The Evening Blues - 8-29-19


The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Mojo Buford

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features Chicago blues harmonica player Mojo Buford. Enjoy!

Mojo Buford - Blow Wind Blow

“There is nothing more frightful than ignorance in action.”

-- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

News and Opinion

When Ilhan Omar Is Accused of Anti-Semitism, It’s News. When a Republican Smears Muslims, There’s Silence.

“It’s all about the Benjamins, baby.” ... With those two (since-deleted) tweets, Omar kicked off a political and media firestorm that lasted for weeks and saw her condemned and castigated by, among others, cable news pundits, newspaper op-ed columnists, Jewish community groups, Donald Trump, congressional Republicans, and even the leaders and members of her own party. Now, fast forward to last week, specifically August 21. Rep. Mo Brooks, a right-wing Republican congressperson from Alabama with a long history of controversial and offensive remarks, was interviewed on WVNN, a radio station in Huntsville, about the decision by Israel’s government to deny entry to Omar and her fellow Muslim Democrat Rashida Tlaib.

“Usually, there is not much controversy with respect to Israel,” Brooks told host Jeff Poor. “Usually, the United States Congress is overwhelmingly close to 100%, if not 100%, in support of recognizing Israel as a long-term American ally, and that we have a mutual defense relationship. Unfortunately, we now have people in the United States Congress who view Israel as an enemy, and that makes for an entirely different mix of conversation.” Which “people” would that be? Brooks didn’t hold back. “There is, and I think it’s based on the growing influence of the Islamic religion in the Democratic Party ranks,” he continued. “Keep in mind: Muslims more so than most people have great animosity toward Israel and the Jewish faith. And as you have more and more Muslims in the United States, as they gain greater and greater influence in elections, particularly in Democratic Party primaries, then you’re going to see more and more people like Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, and company that are anti-Israel, and that brings an entirely different viewpoint into the United States Congress.”

“I think you’re going to see this influence in the Democratic Party grow and grow and grow over time, but ultimately become the dominant influence within the Democratic Party, where the Democratic Party will become very strongly anti-Jewish and anti-Israel,” Brooks added. (These comments start at about the two-minute mark of this recording of the show).

Wow. I have been reporting on Islamophobia in U.S. politics for more than a decade, and I honestly cannot remember coming across a more brazenly Islamophobic statement from an elected member of Congress. “ ... So you might think the media — and the Democrats — would be all over Brooks and the Republicans, right?

Right? ...

Zero mentions of him in the national press. Zero coverage of him on network and cable news. Not one story; not one report. ...

Look, I expect nothing from the likes of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy or House Minority Whip Steve Scalise. ... But what about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi? Why isn’t she drafting a congressional resolution to condemn Brooks, as she did for Omar? Where are the statements of outrage from Chuck Schumer and Steny Hoyer, who were so quick to go after one of their own? Why aren’t MSNBC and CNN rolling on this? How come the Washington Post and the New York Times aren’t publishing long pieces about the GOP’s Islamophobia problem? Why aren’t the liberal columnists who lined up to slam Omar now writing op-eds denouncing this blatant and undeniable racism from Brooks?

As Alabama GOP Calls for Ilhan Omar's Expulsion From Congress, Minnesota Dem and Her Allies Hit Back

Rep. Ilhan Omar hit back against the Republican Party of Alabama Tuesday after party leaders at a weekend meeting approved a resolution calling on the state's delegation to initiate proceedings to expel the Minnesota Democrat from Congress.

The resolution was introduced by state Rep. Tommy Hanes, a Republican from Alabama's 23rd state House district, because of what he described to The Washington Post as Omar's "disloyalty" to the U.S. The resolution, which asks the state's congressional representatives to use the Constitution's Article 1, Section 5 to expel Omar, passed during the party's retreat in Auburn.

"Well, the Klan has spoken," tweeted CAIR Arizona executive director Imraan Siddiqi.

For her part, Omar replied to the news by reminding the Alabama GOP that the U.S. is a democracy and pointing out that she won her election with "78 percent of the vote."

"If you want to clean up politics, maybe don't nominate an accused child molester as your Senate candidate?" Omar said, referring to former Senate candidate and alleged predator Roy Moore, a two-time Chief Justice of the state Supreme Court who was removed from office in 2003 and suspended in 2016 on six ethics violations and whose 2017 Senate campaign imploded under accusations of misbehavior.

