Stevie Nicks is one of my favorite artists. I write about her all the time. She's released her new song or 'new' 'song.' The music is standard WILD HEART rip-off. It's from that era. The lyrics are trite and the video is "Vote."
Stevie, love you for your music. But I don't need you to tell me to vote or to tell me how to vote.
I'm so sorry that somehow, in our long interaction -- you as the producer of music and me as the listener -- there was some mistake along the way where you thought I needed you to tell me what to do?
Stevie, I didn't need that when you made your questionable video for "Stand Back" -- a video that there's no way you'd release today -- and we both know why.
I didn't need you to tell me what to do when you were putting your entire fortune up your nose via your cocaine habit.
Now none of that -- and so much more -- effected me.
Because our relationship was: You produced music, I listened to it.
Somewhere along the way, you got confused. Was it at Betty Ford? I don't know but somewhere along the way you thought I looked up to you as a role model.
I never did.
You're an artist. You have tremendous talent. You are a legend and an icon. And if you're talking about music, I'm listening.
If you tell me your favorite album is LADIES OF THE CANYON or that you and Lindsey first harmonized on "California Dreamin'," I'm fascinated.
But, Stevie, where in the five decades of our relationship has it ever been suggested that I needed your political thoughts?
If ever I did it was when the US went to war on Iraq and I don't really think you spoke out then.
If ever there was a time, that would have been it.
You didn't speak out against the war.
And I didn't rake you over the coals for that -- not then and not since.
Our relationship wasn't political. You weren't Jackson Browne singing about "Lives In The Balance," for example.
I accepted who you were and didn't try to grade you by a different standard.
Now you're trying to rope me in to voting for a rapist?
Because Joe Biden did rape Tara Reade. That's the reality, Stevie. Now you've had rape fears that have led you to make questionable decisions -- decisions regarding limo drivers -- and you know what I'm talking about. You don't discuss those decisions. You don't discuss who you're frightened of in interviews. But it was reflected in your hiring. Again, you know what I'm talking about.
So if I'm supposed to say, "Stevie's not +++, she just had a bad experience" over that, fine.
But Sleeping Angel, if you want to get political then you start owning some of your decisions.
That includes your hiring decisions which would not be looked upon well this century. I'm surprised you got away with it in the last one.
I don't need you tell me who to vote for and you seriously misunderstood my interest in your art if didn't grasp that.
I never wanted to live your life or be like you.
I just wanted to enjoy your music.
Now you've gone and gotten political and I'm sure most people can figure out I'm saying that there are some actions you've taken over the years that are racist. The "Stand Back" video saluting the Civil War. Your decision not to hire African-American as limo drivers.
You're political now, baby, so start talking about racism but, do us all a favor, and start talking about your own racism from the past.
Explain to me why you marvel over Tara from GONE WITH THE WIND? Why you needed to reproduce antebellum times in your original "Stand Back" video that the label refused to release? Tell me why "Tara" is again invoked in 1987's "Welcome To The Room Sara" on TANGO IN THE NIGHT.
I didn't need you to be political. I've never stuck my nose in your personal life. I've never sought out your political advice.
But now you want me to vote and you want me to vote for a rapist?
The story/excuse that's always been told in California is that you had a close call with rape and the attacker was an African-American male and that's why you refused to hire African-American men for various jobs.
So you almost get raped, the story goes, and that justifies you not hiring any African-American males (and the stories told in a recent book are much worse, you're very lucky so few people read that book) but Tara Reade is assaulted by Joe and you're telling us to vote for him?
Sit your ass down.
No one asked you.
I'll be voting for Howie Hawkins. I live in California and I will do my part to build the Green Party with my vote.
I'm not a child. I long ago, as Bob Dylan advised, learned to draw a line between the artist and the art. I also think if you were traumatized by a near rape, that might explain (it might not) why you refuse to hire African-American men in various jobs -- you're scared and you're a tiny woman (five foot and one inch).
It really wasn't my dance. As a woman who, yes, has been raped, I tried not to judge you for it -- especially since you weren't political.
But here we are. You're political now and you think you have the right to tell me to vote for a rapist.
I love your music and I have great fondness for you, but, Stevie, f**k you.
If you want to go back to being non-political, I'm more than fine with that.
But if you want to be political now then own up to your racist choices. Tell the world about that before you start lecturing us on how to vote.
Closing with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"
Friday, October 9, 2020. Our personal Evita wants to tell us how to vote.
Michelle Obama -- great activist and voice for the people -- wants you to know that you can only vote for Joe Biden. Jimmy Dore explains what a worthless voice Michelle's is.
"Ignorance and hatred keep me from doing my duty as a citizen"?
What duty? What have you ever done?
You've never led a march . . .except a march to the bank.
It's really time we said no to Presidential Welfare. Once upon a time, people didn't dishonor the presidency, turn it into a lotto sweepstakes win. Now that they do? No more healthcare coverage. No more Secret Service detail. Let these whores pay for it themselves.
Jimmy Carter didn't use his former president status to rake in millions or billions. A president like that? Sure, pay for their Secret Service protection.
But I'm damn tired of paying for security at Simon & Schuster book events for Hillary, Bill, Barack or Michelle. They get millions in advances for books that frequently do not sell all that well -- certainly not enough to justify the advances -- and we're then supposed to pick up the bill for security so that they can make millions?
End Presidential Welfare, end it now.
Read Ann's "Ugly Michelle Obama" which is on the mark. Ann is a Green Party member. Her parents are, she was raised to be a Green.
Screw Michelle, that hag should keep her mouth shut. Every time she opens it lately, she lies. Pretending Barack didn't put children into cages at the DNC, for example. She's a hag. She shows no respect for others -- Green Party members are Americans so stop treating them like your lackeys that you can boss around or shame. She's a hag. Barack's hag.
Was she trying to distract from last night's debate? Probably so. Last night The Free and Equal Elections Foundation held their own presidential debate where all candidates were invited. It streamed on FACEBOOK. I don't see it on YOUTUBE but you can stream at the FACEBOOK link. Five candidates participated.
Gloria La Riva (Party for Socialism and Liberation) attended. To the first question, her response included:
My party and my campaign believe that all US troops must be withdrawn from every base around the world. Shut down the more than 800 military bases without any hesitation. Take the troops out of South Korea so that the people of Korea can be reunited again. When a country is occupied by the United States, it cannot be truly free. And that goes for Afghanistan, that goes for Iraq, that goes for part of what used to be Yugoslavia. I have seen the effects of US war and sanctions. I traveled three times to Iraq between 1997 and 2001 to see more than one million people who had died from a total US blockade on Iraq. Why? For the US to take control of the oil. That is strategic geo-political domination of the Middle East. Now they've overthrown Libya and created a hellhole for the people. I believe that the people of the world must be able to decide their own destiny. And part of that foreign policy [I propose] is also stopping all US military aid to Israel. Stop oppressing the Palestinian people. The people in Palestine must have the right to self-determination. And I made a video about Iraq, by the way, it's called GENOCIDE BY SANCTIONS: THE CASE OF IRAQ. It won an award for the exposition
And in just that portion of her first response, you find more weight and depth than anything you saw in the Democrat and Republican presidential debates or in this weeks Democrat and Republican vice presidential debate
Let's not be hags for the Democratic Party. We'll start with the Green Party. Howie Hawkins is the presidential candidate. Howie has long called for Medicare For All (Joe Biden and Donald Trump are against it) and a Green New Deal (ditto). Yesterday, Howie called for other items.
On YOUTUBE, you can find about six minutes of the debate currently.
If you read the comments, you will see that the YOUTUBE stream had issues. If they post it to YOUTUBE, we will include it in a snapshot.
Green Party presidential candidate Howie Hawkins also participated. He's long called for a Green New Deal and for Medicare For All. At his TWITTER feed last night, he called for an end to the electoral college and much more including:
Demilitarize the police. Invest in social services. Legalize marijuana. End the war on drugs. We need community control of the police!
We must give back stolen lands and honor indigenous treaty rights. We need to guarantee representation of native people in Washington, and bring about proportional representation to our entire electoral system.
We have violated treaties where our government recognizes defined indigenous lands. The least we can do is honor the treaties and respect sovereignty.
No Space Force. No militarization of space.
We need to dismantle the privatization of space. We need to invest in NASA and work towards global cooperation.
End the surveillance state!
The Commission on Presidential Debates is a private entity controlled by the Dems and GOP. It is NOT a public government agency.
We need Full Public Campaign Financing
Jo Jorgensen is the Libertarian Party's presidential candidate.
Despite residents in all fifty states being able to vote for Jo, she is not allowed into the mainstream debates. How scared are Donald Trump and Joe Biden of Jo Jorgensen? Little, cowardly boys is all they are.
Jo's been campaigning around the country. Below is her speaking at a campaign rally in Philadelphia.
Michelle Obama wants to limit your choice. She wants to make it a two-man race. Of course, she does. She was a sexist pig at the DNC in 2008 -- and we called that crap out (and her decision to wear granny panties that were visible through her dress -- see Ava and my "TV: The endless non-news"). She's now yet again working overtime to erase women. Gloria La Riva is a solid choice and she's a woman. Jo Jorgensen is a solid choice and she's a woman. Angela Walker -- Howie's running mate -- is a solid choice and she's a woman.
Michelle doesn't support women. And she never has. "Our girls" is about the height of activism from Michelle. She works overtime to betray women and to keep the patriarchy going. She doesn't instill pride, she just offers scolding and nagging and bullying.
You have choices. You need to listen to yourself and decide who represents you. If it's Joe Biden, great. If it's Gloria La Riva, great. Whomever it is -- even Donald Trump -- if that's the person who best represents your views and opinions, that's who you need to vote for. And if no one represents you, you have every right to not vote (either just on the presidential or on the whole ballot). That's what a democracy is supposed to be about.
At THE GUARDIAN, Ghaith Abdul-Ahad reports on the militia:
According to Abu Hashem and other commanders, Iranian flights soon started delivering weapons to the newly opened airport in Najaf.
“One of the ministers in the government at that time used to be head of logistics in the [Shia political party and military group] Badr Corps. He sat on the floor in a white dishdasha, picked up phones and arranged for shipments of pickup trucks, munitions and weapons, then distributed them among the different factions.”
With weapons, cars and men came Iranian advisers. They dispersed across the country in a wide geographic arch from Diyala in the east to the western border with Syria. Their voices could be heard on the military radio directing mortar fire in Falluja, installing thermal cameras in a small besieged village in the west of Mosul and accompanying the advance of an Iraqi special forces brigade in Tikrit.
“The reality is, without the Iranians we wouldn’t be able to do anything,” Abu Hashem said. “If the Iranian advisers weren’t there, the battalions wouldn’t attack. Their presence gave the men confidence in the early days.
We last noted the militia's in Monday's snapshot: We were noting how they were attacking the protesters:
This result was completely expected by any of us paying attention in real time. That would leave out the likes of THE NEW YORK TIMES which, in 2019, offered that the "militia's independence" would be "chip[ped] away" by this move. They were wrong. The move to bring the militia forces under the umbrella of the Iraqi forces was first proposed by thug Nouri al-Maliki in his second term. But it would be the laughable Hayder al-Abadi who would actually do it. One of the few to call the militia nonsense out in real time was Ranj Alaaldin (Brookings) who observed:
But such beliefs were met with a new reality on Monday, as were (unrealistic) hopes that al-Abadi could rebuild Iraq and bring the country together: His coalition announced that he will join forces with Iran-aligned militias that spear the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), the umbrella Shiite militia organization established in 2014 to fill the vacuum that was left by the collapse of Iraq’s armed forces when ISIS seized Mosul.
Just a day later, the Iran-aligned militias—contesting the elections as the al-Fatih (Conquest) bloc—withdrew from the electoral alliance, not out of principle but because of differences over participation and electoral strategy (there were not enough seats to go around). Indeed, Hadi al-Ameri, the head of the Badr Brigade—Iraq’s most powerful militia, which Iran established in the 1980s and which controls the Interior Ministry—has even hinted they could join forces after the elections to form a government.
Folding the militias into the Iraqi government did not put any controls on the militias. They terrorize the Iraqi people as they did before they were part of the government. They refuse to take orders and they issue threats against the Iraqi government.
At The Atlantic Council (a pro-war body), Andrew Peek makes an argument which includes:
The issue is that Sunni extremists are no longer a determinative geopolitical priority. For the moment, the fire has gone out of the radicals. ISIS is not gone but has gone underground like its sister organizations. Though it can still bite, it is utterly discredited in the heartland of Iraq and Syria. ISIS pulled the Sunni world to the brink and it drew back. Outside of a catastrophic black swan event—a mass release from the al-Hol prison in Syria, a Houthi breakthrough in Yemen, some implosion in Pakistan or Afghanistan—it is not clear what would resurrect the mass political appeal of Sunni extremism.
Adding to this challenge is that the Shia community’s radicals are radical in a very different way than the Sunnis. They form the political bodies from which structured, directed militant groups emerge, but there are virtually no lone wolves. Terror, such as it exists, is carefully controlled for state ends. Lebanese Hezbollah will still conduct bombings in Israel, Syria, and Europe—like the Bulgarian attack for which it was blamed in 2012—and Iran will kill dissidents, but this is structurally a far different phenomenon than the explosion of hydra-headed Sunni radicalism that the US faced at the end of the twentieth century.
The great bureaucratic success of the Trump administration has been to make Iran the US’s top priority in the Middle East, allowing for America’s great big counter-Sunni extremist machine to shift focus to Shia groups. Iranian-backed Shia militant groups have begun to be sanctioned more regularly—even those that had fought against ISIS. President Donald Trump’s targeting of Iranian and Iran-backed targets and his administration’s increased risk tolerance of operating against such actors in battlespaces where they dominate is a signature bureaucratic achievement. Neither the State Department nor the Defense Department readily changed course.
Nevertheless, the public engagement work has not caught up with the new focus on Iran. In other words, the US lacks virtually any engagement with the Shia body politic. We normally do not host Shia religious leaders at official events, Iftar dinners, and the like, particularly not members of the Marjayiya. The Bush administration was actually forward-leaning with this: for example, sending a plane in 2007 to fly a senior Iraqi cleric to Houston for medical treatment. But, other than that (and some very quiet meetings held by myself with one or two others), there has not been much engagement with them, besides the occasional over-the-top communiqué to Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani in Iraq—usually when the walls in Iraq are about to come crumbling down.
The following sites updated: