Wednesday, February 27, 2019

The Guardian UK:
"Microsoft workers are calling on their employer to cancel a $480m contract to provide the US army with augmented reality (AR) headsets, saying they 'do not want to become war profiteers'.

'We did not sign up to develop weapons, and we demand a say in how our work is used,' reads a petition being circulated inside the company, a copy of which was published on Twitter on Friday afternoon. More than 50 employees had signed the letter as of Friday afternoon, according to an employee.

The employee protest is the latest manifestation of a growing labor movement in the US technology industry. Employees at companies including Microsoft, Google, Amazon and Salesforce are increasingly speaking out both about their own working conditions and about the uses to which their employees put their work product."

-->The NYT won't print stories like this because it is in the pocket of the major internet companies. U.S. worker rebellions have to be reported by a newspaper printed in England. 


"After The Wall Street Journal reported that popular period-tracking app Flo had been secretly sharing some of its users' most personal health data with Facebook, Flo is promising to make some changes.

Along with a number of other popular health apps, Flo used Facebook's developer software to track users' data in a way that could be used for advertising purposes, the report found. 

In Flo's case, the period tracking app 'told Facebook when a user was having her period or informed the app of an intention to get pregnant,' according to The WSJ. This data 'was sent with a unique advertising identifier that can be matched to a device or profile.' "

-->Too bad our newspaper of record can't bring itself to print this story. It certainly hyped Flo when the app was first introduced. 


"Venezuela’s Bolivarian Revolution, which took off with the election of President Hugo Chávez in December 1998, frequently and even quite recently received praise for its social gains from the United Nations, international humanitarian organizations and economists. This aspect of the country’s story has been almost entirely written out of media coverage of the effort to overthrow the Venezuelan government by the US, Canada and their right-wing partners in Venezuela and the region.

Under Chávez, poverty in Venezuela was cut by more than a third, and extreme poverty by 57 percent (These declines were even steeper if measured from the depths of the opposition-led oil strike, designed to force Chávez out by wrecking the economy.)

In June 2013, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) included Venezuela in a group of 18 nations that that had cut their number of hungry people by half in the preceding 20 years ..."

-->All the news that's fit to print never includes good things about an elected leader the U.S. is trying to overthrow. In effect, the NYT prints all the news the Pentagon deems fit to print.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Common Dreams:
"In a 'landmark' ruling on Thursday, a federal court in North Dakota tossed out a "baseless" case against Greenpeace and other environmental and Indigenous activists who organized protests against the deeply controversial Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL), which drew thousands of people to the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in 2016.

District Judge Billy Roy Wilson dismissed (pdf) all claims against all defendants in a lawsuit brought by fossil fuel giant Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), which sought to hold the water protectors liable under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act for millions of dollars in alleged damages.

'This is what happens when greedy corporations go after Indigenous women grounded in the power of prayer, the power of relationship building, and the power of collective organizing.' —Krystal Two Bulls, defendant."

-->The NYT let Reuters cover the story and didn't print this victory over baseless lawsuits against environmental activists. Our congratulations goes out to Krystal Two Bulls, who was interviewed recently on Activist Radio!

"New legislation passed in the Senate seeks to legalize the right of individual state governments to force American companies to certify they won’t engage in economic boycotts of Israel as a condition for receiving government contracts.

Strengthening America’s Security in the Middle East Act of 2019, if signed into law, would allow states to withhold government funding from entities unwilling to certify they will not boycott Israel. ...

But only 22.5% of American adults favor anti-boycott measures. A new representative IRmep poll conducted through Google Surveys finds that 74.9% of Americans oppose forcing government contractors to forswear boycotts.

-->The NYT doesn't really care if most Americans are against a proposed law outlawing boycotts. Out newspaper of record is too busy smearing Representatives Ms. Omar and Ms. Tlaib as antisemites to print stories about what most citizens want.


Common Dreams:
"With Trump Pushing Regime Change in Venezuela, Critics Warn News Outlets Failing US Viewers Once Again. ...

According to Johnson [contributor to Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting], 'The self-aggrandizing, 'factchecking' brigade that emerged to confront the Trump administration is suddenly nonexistent as it rolls out a transparent, cynical PR strategy to delegitimize a Latin American government it's trying to overthrow. ... If the U.S. had a major state TV network it would sound exactly like this. 100% pure, uncritical cheerleading. CNN, which markets themselves as brave truth-tellers in the age of Trump, read off the Trump admin script word for word.' "

-->Yes, our media is little more than Pravda when it comes to cheerleading U.S. interventions abroad. Pentagon propaganda is all we ever get from the NYT on down.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Common Dreams:
"The US government acknowledges that it is knowingly, consciously driving the Venezuelan economy into the ground, but US media make no such acknowledgment, which sends the message that the problems in Venezuela are entirely the fault of the government. ...

Sanctions have kept the Venezuelan government from accessing financing and dealing with its debt while hamstringing its most important industry [oil]. Given that US media are writing for a principally US audience, the damage done by Washington and its partners’ sanctions should be front and center in their coverage. Exactly the opposite is the case. ...

-->The U.S. government admits to collapsing the Venezuelan economy with sanctions. Now it wants to "save the population" from the hardships that have resulted. And our media buys all this propaganda completely. So it goes in the empire's media.


Common Dreams:
"As Energy for Medicare for All Soars, Pelosi Aide Reportedly Assured Insurance Industry That Democratic Leaders Remain 'Allies.'

As Medicare for All advocates point to surging grassroots energy behind the bold policy and argue that the key question now 'is not if we will win, it is when,' a report by The Intercept on Tuesday intensified concerns that the Democratic leadership will continue to resist the rising tide of enthusiasm for single-payer even as it is embraced by a growing number of lawmakers, 2020 presidential candidates, and 70 percent of the public.

According to The Intercept, Wendell Primus—the top healthcare adviser to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)—reassured Blue Cross Blue Shield executives during a private meeting shortly after the November midterm elections that the Democratic leadership 'had strong reservations about single-payer healthcare and was more focused on lowering drug prices.' "

-->And why wouldn't the NYT report this story of Pelosi's betrayal? Because our newspaper of record has always been in the pocket of the big insurance companies and against universal healthcare.


The NYT:
"It happened again last month in Detroit. Pro-Palestinian demonstrators seized the stage of the National L.G.B.T.Q. ... 'From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free,' they chanted — the tediously malign, thinly veiled call to end Israel as a Jewish state.

They were met with sustained applause by the audience at what is the largest annual conference of L.G.B.T.Q. activists in the United States. Conference organizers did nothing to stop the disruption or disavow the demonstrators.' "

-->The article goes on to whine about poor Zionists hounded from colleges and reviled by Blacks who love Louis Farrakhan. Just how long will our country put up with equating criticism of Israel with antiSemitism? Congress has been bought and paid for by the Israel Lobby, but perhaps the people of this nation have finally had enough.

Thursday, February 07, 2019

Common Dreams:
"Adding another chapter to its long history of supporting U.S.-backed coups in Latin America, the New York Times editorial team on Wednesday gave Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó prime op-ed real estate to call on governments of the world stand with him and the Trump administration as they attempt to overthrow elected President Nicolás Maduro 'with the minimum of bloodshed.' ...

'They'll tell you this about restoring democracy and human rights in the South American country,' Peter Certo, editorial manager for the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C., wrote of the White House's actions. 'But one look at the administration officials driving the putsch perishes the thought.'

Highlighting the long anti-democratic records of Bolton, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and newly appointed Venezuela envoy Elliot Abrams—all of whom have backed authoritarians leaders, death squads, and illegal wars throughout their careers in government—Certo concluded that the U.S. must abandon its push for regime change and 'back regional dialogue and diplomacy.' "

-->How eager the Western Democracies are to overthrow the elected president of Venezuela. And how our media is cheerleading another war crime in Latin America.  


The Guardian UK:
"The FBI opened a 'domestic terrorism' investigation into a civil rights group in California, labeling the activists 'extremists' after they protested against neo-Nazis in 2016, new documents reveal.

Federal authorities ran a surveillance operation on By Any Means Necessary (Bamn), spying on the leftist group’s movements in an inquiry that came after one of Bamn’s members was stabbed at the white supremacist rally, according to documents obtained by the Guardian. ...

The FBI considered the KKK as victims and the leftist protesters as potential terror threats, and downplayed the threats of the Klan. ... The report ignored '100 years of Klan terrorism that has killed thousands of Americans and continues using violence right up to the present day', German said [Mike German, a former FBI agent and far-right expert]. 'This description of the KKK should be an embarrassment to FBI leadership.' ”

-->Yes, the FBI sees itself as much closer to the KKK than to any anti-fascist activists. And yes, the FBI has always been a danger to our democratic form of government. The story didn't appear in the NYT.