The Evening Blues - 9-1-17



eb1pt12


The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Son Seals


Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features Chicago blues singer and guitarist Son Seals. Enjoy!

Son Seals - On My Knees

"We kill because we are afraid of our own shadow, afraid that if we used a little common sense we'd have to admit that our glorious principles were wrong."

-- Henry Miller


News and Opinion

US flies bombers over Korean peninsula after missile launch

The U.S. on Thursday conducted joint military exercises with South Korea and Japan, flying fighters and bombers above and near the Korean peninsula days after North Korea's latest missile launch.

”North Korea’s actions are a threat to our allies, partners and homeland, and their destabilizing actions will be met accordingly,” Gen. Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy, Pacific Air Forces commander, said in a statement. ...

Four Marine Corps F-35B Lighting II fighters and two Air Force B-1B Lancers joined Japanese and South Korean warplanes in the show of force, officials said.

US-Russia Tensions: Why did American authorities order Russia to close its San Francisco Consulate?

Obama ruined U.S.-Russia relations for Trump, says Russian official

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Friday blamed Barack Obama for the U.S. government’s order for Russian officials to vacate three diplomatic compounds in the states. Lavrov claimed the former president’s policies have led to the deterioration in U.S.-Russian relations and are preventing current U.S. president Donald Trump from making any “constructive proposals.”

Lavrov was informed of the decision in a phone call with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson Thursday, and he said the Kremlin was still “looking into it.”

Last Isis stronghold in Syria could fall by October, says UN envoy

Raqqa, the last Islamic State stronghold in Syria, will fall by the end of October, allowing credible democratic elections to be held within a year, according to the UN special envoy for the country.

Setting out a highly optimistic scenario for the end of the civil war, Staffan de Mistura said the country would face a “moment of truth” after the reclaiming of Raqqa. He urged President Bashar al-Assad to recognise he must make a political gesture if he didn’t wish to see a version of Isis return under a new name within months.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, De Mistura argued that permanent peace would not be possible if the war ended in a messy but unilateral military victory for Assad. This, he said, would make the task of reconstruction and the return of refugees impossible.

There is a widespread view that the international community is beginning to wash its hands of Syria, and will allow Assad to win. But De Mistura said a military victory without a political settlement would lead to the revival of a Sunni military opposition “and the endless engagement would continue”.

He said he expected Isis to be defeated in its last Syrian strongholds of Raqqa and Deir ez-Zor by October.

Iran is adhering to nuclear deal limits, UN says, despite Donald Trump claim

The UN’s nuclear watchdog has reported that Iran is staying within the main limits set down in a 2015 multilateral agreement that Donald Trump has insisted Tehran is violating.

The International Atomic Energy Agency said that Iran’s stockpile of low-enriched uranium is 88.4kg (about 195lb), less than a third of the maximum allowed under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the official name of the 2015 agreement. Under the agreement, Iran accepted limits on its nuclear programme in exchange for sanctions relief. The current stockpile is just over 1% of the pre-agreement level.

The stockpile of heavy water is also below the agreed limits, the IAEA said, according to journalists shown the agency’s latest quarterly report on Iran’s nuclear activities. The report comes at a critical time, as Trump has threatened to withhold his certification of Iranian compliance when he is next required to report to Congress in mid-October. He has said he expected Iran to be found non-compliant by then and “if it was up to me” would have found them non-compliant months earlier.

Former officials say the White House is putting pressure on intelligence officers and other officials to look for Iranian infractions that could justify the withdrawal of US adherence to the agreement, which is also signed by the UK, France, China, Germany and Russia.

An interesting article worth a read. Here are some excerpts:

The Reasons for Netanyahu’s Panic

A very senior Israeli intelligence delegation, a week ago, visited Washington. Then, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu broke into President Putin’s summer holiday to meet him in Sochi, where, according to a senior Israeli government official (as cited in the Jerusalem Post), Netanyahu threatened to bomb the Presidential Palace in Damascus, and to disrupt and nullify the Astana cease-fire process, should Iran continue to “extend its reach in Syria.” Russia’s Pravda wrote, “according to eyewitnesses of the open part of the talks, the Israeli prime minister was too emotional and at times even close to panic. He described a picture of the apocalypse to the Russian president that the world may see, if no efforts are taken to contain Iran, which, as Netanyahu believes, is determined to destroy Israel.”

So, what is going on here? Whether or not Pravda’s quote is fully accurate (though the description was confirmed by senior Israeli commentators), what is absolutely clear (from Israeli sources) is that both in Washington and at Sochi, the Israeli officials were heard out, but got nothing. Israel stands alone. Indeed, it is reported that Netanyahu was seeking “guarantees” about the future Iranian role in Syria, rather than “asking for the moon” of an Iranian exit. But how could Washington or Moscow realistically give Israel such guarantees?

Belatedly, Israel has understood that it backed the wrong side in Syria – and it has lost. It is not really in a position to demand anything. It will not get an American enforced buffer zone beyond the Golan armistice line, nor will the Iraqi-Syrian border be closed, or somehow “supervised” on Israel’s behalf. Of course, the Syrian aspect is important, but to focus only on that, would be to “miss the forest for the trees.” The 2006 war by Israel to destroy Hizbullah (egged on by the U.S., Saudi Arabia – and even a few Lebanese) was a failure. Symbolically, for the first time in the Middle East, a technologically sophisticated, and lavishly armed, Western nation-state simply failed. What made the failure all the more striking (and painful) was that a Western state was not just bested militarily, it had lost also the electronic and human intelligence war, too — both spheres in which the West thought their primacy unassailable. ...

