Lying Media Bastards

February 3, 2007

News Monsoon

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Mahdi Army gains strength through unwitting aid of U.S.- mainstream news article that says “whoa, the Iraqi security forces are totally infiltrated by Shiite militias and death squads” (which some of us have been pointing out for months). Once you realize this, you see how all of the “surge” and “when they stand up, we’ll stand back” strategies for bringing peace and security to Iraq are delusional.

Some very grim, revealing quotes from US soliders in the article:

“Half of them are JAM [Mahdi Army]. They’ll wave at us during the day and shoot at us during the night,” said 1st Lt. Dan Quinn, a platoon leader in the Army’s 1st Infantry Division. “People (in America) think it’s bad, but that we control the city. That’s not the way it is. They control it, and they let us drive around. It’s hostile territory…”

“All the Shiites have to do is tell everyone to lay low, wait for the Americans to leave, then when they leave you have a target list and within a day they’ll kill every Sunni leader in the country. It’ll be called the ‘Day of Death’ or something like that,” said 1st Lt. Alain Etienne, 34, of Brooklyn, N.Y. “They say, ‘Wait, and we will be victorious.’ That’s what they preach. And it will be their victory.”

Scientists offered cash to dispute climate study
- now that the UN has released one of the most thorough climate studies of all time, the neocon bastards of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) are offering $10K to every scientist who will do research and write papers to poke holes in the study’s “human actions are causing global warming” conclusion. The AEI gets significant funding from ExxonMobil, and are currently Bush’s defacto foreign policy team. Seriously, this “surge” business in Iraq was their idea.

Week of Action Update: Activists Arrested at Public Housing Takeover Feb 1st and Homeless take the football and run with it- I’ve written on this site a number of times about Umoja village, the Miami shantytown erected to house the homeless when negligent and corrupt local officials refused to help out. To coincide with this weekend’s Superbowl in Miami, housing activists planned the Week of Action Against Gentrification and for Low Income Housing. The Wednesday action was to seize several units of vacant public housing and move some families in. Several were arrested in the action. One of the activists said that although there are over 40,000 people in the county waiting for housing assistance, the county government allows public housing units to sit vacant for years at a time.

The Scum Also Rises- Matt Taibbi on the recent fabricated smears on Barack Obama, and on the widespread use of total bullshit by right-wing reporters and pundits these days. Despite his usual cynicism, he seems unable to comprehend how these media figures can tell complete lies, have their lies discovered, and not face any sort of penalty for it. If a “real” journalist was caught faking a story, they’d probably get fired and sued for defamation. A Fox News journalist makes shit up and gets a backrub and a book deal.

Empire v. Democracy- scholar Chalmers Johnson argues that the US is on the verge of giving up its democracy in favor of its global dominance (which makes no sense, until you realize that his definition of “democracy” is “the corrupt sham and voting Americans have lived under for the past century.” Then it all falls into place). He suggests that if Americans return to “democracy”, the recent domestic and international chaos will settle down. And if Americans choose empire, then the country will go bankrupt, have a huge drop in quality of life, and then things will settle back down.

Thousands in Mexico City Protest Rising Food Prices and Tortilla March- around 75,000 people took to the streets of Mexico City to protest a 400% rise in the cost of tortillas, a core foodstuff in Mexico. Most articles I’ve seen on this topic seem to infer that the price jump is caused by an increase in demand for US corn to make ethanol, but I don’t know if that’s true.

Blogger Sets Record for Contempt Jailing of Journalists- as of February 6, indymedia journalist Josh Wolf will have been in jail on contempt charges for longer than any other journalist in US history. While Wolf is a blogger (as mentioned in the article title), he is imprisoned for refusing to turn over videotapes to police. Now that Sarah Olson is in the clear, it’s my hope that will turn their attention to Wolf’s case.

Jury says Seattle violated rights of WTO protesters- turns out that when Seattle police illegally arrested 200 innocent people during the WTO protests of 1999, those police broke the law. Who would have guessed? One of the plaintiffs in this lawsuit was quoted as saying “the key point is a lesson learned, that you cannot just arrest peaceful protesters here in Seattle, or anywhere else in the country.” Um, yes they can. They did. They do. It happens time and time again, when cops would rather arrest a few hundred protesters on ridiculous charges in the name of “order” and worry about the consequences years later in court.

State of Massachusetts insists on calling ATHF ads “hoax devices”- not to keep going on about this guerrilla marketing gone wrong, but it is pretty irritating that government officials, who clearly overreacted, keep referring to the event as a “hoax.” A hoax is when you try to present a fake thing as a real thing. These guys didn’t attempt to trick anybody into thinking their light-up signs were bombs, they were simply putting up pictures of cartoon characters for an advertising company. If some cops got scared and thought that those devices were bombs, well, that’s kinda on them.

Posted by Jake on February 3, 2007 10:01 am

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