Sunday, July 14, 2024

Media: Reality versus the lies the media loves to spread

Tough talk?  Hard to get it from today's media which regularly bungles the story or outright distorts it.  It's how you end up with a claim that an actress beat out other actresses for a plum role, how you get a so-so person enshrined as a brave ally for the LGBTQ+ community and how you get a man in cognitive decline convinced he can fool the American people about his abilities.

 

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Let's start with the last one. 


Before the November general election takes place, Joe Biden will be 82 years old.  Grasp that.  Now grasp that comedy legend Carol Burnett teamed with Amy Poehler for a sitcom, HOUSEHOLD NAME, back at the start of 2017 and ABC ordered a pilot but then decided that, at 84, Carol was 'too old' to build a show on due to financial risks.  Grasp that.  At 84, the network decided she was too old to risk the money on.


She was two years older than Joe will be this year.  And she wasn't trying to be president.


Now, do us a favor, and pretend you're responsible for hiring.  You work for Diamond Offshore Drilling and 82 year old Joe walks in.  Wants to work on one of your company's offshore rigs.  If you hire him, you're pretty sure he can make it to the oil rig, you're just not sure he can make it through the six months.


And that's where the country is with Joe Biden now.

 

Maybe he can make it to January in office.  Maybe.  But can he handle presidential duties and running for office at the same time at his age?

 

June 29th, Alex Thompson (AXIOS) reports


Between the lines: Biden's miscues and limitations are more familiar inside the White House.

  • The time of day is important as to which of the two Bidens will appear.
  • From 10am to 4pm, Biden is dependably engaged — and many of his public events in front of cameras are held within those hours.
  • Outside of that time range or while traveling abroad, Biden is more likely to have verbal miscues and become fatigued, aides told Axios.


So, first off, he's really not up to the job of serving as president right now.  Let's be honest about that.  And he's not up to campaigning and being president.  


And grasp, that he's put in four years working less than all but two other presidents since 1933.  Alex Angle (ROLL CALL) reports, "As measured from the start of his presidency to June 30, President Joe Biden’s presidential office hours are the third-shortest since 1933, averaging six hours and 48 minutes. Harry S. Truman had the second-shortest average at six hours and 43 minutes. The averages come from a Roll Call Factba.se analysis of presidential schedules from FDR to Biden."

 

Serious conversations need to be had and we're not getting them.  August 19th, the DNC convention starts in Chicago and the Democratic Party's presidential nominee will be named.  There is no time for the party or its members to play.  Polling is showing that Joe at the top of the ticket is dragging down the election chances for Congressional Democrats.  


MAGA is out for blood.  They're enthused, they're ready to turn out.  Four years later, Joe is not just cognitively challenged, he also thinks he can yet again run on I'm-not-Donald-Trump and that this alone will be enough to win votes.  Could people prefer Joe to Donald?


We do.


But we're also aware that if every Democrat voted, Republicans wouldn't usually be voted into any office.  For various reasons -- including income and personal resources and neighborhoods they live in --  it's much easier for Republicans to make it to the polls.  We need momentum, we need excitement on our end to turn out the votes and Joe can't do that.


Project 2025?  We've covered it here since 2023.  In fact, all group sites participated in a roundtable on it:  "Roundtable: Project 2025, hate merchants,"  "Roundtable -- LGBTQ+, Project 2025," "THIS JUST IN! ROUNDTABLE!," "LGBTQ ROUNDTABLE," "LGBTQ roundtable," "The LGBTQ+ Roundtable," "Roundtable: Attacks on LGBTQ+, Project 2025," "Talking hate merchants and more roundtable" and "Roundtable."

 

So the goal is to stick with Joe and try to scare people into voting?  Those who can't inspire serve up fear mongering.  


Here's the thing about that?  Project 2025 has been out too long to be effective as a mass scare.  Even if you drop back to the last two weeks as the start date for mass awareness of Project 2025, it peaked too soon to be an effective tool in November.


Gore Vidal often spoke of the democracy experiment in the United States and often noted the boiling frog issue.  We're going to shorthand but please read his writings on the topic.  If you put a frog into boiling water, the frog will try to jump out.  If you put a frog in water on the stove and slowly heat the water, the frog will boil alive unaware of what's happening.  


People can adjust to a lot.  We have to.  It's been that way throughout history.  And it's a coping mechanism.  We'd otherwise live stressed on full alert at all times -- having episodes similar to Post Traumatic Stress.  


Things were bad for Joe Biden before Saturday.  On Saturday, Donald Trump was shot at.  It is a great campaign moment for him.  His ignoring the Secret Service and waiting to make a comment and the optics?  All of it screams: Leadership!


We'd argue poor and inept leadership.  And we'd point out that by not following Secret Service requests to immediately depart, he also put the crowd, himself and the Secret Service at risk. 

 

But this will be shaped into a narrative in the media that helps Donald.


Joe is stuck with his own narrative.  He babbles, he loses his thought, he makes people wonder if he's up to the job.  Last Thursday was supposed to reassure voters.  It was instead the day that we all got reminded that he can't even get the basics right.   At 5:40 pm EST, his task was simple.  Make a few comments as he introduced Volodymyr Zelenskyy -- since 2019, the president of Ukraine and someone Joe Biden has worked closely with since his first days as president.  And what happened?  From the official transcript put out by the White House:


Ladies and gentlemen, President Putin — (applause) — President Putin — he’s going to beat President Putin — President Zelenskyy.


Most people -- including us -- noted he called Zelenskyy "Putin" -- Vladamir Putin, Zelenskyy's sworn enemy (and vice versa).  That was awful.  The whole purpose of the photo op was for Joe to introduce Zelenskyy but he's so far gone, so on the edge of senility, that he can't even get that right.


However, there's another troubling thing.


If you introduce someone to someone else, you don't generally say, "Here's Walker."  Because, unless you're Cher, most of us don't have just one name.  


Our point?


Watch the video, read over a transcript.  And then grasp that the prepared remarks did not include Zelenskyy's first name.  That's how much the mind has gone for Joe.  The White House prepared remarks for Joe to stand in front of the press and introduce Volodymyr Zelenskyy but they grasped that using the man's first name was too much for Joe and his declining memory so they never bothered to put it in the speech.


Not only is Zelenskyy (and we're using the White House spelling, FYI, US media generally goes with "Zelensky") in the news constantly, not only  has Joe forked over $175,000,000,000 US tax dollars to Ukraine per the Council on Foreign Relations, but Joe has now met with Zelenskyy five times in the Oval Office.  And he can't be trusted by his own staff to get the man's first name right?

 

Not only is that sad, sad it also the press conference on Thursday.  Joe couldn't deliver it in prime time, grasp that. 


