Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Truest statement of the week

It was sad to see Cuomo hold a vaccine event at a Harlem church where preachers, politicians, and other “leaders” out did one another in expressing support  and ignoring what may be criminality. New York NAACP president Hazel Dukes referred to Cuomo as her son and added for emphasis, “He ain’t white.” Former congressman Charles Rangel saw fit to be only slightly less embarrassing when he compared Cuomo to the plight of someone who was facing unfair treatment. “You go to your family, you go to your friends because you know they will be with you.” 

Rangel and Dukes were not even among the worst of the Cuomo defenders. A leaked recording  of an Assembly meeting revealed that one black lawmaker compared Cuomo to the exonerated Central Park Five, who spent years in jail for a crime they didn’t commit. Another compared him to Emmett Till as they falsely claimed that impeachment would deprive him of due process.

There are black political leaders who have called on Cuomo to resign, but there is no other community in the state that is represented by people so willing to debase themselves for so little. Cuomo can never again expect to have rich New Yorkers and corporate interests bankroll  campaign war chests that have made him the top fundraiser among all governors in the country. He has outlived his usefulness and at best can hope to remain in office for the rest of this term.

-- Margaret Kimberley's "Freedom Rider: Andrew Cuomo and the Black Political Class" (BLACK AGENDA REPORT).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Truest statement of the week II

Ocasio-Cortez’s defense of the right wing of the Democratic Party against socialist opposition reveals her role in preempting the development of a movement of the working class independent of the two-party system. She is the latest iteration of a strategy, developed by the Democratic Party over 200 years of political experience, to present a “left” face in order to trap social opposition, prop up the capitalist order and carry out ruthless attacks on the working class in the US and internationally. Fundamental lessons must be drawn from this experience.

The historical role of the Democratic Party

The origins of Ocasio-Cortez and her attacks against the socialist left must be understood in the political and historical context of the historical role of the Democratic Party.

The Democratic Party has a vast experience in diverting social opposition by trapping social discontent within its reach, where it is crushed. It has at its disposal billions of dollars, mass media channels and thousands of people whose singular responsibility is to stop social opposition from breaking out of its control.

This has been its political role since its inception in 1828, when Andrew Jackson trapped the embryonic anti-capitalism of “workingmen” in the northern cities behind a reactionary alliance with the southern slave-owning class. The emergence of the working class in the post-Civil War period inaugurated decades of violent class struggle, which the Democratic Party attempted to control through subsuming strains of populist, agrarian politics, culminating in the elevation of the demagogue William Jennings Bryan as repeated Democratic presidential candidate at the turn of the 20th century. Despite the insurrectionary character of the class struggle, the Democratic Party fought to prevent these struggles from developing to a point of a political break and the formation of an independent political party in the European model of labor or social democratic parties. This, alongside the extraordinary wealth of American capitalism, explains why there has never been a labor party in the United States.

This reached a new stage in the period following the Great Depression, when a wave of semi-insurrectionary strikes and social struggles broke out under the leadership of socialists. The administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt, aware of the example of the Russian Revolution of 1917, introduced New Deal social reforms to prevent the workers’ movement from developing in opposition to the capitalist system. This was critical for preparing American imperialism’s entry into World War II, opening up a period of imperialist domination worldwide. John F. Kennedy’s New Frontier and Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society portrayed the Democratic Party as “left” in order to temper social discontent at home and facilitate a massive expansion of imperialist plunder abroad.

The financial crisis of 2008-09 produced a new wave of social radicalization, leading the Democratic Party to present Barack Obama as the candidate of “hope and change,” a former “community organizer” whose race supposedly made him a natural ally of the oppressed.

As opposition to the right-wing character of Obama’s presidency grew, Bernie Sanders then emerged from 30 years on the Democratic congressional backbench as a “socialist” candidate in the party primary who promised “political revolution.” In 2016, he became a lightning rod for social discontent, winning over 10 million votes, mostly from workers and youth. His sudden rise to popularity shocked the Democratic Party and served as a warning that the population was moving rapidly to the left and was attracted to socialism. Sanders, who had criticized Hillary Clinton as the stooge of Wall Street, endorsed her campaign, leading to the disillusionment of many of his supporters.

