Wednesday, June 13, 2018

FAIR:
"With Literal Nazis Running for Office, NYT Suggests Candidate’s Israel Criticism Is Antisemitic. Eight overt white nationalists are running for office in 2018—a new record, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. Overt fascists, inspired by the rise of President Donald Trump, have found a place both within and just outside the margins of the official Republican Party. ...

With the increase on the US right in overt Nazi activity, one might be surprised to see the paper of record (New York Times, 5/29/18) turn its sights not on this disturbing trend, but on progressive candidate Leslie Cockburn, whose criticism of Israel is being cynically exploited by her opponents in the Republican Party—the same party increasingly finding common cause with a host of white nationalists, alt-right and 'alt-light' elements. ...

The very existence of this piece makes little sense. The only people in the 1,100-word report who think Cockburn is an antisemite are operatives for the Virginia Republican Party, who have an obvious political agenda. Times reporters Thomas Kaplan and Michael Tackett can’t find a single independent or third-party talking head to accuse Cockburn of antisemitism."

-->Is it because Cockburn is progressive, or because she has criticized Israel that the NYT is spreading these false rumors? I am afraid that it may be both reasons. 

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Democracy Now:
"In Yemen, the U.S.-backed, Saudi-led coalition bombed a new Doctors Without Borders cholera clinic in Yemen’s northwestern Abs region. Doctors Without Borders said that before the strike the group had provided the coordinates of the clinic to the Saudi-led coalition and that the roof of the building clearly identified it as a medical site. The ongoing U.S.-backed, Saudi-led war in Yemen has sparked the world’s worst cholera epidemic, with more than 1 million people affected.

This comes as the United Nations is warning an impending Saudi-led offensive on the Yemeni port city of Hudaydah could have catastrophic humanitarian consequences. This is Mark Lowcock, the U.N. under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs.

"Seven million people are completely reliant every month on food, and more than 7 million on other assistance, from humanitarian organizations. So, Hudaydah is absolutely central to the preserving of life. And if, for any period, Hudaydah were not to operate effectively, the consequences in humanitarian terms would be catastrophic.' ”

-->This American led genocide in Yemen is only possible when the citizens of this country are kept ignorant. The NYT does its part; it didn't cover the bombing of the cholera clinic. 

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Common Dreams:
"Elizabeth Warren: Democrats Will Keep Losing Until the Entire Party Is 'Willing to Take on the Billionaire Class. ... 'Money is going to drown our democracy, and if we don't start fighting back, and fighting back more aggressively, then we are part of the problem as well.'

Several Senate Democrats were deeply offended when their colleague Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) publicly called them out by name for backing a bank deregulation bill that will heighten the chances of yet another devastating financial crisis, but that hasn't deterred the Massachusetts senator from continuing to denounce members of her own party for cozying up to corporate power.

In a new interview on Mehdi Hasan's 'Deconstructed' podcast, Warren said she agrees with Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) that too many Democrats lack the 'guts' to take on Wall Street and argued that her party's struggles will continue until all of its members are 'willing to take on the billionaire class.' "

-->The media of the billionaire class didn't report this story. The NYT didn't consider Warren's statements fit to print.

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

The Guardian UK:
"Donald Trump is deliberately forcing millions of Americans into financial ruin, cruelly depriving them of food and other basic protections while lavishing vast riches on the super-wealthy, the United Nations monitor on poverty has warned.

Philip Alston, the UN special rapporteur who acts as a watchdog on extreme poverty around the world, has issued a withering critique of the state of America today. Trump is steering the country towards a “dramatic change of direction” that is rewarding the rich and punishing the poor by blocking access even to the most meager necessities.

'This is a systematic attack on America’s welfare program that is undermining the social safety net for those who can’t cope on their own. Once you start removing any sense of government commitment, you quickly move into cruelty,' Alston told the Guardian."

-->No story in the NYT. It makes the empire look bad, and that goes against the type of corporate propaganda that our newspaper of record specializes in.

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Common Dreams:
"Dozens of racial justice and civil liberties groups on Wednesday demanded the Department of Homeland Security release an unredacted version of their so-called 'Race Paper,' an internal memo which the department has leaned on to justify surveillance of racial justice activists.

'We are concerned that biases and inaccuracies reflected in the 'Race Paper' could result in unconstitutional law enforcement activities throughout the country that disproportionately impact activists, protesters, and communities of color,' wrote the groups, which included Free Press, the Brennan Center for Justice, Color of Change, and the NAACP.

The memo and the efforts it covers, the groups and other critics say, are part of the government's attempts to portray anti-racist groups like Black Lives Matter as dangerous, surveil black communities, and suppress dissent."

-->No news about political repression is good news, according to the NYT. It didn't print this story. Not good for business.

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The Guardian UK:
"Avoiding meat and dairy products is the single biggest way to reduce your environmental impact on the planet, according to the scientists behind the most comprehensive analysis to date of the damage farming does to the planet.

The new research shows that without meat and dairy consumption, global farmland use could be reduced by more than 75% – an area equivalent to the US, China, European Union and Australia combined – and still feed the world. Loss of wild areas to agriculture is the leading cause of the current mass extinction of wildlife.

The new analysis shows that while meat and dairy provide just 18% of calories and 37% of protein, it uses the vast majority – 83% – of farmland and produces 60% of agriculture’s greenhouse gas emissions. Other recent research shows 86% of all land mammals are now livestock or humans. The scientists also found that even the very lowest impact meat and dairy products still cause much more environmental harm than the least sustainable vegetable and cereal growing."

-->Shame on the NYT for avoiding this story. It printed a story called "The Case for a Carbon Tax on Beef" in March. But why not carry a story that proves how destructive an animal based diet really is to the planet?

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Common Dreams:
"Amid Grassroots Push, Medicare for All Winning Big in Democratic Primaries. With Medicare for All reaching record levels of support among both members of Congress and the American public—where support for single-payer is spreading 'like wildfire'—policy platforms demanding that the U.S. ditch its wasteful and deeply immoral for-profit system in favor of guaranteed healthcare for every American are also proving to be winners in Democratic primary fights across the country.

In red and blue states alike, candidates backing Medicare for All have emerged victorious in Democratic primary battles where, in some cases, their opponents had the backing of the party establishment."

-->There is a battle going on between the corrupt Democratic Party establishment and reform minded candidates. Our mainstream media, including the NYT, is on the side of the party's corporate wing. This story isn't being reported.

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The Guardian UK:
"Rudy Giuliani won deal for OxyContin maker to continue sales of drug behind opioid deaths. The US government secured a criminal conviction against Purdue Pharma in the mid-2000s but failed to curb sales of the drug after Giuliani reached a deal to avoid a bar on Purdue doing business.

... Giuliani won an important concession for Purdue. Corporations with criminal convictions are mostly barred from doing business with the federal government. If Purdue Pharma’s name was on the conviction it would probably have forced OxyContin from public health programs such as Medicaid and Medicare and the Veterans Administration health system. That in turn was likely to diminish its prescribing in the private health system.

[The federal prosecutor] said he did not want to be responsible for taking OxyContin off the market and so agreed with Giuliani to target the prosecution at the parent company, Purdue Frederick. That left Purdue Pharma, cleaved out as a separate painkiller manufacturer in 1991, to continue selling the painkiller without restriction even though opioid deaths were escalating."

-->Big Pharma pushing drug addiction with the help of Rudy Giuliani. Why must readers learn abut this from a foreign newspaper? Maybe our major media is addicted to corporate influence.

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Popular Resistance:
"Nicolás Maduro was successfully re-elected president of Venezuela on Sunday, receiving 5.8 million of the 8.6 million ballots cast, on a turnout of 46 percent. His nearest challenger, Henri Falcon, received 1.8 million votes. The process was watched over by 150 international observers from over 30 countries, among them former Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, who said 'I do not have any doubt about the voting process. It is an advanced automatic voting system.' ...

However, Western media have taken an entirely different outlook to the proceedings, unanimously presenting them as seriously flawed, at best, and at worst a complete sham presided over by a dictator. The New York Times presented the election as 'a contest that critics said was heavily rigged in his favor,' Huffington Post christened it 'a vote denounced as a farce cementing autocracy in the crisis-stricken OPEC nation,' while NPR reported that the vote was fraudulent, 'a view shared by the United States and many independent observers.'

-->Reporting on Venezuela clearly shows how subservient our media is to corporate interests. Big Oil clearly wants Venezuela's oilfields back, and mainstream media is as always sickenly ready to oblige.

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Common Dreams:
"After what critics called 'a hollow charade of a trial' and 'theater of the absurd,' an Israeli court Thursday convicted Palestinian poet and photographer Dareen Tatour, 36, of 'incitement to violence' and 'support of a terror organization' for publishing her poetry on social media."

Let us read the poem that is sending her to prison, in the Middle East's "only democracy."

Resist, my people, resist them.
In Jerusalem, I dressed my wounds and breathed my sorrows
And carried the soul in my palm
For an Arab Palestine.
I will not succumb to the “peaceful solution,”
Never lower my flags
Until I evict them from my land.
I cast them aside for a coming time.
Resist, my people, resist them.
Resist the settler’s robbery
And follow the caravan of martyrs.
Shred the disgraceful constitution
Which imposed degradation and humiliation
And deterred us from restoring justice.
They burned blameless children;
As for Hadil, they sniped her in public,
Killed her in broad daylight.
Resist, my people, resist them.
Resist the colonialist’s onslaught.
Pay no mind to his agents among us
Who chain us with the peaceful illusion.
Do not fear doubtful tongues;
The truth in your heart is stronger,
As long as you resist in a land
That has lived through raids and victory.
So Ali called from his grave:
Resist, my rebellious people.
Write me as prose on the agarwood;
My remains have you as a response.
Resist, my people, resist them.
Resist, my people, resist them.

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Common Dreams:
"The public comment period is now open on the U.S. Department of Agriculture's just unveiled proposal for food labeling of products using GMOs—a plan that would have labels without the words 'genetically modified' or 'genetically engineered,' but instead adorned with cheerful images.

According to Wenonah Hauter, executive director of Food & Water Watch, the proposal represents 'a gift to industry from our now Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, who authored the legislation to squash the Vermont GMO labeling law and mandatory labels.'

The proposal follows President Barack Obama's 2016 signature on an industry-approved bill—dubbed the DARK Act—that required national labeling standard rules, and which critics blasted for having loopholes and lacking a mandate for adequate GMO labels."

-->Yes, both parties have sold out to Monsanto and GMO's. The NYT completes the betrayal; it didn't cover this story.

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Common Dreams:
"After Amazon stocks soared last week—making founder Jeff Bezos, the world's richest man, $12 billion richer—Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) tweeted that the company paid no federal income tax last year, which was confirmed by independent analysis on Thursday, and comes as Amazon is trying to kill a proposed tax that aims to end Seattle's homelessness crisis. ...

'He's right,' PolitiFact declared. 'We've taken a look at a series of exaggerated claims about Amazon in the past. But in this case, Sanders is on the money.'

With no public tax return and no cooperation from Amazon, fact-checkers dug into the company's annual filings to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). They found, based on a February 2018 filing, 'that not only would the company not be paying anything in 2017 federal income taxes, but it would be getting a $137 million tax refund.' "


-->The NYT reported Amazon's despicable attempts to kill a local tax for the homeless in Seattle, but left out one little detail. Yes, the fact that Amazon paid no taxes last year, and would be getting a $137 million from the IRS. When it comes to corporate robbery, the NYT always sticks to the little details.

Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Common Dreams:
"Amid the handwringing of many in the corporate media over comedian Michelle Wolf's monologue at the White House Correspondents' Association over the weekend, few took notice of reports that the Justice Department took a step away from protecting journalists on Sunday, deleting language in its policy manual regarding press freedom ...

In the new update, a section titled 'Need for Free Press and Public Trial' was removed. The deleted passage had stressed the need to maintain 'the constitutional requirements of a free press and public trials as well as the right of the people in a constitutional democracy to have access to information about the conduct of law enforcement officers, prosecutors and courts, consistent with the individual rights of the accused.' "

-->The loss of press freedom didn't interest our "newspaper of record." The NYT didn't print this story.

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Common Dreams:
"After a video of the arrest of two African-American men sitting in Starbucks without buying anything went viral, Starbucks scheduled anti-racism training. But their inclusion of the Anti-Defamation League in the training provoked another outcry and Starbucks capitulated. ...

Cat Brooks, co-founder of the Anti Police-Terror Project, said ... 'You can’t be a piece of an anti-bias training when you openly support a racist, oppressive, and brutal colonization of Palestine.'

Linda Sarsour, also co-chair of the Women’s March, wrote on Facebook that ADL is 'an anti-Arab, anti-Palestinian organization that peddles Islamophobia and attacks America’s prominent Muslim orgs and activists and supports/sponsors US law enforcement agents to travel and get trained by Israeli military.' "

-->The major media, led by the NYT, avoided this story of how the racist ADL was thrown out of the Starbucks retraining plan. Always protecting the Zionist lobby and its Islamophobia campaigns. 

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Common Dreams:
"Faced with mounting scientific evidence that bee-poisoning neonicotinoids, or neonics, could cause an 'ecological armageddon,' European regulators on Friday approved a 'groundbreaking" and "historic' ban on the widely-used class of pesticides—an announcement met with immediate applause by campaigners.

'The E.U.'s groundbreaking ban on bee-killing neonicotinoid pesticides is a huge win for pollinators, people, and the planet,' responded Tiffany Finck-Haynes, senior food futures campaigner for Friends of the Earth (FOE). ...

'The E.U.'s wisdom highlights the Trump EPA's folly,' noted [Lori Ann Burd, director of the Center for Biological Diversity]. 'Although U.S. beekeepers reported catastrophic losses again this winter, and just this past week the EPA closed a comment period on another suite of damning neonicotinoid risk assessments, rather than banning these dangerous pesticides, the agency is actually considering increasing the use of neonics across another 165 million acres.' "

-->Always eager to take Monsanto's side, the NYT didn't cover this story.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Common Dreams:
"Former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who sparked a league-wide protest that has spanned two seasons since he first kneeled down before a game to protest racial violence and police killings in 2016, was awarded Amnesty International's highest honor on Saturday.

Presented at a ceremony in Amsterdam, Netherlands on Saturday, the secretary general of the human rights group Salil Shetty said Kaepernick earned its Ambassador of Conscience Award for 2018 for his 'refusal to ignore or accept racial discrimination.'

'Just like the Ambassadors of Conscience before him, Shetty added, 'Colin Kaepernick chooses to speak out and inspire others despite the professional and personal risks. When high profile people choose to take a stand for human rights, it emboldens many others in their struggles against injustice. Kaepernick’s commitment is all the more remarkable because of the alarming levels of vitriol it has attracted from those in power.' "

-->Much of our media, including the NYT, refused to print this story. Corporate controlled news reporting never favors popular resistance.

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Common Dreams:
"As President Trump threatens to rip up the nuclear agreement between the U.S., Iran and other major powers, the Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javar Zarif said on Sunday that the United States has 'never abandoned the idea of regime change' for his country and the only major difference now is that the Trump administration has just become 'more explicit about stating it.' ...

With a clear reference to Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and other Gulf monarchies, Zarif continued by saying the U.S. is 'used to dictators in our region who rely on them. As President Trump said, [those regimes] cannot live without U.S. support for two weeks. That's the type of regime that they're used to and that is why they so readily talk about regime change. They have not been able to impact the decision of the Iranian people over the last 40 years even at times when the Iranian revolution was very new.' "

-->The NYT, propagandist for the Pentagon's war talk against Iran, only carries opinions pieces on supposed human rights "outrages" in Tehran. Our "newspaper of record" would never print Javar Zarif's words. It is a much too honest assessment of US imperialist policies.

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FAIR (Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting)
"[The US] media have engaged in extraordinary mental gymnastics to describe the Israeli military’s deliberate killing of Palestinian protesters in the Great Return March, framing long-distance sniper shootings as 'clashes' in order to misleadingly 'give the reader the impression of two equal warring sides.'

Equally torturous are the linguistic contortions news outlets have performed to avoid stating the simple fact that Israel is shooting hundreds of demonstrators with live ammunition (Electronic Intifada, 4/6/18), killing 30 (Reuters, 4/9/18) and injuring close to 2,000. An Associated Press headline (4/6/18) said, 'Palestinian Protesters Burn Tires, Sending Smoke Billowing at Gaza/Israel Border; Israeli Troops Fire Back Sporadically.' That’s a logical impossibility: Israeli forces cannot 'fire back' at people who aren’t firing at them. The sentence rests on the absurd assumption that burning tires is the same as shooting people."

-->Almost all news reported in the US about Gaza is fake. The NYT employs journalists with strong ties to Israel, who are often duel citizens, to distort the coverage. Free our nation's media from Zionist apologists! 

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Common Dreams:
"As foreign policy experts denounced the missile strikes ordered by President Donald Trump Friday night, U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley further troubled critics on Saturday when she warned that the U.S. is prepared to attack the war-torn country again. ...

Haley's declaration was denounced by some of her counterparts at the UN, with Bolivian ambassador Sacha Sergio Llorenty Soliz expressing hope that international law would 'prevail.'...

Holding up the U.N. charter, which allows the use of military force for members only when necessary for self-defense or with the approval of the Security Council, Soliz concluded, 'And we also know that they have nothing but scorn for international law, but we have this.' "

-->The US media doesn't do international law, or include references the UN Charter in its enthusiastic war coverage. A brief look at our nation's media reveals that the term "war crime" just isn't applied to America's unprovoked attack on a sovereign nation.

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The Washington Post:
Headline: "Trump was right to strike Syria. But the mission is far from accomplished."

-->When our media gets into a war frenzy, factual information is not needed. The media assumes that the chemical weapon came from Syria, despite the lack of evidence, and the obvious reluctance of Assad to do the very thing that would bring in Western Imperialists. His war is won; why would he risk using chemical weapons?

Also this attack on Syria is a "war of aggression" the most serious of the war crimes since it leads to all the others. "To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole." -Nuremberg Trial Proceedings

Syria threatening the US? Why isn't this attack on Syria described as what it is: a "war of Aggression" with the flimsiest of excuses? Maybe the empire doesn't really need legal justifications anymore. 

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Common Dreams:
"While President Donald Trump's address to the nation suggested that he and his counterparts in France and the United Kingdom launched airstrikes out of concern for Syrian civilians, a number of critics pointed out that the leaders have shown little compassion for those same innocent people as nations have debated taking in Syrian refugees in recent months.

Under Trump, the number of Syrian refugees who have been granted asylum and resettled by the U.S. has plummeted,  dropping from more than 12,000 in 2016 to half that number last year. Less than 100 of the war-torn nation's 5.5 million refugees are expected to be allowed into the U.S. by the end of the current fiscal year in September."
https://www.commondreams.org/news/2018/04/14/trump-and-may-claim-concern-syrian-civilians-critics-slam-leaders-anti-refugee

-->We bomb Syria out of "concern" for the poor civilians, yet keep almost all Syrian refugees out of our country. The gross hypocrisy of the empire! Why can't our mainstream media question our supposedly good intentions? Too busy cheering our military airstrikes.