Friday, April 03, 2020

Denying the American people is what Congress does


BBC NEWS reports:

The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits has hit a record high for the second week in a row as the economic toll tied to the coronavirus intensifies.
More than 6.6 million people filed jobless claims in the week ended 28 March, the Department of Labor said.
That is nearly double the week earlier, which was also a new record.
The deepening economic crisis comes as the number of cases in the US soars to more than 216,000.
With the death toll rising to more than 5,000, the White House recently said it would retain restrictions on activity to try to curb the outbreak.

And that's why we needed a real stimulus and not the nonsense Congress served up last Friday. CNBC reports that Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, is saying it's time for another stimulus.

April 20th is when Congress is thought to be back in session so nothing's happening before then. CNBC notes that there are at least 200,000 confirmed cases in the US of coronavirus so far. We need real relief. We didn't get it from Congress. Last go round, Senator Bernie Sanders pointed out the minimum required was $2,000 a month for every adult. But Congress didn't fight for that -- including Bernie, sad to say. Now unemployment is rising and people are at the first of the month, struggling to hold on. Will they be able to? Maybe not. Does the Congress care? I can't see any indication that they do. Prove me wrong -- that's my attitude. Make me look like a fool for doubting the Congress. I'll be happy to wear a dunce's cap if it means Americans can get what they need to make it through this pandemic without losing everything.

The Congress has made it clear to me that we are not all in this together. Corporations come first, before We The People, before hospitals and providers.

And on that, let me point something out. I get thanked by patients and that's great. But if you're not a patient going out in this, you may not realize it. None of us could be at work if it weren't for the hardworking staff that comes in and cleans. They deserve thanks. It's not a glamour job in good times. During a pandemic, it is a dangerous job. But the custodial staff really makes a true effort and they deserve praise for all that they do. You would not want to attend an appointment without their having been at work. They deserve thanks, they deserve hazard pay and they are necessary to keep hospitals and clinics going and to keep them safe and clean.

This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" for Thursday:


Thursday, April 2, 2020.  High school drop out Whoopi Goldberg attacks Bernie Sanders because she doesn't understand democracy and can't do the math, even without the corporate media reporting on Tara Reade's allegations against Joe Biden, the news is getting out, and much that.


Starting in the US where the race for the Democratic Party's presidential nomination continues.  Yesterday, Senator Bernie Sanders was attacked by Jabba The Hut.  Yes, he appeared on THE VIEW and Whoopi Goldberg tried to eat him for breakfast.

Storm Gifford (NEW YORK DAILY NEWS) reports how the morbidly obese Whoopi Goldberg attacked Bernie:


It’s no surprise that the tone on “The View” got testy, but this time there was no blaming Meghan McCain.

On Wednesday’s episode of the TV gabfest, Goldberg — still working from home due to coronavirus concerns — grilled Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders as to why he was moving forth on his White House bid despite significantly trailing frontrunner Joe Biden.
“I’m told that you intend to stay in this race because you believe there is a path to victory,” Goldberg asked the Vermont senator, who was interviewed from his home.


If nothing else, Whoopi is exploding at least one stereotype: The one about fat people being jolly.

If Barbara Walters wasn't in a home and in bad health, Whoopi would be gone.  Instead, she gets to continue episode after episode ruining the show that Barbara created.  It was supposed to be a place where women of various backgrounds could have an honest and respectful conversation.  Instead, it's just a mud fight among ugly women.  And Whoopi is an awful host.  She's walked out in the midst of interviews, she attacks guests, she doesn't know how to host.

She's the prize pig in ABC's stye.  What a proud moment for a woman who last had a hit film in 1992.  How wonderful of ABC to give this high school drop out a position on TV where she uses her untrained and uneducated mind to pontificate on every problem under the sun never inhibited by her appalling ignorance.

High school drop out Whoopi never bothered to attend college and it shows.  It really shows.  It's not often a raging idiot like Whoopi exposes themselves on TV so constantly.

Whoopi does not see a path to victory for Bernie Sanders.

Bernie currently has 914 delegates.  To win the Democratic Party's presidential nomination, he needs to get 1991 delegates.  Currently, he is 1027 away from that number.

Stupid Whoopi, drop out Whoopi, dumb ass Whoopi, how many delegates are still up for grabs?

1619.

And Bernie only needs 1027.

Is there a path to victory?

Unless you're as stupid and uneducated as Whoopi, you can grasp that, yes, Bernie can pull this off.

Will he?

I'm not making predictions.  But it is possible?

Yes, it is.

I get it.  Whoopi's ignorant.  She's never understood the democratic process, let alone how primaries work.  She's just dumb and stupid.

There are 27 primaries still to be held.  There are 1619 delegates still to be awarded.

If you're brainless and dense like Whoopi, that means nothing.  If you grasp how democracy works, you get that those primaries need to be held.

Whoopi would probably insist that her stupidity and dropping out came from dyslexia.  Oh, boo-hoo.  I have it too.  A lot of us do.  I'm rhyming.  But most of us learned to manage it.  Whoopi was too stupid for that.  She has a career of bit parts in films because she was too stupid to avoid the nasty image she built.  Starting with getting Howard Zieff fired from her second film, JUMPING JACK FLASH, Whoopi has always been seen as a first-rate bitch.  Zieff directed THE MAIN EVENT (Barbra Streisand), PRIVATE BENJAMIN (Goldie Hawn), MY GIRL, HOUSE CALLS and HEARTS OF THE WEST (Jeff Bridges).