Moore joined the fray on Wednesday, saying on Twitter that he supported the resolution and that Omar "should go back to Somalia from whence she came" in language echoing President Donald Trump's July call for Omar and fellow Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Rashida Tlaib, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to go back to the "broken and crime infested places from which they came."

Pompous Maximus celebrates lawlessness and impunity.

Mike Pompeo Celebrates Defeated ICC Probe Into US War Crimes

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday affirmed President Donald Trump's disdain for the International Criminal Court when he appeared to boast of the White House's successful bullying effort to stop the court from launching a probe into possible war crimes committed by U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

Pompeo made the remarks in a "Celebrating Americanism in Our Foreign Policy" speech at the American Legion National Convention in Indianapolis.

"Americanism means taking care of our own," said Pompeo.

"We stopped international courts from prosecuting our service members," Pompeo continued, adding that the potential probe "was an outrage."

In April, the ICC announced that it rejected a probe into possible war crimes and crimes against humanity in Afghanistan. Outgoing ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda requested the investigation in 2017, saying at the time that there was a "reasonable basis to believe" that war crimes were committed by the Taliban, Afghan National Security Forces, U.S. armed forces, and the CIA. That move won the praise of human rights organizations and triggered over one million statements from alleged Afghan victims.

But the potential prosecutions also prompted threats from the White House, with Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, warning of sanctions against ICC officials if they moved ahead with probes into U.S. or Israeli war crimes. Pompeo confirmed earlier this year that the administration would revoke or deny visas for ICC personnel who try to investigate or prosecute U.S. officials or key allies for potential war crimes. A month later, in April, the administration followed through and revoked prosecutor Bensouda's visa for entry into the U.S.

Trump, for his part, celebrated the rejected war crimes probe as an "international victory."

An interesting read. Yet another thing that the feckless Clinton administration has to answer for. Here's a taste:

US knew Indonesia intended to stop East Timorese independence 'through terror and violence'

The US government knew for months that Indonesia’s military was supporting and arming militias in East Timor in the lead-up to the 1999 independence referendum but continued to push for stronger military ties, declassified documents have revealed. The hundreds of documents provide a window into US policy on the months of terror inflicted on the Timorese and the “muted” attempts by the US to convince Indonesian officials to allow a peaceful and free vote to proceed.

The formerly classified documents are released in a briefing book by the National Security Archive’s researcher Brad Simpson on Friday to coincide with the 20th anniversary of East Timor’s independence referendum on 30 August 1999. They reveal extensive and early awareness within the US government of the Indonesian military (formerly ABRI, now TNI) and its “determination to thwart an independence vote in East Timor through terror and violence”.

Clinton Fernandes, a professor of international and political studies at the University of New South Wales, said the documents illustrated a split between the US state department concerned with the TNI-backed militia violence and the Pentagon striving to preserve a military relationship in the face of widespread opposition. Fernandes said one key document – describing a meeting between US secretary of defence William Cohen and the Indonesian commander of the armed forces, General Wiranto, less than two weeks after International Force for East Timor (Interfet) forces landed in East Timor – starkly demonstrated that it was the military which mattered to Indonesia.

“As long as there was the dual policy – state department v Pentagon – there were no practical consequences from the state department so Indonesia believed they could get away with it,” he said. “It’s when the defence department – Cohen – steps in that it changes things.”

As violence escalated, state department officials, including the US assistant secretary of state for East Asia and Pacific Affairs, Stanley Roth, lobbied Indonesia to rein in the militias. “But US military officials resisted efforts to pressure the Indonesian armed forces and opposed efforts to reduce military aid, convinced that the Indonesian military remained a crucial force for political and military stability in the archipelago during a fragile democratic transition,” Simpson said.

It Looks Like North Korea Is Building a Submarine That Can Launch Nuclear Missiles

A new report suggests that North Korea is building a submarine capable of launching nuclear missiles. Satellite imagery taken on Monday and published by Beyond Parallel, a research project funded by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), suggests circumstantial evidence of the construction of a new ballistic missile submarine at the Sinpo South Shipyard.

