Sunday Morning Talking Heads: March 1, 2015

By: Sunday March 1, 2015 7:00 am

Good morning. Topic du jour is Homeland Security Department. Also, CPAC. And the latest scary villain from the Islamic State. WASHINGTON JOURNAL: 7:00 am – Stephen Dinan, Washington Times. 7:45am – Matt Schlapp, American Conservative Union. 8:30am – Ron Pollack, Families USA. 9:15am – Joshua Meservey, Atlantic Council of the U.S. ABC’S THIS WEEK: Secretary of State John Kerry on “Jihadi [...]


Forcing Change in Big Media’s Pro-war Bias

By: Saturday February 28, 2015 6:00 pm

Today I want to suggest some other steps and some leverage methods to force the issue.

I discussed them and the research that led to them on Virtually Speaking with Jay Ackroyd. Feb, 26, 2015.

Today Digby wrote about Chris Hayes and Laura Ingram pointing out how the networks push war. Now, what to do to change it?

Following Lee Fang’s Nation article on retired generals pushing bombing without being identified. I dug into the process for getting those guests to get on the air. I spoke to news producers, show bookers, guests, corporate media execs, FCC and FTC lawyers. I spoke to corporate CFOs, institutional investors, hedge fund managers and media trackers.

After I understood the process, I asked, “Who or what has the power to change things?”

TODAY 3PM (CST): Shut Down #HomanSquare – @Chicago_Police Black Site

By: Saturday February 28, 2015 4:00 pm

TODAY 3PM: Shut Down #HomanSquare – @Chicago_Police Black Site | #Gitmo2Chicago — Chicago Rising (@ChicagoRising) February 28, 2015 Some background from Spencer Ackerman and Vic Suter on Deomcracy Now! This is the transcript.   Spencer Ackerman’s Homan Square ouevre at the Guardian is here. Marcy Wheeler, writing for’ “I was in a [...]

MI-5’s Jihadi John: How British Intelligence Primed Both Sides Of The Terror War

By: Saturday February 28, 2015 2:00 pm

‘Jihadi John’ was able to join IS for one simple reason: from Quilliam to al-Muhajiroun, Britain’s loudest extremists have been groomed by the security services.

Every time there’s a terrorist attack that makes national headlines, the same talking heads seem to pop up like an obscene game of “whack-a-mole”. Often they appear one after the other across the media circuit, bobbing from celebrity television pundit to erudite newspaper outlet.

A few years ago, BBC Newsnight proudly hosted a “debate” between Maajid Nawaz, director of counter-extremism think-tank, the Quilliam Foundation, and Anjem Choudary, head of the banned Islamist group formerly known as al-Muhajiroun, which has, since its proscription, repeatedly reincarnated itself. One of its more well-known recent incarnations was “Islam4UK”.

Both Nawaz and Choudary have received huge mainstream media attention, generating press headlines, and contributing to major TV news and current affairs shows. But unbeknown to most, they have one thing in common: Britain’s security services. And believe it or not, that bizarre fact explains why the Islamic State’s (IS) celebrity beheader, former west Londoner Mohammed Emwazi – aka “Jihadi John” – got to where he is now.

Saturday History: The Hicklin Place

By: Saturday February 28, 2015 12:00 pm

The farm my father purchased in 1920 was referred to as the “Hicklin place” because it was a hundred and sixty acres carved from the Hicklin plantation. The designation “plantation” was given to land owned by a farmer if he had at least twenty slaves. The graveyard for the Hicklin slaves was on our farm. My father plowed around it, so it survived as a weed patch with tumble-down tombstones. As a kid, I sometimes walked there to have a look. It always gave me the creeps, especially when I noticed how many of the stones marked the resting place for children. I wondered what they had looked like and why they had died so young.

The UnReal World of House Republicans, and Jon Stewart’s Departure from The Daily Show

By: Saturday February 28, 2015 10:00 am

Alexander Bolton over at The Hill has a nice piece about the implosions going off in the GOP on Capitol Hill, but it’s far too restrained in its observations.

I, on the other hand, feel a bit freer to read between the lines . . .

The Roundup

By: Saturday February 28, 2015 7:00 am

May Leonard Nimoy rest in peace. International Politics Overall – A former U.S. ambassador to the Soviet Union during the Cold War believed the Obama administration made a mistake against Russia in regards to Ukraine. He believes the country should seek a compromise. – It is worth examining how the U.S. pays for accidental deaths it causes in Afghanistan Middle [...]

Saturday Art: George Bellows

By: Saturday February 28, 2015 3:55 am

One of the best regarded American realist painters of the past century, George Bellows was a promising athlete from Columbus, Ohio, who chose to follow a life as an artist and achieved renown for his honest portrayal of urban life.

Bellows first achieved notice in 1908, when he and other pupils of Henri organized an exhibition of mostly urban studies. While many critics considered these to be crudely painted, others found them welcomely audacious and a step beyond the work of his teacher.

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