Against Hizbullah, Israel had thrown its full military force (though Israelis always say, now, that they could have done more). And against Syria, the U.S., Europe, the Gulf States (and Israel in the background) have thrown the kitchen sink: jihadists, al-Qaeda, ISIS (yes), weapons, bribes, sanctions and the most overwhelming information war yet witnessed. Yet Syria – with indisputable help from its allies – seems about to prevail: it has stood its ground, against almost unbelievable odds.

Just to be clear: if 2006 marked a key point of inflection, Syria’s “standing its ground” represents a historic turning of much greater magnitude. It should be understood that Saudi Arabia’s (and Britain’s and America’s) tool of fired-up, radical Sunnism has been routed. And with it, the Gulf States, but particularly Saudi Arabia are damaged. The latter has relied on the force of Wahabbism since the first foundation of the kingdom: but Wahabbism in Lebanon, Syria and Iraq has been roundly defeated and discredited (even for most Sunni Muslims). It may well be defeated in Yemen too. This defeat will change the face of Sunni Islam.

Trump's ambassador to Israel refers to 'alleged occupation' of Palestinian territories

Donald Trump’s ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, has referred to the situation in the Palestinian territories as “an alleged occupation”, in an apparent break from US foreign policy and mainstream international opinion.

Talking to the Jerusalem Post in his first major interview with the Israeli media, Friedman appeared to adopt a stance more in line with Israeli settlers, of whom he has been a high-profile supporter. One of the two journalists who conducted the interview confirmed to the Guardian that Friedman had been accurately quoted. A US official insisted that Friedman’s comments did not mark a change in US policy.

Demanding clarification from the US a Palestinian official said: “Our understanding is that when someone has an official position, like being an ambassador, this person does no longer speak in a personal capacity. Mr Friedman should realise that denying facts doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. He has an extensive record of attacks against the national rights of the Palestinian people, including funding illegal colonial-settlements and participating in celebrations of the Israeli occupation. We call upon the US administration to clarify their position.”

The legal status of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and east Jerusalem – captured during the six-day war in 1967 – is recognised by the United Nations, most countries and by Israel itself in its use of institutions such as military courts to try Palestinians in the West Bank.

New York Times distorts reality of Israel’s walls

Isabel Kershner, writing in The New York Times, recently misrepresented the reality of Israeli-built walls and the fact that it is Palestinians enclosed by them and not Israelis.

Establishing that she spends far too much time in an Israeli milieu and too little in occupied Palestinian territory, she flips reality by penning, “Challenged by hostile forces on most of its fronts, Israel is already pretty much walled in.”

Yet it is Israel itself which has chosen to build walls. The people to describe as “walled in” are Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Palestinians are the ones being forcibly enclosed within bantustans as part of a comprehensive system of apartheid – not Israelis.

Throughout the article, Kershner repeatedly omits vital information about an underground wall Israel is building to further obstruct Palestinian egress from the tightly blockaded Gaza Strip.

Kenya’s presidential election was just overturned in historic ruling

In a historic decision Friday, Kenya’s Supreme Court annulled last month’s election result, citing irregularities in the way the vote was run and calling for a new election in the next 60 days.

Following a vote on August 8, the election commission declared incumbent President Uhuru Kenyatta the winner by a margin of 1.4m votes. But opposition candidate Raila Odinga quickly filed a complaint, challenging the validity of the vote and alleging that the commission’s IT system had been hacked to change the outcome.

The court seemingly agreed. Delivering the ruling, Chief Justice David Maraga said: “Elections are not an event but a process. After considering the totality of the entire evidence, we are satisfied that the elections were not conducted in accordance to the dictates of the Constitution and the applicable principles.” Justice Maraga called for a new election in the next 60 days.

Reality Winner was not Told She had the Right to Remain Silent

At a court hearing on Wednesday, a federal judge agreed to delay accused leaker Reality Winner’s trial until March. The delay will allow Winner’s lawyers and expert witnesses to acquire the required security clearances needed to access classified information the government may use against her in court.

A potentially critical pretrial battle, however, is brewing right now, according to court documents filed Tuesday. Winner — the 25-year-old Air Force veteran and ex-National Security Administration contractor indicted under the Espionage Act for allegedly leaking a top-secret document — has accused the FBI of violating her Miranda rights. Winner’s lawyers are arguing that any alleged confession should be barred from a jury trial.

“Because Winner was not read her Miranda rights prior to law enforcement questioning,” Winner’s lawyers said in a memo supporting their motion, “any statements elicited by law enforcement from Winner during the encounter must be suppressed, as should any evidence obtained as a result of those statements.”

Winner is accused of having leaked an NSA document that was the basis of a story published by The Intercept on June 5, though The Intercept has no knowledge of the source’s identity. (The Intercept’s parent company, First Look Media, has taken steps to provide independent support for Winner’s legal defense through the Press Freedom Defense Fund. First Look also contributed $50,000 in matching funds to the Stand With Reality campaign, which I co-founded.)

Winner was denied bail shortly after her arrest and is currently in jail awaiting trial. Her case is the first leak prosecution the Trump administration has brought under the Espionage Act, as part of a wider crackdown on leaks. Winner’s case is widely seen as having enormous implications for both whistleblowers and the press. The Miranda rights argument made by her defense adds a potentially significant early wrinkle in what is almost sure to be a complex case.

Why Did The New York Times Give A Right Wing Parasite A Platform To Slander Chelsea Manning?

The New York Times published a scurrilous column on United States military whistleblower Chelsea Manning and provided a platform to a right-wing neoconservative writer, who was disappointed the military did not sentence Manning to execution in the electric chair. Jamie Kirchick also initially refused to refer to Manning as Chelsea and use appropriate gender pronouns after she came out as a woman in August 2013. In fact, two months later, for Commentary Magazine, Kirchick labeled Chelsea Manning, a transgender person, a man.

“Supporters of [Edward] Snowden and Bradley Manning (the former Army private who released more than a quarter million classified diplomatic cables to the anarchist web collective WikiLeaks and who was recently sentenced to 35 years in prison after being found guilty of violating the Espionage Act) claim that the men are ‘whistleblowers,'” Kirchick wrote. “Far from betraying their country, both men’s backers say, they in fact served it by revealing egregious wrongdoing.”

Kirchick insists on pushing the notion that Manning engaged in treason or treachery, even though a military judge acquitted Manning of this very offense: “aiding the enemy.” He also compares Manning to the wife of Bashar al-Assad, and by dropping the Syrian leader’s name, goes low again just to push a cheap guilty-by-association smear into the minds of readers.

Why did the New York Times editorial board publish such malevolent commentary and give a platform to someone with such a toxic reputation? What is with the vitriolic headline, “When Transgender Trumps Treachery”? ... If the Times merely wants to play the role of contrarian to drive traffic to their website, that is vile because it comes at a cost to Manning.

Controlled Opposition: Clinton Machine Caught Funneling $20 Million to The Young Turks

It was recently announced that The Young Turks Network, led by Cenk Uygur, had secured $20 million dollars in funding to bolster their business/media presence. But while Cenk Uygur attempts to sell his brand to the public as a progressive alternative media outlet, facts reveal that this is nothing more than a façade meant to lure young liberal pragmatists into buying into a hidden corporatist agenda. ...

The main conduit for the funding is a newly created growth equity fund called 3L Capital, with additional financial backing from venture capital groups Greycroft Partners, E.ventures, and WndrCo. — which was recently launched by Hollywood mogul Jefferey Katzenberg. ...

Greycroft Partners – venture capital fund run by Alan Patricof — Patricof has been active in Democratic Party politics, contributing to candidates including Bill and Hillary Clinton, whom he met in the Hamptons when they were there guests of lobbyist and Democratic activist Liz Robbins. Greycroft Partners pumps money into the Clinton slush funds so their businesses can curry favor from the government in an effort to maximize profits on the companies they are invested in.

Jeffrey Katzenberg – Hollywood mogul & film producer, Disney, Dreamworks Animation — Katzenberg has been actively involved in Democratic politics. He actively supported Barack Obama, and has been called “one of Hollywood’s premier political kingmakers and one of the Democratic Party‘s top national fundraisers.”

Revealing that he is no progressive by any stretch of the imagination, Katzenberg tellingly donated $1 million to the Super PAC Priorities USA, which supported Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential race. Furthermore, in June 2016, information released by WikiLeaks regarding leaked Democratic National Committee documents confirmed that Katzenberg donated $3 million to the Hillary Clinton campaign. Then in October 2016, he hosted a $100,000-per-person fundraiser at his Beverly Hills residence with Obama as the main attraction.

The idea that someone with such a strong track record of support for the Clinton machine and Obama, like Katzenberg, is actually working to help real progressives and progressive ideas come to the forefront of American political discourse is patently absurd. Ironically, Cenk still attempts to maintain that he is against money in politics – completely failing to mention that his newest corporate owners have shoveled millions of dollars into the pockets of Hillary and Obama – both standard bearers for the corporatist brand of Democratic party politics.

Single Payer Doctors Out Sanders for Watered Down Bill

Single payer activists say they will not support a proposed bill that Senator Bernie Sanders will introduce after Labor Day if the bill includes cost-sharing measures such as co-pays. In a letter to Senator Sanders, Carol Paris, David Himmelstein and Steffie Woolhandler of Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) warn that PNHP “cannot endorse or wholeheartedly advocate for a reform that includes copayments for medically-necessary services.” ...

“While your staff has not shared with us the details of the current draft, we understand from colleagues in other single-payer advocacy groups that it mandates copayments for medical services for most Americans and proposes a four-year delay before the implementation of the single-payer reform,” the doctors write. “We also understand that during the four year phase-in period, the bill would make available a public option, and provide some upgrades to and expansion of Medicare coverage.” ...

“Recent reports are that Sanders’ bill falls far short of HR 676 in fundamental ways. In fact, Sanders’ bill is a multi-payer system not a single payer system,” said Dr. Margaret Flowers of Health Over Profit. “His bill reportedly would allow private insurers to compete with the public system, allow the wealthy to buy their way out of the public system and allow investor-owned health facilities to continue to profit while providing more expensive and lower quality health care.”

“As a leader in the Democratic Party in the Senate, Sanders is trying to walk the line between listening to the concerns of his constituency, which overwhelmingly favors single payer health care, and protecting his fellow Democrats, whose campaigns are financed by the medical industrial complex. Sanders needs to side with the movement not those who profit from overly expensive US health care.”

File under: "Tales from the police state."

Union Denounces 'Chilling' Assault on Nurse Defending Her Patient from Police

The nation's largest nurses union is among those condemning the Salt Lake City police department after a video released Friday showed an officer physically assaulting and then arresting a nurse who refused to take a blood sample from an unconscious patient.

While attempting to force registered nurse Alex Wubbels to draw the sample without the appropriate warrant or authority, Detective Jeff Payne became infuriated when Wubbels' supervisor defended her refusal. Payne lunged at the nurse and tried to arrest her while she screamed for help and her shocked colleagues protested.

Payne reportedly wanted a sample from a car accident victim, but without a warrant—which he matter-of-factly told Wubbels he did not have—both hospital policy and state law forbid it.



the horse race



Hmmm... something smells funny here...

FBI says lack of public interest in Hillary emails justifies withholding documents

Hillary Clinton’s case isn’t interesting enough to the public to justify releasing the FBI’s files on her, the bureau said this week in rejecting an open-records request by a lawyer seeking to have the former secretary of state punished for perjury.

Ty Clevenger has been trying to get Mrs. Clinton and her personal attorneys disbarred for their handling of her official emails during her time as secretary of state. He’s met with resistance among lawyers, and now his request for information from the FBI’s files has been shot down.

“You have not sufficiently demonstrated that the public’s interest in disclosure outweighs personal privacy interests of the subject,” FBI records management section chief David M. Hardy told Mr. Clevenger in a letter Monday. “It is incumbent upon the requester to provide documentation regarding the public’s interest in the operations and activities of the government before records can be processed pursuant to the FOIA,” Mr. Hardy wrote.



the evening greens

Greenpeace & Indigenous Water Protectors Respond to Lawsuit Accusing DAPL Activists of Eco-Terrorism

Texas Republicans Helped Chemical Plant That Exploded Lobby Against Safety Rules

The French company that says its Houston-area chemical plant is spewing "noxious" smoke — and may explode — successfully pressed federal regulators to delay new regulations designed to improve safety procedures at chemical plants, according to federal records reviewed by International Business Times. The rules, which were set to go into effect this year, were halted by the Trump administration after a furious lobbying campaign by plant owner Arkema and its affiliated trade association, the American Chemistry Council, which represents a chemical industry that has poured tens of millions of dollars into federal elections.

The effort to stop the chemical plant safety rules was backed by top Texas Republican lawmakers, who have received big campaign donations from chemical industry donors. ...

Arkema has six production plants in Texas and has received more than $8.7 million worth of taxpayer subsidies from the state. Arkema’s Crosby plant — which OSHA fined more than $90,000 for ten “serious” violations earlier this year and has spewed smoke in Crosby — appears to be covered under the existing EPA rules because of the kinds of chemicals it uses. While Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott has given chemical companies legal cover to hide the locations of their EPA-regulated chemicals, the Associated Press reports that the imperiled Arkema facility houses large amounts of toxic sulfur dioxide and flammable methylpropen, which required Arkema to submit a risk management plan to the agency —  and which would have subjected the company to the strengthened safety rules.

However, those rules — which would have taken effect on March 14  — were blocked by EPA administrator Scott Pruitt, who as Oklahoma Attorney General demanded  the rule be withdrawn. The move was a big win for the chemical industry that has spent more than $100 million supporting federal lawmakers since 2008. Among those who have received more than $100,000 from the industry are powerful Texas lawmakers including Sen. John Cornyn (R), Rep. Joe Barton (R), Rep. Pete Olson (R), Rep. Gene Green (D), Rep. Pete Sessions (R) and Rep. Kevin Brady (R).

Texas Republicans Pushed to Kill Safety Regulations for Arkema Chemical Plant Before Explosion

Galveston Bio-Lab Declared Safe

The Galveston National Laboratory in Texas, which contains samples of some of the most deadly and incurable diseases, has issued a statement reporting itself safe five days after Hurricane Harvey struck on Friday amid safety concerns for a lab built in one of America’s most active hurricane zones. The lab issued a statement late on Wednesday saying, “The GNL reported that the facility continued operations without interruption and did not incur any damage, loss of power or biocontainment during the storm. “

Until Wednesday, there had been a news blackout about the lab since the Category 4 hurricane struck the island of Galveston in the Gulf of Mexico, where the lab is located. Reporters had been unable to reach the island because of severe flooding and the local press did not report on the fate of the lab. A voice message I left at the lab on Tuesday was never returned.

The lack of news about the lab fueled legitimate worry about its condition, given longstanding concerns about placing the lab in the path of hurricanes.

Another powerful hurricane is already brewing in the Atlantic

Irma, now barreling toward the Caribbean, formed as a tropical storm on Wednesday morning. By Thursday evening, however, the storm had strengthened at an alarming rate: Winds had built up to 115 mph — what meteorologists call “rapid intensification — making it a Category 3 hurricane. And as Irma tracks across the Atlantic, it’s expected to build to a Category 4, at least.

