<$BlogRSDUrl$>
Be sure to follow me on Twitter @leftiblog

Friday, October 19, 2018


 

Headlines for Oct. 19, 2018



Click here to listen to this week's segment on Loud & Clear Radio. 
Headlines with an * are the ones we managed to fit in in our allotted 11 minutes.

Worst, Most Misleading & Funniest Headlines (WMMFH) -- Oct. 19, 2018


CANDIDATES FOR “WORST”/”MOST DISGUSTING”:

*After journalist vanishes, focus shifts to young prince’s ‘dark’ and bullying side
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/the-dashing-prince-with-a-dark-and-bullying-side/2018/10/13/61f64ea0-ce41-11e8-a360-85875bac0b1f_story.html?utm_term=.335215183e04
Of course the WaPo and all other establishment media has been primarily responsible for the fact that the focus hasn't been on that all along. Even in this article allegedly focusing on his “dark” side, they can’t resist describing bin Salman as “charismatic”, “ebullient” and “charming” and the original headline, as revealed by the URL, called him “dashing”.

*How One Journalist’s Death Provoked a Backlash That Thousands Dead in Yemen Did Not  https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/17/world/middleeast/jamal-khashoggi-saudi-arabia.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share
Took them a week to write a headline like this. “Psychologists have repeatedly found that people experience a greater emotional reaction to one death than to many, even if the circumstances are identical. Perversely, the more victims, the less sympathy that people feel. The effect even has a name: collapse of compassion.” I have a different explanation. US support for/participation in  Saudi-led war in Yemen started under Obama; it’s bipartisan. But this is something the establishment can pin on Trump, and use as part of an effort to discredit him.

*‘Blue wave’ or ‘left-wing mob’? Anti-Trump fervor fuels a new movement aimed squarely at winning elections.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/blue-wave-or-left-wing-mob-anti-trump-fervor-fuels-a-new-movement-aimed-squarely-at-winning-elections/2018/10/15/ed184146-bd1b-11e8-be70-52bd11fe18af_story.html?utm_term=.b74e80eec4af
Even if it’s a Trump quote, why would you dignify this ridiculous slur with equal billing in a headline?

A President Who Believes He Is Entitled to His Own Facts
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/18/us/politics/donald-trump-foreign-leaders.html?action=click&module=Top%20Stories&pgtype=Homepage
Couldn’t bring themselves to say “lies” even in an article about them; the only time the word “lie” appears in the article is Trump saying doctors “lied” that there’s no connection between vaccinations and autism. But the article has problems of its own, namely, not understanding the meaning of the word “fact”. For example, the article includes a reference to “widely doubted commitment to denuclearization by Kim Jong-un”, as if it is a fact that the DPRK has no intention to denuclearize. And the article is filled with “facts” like that, and actually sparse of real facts that Trump lies about all the time.

Kyrsten Sinema's anti-war activist past under scrutiny as she runs for Senate
https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/12/politics/kfile-kyrsten-sinema-activist-past/index.html
“Republican groups and her opponent have sought to make her judgment an issue, highlighting her liberal activism and anti-war work in ads...Sinema, then a law student at Arizona State University, was a frequent organizer of anti-war rallies, organizing 15 by the start of the Iraq War. Sinema would later boast on a progressive message board in 2006 of her opposition to Afghanistan from the start...BUT AFTER SHE BECAME AN ELECTED DEMOCRAT her views “evolved”...She now favors aggressive diplomacy [genocidal sanctions] with military intervention as a last resort. She said she would have still opposed the war in Iraq, but supported the war in Afghanistan. She voted against approving the Iran deal and backed President Donald Trump's decision to strike Syria. In 2015, she voted to stop admitting Syrian and Iraqi refugees until the vetting process was strengthened.