The researchers, Joseph Bermudez and Victor Cha, add that “preliminary evidence indicates possible preparations for a test,” though they added that even after construction is complete it would take at least a year for the submarine to become fully operational.

The researchers describe the ballistic missile submarine threat as “emerging rather than imminent.”

Last month, North Korea’s state news agency reported that Kim had inspected a new submarine at an unspecified location. Kim said the submarine was “an important component in the national defense of our country.”

Chinese troop movement into Hong Kong prompts unease

Chinese military vehicles have been seen moving across the border into Hong Kong, in what the military said were regular troop movements, as fears rose that the city could see a Beijing-led crackdown after months of political unrest. Following witness reports of the movements in the early hours of Thursday, state-run news agency Xinhua released a report that the Hong Kong Garrison of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) was making a scheduled rotation and that it was an “annual normal routine”.

The images published by Xinhua showed armoured carriers and trucks carrying troops at the border, and a naval vessel arriving in Hong Kong.

In the previous two rotations – in 2017 and 2018 – state media reports noted that the number of troops and equipment had not changed. This year the report does not include that detail. It is estimated there are between 8,000 and 10,000 troops in the garrison, on either side of the border.

The movements come before a major anti-government demonstration planned for Saturday, as Hong Kong nears its third month of mass protests. On Thursday, the organiser of the demonstration, Civil Human Rights Front, received notice that police had banned the event.

Worth a read:

Washington invokes "domestic terrorism" to justify police state rule

In the face of growing strikes and protests and mounting social unrest internationally, the American ruling class is acknowledging that maintaining the flow of corporate profits and defending unprecedented levels of social inequality against the opposition of the broad masses of people requires dictatorial forms of rule. Under conditions in which three US billionaires control as much wealth as half the US population, even the worn-out forms of democratic rule have become untenable. Trump increasingly legislates by “national emergency,” deploying troops on US soil, diverting Pentagon funds to build a border wall, threatening to end due process and constructing a network of concentration camps presently filled with desperate asylum seekers.

The next steps—including for martial law, mass arrests of left-wing dissidents, and shutting off the Internet—are being developed out of the public view. For example, Brennan Center co-director Elizabeth Goitein wrote in the Atlantic in February that the military-intelligence agencies now interpret a section of the 1934 Communications Act as granting the executive branch the power to “seize control of US internet traffic, impeding access to certain websites” as well as to shut down the internet, block the delivery of email and manipulate smart speakers like Amazon Alexa upon the president’s proclamation “that there exists a state or threat of war involving the United States.”

The government is also developing plans to abolish the Constitution and carry out mass arrests. Since 2012, Congress has granted the Justice Department’s requests for funds to update secret executive directives called Presidential Emergency Action Documents (PEADS) used to plan “continuity of government” operations in case of national emergencies including mass social unrest, strikes and protests. Perhaps the most well-known PEAD was the directive that authorized Lt. Col. Oliver North and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to establish a contingency plan authorizing “suspension of the Constitution, turning control of the United States over to FEMA, appointment of military commanders to run state and local governments and declaration of martial law during a national crisis,” as The Miami Herald reported in its 1987 exposure of the program, known as “Rex 84.”

Goitein notes that such plans are far from dormant:

“A 2007 Department of Homeland Security report lists ‘martial law’ and ‘curfew declarations’ as ‘critical tasks’ that local, state, and federal government should be able to perform in emergencies. In 2008, government sources told a reporter for Radar magazine that a version of the Security Index [the mass arrest list of the mid 20th century] still existed under the code name Main Core, allowing for the apprehension and detention of Americans tagged as security threats.”

Trump’s July 27 and August 17 tweets to label Antifa a “major terrorist organization” are an expression of these police state plans, which can only be implemented through massive censorship and the silencing of dissent. These plans lie behind the international imperialist campaign to imprison and vilify WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and whistleblower Chelsea Manning, both of whom remain locked up for the “crime” of exposing such crimes to the world.

