Monday, November 23, 2015

Truest statement of the week

If the Democratic Party is where grassroots movements go to die, then the run-up to presidential elections is a year-long procession of Dead Activists Walking. This week, the funders of the Democratic wing of the corporate Deep State – most prominently, currency manipulator George Soros – have invited the Good, the Bad and the Hungry elements of what is widely called the Black Lives Matter movement to make their case for cash infusions. The Democracy Alliance’s (DA) stated mission is “to build progressive infrastructure that could help counter the well-funded and sophisticated conservative apparatus in the areas of civic engagement, leadership, media, and ideas.” Translation: to transform leftish activist organizations into loyal, dependent annexes of the Democratic Party.

-- Glen Ford, "'Black Lives Matter' Groups Hoping for a Big Payday" (BLACK AGENDA REPORT).

Truest statement of the week II

While Obama administration officials previously claimed that the bulk collection program was ended “for operational and resource reasons and has not been restarted,” NSA officials now gather emails and other information from Americans and non-Americans unhindered by restrictions on targeting which existed previously on US-based targets by collecting internet communications stored in data hubs located overseas (the “internet’s backbone”).

-- Nick Barrickman, "NSA documents reveal bulk email collection continues despite official claims" (WSWS).

A note to our readers

Hey --

A Monday.  First, we 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,
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?

Glen Ford gets another truest.
A new one for the truest feature.
Hillary appears unstoppable -- sadly, that's not a good thing.
Ava and C.I. weigh in on JESSICA JONES.
It's really strange when you grasp that this outlet can -- and has -- regularly call out sexism while so many others cannot.  And we've been calling out Crapapedia since 2005.  We've also gotten results and led the way to stop the 'slut shaming' way Crapapedia then-presented women's personal lives.
I weigh in.  Largely because this edition needed more pieces.  

We love this album.
Marcia and Rebecca count Darwin as one of their favorite authors.
What we listened to while writing this edition.
Repost from Great Britain's Socialist Worker.

Repost from Great Britain's Socialist Worker.

Mike and the gang wrote this and we thank them for it.

So that's what we came up with.  Happy Thanksgiving and see you next week.


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

Editorial: She won't own her mistakes but she thinks she can buy the White House

Thursday, War Monger Hillary Clinton gave a foreign policy speech calling for war, war and more war.

Her vote in favor of the Iraq War in 2002, she insists, was a 'mistake.'

Apparently, it's a mistake she's learned nothing from as evidenced by Thursday's words.

But any mistake, other than her never explored (by her) 2002 vote, is never acknowledged.

  (Illustration is Isaiah's The World Today Just Nuts from January, 2006.)

In the speech Thursday, she insisted:

Now, we’ve been in a similar place before in Iraq. In the first Sunni awakening in 2007, we were able to provide sufficient support and assurances to the Sunni tribes to persuade them to join us in rooting out Al Qaida. Unfortunately, under Prime Minister Maliki’s rule, those tribes were betrayed and forgotten. So the task of bringing Sunnis off the sidelines into this new fight will be considerably more difficult. But nonetheless, we need to lay the foundation for a second Sunni awakening.

Yes, the Sahwa (also known as Awakenings and Sons of Iraq and Daughter of Iraq) were betrayed by Nouri al-Maliki.

And this betrayal was well documented before the 2010 elections.

And before the eight month political stalemate that followed the elections as loser Nouri al-Maliki refused to step down.

And before the The Erbil Agreement ended the stalemate.

Remember that?

Hillary hopes you don't.

November 10, 2010, the Erbil Agreement is signed.  November 11, 2010, the Iraqi Parliament has their first real session in over eight months and finally declares a president, a Speaker of Parliament and Nouri as prime minister-designate -- all the things that were supposed to happen in April of 2010 but didn't.

Nouri lost the election.

Hillary's right to call out Nouri.

She forgets to call out herself, Barack Obama and others for the US government brokering the Erbil Agreement that gave Nouri a second term after the voters said "no."

That's right, the US government stole that election.

When Hillary was US Secretary of State.

And she doesn't want to own up to that.

She won't own any of her mistakes.

But she just knows Big Money can buy the White House for her.

Sad thing is, she's probably right.

TV: Netflix scores another hit in Jessica Jones

Why does Netflix do it?


We kept wondering that while watching the latest TV series JESSICA JONES.

In the briefest overview possible, Jessica is a former superhero who still has great strength and can leap tremendous distances but now operates her own seedy, one-woman detective agency in New York City.

Well, not just in NYC, in post-MARVEL'S THE AVENGERS New York City.  And super powers aren't seen as so great by everyone -- including those who weren't thrilled by the big 2012 battle in the city.

Jessica takes walk-ins but also depends on wealthy and corrupt attorney Jeri Hogarth (Carrie-Anne Moss) as she tries to put the trauma of being controlled by Kilgrave (David Tennant) behind her.

She has her friends Trish (Rachael Taylor) and Malcolm (Eka Darville) and her hump-buddy Luke Cage (Mike Colter) but mainly she's got her own baggage as a result of the deaths of her parents and brother as well as being mind controlled by Kilgrove.

Jessica is played by Krysten Ritter who survived 'TIL DEATH and excelled in DON'T TRUST THE B---- IN APARTMENT 23, but still hadn't done anything to prepare audiences for how great she is in this role.

Everything about JESSICA JONES is impressive.

Rachael Taylor, for example, has floundered in the CHARLIE'S ANGELS TV reboot, PARK 666 and CRISIS.  Trish may be a supporting role but it offers her far more opportunities than lead roles in the last three did.  Or what about Trish's abusive mother?  In what could have been a one-note role, Rebecca De Mornay is given a chance to shine. Mike Colter's turn as Luke Cage (also known as Power Man) is so exciting you can't wait for next year when Luke gets his own Netflix series.

Jessica is a complex character and the show is as well with it's own unique point of view and a strong and individual look to it which stands in stark contrast to CBS' SUPERGIRL -- another live action attempt where all the surrounding characters are more interesting than the dull, vanilla superhero.

SUPERGIRL has no point of view, has no unique look and a lead character that's an embarrassing weakling.  It's not just that Lynda Carter's Wonder Woman and Diana Prince were more advanced in the 70s hit WONDER WOMAN, it's that even Phyllis Coates and Noel Neill alternating as Lois Lane in THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN had more purpose and strength back in the 50s.

On the heels of last spring's success with DAREDEVIL, Netflix launches another first class superhero show.  If only CBS and the other broadcast networks could do the same . . .

Remember, boys and girls, it's Crapapedia


WIKIPEDIA, where any lie can be falsely presented as truth.

Take their entry on the 1978 film THE WIZ:

When Motown star Diana Ross asked Gordy if she could be cast as Dorothy, he declined, saying that Ross—then 33 years old—was too old for the role.[8] Ross went around Gordy and convinced executive producer Rob Cohen at Universal Pictures to arrange a deal where he would produce the film if Ross was cast as Dorothy. Gordy and Cohen agreed to the deal. Pauline Kael, a film critic, described Ross's efforts to get the film into production as "perhaps the strongest example of sheer will in film history."[8]


Because Rob Cohen, who produced the film, told a different story to J. Randy Taraborrelli for his book CALL HER MISS ROSS.  In the original hard coversion, it appears on pages 337 through 339.

Diana Ross calls Berry and says she wants to play the part.  He tells her to forget it.

He then calls Rob Cohen

Rob agrees with Berry but tells him, "There's only one reason that it's right. [. . .] Universal will pay her $1 million to do it.  And it'll mean getting this movie made."

Berry likes the one million notion and Rob's left to speak to Universal executive Tom Mount the next day to make good on his prediction of Diana getting a million to make the film.

Cohen states he then called John Badham who didn't like the idea and left as director of the film.

He then states he called Berry Gordy.

After which, Diana called Berry to restate that she wanted to play Dorothy and, after a moment of playing stand-offish, he tells her she has the role and Universal will pay her one million dollars for playing the part.

In his end notes (again, original hard cover version of the book), Taraborrelli explains that the source for these events is from "my interview with Cohen."

And Pauline Kael's quote?

She didn't write that.

But only at Crapapedia can you 'source' a Pauline Kael film review for THE NEW YORKER by referencing . . . a clip job biography of Ross.

Pauline Kael's review actually stated -- in fact opened -- with this on "will," "Diana Ross's determination to play Dorothy in the film version of the black Broadway musical 'The Wiz' is probably the chief example in all movie history of a whim of iron."

And that, boys and girls, is from page 138 of the October 30, 1978 issue of THE NEW YORKER.

That's how you source a film review -- that or by the Pauline Kael book of collected reviews the review appeared in.  (Hint, can't use FOR KEEPS -- that collection contains only part of the review -- not the full review -- and doesn't contain the quote.)

You may notice, speaking of sourcing, that the false claim that Diana went around Berry isn't sourced at WIKIPEDIA.

But when telling and spreading lies about women, WIKIPEDIA never requires sourcing.

Jim's World (They never listen)


Thanksgiving is nearly upon us.

Like many, I will be spending it with family --  Dona and our child and our parents, etc.

So like many guys across the country, the weekend meant haircut time.

I hope my experience was different than others but, from conversations since, I think it was all too common.

When I showed up for my haircut, the woman looked at the computer and said, "You like it long on top, right?"


And it's in the computer because too often that's not what I get.

And it's not what I got.

I did get to hear about my stylist's ADD and her OCD.

I got to hear about the angry spat with her lover.

I got to hear about her ex as well.

I got to hear her drone on and on while she destroyed my hair.

She saved the top for last.

Before cutting it, she asked me how it looked.

And right then it looked fine.

And then she takes the scissors and whacks the front about an inch short.

As two inches fall to the floor, I ask her what she just did?

"Oh, right.  Longer on top.  Okay, okay, I can fix it."

She takes the shears, takes off the two guard and does the sides to the scalp.

On one side.

It did not make it look better.

Nor did it look any better when she had done the other side.

It looked like Jack Webb.

Thanks to this idiot who couldn't be bothered with paying attention to her actual job, I'll be seeing family on Thursday as I sport a Jack Webb DRAGNET haircut.

When I complained, and I did complain, she told her boss I hadn't objected during the haircut.

No, not until she lopped off two inches from the top.

More to the point, the computer clearly states that I like it long on top.

And since when is it my job to monitor her?

I drop the car off for new brakes, I don't have to sit there and watch them mechanic.

So my beef this go round is how some stylists want to bore you with all the petty details of their life and don't care enough about you the paying customer to cut your hair right.

I really think a new rule needs to be imposed: Shut your mouth and cut the hair.

Agree or disagree, you can weigh in via e-mail (

10 Reasons to Grab Songs From The Trees

Friday, Carly Simon's SONGS FROM THE TREES was available for download online and purchase in stores.


Here are ten reasons you should grab the album.

1) It's a double disc collection -- 31 songs in all.

2) You can purchase the discs for $12.99 at Amazon or download it at Amazon for $14.99 (prices are the most current as we write this piece).

3) The collection features two previously unreleased tracks, "Shutdown" recorded during the sessions for 1978's BOYS IN THE TREES album and "I Can't Thank You Enough" (written and performed with Ben Taylor).

4) The other 29 songs are previously released but all have been remastered for this collection.

5) It's the musical companion piece to her new memoir BOYS IN THE TREES due out Tuesday ($17.39 at Amazon currently).

6) The collection contains an 18-page booklet.

7) Singer-songwriter Carly has won the Grammy, the Golden Globe and a Grammy for her songwriting and has been inducted into The Songwriters Hall of Fame (though, being a woman, she still can't get into Jann Wenner's sexist Rock & Roll Hall of Fame).

8) Covering 12 of her first 13 studio albums (plus including a hit from The Simon Sisters -- her folk duo with sister Lucy Simon), the collection serves as a strong overview of Carly's early career.

9) SONGS FROM THE TREES contains over 20 tracks not included on previously released single and double disc Carly collections (we're not including the three disc retrospective CLOUDS IN MY COFFEE).

10) "CD wallet made from 100% recycled paperboard".

2015 book Cranky Clinton doesn't want you to read

Hillary really, really hopes you don't read this new book.

Bill and Hillary: So this is that thing called love.Bill and Hillary

So This is that Thing Called Love

Darwin Porter & Danforth Prince

Whereas Tabloid Kings Darwin Porter and Danforth Prince have already exposed the charismatic excesses of the Kennedys and the Reagans, they now aim their liberal and Democratic lasers onto dramas associated with their all-time favorite politicians, the Clintons.

In this hot new “I Love You Madly” overview of the most likely Presidential candidates for election in 2016, they examine the “conjoined-at-the-hip” love story of Bill and Hillary.

Tabloid Exposure and Timing: As America propels itself into 2016’s bloodthirsty search for presidential scandal, this book is rich in ironies associated with pandemic sex, vendetta, and subterfuge that’s naughtier than a Hollywood scriptwriter could ever have imagined.

Never in the history of the Republic have we heard such emphasis on the spirit and language of True Grit.  Some of the dialogue reported by witnesses to the Clinton saga makes Richard Nixon’s taped rants seem like a script from Shirley Temple’s Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm.

Presidential Politics:  It’s all here, the glitter, glamor, sex, money, and power, but also the betrayals, the exposures, the epic fight for love and glory, a kick in the groin about high adrenaline sex.

Shadowy Figures from the Twilight Zone: It’s also a book about the men and women, and their hangers-on, who run the government, ultimately ruling over the free world.

As a contribution to the current political dialogues inundating the country, this hot new title will be available EVERYWHERE, online and in bookstores, in late October/early November.

Paperback 978-1-936003-47-1 • 1-936003-47-3 Trim size 6x9 Ppg 576

About the Author:

“Darwin Porter is the master of guilty pleasures. There is nothing like reading him for passing the hours. He is the Nietzsche of Naughtiness, the Goethe of Gossip, the Proust of Pop Culture. Porter knows all the nasty buzz anyone has ever heard whispered in dark bars, dim alleys, and confessional booths. And lovingly, precisely, and in as straightforward a manner as an oncoming train, his prose whacks you between the eyes with the greatest gossip since Kenneth Anger. Some would say better than Anger.” (as quoted from Alan W. Petrucelli’s THE ENTERTAINMENT REPORT at

Porter began his career writing about politics and the entertainment industry for Knight Newspapers and The Miami Herald. Today, he’s one of the most prolific biographers in the world. His portraits of Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra, J. Edgar Hoover, Vivien Leigh, Laurence Olivier, Howard Hughes, John and Jackie Kennedy, Paul Newman, Merv Griffin, Steve McQueen, Marlon Brando, Humphrey Bogart, Katharine Hepburn, and Michael Jackson have generated widespread reviews and animated radio and blogsite commentaries worldwide. Some of his biographies have been serialized to millions of readers in The Sunday Times of London and The Mail on Sunday.

Porter is also the well-known original author of many editions of The Frommer Guides, a respected travel guidebook series that’s among the most prominent and well-respected in the world.

Blood Moon Productions:

Applying the tabloid standards of today to the Hollywood scandals of yesterday. It's a tough job, but somebody's got to do it.
Danforth Prince, President

This edition's playlist


1) Carly Simon's SONGS FROM THE TREES.


3) Janet Jackson's UNBREAKABLE.


5)  Steve Grand's ALL AMERICAN BOY.

6) Ben Harper's BOTH SIDES OF THE GUN.



9) Ben and Ellen Harper's CHILDHOOD HOME.

10)  Adele's 25.

Moazzam Begg says, resist ‘the state of fear’

This is from Great Britain's Socialist Worker:

Moazzam Begg says, resist ‘the state of fear’

Moazzam Begg
Moazzam Begg (Pic: Guy Smallman)

“Once again Muslims are being blamed for the actions of people we reject. It’s as if we have to continually condemn something we don’t agree with, committed by people we have never known.

The self-censorship we have to put on ourselves says we shouldn’t comment on what caused Isis to become so deadly.

It means we feel we can’t talk about the reality—if you are bombing a country you can expect something to happen. This is what the security services have said all along. The likelihood of terrorist reprisals goes up because you are in a bombing campaign.

If you say these things, people think you are making a justification. You’re not because you know people who have been butchered by Isis. But because they are from the Muslim world, nobody really cares.

What would happen if the three million Muslims in Britain sat down together and had a big condemning session?

It wouldn’t prevent Isis attacks. Isis doesn’t care what Muslims in Europe think, it is responding to what it sees as an assault on itself. I think it’s important that everyone expresses sympathy with the victims in Paris. We should stand with them and their families, but not with the governments because they are exploiting the situation.

The prime minister’s “full spectrum response” has an impact on the ordinary person, so you see Islamophobic attacks.

The attacks are fuelled by politicians and many sections of the media.

They allow the creation of the state of fear in which Muslims are living.

There has been a response from a significant section of society who recognise that the backlash will be targeted against Muslims.

That’s something we should embrace. We also need to be prepared for the rise of the far right.

When a group of people feels frightened and isolated we need to form a cordon
around them and stand shoulder to shoulder with them.

Fourteen years ago George Bush and Tony Blair launched a war against terrorism to eradicate Al Qaida.

Al Qaida now has more franchises than a lot of fast food chains.

If the response to the atrocities in Paris is more invasions it may create the conditions for more terrorism.”
Moazzam Begg is director of Cage and was a detainee in Guantanamo Bay

Our job is to defeat imperialism, not Isis

This is a repost from Great Britain's Socialist Worker:

Our job is to defeat imperialism, not Isis

by Alex Callinicos

Positively the stupidest thing said about the Paris attacks came from the French president, Francois Hollande, when he denounced them as an “act of war”. Of course they were, but this war didn’t start on Friday of last week.

At the very latest it began with the Gulf War of 1990-91, the first in the present cycle of imperialist interventions in the Middle East.

This doesn’t make the shootings and bombings in Paris part of a legitimate anti-imperialist struggle.
Indiscriminate killing of civilians is wrong whether it is carried out by Isis and its sympathisers or by the US and its allies.

But it’s a mistake to see the conflict as a symmetrical one between two equal evils, as many on the left do.

Isis is a reactionary and counter-revolutionary movement. But it is a product of the destruction wreaked in Iraq by the 2003 invasion and subsequent occupation and of the defeat of the Arab Spring.

The ultimate responsibility for its rise therefore lies with the Western imperialist powers and their local clients.

Labour shadow justice secretary Lord Falconer—as a cabinet minister of Tony Blair’s a supporter of the 2003 invasion—talked a lot about “defeating Isis” on last Sunday’s Andrew Marr show.

This phrase has been taken up even by the Stop the War Coalition, which mobilised so strongly against that invasion.

But “defeating Isis” is empty chatter given the present situation in Syria and Iraq, where it has its strongholds.

Patrick Cockburn wrote recently in the London Review of Books, “A couple of years ago in Baghdad an Iraqi politician told me that ‘the problem in Iraq is that all parties are both too strong and too weak: too strong to be defeated, but too weak to win.’

“The same applies today in Syria. Even if one combatant suffers a temporary defeat, its foreign supporters will prop it up: the ailing non-IS part of the Syrian opposition was rescued by Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey in 2014 and this year Assad is being saved by Russia, Iran and Hezbollah.”


The same is true even of the imperialist powers—the US and Russia—now dabbling in Syria. After their defeats in Iraq and Afghanistan respectively, neither wants to commit ground troops on a significant scale. So they just lob bombs and missiles into Syria. The futility of these measures was summed up the day of the Paris attacks.

David Cameron held a special press briefing outside

10 Downing Street to preen over Britain’s role in the claimed drone killing of Mohammed Emwazi.
Within hours we had concrete proof that such “acts of self defence” offer citizens in the West absolutely no protection.

Isis has built up a formidable fighting machine based on a mixture of organised plunder and ideological zeal. It channels in a distorted way the anger and hatred provoked by Western intervention.

Lydia Wilson writing in The Nation magazine interviewed captured Isis fighters in Kirkuk, in Iraq. She describes them as “children of the occupation”.

“They are not fueled by the idea of an Islamic caliphate without borders; rather, Isis is the first group since the crushed Al Qaeda to offer these humiliated and enraged young men a way to defend their dignity, family, and tribe.”

Only a revival of the Arab revolutions can generate the social force strong enough to take Isis on—above all by offering a better way of resisting imperialist domination and overthrowing the local ruling classes.

Cameron made the connections crystal clear when he stood outside Downing Street a week or so before the Paris killings to greet president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, the butcher of the Egyptian


Vowing to respond to the Paris attacks with “pitiless war”—as Hollande did—simply means that the vicious cycle of intervention and atrocity will continue, with escalating deaths and suffering in both the Middle East and the imperialist centres.

Here in the West, we can’t “defeat Isis”. But we can help break the cycle by building mass movements that put an end to our rulers’ imperialist bullying.


This piece is written by Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude, Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix, Kat of Kat's Korner, Betty of Thomas Friedman is a Great Man, Mike of Mikey Likes It!, Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz, Ruth of Ruth's Report, Marcia of SICKOFITRADLZ, Stan of Oh Boy It Never Ends, Ann of Ann's Mega Dub, Isaiah of The World Today Just Nuts and Wally of The Daily Jot. Unless otherwise noted, we picked all highlights.

 "They're preaching war and destruction again" -- most requested highlight of the week by readers of this site.

"Kat's Korner: Adele's 25 (on a scale of 1 to 100)" and "Kat's Korner: Carly's Songs From The Trees" -- Kat reviews the new releases by Adele and Carly Simon.

"Marvel Agents of SHIELD," "heroes reborn,"  "scandal boring,"
"I am loving Jessica Jones (and Arrow)," "The Originals" and "how worried is abc?" -- Mike, Rebecca, Stan and Marcia cover TV. 

"The Secret In Their Eyes" -- Stan goes to the movies.

"Carly Simon," "Carly Simon coverage," "Again on Tracy Chapman," "Likes for this weekend (Carly Simon, Jessica Jones, Martin O'Malley)," "Carly Simon's new album is out now,"  "Joni Mitchell nailed it," and "Carly, Joni, "You're So Vain"" -- music coverage.

  • "Nick Jonas is a little bitch" -- Trina tells the truth.

  • "Talk Is Cheap" -- Isaiah dips into the archives.

    "David Beckham" -- Trina talks sexy.

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