Mitch McConnell on Rising Deficit: ‘It’s Not a Republican Problem'
https://finance.yahoo.com/news/mitch-mcconnell-rising-deficit-not-214450836.html
Whaaaat? Republicans in control of legislative & executive branch, passed huge tax cuts? What he actually means is—it's not a problem for millionaires like him, who don't depend on Social Security or Medicare and won't care if they're cut.

CANDIDATES FOR “MOST MISLEADING”:

Trump says 'who cares' after Warren takes DNA test, denies $1 million offer
https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/15/politics/donald-trump-elizabeth-warren-dna-1-million/index.html
Despite video of him doing exactly that. Why isn't that in the headline? Anyone reading just the headline will think it's a "he said, he didn't say" situation. It isn't. Even Shep Smith on FOX News was mocking Trump for this claim.

G.O.P. Finds an Unexpectedly Potent Line of Attack: Immigration
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/14/us/politics/immigration-midterm-election.html
Really? It comes as a shock to the NYT (and this is an article, not an op-ed) that bashing immigrants is a "potent line of attack" for the GOP? Where were they during the 2016 election?

'That grip and grin will come back to haunt him': Pompeo takes heat for friendly Saudi sit-down
https://www.politico.com/story/2018/10/17/pompeo-heat-for-saudi-meeting-911934
Still waiting for the invasion of Iraq to come back and haunt George W. Bush

Brazil’s Bitter Presidential Race Leads to Scores of Assaults
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/17/world/americas/brazil-attacks-bolsonaro-haddad.html
A typical “both sides” headline. Except for the stabbing of Bolsonaro himself, all the examples of *actual* events (dozens of assaults including two murders) are of attacks on Workers Party supporters. No surprise, since “During a recent campaign rally in the northern state of Acre, he hoisted a tripod, pretended it was a machine gun and told supporters, “Let’s shoot Acre’s Workers’ Party supporters.”” And also there’s “even a computer game in which players can use an avatar of Mr. Bolsonaro to kill gay people and leftists.”

CANDIDATES FOR “FUNNIEST”:

*Trump says he has 'natural instinct for science' when it comes to climate change
https://www.politico.com/story/2018/10/17/trump-instinct-climate-change-910004
"You have scientists on both sides of it. My uncle was a great professor at MIT for many years, Dr. John Trump. And I didn’t talk to him about this particular subject, but I have a natural instinct for science, and I will say that you have scientists on both sides of the picture."

*China’s new booze university wants to change how Americans drink
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/chinas-new-booze-university-wants-to-change-how-americans-drink/2018/10/19/3a994580-c674-11e8-b1ed-1d2d65b86d0c_story.html?utm_term=.bf18f6f48ac3

*Betsy DeVos was asked whether U.S. schools are teaching kids to be socialists. Her answer was rich.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/education/2018/10/17/betsy-devos-was-asked-whether-us-schools-are-teaching-kids-be-socialists-her-answer-was-rich/?utm_term=.ff85009e9a50
Everything about Betsy DeVos is rich. Her answer is just bizarre: "I think number one, students aren’t getting the kind of foundation in civics and government that I recall getting as a student in K-12 education. And they’re coming then into higher education without the background to even know and understand competing ideas, and then without the ability to discuss and debate them."

‘There’s no place for that’: Ryan rebukes Trump for insult of Stormy Daniels
https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/theres-no-place-for-that-ryan-rebukes-trump-for-insult-of-stormy-daniels/2018/10/17/452edf9e-d1f7-11e8-8c22-fa2ef74bd6d6_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.2c42aadf5d00
My one-liner for the week: It's a classic case of "Good GOP, Bad GOP"!

*Jeff Bezos predicts we'll have 1 trillion humans in the solar system
https://www.cnbc.com/2018/10/15/blue-origins-jeff-bezos-predicts-1-trillion-humans-in-the-solar-system-wired-summit.html
Proof that you don't have to be smart — or even sane — to be rich. Current population of Earth — 7.4 Billion.

