Professional Scam Artists – part 55

dangerous scam artist Lenin Moreno

“Ecuador’s President Moreno Orders Suspension of Prisoner Rights” by ? (teleSUR)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|(
Ecuadorean President Lenin Moreno has issued an executive order that declares a “state of exception” over the detioriorating conditions in the nations prison system. This order mobilizes temporary exceptional powers of the state to intervene in solving the problems, but critics contend that it comes at the cost of civil liberties…

One of the more controversial statutes included in the law is the suspension of the guaranteed rights of prisoners to correspondence, and the freedoms of information, association, and assembly.

Activists for the #FreeOlaBini movement have criticized the president’s order as a targeted move against privacy advocate Ola Bini, who was jailed on April 12 without charges who had been continuing to correspond with outside groups to call attention to his plight.
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related: “Alleged WikiLeaks Collaborator Ola Bini Arrested in Ecuador”

“Bolsonaro Strikes Back: Brazilian Universities to Lose Autonomy” by ? (teleSUR)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

====:-
President Jair Bolsonaro’s administration published a decree on May 15 which allows the executive branch to veto nominations for university authorities, a decision which destroys, in practice, the autonomy that Brazilian public universities have to exercise independent control over their day-to-day operations and curriculum…

In a meeting held with the National Association of Authorities from Federal Higher Education Institutions (Andifes), the Education Ministry’s executive secretary Antonio Paulo Vogel minimized the implications of Bolsonaro’s decree. According to him, this regulation would not change the election of authorities, regulating only what happens in the appointment process.

Nevertheless, his explanation did not convince professors, researchers, and students, all of whom will organize a new nationwide strike in defense of education on May 30.

“It’s a retaliation for the mega protests. Bolsonaro’s unconstitutional decree offends the autonomy of universities. The Legislative and Judicial branches must react,” said Fernando Haddad, the Workers’ Party 2018 presidential candidate, who also served as Education Minister in President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva administration in 2005.
-:====

“That Time John Bolton Said It’s Good To Lie About War” by Caitlin Johnstone (Caitlin Johnstone.com)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|[|
On a December 2010 episode of Fox News’ Freedom Watch, Bolton and the show’s host Andrew Napolitano were debating about recent WikiLeaks publications, and naturally the subject of government secrecy came up.

“Now I want to make the case for secrecy in government when it comes to the conduct of national security affairs, and possibly for deception where that’s appropriate,” Bolton said. “You know Winston Churchill said during World War Two that in wartime truth is so important it should be surrounded by a bodyguard of lies.”

Back in 2012 at a forum for the Washington Institute Of Near East Policy think tank, the group’s Director of Research Patrick Clawson openly talked about the possibility of using a false flag to provoke a war with Iran, citing the various ways the US has done exactly that with its previous wars.

“I frankly think that crisis initiation is really tough, and it’s very hard for me to see how the United States president can get us to war with Iran,” Clawson began.

(Can I just pause here to note what a bizarre series of words that is? “Get us to war with Iran?” Get us to the thing that every sane human being wants to avoid with every fiber of their being? You want to “get us to” there? This is not the kind of thing normal humans say. You only hear this kind of insanity in the DC swamp where creatures like John Bolton have their roots.)

Bolton trussed up his 2010 confession using an example that most people would agree with: that it was reasonable for the Allied forces to deliberately deceive the Nazis about the nature of the D-Day invasion. But we know John Bolton better than that by now. This PNAC director and architect of the Iraq war once threatened to murder a foreign official’s children because his successful diplomatic efforts were putting a damper on the manufacturing of consent for the Iraq invasion. He wasn’t defending the use of deception in crucial military options used to halt tyrants trying to take over the world, he was defending the use of deception in the senseless wars of aggression that he has built his political career on advancing.
|]|

Examining John Bolton’s words, one realizes that his intention is to have us believe that bad is sometimes good. But with John Bolton ‘sometimes’ is ‘all the time’. If the faithless can be forgiven for being faithless, when they act in a deceptive and/or violent manner that completely sets aside God’s standards, that has nothing to do with the deceit and violence that neoconservatives do on a regular basis because it is 1. the normal way that those behave who have self-modified into being believers in inequality, deceit and violence and 2. the necessary behavior of those who are determined to maintain dominance and control, which involves using any means, including terrorism, in putting and keeping the people in their (low, unobtrusive) place.

Caitlin says that as a result of the examples of deceit she points to in her article, she must declare the kind of deceit that Bolton et al employ a “thing.” Okay. But of course is it’s a thing. And it’s not a new thing, which Caitlin’s words sort of imply. Anyone paying minimal attention knows about that “thing.”

the corrupt Donald Trump

“Trump just pardoned a man who wrote a book praising him” by Cody Fenwick (Alternet)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

\#\#\
Presidential pardons are best viewed as a mechanism for correcting wrongs done in the justice system or distributing mercy in exceptional cases. Or, if you’re President Donald Trump, it’s just a way to reward business associates who say nice things about you.

That’s the message of Trump’s pardon Wednesday night of Conrad Black, a former media mogul.

Black was charged on multiple counts of fraud and obstruction, and he served three and a half years in prison. But most importantly, he’s a big fan of Trump. They worked together to build Trump Tower Chicago, the Washington Post’s David Fahrenthold said. He has said Trump is “already the most successful U.S. president since Ronald Reagan,” and he wrote a glowing book about him titled, apparently with no irony, “Donald J. Trump: A President Like No Other.”

“There are thousands of people behind bars, many serving decades-long sentences for low level drug crimes, who deserve pardons,” said former DOJ spokesman Matthew Miller. “The way Trump keeps handing them out to political cronies and right-wing reactionaries is a pure perversion of the pardon power.”
/#/#/

Note: I am not endorsing Alternet.

Finian Cunningham (photo from RT News)

“Trump’s Soft Cop-Hard Cop Routine on Iran” by Finian Cunningham (Information Clearing House)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

(+
May 19, 2019 “Information Clearing House” – -President Trump this week took a surprising turn by emphatically insisting that the US does not want war with Iran, dialing back mounting global fears that the two nations were on the cusp of all-out conflict.

Trump also in the same vein called for the Iranian leadership to enter into diplomatic negotiations.

The latest move by the US president appears to be a stark rebuke to his national security adviser John Bolton, who only last week had threatened Tehran with “unrelenting force” over vague intelligence claims that Iran was about to attack American interests in the Middle East…

With subsequent incidents of alleged sabotage against oil tankers in the Gulf as well as Saudi claims of Iran directing drone attacks from Yemen on its petroleum plants, the situation looked like a powder keg ready to explode.

In stepped Donald Trump who reportedly admonished Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to tamp down talk of war and regime change in Tehran…

Trump himself has personally piled on the invective towards the Islamic Republic in a way that suggests he would like to see the authorities there toppled. Earlier this year, on the 40th anniversary of the Iranian revolution against a US-backed puppet regime, Trump marked the occasion with rhetoric dripping in disdain. “40 years of corruption, repression and terror,” said Trump in a Tweet.

So what’s going on in the latest “peace overture” from Trump is not so much a desire to avoid conflict in principle, but more a cynical negotiating tactic of “soft cop-hard cop” routine.
+)

Marcel Nemeh

“Jon Snow and the Murdered Children: His Six-Figure Salary Cannot Buy a Clear Conscience” by Alison Banville (BSNews)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|(|(|
I have just heard some news which is almost too heartbreaking to put into words. This morning, a little boy, Marcel Shadi Nemeh, died of his wounds in hospital after sustaining them last Sunday in an attack by Nusra Front terrorists on his home in Skeilbiyyeh, Syria. In that same attack, his brother Bashar was killed, along with three other children who were innocently playing in a monastery courtyard and some in their own homes.

But you will not be seeing Marcel’s angelic face all over your TV screens tonight. Nor little Bashar’s. Because that would be a sane world, one in which humanity rules the way our news media responds to such atrocity…

Are we not told that ‘we’ are supporting ‘moderate rebels’ in Syria? A lie so huge it rivals any falsehood concocted by whichever iniquitous government thirsty for power and profits you might care to name in the war ravaged annals of history…

What possible excuse can be offered by the journalists whose ostensible job it is to report the truth of the Syria conflict in ignoring these heinous murders? I have made sure to make Jon Snow of Channel 4 News aware of all these deaths. I have exchanged emails with him previously on Syria and other issues, but why him? Because he is the face of a programme which brands itself the most radical news source on British television: fiercely independent, daring to go where other news channels fear to tread, boldly holding power to account…

So whilst Vanessa Beeley is relentlessly uncovering the lies that underpin the entire rapacious imperialist Syria project, what is Jon Snow doing? Parroting his masters’ message that’s what. How does this man reconcile his pose as a person of humanity, honesty and integrity when he has been exposed in refusing to report such atrocities as the Sweida massacre in Syria in which 180 civilians were killed in cold blood? A search of the Channel 4 News website still brings up this result…

He is the worst kind of liar, because when he is in full possession of the facts he proceeds to lie barefaced to the Channel 4 News audience, colluding blatantly in the covering up of some of the wickedest crimes the British state has ever perpetrated. He is their slave, their whore; nothing more than that. Jon Snow is a regime change fanatic masquerading as a respectable, upstanding journalist, when in reality he shames himself and the entire journalistic profession.
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“Pseudo-Socialist Bernie Sanders Finally Opposes Charter Schools” by Shawgi Tell (Dissident Voice)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

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After wavering and making confusing statements about charter schools three years ago when he was running for President, U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, who is running for President again, finally came out and issued a broad education plan on May 18, 2019 which, among other things, opposes charter schools.

Part two of Sanders’ ten-part “Thurgood Marshall Plan for Public Education” is titled, “End the Unaccountable Profit-Motive of Charter Schools.’

Sanders begins this part of his education plan for the nation by repeating the incorrect and refuted narrative, stubbornly promoted by the left, democrats, and “progressives,” that charter schools had humble, positive, grass-roots origins, as opposed to being conceived, organized, and implemented by neoliberals committed to destroying the natural and social environment…

Unfortunately, when all is said and done, despite the many positives of his belated position on charter schools, Sanders, as he did three years ago, will again play the calculated role of betraying millions of people who do actually want a much better society. Millions want an alternative to capitalism. People are fed up with an economy that cannot provide for the needs of the people. Sanders knows he will not be President and can afford to sound bold, daring, and pro-social. As he did three years ago, he will hand-over millions of supporters and voters to the Democratic party, which has long supported charter schools and other antisocial arrangements. Of course, this “hand-over” did not go so smoothly in 2016, but it is the aim of Sanders’ 2020 campaign for President.
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From “This Can’t Be Happening!”:
What’s that smell? Asphalt or B.S.? Benny Jeffery protests Dallas mayor Mike Rawlings’ decision to pave over the “X” which marks the spot of President Kennedy’s death.

“JFK 50th Anniversary: The Eyes of Texas, Pt. I” by Lori Spencer (This Can’t Be Happening!)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

==== == =
I once did know a President
A way down South, in Texas.
And, always, everywhere he went,
He saw the Eyes of Texas.

The Eyes of Texas are upon you, all the livelong day.
The Eyes of Texas are upon you, you cannot get away.
Do not think you can escape them
At night or early in the morn
The Eyes of Texas are upon you ’til Gabriel blows his horn.

Sing me a song of Prexy, of days long since gone by.
Again I seek to greet him, and hear his kind reply.
Smiles of gracious welcome
Before my memory rise,
Again I hear him say to me, “Remember Texas’ Eyes.”

“The Eyes of Texas” by John Sinclair, 1903

(This was the last song JFK ever heard. President Kennedy was serenaded by the Texas Boys Choir in Ft. Worth on the final morning of his life.)

Nov 22 1963: CBS evening news anchor Harry Reasoner displays the grisly headline.
= == ====

Read the article. You’ll find no hint that John Kennedy was an awful man, let alone a terrorist. The tone of the article is favorable toward that awful man. Camelot propaganda constitutes an enduring ad selling the American Presidency, the American system, with slavery at its core (and exploitation and oppression generally), and the global capitalist system that America designed (and dominates) post World War Two. I emailed “This Can’t Be Happening!” to express my dismay at the pro Camelot propaganda on their website. There’s two things to be said about that. 1. If nowhere in the article does the author come out and explicitly praise the Kennedy brothers and JFK’s (sick) administration, although she wants to, Is that somehow impressive? Have the courage of your (chosen) convictions. 2. Also, It’s one thing to be objective in the negative way that establishment journos are, so as to actually slant your reportage to a particular establishment view, when the subject is just nasty or threatening. It’s an altogether different thing when the person at the center of your report is a mass murderer. If Lori Spencer had been writing about Hitler or Stalin in the same ‘objective’ fashion as she reports on JFK, real progressives would be appalled and they would express that disgust and point out that progressives reporting on Hitler who fail to point out what a monster he is, citing examples of why, fail.

JFK was a monster like Hitler. John Pilger wasn’t impressed. That’s my opinion after having read plenty of history touching on or mainly dealing with JFK. In his second angry email to me (two were sent in a row), Dave Lindorff wrote: “If you’re going to make a snark remark like that you need to document what you’re talking about.” I appended a link to my extensive, and growing, compendium on John and Robert Kennedy in my original email to “This Can’t Be Happening!” and that’s his response! Don’t drink, horse, if you don’t want to. But gosh, Don’t say I didn’t lead you to the water! Unless you’re just a scam artist.

Camelot propaganda works and it has ensnared much of the real Left. What does that say about the world? I’m pushing back against Camelot propaganda and on my blog I amplify voices that are trying to push back against all kinds of fake news and fake history. Forgive me for trying to shine light on darkness in regard to Camelot propaganda. I get a lot of pushback from progressives, knowledgeable and ignorant, when I attempt to counter Camelot propaganda. It’s exasperating. Either Dave Lindorff is not paying attention to what’s being published on his site – “…it’s possible that John or Linn may have had a good word for Robert K. I can’t recall…” – or else he’s just angry that I called him out. The problem is his. The tone of his emails suggests to me that he has drank the Kool-Aid on Camelot propaganda. For example: “The man did change much from his time on HUAC as an attorney for the committee during the McCarthy era to his time running for president when he was killed in what appears to have been a CIA hit.” (Where’s YOUR documentation for that, Dave?) But he also writes that “I have no love personally for the Kennedys.” Which is it? Have the courage of your convictions instead of attacking me for having the courage of my convictions, Why don’t you?

I didn’t know what prexy meant so I looked it up. Interestingly, this is what the Urban Dictionary gives for prexy: “A person who can seamlessly combine the idea of being beautiful and being sexually alluring at the same time, a feat that only few can subtly achieve.” That’s my bolding.

Seymour Hersh (“The Dark Side Of Camelot,” pg 13):

“Jack Kennedy was a dazzling figure as an adult, with stunning good looks, an inquisitive mind, and a biting sense of humor that was often self-mocking. He throve on adoration and surrounded himself with starstruck friends and colleagues. Women swooned. Men stood in awe of his easy success with women, and were grateful for his attentions to them. Today, more than thirty years after his death, Kennedy’s close friends remain enraptured.”

Bruce Miroff (“Pragmatic Illusions – The Presidential Politics of John F. Kennedy,” pg 1):

“John F. Kennedy still possesses a secure hold on the America imagination…

“Preoccupation with his personal attractiveness has, unfortunately, done more to obscure than to carify John Kennedy’s political record.”

Richard J. Walton (“Cold War and Counterrevolution – The Foreign Policy Of John F. Kennedy,” pg 3):

“The legend materialized spontaneously. It was inevitable, given the events of that terrible November day in Dallas. But beyond that, Kennedy was the stuff of which myths are made: young, handsome, heroic, with a style, grace, and vitality that most applauded and many envied. If personal specifications had been designed for the ideal postwar President, Kennedy would have fitted them. The circumstances and the man were right for myth-making, and with them came the myth-makers.”

John Pilger (“Foreword” to “Towards A New Cold War” by Noam Chomsky):

“What Chomsky has made vivid is the truth that western political leaders, respectable people whose “moderation” contains not a hint of totalitarianism, can, at great remove in physical and cultural distance, kill and maim people on a scale compared with the accredited monsters of our time. Thus, John Kennedy terror-bombed Vietnam: and Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter backed genocide in East Timor; and George Bush conducted a slaughter in Iraq in 1991, called the Gulf War, and his son finished the job in 2003, both of them calling their crimes a “moral crusade.”

To see the images below clearly, right click and select ‘view image’. Then just click on your back button to return to the post.

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Professional Scam Artists – part 54

Cenk Uygur

“Cenk Uygur Keeps Trying To Out-Maddow Maddow” by Caitlin Johnstone (Rogue Journalist)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|O
A new Washington Post article titled “A frustrated Trump questions his administration’s Venezuela strategy” has got people all across the political spectrum barking at shadows, and it doesn’t seem like any of them have actually read it.

The opening paragraphs of the anonymously sourced article say there’s tension between the president and National Security Advisor John Bolton about the administration’s humiliating April 30th failed coup attempt in Venezuela, and if you only read those, it looks like a very significant news story…

In a new video titled “Told Ya! Trump Changes Venezuela Policy After Putin Call!“, Cenk Uygur, creator of the popular The Young Turks platform, told his 4.3 million YouTube subscribers that this Washington Post article proves Trump has “reversed” his administration’s stance on Venezuela, and that he has done so because of his controversial phone call with Putin a few days earlier. Uygur claims that the report vindicates his previous Russiagate conspiracy mongering because it proves that Trump takes orders from the Russian president…

Back to that Washington Post article. Paragraph four reads as follows (emphasis mine):

“The administration’s policy is officially unchanged in the wake of a fizzled power play last week by U.S.-backed opposition leader Juan Guaidó. But U.S. officials have since been more cautious in their predictions of Maduro’s swift exit, while reassessing what one official described as the likelihood of a diplomatic ‘long haul.’”

Paragraph twelve reads as follows:

“Despite Trump’s grumbling that Bolton had gotten him out on a limb on Venezuela, Bolton’s job is safe, two senior administration officials said, and Trump has told his national security adviser to keep focusing on Venezuela.”

Paragraph 39 reads as follows:

“Officials said the options under discussion while Maduro is still in power include sending additional military assets to the region, increasing aid to neighboring countries such as Colombia, and other steps to provide humanitarian assistance to displaced Venezuelans outside of Venezuela. More forward-leaning options include sending naval ships to waters off Venezuela as a show of force.”

So, according to this same report that Uygur is basing videos and tweet after tweet after tweet on, Trump is keeping Bolton, is keeping existing Venezuela policies, and is currently exploring military options to get Maduro out of power.
O|

“Corporate funding for KPFA?” by Daniel Borgström (Daniel’s Free Speech Zone)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

)=-
When KPFA’s General Manager eliminated Guns & Butter, and then several more programs including Counter Spin, Discrete Music, and Twit Wit Radio, there was some speculation that it might be a move to make KPFA’s airwaves acceptable to corporate sponsors. Of course KPFA does not accept corporate funding for the reason that it would have strings, ropes, and chains attached. However, we learned on May 4th that the station management is indeed looking to corporations for funding.

Clearly, we cannot let this happen…

My understanding is that KPFA/Pacifica belongs to the listeners, that we the board members are there to represent the listeners, and to work with station management and the GM, not be subject to him.

Anyway, the GM then introduced the administrative staff… A couple of them mentioned hopes of getting grants…

However, they seemed to imply that there might be other grants available. So when the time came for Q&A, I asked about that.

Brooke Caputo, the Fundraising and Development Director, responded to my question saying that they hoped to get grants from foundations, and also, she added, from corporations. “I will not refuse money, wherever it comes from,” she said.
(She did not specify which foundations or which corporations.)

I then asked my other question, saying that Twit Wit Radio and several other programs (at least 4) have been taken off the air during this last year. I said many listeners have been asking me what happened to them. Then LSB Chair Christina Huggins cut me off saying that we don’t discuss programming in open sessions, that is about personnel information of programmers and we discuss it only in executive sessions…

So, this was my introduction to being a board member. I was elected this year and seated just last month. As I said above, I’ve been attending LSB meetings for about 14 years, since 2005. So I thought I’d heard it all, but what I heard at this session was quite a surprise.
-=(

“The News with Rick Sanchez – May 13, 2019 (20:00 ET)” by Rick Sanchez (The News With Rick Sanchez)

The announcement for the above linked-to show follows:

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Rick Sanchez lays into the New York Times’ baseless and intellectually lazy attack on RT America’s coverage of the potential health hazards posed by 5G radiation. Then RT America’s Dan Cohen reports on the deep conflicts of interest between New York Times and US telecommunications giant Verizon and what ties between the two say about the Times’ motives for attacking RT’s coverage of 5G technology. RT America’s Michele Greenstein discusses the legitimate public health concerns that scientists continue to raise about 5G technology and are relevant to people of all countries and points out that smearing RT is far easier than smearing the doctors and other experts sounding the alarm. Finally, journalism professor Chris Chambers joins Rick Sanchez to weigh in on the Times’ “bizarre” latest attack on RT and what it says about declining standards in journalism.
|/|

The internet is getting stickier as fascists get nastier. This site and Caitlin’s simply stopped functioning as I was viewing them. Usually, my crappy internet (carrytel) is the problem when something like that happens. To be sure, I just open my search engine (Startpage) in a new tab. If it doesn’t load, I wait a minute. I get those interruptions daily, all day long. When I checked during the making of this post, it wasn’t my landlord’s ISP. This is nastiness from unprincipled, lawless, vicious fascists. For the record, RT normally doesn’t load completely until I click on the link twice. But that’s not what this was. This was in addition to that nastiness.

Jeff Bezos, unfortunately

“Bezos Reveals His Ugly Vision For The World He’s Trying To Rule” by Caitlin Johnstone (Rogue Journalist)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

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“Guess what the best planet is in this solar system?” asked Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos at a recent media event on his Blue Origin space program.

“It’s easy to know the answer to that question,” he continued. “We’ve sent robotic probes like this one to all of the planets in our solar system. Now, some of them have been fly-bys, but we’ve examined them all. Earth is the best planet. It is not close. This one is really good.”

Bezos then went on to discuss his plan to ship humans off of the best planet in the solar system and send them to live in floating cylinders in space.
-:====

“‘National emergency’: Trump bans Huawei & other ‘adversary tech’ from US telecoms” by ? (RT News)

The blurb for the above linked-to show follows:

::::====
US President Donald Trump has declared a national emergency over technology designed or produced by ‘foreign adversaries,’ an act widely understood to target China’s ZTE and Huawei in an effort to freeze them out of 5G market.

Arguing that “foreign adversaries are increasingly creating and exploiting vulnerabilities in information and communications technology and services” the US increasingly depends on, Trump’s executive order on Wednesday declares an emergency over foreign-designed, developed, manufactured or supplied information and communications technologies.
====::::

Is this capitalism? It is and it isn’t. Here’s a great example of how the rich and powerful in this dark world get rich and powerful and stay that way. They break rules. The US has no problem with capitalism, as long as it always dominates the global capitalist system it designed post WWII. There can and should be competition, but not if the US might lose. I don’t believe that China (the ruling class mainly) is any more or less righteous than the United States (the ruling class mainly). It just happens to be less powerful. That makes self-modified white supremacists soooo happy.

“Trump welcomes Hungarian far-right prime minister Orbán to the White House” by Clara Weiss (WSWS)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

[=-
On Monday afternoon, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán was welcomed by US president Donald Trump at the White House. It was the first time in 20 years, since Bill Clinton welcomed Orbán in 1998, that the leader of the Hungarian far-right government has met with a US president in Washington.

At a brief session with reporters after the discussion with Orbán, Trump praised the latter saying the Hungarian leader had “done a tremendous job in so many ways,” and that he was a “tough man,“ that had done “the right thing … on immigration.”

Orbán added, “We are proud to stand together with the United States on illegal migration, on terrorism,” and in helping “Christian communities all around the world.” Both Trump and Orbán stressed that the primary goal of their meeting was “to strengthen our strategic alliance.”

The visit, following an invitation by the White House, took place just 11 days before the European elections in which far-right parties like Orbán’s party Fidesz are expected to make significant gains. More than any other head of government in Europe, Orbán is associated with the rise of far-right, authoritarian movements in Europe over the past decade.

Under his second term as prime minister since 2010, the Hungarian government has cracked down on freedom of the press and freedom of speech, significantly expanded the powers of the prime minister and president and undertaken far-reaching efforts at falsifying history.

The glorification of the fascist Horthy regime, which was in an alliance with Hitler’s Nazi Germany during World War II, has become official state policy. The government-sponsored “House of Terror” in Budapest deliberately minimizes the Nazi genocide of 6 million European Jews, including about half a million Hungarian Jews, in World War II, claiming instead that “Communist occupation” was in fact worse than the crimes of the Nazis and those of the Horthy regime and insinuating that the Communist movement was led above all by Jews…

Trump’s meeting with Orbán was a deliberate signal that his administration is actively endorsing and promoting the European far-right in the upcoming elections and the coming period more generally. In the US itself, the Trump administration has been systematically fostering fascistic forces, seeking to build an extra-parliamentary movement that could be mobilized against the working class.
-=]

“Guaido Requests US Military ‘Cooperation’ to Oust Maduro as US Vessel Violates Venezuelan Waters” by Paul Dobson (Venezuelanalysis)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

(((
Merida, May 13, 2019 (venezuelanalysis.com) – Self-declared “Interim President” Juan Guaido has ordered the setting up of a meeting with the US Armed Forces to discuss “cooperation” in his efforts to oust President Nicolas Maduro.

During a gathering of supporters in the upper middle class Caracas district of Las Mercedes on Saturday, Guaido informed that he was instructing his representative in the United States, Carlos Vecchio, to establish a “direct relationship” with the US Southern Command (SouthCom), which plans, oversees, and controls all US overt and covert military operations in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The initiative by Guaido stokes increasing fears that he looks to oust Maduro using a foreign-led intervention. Italian newspaper La Stampa published an interview with Guaido Friday, in which the opposition leader explained that “If the North Americans proposed a military intervention, I would probably accept it.”

Venezuelan authorities were quick to respond to the opposition’s move, with Vice President Delcy Rodriguez qualifying it as “repulsive” and “doomed to fail.” Recent polls suggest that over 86 percent of Venezuelans oppose a foreign-led military incursion into the country.
)))

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Lawlessness / Ruined – part 48

“Washington political warfare intensifies with lawsuits, looming contempt charges” by Patrick Martin (WSWS)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

+++—
Political and legal conflicts between the Trump White House and the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives are escalating in the wake of the decision by Attorney General William Barr not to appear before the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday.

Barr’s refusal to testify, as well as his declaration that he will not turn over an unredacted copy of the report by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, led to numerous calls by congressional Democrats and Democratic presidential candidates for Barr to resign or be impeached.

In a formal letter to Barr on Friday, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler set a 9:00 am Monday deadline for the Justice Department to comply with a committee subpoena for the unredacted report as well as the underlying documents supporting Mueller’s 448-page narrative.

After that, the letter warns, the committee will cite Barr for contempt of Congress for failing to meet the committee’s May 1 deadline for delivery of the various documents.

Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd sent a letter to Nadler earlier in the week declaring that Congress was not entitled to the information because the committee’s request was “not legitimate oversight.”

Despite the rival claims of fighting against a would-be “dictator” and opposing a “coup” by the security agencies against an elected president, neither side in the conflict in Washington is defending democratic rights or constitutional principles. Both sides, the congressional Democrats, who are allied with the intelligence agencies, and the White House, supported by sections of the military, the police and fascist elements, are profoundly antidemocratic and politically reactionary.
—+++

“Why Are These Facts So Stubbornly Forbidden?” by David Swanson (Let’s Try Democracy)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

(O
Like you, I’ve had countless experiences of pointing out a new fact to someone, and seeing them acknowledge it and incorporate it into their thinking and their talking from that point forward. I’ve even had this experience with public petitions pushed on powerful people. But, I’ve also had a different experience. There are some facts that some people just will not accept, and for some of them I have a very hard time understanding why. Can you help me understand?

For example, today I received an appeal from the March for Our Lives people upset and outraged that teachers were going to be allowed to bring guns into their school in Florida. They do not want any guns in their school, they said. But — and this they did not say — their school already has ROTC and gun training. Their school already has lots of guns in it. Their classmate who killed many of their other classmates was trained to shoot guns in their school by the U.S. Army. So, do they want guns in their school or not? They are 100% dedicated to pretending that the ROTC does not exist, but also outraged by the idea of guns being brought into the school that they are pretending is gun-free. Why can they not incorporate into their consciousness the existence of the program whose t-shirt the murderer was wearing? What prevents it? I really want to know. Do you have an answer that’s not just a guess?…

Most of U.S. political discourse seems to me perverted by the stubborn universal refusal to incorporate basic acknowledged facts into general understanding. Also today I saw a report claiming that the U.S. government has been spending more on fossil fuel subsidies than on “defense.” Of course, the U.S. government spends little or nothing on anything designed to be defensive, so we have to translate that to “military.” But over half of the military budget is not counted in this or any other situation because it’s spread across numerous departments and agencies. At $1.25 trillion a year, it dwarfs fossil fuel subsidies, but the fact that those subsidies outpace the fraction of military spending that goes to the Pentagon is still staggering. Or it would be, if most people would incorporate into their worldview the fact that militarism costs anything at all. For most people, only non-military expenses cost anything, and their size determines the size of the government, even though militarism is now about two-thirds of federal discretionary spending.
O)

“Florida Charter Schools” by Shawgi Tell (Dissident Voice)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|\|
Under the veil of high ideals, nonprofit and for-profit charter schools across the nation have long been violating the public interest in a variety of ways.

One of the most destructive ways is the non-stop siphoning of unthinkable sums of public funds from public schools—schools that are often chronically-underfunded, over-tested, constantly-shamed, and increasingly militarized and surveilled.

This legalized theft usually takes the form of a large or full portion of state and federal per-pupil funds “following” a student to a deregulated charter school governed by non-elected individuals with many business connections. Incidentally, these “per-pupil” funds, contrary to what charter school supporters dogmatically repeat, do not actually “belong” to this or that student. This is a distorted and self-serving way to render a complex social issue like public school funding. It trivializes the deep social significance and nature of societal investments in social programs like education…

By now, Florida has likely closed far more charter schools, leaving thousands of families out in the cold and disillusioned with charter schools.

People do not want public funds casually handed over to wealthy private interests obsessed with maximizing profits as fast as possible under the pretext of “saving the kids” and “offering parents choices.”

There is no such thing as a public charter school. There never has been. Court rulings and other legal rulings in many different jurisdictions across the country have repeatedly confirmed that these deregulated, deunionized, segregated, non-transparent, test-obsessed charter schools are not public schools precisely because they lack many of the long-standing features and characteristics of public schools and the public sphere. Nonprofit and for-profit charter schools do not walk, talk, and act like public schools. They are not officially government entities. Legally and philosophically charter schools differ from public schools. In theory and practice, they are mainly pay-the-rich schemes.
|/|

“Julian Assange: The UK, Sweden and the ‘Illusion of Justice’” by Nina Cross (21st Century Wire)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|[|
Whistleblower and political prisoner Chelsea Manning has been released from Alexandria Detention Centre in the US state of Virginia. This follows the appeal made by her lawyers that continued detention would be a violation of law as it would be to punish her and not to ‘purge her contempt’ given her principled conviction in not cooperating. She was held in contempt in March in relation to a grand jury investigation into the highly dubious, if not fabricated charges against WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange. She is now facing the prospect of further detention as she has been subpoenaed to a different grand jury next week and by all accounts will continue refusing to cooperate. At the same time Assange is fighting extradition from the UK to the US where it is likely he will face degrading treatment for the politically-driven charges against him. The US and the UK, and Sweden in the case of Assange, have abused their legal systems to create a facade of both ‘rule of law’ and ‘freedom through choice’, behind which Assange and Manning are persecuted.

Manning faces continued detention because she won’t surrender. Assange is probably still alive and fighting because he has not surrendered. For Assange this meant that while in the Ecuadorian embassy he could only access urgent medical help by risking arrest and extradition to the US, which could have meant the death sentence or a life prison sentence. Surrender or death. Death or death. The illusion of choice hid persecution.
|]|

Chelsea Manning

“WikiLeaks Source Manning Could Be Jailed Again Soon If She Disobeys U.S. Grand Jury” by Mark Hosenball (Reuters via Popular Resistance)

)=-
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Chelsea Manning, a former U.S. Army intelligence analyst and source for online publisher WikiLeaks, could be jailed again if she refuses to comply with a new grand jury subpoena, said a U.S. law enforcement source, as well as Manning herself.

After 62 days in prison, Manning was released last Thursday. She had been locked up for refusing to comply with a grand jury subpoena for testimony in an investigation into WikiLeaks by U.S. prosecutors in Alexandria, Virginia.

Federal prosecutors are believed to be focused on WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange, who is serving 50 weeks in a London prison for jumping bail when he took refuge in the Ecuadorean embassy in 2012.

The first grand jury expired and Manning was immediately summoned to appear before a new grand jury on May 16.

A law enforcement source said on Monday that if Manning refuses to testify, prosecutors will likely request that she be jailed again for contempt.
-=(

Stacey Lewis/Flickr

“National Lawyers Guild Condemns Secret Service Complicity In Violence Against US Peace Activists” by ? (Popular Resistance)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

====—
The undersigned write to condemn the violations of law which are occurring at the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington D.C. and to demand immediate action be taken. Prior to April 25, 2019, a group of peace activists were invited to the Embassy by the government of Venezuela – recognized as such by the United Nations – and continue to be lawfully on the premises. Nonetheless, the United States government, through various law enforcement agencies, have condoned and protected violent opponents in support of an attempted siege of the Embassy. In so doing, the U.S. government is creating a dangerous precedent for diplomatic relations with all nations. These actions are not only illegal, but they put embassies around the world at risk.

It has been no secret that the United States government has been interfering in the internal affairs of Venezuela, openly supporting “regime change” and the promotion of a coup d’état. Regardless of differing opinions of the Maduro government, the U.S. government’s failed attempt at an orchestrated coup in Caracas is now being directed at the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in Washington D.C. Secret Service agents, tasked to protect the inviolability of foreign embassies under the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, are currently permitting violent opposition demonstrators to physically attack the Embassy, assault the peaceful invitees and prevent them from entering the Embassy with supplies of food and water…
—====

© REUTERS/ CARLOS BARRIA

“US Law Enforcement Officials Raid Venezuelan Embassy in Washington DC” by ? (Sputnik)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

)|—-
After a standoff lasting more than a month, US police have elected to end the siege of the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington, DC, by declaring the Embassy Protection Collective to be tresspassers who must leave the property, and subsequently conducting a raid of the facility.

The collective is comprised of group of anti-war protesters from organizations including Code Pink, Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER) Coalition, Popular Resistance, and the Black Alliance for Peace, who said they believed the embassy falling into opposition hands would precipitate a war between the US and Venezuela and set a dangerous precedent elsewhere in the hemisphere for other diplomatic offices to be similarly disrespected…

Meanwhile, the office of the Venezuelan vice president described the US authorities’ intrusion in the country’s embassy in the United States as a violation of the international law.
—-|(

“Silicon Valley Giants Collaborate With The US Government On Venezuela” by Caitlin Johnstone (Rogue Journalist)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

\\\
Whenever you speak out on a public forum against internet censorship, like the recent Instagram/Facebook banning of Louis Farrakhan, Infowars, and several right-wing pundits, you always offend two major political groups. The first group are the power-serving authoritarians who identify with the left side of the political spectrum; they argue that it’s good and right to trust Silicon Valley plutocrats to regulate political speech on giant monopolistic platforms. The second group are the capitalism cheerleaders who believe there’s a free market solution to every problem; they argue that these Silicon Valley giants are private companies which are completely separate from the government, so it’s not accurate to refer to what they do with their own property as censorship.

Is that really true, though? Is it really accurate to claim that these sprawling corporations that nobody’s been able to compete with are simply private companies, separate and distinct from the government of the nation they’re based in? If you look at their behavior, it certainly doesn’t seem like it…

For example, as highlighted by journalist Max Blumenthal, if you go to Google and look up Venezuela’s embassy in Washington, DC, the result you get looks like this:

Google lists Venezuela’s ambassador to the US as Carlos Vecchio, who has no governmental power and no authority to issue Venezuelan passports, because he represents no actual government but rather the puppet government that the US is attempting to install. Google has no reason to refer to this US government propaganda construct as “Ambassador”, but it does so anyway in support of the US government’s aggressive campaign to replace the Venezuelan government staff in the DC embassy with the staff of its imaginary puppet regime.
///

This is like the way that leftwingers, perhaps under the influence of too much of mainstream media, can’t bring themselves to call fascist States fascist. They are either ‘quasi-fascist’, or ‘proto fascist’ or ‘fascist-like’. Caitlin probably knows that John Perkins made the term Corporatocracy famous. It’s a good term, even if Perkins has proven to be a faker. I use the term Corporatocracy to refer to the global capitalist system that the US designed (and dominates) post WWII because it’s descriptive. It’s apt. Corporations and capitalists run the world. Governments and all their resources are used to protect the global 1%. Benefits to the people (many who are just slave labor) are incidental. If Caitlin wants to keep acting like she’s just discovered that and hasn’t fully grasped it, that’s her call. As I noted in a comment I attached to the above linked-to article, you can flip around her title and it would be, as I imply, more accurate. Governments are aiding and abetting Silicon Valley.

© AP Photo / Brynn Anderson

“WATCH: Teen Trump Fans Flash White Power Signs, Use Racial Slurs in Viral Video” by ? (Sputnik)

An excerpt from the above article follows:

====:-
A Facebook video featuring two Nevada college students declaring their support for “white power” and yelling racial slurs has gone viral. One of them heads a local chapter of conservative advocacy group Turning Point USA, which has disowned him and the contents of the video, although the group has a long record of supporting similar rhetoric.

The video was found by left-wing publication Our Revolution Nevada and posted on Facebook Wednesday. In the video, a boy who’s been identified as Riley Grisar, the president of the University of Nevada Las Vegas’ chapter of Turning Point USA, is joined by a girl identified as Lily Saxton and an unseen cameraman in shouting white supremacist and racist slogans…

However, TP has a long history of encouraging discriminatory attitudes, even as it rushes to keep its public image clean.

The group was founded in 2012 by Charlie Kirk, a then-18-year-old who counts as his friends Donald Trump Jr. and arch-conservative political commentator and former Donald Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka. The group aims to advance conservative politics on college campuses, which Kirk has called “islands of totalitarianism,” as TP believes conservatives are the true victims of discrimination in America today.

The group has maintained a “Professor Watchlist” since 2016, a running registry of liberal and left-wing college instructors who “discriminate against conservative students, promote anti-American values, and advance leftist propaganda in the classroom,” as Kirk put it. Multiple professors who have appeared on the list have reported receiving threats from TPUSA, such as Harvard University political science professor Danielle Allen and Northern Arizona University English professor Anne Scott.

Moreover, the group might be breaking the law by trying to influence elections. TP is registered as a 501(c)3 charity, a type of organization the US Internal Revenue Service strictly prohibits from engaging either directly or indirectly in political elections.
-:====

“Elderly Nevada Man Pushed Off Bus Dies From Injuries, Woman Charged (VIDEO)” by ? (Sputnik)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|(|(|
Disturbing footage released this week shows a 25-year-old woman pushing an elderly man off a bus in Las Vegas, Nevada, resulting in his death six weeks later.

The footage, which doesn’t contain audio, shows Cadesha Bishop, 25, visibly arguing with 74-year-old Serge Fournier on a bus in Las Vegas. Seconds later, Bishop can be seen vigorously pushing Fournier with both hands off the stopped bus as he exits with what appears to be a foldable cart or a walker. Fournier falls through the bus doors, landing face-down and motionless on the sidewalk…

She has been charged with the murder of an elderly, vulnerable person. Police officials believe that Bishop had been yelling profanities at people on the bus. When the bus stopped, Bishop and Fournier began to argue, after Fournier allegedly told Bishop to “be nicer to passengers.”
|)|)|

“Ruin”

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Professional Scam Artists – part 53

“Digging for Dividends” by Hadrian Mertins-Kirkwood, Ben Smith (CCPA)

An excerpt from the above linked-to pdf (click on image) follows:

====:-
Investor–state dispute settlement (ISDS) is a system that allows
foreign investors to sue governments in private tribunals over public policy
measures that affect the profitability of their investments. ISDS is typically
used as an enforcement mechanism for the investment provisions found in
trade and investment agreements between two or more countries. For the
governments consenting to this system, the potential for punitive payouts to
foreign investors is rationalized by the promise of greater inward investment
and by the benefits afforded to a country’s own investors operating abroad.

Canada has long been a proponent of ISDS as part of its trade and
investment regime, yet Canada’s experience with ISDS at home has been
overwhelmingly negative. Under the North American Free Trade Agreement
(NAFTA), the Canadian government has been sued more than either the
U.S. or Mexico—resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars in damages and
government backtracking on public interest regulations—while Canadian
investors in the U.S. and Mexico have never won an ISDS case.

The failure of NAFTA’s ISDS system for Canada was acknowledged in
the recently negotiated United States–Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).
For the first time in a Canadian investment agreement, ISDS was scaled
back rather than expanded. Describing the change, Canada’s foreign affairs
minister echoed the long-standing concerns of labour unions, social justice
movements, environmental activists and other critics that investor–state
arbitration “elevates the rights of corporations over those of sovereign
governments.”

Nevertheless, Canada continues to promote and entrench ISDS through
its trade and investment agreements outside North America. Understanding
the Canadian government’s persistence in advancing a controversial system
that, by the current government’s own admission, has failed Canada and
Canadian investors under NAFTA, requires us to look beyond North America
to Canada’s experience with ISDS in the rest of the world.

Whereas only one ISDS case has ever been brought against Canada by
a country other than the U.S. or Mexico, Canadian investors have initiated
at least 43 ISDS claims against countries outside North America through
the end of 2018. This study documents and analyzes each of those cases to
arrive at a more comprehensive understanding of Canada’s experience with
the ISDS regime.

Overall, we find that the prevailing use of ISDS by Canadian investors
outside North America follows a common pattern: a Canadian firm in the
mining or energy sector operating in a developing country brings a claim
disputing a resource management or environmental policy measure of that
country. Specifically, we find the following:

• Canadian investors in the mining, oil and gas industries were behind
70% of Canadian ISDS cases outside North America even though the
extractive sector accounts for only 9% of the domestic economy and
22% of Canadian investment abroad.

• Canadian investors targeted developing countries in 86% of Canadian
ISDS cases outside North America even though only 41% of total Canadian
investment abroad is hosted by developing countries. Specifically, half
of cases were brought against countries in South and Central America.

• Canadian investors challenged resource management measures in 44%
of Canadian ISDS cases outside North America and environmental
protection measures in 23% of cases.

Environmental policy is the fastest-growing trigger for ISDS cases involving
Canadian investors. Colombia’s recent efforts to protect a sensitive ecosystem,
which triggered three separate ISDS claims by Canadian mining companies,
is illustrative of the trend. As governments around the world accelerate their
efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate the worst effects of
climate change, the potential for ISDS cases to delay and obstruct action is
a serious ecological and economic concern.
-:====

tool Harjit Sajjan

“Canada’s defence minister promoting arms sales to anti-democratic, repressive regimes” by Yves Engler (Canadian Dimension)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

(+
Last Friday, members of Mouvement Québécois pour la Paix interrupted a $135-a-plate luncheon to confront defence minister Harjit Sajjan. At the event sponsored by SNC Lavalin, Bombardier, Rio Tinto, etc., we called for cutting military spending, for Canada to withdraw from NATO and an end to weapons sales to Saudi Arabia.

While Sajjan’s responsibility for NATO and military spending are straightforward, his role in fueling the Saudi led war in Yemen is less obvious. But, the Department of National Defence (DND) plays a substantial role in Canadian arms exports to Saudi Arabia and elsewhere.

As he did the last three years, Sajjan is set to speak at the CANSEC arms bazar in Ottawa later this month. For more than two decades the annual Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries (CADSI) conference has brought together representatives of arms companies, DND, Canadian Forces (CF), various other arms of the federal government and dozens of foreign governments. In 2018 more than 11,000 people attended the two-day conference, including 16 MPs and senators and many generals and admirals…

Beyond contracts, subsidies and various other forms of support to Canadian weapons makers, DND has long promoted arms exports. Its website highlights different forms of support to arms exporters. “Learn how the Department of National Defence can assist in connecting Canadian industry to foreign markets”, explains one section. Another notes: “Learn how the Department of National Defence keeps Canadian companies informed of business opportunities at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).”

Harjit Sajjan heads a ministry intimately tied to a globally oriented corporate weapons industry that profits from war. Is this something Canadians understand and support? Or would the majority of us be upset to learn their Minister of Defence is an arms pusher, promoting sales to anti-democratic, repressive regimes?
+)

Murder for profit is absolutely normal business within the gangster Corporatocracy. Who cares? Too few care I’m afraid. It’s time for this world to go.

Mike Cernovich

“Is Alt Media’s Bad Boy Lying About His Role In The Epstein Case?” by William Craddick (Disobedient Media)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|(
In January 2017, social media personality Mike Cernovich filed a motion to intervene in the much-publicized lawsuit between a victim of billionaire pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, Virginia Giuffre (nee Roberts) and Ghislaine Maxwell, who has been accused of acting as a groomer for a sex trafficking network run by Epstein. Cernovich’s motion included a request to unseal documents in the case filed by Maxwell as part of a motion for summary judgement which relate to “adjudication of the merits of the action.” On his personal blog Cernovich stated that his involvement stemmed from public interest in learning details about the alleged madam of a “massive international sex-trafficking ring.” But is Cernovich’s interest in the case legitimate?…

In their response to Cernovich’s motion to intervene and unseal, lawyers for Virginia Giuffre delivered a scathing reply. Central to the plaintiff’s claims was the contention that Cernovich’s motion was indistinguishable from a previous motion to unseal filed by Dershowitz, and was presented with the same intent.

Giuffre’s attorneys noted that Cernovich was requesting Ghislaine Maxwell’s motion for summary judgement which included nearly 700 pages of exhibits but none of the other records in the case, which spanned 586 docket entries at the time of filing. As a motion for summary judgement is composed of a party’s strongest argument for an immediate favorable ruling, it could be expected that Maxwell’s motion would be heavily one sided and the exhibits contain mostly information that would be harmful to the plaintiff. Cernovich did not request Giuffre’s response in opposition to the motion, meaning that he had no intention of giving his audience a nuanced, balanced view of that case in the event that his motion was granted.
)|

Apologies if I’ve posted this before. I read everything I post, so the problem becomes, for me, “Am I remembering the article or posting an entry for the article?” I do a quick check on my blog when I have doubts and I didn’t see anything. This may or may not be a duplicate. As for alternative media, This is a good example of how ‘alternative’ media doesn’t automatically mean different media, as in well-intentioned and not fake news.

The NYT is component of the Corporatocracy (not an unwilling cog in the machinery). And it’s utterly evil, pushing for war against the innocent this way. This Godless world’s time is almost up.

“Zero Percent of Elite Commentators Oppose Regime Change in Venezuela” by Teddy Ostrow (FAIR)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|\|
A FAIR survey of US opinion journalism on Venezuela found no voices in elite corporate media that opposed regime change in that country. Over a three-month period (1/15/19–4/15/19), zero opinion pieces in the New York Times and Washington Post took an anti–regime change or pro-Maduro/Chavista position. Not a single commentator on the big three Sunday morning talkshows or PBS NewsHour came out against President Nicolás Maduro stepping down from the Venezuelan government.

Of the 76 total articles, opinion videos or TV commentator segments that centered on or gave more than passing attention to Venezuela, 54 (72 percent) expressed explicit support for the Maduro administration’s ouster. Eleven (14 percent) were ambiguous, but were only classified as such for lack of explicit language. Reading between the lines, most of these were clearly also pro–regime change. Another 11 (14 percent) took no position, but many similarly offered ideological ammo for those in support.
|/|

“Corporate Media Are Here to Warn You: Medicare for All Is a Very Bad Idea” by Alan Macleod (FAIR)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

====:-
The United States spends around twice as much on healthcare as other high-income nations, with inferior results. Worse still, around 45 million Americans, 13.7 percent of the population, have no healthcare whatsoever. The Medicare for All plan, which aims to create a nationalized healthcare system like those employed by virtually every other high-income nation, is highly popular among the general public. In late 2018, polls from Reuters and Harris found that at least 70 percent of Americans supported the proposal—including majorities of Republicans.

However, corporate media appear to be almost univocally against the idea, with the flow of doom-mongering stories increasing to a roaring flood as the notion gains more traction among the public.
-:====

PM Netanyahu meets with US Vice President Joe Biden

“‘Send a message to Bibi, I love him’ — Joe Biden’s long ties to Israel” by Philip Weiss (Mondoweiss)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

:||:-
Joe Biden has been in mainstream Democratic politics longer than any other politician running for president, and as he said in 2014, “I have long, long ties with the American Jewish community.”

Below are excerpts of the former vice president’s remarks on Jews and Israel, emphasizing these themes: Jewish influence transformed American society for the better; American Jews need Israel in order to be safe here; and efforts to delegitimize the Jewish state, or even to protest the 2014 Gaza onslaught, are anti-Semitic.

“I’m a Zionist,” Biden has said on many occasions. He has bragged about raising money from AIPAC and of knowing every Israeli prime minister since Golda Meir, and dismissed the idea that Israel hurts U.S. foreign policy.

“Israel is the single greatest strength America has in the Middle East,” Biden has said. Israel is a “security necessity” for the U.S.

In the several speeches I’ve dug up, there is hardly a reference to Palestinians except as footdraggers on the peace process. Though yes, he’s all for the two-state solution.

And meantime, Biden has kisses for Benjamin Netanyahu. “Send a message to Bibi. I love him.” Even if he drives me crazy, Biden said. The love message came in 2014 a few months after the Gaza slaughter, in which Israel killed 500 children.
-:||:

Joe Biden with Hillary Clinton

“Joe Biden Personifies a New “End of History,” This time for U.S. Imperial Rule” by Danny Haiphong (Black Agenda Report)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

==== == =
Joe Biden officially entered the Democratic Party primary on April 25th. The former Senator and Vice President vowed to defeat Donald Trump and rescue the “soul” of the nation. His third attempt to capture the commander-in-chief position exemplifies the decrepit state of U.S. imperial rule. After the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, U.S. and Western oligarchs celebrated the “end of history.” The oligarchs assumed that unfettered imperial rule and capitalist exploitation would permanently dominate the globe. Biden is indeed a favorite among the oligarchsto continue this project, but his very essence represents quite the opposite development.

Large numbers of people in the United States desire policies that are anathema to the Biden-Clinton wing of the Democratic Party. A new “end of history” is emerging, but this time for the empire. Majorities of voters in both parties want Medicare for All . The same goes for the Green New Deal . There is little support among the population for U.S. military expansionism , which is why it’s been cleverly cloaked as “humanitarian intervention.” The 2016 electoral defeat of Hillary Clinton was a referendum on the neoliberal imperialist agenda. Her open policy proposals to expand free trade through the Trans-Pacific Partnership, war through a no-fly zone in Syria, and corporate healthcare through the rejection of Medicare for All failed to inspire enough voters to defeat Donald Trump in the electoral college…

Biden is also a war criminal. He eagerly supported the U.S. invasion of Iraq. This war alone caused the deaths of over one million Iraqis. Many more Iraqis have been saddled with permanent physical and psychological damage as a result of the U.S.’ use of depleted uranium. Not only did Biden support the war , but he knowingly spread lies about Saddam Hussein’s alleged possession of weapons of mass destruction (the infamous WMDs).

It is thus no surprise that the peddlers of the “end of history” narrative, the corporate elite, are so enthusiastic about Biden. His track record of service is more than impressive. What is important to note is that Biden served as Barack Obama’s Vice President for eight years. He co-signed every one of Obama’s criminal policies, whether it was bailing out the banks, jailing whistleblowers, waging war on seven countries, drone striking civilians in record numbers, militarizing the police to occupy Black America, or privatizing education and healthcare. Obama’s legacy has been called “scandal free” by both Biden and the corporate press.
= == ====

Those (caring, normal people) who are clamoring for faker Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s New Green Deal are falling for a trap, I believe. See Cory Morningstar’s investigation into the movement. Black Agenda Report is missing this.

“Al Baghdadi: The US Couldn’t Wish for a Greater Ally” by Tony Cartalucci (New Eastern Outlook)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

|\||
With US-backed militants having already reached the full extent of their gains on the battlefield and now facing incremental but inevitable defeat – the US appeared to be out of time and out of options.

Then suddenly – as if on cue – Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi – alleged leader of the so-called “Islamic State in Iraq and Syria” (ISIS) was resurrected after US claims he had died years early, and provided the US with the perfect pretext to militarily intervene in Syria anyway…

For one year the US posed as fighting ISIS while simultaneously seizing Syria’s oil fields and building an army of militants it had hoped to use to both push ISIS into Syrian government-held territory, and with which to fight the Syrian government itself.

By 2015, Russia began its own military intervention. It immediately targeted ISIS supply lines leading out of NATO-member Turkey – something the US has failed to do up to and including today, isolating the terrorist group within Syrian territory before Russian air power along with Syrian, Iranian, and Hezbollah ground forces encircled and eliminated them along with Al Nusra and other extremist groups everywhere west of the Euphrates River.

On the American-occupied side of the Euphrates, ISIS persisted until just this year and at times was even protected from pursuing Syrian and Russian forces by a US-declared exclusion zone.

It is now clear US efforts to overthrow the Syrian government have failed. It is also clear that Washington’s pretext for illegally occupying Syrian territory is no longer politically tenable.

Just as America’s presence in Syria was becoming increasingly awkward and unsustainable, al-Baghdadi has again emerged – just in time – to grant the US victory in eastern Syria but to also remind the global public that ISIS is still an enduring threat that will require America’s continued presence in the region.
||\|

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The Avalanche – Snapshot 35 – May 11, ’19

plundering Honduras

“Media silence over mass protests in Honduras shows how corporate media ‘serves the global economic elite’” by John McEvoy (The Canary)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

(O
The Honduran capital of Tegucigalpa has seen massive protests this week against controversial president Juan Orlando Hernández. Many Hondurans are angry that their government, which gained power through a reportedly fraudulent election in 2017, had planned a major wave of privatisations. The US government has also played a key role in the destabilisation of Honduras since 2009 (and for many decades before that), which seems to explain why events in the country have received little to no coverage in the corporate media.
O)

“Calls to ban the Muslim Brotherhood aim to criminalise US Muslim dissent, not counter terrorism” by Sahar F. Aziz (The New Arab)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

::–
When America’s founders passed the First Amendment, protecting the right to dissent was the objective.

Having experienced a repressive English state, they understood the hallmark of authoritarianism lies in the absence of freedom of thought, speech and association.

Yet, Trump’s promise to designate the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organisation runs contrary to these fundamental American values. The consequence could be devastating for American Muslims’ civil liberties…

Although the dictators and Islamophobes have different targets in mind, their goal is the same – to criminalise dissent and quash political opposition.

Middle East dictators seek US approval for their violent crackdown against their strongest political opposition movement – the Muslim Brotherhood.

American Islamophobes want to criminalise Islam. The designation could unleash material support to terrorism prosecutions of non-violent, religious American Muslim activists who challenge unconditional US support for Israel, oppose Islamophobe’s anti-Sharia campaigns, and defend religious freedom rights of Muslims…

If Trump goes through with designating the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group, the grounds of criminality will not be engaging in or directly supporting terrorism. Rather, it will be political beliefs. The government, therefore, would be unfettered in criminalising a wide range of views it disfavours…

Ultimately, the freedom to dissent guaranteed by the First Amendment will not apply to Muslims. This totalitarian outcome is not accidental.
–::

I have zero use for Islam. I have zero use for all of organized religion, none of which, I believe, has God’s approval. The Muslim Brotherhood is awful. It is behind a lot of terrorism. But the author is right about this. This isn’t about terrorism. This is the usual counterrevolution. This is part of the global pacification of the people that is underway. All challenges, or potential challenges, to the status quo will be crushed by the war-making State within the gangster Corporatocracy. Also, The author uses the conventional term for anti-Islamic people, namely Islamophobes. It’s simply wrong to refer to anti anything as fear. They are two different things, as different as ‘climate change’ is from ‘climate crisis’, but (bad and relatively good) people are perverse, uncaring and arrogant. Ralph Nader recently wrote an article in which he pleads with enviros (who care about the environment) to please stop calling ‘climate crisis’ climate change. He shouldn’t even have to, but… And David Swanson wrote an article recently in which he laments the way normal people often latch onto a wrong idea and, even when they get that it’s wrong, they stubbornly refuse to adjust their language accordingly. The world is ruined.

“Digital Purge: Facebook Unpersons Alex Jones, Farrakhan And Others With Draconian Full-Content Ban” by Tyler Durden (ZeroHedge)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

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Facebook has unilaterally banned a handful controversial figures from its platform – while lumping conservative pundit Alex Jones, who has been criticized by white nationalists for not “naming the Jew” – in with documented anti-Semite Democrat ally, Louis Farrakhan…

What’s more, anyone who shares Infowars content on Facebook also faces a permanent ban…

Also noteworthy is that several mainstream publications labeled Farrakhan as a “far-right” leader, despite the fact that he is a strong ally to the Democrats.
|/|

Durden (which, I assume is not this blogger’s real name) implies that it is ‘very’ wrong to call the Democrats (Democratic Party) far rightists. He’s wrong. If it’s right to suggest that the Democrats don’t display some of the trappings of the far right (openly white supremacist, willing to sport swastikas, openly racist), it hardly matters. The Democrats are ‘not’ leftwing. Not even close. Here I see a hint of why some refer to ZeroHedge as rightwing. Even so, Tyler Durden has posted many great articles online, which is why real leftwing orgs pick pick them up or refer to them.

From Mint Press News:
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, center, flanked by national security adviser John Bolton, left, and White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, right, listen during the meeting between President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, April 26, 2019. Susan Walsh | AP

“Having Admitted to “Lying” and “Cheating” while CIA Director, Pompeo Drops Another Whopper after Failed Venezuelan Coup” by Whitney Webb (Mint Press News)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

==== == =
WASHINGTON — Just a week after the former CIA director and now secretary of state admitted that the agency prior to and under his direction “lied,” “cheated” and “stole,” Mike Pompeo has delivered another claim that, despite his recent admission of dishonesty, has been regurgitated with little scrutiny by a variety of media outlets.

In what Venezuelan government officials claimed was an attempt to provide cover for the failure of Tuesday’s U.S.-backed coup attempt to gain any traction, Pompeo claimed that Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro had been ready to flee to Havana, Cuba amid the early morning chaos of Tuesday’s failed military uprising, but had been convinced to stay by the Russian government…

Neither CNN nor Fox chose to question the veracity of Pompeo’s claims or ask for any proof of them, even though Pompeo had stated to an audience in Texas just a week prior that when he “was a CIA director, we lied, we cheated, we stole… like, we had entire training courses. It reminds you of the glory of the American experiment.” In fact, the vast majority of mainstream outlets — including the Miami Herald, NPR, The Week and Bloomberg, among others — all failed to place Pompeo’s recent statement regarding the coup in the context of his recent statements about his time in the CIA.
= == ====

“MintPress, Grayzone journalists endure US govt blackout and siege at Venezuelan embassy in DC” by Mnar Muhawesh (The Grayzone)

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

(((—
MintPress News journalist Alexander Rubinstein and a reporter for The Grayzone, Anya Parampil, are besieged inside the Venezuelan embassy in Washington, DC, and have been since April 30, in an egregious attack against press freedom.

On the evening of Wednesday, May 8, events took a turn for the worse as the Metropolitan DC police cut off the power and water to the building — a violation of international law under the Vienna Diplomatic Conventions, Article 25, which reads, “The receiving State shall accord full facilities for the performance of the functions of the [diplomatic] mission.”

There is little doubt that this blackout and the other illegal punitive measures taken against the activists and journalists inside the embassy — which have been described by the activists as sanctions — were intended to silence journalists covering the Embassy Protection Collective‘s efforts to protect the Venezuelan embassy from fascist, pro-coup protesters.

On Wednesday night, after the power was cut, I spoke with Rubinstein, who said he had 5 percent battery left on his phone.

Members of the collective are living inside the embassy at the invitation of the elected government of Venezuela and show no signs of backing down.
—)))

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