The Evening Blues - 10-19-21



eb1pt12


The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Peetie Wheatstraw

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features blues piano and guitar player Peetie Wheatstraw. Enjoy!

Peetie Wheatstraw - Crazy With The Blues

"A strike is an incipient revolution. Many large revolutions have grown out of a small strike."

-- William Dudley "Big Bill" Haywood


News and Opinion

John Deere Worker: Witnessing REBIRTH of US Labor Movement

Worth a full read:

The Strike Wave Shows the Tight Labor Market Is Ready to Pop

Shortly before midnight on Wednesday, production workers at a John Deere facility in Waterloo, Iowa, started shutting down the plant, quenching the furnaces in the foundry. ... The 10,000 workers who walked off the job are striking Deere for the first time in 35 years. They join 2,000 hospital workers striking in Buffalo, New York; 1,400 production workers for Kellogg’s in four states; 450 steelworkers in Huntington, West Virginia; and a one-day walk-off of 2,000 telecommunications workers in California, all since October 1. One thousand Alabama coal miners, 700 nurses in Massachusetts, 400 whiskeymakers in Kentucky, and 200 bus drivers in Reno, Nevada, were already on strike, in addition to recently settled strikes by 2,000 carpenters in Washington, 600 Frito-Lay workers in Kansas, and 1,000 Nabisco factory workers at five plants across the country. And there are tens of thousands of workers waiting in the wings, with 37,000 health care workers at Kaiser in Oregon, California, and Hawaii, who have either authorized a strike or are about to as well as several large unions of academic workers also readying to strike. ...

This strike wave isn’t the 1940s, when one in 10 U.S. workers went on strike in the space of a year. But it isn’t the labor lull of the 2010s, either, when large strike activity in the private sector fell toward zero. Today, workers are increasingly militant—that is, unwilling to accept bad terms of employment—but they are not particularly organized. With union density at a historical nadir, the unions are playing an inspirational role, but they aren’t the only source of the action. What we’re seeing now is strike activity beginning to rise from a decadeslong trough as the “essential” worker—a new category of worker born of the coronavirus pandemic—challenges the boss to make good on that designation. It’s not just workers taking note of the potential power shift; Wall Street analysts also sounded the alarm on Deere’s stock price this week, with one analyst downgrading projections by 25 percent. In a section of a proprietary report titled “Pendulum of Power Has Swung,” the analyst wrote: “Members, in addition to wanting concessions from Deere regarding a new 6-yr labor agreement, could also be tying these negotiations in with their desire to change how UAW national leadership is elected, and a broader national (and if global) enhanced activism by labor as they see their increasing power in a tight labor market.” ...

Today, workers’ economic resistance—whether through organized strikes or in the refusal of dangerous, underpaid, and unappealing jobs—is shaping the political agenda. Many of the policies in the Democrats’ $3.5 trillion budget proposal would pursue the same ends as workers’ actions but in the realm of social policy. Proposed subsidies for home health care and child care, the child tax credit, Medicaid expansion, and investments in housing and green energy would all indirectly support workers’ power. Either by increasing demand for labor further or by alleviating some of the grotesque social pressures that have forced employees to accept whatever terms employers offered them, the federal government would strengthen workers’ bargaining position. When Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va)., warns against becoming an “entitlement society,” what he is opposing is the shift in labor market power that such policy measures help secure. ...

Ultimately, the issue in dispute across these strikes is whether American workers can be muscled back into the punishing labor market conditions of the pandemic and the several decades that preceded Covid-19 that made the pandemic so brutal within the insecure and unequal American workplace. Will nonunion workers settle for low wages and dangerous conditions? Will union workers continue to ratify two-tier contracts with incremental givebacks to employers? When the U.S. worker “goes back” to work, what kind of economy will they be going back to?

This is precisely the same issue as the one roiling Capitol Hill right now: whether Congress’s role is to return us to a pre-pandemic status quo or to intervene on the side of a battered working class.

Krystal Ball: Biden SILENT on Strikes After Claiming to be Most Pro-Union President Ever

‘The court of God will be waiting for him’: Iraqis react to Colin Powell’s death

For many Iraqis, Colin Powell was the face of the US invasion which caused an estimated 200,000 deaths, unleashing nearly two decades of domestic chaos and precipitating turmoil throughout the region. His death, at the age of 84, was unlamented by many in a country still grappling with the aftermath of a disastrous occupation and an Islamist insurgency that followed the 2003 war – a conflict that Powell himself was later to acknowledge as a stain on his legacy.

In Iraq’s northern city of Mosul, which bore the brunt of the insurrection by the Islamic State terror group, eulogies for the former general were brusque and often unforgiving. “America made Iraq worse because they destroyed the entire country, and they were the reason people from outside Iraq came to control Iraq,” said Khaled Jamal, a resident of the city. “He introduced chaos to Iraq,” he said of Powell whose speech to the UN general assembly laid out the flawed US case for war. “He was an important part of this, because he was the main liar who gave unreliable reasons for America to attack Iraq.”

A second Mosul resident, Suha Mutlak gave a bleak assessment of Powell’s UN speech. “He was the reason my cousins were killed and that my family needed to live in camps for three years,” she said. “What sort of a victory was this? Not for them and not for us.”

Politicians remained largely mute – as did Iraqi media. Social media, on the other hand, lit up with critiques of Powell’s role in making the case to invade. ...

A man who became synonymous with the Iraqi anger towards Powell’s former boss, George W Bush, took to Twitter to offer a eulogy. “I am saddened by the death of Colin Powell without being tried for his crimes in Iraq,” said Muntader al-Zaidi, who in 2008 threw his shoes at Bush at a press conference in Baghdad. “But I am sure that the court of God will be waiting for him.”

A Reluctant Warrior? An Examination of Gen. Colin Powell’s Bloody Legacy from Iraq to Latin America

Also see: The New Chinese Wonder Weapon Which Likely Isn't One

US ‘very concerned’ despite China denials over hypersonic missile

The United States is “very concerned” about China’s development of hypersonic technology, the US disarmament ambassador, Robert Wood, has said, after reports that Beijing had recently launched a hypersonic missile with a nuclear capacity. “We are very concerned by what China has been doing on the hypersonic front,” Robert Wood told reporters in Geneva.

The Financial Times reported on Saturday that Beijing had launched a nuclear-capable missile in August that circled the Earth at low orbit before narrowly missing its target. Citing multiple sources, the FT claimed the hypersonic missile was carried by a Long March rocket and that the test had been kept under wraps. “We just don’t know how we can defend against that type of technology. Neither does China or Russia,” Wood told reporters.

But Beijing said the report was inaccurate, and the exercise was a test of reusable technology that could reduce the cost of launching spacecraft. “According to my understanding, this test is a routine spacecraft test, used to test a reusable spacecraft technology,” the Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told reporters in a regular press briefing. “This could provide a convenient and cheap way for humans to use space for peaceful purposes.” ...

The reported launch of a hypersonic missile puzzled some observers in Washington. One US official told the FT: “We have no idea how they did this.” The FT report said Beijing’s progress in the field had “caught US intelligence by surprise”.

'Needlessly Provocative': U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin Rebuked for Again Opening NATO Door to Ukraine and Georgia

Anti-war advocates on Monday warned that U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin would be making a dangerous strategic blunder if he suggests that Ukraine and Georgia have a welcome mat toward full integration into the NATO military alliance—a move critics say would dramatically increase the risk of war between Washington, D.C. and Moscow.

According to The Washington Times, Austin will signal that NATO is holding an "open door" for Georgia and Ukraine as he visits the two nations and Romania this week.

"We are reassuring and reinforcing the sovereignty of countries that are on the front lines of Russian aggression," a senior U.S. defense official told reporters ahead of Austin's trip.

Critics like Matt Duss, foreign policy to Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), renewed long-standing warnings against potential NATO membership for the two former Soviet republics.

Duss, writing on his personal Twitter account, categorized the move as "needlessly provocative," one that "will almost certainly receive wall to wall applause in DC."

According to Antiwar.com contributing editor Daniel Larison:

Encouraging Ukraine and Georgia to believe that NATO membership is still in the cards for them is a serious mistake. It is not surprising that the Biden administration is maintaining the status quo on this issue, but it is a missed opportunity to reverse some of the damage that was done back in 2008 when this dangerous promise was first made to these aspirant states.

Keeping the "door" open to NATO expansion antagonizes Russia, and it strings Ukraine and Georgia along for no good reason. Many European allies will not support bringing these states into the alliance, and there is no compelling reason to add them.

Both countries would be extremely difficult if not impossible to defend in the event of a conflict, and they already have Russian or Russian-backed forces on their territory. Even if they were model democracies, which they most certainly are not, they would be poor candidates for the alliance.

Under Article 5 of the NATO charter—also known as the "collective defense" clause—the United States and other alliance members would be treaty-bound to fight Russia should war break out with Georgia or Ukraine. Russian troops invaded and occupied Abkhazia and South Ossetia in Georgia in 2008, and Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula in 2014. Ukraine is also widely considered the ancient cradle of Russian civilization.

Critics have long argued that NATO, formed in 1949 as a mutual defense pact against the Soviet Union, is a provocative anachronism in the absence of any threat from a long-defunct Warsaw Pact, and should be dissolved.

Peace advocates have greeted each actual or proposed enlargement of NATO—which currently counts 10 former Soviet or Warsaw Pact republics as members, and which has crept steadily eastward since its inception—by warning that such expansion threatens world peace.

"After decades of overreach, the Biden administration now faces a stark choice," writes Stephen Wertheim of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, "commit to fight for Ukraine, creating a serious risk of war with Russia, or admit that NATO expansion has come to an overdue end."

Austin's trip comes as Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced Monday that his country's government was suspending its diplomatic mission to NATO and closing the alliance's Moscow office. The move follows last week's expulsion of eight Russian staff members from Russia's mission in Brussels amid espionage allegations.

Iran, Venezuela to sign 20-year cooperation accord

Iran will sign a 20-year cooperation accord with Venezuela when President Nicolas Maduro visits Tehran “in the next few months”.

In a joint press conference with his Venezuelan counterpart Felix Plasencia in Tehran on Monday, Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian announced the news and added that a joint economic cooperation commission, which will be formed in Iran’s capital before the end of the year which, will finalise the details of the agreement.

“All of this confirms that relations between the two countries are on the rise,” Amirabdollahian said, adding that some of the agreements made earlier on cooperation on a wide range of issues, including energy, are currently being implemented.

Plasencia’s visit to Iran came shortly after Reuters news agency reported on Saturday that an Iran-flagged supertanker, carrying two million barrels of heavy crude provided by the Venezuelan state-run oil firm, was about to set sail for Iran.

The vessel had reportedly arrived in Venezuela last month carrying 2.1 million barrels of Iranian condensate.[condensate used in refining process -js] The exchange was part of a swap deal between the two countries that defies unilateral United States sanctions on both states.

Guantanamo detainee can pen letter on CIA mistreatment, US says

The Biden administration has informed the US Supreme Court that it would allow a Guantanamo Bay detainee to testify in a letter about being mistreated by the CIA. In a filing to the Supreme Court filed on Friday, the US government said Abu Zubaydah can “send a declaration” to Polish investigators looking into the alleged torture of the suspect at a CIA black site in their country.

Zubaydah’s letter may be redacted to conceal information that “could prejudice the security of the United States”, acting Solicitor General Brian Fletcher told the top court. “That review would not prevent him from describing his treatment while in CIA custody,” Fletcher wrote.

Zubaydah’s lawyers have filed a complaint against Poland in Polish and European courts for its role in the harsh treatment he received from the CIA while detained at a secret site in the country. As part of the case, Zubaydah is seeking testimonies from James Elmer Mitchell and John Jessen, known as the architects of the CIA’s post-9/11 enhanced interrogation programme. The US government has rejected the request, saying that interviewing the contractors could lead to revealing “state secrets”. After legal battles in the lower courts, the case has made it to the US Supreme Court.

Last week, Supreme Court justices questioned why Zubaydah cannot testify for himself.

After CIA Plot Revealed, Press Freedom Coalition Says DOJ Must Drop Assange Case

A coalition of more than two dozen press freedom groups on Monday intensified an earlier call demanding the U.S. Department of Justice drop its charges against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, saying the demand is now even more urgent due to recent reports that the CIA plotted to kidnap—and possibly kill—the journalist.

In a letter sent Friday to Attorney General Merrick Garland, groups including the Knight First Amendment Institute, Committee to Protect Journalists, Freedom of the Press Foundation, and Reporters Without Borders said the prosecution of Assange by the U.S. government is "a threat to press freedom around the globe."

"We appreciate that the government has a legitimate interest in protecting bona fide national security interests, but the proceedings against Mr. Assange jeopardize journalism that is crucial to democracy," wrote the organizations. "In our view, a precedent created by prosecuting Assange could be used against publishers and journalists alike, chilling their work and undermining freedom of the press."

Meet Joe Manchin, entitled asshole. Much more detail at the link.

Joe Manchin demands work requirements for child tax credits, while he benefits from and supports tax preferences for work-free income.

West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin is reportedly demanding new work requirements for families to qualify for the child tax credit. At the same time, Manchin may be enjoying a windfall from loopholes that provide the idle rich special tax preferences for passive income reaped without doing any work. Manchin has publicly boasted of doing zero labor for his family’s coal company that has nonetheless been paying him hundreds of thousands of dollars annually and may be providing him preferential tax breaks on that passive, work-free income. Manchin has also previously supported legislation to expand tax breaks for heirs to vast family fortunes, and those benefits would flow to wealthy scions even if they are not working and they refuse to get a job.

The situation spotlights a hypocrisy now baked into America’s oligarchic politics: Politicians frequently demand draconian work requirements for programs that benefit working-class families, while those same politicians rarely apply such restrictions to tax preferences that enrich themselves, their families and their donors. As nearly one in five families have seen their life savings eliminated during the COVID-19 pandemic, the child tax credit battle makes the elitism explicit: Manchin is pressing for restrictions that could deny the benefit to 190,000 West Virginians, even as he’s expressed no concern about — and may be personally benefiting from — tax breaks rewarding income gleaned from doing no labor at all.

Axios this weekend reported that Manchin has gone full Bond Movie Villain, demanding “a firm work requirement” and means testing for the child tax credit that has significantly reduced poverty, and that has supported more than 346,000 children in his home state. Manchin has taken time away from hosting parties on his luxury yacht to tell the press that he’s worried about “our economy, or basically our society, moving towards an entitlement mentality.”

In addition to the work requirement, Manchin is also demanding that the program only help families making less than $60,000. Earlier this month, he explained his thinking: “If you’re gonna target, target to people that need it the most, the working.” But adding a work requirement to the child tax credit would punish the poorest kids, and it is unlikely to impact their parents’ labor force participation, according to research from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and a recent paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research.

As Manchin continues deriding an “entitlement mentality” from the deck of his yacht, most of Manchin’s annual earnings come from sources that do not require him to do any work: He has been raking in hundreds of thousands of dollars each year from corporate dividends and a sprawling stock portfolio, according to his financial disclosures.

Congress Threatens To JAIL Bezos For Lies

Trial begins of three white Americans in death of Black jogger

Trial of three white men accused of murdering Ahmaud Arbery begins

The trial of three white men accused of pursuing and murdering Ahmaud Arbery in one of Georgia’s most notorious racial killings began on Monday with jury selection, a process the judge estimated could take at least two weeks. Jury duty notices were mailed to 1,000 people in Glynn county, about one in every 85 adult residents, in an attempt to secure an unbiased panel of 12 plus four alternates for the trial of Travis McMichael, his father Greg and their friend William “Roddie” Bryan.

Selection got under way on Monday morning amid a heavy police presence outside the county superior court in Brunswick, south-eastern Georgia.

The McMichaels are accused of chasing down Arbery, who was Black, in a pickup truck as he went for a run in February 2020. Bryan allegedly joined the chase and took cellphone footage of Travis McMichael shooting Arbery, 25, with a shotgun at close range. All three deny murder.

That so many jury notices were sent, with 600 required to show up at court on Monday, and the remainder on standby for a week’s time, indicates the sensitivity of the case. Adding to the controversy was the indictment last month of its original prosecutor, Jackie Johnson, who is accused of protecting the men, one of whom, Greg McMichael, was a former employee.

Court officials intend to complete the trial in Glynn county, but acknowledge the challenge of seating an impartial jury in a case in which the suspects and victim lived within two miles of each other, and which attracted international attention and a federal hate crime investigation.



the horse race



Hat tip to Snoopy. A significant portion of this paywalled article is available on Zerohedge. Here's an extract:

Greenwald: Civil Liberties Are Being Trampled By Exploiting "Insurrection" Fears

Almost immediately after the Capitol riot, some of the most influential Democratic lawmakers — Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and House Homeland Security Committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS), who also now chairs the Select 1/6 Committee — demanded that any participants in the protest be placed on the no-fly list, long regarded as one of the most extreme civil liberties assaults from the first War on Terror. And at least some of the 1/6 protesters have been placed on that list: American citizens, convicted of no crime, prohibited from boarding commercial airplanes based on a vague and unproven assessment, from unseen and unaccountable security state bureaucrats, that they are too dangerous to fly. ...

With more than 600 people now charged in connection with the events of 1/6, not one person has been charged with conspiracy to overthrow the government, incite insurrection, conspiracy to commit murder or kidnapping of public officials, or any of the other fantastical claims that rained down on them from media narratives. No one has been charged with treason or sedition. Perhaps that is because, as Reuters reported in August, “the FBI has found scant evidence that the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol was the result of an organized plot to overturn the presidential election result.” Yet these defendants are being treated as if they were guilty of these grave crimes of which nobody has been formally accused, with the exact type of prosecutorial and judicial overreach that criminal defense lawyers and justice reform advocates have long railed against.

Dozens of the 1/6 defendants have been denied bail, thus being imprisoned for months without having been found guilty of anything. Many are being held in unusually harsh and bizarrely cruel conditions, causing a federal judge on Wednesday to hold “the warden of the D.C. jail and director of the D.C. Department of Corrections in contempt of court,” and then calling on the Justice Department "to investigate whether the jail is violating the civil rights of dozens of detained Jan. 6 defendants.” Some of the pre-trial prison protocols have been so punitive that even Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) — who calls the 1/6 protesters "domestic terrorists” — denounced their treatment as abusive: “Solitary confinement is a form of punishment that is cruel and psychologically damaging,” Warren said, adding: “And we’re talking about people who haven’t been convicted of anything yet.” Warren also said she is "worried that law enforcement officials are deploying it to 'punish' the Jan. 6 defendants or to 'break them so that they will cooperate.”

The few 1/6 defendants who have thus far been sentenced after pleading guilty have been subjected to exceptionally punitive sentences, the kind liberal criminal justice reform advocates have been rightly denouncing for years. Several convicted of nothing more than trivial misdemeanors are being sentenced to real prison time; last week, Michigan's Robert Reeder pled guilty to “one count of parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building” yet received a jail term of 3 months, with the judge admitting that the motive was to “send a signal to the other participants in that riot… that they can expect to receive jail time.”

Meanwhile, long-controversial SWAT teams are being routinely deployed to arrest 1/6 suspects in their homes, and long-time liberal activists denouncing these tactics have suddenly decided they are appropriate for these Trump supporters. That prosecutors are notoriously overzealous in their demands for harsh prison time is a staple of liberal discourse, but now, an Obama-appointed judge has repeatedly doled out sentences to 1/6 defendants that are harsher and longer than those requested by DOJ prosecutors, to the applause of liberals. In sum, these defendants are subjected to one of the grossest violations of due process: they are being treated as if they are guilty of crimes — treason, sedition, insurrection, attempted murder, and kidnapping — which not even the DOJ has accused them of committing. And the fundamental precept of any healthy justice system — namely, punishment for citizens is merited only once they have been found guilty of crimes in a court of law — has been completely discarded.



the evening greens


Steven Donziger Will Go To UNSAFE Prison Unless AG Merrick Garland Steps In

‘This is our last chance’: Biden urged to act as climate agenda hangs by a thread

With furious environmental activists at the gates of the White House, and congressional Democrats fretting that a priceless opportunity to tackle catastrophic global heating may be slipping away, Joe Biden is facing mounting pressure over a climate agenda that appears to be hanging by a thread.

Biden’s allies have warned that time is running perilously short, both politically and scientifically, for the US to enact sweeping measures to slash planet-heating emissions and spur other major countries to do the same. Failure to do so will escalate what scientists have said are “irreversible” climate impacts such as disastrous heatwaves, floods, wildfires and a mass upheaval of displaced people.

The administration’s multitrillion-dollar social spending package, widely considered the most comprehensive climate legislation ever put forward in the US, must survive razor-thin Democratic majorities in Congress and, the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, has vowed, pass in time for crucial UN climate talks in Scotland that begin in about two weeks.

Embedded in the measure are plans to dramatically cut carbon emissions warming the planet and fueling climate disasters, a potentially historic set of policies that Pelosi has said would serve as “a model for the world”. But the 31 October deadline for passing the spending package and a smaller companion infrastructure bill appears increasingly ambitious as negotiations drag on between the White House, Democratic leaders and a pair of centrist holdouts in the Senate. ...

The prospect of the world’s leading economic power arriving in Glasgow with no domestic policy to cut emissions will make it harder to convince other major emitters, primarily China, to do more at a time when governments are collectively failing to avert unlivable global heating.

Worth a full read:

Factory farms of disease: how industrial chicken production is breeding the next pandemic

One day last December, 101,000 chickens at a gigantic farm near the city of Astrakhan in southern Russia started to collapse and die. Tests by the state research centre showed that a relatively new strain of lethal avian flu known as H5N8 was circulating, and within days 900,000 birds at the Vladimirskaya plant were hurriedly slaughtered to prevent an epidemic. Avian flu is the world’s other ongoing pandemic and H5N8 is just one strain that has torn through thousands of chicken, duck and turkey flocks across nearly 50 countries including Britain in recent years and shows no sign of stopping.

But the Astrakhan incident was different. When 150 workers at the farm were tested, five women and two men were found to have the disease, albeit mildly. It was the first time that H5N8 had been known to jump from birds to humans.

The World Health Organization (WHO) was alerted but, this being at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, little attention was paid even when Anna Popova, chief consumer adviser to the Russian Federation, went on TV to warn “with a degree of probability” that human-to-human transmission of H5N8 would evolve soon and that work should start immediately on developing a vaccine.

Global attention is fixed on the origins of Covid-19, either in nature or from a laboratory, but eight or more variants of avian flu, all of which are able to infect and kill humans and are potentially more severe than Covid-19, now regularly rattle around the world’s factory farms barely noticed by governments.

There have been no further reports of human H5N8 infections in 2021, but concern last week turned to China, where another type of avian flu known as H5N6 has infected 48 people since it was first identified in 2014. Most cases have been linked to people working with farmed birds, but there has been a spike in recent weeks and more than half of all the people infected have died, suggesting that H5N6 is gathering pace, mutating and extremely dangerous. ...

Governments and the £150bn-a-year poultry and livestock industries emphasise how intensive farming is generally extremely safe and now essential for providing fast-growing populations with protein, but scientific evidence shows that stressful, crowded conditions drive the emergence and spread of many infectious diseases, and act as an “epidemiological bridge” between wildlife and human infections. ...

Wild birds are routinely blamed by governments and industry for spreading avian flu along migratory routes, but evidence is mounting that intensive farms are potential “mixing pots” for new, deadly viruses.

'Policy of Death': Amazon Guardians Sue Ecuador's President Over Oil, Mining Decrees

In a bid to halt what one Indigenous leader called a "policy of death," communities from Ecuador's Amazon region on Monday sued the country's right-wing president, who is planning a major expansion of fossil fuel extraction and mining that threatens millions of acres of pristine rainforest and the survival of native peoples.

In the first of a series of lawsuits against President Guillermo Lasso, Indigenous nations, groups, and advocates allege that Executive Decree 95—which aims to double the country's oil production to one million barrels per day by deregulating the fossil fuel industry—violates their internationally recognized right to free, prior, and informed consultation and consent.

Lasso, a former banker who defeated progressive economist Andrés Arauz in a second-round runoff election in April, has also said he wants to make mining one of Ecuador's leading income sources.

Monday's lawsuit will be followed by a second suit against Executive Decree 151, which loosens environmental controls to expedite foreign mining companies' entry into the Amazon region against the wishes of Indigenous peoples. The plaintiffs are demanding Ecuador's Constitutional Court strike down both decrees.

"The Ecuadorean government sees in our territory only resource interests," Waorani of Pastaza (CONCONAWEP) President Nemonte Nenquimo said outside the Quito court, according to Reuters. "Our territory is our decision and we'll never allow oil or mining companies to enter and destroy our home and kill our culture."

Fukushima: Japan’s new PM won’t delay release of contaminated water into ocean

Japan’s new prime minister, Fumio Kishida, has said that there can be no delay to plans to release contaminated water from the wrecked Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant into the sea, despite opposition from fishers and neighbouring countries. Kishida, who made his first trip to the plant at the weekend since becoming prime minister last month, said every effort would be made to reassure local people that disposing of the water in the Pacific Ocean was safe.

The wastewater, which is pumped up from reactor basements and treated to remove all but one radioactive material, has built up at the site since the plant suffered a triple meltdown in March 2011.

“I felt strongly that the water issue is a crucial one that should not be pushed back,” Kishida told reporters after being shown around by the plant’s operator, Tokyo Electric Power. More than one million tonnes of water are being stored in 1,000 tanks at the site, and Tepco has warned that space will run out late next year.

The government and Tepco said in April that work to release the heavily diluted water would begin in the spring of 2023 and take decades to complete.

The move is opposed by nearby fishing communities which say it will undo years of hard work rebuilding their industry’s reputation since the plant was struck by a huge tsunami in March 2011, soon after Japan’s north-east coast was rocked by a magnitude-9 earthquake.


Also of Interest

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

Psyops

Creator Of World’s Most Effective Anti-War Meme Dead At 84

Behind Colin Powell’s Legend – My Lai

Contradicting Iran, EU Says No Nuclear Deal Talks in Brussels

After Corbyn, Israel Lobby Turns Its Guns on UK Academia

The John Deere Strike: Organized Labor’s Turning Point?

Manchin Sparks Fury With Demands for Work Requirement, $60K Income Cap on Child Tax Credit

Another Fed Bank President’s Financial Disclosures Fail the Smell Test

Haaland Urged to Sign Order to Halt Extinction Crisis

EPA unveils new strategy to address US contamination of ‘forever’ chemicals

‘We want sun’: the battle for solar power in Puerto Rico

Starbucks, Dollar General CAUGHT In Crazy Anti-Union Plots

DC Media Giant To Require 'Israel, Free Market, EU' Pledge

Canada's First Nations peoples seek truth and justice after remains of children found

Andrew Yang: Forward Party Aims To TAKE DOWN The Duopoly, LASER-FOCUSED On 2022 Ballot Initiatives

Ryan Grim: Joe Manchin Pushing To DRIVE UP Child Poverty While His Own Children THRIVE Off Nepotism

Kim Iversen: Supply Chain Backlog SPELLS CATASTROPHIC Outcome For Offshore Manufacturing

Supreme Court BACKS The Blue, UPHOLDS Qualified Immunity Protections For Law Enforcement

Sanders, Manchin MEET Amid Spending Bill STALEMATE: "We're Talking"


A Little Night Music

Peetie Wheatstraw - Police Station Blues

Peetie Wheatstraw - Devil's Son-In-Law

Peetie Wheatstraw - More Good Whiskey Blues

Peetie Wheatstraw - King Of Spades

Peetie Wheatstraw - Gangster's Blues

Peetie Wheatstraw - C & A Train Blues

Peetie Wheatstraw - Long Time Ago Blues

Peetie Wheatstraw - Working Man (Doing The Best I Can)

Peetie Wheatstraw - Stomp


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joe shikspack's picture

posting a little earlier than usual today because i have some things to do this afternoon/evening. i'll catch up with you later this evening.

have a good one!

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12 users have voted.
CB's picture

just think: with
- 4 U.S. presidents
- 20 years
- 2 trillion dollars
- 2,400 soldiers' lives...
the regime of Afghanistan changes from Taliban to... Taliban

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11 users have voted.
QMS's picture

@CB

shows a beautiful bridge erected by the Chinese.
Amazing structure in its own right.
Is the reason the Chinese are the US newest enemy
perhaps the fact that they are able to invest in infrastructure
while our own bridges are falling down, in need of repairs?

Embarrassing contrast, if one were able to compare the relative
value of our 'economy' against a much greater one that is working
for the people. A shame more people can't see it.

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joe shikspack's picture

@CB

When you feel life is going nowhere,

some days the best you can do is admire the fine weaving techniques used in making the handbasket.

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CB's picture

@joe shikspack
and where am I going?

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3 users have voted.
Lookout's picture

on we go...marching unto war...

seems there's no escape hatch...

Be well!

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10 users have voted.

“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

QMS's picture

@Lookout

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8 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@Lookout

well, at least major kong appears to be enjoying the ride. Smile

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4 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

The Ford and Carnegie foundations. That’s when she started spouting deep state propaganda on Russia Gate and once had a lead terrorist on to talk about the Syrian gas attacks. That’s when I found out where her money came from.. but not why she took it. The consortium article is a good read. Don’t any of the journalists that sold out for millions have any shame for doing it? And many of the democrat groups that formed up after Bernie are taking money from Soros.

Just got sent this: nice timing.

Occupy democrats just tweeted out support for Bannon to be arrested by Garland for ignoring the subpoena. Will anyone tell democrats that they don’t have the authority to get private citizens phone records and the other info they want? Garland perhaps? It’s so mind boggling that so many on the left have changed so much in such a short time.

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10 users have voted.

In a free country civil liberties are not only for certain groups.
So this is how liberty dies . . . with thunderous applause.
The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

@snoopydawg You can bet discussion of the report will be censored on major social media outlets.

Pfizer’s Power

Public Citizen has identified several unredacted Pfizer contracts that describe the outcome of these negotiations. The contracts offer a rare glimpse into the power one pharmaceutical corporation has gained to silence governments, throttle supply, shift risk and maximize profits in the worst public health crisis in a century. We describe six examples from around the world below.

I was surprised but WaPo had an article on the just released report. Not a good take.

In secret vaccine contracts with governments, Pfizer took hard line in push for profit, report says

I am sure the contracts with various counters happened before the need for booster shots and the vaccine less than stellar results coming out of Israel. Brazil has a contract for 100 million doses. Now with booster will mean 25 million less people vaccinated unless they buy more or refuse booster shots.

Mean while, the Chinese and Russians seem to be vaccinated the rest of the world.

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12 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@MrWebster

I read that Trump gave them a lot of it on what they can do, but I doubt Biden would have done anything different. Big pharma, business, banks, oil ect have too much power over congress because they’ve let themselves be bribed and now they don’t want to live without the cash and power they have. Both parties have sold us out, but I’m not sure when that originally happened. Congress broke up monopolies once, but they are certainly back in business today.

Experts who reviewed the terms of contracts with foreign governments suggested that some demands were extreme. In contracts reached with Brazil, Chile, Colombia and the Dominican Republic, those states forfeited “immunity against precautionary seizure of any of [their] assets.”

“It’s almost as if the company would ask the United States to put Grand Canyon as collateral,” said Lawrence Gostin, a professor of public health law at Georgetown University.

Then there’s the story of the IMF offering Belarus' president lots of money to do Covid restrictions. Ha..speaking of him have you read how he’s getting payback for the flight restrictions after that arrest of one of the people who tried to overthrow him after the plane diverted from a bomb scare? They won’t let planes fly over their airspace. He has been flying immigrants close to the borders of some countries telling them that the border controls are very loose. They have been flooding certain countries. Germany is one. RT had the article yesterday.

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10 users have voted.

In a free country civil liberties are not only for certain groups.
So this is how liberty dies . . . with thunderous applause.
The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

ggersh's picture

@snoopydawg

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12 users have voted.

The correct response to someone who supports going to war if China attacks Taiwan is “Are you enlisted?”

The correct response when they inevitably answer “no” is “Then shut the fuck up.”

Caitlin

joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

i think that amy's slide began long before the ford and carnegie foundations began shovelling money at her. i think that her decline started during the clinton years when democracy now coverage started having a pronounced dem party agenda around election times especially. at the time i assumed that most of dem now's donors were democrats and were pushing her in that direction.

it has been a long, slow slide to where she is now. is there further she can go? sure. dem now still does some decent reporting, but pulls its punches on far too many important topics.

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8 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

It’s mostly about the upcoming war on Iraq, but Syria was also included in the number of wars done to make Israel safe and the only super power in the Middle East. I’d love to see an article on the dual loyalists in congress because there are quite a few who are.

Smile

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11 users have voted.

In a free country civil liberties are not only for certain groups.
So this is how liberty dies . . . with thunderous applause.
The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

@snoopydawg Blinken's loyalties are.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/in-tapping-blinken-biden-will-be-served-by...

In tapping Blinken, Biden will be served by confidant with deep Jewish roots
US secretary of state nominee’s work with president-elect spans decades, and while the two sparred with Israel over Iran, they remain guided by fundamental support for Jewish state

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8 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

my guess is that nobody can get confirmed as secretary of state unless they are a toady of israel.

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11 users have voted.
Pluto's Republic's picture

@snoopydawg

It serves to remind us of the constant stream of poisonous lies coming from the Deep State Department. With China, their lies have reached new extremes — and I believe will turn out to be deadly to many Americans alive today.

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7 users have voted.

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11 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@humphrey

if henry the k can win a nobel peace prize, anez should be in the running as a serious humanitarian.

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10 users have voted.

Thanks to lying Biden and president Manchin.

https://thehill.com/homenews/house/577502-key-democrat-says-tuition-free...

Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) expressed doubt on Tuesday that the tuition-free community college proposal previously floated by Democrats to be included in the sweeping social spending plan the party is crafting will be included in the final version.

“There will be something for higher education, but it probably won’t be the free community college,” Jayapal, who chairs Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, the told reporters when discussing ongoing negotiations within the party for the spending plan.

comments came shortly after CNN reported that President Biden, who has pushed for the measure as a key part of his legislative agenda, told progressives the proposal likely won’t make it into the finalized package.

Biden previously called for two years of tuition-free community college for Americans. First lady Jill Biden, who has been a teacher for decades, has also advocated for the measure in recent months.

How many more campaign promises will Joe renege on?

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9 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@humphrey

i guess biden like obama might prefer to have a republican legislature so that he can retreat into the basement and take naps whenever he wants.

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8 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@humphrey

There’s your answer. But according to Jayapal he’s doing a heck of a job. Geez has the squid stood up for anything? They will cave to Manchin too. It’s what they do.

Nina is back to saying that the pentagon budget needs to be cut after she praised Powell yesterday. Guess where she said that? On CNN. Real progressives don’t get on there unless they have sold out.

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11 users have voted.

In a free country civil liberties are not only for certain groups.
So this is how liberty dies . . . with thunderous applause.
The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

Pluto's Republic's picture

@humphrey

...as possible is the only sure advantage the rogue government has. And they are doing a damn good job of it.

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7 users have voted.
CB's picture

the movie The Kite Runner and explains that it had to be filmed in Xinjiang due to 40 years of war in Afghanistan.

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8 users have voted.
Pluto's Republic's picture

The war-mongering nitwits at the Guardian — Oliver Milman in New York and Lauren Gambino in Washington — who wrote the article cited in EB about the failure of climate change legislation in the US Senate, point out that Biden will show up at the UN Climate Summit in Glasgow in two weeks, completely empty handed. The two nitwits mentioned above end their article with this banal stupidity:

The prospect of the world’s leading economic power arriving in Glasgow with no domestic policy to cut emissions will make it harder to convince other major emitters, primarily China, to do more at a time when governments are collectively failing to avert unlivable global heating.

Primarily China?

It doesn't matter that citizens of the pathetic White People Nations are deeply uninformed about the great strides and sacrifices that China is making to move into carbon neutral territory. Those citizens are politically neutered. Even if they were informed about anything meaningful, there is nothing they can do.

And it is doubly pathetic for them to wring their hands over the global heating their nations are engaged in and committed to. Any mentally developed person is well aware that their greedy White Overlords intend to monetize and burn every last bit of fossil fuels that can be ripped from the earth for personal profit.

Whereas in China, reality is center stage and pledges and projects to solve the climate change crisis for all the world are underway on a massive scale across the Eastern Hemisphere.

"Power highways" push forward carbon emission reduction in China

-- China has built a massive power network often termed "power highways" to transmit electricity from its resources-rich west to the more developed, power-thirsty east.

-- As the country is striving to meet its carbon commitment to peak carbon emissions before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060, the power highways have seen increasing transmissions of electricity generated by green energy.

-- The trend of green power transmission is set to continue as China keeps up its capacity of clean and renewable power generation

China determined to pursue green development and build shared future for humanity and nature

The 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (COP15), which kicked off on Oct. 11 in Kunming, southwest China’s Yunnan province, demonstrates China’s determination to advance the construction of global ecological civilization and promote the harmonious coexistence of man and nature with the international community.
With the theme of “Ecological Civilization: Building a Shared Future for All Life on Earth”, the event marks the first time that a meeting of the COP to the UN environmental convention makes ecological civilization its theme.

Taking on its lofty responsibility for the entire human civilization, China advocates respecting and protecting nature and obeying nature’s laws and has been exploring a path for human and nature to live in harmony.

Western media and its compulsive anti-China bias

Western media purportedly claim to be unbiased and fact-oriented. But when it comes to China, the impulse to toss aside journalistic ethics and manipulate the truth is now boringly obvious.

For the past several months, a number of mainstream media outlets in the West have kept their smearing machines humming. They either choose to echo fallacies about China's human rights record by unknowing politicians or simply make up stories, such as the bizarre "Wuhan lab leak" theory. The topic du jour this time around is LinkedIn.

Earlier last week, the BBC, The New York Times and the Financial Times, garbled a decision by LinkedIn and hyped up the social networking platform's "China demise" by giving the wrong impression that the company decided to quit the Chinese market.

The news outlets were soon left with egg on their face. LinkedIn denied such claims on its official Weibo account and called the reports "untrue." Later, LinkedIn's senior vice president Mohak Shroff posted online that "We will continue to work with Chinese businesses to help create economic opportunity."

The LinkedIn incident is yet more evidence that Western media, with their dominant global sway, seize any opportunity to demonize China and mislead public opinion about Beijing.

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11 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@Pluto's Republic

Just unbelievable that anyone would ever consider that it wasn’t.

Walmart wants to privatize the water in the Colorado river. Oh yeah they got a plan alright.

up
12 users have voted.

In a free country civil liberties are not only for certain groups.
So this is how liberty dies . . . with thunderous applause.
The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

CB's picture

@Pluto's Republic
by hydrogen by 2025. Hydrogen produced by solar/wind energy produces only clean water when burned. No other nation in the world is this committed to clean energy for the immediate future. The interesting thing is there is money to be made doing it.

China's Sinopec builds 3rd hydrogen filling station in Shanghai
19 Oct 2021

  • The new station with designed daily filling capacity of 1,000 kilograms caters to vehicles with both 35-Mpa and 70 Mpa fuel tanks. The higher-pressure tanks allow mileage to double to over 600 kilometers (372.82 miles) versus previously 320 km.
  • The station supplies hydrogen fuel primarily to public service vehicles such as sanitary fleet and buses.
  • Sinopec plans to add a total of over 30 hydrogen fuel stations in Shanghai by 2025, part of the state energy firm's target of building 1,000 such stations across China by then.
  • Sinopec is capable of producing over 3.9 million tonnes of hydrogen annually, 11% of the national total. The refiner by far operates seven hydrogen purification facilities.
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8 users have voted.
CB's picture

@Pluto's Republic
These power lines use high voltage DC to minimize losses.

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5 users have voted.

Been following this on and off. More and more I fear this is what our criminal justice system will be for us. I don't see any path to stopping the corruption and it gets worse day by day. It's not a political swamp any more but a tidal wave in a cesspool.

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11 users have voted.