Thursday, April 21, 2011

I Hate The War

A few things. First, Barack got serenaded by supporters of Bradley Manning. For his reaction -- as opposed the spin -- click here and you can see his angry sneer in the Reuters photograph. We're not going to be focusing on the group involved. Their song was rather weak. Oh please Barack we love you do the right thing. Please. They'll never get this kind of press again and they wasted their moment with weak-ass suck-up crap. And there was no reason to sing of the man from Flordia. I'm sure they thought they were cute. But they were full of it. And let's be really clear, once you say, "We'll vote for you in 2012 . . ." you're nothing. You've got nothing. You've given away all your power. I'm not promoting those pathetic losers or their organization. If a six-year-old had done it, that might have been worth applauding. Grown adults? That was embarrassing. Why didn't they just crawl over to him on their bellies and kiss his feet?

That's one. We've got two more. The count we're using is wrong, an e-mail informs.

How is it wrong? Do the numbers not add up?

It's not wrong. AP's count is at least two lower. AP does their own count. I'm not picking on them for their count. I'm glad that at least one US outlet does their own count.

We used to use ICCC but you start going down in the numbers after you've gone up, you tick me off. And when we lost the ability to check their numbers -- in the past you could click on the month and you would read every last name announced -- we went elsewhere. I no longer trusted their numbers -- and their civilians numbers are a joke -- and wasn't interested in promoting them.

That left us with few choices. There is AP and a friend said to call every Thursday and Sunday night and they'd give me the count. But that doesn't help because someone would e-mail and claim that I was lying about the numbers. If I didn't have a link in there, at least one outraged crank would e-mail repeatedly to insist that the numbers were wrong.

Doubt it?

We provide a link now with the number and I've got a man insisting "your numbers" are wrong. They aren't my numbers. They are the Defense Dept's numbers. 4421 are the total DoD deaths from the start of the Iraq War through August 31, 2010. At which point the war is renamed ("Operation New Dawn"). There are 30 deaths listed on that. 30 US service members have died in Iraq since Barack declared the end of combat operations.

You add the 4421 and 30 and you get 4451. That's DoD's number. After the song excerpt below, you'll have the number and a link with it. Use the link. I'm not making up the numbers, these are the figures provided by DoD.

Third, regarding the snapshot, a self-described fan of Gareth Porter's e-mails the public account to say I wasn't fair to him. I disagree but that's an opinion. I will note that, in that final section, there's a Nouri sentence that makes no sense. That's because I killed half of what I dictated on Gareth. There was a whole thing in there about someone having a Daddy fixation and I pulled all of those jokes out.

That's the minor point of the e-mail (or I consider it to be). The part that really matters is the e-mailer wants to know why, if Moqtada does Iran's bidding, he wouldn't go after Nouri if US forces stayed on the ground in Iraq. That, the e-mailer insists, would be outrageous to Iran.


I don't happen to agree with that. I feel that the US government has repeatedly used the Iranian government and the Iranian government has repeatedly used the US government. They're kind of like the Democratic and Republican parties. If the US leaves, Iran faces full on wrath. Now some Iraqis can be glad for Iran's influence. By the same token some are glad for the US influence (occupation) but, if and when Iran became a friendly neighbor, there would be even more anger at the US for the occupation. They both play their games with Iraq and benefit from one another. My opinion. (Among the benefits? Both sides repeatedly having the opportunity to bash and demonize the other. Often those speeches seem less for Iraqi audiences or even international ones and purely for domestic consumption in the US or Iran.)

And lastly, if someone is kind enough to e-mail me an interview with Gareth, I should be linking to it -- the e-mailer insisted. Do you know how many people send their own stuff to the public account asking to be highlighted?

And since 2004, I've highlighted as much of it as I could if it was appropriate. But the reality is that it is a one way street. That's fine in terms of I don't need anyone promoting this site or trying to garner us new readers. But it's not fine in terms of the same people sending things over and over and never returning the favor.

David DeGraw seems like a nice person. But I drew a line and he doesn't get highlighted now. Why? Do you know how many times Danny Schechter asked for things to be promoted? Do you know how many times I was asked to note that Media Channel was struggling and needed donations?

And every time I did it.

What changed?

Last time we highlighted David DeGraw, the private e-mail accounts filled up with complaints. Why, community members wanted to know, was I highlighting Media Channel's David DeGraw when Danny Schechter had just dropped The Common Ills from his links?

I didn't know he had. I really don't follow that. But, they were right, he had. And because he had there's huge hostility towards Media Channel in the community so there's no point in highlight DeGraw or anything else to do with that outlet -- members aren't interested. But that is a good example of how the net really works. You get Media Channel and Danny e-mailing you constantly asking for favors and you do them and the thank you for that is that they drop you from their links. I could care less that Danny doesn't link to this site. But it also frees from ever having to do another favor for anyone involved with Media Channel which, for the record, republished Ava and my writing (in full) without our permission, without notifiying that they'd done so and that started the rumors that we were getting Soros money.

There are a ton of rumors and I don't care about most of them. People will believe what they want to believe. But George Soros made blood money. That's what his 'currency speculation' was. I do not support George Soros. I do not appreciate that -- because of what Danny and Media Channel did -- to this day people assume Ava and I were paid by Media Channel -- which has taken money from Soros.

I don't need money, Ava doesn't need money. We'll never take a dime from the likes of George Soros. But that rumor refuses to die because of what Danny and Media Channel did.
The snapshot is reposted all the time as are other things here. If I write it, it doesn't matter to me. I don't need money, I'm not going to have a fit. I'm not going to tell anyone to take down something I wrote. That's how we got our European readers and community members, by reposts. Especially in England in 2004 and 2005, you'd go to a British music site and someone would repost an entire entry from this site in a comment or on its own page. And that's fine and it doesn't bother me. Having taken that opinion, I've had to be fair and make it that way regardless. Because I'm not a big supporter of porn and some porn sites have reposted writing. That's fine too. Fair is fair. I'm not going to be angry at anybody.

But if you've read this site for any lenth of time, you know I repeatedly state that Isaiah's comics belong to Isaiah. I can't give permission to reprint Isaiah. Those are his. By the same token, what I do over at Third is at The Third Estate Sunday Review website. I am one of six people who make up Third. I cannot give permission for reprints from that site and have never pretended that I could. When Media Channel did the reprint, it put Third in a very awkward position. Something Danny's known since at least 2006 because he and Jim have exchanged heated e-mails over this and other topics for years now. I know he was furious that his writing that Tina has to forgive Ike was called out (at Third in 2007) by Ava and myself. He can kiss my ass on that. That was my attitude then and now. I've known Tina for years and Ike terrorized her. Tina doesn't have to do a damn thing. She owed that man nothing. To claim otherwise is to put forward the notion that women aren't victims of violence . . . just love. And poor Ike just didn't know how to express himself . . . except, poor thing, with his fists. There is no justification for what Ike Turner did. None. And considering all the rumors swirling around about Media Channel's gender discrimination and worse in the last eleven years, it's probably a blessing to have nothing to do with them at this point. But I am sorry for David DeGraw because he did maintain a focus and I think his work does a real service but I have enough to do on any given day without doing favors week after week for years for people who never say thank you and never do you a solid in return. Though I will try to always have mercy for the needy, I have no mercy for the greedy.

It's over, I'm done writing songs about love
There's a war going on
So I'm holding my gun with a strap and a glove
And I'm writing a song about war
And it goes
Na na na na na na na
I hate the war
Na na na na na na na
I hate the war
Na na na na na na na
I hate the war
Oh oh oh oh
-- "I Hate The War" (written by Greg Goldberg, on The Ballet's Mattachine!)

Last week, ICCC's number of US troops killed in Iraq since the start of the illegal war was 4451. Tonight it is [PDF format warning] 4450.

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