Thursday, November 24, 2016

To All My Friends Before The Rise...

Reynard Loki, writing at Alternet, describes how sea rise will have a monumental impact upon our planet.  "And one dramatic effect is going to force humans to relocate."  From 1880 to the present, the seas have risen about 8 inches.  But that's just the start.  From now until 2100, a mere 84 years away, the seas are predicted to rise an additional one to four feet!  And they will continue rising as time goes on.

But I live in Florida and that is the focus of my concern in this essay.  Ben Strauss, "A vice president at Climate Central, which spent two years analyzing the specific threat to the Sunshine State," said "'Rising seas, a population crowded along the coast, porous bedrock, and the relatively common occurrence of tropical storms put more real estate and people at risk from storm surges aggravated by sea-level rise in Florida, than any other state by far.'"

Strauss goes on to note "that in Florida, around 2.4 million people live within just 4 feet of the local high tide line.  That's almost half the national risk right there. In Miami-Dade and Broward counties alone, there are more people below 4 feet than any other state, except Florida itself and Louisiana [...] ...After the Sunshine State, the next three states that will most likely be overcome by rising ocean water are California, Louisiana and New York.

The map above shows dramatically what Florida will look like with a mere one meter rise in sea level.  Everything in red will be under water!

And the Trump administration, built on ideology and not science, plays down climate change and rising seas and is considering dropping out of our international agreements to take action to reverse this situation!   

Please read Loki's entire article HERE.

American Nazis And Fascists and Racists Will Be Defeated

American Nazis and Fascists have finally gotten a place at the table, thanks to Prezident-elect, da Trump.

Trump's senior advisor is a Nazi who for years has operated a white-supremacist/Nazi website.

The Klan is marching again.  Swastikas are appearing all over the country, on signs and banners and defacing public and private buildings.

But, we beat the bastards once, and we'll beat them again.

Other notes this Thanksgiving which, due to Trump's election, there is little for which to be thankful:

* It's costing American taxpayers $1 million per day to provide security for Trump and his family in New York City.

* Rumors are that Ben Carson has accepted or is considering the office of Secretary of HUD. Carson has absolutely no experience in public housing or urban planning and has shown no interest in it. And from what we've seen during the 2016 when he was running for the Repuglican nomination, he's pretty much an ignorant, bumbling fool.

* Trump has chosen Betsy Devos to head up the Education department.  There couldn't be a worse choice.  She and her husband, a billionaire, have devoted their lives to the destruction of public education in favor of privatization and charter schools.  She is an ultra-right wing fanatic Christian who fails to understand that public schools are the foundation of our democracy.

* Trump is a congregation of messes.  His business entanglements make it impossible to function as prezident.  He has business connections in many shaky countries which will definitely compromise his ability to deal properly with their needs or desires.  He owes hundreds of millions of dollars to banks in China and other countries.  The other day while speaking with President Erdogan of Turkey, Trump promoted his business partner in that country, a clear abrogation of his presidential responsibilities!

* Trump's advisor on "Space" wants to defund NASA's climate, i.e. global warming work.

* Although Trump knows nothing about foreign affairs or even how our country works, he is blowing off the daily intelligence briefings offered by our intelligence community.  He's attended two such briefings in the past two weeks. But then he has been busy twitting about his dislike of the cast of "Hamilton," and Saturday Night Live's caricature of him on that show.

* Trump appointed Nikki Haley, the governor of South Carolina, as the U.S. Ambassador to the UN.  Haley, is an ultra-right wing politico with no experience or expertise in foreign policy, the United Nations, or anything else of importance.

* Last, but far from least, is Trump's appointment of Jeff Sessions, the Alabama crackpot, as Attorney General.  Sessions was rejected some years back as a federal judge because of his racism.  He is a bigot extraordinaire and an out-and-out racist.

Enjoy your turkey if you can!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Waiting for the Apocalypse

This is you know
Not a time for
For fireworks
Explosions in the sky
Or dry Champagne
It is a time when
Winds of war
Hate and terror
Sweep across
Planet Earth
When compared to
Yesterday nothing
Is the same.

Ironically, crime is down
From Florida to Maine
And all the way to
That is if we believe
The media, the police and
The politicians
Not that they would ever
Lie except in an
Emergency or perhaps
If they had a growing need
To put more feathers
In their nest.

One might say
It all began
In the days of Reagan
When a B-grade actor
Became president and
Gave weapons
To our friend
bin Laden so
He could fight the Russians
In Afghanistan
And send them running back
To Russia thereby
Freeing up the land.

Then George the First
Called up the troops to
Fight Iraqis even
Though they'd been our friends
In their fight against Iran
But now he said
They're our enemies
And a danger to Kuwait
Bush owed the
Saudis big time so
He sent our troops to die
To save Kuwaiti oil.

But he left Iraq too soon
Before the job was done
Which left a lot to be desired
And old Hussein in place
Which George the Younger
Thought was bad
And made him
Very mad though it is said
That he was mad
From his youth
And seldom gave a thought
To reason or to
Common Sense.

So George the Younger
Went to war but sent
The young and bold and those
Who had no other options
To spill their blood again
So he could at last avenge
His daddy's dithering
Although he lied of course
About everything
Which wasn't strange at all
To those who knew him when.
Today Iraq's a hole in hell
The Middle East aflame
It might have happened anyway
But Bush is much to blame
For thousands lost their
Homes and lives
Many went insane.

And in the good ol' USA
Instead of going to jail
Bush is given accolades
A "fare thee well" and "Hail"
Sadly too
George left a mess
A country deep in debt
His tax cuts made the rich
Even richer yet
And most folks struggling
To survive.

Then Obama came along
Couldn't catch a break
When he tried to do
The things he couldn't do
With a Congress full of fools
People jeered
Called him a Muslim
And a Marxist too
Republicans attacked
Fought him tooth and nail
While they left the country
To fester and to fail
So they could blame
The president
And set a precedent
Which would get them

But now we've got to deal
With Trump
That lying hairy burly lump
Who claims that can change
Our fate and somehow
Make our country great
But he's too little, too crazy
And way too late
To turn this thing around
There's just two minutes left
On the Doomsday Clock
Most folks don't really
Seem to care
Politicians run and hide
When asked what they have done
To stop the seething searing
Heat that's scorching
Mother Earth.

The Second Coming you should know
Is nothing but a myth
And Armageddon
Mere nonsense
But don't take that to mean
That we'll survive or
Make it through
The earth's Apocalypse!

New Amazon Prime Commercial 2016 – A Priest and Imam meet for a cup of tea.

The Story of the Theft of the 2016 Election

Here’s what we do now – a personal note
by Greg Palast

Being right never felt so horrid.
“This is the story of the theft of the 2016 election.
It’s a crime still in progress.”
So opens my film, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy.
And on Election night I waited for the returns to make a fool of me.

Instead, the returns made the fool a President.

And so, my vacation’s cancelled.  My life’s cancelled; that is, a life of anything but sleuthing and exposing the details of the heist of our democracy.

What’s at stake?
No way around it, this is one frightening moment.

Decades of progress created with sweat and determination face destruction.  Within the next six months, we may see the Voting Rights Act repealed—and civil rights set back 50 years; the entirety of our environmental protection laws burnt in a coal pit; police cruelty made our urban policy; the Education Department closed to give billionaires a tax holiday; and a howling anti-Semite as White House Senior Counselor.

But the horror we face is countered by this one hard and hopeful fact:  Donald Trump did NOT win this election.

Trump not only lost the popular vote by millions — he did not legitimately win the swing states of the Electoral College.

Michigan, Florida, North Carolina, Arizona, Ohio:  every one was stolen through sophisticated, and sickeningly racist vote suppression tactics.

If you saw my report for Democracy Now! on election morning, it revealed that Ohio GOP officials turned off anti-hacking software on voting machines, forced Black voters to wait hours in line (while whites had no wait).

