The Evening Blues - 6-10-24



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The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Tommy McClennan

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features delta blues singer and guitarist Tommy McClennan. Enjoy!

Tommy McClennan - I'm A Guitar King

"The most costly of all follies is to believe passionately in the palpably not true. It is the chief occupation of mankind."

-- H. L. Mencken


News and Opinion

Everything About Israel Is Fake

Everything about Israel is fake. It’s a completely synthetic nation created without any regard for the organic sociopolitical movements of the land and its people, slapped rootless atop an ancient pre-existing civilization with deep roots. That’s why it cannot exist without being artificially propped up by nonstop propaganda, lobbying, online influence operations, and mass military violence.

Israel is so fake that its far right minister of national security Itamar Ben-Gvir has been stoking religious tensions by encouraging militant Zionists to pray on the Temple Mount — known to Muslims as Al-Aqsa. This is an illustration of how phony Israel and its political ideology are because Jews were historically prohibited from praying at the Temple Mount under Jewish law; a sign placed there in 1967 and still upheld by Israel’s Chief Rabbinate reads, “According to Torah Law, entering the Temple Mount area is strictly forbidden due to the holiness of the site.” It’s just this weird, evangelical Christian-like thing that Zionists have started doing in contravention of their own traditions and religious texts to advance their nationalist agendas.

Journalist Dan Cohen explains on Twitter:

“‘Prayer’ on the Temple Mount is 100% a Zionist invention in total contravention of Jewish law. Jews don’t step foot onto the Temple Mount, let alone ‘pray’ there. That’s why the sign below is posted at the entrance non-Muslims use.

“Ben Gvir publicly announced this in order to provoke a reaction to use as a pretext to restrict and expel Muslims from the site, explode Jerusalem and the West Bank, and expand the regional war.

“Ben Gvir holds Netanyahu hostage. Together, they’re leading Israel to self-destruction.”


There’s no authentic spirituality in such behavior. It has no roots. No depth. No connection. It’s the product of busy minds with modern agendas, with nothing more to it than that.

Israel is so fake that Zionists artificially resurrected a dead language in order for its people to have a common “native” tongue for them to speak, so that they could all LARP as indigenous middle easterners together in their phony, synthetic country.

Israel has no real culture of its own; it’s all a mixture of (A) organic Jewish culture brought in from other parts of the world by the Jewish diaspora, (B) culture that was stolen from Palestinians (see “Israeli food”), and (C) the culture of indoctrinated genocidal hatred that is interwoven with the fabric of modern Zionism. The way Israel has become a Mecca of electronic dance music points clearly to an aching cultural void that its people are trying desperately to fill with empty synthetic pop fluff.

Even international support for Israel is fake, manufactured astroturf that has to be enforced from the top down, because it would never organically occur to anyone that Israel is something that should be supported.

The phenomenally influential Israel lobby is used to push pro-Israel foreign policy in powerful western governments like Washington and London. Just yesterday US Representative Thomas Massie told Tucker Carlson that every Republican in Congress besides himself “has an AIPAC person” assigned to them with whom they are in constant communication, who he describes as functioning “like your babysitter” with regard to lawmaking on the subject of Israel. 


The Israel lobby exists with the full consent of the western imperial war machine and its secretive intelligence cartel, because western military support for Israel is also phony and fraudulent. The western empire whose strategic interests directly benefit from violence and radicalism in the middle east pretends it’s constantly expanding its military presence in the region in order to promote stability and protect an important ally, but in reality this military presence simply allows for greater control over crucial resource-rich territories whose populations would otherwise unite to form a powerful bloc acting in their own interests. The Israel lobby is a self-funding consent manufacturer which helps the empire do what it already wants to do.

Support for Israel in the media is also phony and imposed from the top down. Since October outlets like The New York Times, CNN and CBC have been finding themselves fighting off scandals due to staff leaks about demands from their executives that they slant their Gaza coverage to benefit the information interests of Israel. Briahna Joy Gray was just fired by The Hill for being critical of Israel as co-host of the show “Rising”, a fate that all mass media employees understand they will share if they are insufficiently supportive of the empire’s favorite ethnostate.

Israel’s support from celebrities is similarly forced. A newly leaked email from influential Hollywood marketing and branding guru Ashlee Margolis instructs her firm’s employees to “pause on working with any celebrity or influencer or tastemaker posting against Israel.” As we discussed recently, celebrities are also naturally disincentivized from criticizing any aspect of the western empire by the fact that their status is dependent on wealthy people whose wealth is premised upon the imperial status quo.


Support for Israel on social media is likewise notoriously phony. For years Israel has been pioneering the use of social media trolls to swarm Israel’s critics and promote agendas like undermining the BDS movement. After the beginning of the Gaza onslaught Israel spent millions on PR spin via advertising on YouTube, Instagram and Facebook, and The New York Times has just confirmed earlier reports that Israel has been targeting US lawmakers with fake social media accounts to influence their policymaking on Israel.

In truth, nobody really organically supports Israel. If they’re not supporting it because their lobbyists and employers told them to, they’re supporting it because that’s what they were told to support by the leaders of their dopey political ideologies like Zionism, liberalism and conservatism, or by the leaders of their dopey religions like Christian fundamentalism. It’s always something that’s pushed on people from the top down, rather than arising from within themselves due to their own natural interests and ideals.

Israel is not a country, it’s like a fake movie set version of a country. A movie set where the set pieces won’t even stand up on their own, so people are always running around in a constant state of construction trying to prop things up and nail things down, and scrambling to pick up things that are falling over, and rotating the set pieces so that they look like real buildings in front of the camera. Without this constant hustle and bustle of propagandizing, lobbying, online influence ops, and nonstop mass military violence, the whole movie set would fall over, and people would see all the film crew members and actors and cameras for what they are.

Clearly, no part of this is sustainable. Clearly, something’s going to have to give. Those set pieces are going to come toppling down sooner or later; it’s just a question of when, and of how high the pile of human corpses needs to be before it happens.

Alastair Crooke : Israel and Reality

Moderate politician Benny Gantz resigns from Israeli war cabinet

The Israeli politician and former military chief Benny Gantz has followed through on a threat to resign from Benjamin Netanyahu’s emergency war cabinet, leaving the prime minister more reliant than ever on far-right elements of his coalition government.

Gantz, a major Netanyahu rival, former defence minister and leader of the centre-right National Unity party, joined the three-man war cabinet as a minister without portfolio in the aftermath of Hamas’s 7 October attack, a move he said was for the sake of the country’s unity.

But as Israel’s war effort in Gaza dragged on, disagreements over strategy and how best to bring the 250 Israeli hostages home spilled into the open, culminating in Gantz accusing the prime minister of pushing strategic considerations such as a hostage deal aside for his own political survival. Last month, he gave Netanyahu an ultimatum of 8 June to present concrete “day after” plans for the Gaza Strip.

Gantz delayed his resignation speech by a day after the unexpected rescue of four Israeli hostages in an operation that the health ministry in Gaza said killed 274 people and injured another 696. The withdrawal of his party also means Gadi Eisenkot, an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) general and war cabinet observer, and the minister without portfolio, Chili Tropper, are also stepping down. ...

The move does not immediately pose a threat to Netanyahu, as the prime minister still controls a majority coalition in parliament. It does, however, affect the Israeli government’s respectability on the international stage; centrist Gantz is well liked in Washington, where he was seen as a useful brake on Netanyahu, and his absence means the prime minister’s far-right allies are likely to now have more sway over the trajectory of the war in Gaza and the growing threat of war with Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Report From Gaza: "Devastating" Israeli Raid to Free 4 Hostages Kills 270+ Palestinians

Outrage over ‘massacre’ in Gaza as Israel rescued four hostages

Israeli attacks in central Gaza killed scores of Palestinians, many of them civilians, amid a special forces operation to free four hostages held there, a death toll that has caused international outrage. At least 274 Palestinians were killed and 698 wounded in Israeli strikes on the Nuseirat refugee camp in central Gaza, Gaza’s health ministry said on Sunday. The Israeli military said its forces had come under heavy fire during the daytime operation.

The EU’s top diplomat, Josep Borrell, called Saturday’s events a “massacre”, while the UN’s aid chief described in graphic detail scenes of “shredded bodies on the ground”.

“Nuseirat refugee camp is the epicentre of the seismic trauma that civilians in Gaza continue to suffer,” Martin Griffiths said in a post on X, calling for a ceasefire and the release of all hostages. ...

Borrell, in a post on X, condemned “in the strongest terms … reports from Gaza of another massacre of civilians”. He called for a ceasefire and the release of all remaining hostages. “The bloodbath must end immediately,” he said. Israel’s foreign minister, Israel Katz, lashed out at critics of the operation in a post on Secret “Only Israel’s enemies complained about the casualties of Hamas terrorists and their accomplices.”

"Massacre": Analyst Slams Israeli Military Raid That Frees 4 Hostages, Kills 270+ Palestinians

US involved in Israeli rescue operation that killed over 200 Palestinians

The United States supported the Israeli military in rescuing four Israeli captives from Gaza on Saturday, in a "complex daytime operation" that killed over 200 Palestinians in Nuseirat, multiple news agencies have reported. A US official told Axios that a US cell stationed in Israel "supported" the Israeli military's operation, with the New York Times later reporting that the US provided "intelligence and other logistical support."

Citing a source familiar with the matter, CNN reported that there were "no US boots on the ground," adding that the American cell has been in place since 7 October, supporting Israel with information gathering. However, videos circulating online on Saturday showed a helicopter taking off from the beach in Gaza with the US pier in the backdrop.

Two US officials told CBS News that the pier was not used in the operation and in a series of statements released later on Saturday, US Central Command (Centcom) said that the "pier facility, including its equipment, personnel, and assets were not used in the operation to rescue hostages today in Gaza."


Hamas released a statement on Saturday condemning US complicity in the operation. It said: "American participation in the criminal operation that was carried out today proves once again the complicit role of the American administration, its full participation in the war crimes committed in the Gaza Strip, [and] the falsity of its declared positions on the humanitarian situation and its concern for the lives of civilians."

Congress invites mass murderer Netanyahu to address a special joint session on July 24

On Thursday, US congressional leaders announced that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will address a joint session of Congress on July 24. This invitation, one of the highest honors that can be extended to a foreign head of state, identifies the entire US political establishment and both imperialist political parties with genocide.

The formal invitation dated May 31 was addressed to “His Excellency Benjamin Netanyahu” on behalf of “the bipartisan leadership of the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate.” It was signed by Republican Speaker of the House Mike Johnson, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, Democratic Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer and House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries.

“We join the State of Israel in your struggle against terror,” the joint letter states, going on to “highlight America’s solidarity with Israel,” which is allegedly in the process of “defending democracy.”

The bipartisan invitation to Netanyahu was extended exactly one week after the International Court of Justice (ICJ) issued an emergency order under the 1948 Genocide Convention for Israel to “immediately halt its military offensive” in Rafah. The ICJ’s ruling was issued just days after the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) sought arrest warrants against Netanyahu and Israeli Minister of Defense Yoav Gallant, accusing them of “extermination” of civilians.

Netanyahu’s regime responded to these decisions by accelerating its war of annihilation against Rafah. More than two-thirds of Gaza’s population, 1.7 million people, have now been compressed into an area of less than a fifth of the Gaza Strip, where they face constant bombardment and lack basic civilian infrastructure or necessities.

Macron Calls SNAP ELECTION After Right Wing EU SURGE

Macron to dissolve French parliament after crushing loss to far right

France’s president, Emmanuel Macron, has been accused of gambling with French democracy after announcing that he will dissolve parliament and call snap legislative elections in the wake of his allies’ crushing defeat to Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally (RN) in Sunday’s European parliament elections.

On a night that saw far-right parties make significant but far from conclusive gains in Europe, the RN won about 32% of French votes, more than double the 15% or so scored by Macron’s allies, according to projections, with the Socialists just behind on about 14%.

The first round of elections for the national assembly will take place on 30 June and the second on 7 July, Macron announced in an address to the nation, in a huge gamble on his political future three years before the end of his second term as president.

The outcome of the European parliament elections was “not a good result for parties who defend Europe”, the French president said, noting that, led by RN, far-right parties in France had taken almost 40% of the national vote.

“I cannot act as if nothing had happened,” he said. “I have decided to give you the choice ... Therefore I will dissolve the National Assembly tonight.” He said the decision was “serious and heavy”, but called it “an act of confidence”.

Rus Captures Chasov Yar District, Ukr Retreats; Biden Macron Tense Talks: US/EU States No Troops Ukr

Clarence Thomas Finally Reports Gifts He Says Were 'Inadvertently Omitted' From Disclosures

Far-right U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has officially—and belatedly—disclosed two luxury vacations gifted him by a billionaire Republican megadonor as eight of the nine high court judges released their financial disclosure statements on Friday.

Thomas' 2023 disclosure includes food and lodging during 2019 trips to Bali, Indonesia and Bohemian Grove—a secretive, men-only retreat in Mendocino County, California—paid for by billionaire real estate developer Harlan Crow. The trips and other gifts for Thomas—including yacht excursions, flights on private jets, and private school tuition for the justice's grandnephew—were first revealed by ProPublica last year.

In his 2023 disclosure, Thomas claims information about the 2019 trips was "inadvertently omitted at the time of filing," and that the justice "sought and received guidance from his accountant and ethics counsel" as he prepared this year's report.

This fits a pattern: In 2011, Thomas attributed his failure to disclose his wife's income to a "misunderstanding of the filing instructions." In 2023, he said he "inadvertently failed to realize" that he needed to publicly disclose a real estate deal with Crow.

"The fact that he omitted the plane to Indonesia and the yacht around Indonesia leads me to believe he and I have very different interpretations of his disclosure responsibilities, and that's a problem," Gabe Roth, executive director of the watchdog Fix the Court, toldThe Washington Post.

The justices' disclosures also show that three members of the court—Justices Brett Kavanaugh, Neil Gorsuch, and Ketanji Brown Jackson—received six-figure payments for book deals.

"Each justice would be capable of earning 10 times their current salary in the private sector, so it's reasonable for them to want to boost their income as authors, especially those with inspiring life stories," said Roth. "This may be an unpopular opinion, but I don't see anything ethically compromising about it so long as the justices don't use their offices to hawk books, they speak to ideologically diverse audiences on their book tours, and they recuse from petitions involving their publishers."

Jackson also took four tickets to a Beyoncé concert worth over $3,700.

"Justice Jackson is 'Crazy in Love' with Beyoncé's music. Who isn't?" Supreme Court spokesperson Patricia McCabe told The Washington Post.

But Roth said that "next time... Justice Jackson should pay for her own Beyoncé tickets."

Justice Sonia Sotomayor was paid $1,900 to voice an animated version of herself on the PBS children's show "Alma's Way." Justice Elena Kagan was reimbursed for travel, lodging, and food by Notre Dame Law School following a speech she delivered there last September. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, Amy Coney Barrett, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh did not receive any gifts last year, according to their disclosure forms. Justice Samuel Alito was again granted an extension to file.

The justices' disclosures came a day after Fix the Court published a database listing 672 gifts worth nearly $6.6 million that current and former Supreme Court judges received, mostly since 2004. Thomas accounted for 193 gifts with an estimated value of more than $4 million that were identified by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.


Businessman testifies he promised Bob Menendez up to $250,000 in bribes

A New Jersey businessman took his star turn on the witness stand on Friday in the bribery case against US senator Bob Menendez, telling a jury he believed he had a $200,000-$250,000 deal in 2018 for the Democrat to pressure the state attorney general’s office to stop investigating his friends and family.

Jose Uribe testified in Manhattan federal court in the afternoon, providing key testimony against Menendez and two other businessmen charged in a conspiracy along with Menendez’s wife. Next week, Menendez’s lawyers will get to cross-examine the naturalized US citizen. ...

Uribe, 57, who pleaded guilty to charges in a March cooperation deal, was the star witness for the government in its bid to win a conviction against the senator, who once held the powerful post as chair of the Senate foreign relations committee. He was forced out of the position after he was criminally charged last fall. ...

Uribe testified that he had been close friends with Wael Hana, who is on trial with Menendez, when Hana told him in early 2018 that New Jersey state criminal investigations swirling around the trucking business of a friend of his and Uribe’s own insurance business could be largely put to rest if he was willing to spend $200,000 to $250,000.

Uribe said Hana told him that he would go to Nadine Arslanian (her name before she married the senator), who had begun dating Menendez that year, and then “Nadine would go to Senator Menendez”, although Uribe did not testify about how the couple could resolve multiple investigations.

Appeals court tells Texas it cannot ban books for mentioning ‘butt and fart’

An appellate court has ruled that Texas cannot ban books from libraries simply because they mention “butt and fart” and other content which some state officials may dislike. The fifth US circuit court of appeals issued its decision on Thursday in a 76-page majority opinion, which was written by Judge Jacques Wiener Jr and opened with a quote from American poet Walt Whitman: “The dirtiest book in all the world is the expurgated book.”

In its decision, the appellate court declared that “government actors may not remove books from a public library with the intent to deprive patrons of access to ideas with which they disagree”.

It added: “This court has declared that officials may not ‘remove books from school library shelves simply because they dislike the idea contained in those books and seek by their removal to prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion or other matters of opinion.’”

The appellate court’s latest decision follows a federal lawsuit filed in 2022 by seven Llano county residents against county and library officials for restricting and removing books from its public circulation. The residents argued that the defendants violated their constitutional right to “access information and ideas” by removing 17 books based on their content and messages.

Those books include seven “butt and fart” books with titles including I Broke My Butt! and Larry the Farting Leprechaun, four young adult books on sexuality, gender identity and dysphoria – including Being Jazz: My Life As a (Transgender) Teen – and two books on the history of racism in the US, among them Caste and They Called Themselves the KKK. Other books targeted by the ban were In the Night Kitchen, which contains cartoons of a naked child, as well as It’s Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex and Sexual Health, according to court documents.



the horse race



Fresh Calls to 'Reject AIPAC' After Analysis of GOP Money in Dem Primaries

Politico reported Sunday that the American Israel Public Affairs Committee "the biggest source of Republican money flowing into competitive Democratic primaries this year," sparking new calls for candidates and voters nationwide to #RejectAIPAC.

"If you don't want Republican megadonors to choose your next Democratic congressperson for you, then there's only one option: #RejectAIPAC," Naftali Ehrenkranz, digital director at Get Free, said on social media, pointing to the reporting.

Also noting the "bombshell" report, Yonah Lieberman, co-founder of the Jewish American organization IfNotNow, said that "AIPAC is a GOP front group. Democrats who accept their money or endorsement should be shamed out of the party."

Institute on Race, Power, and Political Economy senior fellow Nina Turner, a former Democratic congressional candidate, declared, "AIPAC is a right-wing group that buys deep blue seats."

Trita Parsi, executive vice president of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, drew a comparison to the National Rifle Association, saying, "Imagine how mainstream Democrats would react if the NRA was the single biggest source of Republicans donating into Democratic primaries."

Support for or criticism of the Israeli government has become a defining issue in this election cycle over the past eight months, as Israel has waged a war on the Gaza Strip that has led to a genocide case at the International Court of Justice. AIPAC, which supports pro-Israel Democratic and Republican candidates, has targeted progressives who oppose the military assault.

"We are proud to engage in the democratic process in a bipartisan way to help elect candidates who support the U.S.-Israel relationship," AIPAC spokesperson Marshall Wittmann said in a statement. "Candidates from both parties should welcome the engagement of pro-Israel activists because Americans overwhelmingly stand with the Jewish state. In fact, those who object to our participation only represent a small, extremist fringe."

Gallup polling released in March shows that 55% of Americans disapprove of Israeli military actions in Gaza—which as of Sunday, have killed over 37,000 people, according to local officials. A Pew Research Center survey published last week found that 53% of U.S. adults have little to no confidence that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will "do the right thing regarding world affairs."

Politico put out the findings from its analysis—which is based on a review of Federal Election Commission filings from AIPAC, the ActBlue and WinRed donation platforms, and individual campaigns—a day after thousands of American critics of Israel's war and U.S. complicity in it descended on the White House while Israeli forces slaughtered hundreds more Palestinians.

According to the outlet:

Only about 2% of this cycle's donors to Democratic candidates or through the Democratic giving platform ActBlue have also given to Republicans over the past few cycles, Politico's analysis found. But 46% of donors who have given to Democratic candidates via AIPAC this cycle have given to Republicans since the 2020 cycle.

For Republican donors, giving to Democratic candidates in primaries helps ensure more moderate, pro-Israel candidates win in deep-blue seats where the general election is all but certain to be uncompetitive, and financial support for GOP candidates would be a waste.

The top recipient of AIPAC money—at least $1.61 million—is Westchester County Executive George Latimer, who launched his challenge to Democratic Congressman Jamaal Bowman in New York's 16th Congressional District after visiting Israel.

Responding to the report on social media Sunday, Bowman—who has called Israel's assault on Gaza genocide—said that "Republicans are setting records spending against us. And we're going to break records beating them."

Politico pointed out that "competitive Democratic primaries are also the biggest targets for AIPAC's affiliated super PAC, United Democracy Project, which has already spent $19.8 million in them this year, including $9.3 million in the Bowman-Latimer race. That makes it by far the biggest outside group in Democratic primaries, with more money flowing from UDP than the next 10 biggest spenders combined. (The super PAC has also spent in a handful of GOP primaries, dropping $3 million total.)"

The New York arm of the Working Families Party, which is backing Bowman in the June 25 primary, shared Politico's graph of top AIPAC beneficiaries and stressed that "we must be united in rejecting AIPAC's efforts to subvert our democracy."

After Bowman and two incumbents is St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell, at $869,300. He is trying to oust another progressive "Squad" member, Democratic Congresswoman Cori Bush, in the August 6 primary for Missouri's 1st District.

"My opponent Wesley Bell is among AIPAC's TOP 4 recipients this cycle—and is gladly taking money from anti-abortion, anti-LGBTQ+, anti-labor, pro-NRA Republicans who expect his loyalty in return above all else," Bush said on social media. "We deserve better. #StLouisIsNotForSale."



the evening greens


Far-right fossil fuel company allies pressure US supreme court to shield firms in unprecedented campaign

Far-right fossil fuel allies have launched a stunning and unprecedented campaign pressuring the supreme court to shield fossil fuel companies from litigation that could cost them billions of dollars. Some of the groups behind the campaign have ties to Leonard Leo, the architect of the rightwing takeover of the supreme court who helped select Trump’s supreme court nominees. Leo also appears to have ties to Chevron, one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit. ...

Honolulu is one of 40 cities and states suing big oil for an alleged decades-long effort to sow doubt about the dangers of burning fossils. If successful, the case could force the defendants to pay for climate damages. In October, the Hawaii supreme court ruled that the suit can go to trial. But oil companies petitioned the US supreme court in February to review the state court’s decision; they argued the cases should be thrown out because emissions are a federal issue that shouldn’t be tried in state courts.

Supreme court justices met on Thursday to consider whether or not to take up the fossil fuel companies’ request, and the justices could grant or reject the petition in the coming days. If granted, the request could catalyze the dismissal of the wave of climate accountability lawsuits against big oil – a major win for the defendants seeking to limit their liability for the climate crisis. But it’s the kind of ask about which the supreme court would not normally offer its opinion, advocates and legal experts say. ...

“I have never, ever seen this kind of overt political campaign to influence the court like this,” said Patrick Parenteau, professor and senior climate policy fellow at Vermont Law School. In recent weeks, conservatives have published opinion pieces in Bloomberg, the Hill, the Wall Street Journal and the National Review calling on the court to grant the petition. ...

Another Leo-tied non-profit, the Alliance for Consumers, has also been running social media ads making similar arguments, Rolling Stone reported this month. Leo has said he will attempt to use the non-profit to “institute a lot of legal and social change”. In April, 20 Republican state attorneys general also filed “friend of the court” briefs asking the supreme court to grant the petition. Each of them are members of the Republican Attorneys General Association, to which Leo’s Concord Fund is a major contributor.

Wildfire smoke prematurely killed over 50,000 Californians in a decade

More than 50,000 people have died prematurely in California over a decade due to exposure to toxic particles in wildfire smoke, according to a new study. Wildfires create smoke containing PM2.5, tiny particles roughly one-thirtieth of a human hair that can embed themselves deep in the lungs and enter the bloodstream. The particles have been linked to numerous health conditions and premature death. Previous research has found that the wildfire smoke is exposing millions of people in the US to the harmful pollutant.

Wildfires create smoke containing PM2.5, tiny particles roughly one-thirtieth of a human hair that can embed themselves deep in the lungs and enter the bloodstream. The particles have been linked to numerous health conditions and premature death. Previous research has found that the wildfire smoke is exposing millions of people in the US to the harmful pollutant.

The research is the first to quantify the long-term impacts of chronic exposure to PM2.5 specifically from wildfires, rather than other sources, and has important implications for California, said Rachel Connolly, an author of the study. The results suggest that wildfires are responsible for more deaths and greater economic impacts than previous studies have indicated.

“The findings are really a call to action for forest management and climate change mitigation,” said Connolly, who is the project director at the UCLA Luskin Center for Innovation and also works within the Fielding School of Public Health.

Researchers are only just starting to grasp the impacts of PM2.5 exposure on human health, but the particles can reduce lung function and worsen existing health conditions, including respiratory problems and heart disease.

Much more at the link:

Napa Valley has lush vineyards and wineries – and a pollution problem

Famous for its lush vineyards and cherished local wineries, Napa valley is where people go to escape their problems. “When you first get there, it’s really pretty,” said Geoff Ellsworth, former mayor of St Helena, a small Napa community nestled 50 miles north-east of San Francisco. “It mesmerizes people.”

What the more than 3 million annual tourists don’t see, however, is that California’s wine country has a brewing problem – one that has spurred multiple ongoing government investigations and created deep divisions. Some residents and business owners fear it poses a risk to the region’s reputation and environment.

At the heart of the fear is the decades-old Clover Flat Landfill (CFL), perched on the northern edge of the valley atop the edge of a rugged mountain range. Two streams run adjacent to the landfill as tributaries to the Napa River. A growing body of evidence, including regulatory inspection reports and emails between regulators and CFL owners, suggests the landfill and a related garbage-collection business have routinely polluted those local waterways that drain into the Napa River with an assortment of dangerous toxins.

The river irrigates the valley’s beloved vineyards and is used recreationally for kayaking by more than 10,000 people annually. The prospect that the water and wine flowing from the region may be at risk of contamination with hazardous chemicals and heavy metals has driven a wedge between those speaking out about the concerns and others who want the issue kept out of the spotlight, according to Ellsworth, a former employee of CFL.


Also of Interest

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

The Media Skew Public Perception By Manipulating People’s Attention

When Opposing A Genocide Means You’re A Nazi

Corporate Media Push Conspiracy Theories to Discredit Student Protesters

Why are America’s elite universities so afraid of this scholar’s paper?

Wounded Palestinians from Gaza find refuge in Baghdad's hospitals, recount horrors of Israeli atrocities

Patrick Lawrence: Scott Ritter Silenced by Liberal Authoritarians

The Cautious US Escalation Against Russia Is Developing Not Necessarily to US Advantage

Thousands of Children Got Tested for Lead With Faulty Devices: What Parents Should Know

Briahna Joy Gray FIRED By Rising Over Israel


A Little Night Music

Tommy McClennan - Cross Cut Saw Blues

Tommy McClennan - New Shake 'Em on Down

Tommy McClennan - Drop Down Mama

Tommy McClennan - Baby, Don't You Want to Go

Tommy McClennan - My Baby's Gone

Tommy McClennan - Deep Blue Sea Blues (Catfish Blues)

Tommy McClennan - Love With A Feeling

Tommy McClennan - She's Just Good Huggin' Size

Tommy McClennan - Bertha Lee Blues


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snoopydawg's picture

.

that’s supported by US backed NGOs.

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Conversation

Robby Starbuck
@robbystarbuck
This is insane. A Ukrainian NGO just put out an enemies list that includes US citizens. This list blames us for Ukraine’s issues on the battlefield.

Here’s where it gets crazy… The founder of this NGO (http://Texty.org.ua) was TRAINED by the U.S. State Department. The list includes me,
@elonmusk
,
@DavidSacks
,
@Jim_Banks
,
@RandPaul
,
@JackPosobiec
,
@charliekirk11
,
@RealCandaceO
,
@JDVance1
,
@michaeljknowles
,
@HawleyMO
,
@Eric_Schmitt
,
@benshapiro
,
@RonDeSantis
,
@DonaldJTrumpJr
,
@realDonaldTrump
,
@Jim_Jordan
,
@LauraLoomer
,
@ggreenwald

@TuckerCarlson
,
@RonPaul
,
@RepThomasMassie
,
@timburchett
,
@dbongino
,
@TateTheTalisman
,
@Cobratate
,
@RobertKennedyJr
and more.

The founders name is Anatoly Bondarenko and he was trained at the State Dept’s “TechCamp”. Now he’s using that training to target US citizens with an enemies list.

The NGO also received US funds. This is beyond unacceptable. Not only are we being forced to fund a meat grinder killing countless young men and women when peace could’ve been attained but now that country that’s been taking our money has a group targeting US citizens AND the US government trained their founder!

We need answers from the US government about what they’re doing to ensure the safety of everyone on the list and what consequences there will be for the creation of this enemies list. Is this the thanks
@elonmusk
gets for providing Ukraine Starlink? Insane. I expect to see a lot more info coming out over the next week about this group. Will JoeBiden speak up in defense of American citizens or allow them to be targeted by a foreign nation that he’s led the charge to fund?

Not new, but still interesting. Will Biden do anything about it? Probably not after he has done jack S after Ukraine killed Gonzo Lira and he’s letting Israel bomb the hell out of Gaza even though there are American hostages there.

Next time someone says that Israel has to kill civilians because Hamas hides behind them ask them where Hamas is supposed to hide in the open air fenced prison.

ETA

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@snoopydawg

A total of 390 individuals and 76 organizations are included in what McAdams describes as Ukraine's "enemies list."

More from McAdams:

The report also includes such prominent American politicians and journalists as Sen. JD Vance, Sen. Rand Paul, Rep. Matt Gaetz, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, Rep. Jim Jordan, and Col. Douglas Macgregor.

Even our friends at Antiwar.com…and your own correspondent (!) find ourselves appearing on the Ukrainian "enemies list":

https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/us-affiliated-ukrainian-ngo-debut...

So the Biden Administration doesn’t care that American congress members are on Ukraine’s hit list? I bet the democrats who voted against giving Ukraine more billions are on the list too. And I’m guessing that Pelosi doesn’t care either because she wants American citizens who are critical of Israel investigated for ties to Russia and China….

Like I’ve said…stupidest timeline ever.

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joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

some of the people on that list are people that can pick up the phone and get joe biden on the other end. it will be interesting to see if anything happens.

seems to me that israel has done so much hiding behind human shields that it doesn't have much room to grumble.

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@joe shikspack

But do they know that they are on the list? Hopefully someone will tell them.

Nope Israel has no room to talk. Sullivan brought that up yesterday as have many pro Zionists.

Orban said that America wants the minerals in Ukraine and yesterday Lindsay said the same thing.

"There’s $12-14 trillion worth of minerals in Ukraine and we should get them and not Russia because they will share them with China."

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@snoopydawg

god is such a mysterious cat! he clearly intended for american capitalists to exploit all of the things that can be converted into wealth on the planet - and then he went and put them underground in other people's countries. it's like god intended for 'merka to make war on all of them to seize the goodies!

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@snoopydawg

He ain’t aging well…

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@snoopydawg

...for electroshock therapy.

And I mean that in the most clinically therapeutic way.

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Lol…Da Judge calls Kirby - Baghdad Bob.

Apologies if you posted this last week. I missed it if you did.

Russian warships are in Havana Harbor. Wilkerson thinks that they should put some missiles there again to call out America's hypocrisy. We’ve got missiles and maybe nukes in 2 states that border Russia. Not to mention giving Ukraine permission to use long range missiles to hit inside Russia. There’s that goose and gander thing again. The ships themselves are loaded with nuclear weapons so maybe the point is mute.

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@snoopydawg

that was one i missed. thanks for posting it!

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@joe shikspack

Maybe it’s just on my iPad, but it often posts videos from weeks ago and nothing current.

This might interest some. I’m very naive about foreign history.

The main thrust of the hegemons has not changed in the last 120 years or so. It is somewhat surprising that many people still believe today that Germany was solely responsible for the First World War. Even then, every conceivable effort was made internationally to prevent the Germans from focussing on peace and prosperity in the long term and with all their social power.

Germany was becoming too strong economically for the then hegemon Great Britain. The construction of the Berlin-Baghdad railway, for example, threatened the British Empire not only industrially, but also in terms of trade routes. If you understand Mackinder’s Heartland Theory, which saw the British Empire in danger as early as 1905, and internalise the strategy of Brzesinski and Friedman, the First World War and today’s tensions make much more sense. However, this requires a minimum of knowledge and education, which the German government clearly lacks. On this topic, I refer you to the article by Karl Eckstein “Anglo-Saxon geopolitical strategy – unchanged for 120 years“. We will return to this topic below.

https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/germany-naive-pawn-usa-no-power-t...

Russia has been trying to make peace with the west for decades only to be turned down over and over. 2 Minsk agreements were never upheld either and here we are again on the brink of another world war because America just can’t believing that everything in the world belongs to it. Yep gawd has a wicked sense of humor putting American assets in other countries.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

It is a gauntlet thrown with the courage that only the truth can bring. In the current context of Imperial mind control in the West, Johnstone has composed one of the most honest and powerful views on Zionism (and on its Potemkin prop, Israel) that we are likely to read anywhere. Preserve it.

Johnstone's truth-telling journalism began at exactly the same moment that this website, c99, appeared.

I have a journalism degree but it became clear to me before I graduated that there’s no real path to doing real journalism in the legacy media which was dominant at the time. I stumbled into my current journalism gig by accident in 2016, just from writing my opinions about Bernie Sanders and how unjustly the progressive movement was being treated by the mass media and the Democratic establishment.

.

Caitlin Johnstone, like those of us who are part of this site, sought a way to shine a light on the truth in the midst of a massive propaganda blast generated by the privately-owned mainstream media monopolies in the United States, and by government and big-donor funded National Public Media outlets.

Because we now stand at a watershed moment in the cohesiveness of our civilization, which suffers from conscious neglect and lazy ignorance on the part of the People — I thought I would offer a statement that Johnstone wrote about her committed ongoing mission as a journalist on December 11, 2020. It received 103 responses. What follows is an edited version. Any errors are mine.

When I first started out my perspective was as unrefined as you’d expect from any novice, but over time I’ve cultivated an understanding of global power dynamics and the way power structures use mass-scale narrative manipulation to advance their agendas which has given my analysis a lot more lucidity.

I support transparency of the powerful. I believe if the public just had a clear image of what’s happening in our world and the murderous oligarchic forces that are steering us into destruction, they would naturally use the power of their numbers to force drastic changes away from our omnicidal, ecocidal status quo and toward something much healthier. It is only the ability of the powerful to use government, corporate and financial secrecy, internet censorship and mass media propaganda to hide and distort the truth which prevents this from happening.

This is why nobody is so reviled and demonized by establishment propagandists as those who reveal inconvenient truths and promote unauthorized narratives.

The plutocratic class uses its mass media monopolies to promote narratives that are favorable to the status quo upon which those plutocrats have built their respective kingdoms. Our world is ruled by manipulative sociopaths who are pouring massive amounts of resources every single day into controlling the way people think, act and vote so as to preserve their existing power structures.

If humans are to survive we cannot remain driven by ego and fear, because as long as we are we’ll remain easy to manipulate and propagandize and we will inevitably keep finding our way onto self-destructive trajectories, terrorized by phantom enemies and foreign ideologies that threaten our lives and freedom in the United States. Americans are being robbed of their savings and security to pay for deadly wars against billions of innocent humans around the world. All to give Western plutocrats and sociopaths control over the world’s natural resources and wealth.

For millennia wise humans have been writing about the potential within us all to bring consciousness to our inner processes and begin functioning in a healthy and harmonious way, and our current evolve-or-die predicament means we’re about to either see that potential unlocked in us at mass scale or go the way of the dinosaur.

And that’s primarily what I’m doing here — my part in helping to bring consciousness to the true facts. I point to these facts in as many different ways as possible; sometimes just by laying out the raw data and saying what it looks like to me. And that’s what I’ll continue to do, better and better every year as my inner and outer consciousness expands and I see the full picture with more and more clarity.

.

Caitlin Johnstone's editorial at the top of tonight's Evening Blues, demonstrates that Johnstone, and her writing partner Tim Foley, have not backed down from journalism that expresses the apparent truth, even in the most compromising and dangerous of times. Even as the West blindly clings to its obvious and self-destructive propaganda and lies.

[edit = typo]

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snoopydawg's picture

@Pluto's Republic

She has helped open my eyes to the propaganda we have been dished for as long as I’ve been alive. She gets me to question what the goal of the mainstream media narrative is to get me to believe.

She made me appreciate what Chomsky has been saying for so long.

CJ Hopkins is another person who gets me to look at the big picture. He wrote this in 2016 before Trump knocked Hillary off her coronation pedal and he nailed where the world was heading.

It’s too bad that neither will ever appear on mainstream media so the rest of Americans can wake up and see their government fail what it is.

Still wondering why we see threats through the kabuki.

Damn auto corrupt!

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@Pluto's Republic

yep, caitlin has been doing a marvelous job of shining her little light of truth at the world. i salute her incisiveness, perserverance and incredible productivity.

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.

Blinken puts his blinders on again.

US Lifts Ban on Arms Supplies to Ukraine’s Nationalist Battalion Azov

The formation has passed the State Department's inspection for compliance with the Leahy Law, which prohibits the provision of US military assistance to foreign units convicted of serious human rights violation, the report added.

The Azov battalion is one of the most notorious military units of the Ukrainian army, as its soldiers have been found to be involved in torture, abuse of civilians, neo-Nazism and excessive brutality since its foundation.
Earlier, there were already concerns that the prohibition on military aid to Azov was de facto losing force, particularly because the Azov fighters had become part of Ukraine's National Guard or had created new separate paramilitary formations.

Blocking food, water and medical supplies doesn’t go against the Leahy rule either according to Antony. He is on his 8th visit to Israel to try to bring this genocide to an end.

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@snoopydawg

i hope to live to see the day that antony blinken and his co-conspirators are dragged off in chains to the hague.

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@joe shikspack

DITTO!

Some of the stupidest people ever to hold positions in government. Then there’s our current president who wouldn’t know empathy if someone spelled it for him.,

Instead of finding ways to forgive student debt why not change the bankruptcy laws? Hey shitlibs, why aren’t you asking that?

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@joe shikspack

Hope he knows how many people are mocking him. Did he go to Israel for the 8th time as a Jew? Or are things so bad at home that he just globes hops to get away from it? Or maybe it’s all the protesters outside his house that keeps him from sleeping well.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

.
...for so long, the lies appear as an anathema: Something dirty and diseased on the page. Something that definitely does not belong.

We have pointed out the lies, false flags, and propaganda since 2016 and long before, and have been 100 percent correct each and every time.

People have been kept informed, and warned of rogue actions and aggression. But why worry when you are safe inside the United States? If and how they protect themselves from the fallout and unintended consequences is up to them. It's not easy to act with the power of one's independence.

Personally, events in Israel have reopened many questions on the events of 9/11 in my mind. It's probably prudent to take a closer look at the event that sent the US careening off into Neocon-inspired national self-destruction.

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