Always Controversial

Closing Thought–29Apr20

Filmmaker Michael Moore seems to always be in the middle of some controversy or another……usually from the Right….but his new film has Green Power activists upset…..the Left is upset….WTF?

Michael Moore is used to taking all kinds of criticism over his films. His new one, however, offers a twist on that. Many environmentalists and other usual Moore supporters on the left are outraged over the documentary Planet of the Humans, while conservative sites, including Breitbart, are singing its praises. Coverage:

  • The film: You can watch it on YouTube. Moore is an executive producer, while Jeff Gibbs, who has collaborated with Moore frequently, is the director and narrator.
  • The premise: The film aims to call out hypocrisy in the green movement, particularly in regard to solar energy, electric cars, and big environmental groups such as the Sierra Club, per Gizmodo. It casts “renewables as no better than fossil fuels and environmental groups as sleek corporate outfits in bed with billionaires helping kill the planet,” writes Brian Kahn. The film argues that population control is perhaps the best answer to the planet’s problems, though Kahn complains that interviews conducted to buttress this point have “more than a whiff of eugenics and ecofascism.”
  • The criticism: Fellow documentary maker Josh Fox (Gasland) is leading the charge against the movie with a petition that is gaining steam. His letter calls the film “shockingly misleading” and says it “touts blatantly untrue fossil fuel industry talking points,” reports the Guardian.
  • Briefly pulled: One of the movie’s distributors, Films for Action, took down the film temporarily after declaring it was “full of misinformation.” However, the company later rescinded the move, saying it didn’t want claims of censorship to give the movie “more power and mystique than it deserves.”
  • Detailed critique: At Vox, UC Santa Barbara assistant professor Leah C. Stokes provides a detailed takedown of the movie. Among other things, she says it uses old data on electric cars and wind and solar energy, adding that “the largest share of the movie’s scorn goes to biomass—generally, burning wood—which supplied less than 2% of the US electricity mix last year.” The filmmakers, though, “obscure that fact, showing graphs that imply biomass is leading to forest destruction across the US.” The movie inexplicably goes after green groups instead of fossil fuel companies or utilities, she writes, and her essay’s headline calls the film a “gift to big oil.”
  • Al Gore a target: The film goes after green heavyweights, including Bill McKibben, co-founder of 350.org, who has fired back with a defense. It also lays into Al Gore, suggesting that his famous An Inconvenient Truth documentary might have been timed to help Gore’s green investments.
  • Moore’s take: Promo material for the film calls attention to the coronavirus pandemic. “This film is the wake-up call to the reality we are afraid to face: that in the midst of a human-caused extinction event, the environmental movement’s answer is to push for techno-fixes and band-aids,” reads a promo cited by Real Clear Politics. “It’s too little, too late.” The promo adds that “getting a grip on our out-of-control human presence and consumption” is “the only thing that MIGHT save us.”

Has Moore gone over to the Radical Right?

Moore gets raked over the coals…..https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/04/28/demoralizing-new-michael-moore-film-attacks-climate-movement-time-when-solutions

All this PR can only be good for the profits of the film….I know I am a cynic….but questions need answers.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

The 2020 Vote

NOTE:  This is an old draft but the thoughts are still valid.

There are a few things we need to look at before the big day when we Americans decide who will lead the country in the next 4 years.

First let’s look at the last couple elections…..and the candidates…..

Al Gore (centrist) – lost, John Kerry (centrist) – lost,  Hillary Clinton (centrist) – lost…… While also a centrist, Barack Obama campaigned as a progressive and won handily in 2008….then reverted back to the centrist he truly was.

Just a thought

There are issues that have never made the debate stage and I feel that they should be discussed so the voter knows where these people stand.

Remember several years ago, I know that is hard in the trials and tribulations of a Trump presidency, the main thing we all were writing about was the discovery of the NSA’s spying on us mere mortals.

National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden said Tuesday that 2020 White House candidates should publicly declare their stance on the U.S. government’s “unconstitutional mass surveillance program.”

Snowden made the comments following a New York Times report showing the agency’s sprawling photo data collection effort was hugely expensive and largely useless.

Charlie Savage’s reporting on the program under the USA Freedom Act of 2015, which is set to expire March 15, showed the suspended call records program “cost $100 million from 2015 to 2019” and produced “a single significant investigation.” The Times report cited a declassified, partly censored version of a report from the congressionally-created Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board.

The NSA shut down the program—initially exposed by Snowden in 2013 and then modified in 2015—last year.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/26/presidential-candidates-should-declare-their-stance-costly-failure-nsas

There are only a couple of candidates left…..so they should go on the record about the NSA programs.

Just one of those situations that the next president needs to handle….I am not all that confident that this one will do anything but throw words at it.

I realize that the normal American has the attention span of a goldfish so this needs to refresh their meager minds on the violations of our right to privacy.

But the elections have become high entertainment….Voters need to take voting seriously…..instead of a hobby they delve into every few years…..

Has politics become a form of entertainment? With debates every week, opinion polls every day, the insatiable appetite of 24/7 cable news for fresh “content,” heated arguments online around the clock, and the clickbait casting of heroes and villains, politics may indeed be America’s new national pastime. 

We know the names of all the players. We know the odds, the delegate counts, and the morning line.

That’s what this week’s WhoWhatWhy podcast guest, professor Eitan Hersh, calls “political hobbyism” — another shallow, home-based, and technology-driven activity that takes us out of our community and away from personal engagement. In his view, it runs counter to the very idea of what politics should be.

Political Hobbyism Is Not Politics

Please Learn Stuff!

VOTE!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Good Enough For Donald Then Why Not Joe?

Never let it be said that I am not a fair and balanced bitcher…..

Remember the sh*t storm the media made out of the women who claim to have been sexual assaulted by Trump?

Or maybe the accusations by women on the assault by supreme court dullard Kavanaugh?

The MSM spent weeks if not months on these accusations….they analyzed the situations from every conceivable angle….

And now we have the Dem presumptive candidate for 2020 Joe Biden….and a woman has come forward, Tara Reade, and accused the VP of sexual assault…..

Two more people have come forward to say Tara Reade, the woman who says Joe Biden sexually assaulted her when she was his aide in 1993, talked to them about the alleged incident at the time. “This happened, and I know it did because I remember talking about it,” a former neighbor of Reade’s tells Business Insider. And a former colleague of Reade’s, who worked with her after she worked for Biden, says she remembers Reade talking about her former boss in Washington, DC, sexually harassing her. She says Reade complained that she was fired after raising concerns about the treatment. Biden’s camp has denied Reade’s allegations. Two others, including Reade’s brother, have previously come forward to corroborate her story, while other former coworkers of Reade’s have cast doubt on the claims.

The former neighbor says an emotional Reade told her the story while crying. “I remember her saying, here was this person that she was working for and she idolized him. And he kind of put her up against a wall. And he put his hand up her skirt and he put his fingers inside her. She felt like she was assaulted, and she really didn’t feel there was anything she could do.” Last week, the Intercept unearthed an anonymous caller to Larry King’s show in 1993 that Tara Reade says was her mother. During a show about the culture in DC, the unnamed woman discussed the problems her daughter was having with a senator. “My daughter has just left there, after working for a prominent senator, and could not get through with her problems at all, and the only thing she could have done was go to the press, and she chose not to do it out of respect for him,” the caller says.

So there is collaboration of what the woman has claimed and yet the MSM has stayed away from this as best they can.

I realize that the virus sucks all the oxygen out of most stories….but this one is about the presumptive Dem candidate….they should work as hard as they did for Trump and Kavanaugh.

If Trump’s sexual accusations were news then….and Kavanaugh’s as well….then Biden should be just as imperative.

Biden was unequivocal in his demand that Americans must believe women as a matter of unwavering reflex. “For a woman to come forward in the glaring lights of focus, nationally,” Biden argued, “you’ve got to start off with the presumption that at least the essence of what she’s talking about is real, whether or not she forgets facts, whether or not it’s been made worse or better over time.”

https://www.nationalreview.com/2020/04/the-hypocrisy-on-tara-reade-is-a-national-disgrace/

By basically ignoring this situation the MSM is just adding fuel to the fire of “fake news” accusations by Trump and the ilk that worship him…..and creating a mess for Dems…..

The Tara Reade allegations against Joe Biden—that he sexually assaulted her in the 1990s—seem to be gaining credibility by the day, writes Rebecca Traister at the Cut. As a result, Democrats now have a “grievous mess” on their hands. The growing corroboration of the Reade allegations “should surely imperil Biden’s position at the top of the ticket, though it remains to be seen whether—in the midst of the COVID crisis and with all the other candidates out of contention—there is any chance that they will,” writes Traister. In the meantime, consider the impossible predicament Biden’s running mate will be in. He has promised to pick a woman; whomever he picks will not only have to answer for Biden’s treatment of women but will likely be diminished for her association to him. The latter is especially true if he picks a strong progressive.

This should prove interesting as the VP search begins….

Let me say here…this does NOT mean I am defending Trump in any way…..I still think he is a danger to our society…..I just want the MSM to do what they should be doing….reporting the news (do not get me started on the bias reporting out of Israel)…..

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Pandemic Profiteers

There are some of the lowest of the low in society those people that profit off of war….and now we can add another to the list of worthless slugs of society…pandemic profiteers.

Think about this for a moment…..26 million Americans lose their jobs, the billionaire class has added $308bn to its wealth…..

Never let a good crisis go to waste: as the coronavirus pandemic sweeps the world, America’s 1% have taken profitable advantage of the old saying.

Some of the richest people in the US have been at the front of the queue as the government has handed out trillions of dollars to prop up an economy it shuttered amid the coronavirus pandemic. At the same time, the billionaire class has added $308bn to its wealth in four weeks – even as a record 26 million people lost their jobs.

According to a new report from the Institute for Policy Studies, a progressive thinktank, between 18 March and 22 April the wealth of America’s plutocrats grew 10.5%. After the last recession, it took over two years for total billionaire wealth to get back to the levels they enjoyed in 2007.

Eight of those billionaires have seen their net worth surge by over $1bn each, including the Amazon boss, Jeff Bezos, and his ex-wife MacKenzie Bezos; Eric Yuan, founder of Zoom; the former Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer; and Elon Musk, the Tesla and SpaceX technocrat

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/26/heads-we-win-tails-you-lose-how-americas-rich-have-turned-pandemic-into-profit

Yes a number of billionaires have used the pandemic to their advantage……(a reiteration)……

A number of American billionaires have used the coronavirus pandemic to grow even wealthier than they were before.

In fact, billionaires in the U.S. have increased their wealth by a combined $282 billion, Fast Company reports. That’s a ten percent increase over where the billionaire class stood at the beginning of March — illustrating how the global crisis has furthered global inequality.

https://futurism.com/the-byte/billionaires-making-killing-off-pandemic

Time for Americans to wake up and see what is being done to them and their country….it is not pretty and it is a crime in my eyes…..it must STOP!

Stop the Pandemic Profiteers

We Americans have the power to make this stop and to reverse the growing inequality….but the question is….do we want this to stop or just go away for awhile?

Me?

I want these fuckers in prison for treason and profiteering…..and I want change and I have been working for that change my whole life and not many were listening……maybe now the deafness has passed.

We will see!

Watch This Blog!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Cerium….Yttrium….Lanthanum….Oh My…..

Nope those are not the names of some obscure Greek god…..but rather something that is extremely useful….those “rare earth minerals”….

Just what about these minerals that makes them so important?

Rare earth elements are a group of seventeen chemical elements that occur together in the periodic table (see image). The group consists of yttrium and the 15 lanthanide elements (lanthanum, cerium, praseodymium, neodymium, promethium, samarium, europium, gadolinium, terbium, dysprosium, holmium, erbium, thulium, ytterbium, and lutetium). Scandium is found in most rare earth element deposits and is sometimes classified as a rare earth element. The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry includes scandium in their rare earth element definition.

Rare earth metals and alloys that contain them are used in many devices that people use every day such as computer memory, DVDs, rechargeable batteries, cell phones, catalytic converters, magnets, fluorescent lighting and much more.

During the past twenty years, there has been an explosion in demand for many items that require rare earth metals. Twenty years ago very few people owned a mobile phone, but today over 5 billion people own a mobile device. The use of rare earth elements in computers has grown almost as fast as cell phones.

Uses of rare earth elements

But the most important part of their usage is for national defense…..

Rare earth elements play an essential role in our national defense. The military uses night-vision goggles, precision-guided weapons, communications equipment, GPS equipment, batteries, and other defense electronics. These give the US military an enormous advantage. Rare earth metals are key ingredients for making the very hard alloys used in armored vehicles and projectiles that shatter upon impact.

Substitutes can be used for rare earth elements in some defense applications; however, those substitutes are usually not as effective and that diminishes military superiority.

Defense Uses of Rare Earth Elements

Lanthanum night-vision goggles
Neodymium laser range-finders, guidance systems, communications
Europium fluorescents and phosphors in lamps and monitors
Erbium amplifiers in fiber-optic data transmission
Samarium permanent magnets that are stable at high temperatures
Samarium precision-guided weapons
Samarium “white noise” production in stealth technology

Now that I have brought my reader up to speed on rare earth minerals I will now explain why I brought all this up…(as if you have to ask)…..

I have written about this several times….it helps explain why we do what we do in some of these endless wars……https://lobotero.com/2019/06/04/it-is-about-rare-earth/

https://lobotero.com/2019/06/22/the-rare-earth/

Damn that took longer than I anticipated…..trying to give you all the facts that can help explain this next part…..

The US wants to end its dependency on REM from China….but it may not be that easy…..

The United States wants to curb its reliance on China for specialized minerals used to make weapons and high-tech equipment, but it faces a Catch-22.

It only has one rare earths mine – and government scientists have been told not to work with it because of its Chinese ties.

The mine is southern California’s Mountain Pass, home to the world’s eighth-largest reserves of the rare earths used in missiles, fighter jets, night-vision goggles and other devices.

But the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has told government scientists not to collaborate with the mine’s owner, MP Materials, the DOE’s Critical Materials Institute told Reuters.

This is because MP Materials is almost a tenth-owned by a Chinese investor and relies heavily on Chinese sales and technical know-how, according to the company.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-rareearths-insight/american-quandary-how-to-secure-weapons-grade-minerals-without-china-idUSKCN2241KF

Our longest war…Afghanistan…..could it have anything to do with the duration of this conflict?

After more than a decade of war and nation building, members of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan are heading for the exits. Although what ISAF will leave behind is better than what was there in 2001, Afghanistan remains a battered land. However, the resources Afghanistan’s land holds — copper, cobalt, iron, barite, sulfur, lead, silver, zinc, niobium, and 1.4 million metric tons of rare-earth elements (REEs) — may be a silver lining.

U.S. agencies estimate Afghanistan’s mineral deposits to be worth upwards of $1 trillion. In fact, a classified Pentagon memo called Afghanistan the “Saudi Arabia of lithium.” (Although lithium is technically not a rare earth element, it serves some of the same purposes.)

https://www.fraserinstitute.org/article/afghanistans-rare-earth-element-bonanza

Does Afghanistan hold the key to breaking our dependency on China for these minerals and our continued production?

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”