Friday, December 3, 2021

Jussie and his equally shameless legal team

Let me start with this



The two men Jussie Smollett accused of attacking him in a hate crime testified this week that the actor paid them to “fake beat him up.” Smollett is facing six counts of felony disorderly conduct for lying to police and staging the hoax. Yet back in 2019, after Smollett made his allegations, then-soon-to-be-veep Kamala Harris raced to call it an “attempted modern day lynching.” No need to wait for the facts; the story fit her narrative — that America is filled with violent mysoginistic, homophobic racists — much in the way that President Biden once painted Kyle Rittenhouse as a white supremacist.


Kamala is an embarrassment but she can take comfort in the fact that con man Jussie Smollett is even more embarrassing.  And Jussie just gets more outrageous.  He's like Flip Wilson's Geraldine playing for convictions and not laughs.  


Legal expert Jonathan Turley explains:

If you thought that Smollett case could not get more bizarre, think again. CBS 2 Legal Analyst Irv Miller is reporting that defense attorney Tamara Walker had a sidebar conversation with attorneys from both sides and Cook County Judge James Linn. She reportedly accused Judge Linn of some improper comment and then said that he lunged at her in the courtroom.  She was crying during the sidebar.  Another Smollett attorney accused Linn of snarling and making faces during the trial. In thirty years of practice as a criminal defense attorney, I have never heard of such allegations in a criminal trial.

The demand for a mistrial was rejected.

In a case where the defendant is accused of manufacturing a bizarre alleged attack, the allegation of a judge lunging at his counsel seems weirdly consistent.  There is no indication if there is proof of such threatening act or the alleged faces being made from the bench.


Jussie Smollett is just a liar.   He refuses to get honest.  It doesn't speak well for his family that they've gone along with this con.  But that's hurt them -- going along.  It's part of the reason the last Harley Quinn film suffered -- people don't want to watch Jussie's sister -- they didn't turn out for her crap show on HBO either.  She's just a liar like her brother.


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


Friday, December 3, 2021.  Still hae a bad fever let's see if you can follow my twists and turns.


We'll start out with Liza Featherstone's column at JACOBIN:


Would Russia or China Help Us if We Were Invaded By Space Aliens?” At least the New York Times is asking the important questions. The answer, by the way, is an implicit no. Scary world out there!

The column itself — by Thomas Friedman, who distinguished himself in his next column by intoning “We Need More Elon Musks” more than we need more Greta Thunbergs — was reasonable, arguing that the major world powers need to cooperate on climate change. (Global warming is a national security issue for all countries, but also, like the hypothetical space aliens, a common enemy.) But the jarring headline itself fit right into the current atmosphere of conspiratorial nonsense; we’re unfortunately becoming used to seeing outlandish, paranoid ravings in mainstream media and from liberal politicians.

]. . .]


The low-bar high ground of “reality,” “sanity,” and “planet Earth” is increasingly hard for liberals to stake a claim upon. Although closer to reality than the far right on issues like vaccine effectiveness and pandemic workplace safety, the “In this house, we believe in science” crowd shows many signs of abandoning its commitment to empiricism.

Remember Russia? The source of all evil, which put Trump in office and conspired to undermine the United States election? Throughout the Trump administration, liberals created a QAnon-like world for themselves around these assumptions, based partly on the Steele dossier, a collection of reports compiled by Christopher Steele, a former British spy. Early this month, one of the main sources for that report, a Russian named Igor Danchenko, was arrested and indicted, charged with lying to the FBI. The federal government rarely goes to court without a very strong case — it wins the vast majority of its indictments — so it’s likely that the FBI has strong evidence here, or at least evidence highly likely to convince a federal judge.

You’d think the collapse of the Steele dossier would prompt a reckoning in liberal media circles about paranoid warmongering and conspiratorial thinking. But no. “Even if the Steele dossier is discredited,” a defensive Washington Post headline read this week, “there’s plenty of evidence of Trump’s collusion with Russia.” In the op-ed that followed, Council on Foreign Relations fellow and Post columnist Max Boot painstakingly tried to salvage what was left of the Trump-Russia conspiracy. There’s been no real reckoning by establishment liberals on how or why they might have gotten the Russia-Trump conspiracy wrong.


A lot to cover and we're going to weave a few things in and out right now.


The idiots Kyle Kulinski and his effete roll poodle Vaush.  


I didn't need to listen to Vaush to know he was garbage.  I only needed to see him.  He's a fake and a poser who tries to throw his body into his fakeism but can't.  You can see that with his half-facial expressions and that little girl lost voice.  Put in the chest voice.  What an embarrassing and efette priss that Vaush is.  


Fake assery can be spotted easily and Vaush is a fake ass.  He's trying to deliver a perofrmance but he doesn't just lack the talent, he lacks the conviction.


Kyle's a grotesqe embarrassment and we don't note BREAKING POINTS when he is on ehte program.  



Jackson Hinkle makes a strong critique of both Vaush and Kyle.  


And yesterday, two posts here:


  • Krystal Ball & Saagar Enjeti Caught Lying About Ch...
  • BREAKING POINTS CELEBRATES 6 MONTH: 100 Million Vi...

  • The second one notes the success BREAKING POINTS is having in terms of views.  And the first one in Jackson Hinkle calling the show out regarding China.  Some are confused.


    Where's the confusion?  I'm not a gatekeeper.  I'm not a cheerleader.  If Jackson is seeing something to call out, he needs to call it out and good for him for doing so.  And he can be right in his call -- I have no idea if he's right or wrong on that, I haven't streamed the video and I don't follow BREAKING POINTS on foreign issues because they don't really impress me with their foreign coverage which is also largely non-existant.  And I think we can make a swipe acoss all of the left YOUTUBE programs and note that they ignore Iraq.  They ignore the ongoing Iraq War.  They ignore the damage that our own country has done to Iraq.  Is it guilt?  I don't know.  But I'll make that criticism about all of them.  And it's accurate.



    So if Jackson wants to hold someone accountable, that's something that's going to go up here.  I prefer it to those wo pretend there are no problems.  


    'Anti-vaxer!'  I noted that I know RFK Jr. and that I respect him and I like him.  And now I'm an "anti-vaxer."  I'm actually neither anti nor pro.  Your little dramas and your bulls**t back aand forths?  I don't give a damn.  As noted here over and over, austism is one of my chief issues offline and has been my entire life.  I sit on committess, I fundraise .  Go back to your mental prisons.  I don't have time for you.  I can fundraise effectively and I can build consensus because everyone who knows me knows that I long ago said that wasn't my battle, that isn't my issue.  I'm not taking sides.  I'm not calling people who are pro child vaccines horrible people putting children at risk and the same on the flip side.  More to the point, I'm not here to bring harm on this earth to any parent desperate to raise their autistic child.


    The 'pro vaxer' crowd turns me off more than the anti-vax crowd because I know how their attacks hurt families.  


    Let's see you raise a child with a condition or a disease and you try to make sense of it and you try to figure out.  Let's see that and let's see how you handle that and then slam parents who are living with autistic children.


    Which is a lot of people -- either the numbers are increasing or we just are getting better testing and measurements.


    This is an issue I've worked on since I was a teenager.


    I understand that on the left -- really the faux left (sorry, Liza), it makes you feel so powerful and so impressive to turn around and attack people who blame vaccines for what happened to their children.


    I have no sympathy for you.  


    You're incapable of stepping into someone else's shoes.  And you ride your high horse and think you're so smart and meanwhile parents are struggling.  They don't deserve your hatred.  


    Robert?  I love Robert.  I have no problem with any questions or concerns he raises.  


    On Iraq . . .

    Omar Ahmed (MEMO) rightly notes:

    It is perfectly reasonable for Iraqi nationalists and patriots to demand that their country be free of foreign interference and patronage. This has been most vocalised in relation to corrupt governance amid increased political influence from neighbouring Iran but also perceptions of Iraq as a client state of the US. While these grievances are understandable, whether it is actually plausible for Iraq to be "free" is another thing altogether. This is so, because uncomfortable as it may sound, since its modern history as a nation-state, Iraq has never really been an independent country.

    In fact, one would have to go as far back in pre-modern history to the Abbasid caliphate (750 CE-1258 CE) based in the region corresponding to "Iraq" which was truly autonomous. However, even the Abbasid rulers were eventually reduced to being symbolic powers in name only, with real authority ceding to dominant regional emirs and viziers such as the Persian Buyids and the Seljuk Turks, the consequence of the Abbasid decline starting from the mid-ninth century.

    After a series of invasions and dynastic rulers, from the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries Iraq and especially Baghdad would change hands between the rival Ottoman and Safavid empires and would in effect serve as a buffer zone between the respective Sunni and Shia powers of the Middle East. When the Ottomans recaptured Baghdad and most of Iraq from the Safavids for the second time in 1638, it would never again be under Persian control, remaining under Ottoman control until it fell under British governance in 1918 during the breakup of the Ottoman Empire in the aftermath of the First World War. The last century therefore, represented a hiatus from the historical pattern of Turkish and Iranian competition for pre-eminence in Iraq.


     Yesterday, we were noting that the sneering at Iraqis who wouldn't take the word of the UN or the EU was backward.  Why in the world would a people trust bodies who destroyed their country?  It's a natural response to trust those bodies.  And it's a natural response to want foreign fighters out of your country.


    At FOREIGN POLICY IN FOCUS, Belkis Wille, of Human Rights Watch, writes:


    “Armed groups,” “paramilitary forces,” “groups following the orders of another country.”

    Human rights advocates in Iraq use these descriptions all the time when we refer to the men with guns behind the killings, abductions, and torture of protesters, activists, journalists, and communities seen to have been close to ISIS in Iraq.

    In recent days we have seen these men go further than ever before, including a brazen effort on November 7 to assassinate Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi in his home, using three armed drones.

    Many don’t dare go further in identifying who exactly these men are, the groups they belong to, and who they are getting their orders from — at least not in public. But on October 25, in a courtroom in Basra, someone finally came out and said it.

    And what he said raises a bigger question: Can the Iraqi state even provide the rule of law?

    Explosive Revelations About the Murder of Two Journalists

    In a nutshell, his testimony indicated that the militias called Popular Mobilization Forces, which were formed to help defeat ISIS and some of which have close ties to Iran, may be calling the shots in Iraq and are independent of — and more powerful than — the government.

    On that day, a judge at Basra Criminal Court presided over an investigative hearing for Hamza Kadhim al-Aidani, accused of killing two people on January 10, 2020: Ahmed Abdul Samad, a Dijlah TV reporter, and Safaa Ghali, his cameraman. The local media widely covered al-Aidani’s conviction for the murders and subsequent death sentence handed down on November 1.

    What the media covered less, and the government refused to comment on, were the explosive statements al-Aidani made during the hearing.

    Two people who attended said that al-Aidani, a Basra police commissioner, admitted that he was also a member of an abusive Popular Mobilization Forces unit formally under the control of the prime minister.

    He said he fought with the group to retake the city of Fallujah from the Islamic State (ISIS) in 2016. He admitted that he was a member of a so-called “death squad” and was involved in the killing of the two journalists, the sources said. He said he and team members used the local PMF Commission (the PMFs’ governing body) office in Basra to plan the killings and hide their cars and weapons after the fact.

    The court witnesses told Human Rights Watch that Al-Aidani told the judge the police had not arrested the head of his squad within the PMF unit but instead allowed him to flee the country. This was the man, he said, who killed the journalists in front of him. He said that the man told the team that the Iranian supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, had issued a fatwa (a religious legal ruling) that journalists covering protests with calls against Iran and the PMF, and those inciting the protests, should be killed.

    He said they targeted Samad because he had covered a protest on December 13, 2019, on a street that the PMF had renamed Khamenei Street in 2019. During the protest, demonstrators burned a large picture of Khamenei that the PMF had hung up on the street. Samad, in his coverage, asked viewers why the street was not instead renamed after an Iraqi leader. The judge ultimately said that he would not include this detail in the record.

    Al-Aidani’s apparent comments, and the fact that he was standing trial alone, raise another question. Where were the other suspects connected with this case?


    That's an important story and, again, I don't see YOUTUBE shows from the US that address it.  Speaking of addressing . . .


    A communiy member who is an Iraq War veteran heard an NPR report on Ian Fishback and found it grossly offensive.  (I would agree the beginning is appalling.)  She asked that we include the comments about Fishback made in the Thanksgiving day snapshot:


    Rose L. Thayer (STARS AND STRIPES) reports:

    Ian Fishback, a former Army officer who in 2005 raised concerns about the treatment of detainees in the Global War on Terror, died Nov. 19 at an adult treatment facility in Michigan. He was 42 years old.

    In a statement posted with Fishback’s obituary, the veteran’s family thanked his hometown community in Newberry, Mich., for the support provided Fishback in “recent difficult times.”

    “He faced many challenges and many of us felt helpless. We tried to get him the help he needed. It appears the system failed him utterly and tragically. There are many questions surrounding his death and the official cause of death is unknown at this time. We can assure you that we will get to the bottom of this. We will seek justice for Ian, because justice is what mattered most to him,” according to the statement.

    Fishback’s mental health had declined recently and he struggled to get access to medical and mental health care from Veterans Affairs, said his longtime friend Justin Ford.

    For those who knew Fishback, his friend said that his actions regarding the inhumane treatment of detainees came as no surprise. He always had a strong moral and ethical compass and held tightly to those principles, Ford said.

    “Standing up for what you believe in is never easy. And it wasn't easy on him,” he said. “He paid a price.” 


    THE NEW YORK TIMES had a story on Ian Fishback.  We didn't note it.  


    Ian Firshback did something heroic when others didn't.  He could have looked the other way, as many did. He could have focused on something else.  But he knew right from wrong and was raised to stand up for what was right.  


    To me, THE TIMES story read like 'crazy man kills himself -- more mental illness help needed at VA.'


    He wasn't crazy.  


    I don't know that you could even call him mentally ill.  And be careful with that term if your goal is to help veterans.  Don't just apply it because you survived viewing a season of Jerry Springer programs and you think that's the equivalent of a hospital residency.  


    We say "Post-Traumatic Stress" here and we have used that forever.  That condition is a coping condition.  You are in volatile and violent environment and your body and your mind respond by making you hyper-vigilant.  A veteran with PTS has a coping mechanism and now that she or he is back in civilian life, they need some help adjusting, re-orienting their body, mind and soul to a calmer world that they do not have to be hyper-vigilant in order to protect themselves and others.


    When you stigmatize something, you make it harder for people who need some coaching, counseling or assistance to get it.  Retired Gen Peter Chiarelli got that and was part of the move towards changing the term to PTS.  


    "Disorder" at the end of that is a shaming term that will result in fewer service members and veterans seeking assistance.  


    Words do matter.  And THE NEW YORK TIMES report was appalling.


    Crazy man kills himself -- more money to VA so the crazies can help!


    That is how it read.


    A brave person did a heroic thing.  It wasn't easy to do it at the start and you can be sure it was hard to live with.  Revealing what was happening didn't undo the damage.  It didn't undo what was done -- those tortured were not magically untortured.  And the horror that Ian felt that moved him to expose what was happening remained inside him.


    That's sadly very normal.  No one should have that in their head.  We would all struggle with that.  It is normal.  We recoil from horrors for a reason.


    The system clearly failed Ian.  But Ian wasn't crazy.  He was sent by our government into a war and he experienced very troubling things as a result.  You go deep diving, you need to decompress.  You experience what Ian did, you need something more than, "Thanks for your service."


    And to be really clear, I'm not advocating for returning service members to be kept in some sort of isolation for weeks.  When they return, they should be able to return to their loved ones.  I am saying that services need to be made available.  That's counseling with trained medical professionals, absolutely.  That's also religious counseling -- that's chaplains and others.  There should be a huge range of people to talk to and you should be encouraged to check in with some of the resources available.  


    If a veteran is feeling suicidal, it is great that there's a toll free number where they can serve assistance -- 800-273-8255 -- and it's sad that Eric Shinseki's family worked to make the use of that number questionable.  But that the service is so needed goes to the fact that there are so many gaps in care.  


    And there were way too many gaps on the part of the US government with regards to Ian.  He was abandoned in many ways.


    He did a heroic and courageous thing.  The US government did not honor that action.


    There needs to be an award for people who show true courage and character by coming forward like he did.  He received no special decoration from the US government.  If he had, that could have eased some of his stress.  If the government had officially recognized the strength of his actions, that could have made a real difference.


    If you could follow the above, great.  If not, sorry.  I've still got a fever and an infection.  The way my left arm looks, I'm really ticked.  This is an infection from the dental surgery on Monday.  (The arm thing, if I didn't mention it here -- I know it's in the community newsletters -- they screwed up the blood they took on Monday and one arm -- the first attempted looks awful. They took blood because they were getting the immunities out and injecting it into the jaw after the surgery to try help it heal faster and more effectively.)  I hope I'm back to normal soon but it's been a rough week medical wise.  Sorry if this was a less than coherent snapshot.

    The following sites updated:

    Thursday, December 2, 2021

    Jussie Smollet, the joke goes on trial

    Disgraced actor and con artist Jussie Smollett is on trial.  Dinesh D'Souza Tweets

    Here's what makes the #JussieSmollett trial so entertaining--Jussie has a completely new account of what happened when he went out to get a sandwich, and this time it has nothing to do with hate crimes or MAGA.



    It wasn't racism, Jussie says now.  It was because the two brothers never liked him on the set.  Then why did he give interviews saying that it was racism and they were MAGA supporters?  Jussie really thinks he can run from the videotapes?

    Even Dinesh is mocking Jussie.  CNN reports:


    Two brothers testified in court over the past two days that "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett directed them to carry out a fake hate crime while pretending to be Donald Trump supporters in an attempt to get media attention.

    Abimbola "Bola" Osundairo and his brother Olabinjo "Ola" Osundairo provided critical testimony on Wednesday and Thursday in Smollett's criminal trial on charges that he staged the attack and falsely reported it to police.
    The prosecution rested Thursday evening after three days of testimony in which it called seven witnesses, including the brothers.
        Ola Osundairo told jurors that Smollett "had this crazy idea of having two MAGA supporters attack him," and that he wanted "to put that on social media."


        Jussie should really just stop lying.  His inability to take accountability says he hasn't learned anything.  He needs to go away.  He's an embarrassment and doesn't deserve an acting career.


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


         Thursday, December 2, 2021.  The electoral commission releasing their final tally (their final tally) does not mean the results are official and far too many idiots at media outlets are revealing yet again that journalism degrees these days are nothing but glorified studies majors.  We'll deal with the reality of what happens next, the need for Anthony Fauci to clear his desk and much more.


        So now the election count is released by the electoral commission (barring any rulings by the judiciary).  And it's all happiness in Iraq, right?


        MEMO reports:


        The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), the ruling party in the Kurdistan region of northern Iraq, yesterday said it was objecting to the final results of the parliamentary elections which were held on 10 October.

        "After the announcement of the final election results, it became clear to us that two deserved seats legally entitled to two candidates from our party were taken away in Erbil and Nineveh provinces," said KDP Spokesperson Mahmood Mohammed in a statement.

        Mohammed noted that the KDP's political bureau would hold a meeting to "discuss this illegal act."


        Okay, so the KDP in Kurdistan is unhappy but others are fine, right?  IRAN INATNERATIONAL reports:


        Protesters in Baghdad on Wednesday rejected the final results of Iraq's parliamentary elections, which were announced by the electoral commission a day earlier.

        The protesters, mainly supporters of Shiite factions backed by Iran, continued to level unsubstantiated claims that the vote had been rigged.

        "We will continue our protest until they change the results and bow to our demands," said protester Ali Jawad.

        The electoral commission confirmed Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr as the biggest winner in last month's poll, securing 73 out of Parliament's 329 seats.


        There are other examples but the point is that tensions continue and nothing has been resolved.  These also aren't the final results.  Not yet.  These are the official results released by the electoral commission.  These are not final until the federal judiciary looks at them and certifies them.  After that, per the Constitution, the Parliament has tend days to convene their first assembly and to declare someone prime minister-designate.  That person, per the Constitution, then has 30 days to form a Cabinet.  


        A month wasted on counting and there is still no prime minister.  


        But, hey, Iraq has all the time in the world, right?


        It's not like they're facing any upcoming obstacles, right?


        Mina Aldroubi (THE NATIONAL) reports:


        Iraq's Tigris and Euphrates rivers could run dry by 2040 because of declining water levels and climate change, a government report said on Thursday.

        Over the years, the construction of dams in upstream Turkey, Syria and Iran has choked off some of the flow of the Tigris and Euphrates on which Iraq depends.

        Climate change is contributing to temperatures increases and erratic rainfall, pushing the fear of water shortages in Iraq to new levels, it said.


        The country made $7 billion in oil sales in November alone.  That generates a lot of money, it also harms their own environment (and the world's).  You can trumpet the 'increase' in date trees all you want but that's meaningless -- especially when they don't have enough water for their farming industry, but it you'd not noting the reality that's coming and if you're not addressing it, you're faling your people.  (Iraq's not alone in that.  The US government has falied its people with regards to climate change.)


        Sinan Mahmoud writes like an idiot at THE NATIONAL.  Again, the results are not final.  They do not become final until the judiciary reviews them and confirms them.  That's the process.  One of the few that has been consistently followed in Iraq's post-invasion elections.  He doesn't understand a great deal.  For example:


        The Shiite Co-ordination Framework, made up of Al Fatah, State of Law and other parties renewed their rejection of the results, accusing the IHEC of manipulation, despite the EU and UN saying the poll was well-managed.

        “We categorically reject the current election results,” the group said. “It is clear now and without any doubt that the Elections Commission had prepared these results before against the will of the Iraqi people,” it added.

        Their demands are now beyond recounting the votes.

        “We reiterate our firm stance, which is based on documents and proof that there has been widespread manipulation in the elections results,” it said.

        “We are committed to continue our lawsuit, which we have filed at the Federal Court to annul the elections,” the group added.


        "Despite the EU and the UN saying the poll was well-managed."


        Huh?


        What lunatic writes that about Iraq?  Iraq sturggles right now, in war, the whole country is suffering, because of the EU and the UN.  Where the hell do you get off with the 'despite' as though Iraq's supposed to trust bodies that helped destroy their country.  The UN can 'at least' note that they didn't sign off on the invasion (which the Secretary-General of the UN at the time said was illegal) but they immediately signed off on the occupation that came from the illegal invasion.  They did so yearly.


        No Iraqi person owes trust to either the EU or the UN.  


        You don't build trust by destroying a country.

        You don't build trust by sticking with people who put your agenda at risk.  I can remember people within Bill Clinton's first presidential administration believing he waited too long to ditch both Zoe Baird and Kimba Wood as Attorney General nominees.  But nearly a year into his term as president, Joe Biden's still sticking by Donald Trump's Anthony Fauci.  He -- Joe -- has no political captal to expend.  He is diverting it into maintainging Fauci who is a lost cause.  Fauci's numbers are only going to get worse because he's a liar.  Do this, no do that, no  do this, no do that.  They didn't have a real plan from the start so some fumbling was always going to be an issue.  But it's gone beyond that now.  And it's time for a clean slate.  Fauci needs to go.  If Republicans take over the House in next year's mid-terms, look for a number of peopl ein the administration to leave and to begin explaining to the press that they told Joe that it was time for Fauci to go, that every week defending a political appointee meant the appointee wasn't helpful to the adminisration.  


        Pepe Escobar (ASIA TIMES) has a book review worth reading -- RFK Jr. on Fauci.  I know and like Robert.  I'm providing a link and may do an excerpt in another snapshot but I'm feeling sick -- fever -- this morning.  I was hoping the workout would break it but it didn't.  So I'm winding down.  We were going to end on Fauci by noting an article Glenn Greenwald's published at his SUBSTACK page (is it page, I don't know and I'm not being sarcastic.)  At SUBSTACK, Leighton Woodhouse writes:

        By now you’ve surely heard about Anthony Fauci and his laboratory beagles, but in case you haven’t, it goes like this: For forty years, Fauci, as the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), has funded gruesome experiments on animals. Beagles in particular are one of the favored species for these experiments, because of their docile and people-pleasing nature, which makes for less hassle for the humans who subject them to pain and suffering. In one of these NIAID-funded experiments, in Tunisia, sedated beagles’ heads were put into mesh bags with swarms of starved sand flies, who fed on the live dogs.

        The other thing you may have heard is that the story is just another right-wing conspiracy theory. You may have heard this from The Washington Post, from any of a number of self-proclaimed “fact checkers,” or maybe even from the globally renowned Beacon of Honesty David Frum of The Atlantic.

        I’ve been reporting on this story for the past few weeks. In fact, I’ve been reporting it as closely as anyone, if not more so. It’s been an extremely educational experience for me, but not because I was unfamiliar with the industry of animal experimentation, or NIAID’s leading role within it. What’s been educational is seeing up close and first-hand how the mainstream media constructs and deploys a brazen misinformation campaign.

        First of all, just to get this detail out of the way: the story is true. As head of NIAID, the second biggest institute within the National Institutes of Health, Anthony Fauci has spent billions of dollars over four decades funding scientific experiments on animals, many of them stomach-turning. NIAID does not deny this. In fact, the published scientific papers that describe these heinous experiments routinely credit NIAID and NIH as their funders, and sometimes as direct collaborators. You can look them up yourself: here are just a few of them.

        Of the numerous horrific experiments on dogs funded by agencies and budgets controlled by Fauci, there’s only one that is in dispute: the one in Tunisia. That is the experiment which involved placing sedated beagles’ heads in mesh bags with swarms of starved sand flies, which feasted on the live dogs in order to transmit to them a parasite that carries a disease called “leishmaniasis.” The scientific paper that described the results of that experiment, published on July 15, originally credited NIAID as a funder.

        But after this ethical monstrosity was publicized and denounced by an anti-animal testing group specializing in a building left/right coalitions — the White Coat Waste Project, which, as Glenn Greenwald reported in this space two weeks ago, became the target of a Washington Post hit piece as punishment for denouncing Fauci — this particular experiment created a minor media sensation and a major headache for NIH. In the wake of that recent controversy, the paper’s authors — just three weeks ago, on November 11 — suddenly retracted their statement about NIAID funding. In wooden language that reads like a hostage note, they now claim that when they said that NIAID had paid for this experiment, it was by accident. 







        The following sites updated:


        Wednesday, December 1, 2021

        Who paid off DEADLINE?

        Can DEADLINE stop pimping DUNE?  Apparently not, now they've got a podcast about that bad film -- where they pretend it's not a bad film.  I don't get it.  Who f**ked who to get all of this coverage from DEADLINE?  Who got paid off?


        In real news, DEADLINE reported this on Tuesday:


        Legendary Jazz Age performer and civil rights activist Josephine Baker made history today as the first Black woman to enter France’s hallowed Panthéon. Baker is also only the sixth woman to be honored in such a way.

        A ceremony was held this evening, led by French President Emmanuel Macron, who called the late Baker a “war hero, fighter, dancer, singer” who was “firstly defending humans. American and French.”

        This was a major event in France today as the Missouri-born France transplant’s coffin containing handfuls of Earth from four places she lived were carried into her tomb in a symbolic laying to rest.

        Josephine Baker?  A legend who is worthy of attention.  (I wish Diana Ross had been able to make the Baker film she tried to back in the 80s.)  DUNE?  Let it go, DEADLINE, let it go.  The film is dead.  Let it die.


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


        December 1, 2021.  A final election tally is finally announced in Iraq and we look at the corrupt media system which devours its own in order to protect itself.

        Starting with the media.  This site has not called for Chris Cuomo to be fired.  Rebecca's made that call and it's a solid call (see "it's time for cnn to fire chris cuomo" and :"suspended isn't fired").  There are also solid reasons to argue against it.  But those e-mailing the public account -- and noting that it was this site -- need to check their eye sight.  (I can give you the numbers of several wonderful doctors.)   I have not made that call nor am I closely following that story.  It takes a lot to get me to call for someone to lose their livelihood.  I have no idea what's going to happen to Chris.  


        He is now expendable.  To CNN, he is now expendable.  They're trying to rebrand.  He is the face of so much that people do not like about CNN -- and CNN executives made him that face and encouraged him to be it -- so it is very likely that he will be fired.  I'm not saying he should be.  I'm not sying he shouldn't.  But I have not made the call for him to be fired.


        But, and this brings us to our second topic of e-mails to the public account, Lara Logan.  


        Lara appeared on some FOX NEWS program.  She did not -- as the people e-mailing claim -- say Anthony Fauci was Josef Mengel.  


        She stated that she had encountered many people who saw him as that.  So get your facts straight.  Second, if that was shocking to you -- the way a number of people see Fauci -- you really are in a bubble.  He is inept and he is hated.  The White House wasted too much time and energy on him.  Had they done what they wree supposed to do -- push Joe Biden's administration wish list -- they'd be more successful -- and Joe would be higher in the polls.  Months ago, I pointed out here that they were expending too much enery on protecting Fauci.  That was their first clue that he had to go.  


        And he should go.  What's the difference between a Trump administration and a Biden administration?  Not a whole lot apparently.  He has cost the administration a great deal -- both in terms of defining itself in opposition to Donald's policies and in terms of being able to stay on message and focused.


        Does no one have a brain in the administration?


        He should have been told long ago, "Thank you for your work, we're going to be making some changes so we'd like your resignation."  And that Fauci didn't grasp that he was an anchor for the administration, dragging them down, and leave on his own goes to Fauci's stupidity and his vanity.


        Stupidity?  Lara Logna was stupid and foolish.  For what she said regarding Fauci?  No.  It is a view that many hold of Fauci.  Her job isn't to censor what someone -- Ruth Bader Ginsberg? -- says, her jon is to address what is being said.  If you're that offended by her, I don't understand how you watch television.  Does a nanny come in and watch it with you, hug you after each broadcast?


        Lara was stupid with regards to CBS.  


        'Lara Logan lied and CBS fired her!'  


        She didn't get fired.  She got put on a suspension and, when it was up, CBS eased her out by making it clear that there would be no real duties again.  That's probably the road that CNN will try to tke.  Get them to express their desire to leave and you don't have to honor the contract.  Lara was made the face of problems and Chris will likely be as well.  


        Chris did not take an axe to the wall of professional boundaries while CNN execs objected and told him to stop.  He did what he did in full view of everyone.  He should not have been covering his own brother.  Things like that happen but they shouldn't.  When Chris Hayes was with THE NATION, he shouldn't have been allowed to cover the Obama administration since his wife was an attorney for that administration.


        Whether Chris gets terminated or not, he did not create the problem.  Nor is he, honestly, the problem.  The problem is the culture at CNN that allowed it to happen.


        Lara Logan?  I went to CRAPAPEDIA when Martha told me about the e-mails because there was so much stupidity in the e-mails, I knew it had to be coming from somewhere besides outrage junkies.  Sure enough, the lies are intact at CRAPAPEDIA.


        To hear CRAPAPEDIA tell it, Lara Logn did a 60 MINUTES segement that had backlash and she apologized for the inacuracies and was suspended.


        Really?  That's what we're going to pretend happened?


        Dylan Davies' name is in the entry, but that's about all.  Here are three significant words that are missing:  THE EMBASSY HOUSE.


        That's the 2013 book that Dylan Davies wrote, the book that THRESHOLD EDITIONS published -- THRESHOLD is a CBS imprint.  


        Claims were made -- I didn't watch the segment.  Lara apologized for them.  That was part of her stupidity.


        Lara did end up losing a promising career.  Who else, though?


        Louise Burke was the publisher at THRESHOLD.  Did she lose her job?  Well, kind of.  She got promoted.They moved her up the chaing to publisher of Gallery Books Group.  And she stayed there, part of the CBS corporate family, until 2017.  She went on to co-found another outlet (ALL SEASONS PRESS).


        Set aside what was true or fale about the book for a moment (we'll come back to that) but CBS published a book.  Publishers are supposed to employ fact checkers.  CBS published a book that made claims that, when repeated on TV, cost Lara Logan a promising career.  But no one involved in publishing the book suffered.


        Lara was stupid to have promoted the book.  She should have said that an on air disclosure was needed regarding CBS' involvement in the publishing of the book.  She also should have said that this feels like book promotion and not reporting.  She didn't.  If she had, she might have been ignored, but she should have said that.


        Her stupidity continued after the segment aired.  "We're going to let this blow over."  She was told that -- I know from the man who told her those words that she was told that.  I shook my head in real time and said, "You're going to hang her out to dry."  No, no, no, he insisted.


        Yes, yes, yes.


        And any reporter is an idiot when they believe that garbage.


        No matter what you think your value is -- again, think Chris Cuomo today -- it isn't.  You're product and the minute you threaten the brand, you're on your way out.




        Karmicallyt Dan Rather got what he deserved when Bully Biy Bush's AWOL story blew up in his face.  It was a long time coming for Dan who was a professional liar and it's sad to watch some uninformed lefties rush to defend him to this day.  Or worse, celebrate him as a hero.  


        Dan lied for CBS over and over.  And he was rewarded for that.  And he thought he was untouchable and certainly indisposable.  Nope.  When there was embarrassment and CBS could protect itself by cutting him out, they did so.  They removed him like a tumor.


        Mary Mapes?  I feel sorry for her.  But she was stupid as well because she bought the b.s. that CBS was handing her.  Don't.  They have no loyalty to anything but their brand.  She should have learned from what CNN did to April Oliver. You do not matter to them, their corporate bottom line does.  The dumbest mistake you can make is to go silent.  You need to be talking to the media and your employers needs to see the coverage.  It's the only thing that can save you.  When CBS wanted to dump Daniel Schorr, it was the publicity he was taking part in that kept them from doing so.  Because Schorr was a liar, the attitude was, "Let him keep talking, he'll trip himself up."  And he did.  (Yet when he died, many tried to rewrite history and pretend that he was brave and wonderful.)


        If youre silent, you're an idiot.  Because they're using your silence by filling the void with whispers about you and they're damaging your credibility to protect their brand.


        CBS airs a questionable report based on a CBS book that is also questionable.  And Lara's the only one punished?  No one at the publishing house is punished.  Just Lara.


        Was the book true or false? 


        I'd argue we don't know.  I know the argument that THRESHOLD made -- which had CBS back off from punishing them.  Davies was a contractor.  Not a merc, but an intellignece conttractor.  Benghazi was a CIA outpost (the embassy -- that came out in the first hearing we attended, US House Rep Jason Chaffetz was having a meltdown in the hearing as different thing were being said and his mike caught enough comments (asides he was making) to make clear that he felt too much was being aired publicly.


        So Davies was contracted by the US government as some form of intelligence.  Probably, he was to carry out activities that are crimes for the CIA to carry out.  Probably he, like many others, was just there in case the whole thing blew up -- a patsy.


        Daveis was 'exposed' by journalists with CIA ties as having stated that he was not present in an FBI interview.  And?  Did he say it?  You have no idea, I don't either.  If he said it, was he ordered to say it because of the nature of the mission?  Ibid.  They also trotted out an incident report which Davies denied having completed.  


        THRESHOLD didn't say, "Sure, thanks, guys, I know we can work this out."  Lara Logan did.  THRESHOLD said, "If you come for us, we're coming for you."


        And if you don't get how many work to brand these contractors as liars, you missed Senator Idiot Supreme Dianne Feinstein in her attacks on Ed Snowden which included her claims -- presented as facts -- that he was never employed by the CIA or the NSA.  "High school drop out" was her line of ridicule, for those who missed it.  

         The outrage junkies are after Lara Logan again.  


        Are they lying or just so addicted to their outrage high that they can't make sense of what was said?  Lara did not say she considered Fauci to be a Nazi War Criminal.  She said she encounted many people who did.  If that's a shock to you, as Demi Moore says in THE BUTCHER'S WIFE, "Well you ought to get out more."


        October 10th, Iraq held elecgtions. They finally have official results.  ALJAZEERA notes:


        The political bloc led by Shia leader Muqtada al-Sadr was confirmed the winner of the October parliamentary election.

        Iraq’s independent election commission announced the final results on Tuesday following weeks of recounting and intensified rejection from the losing parties.

        Five seats changed as a result of the appeals and recounting process in the capital; Baghdad, Nineveh, Erbil, Kirkuk and Basra.

        [. . .]

        The number for the Taqadum, or Progress Party-led by current Parliament Speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi, a Sunni – remained the same, 37 seats. Former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s State of Law party lost two seats and will have 33 in parliament.

        The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) captured 31 seats, and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) received 18.


        Some issues have been turned over to the judiciary so there may be changes to come (or not) but those are the 'final' results as issued by the electoral commission.

        I love some of the spin, by the way, like this Tweet:


        The manual recount of contested ballot boxes in Iraq's parliamentary elections held in October have only affected five seats in five provinces, Iraq's IHEC said.


        Really?  Just five seats.  Just?  If five seats flipped in the House, Democrats would not be the majority party.  


        Those announced results do not build trust in the system -- nor does the laughable claim of 44% participating -- but as we noted repeatedly ahead of the election, anticipating an extremely low turnout, they changed the way they counted participation.



        The following sites updated: