06/10/2014 archive

Hellraisers Journal: Trial of Joe Hill, IWW Singer & Songwriter, to Begin Today in Salt Lake City

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age. Put on your fighting clothes.

-Mother Jones


Friday June 10, 1904

From the Kansas City Star: Mother Jones Heads East to Speak in Kansas City on Sunday

Mother Jones, Not Smiling

“Mother” Jones to Speak at a Picnic

Mary G. [sic] Jones, known as “Mother” Jones, will speak at Budd park Sunday afternoon at 4 o’clock. “Mother” Jones once lived in Kansas City and had a dressmaking shop, but in recent years has devoted her attention to Socialism and has been active in big strikes as a crusader. She will talk on the miners’ strike in the Cripple Creek district. There will be a picnic in connection with the meeting Sunday afternoon.


Kansas City Star

(Kansas City, Missouri)

-of June 10, 1904


Mother Jones



Hello, you denizens

Well, Hi.

I think I can say this stuff here.  If not, let me know.

Read GOS going back to 2007, joined in 2011.  And it’s been fairly amazing.  

More and better Democrats.  Yup…


It seems that for some reason, those with a contrarian opinion on or in support of a particular issue within the global context of being a Democrat are either accepted or rejected (attacked).  Conformity seems to be the overriding principle for continued participation in the “discussion”.

I think over the past 4 years, there have been, what?, 3 or 4 mass purges/boycotts/punishments?  It’s what happens cyclically to keep the purity of the site’s intent? That is, sit-down and STFU?

All I know is that so many voices have been silenced.  Banned, GBCW’d, fled, just left.  They were mainly more of the better writers, they had a POV and were willing to defend it.  They all got sh*t slammed and are no longer there.  How about the FP, or the sacrosanct Porch, or RKBA, or the never-ending attack vs Christians (hello Blue Collar Dems?) or IP where the one has been anointed somehow (since there is no one left with cred to disagree) and one cannot disagree – with anything opined.  Sheesh.

GOS is a pale comparison to its former self, imho.

DBAD is now the universal cover to quell dissent and discussion.

The moderation is all f’d up.  

And, last but not least, there are about a dozen contributors that are everywhere – they’re in the diaries,  they’re in the hiddens, in the dead threads, they’re on the Help Desk.  They’re f’g everywhere, every day.  No, no, they’re not a “group”.  They’re just always there with their pile-on  HR’s and communal condemnation of those that dare disagree.  Perhaps their day will come soon?  

I know, “we” are mad as hell!  We have instituted an investigation and will get back to you with the results in our own sweet time.

On to the mid-terms and 2016, Yea!

Punting the Pundits

“Punting the Pundits” is an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.

Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting the Pundits”.

Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt

Dean Baker: Why Do Coal-mining Jobs Matter So Much More Than Jobs Lost to Trade?

When President Obama announced plans to curtail the use of coal over the next 15 years, major news outlets like National Public Radio and the New York Times rushed to do pieces on the prospective loss of jobs in coal-mining areas. There are a bit less than 80,000 workers directly employed in the coal industry. A large percentage of these jobs will be lost in the next 15 years due to these regulations.

While it is good to see the media paying attention to this job loss and its implications for families and communities, this concern is a striking departure from normal practice. This was demonstrated clearly last week when the Commerce Department reported a large jump in the trade deficit for April. The report, and the implied job loss, received almost no attention from the media.

Jonathan Turley: Edward Snowden: Whistleblower or traitor?

Whatever he may be, Snowden remains fascinating precisely because he proved to be the malfunctioning cog in the system.

It is hard to imagine that just one year ago, Edward Snowden famously walked away. He was a low-level employee of Dell contractor at a nondescript National Security Agency site. A non-entity by design. Just one of hundreds of thousands of people working in the burgeoning national security complex in the United States – the ultimate faceless cog. Now, one year later, he is a household name but the world remains divided on who Edward Snowden is. Is he a whistleblower or a traitor? It turns out that question is often answered not by how people view Snowden but how they view their government. [..]

So there you have it: hero or traitor. Take your pick. What is clear is that Snowden pulled back the curtain on new reality of living within a fishbowl of constant surveillance. People clearly don’t like it, even if they don’t like Snowden. They are left however with the same sense of frustration and isolation when it comes to their government. Snowden stepped outside of a system that many Americans now view as impenetrable and unchanging. Whatever he may be, Snowden remains fascinating precisely because he proved to be the malfunctioning cog, the one who walked away.

Ralph Nader: Minimum Wage Support Grows

During a recent talk at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, McDonald’s CEO Don Thompson indicated his support for legislation in Congress to raise the federal minimum wage. “I will tell you we will support legislation that moves forward,” he said. Later in the talk, Mr. Thompson continued, “McDonald’s will be fine. We’ll manage through whatever the additional cost implications are.” It turns out that, contrary to the stale Republican talking points, one of the largest low-wage employers in the country does not have a problem with a higher minimum wage.

We have been vigorously advocating for a raise in the federal minimum wage for several years now. Much progress has been made in that time. Unfortunately, little of this progress has come in the halls of Congress, leaving cities and states across the country to do the work that our national leaders won’t do.

Juan Cole: Top 3 White Terrorist Attacks in America this Week

Our capitalist class may be becoming an absolute danger to ordinary Americans.  By promoting a doctrine of absolute right to gun ownership (which rather helps gun manufacturers) and at the same time encouraging people to hate the Federal government and resent paying taxes, they are creating a whole class of alienated far right shooters.

The American far Right, with its white supremacism, fascination with guns and explosives, profound hatred for the Federal government, poses the biggest terrorism threat in the country by far.  Worse, they receive support from right wing media in the U.S. because they hate taxes just the way the ultra-conservative media moguls doe.  Although their attacks are ideological, directed at civilian victims and violent, they are seldom categorized as ‘terrorists.’  Rather what they do is “mass shootings.”  In the meantime, plots hatched by Muslims in the U.S. during the past few years appear almost always to be a form of entrapment by the FBI.

John Nichols: Getting Married ‘Where We Live’: Why Each Marriage Equality Ruling Is Historic

Marriage equality is not a new premise. The barriers are falling rapidly. Since the US Supreme Court struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act’s definition of marriage as only between a man and a woman, it has, in fact, become inevitable. Following on the Supreme Court ruling of last summer, the group Freedom to Marry says twenty consecutive rulings by state and federal judges have found state marriage bans unconstitutional-and more will do so.

Yet each state’s embrace of freedom and fairness matters. That was so very obvious on Friday night in Madison, a city that has for decades embraced and celebrated LGBT rights. Indeed, among the many jurists performing marriages Friday night was Dane County Judge Shelley Gaylord, who was first elected two decades ago to a municipal judgeship as an LGBT activist and lawyer.

Wisconsin should have been the first state in the nation to embrace marriage equality.

Joe Muto: Bowe Bergdahl is Fox News’ perfect villain for the propaganda machine

As Bill O’Reilly used to tell me, the only thing that drives more viewers than a hero … is a villain. Especially if you arrange to have ‘experts’ call him that on purpose

Booking guests for cable news can be a taxing job. You’re underpaid, overworked and constantly on deadline. It’s no surprise, then, that most bookers form a symbiotic relationship with PR people, “fixers” who specialize in connecting producers with the right expert, in possession of the right point-of-view, right away. The pitfall, of course, is that when someone is desperate to go on television, it’s usually a safe bet that they have an axe to grind. Ideally, the booking producer acts as a gatekeeper, to filter out those who are pushing an agenda.

There’s no such filter at Fox News Channel, where pundits are not only allowed to push an agenda but are very much expected to do so. Guests at Fox are booked specifically to advance the latest anti-government narrative – be it Obamacare or Benghazi, the Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy or now the released Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl … or on some nights, all of the above.

The Breakfast Club: 6-10-2014

Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We’re a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when we’re not too hungover we’ve been bailed out we’re not too exhausted from last night’s (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Everyone’s welcome here, no special handshake required. Just check your meta at the door.

Join us every weekday morning at 9am (ET) and weekend morning at 10:30am (ET) to talk about current news and our boring lives and to make fun of LaEscapee! If we are ever running late, it’s PhilJD’s fault.

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This Day in History

On This Day In History June 10

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

June 10 is the 161st day of the year (162nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 204 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1990, Luther Campbell and fellow 2LiveCrew members are arrested on obscenity charges

Though the First Amendment to the Constitution clearly states that the U.S. Congress “shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech,” free speech is widely understood to have its limits. It is dangerous and potentially criminal, for instance, to yell, “Fire!” in a crowded theater. But what about yelling “$&%#@!!” in a crowded nightclub? Lenny Bruce and other comedians tested the limits of that practice in the 1960s, but it was not until the late 1980s that the issue of obscenity came front and center in the world of popular music. The group that brought it there was 2LiveCrew, a hip-hop outfit led by Luther “Luke Skyywalker” Campbell. On June 10, 1990, just days after a controversial ruling by a Florida federal judge, Campbell and two other members of 2LiveCrew were arrested on charges of public obscenity after performing material from their album As Nasty As They Wanna Be in a Hollywood, Florida, nightclub.

As Nasty As They Wanna Be

In 1989, the group released their album, As Nasty As They Wanna Be, which also became the group’s most successful album. A large part of its success was due to the single “Me So Horny”, which was popular despite little radio rotation. The American Family Association (AFA) did not think the presence of a “Parental Advisory” sticker was enough to adequately warn listeners of what was inside the case. Jack Thompson, a lawyer affiliated with the AFA, met with Florida Governor Bob Martinez and convinced him to look into the album to see if it met the legal classification of obscene. In 1990 action was taken at the local level and Nick Navarro, Broward County sheriff, received a ruling from County Circuit Court judge Mel Grossman that probable cause for obscenity violations existed. In response, Luther Campbell maintained that people should focus on issues relating to hunger and poverty rather than on the lyrical content of their music.

Navarro warned record store owners that selling the album may be prosecutable. The 2 Live Crew then filed a suit against Navarro. That June, U.S. district court Judge Jose Gonzalez ruled the album obscene and illegal to sell. Charles Freeman, a local retailer, was arrested two days later, after selling a copy to an undercover police officer. This was followed by the arrest of three members of The 2 Live Crew after they performed some material from the album at a nightclub. They were acquitted soon after, as professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. testified at their trial in defense of their lyrics. Freeman’s conviction was overturned on appeal as well.

In 1992, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit overturned the obscenity ruling from Judge Gonzalez, and the Supreme Court of the United States refused to hear Broward County’s appeal. As in the Freeman case, Gates testified on behalf of Navarro, arguing that the material that the county alleged was profane actually had important roots in African-American vernacular, games, and literary traditions and should be protected.

As a result of the controversy, As Nasty As They Wanna Be sold over two million copies. It peaked at #29 on The Billboard 200 and #3 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart. A few other retailers were later arrested for selling it as well, including Canadian Marc Emery who was convicted in Ontario in 1991, and would later gain fame as a marijuana activist. Later hard rock band Van Halen sued over an uncleared sample of their song “Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love” in The 2 Live Crew Song “The Fuck Shop”. The publicity then continued when George Lucas, owner of the Star Wars universe, successfully sued Campbell for appropriating the name “Skywalker” for his record label, Luke Skyywalker Records. Campbell changed his stage name to Luke (and changed the record label’s name to Luke Records) and the group released an extremely political follow up album, Banned in the USA after obtaining permission to use an interpolation of Bruce Springsteen‘s Born in the U.S.A. The 2 Live Crew paraphernalia with the Luke Skyywalker or Skyywalker logos are often sought-after collector’s items.

TDS/TCR (When Harry Met Sally)


Goofus & Gallant

Spore Report

You’re very handy, I can tell. I bet you like to read a lot, too.

Print is dead.

Oh, that’s very fascinating to me. I read a lot myself. Some people think I’m too intellectual but I think it’s a fabulous way to spend your spare time. I also play raquetball. Do you have any hobbies?

I collect spores, molds, and fungus.

Below the fold Chrissie Hynde x 2 including Exclusive Web Extra!

Oh, and tonight’s shows and commentary.

Being a victim of sexual assault is a “coveted status that confers privileges”

The Washington Post columnist [George Will] thinks women are lying about sexual assault in order to get “privileges”

From Salon.com:

Washington Post columnist George Will doesn’t believe the statistic that one in five women is sexually assaulted while in college. Instead he believes that liberals, feminists and other nefarious forces have conspired to turn being a rape survivor into a “coveted status that confers privileges.” As a result of this plot, “victims proliferate,” Will wrote in a weekend editorial that ran in the Washington Post and New York Post.

Further compounding the crisis of people coming forward about sexual assault to stay de rigueur is the fact that “capacious” definitions of sexual assault include forcible sexual penetration and nonconsensual sexual touching. Which is really very outrageous, according to Will. It is really very hard to understand why having your breasts or other parts of your body touched against your will should be frowned upon.

It’s not very surprising that George Will does not think that sexual assault on campus is a big deal. It’s also not very surprising that he thinks that definitions of sexual violence are somehow overly broad because they factor in forms of sexual contact other than penetration. But what is puzzling – about this editorial and the army of nearly identical pieces of rape apologia that find a way into national newspapers with some regularity – is how much one has to ignore in order to argue these points.

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