The Evening Blues - 12-7-15



eb1pt12


Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features early Texas blues guitarist Blind Lemon Jefferson. Enjoy!

Blind Lemon Jefferson - Match Box Blues

"When the rich wage war, it's the poor who die."

-- Jean-Paul Sartre


News and Opinion

Defense Contractors Cite “Benefits” of Escalating Conflicts in the Middle East

Major defense contractors Raytheon, Oshkosh, and Lockheed Martin assured investors at a Credit Suisse conference in West Palm Beach this week that they stand to gain from the escalating conflicts in the Middle East.

Lockheed Martin Executive Vice President Bruce Tanner told the conference his company will see “indirect benefits” from the war in Syria, citing the Turkish military’s recent decision to shoot down a Russian warplane.

The incident, Tanner said, heightens the risk for U.S. military operations in the region, providing “an intangible lift because of the dynamics of that environment and our products in theater.” He also stressed that the Russian intervention would highlight the need for Lockheed Martin-made F-22s and the new F-35 jets.

And for “expendable” products, such as a rockets, Tanner added that there is increased demand, including from the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia because of the war in Yemen.

Pentagon Hypes ‘Surging Sales’ for US Missile Makers

The massive US military industrial complex is struggling to keep up, according to officials, with ever-escalating attacks on various targets across the planet, and growing demands from its various customers looking to build up their assorted missile arsenals for assorted wars.

Pentagon officials are hyping “surging sales” while warning that they are lobbing missiles and bombs at stuff faster than they can replace them, and that ultimately the US is facing a supply shortage. Their solution, unsurprisingly, is massive new funding for weapons production.

The Islamic State that Buys Our Weapons

The Canadian Air Force Is Looking to Buy Weaponized Drones

Canada is looking at buying its own weaponized drones, and internal documents tout the benefits of a controversial model used by the US Air Force.

American Reaper and Predator drones have dropped Hellfire missiles on terrorist targets all over the world for years, but Canada has kept its distance from the cutting-edge weapons — until recently.

A February 2015 Canadian ministerial briefing, obtained through Canada's Access to Information Act and classified as "Secret," offers a glimpse at how the upper echelons of the Department of National Defense view armed drones, which were known to be on the air force's shopping list.

As far back as the airstrikes in Libya in 2011, senior officers within the Canadian Air Force (CAF) hoped the operation could kickstart a $600 million procurement of new drones with weapons payloads. Canada has only ever rented surveillance drones, even during the Afghan mission when the CAF operated leased Heron surveillance drones from MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates, a partner of Israel Aerospace Industries.

Airstrikes Against Syria are a Trap

Obama's speech reminded Americans that the war with Isis is still illegal

If you listened closely during Barack Obama’s speech to the nation on Sunday night, you would have heard him reference the fact that the US war against Isis – which is well over a year old at this point – is illegal and unconstitutional.

He didn’t phrase it like that of course, but he did remind Americans that Congress has not authorized any military action against Isis despite the fact that we have been dropping bombs on multiple countries in an effort to stop Isis since August of 2014, and despite the fact that such military action is required by both the law and the US constitution.

Here’s what Obama did say about the subject on Sunday:

Finally, if Congress believes, as I do, that we are at war with Isil, it should go ahead and vote to authorize the continued use of military force against these terrorists.

For over a year, I have ordered our military to take thousands of air strikes against Isil targets. I think it’s time for Congress to vote to demonstrate that the American people are united and committed to this fight.

He framed congressional authorization of the war against Isis as a solidarity or symbolic issue – like the US Congress would be showing the American public unity or something – but it’s much more consequential than his deceptive wording allows. According to Article I, section eight of the US constitution, only Congress has the power to declare war, not the executive branch, and under the War Powers Act passed after the Vietnam war, Congress must authorize war 90 days after any combat missions begin.

For the past year and four months, the administration has been pretending that the 2001 Authorization for Military Force (AUMF), which made it legal to wage war against those who perpetrated the 9/11 attacks, somehow makes it OK to wage a indefinite, worldwide war against Isis. ... It makes no logical sense to claim that the authorization to engage in military action against al-Qaida in Afghanistan in 2001 applies to Isis in Syria in 2015, yet that is supposed argument to which the White House lawyers are clinging.

If you have the stomach for sarcasm that maybe points to the plain truth of things, you would want to read this in full...

Obama’s Speech, Translated into Candor

Here is a condensed version of President Obama's speech from the Oval Office on Sunday night, unofficially translated into plain English:

I kind of realize we can’t kill our way out of this conflict with ISIL, but in the short term hopefully we can kill our way out of the danger of a Republican victory in the presidential race next year.

As a practical matter, the current hysteria needs guidance, not a sense of proportion along the lines of what the New York Times just mentioned in passing: “The death toll from jihadist terrorism on American soil since the Sept. 11 attacks—45 people—is about the same as the 48 killed in terrorist attacks motivated by white supremacist and other right-wing extremist ideologies.... And both tolls are tiny compared with the tally of conventional murders, more than 200,000 over the same period.” ...

I gave a lofty major speech a couple of years ago about how a democratic society can’t have perpetual war. I like to talk about such sugary ideals; a spoonful helps the doublethink medicine go down.

Let me now say a word about what we should not do. We should not be drawn once more into a long and costly ground war in Iraq or Syria. The United States of America has colossal air power—and we’re going to use it. No muss, little fuss: except for people under the bombs, now being utilized at such a fast pace that the warhead supply chain is stretched thin.

But here’s the main thing: In the Middle East, the USA will be number one in dropping bombs and firing missiles. Lots of them! It’s true that we keep making enemies faster than we can possibly kill them, but that’s the nature of the beast.

On the other hand, if you have the stomach for the plain truth of things delivered without humor, then maybe read this article through...

Obama’s Credibility Crisis

Inside Official Washington’s bubble, the Important People believe their “group think” is the envy of the world, but the truth is that their credibility has collapsed to such a degree that their propaganda can’t even match up with the head-chopping videos of the Islamic State crazies.

Like the old story of the little boy who cried wolf, the U.S. government is finding out that – just when its credibility is most needed – it doesn’t have any. With all its “soft power” schemes of “perception management,” funding “citizen bloggers” and sticking with “narratives” long after they’ve been discredited, the U.S. government is losing the propaganda battle against ISIS.

That was the conclusion of outside experts who examined the State Department’s online campaigns to undercut ISIS, according to an article by The Washington Post’s Greg Miller who wrote that the review “cast new doubt on the U.S. government’s ability to serve as a credible voice against the terrorist group’s propaganda.”

In other words, even when the U.S. government competes with the creepy head-choppers of ISIS, the U.S. government comes in second. Of course, the State Department remains in denial about its collapse of credibility – and typically won’t release the details of the critical study. ...

But the U.S. government’s problem is much deeper than its inability to counter ISIS propaganda. Increasingly, almost no one outside Official Washington believes what senior U.S. officials say about nearly anything – and that loss of trust is exacerbating a wide range of dangers, from demagogy on the 2016 campaign trail to terrorism recruitment in the Middle East and in the West.

President Barack Obama seems to want so desperately to be one of the elite inhabitants of Official Washington’s bubble that he keeps pushing narratives that he knows aren’t true, all the better to demonstrate that he belongs in the in-crowd. It has reached the point that he speaks out so many sides of his mouth that no one can tell what his words actually mean.

The Isis papers: leaked documents show how Isis is building its state

A leaked internal Islamic State manual shows how the terrorist group has set about building a state in Iraq and Syria complete with government departments, a treasury and an economic programme for self-sufficiency, the Guardian can reveal.

