Monday, May 20, 2019

Truest statement of the week

The objective fact that large numbers of the public accept that the U.S. can determine the leadership of another sovereign nation while simultaneously being outraged by the idea of a foreign power interfering in U.S. elections demonstrates the mindboggling subjective contradictions that exist in the U.S. For example – that an Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez can assert that she will defer to the leadership of her caucus on the issue of Venezuela or that Barbara Lee can vote to bring Trump’s budget proposal out of committee or that Biden can proudly support Trump’s immoral backing of a neo-fascist opposition in Venezuela andthey will all get away with those positions – reveals the incredible challenge that we face in building an alternative radical movement for peace, social justice and people(s)-centered human rights. 
So, we must join with U.S. Peace Council and the other members of the Anti-war, pro-peace, and anti-imperialist communities in the U.S. to “resist and oppose this military attack on our communities, our livelihoods and our lives.” This is an urgent and militant first step in reversing the cultural support for violence and the normalization of war that currently exists in the U.S. Now is the moment to demand that Congress reject and reverse the Trump Administration’s military budget and the U.S. Government’s militaristic foreign policy. But now is also the moment to commit to building a powerful countermovement to take back the power over life and death from the denizens of violence represented by the rapacious 1%. 

-- Ajuma Baraka, "2020 Elections: Its Militarism and the Military Budget Stupid!" (BLACK AGENDA REPORT).

Truest statement of the week II

The evil war mongers are very stupid but that it isn’t a cause for celebration. Unintended consequences have already lead to two world wars and millions of dead.  Unfortunately no one who ought to educate the public on this subject are doing what they should. The corporate media always support presidents at war. Even supposedly liberal outlets have spent years demonizing Russia, Venezuela and Iran. In so doing they have made the population ignorant and or blood thirsty. Democrats in congress are equally imperialist and will say nothing as the government plans a humanitarian catastrophe. At most they will mutter that Trump must ask for their approval before killing thousands of people. Instead they carry on the discredited Russiagate story but oppose none of the things that actually make the Trump administration so dangerous.

-- Margaret Kimberley, "Freedom Rider: U.S. Wages War Against the World" (BLACK AGENDA REPORT).

A note to our readers

Hey --

Monday evening.

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?

Ajamu Baraka gets a truest.
Margaret Kimberley gets another truest.
Pay attention to who is really speaking out on this issue and who may be just offering lip service.
Ava and C.I. take on the garbage that was supposed to be a celebration of LAUGH-IN.
We respond to some of your e-mails.
Instead of a weekly poll of who's hot and who's not in the presidential race, we're going to try to do a weekly register -- a ranking of the candidates based upon who is addressing serious issues and who's just pandering and f**king around.
This NEWSHOUR interview was censored by GOOGLE NEWS over the weekend.
Dionne Warwick's "Tears Ago."
CBS NEWS is the only US broadcast network with a journalist in Iraq.
Throw a house party!
What we listened to while writing.
Mike and the gang wrote this and we thank them for it.


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

Editorial: No to expanding the Iraq War to Iran and no to candidates who don't call it out

Tensions rise in the Middle East -- as a result of actions by the US government.  RT reports:

As Washington and Tehran trade threats, a number of influential Iraqi Shia leaders have warned that a conflict between the US and Iran would be disastrous for Iraq, possibly destroying the country beyond repair.
A prominent Shia cleric, a leading politician and two militia representatives each voiced opposition to a possible war with the Islamic Republic on Monday, warning of apocalyptic consequences for their country.
“This war would mark the end of Iraq,” said Shia cleric and politician Muqtada al-Sadr, whose populist ‘Sadrist’ movement enjoys a large following. “We need peace and reconstruction.”
Any political party that would advocate such a war “would be the enemy of the Iraqi people,” al-Sadr said, arguing that Iraq would become “a scene for conflict,” caught between the warring powers.

Sunday, there was a rocket attack on the Green Zone.  Rocket attacks on the Green Zone are common.  REUTERS notes the most recent one was in September.  AP noted that the US State Dept was saying the rocket landed near the US Embassy.  With no proof, Carlo Munoz (WASHINGTON TIMES) rushed to insist the US Embassy was the target and to link Iran to the attack.  This was not just bad reporting, in the current climate, this was dangerous reporting.

There was no evidence cited in Munoz's 'report.'  And no evidence has been cited period.

If the United States has evidence of Iranian threats against the peace and specifically against the U.S. take it to Security Council, an action most "normal states" would pursue. But the U.S. is not a "normal state," it is a rogue state & threat to peace & international order.

THE ARAB TIMES reminds, "Last week, the US ordered the evacuation of nonessential diplomatic staff from Iraq amid unspecified threats from Iran and rising tensions across the region.  The White House has also sent warships and bombers to the Persian Gulf to counter the alleged Iranian threats. Iraqi military spokesman Brig Gen Yahya Rasoul tweeted Monday that the army command in Baghdad is working 'day and night; to guarantee the security of citizens, foreign missions and international and local companies."  Qassim Abdul-Zahra and Bassem Mroue (AP) add, "As tensions escalate, there are concerns that Baghdad could once again get caught in the middle, just as it is on the path to recovery. The country hosts more than 5,000 U.S. troops, and is home to powerful Iranian-backed militias, some of whom want those U.S. forces to leave."

The Iraq War continues and the US government is working to expand it into neighboring Iran.

US House Rep Tulsi Gabbard is an Iraq War veteran who is seeking the Democratic Party's presidential nomination.  Sunday she appeared on ABC's THIS WEEK WITH GEORGE STEPHANOPOULUS:

GABBARD: The problem that I have seen is that across both Democrat and Republican administrations, and especially in this Trump administration where, right now, he is leading us down this dangerous path towards a war with Iran …
STEPHANOPOULOS: He says he doesn’t want it.
GABBARD: He says he doesn’t want it but the actions of him and his administration, people like John Bolton and Mike Pompeo, tell us a very different story. They are setting the stage for a war with Iran that would prove to be far more costly, far more devastating and dangerous than anything that we saw in the Iraq war, a war that I served in a medical unit where every single day I saw firsthand the high human cost of war.
STEPHANOPOULOS: Well, one of the actions they took this week was evacuating, as you know, our diplomatic posts in Iraq because they were concerned, based on the intelligence, that Iran may be looking to strike U.S. interests. You don’t buy it?

GABBARD: I don’t. You know, we heard conflicting stories coming from the British commander who is the co-commander of the fight against ISIS and Al-Qaeda there in Iraq and Syria saying, hey, he hadn’t seen an escalation of tensions or threats coming from these Iraqi – or these Shia militias serving in Iraq. I think what we’re seeing, unfortunately, is what looks a lot like people in the Trump administration trying to create a pretext or an excuse for us to go to war against Iran, a war that would actually undermine our national security, cost us countless American lives, cost civilian lives across the region, exacerbate the refugee crisis in Europe, and it would actually make us less safe by strengthening terrorist groups like ISIS and Al-Qaeda. 

Friday, Tulsi Gabbard appeared on PBS' THE NEWSHOUR and discussed the possibility of war on Iran:

  • Judy Woodruff:
    Right now, there is a lot of attention being paid to whether the Trump administration is edging closer to some sort of military confrontation with Iran.
    What would you be doing differently?

  • Rep. Tulsi Gabbard:
    A number of things.
    I think, first, it's important to make sure the American people understand that a war with Iran would be far more costly and far more devastating than anything that we experienced in Iraq.
    What we would see is a devastating cost on our troops, my brothers and sisters in uniform, a cost on the civilians, people both in Iran and across the region, worst refugee crisis across Europe, as well as a strengthening of terrorist groups like ISIS and al-Qaida, further undermining our national security.
    So, it would essentially make the war in Iraq look like a cakewalk, when we look at the cost of going to war with Iran.

  • Not only do we need to oppose war on Iran, we need to register which candidates who'd like to be president are speaking out against such a move.  Strongly speaking out at this point?  Tulsi, US Senator Bernie Sanders, US House Rep. Seth Moulton and former US Senator Mike Gravel.

    We should also note that Senator Elizabeth Warren raised the issue.  Once in her Twitter feed.  On May 14th.  Six days later and she hasn't mentioned it again.  Her Twitter feed has added 20 Tweets since then and not one of them was about war on Iran.  Thanks for standing up -- that one time -- Elizabeth.

    TV: NETFLIX comes not to praise LAUGH-IN but to bore you

    This weekend, NETFLIX offered STILL LAUGH-IN: THE STARS CELEBRATE.  A more apt title would have been NETFLIX COMES NOT TO PRAISE LAUGH-IN BUT TO BORE YOU.  By going with the other title, they begged the question: What stars?

    3 JESS

    For those who don't know LAUGH-IN, the show ran on NBC from 1967 to 1973 and was actually titled ROWAN & MARTIN'S LAUGH-IN.  An hour long comedy, it featured blackout jokes, cutaways, skits, gags and much more.  It was not the second coming of comedy.  It was often funny.

    The funniest thing about LAUGH-IN was Goldie Hawn.  She was the breakout star and, while still on the show, landed her role in the film CACTUS FLOWER.  She became a movie star and an Academy Award winner.  Goldie's known for her good taste -- which goes a long, long way towards explaining why she didn't appear on the special.

    Actually, "special" is far too generous.  What Jon Macks wrote was often pedestrian and sometimes offensive.  He's not really a writer.  He stumbled into comedy via politics -- he's a writer for various Democrats, including Senator Elizabeth Warren -- a politician never known for having a sense of humor.  We'd argue Macks and Warren are a good fit.

    Him and LAUGH-IN?  Not so much.

    Co-host Neil Patrick Harris made a running joke of himself about to perform a song.  It was all pointless but, for the record, LAUGH-IN frequently featured songs -- original songs performed by the cast.  And the special offered a song -- Rita Moreno and Rita Wilson . . .  doing what?

    Did they tape a rehearsal?  Because neither woman had any real dance moves.  LAUGH-IN had choreography.  It also had costumes.  Can anyone explain the outfits the two Ritas showed up in?  Nice street wear but nothing you'd perform a musical number in.

    Tiffany Haddish, co-host of the whatever, always dressed with style and provided some of the few actual laughs.  Few others could make the same claim.

    Lily Tomlin showed up with Ruth Buzzi and Jo Anne Worley.  The three had all appeared on LAUGH-IN.  For Buzzi and Worley, LAUGH-IN was the height of their careers in terms of visibility.  Lily, of course, would go on to films (including her Academy Award nominated role in NASHVILLE) comedy recording success (Grammy winner for her album THIS IS A RECORDING) and to success on stage (including her Tony Award winning performance in Jane Wagner's THE SEARCH FOR SIGNS OF INTELLIGENT LIFE IN THE UNIVERSE) as well as to success on TV (seven Emmy wins -- and, for GRACE AND FRANKIE, four nominations).  Only Goldie Hawn has been more successful (Goldie became a movie star, at a time when few women emerged as film stars).

    The bulk of the cast over the years never achieved anything of prominence again.  (Richard Dawson did go on to successfully host the game show FAMILY FEUD and Teresa Graves would star in the single-season series GET CHRISTY LOVE.)  That's not really a surprise, George Schlatter never achieved much himself after LAUGH-IN.


    Exactly.  A professional liar is all George is and it's about time we all faced that fact.  He had no real vision, he lucked in to LAUGH-IN.  He did variety shows and did them poorly -- like when he took over Judy Garland's CBS variety show.  George didn't even create LAUGH-IN -- Digby Wolfe did.


    That's the question you'd ask if you saw the NETFLIX product.  By the way, it was produced by . . . George Schlatter.  So he's not only a professional liar, he's also a back-stabbing credit grabbing ass.

    Let's stay with that for a moment.

    Lily did a bit as Ernestine where her famous phone operator was now working for a healthcare company.  It was funny.  She also did a two-liner where she said President Donald Trump had created jobs -- in the special prosecutors office.


    Why did Lily appear on this crap special?

    Chelsea Handler did a bit with Mary McCormack which would have been funny as a one liner but instead went on and on.  They spoke of LAUGH-IN's historic place in gender studies: in the late sixties, it dared to let men do comedy and took on the notion that men couldn't do comedy.

    Again, it went on way too long, but the bit did have a point.

    And we do as well.

    It's 2019.  Why the hell is Lily doing this crap ass special?

    In the series of the original show, 41 people get credit as writers -- George Schattler among them.

    Lily, dear, who created Edith Ann?

    You did.

    Who created Ernestine?

    You did.

    Where's your writing credit?

    Lily never got a writing credit.

    In fact, no woman ever got a writing credit on that show.  All 41 credited writers are men.

    It's 2019.  Any debt Lily owed George ended long ago.  And considering that Lily carried the show in its last two seasons, it's actually George who owes her.

    There's no reason for women -- and that goes to Chelsea and Mary as well -- to prop up men who did their best to hold women back.  And that's what George did and Lily knows that.  For every Lily hire (a comedy hire), ten women were hired to be scantily dressed.  Goldie broke through -- while other dancers on the show didn't -- by the sheer force of her personality.

    Women often have to use the sheer force of their personality to break through stereotypical rows.  Look at Tracee Ellis Ross.  An incredible actress with great comic timing who is trapped in a sexist and stunted role on BLACK-ISH but makes it more than it is on paper as a result of her personality.  In fact, BLACK-ISH has been one of the most sexist programs of this decade.  Jennifer Lewis also used her personality to make the one-note and minor role of Ruby Johnson entertaining and moving herself (in season two) into the actual cast.  Why are we the only ones who can point out sexism?  We've done it with BLACK-ISH, we did it the year the networks offered not one new series revolving around a woman.  Does no one else see the sexism?  Do they watch the first season of BLACK-ISH and somehow miss that Dre's co-workers are all men?  Was he working at PENISES UNLIMTED or was it that BLACK-ISH creator Kenya Barris is just a dick?

    It's the latter.

    And it's worth commenting on because Barris appeared on the show -- looking like a grossly obese Lucifer.  And clothes?  Did he wake up from his nap on the couch to rush to the stage?  Those jeans and that football jersey went to the fact that Barris is trash and always will be.

    That was even more clear as he used the supposed celebration of LAUGH-IN to praise himself, his supposed bravery, his supposed success.

    Kenya landed a diversity-hire contract with NETFLIX worth millions.  Don't mistake that for success.  Kenya does.

    Unlike Shonda Rhimes -- or even, to a lesser degree, Ryan Murphy, Kenya brings nothing to NETFLIX.  Shonda is responsible for TV success -- that's GREY'S ANATOMY and PRIVATE PRACTICE and SCANDAL.  Those were huge shows.


    It's never been a hit.  To this day, it's ratings are awful.  Season one, the show was the 54th most watched series on broadcast TV during primetime.  That was the best things ever got for BLACK-ISH. For the fall 2017 to spring 2018 season, it was the 84th most watched series.  This week, the final new episode of the season airs and no one's watching anymore as the show churns out 2 million viewers the last two weeks.

    As Kenya stood on the stage praising himself endlessly, he may have provided the funniest moment -- however unintentionally.  Unintentional laughs were also provided when Billy Crystal walked onstage.  Was that a wig he was wearing?

    Regardless, there he was, film failure whose career made clear that people would pay to see popular concepts he was in but wouldn't pay money to see him in films.  This was especially true when Crystal tried to write a screenplay and, worse, when he tried to direct.

    His career dried up sometime ago.  But there he was, desperate for attention.  Doing stand up.  Stand up?  LAUGH-IN really didn't do stand up.  Nor did they do the political he was doing.

    Lily's joke about the special prosecutor was the type of joke that a LAUGH-IN might do.  It was quick, it was fleeting.  Billy doing a series of parody Tweets that a President Donald Trump might have Tweeted?  Not really funny and not really the sort of thing LAUGH-IN would have done.

    It wasn't political, it was partisan and it was really hateful and stopped the show -- not in a good way.  Can we get a safe space option where we can just enjoy what's supposed to be entertainment without Donald Trump being injected into it?  We get that the outrage culture has turned their lives over to Donald Trump but not everyone on the left is dying to hear about Donald.  We'd like to enjoy our evenings Donald-free. 

    A friend who writes for SNL called us and said he turned off the special in the middle of Billy Crystal's nonsense.  "What was that crap?" he asked us.

    We have no idea.

    We'd guess it's more garbage from NETFLIX which keeps throwing millions out to Barack Obama and his former administration officials.  No jokes were made about Democrats.  It's a one-sided, sort of hate-fest and, again, we're bothered that Lily participated.  Nothing she did was hateful but we really think it was a mistake for her to participate.  Again, good for Goldie Hawn for saying no -- a true class act.

    George's one-sided view was really amazing to us because we know George, we know what a piece of s**t he is and how close with Richard Nixon -- the cancer on America.  But it's his efforts to suppress an honest discussion about the assassination of John F. Kennedy that should really have Schattler railroaded out of polite society.

    He deliberately altered an interview with Jim Garrison for SPEAK UP AMERICA.  John Barbour was the producer and he was the one Schattler stabbed in the back, going around Barbour to have the interview re-edited and telling the editor not to inform Barbour that it had been done.  If news of the real George Schlatter -- piece of trash Schlatter -- is news to you, you can start your reading list with this interview with John Barbour.

    Schlatter ensured, as producer of the NETFLIX product, that Digby Wolfe, the real creator of LAUGH-IN -- and the only person ever professionally credited as a creator of the show, was erased.  Listening to lunatics like Kenya Barris claim George invented it all, we realized that if he didn't vanish Wolfe, he'd also have to admit that LAUGH-IN owed a large debt to the UK's THAT WAS THE WEEK THAT WAS (which Digby wrote for).

    The NETFLIX product was an embarrassment. And watching it will leave you confused -- especially about the whole "THE STARS CELEBRATE" aspect of the show's title.  What stars?  Lily Tomlin and Michael Douglas?  Well they have NETFLIX shows, maybe they were forced to appear?  Other than those two though, where were the stars?  Like truth, they were absent from the program.



    Dipping into the mailbag again to reply to some of the e-mails.

    Jordan e-mailed asking if Trina really believed racism didn't exist in the US anymore?  What's Jordan talking about?  The post "Eugenics??????? Who knew that racism was still around and that a college would look the other way?"

    Trina: I might have been better off typing it "Eugenics????? Who knew THAT racism was still around and that a college would look the other way?"  My point was, "Eugenics?"  I thought that went out with the Nazis.  I can't believe that a college would look the other way.  Jordan's not the only one who was confused by my typing.  I got about 12 e-mails asking me the same question.  For the record, yes, I know racism is still around.  I did, however, think eugenics had been long ago discredited.

    Ray liked Stan's review of "JOHN WICK 3" and wondered what one movie Stan would like to see on TCM or available to stream?

    Stan: There are so many but I think I would go with but I'll pick WHO IS KILLING THE GREAT CHEFS OF EUROPE?  It's a comedy from 1978 that stars George Segal, Jacqueline Bisset and Robert Morley.  Bisset was nominated for a Golden Globe for the film as was Morley.  It's a funny movie and I feel a lot -- a huge number -- of George Segal films are not available and that people don't realize what a great leading man he was in films.  I think most people today know him as the grandfather in THE GOLDBERGS and as Maya's father on JUST SHOOT ME.  And he's funny on those shows but he did some great film work and so much of it -- THE BLACK BIRD is another example. THE HOT ROCK,  -- is not available on streaming or showing on TCM.  He really is one of the most underrated leading film actors of the 70s and 80s -- he did THE DUCHESS AND THE DIRTWATER FOX with Goldie Hawn, with Jane Fonda he did FUN WITH DICK AND JANE, with Natalie Wood he did THE LAST MARRIED COUPLE IN AMERICA, A TOUCH OF CLASS and LOST AND FOUND with Glenda Jackson,  with Denzel Washington and Susan Saint James he did CARBON COPY -- he and Elliot Gould are probably the two forgotten leading men of their period and they really deserve more appreciation and more recognition.

    Lawrence e-mailed to say he likes how Betty writes things like "We are really sad and pathetic" which finger point at all of us and not just at others.

    Betty: Thank you, Lawrence.  I'm no better than anyone else and I try to make that clear in my posts.  Sometimes I get the point across, sometimes I don't.  But I'm just as much a product of the culture of fear that our media-government culture instills in us.  I do think that we all have more in common as people than we have different.

    ZSX e-mailed to ask Isaiah about "Primary thoughts" and doesn't he feel he has an obligation to draw Donald Trump?

    Isaiah: No, I don't.  First off, I have done comics about Trump -- both when he was a candidate and after he became president.  But I'm not obsessed with him.  I think so many people have let him steal their joy and have even become unhinged.  Chelsea Handler's spoken of her reaction to him and wrote about it in her new book as well.  Good for her on that.  But he is not all powerful and he is not God and this desire to make him your focus 24-7?  I'm not going along with that crap.  I lead a healthy life.  He is not the center of my world.  I also believe, firmly, that Trump -- as is true of all US presidents -- is more of a threat to non-Americans than he is to us.  In the US, we have checks on the executive branch.  Outside the US?  There's no check on a president's ability to kill -- whether in a declared war, an undeclared war, a secret operation, a drone war, what have you.  I look back at my life since 2016, and I'm glad that I've had a life.  I don't think a Debra Messing, for example, can make that same claim.  I laugh daily, I see friends, I go to church, I am with my family, etc.  I do not let Donald Trump dictate my life.

    And, since this is a humor question -- Isaiah does comics, we also brought Wally and Cedric in on this one.

    Wally: Like Isaiah said, there are too many people who are obsessed with Donald Trump.  Their every day, their every hour is about him.  They're pathological and they accomplish nothing.  If we have a Trump joke, we'll do it, but he's not our go to.  Cedric and I are much more interested in those with a pathological response to Donald Trump than we are with Trump.  Look at the ridiculous Fran Lebowitz.

    Cedric:  So many just let him steal their joy, so many just give him their power.  To us, the big jokes are the Alyssa Milanos and Debra Messings who live on Twitter and are constantly in a rage.  They're not very smart and never really understand an issue but they Tweet constantly.  They think they're brave and bad-ass but they're really just centrist Democrats who don't know the issues -- whether it's Syria or healthcare -- and really need to sit their tired asses down.  It's also true that we don't want to live in a panic and always be trembling the way those ridiculous professional victims appear to do.

     "5 great tracks from Dionne Warwick" went up after an e-mail had come in from SnowCap79 wondering if Elaine had stopped noting music at her site?

    Elaine: I try to do that at least once a week.  I don't always succeed.  That should be my blog's subtitle "I don't always succeed."  And I'm fine with that.  But, yes, in a perfect world, I would be doing music twice a week.  I think it provides more reality and humanity than what passes for a 'news' program these days ever could.  I trust music, I don't trust those that sell wars.  To relate to a topic above, my life does not revolve around Donald Trump.  I happen to love Jack Johnson's music but I do not have ALL THE LIGHT ABOVE IT TOO and I haven't listened to that album and don't plan to anytime soon.  I don't need Donald Trump on my speakers.  And I do not need Jack Johnson bringing Trump into my home.  I don't know why he felt the need to be partisan but I don't need Jack Johnson to tell me who to vote for.  There are so many great and needed topics to write about, I don't see Donald Trump as one of them.  I kind of thought the agreement that Jack had with those of us who listen was that he'd provide a better world in his songs, not focus on crap.  He broke that agreement with me.

    Laverne, a Green Party members, wrote Friday asking why Ann didn't highlight the Green Party at her site.  Ann, for the record, just did a post entitled "Howie Hawkins."

    Ann: I understand Laverne's frustration. I do share it.  But the reality is that the Green Party still doesn't use the internet the way they should.  C.I. highlights the Green Party more than I do and she gets e-mails from the Michigan group, for example.  But she would highlight them daily if they had that kind of content.  I don't know why the party itself on a national level can't offer a press release every day -- at least one.  I don't know why Green candidates are not willing to use the internet to get out there repeatedly in front of the people.  There's a move to draft Howie to run for president.  That was my excuse for highlighting his Tweets in the post I did.  But too many days there is no Green issue to highlight.  I understand Laverne's frustration and share it.

    Peter notes Rebecca's "dynasty - a blake and crystal episode" and wonders what her hopes for the show are and who she'd pick to be the new Alexis?

    Rebecca: I think the show needs Alexis and that it needs to be a strong actress.  My personal choice? If I were casting, I would cast Heather Locklear in the role immediately.  If I were Heather and wanted the part, I'd have it written into my contract that I was not to be a foil for Fallon but an actual character.  Too many of the characters exist solely to advance Fallon.  I'm watching DYNASTY, not FALLON.  I like Fallon but most episodes have way too much of her.  My hopes for the show?  A recasting of Steven and Steven and Sammy Jo back together.  There's really no reason for Sam to be on the show if he's Steven's ex-husband.  Certainly, no reason for him to live at the Carrington mansion.  I also firmly believe that Monica Colby needs to do more on the show, she is one of the best characters and probably the only one the audience can really relate to.

    Many wrote on about Ava and C.I.'s "TV: NETFLIX continues to underwhelm" with most hoping Ava and C.I. will continue to cover NETFLIX because, in the words of Rhonda, "they are the only ones who really report as opposed to just quoting from a NETFLIX press release."

    Ava: Thank you, Rhonda and everyone else.  We will continue to cover NETFLIX -- we address it this week.  But we will continue to cover it -- both in terms of reviewing programming and also in terms of using our sources at NETFLIX to explain what's really happening.  The so-called press specializing in entertainment has given NETFLIX one pass after another.  Their economic model is not feasible and people at NETFLIX we speak with grasp that -- even if the press pretends otherwise.

    A. McDougal wants to know when Kat will be doing another music review.  That e-mail came in before Kat's "Kat's Korner: Dionne's back and she's better than ever" went up Sunday.

    Kat: I wish I did album reviews every week but (a) I'm lazy and (b) I don't always have something to say about a new album.  I try to do 11 a year now and a wrap up for the end of the year.  I've only done three so far this year.  I need to do more.  Hopefully, I'll get on the ball.  I like Imagine Dragons' ORIGINS, for example, but I only started listening to it this month -- it came out in November.  Do I review something like that?  Is there a point?  I think actually there is.  I think my audience is a little different and that I can add a spotlight that might turn on a few more people to it.  Who knows?

    Conor e-mailed asking what Marcia thinks will happen to Chelsea Manning?  Marcia's "The witch hunt of Chelsea Manning continues" last week was her most recent piece on Chelsea.

    Marcia: My guess?  My hopeful guess is that we're all so outraged that the court is forced to release Chelsea -- she's back behind bars again for refusing to testify -- and that they're forced to drop any fines against her.  They are no longer just holding her behind bars to try to force her to testify, they are now also charging her for each day.  That's outrageous.  She's a whistle-blower.  She performed a public service with her brave actions.  I am very appalled that only one presidential candidate -- Tulsi Gabbard -- has spoken out against what is being done to Chelsea and to Julian Assange.

    Judy felt Ruth's "Doris Day has passed away" deserved praise and she writes, "I'm a few years younger than Ruth is but wonder if she's realized how many great people we are going to be losing in the next ten or so years?"

    Ruth: Yes, I am aware.  It is scary.  Most of the great MOTOWN artists are now over 70 so that means many of them could be gone.  We will be losing many actors from TV shows we loved in the fifties, sixties and seventies.  We have already lost so many who were major cultural points in my lifetime: Mary Tyler Moore, Aretha Franklin, Prince, Penny Marshall, Stan Lee, Herman Wouk, Tim Conway, Peggy Lipton . . .  It is something, the passage of time.

    "Tulsi house party you can do" resulted in Charlie e-mailing to say to thank Mike for the great idea.

    Mike: All I did was take C.I.'s suggestion in the gina & krista round-robin and blog about it.  But I'm glad if anyone runs with it.  It was really productive when Elaine and I did it with our friends.  I'm firmly supporting Tulsi Gabbard and I hope others will be inspired by her as well.

    You can reach us at or at and we do try to read all e-mails.

    The register

    We're calling this a register and not a poll.  There are currently 24 candidates for the Democratic Party's presidential nomination.

    number 24

    Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "The Prisoner de Blasio: Number 24" notes Bill de Blasio entered the competition last week.   Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "Another Hat Tossed In The Ring" notes Steve Bullock entered the race last week.


    The register is our ranking of candidates based on their addressing real issues last week.

    1) Tulsi Gabbard.

    2) Mike Gravel.

    3) Bernie Sanders.

    4) Marianne Williamson

    5) Amy Klobuchar

    6) Beto O'Rourke

    7) Joe Biden

    8) Kirsten Gillibrand

    9) Cory Booker

    10) Seth Moulton

    11) Kamala Harris

    12) Tim Ryan

    13) Michael Bennet

    14) Julian Castor

    15) Pete Buttigieg

    16)  Eric Swalwell

    17) Andrew Yang

    18) Steve Bullock

    19) Bill de Blasio

    20) John Hickenlooper

    21)  Wayne Messam

    22) Elizabeth Warren

    23) Jay Inslee

    24)  John Delaney

    News interview of the week

    Judy Woodruff spoke with US House Rep. and Iraq War veteran Tulsi Gabbard about her run for the Democratic Party's presidential nomination.

    This is "The news story GOOGLE doesn't watch you to know about" but you can watch it anyway.

    Music track of the week

    Dionne Warwick performing "Tears Ago" from her new album SHE'S BACK.  Kat reviews the album in "Kat's Korner: Dionne's back and she's better than ever."

    Broadcast news report of the week

    That's from CBS THIS MORNING and, as Gayle King notes, Roxana Saberi is the only reporter for a US network in Iraq currently.

    House Party Mix

    You add food and friends and YOUTUBE provides the entertainment: Joe Rogan's interview with Tulsi Gabbard -- member of Congress, Iraq War veteran and someone who is seeking the Democratic Party's presidential nomination.

    See Mike's "Tulsi house party you can do" and Trina's "Crustless Pumpkin Pie in the Kitchen" for their handling of a Tulsi House Party.

    This edition's playlist

    1) Dionne Warwick's SHE'S BACK.

    2)  Chaka Khan's HELLO HAPPINESS.

    3) Rhiannon Giddens' THERE IS NO OTHER.

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

    5) Cat PowersWANDERER.

    6) Mavis Staples' LIVE IN LONDON.

    7) Janet Jackson's UNBREAKABLE.


    9) Alicia KeysHERE.

    10) Ben Harper's CALL IT WHAT IT IS.


    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.

    "The news story GOOGLE doesn't watch you to know ab..." -- most requested highlight of the week by readers of this site.

    Kat's "Kat's Korner: Dionne's back and she's better than ever" -- Kat reviews Dionne Warwick's new album.

    Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "The Prisoner de Blasio: Number 24," Isaiah THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "The Scream" and Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "Another Hat Tossed In The Ring" -- Isaiah served up three comics last week.

    "Iraq snapshot," "Iraq snapshot," "Iraq snapshot," "Iraq snapshot," "Iraq snapshot," "Tulsi Gabbard inspires," "Primary thoughts," "Howie Hawkins," "Princess Bubble," "Warren the hothead," "Mike Gravel," "The candidates," "marco rubio is fuh-reaky," "elizabeth warren's l.b.j. moment," "3 who can lead," "Warren makes another idiotic decision," "Tulsi house party you can do," "Real leaders?,"

    "Crustless Pumpkin Pie in the Kitchen" -- Trina serves up a recipe.

    "Doris Day has passed away," "Dark Phoenix," "Doris Day" and "JOHN WICK 3" -- movie coverage in the community.

    political coverage.

    "Some Curiosity Tweets" and "The Moon" -- Betty offers some science coverage.

    Creative Commons License
    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
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