These plans are bipartisan. Democratic Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff recently introduced the “Confronting the Threat of Domestic Terrorism Act.” This bill, which has a high chance of passage, would allow the Attorney General to prosecute people or groups as “domestic terrorists” if they engage in or conspire to engage in activity that seeks to “influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion” if that activity impacts “interstate or foreign commerce,” which by nature any workers’ strike would do. The “conspiracy” clause will facilitate the prosecution of individuals based on political opinion alone. The Democrats and the Democratic-linked press present this initiative as aimed against right-wing mass shooters. But because shootings, bombings and other acts of terrorist violence are already illegal in every state, the only purpose for the proposed law is to criminalize free association with those who will be listed as “domestic terrorists,” as well as to apply anti-foreign terrorist laws like the PATRIOT Act against US citizens engaged in First Amendment-protected speech and activity.

Russiagate skeptics are vindicated, but conspiracy theorists are rewarded (w/ Glenn Greenwald)

John Kiriakou: In Search of a Russiagate Scalp: The Entrapment of Maria Butina

Much has been written about Maria Butina, the Russian “spy” who was accused of seeking to infiltrate the National Rifle Association and other organizations to try to gain a foothold in the Trump campaign and, later, in the White House. Much of it turned out to be nonsense. Butina wasn’t a spy. She wasn’t charged with spying. She wasn’t accused of being a spy. But that’s how the media branded her. The important thing is that there actually were spies around her. And they weren’t who you might have thought.

In the Butina case, the FBI and the Justice Department needed a scalp in the midst of the frenzy about the ultimaely unproven collusion theory of “Russiagate,” and so Butina was charged and convicted of “conspiracy to fail to register as an agent of a foreign government.” Seriously. ... As things turned out, she really was just an overly-aggressive Russian grad student at American University who really, really loved guns and was trying to ingratiate herself with the NRA. But the Justice Department came down on her like a ton of bricks, forced her into taking a plea, and sentenced HER to 18 months in a federal prison: for conspiring to fail to fill out a form.

I also want to talk about how Maria Butina got into this predicament in the first place. We know that she was very active in the gun rights movement in both Russia and the U.S. and that she sought to improve contact between gun groups in both countries. We also know that she met and began dating Patrick Byrne, the founder and CEO of We learned recently, thanks to Byrne himself, that he was a longtime FBI source and that the FBI directed him to begin dating Butina. He did so. And he reported back to the FBI that she was simply a graduate student. That wasn’t good enough for the FBI, though and, according to Byrne, he was instructed to go back to Butina, to begin a sexual relationship with her, and to again report back to the FBI. He did that, too.

In the end, the Justice Department accused her publicly of “trading sexual favors” for access, an accusation that prosecutors had to withdraw. It was patently untrue. But that didn’t stop them from accusing her in the press of being a Russian spy, which she was not. And it didn’t stop the judge from giving her three times the maximum sentence called for by the sentencing guidelines. ... Butina wasn’t committing a crime, so they just made something up, leaked it to the press, allowed it to influence the public and the judge, and hoped she would cave and take a plea. She did. Byrne went on CNN last week to say that two of the three people who instructed him to do all of this were James Comey, Peter Strzok, and another as-yet-unnamed individual. The operation was hatched at the top.

Boris Johnson Suspends Parliament Ahead of Brexit in “Shameless and Brazen Attack” on U.K. Democracy

'Stop the coup': Protests across UK over Johnson's suspension of parliament

Within hours of Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament, impromptu protests were being held in major city centres across the country, including in front of the Palace of Westminster in central London.

Demonstrations were scheduled to be held from late afternoon onwards in areas including Manchester, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Birmingham, Liverpool, Bristol, Cambridge, Brighton, Durham, Milton Keynes and Chester.

Protesters gathered at Commons Green, just outside Parliament, and marched towards Downing Street. Organisers claimed the crowd numbered in the thousands.

The demonstrators described the move to suspend parliament as a coup and called for Johnson to resign. At one point, the traffic at Downing Street was at a standstill as protesters chanted “save our democracy, stop the coup” and sang “No one voted for Boris”. ...

Michael Chessum, the national organiser for Another Europe is Possible, said: “Today’s protest was huge and exceeded all expectations. We got thousands at four hours’ notice. We cannot rely on the judiciary or parliamentary process to save democracy – we need a mass movement of protest and civil disobedience.”

Jeremy Corbyn says he will try to 'politically stop' prorogation with legislation

Guatemala in grip of 'mafia coalition', says UN body in scathing corruption report

A UN commission that spent the last 12 years investigating graft in Guatemala has described the country as “captured” by corruption in its final report, days before it is set to wrap up operations after President Jimmy Morales refused to renew its mandate.

The commission, known as Cicig for its initials in Spanish, said in its final report that there is a “mafia coalition” among members of government, the business community and private individuals that is “willing to sacrifice Guatemala’s present and future to guarantee impunity and preserve the status quo”.

The commission chief Iván Velásquez, a Colombian lawyer who has been barred by Morales’ government from entering Guatemala, said via video conference from Colombia that the report would be the commission’s last public act.

“We almost got to the nucleus of the structures that have captured the state,” Velásquez said. “This cannot be solved without a profound restructuring of the state.” ...

While many observers praised the commission for its work, which resulted in the prosecution of more than 400 people, including the former president Otto Pérez Molina, his vice-president and much of his cabinet, Morales decided that Cicig had run its course, setting up its impending departure on 3 September.

Critics saw Morales’ refusal to renew the commission’s mandate as an attempt to protect himself and those close to him.

the horse race

Kamala Harris Staff Walks Out On Bernie’s Speech

Kirsten Gillibrand Just Dropped Out of the 2020 Presidential Race

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is officially out of the presidential race.

The New York Democrat shared the announcement on Twitter Wednesday after a last-ditch effort to qualify for the second round of primary debates fell short.

“I know this isn’t the result we wanted — we wanted to win this race — but it’s important to know when it’s not your time,” she said in a video posted to Twitter. ...

Gillibrand is the fifth Democratic presidential contender to drop out in recent weeks, following Reps. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) and Seth Moulton (D-Mass.), former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D), and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D). More candidates may follow them in the coming weeks as they run low on campaign funds and struggle to get much attention or traction in the race after failing to qualify for the debate stage.

Tulsi Gabbard: There's no circumstance where I won't support Democratic nominee

Let's go back to paper ballots and make the bastards steal votes the old fashioned way.

Viral Video of Mississippi Voting Machine Changing Man's Vote Prompts Calls for Paper Ballots and Election Security Reform

A viral video showing a voter in Mississippi attempting to cast a vote in the state's Republican gubernatorial primary on Tuesday had been retweeted more than 10,000 times by Wednesday morning, as voting rights advocates pointed to the video as evidence that a return to paper ballots would make U.S. elections far more secure.

The voter in the video was shown trying to click the box next to retired state Supreme Court Justice Bill Waller Jr.'s name on the touchscreen of an electronic voting machine, only to have an "X" appear next to Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves's name.

"It is not letting me vote for who I want to vote for," the man said in the video.

The voter was one of more than a dozen people in Mississippi who reported machine glitches when they tried to vote. At least three machines in two counties were confirmed to be malfunctioning on Election Day, with unconfirmed reports in seven other counties.

‘Hypocritical’ hedge funds: Dems get donations from Puerto Rico’s debt profiteers

the evening greens

Climate activists plan Washington DC protest to 'disrupt workings of power'

Climate activists will escalate their protests next month in Washington DC, seeking to shut down traffic with blockades at key intersections to bring attention to the intensifying crisis. Several local groups are planning the action for 23 September, as youth leaders call for a global strike and a week of action. Hundreds of events are planned, with more than 100 of them in the US, organizers said.

Patrick Young, a 35-year-old who works with the group Rising Tide called the protest “a big ambitious plan to disrupt business as usual”.

“The level of frustration with the inaction of political leaders and corporations on the climate crisis is just really boiling over,” Young said.

Rising Tide North America is joining other local organizers with Extinction Rebellion DC, 350 DC, the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, Friends Meeting of Washington’s Social Concerns Committee, Movement for a People’s Party and Code Pink. The groups are announcing their broad plans – without disclosing strategic details – as the 16-year-old Swedish youth climate activist Greta Thunberg arrives in New York via boat for plans to speak at the United Nations Climate Action Summit.

A call-to-action document for Shut Down DC highlights worsening superstorms, floods, droughts, and wildfires, and notes that they unevenly hurt people with low incomes and people of color.

With Amazon in Flames, Trump Moves to Open 16.7 Million-Acre Alaskan Rainforest to Corporate Exploitation

President Donald Trump has reportedly ordered the U.S. Department of Agriculture to open Alaska's 16.7 million-acre Tongass National Forest—the planet's largest intact temperate rainforest—to logging and other corporate development projects, a move that comes as thousands of fires are ripping through the Amazon rainforest and putting the "lungs of the world" in grave danger.

The Washington Post, citing anonymous officials briefed on the president's instructions, reported late Tuesday that Trump's policy change would lift 20-year-old logging restrictions that "barred the construction of roads in 58.5 million acres of undeveloped national forest across the country."

The move, according to the Post, would affect more than half of the Tongass National Forest, "opening it up to potential logging, energy, and mining projects."

The logging restrictions have been under near-constant assault by Republicans since they were implemented, but federal courts have allowed them to stand.

Why a boycott of Brazilian goods could be the best way to stop the Amazon fires

‘Worst of wildfires still to come’ despite Brazil claiming crisis is under control

The fires raging in the Brazilian Amazon are likely to intensify over the coming weeks, a leading environmental expert has warned, despite government claims the situation had been controlled. About 80,000 blazes have been detected in Brazil this year – more than half in the Amazon region – although on Saturday the far-right president, Jair Bolsonaro, claimed the situation was “returning to normal”.

On Monday Brazil’s defense minister, Fernando Azevedo e Silva, told reporters: “The situation is not straightforward but it’s under control and already cooling down nicely.” But in an article for Brazil’s O Globo newspaper on Wednesday, one prominent forestry expert warned that the country’s annual burning season had yet to fully play out and called for urgent steps to reduce the potential damage.

“The worst of the fire is still to come,” wrote Tasso Azevedo, a forest engineer and environmentalist who coordinates the deforestation monitoring group MapBiomas. Azevedo said many of the areas currently being consumed by flames were stretches of Amazon rainforest that had been torn down in the months of April, May and June. But areas deforested in July and August – when government monitoring systems detected a major surge in destruction – had yet to be torched. ...

Azevedo wrote: “What we are experiencing is a genuine crisis which could become a tragedy foretold with much larger fires than the ones we are now seeing if they are not immediately halted.” He called for urgent measures such as a crackdown on deforestation in indigenous territories and conservation units and outlawing deliberate burning in the Amazon until at least the end of October when the dry season ends.

Hurricane Dorian spares Puerto Rico and heads for Florida's eastern coast

Hurricane Dorian caused limited damage in the northern Caribbean as it left the region and gathered strength late Wednesday, setting its sights on the US mainland as it threatened to grow into a Category 3 storm.

Puerto Rico, which had braced for the worst, seemed to be spared any heavy wind and rain, a huge relief to many on an island where blue tarps still cover some 30,000 homes nearly two years after Hurricane Maria. The island’s 3.2 million inhabitants also depend on an unstable power grid that remains prone to outages since it was destroyed by Maria.

Power outages and flooding were reported across the US Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands and the Puerto Rican islands of Vieques and Culebra after Dorian hit St Thomas as a Category 1 storm. ...

Florida officials said Wednesday that they are preparing for the hurricane to make landfall somewhere along the state’s eastern shore. Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, declared a state of emergency and urged residents to take precautions in anticipation of a possible Labor Day strike.

Dennis Feltgen, a Hurricane Center meteorologist in Miami, said Dorian may grow in size and could land anywhere from south Florida to South Carolina on Sunday or Monday. “This will be a large storm approaching the south-east,” he said.

Apparently poisoning people and spreading cancer is not a powerful enough demonstration of Monsanto's utter contempt for the public. They also want to hire squads of thugs to enact their rage against people who object to being poisoned and endangered.

Monsanto Doctor Wanted to 'Beat the Sh*t Out of' Group of Mothers: Emails

Leaked emails from scientists working with agrichemical giant Monsanto feature company leaders in 2013 wishing they could "beat the shit out of" advocacy group Moms Across America.

Moms Across America wrote an open letter asking Monsanto to discontinue the use of the pesticide glyphosate—which some research has tied to cancers—and to stop producing genetically modified seeds that was seen by company executives as a public relations disaster.

"I have been arguing for a week to beat the shit out of them and I have clearly lost," Monsanto's Dr. Daniel Goldstein wrote to University of Georgia crop scientist Wayne Parrott and University of Illinois biochemist Bruce Chassy. "We don't want to be seen as beating up on mothers."

The emails were released as part of litigation relating to the cancer-causing effects of glysophate against Monsanto's now-parent company Bayer.

Also of Interest

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

Boris Johnson Seizes Power

The Key to a Sustainable Economy Is 5,000 Years Old

Dozens of supporters of Donald Trump have carried out or threatened acts of violence. Here, the Guardian lists them all.

Violence Against Indigenous Hondurans Shows Us What Fuels Migration

Humanity Denied: What Is Missing From the Omar, Tlaib Story

Puerto Ricans Aren’t Just Preparing for Hurricane Dorian: 'We’re Preparing for the Government to Fail Us'

The Koch brothers tried to build a plutocracy in the name of freedom

Skull of humankind's oldest-known ancestor discovered

A Little Night Music

Mo-Jo Buford - Whole Lotta Woman

Mojo Buford - Don´t Go No Further

Mojo Buford - Big Leg Woman

Mojo Buford - Deep Sea Diver

Muddy Waters w/ Mojo Buford - King Bee

Mojo Buford - Gone and Left Me

Mojo Buford - Tell Me Watcha' Gonna Do

Mojo Buford - Harp Breaker

Mojo Buford - Picking Rags

George 'Mojo' Buford - Mo's Boogie

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lotlizard's picture

are wealthy enough to build their dream house, but don’t seem to know anyone they trust to ask when it comes to questions of taste.

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joe shikspack's picture


if those are "dream homes," it appears that some people are having nightmares and seem to enjoy them. Smile

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Azazello's picture

Here's Anya Parampil on Fox News re: Honduras.
[video: width:500 height:300]
I can't vouch for the rest, but the first half of this one is pretty good.
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Have a nice night.

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We wanted decent healthcare, a living wage and free college.
The Democrats gave us Biden and war instead.

joe shikspack's picture


heh, i ran short of time to watch videos today and didn't get a chance to watch max. thanks for posting them.

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Azazello's picture

@joe shikspack
Oh wait, should I even admit I read it ?
I heard this on the radio last night.
Tasty little lick from an album I had never heard of,
looks like it's a Booker T. composition.
[video: width:400 height:240]

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We wanted decent healthcare, a living wage and free college.
The Democrats gave us Biden and war instead.

joe shikspack's picture


well, i read stuff from wsws frequently. i am not a big fan of trotsky and some of their stuff turns me right off. but, they do pretty good work on some issues and as i read my head nods in agreement.

heh, i missed that album, too. i would never in a million years have guessed that this tune came from a santana album:

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Happy Thursday, bringing us closer to the weekend.

Butina's hapless fate reminds me of Nakoula Basseley Nakoula

For some reason, our government initially tried to pretend that the attack on our diplomatic site in Benghazi had nothing to do with the fact that it occurred on an anniversary of the attack on the Twin Towers, September 11, 2012. We acknowledged that rioting in Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries that day was related to 911, but we wanted to pretend that Benghazi was different.

So, we claimed initially that it was a protest against an anti-Muslim film, although Obama did throw in the word "terrorism," just in case. We then picked up Nakoula on some minor charge, for which he got a year in prison and four years of supervised release or some such.

Trouble was, our little fib exposed both Nakoula and the totally clueless young, struggling actors in the film, who just needed a gig desperately, to harassment, death threats, etc.

But, hey, when we need a cover story in a pinch, we find one, no matter how transparently false and harmful to innocents it may be. Not that Butina or Nakoula were totally innocent. Only the actors were. But we most likely would have left Butina and Nakoula entirely or pretty much alone, if we hadn't needed a cover story.

Oh, well, life and Mother Nature are random, too. Why should the US government be any different? /s

A personal note: I was awake most of the night of the Benghazi attack. At some point, I got on my laptop, looking for news stories. At about 2 or 3 am US time, I spotted the story on, either AP or Reuters. Initially, it flat out stated that Benghazi was related to the 911 riots. And I literally watched the story morph several time until it was about a protest against a cheap, poorly made, anti-Muslim video. "At this point, what difference does it make" if our government lied to us or not?

Never observed anything like that, before or since, but watching the original 911 attack on Al Jazeera TV came close. On US TV, they somehow "disappeared" all the falling bodies of the people who had jumped out of the windows of the upper floors to escape the flames. Talk about graphic and heart-wrenching. Not a sight I will ever be able to forget.

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joe shikspack's picture


yep, it's a shame that the government has so many things to cover up. it's a wonder that they can keep coming up with narratives to cover their asses.

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@joe shikspack

to come up with a plausible narrative and no one holds them accountable. Was it plausible that nations were rioting to commemorate the anniversary of 911 everywhere but Benghazi, where Americans were killed over a video made by an American of Egyptian origin that no one had heard of before, much less seen?

A Presidential debate moderator actually jumped into a Presidential debate when Romney raised the lie about Benghazi to defend Obama based on the latter's having had the foresight to throw the word "terrorism" into a speech telling Americans that four of us had been shot to death over a video.

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ggersh's picture

now what are the odds of this happening?

Gotta be that good old vaunted conspiracy theory
theory at work

FBI studies two broken cameras outside cell where Epstein died: source

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

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

Heard from Margaret Kimberley

lotlizard's picture

Incompetence and coincidence, yeah, that’s the ticket.

And YouTube (= Google), Facebook, Twitter, and Amazon will de-platform anyone who says otherwise.

Get Gillette’s new 5-blade version of Occam’s razor! It cuts your ability to question off at the root!

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joe shikspack's picture


i don't know how i could be less surprised by this revelation. on the other hand, i'm pretty sure that we will never know the full truth about the circumstances of epstein's demise.

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snoopydawg's picture

My first thought when I heard that the Queen gave her consent was that the PTB who want to get their hands on Britain's health care was because she is just one of the globalists. But I have read a few articles that say she isn't happy with the position he put her in. Lots of people are tweeting that they just want to Brexit regardless if there is a deal or not. Others not so much so who knows what the real story is? But yeah if it's true that billionaires are pushing this then I guess we'll be seeing riots in the U.K..

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Which AIPAC/MIC/pharma/bank bought politician are you going to vote for? Don’t be surprised when nothing changes.

joe shikspack's picture


i have read a number of things over the past day that basically (like this piece) say that johnson is doing wrong by dragging the queen into politics:

For many, Johnson has contravened a basic constitutional rule in the U.K. that says the government should not politicize the queen.

In asking her to prorogue Parliament, he exercised something called "prerogative power" — which dates from when the monarch ruled the country and crucially cuts out the involvement of lawmakers.

"Prorogation is a good example of a part of the U.K.'s unwritten constitution that previous governments have chosen not to manipulate," according to a briefing from the Institute for Government, a think tank.

Leaders before Johnson have avoided doing this because it "would undermine trust and could be used by their opponents against them in the future," it said.

it appears to me that the uk is deeply polarized over brexit. i am guessing that the number of folks that want a no-deal crash out brexit are far fewer than those that wanted the brexit with all the trimmings that nigel farage sold them, while the remainers are even more radicalized by the prospect of brexit gone bad that faces them.

some form of enhanced struggle is in the offing.

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Not Henry Kissinger's picture

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The current working assumption appears to be that our Shroedinger's Cat system is still alive. But what if we all suspect it's not, and the real problem is we just can't bring ourselves to open the box?

joe shikspack's picture

@Not Henry Kissinger

he does a pretty good job. i guess democracy in the uk, like here in the u.s., has always been quite attenuated and the desires of a few upper class twits are quite likely to outweigh those of the unwashed masses.

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smiley7's picture

“There is nothing more frightful than ignorance in action.”

Life-long engagement in ignorance and can't answer how to tactfully engage those suffering from its disease without hurting feelings, mine included, to this day.

A shared societal construct, i would have preferred not to live with in past or present. Politically, a nightmare included. You get under the covers in thinking tonight with your lede,

Love you, for many reasons and for this understanding; outstanding,


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joe shikspack's picture


heh, i know from experience that not all ignorance is intractable, though it rarely responds to just one application of information - unless it is accompanied by a rigorous application of one of karma's clue-by-fours. Smile

keep on keepin' on.

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mimi's picture

Jimmy Dore: "Not any vagina will do".

Jimmy Dore for President. Who is Tulsi? I am very confused and shut down with a blank stare.

Good Night.

Good Night again. Edited a bit my words. All politics are supposedly local. I am not local anymore to the US. What do I know?

Sigh, so sad.
My sig is always true.

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