Monday, March 26, 2018

Truest statement of the week

Many people who hate and fear Donald Trump feel that only political black magic or some form of trickery can explain his election as US President. They convince themselves that we are the victims of a dark conspiracy rather than that the world we live in is changing, and changing for the worse.
Cambridge Analytica has now joined Russia at the top of a list of conspirators who may have helped Trump defeat Hillary Clinton in 2016. This is satisfactory for Democrats as it shows that they ought to have won, and delegitimises Trump’s mandate.
In the Russian and Cambridge Analytica scandals, dodgy characters abound who claim to have a direct line to Putin or Trump, or to have secret information about political opponents or a unique method of swaying the voting intentions of millions of Americans. The most doubtful evidence is treated as credible.

The dossier by the former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, about Trump’s romps in Moscow, struck me when I first read it as hilarious but entirely unbelievable. The US media thought the same when this document was first being hawked around Washington before the election, and refused to publish it. It was only after Trump was elected that that they and the US security agencies claimed to find it in any way credible.

-- Patrick Cockburn, "It’s wishful thinking to blame Clinton’s loss on Cambridge Analytica" (THE INDEPENDENT).

Truest statement of the week II

Today, the  Iraq invasion of 2003 is considered the biggest foreign policy mistake in US history -- argued by many -- and right there with the Vietnam War.  

-- Mitch Jeserich, Monday, March 19, 2018's LETTERS & POLITICS (KPFA).

A note to our readers

Hey --

Sunday here on the West Coast.  Monday on the East.

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?

Mike and C.I. brought Patrick Cockburn's statement in for a truest.
Also getting a truest? Mitch Jeserich.
There's a war going on but we've got babies who can't even drink yet who want to lead the country.  
Ava and C.I. take on the junk CBS served up Sunday night.
How about Congress remembers they're supposed to serve We The People and then how about that they start doing that?
Graphic to Miles is mild to everyone else.
The Kills.
Continuing list.
This didn't get done last week.  On a smaller scale, C.I. did it in a snapshot last week.
What we listened to while writing.
Cindy's got a real protest planned.
And a look at the community's best.

See you next week.


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

Editorial: Navel gazers refuse to look at the ongoing war

"At the height of the war, there were almost 170,000 U.S. troops in Iraq trying to quell an insurgency and stabilize a country in the grips of a vicious civil conflict. And the U.S. is still involved in Iraq," declared Lulu Garcia-Navarro on NPR's WEEKEND EDITION Sunday.  Why is it so hard for so many others to admit this reality?

So many realities about Iraq tend to be difficult for the media.


Even in Australia, they realize what a joke THE ATLANTIC is.

As Michael Brull (NEW MATILDA) points out, "The governments who perpetrated the war are 'still at large', and the experts haven't been fired, let alone discredited. A prime example is Jeffrey Goldberg, the insufferable liberal 'journalist' who has fallen upwards after every round of pumping out American and Israeli propaganda. Now, incredibly, he is the editor-in-chief at the Atlantic."

And to prove how pathetic THE ATLANTIC is, they ran garbage over the weekend by Matt Peterson who insisted, "The bull had destroyed the china shop. Yet only the bull could fix it. More than that, argues the ethicist Gerard Powers, it would have been wrong for the United States to withdraw at that point."

That's the thing about the War Whores, it's never the right time to leave for them.

THE ATLANTIC passes this off as 'insight' and 'new' but it's not.  It was all around 14 years ago and rejected at THE COMMON ILLS in "SHOULD THIS MARRIAGE BE SAVED?"  The people who destroy your home?  It doesn't matter if it was an accident (the Iraq War was no accident), if they've broken in your home, you just want them to leave.  They may want to stay and try to fix it, but it's not their home and they need to respect your wishes and leave.  The wishes of the Iraqi people is that the US leave their country.

Don't expect the US to leave anytime soon.

A bunch whiny kids in America again made it about themselves over the weekend.

The world was not amused.

All across the nation, people are protesting against "violence," and yet not one demonstration about the government's violence in , , , , , . Millions have died since 2003 and it doesn't even register on the outrage meter.
Protests around the world to condemn gun violence in America; NO PROTESTS to condemn American violence in , , , , & around the world?

America's White teens have made it clear that they will navel gaze forever more.  They will also whine to the media that their school was 25% African-American and that the media is ignoring those students of color -- while these White entitled kids never realize that by refusing to step aside, they will continue to hog the microphone and prevent students of color from speaking.

The whiners aren't really interested in their peers of color, if they were they'd shut up and insist the media focus on the students of color.  They're not interested in the deaths of foreigners caused by the US government either.

They're useless and their only function at this point is being the subject of a betting pool -- will Hogg disgrace himself in the next four years by attacking a female or be caught selling his ass for cash?

In the world of real problems, there's the Iraq War.

Nicholas J.S. Davis (NEW MINT PRESS) notes the death toll in Iraq is easily 2.38 million killed since the start of the 2003 US-led invasion.

But, hey, no need to march for that, right?  Who cares about the Iraqi people, right?

On Sunday, the CBC asked "What are Canadian special forces still doing in Iraq?"  It's a shame that no media outlet in the US had the courage to ask that question about US forces.

Suck on that, David Hogg.

TV: 60 MINUTES of gossip

A big event changed everything, right?

That's the lie we were told.

Does anyone remember?

Does 60 MINUTES?

a new illst

Last week was the 15th anniversary of the ongoing Iraq War.  And the weekly magazine 60 MINUTES did what?

Not one damn thing.

Not Sunday the 18th, not Sunday the 25th.  Not one damn thing.  This despite it supposedly being a serious news magazine, this despite the media having sold the Iraq War (including the CBS news magazine), this despite everything.

But, please note, Anderson Cooper showed up on 60 MINUTES Sunday night to interview Stephanie Clifford.  Who?  Her porn name is Stormy Daniels.

He could have asked her about exploitation in the porn industry.  He might have asked her how you maintain a marriage to a fellow porn actor (she has had three) while also filming porn scenes.  He could have used the time with her to explore why male actors in straight porn like to have a little scruff on their chin while waxing every other part of their body.  Or he might have gotten right down to it and asked how many men's anuses she tongued on camera and how many females' and whether she preferred shoving a vibrator up another woman or having a woman shove one up her?  He might have probed the area of cosmetic surgery and how, unlike most women, her breasts appear to have actually increased decades after puberty.

None of that would have qualified as spectacular journalism but it would fit interviewing a porn performer.

Instead, Anderson didn't even ask her what drug (or drugs) she was on in the interview -- her pupils were extremely dialated.  (A CBS NEWS friend swears it was Klonopin but we're going to guess Benzodiazepines.)  That's a news story, right?  News magazine airs segment with drugged out interview subject without informing viewers?

If not to argue over who had taken more loads, why did Anderson and Stormy sit down together?

Because she says she had sex (once) with Donald Trump -- reality star turned President of the United States.

This month saw 7 US service members killed in Iraq and 60 MINUTES devoted zero segments to the story.

Early in the interview, Anderson Cooper declared, "I guess I'm not 100% sure why you're doing this."

We could relate.  We weren't 100% sure why any journalist would be interviewing her about one act of sex from 2006.

But then we realized it was Anderson Cooper and the former host of THE MOLE isn't much of a journalist.


Remember that?

Leading up to 9/11, we were awash in sex talk.  Bill Clinton did it with this woman, did it with that woman.  Made a pass here, made a pass there.

That's what the so-called news media concerned themselves with.  That's what the gabby pundits talked about.

Supposedly, 9/11 changed everything -- including the media.

In 2011, Brian Lowry (VARIETY) observed, "In hindsight, news organizations were second-guessed for their trashy and inconsequential coverage leading up to Sept. 11. The most ostentatious examples included the media scrum surrounding missing D.C. intern Chandra Levy and a trumped-up outbreak of shark attacks breathlessly transformed into a 'trend'."  The media landscape was supposed to change.  But it didn't.  A point Jefferey Cronin (Temple University's Klein College of Media and Communication) covered in a 2011 essay:

Assistant Professor Peter Jaroff, MSP, who was a producer for the 6 p.m. news on 6abc on 9/11, remembers the overwhelming feeling that the viewers were counting on him. He was on his way into the office when he first heard that a plane hit the World Trade Center.
"I had think about whether I would continue on to work," he says. "But of course, I had to."
In the days immediately following 9/11, Jaroff remembers thinking that, "if anything good can come out of this, we could have more of a seriousness about what we do." He had hopes that local affiliates would focus more on important national and international news and recapture "something we had lost as a genre since the O.J. Simpson murder case."
But he says it didn't last long.
Within two weeks, Jaroff remembers the newsroom buzzing over news that someone was attacked by a pit bull and the level of interest in making it the top story. "To me, it's remarkable how little things have changed."

"To me, it's remarkable how little things have changed."

We really felt that way watching Anderson Cooper's nonsense tonight.

So the big 'news' from the interview?  The woman had sex with Donald twelve years ago.  Consensual sex.  Once.

This is news?

America didn't know Donald Trump cheated?

Where were they when Ivana Trump found out in 1990 that her husband was sleeping with Marla Maples?  Or during the months when gossip columnist Liz Smith did nothing but cover the affair?

Liz Smith died in 2017 but her spirit lives on in Anderson Cooper.

Anderson and other nonsense peddlers like to insist this is not about the sex, it's about payment.  It is completely about the sex.

At this point, Donald's not even accused of paying the porn actress for her silence.  B-b-b-ut it could lead back to him!  And what?  It's not a crime to pay someone to lie about sex.  And if it turns out to be a campaign finance issue -- which some are sure it will be -- well, those are monetary fines usually and they don't amount to high crimes and misdemeanors for those who keep insisting this will lead to impeachment.

You have some saying that it will remove Trump from office via special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.

That would be his investigation into Russia 'hacking' the 2016 presidential election.

He's found nothing so far but you have some 'resistance' members finger banging themselves to the thought that he'll expand his investigation.

Expand his investigation?  That seems so familiar.  Hmm . . . Oh, Ken Starr.  The special prosecutor who overreached and was widely rejected by most Americans as a result.  Assigned to probe Whitewater, he came up with the 'news' that Bill Clinton had sex with Monica Lewinsky.

Who cares?

That was America's reaction.

Interesting that some of the people who felt it was a non-issue in 1998 are now insisting this is about a serious issue today.  It's about sex.  It's a non-issue and Americans are not going to care about it.

Robert Mueller's investigation has come up empty thus far but if he really wants to look like an idiot then all he has to do is turn his focus onto Donald Trump's sex life.

Equally true, no one needs to hear from the porn star.

She signed away her rights in 2016.  It's not her story to tell.

If she had been raped, we might see a point to her breaking the agreement.  She states it was consensual.  There's no reason to break the agreement.  'But she changed her mind.'  Tough.  Sherri Ellis would love to have that out.  Who?

In the film SILKWOOD, Cher plays Dolly Pelliker.  That's Sherri Ellis.  But because parts of the story weren't really Sherri Ellis' story (the affair with the character played by Diana Scarwid, for instance), they called the character Dolly Pelliker.  Sherri Ellis was paid $67,500 for elements of her life to be used in the film.  She feels that the film defamed her.  She'd probably love to back out the agreement she made.  So let's start a new movement where you get paid for a part of your life to be used or kept silent and then you insist that you've changed your mind -- after you've signed it away and deposited the check.

In what world does that make sense?

There are real issues out in the world but Anderson Cooper and his colleagues at 60 MINUTES can't find any.  Instead of addressing real issues, they're a bunch of cackling hens offering about as much 'news' as the cast of THE VIEW, THE CHEW, THE TALK, etc.  That's a huge comedown for what was supposed to be a serious news magazine.

Stupid Hiral laps at Tammy Duckworth's crotch

Sen. Tammy Duckworth (IL), an Iraq War veteran herself, is spot on: "It's shameful to turn our backs on those who have the courage to wear the uniform. We can do better than this."

Oh, Hiral, you ignorant fool.

You don't deserve to be elected.  Tammy Duckworth?  She doesn't deserve to serve in Congress.  The only time whining Tammy speaks up is if it's someone -- citizen or not -- who fought in the Iraq War.

Guess what?

Congress is supposed to represent the American people.

It's time all you whores grasped that.

That means you work on ending homelessness immediately.  No, not just for veterans, for all American citizens.

It means you start grasping that you're in DC to serve the American people.  Stop whoring out to corporations.  Stop pushing the tax burden onto individual American citizens.  Start raising the minimum wage.  Start creating jobs.  Start increasing Medicare benefits.  And create Medicare 4 All to ensure that every American citizen has health insurance.

That's the work you need to do.

Instead, you all just get into Congress and line your own pockets.  Cheap whores.  America deserves better.

How sexless is Miles Park?

We have to wonder about Miles Park -- not yet thirty and possibly still a virgin.  The NPR 'reporter' just filed his latest Sunday night, "Stormy Daniels Shares Graphic Details About Alleged Affair With Trump."

Ava and C.I. cover the travesty of journalism that was the 60 MINUTES segment in "TV: 60 MINUTES of gossip."  So, yes, NPR and Miles Park should be ashamed of themselves for pretending like the CBS show provided journalism.

But possibly even more embarrassing is Miles' claim of graphic details.

We get the feeling that Miles would jizz in his pants were he to read Jacqueline Susann's VALLEY OF THE DOLLS from 1966.  Hell, he might even jizz just from reading a Harlequin Romance.

He thinks there were "graphic details" about the "affair" on CBS?

The "affair" was having sex one time.

Miles really is sexually inexperienced, isn't he?

As for graphic details?

She swatted him a few times on the butt with a rolled up magazine before they had dinner?

Was that graphic?

Makes you wonder just how the NPR crowd has sex.

We're assuming it's with the lights out, no talking and little touching.  Missionary position, of course.

It's okay to be sexually dysfunctional.  We just don't understand why you'd want to broadcast that fact?

Music video of the week

The Kills "List of Demands (Reparations)."

Read a book?


Readers have e-mailed us asking for more book coverage at community sites.  We've passed this request on.

So far, the book coverage includes:

"THE SAME RIVER TWICE (Alice Walker)" -- Isaiah.

"Dancing with Demons: The Authorized Biography of Dusty Springfield" -- Marcia.

"Good for Jimmy Stewart, bad for readers" -- Stan.

"Conversations with Toni Morrison" -- Marcia.

"Forced Into Glory: Abraham Lincoln's White Dream" -- Ann.

"He Ran All The Way" -- Trina.

And we'll also note Ann's "How a book store could stay alive in today's economy" about the book business.

We'll try to update this feature regularly.

Those who got and get it right

From C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

Many got it wrong.  Many walked away.  At THIRD, Betty, Elaine, Trina, Ava and I had discussed a piece that time ran out for.  But here are ten that deserve mention for not just making the hard calls when everyone talked about the Iraq War but who have continued to make those hard calls and refused to provide cover for political favorites.

1) Glen FordMargaret Kimberley and Bruce A. Dixon (BLACK AGENDA REPORT)
2) Arundhati Roy (novelist and activist)
3) Sarah Abdallah (activist)
4) Harry Belafonte (singer, activist, author, leader)
5) Justin Raimondo, Jason Ditz, Margaret Griffis, Scott Horton (ANTIWAR.COM)
6) Cindy Sheehan (activist, author)
7) Patrick Martin and Bill van Auken (WSWS)
8)William Rivers Pitt (TRUTHOUT)
10) John Stauber (critic, author)

These are the ones we had agreed on -- Betty, Elaine, Trina, Ava and I -- and the plan was to include them on a list -- a much larger list -- with other choices for people who had not walked away from the topic.  A lot of people would not make the list because, for example, like United For Peace and Justice, they closed shop after Barack was elected in November of 2008.  Fakers.  But it's important to note the people who did make a difference.

This edition's playlist


1) Sam Smith's THE THRILL OF IT ALL.


3) Alicia Keys' HERE.



6) Janet Jackson's UNBREAKABLE.


8) Taylor Swift's REPUTATION.

9)  Steve Grand's ALL AMERICAN BOY.

10) Ben Harper's BOTH SIDES OF THE GUN.

The March on the Pentagon

Cindy Sheehan's organizing a March on the Pentagon.


Women Rise Together for Peace 
An Open Invitation:
Women's March on the Pentagon

April 5th in Washington DC

April 9th in Boston 

April 12th in Long Island




 contact Cindy Sheehan for 

more info, to organize a meeting/action
in your area or ??



This piece is written by Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude, Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix, Kat of Kat's Korner, Betty of Thomas Friedman is a Great Man, Mike of Mikey Likes It!, Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz, Ruth of Ruth's Report, Marcia of SICKOFITRADLZ, Stan of Oh Boy It Never Ends, Ann of Ann's Mega Dub, Isaiah of The World Today Just Nuts and Wally of The Daily Jot. Unless otherwise noted, we picked all highlights.

"Iraq snapshot" -- most requested entry by readers of this site.

"Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "Hillary's Tain..." -- Isaiah on Hillary's campaign efforts.

"Great Pacific Garbage Patch," "Curiosity's trip turns 2,000 days old" and "The universe is a lightbulb"

"Fatty Katha Pollitt always does her part to keep the Iraq War going"

"scandal (tv and hillary),"  "friday, march 30th, nicollette sheridan as alexis on dynasty," "MARVEL AGENTS OF SHIELD, Patrick Cockburn calls out the crazy, Hillary tries to drain every dollar out of the DNC"

"Barbra Streisand and other disappointments," "Crappy Lauper," "Dionne Warwick," "Landslide" and "Who are The Kills?" -- Ruth, Marcia, Kat and Elaine on music.

 "In Whose Times?" Marcia has a question.

"Bozo The Clown" -- Ruth notes a passing.

"Toys 'R Us" -- it's ending.

"Things are getting Zucky" and "Time to unfriend Facebook" -- Ann and Elaine on FACEBOOK.

"PACIFIC RIM UPRISING vs READY PLAYER ONE" and "Skip TOMB RAIDER" -- Stan goes to the movies.

"Ratatouille Hotpot in the Kitchen" -- Trina serves up a recipe.

 "Mueller has proof!" and "THIS JUST IN! MUELLER HAS VIDEO PROOF!" -- Cedric and Wally speak with Robert Mueller.

"Accountability?" -- where is it?

"THE SAME RIVER TWICE (Alice Walker) " -- Isaiah reviews a book

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