And, crucially, I confirmed that purged tens of thousands of minority voters on fake accusations they’d voted twice.  I first exposed this bogus double-voter blacklist called Crosscheck, in Rolling Stone. It’s the sick excrescence crafted by Kris Kobach, the Trump transition team's maven who also created the Muslim-tracker software he’s bringing to the Trump administration.

What can we do now?
I have been INUNDATED with requests for my factual reports and findings by media and, most important, the front-line activist groups preparing for the fierce fight to protect our votes.  Some examples:
  • Rev. William Barber of the NAACP filed a suit based in North Carolina,  hoping to overturn the Trump "victory" — and protect the tiny margin of the Democrat’s win of the Governor’s mansion.  The NAACP cites my discovery of "Crosscheck" — in which North Carolina removed upwards of 190,000 voters on false charges they voted twice.
    They now need my facts.
  • Congressmen Keith Ellison and Alcee Hastings of the Congressional Black Caucus, personally presented Attorney General Loretta Lynch with my investigative reports and demanded investigation — "and indictments."  That investigation must kick off immediately.
    They now need my facts.
  • The Asian-American civil rights group 18 Million Rising has gathered 50,000 signatures to push the Justice Department to investigate my evidence of a massive attack on the Asian-American vote.
    They now need my facts.
  • In Michigan, the ACLU is ready to take action on the purge scheme I uncovered, "Crosscheck," that wrongly gave the state to Trump. In Ohio, voting rights attorney Robert Fitrakis is going into court with evidence, much that I uncovered, of racist voting games — from 5-hour-long lines in Black precincts to shutting off ballot security measures on the voting machines.  
    The team need my facts.

I expect to be in Washington at the Justice Dept and meeting with civil rights groups in December before the Electoral College meets.

Information—plus film, video, investigative reports
And beyond the voluminous files and confidential documents my team has uncovered, we are deluged with requests for our film, videos, writings and more.

    And now we have US networks, even major comedy shows, asking for our material and, of course, new investigative findings.

Information and facts make a difference
With our investigative reports, with our hard and unassailable evidence, we can challenge the legitimacy of the Trump "election."  Most important, we must begin the difficult but necessary work of protecting and restoring voting rights.  The 2018 Election — and the threat of more stolen elections — is upon us.

What we need to keep going...  
Your extraordinary support and faith in our work funded my film The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, which is now more relevant than ever and being seen by ever more audiences.

Now we need your financial support again to keep this fight going. We just did not budget for the GOP's in-your-face steal of the Congress and White House.  All our resources went into raising the alarm before the election. 

So, now, I have to re-hire the staff, hit the road again. Ohio, North Carolina, Washington DC and who knows where, retain attorneys—and retain our team of technicians from cameramen to outreach organizers.

Can this new work be done?
Is there any choice?

Honestly and personally, I was hoping for some rest and time off.

But a lifetime of your work and mine is now in the balance.

  • PLEASE, say, "Count me in to count the votes" by supporting the 2016 Stolen Election Investigation for a donation of any size no matter how small or large

  • Be listed as a producer ($1,000) or co-producer ($500) in the credits of the broadcast version of the updated, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy:  THE THEFT OF 2016

  • Stay informed and get a signed DVD of my film The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, a signed copy of the book with the same title or better still - get the Book & DVD combo.
  And does an angel have the $8K needed for our Washington work and filming?  If so, flap your wings.

I can't thank you enough for all the years of support. Alas... our work is not done.

Greg Palast

and the Palast Investigations Team


Greg Palast (Rolling Stone, Guardian, BBC) is the author of The New York Times bestsellers, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy and Billionaires & Ballot Bandits, now out as major motion non-fiction movie.

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Evangelicals and Evil

The word, evangel, comes from the Greek euangelion, which means "good news."  In the Christian New Testament it refers to the gospel of Jesus Christ which is supposed to be "good news" to the world.

Evangelicals, therefore, are bearers of this Good News.  It applies to all those who claim the title, Christian.  However, some years back it was co-opted by "conservative" Christians who stressed the infalibility of the Bible and certain doctrines which they cherry-picked to suit their inclinations. For example, they chose John 3:16 to be their rallying cry:  people must be "born again" in order to get into the Kingdom of Heaven.