Penny Marshall was hired to replace Howard with the hopes that Whoopi would get along with her.  She did not and she floated the idea that Penny should be fired.  Penny was more popular in the industry and with FOX so it didn't happen.  Instead, Whoopi just threw tantrums each day on the set.  Again, this was her second film.  Her tantrums got worse with each film.  Most of it probably was the result of insecurity.  She was taking the parts that Cher, Bruce Willis and others had turned down.  She was no one's first or second or third or . . . choice.  And she can't act.  On THE COLOR PURPLE, Steven Spielberg grasped that he couldn't work with her like he would a normal actor so instead he treated her like a child actor, he'd go up to her before each take and explain the way he wants her to react, "Like ___ in ___."  She did a great job pretending to be this actor and that in THE COLOR PURPLE, she just never bothered to create Celie.  And that's what she's done with every one of her films since.

After five flops in a row, she had to move into character parts and, though no one wanted her for GHOST, she managed to steal the role from Jackee -- and she imitated Jackee in the film.  The Academy Award -- for Best Supporting Actress -- led to DISNEY deciding they could rebuild her career the way they had earlier with Bette Midler.  SISTER ACT would be a huge hit but everything else that followed proved that you had to have real talent (which Bette does) to have a string of hit of movies.  All Whoopi had was SISTER ACT.  18 years later, it's still all she has.

Or all she has to point to with pride.  The former Slim Fast spokesperson (they fired her long ago) can't keep the pounds off, not even after 2019's health scare.  People don't tend to notice that because she distracts them by insisting that Roman Polanski didn't commit "rape-rape."  It wasn't real rape, she wanted America to know, despite the fact that Roman himself had entered a guilty plea.  Again, she's stupid.  She's ignorant.  Why she's allowed on TV to share her opinions is anyone's guess.

I don't mean: Why isn't she doing movies!!!!  She has a lousy image of being a pain in the ass on every production.  No one's going to hire her for a lead role.  She can't do a TV show -- real TV show, primetime TV show -- because she's flopped every time she's tried.  So she's gone to the sewer of daytime TV gab show.  This is the woman who couldn't even cut it on HOLLYWOOD SQUARES which is why, despite being a producer (a vanity credit, she didn't do any actual producing), Whoopi was kicked to the curb in 2002 and she was replaced with Henry Winkler.

Yesterday, Whoopi asked Bernie why he didn't drop out of the race.  Bernie didn't ask her why she didn't drop out of the entertainment industry -- the answer was clear: The industry long ago dropped Whoopi.  Bit parts and bad Tyler Perry movies are what she tries to pass off as a career.


Whoopi is supporting presumed rapist Joe Biden.  Former senate staffer Tara Reade has detailed her allegations of being attacked by Joe Biden.  Another failed actress is Alyssa Milano.  CHARMED as cancelled in 2006.  There's been nothing of value since.  She couldn't get a long with the show runner on MISTRESSES -- she tried to get the woman fired -- so she left the show while pretending it was because she didn't want to film in Canada.  She attacked the CHARMED reboot -- for daring to cast Women Of Color in the leads?  Remember, after the third season of the original CHARMED, Alyssa is a producer.  There's producer Brad Kern who assaults women in the workplace -- and gets fired by CBS for doing that on a CBS show (NCIS: NEW ORLEANS) but producer Alyssa claims she was never aware of anything like that going on at CHARMED.  Read Rose McGowan's book and you'll realize that a lot was going on and, yes, Alyssa was aware.  Before she got that producing credit, she did her part to run off Shannen Doherty.  Now that Shannen's in stage-four on her cancer.  Does Alyssa think she can just ignore the public apology she owes Shannen?  She's so stupid, she may not grasp that if that apology is not made before Shannen passes away, it will be even worse for Alyssa.  When she became a 'producer' of CHARMED, the show never added another African-American character -- all the ones on the show were created by Constance M. Burge -- the creator who left the show because of Alyssa.  That's why she thought she'd get away with getting the show runner fired from MISTRESSES but she didn't.  And the entire cast of that show -- male and female -- hates her -- not just hated her when they worked with her, actively hates her to this day.

So this former child-actress who never bothered to learn how to act weighed in yesterday to praise Whoopi for attacking Bernie: "Thank you Whoopi Goldberg.  This moment in time is too important to take bulls**t from politicians."  Alyssa just increased the call outs on herself for refusing to note Tara Reade.

Alyssa's a hypocrite and this is nothing new.  Yes, I consider Illeana Douglas a friend.  When she publicly came forward about Leslie Moonves assaulting her, I supported her here and I noted that I'd heard the story years ago from Martin Scorsese.  But you know who didn't defend her?

Alyssa.

Alyssa never defended Illeana.  She never called out Leslie Moonves.  And we called Alyssa out for that.  See, Leslie was over CBS and THE CW and Alyssa had a pilot she was desperately -- Norma Desmond desperately -- trying to get on the air.  So she stayed silent.

Rose McGowan long ago told everyone that Alyssa was a fake.  And she is.  She will use anything to get her name out there.  She doesn't support #MeToo or #Times Up.  Nor could she while married to a CAA agent.  CAA enabled this behavior for years.  They actively covered for men like Harvey Weinstein and they actively procured women -- they'd send women to 'interviews' knowing the women would be assaulted.  A French actress who had two hit films in the US (made in the US, hits in the US) left this country because of CAA and will not come back because they set her up on an 'interview' that was rape.  Alyssa'a fake ass.

