The Evening Blues - 4-8-21



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The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Mighty Joe Young

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features Chicago blues singer and guitarist Mighty Joe Young. Enjoy!

Mighty Joe Young - Baby Please

"The constitutional Presidency—as events so apparently disparate as the Indochina War and the Watergate affair showed—has become the imperial Presidency."

-- Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.


News and Opinion

Months After Biden Promised to End Support for Yemen War, Congress Still Has No Details

More than two months after President Joe Biden announced that he would end “all American support for offensive operations in the war in Yemen, including relevant arms sales,” his administration has yet to detail what forms of support the U.S. has cut off. Biden made the commitment in a February address, but he also promised to help defend Saudi Arabia from missile attacks and “threats from Iranian-supplied forces,” an apparent reference to assaults by Houthi rebels fighting the Saudi-backed government of Yemen. That left many members of Congress questioning how the administration would distinguish between offensive and defensive military support.

Forty-one progressive members of Congress wrote to Biden asking him to clarify what forms of support he had discontinued and which Trump-era arms sales would be deemed “relevant” to offensive operations. The letter requested a response before March 25, six years to the day after a coalition of countries led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates launched their intervention to defeat the Iranian-backed Houthis. The intervention was supported by the United States, and both the Obama and Trump administrations provided weapons, intelligence, and, until 2018, mid-air refueling support for Saudi aircraft.

But almost two weeks after the deadline, the administration still has not responded to the letter. A spokesperson for the State Department referred The Intercept to the White House. A spokesperson for the White House did not respond to multiple requests for comment. ...

The missed deadline comes as many of the same members of Congress are looking for ways to press Saudi Arabia to end its blockade of Yemen. After years of war, Yemen is suffering one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises, and aid groups have criticized both sides for impeding the flow of needed goods.

Ex-Iranian Diplomat: Revived Nuclear Talks Must Start with U.S. Lifting of Crippling Sanctions

Warnings of Attempt to 'Sabotage' Diplomacy as Israel Reportedly Attacks Iranian Ship

Israel reportedly informed U.S. officials that it was behind a Tuesday mine attack on an Iranian vessel stationed in the Red Sea, a dangerous escalation that came on the same day American and Iranian negotiators took part in European-led talks in Vienna on the 2015 nuclear agreement.

The timing of the attack, which Iranian media outlets reported Tuesday without assigning blame, raised suspicions that it was carried out with the express purpose of undermining steps toward a diplomatic solution on the nuclear accord. In 2018, U.S. President Donald Trump violated the agreement, which Israel's right-wing government has opposed from the beginning.

"Israel appears to be stepping up attacks on Iran to undermine diplomacy," argued Mohammad Ali Shabani, editor of Amwaj.media. "Same Catch 22 for Tehran as before: respond, and get blamed. Don't respond, and invite further attacks. One exit: Statements of condemnation from Iran's counterparts in Vienna."

Jamal Abdi, president of the National Iranian American Council, tweeted in response to the mine attack that "some U.S. lawmakers advocate for Israel to be in the room for any talks with Iran, presumably so they can blow negotiations up from the inside as well as the outside."

The New York Times reported that while Israeli officials had yet to publicly comment on the attack as of Tuesday night, "an American official said the Israelis had notified the United States that its forces had struck the [Iranian] vessel at about 7:30 am local time."

Trita Parsi: How Iran Deal Is US Ticket OUT Of Middle East

Russia conducts nationwide military exercises as Ukraine, NATO prepare for war

Against the backdrop of intensifying tensions with Ukraine, the Russian government will proceed with previously planned nationwide military exercises, announced Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu on Wednesday. The test of the country’s fighting capacity and readiness will stretch over the course of April, involve both ground and naval forces, and include more than 4,000 separate events conducted across the country, even in its most remote regions. While the military exercises have been scheduled for some time, Moscow’s public reaffirmation that they will proceed is clearly intended as a show of force in the face of growing threats of war against Russia over Ukraine. In the last several weeks, these threats have reached a fever pitch, with the danger emerging of a full-blown conflict between Russia and Ukraine, behind which stand the United States and Germany.

Over the last seven days, the Ukrainian government has called on NATO to admit the country to the transnational military alliance, appealed for stepped-up NATO intervention in the Black Sea, and announced that Ukrainian forces will be conducting joint exercises with NATO later this year. Prior to this, Kiev outlined its intentions to retake Crimea by force, the peninsula extending into the Black Sea that rejoined Russia in 2014. Fighting has also intensified between Ukrainian and Russian-allied forces in the Donbass, where breakaway republics emerged in 2014 after a coup orchestrated by Washington and Berlin brought to power a far-right anti-Russian government in Ukraine.

In calls with the heads of state of Canada and Britain on Tuesday, President Volodymyr Zelensky secured assurances of these nations’ support for Ukraine. They follow the lead of the US government, the architect of the pro-Kiev, anti-Russian campaign, which has involved the financing, equipping, and training of Ukraine’s military for years. Writing for the Atlantic Council, American political analyst Stephen Blank appealed Tuesday for the US to go further and upgrade Ukraine’s air force in order to make clear the “hard and tangible long-term strategic costs Russia must bear for its malign conduct.”