Grasp that when the President of the United States does his first press conference of the year -- yes, his first press conference of the year was after the half-way mark because the White House can't trust the senile old man to be in front of the camera -- he can't even pull that off.  From the official White House transcript:

 

My foreign polic- — ma- — many foreign policy experts thought, as Putin amassed Russian forces just 100 miles north of Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine — but he thought — he, Putin, thought it was the mother home of Russia — the capital would fall in less than a week. 


Is the blood flowing to the brain?  


Who knows.  He then called on pre-selected journalists ("With that, I’ll take your questions.  I’ve been given a list of people to call on here.").  And the mistakes just piled up.  Such as this exchange between Joe and REUTERS' reporter Jeff Mason:


Q    Mr. President, your political future has hung over the NATO Summit a little bit this week.  Speaker Pelosi made a point of suggesting that your decision on whether to stay in the race was still open.  George Clooney and a handful- — a handful of lawmakers have called on you to step aside.  Reuters is reporting tonight that UAW leadership is concerned about your ability to win.

 

THE PRESIDENT:  UAW en- — just endorsed me.  But go ahead.


No, you go ahead, Joe, and tell the country what month you think it is because the United Auto Worker did not "just endorse" you.  That endorsement came in January -- many, many months ago.  Go to the UAW website and you'll find the press release which opens:


On Wednesday, January 24th, with hundreds of UAW members, leaders, and activists gathered at the union’s national Community Action Program (CAP) conference, the UAW announced its endorsement of Joe Biden for President of the United States.

Addressing the assembled members, UAW President Shawn Fain spoke to the issues facing the working class, and the strategic choice ahead in the 2024 presidential election.


July 11th, he thinks he was "just endorsed" by the UAW when the endorsement came on January 24th?  At what point do we stop pretending that Great Grandpa Joe still knows what's going on around him?

Again, what month does he think it is?  And, if we asked him who was president of the United States, would he be able to answer that question either?


Asked about Vice President Kamala Harris, these words came out of his mouth:


THE PRESIDENT:  Look, I wouldn’t have picked Vice President Trump [Harris] to be vice president did I think she was not qualified to be president.  So, let’s start there.  Number one.

 

That's the official White House transcript.  What happened?  That's the official White House transcript and they're trying to fix Joe's comment which was, "Look, I wouldn't have picked Vice President Trump to be vice president did I think she was not qualified to be president."  Maybe he meant to say, "Look, I wouldn't have picked Vice President Trump to be vice president. Did I think she was not qualified to be president?"  At any rate, the vice president is not Donald Trump, it is Kamala Harris.  She's been at Joe's side since the 2020 campaign.  You'd think that would be an easy one for him to remember.


That White House tried to correct the mistake because, grasp this, Joe didn't correct it himself.  When he got Zelenskyy's name wrong, Joe at least caught his mistake a few second later.  With regards to confusing Kamala with Donald?  He never even grasped that he'd done it.

 

Fact checking the briefing for THE NEW YORK TIMES, Linda Qiu (via THE SEATTLE TIMES notes:


WHAT WAS SAID

“There are at least five presidents running or incumbent presidents who had lower numbers than I have now.”

This needs context. Several presidents have had lower approval numbers near this point in a reelection race, but none of them won office again.

According to Gallup’s approval poll, which goes back to President Harry S. Truman, 38% of adults approve of Biden’s job performance on Day 1,250 of his presidency. That was lower than all past presidents but Presidents George H.W. Bush (37%) and Jimmy Carter (32%) at similar points in their terms, and similar to Trump (39%).

 

Linda's fact check also needs context or at least underscoring.  The three she notes who  were at similar points to Joe?  Poppy Bush, Carter and Trump all lost.


Is it the senility or is Joe just lying?


We thought Annette Insdorf was lying -- in the new HBO documentary FAYE.  We see Faye Dunaway talking to the camera about how she flew out to Los Angeles to meet with Arthur Penn and Warren Beatty about the role of Bonnie Parker in the film BONNIE AND CLYDE.  Penn liked what he saw and he was the director.  Warren needed convincing and Warren was the star and the producer who had nursed the project along.  After Faye explains that the director fought for her to have the role, Annette pops up saying, "It was Penn who insisted upon Faye Dunaway although the other actresses being considred included Jane Fonda, Tuesday Weld, Natalie Wood and Leslie Caron and, my, my the film would've been different with any of the other actresses."


Is that accurate?  No, it's not.  Faye did not beat out Jane, Tuesday or Natalie.  She may have beat out Leslie depending upon how you want to view it.  Leslie wanted the role but Warren (her lover when he started developing the film) didn't want her in it.  She writes about this in her autobiography (and gets that part accurate -- she's a liar we don't care for).


But the other three women?  Faye didn't beat them for the part.  They turned the role down.  Natalie always stated publicly that she turned it down -- after repeated calls from Warren -- because she didn't want to be on location and away from her therapist.  However, she also turned it down because of the messy break up she and Warren had -- he left her at a table and exited the restaurant with a waitress.  If Natalie had wanted the role, it would have been her role.  WARNER BROS was the studio behind the film and Natalie was their biggest female star of the sixties. 1966, when the film began shooting, Natalie was evaluating her relationship with WARNERS and would end up buying out her contract to be free of the studio -- that was her decision.  WARNERS wanted to keep her and would have gladly gone along with her in the film.


Tuesday Weld? 


Her quote's right at the top of this page and has been since 2008.  It had been Cher's "If you can dig it then I'm happy if you can't then I'm sorry." But in the summer of 2008, the quote at the top of the page was changed to Tuesday -- a famous quote from her -- stating, "I do not ever want to be a huge star. Do you think I want a success? I refused BONNIE AND CLYDE because I was nursing at the time but also because deep down I knew that it was going to be a huge success. The same was true of BOB AND CAROL AND FRED AND SUE or whatever it was called. It reeked of success." 

 

Jane Fonda, like Tuesday and Natalie, turned the role down.  She and then-husband Roger Vadim were going to Rome to make BARBARELLA.  By the way, Jim heard an early discussion of this piece and stated, "She made the wrong decision."  No, she didn't.  Bonnie is a splash of color, she's not the lead and, if you're going by financials, BARBARELLA -- with nudity -- made more around the world at the box office than BONNIE & CLYDE.  Jim stated that CRAPAPEDIA says BONNIE & CLYDE made  $70 million domestically.  That's a lie.  Believe us on this, Warren had profit participation and he wishes it made $70 million.  Oh, some newspaper in 2008 said the 1967 film made that amount?  It didn't.  It would have been film rentals, first off, that's how it was measured then -- not in ticket sales.  Stop using CRAPAPEDIA as a trusted source on box office.  You can look at KRAMER VS KRAMER's for financials, for example, and you'll find that their sources linked to are people who don't know s**t and never did but their really big mistake is on their page "1979 in film" where you can find this:


Highest-grossing films of 1979 (United States and Canada)
RankTitleDistributorBox-office gross
1Kramer vs. KramerColumbia$106,260,000[1]
2The Amityville HorrorAmerican International$86,432,520[2]




No, the number one grossing film of 1979 was not, was never, KRAMER VS. KRAMER.  They lie.  Stick with us and we'll convince you on it.  When was KRAMER VS. KRAMER released?  


1979, yes.  But when in 1979?  December 19, 1979.  The film did not make enough in 1979 to be the number one film for the year -- it didn't even make enough in 1979 to be in the top ten for the year.

 

Stop using and trusting sources for pre-1980 box office if it gives you something other film rentals. There is no data beyond that -- unless we're looking at studio accounting ledgers.  So stop believing crap you read on CRAPAPEDIA. 

 

Annette may have been poorly edited.  She might have made those comments in a different context.  By her comment showing up after Faye tells the camera about winning the role, Annette's comments come off as lying.


Imagine that, the media lying.


Like they did all day Saturday as they repeatedly presented "Dr Ruth" as the biggest ally that the LGBTQIA+ community ever had.  


Lie.  


First off, her radio show?  She didn't highlight gay men at the beginning of the AIDS crisis.  She only began to do so after pressure was brought to bear on her.  And even then, she was more comfortable talking about children getting AIDS or straight people getting AIDS -- heck, she'd have preferred discussing feline AIDS.   


We're pressed for time because we've just learned, Joe's about to address the nation about the attempt on Donald's life.  So we need to hurry because we don't want to be stuck covering that as well.


So join us as we highlight some of 'ally' Dr Ruth's actions over the years.

 

Bisexuals? "Dr" Ruth denied their existence: "There is just not that much hard evidence that such a state really exists."  And it was not a one time, off hand remark.  She even wrote about the topic that she -- the sexpert -- didn't know a damn thing about.  From inki's LIVE JOURNAL in 2005:


Recently, Dr. Ruth penned a column where she advised a bi-curious man that there is in fact no such thing as bisexuality. It's not online, but I have included it below, along with my own overly snarky response. Unfortunately, she is just the latest advice columnist to do this. Dan Savage (link) and Dr. Stephen Goldstone (link) have also taken this stance in columns during the last year. All three columnists are reacting to a piece of bogus science put out by neo-eugenicist researcher Michael Bailey (link), which claims to have discovered that there are no bisexual men. You can see how I might be upset about this.

If you want to write a nasty letter, you can do it at the paper's editorial page (link) or on Dr. Ruth's online forum (link). Or preferably, both.

Here is the column segment:

Dear Dr. Ruth: I’ve been with my girlfriend for more than two years, and I have no intention of ever leaving her, but lately I have become more attracted to men. I am very bi-curious, and I know some men I can have first-time experiences with, but I don’t want to commit to the full gay lifestyle. Does it even make a difference if I get together with a man? Basically, I am going to stay with my girlfriend anyway, but I feel I need to get this out of my system.

Dear Reader: Everyone is either straight or gay. Some people go through an in-between stage where they are perhaps not sure, but eventually they fall into one category or the other, so that there really is no such thing as being bisexual — though some people lead a bisexual lifestyle for a certain time in their lives. Now, if it turns out that you are gay, you are not going to stay with your girlfriend for the rest of your life. So while I know it is hard to give her up, that’s what you should do.

You have to decide whether you are straight or gay, and it wouldn’t be fair for you to cheat behind her back with a man, any more than it would to cheat with a woman. But since you are not sure right now of your sexual identity, you may want to do some exploring to find out. You should tell your girlfriend that you need a break from the relationship. Perhaps you’ll decide that you are heterosexual, but by that point she might have moved on to someone else.


You have to decide?  Dr Ruth is stating that being gay is a choice -- grasp that.  That's not an ally.  That's someone advocating for 'conversion' therapy.


And she didn't just write about it once,  here she is denying bisexuality again.


LGBTQ+ is also LGBTQIA+ and the "A" is for asexual. Rachel Kramer Bussel (SALON, 2015):

 

According to Dr. Ruth Westheimer, asexuals are doing it wrong—or rather, not doing it wrong. Last week, the 87-year-old sex therapist Tweeted, “Studies say 1% of pop. is asexual. To me that's 1% too much but sexuality is a spectrum so good that it's so low and not 10%.”

The critical response was immediate:

For those not familiar with the term, an asexual is, according to The Asexual Visibility & Education Network (AVEN), “someone who does not experience sexual attraction.” Sounds simple, right? Not so fast. Even as asexuals are increasingly coming out and expanding the definition of the term, too often, in mainstream culture, asexuality is dismissed or problematized, or treated simply as less worthy than being sexual, as Westheimer did.

The thinking behind Westheimer’s post—that asexuality is a problem to be solved, even while she mentioned but glossed over the idea of sexuality existing on a spectrum—is disturbing. If sexual freedom—meaning the rights of adults to make their own autonomous decisions about how to conduct their sex lives—is a goal, then asexuality has to be part of that vision. As Feministe guest blogger Ze wrote in 2012, “many asexual people often describe the sex-positive movement as unsafe for them…when discussions of asexuality occur in public places, concern trolling about the health of asexual people often abounds — up to and including outright denial of asexuality — as does demonization of asexual people in romantic relationships.” Dr. Ruth’s assertion in no way helps either asexuals—or anyone else.

Tom Schrantz, 35, creator of AsexualityArchive.com, told Salon that “what hurt most” about Dr. Ruth’s comment was that it “went beyond simple ignorance of asexuality, and said that we shouldn’t exist. Someone in her position should be celebrating the diversity of sexual expression, not attacking it, even when that expression is ‘no thank you.’” Schrantz also responded directly to Westheimer on Twitter, noting, “Asexuality is an orientation like any other. There's nothing wrong with us.”

Schrantz knows firsthand how harmful ignorance about asexuality can be—and the direct damage it can cause. “Before I knew what asexuality was, I rarely talked to anyone about how I felt,” he said. “When the conversation turned to sex, I mostly kept my head down and tried to stay out of it, out of fear of being asked uncomfortable questions or being made the center of the conversation. I had a girlfriend once and sex (and my lack of enthusiasm for it) was a frequent subject of awkward and painful conversations.”

The lack of visibility of asexuals can be haunting, especially in a culture where sex is considered a mark of maturity. Schrantz said the ubiquity of sex helped further his own sense of alienation, before he heard the word on a TV show four and a half years ago and “knew it fit me immediately.” However, it took him a long time to realize there was nothing wrong with him because he lacked sexual desire.

As he explained, “For years, I’d see my friends talk about good-looking women, I’d see TV talk about how I couldn’t be a real man if I weren’t sex crazed, I’d see almost every movie rewarded the hero with sex for saving the day, and all of that started to get to me. Pretty much everyone talks about sex as being this amazing, world changing thing, but when I had sex, I remember getting bored and wondering if I could stop without offending my girlfriend.  I wondered what was wrong with me. Why wasn’t I interested?  How could I make myself interested? What would it take to fix me and let me be ‘normal?’ That’s why I got into asexuality activism: I don’t want anyone else to go through what I did.”