And people are catching on -- click here to read some of the Tweets called the failed adult actress out.  While Alyssa is silent, Rose is not -- here, here and here for just three examples.  Rose is the real deal.  Alyssa is just someone who uses #MeToo to try to get attention.


Yesterday, we noted Amanada Maracotte's attack on Tara.  Krystal Ball responds to that attack below.






And we'll note this video where Krystal Ball and Saagar Enjeti call out the corporate media for refusing to cover Tara's story.



Amanda Marcotte thought she could misdirect and lie and cover for the corporate media and others.  She can't.  It doesn't matter where you are on the political spectrum, you are hearing about this story and you are noticing that the corporate media is ignoring it.

On the left, THE ALL AMERICAN SOCIALIST is covering it.



On the right, MRCTV is covering it.




Sonali Kolhatkar spoke with Branko Marcetic on RISING UP WITH SONALI (also UPRISING WITH SONALI) about  his article on the silence greeting Tara Reade's allegations.

Greg Piper (THE COLLEGE FIX) notes:

Now that he’s been accused of sexual assault by a former employee – an accusation that drew little legacy media coverage – some Democratic student groups are showing their consistency on the issue.
The University of Pennsylvania’s Penn Democrats and Penn for Bernie demanded that Biden’s campaign and mainstream media outlets investigate the allegations by Tara Reade, his former Senate staffer, The Daily Pennsylvanian reports.

Left-wing outlets Vox and The Intercept have run lengthy articles in the past week on the cold shoulder Reade has received since she aired a more narrow version of her allegations a year ago, accusing Biden of inappropriately touching her shoulder and neck.
They were largely in line with allegations by a former Nevada lawmaker, Lucy Flores, but the sudden wave of claims against Biden were not enough to make Penn reconsider naming its new Washington, D.C.-based center after him.


This is story is out there.  We are doing video links with students instead of our face-to-face conversations and this is a big issue with students.  That's where Joe already has an enthusiasm gap.  As Sonali pointed out in her interview "Trump will bring it up" if Joe is the candidate in the general election.

Turning to Iraq, John David Randolph Hilty is the name of the US soldier who died this week in Iraq.  WBNS notes:

A soldier from Bowie, Maryland, died in Iraq in a non-combat related incident on Monday, according to Department of Defense officials.
John David Randolph Hilty, 44, was a Bowie resident who entered the Army as a combat engineer about 21 years ago. DOD officials said that at the time of Hilty's death in Erbil, Iraq, he was working as a petroleum supply specialist.

KXXV adds:

Hilty died March 30, in Erbil, Iraq, of a non-combat related incident. The incident is under investigation.
He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division since October 2019.
"TF ATTACK is deeply saddened by the loss of Sgt. 1st Class Hilty. He was an exceptional leader who will be sorely missed throughout the entire formation. His loss will not be forgotten and his legacy will continue through the outstanding performance of the Soldiers he led," said Lt. Col. Adam Camarano, 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade commander.
Hilty deployments include three tours to Afghanistan from January 2009 to December 2009, January 2012 to December 2012, October 2016 to October 2017 and most recently to Iraq in October 2019.



Chad Garland (STARS AND STRIPES) explains:


  His death marks the seventh fatality for the coalition this year. Six occurred in March alone and all but two were combat-related.
Army Spc. Antonio I. Moore was killed in a vehicle rollover incident in Syria on Jan. 25 while conducting route clearance operations in Deir al-Zour province.
Marine Raiders Gunnery Sgt. Diego D. Pongo and Capt. Moises A. Navas, both 34, were killed March 8 during combat operations in northern Iraq, where a joint U.S. and Iraqi raid encountered Islamic State group militants in a well-fortified cave system.
Days later, the rocket attack on Camp Taji killed Mendez Covarrubias, Oklahoma Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Marshal D. Roberts and British Army Lance Cpl. Brodie Gillon, a combat medic and reservist who volunteered for deployment with the Irish Guards Battle Group.

More than a dozen others were injured in that attack, which the Pentagon blamed on an Iran-backed militia. In response, U.S. airstrikes hit several sites south of Baghdad, which the Defense Department said the militia used as weapons storage facilities.


In other news, Robert Schroeder (MARKETWATCH) reports:

President Donald Trump warned Iran on Wednesday against attacking U.S. troops or assets in Iraq, saying the Islamic Republic would pay a “heavy price” for such a move.

“Upon information and belief, Iran or its proxies are planning a sneak attack on U.S. troops and/or assets in Iraq,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “If this happens, Iran will pay a very heavy price, indeed!” he said, without providing more details.


The following sites updated:









Thursday, April 02, 2020

What we need is clear

Tim Higginbotham (Jacobin) notes:

The US health care system is going to be overwhelmed by the coronavirus pandemic for months to come. But when the spread of the virus finally does subside, many of its impacts will be here to stay. With millions of Americans likely to need expensive hospital stays this year, our nationwide health care costs are expected to increase by as much as $251 billion, according to a new analysis. As a result, US health insurance premiums could rise by up to 40 percent in 2021, exacerbating a crisis of ever-increasing costs that already leave Americans paying far more for care than the people of any other country.
What this means is that we’re about to hit a fork in the road with the private insurance industry. The coronavirus is shredding insurers’ profits right now, underlining the fact that private insurance is simply not built to handle a medical crisis. Having to cover a surge of expensive treatment — and, in some cases, having to waive co-pays —  is antithetical to the premise of for-profit insurance. Saddled with these unexpected costs, private insurers’ only alternative to drastically raising our premiums will be to request a massive government bailout to avoid bankruptcy.
Allowing private companies to bankroll our health care system has always been a terrible policy choice, but the horror of this approach is about to become even more evident. Hiking premiums in the midst of a devastating pandemic to make up for their losses is an act of cruelty, to be sure. But it’s also the only logical act for companies whose sole purpose is to chase accrescent profits.
Instead of allowing our premiums to skyrocket or bailing out a heartless industry with public funds, thereby prolonging a profit-driven nightmare, we need to seize this watershed moment by taking the step many Americans have demanded for over a century. It’s time to abolish the private insurance industry and create a single, national insurance plan in its place.

I 100% agree.  We need Medicare For All.

I know the idiot Whoopi Goldberg doesn't think so.  But I'll put my years as a nurse up against her years as a loud mouth ass on TV any day.  She doesn't know a damn thing about anything and that includes the medical industry.

America needs Medicare For All.  It is a need, not a want.

And the coronavirus is making that clear which is why creeps like Whoopi Goldberg are attacking Bernie Sanders.

This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" for Wednesday:


Wednesday, April 1, 2020.  If the corporate media is going to pretend Joe Biden is already the nominee is it equally fair to start presenting as "presumed rapist Joe Biden"?  We look at that and many other things including Amanda Marcotte's latest nonsense.


Joshua Collins is running for Congress and Tweets under Joshua4Congress and this is one of his Tweets:

This is gonna make a lot of people mad, but because of the very credible rape allegation against Joe Biden, I have decided I cannot vote for him if he's the nominee.  Y'all can vote for whichever rapist you want, count me out.


Meanwhile Meg Slay Tweets:

Symone Sanders tweeted her support for Blasey Ford + #MeToo
. She said if her rapist ran for president, she would come forward even if it was 50 years later. Now that she's a Senior Advisor to Joe Biden, who has been accused of sexual assault, Symone has scrubbed her tweets.


Yes, we're starting in the US with presumed rapist Joe Biden.  That is what he is, right?  He's not the presidential nominee for the Democratic Party but REUTERS calls him that here -- no, not in the text of the story but in the caption to Elizabeth Frantz's photo.  So if REUTERS can call him that with 27 primaries still to take place, over 1300 delegates still up for grabs and neither he nor Bernie Sanders having yet reached the 1991 delegate total needed to grab the nomination, I think an argument can be made that referring to him as "presumed rapist Joe Biden" is in line with the garbage that the corporate media -- and Bitch Amanda Marcotte -- are serving up.

Kamille Houston (THE DAILY PENNSYLVANIAN) observes:

Last week, former Senate staffer Tara Reade alleged that Joe Biden sexually assaulted her when she worked in his senate office in 1993. Last year, Reade told the Union that Biden touched her inappropriately on her neck and shoulders, but recently said a sexual assault also occurred. In the past, multiple women have made complaints against the former Penn presidential practice professor for touching them inappropriately or making them uncomfortable, though Reade’s is the first allegation of sexual misconduct.
[. . .]
On-campus political groups like Penn Democrats and Penn for Bernie are calling on Biden's campaign to investigate and address Reade's allegation. 
Penn Dems, who recently endorsed Biden for president, still support him despite the allegation.
In a written statement to The Daily Pennsylvanian, Penn Dems executive board expressed that they take allegations of sexual assault "extremely seriously," and reference their status as a group certified by Penn Violence Prevention's Anti-Violence Engagement Network.
“Tara Reade deserves to be heard and journalistic organizations have an obligation to investigate her allegations," the statement read. "VP Biden should also address them further immediately.” 

Over on the right-wing, Debra Heine (AMERICAN GREATNESS) notes, "It’s been nearly a week since former Joe Biden staffer Tara Reade leveled credible accusations of sexual assault against the presumptive Democrat nominee for president, yet ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and CNN have yet to report on the troubling story, according to Newsbusters.Brad Polumbo (WASHINGTON EXAMINER) adds, "Interestingly, some left-wing outlets such as the Intercept and Vox have covered the accusation, but major liberal national newspapers and networks have almost uniformly ignored it. (The Hill did cover it, in a television interview that’s worth watching.)"  Polumbo also notes this study by the conservative media watchdog the Media Research Center which found:

Since Reade went public, candidate Biden has given long interviews, including: an hour-long CNN town hall on March 27, where he faced 23 questions (13 from CNN’s Anderson Cooper, ten others submitted by audience members); nine minutes on NBC’s Meet the Press on March 29, where he faced nine questions from moderator Chuck Todd; and nearly a quarter-hour on Monday’s MSNBC Live with Katy Tur, where he faced an additional nine questions.
Out of 41 total questions, Biden didn’t face a single one about his new accuser.
           

Branko Marcetic (JACOBIN) explains:

In 2017, the resignation of Senator Al Franken (D-MN) over a series of allegations that he had groped or kissed women without their consent was viewed as a pivotal moment in the long history of sexual abuse on Capitol Hill. As the allegations mounted, thirty senators from his own party, joined by two independents, placed what he later called a “tremendous amount of pressure” on Franken to resign, which he did.
Now, as a sexual assault allegation against Democratic front-runner and former vice president Joe Biden trickles from the world of online news into the mainstream media, all but one of those thirty-two senators are staying silent.
Last week, Tara Reade, a former staffer of Biden’s, alleged that in 1993, he had pushed her up against the wall and groped and penetrated her with his hands, telling her afterward, “You mean nothing to me.” Although Jacobin was unable to reach Reade and has not independently corroborated her story, the Intercept’s Ryan Grim, who originally broke the story, spoke to Reade’s brother and friend, who recounted hearing the story from her at the time. Grim had originally also broken the story about then–Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser, Christine Blasey Ford.
Biden has previously said that “for a woman to come forward in the glaring lights of focus, nationally, you’ve got to start off with the presumption that at least the essence of what she’s talking about is real.” His senior adviser, Symone Sanders, whose personal website describes her as “a champion for women,” had said in 2018 she believed Ford’s allegation, stressing that she didn’t “think anyone that has ever done that, whether it was once in their life or fifty times, deserves to sit at the highest precipice of power.” Biden’s campaign has called Reade’s allegation “false.” 
Jacobin reached out to the twenty-nine Democratic and independent senators who had called for Franken’s resignation three years ago and are still in office, in some cases leaving multiple voicemails and emails, and sometimes speaking directly with staffers. Some of those senators have since endorsed Biden for president, including Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Kamala Harris (D-CA), and Cory Booker (D-NJ). Of those twenty-nine, only one — Ohio’s Sherrod Brown — offered a statement in response:
“Every woman has a right to be heard without fear of intimidation or retribution, and I will always fight for that right.”

Perhaps the most surprising silence came from Senator Gillibrand, who has carved out a profile as a champion of women and sexual assault victims. Gillibrand has fought for years to ensure accusers in the military can be heard and see justice, and she was the first senator to call for Franken’s resignation in 2017, without an investigation into the allegations first.


Nolan Finley (DETROIT NEWS) observes

I do tend to believe Reade. As I said, her allegations fit into Biden’s pattern of interactions with women, and there’s no doubt the two knew and worked together.
But she and Ford share in common a lack of evidence to support their claims, beyond their own word.
Ford’s word was good enough for the left to embrace as a weapon against Kavanaugh. No one is thanking Reade for telling her story. Few are even listening to her tell it.
#MeToo should change its motto. Believe all women, except when their stories are inconvenient to our political agenda.


On Tuesday, Tara Reade spoke to DEMOCRACY NOW! about her allegations:

TARA READE: I actually tried to tell the story to some extent in 1993, in the sense that I wanted to talk about it, but I was too afraid. My mother had encouraged me to file a police report, and I did not, and I should have. So I filed a sexual harassment claim, where just I filled out a paper and then did not hear back.

AMY GOODMAN: Can you give us the circumstances, how you ended up — what was the day, how you ended up alone with Joe Biden? Explain what happened that day.

TARA READE: I was approached by my supervisor. She handed me a gym bag and said, “Hurry, Joe wants this, so get it to him. He’ll meet you down towards the Capitol.” And I went down the stairs, and I don’t remember exactly where I was, because there’s connections between the Russell Building and all of that and the corridors, but we were in a semi-private location. It wasn’t a room. It wasn’t, you know, the Russell Office Building — I mean, in his office. It was down in the corridors. And I handed him the gym bag.
And then he — it was one, as I described, fluid moment. He was talking to me, and he said some things that I don’t recall. And I was up against the wall. And he — I remember the coldness of the wall. And I remember his hands underneath my blouse and underneath my skirt, and his fingers penetrating me as he was trying to kiss me and I was pulling away. And he pulled back, and he said, “Come on, man. I heard you liked me.” But he was angry. It was like a tight voice. And he tended to smile when he was angry. And he isn’t like the Uncle Joe like everybody talks about now. He was younger. He was my dad’s age at that time and very strong. And he looked insulted and angry. And I remember feeling like I had done something wrong when he said that statement. And then I was standing there when he said — he was still near me. He said — pointed his finger and said, “You’re nothing to me. You’re nothing.” And he walked away.
And I don’t remember exactly where I went after. I think I went to the restroom to clean up, but I don’t remember precisely. The next memory I have is sitting on the cold stairs, on the Russell Building back stairs, where the big windows are. And I remember just my whole body shaking. And I remember knowing that — knowing that I had made him angry and that my career was probably over. And I didn’t comply. And I didn’t comply when I was asked to serve drinks at a cocktail party for donors, because, apparently, Joe Biden said, according to a legislative staffer, that I had pretty legs, and he thought I was pretty, and I should serve the drinks. And my supervisor had encouraged me to do so, and I did not. So, sitting on those stairs, the reality hit me.
The next thing I remember was that night and talking to my mom, and she was like, “You need to file a police report. It’s a sexual assault.” And I didn’t think of it as sexual assault, and I didn’t really understand. And I was trying to just get over the shock of it, because I looked up to him. He was supposed to be a champion of women. And I was so thrilled to be at that office and so honored, and it shattered my life and changed the trajectory of my whole career and life. And I lost my job after I complained, and I was fired.

AMY GOODMAN: And how exactly did you complain, Tara? You filed a complaint of sexual harassment against Senator Biden at the time? Now, let’s be clear, this is 1993, two years after he led the Senate Judiciary Committee around the Anita Hill charges against Clarence Thomas. So this is soon after that. You filed a complaint. Did you talk about this happening?

TARA READE: No, I didn’t talk about the sexual assault. What I did was I went through office protocol, which would be to go to your supervisor. And if you’re not happy, you go to the next supervisor, and then the next one would be the chief of staff. And I did go up the chain verbally. And there were a couple of meetings — more than a couple, actually. And there were people taking notes. I mean, I know they took notes. And some were more informal in the hallway, with Marianne. And I was basically — after I had not served the drinks, that whole, you know, episode, I was immediately told, like within a few days, by Marianne’s assistant that I dressed too provocatively, that I was too — that I needed to be less noticeable. And then Marianne got me in the hallway, because I was annoyed by that, and she said, you know, “You want to just keep your head down and do as you’re told, if you want to last here.”
And I went to them and told them I was uncomfortable. So I couched it in those terms. We didn’t use the term “sexual harassment” a lot back then. And I remember saying I was uncomfortable and why. But nothing happened. And in fact, I was put in a windowless office, and I had my duties taken away from me. I was given a desk audit. I was told to call one of my upper-level supervisors even if I went to the restroom. I was not to call or talk to other staffers or go to legislative hearings. I was told that I was given a month to find another job. And I sent out my résumés. And before I did that, because of this retaliation, I told my mother, who gave me the term “retaliation” and explained to me what was happening, and said to march in there and file a sexual harassment claim. And I said — and she used the word. And I said, “Well, you don’t just march into their office. Like, that’s not how this is done.”
So, I had gone through that protocol. Then, when that didn’t work, I went to the outside, which was like a — they had a temporary office set up, so it was Senate personnel or something like that, and I was given a clipboard. I filled out a form and talked about just the incident of the sexual harassment, feeling uncomfortable. And I was told at the window that somebody would call back, you know, call me back in. And they never did.
I ended up looking for work, couldn’t find it. I volunteered for the Robert F. Kennedy memorial. I was fortunate enough to work in the VIP tent and with the family, and it was helping me emotionally, because I was trying to recover from the trauma of what had happened that day. And I didn’t share it with many people at all at that time. It’s just not something that was easy to talk about. It’s not easy to talk about now.
And when I came out in April, I started again — I had the intent to tell the whole history with Biden. But one of the first questions out of the reporter’s mouth was, “Yeah, but it wasn’t sexual, right?” when he was talking about the sexual harassment. And it shut me down. And that’s not his fault. It’s my responsibility, I know, to be brave and to be courageous and say the words. But it just put me off from being able to talk. And then, when the story was hitting, there was so much blowback and smearing on social media that I just didn’t feel comfortable. So I was trying to find a way to tell my story to a legitimate news agency. I didn’t want it sold or, you know, sensationalized or anything nonsense like that. I wanted to have the deeper conversation of how hard it is for survivors of sexual assault and sexual harassment in the workplace to go up against powerful men, because I have not received any payment for this, I have not received any compensation, because the facts are, you know, women are not paid to talk. They’re paid to stay silent. And so I wanted a women’s organization around me, and that’s why I went to Time’s Up.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And, Tara Reade, could you talk about your experience then with Time’s Up, when you went to them and you were hoping that they might be able to assist you in this?

TARA READE: Yes. I went to Time’s Up. They were very gracious. I filled out a form, first of all, on — you know, you do it online. And then I was called about January 24th-ish, right around there, and emailed back, and then we had a phone interview. There was about 20 emails between us, and there were several meetings on the phone. And what they did was they prepared a paragraph describing my case, and they were going to give me attorney referrals. And if you’re economically challenged or you need help with funds, they will help you with a public relations platform for one month, so access to a public relations firm, to tell your story with their platform, and also to have an attorney, which is what I was seeking because of the social media smears. I wanted like cease and desist for some of the things that were being said. I wanted protection, of some sort, and not to be alone.

AMY GOODMAN: And describe then what happened, I mean, this report in The Intercept of you waiting to hear from Time’s Up and then what you learned afterwards about its links to the Biden campaign through the PR firm.

TARA READE: It was absolutely stunning. In the 20-plus emails and the multiple conversations that we had, not one time, not once, did they say that they were connected to Anita Dunn, who worked for Harvey Weinstein and advised him and helped him keep — silence some of the women that came forward. Not one time did they talk about the payments that were made to the Joe Biden campaign. Now, bear in mind, in their defense, they said that that’s second removed. But part of their services was to provide a platform, you know, a public relations platform. I don’t understand, as a survivor — and I’m not an investigative reporter. I’m not an investigator. I’m just speaking as a survivor. It violated my trust, when I read Ryan Grim’s article. I found out with everyone else. And I’m still processing that. I shared my story with them again and again, with the attorneys that they sent to me. And each time I was rejected by each attorney. One attorney said, “We’ve met as a firm, and we have decided there is no legal strategy to safely tell your story, because it’s Joe Biden.”
And what I want to say is that’s wrong. That’s unconscionable. Anyone who has a claim or an assertion of something that’s happened of misconduct should be able to speak freely without reprisal. And as you can see in the social media, I am being ripped apart. I’ve had my family and my friends contacted. I’ve had my bankruptcy posted. I have had the fact that I had a name change, which was sealed, and a sealed Social Security change for safety, because I’m a domestic violence survivor. And I’ve been dragged through it. But I don’t care. I don’t care about that. They can try to strip away everything about me, but they won’t take my dignity, and they won’t get my silence, because all that does is make me more determined to tell my story, and it doesn’t change the fact of what happened in 1993.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And, Tara Reade, throughout all this time, when you were engaged in discussions with the Time’s Up folks, they never mentioned their relationship with Anita Dunn, or — and how did they finally notify you that they could not be involved?


