The Evening Blues - 8-28-20



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The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: James Brown

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features the Godfather of Soul, James Brown. Enjoy!

James Brown - I Feel That Old Feeling Coming On

"You can kill a revolutionary, but you cannot kill a revolution."

-- Fred Hampton


News and Opinion

Trump Supporters Rush to Defend One of Their Own Who Killed Protesters in Kenosha

When Tucker Carlson set off a firestorm of criticism on Wednesday — by describing a 17-year-old Trump supporter who opened fire on protesters in Kenosha, Wisconsin on Tuesday, killing two, as a well-meaning kid who decided he “had to maintain order” in the Democrat-run state because “no one else would” — the Fox News host was surfacing an idea that had already spread widely on the far-right. “The chaos that began with the first George Floyd protests on Memorial Day has reached its inevitable and bloody conclusion,” Carlson told viewers tuning in for his buildup to the Republican National Convention, which had featured, on its first night, two speakers lionized for threatening to shoot Black Lives Matter protesters outside their mansion in St. Louis.


“Last night, three people were shot on the streets of Kenosha, Wisconsin. Two of them have died. Police say they’ve charged a 17-year-old with murder,” Carlson reported, without revealing that the suspect, Kyle Rittenhouse, was not the anti-fascist radical his viewers might have been led to expect, but a conservative vigilante who had posted video from the front row of a Trump rally in January, and written “BLUE LIVES MATTER” and “Trump 2020″ on his TikTok bio, as Buzzfeed first reported.

In Carlson’s telling, the moral of the story was not that Rittenhouse — who was photographed and caught on video from multiple angles shooting three men — had provoked trouble by responding to a militia group’s Facebook call for “patriots willing to take up arms and defend” the city from “evil thugs,” but that he was something closer to a victim, prodded to fill a vacuum by the misrule of the city’s Democratic mayor, John Antaramian, and the state’s Democratic governor, Tony Evers. “Kenosha has devolved into anarchy because the authorities in charge of the city abandoned it,” Carlson told Fox viewers unaware that the city had not, in fact, collapsed into chaos just because they were being shown isolated scenes of violence on a loop.

“People in charge, from the governor of Wisconsin on down, refused to enforce the law. They stood back and they watched Kenosha burn,” Carlson claimed, oblivious to the fact that video recorded by witnesses to Tuesday’s events showed Rittenhouse and other heavily armed young vigilantes had spent most of the night standing close to armored police vehicles outside a business they appointed themselves to guard.

Historian Rick Perlstein on the RNC & Trump’s Dangerous Propaganda Driving People to Violence

White supremacists and militias have infiltrated police across US, report says

White supremacist groups have infiltrated US law enforcement agencies in every region of the country over the last two decades, according to a new report about the ties between police and far-right vigilante groups. In a timely new analysis, Michael German, a former FBI special agent who has written extensively on the ways that US law enforcement have failed to respond to far-right domestic terror threats, concludes that US law enforcement officials have been tied to racist militant activities in more than a dozen states since 2000, and hundreds of police officers have been caught posting racist and bigoted social media content.

The report notes that over the years, police links to militias and white supremacist groups have been uncovered in states including Alabama, California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia.

Police in Sacramento, California, in 2018 worked with neo-Nazis to pursue charges against anti-racist activists, including some who had been stabbed, according to records. And just this summer, German writes, an Orange county sheriff’s deputy and a Chicago policeman were caught wearing far-right militia logos; an Olympia, Washington, officer was photographed posing with a militia group; and Philadelphia police officers were filmed standing by while armed mobs attacked protesters and journalists.

The exact scale of ties between law enforcement and militias is hard to determine, German told the Guardian. “Nobody is collecting the data and nobody is actively looking for these law enforcement officers,” he said. Officers’ racist activities are often known within their departments and generally result in punishment or termination following public scandals, the report notes. Few police agencies have explicit policies against affiliating with white supremacist groups. If police officers are disciplined, the measures often lead to protracted litigation.

Prosecutors release charges against alleged Kenosha shooter Kyle Rittenhouse

Kyle Rittenhouse, the 17-year-old from Illinois who was arrested in connection with the shootings of three protesters in Wisconsin earlier this week, has been charged with six criminal counts, according to the criminal complaint disclosed on Thursday.

The charges filed by prosecutors against Rittenhouse in Kenosha county include first-degree reckless homicide in the death of Joseph Rosenbaum and first degree intentional homicide in the death of Anthony Huber, according to the complaint.

Rosenbaum had a two-year-old daughter, according to local reports, while Huber leaves behind a stepdaughter. A third man, 26-year-old Gaige Grosskreutz, was injured in the shooting but survived.

Rittenhouse would face a mandatory life sentence if convicted of first-degree intentional homicide, the most serious crime in Wisconsin. He also faces one count of attempted first-degree intentional homicide and two counts of first-degree reckless endangerment.

Rittenhouse was also charged with possession of dangerous weapon by someone under the age of 18. Authorities allege Rittenhouse used a Smith & Wesson AR-15 style .223 rifle – a popular style of rifle with many American gun owners and the gun of choice for young male perpetrators of some of America’s most infamous mass murders, including the 2018 school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Under Wisconsin law, Rittenhouse, who is 17, was too young to legally posses the rifle he was alleged to have been carrying at the protests.


ACLU Demands Resignation of Top Cops in Kenosha for Racism & Brutal Response to Jacob Blake Protests

ACLU Demands Immediate Resignation of Kenosha Police Chief, Sheriff, and Mayor

National ACLU alongside its state chapter in Wisconsin on Thursday called for the local sheriff, chief of police, and mayor of Kenosha to immediately tender their resignations, arguing the top law enforcement officials and city leader have failed in their duties in terms of the killing by shooting of Jacob Blake on Sunday and their handling of subsequent protests in the city that culminated in the killing of two Black Lives Matter demonstrators allegedly carried out by an underage militia-style vigilante armed with an AR-15 assault weapon overnight Tuesday.

In what the ACLU said was done in consultation with "organizers on the ground," the civil liberties group condemned Kenosha Police Chief Daniel Miskinis and Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth for their handling of events in recent days—both in word and deed—and urged Kenosha Mayor John Antaramian to have the pair removed if they do not step down from their posts voluntarily. At the same time, the ACLU said Antaramian should also resign. ...

According to a statement by the ACLU and ACLU of Wisconsin:

Sheriff David Beth's deputies not only fraternized with white supremacist counter-protesters on Tuesday, but allowed the shooter to leave as people yelled that he was the shooter. The sheriff excused this by saying his deputies may not have paid attention to the gunman because there were many distractions, including "screaming” and "hollering," people running, police vehicles idling, "nonstop radio traffic," and that "in situations that are high stress, you have such an incredible tunnel vision." Sheriff Beth was also criticized last year after calling for five people of color who had been arrested for shoplifting to be put into warehouses "where we put these people who have been deemed to be no longer an asset."

During the Kenosha Police Department's first press conference in response to the Blake shooting and subsequent murders committed at protests, Police Chief Daniel Miskinis blamed the unidentified victims in Tuesday night's shooting for their own deaths, saying the violence was the result of the "persons" involved violating curfew.

Chris Ott, executive director of the ACLU of Wisconsin, said resignations were the best course of action.

"The ACLU strongly condemns Sheriff Beth and Police Chief Miskinis' response to both the attempted murder of Jacob Blake and the protests demanding justice for him," said Ott. "Their actions uphold and defend white supremacy, while demonizing people who were murdered for exercising their first amendment rights and speaking out against police violence. The only way to rectify these actions is for both Sheriff Beth and Police Chief Daniel Miskinis to immediately tender their resignations."

Protesters in Multiple States Are Facing Felony Charges, Including Terrorism

Prosecutors and lawmakers in several states have responded to mass protests against police brutality by charging demonstrators with committing felonies, including terrorism charges. The trend of criminalizing protest has been on the uptick since the 2016 protests against the Dakota Access pipeline at Standing Rock, during and after which numerous states upped charges for protests “near critical infrastructure” as felonies. Since 2016, 14 states have enacted new laws to restrict the right to peaceful assembly, according to the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law, which tracks related state and federal legislation. But in the wake of the nationwide movement in support of Black lives, numerous states have increased the severity of criminal penalties for protesters along political lines and are prosecuting them more aggressively, as demonstrations continue with no sign of slowing down.

Just last week, following more than 60 days of demonstrations outside the State Capitol, Tennessee Republican Gov. Bill Lee signed a law that made it a felony to participate in some types of protests, including camping out overnight on state property. Charges for the same activity were previously classified as a misdemeanor. In Tennessee, people convicted of felonies lose their voting rights — making the new law a tool for disenfranchisement.

Earlier this month, police in Muscatine, Iowa, apprehended two people they say were attempting to drive a vehicle into the city Public Safety Building and got stuck on a planter. They charged both men with numerous counts, including terrorism. That follows an Oklahoma district attorney’s pursuit of terrorism charges against five young people, including three teenagers and two people in their 20s. The fourth-term prosecutor also threw felony charges at numerous other people in relation to protests and damage to local and police property in late May.

The terrorism charges reveal a “false equivalency between people who kill, and people who commit acts of property damage,” said Kate Chatfield, policy director at the Justice Collaborative, a policy and media organization focused on mass criminalization and incarceration. “Maybe not a great thing.” “To say that the power of the state will be wielded in this way against political enemies is incredibly frightening,” Chatfield said, drawing a parallel to the post-9/11 era, when many people who had never committed an act of violence were prosecuted for terrorism. “Let’s not ignore the fact that we have a history of this in this country. A very recent history. And a continuing history, unfortunately.”

Sick bastards proliferate in the Failed State of America.

Praise for alleged Kenosha shooter proliferates on Facebook despite supposed ban

Fundraisers, messages of support and celebratory memes for the alleged Kenosha, Wisconsin, mass shooter are being shared widely on Facebook and Instagram, despite the company’s assurance on Wednesday that it was working to enforce its policy banning content that “praises, supports, or represents” mass shooters.

One fundraiser for Kyle Rittenhouse, 17, was shared more than 17,700 times on Facebook, including by 291 public groups and pages with more than 3.9m aggregate followers, according to data from CrowdTangle, a Facebook-owned data analytics tool. A second fundraiser garnered 1,698 shares on the platform, including by an additional 17 pages and groups with nearly 400,000 followers. ...

Facebook designated the shooting a “mass shooting” – a ruling that invokes the company’s ban on praise, support, or representation of a mass shooter or the shooting itself, a spokesperson said on Wednesday. And yet those types of posts continue to be spread widely on the platform, according to a Guardian analysis of CrowdTangle data.

Hundreds of Facebook posts and memes featuring the phrase “Free Kyle” or “Free Kyle Rittenhouse” had garnered more than 70,000 interactions as of Thursday morning. Many of the posts include stills captured from videos of Rittenhouse carrying his assault rifle before, during and after the shooting. One meme posted on Wednesday afternoon by the page “All About Trump 2020”, which has more than 32,000 followers, shows Rittenhouse with his arm raised in the air and includes the caption, “3 commies down”.

Dozens of similar “Free Kyle” memes were also attracting significant support and engagement on Instagram, where they had been liked nearly 60,000 times. The Instagram hashtags #KyleRittenhouseIsAHero and #KyleRittenhouseDidNothingWrong revealed hundreds of pro-shooter memes and posts.

Krystal and Saagar: Unemployment Over A Million, Protestors Build Guillotine In Front Of Bezos House

US unemployment claims climb past one million for second week in a row

One million people filed for unemployment benefits last week in the US as the coronavirus pandemic continued to take a historic toll on the job market.

It was the second week in a row that claims passed the million mark after briefly dipping below that figure in early August.

New applications for unemployment have remained stubbornly high for months even as the number of coronavirus cases are declining. At about 1m claims a week they are five times as high as the average 200,000 weekly claims before the pandemic.

In the week ending 22 August just over 1m claims were filed, 98,000 fewer than the previous week.

Explosive Reports Indicate Top Trump Officials Ordered Changes to CDC Covid-19 Guidelines

After new reporting late Wednesday indicated that abrupt and what experts characterized as dangerously unsound changes to the CDC's Covid-19 testing guidelines were directed by the highest levels of the Trump administration, lawmakers demanded answers and sounded alarm bells over the White House's ongoing politicization of America's public health agencies.

CNN and Politico both reported Wednesday that top Trump administration officials were behind the CDC's decision to stop advising Covid-19 tests for all people who have potentially been exposed to the virus, which has infected nearly six million people and killed more than 179,000 in the United States.

The new guidelines, published on the CDC website Monday, state that people who have been in close contact with someone infected by Covid-19 "do not necessarily need a test" if they don't show symptoms. The CDC, led by Trump appointee Dr. Robert Redfield, did not present evidence justifying the changes.

Citing an anonymous federal health official close to the decision, CNN reported that the "sudden change in federal guidelines on coronavirus testing came this week as a result of pressure from the upper ranks of the Trump administration." CNN also first reported that Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, was undergoing surgery when the CDC guidance changes were discussed by the White House coronavirus task force.

"I was under general anesthesia in the operating room and was not part of any discussion or deliberation regarding the new testing recommendations," Fauci told CNN. "I am concerned about the interpretation of these recommendations and worried it will give people the incorrect assumption that asymptomatic spread is not of great concern. In fact it is."

Germany urges halt to naval exercises to defuse Greece-Turkey tensions

Germany has called for naval exercises in the eastern Mediterranean to cease in an attempt to defuse tensions between Greece and Turkey that it fears could tip over into “catastrophe”.

Greece and Turkey lay competing claims to the same parts of the eastern Mediterranean sea and are at odds over potentially abundant gas reserves and maritime rights.

Germany’s foreign minister, Heiko Maas, who is trying to mediate between the two countries, said the precondition for talks was an end to military manoeuvres. “For sure the parties will not sit down at the table when warships are facing each other in the eastern Mediterranean,” he said.

During shuttle diplomacy between Athens and Ankara this week, Maas said the current situation in the eastern Mediterranean was akin to “playing with fire” where “every little spark can lead to catastrophe”.

Turkey has announced it will hold live-fire military exercises off its southern Mediterranean coast next week, while Greece has staged war games with France, Italy and Cyprus. France announced this month it was reinforcing its military presence in the sea by sending two fighters and a naval frigate.

South China Sea: US unveils first sanctions linked to militarisation

The United States has blacklisted 24 Chinese companies and targeted individuals it said were part of construction and military efforts in the South China Sea, its first such sanctions move over the disputed strategic waterway.

The US Commerce Department said the companies played a “role in helping the Chinese military construct and militarise the internationally condemned artificial islands in the South China Sea”.

Separately, the State Department said it would impose visa restrictions on Chinese individuals “responsible for, or complicit in” such action and those linked to China’s “use of coercion against south-east Asian claimants to inhibit their access to offshore resources”.



the horse race



Worth a full read:

Alex Morse Has a Second Opponent: Local Media

On August 7, the Daily Collegian, the student paper at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, lit a fuse that would explode the sleepy primary race in Massachusetts’ 1st District between Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse and incumbent Rep. Richie Neal. The outlines and accusations by now are well known — the College Democrats had disinvited Morse from any events that might be scheduled in the future, on account of what they described as inappropriate attention he was paying to students — and the local press made sure that western Massachusetts readers were kept fully abreast of the accusations. Between August 7 and 13, the Springfield Republican, also known as Masslive, ran, for instance, 16 stories featuring the mayor, all but one focused on the allegations and resulting fallout, according to a review of local media coverage by The Intercept.
Other local outlets followed suit. On August 10, Albany, New York-based NPR affiliate WAMC News devoted 40 minutes to the allegations on the channel’s daily politics program “The Roundtable.” The panel show exhaustively covered the topic, with lobbyist Libby Post, a frequent guest, likening Morse to President Donald Trump and other politicians with sex scandals. “Men have a problem at times with controlling their — keeping it in their pants is the best I can put it — and it becomes a priority over doing their jobs,” said Post.

By August 12, however, The Intercept had discovered that the claims were part of a long-running plan by students to take down the mayor and on August 14 reported that Massachusetts Democrats Chair Gus Bickford and Executive Director Veronica Martinez facilitated the letter’s development, assigning the task to state party attorney Jim Roosevelt and offering the students tips in dealing with the press. While the allegations in the letter had received heavy play on local radio, television, and print media, those later revelations did not, even after the state party was pressured by its rank and file into announcing an internal investigation into its own conduct. On local television, the issue continued to play out as he said, he said, with the unsubstantiated allegations of the college students given a full airing, followed by a denial from Morse. Chyrons in clips reviewed by The Intercept from local stations WWLP, Western Mass News, and CBS 3 emphasized Morse’s “sexual misconduct” and the existence of an “official investigation” into the mayor from both the Holyoke City Council and UMass. The conspiracy angle — the fact that the accusations were part of a long-running scheme by students, with the aid of the state party, to take down the Morse campaign — was barely mentioned.

While the scheme imploded spectacularly, earning a thorough autopsy in the New York Times, it may still have worked. By airing out the allegations so prominently, particularly in the local media, advocates for Neal were able to materially damage Morse, with internal polls showing a spike in the number of voters who held a negative view of the Holyoke mayor — voters who may otherwise have been persuadable as Morse surged into the final month of the campaign. Those voters, if they’ve relied on local media for their news, would have little way of knowing Morse had been vindicated. After The Intercept revealed the scheme, Masslive put the story on the back burner. Of the next 15 stories it published on the race through August 21, just six touched on the fallout from the MassDems revelations. Instead, the Republican covered the race from a number of more traditional angles, focusing on endorsements, issue positions, and polling.

Panel DEBATES: Does Kenosha Chaos Help Trump?



the evening greens


65+ Advocacy Groups Call on Home Depot and Lowe's to Take Cancer-Causing Roundup Off Shelves

Appealing to Home Depot and Lowe's to be part of the solution to environmental and public health hazards, rather than a contributor to them, more than 65 advocacy groups on Wednesday called on the home improvement giants to take the herbicide Roundup off their shelves and online stores, citing numerous concerns about the product.

Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, has been classified by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a probable human carcinogen since 2015. While 10 countries have imposed outright bans on the weedkiller since then, and 15 have placed restrictions on its use, the U.S. continues to allow stores to sell Roundup and other products containing glyphosate. The Environmental Protection Agency maintains that glyphosate does not cause cancer in humans, despite WHO's finding.

"Regulatory agencies have failed to protect us," Mackenzie Feldman, executive director at Herbicide-Free Campus, said in a statement. "Young people are taking their health into their own hands and demanding that Home Depot and Lowe's remove glyphosate-based herbicides from the shelves. We have sufficient scientific evidence to know the adverse effects these products have on our own bodies, as well as on the environment. It is Home Depot and Lowe's responsibility to protect the many people who still use these products and are unaware of the risks."

Costco and the British home and garden store B&Q have committed to phasing out Roundup, and the groups called on Home Depot and Lowe's to take responsibility for the safety of their customers as well, as they have previously by committing to ending sales of pesticides containing neonicotinoids.

"Home and garden stores can make a significant difference in reducing the use of this toxic product," said Kendra Klein, senior staff scientist at Friends of the Earth. "Research shows that homeowners use up to 10 times more chemical pesticides per acre on their lawns than farmers use on crops. It's reckless to sell consumers products linked to cancer when safer organic alternatives exist."

The groups called on the companies to expand sales of organic weed killers that they already sell.

In addition to being linked to cancer, exposure to glyphosate has been connected to high rates of kidney disease, pregnancy complications, endocrine disruption, and Parkinson's disease.

The chemical has also been identified as a primary driver of declines in monarch butterfly and honeybee populations, potentially threatening one in three bites of food for humans.

Hurricane Laura Devastates Gulf Coast, Laying Bare Climate Crisis, Environmental Injustice

As Hurricane Laura Batters Louisiana, Massive Chemical Leak Spews Toxic Smoke Near Lake Charles

After Hurricane Laura tore through the area Thursday morning, a chemical leak broke out at a plant near Lake Charles, Louisiana, leading authorities to warn residents against traveling through the affected region as dark smoke flowed out of an industrial building and over Interstate 10.

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards tweeted that "there is a chemical fire in the Westlake/Moss Bluff/Sulphur area. Residents are advised to shelter in place until further notice and close your doors and windows. Follow the directions of local officials."

"If you are in the Westlake/Moss Bluff/Sulphur area, shelter in place, close your windows and doors and TURN OFF YOUR AIR CONDITIONING UNITS," the governor added. "There is a chemical fire. Stay inside and wait for additional direction from local officials."

The local Daily Advertiser reported that a "possible chlorine leak" caused a fire at an industrial plant but authorities have not yet confirmed any details of what sparked the incident, which comes after activists warned of the "environmental nightmare" that could result from the hurricane slamming a region with a high concentration of chemical and fossil fuel plants and infrastructure.

"Facilities like this have been poisoning Gulf communities for decades," tweeted environmentalist Rob Friedman. "During and after storms, who knows how much toxic pollution they're emitting."

"We knew this would happen," said another activist. "Lake Charles and Cameron Parish are petrochemical industry epicenters. The plants, export terminals, refineries, oil tank farms are ticking time bombs every hurricane season. Industry only sees money, not environmental impact, and our leaders are in their pockets."


Also of Interest

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

A father and a 26-year-old skateboarder: the protesters killed in Kenosha

Why Police Unions Are Not Part of the American Labor Movement

Normal Has Failed. Be As Weird As You Like.

Israel Is an Army With a Country Attached

Citing 'Unbreakable Commitment,' Harris Vows Biden Would Never Place Conditions on US Military Aid to Israel

An Unprecedented 1,640 CEOs Departed in 2019; Now Execs Are Dumping Stock at Highest Pace Since 2006

Freedom Rider: Democrats are Officially Republicans

Democracy Now: Jacob Blake Shooting Shines New Light on Death of Michael Bell, Killed by Kenosha Cops in 2004


A Little Night Music

James Brown - I Don't Know

James Brown - I'll Go Crazy

James Brown - Blues For My Baby

James Brown - In The Middle

James Brown - I Got The Feelin'

James Brown - Gittin' a Little Hipper

James Brown - My Thang

James Brown - Cold Sweat

James Brown - I Can't Stand Myself (When You Touch Me)

James Brown - Get Up Offa That Thing

James Brown - Turn Me Loose I'm Dr Feelgood

James Brown - Get on the Good Foot

James Brown and the Original JB’s (with Bootsy Collins)


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19 users have voted.

Comments

ggersh's picture

used to be, notice he doesn't mention why people might want to do
what in his "unhinged" mind thinks what they will do.

https://www.zerohedge.com/

"They Would Have Killed Us" - Rand Paul Describes Attack By "Unhinged" Mob

"If we allow them to take over the White House, we are going to become Portland, the country will be on fire, we have to have law and order and we have to support the police."

380

Have a nice weekend everyone stay safe!

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17 users have voted.

I would rather have questions that can't be answered than answers that can't be questioned
Prof. Feynman

Should Ivermectin work, you wouldn't need a vaccine passport or lockdowns, would you?

joe shikspack's picture

@ggersh

it looked from the footage that i saw that rand paul was in a tight spot.

this is just speculation, but i wouldn't be surprised if the police presence brought out the worst in the crowd.

on the other hand, he might be right that there were people in the crowd that would have done him harm. there were probably people in that crowd that felt (with reasonable evidence) that he had harmed them.

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10 users have voted.

President Putin has already said in the recent past that negotiating with Team Trump is like playing chess with a pigeon: the demented bird walks all over the chessboard, shits indiscriminately, knocks over pieces, declares victory, then runs away.

Link Pepe Escobar

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25 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@Marie

heh, great description. i guess i should save my bread crusts for the next time i go to dc. Smile

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14 users have voted.
Granma's picture

@Marie comment. If it is a Putin quote, I have under appreciated Putin the past. He has a way with words.

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19 users have voted.

Is it just me or is the Massachusetts primary on Tuesday looming large in many Progressive minds? I feel like the importance of the outcomes are punching way above their weight for me.

Yes, it's just another Primary. But the ability for Pelosi & company to rain on our parade once again, with impunity, has me worried.

Kennedy III especially riles me up. A candidate picked for the wealth of his family over our choice Ed Markey who is a dependable ally on our biggest issue of Climate Change.

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18 users have voted.

NYCVG

joe shikspack's picture

@NYCVG

well, i'd say that the democrat powers-that-be have definitely gotten the attention of a broad range of progressive and related activists.

pelosi has broadly angered progressives with her hypocritical endorsement and the mass dnc honchos have pissed off a lot of people with their homophobic smear campaign against alex morse.

i sure hope that neal and kennedy both get soundly trounced and the party infrastructure in massachussets gets reamed out.

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20 users have voted.

I admit to being biased, but I don’t think he gets the recognition he deserves. Sure, people know who he was and what he did, but he was such an innovator. So much of modern music period owes a debt to him. I picked up another book about him recently. Maybe I’ll finally start it this weekend. Haha.

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16 users have voted.

Idolizing a politician is like believing the stripper really likes you.

joe shikspack's picture

@Dr. John Carpenter

james brown was an incredible musician and despite his personal flaws, i think made a serious contribution to our culture.

while i was putting together tonight's music, i was noticing the many gaps in my collection of brown's music. i reckon i'll be checking out the vinyl bins whenever this doggoned pandemic thing finally ends.

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15 users have voted.

@joe shikspack last count was well over 200 lps and 45s. He was prolific for sure and there’s all the associated artists and whatnot. Lol.

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5 users have voted.

Idolizing a politician is like believing the stripper really likes you.

snoopydawg's picture

C5C2CA19-805F-4EE5-8CA8-E46C86F3312A.jpeg

This is so spot on. Dylan Roof was peacefully arrested and taken to dinner on his way to jail. The movie shooter met the cops in the parking lot with his gun still in his hands and was peacefully arrested. I don’t understand how people cannot see that some or many cops are racist. What went through of the cop that kneeled on Floyd George’s neck? Or the cop who shot Jacob in the back? The cop who shot Scott Campbell (?) in the back because he was running away? Cops in Utah shot a black teenager in the back while he was running away from them with a plastic sword. Cops shot.....up to 1,000 people every year for over 5 years. Congress rarely mentions that.

Well it’s Friday again. Days fly by so fast anymore don’t they? It’s going to be in the high 70's here for a few days. Yay. It’s been a very long hot August here.

Enjoy your weekend folks.

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20 users have voted.

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

joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

great cartoon! it really does sum things up pretty well.

glad you're getting some relief from the heat there.

it cooled down considerably here this afternoon as some nasty thunderstorms came through the area. we're set to get some more rain tonight and tomorrow, so maybe it will stay cool for a while here, too.

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13 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

The Social Fabric of the U.S. Is Fraying Severely, if Not Unravelling

Lurking beneath the headlines justifiably devoted to these major stories of 2020 are very troubling data that reflect intensifying pathologies in the U.S. population — not moral or allegorical sicknesses but mental, emotional, psychological and scientifically proven sickness. Many people fortunate enough to have survived this pandemic with their physical health intact know anecdotally — from observing others and themselves — that these political and social crises have spawned emotional difficulties and psychological challenges.

Notice how the police unions are never targeted? This tells you everything.

Uncle Tom strikes again.

Too harsh? I was surprised this morning when I saw that the nba is resuming their games. I thought what a worse less gesture to protest the police, but only for a night.

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19 users have voted.

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

joe shikspack's picture

@snoopydawg

i haven't been paying much attention to the professional sports strike story, so i'll be interested to find out what it is that the players got from the billionaire, masters-of-the-universe owners association. hope it's something meaningful.

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11 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@joe shikspack

He got them to form a committee.

A81DBF94-D662-4ECF-BD85-FAF3ADFD4BD8.jpeg

Probably

Especially after LeBron said he was sick of this shit. Psst...L this ain’t gonna do anything to get cops from murdering blacks.

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14 users have voted.

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

@snoopydawg Form a committee, which will work with a study group, to formulate a plan, to submit to a Commission, etc, in order to...............do nothing to impact the profit structure of our enterprise.

same as it ever was.

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11 users have voted.

NYCVG

snoopydawg's picture

@snoopydawg

On Friday, the NBA and the players announced that they would resume the season on Saturday, but a “social justice coalition, with representatives from players, coaches and governors, that will be focused on a broad range of issues, including increasing access to voting, promoting civic engagement, and advocating for meaningful police and criminal justice reform,” would be “immediately” established.

FFS what the hell is that going to do to stop cops from shooting people? Or arresting them for some piddly assed 'crime'? Great job Obama and everyone involved for derailing what could have been something huge. I read that Kaepernick told LeBron thanks for what he did. Empty gesture there, Kaep.

Oh yeah... if the NBA owns some of the facilities they will let them be used for voting. Sorry folks, but we can't vote our way out of this problem. People returned to DC to March on Washington like MLK did over 50 years ago. People returned to DC on the 20th anniversary of King's march in '83. I was in DC at the time and saw the long lines of people leaving the event. But how many more times will people need to March On Washington until they finally see some change?

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5 users have voted.

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

janis b's picture

What a great combination - James Brown and Caitlin's very clever piece. Thanks joe.

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13 users have voted.
janis b's picture

@janis b

"Normal Has Failed. Be As Weird As You Like."

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10 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@janis b

heh, james brown and caitlin johnstone might seem like an odd pair, but actually, their political messaging has a great deal in common when you think about it.

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11 users have voted.
janis b's picture

@joe shikspack

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9 users have voted.

ready for retirement, found shot dead. EU and Joe Biden suspect a hit ordered by Putin.

Nah -- I'm just messing with y'all.

Senior U.S. Intelligence Official Died by Suicide in June

One of the nation’s highest-ranking intelligence officials died by suicide at his home in the Washington, D.C., area in June, but the U.S. intelligence community has remained publicly silent about the incident even as the CIA has conducted a secret investigation of his death.
...
As NIO for military issues, Schinella was the highest-ranking military affairs analyst in the U.S. intelligence community, and was also a member of the powerful National Intelligence Council, which is responsible for producing the intelligence community’s most important analytical reports that go to the president and other top policymakers.
...
A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a graduate degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Schinella had spent much of his career in the CIA before joining the National Intelligence Council. In 2019, the Brookings Institute, a Washington think tank, published a book by Schinella entitled “Bombs Without Boots,” a study of the limits of the uses of air power in modern war.

Tim Kilbourn, a friend and former colleague of Schinella, described him in an interview as an “American patriot,” and said that his end was a “tragedy,” but declined to comment further. The Arlington County, Virginia, police report on the incident was not immediately available.
...

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16 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@Marie

perhaps there are some jobs that you never really retire from.

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8 users have voted.
QMS's picture

@Marie

dirty secrets in a brain?
suicided is the answer
tptb are the assassins
albeit indirectly

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14 users have voted.

@QMS mental health breakdowns but don't know how many of those were followed by suicide such as Frank Wisner. Angleton was batshit crazy, but chainsmoking and alcoholism killed him at the age of 69.

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12 users have voted.
QMS's picture

@Marie

they play
takes its toll on the mind
over time with creeps
and spooks for bosses

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12 users have voted.
Azazello's picture

I'm happy tonight.
108 today but the forecast is for rain and cooling tomorrow.
So I am no longer contemplating suicide, at least for the time being.

At least I don't live in Phoenix.
File this one under Duh: Hospitals charge a lot more when Wall Street owns them

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19 users have voted.

It didn't have to be this way.

joe shikspack's picture

@Azazello

glad to hear that you are feeling hopeful about the weather.

frankly, i don't know how you deal with triple-digit temperatures for months on end, though i guess it gives you a fine appreciation for rain and cool weather. Smile

have a great weekend!

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8 users have voted.
Azazello's picture

@joe shikspack
The climate is changing. It didn't used to be triple-digits for months on end.
It was only 3 or 4 days in a row, maybe a week max.
Here's a chart of this last month:

Note that the average high is only 97.
It didn't used to be like this, hence the widespread despair.

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14 users have voted.

It didn't have to be this way.

joe shikspack's picture

@Azazello

i hope that, as the chart says, yesterday's reprieve is the start of a new trend.

i guess different people are set up to tolerate different things, but a month of triple digit temps would have me packing to move north, or at least much higher in elevation.

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8 users have voted.
Azazello's picture

@joe shikspack
When's the last time you moved ?
We moved, just in town, 10 years ago and it almost killed us.
The books, the furniture and all that, big ordeal.
Not to mention differential property values.
All the livable places are already expensive.
We'd be downsizing for sure.
That cartoon I posted was right on.
Talk to people, you hear a lot of denial.
I think, in the back of their heads they all get it,
we've all been watching it happen for years,
but nobody wants to believe that this is the new normal.

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11 users have voted.

It didn't have to be this way.

joe shikspack's picture

@Azazello

the last time i moved was more than 20 years ago when i bought my house. moving now would be a huge pain in the ass and it would force me to downsize the crap i don't need and find new homes for it.

i've considered moving for a while and might yet do it assuming that the housing market doesn't crash and i can get enough value out of my house to purchase another one to our liking somewhere else that we want to be.

so, i guess the answer to your question is that i am old enough that i don't relish the idea of moving, but young enough that there are reasons that would be compelling enough to make me think that it was a good idea. Smile

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13 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@Azazello

It goes into more than just Phoenix's hot weather and deaths related to it, but also many other states that you wouldn't think would be having these problems with climate change heat problems.

Phoenix area residents accustomed to blazing summer days are also being hammered by rising nighttime temperatures. More than once this summer, the thermometer still read 100 degrees at midnight and for more than seven days in July, the temperature never dropped below 90 degrees, setting a new record.

The region also contends with longer summers as days grow hot earlier, sometimes as soon as April, and stay hot well into October.

Utah still gets down to the 60's most nights with just a few low 70's. The high Monday is going to be 78 which is a huge cool down from the 100's we've been having.

People in cold states get help with their gas and electric bills if they are poor enough, but I haven't seen that people can get relief during the summer. Anyone know if LIHEAP is offered during summer? If not it should. And congress should raise the limit of what poor in America is. Utah only offers Medicaid if people's income is 138% of poverty. Not sure exactly what the number is.

Thanks for posting it. This is a preview of what's coming for us. Too bad we don't have a government that takes climate change seriously. The great Obama signed the Paris accords. Whoopee. They he opened the country up to drilling and fracking and sent the woman warmonger across the world to have them get going on fracking. Yeah the hell with clean water which is going to be scarce ones the poo hits the whirling blades. And of course let's keep letting Nestles and other continue taking water out of communities for pennies on the dollar and selling it back to us at a great profit. Trump is going to open up the Arctic for drilling. Hmm didn't the great O threaten to do just that or did he stop at opening up the coasts for drilling?

I found this:

Local electric utilities, including SRP and Arizona Public Service, offer some programs to aid low-income customers making at or less than 150% of the federal poverty level. For the Abarcas, that would be just $32,500 annually. Making their home more energy-efficient is out of reach even with a more generous income limit of twice the federal poverty level, since the maximum grant is $6,000.

In the meantime, Abarca said, she sees her neighbors getting AC units, only to be shocked when the first bill arrives.

“Some people pay $400 or $500 a month,” she said. “One lady got a $1,500 bill, but even after talking to the company and finding there was a mistake, they still had to pay $600. Oh my gosh, I don’t have that kind of money!”

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6 users have voted.

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

enhydra lutris's picture

Country have definitely NOT been infiltrated by white supremacists, fascists, nazis, militias, and the like. From day one those types have been the police forces in this country. From day one they have, more often than not, recruited such types. The question has generally never arisen whether or not to hire such people because they were already the norm, just another one of the guys.

be well, have a good one. and have a great weekend.

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13 users have voted.

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

joe shikspack's picture

@enhydra lutris

sounds about right to me.

have a great weekend!

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7 users have voted.
lotlizard's picture

@enhydra lutris  
out there, however narrowly.

https://lite.qwant.com/?q=otter+ship+escape+orca&client=opensearch

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3 users have voted.
enhydra lutris's picture

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1 user has voted.

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

dystopian's picture

James Brown was great. I was amazed as a kid seeing him on say Ed Sullivan in the 60's.
Always loved him. I think Mick Jagger really studied him very well, ok, stole a bunch of his moves, in the very early days. Brown's bands were always the best. Didn't Bootsy Collins (the bass player) come out of one? The act Brown would put on like he was dyin' but keeping on going, was so well done it was astounding.

I saw you did Freddie Roulette the other day... sorry I have been too busy to stop by and say hi... Man what a lap steel player! Crazy good, so original and creative, amazing technique, he was awesome. Great great player! What sounds he got out of it.

The ACLU and the house need to fix this protest is a felony crap, now! My how we have devolved. It was a nice piece of paper while it lasted.

When Biden overheard folks saying Obama was the best Republican president ever, he said "hold my beer".

Thanks for the sounds!

have a good one!

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13 users have voted.

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

joe shikspack's picture

@dystopian

yep, james brown was just the best. i was riveted when i saw him as a kid. i might have been 8 or 9 the first time i saw him on teevee, but i knew that this was something different and special that i had never seen or heard before. it was a whole different kind of cool.

freddie roulette was a talented guy who the recording industry really failed to get. it's a damned shame how under recorded he was.

yep, i hope that the aclu steps up its game and what's left of the justice system steps up to the plate. otherwise it's going to be ugly, ugly, ug-ly.

have a great weekend!

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6 users have voted.
Lookout's picture

Late to the party as usual. Lee Camp had a great routine on the DNC convention last week.

Thanks for all the music and news. Have a great weekend js and all.

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9 users have voted.

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