Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Hannah Gadsby is still gross and disgusting and not funny

baby stacey

Above is Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "Baby Stacey Wants On The Ticket."  It went up Sunday.


HBO MAX?  I'll write about it tomorrow.  I have nothing kind to say about it now.

Which brings me to the hideous Hannah Gadsby.

"Why, Stan, are you writing about her?  She stopped doing stand up."

She never did stand up -- not good stand up.  But, yes, she did announce her last special that she was done with stand up.

Well she lied.  She's back.  This one's called "Douglas."  Why?

Who the hell knows?  And who the hell cares?

Here's something we need an answer to.

Not why does she wear men's suits but why does she wear such ugly men's suits?

It's an ugly man's suit.

And does she want to be a man?

That's not a crack about her being a lesbian.  That is noting that her damn suit doesn't fit and keeps bulging in the crotch when she twists to the side. 

Is it a phantom penis?

She's disgusting.

She opens the 'show' by explaining what she's going to do in the show and dithering about with the pretense that she's funny.  An audience that's drunk or loaded plays along.

She's not funny.

She did give a response to Ava and C.I.'s criticism of her last special.  From Ava and C.I.'s "MEDIA: Hannah Gadsby is the 21st century's Jimmy Swaggart" back in 2018:

Hannah rails at Harvey Weinstein and Bill Cosby as well.  Which really left us confused.

The special was taped in Australia.

She's from Tasmania.

What is with this obsession with America?

She reminded us of the thankfully forgotten Australian blogger Luke Whatshisname who used to daily attack Bully Boy Bush for the Iraq War but never called out Australia's prime minister John Howard.  Now we called out Bully Boy Bush for the Iraq War, but we're Americans.  Luke was an Australian blogging from Australia and he couldn't call out his own country's prime minister for taking part in the Iraq War?

He struck us an inept and incompetent -- like Hannah does today.

There are many men in Australia who could be called out for assault.  Certainly, the one getting all the attention ahead of her taping of the special was George Pell -- Cardinal George Pell, her country's highest-ranking Catholic official -- and thought to be "the most senior Catholic cleric in the world to face such charges."


Or Yunxiang Gao who was arrested earlier this year on charges of assaulting a woman in Sidney? Or the 2017 convictions of Bailey Joseph Hayes-Gordon, Nicholas William Jackson, and Jacob Michael Watson in Brisbane for using a bottle to rape a friend who was passed out?



It's strange how these don't factor into her comedy or her rage.


At the start of this 'special,' she insists that she's going to make fun of America and that it's because she's punching up.  Ha ha ha.  Oh, and she needs to do it now because there's a small window.

Shut the f**k up, you piece of trash.  I don't need a foreigner wasting my time mocking my country.  Kiss my Black ass, you entitled piece of trash.

You're not funny.  You're not attractive.  You don't belong on TV.

She has no real jokes, she just has (as Ava and C.I. noted) virtue signaling.  Go home, Hannah.  I know they don't want you in Australia but we don't want you here.  Paddle home, Hannah, paddle home.




Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"


**Wednesday**, May 27, 2020.  We all wake up grumpy these days.


I had a nightmare.  And then realized it was no dream.

Joe Biden is a hideous candidate by any standard.  But some in the DNC are determined to have him as the presidential candidate.

Accused of assault, his campaign pretends to be standing back and letting events unfold when in reality they are feeding 'reporters' information to attack Tara Reade's character.  Despite their best efforts at embracing rape culture, nothing has changed the fact that Tara's accused him of assault and that her accusation is credible.

Whores like Katha Pollitt insist it's vote Joe or else.  When what they should be insisting is that a senile War Criminal drop out and be replaced.

Joe Biden showed up last week for one of those rare appearances.  He appeared on  Charlamagne tha God's program and insisted that "You ain't Black" if you voted for Donald Trump.  An elderly, White man telling others who was and wasn't Black -- an elderly, White man with a history of racism -- including his crime bill, including his praise for segregationists . . .

In the aftermath last Friday, Joe Biden 'apologized.'  Chris Freind (THE MERCURY) points out:

What isn’t a joke is how racist, arrogant, condescending, obnoxious, tone-deaf and patronizing Mr. Biden’s statement is. About the only thing worse was his non-apology apology: “I shouldn’t have been such a wise guy…perhaps I was much too cavalier.” Perhaps? That’s the best he could muster? “Perhaps?”



Joe never really apologizes, he's a sociopath.  When nine women came forward to complain about his inappropriate behavior he did a video 'apology' and then, a few days later, made fun of the women at a predominately all male event.

So no surprise, he's taken back the apology.

From "I shouldn't have been such a wise guy" to now insisting that someone else was the "wise guy."  Fionnuala O'Leary (THE SUN) explains:

The presumptive Democratic nominee acknowledged the statement he made on "The Breakfast Show" was a "mistake" last Friday, but Biden claimed the radio presenter was also being "a wise guy."


"He was being a wise guy," Biden says of Charlamagne, "and I shouldn't have responded in kind."

Way to take ownership, Joe.

Charlamagne was right to doubt the sincerity of the words -- which were never an apology.




It's always someone else' fault and he never takes real accountability.  That's the problem with a career politician and Joe is everything America stands against.