These events unfold as NATO is pressing forward with war preparations against Russia. It is currently conducting a massive military training exercise that extends across the European continent. DEFENDER-Europe 2021, involving 27 nations and 30,000 troops and unfolding in 12 countries, “demonstrates,” according to the US Army’s Europe and Africa division, “our ability to serve as a strategic security partner in the western Balkans and Black Sea regions while sustaining our abilities in northern Europe, the Caucasus, Ukraine and Africa.” Involving ground, maritime, and airborne exercises along the entire stretch of Russia’s western borders and in areas central to Moscow’s geopolitical interests, DEFENDER-Europe 21 is gearing up NATO to wage World War III. The consequences of such a conflict would be, at the very least, the loss of tens of millions of lives in Europe and Russia and, most likely, the nuclear annihilation of the planet, as the US military has repeatedly made clear that it is prepared to use atomic weapons to secure American interests.

Not a single person in Ukraine, or anywhere else for that matter, will achieve “liberation” from “Russian aggression” under these circumstances. Rather, they will all be dead.

Nobel Peace Prize Winner Jody Williams Slams Biden Admin for Claiming Landmines Are a “Vital Tool”

Freedom Rider: The U.S. Can’t Control the World

Joe Biden’s foreign policy differs little from that of his predecessor Donald Trump. The imperatives of the United States hegemon require treating the rest of the world as either willing vassals or as sworn enemies. Any nation that threatens economic supremacy or the ability to thwart foreign policy directives is labeled an adversary and faces an onslaught of governmental and corporate media attacks. This dynamic remains unchanged and the Biden administration has only worsened an already bad situation. The troubles start at the top with the president himself. When asked by George Stephanopoulos in an ABC news interview if Vladimir Putin is “a killer” Biden answered in the affirmative. The president was never known for his intellect and thought that repeating Russiagate tropes would play well. It didn’t play well with the Russians who immediately recalled their U.S. ambassador back home to Moscow.

While Biden was dealing with foot in mouth disease regarding Russia, his Secretary of State Antony Blinken was making a mess of relations with China. He invited his Chinese counterparts to a meeting in Anchorage, Alaska and proceeded to offend them by scolding them in front of the press and repeating unfounded charges about human rights abuses against the Uyghurs. ...

Having squandered opportunity and lost leverage, the hapless Americans have been pressured by the Europeans to rejoin the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), popularly known as the Iran nuclear deal. Talks will resume in Vienna but the Iranians are neither impressed nor intimidated. Foreign minister Javad Zarif stated in a Twitter post that the U.S. must remove all sanctions in order for the talks to move forward. He added for emphasis, “No Iran-US meeting. Unnecessary.” The ongoing impacts of U.S. meddling are coming to fruition all over the world. Even U.S. ally Germany is moving ahead with the Nord Stream II gas pipeline with Russia, making a lie out of claims that Russia is a threat to Europe. Despite all of its schemes to dominate, nothing is working in this country’s favor on the diplomatic front. ...

Biden is dealing with the results of decades of the United States behaving as if its brief unipolar moment would last forever. China will soon surpass the United States economically and it is using that power to its advantage. Its Belt and Road Initiative involves countries on every continent and provides opportunity where the western nations offer only debt and subjugation.

The idea that Joe Biden is the most powerful man in the world is a fantasy accepted only because of endless indoctrination. No one else lives in this dream land. Even dim witted Joe Biden has to learn that he can’t call other presidents killers and have any expectation of good relations. Of course his definition of good relations means other countries obeying U.S. dictates. But that isn’t how the world works any more. He and his handlers must quickly disabuse themselves of any notion that the U.S.can continue to get away with these debacles of their own making. These “grown ups” in the room had better grow up fast.

Bolsonaro a 'Threat to the Planet,' Says Lula as Brazil's Daily Covid Death Toll Hits All-Time High

Former Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva on Wednesday called far-right President Jair Bolsonaro a grave "threat to the planet" after the nation's daily Covid-19 death toll topped 4,000 for the first time since the pandemic began last year, a sign that the public health crisis is worsening as Bolsonaro continues to downplay the virus and undercut potential solutions.

At least 4,195 Brazilians died of the coronavirus on Tuesday and nearly 87,000 new infections were reported as the South American country's treatment facilities were "stretched to breaking point" by the rapidly spreading virus.

"It's a nuclear reactor that has set off a chain reaction and is out of control," Miguel Nicolelis, a Brazilian doctor and professor at Duke University in the United States, told The Guardian of the worsening Covid-19 crisis in Brazil, which has the second-highest Covid-19 death toll in the world behind the U.S.

"It's a biological Fukushima," said Nicolelis.

With deaths and cases surging, Bolsonaro has persistently refused to consider implementing public safety measures to slow the spread and remained committed to dismissing the severity of the pandemic, which he has previously characterized as a media creation.

In an open letter published Wednesday, Lula—who is expected to mount another presidential bid—wrote that "unfortunately, our country is today considered a global threat, due to the uncontrolled circulation of the virus and the emergence of new mutations."

"It must be said that this threat to the planet has a name and a surname: Jair Bolsonaro, a president of the republic who systematically denies science and who ignores the suffering of the people he has sworn to defend," Lula continued.

The former president went on to stress the need for equitable and swift global distribution of the coronavirus vaccine, echoing scientists' warnings that leaving much of the world unprotected dramatically increases the risk of vaccine-resistant mutations emerging and spreading around the world, rendering first-generation vaccines ineffective.

"We cannot consider living in a world where part of the planet is vaccinated and part abandoned and isolated to be a free field for mutations of the virus," Lula wrote. "The epicenter of the pandemic cannot be Europe yesterday, today Brazil, tomorrow Africa, with new variants restarting the cycle of death and sadness around the world."

But "instead of defending immunizations as a public good for humanity," said Lula, the Bolsonaro government "advocates the private commercialization of vaccines and their concentration in a few companies and countries."

As The Intercept reported Wednesday, Bolsonaro has repeatedly undermined Brazil's public vaccination system—widely considered one of the best in the world prior to the Covid-19 crisis—and is currently supporting an effort by right-wing lawmakers to "allow corporations to directly purchase vaccine doses from international suppliers and give them to employees, even before priority groups like the elderly and medical workers are fully vaccinated."

Under Bolsonaro's leadership, Brazil has also joined the United States, Canada, and European nations in opposing a South Africa and India-led effort at the World Trade Organization to temporarily suspend vaccine-related patent protections.

"The real tragedy is that Brazil is among the few vaccine-manufacturing countries in the world blessed with world-class vaccine research and production facilities," Achal Prabhala of accessibsa, an international project focused expanding access to medicines and vaccines, told The Intercept. "If there had been a coordinated federal strategy early on to support the local production of vaccines, Brazil would have been in a very different situation today."

Is Manchin Set To BLOW UP Entire Infrastructure Package?

US to enter post-Covid boom ‘torn by income inequality,’ says JP Morgan boss

The US is about to enter a post-pandemic boom, according to JP Morgan boss Jamie Dimon, even though it has been “torn and crippled by politics, as well as racial and income inequality.” In his annual letter to shareholders, Dimon, the US’s pre-eminent banker who was paid $31.5m during 2020, called for higher spending on everything from infrastructure to childcare and backed higher taxes on companies and the wealthy and to help pay for it.

But he said the economy was on the edge of a “Goldilocks moment” where expanding vaccinations, high savings rates and the Biden administration’s massive stimulus bill could trigger a strong recovery lasting well into 2023. Dimon’s closely watched letter stands in marked contrast to last year’s, when the JP Morgan chief executive predicted the US was heading for a “bad recession” in which US gross domestic product could fall by up to 35%.

But his upbeat assessment of the economic landscape also comes with caveats. Dimon has long warned that growing economic inequality poses a systemic threat and says that future growth has been challenged by “China, Covid-19 and our own competence”.

“Vaccine Passports”: ACLU Warns of Privacy Nightmare That Could Create “Two-Tiered Society”

How US Capitol attack surveillance methods could be used against protesters

Over the past months, federal law enforcement has used a wide variety of surveillance technologies to track down rioters who participated in the 6 January attack on the US Capitol building – demonstrating rising surveillance across the nation. Recent news coverage of the riot has largely focused on facial recognition – and how private citizens and local law enforcement officials have conducted their own facial recognition investigations in an attempt to assist the FBI with the help of social media. But charging documents reveal that the FBI has relied on a variety of other technologies, including license plate readers, police body cameras and cellphone tracking. And civil rights watchdogs like the ACLU are concerned that the same technologies used to surveil the rioters could impede protesters exercising their first amendment rights.

The Capitol riot was an exceptional event – marking the first time in centuries that insurrectionists breached the center of the US federal government. Many of those surveilled and charged belonged to white supremacist groups. But, according to Dave Maass of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a non-profit advocating for free speech and digital privacy, the level of surveillance was “overkill”. ...

While the surveillance tools were used to monitor the mostly white crowd in the Capitol during the riots, research and news reports have indicated that Black demonstrators are more likely to be monitored during protests, and to be arrested for protest-related infractions than white demonstrators.

Christian Davenport, a political science professor at the University of Michigan, led a study of more than 15,000 protests between 1960 to 1990 to find out if race was a factor in police response to protests. Researchers found:

[W]hen compared with other groups, African American protesters are more likely to draw police presence and that once police are present they are more likely to make arrests, use force and violence, and use force and violence in combination with arrests at African American protest events.”

On top of concerns about privacy and racial inequity, Maass pointed out that rather than keeping the Capitol safer at the time of the attacks, surveillance seems to have replaced real-time police work. “I was definitely sitting in front of the computer watching live and wondering ‘where are the cops?’ No one was kicking people out,” he said. “All the surveillance in the world didn’t serve to prevent what happened … it’s helping them clean up the mess afterwards. Surveillance is not a replacement for judgment.”

Dozens of House Dems and Progressive Groups Push Biden to Curb Militarization of Police

Backed by more than 50 progressive advocacy groups, dozens of House Democrats are urging President Joe Biden to issue an executive order to prevent the transfer of military-grade weaponry from the Pentagon to federal, tribal, state, and local police departments.

In a letter (pdf) sent to the White House on Tuesday afternoon, 29 lawmakers, led by Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.), argue that taking executive action to reform the Defense Department's 1033 program "is a reasonable step towards demilitarizing our police forces while preserving the safety of our communities."

"Decades of militarization of our nation's law enforcement have led to some police departments looking more like an occupying army than a community-based regulatory arm of state and local government," the lawmakers wrote.

Stephen Semler, cofounder of the Security Policy Reform Institute, highlighted the scale of the "military-to-police pipeline" in a Jacobin article published Tuesday: "Nearly $34 million in military equipment was sent to police in the first quarter of this year, according to the Pentagon's latest figures on the 1033 program. Since its inception in 1997, the program has been a conduit for at least $1.8 billion in combat gear shipments from the Department of Defense to U.S. law enforcement agencies."

"Not surprisingly," Semler added, "arming police to the teeth makes them more violent. Law enforcement agencies that get combat gear through the 1033 program tend to shoot and kill more people than ones that don't."

In their letter to Biden, the House Democrats noted that "the inappropriate use of such weapons is incentivized by a perverse requirement that to keep the equipment transferred under the 1033 program, the receiving agency must utilize it within one year or it must be returned to DOD."

Referring to the crackdown on nationwide protests against police violence that erupted last year in the wake of the killing of George Floyd, the members of Congress wrote that "law enforcement's response to the civil rights demonstrations last summer show irrefutable proof of our police forces' increasing aggression and brutality—images of local police in military vehicles, with military-grade weaponry trained on citizens exercising their constitutional right to peacefully protest."

Biden Continues Building Trump's Border Wall

Chauvin used deliberate and excessive pain technique on George Floyd, police expert says

An expert police witness has told the Derek Chauvin murder trial in Minneapolis that the accused former officer used a technique designed to deliberately inflict pain and subjected George Floyd to it for an extended period.

Sgt Jody Stiger, a Los Angeles police specialist on the use of force, said on Wednesday that video shows Chauvin applying a “pain compliance” procedure by pulling the 46-year-old Black man’s wrist into the handcuffs, which can be heard clicking tighter.

Stiger said the technique, which also involves squeezing the knuckles together, is normally used to inflict pain in order to persuade a person to comply with an officer’s commands – but at that point Floyd was not resisting and was lying prone on the ground.

The procedure was also used for much longer than was necessary, Stiger told the jury.

The prosecutor asked Stiger what the effect is of using the pain compliance procedure if there is no opportunity for compliance.

“At that point it’s just pain,” he said. ...

Earlier, Stiger questioned the use of any force, given the low-level offence Floyd was accused of - using an allegedly forged $20 bill in a store.



the horse race



Krystal Ball: ELITIST National Review Writer Blames VOTERS For National Mess In Anti-Democracy Piece

Tishaura Jones elected St Louis’s first black female mayor

Tishaura Jones has been elected as the next mayor of St Louis, Missouri, making history as the first Black woman to hold the city’s top position.

“This campaign can unequivocally say that we’ve begun breaking down the historic racial barriers and the racial divides that exist, and have existed for generations in our city,” Jones said on Tuesday night, adding that she “will not stay silent” in the face of “any injustice”.

“As a city, we’ve been surviving. We’ve suffered disinvestments, decades of violence, broken promises from our city’s leaders, who have bowed to the will of special interests and insider dealings,” she said. “It’s time for St Louis to thrive.”

Jones, who currently holds the position of treasurer in St Louis, defeated Alderwoman Cara Spencer, who conceded the race on Tuesday night. The final vote tally between the two women was Jones with 52% against Spencer with 48%.

Hunter Biden Justifies Burisma Payments As 'F*** You' To Putin



the evening greens


EPA reverses Trump stance in push to tackle environmental racism

Michael Regan, head of the US Environmental Protection Agency, has sought to revive the effort to confront environmental racism by ordering the agency to crack down on the pollution that disproportionately blights people of color.

On Wednesday, Regan issued a directive to EPA staff to “infuse equity and environmental justice principles and priorities into all EPA practices, policies, and programs”. The memo demands the agency use the “full array of policy and legal tools at our disposal” to ensure vulnerable communities are front of mind when issuing permits for polluting facilities or cleaning up following disasters.

The directive states there should be better consultation with affected communities and indicates the EPA will be tougher on companies that violate air and water pollution mandates. Regan’s memo calls for the EPA to “strengthen enforcement of violations of cornerstone environmental statutes and civil rights laws in communities overburdened by pollution”.

Enforcement of pollution violations dropped steeply under Donald Trump’s administration, with the EPA even suspending routine inspections of facilities while the Covid-19 pandemic raged in the US last year.

Much more detail at the link:

Banks pledge to fight climate crisis – but their boards have deep links with fossil fuels

US banks are pledging to help fight the climate crisis alongside the Biden administration, but their boards are dominated by people with climate-related conflicts of interest, and they continue to invest deeply in fossil fuel projects.

Three out of every four board members at seven major US banks (77%) have current or past ties to climate-conflicted companies or organizations – from oil and gas corporations to trade groups that lobby against reducing climate pollution, according to a first-of-its-kind review by climate influence analysts for the blog DeSmog.

One of the controversial projects those board members have chosen to back is the new Line 3 tar sands pipeline, currently under construction in northern Minnesota. If completed, the project would allow the Canadian oil giant Enbridge to double the amount of high-polluting tar sands oil it transports through the region to 760,000 barrels per day. ...

From the US, Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo have made the project possible with billions of dollars in loans, although it’s impossible to tally precisely how much they have financed for the pipeline specifically. Another five large Canadian banks are also financing Enbridge, according to Rainforest Action Network (Ran).

Out of these nine North American banks backing Enbridge, six have recently published net-zero climate goals, pledging to align their investments with the international Paris climate agreement.

Rates of Parkinson’s disease are exploding. A common chemical may be to blame

Asked about the future of Parkinson’s disease in the US, Dr Ray Dorsey says, “We’re on the tip of a very, very large iceberg.” Dorsey, a neurologist at the University of Rochester Medical Center and author of Ending Parkinson’s Disease, believes a Parkinson’s epidemic is on the horizon. Parkinson’s is already the fastest-growing neurological disorder in the world; in the US, the number of people with Parkinson’s has increased 35% the last 10 years, says Dorsey, and “We think over the next 25 years it will double again.”

Most cases of Parkinson’s disease are considered idiopathic – they lack a clear cause. Yet researchers increasingly believe that one factor is environmental exposure to trichloroethylene (TCE), a chemical compound used in industrial degreasing, dry-cleaning and household products such as some shoe polishes and carpet cleaners.

To date, the clearest evidence around the risk of TCE to human health is derived from workers who are exposed to the chemical in the work-place. A 2008 peer-reviewed study in the Annals of Neurology, for example, found that TCE is “a risk factor for parkinsonism.” And a 2011 study echoed those results, finding “a six-fold increase in the risk of developing Parkinson’s in individuals exposed in the workplace to trichloroethylene (TCE).”

Dr Samuel Goldman of The Parkinson’s Institute in Sunnyvale, California, who co-led the study, which appeared in the Annals of Neurology journal, wrote: “Our study confirms that common environmental contaminants may increase the risk of developing Parkinson’s, which has considerable public health implications.” It was off the back of studies like these that the US Department of Labor issued a guidance on TCE, saying: “The Board recommends [...] exposures to carbon disulfide (CS2) and trichloroethylene (TCE) be presumed to cause, contribute, or aggravate Parkinsonism.”

TCE is a carcinogen linked to renal cell carcinoma, cancers of the cervix, liver, biliary passages, lymphatic system and male breast tissue, and fetal cardiac defects, among other effects. Its known relationship to Parkinson’s may often be overlooked due to the fact that exposure to TCE can predate the disease’s onset by decades. While some people exposed may sicken quickly, others may unknowingly work or live on contaminated sites for most of their lives before developing symptoms of Parkinson’s.


Also of Interest

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

NYPD “Goon Squad” Manual Teaches Officers to Violate Protesters’ Rights

Calling Chauvin a ‘Bad Apple’ Denies Systemic Nature of Racist Police Violence

Hundreds of dead dolphins and fish wash up on beaches in Ghana

Hospitals try to curb astronomical emissions as pandemic brings new challenges

Law Students Denounce Chevron’s Law Firm Over Steven Donziger Case

‘Race against the clock’: the school fighting to save the Ojibwe language before its elders pass away

Keiser Report | Second Property Mortgage Explosion

US plans to appoint an envoy to kill Nord Stream 2

Saagar Enjeti: Lab-Leak Hypothesis Could Reveal EPIC Screwup Of US, Fauci AND China


A Little Night Music

Mighty Joe Young - Suffering Soul

Mighty Joe Young - Drivin' wheel

Mighty Joe Young - Just A Minute

Mighty Joe Young - Somebody Loan Me A Dime

Mighty Joe Young - Teasin' The Blues

Mighty Joe Young - Wisefool Express

Mighty Joe Young - Just A Minute

Lucille Spann & Mighty Joe's Young Blues Band - Womans Lib

Mighty Joe Young - Big Talk

Mighty Joe Young - Every Man Needs a Woman

Mighty Joe Young - Guitar Star

Mighty Joe Young - Why Baby


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19 users have voted.

Comments

ggersh's picture

I wonder if Dejoy got a kickback, retirement fund or just pure joy?

how did it comes to this, the worlds richest asshole is thrilled to have slaves, just cuz and we the people just sit and watch.

fuck it the climate will take care of it, if we don't try to take out Russia, China or Iran first.

Danke Joe!

EDIT: adding this about Manchin which has hammer hitting nail perfectly!

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15 users have voted.

Joementia says to protesters no looting, just peaceful protests or IOW's

"I can excuse extrajudical murder, but property damage is a step too far."

NO MORE WAR

snoopydawg's picture

@ggersh

Right now it’s 100-39 that the Times is reporting. And remember that they got the traffic lights changed for people going to work. Money changed hands somewhere. Will anyone investigate?

I got Sam a nice size cat stuffed animal and the squeaker is in the neck. She has been biting it all afternoon. Wonder if it’s a training toy? I never let my dawgs chase cats. Got to the point where the cat didn’t even move when we walked past. Good dawgs.

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13 users have voted.

The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

Humans must not submit to policing by machine.

ggersh's picture

@snoopydawg who's gonna argue w/that? WMD's and Russia/China/Iran, the good ol trustable Times.

A revolution is all that can stop the path we're on...sigh

Good on Sam, my Luna stays away from cats although she the curiosity of a cat. Wink

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9 users have voted.

Joementia says to protesters no looting, just peaceful protests or IOW's

"I can excuse extrajudical murder, but property damage is a step too far."

NO MORE WAR

Pricknick's picture

@snoopydawg
Please leave a link.

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4 users have voted.

Regardless of the path in life I chose, I realize it's always forward, never straight.

joe shikspack's picture

@ggersh

I wonder if Dejoy got a kickback, retirement fund or just pure joy?

heh, probably all three.

it'll be interesting to see if anything comes of this.

it'll also be interesting to see if any progressives start a ground game in west virginia.

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9 users have voted.
ggersh's picture

@joe shikspack was a ground game like we had in 76, ya 1776.

We were warned and told but I have a smartphone ;-(

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8 users have voted.

Joementia says to protesters no looting, just peaceful protests or IOW's

"I can excuse extrajudical murder, but property damage is a step too far."

NO MORE WAR

joe shikspack's picture

@ggersh

well, if i ever win the lottery, i'd like to rent a bunch of billboards in west virginia and run this ad to start:

hey west virginians, joe manchin says you ain't worth paying a living wage!

whatcha gonna do about it?

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11 users have voted.
ggersh's picture

@joe shikspack 50 states, gotta go big Wink

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2 users have voted.

Joementia says to protesters no looting, just peaceful protests or IOW's

"I can excuse extrajudical murder, but property damage is a step too far."

NO MORE WAR

QMS's picture

and how

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12 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@QMS

heh, it seems a safe bet that the world is fairly tired of u.s. efforts to control the world.

thanks for the tune! i haven't listened to that one in quite a while.

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7 users have voted.

replying but I will give it a go.

Biden grabs the headlines with his announcements and the MSM gladly runs with it but most often the results are pushed down a lengthy time frame with little immediate benefits.

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/04/08/snags-in-free-cobra-insurance-may-leave-...

Linda, a lawyer from California who was laid off from her job in January, is like millions of others in the pandemic who are living without health insurance.

But she discovered that the government would fully subsidize her COBRA health insurance premiums from April until September, thanks to a provision in the latest stimulus package. She immediately contacted her insurer to sign up. Linda (she asked not to use her full name) was eager to go to the doctor after contracting a painful urinary tract infection this month, which she feared could spread to her kidneys.

The rules in the $1.9 trillion relief bill passed in March seemed straightforward enough: The government would pay for people’s COBRA premiums for six months beginning on April 1. COBRA, or the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, typically allows people who leave a company with 20 or more employees to stay on their workplace insurance plan if they can pay both their part of the premium and the share their employer was formerly paying

Of course, many newly unemployed people can’t afford to do so, but this provision in the stimulus package is aimed at changing that by slashing people’s monthly insurance premiums entirely for six months.

But when Linda emailed her previous insurer in April asking if she was free to go to the doctor for treatment of her infection, she was surprised to be told that the government subsidy isn’t available yet.

″[F]orms and processes have not yet been provided nor finalized by the IRS or DOL,” she was told, according to the email seen by CNBC. “Until notified otherwise, we must operate as ‘business as usual.’”

“It’s frustrating to say the least,” said Linda, who worries she’ll have to go to the emergency room for her infection and rack up debt. She’s also had to stop taking her medication for anxiety and depression because of its cost./blockquote>

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14 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@humphrey

heh, of course msdnc is silent. that's the problem with partisan media, what they care about depends upon who is in power.

i remember back when obama took office, all of the people that "cared" about afghanistan, iraq and our forever wars at the great orange satan suddenly couldn't bestir themselves to give a damn.

partisans are pretty useless.

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11 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

Deleted the Amazon news. Who has the power to investigate whether the vote was interfered with? Hey has Biden fired DeJoy yet? Or Trump’s social security goons who are also there to destroy it. Gawd dammit! It’s a thread btw.

Scott Ritter on Ukraine/Russia

Ukraine’s NATO fantasy is a suicide pill in disguise; military action by the alliance against pro-Russian forces would be crushed

The following are the words and actions that the historians who may one day come to write how mankind blundered its way into a major conflict in 2021 will need to know, to understand its origins and the parts played by the shortcomings and strategic missteps of ill-suited leaders.

On March 24, 2021, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky signed into law Decree 117/2021, “On the Strategy of de-occupation and reintegration of the temporarily occupied territory of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol.” While the stated primary goal of this decree is the “restoration of the territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognized state border, ensuring the state sovereignty of Ukraine,” the reality is that the issue of restoring Ukrainian “territorial integrity” is merely a vehicle toward “gaining full membership of Ukraine in the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.”

According to Zelensky, there is only one pathway for resolving the ongoing dispute between his nation and Russia over the status of the Crimea and the ongoing fighting in the pro-Russian eastern Ukrainian region of the Donbass. “NATO is the only way to end the war in Donbass,” Zelensky declared in a recent phone call with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. Zelensky called for the immediate implementation of a ‘Membership Action Plan’ delineating Ukraine’s entry path into the NATO alliance. Such a move, Zelensky noted, “will be a real signal for Russia.” ....

A military exercise conducted some 30 miles from its border with Ukraine, involving 4,000 troops, was originally scheduled to end on March 23. A decision by Moscow to keep its forces in the field prompted the US military’s European Command to raise its watch level from possible crisis to potential imminent crisis – the highest level. ...

The reality is that NATO is not in any position to intervene militarily on behalf of Ukraine, even if it were so inclined. Its ground combat capability has deteriorated significantly since the end of the Cold War in 1991....

The F-35 in particular was described as “double inferior” to the SU-30, with experts noting that the advanced US fighter “can’t [out]turn, can’t [out]climb, can’t [out]run” its Russian opponent.

This means that the F-35 will likely be compelled to fight the kind of close-in dogfights it is supposed to avoid. But even here it is at a disadvantage – its 25mm gun, which would be used in this situation, is plagued by poor accuracy. ( it shot itself already)

The likelihood of the US Air Force being annihilated in the skies over Ukraine in the event of a force-on-force engagement with Russia is high, and the US military planners know this.

So that massive war game exercise is just to waste lots of money then and for our troops to act all soldier-y then. China said that they aren’t driving their boats on Mexico’s borders like we are doing in the China seas.

I haven’t read this yet, but it’s hopeful.

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17 users have voted.

The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

Humans must not submit to policing by machine.

joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

heh, do you really expect biden to do anything about dejoy or the trumpsters that are working to help biden realize his dream of social security being destroyed?

i'd say the chances are slim and largely dependent upon progressives starting a movement in the streets. in other words, fat chance.

ritter seems to be on target. getting sucked into a war with russia over ukraine is only for those with a serious death wish. but, who knows? perhaps the military elites are ready to go back to fighting with clubs and spears. these nuke things take all the challenge and chivalry out of war. (there's some snark in there)

i saw sirota's piece just a few minutes ago when i got home, it looks promising, but i'll give it a closer read later.

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snoopydawg's picture

@joe shikspack

It might be a battle group, you know me, but Russia has already beefed up theirs so that is worrisome. Just in case they need to help Ukraine. Sure. Like just in case you need to help Taiwan.

I didn’t get much out of the bankruptcy article except that there is a case going before the Supreme that might help. But just think about how Biden deliberately trapped millions into crushing debt. Sick.

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9 users have voted.

The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

Humans must not submit to policing by machine.

joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

well, the good news is that only so many ships will fit in that small body of water. Smile

the key info in the bankruptcy article is that a petition for a writ of certiorari has been filed with the supreme court to review the (brunner) test that courts use to determine if bankruptcy relief can be granted to a borrower.

the brunner test is quite stringent and courts have been loath to grant relief.

if the supreme grants cert and hears the case, there is a chance that they could determine that the brunner test is too restrictive and invalidate it. that would likely be good news.

there are a lot of ways this could go, including nowhere. so it's not time to raise a lot of hope.

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Pricknick's picture

@snoopydawg
Is supported by the sheepdog in command of nothing.
Burnme Sanders.

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Regardless of the path in life I chose, I realize it's always forward, never straight.

https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-israel-linked-attack-on-ira...

The Latest Reported Israeli Attack on an Iranian Ship Seems Like a Deliberate Escalation
Unlike previous attacks attributed to Israel, which targeted oil and weapons shipments, the target this time was directly tied to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/4/8/syria-claims-israeli-missile-att...

A missile attack near the Syrian capital of Damascus has wounded four soldiers, according to Syria’s state media which blamed Israel for the attack.

Syria’s state news agency SANA, quoting an unidentified military official, said Syrian air defences were able to shoot down most of the missiles before they hit their targets on Thursday.

Damascus residents reported hearing at least one explosion.

The missiles were fired from the direction of neighbouring Lebanon and the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, state television said.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a war monitor, reported that military posts near Damascus were targets, but gave no further details.

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joe shikspack's picture

@humphrey

one hopes that israel will get an appropriate comeuppance for its despicable acts that will be sufficient to cause it to cease its violence and hostility.

not surprising that israel will not cooperate with the icc. one hopes that it will not take hostile action against it.

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10 users have voted.

Heavy emphasis on the blues because the news is so hard to read. Went to the doctor and my blood pressure is up for no apparent reason but suspect just reading what our country is doing is enough to make the blood boil.

On the home front, finally have a brother in law on way to help me assess the damage done by the Big Freeze in Texas to my water system for my house. Hope it will be easily solved and no hidden “oh no another leak”!

Looks like we are in for another hot dry summer and the prognosis for hurricane season is another one with lots of storms in store for us.

Hope all are well and have a good evening!

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12 users have voted.

Life is what you make it, so make it something worthwhile.

This ain't no dress rehearsal!

joe shikspack's picture

@jakkalbessie

sorry to hear about the blood pressure rising. maybe more blues and less salt? Smile

take it easy and have a great evening!

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Azazello's picture

LIVE right now, The People's Party Podcast with Chris Hedges.

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10 users have voted.

It didn't have to be this way.

joe shikspack's picture

@Azazello

thanks for the heads-up!

have a great evening!

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5 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

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9 users have voted.

The donor class doesn’t want it, and Americans elect the bribed. So suck it up.

Humans must not submit to policing by machine.

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7 users have voted.

@#I also hope this hbp was just a one time event.

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4 users have voted.

I hope everyone is safe and healthy, and ready to rebel against The Man.

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6 users have voted.

@on the cusp

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@humphrey Ok. I am doing zoom trials. They can be viewed by the public, or with permission by the attorneys and judge, be just amongst ourselves. This is usually to protect kids the subject of custody cases, or adoptions.
I can't imagine why a contempt of court hearing is kept out of zoom public view unless open, in person court is available. I truly do not get how this is within the bounds of the Constitution, and why his attorneys haven't managed to get that cuff off his ankle by a ruling from an appellate or supreme court writ.
What is happening to him is nothing short of torture. Go Chevron! Go, Chevron!
I read this shit, and want to just retire, grow a vegetable garden.
And the red flag for gun ownership that allows the cops to file a something or other to take away anyone's right to a gun is begging for cops to file against anyone, like defense attorneys, to be unable to go out and shoot a damn snake in their yard.

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joe shikspack's picture

@on the cusp

i hope that he remains a hero rather than a martyr.

have a great evening!

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6 users have voted.

because it leaves NATO and Western forces with no other option but to use nuclear weapons, which would end life on earth. His assumption seems to be that Western forces would never do it. But it’s exactly what they are saying they are going to do. They are willing to destroy life on earth, including the people of the United States, in order to win. For some people that’s a win, to be able to end all life.

I meant for this to be in response to snoopydawg's posting of Ritter's article earlier in the discussion. Ritter, whom I respect so much, seems to think NATO doesn't have the troops or means currently to win a ground or conventional air war with Russia in Eastern Europe, especially Ukraine. But that leaves nukes as the only option.

Ukraine’s NATO fantasy is a suicide pill in disguise; military action by the alliance against pro-Russian forces would be crushed — RT Russia & Former Soviet Union

Scott Ritter
8 Apr, 2021

https://www.rt.com/russia/520366-nato-zelensky-ukraine-suicide/

... Zelensky can huff and puff all he wants about joining NATO and the leverage such membership would give him to “liberate” Crimea and Donbass. But “unwavering support” for Ukrainian “territorial integrity,” no matter how many times in unison it is uttered by the leaders of NATO, does not equate to a suicide pact, which is what any direct military conflict between NATO and Russia in Ukraine would be.

The danger is that this realpolitik is not being effectively transmitted to Zelensky, thereby creating the real risk of the kind of miscalculation that occurred in August 2008, when Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili ordered his military into South Ossetia, believing he had the full support of the US. The result was a disaster for Georgia. A similar fate awaits Zelensky and Ukraine should a similar military misadventure be launched against pro-Russian forces in Donbass.   

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joe shikspack's picture

@Linda Wood

this is a frightening situation. i have little faith that within our international elites there are enough people with one brain cell to rub against another to stop determined morons from inciting a nuclear conflagration that will consume us all.

the russians have been signalling to the u.s., europe and anybody else that will listen that ukraine/nato/the u.s. are treading far too close to a very real red line. putin once said that he had no use for a world without russia, indicating that if attacked he would indeed loose the nukes.

do we have the power to stop these morons? i don't know.

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10 users have voted.
usefewersyllables's picture

@joe shikspack

so I have moved the makings for my final Manhattan onto the counter right by the door to the deck, so that I can mix really fast if I need to. Might not get time to change into my tux, but by Gawd I'm going to meet the plasma with an Adult Beverage in hand.

I'm also glad that I grew up in a family printing business, so that I was soaking in trichlor, naptha, MEK, acetone, and finely divided lead-tin-antimony dust and aerosol oxides (from the type metal melted and used by the Linotype machine) from age 5 on until I left for college. Between that, and being a downwinder during the last of the pre-'63 go-go phase of aboveground testing at the Nevada Test Site, I feel downright blessed by the Industrial Age and Cold War. Maybe I should take up painting radium watch dials as a hobby...

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6 users have voted.

Twice bitten, permanently shy.

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Maybe the title is snark but I can't be sure.

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