Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Truest statement of the week

The worst hate group in the United States is not the Ku Klux Klan or any self-proclaimed alt-right group. The most racist, vicious, and deadly menace to black people in this country is law enforcement. The police, courts and prisons exist primarily to keep as many black people under control as possible. All other claims of usefulness are phony and cover up the racist cruelties inherent to their existence.
Every day one can be see videos of black people being humiliated, arrested, shot and beaten for minor infractions or for none at all. They may be driving, walking, eating, or shopping while black. They may be men, women, or children. The system is made to put as many victims through its maw as possible and all the photographic evidence in the world won’t stop it unless inconvenient truths are told. One of the worst is the reliance on the collaboration of black people who help keep the police state running.

-- Margaret Kimberley's "Freedom Rider: Black Support for the Police State" (BLACK AGENDA REPORT).









Truest statement of the week II

 AG:Okay, last question. In spite of everything you have to deal with there in the 197—poverty, violence, homelessness, and drug addiction—you joined the steering committee of the W omen's M arch on the Pentagon planned for October 21and 22. Could you tell us why you did that?

CH: I joined the steering committee I saw the march as a chance to address the real issues of war abroad and violence on the front lines in our own communities, and to say what we’re not supposed to say out loud—that the Democrats support war. We can't run and hide from that. It’s not the progressive party because it supports war. As long as we continue to accept what’s really a one-party system—the Democratic and Republican duopoly—we're really in trouble. The corporations are going to keep us engaged in all these wars and they’re not going to do anything about poverty, hunger, and homelessness. If we want to end the war at home and abroad, we need to support the development of an independent political party. It's time for us to grow up and join the rest of the world that has several different political parties.

Cheri Honkala speaking with Ann Garrison, "Challenging Democratic Party Corruption in Pennsylvania’s District 197" (BLACK AGENDA REPORT).







A note to our readers

Hey --

Oh look, it's early  Tuesday night or late Monday (we've got 19 more minutes until it's Tuesday) and we're now done.


Let's thank all who participated this edition which includes Dallas and the following:








The Third Estate Sunday Review's Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess and Ava,
Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude,
Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man,
C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review,
Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills),
Mike of Mikey Likes It!,
Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz),
Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix,
Ruth of Ruth's Report,
Wally of The Daily Jot,
Trina of Trina's Kitchen, Marcia of SICKOFITRDLZ,
Stan of Oh Boy It Never Ends,
Isaiah of The World Today Just Nuts,
and Ann of Ann's Mega Dub.


And what did we come up with?


Margaret Kimberley gets another truest.
And a truest from an Ann Garrison interview.
It continues.  Check out Twitter, though, and you'll find thousands of fools who believe the Iraq War ended in 2011.

Ava and C.I. take on SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE and Tina Fey.
Close the investigation already.
This was one that C.I. proposed and a number of people agreed with (including Betty, Ann, Stan, Isaiah and Cedric).  I (Jim) missed the point (I see it now) and I said we had other things to cover last week.  I got the point late.  When I did I was all for us doing it here.

Sarah gets another Tweet of the Week.
Noting the ongoing book coverage in the community.

What we listened to while writing.
A look at last week's best.


See you next week.

Peace,





-- Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava and C.I.


















Editorial: Are we ever going to end the Iraq War?

Your weekly reminder that the Iraq War is not over.


  1. Soaring! ✈️ A Strike Eagle flies over 🇮🇶. The dual-role fighter is designed to perform air-to-air and air-to-ground missions.






And people who can't face that reality are pretty sad.


Some people, like Cindy Sheehan, are working to end the wars.  This is from Cindy Sheehan's site:





We have spent the time up to now on messaging, "branding," and literally circling our wagons to protect the integrity and non-partisan nature of WMOP, now it's time to get into the actual march.

PLEASE CONSIDER JOINING ONE OF OUR COMMITTEES:

 



COMMITTEES
(IF YOU'D LIKE TO VOLUNTEER, PLEASE EMAIL CINDY AT
CINDYSHEEHAN@WOMENSMARCHONPENTAGON.COM)


STEERING COMMITTEE
(Meets twice a month--for now--responsible for approving expenditures, messaging, outreach, social media, website, overseeing committees)
Cindy, CHAIR
MEMBERS: Bonnie Caracciolo
Riva Enteen
Emma Fiala
Suzanne O'Keefe
Paki Weiland 
Heather Cottin

ADVISORY COMMITTEE:
(self-explanatory)
Walter Teague, Veteran of 1967 March on Pentagon
Margaret Flowers,  Co-director of Popular Resistance
Kevin Zeese, Co-director of Popular Resistance
Bruce A. Dixon, Managing Editor of Black Agenda Report 
Ward Reilly, US Veteran-Activist 
Doctress Neutopia, Utopian Visionary 
Ann Wright, Peace Activist 
Gloria LaRiva: PSL and ANSWER
Mnar Muhawesh: MintPress
PR COMMITTEE
(responsible for press-releases, etc)
Cindy Sheehan
Juliette Schwartz-Frinhani 

SOCIAL MEDIA
Cindy
Bonnie
Emma
Aimee
Jessica

(ALL OF YOU WHO SHARE AND PARTICIPATE ON FB AND TWITTER)

WEBSITE:
Emma Fiala, CHAIR AND DESIGNER

FUNDRAISING 

CHILDREN'S PEACE FESTIVAL (OCT 20)
Heather Cottin
Lisa Blank
Aimee Artigliere 
OUTREACH
(CONNECTING WITH OTHER GROUPS TO ENDORSE/PARTNER)

VOLUNTEER COORDINATOR


HOUSING COMMITTEE

RIDE SHARE COMMITTEE

BUS COORDINATOR

LEGAL COMMITTEE
Riva Enteen

COMMUNICATIONS
Ann Garrison

RALLY COMMITTEE
CINDY SHEEHAN

DC COMMITTEE
Malachy Kilbride

CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE COMMITTEE
OCCUPY THE PENTAGON

SOLIDARITY EVENTS
Bonnie Caracciolo, CHAIR
Cathy Browning

IF YOU'D LIKE TO JOIN OUR CALL, PLEASE EMAIL
CINDY FOR THE NUMBER AND CODE.
CINDYSHEEHAN@MARCHONPENTAGON.COM
******

TWITTER 

email CINDYSHEEHAN@MARCHONPENTAGON.COM
to volunteer. 



















TV: SNL goes out on a sad and sour note

In 1940, MGM offered DR. KILDARE GOES HOME.  Over the weekend, SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE tried the same thing with their former writer Tina Fey.  It was not pretty.

Why was she hosting?

Apparently because she couldn't get any work elsewhere.

a new illst

Once upon a time, Tina was a big name -- a name that conjured up the notion of hilarity and a solid future.  That was long ago.  Her most recent film, WHISKEY TANGO FOX TROT, couldn't even make up its shooting budget with ticket sales.  Her film before that did a little bit better, SISTERS made $87 million in ticket sales in north America.  If this were 1985, people would be applauding that box office.  But for a heavily promoted film in 2018, it just underscored that she couldn't connect with a larger audience.  (Most analysis of the film's box office notes that Amy Poehler was the draw.) TV hasn't been any kinder.

30 ROCK is gone (more on that in a minute).  Worse, NBC just axed GREAT NEWS.  That was Tina's big foray into producing.  She was going to sport her comic genius and her business sense.  Well, she tried anyway.  Season one was a disaster in the ratings.  Season two saw her trying to pump up the ratings by appearing on the show.  It didn't help at all.  At one point, season two saw an episode garner only 1.8 million rating.

Well there's Broadway -- where Tina's MEAN GIRLS is currently playing.  Ticket sales started off well but are now sluggish and, in fact, you can easily purchase half-price tickets online because the house is never filled these days.  There's hope that the show will score some major Tony awards and that will help the box office.  But the reality is a tween film favorite doesn't make for a long running Broadway hit.

She's striking out everywhere.  So why not go back to SNL?

All hail the faded glory.

As if to demonstrate just how much in the past her glories are, she trotted out her Sarah Palin impersonation.  Ah, yes, she was riding high back in 2008.  She was going to be the biggest thing in everything.  Only it didn't work out that way.

Riding the social media sharing buzz for her Palin impersonation, her 30 ROCK's season three debuted with 8.7 million viewers -- a record high for the show, one it would never achieve again.  Six episodes later, it was back to the likes of five million because people just didn't watch the show.  The show would continue to run off viewers.  There's a reason Tina needed to become a successful TV producer: No one wanted to watch a show she starred in.

Not many even wanted to watch her return to SNL.  Last year's season finale posted a 5.3 million audience while this season, wrapping up with Fey, was down to 4.5 million.

Isn't the hometown gal supposed to increase ratings?

Maybe if she ever had something to offer.

But she didn't.  As previously noted, she was digging into 2008 to do Sarah Palin.  Why?  Because she's known for so little else on SNL.

She took part in a sketch that fell flat about the royal wedding but at least it used members of the current cast.  She wasn't funny as an attorney in spoof of MORNING JOE.  The MEAN GIRLS sketch was even worse.  She next appears in a skit known as PREDATOR HUNTERS where she poses as a woman named Svetla -- yeah, she trotted that tired gag out yet again.

Then it was time for her to do Sarah Palin.  The sketch started with real enthusiasm but you can feel the audience growing bored as the skit offers nothing.

Next up is a spoof of a mother-daughter talent performance that isn't funny.  Then the final skit -- the one they throw in at the end knowing it might not be funny.  It wasn't.  It was a spoof of Dick Wolf's latest franchise -- CHICAGO IMPROV.  It should have been something.  It was nothing.

Like so much of the episode.

Like so much of the season.

Why did Lorne Michaels return to the show?

We can remember how he trashed what Dick Ebersol had done when Ebersol produced the show.  It wasn't funny, he insisted and relied too heavily on spoofs of TV and too much on celebrities.  For example, he would never -- he insisted -- have put established star Billy Crystal in the cast.

Interesting.

The opening skit didn't have many spots for regular cast members but did include Alec Baldwin, Ben Stiller and Robert De Niro.  And the opening monlogue that followed?  Jerry Seinfeld, Donald Glover, Anne Hathaway, Benedict Cumberbatch . . .

Lorne thought he was more talented and more tasteful than Dick Ebersol.  Lorne kids himself a lot.  Dick Ebersol knew what he was doing and did it on purpose.  Lorne's now aping Dick but won't cop to it.  He has become everything he slammed Dick for.  In the process, SNL has had another lousy season where no real break through characters were created but didn't we get to have a lot of fun with various celebs showing up to do one skit an episode -- playing a character that a cast member actually should have been playing.

There's no point in being in the cast of SNL these days.  If you're Leslie Jones or Kate McKinnon, it doesn't matter that you're talented -- the writers are going to give you the exact same character with a different name because Lorne's not pushing -- not pushing the writers to be funny, not pushing them to be creative, not pushing them to push the envelope.

For the second season in a row, SNL makes the point that there's no reason for it to be on the air anymore.  Tina Fey's return only confirmed that.  At least when Dr. Kildare went home, the community got a medical clinic.







Laughable Robert Mueller and his ridiculous investigation

the scope of the investigation


Robert Mueller, this century's Kenneth Starr.

Tasked with investigation allegations of Russia 'hacking' the 2016 presidential election, what has he come up with?  One year later, nothing of value.



 

As Jeff Cohen discussed with Nellie Bailey and Glen Ford (BLACK AGENDA RADIO), the whole nonsense is nothing but an excuse for Hillary Clinton's failed campaign and the many mistakes made.


The scorn heaped on voters never ended -- Hillary calling Americans "deplorables," Hillary taking over the DNC, Donna Brazile rightly noting how that titled the balance unfairly, the argument that the will of the voters in a Democratic Party didn't matter -- but somehow Donald Trump must have cheated to win?

Hillary didn't visit swing states that mattered and lost the election.  And that was Russia?

Hillary lied over and over about her e-mails -- even Neera Tanden realized this was a public nightmare and that Hillary should address it strongly and clearly but that never happened.

Or take the fact that Donald Trump was elevated in the GOP primary race by the media . . . at Hillary's request.  That was the plan.  He was the candidate she wanted to run against because she just knew she could beat him.

In the end, she didn't though.

And that's on her.

The WIKILEAKS publishing of her e-mails demonstrated yet another level of craven.

And Robert Mueller's investigation has done little to point the finger to Russia.  It has resulted in a number of reveals that suggest the FBI and CIA were used in the summer of 2016 to spy on a presidential campaign -- which would be illegal.  This was an administration (Barack Obama's) determined to hand pick their successor by illegally spying on a campaign.  That goes beyond Tricky Dick's dirty tricks.  Robert Mueller needs to wrap up the investigation or step the hell down.  His charges, thus far, are an embarrassment and shoddy.  They go to the fact that he has no case and has gone clearly beyond the scope of his investigation.

America didn't tolerate Kenneth Starr and they won't tolerate Robert Mueller.  Partisans will be thrilled this go round, as they were with Starr's lunacy, but your average American is going to be outraged because this farce has gone on long enough and it has nothing of value to show for the time or the money.

------------------
Illustration is Isaiah's THE WORLD TODAY JUST NUTS "The Scope of the Investigation."





Bill Cosby's conviction does not mean you can lie about him

Last month, actor and comedian Bill Cosby was convicted of three counts of aggravated indecent assault against Andrea Constand.

Some have stayed silent about Cosby while others have found ways to attack him.

"I was not friends with him," C.I. says.  "He was way too conservative for my tastes.  But I did find it funny that no one could say anything to nice about him in the last years even if they owed him.  A number of people -- especially White performers -- owed him big time.  I can, for example, think of a certain Twitter presence who probably wouldn't have a career today if Bill Cosby hadn't agreed to open and introduce the person's attempt at a comeback after their first flame out in the sixties.  Had he done that for me, I would've found a way to note a good quality or two.  That's not defending him against his conviction but that is noting that he was a bit more complex."

Complexity flies out the window when someone gets convicted which is how a 'journalist' like Michael Cieply (DEADLINE) feels he can get away with typing this:

Cosby, just convicted on sexual assault charges, may have been the easier decision. After all, he was never much of a feature film presence (though I have a weak spot for Hickey & Boggs).


 WTF?  What a racist.

Bill Cosby's 70s and 80s film output, via WIKIPEDIA:

1971 Aesop's Fables Aesop
1972 Hickey & Boggs Al Hickey
1974 Uptown Saturday Night Wardell Franklin
1975 Let's Do It Again Billy Foster
1976 Mother, Jugs & Speed Mother
1977 A Piece of the Action Dave Anderson
1978 California Suite Dr. Willis Panama
1981 The Devil and Max Devlin Barney Satin
1987 Leonard Part 6 Leonard Parker



Sidney Poitier was the first African-American film star and he became a film star in the 50s.  In the 70s, the decade Bill Cosby began starring in films, Poitier acted in nine films.


The three biggest African-American film stars who came to prominence in the 70s were Richard Pryor (LADY SINGS THE BLUES, THE MACK, SOME CALL IT LOVING, HIT!, UPTOWN SATURDAY NIGHT, ADIOS AMIGO, THE BINGO LONG TRAVELING ALL-STARS & MOTOR KINGS, CAR WASH, SILVER STREAK, GREASE LIGHTNING, WHICH WAS IS UP?, BLUE COLLAR, THE WIZ and CALIFORNIA SUITE), Diana Ross (LADY SINGS THE BLUES, MAHOGANY and THE WIZ) and Billy Dee Williams (MAHOGANY, LADY SINGS THE BLUES, THE FINAL COMEDOWN, HIT!, THE TAKE, THE BINGO LONG TRAVELING ALL-STARS & MOTOR KINGS and, in the 80s, he began playing Lando in the STAR WARS films).

Richard was the biggest male movie star and his credits show it.  But Diana and Billy Dee were also movie stars and their fewer credits go to Hollywood's inability to create major projects for African-Americans in the 70s -- especially African-American women.


In that context, with that context, it is clear that Bill Cosby was a major film presence.

His had major roles in films that co-starred Jane Fonda, Richard Pryor, Sidney Poitier, Harry Belafonte, Raquel Welch, Harvey Keitel, Ossie Davis, Flip Wilson, Jimmie Walker, Denise Nichols, James Earl Jones, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Susan Anspach, Elliott Gould, Rosalind Cash, Isabel Sanford and James Woods, among others.  He worked for major studios -- WARNER BROTHERS, COLUMBIA, 20TH CENTURY FOX, etc.

You may or may not like the work that Bill Cosby did in films but you have no right to lie about it and pretend like he was not a major film presence in the 70s.


We won't -- and don't -- defend him for his conviction.  That's on his record.  But his record also includes blazing a trail for African-Americans on TV and, yes, in film.  His criminal conviction doesn't give anyone the right to lie about that -- but isn't that how society's always handled convictions?  By pretending the convicted was less than human, had nothing worthy of praise?  People are a little more complex than that -- even if our need to demonize says otherwise.






Fish is good for you

"Who eats enough fish?," Kat asked last week.  And it made us wonder.

First off, fish is a good source of protein and a natural source of Omega 3 which can help with heart health.  There are, of course, mercury concerns due to the pollution of our waters.  But with the American Heart Association again advising people eat at least two servings of fish a week, we decided to tally up our fish intake from last week (this is all of us).



anchovy

1) Anchovies -- anchovy pizza.

2) Sushi dragon roll (eel and crab) and spicy tuna roll (tuna) and Philadelphia roll (salmon)

3) baked salmon

4) baked cod

5) Subway tuna sandwich (six inch)

6) Snow crab legs

7) Betty Crocker Tuna Tetrazzini

8) Steamed catfish with brown rice

9) Clam strips

10)  Shrimp gumbo

11) Shrimp alfredo

12) Linguini with clam sauce

13) Sardines and crackers

14) Fish tacos

15) Long John Silver's Sampler (cod and fish)

16) Red Lobster's Admiral's Feast (shrimp, flounder, crab strips and scallops)

17) shrimp cocktail


Again, that's all of our intake but it's easy to eat fish twice a week.  We didn't even mention fish sticks, for example, or seafood salad -- or topping a salad with tuna, salmon or sardines.






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