Conservative Christians thus distanced themselves from more traditional Christianity by giving this verse extraordinary power in their theological tradition.  All persons who have not had a "conversion" experience and been born again are suspect and not "real" Christians.

They also co-opted the term, evangelical.  Because, unlike other traditional Christian groups, they stressed the need to convert everyone and ensure everyone has a born-again experience, they decided that they, alone, were the true evangelicals bringing good news to the world.

And that's why people like Billy Graham and other hucksters travel around the world holding huge rallies designed to do only one thing - convert people to "evangelical" Christianity.

Somewhere along the way, evangelicals became puffed up with pride believing that they alone were doing God's work.  As they became more numerous, they began to force their beliefs on other people.  The more power they had, the more successful they were.

Years ago, I confronted a public middle school principal in Texas about his insistence on reading the Bible during the morning announcements.  When I suggested this was illegal and unconstitutional, he proudly stood his ground as an evangelical Christian and told me to "jump in the lake" or something similar.

I've thought for some time that the good news brought by evangelicals wasn't very good at all.  It was totalitarian, disdainful of other people, and quite often disregarded the rights of non-evangelicals.

According to the latest statistics, 81% of evangelicals in this country voted for da Trampf.  In other words, a huge majority of people who identify as conservative Christians, true Christians, voted for a thrice-married sexual predator, a con man and grifter who is a pathological liar, a man with no government experience, a man with an ego the size of Russia, a man with strong ties to Russia's leaders, a man whose word cannot be trusted, a man who lives his life to make enormous sums of money but gives away very little, a man who is, in every respect, the antithesis of what a Christian should be and who stands firmly opposed to the teachings of Jesus.

Evangelicals today are not bearers of good news; they are the epitome of bad news.  We can understand the 81% voting for da Trampf when we realize they operate and believe the same things da Trampf does.  They are hateful and dismissive of people different from themselves. They are wrapped up in fear of homosexuals, Muslims, liberals, blacks, latinos, and the way the world is moving which they perceive as the wrong direction.

Unfortunately, for Christianity, the evangelicals have despoiled the "evangelical" name and the Christian faith.  They have proven they are not "born again" but are self-serving political creatures who will sell out their Lord for a bigger piece of the pie or for the pie-in-the-sky promises of a fascist demagogue.

They remind me very much of the story in the Christian Bible, where Jesus' favorite disciple, Peter, denies knowing his Lord three times, because he was afraid.

Evangelicals today have lined up with Peter, not with Jesus.  Their shame is palpable and their recovery is doubtful.  Traitors are generally greeted by the words, "Go to hell!"

The Nazis Crawl Out From the Slime

The following is from a New York Times article by Joseph Goldstein; it is his report on an alt-right conference in Washington, D.C.

By the time Richard B. Spencer, the leading ideologue of the alt-right movement and the final speaker of the night, rose to address a gathering of his followers on Saturday, the crowd was restless.

In 11 hours of speeches and panel discussions in a federal building named after Ronald Reagan a few blocks from the White House, a succession of speakers had laid out a harsh vision for the future, but had denounced violence and said that Hispanic citizens and black Americans had nothing to fear. Earlier in the day, Mr. Spencer himself had urged the group to start acting less like an underground organization and more like the establishment.

But now his tone changed as he began to tell the audience of more than 200 people, mostly young men, what they had been waiting to hear. He railed against Jews and, with a smile, quoted Nazi propaganda in the original German. America, he said, belonged to white people, whom he called the “children of the sun,” a race of conquerors and creators who had been marginalized but now, in the era of President-elect Donald J. Trump, were “awakening to their own identity.”

As he finished, several audience members had their arms outstretched in a Nazi salute. When Mr. Spencer, or perhaps another person standing near him at the front of the room — it was not clear who — shouted, “Heil the people! Heil victory,” the room shouted it back.

Please read the entire article HERE.  Then weep.  

It is time, I think, for our corporate media to call a spade a spade.  It is time to give up the term, "White Nationalists," which may be correct, but is lacking in its essence.  Let's call these scum what they are, Nazis!