First up, Donald Trump and Syria. Yesterday's snapshot resulted in a huge numebet of e-mails from visitors (public e-mail site is firstname.lastname@example.org). Some were appalled that US President Donald Trump wasn't being given credit for getting troops out of Syria. Some were appalled that I hadn't called him out for Syria.
One of the thing that irritates me the most about THIRD -- the only thing really -- is that we do these pieces and they wait and wait to be posted because maybe there's another piece that might be finished in a day or two. Early Sunday morning, we did a roundtable and I spoke to this issue. That might not have prevented the e-mails but at least I'd be able to just copy and paste my comments in here. (If THIRD is not done by tonight, Ava and my TV piece goes up regardless. We worked hard on it. It would have been fresh on Sunday, now it's growing stale.)
I took no opinion in yesterday's snapshot on Syria. I did note that it was a prime issue to peel off Donald's supporters. Not by whining that he took troops out of Syria but by pointing out that he was sending 1,000 -- at least 1,000 -- to Iraq. One e-mailer pointed out I must be right because Samantha Power Tweeted about it Samantha Power is a War Hawk. She supported the Iraq War. When it was deeply unpopular with the American people, she tried to pretend otherwise. As Barack's advisor in 2008, she was against pulling US troops out of Iraq. He was promising in speeches to do so. As she told the BBC -- this is why she left) a campaign promise isn't a promise. Samantha had called Hillary Clinton a "monster" but that wasn't why she left the campaign. She left the campaign because of her comments to the BBC and her realization that if she was with the campaign, she would be asked about it, Barack would be asked about it, it would be an issue.
By announcing she was leaving the campaign, a press that was already lying for Barack would continue to lie for him. And I'm not in the mood to play, don't e-mail me that they didn't lie for Barack, they did. Most infamously Michael Gordon and Jeff Zeleny buried the most important comment Barack made as a candidate. It should have been the headline of their report. It never made it into their report. When THE NEW YORK TIMES released the transcript of the interview, it should have been news. We covered it here and at THIRD (see "NYT: "Barack Obama Will Keep Troops In Iraq"NYT: "Barack Obama Will Keep Troops In Iraq""). Or you can talk about how a wife -- not a journalist -- was able to influence NEWSWEEK's coverage of Barack. So much went down to hold his hand and walk him to the Democratic Party's presidential nomination. (Hillary earned that nomination with hard work. Sadly, after it was stolen from her, she decided to be Barack in 2016 -- celebrities, corrupt DNC officials, etc. Didn't work out for her. She should have stuck to who she was in 2008.)
Donald Trump supporters are a group of people with their own beliefs They're not concerned about his sexual past. They were aware of it and see him as a 'rake.' You're not going to convince them otherwise. If you want to peel his supporters away, you will have to show to them how he broke his promises to them.
My opinion? US troops never belonged in Syria Christiane AmanWhore should not be allowed on TV since she used her program to repeatedly call for US troops in Syria. She's a War Whore. If she were a peace advocate, she would have been fired. She's a War Whore, so the War Machine supports her.
US troops never should have been in Syria. It's good that they're out.
B-b-b-but how they're out!
Oh, shut up. Wars kill. Worry about starting them. In Syria, US troops had to fight with al Qaeda. In Syria, they were trying to overthrow a government. It's going to be messy when you leave.
That's the reality of war. That's why ABC, NBC, CBS and, yes, CNN all pulled out of Iraq the minute Barack was elected to his first term. They don't want to cover reality. They exist to sell war, not reality.
B-b-b-but the Kurds are being betrayed.
Oh, that's different! (That's sarcasm.)
The Kurds are betrayed by the US over and over. Most recently, the US backed a corrupt government in Iraq (that they installed) and admonished the Kurds for having a non-binding referendum. It had long been promised to the Kurds -- by the Kurdish government -- that a poll would be carried out for the Kurds to express their wishes. They were slammed by every government except Israel, they were slammed by every politician in Congress unless the politician stayed silent (or unless they were Democrat US House Rep Elliot Engel). Why didn't the US government support the Kurds right to hold a poll?
Because it's never about helping the Kurds. It's always about using the Kurds. The Pike Committe's report made that clear -- it documents Henry Kissinger openly betraying Kurds, using them as pawns with no intent of ever helping them despite the promises they were given.
Don't know about the Pike Report?
Hmm. Why is that?
Because people don't want you to know. I'm just not in the mood for bulls**t lately.
Daniel Schorr was a disgusting piece of trash. He died in 2010. We got no honesty on that from the press -- the established press or the 'emerging new press' (crap like DAILY KOS). He was a hero. Most avoided the Pike Report. If they 'covered' it, they did it like CRAPAPEDIA does -- a single sentence that portrays Daniel as brave.