Witches to 'hex' Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh; exorcists pray in response
https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/witches-hex-supreme-court-justice-brett-kavanaugh-exorcists/story?id=58585740
Scary thought - exorcist is described as "the exorcist for the Diocese of San Jose, California", i.e., at least the periphery of the technological heart of the country here in Silicon Valley. “Conjuring up personified evil does not fall under free speech,” said the exorcist.

All we know about the White House portrait of Trump drinking Diet Coke with Abraham Lincoln
https://www.washingtonpost.com/arts-entertainment/2018/10/15/all-we-know-about-white-house-portrait-trump-drinking-diet-coke-with-abraham-lincoln/?utm_term=.480922d96d21
It’s bizarre. It’s in the style of “dogs playing poker”. He did not commission it. But Trump did hang it in his private dining room.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018


 

Headlines for Oct. 12, 2018



Click here to listen to this week's segment on Loud & Clear Radio.
Headlines with an * are the ones we managed to fit in in our allotted 11 minutes.
Worst, Most Misleading & Funniest Headlines (WMMFH) -- Oct. 12, 2018


CANDIDATES FOR “WORST”/”MOST DISGUSTING”:

Susan Collins Consents
https://www.wsj.com/articles/susan-collins-consents-1538780948?mod=hp_opin_pos1
A strong contender for most disgusting headline of the year. A rape joke? Are you kidding me?

Care About Palestinian Refugees? This Is Why You Should Back the U.S. Cutting Millions in Aid to Them
https://www.haaretz.com/amp/middle-east-news/.premium-care-about-palestinian-refugees-this-is-why-you-should-back-trump-s-aid-cut-1.6533096
A close second for most disgusting headline of the year (which seems to have now been changed, perhaps in response to complaints?). The only mention of the right of return is this “The camps fuel unrealistic hopes of return to places of origin. They preserve the status quo, and therefore maintain the Israeli-Palestinian deadlock.” Yes, that’s why there has been no progress on the “peace process”.

*‘We bombed you to save you’ – NATO head Stoltenberg speaks about 1999 bombings on visit to Serbia
https://www.rt.com/news/440616-stoltenberg-serbia-nato-bombing/
Can’t fault the headline; it’s the story that’s disgusting.
The classic "destroying the village in order to save it" language. Probably won't be seeing this headline in the WaPo or NYT. Many hundreds to thousands of Serbians were killed in the bombing; including 16 killed when Radio Television Serbia was bombed.

*Michelle Obama: George W. Bush is 'my partner in crime' and 'I love him to death'
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/onpolitics/2018/10/11/michelle-obama-george-w-bush-my-partner-crime/1603296002/
A sad but true commentary on the state of politics and the ruling class in America. Quoting Twitter user Sarah Abdallah: “Considering Bush destroyed Afghanistan and Iraq while Michelle Obama’s husband destroyed Syria, Libya and gave Saudi Arabia the go-ahead to commit genocide in Yemen, “partner in crime” is actually the perfect phrase.”

CANDIDATES FOR “MOST MISLEADING”:

U.S. Opens Probe into Alleged Chinese Mattress Dumping
https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-opens-probe-into-alleged-chinese-mattress-dumping-1539361141?mod=hp_lista_pos3
Domestic manufacturers say Chinese products have been sold at roughly 259% to 1,732% below normal value. So a $1000 mattress is being sold for $55? Seems unlikely.

CANDIDATES FOR “FUNNIEST”:

*The end of the Saudi Whisperer
Subhead: Tom Friedman bet big on Mohammed bin Salman and lost. What can we learn from that?
https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2018/10/09/end-saudi-whisperer/?utm_term=.d692d9097dd0
It is true that Tom Friedman has been the single biggest person talking about “reform” in Saudi Arabia. But he is far from alone among American journalists or politicians. For example, Adam Johnson at FAIR documented “David Ignatius’ 15 Years of Running Spin for Saudi Regime” in an article last year (https://fair.org/home/david-ignatius-15-years-of-running-spin-for-saudi-regime/)
Friedman’s defense (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/08/opinion/jamal-khashoggi-missing-saudi-journalist.html ): “our job is to help curb his bad impulses and nurture his good ones.”

Rand Paul’s Wife Says She Keeps Loaded Gun By Her Bed Out Of Fear Of Liberal Attacks
https://www.newsweek.com/paul-wife-loaded-gun-liberal-attacks-1160029
She thinks that liberals will start breaking into her home based on the fact that Trump administration people are being heckled in restaurants in Washington, DC. Classic projection.

Friday, October 05, 2018


 

Headlines for Oct. 5, 2018



Click here to listen to this week's segment on Loud & Clear Radio.
Headlines with an * are the ones we managed to fit in in our allotted 11 minutes.
Worst, Most Misleading & Funniest Headlines (WMMFH) -- Oct. 5, 2018


CANDIDATES FOR “WORST”/”MOST DISGUSTING”:

The Big Hack: How China Used a Tiny Chip to Infiltrate U.S. Companies
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-10-04/the-big-hack-how-china-used-a-tiny-chip-to-infiltrate-america-s-top-companies
Denials in 10th paragraph.
Bloomberg’s report of Amazon’s denial: “It’s untrue that AWS knew about a supply chain compromise, an issue with malicious chips, or hardware modifications when acquiring Elemental.”
The actual Amazon denial: “As we shared with Bloomberg BusinessWeek multiple times over the last couple months, this is untrue. At no time, past or present, have we ever found any issues relating to modified hardware or malicious chips in SuperMicro motherboards in any Elemental or Amazon systems. Nor have we engaged in an investigation with the government.”

China inserted surveillance microchip in servers used by Amazon and Apple, report says
https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2018/10/04/china-inserted-surveillance-microchip-servers-used-by-amazon-apple-according-report/?utm_term=.553081a097e3
In the Mercury News version of the article, Apple and Amazon denials come in the 16th paragraph. In the Post, we now read: “Editor’s note: This story has been updated with additional reporting on the views of U.S. officials about the Bloomberg Businessweek report. One official who previously had conveyed confidence in the report later expressed uncertainty. The story also includes additional denials from Apple and Amazon.” In the article, we now read: “Several U.S. officials contacted by The Washington Post said they were uncertain about the accuracy of the Bloomberg Businessweek report. One U.S. official who said Thursday morning that the thrust of the article was true later expressed uncertainty about that conclusion.”

CANDIDATES FOR “MOST MISLEADING”:

*A lot of the criticism of 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' actually came from Russian trolls and bots, new study finds
https://www.businessinsider.com/star-wars-the-last-jedi-criticism-linked-to-russian-trolls-and-bots-new-study-finds-2018-10
Subhead even goes from “a lot” to “Much of the "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" backlash came from Russian trolls — not fans — according to a new study.”
As this propagated through the media, it became simple fact, e.g.,
*Why The Russian Trolling Of 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' Proved So Successful
https://www.forbes.com/sites/scottmendelson/2018/10/02/why-the-russian-trolling-against-star-wars-the-last-jedi-was-so-successful/amp/
In a word, no. Even the author really doesn’t say that: “I have discovered political agitation for right-wing values using The Last Jedi as a placeholder for left-wing positions. Furthermore, it appears that political activists have used bots and sock puppet accounts to troll left-wing fans, and there is even evidence that Russian influence operators have inserted themselves into the debate to exploit and exacerbate the conflict, thereby securing more media attention to the conflict, which again helps spread the perception that America is divided and in chaos.”

He studied 206 Twitter accounts which tweeted negatively (basically racist and misogynist content) about The Last Jedi; 16 (a whopping 8%) of them "appear to be Russian trolls, or at least possess several of the Russian troll characteristics presented above"; those characteristics include "Russian trolls usually target “very specific world events” and “political threads”" and "prefer the Twitter web client over the mobile client". "They predominantly report their location (if at all) to be in the U.S., Germany and Russia"

Indicative of the “scholarship”, he found this tweet suspicious and likely “Russian” because it was short and had misspellings “So, now explain why Mark Hamil didn't like Luje in TLJ?”. Apparently he has never looked at a keyboard! [amusingly, while I was writing this I typed lijely instead of likely!)

Notes: “Star Wars movies, books, video games, tv shows and comics have consistently attempted to convey left-leaning values. For years, the franchise’s creator, George Lucas, has explained the series’ impetus as partially being a comment on the Vietnam war, which ended just as Lucas started work on the first Star Wars film. The evil, oppressive, technologically and economically superior Empire represented the United States, while the far less advanced, but resilient South Vietnamese [sic] forces and their unlikely victory inspired the “good guys” in the Rebel Alliance.”
Link to paper: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/328006677_Weaponizing_the_haters_The_Last_Jedi_and_the_strategic_politicization_of_pop_culture_through_social_media_manipulation

CANDIDATES FOR “FUNNIEST”:

*College students say they can't send in their absentee ballots because they don't know where to buy stamps
https://www.businessinsider.com/young-voters-dont-know-where-to-buy-stamps-for-absentee-ballots-2018-9
Funny not funny. But here’s the funniest (but actually serious) part: “The US Postal Service also has a policy that it mails absentee ballots, whether or not they contain postage. Instead of returning the ballot to sender, they charge the local election board.” But the absentee ballot (at least in California) doesn't bother to tell you this.

'We fell in love:' Trump swoons over letters from North Korea's Kim
https://mobile.reuters.com/article/amp/idUSKCN1MA03Q
What can you say?

China reveals its new party line: We're trying to save the world from the US
https://www.cnbc.com/2018/09/25/trade-war-china-white-paper-on-trade-bullyism-practices-by-the-us.html?__source=facebook%7Cmain
If only they were talking about imperialism and not just economic trade wars.
China hit out against the U.S. in a 71-page paper, accusing President Donald Trump's administration of "trade bullyism practices" that have become "the greatest source of uncertainty and risk for the recovery of the global economy."

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle visit namesake county of Sussex
https://www.upi.com/Entertainment_News/2018/10/03/Prince-Harry-Meghan-Markle-visit-namesake-county-of-Sussex/6371538571671/
Highlighting the absurdity of the concept of “royalty” and royal titles — the “Duke” and “Duchess” of Sussex visit Sussex…for the first time! Imagine “the King of Sweden visits Sweden for the first time”, etc.

*Kavanaugh writes op-ed arguing he is an 'independent, impartial judge' after emotional testimony
https://amp.cnn.com/cnn/2018/10/04/politics/kavanaugh-wsj-op-ed/index.html
Uh huh.

*Drunk birds are causing havoc in a Minnesota town. Police say they’ll sober up soon.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2018/10/04/drunk-birds-are-causing-havoc-in-a-minnesota-town-police-say-theyll-sober-up-soon/?utm_term=.6dd3e9b5a8f6
A member of our local Audubon Society  is quoted in this article!
An early frost meant that berries had fermented earlier than usual, he explained, and Cedar Waxwings were eating them and getting drunk.
The Gilbert Minnesota Police Department issued a press release filled with fake news, telling residents to call if they saw:
• Heckle and Jeckle being boisterous or playing practical jokes. #FakeNews — H&J are Magpies, not Cedar Waxwings!
• Woodstock pushing Snoopy off the doghouse for no apparent reason. #FakeNews - Woodstock is a small yellow bird, possibly a Yellow Warbler, and definitely not a Cedar Waxwing!
• The Roadrunner jumping in and out of traffic. Again, #FakeNews — not a Cedar Waxwing.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours? Weblog Commenting by HaloScan.com High Class Blogs: News and Media