According to journalist Rachel Hills, author of "The Sex Myth: The Gap Between Our Fantasies and Reality," Westheimer’s statement was “out of touch and alienating,” but it wasn’t, however, a shock. “Dr. Ruth grew up in an era where celebrating sex was a radical act,” Hills said. “It’s not surprising to me that her vision of sexual freedom might be one that focuses more on validating the joys of sex to the exclusion of validating the right not to have it.” Because the term asexuality has only been used for about the last 15 years, increasing in prominence, especially online, more recently, according to Hills, “It’s going to be a lot easier for a 22-year-old on Tumblr to accept asexuality than 87-year-old Dr. Ruth. But sex is so central to how we structure our society, relationships, and cultural narratives that it’s difficult even for a lot of people much younger than Dr. Ruth to get their heads around the idea that some people just aren’t interested in sex.”

 


Rock Hudson became the face of AIDS in 1985, the year it was learned he had AIDS and the year he died from it.  And what was Ruth's position?  She declared, "I feel sad for all the thousands of women who fantasized about being in [Rock Hudson's] arms, who now have to realize that he never really cared for them."

 

Jason Collins comes out in 2013 -- this isn't ancient history -- and the little troll weighs in.  Danny Shea (HUFFINGTON POST):


Renowned psychosexual therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer joined HuffPost Live Monday to explain her "mixed feelings" about NBA player Jason Collins coming out as the first openly gay male professional athlete in a major sport.

"I find it very sad," Dr. Ruth told HuffPost Live host Ahmed Shihab-Eldin. "That's why I said that I have mixed feelings, that we even have to talk about it. In my opinion, this is a private matter and everybody has to be respected for who they are."


A private matter?  Read her comments, she's saying stay in the closet.  Now that's reprehensible coming from anyone but from someone presenting themselves as a doctor?


The Trevor Project noted at the start of this year:

 

  • Suicide is the second leading cause of death among young people aged 10 to 14, and the third leading cause of death among 15-24 year olds (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2022). Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ+) young people are at significantly increased risk.
  • LGBTQ+ young people are more than four times as likely to attempt suicide than their peers (Johns et al., 2019; Johns et al., 2020).
  • The Trevor Project estimates that more than 1.8 million LGBTQ+ young people (ages 13-24) seriously consider suicide each year in the U.S. — and at least one attempts suicide every 45 seconds.
  • The Trevor Project’s 2023 U.S. National Survey on the Mental Health of LGBTQ Young People found that 41% of LGBTQ+ young people seriously considered attempting suicide in the past year, including roughly half of transgender and nonbinary youth. 

 

One of the motivating factors for so many to come out of the closet has been the reality that LGBTQ+ children can be othered and made to feel they are a mistake or a problem or an error.  That is what has led so many to come out.  


In 2013, this was known.  The suicide rate had been studied for years -- decades even.  And she wants to slam a man for coming out because his sexuality should be a "personal matter."


 

Grasp that.  Personal matter?  She was a sex therapist.  All she did was talk about sex.  Thinking she looked cute -- she looked like a tree stump -- talking about erections and vaginas but a gay person coming out she objects to.

 

 

Or look at her March 30, 1988 column, where she was telling people that they would get AIDS if they had sex with someone who had AIDS.  This was over a year after C Everrett Koop had talked about condom usage to prevent the transfer of AIDS.

 

Reality also comes to bear on Joe.

 

The narrative is in place, the media has imposed it.  Joe has spent weeks attempting to change it; however, it remains: Senile Joe.  That's what the media tunes in for and what's they're going to continue to watch for and to promote.  Once they imposed the liar narrative on Al Gore, it didn't matter what he said or did, that was the lens through which they viewed every statement he made afterwards.

 

Senile is the narrative for Joe.  It's too late to change it.  He's struggling in the polls, there is no real enthusiasm for him and he keeps making glaring mistakes in public.  It's time for him to step aside.  The only thing that's going to change the narrative for the Democratic Party's presidential nominee away from "how senile is he?" will be changing the nominee itself.  For the good of the country, he has to step aside.

 

 

 

Sunday, July 07, 2024

Truest statement of the week

Lord Trump is now, thanks in great part to Supreme Court Judge Alito and his “boy” Uncle Thomas, officially “untouchable” and “above the law” of this fragmented and divided land.
In an unprecedented display of judicial catastrophe, the Supreme Court’s latest term has been nothing short of a cataclysmic train wreck. Within a mere few weeks, the right-wing majority has ravaged the federal government’s powers, championed the Republican assault on voting rights and gun control, swung open the gates for legalized bribery among public officials, and granted Donald Trump a get-out-of-jail-free card for his relentless attempts to subvert democracy and overturn a legitimate election.
And the chaos is far from over.
Brace yourself for even more dubious deeds: expect rulings dropped in the dead of night without a shred of justification, resulting in the relentless erosion of the civil rights of millions of Americans.
May the Gods have mercy on our naive and apathetic asses.
It’s clear most Americans-of-color, and that minority of independently, democratically-inclined minded White folks have vastly misjudged, miscalculated, misread and misconstrued the contempt, animosity and hatred most of mainstream White America (MAGA) harbors for everyone who isn’t them.

 

-- Desi Cortez, "I'd Sooner Vote For Frosty The Snowman, Mother Nature, or even the Yeti Than See Trump Win" (THE BLACK COMMENTATOR).   



A note to our readers

Hey --

Sunday.

Let's thank all who participated this edition which includes Dallas and the following:


The Third Estate Sunday Review's Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess and Ava,
Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude,
Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man,
C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review,
Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills),
Mike of Mikey Likes It!,
Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz),
Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix,
Ruth of Ruth's Report,
Wally of The Daily Jot,
Trina of Trina's Kitchen, 
Marcia of SICKOFITRDLZ,
Stan of Oh Boy It Never Ends,
Isaiah of The World Today Just Nuts,
and Ann of Ann's Mega Dub.

An edition up on Sunday.  And on Sunday morning!!! How the hell did we manage that.  Hold on, I'll tell you

And what did we come up with? 

Desi Cortez gets the truest.

 Repost from THE COMMON ILLS for Gaza coverage -- and to note Kat's two reviews and Isaiah's 2 comics since we don't have a "Highlights" this edition.  Why's that?  Here's where I (Jim) get to it.

 And this is why the edition went up this morning.  Ava and C.I. did the book discussion with Kat first.  Then they looked at the other ideas and said, fine, they're going off to write the media piece and when they were done it was going up regardless of whether there was any other content to go with it.  What were they writing about?  On the Fourth, they discussed THE BOYS, the Jessica Alba NETFLIX movie and something I forget.  They were not doing politics.  They were doing something easy and light.  On Friday, they watched Joe's ABC interview.  They said nothing to us about but excused themselves from the room. Jess thought they were discussing whether or not to write about the interview.  I thought they just didn't want to hear anything more on the topic.  This morning, after they wrote this and I read over it, I asked them why they didn't mention it?  It's a great piece but why hide it like they did.  C.I. noted that she posted Saturday night at THE COMMON ILLS and that she didn't mention Joe.  They were holding it for this edition.  And that's why stuff had to go up Sunday morning. 

 

Elaine had the idea for this one.  Dona loved it because it was a "short piece."

Kat talks to Ava and C.I. about the book she read.

Our new feature that we started a few weeks back.

Mike came up with the idea for this.

Deaths noted in the community.

Book reviews in the community. 

Paul Rudnick gets the tweet of the week.

What we listened to while working on this edition.


Peace.

 

-- Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava and C.I.

 

 

 


Gaza

Repost from THE COMMON ILLS:


 Iraq snapshot

Friday, July 5, 2024.  As the slaughter in Gaza continues, the official death toll has passed the 38,000 mark, 'progressive' David Sirota is pimping a candidate to replace Joe Biden and David doesn't want you to get how he's tricking you again (Israel loves David's choice -- environmental activists, First Amendment supporters, and opponents to genocide aren't crazy for Josh Shapiro), Joe Biden will be on ABC tonight with an interview while he tries to assure Democrats that he's up to the task of running for the presidency, and much more.



Today, the European Union's Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Committee released the following:

High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell and Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič, have issued the following statement:

"The European Union is deeply concerned about the Israeli army orders to evacuate civilians from the area of Khan Younis. Some 250,000 people are impacted by the evacuation orders. These orders also threaten the patients of the European Hospital, one of the few remaining partially functioning hospitals in southern Gaza.

Injured and sick patients from the European Hospital, including pregnant women and elderly people, were forced to relocate to other facilities, such as the Nasser Hospital. Staff also tried to save medical equipment. This evacuation decision is certain to worsen overcrowding, and cause severe shortages in the already overwhelmed remaining hospitals, at a time when access to emergency medical care is critical.

Forced evacuations are creating a humanitarian crisis within the crisis. They exacerbate an already catastrophic humanitarian situation, with nearly 1.9 million Gazans displaced within the Strip, as stated by UN Senior Humanitarian and Reconstruction Coordinator for Gaza Sigrid Kaag in the Security Council. There are no facilities to accommodate people, and humanitarian partners struggle to meet the immense needs of the newly displaced.

The European Union reiterates that for evacuations not to amount to prohibited forcible transfers, they must conform with International Humanitarian Law, guaranteeing safety in transit and proper accommodation in areas of refuge for Palestinians called on to evacuate. Israel is likewise responsible for guaranteeing that displaced persons are able to return to their homes, or areas of habitual residence, once hostilities end. Displaced people also need to have access to the necessary services and have their needs met.

Faced with the deteriorating situation, the European Union has mobilised all its crisis response and humanitarian tools to channel needed aid to Gaza. This includes medical supplies, drugs and medications, and a significant increase in EU funding to humanitarian partners.

A ceasefire is all the more important now, and would make possible a surge of humanitarian assistance to Gaza as well as the release of all hostages.

The European Union recalls the obligation to respect and implement the orders of  the International Court of Justice (ICJ) of 26 January and 24 May 2024, which are legally binding. The EU gives its full support to the comprehensive roadmap presented by President Biden and calls for the immediate implementation of United Nations Security Council resolution 2735, as well as the implementation of UN Security Council resolutions 2728, 2720 and 2712."


Also speaking out is the Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor.  PRESS TV reports:

An international human rights organization says Israel is using water as another weapon of genocide against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip by deliberately reducing the amount of water available to them, especially potable water sources.

The Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said in a new press release issued on Thursday that the Tel Aviv regime is purposefully causing the death of over 2.3 million people as part of its genocide war.

The Euro-Med noted that its field team observed significant damage to a desalination plant in the al-Zaytoun neighborhood, south of Gaza City, as a result of an Israeli strike. The attack claimed the life of a young man who was filling a gallon with water there and left several other individuals wounded.

The station, which provided services to at least 50,000 people in several nearby residential neighborhoods, sustained significant damage after being struck by an Israeli guided bomb that broke through multiple stories and detonated on the first floor.



Yet the US Congress has no such statement to make collectively?  Nothing.  However, US Senator Lindsey Graham has finally learned to breathe through his nose and did manage to speak while otherwise occupied.  ALJAZEERA notes:
 

United States Senator Lindsey Graham has sparked anger after he responded to protests outside his home in Seneca, South Carolina, with anti-Palestinian remarks on social media.

“The Palestinians in Gaza are the most radicalized population on the planet who are taught to hate Jews from birth. It will take years to fix this problem,” Graham said in a post on the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

“When I hear ‘from the river to the sea,’ it reminds me of ‘the Final Solution.’ The Hamas terrorists are the SS on steroids,” he added, drawing a comparison to a Nazi paramilitary organisation, the Schutzstaffel (SS).

As part of the post, Graham shared a video of a small line of protesters — about 20 in total — who held up a large Palestinian flag on the road outside his home and chanted, “Lindsey Graham, we’re not done. Intifada’s just begun.”


Lindsey went on in the deleted post, per ALJAZEERA, to apologize to his neighbors for the disturbance the protesters were causing.  Couldn't he have just used the excuse he usually does on his neighbors?  "They're my nephews."

Paul Rudnick Tweets:  


ALJAZEERA notes:

In response to Thursday’s social media post, Claudia De la Cruz, the PSL’s presidential candidate, compared Graham to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

“It’s clear from Lindsey Graham’s comments that he considers the entire Palestinian population to be ‘the enemy’, making his genocidal intent as clear as Netanyahu’s. He should be held to account for aiding and abetting war crimes,” De la Cruz said in a statement posted online.

A majority of Americans likewise disapprove of Israel’s actions in Gaza: The survey agency Gallup found in March that 55 percent oppose the military offensive, and approval dropped to 36 percent.


And still the slaughter continues.



That's a video report from NBC so maybe it'll still visible in the snapshot five hours from now?  I always wonder, when a person or outlet thinks they want to be noted here: Do they really?  Do they not know that when it's spotted here, there's a good chance that it will be restricted when the Zionists start complaining and spamming YOUTUBE?  I don't know.  At COUNTERPUNCH, Vijay Prashad notes the children of Gaza:


Everyday Violence

June 14: One child was killed by Israeli airstrikes in Zeitoun (Gaza City).

June 22: Two children were killed by Israeli airstrikes in Shujaiya (Gaza City).

June 25: Two children were killed by Israeli fire on al-Wahda Street, near Al-Shifa Hospital (Gaza City).

June 25: Three children were killed by Israeli airstrikes in the Maghazi refugee camp.

Each of these stories is about precious children, most of whom have not even reached the age of 10. Some of these children lived through the barbarous Israeli bombardment of 2014 when over 3,000 children had been killed. Sitting in the homes of families in Gaza City and Khan Younis in the aftermath of that war, I heard story after story about children killed and children maimed (Maha, paralyzed; Ahmed, blinded—my notebook a mess of loss and sorrow). As the bombs continued to fall in 2014, Pernille Ironside, then-chief of the Gaza office of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) saidthat 373,000 children needed “immediate psycho-social first aid.” There were simply not enough counselors to help the children, most of whom are now hardened because of the ugliness of occupation and war.

The violence that they experience has become a daily affair. But this kind of violence can never be mundane. “I am scared,” said Hind Rajab. I remember meeting a little boy who was playing with a football on the streets of al-Mughraqa. His father, who was showing me around, told me that the boy was not able to sleep, but would stay awake at night and cry. That was in 2014. That boy must now be in his early twenties. He might not be alive.

One or Two Legs

An Al Jazeera interactive website has the names of the children killed since October 2023, one killed every fifteen minutes; as I scrolled down the names, I felt ill, and then found this at the very end: “These are the names of only half of the children killed.” In early May, UNICEF director Catherine Russell said, “Nearly all of Gaza’s children have been exposed to the traumatic experiences of war, the consequences of which will last a lifetime.” In her statement, where she reported that 14,000 children have been killed, she said that “an estimated 17,000 children are unaccompanied or separated.” These numbers are estimates and are likely to be undercounts.

A new report from Save the Children suggests that over 20,000 children are missing in Gaza. They are either under the rubble, detained by the Israeli military, or buried in mass graves. During a detailed briefing on June 25, the Commissioner-General of the UN Palestine Agency (UNRWA) Philippe Lazzarini said something staggering: “And you take into consideration that basically, we have every 10 days children losing one leg or two legs on average. This gives you an idea of the scope of the type of childhood a child can have in Gaza.”

The story should not be real. It was the morning of December 19, 2023. Israeli tanks rumbled through the neighborhood of Rimal in Gaza City. Seventeen-year-old Ahed Bseiso was on the top floor of a six-floor building trying to call her father in Belgium to tell him that she was still alive. She heard a loud noise, fell, and called out for her sister Mona and her mother. Her family rushed up, carried her down, and laid her on the kitchen table where her mother had been making bread. Ahed’s uncle Hani Bseiso, an orthopedic doctor, looked at her leg and realized that he would have to either amputate it or she would die. He grabbed whatever supplies he could find and conducted the amputation without anesthesia. Ahed recited verses from the Quran to calm herself. Hani wept as he did the operation, which the family filmed and later posed on YouTube, which was reposted in many places.

These are the stories of Gaza.


These children are dead and dying and let's not pretend that those lucky enough to survive are not going to be haunted by their own childhood for the rest of their lives.  Let's not also not forget the countries feeding this nightmare, making it continue.  ANADOLU AGENCY (via MEMO) notes:
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Israel’s ongoing war on Gaza, now stretching into its 10th month, has been marked by severe civilian casualties and widespread destruction, significantly fuelled by Western arms.

Germany, as the second-largest arms supplier to Israel after the US, plays a major role in exacerbating the crisis.

Despite global condemnation and calls for an end to arms sales, Germany, alongside the US, Italy and the UK, continues to be the main supplier of military equipment that intensifies the violence and suffering in Gaza.




I've seen and done things I want to forgetI've seen soldiers fall like lumps of meatBlown and shot out beyond beliefArms and legs were in the trees
I've seen and done things I want to forgetComing from an unearthly placeLonging to see a woman's faceInstead of the words that gather pace
The words that maketh murderThese, these, these are the wordsThe words that maketh murderThese, these, these are the wordsThe words that maketh murderThese, these, these are the wordsThe words that maketh murderThese, these, these are the wordsMurder
These, these, these are the wordsThe words that maketh murderThese, these, these are the wordsThe words that maketh murder
-- "The Words That Maketh Murder," written by PJ Harvey, first appears on her LET ENGLAND SHAKE album



In the US, we're still caught in the will-he-or-won't-he.  Joe Biden is the US president and the Democratic Party's presidential nominee for November.  Could it change?  It could.  But those who think they're helping, those like professional idiots at THE VANGAURD?  Zac and 'Cody', I didn't realize that they didn't even have college educations.  I know they're idiots and I know they have no knowledge base and no core values.  But just because you desire Joe gone, is that a reason to present your segments as Donald-is-a-truth-teller?

They're stupid and uninformed which is why any lengthy conversation they post needs to be fact checked.  But they're just dumb blowhards.

I am not interested in liars.

Norman Solomon lied throughout 2008 in radio appearance after radio appearance, TV appearance after TV appearance.  He had no dog in the fight, he insisted, but Barack was the best nominee.  Those who read his printed opinion pieces at corporate news sites knew better -- and they saw something that you didn't see when he was reposted by COUNTERPUNCH or COMMON DREAMS or whomever: That he was a pledged delegate for Barack.  He had to include that when he got actual payment from actual newspapers because if he didn't include it they could've gotten him for failing to disclose and that would have taken the whole syndicate his columns went through down.  That's a liar.

We don't need liars in this debate.  He elected to lie and we don't need him, can't trust him.

If you have whored yourself in the past, have lied to the American people and tried to trick them, you don't belong in this conversation.  You are not to be trusted.

Tonight, on ABC's first hour of prime time, Joe will speak with George Stephanopoulos 



Watch, make up your own mind.  Also watch the way some try to spin it.  Opinions are one thing and people can see the same thing and disagree but then there are whores.

David Sirota, come on down.  The man who looks like a drunken doctor mangled his skull during birth with forceps has always been problematic.  There was the moment when he attacked an Iraq War veterans mother and did so as though she didn't know what she was talking about.  She knew what she was talking about and, sad for David, we knew why David was whoring -- she was rightly calling out US House Rep David Obey.  Let's go back because David Sirota wants this forgotten.  When we called him out in real time for attacking Tina, he sent us this most foul mouthed e-mail where he repeatedly stated he was going to sue.  As I noted when he got an undeserved Academy Award nomination, I evened the score by printing up that e-mail and sharing it at every official Academy Award event I attended.  



You might not know her name, but she's fast become a fresh face of the antiwar left. Missouri mom Tina Richards became an overnight YouTube sensation last week, when an encounter she had with Rep. David Obey in a Capitol Hill corridor went viral—just as Congress was debating a bid to rein in spending for President Bush's surge in Iraq. During the encounter, Richards approaches Obey, chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, to discuss her son, Marine Cpl. Cloy Richards—who suffers from undiagnosed traumatic brain injuries following two tours of duty in Iraq and a failure by the military health-care system to provide adequate treatment, his mother says. Obey responds patiently, at first, but the congressman grows agitated as the conversation continues, and he tells Richards that "liberal idiots" were pushing Congress to defund the war—which, Obey argues, would further hurt the cause of veterans whose health-care needs are already being shortchanged.

Richards, the CEO of Grassroots America, a nonprofit devoted to social-justice issues, has continued walking the halls of Congress since then, pushing members to end the war in Iraq. Cloy is due to be deployed to Iraq later this month despite his injuries, she says, and has threatened suicide if he is to be deployed again. 


That's who David Sirota attacked in a piece that he later had taken down.  In the piece, please note, he attacked her for not grasping how important David Obey was.  As he relentlessly kissed David Obey's ass, he forgot to include that, woops, he had been paid by Obey for many years.  That's what professionals call "disclosure."  And that's why we called him out and he was furious and angry and then, a week later, while defending Obey yet again, he did manage to do the needed disclosure -- bare minimum.

His second attempt at the topic omitted Tina's name but did continue to lecture her and others because who knows better about war than David Sirota?  Forget that Tina's son had served two tours in Iraq, David Sirota knew better than her.  Knew better than everyone because, as he wrote, there are "idiot liberals" and they are wrong to "berate" David Obey or anyone like him.

Are you getting just what a piece of crap David Sirota is?  

Why bring this up now?

David's been in the conversation regarding the nominee.  David wants Joe Biden out.  Okay, he's not alone on that.  There are others who want the same.  But David's also pimping a replacement: Josh Shapiro the governor of Pennsylvania who doesn't believe in mask mandates or addressing climate change.  But for our focus here?  Let's note this from ALJAZEERA:

While he may not have the national name recognition that his fellow governors Newsom and Whitmer enjoy, Shapiro is considered one of the top candidates to potentially replace Biden.

The governor, who previously served as Pennsylvania’s attorney general, comfortably won his election in the Mid-Atlantic swing state in 2022. Since taking office, he has had positive approval ratings.

With regards to the war in Gaza, Shapiro has been a staunch supporter of Israel.

“The whataboutism used by some to justify Hamas’s unprovoked actions is ignorant and wrong,” he said last year. “There is no moral equivalency here. Israel has a right to defend itself.”

Shapiro has also been outspoken in denouncing what he describes as anti-Semitism by protesters who oppose the war in Gaza.

In April, he likened pro-Palestinian student protesters to the Ku Klux Klan. The campus protests, however, have been largely peaceful, and student leaders say accusations of anti-Semitism misrepresent their aim: to encourage their universities to divest from Israeli companies linked to the country’s human rights abuses.

“We have to query whether or not we would tolerate this if this were people dressed up in KKK outfits or KKK regalia making comments about people who are African American in our communities,” Shapiro told CNN.


And that's who David Sirota supports.  David wants Joe Biden out and he wants Shapiro in.  How exactly is David a progressive whatever it is that he calls himself these days?  (I just call him an ass regardless.)  Maybe David Sirota needs to sit his tired ass down and keep it down?  (For the record, he never apologized to Tina.)

Some people are genuinely concerned that Joe is not going to win in November.  They are in a panic and they might be right to be in a panic.  It might be good to have a different nominee.  But some people who are injecting themselves into this conversation are doing so for other reasons and are not being honest about it.  We need to be sure, as the conversation continues, that the David Sirotas and Norman Solomons who have lied in the past to try to get you to vote for someone aren't part of this conversation.  They aren't honest brokers and we shouldn't listen to them.


The ALZAZEERA article does a run down on a number of possibilities that a number of people are pushing.  I've warned about Gretch The Wretch already so we won't quote from the article on her but you should look over the article and ponder why some people keep pimping a candidate that has so very little to offer?  Well, I say they have nothing to offer and nothing that says American President -- I say that but maybe, like David Sirota, you're ideal President of the United States is a man who proposed to his wife in Jerusalem?  What's more American than that, right?   



Yesterday, the death toll in Gaza passed 38,000. So maybe not the best time to pimp Josh Shapiro -- who made a dozen trips to Israel before being elected governor and whose election as governor led to a front page story by THE TIMES OF ISRAEL insisting "Josh Shapiro's inauguration symbolizes a new age for Jewish politicians" -- an article that basically attacks Ed Rendell ("Josh shows up for us just by being so proudly Jewish and that is really something because Rendell, who I worked for and who I love, I mean, he never hid his Jewishness, but he didn’t wear it on his sleeve").  I know Ed, I've know him for years and this has been disclosed here repeatedly.  One example of many, March 2012:


Trudy Rubin (Philadelphia Inquirer) admonishes Ed Rendell here. Trudy Rubin's one of the few journalists who doesn't forget Iraq so we note her columns. I don't think Ed's done anything wrong (as noted before, I know Ed). But we'll use that to note a few things about the MEK which has nothing to do with the US legal obligations to Camp Ashraf residents. 


So Little Joshy -- whom THE TIMES OF ISRAEL dished was the best Jewish politician since Joe Lieberman!!! are your panties wet yet, girls? -- is just THE TIMES OF ISRAEL's cover boy and, I'm sure, nude centerfold.


He's clearly not who America needs and it's really past time that the left started holding David Sirota accountable or at least permanently tuning him out.  Whether it's defending US politicians for prolonging the Iraq War or pimping a non-Green and pro-genocide man for the Democratic Party's presidential nomination or, for that matter, attacking the mother of an Iraq War veteran, David Sirota has shown us what he is and he's done so repeatedly.

I was going to include one of David Sirota's Tweets where he basically creams his shorts as he fantasizes about Joshua Shapiro but the person I'm dictating this too found something much more interesting.

 



I'm sorry, where above did I knock Emily Sirota for her husband's Zionist beliefs?  I didn't.  That Tweet is nothing but sexism.  Jill Biden is the First Lady.  I never held Laura Bush responsible for her War Criminal husband's actions.  I don't understand why David needs to knock Jill or to tie her being on the cover of VOGUE -- a common thing for First Ladies -- to his desire to oust Joe Biden so he can get an Israeli loyalist nominated for president?

David Sirota is a piece of crap.  You need to grasp that not everyone involved in the conversation on the issue of who the Democratic Party's presidential nominee should be is an honest broker.  Some are in it to trick you and they will -- as they have repeatedly in the past -- lie to you and think they can manipulate you.


Regarding this topic -- following Wednesday's snapshot -- many e-mails came in to the public e-mail account (common_ills@yahoo.com) from people saying that here I was telling them to vote for whomever the Democratic Party's nominee was.  I didn't do that.  I'm sorry that I wasn't more clear but that was a huge, lengthy snapshot.  

This does appear in the Wednesday snapshot:


So you're reality is Cornel West, Chase Oliver or a Democrat if you're voting for president in 2024.  Donald's going to destroy Palestine even more.  And his vile and disgusting comments in the debate received no pushback from Owen or Glynneth.  Or anyone else.


If you're a Libertarian, Chase Oliver is a great choice.  I can certainly understand someone wanting to vote for Cornel West -- since he's been on fire since rejecting a bunch of White 'leaders' trying to jerk him around.  We've noted Laura Flanders' interview with his running mate earlier this morning but I will include it here in the snapshot as well.




In prior years, we covered everyone running for president -- whether they had a chance at the slot or not.  In 2023, I noted here that I wasn't doing that.  It's a lot of work and there are a lot of liars.  When Howie Hawkins won the Green Party nomination for president, he won it.  He did that by working his ass off.  Dario and the other whores thought campaigning was Tweeting every other week.  That's not a campaign.  Then, filled with sour grapes, they tried to tank Howie by going around to various questionable platforms (CINDY SHEEHAN'S SOAPBOX, to cite one) where hosts would not only air their lies but also encourage them.  Dario didn't run a campaign.  Howie did and that's how Howie got the nomination.  The attacks, the smears on Kevin Zeese, all of that nonsense was repugnant.

And Jill Stein was a part of that.  And Jill's a worthless candidate.  If the Green Party gives her the nomination, it deserves all the ridicule it gets.  

So I noted that we weren't covering every campaign.  I said we'd cover what we could of real campaigns.  Cornel came alive as a candidate during the combative interview with Jimmy Dore and I have no problem highlighting his campaign.  I wish I had time to note Chase Oliver.  But my time is limited.  

That snapshot was directed to those people who were voting Democrat or planning to.  I worded that very badly in the snapshot and the person I was dictating it to even asked me if I wanted to include a statement like that and I responded, "_____ no, just get the damn thing up already."  A feeling I've got this morning because this snapshot has gone on way too long as well.  Expect Monday's to be much shorter.  

But, no, I'm not telling anyone that they have to vote for the Democrat.  I am voting for the Democrat and I'm doing that because I am so worried what's going to happen to reproductive rights, to the LGBTQ+ community, to our basic rights, to our citizens -- that threat Donald made against Liz Cheney is not something minor.  

But some people don't want to vote Democrat and I understand that.  And when I'm talking about do we keep or replace Joe, I'm speaking to other Democrats.  It's a difficult conversation to have because a lot of 'celebrities' on the left -- I'm referring to pundits -- pose as Democrats but they aren't Democrats.  They're Socialists, or they're Democratic Socialists, or they're this or they're that.  And they try to butt into this conversation and pretend to be Democrats.  I find that dishonest, manipulative and disgusting.


You're a Socialist who wants Joe out?  Say you're a Socialist.  But if you're a liar, you don't admit it, you won't fess up because you know the minute you do, the natural response on the part of many Democrats is going to be, this is a decision for members of the Democratic Party only.




Gaza remains under assault. Day 273 of  the assault in the wave that began in October.  Binoy Kampmark (DISSIDENT VOICE) points out, "Bloodletting as form; murder as fashion.  The ongoing campaign in Gaza by Israel’s Defence Forces continues without stalling and restriction.  But the burgeoning number of corpses is starting to become a challenge for the propaganda outlets:  How to justify it?  Fortunately for Israel, the United States, its unqualified defender, is happy to provide cover for murder covered in the sheath of self-defence."   CNN has explained, "The Gaza Strip is 'the most dangerous place' in the world to be a child, according to the executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund."  ABC NEWS quotes UNICEF's December 9th statement, ""The Gaza Strip is the most dangerous place in the world to be a child. Scores of children are reportedly being killed and injured on a daily basis. Entire neighborhoods, where children used to play and go to school have been turned into stacks of rubble, with no life in them."  NBC NEWS notes, "Strong majorities of all voters in the U.S. disapprove of President Joe Biden’s handling of foreign policy and the Israel-Hamas war, according to the latest national NBC News poll. The erosion is most pronounced among Democrats, a majority of whom believe Israel has gone too far in its military action in Gaza."  The slaughter continues.  It has displaced over 1 million people per the US Congressional Research Service.  Jessica Corbett (COMMON DREAMS) points out, "Academics and legal experts around the world, including Holocaust scholars, have condemned the six-week Israeli assault of Gaza as genocide."   The death toll of Palestinians in Gaza is grows higher and higher.  United Nations Women noted, "More than 1.9 million people -- 85 per cent of the total population of Gaza -- have been displaced, including what UN Women estimates to be nearly 1 million women and girls. The entire population of Gaza -- roughly 2.2 million people -- are in crisis levels of acute food insecurity or worse."  THE NATIONAL noted yesterday, "More than 38,000 Palestinians have been killed since October, according to the latest figures from the enclave's health ministry.  A total of 58 people were killed in the 24-hour reporting period, taking the overall toll to 38,011.  Another 179 people were wounded, taking the total number of injured to 87,445. The majority of victims are women and children, according to the ministry."  This number has not yet been updated on Friday.  Months ago,  AP  noted, "About 4,000 people are reported missing."  February 7th, Jeremy Scahill explained on DEMOCRACY NOW! that "there’s an estimated 7,000 or 8,000 Palestinians missing, many of them in graves that are the rubble of their former home."  February 5th, the United Nations' Phillipe Lazzarini Tweeted:

  



April 11th, Sharon Zhang (TRUTHOUT) reported, "In addition to the over 34,000 Palestinians who have been counted as killed in Israel’s genocidal assault so far, there are 13,000 Palestinians in Gaza who are missing, a humanitarian aid group has estimated, either buried in rubble or mass graves or disappeared into Israeli prisons.  In a report released Thursday, Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said that the estimate is based on initial reports and that the actual number of people missing is likely even higher."
 

As for the area itself?  Isabele Debre (AP) reveals, "Israel’s military offensive has turned much of northern Gaza into an uninhabitable moonscape. Whole neighborhoods have been erased. Homes, schools and hospitals have been blasted by airstrikes and scorched by tank fire. Some buildings are still standing, but most are battered shells."  Kieron Monks (I NEWS) reports, "More than 40 per cent of the buildings in northern Gaza have been damaged or destroyed, according to a new study of satellite imagery by US researchers Jamon Van Den Hoek from Oregon State University and Corey Scher at the City University of New York. The UN gave a figure of 45 per cent of housing destroyed or damaged across the strip in less than six weeks. The rate of destruction is among the highest of any conflict since the Second World War."






Yesterday, Kat's "Kat's Korner: The late Melanie releases a live album" and "Kat's Korner: Judy Garland, THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT!" and Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "Clarence Takes Another Dump" and "He Eats Dog" went up.  The following sites updated since the last snapshot:








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