Nora Ephron, then the media critic for ESQUIRE, wrote the truth about Schorr in real time -- when CBS was rightly firing him. ESQUIRE refused to print it. She had to take it to MORE.
Short story, Daniel got a copy of the Pike Report. It was supposed to be released. Then it was decided it wouldn't be. CBS NEWS was deciding what to do -- report on it or not.
Daniel tried to shop it around -- for a price -- and had little luck. He then gave it away for free to THE VILLAGE VOICE.
CBS NEWS, having the only copy (outside of Committee Members), was furious and heads were rolling. At this point, you could applaud Daniel. Here's where that changes. It's not enough for him to pretend he didn't release the report. He lies about releasing it and tells CBS it was Lesley Stahl who did it. And remember, he tells them, her boyfriend Aaron Latham (her husband since 1977) works at THE VILLAGE VOICE.
He's a piece of trash.
That's the reality of Daniel Schorr. He attempted to save his own ass by getting an innocent person fired -- someone he knew was innocent. He's trash and the world's better off now that he's dead.
After being fired from CBS NEWS, he briefly tried to profit off the whole issue but quickly realized there was no life for him in the press corps unless he just stopped talking about the Pike Report -- so that's what he did.
And that's when NPR and THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR welcomed him back into the press fold.
If you don't know about the Pike Report, it's not because you're an idiot, it's because the news media doesn't want you to know about it. In real time, it was a major story -- just the Committee overruling their decision to release the report was a major story. All the drama that followed because of Daniel Schorr was a major story.
What took up hours on the network evening news for days and days and weeks and months is now buried. It's very telling what the press decides to bury. And don't expect bulls**t CJR to rescue history. This is the 'watchdog' that had to be confronted in their comment section about their hypocrisy in going after a local reporter for sleeping with a source while ignoring that Gina Chon, at THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, was letting US government official Brett McGurk vet her copy before she turned it into the paper she was employed by. He made the decisions on all of her 'reports.' When THE JOURNAL found out, they called her in and fired her. Fired her. She didn't quit, she was fired. (There's a great recording of her blowing up in the middle of that firing, by the way. It makes me laugh every time I hear it.) CJR couldn't even call out Gina Chon. They're a pretense, they're a fake ass. ( Brett was also Gina's source on many articles -- and she was sleeping with him -- which she also 'forgot' to tell her employers.)
Gina now works for REUTERS. Remember when REUTERS put a CIA agent in Iraq? We called them out. Did anyone else? No. (We did not name her. Anyone could have found out who she was because we did call out her garbage, note that she was CIA and note that we weren't linking to her 'reporting' because of that.)
So, no, I'm not upset that Donald Trump is pulling US troops out of Syria. I do agree with US House Rep Justin Amash that sending 1,000 into Iraq is not what he promised or led people to believe. Had I praised him here, I would be apologizing for that praise. But I didn't. I've learned to wait for things to happen before praising. The press doesn't do that. We saw that this month already. Hunter Biden's left the board! Praise Hunter! Well, actually, no, he hasn't left. He says he'll leave at the end of this month. Let's wait and see what happens before we offer praise.
And let's also try demanding that the press use a functioning brain.
The 1,000, the press tells us, are going to western Iraq.
Most Americans have no idea of Iraq's geography or what borders it.
If the troops are going to the west, we should all be questioning whether they are no longer being used in Syria. Syria borders western Iraq. This is just like when Barack Obama moved all those US troops into Kuwait so that they could dart back into Iraq. Bonus points for anyone who remembers the US senator who pointed that out in an open hearing. (Answer: Senator Kay Hagan. And we covered it here while the corporate press ignored it and tried to build a disagreement -- between John McCain and Leon Panetta -- into a cat fight.)
So that's another point those wishing to peel away Trump supporters should emphasize. 'He's lying to you because that 1,000 is in Iraq where it is so it can dart back and forth across the border.'
Some people are stupid, some people just need a few more years on them. I've been stupid many times. In 1980, for example, I didn't see how anyone couldn't be persuaded not to vote for Ronald Reagan. (Is that not the worst sentence I've ever dictated? I'm trying to say that Ronald Reagan was so obviously -- to me, based on my values -- a poor choice that I couldn't see anyone supporting him if you just pointed out the basics to them.) I also didn't see his charisma. We have to learn to stop judging everything by our own beliefs and values. You may see Donald Trump as a raving lunatic. His supporters don't. And what matters to you doesn't necessarily matter to them.
That doesn't make them unpatriotic or anything else. It just means they rank things differently than you do. But what we all expect our politicians to do is to carry out the promises we elected them on. It's why Jill Abramson refused to let THE NEW YORK TIMES report in September 2012 the big story -- Barack Obama was sending US troops back into Iraq. He was running for re-election claiming he had fulfilled his promise. Finally, at the end of September, in an article on Syria, Tim Arango was allowed to include that fact briefly. It should have been its own story and it should have been on the front page. Again, don't kid that the press didn't protect Barack. They lied for him, they covered for him, over and over and over.
And when the press isn't fair, people walk away from it. So they can report anything on Donald right now and it's not going to be important to his supporters.
Look at this Tweet.
.@DonaldJTrumpJr made an excellent point tonight at Culture War Grand Canyon: “Why doesn’t the media talk about when Joe Biden became VP he and his son started their international business. But when my father became president we chose to stop all international business.”
Hunter Biden has been protected by the press. Anderson Cooper declared in a debate that Hunter did nothing wrong. That's a bold face lie. Again, there is no proof that Hunter did anything illegal. But there's a world of difference between nothing illegal and nothing wrong. Hunter was wrong to have used his father's name and his father's position. We knew that was wrong with Roger Clinton, we've always known that was wrong. It is unethical. And when the press looks the other way on that reality, Donald Trump supporters don't have to listen to the press because they see the bias.
Let's note some Tweets about the Democratic candidates.
You wanna know why I oppose @JoeBiden? It’s because a guy who bills himself as “Middle Class Joe” helped his donors and his GOP allies destroy Democrats and pass a bill that deliberately sentenced millions of Americans to a lifetime of crushing college and medical debt.
Some people feel that Bernie didn't get his due in the coverage of the debate that I provided. That may be true but remember that the coverage also includes Ava and my "TV: Let's kill Elizabeth!" at THIRD that went up as the debate was ending. Hunter Biden's corruption is not a minor story nor is the way that Joe went after Elizabeth. That went beyond rude and it has made a lot of women uncomfortable. Betty's not the only one who felt he might hit Elizabeth -- his rage was not inspiring and many women we've spoken to (and two men) have voiced sentiments similar to Betty's (that he acted like he was going to go violent).
In yesterday's snapshot, we noted this:
Pete's big weakness will probably emerge in the next debate. He spent the last debate attacking everyone. The next one may have a few pointing out Pete's own waffles, highlighting his remarks, for example, about Medicare For All at the first debate versus what he's now saying a few months later.
Norman Solomon's already on it. From his column at COMMON DREAMS:
A not-funny thing has happened to Buttigieg on the campaign trail. As he kept collecting big checks from corporate executives and wealthy donors, he went from being “all for” a single-payer Medicare for All system in January to trashing it in the debate last week as a plan that would kick “150 million Americans off of their insurance in four short years.” The demagoguery won praise from corporate media outlets.
Those outlets have often lauded Buttigieg for his fundraising totals this year without scrutiny of the funding sources. They skew toward the wealthy—and toward donors with a vested interest in protecting the status quo.
“Of course, from a voter’s point of view, what really matters is not how much financial support a candidate is getting, but who they’re getting it from—because those supporters may not have the same interests as the voter,” Jim Naureckas at the media watchdog FAIR pointed out this summer. “In the case of Buttigieg, the two main sources of funds seem to be the tech industry . . . and the financial industry, that traditional source of funds for corporate-oriented Democrats.”
So far this year, Buttigieg has reported $27 million in contributions of $200 and above—accounting for 52.5 percent of his total dollars raised. Compare that to Elizabeth Warren at 29.6 percent and Bernie Sanders at 24.9 percent.
And major sources of Buttigieg’s funding are in harmony with his recent hostility toward Medicare for All. “Pharmaceutical, health insurance, and hospital industry donors have flocked to Mayor Pete all year,” journalist Alex Kotch reported last week. “As of mid-2019, he was second only to Donald Trump in overall campaign cash from donors in the health sector. Among Democratic candidates, he was second to former Vice President Joe Biden in terms of pharmaceutical and health insurance donations.”
Reporting for the investigative website Sludge, Kotch wrote: “Over 100 individuals in leadership, legal, consulting, or financing roles in health sector donated $200 or more to Pete for America between July and September. These donors include pharmaceutical industry leaders such as the chief corporate affairs officer at drugmaker Pfizer, the president of Astex Pharmaceuticals, a state lobbyist for Biogen, a vice president of public policy at Novartis, and the deputy vice president at the nation’s largest pharmaceutical trade association, PhRMA, as well as attorneys for AbbVie, Johnson & Johnson, and Merck.”
Buttigieg’s reversal of avowed support for Medicare for All is classic opportunism. In early 2018, he was unequivocal via Twitter: “I, Pete Buttigieg, politician, do henceforth and forthwith declare, most affirmatively and indubitably, unto the ages, that I do favor Medicare for All.”
As we wind down, we'll note this:
Between 1st- 12th of October, hundreds of unarmed protesters in Baghdad and Iraqi southern provinces were targeted by snipers. "We were unarmed. Why was that young man shot with two bullets to the head?"
The following sites updated: