and when their rights aren’t respected, it hurts both them and society as a whole,” she said. “If ICE is given free reign to silence their critics, we are creating an agency that is unaccountable and is permitted to disappear those who are in the best position to educate the public about what this agency is actually doing. That should be a scary prospect for anyone living in this country.”



the horse race



How Ranked Choice Voting Works & Eliminates Election "Spoilers"





the evening greens


Ryan Zinke Uses Climate-Fueled Wildfires to Boost the Timber Industry — and It’s Not the First Time

In an op-ed for USA Today, titled “Wildfires seem unstoppable, but they can be prevented. Here’s how,” Zinke wrote, “Every year we watch our forests burn, and every year there is a call for action. Yet, when action comes, and we try to thin forests of dead and dying timber, or we try to sustainably harvest timber from dense and fire-prone areas, we are attacked with frivolous litigation from radical environmentalists who would rather see forests and communities burn than see a logger in the woods.” On Breitbart News radio on August 11, Zinke doubled down. “We have been held hostage by these environmental terrorist groups that have not allowed public access, that refuse to allow harvest of timber,” he said. “The result is these catastrophic fires that are causing death.” ...

Interspersed between his demands for more tree removal and dismissals of climate science, Zinke compared the wildfire-affected areas to war zones and assured that the government was fighting fire with drones. His rhetoric around so-called environmental terrorists fits in with a broader push to frame environmental organizations as promoters of eco-extremism that threatens critical infrastructure. ...

Zinke’s criticism of environmentalists and public support of forest thinning is not empty rhetoric, nor is this type of politicking new for him. Finding ways to prop up Montana’s struggling timber industry was a frequent activity of Zinke’s during his tenure as the state’s U.S. representative. Now, as interior secretary, Zinke is in charge of overseeing 65 million acres of forests and woodlands managed by the Bureau of Land Management. From his elevated platform, Zinke is pushing the same timber-friendly policies that he did in Congress. In 2015, Zinke co-sponsored legislation that would have gutted environmental protections for forests located on public lands. That bill failed, but it laid the groundwork for similarly severe provisions in the House version of the 2018 farm bill, which is being debated now by members of Congress.

Using some of the same language from Zinke’s bill, the House farm bill would eliminate many of the environmental reviews currently required under the National Environmental Policy Act for timber harvested on public land. “This is an industry wish list,” Paul Spitler, director of wilderness policy for the Wilderness Society, said of the House farm bill. “The changes are sweeping. It is a dramatic rollback of environmental rules.” ...

Timber removal as a means to slow wildfires is a subject of debate among environmentalists, forestry scientists, and land managers. Many foresters assert that a century of too much fire suppression has left forests with an excess of burnable material that intensifies fires, especially under dry conditions. But even advocates for more forest thinning have called Zinke’s approach an opportunistic attempt to use a climate-fueled disaster to support the timber industry. “They’re using these fires as an excuse to increase logging on public lands, and it’s happened before. It happened in the Reagan years, it happened in the Bush years,” said James Agee, a forestry professor emeritus at the University of Washington, who wrote a set of best practices for fuel reduction projects. “Every time the Republicans come into office, you see a shift in this direction.” Agee underlined that forest thinning done wrong can backfire, “You’re opening up the forest to practices that might make the situation worse,” he said.

Summer weather is getting 'stuck' due to Arctic warming

Summer weather patterns are increasingly likely to stall in Europe, North America and parts of Asia, according to a new climate study that explains why Arctic warming is making heatwaves elsewhere more persistent and dangerous. Rising temperatures in the Arctic have slowed the circulation of the jet stream and other giant planetary winds, says the paper, which means high and low pressure fronts are getting stuck and weather is less able to moderate itself.

The authors of the research, published in Nature Communications on Monday, warn this could lead to “very extreme extremes”, which occur when abnormally high temperatures linger for an unusually prolonged period, turning sunny days into heat waves, tinder-dry conditions into wildfires, and rains into floods.

“This summer was where we saw a very strong intensity of heatwaves. It’ll continue and that’s very worrying, especially in the mid-latitudes: the EU, US, Russia and China,” said one of the coauthors, Dim Coumou from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. “Short-term heatwaves are quite pleasant, but longer term they will have an impact on society. It’ll have an affect on agricultural production. Harvests are already down this year for many products. Heatwaves can also have a devastating impact on human health.”

Circulation stalling has long been a concern of climate scientists, though most previous studies have looked at winter patterns. The new paper reviews research on summer trends, where it says there is mounting evidence of planetary wind systems – both low-level storm tracks and higher waves in the troposphere – losing their ability to shift the weather. One cause is a weakening of the temperature gradient between the Arctic and Equator as a result of man-made greenhouse gas emissions. The far north of the Earth is warming two to four times faster than the global average, says the paper, which means there is a declining temperature gap with the central belt of the planet. As this ramp flattens, winds struggle to build up sufficient energy and speed to push around pressure systems in the area between them.

As a result, there is less relief in the form of mild and wet air from the sea when temperatures accumulate on land, and less relief from the land when storms build up in the ocean.

Food waste: alarming rise will see 66 tonnes thrown away every second

The amount of food that is wasted each year will rise by a third by 2030, when 2.1bn tonnes will either be lost or thrown away, equivalent to 66 tonnes per second, according to new analysis. The report by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) warns that the global response to food waste is fragmented and inadequate, and that the problem is growing at an alarming rate. ...

“The scale of the problem is one that will continue to grow while we’re developing our solutions,” said Shalini Unnikrishnan, a partner and managing director at BCG. “As population grows rapidly in certain industrialising parts of the world, like in Asia, consumption is growing very rapidly.” Each year, 1.6bn tonnes of food worth approximately $1.2tn, goes to waste – about one third of the food produced globally.

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that about 815 million of the 7.6 billion people in the world (10.7%), were suffering from chronic undernourishment in 2016.



Also of Interest

Here are some articles of interest, some which defied fair-use abstraction.

Big Banks Were Meant to Gain From Bipartisan Deregulation Bill All Along, Senate Letter Reveals

How Turkey’s Crisis Might Fracture NATO

In Detaining Peter Beinart, Israel Has Declared it No Longer Represents Millions of Jews Overseas

How the 1968 Chicago 'police riot' shocked America and divided the nation

Religious Divisions Threaten to Further Inflame Ukrainian Civil War


A Little Night Music


Lowell Fulson - Don't Drive Me Baby

Lowell Fulson - I've been Mistreated

Lowell Fulson - Love Grows Old

Lowell Fulson - Loving You (Is All I Crave)

Lowell Fulson - I Believe I'll Give It Up

Lowell Fulson - Sinner's Prayer

Lowell Fulson - I'm Sinking

Lowell Fulson - I Want To Make Love To You

Lowell Fulson - Cash Box Boogie

Lowell Fulson - Little Angel

Lowell Fulson - Stoned to the Bone

Lowell Fulsom - Too Many Drivers

Lowell Fulson @ Mark Naftalin's Blue Monday Party



Share
up
22 users have voted.

Comments

JekyllnHyde's picture

It's difficult to trick the Greeks. They're all too familiar with this tactic.

up
20 users have voted.

A riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma

joe shikspack's picture

@JekyllnHyde

yep, the greeks knew what was coming. it was like they had been listening to george carlin or something. i had to run out to the store and pick up some groceries this evening and listened to "the world" (a bbc production carried by my local neoliberal promotion radio station) and they had a feature on greece. they interviewed a greek teacher and the first words out of her mouth about the end of the bailout were, "it's all bullshit."

heh, speaking of george carlin, this turned up in my youtube feed. really well produced:

up
10 users have voted.
lotlizard's picture

@joe shikspack  
NPR = “neoliberal promotion radio” — LOL, good one.

up
9 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@lotlizard

heh, sadly they have earned the title many times over.

up
7 users have voted.

@JekyllnHyde

up
8 users have voted.

They say that there's a broken light for every heart on Broadway
They say that life's a game and then they take the board away
They give you masks and costumes and an outline of the story
And leave you all to improvise their vicious cabaret-- A. Moore

joe shikspack's picture

@Johnny Q

thanks! that's pretty good.

up
4 users have voted.
Arrow's picture

Well it's new to me anyway.
I didn't know of Allan Savory's work before.
Here's the a quote from under this TED talk video. It
s good stuff.

"Desertification is a fancy word for land that is turning to desert," begins Allan Savory in this quietly powerful talk. And terrifyingly, it's happening to about two-thirds of the world's grasslands, accelerating climate change and causing traditional grazing societies to descend into social chaos. Savory has devoted his life to stopping it. He now believes -- and his work so far shows -- that a surprising factor can protect grasslands and even reclaim degraded land that was once desert.

up
12 users have voted.

I want a Pony!

enhydra lutris's picture

@Arrow
some of them.

up
6 users have voted.

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

joe shikspack's picture

@Arrow

heh. i hope that he's right this time. it'd be great to bring back the bison. if we could clear the western public lands of those damned welfare queen cattle ranchers, bison belong there and did an excellent job on the western grasslands for thousands of years.

up
8 users have voted.
enhydra lutris's picture

Unlike RT, Telesur hasn’t been singled-out for a role in laundering disinformation for military intelligence purposes,

Dunno what that is even supposed to mean, but evidence for whatever the hell it is?

up
13 users have voted.

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

joe shikspack's picture

@enhydra lutris

heh, it's an intercept article, authored by sam biddle - so it's going to have a certain amount of stupid in it. in this case, i would guess that since rt has the temerity to point out some unpleasant facts about the u.s. - it's obviously sowing dissent.

up
9 users have voted.
The Aspie Corner's picture

up
6 users have voted.

Modern education is little more than toeing the line for the capitalist pigs.

joe shikspack's picture

@The Aspie Corner

wow, i didn't realize that trumpism had made such a beachhead in canada.

up
3 users have voted.

As I have said over and over, the only people who game and cheat elections are people inside the system. Not Russians in Moscow. Hey, any Russians in Georgia?

Election board proposes shutting down seven of the nine polling locations in an overwhelmingly black rural county not long after Democrats nominated Stacey Abrams, an African American woman, as their gubernatorial candidate.

Georgia election board proposed shutting down seven of the nine polling locations in an overwhelmingly black rural county. It’s the sort of blatantly illegal idea that would have been swiftly dismissed by federal courts in an age when an openly racist president was not appointing judges to the federal bench.
...
According to a letter from the ACLU of Georgia to the Randolph County Board of Elections, over 60 percent of the voters in this county are African American — and one of the polling places the board may close “serves a 96.7% black population.”

And what is the national party worried about?

cnn_russians.PNG

They want the names of anybody who has seen "Russian misinformation".

Can you imagine getting a message basically pointing a finger in your chest you for what you read?

But black voter suppression. Hey, good luck ACLU.

up
14 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@MrWebster

i guess if the good people of georgia want the democrats to pay attention to it, they will have to pay some british ex-spook to put together a dossier demonstrating that somebody named ivan has been mailing instructions to the georgia republican voting guru about how to disenfranchise black voters. Smile

up
5 users have voted.
Arrow's picture

@enhydra lutris to the French.

up
7 users have voted.

I want a Pony!

joe shikspack's picture

@Arrow

yep, i'll skip those new jersey steaks, too. well, unless they are from purebred sparkle ponies. Smile

up
5 users have voted.
Unabashed Liberal's picture

Shok

Hey, Joe & Gang! Hope to drop back by again later this evening. I'm sorta frazzled right now--"not been a great day" is an understatement.

But, wanted to share this podcast, if nothing else. Heard earlier on CNBC; it's a John Harwood interview.

Excerpt--

Harwood: But also Social Security and Medicare, right?

Stivers: The only way we're going to be able to fix Social Security and Medicare is for the two parties to come together — the way that Ronald Reagan did with Tip O'Neill — and figure out how to fix them together. I hope we can do that, I believe it's the right thing to do.

Harwood: Retirement age?

Stivers: We need to come together. I think we need to say, "You give a little, we give a little," and figure out how to sustain Medicare and Social Security into the future. The other thing on Medicare is we have to bend the cost curve on health care.

Harwood: Do you like the Ryan proposal on premium support for Medicare?

Stivers: I voted for it. I think it's a way forward. It's not the only way forward. Instead of dictating the ideas that are acceptable, I'd rather work with Democrats and Republicans and say, "What can we all come together to find acceptable?"

Harwood: Are taxes part of that solution?

Stivers: I think we have to have some change as part of that, whether you eliminate the people in the upper economic end from receiving the benefit, or you have them pay more, or you index the wage, it has to be part of the discussion.

While the corporatist MSM has been hyperventilating, verging on hysteria over 'Russia,' our bipartisan lawmakers have achieved passing a slew of appropriations bill under so-called regular order. Has me worried sick! Some of these bills haven't been passed in this manner for 3 or 4 decades. (I'm trying to get details, but am greatly restricted as to time and Wi-Fi access, since medical facilities don't even allow cell phones in most places, much less hot spot capability.)

Hope to be back with a Tweet, later. For now, Everyone have a nice evening. Stay cool!

Bye

Blue Onyx

"Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong."
~~W. R. Purche

"Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage."--Lao Tzu

up
10 users have voted.

"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it."
--George Bernard Shaw, Irish Dramatist & Socialist
"We [corporations] are the government!" Actor John Colicos (1978)

divineorder's picture

@Unabashed Liberal

up
10 users have voted.

A truth of the nuclear age/climate change: we can no longer have endless war and survive on this planet. Oh sh*t.

Unabashed Liberal's picture

@divineorder

missed reading about JB's Dad (that Joe mentioned); but, want to extend my heartfelt condolences to JB and you. I've been there, and know how difficult it is. Take good care . . .

Blue Onyx

"Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong."
~~W. R. Purche

up
4 users have voted.

"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it."
--George Bernard Shaw, Irish Dramatist & Socialist
"We [corporations] are the government!" Actor John Colicos (1978)

joe shikspack's picture

@Unabashed Liberal

thanks for the interview and for helping us to keep abreast of the actions of our treacherous "representatives."

sorry to hear that today was bad. if you want to bring mr. m up north here for treatment, johns hopkins hospital has great guest wifi. Smile

up
5 users have voted.
Unabashed Liberal's picture

@joe shikspack

Seriously, I know that the healthcare at Johns Hopkins is exceptional. One of my best friends growing up had a little brother who had a couple of specialized surgeries there, when we were college freshman. He was a 'Little Person,' but, like the rest of the family--all were brilliant--he went on to become a National Merit Scholar.

Thought I'd post a couple other things, in case I don't have Wi-Fi, tomorrow. Fingers crossed that they work! One's a chart from a health blog; the other's a Tweet.

20 Proven Happiness Hacks That Will Improve Your Life

Image via: AHealthBlog

and, a Tweet of an adorable (I think) Golden. Here you go,

Pleasantry

Have a good one!

Blue Onyx

"Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong."
~~W. R. Purche

"Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage."--Lao Tzu

up
9 users have voted.

"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it."
--George Bernard Shaw, Irish Dramatist & Socialist
"We [corporations] are the government!" Actor John Colicos (1978)

@Unabashed Liberal I know, crazy and stupid, but scene from greatest dog revenge movie ever made...

up
5 users have voted.
Unabashed Liberal's picture

@MrWebster

than I, since she's a Beagle Mom, but my impression is that they're a good and gentle breed. I've not been around Beagles a whole lot, although my late Brother had one. Problem was, it was while we lived in Alaska; so, we never got to see him for long periods of time. As I recall, though, he had a real sweet and mellow temperament.

Have a good one!

Blue Onyx

"Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong."
~~W. R. Purche

up
4 users have voted.

"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it."
--George Bernard Shaw, Irish Dramatist & Socialist
"We [corporations] are the government!" Actor John Colicos (1978)

divineorder's picture

I’m gradually letting myself accept that Aretha made her transition. One of our favorite people in Santa Fe walked on this summer while we were out traveling, as did jb’s father.

And now Aretha. What a difference her music made in my life. I practiced for hours trying to sing along with her and hit those high notes but with very little success. Thankfully not many ever had to endure my attempts. Save jakkalbessie and a few other unfortunates.

Smile

up
8 users have voted.

A truth of the nuclear age/climate change: we can no longer have endless war and survive on this planet. Oh sh*t.

joe shikspack's picture

@divineorder

i'm so sorry to hear about jb's father, my condolences on her (and your) loss.

yep, i've been listening to my old aretha records for the past several days. fortunately for my family, i just tap my toes.

up
7 users have voted.
Raggedy Ann's picture

Happy Monday ~~ we begin another week of action filled news! I’m almost afraid to read, but was pleasantly surprised to read about Korea. I find it completely normal that the US thinks it has a say in this. After all, our gubmit is the boss of the world. This will get interesting.

So the msm was shamed into reporting on the war in Yemen not because there now exists an incredible famine, not because the Saudi’s decided that the people were no better than the dirt beneath their shoe, but because a bus load of children were innocently returning home from a picnic. Bombed for enjoying an afternoon in the outdoors. Bombed for living.

Maybe more people are waking up. Maybe more people will stand for justice. Maybe more people will regain their humanity.

Have a beautiful evening, everyone! Pleasantry

up
8 users have voted.

"They'll say we're disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is that we are disturbing the war." Howard Zinn

joe shikspack's picture

@Raggedy Ann

i hope you're doing well, all healed up, and that cast thingy is long gone.

I’m almost afraid to read, but was pleasantly surprised to read about Korea. I find it completely normal that the US thinks it has a say in this. After all, our gubmit is the boss of the world.

full spectrum dominance, baby! nobody gets peace unless mr. dulles the mic says they can have it.

Maybe more people are waking up. Maybe more people will stand for justice. Maybe more people will regain their humanity.

it would not be too soon. it seems like the younger folks are surprisingly hip to what's going on, it remains to be seen if they will rise up into a mass movement, though.

up
9 users have voted.
Raggedy Ann's picture

@joe shikspack
rise up, those pesky millennials, it will be interesting to see which straw broke that camel’s back. I want a front row seat.

Trying not to whine - my foot is not healing so four more weeks and a bone stimulator. Sigh.

up
6 users have voted.

"They'll say we're disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is that we are disturbing the war." Howard Zinn

Azazello's picture

So Brennan was CIA chief-of-station in Riyadh. What does that tell you ? That he's as dirty as they come, up to his asshole in it. And they want to make him a hero, an upstanding, patriotic member of the "intelligence community", keeping us safe and defending our freedoms.
Sheeeit.
Public companies being taken private ?
It's another step on the road to feudalism. The strange case of the shrinking stock markets
Realpolitik from Pepe Escobar: Economic war on Iran is war on Eurasia integration

up
11 users have voted.
divineorder's picture

@Azazello check that my wallet is still there.

up
9 users have voted.

A truth of the nuclear age/climate change: we can no longer have endless war and survive on this planet. Oh sh*t.

joe shikspack's picture

@Azazello

yep, it seems that democrats and some share of "progressives" are buying the owners propaganda - hook, line and sinker. it's pretty disgusting to watch.

i wonder how much the trend of large companies going private is a function of the vast concentrations of wealth at the upper end of the spectrum having nothing else large enough to purchase with all of their ill-gotten gains.

pepe seems to be barking up the right tree.

up
8 users have voted.
divineorder's picture

up
9 users have voted.

A truth of the nuclear age/climate change: we can no longer have endless war and survive on this planet. Oh sh*t.

joe shikspack's picture

@divineorder

that is indeed good news!

up
5 users have voted.
The Aspie Corner's picture

up
3 users have voted.

Modern education is little more than toeing the line for the capitalist pigs.

Bisbonian's picture

@The Aspie Corner (the three A's of educational anemia) and several other states, already have this law on the books. I have to admit, I've never seen a posted sign, here in Arizona.

up
5 users have voted.

"I’m a human being, first and foremost, and as such I’m for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.” —Malcolm X

joe shikspack's picture

up
5 users have voted.
Not Henry Kissinger's picture

Evening Joe,

Phil Mudd melts down about losing his security clearance:

So much fun to watch these emotional toddlers finally getting their lollipops taken away. The change on his face at 3:58 is priceless.

So sure Phil: as if someone as plainly unstable as you qualifies as a sober caretaker of the nation's secrets.

If you didn't already deserve to lose your clearance, you sure do now.

up
14 users have voted.

The drama of the deep state in full factional meltdown makes Mario Puzo look like a dime store hack.

joe shikspack's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger

heh, after watching mudd's performance, i can't imagine him having anything remotely useful to contribute to any discussion of security matters.

up
10 users have voted.
Azazello's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger
That guy Mudd is a raving loon. I was disappointed that he didn't actually froth at the mouth, that there was no flying spittle.
The "moderator" is a tool.

up
9 users have voted.
Unabashed Liberal's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger @Not Henry Kissinger

Blue Onyx

"Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong."
~~W. R. Purche

up
6 users have voted.

"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it."
--George Bernard Shaw, Irish Dramatist & Socialist
"We [corporations] are the government!" Actor John Colicos (1978)

lotlizard's picture

Welcome to your Authentic Indian Experience™
by Rebecca Roanhorse (Apex magazine, August 2017)

up
4 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@lotlizard

interesting story, thanks!

up
0 users have voted.

In the USA if you are unfortunate enough to live a long time but need 100% custodial care, Medicaid will take all your assets including a family home.

Does National Health do this too? Or is it covered by the government without forfeiture of assets?

As for myself, I hope I am lucid enough and have enough guts to swallow all my heart pills together, washing them down with Bourbon when the time comes. It hasn't come for me ... yet, but it has for my sister0in0law. Unfortunately she is too far gone in Alzheimer's to decide anything or even feed or bathe herself.

up
0 users have voted.