The 24-page document, obtained by the Guardian, sets out a blueprint for establishing foreign relations, a fully fledged propaganda operation, and centralised control over oil, gas and the other vital parts of the economy.

The manual, written last year and entitled Principles in the administration of the Islamic State, lays bare Isis’s state-building aspirations and the ways in which it has managed to set itself apart as the richest and most destabilising jihadi group of the past 50 years.

Together with other documents obtained by the Guardian, it builds up a picture of a group that, although sworn to a founding principle of brutal violence, is equally set on more mundane matters such as health, education, commerce, communications and jobs. In short, it is building a state.

US-Backed Rebels Fight Turkey-Backed Rebels in Northern Syria

In what everyone expected would boil down to a proxy war with Russia, US and Turkish officials have been throwing ever-growing numbers of weapons at their favorite rebel factions, nominally bulking them up against ISIS, but also giving them weapons meant to be used against the Syrian military itself.

Proving that nobody can predict just how much these schemes are going to backfire, however, the reports out of northern Syria today suggest that, instead of fighting Russia, or ISIS, or the Assad government, the US-backed factions and the Turkish-backed factions are just fighting one another. ...

The winner in all this fighting is likely to be ISIS, as they are also moving forces into the same area, and seem to be planning to just pick up the pieces of whichever faction ultimately wins this battle, and claim the valuable border-crossing.

Iraq Gives Turkey 48 Hours to Withdraw Troops

Tensions between Iraq and Turkey are once again on the rise, after the Friday deployment of Turkish ground troops into northern Iraq, a move Turkey said was meant to train Kurdish Peshmerga forces, but which came without any permission from the central government.

Iraqi Prime Minister Hayder Abadi today gave Turkey 48 hours to withdraw all troops from his country, warning that the nation would use “all available options,” including asking the UN Security Council to intervene, if Turkey insisted on staying.

Poland Exploring Program to ‘Borrow’ US Nukes

Though government spokesmen later denied the report, Deputy Defense Minister Tomasz Szatkowski confirmed that the ministry has been exploring the possibility of joining a NATO “sharing” program in which they would “borrow” American nuclear weapons. ...

An estimated 200 US nuclear weapons are already involved in the “sharing” program, with Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Turkey, and Italy all playing host to arsenals of varying sizes. The nuclear sharing program is broadly agreed to violate the nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT), which forbids the transfer of direct or indirect control over nuclear weapons between member nations.

Joe Biden Is Visiting Ukraine — And It Could Get Really Awkward

It's a diplomat's job to stay all smiles and keep the business of international relations chugging along, no matter how bad things look. But sometimes, even diplomats lose their cool.

This week, US Vice President Joe Biden is visiting Kiev to tell Ukrainians they still have Washington's support in their fight against Russia and Russia-backed separatists in the country's east. But his message may be overshadowed by the US ambassador to Kiev, who hasn't been acting very diplomatically lately.

At the end of September, Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt got up in front of a group of businessmen and investors at a conference in the city of Odessa and told them that Ukrainian prosecutors were protecting the corrupt owner of an energy company that employs the Biden's son, Hunter, instead of prosecuting him.

"We have learned that there have been times when the Prosecutor General's Office not only did not support investigations into corruption, but rather undermined prosecutors working on legitimate corruption cases," Pyatt said in Ukraine's main port city.

He then pointed specifically to a case involving former Ukrainian Ecology Minister Mykola Zlochevsky, owner of the Burisma Holdings energy firm, which hired Hunter Biden to its board of directors shortly after the Euromaidan revolution overthrew Zlochevsky's former boss Viktor Yanukovych. ...

According to the US ambassador, Hunter Biden's boss Zlochevsky stole $23 million from the Ukrainian people. But when a British court seized the money and asked Ukrainian prosecutors to send documents to confirm the funds were illicit, they stalled, forcing the court to release the assets back to the former ecology minister.

Opposition Landslide in Venezuela - Maduro Accepts Results

Venezuela elections: socialists dealt a blow as opposition wins landslide

Venezuela’s opposition has won an overwhelming victory in parliamentary elections in the oil-rich nation, which is mired in economic turmoil and violent crime.

Candidates for the centre-right opposition seized a majority in the national assembly, with most of the results in, marking a major political shift in the country, which set out on a leftist path in 1999 under the late president Hugo Chavez and his project to make Venezuela a model of what he called “21st century socialism”.

Five hours after polls closed the electoral commission said that the opposition had won 99 of the 167 seats in the national assembly. The socialist party won 46. Twenty-two additional seats were still undecided.

France's Far-Right, Anti-Immigrant Party Set to Win Big in Pivotal Election

France's far-right National Front party appeared to be on track to score huge gains in regional elections on Sunday, potentially redrawing the political landscape of the euro zone's second-biggest economy as it gears up for the next presidential election in 2017.

The anti-immigration, anti-Europe party, boosted by fears over the refugee crisis and the November 13 Islamic State attacks that killed 130 in Paris, was expected to lead in the first round in six out of 13 regions, a survey by Ipsos pollsters showed on Thursday. 

Early results on Sunday showed the party leading in six regions and scoring 30.6 percent of the vote nationally, according to an exit poll by Ifop-Fiducial. The party topped both former president Nicolas Sarkozy's Republicans, which received 27 percent support, and President François Hollande's Socialists, with nearly 23 percent, according to the exit poll.

Native Americans' sovereignty is at risk, and the high court must help save it

Sovereignty isn’t a difficult concept. If a US citizen crosses the northern border for work and commits a crime, that person should expect to be subject to a Canadian court applying Canadian law. By simply crossing the border, the US citizen consented to the jurisdiction of another authority and is expected to follow the laws of the land. But for Native Americans with sovereign tribal land, the concept isn’t so simple. A new case before the high court Monday has raised fears that Native people’s right to police their own territory will be even further compromised.

In 2000, the multi-billion dollar retailer Dollar General opened a store on the Mississippi Choctaw reservation. Three years later, the manager of that store, Dale Townsend, agreed to participate in a tribal program that placed tribal youth in clerkships with stores operating on the reservation. Townsend, the tribe claims, sexually assaulted a 13-year-old boy assigned to work in the store through the program.

The US attorney’s office in Mississippi could have filed criminal charges against Townsend but declined to do so, meaning Townsend would never be held accountable in criminal court, because the US supreme court ruled in 1978 that Indian tribes cannot arrest and prosecute non-natives who commit crimes on Indian reservations. ...

With no possibility for a criminal conviction, the boy and his parents then decided to sue Townsend and Dollar General for civil damages in tribal court. ... Before going to trial, however, Dollar General filed suit in federal district court, seeking an order halting the tribal action. When the federal district court refused order a halt, Dollar General appealed to the US court of appeals for the fifth circuit. The appellate court also ruled against Dollar General, reasoning that the tribe’s ability to hear these types of cases in its courts is “plainly central to the tribe’s power of self-government”.

But Dollar General wasn’t done. It then asked the supreme court to hear the case. ... The case, which is scheduled to be argued on 7 December, rightly frightens native tribes all across the United States because it could trample on their right to self-government. The brief filed by Dollar General asks the supreme court to rule that tribal courts cannot hear cases filed against non-Indians unless Congress has expressly authorized such a suit or if the non-Indian has expressly consented to such a suit, neither of which applies here.

To Lift Quality of Life and Economy, Finland Champions Universal Basic Income

Under the plan receiving support by 70 percent of the country, every adults would receive a monthly allotment of €800

As a way to improve living standards and boosts its economy, the nation of Finland is moving closer towards offering all of its adult citizens a basic permanent income of approximately 800 euros per month.

The monthly allotment would replace other existing social benefits, but is an idea long advocated for by progressive-minded social scientists and economists as a solution—counter-intuitive as it may first appear at first—that actually decreases government expenditures and unemployment while boosting both productivity and quality of life.

According to Bloomberg, the basic income proposal, put forth by the Finnish Social Insurance Institution, known as KELA, would see every adult citizen "receive 800 euros ($876) a month, tax free, that would replace existing benefits. Full implementation would be preceded by a pilot stage, during which the basic income payout would be 550 euros and some benefits would remain."

US Justice Department to open inquiry into Chicago police department

Attorney general Loretta Lynch announces Ferguson-style investigation prompted by Chicago police department’s response to Laquan McDonald death

The Justice Department will open a far-reaching investigation into the Chicago police department, attorney general Loretta Lynch announced on Monday, in response to questions about how police handled the case of a black 17-year-old shot dead by a white officer.

US attorneys will investigate “whether the police department as a systemic matter has engaged in constitutional violations of policing”, Lynch said, in a press conference in Washington DC.

When police violate the law, Lynch said, “there are profound consequences for the wellbeing of their communities, for the rule of law and for the countless law enforcement officers who strive to fulfill their duties with professionalism and integrity”.

Lynch said the investigation would specifically examine police use of force, racial disparities in that use of force, and how the Chicago department disciplines officers or handles accountability.

After Deadly Mass Shootings, the US Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Challenge to Assault Weapons Ban

The US Supreme Court on Monday rejected a challenge by gun rights activists to an ordinance enacted by a Chicago suburb that bans assault weapons and large-capacity magazines.

The refusal by the nine justices to hear the case, coming at a time of fierce debate over the nation's gun laws following a series of mass shootings, means that the 2013 ordinance passed by the city of Highland Park, Illinois remains in effect. Two of the court's conservatives members, Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia, said the court should have taken the case. ...

The Highland Park regulation bans various semi-automatic weapons, including well-known guns such as the AR-15 and AK-47, in addition to any magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds of bullets.



the horse race



Clinton Super PAC Donor Is Former Goldman Exec and Foreclosure Crisis Profiteer

When Bernie Sanders brought up Hillary Clinton’s prodigious fundraising from Wall Street at the Nov. 14 Democratic presidential debate, Clinton called it an attack on her “integrity.” And in an interview this week, she said that “anybody who thinks they can influence me on that ground doesn’t know me very well.”

But the fact remains that the Clinton campaign is fundraising heavily from Wall Street. Contributions from the securities and investment industries comprise her fourth-largest pile of campaign money, totaling $2,044,471. Commercial banks have given $443,519 directly to her campaign.

One major donor to her Super PAC, Priorities USA, is Donald Mullen Jr., [Mullen gave $100,000 to Priorities USA Action Priorities USA Action] a man who was singularly able to profit from the financial crisis both before and after the crash of the housing bubble.

Mullen, while a Goldman Sachs employee, pioneered the trades that allowed the mega-bank to profit from the collapse of the housing market. Mullen’s team utilized financial instruments called collateralized debt obligations to essentially bet against subprime mortgages. ...

Interestingly, in 2008 he gave $30,800 to the Obama Victory Fund, $2,300 to the Obama campaign, and $28,500 to the Democratic National Committee. But in 2011, he gave $2,500 to the Romney campaign and nothing to Obama, reflecting how much of the finance world abandoned Obama in 2012 to tilt toward Romney. Now it appears that the Clinton campaign has won him back.

Time readers poll picks Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders urges carbon tax and deeper emissions cuts in climate plan

Bernie Sanders will unveil a sweeping new plan to fight climate change on Monday, calling for a carbon tax and an ambitious 40% cut in carbon emissions by 2030 to speed the transition to a greener economy.

The Democratic presidential candidate will use the crunch week of the climate change meeting in Paris to try to upstage rivals Hillary Clinton and Martin O’Malley, releasing a 16-page plan aimed at showcasing his green credentials.

The plan goes beyond Barack Obama’s climate pledges, which aim to match the European Union in ambition by calling for a 40% cut in carbon emissions by 2030 on 1990 levels, according to a copy of the plan seen by the Guardian. The 1990 starting point is a more demanding target than the current US baseline of 2005.

Sanders will also call for a carbon tax, big investments in energy-saving technologies and renewable power sources, and promise to create 10 million clean energy jobs.



the evening greens


Opec bid to kill off US shale sends oil price down to near seven-year low

The latest attempt by Saudi Arabia to kill off the threat from US shale oil has sent oil prices slumping to their lowest level since the depths of the global recession almost seven years ago.

A barrel of benchmark Brent crude was changing hands at below $42 a barrel after the oil cartel Opec – heavily influenced by Saudi Arabia – decided late last week to continue flooding the global market with cheap oil.

Naomi Klein Extended Interview on Role of Obama, Trudeau & Austerity at U.N. Climate Summit

Tea Party leader taking a stand for solar energy

Debbie Dooley is a firebrand Republican and an outspoken founding member of the Tea Party. But in a fast-intensifying battle over the future of solar power in Florida, she is not on the side you might expect.

Along with a diverse grassroots citizens’ coalition including environmentalists and other left-leaning activists, Dooley is taking on Big Energy and its big-spending conservative backers in an intriguing fight that puts her toe-to-toe with her onetime political allies.

She is at the spearhead of a campaign to place an initiative before Florida voters next year that would give consumers the freedom to choose to buy their solar energy from smaller private companies and bypass the mega-bucks utilities. ...

If the initiative is successful, Florida would no longer be one of only four states that prohibits so-called third-party power purchase agreements (PPA), which, in basic terms, refer to a consumer allowing a company to install solar panels with no upfront cost, then paying the company for electricity that the panels generate. ...

Unsurprisingly, the big public power utilities don’t like the message being pushed by the activists as they tour the state attempting to collect the 683,000 signatures needed by February to get the initiative on November’s ballot. So companies including Florida Power and Light, Duke Energy, Tampa Electric and Gulf Power are among the donors who have ploughed millions of dollars into a rival group, Consumers for Smart Solar, which is promoting its own initiative that would enshrine in the state’s constitution their exclusive right to sell solar power.

Activists Dragged Out of Climate Expo for Protesting Corporate Influence over COP21 Negotiations

This WTO Ruling Is Perfect Example of How Big Trade Deals Trump Democracy

NAFTA partners can sue the U.S. for a combined $1 billion annually in retaliatory tariffs over Country of Origin Labels for meat

In a move that watchdogs say presents a "glaring example of how trade agreements can undermine public interest policies," the World Trade Organization (WTO) ruled on Monday that the U.S. can be forced to pay $1 billion annually by NAFTA partners for its establishment of food safety laws. ...

Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, said on Monday that the ruling "makes clear that trade agreements can—and do—threaten even the most favored U.S. consumer protections."

Citing a May 2015 speech during which U.S. President Barack Obama brushed aside warnings that agreements like NAFTA and the pending Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) could undermine important regulations, Wallach continued: "We hope that President Obama stands by his claim that 'no trade agreement is going to force us to change our laws,' but in fact rolling back U.S. consumer and environmental safeguards has been exactly what past presidents have done after previous retrograde trade pact rulings." ...

The Republican-led House of Representatives last spring already passed a measure repealing the meat label provision—despite the fact that 92 percent of Americans support the policy.

Now, with the WTO ruling bolstering their case, meat industry lobby groups, including the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, are pushing the rest of Congress to follow suit.


Also of Interest

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

Removing the gag: how one man took on the FBI for nearly 12 years and won

The AP engaged in willful propaganda yesterday

Hillary Clinton and a Venezuelan Murder Mystery

Up From Imperialism

Chris Hedges: Apocalyptic Capitalism

Yes, Calling Only Muslims Terrorists Does Result in Disparate Treatment of Muslims


A Little Night Music

Blind Lemon Jefferson - See That My Grave Is Kept Clean

Blind Lemon Jefferson - Black Snake Moan

Blind Lemon Jefferson -- That Growling Baby Blues

Blind Lemon Jefferson - Jack of Diamonds

Blind Lemon Jefferson - Shuckin' Sugar

Blind Lemon Jefferson - Hot Dog

Blind Lemon Jefferson - Lemon's Worried Blues

Blind Lemon Jefferson - Piney Woods Money Mama

Blind Lemon Jefferson - Bed Springs Blues

Blind Lemon Jefferson - One Dime Blues



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Unabashed Liberal's picture

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

joe shikspack's picture

it appears that we have normality. i think.

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Unabashed Liberal's picture

that this site is working properly for you, but there's a number of oddities that I'm still experiencing. Oddly, I didn't have these problems until after the last maintenance session.

Instead of cluttering up EB this evening, I'll mention them in my post. Thanks, as always, for the excellent news and blues roundup!

If everything settles down soon, I did have a couple of things that I particularly wanted to post at EB, before we hit the road.

I've still not been able to find anything on "what" the 70 Billion Dollar 'offsets' from the budget, were. I have a feeling that it will be difficult to find them spelled out.

You may recall, withholding monthly Social Security benefits (payments) for anyone with an outstanding warrant--supposedly, it could include a 30-year-old traffic ticket that you didn't show up for--was included in one version of the FAST Act, negotiated by soon-to-be retiring Barbara Boxer and James Inhofe. (I've previously posted Nancy Pelosi's comments on this proposal. She claimed to not support it.)

Hopefully, once the Holidays are over (if not sooner), I'll be able to dig up enough info on these end-of-the-year bills, so that we can put our heads together in order to ascertain how big a haircut that we're gonna take!

Wink

Have a great evening, Bluesters!

Bye

Mollie


"Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare."--Japanese Proverb

Postscript: So many talking heads are delighting in how 'hawkish' FSC sounds. They're also bragging that they think that she'll be able to "work across the aisle" much better than the President has been able to do.

BTW, I heard her give a speech at a Dem donor affair yesterday, and thought that I'd loose my lunch! I'll elaborate on the ridiculously false talking points that she was spouting, at another time. Sorta pushed this evening.

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

joe shikspack's picture

sorry to hear that you and others are still experiencing difficulties with the site. i'm sure that jtc is hard at it trying to get things back into shape. hopefully, everything will be fully normal for everybody soon.

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enhydra lutris's picture

should be, perhaps there is hope for the world after all. Thanks.

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

joe shikspack's picture

thanks! it was deeply gratifying to be able to log on as myself again.

it appears that jtc must have managed to get the hosting techs to cooperate or something.

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enhydra lutris's picture

between February 6 and your EB has vanished. I, for example, have never posted anything here.

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

joe shikspack's picture

but it appears that a lot of my content (if not all) has repopulated. hopefully, so will everybody else's.

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it's there. It's been back to normal for an hour, hour and a half now. If anyone still is experiencing problems, clear your browser cache or close it and re-open it. The site is working fully normal for me. The content was missing earlier because the DNS had to propagate again, when the propagation finished it all came back.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

(Tar sands are the largest industrial project on the planet, and the world’s most environmentally destructive.)

Not breaking news, but interesting… From the Guardian:

Regardless of commitments made in Paris, any steps to halt runaway climate change will be wholly undermined by the secretly negotiated EU-US trade deal, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

While touted as a “free trade” deal, in reality TTIP is anything but. The reduction of “tariffs” is a tiny fraction of the deal. The trade deal’s central mission is to remove “non-tariff barriers” – the regulations that often protect our society, health and environment.

Since its 2013 announcement, a key aim of TTIP has been to destroy regulations that prevent high-polluting tar sand crude oil from entering Europe. It is a target intimately tied to the EU’s anti-Russian geopolitical aims, and the wishes of the powerful oil lobby and its conduits in the American, British and Canadian governments.

Emissions regulations on both sides of the Atlantic are targeted for removal if the TTIP passes. Nasa scientist James Hansen argues, if the tar sands are exploited as projected, it will be “game over for the climate”.

Both TTIP and climate change are symptoms of the dominant neoliberal ideology. Regardless of the outcomes of talks in Paris, without a fundamental change to our corporate-led system. The prospects are bleak for the 100 million more people predicted to be living in poverty by 2030 as a result of global warming.

This story may have been featured already at Evening Blues. I was caught by the TTIP angle.

On another note, regarding this Guardian story, featured above:

Opec bid to kill off US shale sends oil price down to near seven-year low

The latest attempt by Saudi Arabia to kill off the threat from US shale oil has sent oil prices slumping to their lowest level since the depths of the global recession almost seven years ago.

Who believes that Saudi oil price gutting has anything to do with undermining the US shale business?

I believe that the price fail in the US shale business is just another unintended consequence of US "geopolitical strategy": Specifically, the US overthrow of the democratically elected Ukraine government, to provoke Russia and block the rise of Eurasia.

Open source intel suggests that the oil price plunge is a "deal" made between the US and the Saudis. The Saudis (OPEC) agree to over-produce oil and depress the price until it fatally damages Russia's economy and triggers regime change. The US agrees to let ISIS wage terrorism until Assad is forced to leave Syria, letting the Sunnis take over that country. The US shale oil fail is merely unforeseen collateral damage.

I see that scenario every day in every way in the region. It explains all the puzzling aspects of both the US "fake war" strategy and the prolonged plunge in global commodity prices.

:

US Hooked on Empire = Global Climate Fail
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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato
joe shikspack's picture

yep, that was a good article in the guardian. today, chris hedges had some comments that seemed just about right:

The charade of the 21st United Nations climate summit will end, as past climate summits have ended, with lofty rhetoric and ineffectual cosmetic reforms. Since the first summit more than 20 years ago, carbon dioxide emissions have soared. Placing faith in our political and economic elites, who have mastered the arts of duplicity and propaganda on behalf of corporate power, is the triumph of hope over experience. ...

The global elites have no intention of interfering with the profits, or ending government subsidies, for the fossil fuel industry and the extraction industries. They will not curtail extraction or impose hefty carbon taxes to keep fossil fuels in the ground. They will not limit the overconsumption that is the engine of global capitalism. They act as if the greatest contributor of greenhouse gases—the animal agriculture industry—does not exist. They siphon off trillions of dollars and employ scientific and technical expertise—expertise that should be directed toward preparing for environmental catastrophe and investing in renewable energy—to wage endless wars in the Middle East. What they airily hold out as a distant solution to the crisis—wind turbines and solar panels—is, as the scientist James Lovelock says, the equivalent of 18th-century doctors attempting to cure serious diseases with leeches and mercury. And as the elites mouth platitudes about saving the climate they are shoving still another trade agreement, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), down our throats. The TPP permits corporations to ignore nonbinding climate accords made at conferences such as the one in Paris, and it allows them, in secret trade tribunals, to defy environmental regulations imposed by individual states.

New technology—fracking, fuel-efficient vehicles or genetically modified food—is not about curbing overconsumption or conserving resources. It is about ensuring that consumption continues at unsustainable levels. Technological innovation, employed to build systems of greater and greater complexity, has fragmented society into cadres of specialists. The expertise of each of these specialists is limited to a small section of the elaborate technological, scientific and bureaucratic machinery that drives corporate capitalism forward—much as in the specialized bureaucratic machinery that defined the genocide carried out by the Nazis. These technocrats are part of the massive, unthinking hive that makes any system work, even a system of death. They lack the intellectual and moral capacity to question the doomsday machine spawned by global capitalism. And they are in control.

that chris hedges, what a cheerful fella. unfortunately, i'm pretty sure that he is barking up the right tree.

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joe shikspack's picture

about the purpose of the us-saudi agreement on opec overproduction. i'd offer a friendly amendment, though in that i don't think at this point (and probably not at the outset, either) that the demise of the fracking industry was entirely unforeseen. i'd guess that it was part of an agreement for mutual sacrifice - the us sacrifices its fracking industry and the saudi's sacrifice an enormous wad of their saved petrodollars.

i included that article in the greens section just as a point of information to note that the oil glut is going to be expanded.

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enhydra lutris's picture

wildcatters, iirc. Once they are driven into bankruptcy by the Saudis, but having already sunk a ton of money into exploration & development, the Saudis' partners in crime, the Majors and Super Majors, will gobble them up for pennies and have all of those reserves, ready to extract, once the prices float back up again.except for the minor detail that everything posted

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

joe shikspack's picture

the frackers lease the land/mineral rights from the landowners for a period of time. so, if they are unable to exploit those resources in the time frame of the contract, whoever buys up those companies may not be getting much.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

Just to give it some scale:

The average life of a fracking site is 18 months, before it goes dry and the land is hopelessly polluted.

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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato
mimi's picture

It's not an easy thing to go through. So I commend JtC to have come as far as he already has.

It seems Democracy is drowning all over the world and I just wonder what will happen. It smells like ... that we will have interesting times , of fuck that, I meant awful times ahead. With women like the CEO of Lockheed Martin, Marylin Hewson, looking for nothing but foreign weapon sales... I mean, it's all over the world, nothing but weapon's producers and sellers. You can't watch any news without seeing heavily armed troops, heavy weapons all over the place. Can't stand it anymore.

The TRN piece is so devastating to listen to. Ok, now off to more reading.

Thanks for the list and Good Night.

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joe shikspack's picture

i'm pretty sure that jtc has been working very hard and deserves our thanks. i am always impressed with how well this site has come together and how well jtc has been doing at learning as he goes along.

the illusion of democracy has been slipping in a lot of places, indeed. i am reminded of frank zappa's prescient statement:

“The illusion of freedom will continue as long as it's profitable to continue the illusion. At the point where the illusion becomes too expensive to maintain, they will just take down the scenery, they will pull back the curtains, they will move the tables and chairs out of the way and you will see the brick wall at the back of the theater.”

-- Frank Zappa

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Only connect. - E.M. Forster

joe shikspack's picture

it almost makes you miss the cold war, when the capitalists felt under pressure to make good on their propaganda that people in the us lived better and had more civil rights than folks in the commie countries.

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snoopydawg's picture

When the banks crashed the global economy and then got bailed out even though they had committed massive fraud. And then Obama appointed Holder to prosecute them even though he had come from a law firm that defended the banks.
Every one of his appointments were put in charge of the industries that they had destroyed.
I read the article about Biden being in Ukraine today and his pledge to give them more money to fight Russia from annexing Crimea. Wasn't that a Russian port for decades?

And the coup in Ukraine was set in motion in 06 when the current president was living in Virginia. He promised that if they made him president, he'd open the country up to foreigner investors.
Good ole'Uncle Joe' our funny uncle is one of the most corrupt politicians that there's been.
He's helped push the drug war's assault on our civil liberties, and helped pass the bankruptcy bill that hurt many Americans have a difficult time declaring it.
Good EBs tonight as usual.
More Hillary can do no wrong pissing matches on Kos today.
No matter what facts are presented that show how corrupt she is her supporters remain blind to them.
I got dinged for calling her a billbot and saying something about her gentalia which I find very creepy that someone would even write that sentence.
Good to see the EBs back.
Back to reading the links.

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

Voting is like driving with a toy steering wheel.

joe shikspack's picture

the curtain was pulled back for me by the vietnam war, recognizing that both democrats and republicans were united in corruption.

I read the article about Biden being in Ukraine today and his pledge to give them more money to fight Russia from annexing Crimea. Wasn't that a Russian port for decades?

crimea has historically been a russian possession (for hundreds of years). joe stalin "gave" it to ukraine when ukraine was a possession of the soviet union. most of the population there is ethnically russian rather than ukrainian.

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snoopydawg's picture

I read the RN article about the weapons sales.

"Two weeks ago, the the United States approved a $1.3 billion arms sale to Saudi Arabia. But the deal is minuscule compared to existing contracts between the two countries: over $100 billion in arms deals that have cleared Congress in the last five years or so."

Next paragraph says that then Saudi Arabia turns around and gives those weapons to the terrorists we are supposedly fighting.
Absolutely it's a circle jerk or cluster fuck as stated.
Don Midwest posted a link today stating the Air Force has dropped over 20,000 bombs on ISIS in 14 months.
I'd think that we would see some type of progress in destroying or containing'ISIS, yet they are larger than ever.
Oh well, good for business and profits, eh?

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

Voting is like driving with a toy steering wheel.

Unabashed Liberal's picture

Thanks to JtC and Joe for giving us the EB today.

It's not an easy thing to go through. So I commend JtC to have come as far as he already has.

and, I apologize if I sounded whiny. (It was not intended as a criticism, at all.)

Actually, so long as I can find some kind of thread to comment at, and see the left sidebar--I'm good to go!

Wink

Thanks for all the effort and hard work expended on our behalf, JtC.

Have a great evening, Everyone!

Mollie


"We must stop looking for our salvation in strong leaders. Strong people, as Ella Baker said, do not need strong leaders. Politicians, even good politicians, play the game of compromise and are too often seduced by the privileges of power.

. . . Integrity and courage are powerful weapons. We have to learn how to use them."

Chris Hedges

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

mimi's picture

First you hype up weapons' production and the government goes in deep debt for it. Then they sell it for good money to their "allies", then they make sure that the allies messing things up, so that the weapons they bought, end up with the "terrorists". Then the US decides to bomb the hell out of its ISIS and other terrorists and eviledoers and destroys them and their weapons, they had just sold and that ended up in "terrorists" hands. Which obviously means the US (and all its allies) to produce more weapons, which they again sell nicely, which then trickle down to the evil doers, which then get bombed and destroyed.

I am sure I am nuts.

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joe shikspack's picture

it's the sort of thing that, oh what is that french word? ah, yes - it's a clusterfuck.

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mimi's picture

Charlie Foxtrot. Only French people still dance when everything is SNAFU on top of being FUBAR. Smile

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Pluto's Republic's picture

Typically not something you would see reported in the Anglo news. And, it wasn't.

According to Financial Times and Globes Israel Business Journal:

Israel buys most oil smuggled from ISIS territory

Israel has become the main buyer for oil from ISIS controlled territory, reports "al-Araby al-Jadeed."

Kurdish and Turkish smugglers are transporting oil from ISIS controlled territory in Syria and Iraq and selling it to Israel, according to several reports in the Arab and Russian media. An estimated 20,000-40,000 barrels of oil are produced daily in ISIS controlled territory generating $1-1.5 million daily profit for the terrorist organization.

The oil is extracted from Dir A-Zur in Syria and two fields in Iraq and transported to the Kurdish city of Zakhu in a triangle of land near the borders of Syria, Iraq and Turkey. Israeli and Turkish mediators come to the city and when prices are agreed, the oil is smuggled to the Turkish city of Silop marked as originating from Kurdish regions of Iraq and sold for $15-18 per barrel (WTI and Brent Crude currently sell for $41 and $45 per barrel) to the Israeli mediator, a man in his 50s with dual Greek-Israeli citizenship known as Dr. Farid. He transports the oil via several Turkish ports and then onto other ports, with Israel among the main destinations.

In August, the “Financial Times” reported that Israel obtained 75% of its oil supplies from Iraqi Kurdistan. More than a third of such exports go through the port of Ceyhan, which the FT describe as a “potential gateway for ISIS-smuggled crude.”

Kurds supplying most of Israel’s oil

“Israel has in one way or another become the main marketer of ISIS oil. Without them, most ISIS-produced oil would have remained going between Iraq, Syria and Turkey. Even the three companies would not receive the oil if they did not have a buyer in Israel,” an industry official told the newspaper “al-Araby al-Jadeed.”

“Israel has in one way or another become the main marketer of IS oil. Without them, most ISIS-produced oil would have remained going between Iraq, Syria and Turkey,” the industry official added.

http://www.globes.co.il/en/article-israel-buys-most-oil-smuggled-from-is...

That seems to explain why the US didn't "notice" thousands of ISIS oil tanker trucks for over 14 months of air strikes.

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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato
Pluto's Republic's picture

…pushback and economic Acts of War:

U.S. Says Syria Is Buying Oil From Islamic State

U.S. Treasury Department blacklists Syrian businessman for facilitating transactions

The Obama administration accused Syria’s government of purchasing oil from Islamic State and blacklisted a Syrian-Russian businessman suspected of facilitating those transactions.

The U.S. Treasury Department also penalized Russian and Cypriot businessmen and companies suspected of helping the Syrian central bank evade international sanctions through a web of companies based in Russia, Cyprus and Belize.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-says-syria-is-buying-oil-from-islamic-st...

Does the US even read it's own preposterous bullshit, pushed through Propaganda Mouthpiece, Wall Street Journal?

It's embarrassing.

Of course, the only other outlet to publish this disgrace is the Jerusalem Post.

US sanctions those helping Syrian government buy oil from ISIS

WASHINGTON - The United States has sanctioned 10 targets for supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, including those who have helped the Syrian government buy oil from Islamic State militants, the US Treasury Department said on Wednesday.

In its latest round of sanctions related to the Syria crisis, the United States said it would freeze assets of four people and six entities, including a Russian bank, for providing such support and prohibit Americans from any transactions with them.

http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/US-sanctions-those-helping-Syrian-gov...

While legitimate transactions with Syria certainly exist, they have no proven connection with ISIS. They facilitate trade by Syria for essentials, which is blocked by the US. This is US economic terrorism. Crimean trade is blocked by the US, as well.

It's nice that the US finally woke up a few days ago (after 14 months of fake air strikes against ISIS) and noticed that ISIS was selling oil for profit. (Because the Russians called them on the oil sales.) Now, such elaborate kabuki and sudden concern by the US.

Amateur counter-intelligence psyops — a specialty of the dolts at State.

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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato
joe shikspack's picture

it was linked from another news site, but i didn't recognize globes (or have a clue as to the reliability of its information). is it a reliable source?

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Pluto's Republic's picture

I got it from a think tank I subscribe to.

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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato
mimi's picture

but don't you think, all in all, EVERYBODY is talking like drunken sailors?

I mean it started with Hollande using too harsh language and too civil rights crushing responses to the attack. Of course I can givehim and the French people some slack, because it was a vicious attack and the population is rightfully concerned. But his words, (like Obama's btw) are a notch or pitch too high for my taste. It's dangerous to respond with the kind of rhetoric. Hollande used. I didn't expect him to talk like that, to be honest. But nobody could have had the nerves to say that to Hollande in that kind of situation. Just look at the consequences you see already in France with regards to the election and the right-winger's surge. Hollande is supposed to be a Socialist for that matter, and his rhetoric sounded not like one you would expect from a liberal and democratic Socialist.

Germany decided to send their fighter jets as "harmless" reconnaissance over to Syria and some boots to the ground. Merkel caved in more or less silently. It will be a mess. The excuses and announcements that German jets and soldiers will not be involved in combat activities ... yeah of course, tell me about it, nice try, idiits.

In the US people talk about Muslims as if they were ants that need sprayed with insecticides, almost. Trump wants to close the entry into the US for all Muslims. A guy like that could end up being elected for US President? Really? The craziest words come out of the mouth of politicians these days, you just want to shut down your ears. Well, it wouldn't be the first time in history that real crazy lunatics gain power.

The only words, that should matter somewhat and people should listen to, are Obama's, but ... I mean ... his words have nil effect on anyone. I gave up listening to his speech after a minute or two. May be I will now read the articles listed in the EB with regards to the speech, but I almost think it's not necessary. I just wonder, who really still listens and is impressed by what he says, may be just the journalists and they get paid for it.

I don't think that all this is at all normal. There must be something else going on ... so much complete irrational behavior isn't just going to happen without it being caused by something.

So, what is it? Why this dynamic all of the sudden increasing so badly?

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Pluto's Republic's picture

I don't think that all this is at all normal. There must be something else going on ... so much complete irrational behavior isn't just going to happen without it being caused by something.

So, what is it? Why this dynamic all of the sudden increasing so badly?

The breakdown seems to be on two levels: Government trying to manage the narrative, and people who are perilously uninformed.

At the government level, I think it is exhaustion from trying to maintain the tangled web of secrets, lies, and propaganda until they get out of office. The US is losing influence and its goals are, basically, undermined everywhere. Some of the repetitive kabuki is finally becoming obvious to the people, so leaders feel compelled to step-it-up. In the US, candidates for President are using aggressive, hateful, and violent language to win the hearts of Americans.

And, that's the flip side. Aggressive, hateful, and violent language is what Americans want to hear. They have become so infantile and unsophisticated over recent decades that they crave hardened authoritarian leaders to protect them and punish their imagined enemies. And, this is the key. I can't really speak for Europeans, but Americans are have no sense of personal security anymore. They can lose everything in an instant, and there is no real social safety net in the US. They can't really afford education. A full time job can't support a family. They easily believe that government or law enforcement intends to do them harm. They are constantly threatened by propaganda. They lost their self-esteemed and sense of individual sovereignty and rights. They are desperate to arm themselves — and they might be right. Tnly mocking scorn and no protection in hard times.

So they're suspicious of their fellowman and default to fear and hate because they have lost so much already. The nation's revenues are poured down the black hole of war, so they live in a world of scarcity. Immigration and welfare are competing with them for the few scraps that are left, so their thoughts become violent. Foreigners want to terrorize them and they cannot accept that terrorism is actually "revenge" for US foreign policy. The concept is incomprehensible to them. All they have is anger, fear, and hatred for the government-designated enemy of-the-day. They know in their hearts that their children will be facing worse.

The past 15 years have broken them completely.

And when a new leader who promises change arrives — the perversion of neoliberal (income inequality) and neocon (empire-seeking wars) policies will continue. And they know it.

The US is broke. It only stays afloat by terrorizing the world.

That sort of thing lasts only so long.

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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato
mimi's picture

it feels pretty much like you describe it in your comment.
I can only say what I, as a 'former' European, now a 'current' American, sense. I made the conversion from one to the other.

I can't really speak for Europeans ( I can a bit ), but Americans are have no sense of personal security anymore.

They can lose everything in an instant, and there is no real social safety net in the US. They can't really afford education. A full time job can't support a family. They easily believe that government or law enforcement intends to do them harm. They are constantly threatened by propaganda. They lost their self-esteemed and sense of individual sovereignty and rights. (that is true, and that's what my son, who can't speak as a European anymore, has developed into)

They are desperate to arm themselves — and they might be right.( I disagree very much with you on that - the more they arm themselves, the more they will kill each other, there is NO sense in that and I could turn authoritarian to prevent people from arming themselves under those conditions)

Tnuly mocking scorn and no protection in hard times.( yes, unfortunately that's true and quite cruel )

So they're suspicious of their fellowman and default to fear and hate because they have lost so much already.
( suspicious, yes, but fear and hate does not come by itself like that, it is incited through hate speech of people in power, imo)

Well, it's too sad. And I know that my child has faced the worse already as a consequence of the last 15 years. So, it's hard to not get bitter or depressed and it's hard to keep up morals and hope. At least I would have never expected that kind of downturn of events twenty years ago.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

Dont be afraid. No one is going to call you an anti-semite for reading this.

It's a very long and exciting piece of investigative journalism that explains how and why ISIS oil ends up in Israel. Lots of charts and data, and photos — and it's a wild ride. It exposes Turkey and also packs some real surprises.

Little wonder it was not published in the US.

ISIS Oil Trade Full Frontal: “Raqqa’s Rockefellers”, Bilal Erdogan, KRG Crude, And The Israel Connection

Ok, so why are we telling you this? Recall that over the past several weeks, we’ve spent quite a bit of time documenting Islamic State’s lucrative black market oil trade. Earlier this month, Vladimir Putin detailed the scope of the operation in meetings with his G20 colleagues. “I’ve shown photos taken from space and from aircraft which clearly demonstrate the scale of the illegal trade in oil and petroleum products,” he told journalists on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Antalya. The very same day, the US destroyed some 116 ISIS oil trucks, an effort that was widely publicized in the Western media. In the two weeks since, Moscow and Washington have vaporized a combined 1,300 ISIS oil transport vehicles.

No one knows why it took the US 14 months to strike the convoys. The official line is that The Pentagon was concerned about “collateral damage”, but we doubt that’s the reason (for a detailed discussion of this, see here). Well now that the mainstream media have been forced to take a closer look at Islamic State’s main source of revenue (the group makes nearly a half billion a year in the illicit oil trade),we decided to take a closer look at exactly who is facilitating the transport of the stolen crude and where it ultimately ends up because you can be sure that the story you get from the major wires will be colored by a slavish tendency to avoid any and all “inconvenient” revelations.

::

Meanwhile, the US is preparing for an all-out ISIS oil propaganda war. As WSJ reported on Wednesday, “the Treasury [has] accused a Syrian-born businessman, George Haswani, who his a dual Syrian-Russian citizen, of using his firm, HESCO Engineering and Construction Co., for facilitating oil trades between the Assad regime and Islamic State.” Why Assad would buy oil from a group that uses the cash at its disposal to wage war against Damascus is an open question especially when one considers that Assad’s closest allies (Russia and Iran) are major oil producers.

Read on….

::

If I ever write a textbook on Forensic Geopolitics — this will be the first chapter. I wish I could teach the American people to see the propaganda bubble that suffocates them and kills their souls.

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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato
snoopydawg's picture

Over Syria.
Russia has been bombing those convoys and also bombing the terrorists that the U.S. and its allies have armed to help them overthrow Assad.
Russia has every right to fight those groups and protect Assad.
Most of the reasons they want Assad gone is because other corporations want to install the natural gas pipelines that Russia has had for decades.
That's another reason for the coup in Ukraine. Russia supplies Europe with natural gas and other countries want theirs installed instead.
I'm conflicted about when soldiers are killed in the invasions. They willingly signed up to go fight in other countries that haven't threatened the U.S. and they're not fighting to defend either the U.S. or our freedoms. They're fighting for the corporations to steal other country's resources.
Haven't they ever heard about Smedley's book, seen how vets are treated after they return home or wonder why there's so many homeless vets?
I wish they'd visit a VA hospital before they join up.
I worked at a hospital that was close to an Air Force base and many coworkers had family in the military.
I had to keep my mouth shut around them because I wanted to tell them that their family members weren't fighting to protect us.
The propaganda machine has deluded so many people I worked with and they all watched a Fox.

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

Voting is like driving with a toy steering wheel.

after three solid days of work for me and with only a few strands of hair left, it looks like we are finally back to normal [fingers and toes crossed]. After I ensure that that is the case I'll put up an essay. What a clustermuck!!

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joe shikspack's picture

thanks for all the work that you've been doing! it's deeply appreciated.

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mimi's picture

I mean be proud of yourself you can dance the foxtrot backwards.

Should I order a wig for you? May be you look just much cooler with bald top and one string of hair left. These days the darnest things are just "in". And there is a cure too ...bald_head.jpg

Pad yourself on the shoulder ... I send a high-five.

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the only ones seeing an empty Front
Page, no history of comments other
than this afternoon, et cetera, as
detailed in comments beneath
Unabashed Liberal's HELP!!! post?

Joe, for one, seems to be seeing a proper
Front Page . . .

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Only connect. - E.M. Forster

Pluto's Republic's picture

But it was missing all day.

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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato

the only thing on it is tonight's EB,
nothing else.

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Only connect. - E.M. Forster

Unabashed Liberal's picture

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

mimi's picture

starting with today's comment after the site came back. I think it's back to normal. Smile
I mean I can live without my old comments, they were just for my own amusement value anyhow.

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access the site from some time after 3pm
CT.

From 9am - 3pm, I couldn't access the
site at all. IsItDownRightNow kept telling
me c99p was Down with it sometimes
being Up then quickly Down again.

Bluehost, which I also checked, was up
the whole time.

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Only connect. - E.M. Forster

mimi's picture

you have to give JtC and the techs some slack, it just took that amount of time to get us back to normal, who knows how often they had to reboot and doing all sorts of backwards stuff. Dont' worry, be happy. See, I can even poke a joke at you. That's something to cheer about, no?

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JayRaye's picture

To say that I'm upset is a serious understatement. I see tonight's EB then nothing until way back to Feb 2015.

Under my account there is nothing for content.

That means that all of the Joe Hill diaries that I worked so hard on to cover events leading up to his execution, his execution, and events after his execution are ALL GONE.

Please say it ain't so...please...

Going to bed now, I just cannot deal with this right now.

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Never be deceived that the rich will allow you to vote away their wealth.-Lucy Parsons

i just went and checked your profile, it's all still there.

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JayRaye's picture

My account shows nothing for me when I go to it. And when I try to link back to one of my diaries here from a preview at DK it tells me that I am not authorized to access that page.

Nothing shows on front page or community page except for the Help diary, tonight's EB, and then next diary is from Feb 2015.

I've tried logging out and logging back in to no avail.

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Never be deceived that the rich will allow you to vote away their wealth.-Lucy Parsons

it's all there. You are probably seeing cached pages in your browser. Clear the cache in your browser or close it and reopen it. It's all there though, I clicked through it to be sure. The content was missing earlier because the site was moved back to the original server and had to propagate the DNS again, after that was finished a couple of hours ago, it all came back to normal.

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mimi's picture

if I go under My Account to My Content or My Comments there are just the entries that I made after the server came back in late afternoon. Under My Content there are no old diaries visible to me. I believe you that everything is still there, but apparently Jay Raye, who had so many diaries in the last days, can't see her's either.

Just saying. Do you see what I see? I don't see what you see.

Alles wird gut. Smile

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it's all there. Clear your browser cache.

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mimi's picture

time. Let it rest for a while and then all those diaries will wake up again.

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Unabashed Liberal's picture

there's 'lag time' for members' accounts.

I'm on my second browser, now, and have cleared the cache, but still no sign of missing comments and posts.

I'll check again after midnight (in case that is a magic time regarding 'updates'), and, of course, in the next days.

Also, if anything changes (meaning I can view things that I can't see now) when I try the next two web browsers, I'll let folks know.

Thanks to all for the updates.

'M'

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

JayRaye's picture

Even went further and turned computer off, then came back and tried a different browser with same results.

But I'm much calmer now knowing that everything is there.

I'm getting frustrated trying to make it work. So I'll give it a rest now.

Hopefully things will all get sorted out by morning.

The work I have planned for tomorrow is a summary of the past five days, so hopefully I'll have access to it in the morning. If not I'll move on to plan B.

At least comments are posting now as they should! So that's some good news.

Why admins can see the content and we can't is a mystery, but I am very relieved that at least somebody here can see it and that it is still there.

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Never be deceived that the rich will allow you to vote away their wealth.-Lucy Parsons

it's all there. Everything works fine for me, after hearing other folks saying it isn't for them leads me to believe that the site hasn't propagated for everyone yet, that's really the only explanation. It should be back to normal for everyone by tomorrow.

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JayRaye's picture

Heading off to bed to watch a movie and eat popcorn with the boys.

And then after a good nights sleep, I'll try again.

Many problems can be solved simply be a good nights sleep!

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Never be deceived that the rich will allow you to vote away their wealth.-Lucy Parsons

and the third item on the front page is
still an Open Thread dated 02-06-2015.

All content between that date and
tonight's EB simply is not to be found,
at least by me.

Not complaining, at all. Just letting you
know how c99p appears to and works
for me.

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Only connect. - E.M. Forster

the content you saw missing earlier was because the site was moved back to the original sever and the IP had to propagate the DNS again. All the content is back, nothing was lost and all is back to normal.

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JayRaye's picture

And thank you for all of your hard work.

We will all get through this.

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Never be deceived that the rich will allow you to vote away their wealth.-Lucy Parsons

propagation will take,JtC? It does seem
that many of us are not seeing a lot of
content that's apparently visible to those
with sys admin privileges.

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Only connect. - E.M. Forster

your account and all of the comments are there. I've looked the front page and the community content page over, everything is there. All I can say is that if you were here on the site before the propagation ended that you may be viewing cached pages and you need to empty your browser cache. or I guess it's possible that the propagation isn't constant for everyone and the time it takes may vary. All I know is the site is all here and working fine for me and having an admin account shouldn't make any difference.

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Johnny Cake (ha! just remembered the accidental nickname) for tirelessly working to fix the issues.

Reg the media freak show at the San Bernardino shooters' home, it reminds me of publishing teachers' "value-added" scores by some newspaper(s) years back aimed at shaming them. I also read about someone shouting angrily at teachers during a screening of "Waiting for Superman" which does character asssination of teachers via union bashing. IIRC, it then seemed to me like the guy who shouted in the theater could even pose some danger to teachers if he ever crosses them. It is very revealing whose privacy is sacrosanct & whose is not in Amureeka. David Sirota wrote about some rich a-hole getting a very lenient treatment for some traffic violation precisely because his reputation could be jeopardised.

Extending it further, I posted a link about German intel calling Saudi policy as dangerous and de-stabilising Mid East. Well buddies, it didn't take long :

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joe shikspack's picture

so the saudis own germany, too. pretty sad.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

Hi gal. You know it's coming.

“We will know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.”  - William Casey, CIA Director 1981.

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____________________

The political system is what it is because the People are who they are. — Plato
snoopydawg's picture

She posted it on Facebook and they missed it.
Good thing they are spending all that money spying on all social media sites so that they can keep us safe.

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

Voting is like driving with a toy steering wheel.

the database caches, did that help?

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Only thing now on Front Page is tonight's
EB, and the fourth item down on the
Community Content page is still your
Feb. 6 Open Thread.

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Only connect. - E.M. Forster

enhydra lutris's picture

loaded a different page (my homepage) into this tab, cleared my cache, manually entered the URL, logged in, and I have nothing between the Evening Blues and your February 6 content. When I click "my blog" from the top menu, it tells me that I have not created any content.

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

enhydra lutris's picture

promoted to the top by the recent comments therein. (FWIW)

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

It will come back eventually for everyone.

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Unabashed Liberal's picture

and posts have been restored.

If it works with this crummy browser, surely it will work with the others.

Wink

Mollie


"We must stop looking for our salvation in strong leaders. Strong people, as Ella Baker said, do not need strong leaders. Politicians, even good politicians, play the game of compromise and are too often seduced by the privileges of power.

. . . Integrity and courage are powerful weapons. We have to learn how to use them."

Chris Hedges

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

glad to hear it. Clear the cookies in Firefox and let the site set a new one, that may help.

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Unabashed Liberal's picture

(or whatever) has become such a massive headache for you. Looks like it will pay off in the end, though.

Update: More good news--I can now access C99P with 2 other browsers, aside from IE.

'DR,' we had very much the same problems, so all I can say is, 'keep the faith,' since my user account has restored itself (within the past hour) to its proper state. I did switch to IE, a browser which I almost never use. I did clear the cache, as well.

Thanks for your hard work and diligence, JtC. Hey, good luck, Everyone!

Mollie


"Every time I lose a dog, he takes a piece of my heart. Every new dog gifts me with a piece of his. Someday, my heart will be total dog, and maybe then I will be just as generous, loving, and forgiving."--Author Unknown
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Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong.

in an essay after I'm sure everyone's back to normal.

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with most things appearing where they
seem to belong.

I've become a wee bit fearful, though,
that my very next click may time-warp
me again!

Thanks for everything, JtC.

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Only connect. - E.M. Forster

It's just taking time for our new IP address to propagate through the DNS.

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MarilynW's picture

My name was "mimi" for a while tonight and when I tried to link my account I was in the account of JtC. I wrote two comments, one had two photos which uploaded through Flickr but when I tried to upload the comment, I got access denied.

Images are working just fine now, thank you JtC.

I am wondering how US Immigration didn't check on the terrorist couple pictured below more thoroughly. The FBI found out that Syed Farook when searching for a bride on a dating site asked for "a Saudi woman," very religious who reads the Koran. That would be a Wahhabi, a member of a barbaric form of Islam. When she attended university in Pakistan she was known as "a Saudi girl" meaning a Wahhabi. This is the same university that allowed a lecturer to be jailed for blasphemy. Even in that extremist university, Tasheen Malik was considered a radicalized Muslim. So Syed finds her online and travels to the Middle East to meet her. He brings her back with him to the USA on a fiancé visa after he visits with her for two weeks. Update, they were married in Jabba, Saudi Arabia so she arrived as his wife.
How could it have been so easy for her to get a visa? The photo is the most recent one of the couple and it was taken upon their arrival in the USA, two years ago. After they arrived, they settled down in San Bernadino, CA making pipe bombs, procuring assault rifles and going to firing ranges for practice.

Screen Shot 2015-12-07 at 12.55.21 PM.png

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To thine own self be true.