Margaret Kimberley (BLACK AGENDA REPORT) observes:

Joe Biden was always an intellectual light weight and he always had poor impulse control. He was always in the conservative wing of the Democratic Party. Now he believes the hype of the black misleadership class charlatans who make his case by claiming that he has some sort of special relationship with black people. The combination of all these attributes makes his presidential campaign one long train wreck. 
A recent interview on the Breakfast Club  radio program was the occasion of his latest bizarre statement. This time he famously said, “... if you have a problem figuring out whether you're for me or Trump, then you ain't black." He seemed to think that being overly familiar and using bad grammar gave him some sort of credibility.

Symone Sanders, his most prominent black campaign staffer, was left to clean up after him yet again and defend his stupidity by saying that he spoke in jest. The damage was bad enough that Biden had to apologize himself and said that he shouldn’t have been “a wise guy.”
Biden is like Donald Trump, in that he is thoroughly unqualified to be president. Yet black people are desperate to see anyone other than Trump in the White House and that is how the party establishment got away with foisting him upon them. When they aren’t trying to minimize his shortcomings, they admonish anyone who points them out. “But he’s better than Trump!” is their rallying cry lest anyone think for themselves and point out the many reasons why Biden is so problematic. 
Any words of doubt or well deserved humor are frowned upon and even attacked. There is a strange magical thinking afoot that equates acknowledgement of Biden’s faults with support of Trump. A joke at his expense can lead to foolish argument. The Democratic Party propagandists and their friends in the black misleadership class are to blame for this sad state of affairs. 

Allegiance and subservience to their donor class requires them to lie to the party rank and file. Their scam depends upon convincing voters that they work on their behalf when they do nothing of the sort. They had to explain away Hillary Clinton’s defeat with tales of Russian intrigue and blame directed at the left. Trump’s awfulness makes him the perfect foil. They can pretend to oppose him with an impeachment charade which satisfies their base but when he proposes a space force or $700 billion in defense spending they go right along with whatever he wants.



He is not qualified to be president.  He doesn't know where he is, he tells people to vote him into the Senate, he is just not fit.

And his team knows this and has begun the process of lowering expectations.  So they whisper to the press that Joe will have a solid team behind him, the team will be running things, the team . . .

Sorry, that's not what the US Constitution defines.

He qualifies right now, before the election, as incapacitated.  If he were president right now, there would be a solid case for removing him from office.






The interview with Charlamagne was Joe's first real appearance in months.  Coronavirus was a gift to Joe.  He was getting tired and the eyes were starting to water and he was snapping at people.  Along came coronavirus and the man who can't handle the campaign trail was handed a gift.  But all the resting he did while 'sheltering' (instead of campaigning) did not do him any good.

He is unfit for the office and he really can't handle the campaign.

This is America's nightmare.

The Democratic Party refuses to nominate a candidate that inspires or even one that's just competent.  Instead, they go with Joe.

Katha Pollitt, Norman Solomon and other whores have already begun the roll out of attempt to bully people into voting for Joe.  That sort of behavior usually takes place in the fall, after the DNC has their convention.  But Biden's so weak that they're having to start it months earlier.

Let's go back to Chris Freind:

A joke making the rounds shows a Wheel of Fortune puzzle missing one letter. It reads: “JOE BIDEN IS A RA_IST.” Underneath, two choices: “C” and “P.”

Tommy Virgl (THE DEPAULIA) explains:

If the Democratic party actually wanted to beat Trump, they would replace Biden. Not only is he dishonest and an alleged rapist, but he does not represent the moral high ground that the Democratic establishment touts him as — it would make sense to have a candidate who can contrast Trump’s corruption as an effective strategy.
The logical replacement, if Biden were to withdraw from the race, would be the next person on the ballot with the most delegates, which would be Sen. Bernie Sanders. Not only is Sanders backed by grassroots support, but his clear record would be a great way to contrast Trump’s corruption.
“Standing with survivors doesn’t have a political agenda,” Blenck said.

While the election this November is critical, so is applying a consistent standard of believing sexual assault victims. I believe Dr. Ford. I believe Tara Reade. I don’t believe in a party that’s only willing to defend women and sexual assault survivors when it’s convenient for them.



Bernie Sanders and the media keep talking about my/his supporters.  Bernie Sanders had very few supporters.  The issues he ran on had a ton of supporters.  Bernie is trying to sheep dog everyone which is offensive enough but every time he speaks of 'my supporters,' I cringe.  He's a fake ass and his war on delegates, reported by Genevieve Leigh (WSWS), is very telling.

And the lack of concern of what Biden on the world stage would mean?  Very scary.  He did not just vote for the Iraq War.  He repeatedly destroyed Iraq -- most infamously by overturning the votes of the Iraqi people in the 2010 election.  He is not asked about that, the press ignores it.  It is a very key issue and maybe instead of bullying people to vote for him supposed independent writers should be pressuring him to speak to that.


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Tuesday, May 26, 2020

THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO and HBO too

judge tootie

 From Sunday, that's Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "Rest Assured, Judge Tootie Is Here."

I pay for AMAZON PRIME but really don't use it except to store the streaming movies I purchase (purchase, not rent).  I lost any enthusiasm for the stand up comic in season two of her bad adventure.  I loved HOMECOMING with Julia Roberts.  But it's taken me a whole week to watch season two (without Julia) and I only made it through the first episode.  It was dull and boring.

THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATOO? 

I would watch that.  I love the movies.  And it's past time that someone made a TV show out of it.  DEADLINE reports that AMAZON PRIME is developing a show based on those films.

DEADLINE also notes:

HBO Max is finally throwing the “on” switch, culminating a multi-year, $4 billion journey to join the direct-to-consumer streaming wave.
The service’s launch just after midnight ET on Wednesday is the last of five major streaming debuts, an unprecedented multibillion-dollar infusion that has upended traditional organizations and strategies. Apple TV+ and Disney+ arrived last November and NBCUniversal’s Peacock and well-funded mobile startup Quibi hit the market last month. Peacock will reach beyond its initial Comcast footprint via a national expansion in July.

All of these entrants, as well as incumbents led by Netflix, are operating in a marketplace defined by COVID-19, which has boosted overall streaming viewing but also complicated the supply chain. The title initially intended as the flagship attraction for HBO Max, a reunion special with the original cast of Friends, was delayed by the pandemic. Anna Kendrick’s romantic comedy Love Life has stepped in as the service’s marquee show at launch.

I have HBO on my HULU subscription as an add-on.  They e-mailed on May 20th explaining that I'd just use my HULU sign on credentials to access it.

I'll try to check it out tomorrow (it goes live in about 19 minutes) and offer some impressions.


Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"


Tuesday, March 26, 2020.  So many things Joe Biden should be answering for.

Starting in the US . . .



Fiorella Isabel and Tina-Desiree Berg initiate a conversation on sexism among the left.  It's an important conversation that addresses the attacks on Tara Reade, the hypocrisy of so many and the embrace of rape culture as some rush to bury Tara Reade.  Tara has accused Joe Biden of assault.

"He's going through every victim shaming trope that ever existed," Tina-Desiree Berg notes of the hideous Michael Tracey.

It's an important conversation.  It's one the press could have contributed to but instead the bulk of them chose to attack the victim and the small number who did originally want to report walked away the minute Joe Biden's campaign to make Tara 'toxic' was put in place.

They can't shut up about Ronan Farrow -- these same people.  I don't think Ronan's in danger of losing his post at THE NEW YORKER.  I don't believe people are rushing to return their copy of his book.  Ronan's journalism stands or doesn't.  But these people, these same people, want to rush forward to spend time defending Ronan while acting like Tara no longer exists.  Ryan Grim and Rich McHugh, I'm especially looking at you two.

It's especially bad for Ryan Grim.  He's with THE INTERCEPT which already has a bad image for the treatment of sources.  Ryan's the one who broke this story.  And now that the source is being beaten up by the corporate media, where's Ryan's reporting?

Ryan's standing by while Tara is victimized by the media after he set the whole thing in motion.  Don't think I'd ever choose Ryan for any story I wanted to break. 

Still on Tara, Justin Vallejo (INDEPENDENT) reports:

Democrat "squad" member Ilhan Omar says she believes sexual assault allegations against Joe Biden but would vote for him anyway to defeat Donald Trump.
In a Tweet defending her support of accuser Tara Reade, the Minnesota congresswoman said that "believing survivors is consistent with my values".
"With that said, in this interview I did on 6 May, we talked about that and quotes aren't always in context. I will vote for him and help him defeat Trump," she said.



Rose McGowan notes:

BREAKING NEWS: New York Times ‘journalist’ sent these questions to Joe Biden’s accuser, Tara Reade. The public needs to see how
@llerer
and the #NYT plan on twisting their minds. Now you can all see their tactics & how far they will go.

Lisa Michelle Eu Tweets:

There’s an imbalance btw the amount of scrutiny happening around #TaraReade truthfulness vs that of #Bidens. Biden’s history of untruthfulness is documented, recorded. Undeniable. But is never brought up for review in light of this accusation. That’s the process of rape culture.



Turning to Iraq . . .

Ibrahim al-Zobeidi (THE ARAB WEEKLY) does more to address Joe's record on Iraq than any US outlet has done in the last year:

A Biden victory will launch a new episode of the American-Iranian romance. His administration will soon lift or reduce the sanctions against Iran and may even release its frozen assets in the US worth billions of dollars, and perhaps in Europe as well. That’s when Iran completely recovers its former capacity to finance its proxy armies of mayhem, kidnapping and embezzlement, and move them according to its plans.
When Joe Biden was just a senator for the state of Delaware in 2006, and not yet vice-president, he proposed dividing Iraq into three semi-autonomous entities for the Shia, Sunnis, and Kurds.
Following his presidential victory in 2009, Obama made this same Biden vice-president and charged him with the Iraqi file. The latter stuck to his stupid, short-sighted and poisonous proposition for Iraq and happily became a close connection between his boss, Obama, and the Iranians in Iraq and their proxies and militias, openly and unabashedly.
Biden’s vision became reality in 2010, when he managed to impose Nuri al-Maliki as prime minister, despite the crimes the latter committed and the disasters he caused during his previous term as premier. Maliki made it possible for ISIS to invade and occupy one third of Iraq and, with Iran’s precious help, persecuted all Iraqis opposed to Velayat e-faqih.


Joe has a great deal to answer for but you'll apparently never find the American media demanding answers.

We noted the United Nations report on the way protesters were treated in Iraq, noted it on SaturdayIANS notes that the report found 123 protesters were kidnapped. Karwan Faidhi Dri (RUDAW) notes that the UN "has verified the death of 490 activists and the injury of 7,783 others since October." Hiwa Shilani (KURDISTAN 24) explains:

On Saturday, the United Nations published a report on the abduction of multiple demonstrators in Iraq since late October that detailed the experiences of some, including the circumstances in which they were taken and their subsequent interrogation and torture.
The Human Rights Office of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) documented 123 cases of people who disappeared between October 1, 2019, and March 21, 2020. A total of 98 individuals have been found while the other 25 are still missing.
“Absence of accountability for these acts continues to contribute to the pervasive environment of impunity in relation to demonstration-linked reports of violations and abuses,” the UN report highlighted.  
Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq, stated, “The establishment of a high-level fact-finding committee by the new Government to investigate casualties and related harm is a crucial step toward justice and accountability.”

On the kidnappings,  THE NEW ARAB adds:

In every incident, those targeted for abductions had either participated in the protests or provided support to demonstrators, UNAMI said. Nearly all of the abductees were either activists prior to the protests, played significant roles in the demonstrations, or criticised authorities or armed groups on social media, it added.
Abductees were forced into vehicles by masked and armed men close to demonstration sites, according to UNAMI. Many described being blindfolded and driven to locations where they were detained.
All of them were "interrogated" by their captors, with questioning commonly focused on their role in the demonstrations, allegations of links to foreign states - particularly the United States - and their political affiliations.
All male abductees described being subjected to torture such as severe beatings, electrocution, hosing or bathing in cold water, being hung from the ceiling by their arms and legs, being urinated on, being photographed nude, death threats and threats to their families, UNAMI reported.
Female abductees said they were beaten, threatened with rape and touched in their "private areas".



The United Nations is calling for a real investigation -- not the nonsense that passed for an 'investigation' last year.  Omar Sattar (AL-MONITOR) reports:

The new Iraqi government has begun procedures to reinvestigate the violent acts during the popular protests that broke out in October and killed more than 700 people and injured over 25,000. The decision was greatly welcomed at home and in the international arena. The United Nations Security Council called for “transparency during the investigation.”

Following the first meeting of his government May 9, Prime Minister Mustafa al-Khadimi announced the formation of an investigation committee, whose members have not been disclosed so far. He said that the committee will work on uncovering the names of the parties responsible for killing hundreds of protesters who have been calling for reform and the trial of corrupt politicians.
The committee is currently being formed and its members will be announced at a later stage. This is the second committee of this kind, following the one that was formed by Adel Abdul Mahdi, former prime minister who resigned at the end of November 2019, which did not yield satisfactory results for the protesters and failed to indict any party behind the bloody events that took place in central and southern Iraq.




Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "Rest Assured, Judge Tootie Is Here" and his "Baby Stacey Wants On The Ticket" went up yesterday.


Saturday, May 23, 2020

READY OR NOT, horror films, BLINDSPOT

Let me start with some post recommendations.  Elaine covers music in "5 strong solo tracks from Annie Lennox" and Rebecca covers TV with "hack my life - some thoughts on eye candy" and "motherland fort salem."  I want to note Betty's "Praise for my daughter and boos for racist Joe Biden " because she did a lot of work gathering all those videos to show how Joe is racist and this is not a new development.

Now let me reply to Cole.  I was wrong, I'm sorry.  With only 11 episodes in season five and with NBC waiting until May to start airing them, I did assume we'd run straight through with no missed weeks.  For whatever reason, they took Thursday night off this week.  We get a new episode next week and then it runs straight through all the month of June.  I have no idea what's in store for July.  Sorry for getting it wrong. 

READY OR NOT debuted on HBO Saturday night.  I'd praised it before.  2019 was largely saved by horror movies.

Ann's "2019 in film -- Ann and Stan" and my "2019 in films -- Ann and Stan:"

If we had more time -- we spent five hours debating out top ten -- we'd explore one development.  Horror films continue to be one of the few film types that can hold their own against the superhero flicks.  And we are seeing more and more diversity and inclusion and rule breaking of the format in this genre than in any other one.  READY OR NOT is not on our top ten.  If it was a top eleven, it would be.  If it were a top 15, MA would be on the list.  Horror has delivered throughout 2019.

Superhero films have become copy and paste productions, cookie cutter scripts.  We've seen it all before and only the costume ever changes.

But horror films -- US, PARASITE, MA, READY OR NOT -- these films really delivered.  And there were others that were more than worth seeing.

Horror really is the genre that both delivers and defies these days.  LITTLE MONSTERS, DEPRAVED, THE LIGHTHOUSE, I TRAPPED THE DEVIL and BLISS were some other horror films of 2019 that stood out.

READY OR NOT is one of those films that has you screaming at the screen.  You watch Grace realize what's going on.  She's just a little behind the audience on that so you scream at the TV.  The film has twists an turns.  The basic premise is a deal has been made with the devil many, many years ago.  Now Grace, who has just married into the family, has to be the sacrificial goat. 

It's worth watching even if you've already seen it.  I saw it once in the theater and twice on streaming rental but watching it tonight on HBO I was still gripped by the film.

Now let me note a TV show.  Remember THE ALIENEST starring Dakota Fanning and Luke Evans?  The TNT show returns with a second season on July 26th.  I was noting some shows that would soon be airing new episodes in "Some upcoming TV shows" but wasn't aware of THE ALIENEST coming back.


Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

 
Friday, May 22, 2020.  No attack is too far when the press wants to discredit a woman's voice and corruption continues in Iraq.



Let's start with Ely Kreimendahl's hilarious parody of Women for Biden:





Let's note Pig Boy Michael Tracey who loves to attack women (especially women of color -- Maxine Waters, Kamala Harris, etc -- there's a reason Margaret Kimberley's rebuked him online).

Antioch University emphatically denies that Tara Reade ever received a degree. Unless they're lying for some bizarre reason, Tara Reade falsified her credentials in court. Again, congratulations to everyone who promoted this complete fiasco of a story

If true, what does that have to do with her allegation of assault?

More to the point -- who the hell cares?

They are throwing everything they can at her.  Have you had a problem with a landlord?  Guess what -- not a crime.

Have women ever lied about the academic history?  Yes.  It is not uncommon (or for men too).  It is so not uncommon that it was a story for Mary Richards.  Yes, on THE MARY TYLER MOORE SHOW, Mary reveals to Lou that she didn't actually graduate college as she had stated in her long ago job interview.

I didn't believe Christine Blasey Ford and I still don't.  Find anything here where I ripped her apart.  You won't.  First off, I could be wrong.  Second off, I'm not going to rip her apart for this or that event in her life that has nothing to do with her assault charge.  I'm not interested in shaming or silencing women who say they were assaulted.  Blasey Ford may be telling the truth, she may not.  But I'm not going to rip her life apart to try to pretend that proves a point about whether she was assaulted or not.

It proves nothing.

Nothing is what Asama Khalid offered on NPR yesterday.  That includes her justification for Joe Biden supporting the Hyde Amendment.  She insists that Joe has evolved and "the Democratic Party has evolved on it."  As Li Zhou (VOX) noted last June "until a few weeks ago , former Vice President Joe Biden was a staunch supporter of the Hyde Amendment."

Asama felt it was important to note that PBS spoke to 74 people who worked for Joe Biden but with Tara's corroborating witnesses, "these are people, I should point out, that we were connected with through Tara herself."  As Ava and I noted Sunday in "Media: Lies and liars all around," PBS spoke to 74 employees the Biden campaign steered them to -- that's written in the actual report.  That would be the report everyone keeps mentioning but fails to have actually read it.

Failing is all Asama has done on NPR with this story from day one.

The NPR segment offered a Patty in a soundbye insisting "we would have heard about it during the vetting" and demanding "Give me a break!"

Rebecca Traister, who was one of the panelists, rightly noted that the country has evolved on this issue since 2008.  More to the point, Barack's vetting?  He let one of his daughters intern for Harvey Weinstein.  Are we really trusting Barack's vetting?


Democrat Hannah James is running for Congress out of California's 19th district and she Tweets:

Hey
@JoeBiden
, Why did you sexually assault Tara Reade? #AskBidenAnything


Here's another question: When is Joe going to be vetted?  These attacks have been organized by his campaign and yet he's repeatedly allowed to go on camera stating Tara has every right to tell her story and act as though he's not doing anything.  He is running a campaign to trash and destroy her.  When will the media get real about this?

Probably never.  Ever.

When do Joe's actions in public impact the way this story is covered?  When is he ever asked why did you say you apologized and days later make jokes about consent when you appeared before a largely male audience?  How is that funny?  How does that make it appear you took the complaints from women seriously?

When is he asked about his many lies about Anita Hill?  That goes to Tara's assault charge.  Joe has lied about Anita repeatedly.  He has lied that he supported her.  He then went to Republican senators and told them Anita was lying.  When is he going to get honest about that?  How many Republican senators have to talk about that before the media asks him?  He has a long history of dismissing assault and harassment.  That goes to this issue.

The Iraq War?  It doesn't.  His past lying about everything else?  It really doesn't have to do with Tara.  But if the media wants to dig through a citizen's life, they damn well should be digging through a public servant's life -- a public servant who somehow ends up with millions and millions of dollars.  No, that's not how public service is supposed to work.

On Iraq . . .




Joe has spent 2019 and 2020 citing his being in charge of Iraq during Barack's presidency.  So if he was responsible, when is he asked the tough questions?

There are a ton of tough questions that need to be asked.  That interview has many lies in it.

Even to the idiots, it should be obvious that the rise of ISIS -- which Joe is responsible for -- raises the issue of how US troops left.

We were and are for all US troops out of Iraq.  We argued for that to take place immediately.  We argued that to Barack's transition team -- Ava and I did -- long before Barack was sworn in.  Our argument was: Pull all troops now and the reason is: This is what the American people voted for.

Why does that matter?

Iraq's government was and is propped up by US troops.  The US installed the government.  It is not popular with the people.  When US troops leave, the government most likely will topple.

Good.  Let the Iraqi people determine the government that they want and need -- that is democracy.

So pull out immediately and when asked you reply: This was the will of the American people.

Fail to keep your promise of ten months and dicker around with Iraq and you own it.  It's no longer Bully Boy Bush's problem, it is your problem.

And that's how it became Barack's problem.  He did not keep his campaign promise.  Samantha Power and Joe Biden and Susan Rice, among others, just knew they were smart to fix things.  They were idiots.

And they made Bully Boy Bush's war into Barack's war.  If he had kept his promise, it wouldn't have happened.  But he didn't.

Hassan Ali Ahmed (ARAB NEWS) reports this morning:

After about two months of quiet due to pandemic concerns, Iraqi protesters returned to the streets soon after the formation of the new government.
The protests that erupted last year in October resulted in Adil Abdul Mahdi’s resignation and withdrawal of the last two prime ministers. After the approval of Mustafa al-Kadhimi’s government, the new prime minister announced plans to tackle corruption and address the protesters' demands.
Baghdad, Wasit, Dhi Qar, Al-Muthanna, Babel, Al-Qadisiyyah and Karbala provinces have been rocked by protests since last week. There have been several clashes between the protesters and the security forces. On May. 18, four activists were arrested in Diwaniya, the capital of Al-Qadisiyyah. Security forces also attacked protesters at the Ahdab oil field in Wasit province, burning their tents and damaging their vehicles. On May. 19, security forces fired live ammunition at protesters in Diwaniya, killing at leat one and injuring many others.
Protesters still complain about activists and paramedics being abducted. Prominent activist Haidar al-Lami was abducted on May. 18 when he was returning to Tahrir Square in Baghdad. Though those arrested and abducted were released by direct order from the prime minister, the protesters have not only reduced their activities but have stepped up the protests and raised their demands.
As summer approaches, the protests are expanding in the southern provinces over a lack of electricity and clean water. Hundreds of protesters gathered May. 16 in front of the governor's office in Basra, which has suffered salinity problems for last few years.
Iraq's government does not serve the Iraqi people.  The hope of US war mongers originally was the Iraqi people would be stunned -- shocked and awed -- into submission.  Naomi Klein wrote about that in "Baghdad Year Zero" which originally appeared in HARPER'S.





That has long since changed.  They no longer want to shock into submission, they just want to keep the Iraqi government in place until the Iraqi people are too exhausted to argue or fight back.





The US-installed Iraq government is corrupt and it does not serve the Iraqi people.  Karwan Faidhi Dri (RUDAW) reports:                                                                     


When 752 tons of wheat went missing from a state grain silo in Najaf this year, the site manager claimed it had been pilfered by flocks of hungry birds. Anti-graft officials aren’t convinced.

Iraq’s integrity commission, parliament, and provincial officials in Iraq’s holy city of Najaf have launched a probe into the alleged avian antics, which seem a little farfetched.

As the missing grain is said to be worth at least $350,000, investigators believed it was stolen by corrupt officials.

On Thursday, Iraq’s Federal Commission of Integrity (FCOI) said its officials completed an audit of the silo’s stocks between May 4, 2019 and April 1, 2020.

“The Office confirmed that there was a shortage in wheat material that amounted to (752 tons and 498 kg), and that its total value reached (421,120,000 IQD) [$353,744],” the commission said in a statement.

Investigators have submitted their findings to the Najaf Investigation Court and called for legal action against those deemed responsible. 





The following sites updated:













  • Thursday, May 21, 2020

    AT HOME WITH AMY SEDARIS returns and ABC cancels five shows

    TRUE TV's AT HOME WITH AMY SEDARIS returned last night. The show has been Emmy nominated for this show and that was more than deserved. Yesterday kicked off the third season. Each season is 10 episodes. Amy plays a character also named Amy Sedaris. She's a local Martha Stewart type who does a show out of her home about cooking, crafting and hosting parties.

    Amy Sedaris, the actress, is very funny. She played Jerri Blank on the TV show STRANGERS WITH CANDY and on the movie they made of the same name a few years later. She was also on RAISING HOPE as Martha Plimpton's competitive cousin. In addition to playing Amy, Sedaris also plays Patty Hogg who is a pushy woman a few years older than Amy and also one of Amy's friends. She also plays Nutmeg (a crazy character) and others. Another friend of Amy's is Chassie Tucker -- played by Cole Escola. I have to be honest, I didn't know until last night's episode that Chassie was played by a guy. I did not realize that. Chassie is a mess. She's always a mess. Also in the cast is Paul Dinello (who played the art teacher on STRANGERS WITH CANDY) and David Pasquesi (who played Jerri's stepfather on SWC).

    So last night saw Amy 'pregnant.' A woman wanted Amy to participate in her maternity fashion show and brought a fake baby bump for Amy which made Amy decide she was pregnant -- didn't know his name or see his face, she said. Then she told a man he was the father and he told her they hadn't seen each other in 15 years. She told him it was a cryptic pregnancy. She even had a doll that she pretended was her baby.

    To show you what I mean by Chassie being a mess, Chassie came by and saw the doll and got jealous. She even tried to drop the baby in boiling water. Then she left having a temper tantrum and saying that now that Amy had the new baby she didn't want Chassie anymore.

    Each episode is supposed to be Amy at home filming her show.

    It really is a funny show and my only complaint? That they only do ten episode seasons.

    From DEADLINE:

    ABC made some cuts today, canceling Single Parents, Bless This Mess, Schooled, Emergence and the reboot of Kids Say the Darndest Things. Many took to social media to express their disappointment and to say goodbye — and this includes the cast and creators of the shows.

    Okay, that's bad news -- except for KIDS SAY THE DARNDEST THINGS -- there's enough cheap garbage on TV already without us having to endure KSTDT.  Did anyone need them to bring back WHO WANTS TO BE A MILLIONAIRE?  Did anyone need to see smug Jimmy Kimmel in prime time.  And what's the point of Dr. Phil and Jane Fonda and other people who are millionaires playing on a game show called WHO WANTS TO BE A MILLIONAIRE?  What a load of garbage.

    SINGLE PARENTS was funny.  It was my 'safety' show in the summer.  I'd stream it on HULU in the summer when new shows weren't around.  SCHOOLED?  It got so much better as it went along.  I really enjoyed season two -- especially the way they had developed the coach's character via the love story.  Those were both funny shows and I think it was a mistake to cancel them.  BLESS THIS MESS?

    Dax Shepard?

    If you want to be sure that I don't watch something, cast Dax.  I can't stand him.  Everything he projects, everything he does is irritating and annoying.  Remember in the '00s when everyone would slag on Dane Cook and talk about how unfunny he was?  Dax makes Dane look like George Carlin.  Dax is Jerry Van Dyke.  Dax is useless and irritating and he drives viewers away.

    Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

     
    Thursday, May 21, 2020.  Attacking Tara Reade isn't feminism though it clearly helps some make a quick buck.





    Cher performing Stephen Stills' "For What It's Worth." Cher's version appears on her 1969 classif album 3614 JACKSON HIGHWAY.


    There's battle lines being drawn 
    And nobody's right if everybody's wrong 
    Young people speaking their minds
    Getting some much resistance from behind

    As a friend with the Biden campaign gloated to me on the phone last night, "We knew what we were doing."  Yes, they did.  The campus papers are pretty much mute right now.  That was always the biggest block for Joe.  It's not just that young adults don't like him.  It's also that they're better educated on assault and harassment.

    The generational divide that's been at the heart of Joe's lukewarm reception continues.  And you see it at THE NATION where the elderly write so many columns that 46-year-old Dave Zirin is the 'youngster' in the mix.

    Joan Walsh? 61.  Katha Pollitt?  70.  Patricia J. Williams?  68.

    I had to ask Jim to look into that 2007 e-mail from THE NATION.  Ava and I had been sick of the imbalance at THE NATION in terms of gender.  They were publishing far more men than women.  We'd started to track it.  Around July 4th, THE NATION had e-mailed frantically.  They wanted the story killed.  They would do anything.  They would publish Ava and myself (we had no interest, thank you), they were going to be hiring women columnists shortly -- and young women at that.  Could we please kill the story?

    Do we look like whores?  Maybe.  But we're not.

    We tracked it for a full year and served up "The Nation featured 491 male bylines in 2007 -- how many female ones?" on December 23, 2007. 149, by the way, that's the answer.  They had 491 male bylines that year and only 149 female bylines.

    And you don't see what women are up against?  Even on the so-called inclusive Democratic left (as opposed to genuine left).

    Well they never did hire a young woman -- 46-year-old Melissa Lacewell Harris Perry was the closest they got.

    They don't get it, like so many, they just don't get it.  They don't want to get it is probably the reason why they don't get it but it really doesn't matter.  What matters is we're in the 21st century and they're stuck in the 90s with their James Carville mindset.

    They smear and attack Tara with rape culture because they must stop Tara and any other woman who might come out -- two have now hinted publicly about coming forward.

    Katha Pollitt, you're the new Midge Decter!  To this generation coming up right now, that's what you are.  Embrace your descent into frivolity -- or further frivolity.

    They don't get it.  They didn't get Anita Hill in real time either but we'll talk about that tomorrow.

    Alexis Grenell (NEW YORK DAILY NEWS) plans to vote for Joe but is dismayed by the attacks on Tara Reade:

      
    Reade may be only the latest in a long line of inconvenient women to pipe up about a favorite son, but she’s the first to appear post-#MeToo in the middle of an election year where the sitting president has botched the response to a pandemic that’s killed more Americans than the Vietnam War. All of this leaves less bandwidth for her in the public imagination, as she asks us to weigh her individual pain against the agony of watching our whole world bleed out. It certainly doesn’t make her any easier to like.

    The thing is, it’s not necessary to like or not like Reade, because either way we cannot know what happened. I’ve read through every shred of “evidence” and I still can’t make sense of the facts or my feelings about them. I have no qualms about supporting Biden — we can’t re-elect the titular head of the death cult formerly known as the Republican Party — but my ambivalence about Reade is what keeps me up at night. I want her, and anyone else who comes forward about alleged abuse, to be allowed to be unlikeable and legitimate. I want people to be able to separate feelings from facts, and when the facts don’t lead somewhere conclusive, not to fill in the blanks with feelings. I want us to learn that sexual abuse rarely comes with a certificate of origin and to sit with that discomfort.

    Alexis bills herself as a feminist.  Is she?  I'd say no.  Xenophobia doesn't really belong in feminism.  Maybe she's a domestic (and domesticated) feminist (tabby)?  The Vietnam War?  If we're going to count deaths, we should include the Vietnamese.  It was their country.  Reducing a war to the deaths on only one side -- regardless of the war -- is not just short-sighted, it's xenophobic.

    But Grenell is a writer and she's right to be concerned about what's taking place which puts her far ahead of Katha Pollitt the faux feminist that we addressed in yesterday's snapshot.  Others are addressing her nonsense as well.  Here's Sady Doyle:



    Here, from Katha Pollit's latest piece on Reade, is a problem troubling me with this coverage: Pollit names four-count-em-four witnesses corroborating sexual harassment, three of them roughly contemporaneous to the event. Then she calls it merely "possible" Reade was harassed.
      


    The evidence for the assault itself is much weaker. But every witness, even hostile ones (like the ex) corroborates the harassment at least. Why "possible?" Why not "likely?" In any other circumstance, feminists would likely say "can be relatively sure harassment occurred."


    One element of Reade's claim - the most inflammatory, the rape - has the weakest evidence for it. But we DO have corroborating accounts for the harassment, more than are often required to take a claim seriously. If we're feminists, we should take that as our grounds for argument.

    If the worst insinuation of Reade's critics is true -- that she inflated a sexual assault claim to a rape claim to get press attention she was missing -- that's a tragedy about a woman who went unheard so long she risked something desperate and destroyed her life in the process.

    Another scenario is that a vulnerable woman, who struggled with money and an abusive marriage after being sexually harassed at work, was later preyed upon by bad political actors and convinced to escalate her claim. Again, that would be horrible, but it would also be tragic.


    In no scenario does Biden emerge spotless. In no scenario does his track record with women become irrelevant. What makes Biden look worst, all this, is the rush to demolish Reade in the hopes of restoring some "feminist" reputation Biden does not appear to have ever deserved.

    Katha Pollitt is an embarrassment.  She opened that hideous column attacking Tara with the reveal that she would vote for Joe even if were seen on the street eating a baby.  Is she trying to restart the spirit cooking nonsense?  Is that stupid?  I thought we agreed that nonsense was harmful, that people were wrongly being threatened because of it.  But here's Katha offering, like a good whore, where her line in the sand is.  The entire column is an embrace of and advancement of rape culture.  That's not feminism.

    Candice Russell Tweets:

    Watching the Tara Reade coverage has become like some sort of trauma induced version of Groundhogs Day so of COURSE “professional feminist” Katha Pollitt just HAD TO give her two cents on sexual assault again (hint: still just as problematic as when she wrote about mine)


    By the way, when Katha attacked Candice, Katha wrote, "Why not say, 'These are serious allegations, and we're going to look into them'?"

    Double standard?  Katha denies there's one with regards to Christine Blasey Ford and Tara Reade.  But there is one.  There's also a double standard to how Katha responded with Candice and with Tara.

    The rank hypocrisy that wafts off Katha is something no FDS will ever send running.

    COMMON DREAMS' Eoin Higgins offers:

    Wow, Katha Pollit doesn't believe Tara Reade, what a shocking surprise, what's next, that she's a TERF?

    It's left to Anthony Zenkus to provide the realities Katha avoids:

    There is rarely "definitive proof" in rape cases. The reason so many victims never even come forward. And yet 1 in 6 women are victims of rape or attempted rape in their lives. Funny how that works.


    Let's note two more from Zenkus:

    After being called out by multiple women for nonconsensual, inappropriate touch which they viewed as harmful, Biden joked about consent multiple times. Mr. Biden: what is so funny about consent? #AskBidenAnything



    And:



    We need nominee who doesnt think it's fair game to touch the thighs of sex assault victims after they talk about their assaults, and who then jokes about consent after being called out on his gross behavior. Biden needs to go. Consent is not a joke. #DropOutJoe #AskBidenAnything


    Andrew Levine (COUNTERPUNCH) notes:

    Let’s begin with the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund, whose leadership decided to throw Reade to the curb because of the identity of her alleged assailant. According to Reade, she only realized after reading Ryan Grim’s reporting for The Intercept  that this happened owing, in all likelihood, to the nonprofit’s professional relationship to Anita Dunn, a Biden advisor who works for SKDKnickerbocker, the PR firm for Time’s Up. Leaving aside any other critiques one has of The Intercept and Joe Biden, it is a tremendous faux pas for Ryan Grim to let a journalistic bombshell like that be published without forewarning to his source. The Watergate conspirators were given more courtesy, as demonstrated by the classic exclamation “[Washington Post publisher] Katie Graham’s gonna get her tit caught in a big fat wringer if that’s ever published!” What was he thinking?
    In 2019, both the Associated Press and the Washington Post worked the story but ultimately canned coverage. The AP had the story in April of that year, when, simultaneously, everyone was publishing about Biden being too touchy for people’s comfort case and point this particular column in Clinton lap dog Ezra Klein’s Vox. Even if there were inconsistencies within Reade’s story (purportedly the reason for squashing it), she deserved a fair hearing and a forum. These venues have given far more airtime to far more dubious actors over the years (cf. 2016 Donald Trump campaign) and have no shred of credibility here. Sexual trauma and memory are very messy things from top to bottom. There are plenty of women who have very public accounts of suppression and triggering that causes them to recall details sometimes years after the events.


    We're living in a different century and what's going down will not have consequences.  In this century, a woman writes her own "For What It's Worth" and performs it.  Stevie Nicks:





    In Iraq, REUTERS reports:

    Royal Dutch Shell evacuated some 60 foreign staff from Iraq’s Basra Gas Company as a security measure following a protest over delayed pay, company officials said on Thursday, adding production was unaffected.
    The staff were flown out of the country on Wednesday after workers protested at the headquarters of Basra Gas Company (BGC), a venture between state-owned South Gas Company, Shell and Mitsubishi, to demand payment of their delayed salaries, officials said.
    “Shell confirms that as result of a security breach at the accommodation camp of Basra Gas Company, we have temporarily relocated Shell secondees,” Shell said in emailed comments.






    The following sites updated: