This 17 May 2019 video from Zambia says about itself:
This 17 May 2019 video from Zambia says about itself:
This 20 May 2019 video from Democratic congresswoman and presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard in the USA says about itself:
Intelligence officials and politicians led [or: lied] us into war with Iraq. Now, Trump is using the same playbook to lead our country into war with Iran. The cost in lives and treasure will be infinitely greater than the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria, and will undermine our national security.
This 19 May 2019 video from the USA says about itself:
In Trump news today and US news today, Televangelist Dr. Lance Wallnau was seen on the Evangelical Christian Jim Bakker Show selling a Trump prayer coin intended to help guide prayers for the Trump 2020 campaign. TV evangelist Dr. Lance Wallnau is hawking the Trump King Cyrus Coin with Isaiah 45:1 on the back as a $45 way for people to pray for Trump. They calling it the Cyrus Trump bundle. While President Trump claims to be a religious man his past actions do not seem very religious. That said President Trump has spoken every year of his presidency at the National Day of Prayer breakfast.
This 17 May 2019 video from the USA says about itself:
This video from the USA says about itself:
As Elon Musk Proposes Taking Over Power Authority, Puerto Ricans Demand Community-Owned Solar Power
1 November 2017
While in Puerto Rico this past weekend, Democracy Now! spoke to Ángel Figueroa Jaramillo, the head of UTIER, the electrical workers’ union in Puerto Rico, about Elon Musk’s proposal to make Puerto Rico the model of sustainable energy. We also visited the Casa Sol Bed and Breakfast in San Juan, which runs entirely on solar power.
Fossil fuel fat cats cause lots of misery in various countries. In principle, sustainable energy like solar panels should be a good alternative. However, when these solar panels are controlled by a billionaire like Tesla corporation boss Elon Musk … Musk in 2017 was one of the disaster profiteers aiming to make a fast buck off the Hurricane Maria disaster in Puerto Rico.
And now …
By Kate Sheppard in the USA, 19 May 2019:
Alexander C. Kaufman, an environmental reporter at HuffPost, was supposed to be on vacation in Puerto Rico earlier this year when he heard Tesla had all but abandoned the solar panels it brought to Vieques after Hurricane Maria ravaged the island. Unable to turn down a good story, he made a side trip to the tiny island off the coast that has been subjected to numerous environmental hardships over the years.
Tesla had announced it was delivering solar panels to the island shortly after the storm, to great fanfare. And while the electric car and solar titan did bring the technology, it didn’t set up the infrastructure or resources needed to keep it running. Alex’s reporting revealed what happens when a gift goes awry.
How did you find out about the panels?
I was talking to a source of mine in the solar industry and mentioned I was heading to Puerto Rico. She tipped me off to what had happened with the Tesla equipment and connected me with an activist on Vieques.
What was the big problem here — a lack of resources, or inattention to the long-term needs of a place like Vieques?
Both. If Tesla’s goal was to show off what its solar panels and batteries could do, it accomplished that. But when the handful of Viequenses with the disposable income to invest in solar panels and batteries tried to buy some, the company told them the wait was anywhere from six months to a year. That’s in large part because Tesla was behind on production of its Model 3 car, and was redirecting its manufacturing efforts to building the vehicles. Then there’s the problem of maintenance. Vieques lost power when the storm severed the undersea cable that connected it to the notoriously dirty and fragile electrical grid on Puerto Rico’s main island. Once that power was restored, Tesla removed some of its equipment and left what remained without a clear plan or funding to keep it in working condition. On a humid, tropical island with lots of plants and a wild horse for every two humans living there, glass solar panels are vulnerable to a host of problems.
Do you think this is a problem with Tesla, or a bigger problem with just dropping solar in places that might not have the capacity to sustain it?
It’s a problem of relying on the charity of $41 billion corporations to do the hard work of providing lasting improvements to public infrastructure. There’s a reason Puerto Ricans call Vieques the “forgotten island.” It’s remote, accessible only by plane or unreliable ferry. It’s sick, literally, with higher rates of cancer and other diseases than almost any part of the United States, thanks to the decades the U.S. Navy used the island for target practice, firing depleted uranium munitions on a place thousands of American citizens live. Puerto Rico’s status as a territory stunted its development. It went into massive debt in the 2000s. A bunch of vulture funds on Wall Street now control that debt, and believe they’re entitled to be paid back before Puerto Ricans are entitled to public goods, like modern, clean electricity. So it’s easy to see why Tesla seemed like the best possible option for building a solar-powered microgrid, for which a sun-soaked island like Vieques is a pretty obvious candidate. But a company like that, which is beholden to its shareholders before anyone else, is never going to build and maintain something that isn’t making it money.
What did the people you talked to in Vieques think about the panels now, a year and a half later?
The opinions ranged from disappointment to cynicism. A lot of people thought Hurricane Maria was an opportunity to start over, and that Tesla was going to change things for the best. But a lot more people doubted any big institution coming from the mainland United States could come to Vieques with pure intentions. Remember, this is a place that rose up in rebellion against the U.S. military at the turn of the 21st century. They led fierce protests to demand the U.S. Navy stop bombing their island, and they won. That’s a rare distinction in world history. Considering their adversaries in that fight were their own federal government, it leaves a lasting sense that they’re really on their own.
Elon Musk is known for having … devoted … fans online. What was the reader response to this piece?
You know that “Simpsons” meme where Apu, representing Tesla fans, dives in front of a bullet headed for Homer, who in this case is Elon Musk?
There was a lot of that. There were also a lot of people, including at least one former Tesla employee, who wrote to me out of concern that stories that critically analyze companies’ philanthropic efforts will encourage those firms to withhold future charity, which sort of proves the point of the story in a way. I got a lot of routine hate mail, too, suggesting that the fossil fuel industry pays me to pump out anti-solar propaganda. Gotta say, I’m a little annoyed my check from Exxon Mobil hasn’t come yet.
This 3 May 2019 video from the USA says about itself:
Joe Biden On His Bromance With Dick Cheney
Joe Biden has opened up about his relationship with Dick Cheney. John Iadarola, Jayar Jackson, and Francis Maxwell, hosts of The Young Turks, break it down.
“Former Vice President Joe Biden seems to have a certain — if not fondness — appreciation, or respect for his fellow second-in-commands. In a clip unearthed Thursday by Young Turks correspondent Emma Vigeland, the former veep had some kind words for his predecessor, Dick Cheney. Speaking at an event on the campus of George Washington University in 2015, Biden referred to Cheney as “a decent man.” “I actually like Dick Cheney, for real,” Biden said. “I get on with him. I think he’s a decent man.”
Read more here.
By Patrick Martin in the USA:
Kicking off his presidential campaign
20 May 2019
Former Vice President Joe Biden … in the contest for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020, formally kicked off his campaign Saturday with a rally in Philadelphia in which he presented himself as the Democratic candidate most able to work with congressional Republicans.
The main slogan of the rally was “unity”, and campaign staff distributed hundreds of placards embossed with the word “United” with instructions to text the word to a specified phone number to enlist in the campaign.
The rally, generously estimated at 6,000, was smaller than those staged by some of Biden’s major rivals for the nomination, including Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and California Senator Kamala Harris. It was dominated by supporters of the Philadelphia and Pennsylvania Democratic Party machines … .
Much of Biden’s address was Democratic Party boilerplate. He denounced Trump as the “divider-in-chief” and criticized the president’s attacks on immigrants and Muslims, but failed to offer any policy for the struggle against racism and bigotry, or the defense of the democratic rights of immigrants.
On virtually every question, Biden proclaimed that the first step was to “beat Trump”. This was his program for immigration, the environment, the defense of democratic rights and the expansion of access to health care. This mantra spared him from the necessity of actually elaborating alternative policies on any of these issues.
There was an obvious contradiction at the core of Biden’s address. While he predicated all social progress on the defeat of the Republican president, he presented his own major credential as the ability to work with virtually any Republican not named Trump, no matter how reactionary.
He outlined two examples of the supposed achievements of the Obama-Biden administration, one enacted with zero Republican votes—the Affordable Care Act—and one dependent for passage on three Republicans in the Senate whom Biden personally lobbied—the 2009 Economic Recovery Act.
“I know how to get things done, folks,” Biden said. “I know how to go toe-to-toe with the GOP. But it doesn’t have to be and it can’t be that way on every issue.”
The choice of those two pieces of legislation was revealing. Both bills were crafted from the standpoint of winning Republican (and Democratic) support by incorporating into their structure the interests of the giant corporations. The Affordable Care Act compelled millions of low-income workers to buy private insurance or pay a penalty. Its goal was to shift the cost of health care from corporations and the government to the working class.
The economic stimulus bill was entirely geared to boosting the profits of the corporations: it did not establish any government jobs program to assist the millions thrown out of work by the 2008 financial crash. It did not create a single new job, relying instead on what Democrats used to denounce as “trickle-down economics”, i.e., providing subsidies to corporations and the rich with the promise that eventually workers would benefit.
The legislation specifically excluded aid to state and local governments, which were financially hemorrhaging under the impact of the Wall Street crash, with the result that some 300,000 school employees, most of them public school teachers, lost their jobs.
That Biden would present these measures as the summit of his achievements in the realm of bipartisan cooperation says a great deal about the policies a future Biden administration and his real attitude to the working class.
The former vice president attempted to address the criticism he has already begun to receive from rivals for the nomination regarding his previous comments on bipartisanship, most notably his claim that Republicans would experience “an epiphany” if Trump were defeated for reelection, i.e., that they would come to their senses and be amenable to compromise with the Democrats.
“I know some of the really smart folks say Democrats don’t want to hear about unity,” Biden said. “They say Democrats are so angry that the angrier a candidate can be the better chance he or she has to win the Democratic nomination. Well, I don’t believe it. I really don’t.”
Just as important as what Biden said in his address is what he did not say and the subjects he avoided. He accepted without question the claims by the Trump White House and the corporate media that the American economy is now booming, saying only that Trump inherited a rising economy from the Obama-Biden administration, “just like he inherited everything else in his life.”
Biden said nothing at all about rising economic inequality, stagnant wages, deepening poverty and social misery, the enormous toll of opioid addiction, the daily slaughter of working class youth and minorities at the hands of the police, or any of the manifold social evils that plague the American working class. Other words he avoided included: “millionaire”, “billionaire”, “rich”, “Wall Street”, “hedge fund”, “stock market”, “profit”.
Apparently this is what Biden means by striking a note of “optimism:” a cynical refusal to acknowledge the social crisis produced by the decay of American capitalism.
The former vice president, who played an active role in the foreign policy of the Obama administration—and was selected as running mate in part because of his longtime role on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee—said nothing at all about any event taking place outside the borders of the United States. Nothing on Iran, Venezuela, North Korea, China or the mounting trade tensions in world capitalism.
His only comment in this area, an echo of the anti-Russian campaign fomented by congressional Democrats, was to criticize Trump because he “praises tyrants like Putin and Kim Jong Un”. What a Biden administration would do in relation to any of the foreign targets of American imperialism he did not say.
But he closed the speech with a boast that the United States has “the biggest economy in the world, and the most powerful military in the history of the world.” His final words—apparently an invocation to be delivered at the end of every address—were “and may God protect our troops.”
This is the perspective of the politician currently favored for the Democratic presidential nomination and the most likely—after Trump himself—to be the occupant of the White House in 2021.
Biden’s speech will arouse little interest and less enthusiasm among working people, but that was not his primary audience. He was above all reassuring Wall Street, the military-intelligence apparatus and the political establishment as a whole that Joe Biden is a safe pair of hands, an alternative to be preferred to the erratic Trump, whose increasingly authoritarian rule risks provoking a massive movement of popular opposition from below.
By Joe Garden in the USA:
Today, Biden is the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination, despite women calling him out for touching them in ways that made them uncomfortable at public events, and despite objections from the left wing of the party. He has said he has “no empathy” for the problems millennials are experiencing and claimed that Republicans will embrace bipartisanship after Trump is defeated. As I watch him campaign as an old (-fashioned, -school, -old) centrist, I realize how badly we screwed up. Instead of viciously skewering a public figure who deserved scrutiny, we let him off easy.
This video shows an Eurasian lynx in Sweden.