 

 

--  Eric London, "The Democratic Party and the political origins of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez" (WSWS).


 

A note to our readers

Hey -- 

Wednesday.

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.



And what did we come up with?

 

 

 

 

 

Peace,


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

 

Editorial: Censoring PRESS TV

 Social media monster FACEBOOK is now censoring Iran's PRESS TV.

 


It's a shame for many reasons.  It's a shame when any outlet gets censored.  Censorship isn't an answer in a society that believes in free speech.  The real answer is always more speech.


It's a shame because FACEBOOK shouldn't be able to censor at all.  Are they a platform or not?


We see it as a huge shame because PRESS TV -- unlike the US outlets ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, CNN and MSNBC -- actually covers the Iraq War on a regular basis.







TV: Who gets handed the genie?

Sometimes it's as though Scheherazade's genie representing some actors. How else to explain the repeated opportunities so many men are given? 

3 JESS

Alan Tudyk is the perfect example of what we're talking about. A charisma-free actor, he keeps failing and keeps getting repeated chances, you'd think POWERLESS would have killed off any hopes of a leading man career. It certainly should have. But he's back, on SYFY, with RESIDENT ALIEN -- a sitcom deemed funny for those not noted for their sense of humor. He's about as funny in this as he was in SUBURGATORY -- which is to say, not at all. Ratings wise? It's no ALPHAS or DEFIANCE or even INCORPORATED. All of those SYFY shows were cancelled and RESIDENT ALIEN probably will be in season two as well but, currently, SYFY is trying to pass it off as a success.

Maybe it is? Maybe when you make a point to cancel one fan favorite after another, you run off your potential viewership? THE CW has restored faith in a lot of viewers by actually giving their shows a chance to find audiences. It helps that the network plans for summer programming (like everyone, they were effected by the COVID pandemic last summer). Of the non-Big Four (ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC), SYFY has the worst reputation for getting viewers excited about a new show only to quickly drop it.

Why does Tudyk keep getting roles?

You could argue look no further than KENAN.

KENAN could be a funny show. It isn't, but it could have been. In front of a live audience Kenan Thompson kills on SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE and has since 2003. Sadly, NBC doesn't like multi-camera sitcoms and that's how you arrive at the highly uneven show. Kenan isn't the problem. The rest of the cast are the problem. They're not an ensemble. There is no rhythm -- which is needed in comedy (and why MODERN FAMILY was whimsical, not hysterical) -- and they don't act as a cast. Everyone's doing their own little thing, in their own little space and no one's getting any laughs.

Especially true of Don Johnson.

Don can't really act. He never could. For whatever reason, The Water Cooler Set applauds him from time to time. We remember, for example, a TV critic at NYT devastating Farrah Fawcett by trashing her and then going on to do the same to Melanie Griffith but then it came time for Donald Johnson -- the surgically enhanced Don Johnson -- and the same female critic was like a kitten rubbing against Don's ankles. Now he once had that effect on some -- years and years ago. But those days are long gone and he supplied nothing to BOOK CLUB -- Andy Garcia provided the heat among the male cast members. Why does Tudyk keep getting roles?

Why did Don Johnson? He couldn't act and he still can't -- watch him struggle through an episode of KENAN. Flops like THE CITY and SIX PACK didn't destroy his career or him. Finally, in 1984, after 14 years of chances, he finally found success with MIAMI VICE. Another example would be Patrick Dempsey who failed for 20 years before GREY'S ANATOMY. A woman doesn't get the chances that Don and Patrick got or the ones that Tudyk is getting currently. 



Were you wonderin', 

"Was the gamble worth the price?"


Pack it in, I heard you did, pack it in


Was it hard to fold a hand you knew could win?

-- "The Midway," written by Joni Mitchell, first appears on her CLOUDS



Pack it in?

Why would anyone ever do that when Tyler Labine has a career?

 

Despite multiple failures, Tyler Labine has a career.   Apparently, that's enough to keep failures in the race, no matter how many times they lose.



It's got to be Scheherazade's genie tugging  the strings for these men because not even Mike Ovitz, in his hey day at CAA, could pull off this trick.

 

Bad moments in every day life

 1) WAITR texts that your food has been delivered . . . but it apparently wasn't delivered to you.


2)  An hour after taking your cell phone off the charger, you check and the battery is already dead.


3) You're ten minutes early to the bus stop but the driver was apparently 11 minutes or more early.


4) The ATM machine not only doesn't provide your cash withdrawal, it also refuses to return your card.


5) 11:30 at night cravings have you headed for the kitchen to hit the cereal but you take the milk out of the fridge and discover it's gone sour.\

\6) The guy in the window tells you Jack "N The Box is out of curly fires as you wonder, "How does Jack 'N The Box run out of fries?"

\

7) You get your 'stimulus' check . . . only to discover the government grabbed about 800 dollars for student loans.  






KINDLE UNLIMITED (Stan, Ava and C.I.)

1summerread

 

In 2018, community sites took turns covering a book every week.  You can see "In 2018, we read books" to review that coverage.  We didn't want to repeat ourselves in 2019 or 2020.  So when Marcia came up with a way to cover books but with a twist, we were all for it.  Marcia's idea was for us to digital books -- we're largely a printed text crowd -- and to use AMAZON's KINDLE UNLIMITED.  So for 2021, we'll be doing a book a week and trying to just use KINDLE UNLIMITED. This week, we're talking with Stan about his "GOODBYE NATALIE, GOODBYE SPLENDOUR."


So this is a book about Natalie Wood's last weekend?


Stan: Right.  Have either of you read the book?


No,, we haven't.


Stan:  You should.  I saw a lot of the points you have made in the book.  I even noted "Natalie Wood: The lies that remain repeated (C.I.)" that C.I. wrote last year.  The book convinced me that Robert Wagner is responsible for Natalie Wood's death.  If he didn't push her overboard -- accidentally or intentionally -- he made the decision to leave her in the water.  That's why you have the two people who heard her crying for help in the water.  That's why he kept the captain Dennis Davern from looking and delaying any search for Natalie. To read the book is to realize that Robert Wagner killed Natalie Wood.  


It sounds like a very powerful book.


Stan: I found it very powerful.  This book that he wrote with Marti Rulli could have just been his story.  And that would have been fine.  We would have been left with do we trust him or do we trust Robert Wagner.  But Marti Rulli has done a lot of investigative work.  That's how she tracks down the couple in bed in their yacht that heard Natalie's screams and heard a man, Robert Wagner, yelling at Natalie.  The Wagner faction try to play the book off as some sort of attempt to make money on Davern's part.  That's not reality.  Read the book, it's so much more than Davern.  

 

Thoughts on AMAZON's KINDLE UNLIMITED?    


Stan: With regards to this book, I'd like to remind anyone reading that if they are paying for KINDLE UNLIMITED, they can read the book for free.  I am enjoying it.  I wish it had more books but I'm hoping that this series this year will help with that.  I got e-mails on "Adrienne Barbeau's bad book THERE ARE WORSE THINGS I COULD DO" and there are people who are learning about KINDLE UNLIMITED as a result and there are people who subscribe who e-mail and say they're glad that there's a serious series on KINDLE UNLIMITED because there's a lot that can be improved.

    

 

 

---------

"KINDLE UNLIMITED (Isaiah, Ava and C.I.)"

"KINDLE UNLIMITED (Elaine, Dona, Ava and C.I.)"


"KINDLE UNLIMITED (Mike, Ava and C.I.)"

"KINDLE UNLIMITED (Trina, Ava and C.I.)"

"KINDLE UNLIMITED (Stan, Ava and C.I.)"

"KINDLE UNLIMITED (Marcia, Ava and C.I.)"

"KINDLE UNLIMITED (Kat, Ava and C.I.)"

"KINDLE UNLIMITED (Rebecca, Ava and C.I.)"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Songs of The Last Five Years

 Great Songs of The Last Five Years . . .


Jody e-mailed to say she felt we spent too much time looking back "at old music.  There's a lot of great music in the 20s and even in the '10s.  Can we maybe recognize that?"


Okay, Jody, we're starting a new feature entitled "Great Songs of The Last Five Years."  For our first pick?  


The Jonas Brothers' "Sucker."



It's catchy, it's sung well, a great piece of pop perfection.


 

 

 

 
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