“Irma has become an impressive hurricane,” the National Hurricane Center wrote in a notice issued late Thursday. By Friday morning, the agency noted that Irma was on the move, “which should allow the hurricane to intensify.”

Meteorologists are calling Irma a classic example of a “Cape Verde” hurricane, a category of particularly dangerous storms that form near the Cape Verde islands in the eastern Atlantic. For example, Hurricane Ivan, the Category 5 storm that hit the Gulf Coast in Alabama in 2004, was a Cape Verde storm — so was Hugo, another Category 5 that hit just north of Charleston in South Carolina in 1989. ...

By Monday, we’ll know which of the models predicting Irma’s path is correct.


Why are whales dying in the Gulf of St. Lawrence? What it means for fisheries and the future

In recent years, right whales made a dramatic return to the Gulf of St. Lawrence – and then they started to die in unprecedented numbers, leading Ottawa to close fisheries down. The sightings were initially treated as a passing curiosity. The North Atlantic right whale, a rare and endangered species distinguished by patches of roughened white skin, had been seen off the coast of the Gaspé in Quebec before – though few could recall ever seeing them in this part of the gulf. But then came the deaths. That's when everyone started paying attention – especially the fishermen.

The first whale was discovered in the first week of June of this year, found floating west of the Îles-de-la-Madeleine in the south-central area of the gulf. ... Five more dead whales were found later that month. At least one was found entangled in fishing gear, others with evidence of being struck by ships. The crisis further escalated after a whale rescuer, Joe Howlett, was killed trying to disentangle one.

In total, there have been eight dead whales found this summer alone in the Gulf of St. Lawrence – a devastating figure, given only 524 North Atlantic right whales were previously believed to be in existence. ... "It's catastrophic," said Sean Brillant, the manager of marine programs at the Canadian Wildlife Federation. "We're talking about almost 1.5 per cent of an entire population."

The deaths have left officials scrambling. In the second week of July, the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans announced a temporary closing of fisheries in one small area of the gulf. Then, late last week, DFO announced it would suspend all snow-crab fishing across a larger swath of the gulf for the rest of the snow-crab season. ...

Earlier this year, even before the deaths in the gulf, Mr. Brillant released a paper urging summer closings of two areas in the Bay of Fundy known to be critical right-whale habitats. With the recent events in the gulf, he said it's clear that further closings will have to take place there, too. "We're not looking to turn the ocean into a wildlife preserve … we just need to change to recognize that there is more than one purpose of the ocean – it's not simply a driver of economics for Canada. It's also a part of who we are," he said.


Also of Interest

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

If Hillary Had Won

New Think Tank Emails Show “How Google Wields its Power” in Washington

New America Foundation Head Anne-Marie Slaughter Botches Laundering Google’s Money, Fires Anti-Trust Team at Eric Schmidt’s Behest

Charlie Hebdo May Now be Criticized Because They Mocked White Texans Rather Than Muslims

Katrina. Sandy. Harvey. The debate over climate and hurricanes is getting louder and louder.


A Little Night Music

Son Seals - Don't Lie To Me, Sky Is Crying

Son Seals - Going Back Home

Son Seals - Friday Again

The Son Seals Blues Band - Hot Sauce

Son Seals - I Can't Hear Nothing But The Blues

Son Seals - Let It Go

Son Seals - Dear Son

Son Seals - The Sun Is Shining

Son Seals - Don't Throw Your Love On Me So Strong

Son Seals - Going Home

Son Seals - Sadie

Son Seals - Growing up in Osceola, AR with Albert King


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Comments

Raggedy Ann's picture

Well, Henry Miller nailed it. What a bunch of pussies we have running things. I must be feeling feisty!

I just want to take the opportunity to thank you for your hard work on the EB every day, joe. I don't always read in time to comment, but I usually peruse every evening.

I'm heading out to start my 3-day weekend, YIPPEE!

Have a beautiful evening and (hopefully) long weekend, folks! Pleasantry

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8 users have voted.

“It is dangerous to be right in matters on which the established authorities are wrong.”

-- Voltaire

joe shikspack's picture

@Raggedy Ann

feisty is good. we need lots of feisty people. Smile

have a great holiday!

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4 users have voted.
Meteor Man's picture

I have been trying to figure out what the catch is. What strings were attached?

Uygur said the company would focus much of the investment on filling out The Young Turks' back-end tech and sales needs, and 3L Capital's Shawn Colo told Business Insider the funding was partially billed toward helping the outlet expand its creative marketing offerings, including live events.

As many media companies offer so-called skinny bundles of TV channels as online-only options, Uygur and Colo both said they saw an opportunity for The Young Turks to compete directly with traditional media companies and cable networks.

"We already are top three on Pluto and Comcast's Watchable, and we're very excited about the skinny bundles," Uygur said. "It's going to be a very productive place for growth and to be able to compete head-to-head with the TV players."

Ok. So I went looking:

TYT has done a tremendous job developing a deeply engaged millennial community, as evidenced by the size of its paid subscription membership and total watch time,” 3L managing partner Shawn Colo said in a statement. “This financing will allow the company to accelerate its reach and further its leadership in the massive and evolving market of online news and entertainment.”

With the investment, Colo is joining the TYT board.

http://variety.com/2017/digital/news/young-turks-jeffrey-katzenberg-wndr...

Still looks like a good deal for Cenk. One seat on the board? Pretty weak string. What am I missing?

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8 users have voted.

"They'll say we're disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is that we are disturbing the war." Howard Zinn

joe shikspack's picture

@Meteor Man

i'm not sure that i'm as concerned about tyt taking in investments from dlc/clintonite investors as the author of the article. however, my guess is that nobody gives somebody else $20 million without very specific expectations as to how that money is to benefit their causes.

interestingly enough, another story that has been in the news the past couple of days also involves an investment of about $20 million dollars, in this case by google in the new america foundation think tank.

apparently, google had certain expectations of an organization that it had invested that sort of money in, and the person running the foundation seemed to think that they had reason to have those expectations and she fired 10 heretics who had the nerve to criticize google in print for its monopoly behavior.

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8 users have voted.

@Meteor Man

One need only look at who is behind the funding to understand the agenda being put into motion.

3L Capital – put together by hedge fund venture capitalist from Netherlands, Dr. Peter Paul De Vries.

Greycroft Partners – venture capital fund run by Alan Patricof — Patricof has been active in Democratic Party politics, contributing to candidates including Bill and Hillary Clinton, whom he met in the Hamptons when they were there guests of lobbyist and Democratic activist Liz Robbins. Greycroft Partners pumps money into the Clinton slush funds so their businesses can curry favor from the government in an effort to maximize profits on the companies they are invested in.

Jeffrey Katzenberg – Hollywood mogul & film producer, Disney, Dreamworks Animation — Katzenberg has been actively involved in Democratic politics. He actively supported Barack Obama, and has been called “one of Hollywood’s premier political kingmakers and one of the Democratic Party‘s top national fundraisers.”

It's extremely hard for me to believe those people have an interest in advancing progressive issues. Not to mention, these are the same type of people engaged in the same sort of professional influence purchasing Cenk would have been railing against little over a year ago. Add to that when TYT went all in for Her and all but ended their criticism of Her after Bernie stepped aside and less defensible things like pushing RUSSIARUSSIARUSSIA and I don't feel they need visible strings. I think TYT has been looking for a seat at the big kids table for a while now. The $20 million is just a bonus.

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joe shikspack's picture

@Dr. John Carpenter

needless to say, i agree wholeheartedly.

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5 users have voted.
Meteor Man's picture

@Dr. John Carpenter
A seat at the table. I remember complaining about rock & roll bands that "went commercial" for more money to please the Star Making Machinery Behind The Popular Song:

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5 users have voted.

"They'll say we're disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is that we are disturbing the war." Howard Zinn

@Meteor Man I understand that comment 100%. I never begrudged anyone success. All the people I knew, if they were being honest, would tell you they'd love nothing more than to be able to make a living playing music. It's when someone changes who they are or what they do to get there that I have a problem. And I'll be the first to tell you, I'm a lot more cynical these days, especially when it comes to politics and money.

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GreatLakeSailor's picture

@Dr. John Carpenter

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3 users have voted.

Compensated Spokes Model for Big Poor & Big Peace.

@Meteor Man @Meteor Man

As a once-respected 'left' component in a series of once-progressive media outlets bullied/bribed/blackmailed into turning propagandist in order to eliminate sources of inconvenient facts, I expect that there would be the same sort of incentives for Cenk as Maddow received for being evidently the only 'left' talking head willing to stay on MSBC to mouth disinformation, back when they cleared all of the rest out to pump out the propaganda.

We say that it's necessary to 'follow the money' because we're checking out the motives of those who not only follow but chase the money.

Edit: lol, knew I'd have been advance-ninja'd long prior to my getting here, and by a great and informative post.

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0 users have voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

JekyllnHyde's picture

joe - of course, you never have the same problems that Ted does.

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15 users have voted.

A riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma

joe shikspack's picture

@JekyllnHyde

thanks! it's a curious world out there and there always seems to be something going on. Smile

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3 users have voted.

needs to have his ass fired, asap. My God, I know I should not be shocked but I still am. And the mayor apologizes but probably keeps asshole on the force.

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5 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@lizzyh7
Most of the people who comment on my local news website on stories that are related to police actions run 9-1 in favor of the police.
Now that a white person refused to "do what this cop told her to do" they are outraged by his treatment of her.
I often write that people should be against what the police are doing to mostly Blacks because one day this is going to happen to them. I usually get told to stfu because "those people" just need to do what the cops tell them to do.
Remember the outrage when a cop shot the white woman who had called them? This didn't last very long, but I'm hopeful that it opened people's eyes to what they have been doing for so long.

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8 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

@snoopydawg with me because I literally could see myself acting just like she did. I had an episode with a cop in my house one time, some stupid parking lot altercation, completely verbal, where the woman I had it with had "friends in the PD" and called them. Fucker came to my small condo complex, cop car, body armor, the whole bit. My sister and nephew were in the house and as soon as he entered I was combative and extremely belligerent. Not that Sandra was as bad as me but in some ways, the same indignation at being treated like a criminal for nothing. I don't discount AT ALL that had I been black and even in my own house in a different neighborhood, thinks might have turned out very differently. My sister had to sort of defuse the situation by getting the cop out of the house, there was no reasoning with me I fully admit, and I wrote a letter of complaint to the local PD about that asshole, got a response too. But then again, I am who I am and I live where I live....

What really galls me about that video is a nurse in an ER? I mean, really? Just because he didn't get what he wanted to prosecute someone? Time for him to go. God only knows what someone like that is like to deal with personally. He's a liability for the PD too, and really, about time they started realizing that. I know, pipe dream.

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6 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@lizzyh7

of the accident, not the suspect.

The request for the blood draw was made after a truck driver was severely burned in a head-on crash with a vehicle that was fleeing from police in Cache County and crossed into oncoming traffic. The driver of the fleeing vehicle was killed.

This is why the nurse told him that he could not draw blood from him unless he had a warrant.
And even after he was told numerous times that he couldn't and he was shown the rule that said this, he then arrested her anyway.

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3 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

joe shikspack's picture

@lizzyh7

heh, you're spot on, he's still on the force. he has been pulled off duties that require blood to be drawn, however.

i predict that nothing will happen to him.

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4 users have voted.
Centaurea's picture

@lizzyh7

There's more to the story than what that article says. All it says is that the cop wanted blood from a car accident victim, which implies that the victim was a suspect. Turns out the accident victim was a completely uninvolved bystander.

The cop, one Detective Payne (an apt name), was apparently chasing a suspect who was driving a pick-up truck. During the chase, the pick-up crashed into a semi being driven by the accident victim. In other words, the cop caused the accident. In order to cover his behind, he tried to force the hospital to give him a blood sample from the unconscious victim, presumably hoping to show that the poor guy was DUI.

It also turns out the accident victim was a reserve police officer in another state.

From the Associated Press:

SALT LAKE CITY AP:

The patient was a victim in a car crash and Payne wanted the blood sample to show he had done nothing wrong, according to the officer's written report.

The patient, William Gray, is a reserve police officer in Rigby, Idaho, according to the city's police. They thanked Wubbels for protecting his rights.

Gray is a semi-truck driver and was on the road when a pickup truck fleeing from authorities slammed into him and his truck burst into flames, police reports say.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/nurse-refuses-blood-test-unconscious-patient-...

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7 users have voted.

"Don't go back to sleep ... Don't go back to sleep ... Don't go back to sleep."
~Rumi

"If you want revolution, be it."
~Caitlin Johnstone

joe shikspack's picture

@Centaurea

wow! i wouldn't have thought it was possible for the cop who attacked the nurse to be more of a creep than that, but he has exceeded my expectations. what a low-life scum!

thanks for the news bit!

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5 users have voted.

These days not much time to check in, but as always blown away by the music, and that interview. Too neat! I always wish I could sit down and talk to these incredible people. How? Why? When? Who? Thanks for pulling all the totally depressing news together. Makes me truly appreciate my 30+ varieties of tomatoes which I am ruthlessly culling at this point. If I can't get anyone to even try a second one, what's the point of colldling them, right? Meanwhile on a recent trip through Ithaca, the supposed seething radical center of NY, I had the ONLY "Draft Bernie" bumper sticker in town. Not even any McResistance signs in evidence. Donated to the Bernie's Medicare for All campaign tonight and urge everyone to do so, even if Kamela and Warren have signed on.

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6 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@GusBecause

glad that you're enjoying the music. i am often quite amazed at what is available on youtube and delighted to share what i find.

sorry to hear that you aren't finding like-minded folks in your area. you'll be happy to know that i see bernie stickers quite frequently here around baltimore, particularly on or near college campuses.

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4 users have voted.
detroitmechworks's picture

Which is XCOM2, and they have done something that is incredibly subversive, and yet I don't know if it was deliberate or just a wonderfully poetic coincidence.

In the game, you play a resistance movement that actually goes out and fights against the bad guys... What's scary is that after every mission you get to hear the government propaganda on your actions... And it sounds JUST LIKE THE MSM. (New Expansion feature... it's been in the works for over a year, but still... sounds just like the current MSM)

Lots of "Moments of Silence", "Standing up to those that would destroy us", "Dissidents who want to watch the world burn", Lots of mentions of "Traitors"... Every single canned propaganda statement that has come out of the white house for the last 24 years is echoed in these calm, rational calls that nothing is wrong, and everything is just fine...

I honestly am surprised that the MSM hasn't gone after the game for mocking them yet. They've attacked many things for much less.

Sorry to go on a random tangent, but in the world of Media, it's the rare entertainment that ever seems to take the side of the underdogs anymore.

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10 users have voted.

I do not pretend I know what I do not know.

snoopydawg's picture

@detroitmechworks
Do you know who developed it? Aren't most of the war games developed by the military industrial complex?

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6 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

detroitmechworks's picture

@snoopydawg Jake Solomon, the lead designer, is about my age, and was a huge fan of the original, which was made by a British Designer, Julian Gollop, in the 90s. (Was Heavily Inspired by a British Show called "UFO")

What's interesting is that the original was very much on the side of the MIC, with a shadow war against alien invaders who struck at random and engaged in terrorist attacks... (Literally, they bomb and kill civilians...)

The sequel, and its expansion really embrace the resistance group mentality, including a bar DJ who mocks the propaganda, lots of PR photo ops, and the fact that the people you're defending when the "Advent" (One world government under the aliens) attack your refugee camps actually fight back now... And yes, you engage in asymmetrical warfare, including hit and runs, cementing the idea that you can't beat EVERYTHING by throwing munitions at it.

Plus has a great cast of Voice Actors, including John De Lancie, Michael Dorn, Nolan North, and a bunch of other SAG actors. (Since it's an indie studio, it's not affected by the current Strike)

While I admit most strategy games are obsessed with the "Military Cool" aspect, Xcom has always been much more of a maverick, with the MIC/Government not really on your side, and always willing to make deals with the Alien bad guys if you don't perform to their standards...

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5 users have voted.

I do not pretend I know what I do not know.

joe shikspack's picture

@detroitmechworks

wow, pretty cool sounding game. i've been wondering when the game industry would come up with a revolutionary strategy game for the masses to play. heh, in my day we had to read books. Smile

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4 users have voted.
NCTim's picture

Heh, just practicing. Thanks for the reading. I am waiting out a thunderstorm and then out for one of my favorite nights of the year. See my OT, it was serendipitous that you conjured up Rumble, the other night.

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6 users have voted.

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself. - Friedrich Nietzsche -

joe shikspack's picture

@NCTim

sounds like you have a great weekend ahead of you. have a great rumble!

by the way, you should see the movie. i think that you'll like it a lot.

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5 users have voted.
Unabashed Liberal's picture

posting the piece about PNHP's refusal to endorse Bernie's multi-payer bill. I've been feeling like I was shouting in the wind, lately. Wink

Actually, I think that Harris' so-called endorsement might be the best thing that's happened in a while, since some of the contradictions surrounding this entire issue will have to come into focus--making it easier for folks to connect-the-dots. I definitely have more respect for PNHP, now that they've gone public regarding their analysis of the upcoming proposal. (Dr Carol Paris has been forthright, but it didn't seem to get picked up in the mainstream media.)

Gonna have to take care of a couple bills before we leave for the holiday weekend. But, I hope to drop back by with a new signature line regarding the Bill. Frankly, I've come to realize that a one-time mention, or 'policy blurb' (alone) in an essay doesn't effectively get a message out. IOW, it requires repetition in order to reach a broad audience, and/or to penetrate folks' psyche. So, I'm going to try out several health care 'policy oriented' signatures lines, in the hope that the info will be more broadly shared. Fingers crossed!

Pleasantry

We celebrate a major milestone this weekend--Our 40th--so we are very much looking forward to visiting with Family for a couple of days. And, even though I'm dropping back by, I'll go ahead and say,

Cheers from the Eastern Shore--have a fun and safe holiday weekend!
Drinks

Screenshot #3 (FT).pngByeMollie


"I think dogs are the most amazing creatures--they give unconditional love. For me, they are the role model for being alive."--Gilda Radner

"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went."--Will Rogers

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8 users have voted.

Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong.

joe shikspack's picture

@Unabashed Liberal

if i had any thoughts that bernie's bill might be any good, they were blown away when kamala harris signed up to co-sponsor it.

congratulations and happy 40th!

best regards to you and mr. m on this happy occasion.

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6 users have voted.
Unabashed Liberal's picture

@joe shikspack

saying,

". . . health care will bring people to the polls next year . . ."

which I heard him say on a replay of The Morning Briefing.

But, I went to the XM Radio host's Twitter account, and found this,

It's comments like this that fuel my skepticism regarding so many Dem lawmakers all of a sudden saying that they are on board with a single-payer--or, multi-payer public option--plan.

Why is it that they're mostly mum about a single-payer proposal--unless it's during the lead-up to an election cycle?

Hmmmmmmmmmmmm...............

Pleasantry

BTW, hope you get your camper up and going in time for the holiday weekend.

Mollie

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5 users have voted.

Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong.

karl pearson's picture

Very Interesting article regarding Google and the American Foundation. The head of the foundation Anne-Marie Slaughter fired Barry Lynn & company for their criticism of Google, but fortunately they have regrouped as Citizens Against Monopoly. Slaughter was a top strategist to Hillary Clinton while she was at the State Dept., so I'm not surprised by her corporate protecting actions.

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5 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture

@karl pearson

i saw something about citizens against monopoly yesterday, if i remember it correctly, zephyr teachout will be taking a leading role, which seems like a really good thing.

anne marie slaughter is no progressive, she's a hawk who encouraged hillary to promote the libya bloodbath.

and that's just what i most strongly remember about her, i'm sure that a brief google session would turn up lots more evidence that she has no business being involved in anything labelled "progressive."

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6 users have voted.
divineorder's picture

Have some relatives under a flood warning in SE TX . Can you believe the cataclysm that has struck those folks?

Thanks for the coverage on the aftermath of the storm etc!

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3 users have voted.

A truth of the nuclear age/climate change: we can no longer have endless war and survive on this planet. Oh sh*t.

divineorder's picture

We carry a water purifying thingie with us everywhere:

https://www.rei.com/product/872130/katadyn-base-camp-pro-10l-water-filter

Katadyn Base Camp Pro 10L Water Filter

Forget endless pumping to fill multiple water bottles; let the Katadyn Base Camp Pro 10L water filter do the work for you. Just fill and hang for an easy-to-use water supply right in your campsite.

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3 users have voted.

A truth of the nuclear age/climate change: we can no longer have endless war and survive on this planet. Oh sh*t.