TARA READE: They started an email. But then I called Ellie, asking her what was going on. It was taking some time, and I kept getting rejected by attorneys. And she said, “I was going to just email you, but I have to tell you that our 501(c)(3) status would be at risk. We can keep referring attorneys to you, but we cannot provide you funding.” So then I wanted to escalate it to the director, and so we had a meeting with the director and the program manager. And I pushed back a little, and I said, “I can’t help who did this. Where do I go? How do I get help? How do I get a woman’s organization to help me?” And her response was, “Keep in communications with us. Our attorneys have advised us our 501(c)(3) could be at risk because it’s a presidential election, and we can’t appear biased.” So, I accepted that response at that time —


Whenever anyone tells the truth, some will come along to try to destroy them.  I will give Tara the benefit of the doubt unless/until I hear something that makes me rethink her statements.  I do not believe we blindly believe all who claim to be victims of assault or rape.  I do believe we do let all who make that claim air their claims in public so that we can have a public dialogue and debate.  That is what we do in a democracy and it's also what we're really left with when a crime may or may not have taken place in private -- meaning no witnesses to the crime itself.

But there are those who will shut down discussions -- not with facts, not with anything but smears and lies.  Enter Bitch Amanda Marcotte.

I think I've earned the right to call her that, right?  John Edwards?  I've always shared how I met him after the VANITY FAIR profile, how it was a meeting to explore supporting him for a presidential run and how -- even with his wife in another room -- Grabby Hands John didn't know boundaries and I had to physically push him off me.  I've never hidden that story.

But Amanda worked for him, didn't she?  Not then.  Years later.  Her hate got her fired (she's got a problem with Christianity and Christians) but she was trying, in 2007, trying to put that jerk into the White House.  So I think that alone gives me the right to call her what she is: a bitch.

She's also a racist as she demonstrated in her book IT'S A JUNGLE OUT THERE with its racist illustrations portraying innocent White women attacked repeatedly by Black men.  Kate Tuttle (THE ROOT) noted in real time:

When the book came out in early March, few seemed to notice anything wrong. The first dozen reader reviews on its Amazon page were uniformly glowing, with many mentioning how they'd long admired the author's blog. It's a Jungle Out There: The Feminist Survival Guide to Politically Inhospitable Environments is Amanda Marcotte's first book, but the author is a seasoned blogger. A 30ish white woman from Texas, Marcotte wields a freewheeling I-don't-care-who-I-piss-off voice as she attacks sexism, homophobia and other patriarchal behaviors on her blog, Pandagon. Your typical third-wave feminist, she has also railed against racism and other ills because hey, you don't have to personally experience a social wrong to want to right it, right?
You can see where this is going, can't you? Turns out Marcotte's book, whatever sharp wit and political insight it conveyed, painted a thousand more with its illustrations: vintage comic-book images of a blonde chick rampaging through a tropical forest, battling seemingly endless variations of an undifferentiated brown horde.
In retrospect, it's surprising it took all of two weeks for the black blogosphere to rally against the thing. By the end of March and for the first two weeks in April, women of color from BlackAmazonto Angry Black Woman had attacked the book's publisher, Seal Press, a small San Francisco-based house that advertises itself as being "by women, for women."
For these women, the controversy was yet another outrage in the long and discouraging history of white feminists discounting, misunderstanding and disrespecting women of color. It turned out that this wasn't the first time Seal Press had shown what many saw as racial insensitivity—back in 2007 they had to scuttle an original cover for Marcotte's book that featured a King Kong-like ape-ravishing-white-woman image. And, some pointed out, where were the women of color among their author list?

Dodai Stewart covered it for JEZEBEL:

There's a furor going on in the feminist blogsphere. The issue is complicated, but what follows is an attempt to give a general gist of what's gone down: On March 29 in Cambridge, the blogger known as Brownfemipower (BFP) spoke at WAM (Women, Action & the Media conference). Apparently, Brownfemipower (who has been called "one of the most important feminist bloggers in the history of the web") spoke about the racism and sexism faced by immigrant women in the US in our current "build a wall" climate. On April 2, writer Amanda Marcotte published an article on RH Reality Check called "Can A Person Be Illegal?" (It was republished a few days later on Alternet.) The jumping off point was a New York Times article about a 22-year-old immigrant from Colombia whose immigration agent used the threat of deportation to rape her. (The woman recorded the assault on her cell phone and the guy was busted.) Marcotte's article made many of the same points BFP made in her speech (the text of which she posted on her blog immediately after the conference.) BFP was not credited or linked to; Amanda Marcotte maintains that though she reads BFP's blog, she did not "steal" her ideas from BFP. In fact, Marcotte replied to a post on Feministe thusly:
"Considering the severity of the accusations leveled at me—plagiarism is not a minor thing to accuse someone of—my right to defend myself with the much-maligned facts shouldn't be a matter of question, regardless of race. I'm extremely eager to address racism, but I won't be made a scapegoat who has to roll over to scurrilous accusations to make anyone feel better. If you have to unfairly malign someone's reputation to make your point, then you have to reconsider if you have a point. Maligning people's reputations—making up lies and then spreading them around and saying, "Well, where there's smoke, there's fire" is a right wing strategy. I am deeply disturbed to see it picked up by people who ostensibly on the side of the angels."
Some WOC (women of color) bloggers maintain that BFP's views were marginalized because she is not white; Marcotte is white, gets and has a book deal. The book in question? It's a Jungle Out There: The Feminist Survival Guide to Politically Inhospitable Environments. Which, to make matters worse, is illustrated with retro comics picturing a blonde, white woman wearing animal print. Writes Holly from Feministe: "You know, the jungle. Where the savage brown people and ferocious animals are defeated by heroic white folks." 


So she's not just a bitch, she's also a racist.  What a glorious life Amanda must have.  Can we also note that the supposed 'feminist' likes to pretend she supports women in politics.  Well those of us with the scars of 2008 know a different reality.  Not only did she start off working for and supporting Grabby Hands John Edwards for the presidential nomination of the Democratic Party but when Edwards dropped out, she immediately announced her support for . . . Barack Obama.  Not for the only woman in the race: Hillary Clinton.  Hillary was never Amanda's first choice or her second choice.  Might she have ended up the third choice?

Amanda likes to rewrite history but there's this thing called reality that will always trip her up.

All of this is to give you the background on the bitch who is defending the media and attacking Tara Reade with garbage that she's posted to SALON.  As she fluffs and offers excuses for the media's refusal to cover Tara's story, she also -- objectively, you understand -- terms Katie Halper "podcaster Katie Halper, an avid fan of presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, released an episode of her podcast containing" -- a fan?  That's Amanda's way of short changing Katie Halper and insulting her.

Katie's a journalist.  She's a writer.  She's a comic.  She's a podcaster.  She's many things.  Calling her a "fan" of Bernie Sanders -- excuse me, "an avid fan" seems insulting and demeaning -- and seems that way because it's how it's intended.

Please note, Amanda's defending the corporate media and, in her first paragraph, is mocking and insulting a member of the independent media.

We get you, bitch, we see where your priorities are.


We covered Joe's awful stumbling -- even with note cards -- in his Monday MSNBC interview in yesterday's snapshot.  But as others weigh in, we'll note their takes as well.  Emily Jacobs (NEW YORK POST) notes:

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden conducted a gaffe-filled interview on MSNBC Monday, kicking off his media appearance by referring to the epicenter of the coronavirus by the wrong name.
“I suggested we should have people in China at the outset of this event, when it all started, in Luhan Province,” Biden told the network, meaning to refer to the city of Wuhan, in Hubei Province, where the virus originated.
The Democratic front-runner went on to claim that the Trump administration withdrew CDC staffers in the months leading up to the virus outbreak, likely stemming from a Reuters report from last week claiming that the administration slashed CDC staff in China.
“We had people in our administration, we had CDC people in other countries because we wanted to anticipate when in fact another virus would occur, when in fact a pandemic might occur as a consequence of a spreading virus in another country, to act quickly. The president withdrew those people,” Biden said.

The problem, however, is that regardless of staffing cuts, the CDC began offering to send a team of experts to the Chinese province back in early January, according to the New York Times.
As he did last week, Biden again gave the wrong date for a USA Today op-ed he penned on the virus, again claiming it was posted on Jan. 17 when it was actually Jan. 27.
The ex-VP also mixed up his drugstores and government agencies, accidentally referring to CVS as CVC.

Jeff Katz (WRVA) points out:

The former vice president said, "The president has to move more rapidly. You know, we know from experience that speed matters. We know that you can’t go too fast, it is about going too slow. In order to avoid that, those very high numbers, we have to do at least several things."
Looking down at his notes, Biden continued, "One, we have to depend on what the president is going to do right now."
Then, losing his train of thought, he said, "And first of all, he has to tell - uh uh wait until the cases before anything happens. Look, the whole idea is he has got to get in place things that were shortages of. "




Meanwhile another US service member has died in Iraq.  Howard Altman (MILITARY TIMES) reports, "A service member with Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve died in a non-combat related incident in Erbil, Iraq, March 30, the command announced.  The cause of death remains under investigation, but COVID-19 is not suspected, officials said in a media release. No other details were provided."  STARS AND STRIPES notes the death here.  This is the sixth death of a US service member in Iraq since the start of this year.  At ANTIWAR.COM, Scott Horton offers:



Can anyone think what our society might have spent six and a half trillion dollars on instead of 20 years of war in the Middle East for nothing? How about the trillion dollars per year we keep spending on the military on top of that?
Invading, dominating and remaking the Arab world to serve the interests of the American empire and the state of Greater Israel sounds downright quaint at this point. Iraq War II, as Senator Bernie Sanders said in the debate a few weeks ago, while letting Joe Biden, one of its primary proponents, off the hook for it, was “a long time ago.” Actually, Senator, we still have troops there fighting Iraq War III 1/2 against what’s left of the ISIS insurgency, and our current government continues to threaten the launch of Iraq War IV against the very parties we fought the last two wars for. This would almost certainly then lead to war with Iran.
The U.S.A. still has soldiers, marines and CIA spies in Syria, Afghanistan, Somalia, Libya, Mali, Tunisia, Niger, Nigeria, Chad and only God and Nick Turse know where else.
Worst of all, America under President Donald Trump is still “leading from behind” in the war in Yemen Barack Obama started in conspiracy with Saudi then-Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman back in 2015. This war is nothing less than a deliberate genocide. It is a medieval-style siege campaign against the civilian population of the country. The war has killed more than a quarter of a million innocent people in the last five years, including at least 85,000 children under five years old. And, almost unbelievably, this war is being fought on behalf of the American people’s enemies, al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). These are the same guys that bombed the USS Cole in the port of Aden in 2000, helped to coordinate the September 11th attack, tried to blow up a plane over Detroit with the underpants bomb on Christmas Day 2009, tried to blow up another plane with a package bomb and launched the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris, France since then. In fact, CENTCOM was helping the Houthi regime in the capital of Sana’a target and kill AQAP as late as January 2015, just two months before Obama stabbed them in the back and took al Qaeda’s side against them. So the war is genocide and treason.





The following sites updated: