Friday, June 26, 2020

Liars and fools like Nikole Hannah-Jones and Aisha Staggers

I have an e-mail that surprises me but I'll respond.  First, Nikole Hannah-Jones is a hack.  She's an idiot, she's also fraud, but I'll get to that.  This is from Jonathan Turley:

When confronted on her republishing of this conspiracy theory, Hannah-Jones deleted the tweet and apologized.  That was the correct response.  However, the incident does not seem to have prompted any reconsideration of the recent move against the Times or its editors. In that incident, they published not a conspiracy theory but a column on a power held by the federal government for decades and used repeatedly in history.
This was just a tweet and we have all made bad calls on occasion with the hair-trigger technology of Twitter.  However, the incident highlights the troubling and fluid standard over what is permitted for publication or promotion. I am more concerned with Hannah-Jones’ widely cited views of journalism than this wayward tweet.

Hannah-Jones has been at the forefront in demanding that the media prevent others from offering opposing views.  She was one of the first to pile on the editors and demand that the newspaper block such viewpoints.  At the time, she suggested that Cotton’s editorial was advancing unconstitutional ideas (it was not) and, while suggesting that the column was factually in error, she never bothered to state what fact was untrue.

She only wants her opinions published.  She doesn't believe in journalism.  She doesn't believe in truth.  One reason she goes so overboard -- and lies -- in that stupid racialist 'project' for NYT is because she's got a lot to pretend about.

She's not Black.

Her father is.  Her mother's White.

Being bi-racial or mixed isn't a problem.  Unless you try to present as Black.

I'm Black.  Both my parents are Black.  Doesn't make me better than Nikole but it does make me Black and, yes, Blacker than she she is.

Don't give me 'we all have some White/Black in us.'  We're not going back generations, we're talking about parents.  She's not Black.

But that's her only path to fame so she pretends she is.

And carries a huge chip on her shoulder -- just like Melissa LieFace Harris Perry whatever the criminal she's married to now is. 

Because they have problems with Mommy -- with White Mommy -- the world has to suffer.

I don't have time for their garbage.

Now Nikole is a person of color, but she's not Black.

Aisha Staggers is Black.  She's also a fool as anyone reading her garbage here should grasp.

Prince pretended to be mixed. 

Yes, that was shocking, Aisha!

Back in the 80s, you stupid idiot.  That's when EBONY made it a cover story.  Paula Abdul and others were on the cover.  Only one of the people on the cover -- I believe it was Jody Watley -- was Black and claimed it.

But why Prince did that would make a great essay.  Staggers can't write a great essay because she's a stupid idiot.

She writes:

In my personal interactions with Prince’s legacy and fandom, I’ve observed that white fans tend to prefer the 1980s version of Prince and are more inclined to believe the fabricated story of his racial identity. Black fans have more love for Prince’s 1990s catalog, have delved deep into the many instances where he discusses race, social justice and faith, and know with certainty that he was a Black man despite the many convoluted stories that have circulated over the last forty years. Classifying Prince as an 80s artist allows white people to keep him in a false biracial framework, making him inextricably linked to them through genealogy. This is the Prince that most makes sense to them. He is one of them. They can relate to him.

Staggers, kiss my Black ass.  You're a damn fool and probably a damn liar.

Let's not use the fictional people that Staggers pretends she knows, let's use actual damn facts.

In the 80s, Prince had how many top ten hits on the R&B singles chart -- call it urban, call it R&B, call it whatever?  16.

How many in the 90s? 7.

How many of the 16 went to number 1 in the 80s?  5.  How many in the 90s?  2.

Get it?

She's an idiot. 

Prince's finest work was in the 80s and it was his most popular.

I love Prince but CRYSTAL BALL?  It wasn't worth the four discs I bought at Best Buy the day it came out.

There was a single disc -- a solid single disc -- that could have been made from all those tracks.

Prince lost it.  The 90s is the tale of him confusing volume with quality.  He put out too much music and most of it was forgettable.

I don't get where she comes off pretending, by the way, that the 80s are 'White' music.

The 80s are: "Controversy," "Lady Cab Driver," "Let's Go Crazy," "Sign of the Times," "I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man," "1999," "Uptown," "Let's Work," "Little Red Corvette," "Do Me Baby," "Take Me With You," "Delirious," "Raspberry Beret," "Pop Life," "If I Was Your Girlfriend," "Alphabet St.," "I Wish You Heaven," "Party Man," "U Got The Look," "Kiss," "Anotherloverholenyohead," "Mountains," "Batdance" and "Scandoulous."

The 90s?  The R&B top ten hits were "Get Off," "Diamonds and Pearls," "Insatiable," "Thieves in the Temple," "The Most Beautiful Girl In The World" and "I Hate U."

I love "The Most Beautiful Girl In the World" and it's a Prince classic.  If you argued the same were true of "Diamonds and Pearls," I wouldn't argue with you.

But those R&B hits from the 80s?  That's a string no one will ever match.  I love Stevie Wonder but even Stevie didn't have that kind of genius.

WARNER BROTHERS screwed with Prince and messed with his head.  The same way SONY did with George Michael.  Both of them ended up more concerned with fighting the label and lost a lot of their muse.  Of the 80s big players, only Madonna managed to keep it together. 

I love Prince but his 80s music was his best and most significant.

Back to the e-mail.  I've been calling out Whitney Cummings.  And an e-mail comes in saying all I "ever do is tear apart White people.  I like your site but I'm White and I'm tired of your attacks."

I'm sorry that you feel attacked.

I don't just call out White people.  I'm calling out Whitney Cummings and doing so for good reason. 

I've called out Kamala Harris in the last year.  I'm going to look at my archives to see if I'm not being balanced and if I'm not I apologize.

But I don't try to focus on slamming White people.  If I've come off that way, I apologize.  Again, let me check my archives and see what's going on because, on my end, I'm not noticing it.

"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):
Thursday, June 25, 2020.  MSNBC trots out a War Criminal, Iraq's government still at a loss on how to diversify economy, and much more.

Are all the War Criminals supporting Joe Biden?  It certainly seems that way -- neocons and War Criminals.  If you missed it, MSNBC NEWS GUTTER reported this week:

When it came to Donald Trump's presidency, retired Army Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez bit his tongue for years. Every time Trump took another step the retired general found offensive -- the attack on Muslim Gold Star parents, Charlottesville, DACA, et al. -- Sanchez restrained himself and made no public comments.
This month's developments, including the Lafayette Square scandal, led him to believe he had to step up and speak up. 

That's from Rachel Maddow's staff.  Remember boys and girls, if it's about gay rights, Rachel's strong.  If it's about anything else?  She can't be trusted.

Who is Ricardo?  Well first, let's note he was a Lt Gen and let's point out Ruth's "NN and NPR parade their bias against General Flynn" which notes NPR and CNN are happy to call everyone by their military title they retired at -- even David Petraeus -- except retired Gen Michael Flynn.  Are we not supposed to notice that?

And are we not supposed to note who Rachel Maddow's team is now pimping?  Here's a little backstory on Ricardo that Steven Benen leaves out:

Sánchez was commander of coalition forces during a period when abuse of prisoners occurred at Abu Ghraib and at other locations. In a memo signed by General Sánchez and later acquired by the ACLU through a Freedom of Information Act request, techniques were authorized to interrogate prisoners, included "environmental manipulation" such as making a room hot or cold or using an "unpleasant smell", isolating a prisoner, disrupting normal sleep patterns and "convincing the detainee that individuals from a country other than the United States are interrogating him."[3]
On May 5, 2006, Sánchez denied ever authorizing interrogators to "go to the outer limits". Sánchez said he had told interrogators: "...we should be conducting our interrogations to the limits of our authority." Sanchez called the ACLU: "...a bunch of sensationalist liars, I mean lawyers, that will distort any and all information that they get to draw attention to their positions."[4]
Documents obtained by The Washington Post and the ACLU showed that Sanchez authorized the use of military dogs, temperature extremes, reversed sleep patterns, and sensory deprivation as interrogation methods in Abu Ghraib.[5] A November 2004 report by Brigadier General Richard Formica found that many troops at the Abu Ghraib prison had been following orders based on a memorandum from Sanchez, and that the abuse had not been carried out by isolated "criminal" elements.[6] ACLU lawyer Amrit Singh said in a statement from the union that "General Sanchez authorized interrogation techniques that were in clear violation of the Geneva Conventions and the army's own standards."[7]

That's from WIKIPEDIA.  Sanchez should be in prison for what he did.  Leave it to the always oblivious Rachel Maddow to pimp Ricardo as someone we need to hear from, as someone who's opinion on anything matters.

Lives were destroyed at Abu Ghraib.  What took place was outrageous and it was criminal -- War Crimes.  

The 'resistance' is a joke and always will be because they have no ethics, they have no knowledge, and they blindly root for whatever con man stands in front of them at the moment -- be it Michael Avenatti or Ricardo.  Of course, Ricardo's much worse than con man Avenatti, Ricardo's a War Criminal.  Shame on anyone who tries to rehabilitate him.

You have ethics or you don't.

You care about human lives or you don't.

This is not something where you can be "yes and" on it.  People were tortured because of Sanchez.  Sy Hersh has stated repeatedly that Iraqis were raped at Abu Ghraib.

Shame on anyone celebrating Ricardo for anything.  He belongs behind bars.  If there's an afterlife, you can be sure that he will be soundly punished.  He is not 'fixable,' he is not 'redeamable.'  He is a War Criminal.

From a November 2007 column by Amy Goodman entitled "Have They No Shame?":

 This past Saturday the Democrats chose retired Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez to give their response, the same general accused in at least three lawsuits in the U.S. and Europe of authorizing torture and cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment of prisoners in Iraq. This, combined with the Democrats’ endorsement of Attorney General Michael Mukasey despite his unwillingness to label waterboarding as torture, indicates that the Democrats are increasingly aligned with President Bush’s torture policies.
Sanchez headed the Army’s operations in Iraq from June 2003 to June 2004. In September 2003, Sanchez issued a memo authorizing numerous techniques, including “stress positions” and the use of “military working dogs” to exploit “Arab fear of dogs” during interrogations. He was in charge when the abuses at Abu Ghraib prison occurred.
Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski, who headed Abu Ghraib at the time, worked under Gen. Sanchez. She was demoted to colonel, the only military officer to be punished. She told me about another illegal practice, holding prisoners as so-called ghost detainees: “We were directed on several occasions through Gen. [Barbara] Fast or Gen. Sanchez. The instructions were originating at the Pentagon from Secretary Rumsfeld, and we were instructed to hold prisoners without assigning a prisoner number or putting them on the database, and that is contrary to the Geneva Conventions. We all knew it was contrary to the Geneva Conventions.” In addition to keeping prisoners off the database there were other abuses, she said, like prison temperatures reaching 120 to 140 degrees, dehydration and the order from Gen. Geoffrey Miller to treat prisoners “like dogs.”

Again, there's a side.  You are responsible for torture?  You belong in prison.  It says a great deal about THE ATLANTIC -- and about Rachel Maddow -- that they rush to embrace Ricardo.

Grasp that Ricardo's not even offering anything.

He thinks Donald Trump is a racist?  Oh, wow, that's an opinion no one's ever expressed before, right?  Let's forget that Ricardo is a War Criminal because he's got this brand new idea that no one else ever had before, he's detected something no one else could!!!!

What a load of rubbish.

Iraq has many problems -- most of them created by Ricardo and people like Ricardo.  Their economy remains in turmoil.  Maya Gebeily (AFP) reports:

So if they need reform, that would mean diversifying the economy.  There was a period, for example, in the early years of the war, when efforts were made to help with the date farm sector   I knocked it at the time and got a nasty e-mail from a US military official.  I knocked the fact that it wasn't a serious effort and it wasn't fixing anything.

We haven't checked on the date farm sector since Bully Boy Bush left the White House.  Was I right?  Was I wrong?

Iraq is to plant 70,000 date palms south of Baghdad, hoping to revive production of a crop it was famed for across the Middle East.
The country once produced three-quarters of the world’s dates but now accounts for just 5 percent after it switched its economic focus to oil and after decades of conflict devastated its farms.
Backed by a state loan worth 10 billion dinars($8.43 million), a Shi’ite Muslim foundation has planted 16,000 date trees outside the holy city of Kerbala, some 90 kilometers (56 miles) south of the capital Baghdad. It is the biggest state-backed farming project for the crop since the U.S. invasion toppling Saddam Hussein in 2003.
“We plan to have more than 70,000 date trees in future,” said Faiz Eissa Abu Maali, the project’s manager, during a tour.

So that was 2018?  Here's a video report from 2018.

So the US tossed some money at the problem and then Barack Obama became president for two terms and then left office and Donald Trump was then president and that's when the Iraqi government decided, "Hey, maybe that project that all the money was spent on over a decade ago, maybe even though we ignored it and didn't fund it when it needed it, maybe we should try to kick start it again?"

Nothing changes because nothing changes.
The money -- US taxpayer money -- tossed out in the early years of the war for the date farming was a waste of money.  That had nothing to do with Iraqi farmers, it had everything to do with a corrupt government that provided no support and continues to provide no support.

How many years is it going to take for that reality to set in?  In 2018, MIDDLE EAST EYE noted:
 The blazing sun beats down on Mohammed Khalil Ibrahim as he points to what is left of his date palms and the damage caused by a scarcity in water. Bent over his cane on his farm in the Iraqi southern city of Basra, the 73-year-old farmer describes how they are sad examples of the fruit-bearing tree. 
“You see the trunks, they're too thin. And the dates my trees produce are barely edible," said Ibrahim.
The Ibrahim family have been farmers for three generations. Back in the 80s, the family owned around 50,000 date palm trees in the city of Basra. Today, only a few thousand trees have survived the drought and salinity and none of Ibrahim’s sons want to take over the farm since it is no longer profitable. 
“Many neighbouring farmers give up and look for work in the cities," Ibrahim said.
Once a water-rich country, Iraq is facing drought, a significant drop in annual rainfall, salinity and a decline in the level of water flowing into the country, following the construction of major dams in Turkey and Iran since the 1970s.
Additionally, a lack of funds targeting the agricultural sector is preventing the development of Iraq's infrastructure. Basra, now a crumbling city, was once dubbed the "Venice of the Middle East" for its network of canals.
Real steps have to be taken and they have not been.  Iraqi leaders like Nouri al-Maliki have enriched themselves by stealing the public funds.  

  • Iran is pressing Iraq to expand its already game-changing oil and gas infrastructure deal with China.
  • Tehran is looking to include Iraq in the Sino-Russian power bloc in order to expand its influence in the oil-rich country.
  • Chinese money, equipment and technology should, Baghdad and Tehran think, allow Iraq to gradually increase its oil production to the 7 million bpd targeted by end-2022.

The above could be very good for Iraq's economy, if they made the deal with China and if they used money (profits) to invest into diversifying the economic base.  But they've refused to do that.  The prime minister focuses on what foreign governments want -- the US or Iran mainly -- and stick their hands into the people's money.  

Let's turn to the topic of the coronavirus.

MENAFM notes, "The daily tally of cases has been rising since the holy month of Ramadan and as many Iraqis flout coronavirus lockdown measures."  XINHUA notes, "The Iraqi health ministry on Wednesday warned of serious health situation, as it recorded 2,200 new COVID-19 cases, the highest daily increase since the outbreak of the disease, bringing the total number of infections nationwide to 36,702.  The ministry also confirmed 79 more deaths, raising the death toll from the infectious virus to 1,330 in the country." 
The minister's statement came during a press briefing along with and after a meeting with the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq, Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, and the World Health Organization (WHO) representative to Iraq, Adham Rashad.
From her end, Hennis-Plasschaert warned against the lack of adherence to health regulations that are aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus.
"We must commit to fighting the spread of the Coronavirus at all levels, primarily through the individual actions of each of us," said Hennis-Plasschaert.
"The local, regional and national health authorities, as well as friends and partners of Iraq, have warned of great consequence in case of taking the virus lightly," she added. "[W]e cannot exaggerate the seriousness of the situation, but fear and misinformation is no less dangerous," stressing the need for "resistance with courage, sound information, practical advice and collective discipline."
Meanwhile Zhelwan Z. Wali (RUDAW) reports that  Sulaimani Province's Health Dept spokesperson Dr Yad Naqishbandi has declared that he has the coronavirus and that, "My health is good and I have quarantined myself at home."  And Hardi Mohammed (RUDAW) reports:

Photos of a coronavirus patient lying on the ground unattended in a Kirkuk hospital have angered his family, who demand answers about the treatment of the man, who later died on Tuesday.
The disturbing photos circulating on social media in recent days appear to show Najat Rasheed, 57, lying on the ground meters away from a bed and an overturned chair. No hospital staff are seen in the photos, and it’s not known who is responsible for taking the photos.

Rasheed, who is Kurdish, had served as a medical worker in the city for 12 years. He was hospitalized in two separate hospitals for 13 days, but died on Tuesday. His son, Sirwan Najat, remained in contact with his father via their mobile phones while he was hospitalized. After losing contact with him Thursday night Sirwan visited the hospital and found his father abandoned. The next morning, he was pronounced dead.

“My father could not breathe. At 7 am I called to ask the medical personnel of the hospital whether he was alive or not. The doctor said that he would check on him, but he came at 10am," he told Rudaw on Wednesday. "They did not serve him at all," Najat says. 

The following sites updated: