The Evening Blues - 6-6-23


The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Gene Burks & Little Junior Lewis

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features two New York City soul artists, Gene Burks and Little Junior Lewis. Enjoy!

Gene Burks - Monkey Man

"Commonly, people believe that defeat is characterized by a general bustle and a feverish rush. Bustle and rush are the signs of victory, not of defeat. Victory is a thing of action. It is a house in the act of being built. Every participant in victory sweats and puffs, carrying the stones for the building of the house. But defeat is a thing of weariness, of incoherence, of boredom. And above all of futility."

-- Antoine de Saint-Exupery

News and Opinion

Cornel West announces US presidential campaign with the People’s party

Cornel West, the 70-year-old activist and public intellectual, announced on Monday that he is running for president in the 2024 election as a candidate for the People’s party. West made the announcement in a video posted to Twitter, saying that he had “decided to run for truth and justice”.

“I come from a tradition where I care about you,” West said. “I care about the quality of your life, I care about whether you have access to a job with a living wage, decent housing, women having control over their bodies, healthcare for all.”

West’s video, interspersed with photos of his life in activism and clips of himself on Joe Rogan’s and Bill Maher’s shows, also directed viewers to his campaign website, which includes some of his political platform and calls for donations. The range of West’s policies include instituting Medicare for All, banning corporate lobbying, disbanding Nato, stopping all foreign military aid and abolishing student debt.

Chris Hedges: Dr. Cornel West Announces He Is Running for President

Dr. Cornel West, the moral philosopher and civil rights activist, will formally announce today he is running for president on the People’s Party ticket. Cornel will be a singular voice for serious social and political change in an electoral system saturated with corporate money and rigged to crush third parties. His decades-long commitment to the oppressed, his fierce opposition to American militarism and empire, his condemnation of the grotesque avarice of the billionaire class, and his determination to halt the ongoing ecocide, will see him contemptuously dismissed by the establishment. For all of these reasons we must support him.

“We’re at such a low point in the American empire,” Cornel said when we spoke about his decision. “Its spiritual decay and its immoral decadence are so profound that we have to begin on the foundational level of a spiritual awakening and a moral reckoning. Organized greed. Institutionalized hatred. Routinized indifference to the lives of poor and working people of all colors. We’ve got to get beyond an analysis of the predatory capitalist processes that have saturated every nook and cranny of the culture. We’ve got to get beyond the ways in which the political system has been colonized by corporate wealth and by monied elite. We’ve got to get beyond that sense of impotence of the citizenry. These are all the signs of an empire in decline. The only thing that we have to add is military overreach, and we see that as well.”

If this campaign becomes a movement, and it will need a lot of organizing to get Cornel on the ballot and build grassroots support, the array of forces that will seek to discredit and sabotage his candidacy will be formidable. The Israel lobby, the war industry, the courtiers in the mediathe corporatiststhe billionaire class and the Democratic Party leadership, will be as vicious to Cornel as these forces in Britain were to Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters. Entrenched power will fight us with every tool in its arsenal. And, as with Corbyn, these assaults — rooted in a mendacious campaign of character assassination — will be relentless. ...

He said he will take his campaign south and into rural enclaves to address the disenfranchised white workers who support Trump.

“We must go to Trump’s social base,” he said. “We must tell those white brothers and sisters, ‘We know you’re still suffering. We know you’ve been the losers of corporate globalization. We’re going to speak to your needs in such a way that you don’t have to follow a neofascist pied piper.’ We on the left are concerned about working people even when they themselves are xenophobic. We can steal some of the thunder from the neofascists. We’re not in any way putting up with the xenophobia. No way! Not one minute! The anti-Black, anti-immigrant, anti-Jewish, anti-Palestinian, anti-Arab, anti-Muslim — I have no patience with that whatsoever! But I’ll go straight into Trump country and tell all those white working brothers and sisters that I am deeply concerned about their wounds and their inability to gain access to the resources that they ought to have as citizens. We cannot defeat fascism with glib milquetoast neoliberalism. We’ve got to get at the roots of it.”

“We’re trying to achieve the impossible,” he said. “By trying to achieve the impossible we’re going to do something that people think is not possible. The first thing is to break the back of the two-party system, to break the back of corporate duopoly. If we don’t, everything is at stake — democracy, dignity, the planet.”

UN body faults US, other states over Guantanamo prisoner torture

The United States and seven other countries are responsible for torture and illegal detention of a Saudi prisoner awaiting a death penalty trial at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility, a UN watchdog has ruled.

The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention also hinted that the systematic use of Guantanamo to hold suspects rounded up in Washington's "war on terror" after the September 11, 2001 attacks, might in some cases amount to crimes against humanity. ...

In an opinion adopted late last year, but only discreetly made public on Friday, the UN working group determined that all eight countries were "jointly responsible for the torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of Mr. al-Nashiri".

"The submissions that Mr. al-Nashiri was tortured stand unrefuted," it said, also finding that all eight countries were responsible for his "arrest, rendition and arbitrary detention".

Nashiri's lawyer Sylvain Savolainen described the decision as "immensely powerful and important".

The working group, made up of five independent experts, whose opinions are not binding but carry reputational weight, called on the countries to "take the steps necessary to remedy the situation of Mr. Al-Nashiri without delay".

Taking into account all the circumstances of the case, they said "the appropriate remedy would be to release Mr. al-Nashiri immediately", and provide him compensation and reparations.

Disaster Day in Ukraine: Kakhovka Dam Destroyed, Ukraine Suffers Heavy Defeat, Incl 8 Leopard Tanks

Fresh off the Guardian propaganda catapult:

Ukraine’s troops attack along front in apparent precursor to counteroffensive

Ukrainian troops went on the attack at multiple points along the frontline in the Donetsk region on Monday, driving back Russian forces in at least two areas in what appeared to be the preliminary stages of Ukraine’s long-anticipated counteroffensive.

Russia said on Tuesday it had thwarted another major Ukrainian offensive in Donetsk, inflicting heavy losses.

In his nightly address, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy hailed the advances made by Ukraine’s “warriors” after his government declared it had shifted to offensive operations in some sectors, with reports of intense close-quarter fighting in several locations. He also welcomed what he called “the news we have been waiting for” from Bakhmut, without giving further details.

“I am grateful to each soldier, to all our defenders, men and women, who have given us today the news we have been waiting for. Fine job, soldiers in the Bakhmut sector!” Zelenskiy said.

Foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba told Reuters on Monday that Ukraine has enough weapons to begin the counteroffensive operation.

Grab your salt shaker, this is also from the Guardian:

Wagner captures Russian commander as Prigozhin feud with army escalates

Yevgeny Prigozhin’s Wagner group of mercenaries has captured a Russian commander, as the notorious leader further escalates his feud with the regular army.

In a video posted on Prigozhin’s social media channels, Lt Col Roman Venevitin, the commander of Russia’s 72nd Brigade, tells an interrogator that, while drunk, he had ordered his troops to fire on a Wagner convoy.

In the footage, which resembled clips of prisoner of war soldiers, Venevitin said he acted because of his “personal dislike” for Wagner and then apologised.

Last week, Prigozhin accused the Russian army of trying to blow up his men as they were pulling back from the eastern Ukrainian town of Bakhmut.

The businessman, who is best known as “Putin’s chef” because of his catering contracts with the Kremlin, also claimed his men had discovered explosives, which he said were planted on purpose by defence ministry officials.

The Russian ministry of defence has yet to comment on the footage.

What is the Kakhovka dam in Ukraine, and what happened?

Milley Says Ukraine ‘Well Prepared’ for Counteroffensive Due to US, NATO Support

On Monday, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley said Ukraine was “well prepared” to launch a counteroffensive against Russian forces thanks to the support the US and NATO have provided.

“So, I think it’s too early to tell what outcomes are going to happen. I think the Ukrainians are very well prepared, as you know very well. The United States and other allied countries in Europe and really around the world have provided training and ammunition and advice, intelligence, et cetera, to the Ukrainians,” Milley told CNN.

Belgium Asks Ukraine If Belgian Rifles Were Used in Attack on Russia

Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo said Monday that his government is asking Ukraine if Belgian rifles were used by pro-Kyiv fighters in a recent attack on Russia’s Belgorod region.

De Croo’s comments came after US officials told The Washington Post that groups of Russian volunteers fighting for Ukraine were armed with US-made armored vehicles and rifles that were made in Belgium and the Czech Republic during a raid on Belgorod.

“Our defense ministry and its intelligence agencies have started an investigation and are asking for information to determine what has happened exactly,” De Croo said, according to Al Jazeera.

“European weapons are delivered to Ukraine under the condition that they are used on Ukrainian territory with the purpose of defending that territory. And we have strict controls in place to see that this is the case,” he added.

Nord Stream Attack PLANNED By Ukraine Military; US Made Aware of Plan BEFORE Explosion

NYT Defends AZOV BATTALION Nazis, Says Media Coverage Of Swastika Patch Fuels 'RUSSIAN PROPAGANDA'

China Places Country Dangerously Close To US Warship

The US military has released video footage of a Chinese navy ship cutting across the path of an American Destroyer in the Taiwan Strait over the weekend, reportedly forcing the US vessel to slow down to avoid a collision.

A statement on the incident from US Indo-Pacific Command says the Chinese ship “executed maneuvers in an unsafe manner” in the presence of US and Canadian warships during a “routine south to north Taiwan Strait transit” by the naval forces of those nations, coming as close as 150 yards from the American vessel.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: what is a Chinese navy vessel doing in the Taiwan Strait, right where US and Canadian warships are peacefully conducting routine navigation exercises?

Well I don’t know if this news will be as shocking to you as it is to me, but it turns out that China has somehow managed to place its country immediately adjacent to the Taiwan Strait, and is now only 100 miles from Taiwan itself. This narrow channel of water was the only space the US and Canadian navies were given to travel through, placing them dangerously close to Chinese warships, and to the country of China.

China has yet to issue a formal apology for menacing the US navy with the unsafe maneuverings of both its battleship and its geographical location.

Noting in its statement that it was acting “in accordance with international law” at the time of the incident, US Indo-Pacific Command says that its transit “demonstrates the combined U.S.-Canadian commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific,” adding that the US military “flies, sails, and operates safely and responsibly anywhere international law allows.”

Which is of course true. These are international waters after all, and the Chinese navy should therefore stay out of the way of US military vessels traveling through them, just as the US navy would stay out of the way of Chinese military forces traveling a few miles off the coast of California or transiting between the islands of Hawaii. The US is only asking for the same freedom of navigation it would afford anyone else.

We saw another incident of China’s aggressive and dangerous terrestrial placement on the 26th of May, when a US spy plane was buzzed by a Chinese fighter jet during peaceful surveillance operations over the South China Sea. A statement by US Indo-Pacific Command called the incident “an unnecessarily aggressive maneuver” which interrupted the “safe and routine operations” of the spy plane.

What the hell is going on here? What is a Chinese fighter jet doing all the way over in the South China Sea?

Obviously Chinese fighter jets have no business operating in that region, especially when their movements endanger the US spy planes who are flying their peaceful missions there. But as with the Taiwan Strait, the imperialist aggressions of the Chinese Communist Party have been so expansionist in nature that the South China Sea now sits immediately adjacent to mainland China.

Here’s hoping that China stops with its brazen aggressions against the US military forces who are minding their own business in the Taiwan Strait and the South China Sea, stops endangering poor defenseless warships and spy planes by moving through waters and airspace they have no business entering in the first place, and starts respecting the rules-based global sovereignty of the United States of America.

Protests in France as unions make last-ditch bid to resist higher retirement age

Election of Delfina Gómez as governor of Mexico state signals decline of PRI

Mexico’s oldest party has lost control of the country’s most populous and influential state, in an election result that could signal the end of a powerful network that has dominated politics in the region for almost a century. Alejandra del Moral Vela – the candidate for the incumbent Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) which has governed the state of Mexico (Edomex) uninterrupted since 1929 – was beaten by eight points on Sunday, despite claiming victory during the vote count.

The winner, Delfina Gómez, a former school teacher and mayor, and a close ally of the populist president Andrés Manuel López Obrador, will be the first woman to govern the sprawling state of 17m people that wraps around Mexico City. It’s a huge blow for the PRI, which had clung on to Edomex despite years of allegations of foul play – and despite losing every other state and the presidency in recent years. It marked an impressive victory for Morena, the party founded by López Obrador, also known as Amlo, less than a decade ago.

Gómez had consistently led in the polls, but in recent weeks the PRI had claimed that Moral was closing the gap and had the momentum. ...

Now, the future of the PRI is “uncertain” after Sunday’s defeat, and this setback could prove to be “insurmountable” when it comes to contesting the presidential elections next year, according to political analyst Gabriel Corona Armenta at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. “The results on Sunday should have happened in 1999, but the PRI has managed to stay in power 24 extra years using electoral tricks, negotiations and money.”

Your tax dollars at work:

Three-year-old Palestinian boy shot by Israeli soldiers dies in hospital

A three-year-old Palestinian boy has died in hospital, four days after he was shot in the head by Israeli soldiers while riding in a car with his father in the occupied West Bank.

Mohammed al-Tamimi was airlifted to the Sheba hospital near Tel Aviv after the incident on Thursday night and remained in a critical condition until medical officials announced his death on Monday. His father, Haitham al-Tamimi, 40, is still being treated at a Palestinian hospital. His injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.

The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) said troops had opened fire near the village of Nabi Saleh after Palestinian gunmen fired shots towards a guardpost. Tamimi told reporters there had been no other gunfire, and that he had just buckled up his son in order to drive to an uncle’s house when their car was shot at. ...

After initially blaming the wounding of the father and son on Palestinian crossfire, IDF officials later said that it was not clear who had shot them and that an investigation had been opened, and later said that the pair had been injured by Israeli fire. In a statement, the IDF said it “regrets harm to noncombatants and is committed to doing everything in its power to prevent such incidents”.

Many Palestinians see similarities in the shifting Israeli narrative over what happened to the Tamimis with last year’s killing of the Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh. In that case, the IDF eventually admitted there was a “high possibility” the reporter had been shot by a soldier, but maintains that it was accidental and that a criminal investigation is not warranted.

US senator demands report on Shireen Abu Akleh killing

A US senator lashed out at a top Biden administration official on Wednesday over delays in releasing a summary report on the killing of Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, demanding that it be available to review by Friday.

"As you probably know, I've been trying for weeks and weeks now to get a hold of the updated summation report done by the General Fenzel of the [United States Security Coordinator] regarding the shooting death of Shireen Abu Akleh. I just want to tell you, I've run out of patience," Van Hollen said during a Senate budget hearing on Wednesday.

"I expect to be able to view the report wherever you want in a classified setting by Friday. I will otherwise use whatever powers I have here in ways that I've never done before," he warned Barbara Leaf, the US State Department assistant secretary for Near Eastern affairs.

Cop City: Atlanta City Council OKs $67M for Facility Despite Mass Protests & Armed Raid on Bail Fund

Newsom threatens DeSantis with kidnapping charges after migrants dumped twice in four days

For the second time in four days, Florida picked up people seeking asylum and took them by private jet to Sacramento at taxpayer expense, California officials said on Monday after another flight arrived at a local airport.

California’s Democratic governor, Gavin Newsom, on Monday branded his rightwing Republican Florida counterpart, Ron DeSantis, a “small, pathetic man”, and appeared to threaten kidnapping charges after the first incident in which a group of migrants was dumped at a Sacramento church.

Rob Bonta, California’s attorney general, said in a statement that 16 South Americans abandoned outside the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sacramento on Friday were “in possession of documentation purporting to be from the state of Florida”, and may have been duped into boarding charter flights via New Mexico after entering the US in Texas. On Monday morning, a second flight of 20 migrants arrived in the state’s capital. ...

Newsom, in a tweet posted Monday lunchtime directed at DeSantis, said: “You small, pathetic man. This isn’t Martha’s Vineyard. Kidnapping charges?” and linked to a section of California’s penal code stating anybody who “abducts or takes by force or fraud” a person found within the state “is guilty of kidnapping”.

Bonta, meanwhile, also said Florida was guilty of “state-sanctioned kidnapping” if it was found to be behind the flights. He told the New York Times the migrants showed documents to California authorities that indicated their travel had been administered by the Florida division of emergency management and its contractor, Vertol Systems Company. Vertol Systems is the same contractor hired last year by Florida’s department of emergency management to move migrants from Texas to Massachusetts for $1.6m.

the horse race

FBI Dir Wray, Dems HIDING Biden Crime Doc From American People; Comer To Hold IN CONTEMPT

the evening greens

Microplastics found in every sample of water taken during Ocean Race

Sailors testing the waters during the Ocean Race, which travels through some of the world’s most remote ocean environments, have found microplastics in every sample.

Up to 1,884 microplastic particles were found per cubic metre of seawater in some locations, up to 18 times higher than in similar tests during the last Ocean Race, which ended in 2018. Scientists noted that the sensitivity of their instruments is now higher.

“It’s really concerning that we are finding microplastics in every sample, from coastal areas to the most remote regions of the ocean,” said Victoria Fulfer, a visiting scientist from the University of Rhode Island at the National Oceanography Centre (NOC) in the UK. “We are seeing much higher concentrations this year, which can be a sign of increased pollution, but also is related to the increased sensitivity of our analysis.”

The samples were collected during the initial legs of the race, which started in January and finishes in July, passing through the South Atlantic Ocean near a location considered to be the farthest from land anywhere on Earth.

The 45 samples collected from leg two, running from Cabo Verde to South Africa, showed microplastic concentrations from 92-1,884, while in leg three – between Cape Town and Itajaí, Brazil – the concentrations ranged from 160-1,492 per cubic metre.

US Supreme Court Rejects Big Oil Challenge to Offshore Fracking Ban in California

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected a call from several fossil fuel companies to hear their challenge to a lower court ruling handed down a year ago, which prohibited fracking in federal waters off the coast of California.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last June upheld a decision to bar the issuing of permits for offshore fracking, finding that the U.S. Department of the Interior had violated the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the National Environmental Policy Act, and the Coastal Zone Management Act when it allowed fracking in offshore gas and oil wells in the Pacific.

In the original case, the ruling was the result of three separate lawsuits filed by the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) and the Wishtoyo Foundation, the Environmental Defense Center (EDC) and Santa Barbara Channelkeeper, and the state of California, challenging the federal government.

Earlier this year, fossil fuel companies ExxonMobil and DCOR, LLC were joined by the American Petroleum Institute in intervening in the case, filing a petition for certiorari in an effort to overturn the 9th Circuit ruling.

Airborne DNA accidentally collected by air-quality filters reveals state of species

From owls to hedgehogs to fungi, genetic material from plants and animals is being inadvertently hoovered up by air-quality monitoring stations around the world, creating an untapped “vault of biodiversity data”, according to a new scientific paper.

Globally, thousands of air filters are continually testing for heavy metals and other pollutants in the atmosphere. Scientists are now realising that this monitoring network is also picking up invisible traces of genetic material known as airborne environmental DNA (eDNA) from bits of hair, feathers, saliva and pollen.

Testing eDNA from two UK air-quality stations – one in a London park and another in a rural location outside Edinburgh – revealed the presence of more than 180 fungi, insects, mammals, birds and amphibians, including badgers, dormice, little owls, hedgehogs and smooth newts. Plant eDNA was also collected, including yarrow, daisies, nettles, wheat, soya beans and cabbages.

The data can tell scientists which animals live nearby, and could become an important tool in monitoring declines in biodiversity by amassing large amounts of local data over long periods of time.

“This infrastructure may represent a tremendous opportunity to collect high-resolution biodiversity data on national scales,” researchers wrote in the paper published in Current Biology. “This is gamechanging for our approach to biodiversity monitoring on land.”

Also of Interest

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

Ukraine Launches Its Counterattack

Interesting Twitter thread about the NYT and Nazi Ukraine

Deep fake video of Putin declaring martial law is broadcast in parts of Russia

Wagner Mercenary Company Chief Prigozhin Has Gone Over The Line

NYT BOTHSIDES Nazism In Ukraine Military

Insurers Signal Fallout From Sanctions On Russia

Independent Nord Stream expedition discovers clue missed by official investigators

U.S. & Chinese Warships’ CLOSE CALL In Taiwan Strait!

"Enough Is Enough": Australian PM Throws Support Behind Movement to Free Julian Assange

Report Details Devastating Impacts of Development Banks' Factory Farm Financing in Ecuador

Amazon’s road to ruin: highway threatens heart of the rainforest

‘We’re mowed over’: colossal data centers are taking over the US countryside

No Laughing Matter: “Life of Brian” is the Latest Battleground for the Future of Comedy

A Little Night Music

Gene Burks - You Got It

Gene Burks - You Don't Love Me

Gene Burks - Shirley Jean

Gene Burks - Can't Stand Your Fooling Around

Little Junior Lewis - Can She Give Me Fever

Little Junior Lewis - Your Heart Must Be Made Of Stone

Little Junior Lewis - [You're Just My Speed] and That's All I Need

Little Junior Lewis - Half a Heart

Junior Lewis - Too Bad

Junior Lewis - Hear What I Say

15 users have voted.


I am surprised the actors didn't want this scene taken out.

And I used to think that reading Henry Miller in the early 70's was a act of defiance against censorship.

12 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture


yep, i am certain that some group will be horribly offended by that scene. i guess it will have to go. i mean comedy is one thing but, that, well, you know.

have a great evening!

8 users have voted.

that China should be in the way of US/CAN warships
the insolence! And now NATO wants to partner with Japan?
Oh, when the west wants to flub on the world stage
they have the right script.

13 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture


i think that it is probably time for chinese/russian/iranian joint maneuvers and live fire exercises in international waters just off the coast of california.

have a great evening!

8 users have voted.
ggersh's picture

forget about the farmers....the evil WEF at work

7 users have voted.

I never knew that the term "Never Again" only pertained to
those born Jewish

"Antisemite used to be someone who didn't like Jews
now it's someone who Jews don't like"

Heard from Margaret Kimberley

TheOtherMaven's picture


along with Population Zero and human extinction. Fuckhead.

6 users have voted.

There is no justice. There can be no peace.

ggersh's picture

@TheOtherMaven running around the world telling us
what we should or shouldn't do.

Fuckhead is way too polite Smile

4 users have voted.

I never knew that the term "Never Again" only pertained to
those born Jewish

"Antisemite used to be someone who didn't like Jews
now it's someone who Jews don't like"

Heard from Margaret Kimberley

joe shikspack's picture


kerry: "i'm afraid that all of you proles are going to have to stop eating and tighten your belts a bit. the environment can't sustain the factory farming that our neoliberal system favors to feed you. but don't worry, there will be cheap catsup for everybody."

5 users have voted.
ggersh's picture

@joe shikspack But I prefer A-1 over catsup

4 users have voted.

I never knew that the term "Never Again" only pertained to
those born Jewish

"Antisemite used to be someone who didn't like Jews
now it's someone who Jews don't like"

Heard from Margaret Kimberley

@ggersh 6 million people will go hungry due to agriculture, uh, if we stop it NOW, how many millions NOW are without food? We starve NOW to save 6 mil from starvation? Really?
If this is the best climate change has to offer, I feel the responsibility to tell them "You go first". If they can survive on bugs, and be happy, I might just go along with it.

7 users have voted.

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." ---- William Casey, CIA Director, 1981

ggersh's picture

if it's so fucking right!

If this is the best climate change has to offer, I feel the responsibility to tell them "You go first". If they can survive on bugs, and be happy, I might just go along with it.

BTW thanks for the rain today!!

5 users have voted.

I never knew that the term "Never Again" only pertained to
those born Jewish

"Antisemite used to be someone who didn't like Jews
now it's someone who Jews don't like"

Heard from Margaret Kimberley

@ggersh @ggersh We got dark clouds, lightning, thunder, and about 3 minutes of sprinkle. More of that tomorrow.
You need the rain. For now, we do not.
Climate Change is merging and blending WAY too easily with the WEF Great Reset plan. This could increase climate change skepticism. One step forward, 2 steps back.

4 users have voted.

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." ---- William Casey, CIA Director, 1981

puppets and the MSM screaming that Russia did it.

(Bloomberg) -- President Joe Biden said US assistance to Ukraine would continue after an explosion at a major dam in the south of the country flooded villages and threatened supplies of drinking water and electricity.

“We’re not leaving,” Biden said during a Cabinet meeting at the White House. “We’re going to help Ukraine.”

Earlier Tuesday, the White House said they were still evaluating what assistance Ukraine may need after the explosion, as well as culpability for the attack. White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said the US had not determined whether Russia was responsible, but said it was certain the incident would lead to loss of life and wreak significant havoc in the region.

“What is clear, and what we absolutely can say, is that the damage to the Ukrainian people and to the region will be significant,” Kirby said. “We know there are casualties including likely many deaths.”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy blamed Russia for the breach at the Kakhovka hydroelectric plant, which supplies water to Russian-annexed Crimea and feeds cooling systems for the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, one of the biggest in Europe. The Kremlin has denied responsibility.

“We’ve seen the reports that Russia was responsible for the explosion at the dam, which I would remind, Russian forces took over illegally last year, and have been occupying since then,” Kirby said. “We’re doing the best we can to assess those reports.”

6 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture



Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy blamed Russia for the breach at the Kakhovka hydroelectric plant

then again, not too long ago i was reading reports that elensky was blaming russia for all of the rain that ukraine was getting, making the ground too soggy to move their motorized forces out for a counteroffensive.

given that (according to alexander mercouris in the video upstairs) the ukronazis have been shelling the kakhova dam for quite some time, it seems quite reasonable for elensky to blame russia for blowing the dam. pffffttt!

8 users have voted.

@joe shikspack

(Reuters) - Russian forces repeatedly fired at an ammonia pipeline in Ukraine's Kharkiv region, a local governor said on Tuesday, a conduit potentially crucial for the extension of a deal allowing the safe export of grains and fertilizers from Black Sea ports.

The extension next month of the Black Sea Grain initiative, a pact struck in July 2022 to help tackle a global food crises, could hinge on the reopening of the pipeline.

The ammonia pipeline, the world's longest, stretches about 2,470 kilometres (1,534 miles) from Russia's Togliatti on the Volga River to three Black Sea ports. It has been shut down since Moscow's invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

There was no recorded leakage from the late Tuesday shelling that hit the pipeline near the village of Masiutivka and an overnight shelling near the village of Zapadne, said Oleh Sinehubov, the governor of Ukraine's Kharkiv region.

"There is no threat to people's lives and health," Sinehubov said on the Telegram messaging app.

7 users have voted.
Cassiodorus's picture

@joe shikspack

5 users have voted.

" In a war with China there would be a trade embargo. Military manufacturing in the US would grind to a halt almost immediately. But due to a massive competency crisis in DC, they might push for it regardless." -Philip Pilkington

He sure got a lot of likes!

8 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture


better than i would have expected. perhaps a limited hangout by a faction of the ruling elite.

5 users have voted.

8 users have voted.
soryang's picture

I've been working on this off and on for a few days in between the mininstruvia and chores overwhelming my retired life. So it goes. I thought maybe the subject matter was a little too obscure, but then I saw after I wrote this, that the Guardian published a report on this subject matter last night, but didn't connect all the dots or mention the last shoe that has yet to fall politically which is the topic du jure in South Korean independent media this week. It's almost as if the Guardian is trying to soften the potential political fallout to come. The current right wing Yoon administration is lauded in the English language press, so I'm not surprised Guardian didn't tell the whole story. As if this is just one of those peculiar Korean cultural quirks.

As if it is just limited to school life.

The current authoritarian South Korean administration is part of the trend to suppress dissenting views in so called "democratic countries."

OhMyTV cartoon depicts Justice Minister Han Dong-hun using police and warrants as a club to attack a National Assembly office and MBC broadcasting for daring to disclose "private information about the second banana" (him) from his nomination hearing April 2022. The information release reflected on Han's personal corruption and was in the public interest.

One recent investigative report said that President Yoon intended to form an "immunity review committee" to protect the National Police from legal actions that might be taken against police for any injuries inflicted as a result of the new policy to use active forceful measures to suppress demonstrations that "threaten public order." Critics regard this as a dangerous policy from the "80s." The right to peaceful assembly is guaranteed in the South Korean constitution. This is the current Yoon administration response to an upsurge in political demonstrations and assemblies against the Yoon administration, by numerous civic and religious groups, the political opposition and labor and professional organizations.

Recently, Yoon had dismissed the Chief of the Korean Communications Commission, Han Sang-hyuk ( 한상혁 ) based on a criminal accusations which the former Chairman says are unfounded. Other officials and employees of the commission are being harried by investigating police and prosecutors. The CEO of MBC Park Sung-jae was also charged by prosecutors, and consequently forced out as head of MBC broadcasting. Park asserted the charges against him were fabricated by prosecutors. Park also referred to his continuing positive relationship with unions representing company employees. An MBC reporter subjected to multiple warrants and police investigation alleged that the statements to her by police involved suggested they were acting on behalf of the justice minister.

The principal motivation Park the former CEO of MBC mentioned was the current administration's need to control public broadcasting editorial and production content with the campaign season for the next general elections in 2024 in view. He said he exercised no control over news coverage and production as a practical matter, being involved in the nuts and bolts financial management of the corporation, those news related functions were relegated to news team managers, and the various broadcast branches and department heads. As a former career reporter, he said he had no interest in promoting particular views or restricting freedom of the press. MBC had offended Yoon shortly after he had met with President Biden when an MBC reporter recorded on video some vulgar phrase Yoon used referring to the US Congress in a conversation with his Foreign Minister Park Jin. That MBC reporter is now subject to investigation by police for allegedly illegally disclosing "private information" about Justice Minister Han Dong-hun, from a legislative committee.

Former KCC Chief Han said that the Yoon administration was likely interested in controlling broadcast content, by controlling his former office at the KCC. This entailed removing the independence of the commission as a body, because it was designed as a deliberative institution, rather than one controlled by the chair of the commission. He distinguished his former position from that of a minister, who exercised greater control over subordinate officials and employees. Han said that public broadcasting organization KBS would probably fall next. It is legally arguable that Chief Commissioner Han should have only have been removed from office by impeachment, but he was dismissed summarily.

Ironically, the proposed replacement as KCC Chief is Lee Dong-gwan 이동관. Lee Dong-gwan held important PR positions in the presidential office of Lee Myung-bak. He began his career as a reporter at Donga Ilbo. Like other tainted nominations by Yoon, Lee's career was jeopardized when his son was accused by witnesses of bullying and assaults on other students in 2011. The school academy concerned was run by a member of the Hana chaebol family of the Hana Financial Group. The formerdirector/principal was said to be one of the "4 Kings" behind the MB administration at the time. The incidents of repeated bullying, assault, and psychological abuse by Lee's son were covered up because of the embarrassment to the academy and the Lee Myung-bak administration. It's telling that a person involved in a political cover up would now be considered as the leader of broadcast and communications regulatory body. It's not a just a coincidence. Why is the legislative hearing into Lee Dong-gwan's appointment at the KCC now being delayed? Because, not too long ago another Yoon political appointee, Chung Sun-shin's nomination foundered, in February this year, when the suppressed case and unjust outcome of his child's bullying at school was revealed.

This is a very sensitive issue in South Korea as exemplified by the very popular contemporary drama The Glory whose plot focuses on the central role of class, social status in unjust disposition of exceptionally cruel bullying in a school environment and the downstream reach of "revenge" in its aftermath. The Glory's plot is said to based on real events from a bullying scandal in 2006 at a girl's academy.

Here's a newspaper article on the earlier failed nomination of Chung Sun-shin-

Case of powerful parent shielding child from consequences touches nerve in S. Korea

Posted on : Feb.28,2023

The saga of Chung Sun-sin is an unwelcome reminder to many young Koreans that without powerful connections, many roads in life remain shut to them

I found the subject matter and content of The Glory quite brutal. It's certainly for adults because of violent content. I couldn't make it all the way through after watching a few episodes. I see there is a season two. It was a success for Netflix and won some South Korean awards. Guess I'm too squeamish in my old age. I posted the trailer, which is fairly well sanitized, but still conveys the sinister ambiance in 2 min.

There is an English translation of the Lee Dong-gwan situation, translated into English in Namu Wiki- it was just updated and is based on the latest reports including independent investigative reports:이동관%20아들%20학교폭력%20가해%20사건 (The link might not work, I've been having trouble with it.)

Lee Dong-gwan's son's school violence case

[장윤선 단독] 이동관 아들 학폭 왜 묻혔나? 피해자 진술서 내용 단독 공개! (최영일의 시사본부|장윤선의 주간이슈-장윤선 정치전문기자)|KBS 230602 방송

There is a peculiar evolving interplay of public relations, crime, corruption, cover up and government going on in the Yoon administration. Yoon's principal MO as the former Prosecutor General and a senior prosecutor before his election was known as press-prosecution collusion. Yoon's "division" of prosecutors and their collaborators in the mainstream conservative South Korean media (representing powerful special interests) would frame political enemies with leaked and false information and protect the privileged by suppressing news stories. That hasn't changed but only gotten worse after Yoon was elected President of South Korea by an extremely slim margin. Yoon's abuse of administration of the justice was also characterized as "revenge politics." Other descriptions of his administration have gone from "the republic of lawyers," soon after he assumed the presidential office, to "the dictatorship of lawyers," to simply that of "dictatorship." The current Minister of Justice and Yoon's right hand man, Han Dong-hun, now continues to choreograph politically motivated criminal investigations and prosecutions in South Korea with mainstream media cooperation. Any significant dissent or political resistance is met with police investigation, a plethora of search warrants, against the victim and his or her family or business associates and hearings for pretrial confinement after indictment. The Korea Communications Commission and MBC were recently targeted. This is ironic as Yoon contended when he was administratively disciplined for prosecutorial misconduct that the Minister of Justice had no authority over the Prosecutor General's office.

Since, becoming president Yoon has without legislative authority secured effective control of the National Police by placing it under the Ministry of Interior and Safety. In this way, Yoon has effectively nullified the major legal reform of the last administration taking investigative power away from prosecutors because it was being systematically abused by Yoon and Han for political purposes. Having corruption tainted public officials appointed to major government positions uses their political vulnerability to insure loyalty to Yoon's far right authoritarian regime. The Ministry of Interior and Public Safety have been seriously compromised by the Itaewon disaster and other botched public safety responses for which they were responsible along with President Yoon. Only local police and emergency officials suffer political consequences. Yoon has moved into the Lee Myung-bak stage of corruption, censorship and authoritarian rule.

Thanks JS for keeping me informed on the news and blues.

(edited for typos and clarity)

6 users have voted.

語必忠信 行必正直