Thursday, February 14, 2019

Common Dreams:
"The US government acknowledges that it is knowingly, consciously driving the Venezuelan economy into the ground, but US media make no such acknowledgment, which sends the message that the problems in Venezuela are entirely the fault of the government. ...

Sanctions have kept the Venezuelan government from accessing financing and dealing with its debt while hamstringing its most important industry [oil]. Given that US media are writing for a principally US audience, the damage done by Washington and its partners’ sanctions should be front and center in their coverage. Exactly the opposite is the case. ...

-->The U.S. government admits to collapsing the Venezuelan economy with sanctions. Now it wants to "save the population" from the hardships that have resulted. And our media buys all this propaganda completely. So it goes in the empire's media.

-----

Common Dreams:
"As Energy for Medicare for All Soars, Pelosi Aide Reportedly Assured Insurance Industry That Democratic Leaders Remain 'Allies.'

As Medicare for All advocates point to surging grassroots energy behind the bold policy and argue that the key question now 'is not if we will win, it is when,' a report by The Intercept on Tuesday intensified concerns that the Democratic leadership will continue to resist the rising tide of enthusiasm for single-payer even as it is embraced by a growing number of lawmakers, 2020 presidential candidates, and 70 percent of the public.

According to The Intercept, Wendell Primus—the top healthcare adviser to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)—reassured Blue Cross Blue Shield executives during a private meeting shortly after the November midterm elections that the Democratic leadership 'had strong reservations about single-payer healthcare and was more focused on lowering drug prices.' "

-->And why wouldn't the NYT report this story of Pelosi's betrayal? Because our newspaper of record has always been in the pocket of the big insurance companies and against universal healthcare.

-----

The NYT:
"It happened again last month in Detroit. Pro-Palestinian demonstrators seized the stage of the National L.G.B.T.Q. ... 'From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free,' they chanted — the tediously malign, thinly veiled call to end Israel as a Jewish state.

They were met with sustained applause by the audience at what is the largest annual conference of L.G.B.T.Q. activists in the United States. Conference organizers did nothing to stop the disruption or disavow the demonstrators.' "

-->The article goes on to whine about poor Zionists hounded from colleges and reviled by Blacks who love Louis Farrakhan. Just how long will our country put up with equating criticism of Israel with antiSemitism? Congress has been bought and paid for by the Israel Lobby, but perhaps the people of this nation have finally had enough.

Thursday, February 07, 2019

Common Dreams:
"Adding another chapter to its long history of supporting U.S.-backed coups in Latin America, the New York Times editorial team on Wednesday gave Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó prime op-ed real estate to call on governments of the world stand with him and the Trump administration as they attempt to overthrow elected President Nicolás Maduro 'with the minimum of bloodshed.' ...

'They'll tell you this about restoring democracy and human rights in the South American country,' Peter Certo, editorial manager for the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C., wrote of the White House's actions. 'But one look at the administration officials driving the putsch perishes the thought.'

Highlighting the long anti-democratic records of Bolton, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and newly appointed Venezuela envoy Elliot Abrams—all of whom have backed authoritarians leaders, death squads, and illegal wars throughout their careers in government—Certo concluded that the U.S. must abandon its push for regime change and 'back regional dialogue and diplomacy.' "

-->How eager the Western Democracies are to overthrow the elected president of Venezuela. And how our media is cheerleading another war crime in Latin America.  

-----

The Guardian UK:
"The FBI opened a 'domestic terrorism' investigation into a civil rights group in California, labeling the activists 'extremists' after they protested against neo-Nazis in 2016, new documents reveal.

Federal authorities ran a surveillance operation on By Any Means Necessary (Bamn), spying on the leftist group’s movements in an inquiry that came after one of Bamn’s members was stabbed at the white supremacist rally, according to documents obtained by the Guardian. ...

The FBI considered the KKK as victims and the leftist protesters as potential terror threats, and downplayed the threats of the Klan. ... The report ignored '100 years of Klan terrorism that has killed thousands of Americans and continues using violence right up to the present day', German said [Mike German, a former FBI agent and far-right expert]. 'This description of the KKK should be an embarrassment to FBI leadership.' ”

-->Yes, the FBI sees itself as much closer to the KKK than to any anti-fascist activists. And yes, the FBI has always been a danger to our democratic form of government. The story didn't appear in the NYT.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Mondoweiss:
"Elbit Systems is Israel’s largest weapons’ company and has helped make Israel the world’s leading exporter of military and surveillance drones. As of 2017, Elbit was the 28th largest weapons manufacturing company in the world, bringing in $3.38 billion in revenue. Elbit subsidiary Israeli Military Industries (IMI) produces cruise missiles, cluster bombs, bullets for Israeli snipers, and many more tools of death.

Elbit helps ensure that the slaughter and repression of Palestinians by the Israeli government is as efficient as possible. ...

For the past 14 years Elbit has brought their brand of violent border surveillance to the US-Mexico border. In 2004, Hermes drones manufactured by Israel’s Elbit Systems were the first unmanned aerial surveillance vehicles deployed at the US southern border. U.S. Customs and Border protection began contraction with Elbit Systems in 2014 for sensors, cameras, radars and 'integrated fixed towers' in the desert along the Arizona border with Mexico."

-->The same Israeli weapons manufacturer is behind the slaughter of Palestinians and the militarization of the US Mexico boarder. Find that story in the mainstream media!

-----

Amnesty International IE
"Amnesty International welcomes legislative efforts in Ireland to prohibit certain economic activities with illegal settlements in territories deemed occupied under international law, such as the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

'Hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of goods produced in Israeli settlements built on occupied Palestinian land are exported internationally each year, despite the fact that the vast majority of states have officially condemned the settlements as illegal under international law. So this Bill is a welcome first step,' said Colm O’Gorman, Executive Director of Amnesty International Ireland.

'Israel’s policy of settling Israeli civilians on occupied Palestinian land has led to a myriad of human rights violations, including the demolition of tens of thousands of Palestinian homes and properties and hundreds of thousands of Palestinians being forcibly displaced. This is why Amnesty International has been calling on the international community to ban the import of all goods produced in illegal Israeli settlements and to put an end to the profits that have fueled mass human rights violations against Palestinians.”

-->No mention of this in the NYT. It doesn't run too many stories about boycotting Israeli apartheid. But kudos for running Micheal Alexander's op-ed about MLK and Palestine. 

-----

The Intercept:
"The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau penalized a man $1 this week, for illegally exchanging veterans’ pensions for high-interest 'cash advances.' Mark Corbett claimed in sworn statements to the bureau that he had an inability to pay any fine of greater value, and the bureau accepted $1 as payment for making illegal, high-cost loans to former members of the armed forces. ...

A slap on the wrist for eight years of scamming veterans might be something like $10,000. This is more like a handshake. ...

On websites he operated, Mark Corbett marketed a deal for veterans with retiree or disability pensions. He set them up with offers from John Doe companies to purchase some or all of those future pension payments in exchange for a lump sum."

-->Stealing from US veterans' pensions and disability benefits only gets a $1 fine. You would think this story would get a little more media attention. But financial fraud against the poor are rarely covered.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Common Dreams:
"From their strong belief that humanity played a central role in causing the climate crisis to their overwhelming dislike of President Donald Trump, the young Americans who have been classified as Generation Z—comprised of those between the ages of 13 and 21—could be even more progressive than the slightly older millennial generation, according to a Pew Research Center survey published Thursday.

'Gen Z looks a lot like millennials politically, which is terrible news for Republicans,' Acadia University lecturer Jeffrey Sachs wrote in response to Pew's survey, which found that 70 percent of Gen Zers disapprove of Trump, 54 percent believe the planet is warming because of human activity, and 70 percent believe the government should be doing more to solve the nation's problems."

-->The NYT has done several stories on Gen Z, mostly in its Fashion & Style, Job Market, and Music and Dance sections. Our "newspaper of record" doesn't carry stories about leftist trends that are troubling to the nation's elites.  

UPDATE: The NYT belatedly covered this story on Jan 24, 2019

-----

The Guardian UK:
"The growing concentration of the world’s wealth has been highlighted by a report showing that the 26 richest billionaires own as many assets as the 3.8 billion people who make up the poorest half of the planet’s population.

In an annual wealth check released to mark the start of the World Economic Forum in Davos, the development charity Oxfam said 2018 had been a year in which the rich had grown richer and the poor poorer.

It said the widening gap was hindering the fight against poverty, adding that a 1% wealth tax would raise an estimated $418bn (£325bn) a year – enough to educate every child not in school and provide healthcare that would prevent 3 million deaths."

-->The NYT didn't cover this report. It preferred to let Reuters do the writeup and bury the story on its webpage.

-----

BuzzFeed News:
"The Unbelievable Story Of The Plot Against George Soros. How two Jewish American political consultants helped create the world’s largest anti-Semitic conspiracy theory. ...

The demonization of Soros is one of the defining features of contemporary global politics, and it is, with a couple of exceptions, a pack of lies. Soros is indeed Jewish. He was an aggressive currency trader. He has backed Democrats in the US ... But the many wild and proliferating theories, which include the suggestion that he helped bring down the Soviet Union in order to clear a path to Europe for Africans and Arabs, are so crazy as to be laughable — if they weren’t so virulent."


-->This amazing story about the use of antisemitism to elect right wing, racist leaders from Orbán in Hungary to Netanyahu and Donald Trump, is not being reported in the NYT. That's because a story like this casts the Israeli Lobby in a very unfavorable light, as an ally to racist and fascist governments around the globe.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

The Guardian UK:
"New evidence has emerged linking an RAF veteran to the death in 1961 of the UN secretary general Dag Hammarskjöld in a mysterious plane crash in southern Africa.

Jan van Risseghem has been named as a possible attacker before, but has always been described simply as a Belgian pilot. The Observer can now reveal that he had extensive ties to Britain, including a British mother and wife, trained with the RAF and was decorated by Britain for his service in the second world war. ... Van Risseghem was never interviewed by the authorities or journalists directly about the death of Hammarskjöld.

-->This story implicates all the usual villains: the CIA and MI6 doing the dirty work for US and British corporations. This time it was killing the the head of the United Nations, along with 15 members of his staff. JFK, soon to be assassinated himself, had called Hammarskjöld "the greatest statesman of our century." There wasn't much coverage of this story in our mainstream media, including the NYT.

-----

Mondoweiss:
"A study released last month by 416Labs, a Toronto-based consulting and research firm, supports the view that mainstream U.S. newspapers consistently portray Palestine in a more negative light than Israel, privilege Israeli sources, and omit key facts helpful to understanding the Israeli occupation, including those expressed by Palestinian sources.

The largest of its kind, the study is based on a sentiment and n-gram analysis of nearly a hundred thousand headlines in five mainstream newspapers dating to 1967. ...

Since 1967, use of the word “occupation” has declined by 85% in the Israeli dataset of headlines, and by 65% in the Palestinian dataset; Since 1967, mentions of Palestinian refugees have declined by an overall 93%; Israeli sources are nearly 250% more likely to be quoted as Palestinians; Explicit recognition that Israeli settlements and settlers are illegal rarely appears in both datasets.

-->Yes, our newspapers are hopelessly biased in support of Israel, and only getting worse. The fact that the NYT didn't cover this story is only one example of our media's staggering disregard for the truth about the occupation of Palestine.  

-----

The Guardian UK:
"In their rhetoric and policy advocacy, this trio has been steadily moving to the left to keep pace with a leftward-moving Democratic party. ... [But] Booker, Harris and Gillibrand have been making a very different pitch of late – on Wall Street. According to CNBC, all three potential candidates have been reaching out to financial executives lately, including Blackstone’s Jonathan Gray, Robert Wolf from 32 Advisors and the Centerbridge Partners founder Mark Gallogly.

Wall Street, after all, played an important role getting the senators where they are today. During his 2014 Senate run, in which just 7% of his contributions came from small donors, Booker raised $2.2m from the securities and investment industry. Harris and Gillibrand weren’t far behind in 2018, and even the progressive Democrat Sherrod Brown has solicited donations from Gallogly and other powerful executives."

-->Yes, corporate backed Democratic candidates posing as left leaning reformers. Why can't the NYT, our newspaper of record, tell us about these things?

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Common Dreams:
"Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's (D-N.Y.) unflinching support for taxing the wealthiest Americans at a rate doubling what they currently pay each year made waves among conservatives over the weekend—but at least one likely Democratic presidential candidate's backing of the proposal may indicate that it may soon get broader support from the party. 

On ABC's 'The Week,' former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro unequivocally told George Stephanopoulos that he has 'no problem' forcing Americans who make more than $10 million per year to pay far more than they currently pay in taxes. ...

Republicans attempted to attack Ocasio-Cortez's proposal—but were able to only by entirely misrepresenting what she said on '60 Minutes,' suggesting that she supports taxing all Americans' income at 70 percent.

-->The NYT hasn't covered this movement to make the filthy rich pay their fair share of taxes. Only an opinion piece by Paul Krugman mentions the growing support for tax reform. 

-----

Common Dreams:
"The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute (BCRI) in Alabama has come under righteous fire after caving to Zionist pressure and rescinding its decision to award the prestigious Fred Shuttlesworth Human Rights Award to  activist, academic, black icon, daughter of Birmingham and supporter of the BDS movement Angela Davis, who's spent decades fighting for the civil rights they supposedly stand for. In October, the Institute said they were 'thrilled to bestow this honor' on Davis, 'one of the most globally recognized champions of human rights, giving voice to those who are powerless to speak.'

Now they've taken back the offer and cancelled the February gala where she would have received it because 'upon closer examination of Davis’ statements and public record, we concluded that she unfortunately does not meet all of the criteria' for the award. Noting Davis' passionate criticism of Israel's ethnic cleansing, activists promptly called bullshit. 'To argue that Angela Davis is unworthy of a civil rights award is beyond shameful,' said Jewish Voice For Peace. 'And to dance around the fact that it’s due to her outspoken support of Palestinian rights makes it outrageous.' "

-->The NYT doesn't do stories like this that makes the Israel Lobby look bad. It didn't cover this controversy, and only included an AP version of the story on the NYT's website. 


-----

The Guardian UK:
"Meet Dr Miriam Adelson: the record-breaking Republican donor driving Trump's Israel policy. The 73-year-old has played a pivotal role in forming the couple’s interests and alliances in the US, where she is a naturalized citizen, and in her native Israel, according to public records and interviews with people who know her socially and professionally. Evidence suggests that she is the driver in the couple’s political and philanthropic activities, whether pushing for the relocation of the US embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv or donating an unprecedented $113m to this year’s midterm elections.

'Everybody says it’s Sheldon, but it’s Miriam,' says Michael Cherry, the associate chief justice of the Nevada supreme court, who sits on the board of the Las Vegas methadone clinic that the Adelsons founded. ...

Miriam turns out to be far wealthier than her husband, who was ranked #21 on the Forbes 2018 billionaire ranking. ... Worth $17.4bn at the current stock price, her holdings make Miriam wealthier than a number of the world’s richest men, including Rupert Murdoch and Charles Schwab."

-->An Israeli citizen and one of the world's richest billionaires is paying for Trump's support of Israeli apartheid. One might think that the NYT would be interested in this story, but it wasn't. How is it that an English newspaper does such a better job tracing Israel's influence in the U.S. than our own media?

Wednesday, January 02, 2019

Common Dreams:
"Following presumptive House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-Calif.) official announcement on Friday that Rep. Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) will chair the new Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, progressives accused the Democratic leadership of moving ahead with a 'weak' congressional panel instead of listening to grassroots demands for a more bold and visionary Green New Deal Select Committee.

Justice Democrats—an advocacy group that helped organize recent mobilizations in support of a Green New Deal—declared in a statement that the Democratic leadership appears dead-set on taking the 'path of least resistance' when it comes to tackling the climate crisis."

-->Pelosi selling out the Green New Deal? The NYT was not interested in exposing Pelosi as another corporate shill. It didn't cover this story.

-----

Guardian UK:
"Palestinians decry rise in attacks by Israeli settlers. ... Settler violence against Palestinians living in the Israeli-occupied West Bank has been rising since the beginning of 2017, according to the UN. This year 60 incidents attributed to settlers have resulted in Palestinian casualties and 157 in damage to Palestinian property. This is a 175% increase since 2016 and the highest number since a peak four years ago. ...

According to the Israeli human rights organisation Yesh Din, of 185 investigations opened between 2014 and 2017 that reached a final stage, only 21, or 11.4%, led to the prosecution of offenders, while the other 164 files were closed without indictment.

Key among its concerns is the double legal system. Settlers who commit crimes are under the jurisdiction of Israeli law; Palestinians operate under a separate legal system, run by the military."

-->Yes, further proof of Israeli apartheid treatment of the Palestinians. The NYT wasn't interested in this story.

-----

The Intercept:
"Major Liberal Groups Sat on Sidelines as Senate Passed historic Resolution on Yemen War. ...

Backers of the effort approached the Center for American Progress, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the American Civil Liberties Union, and all declined to specifically endorse the resolution or become members of the activist coalition. And when a procedural vote on the resolution came to the House floor, it got the same kind of half-hearted support from Democratic leadership, falling just three votes short. ...

The issue is especially sensitive to the Center for American Progress, the most prominent Democratic think tank in Washington, because it has been criticized for accepting significant funding from the embassy of the UAE, one of the Gulf countries leading the war on Yemen. The UAE gave CAP between $500,000 to $999,000 in 2017, according to the organization’s website."

-->So called liberal establishment leans in favor of endless wars in the Middle East. The NYT would never report that to its "Love Me I'm a Liberal" readers.