10,000 on ignore, Book 189, The Days of Reckoning, Part 48.....

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1
Evacuations continue from Kabul, President Biden to address the nation on Friday
Mark Sumner

On Friday afternoon, President Joe Biden will speak to the nation on the still-unfolding situation in Afghanistan. Daily Kos will carry live coverage of Biden’s address beginning at 1 p.m. Eastern Time.

Military evacuation flights continue to shuttle Americans, allies, and Afghans seeking to leave the country out of Afghanistan. Many of these flights take evacuees to facilities in nearby countries to make as many trips into Kabul as possible.

Many U.S. flights had been directed to Doha in Qatar, but with increasing crowding at those locations, CBS News reports that the U.S. has now secured permission to begin staging evacuees at Isa Air Base in Bahrain. German planes have been evacuating people to Tashkent in Uzbekistan. At each location, military and State Department workers are scrambling to take care of those arriving from Afghanistan, getting citizens on to the next flights, and working out how to handle Afghan refugees. None of these stops are meant to be permanent destinations.
.........
Additional State Department diplomats headed into Afghanistan on Thursday and Friday to help coordinate those on their way out. U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Ross Wilson remains in Kabul to work with the Taliban, if possible, to protect those still moving toward evacuation.

U.S. forces continue to hold the military section of the Kabul airport. However, many of those seeking to leave Afghanistan report that they’ve been unable to reach the airport. CNN reported on Thursday that at least one former military translator was trapped in Kabul after spending eight hours trying to reach the airport. Even those who do arrive to the airport can be in for long waits in a facility where water and even shade are in short supply. Some Afghans have reportedly been waiting on the tarmac for over two days.

But as the media continues to play up reports of chaos in Afghanistan and to wonder how things fell apart so quickly, it’s not just the intelligence reports that are coming into question but also the media’s honesty in dealing with the situation.

As journalist and author Eric Boehlert points out, it’s not as if the networks had displayed much interest in Afghanistan until they could get nice crowd shots around the airport. When it comes to the time that the broadcast networks devoted to stories about Afghanistan—any topic in Afghanistan—the average scores since 2015 were ABC 16, NBC 16, and CBS 25. Those are in minutes per year. Not one network gave America’s ongoing war in Afghanistan one crime drama’s worth of coverage in total over a period of five years—and that’s even when rolling in uplifting stories about the women’s soccer team and female entrepreneurs in Kabul.


Naturally, newscasters are not the military or the intelligence community. They’re not responsible for the clearly failed analysis of how rapidly the Taliban would advance, or the equally flawed planning for how Americans and allies could be evacuated. However, they are the filter through which many are now seeing these events. The incredibly light attention to the situation in Afghanistan should lend a great deal of caution when listening to instant experts reporting on the scenes.

Whether reports are talking about a kinder, gentler Taliban 2.0 or about chaos in which the Taliban are beating Americans, everything coming out of Afghanistan at the moment—other than refugees—needs to be met with a degree of skepticism.

As Marcy Wheeler writes at emptywheel, journalists looking for a quick story are “getting suckered by ass-covering sources” who want to make it seem as if they, and they alone, had the insight to predict what was going to happen. As an example, Wheeler points out a Wall Street Journal article that inverts the order and nature of events to make it seem as if low-level State Department officials had an inside scoop while those above them, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken, were blindsided by events. But getting there requires drawing conclusions that ignore even the content of the article itself. But the WSJ, like many media outlets, is more interested in packaging up a nice story of how the Biden administration screwed up than accurately covering events.

Wheeler notes:


“I get that such stories—suggesting that Biden ignored warnings and so owns this collapse—will drive a lot of traffic. Biden does own this collapse, along with Trump, Obama, and (especially) George Bush. But he owns it because of stupid decisions made 18 months and 18 years ago, not the efforts he made in July to mitigate the aftermath of those earlier decisions.”

There is a stack of people, particularly on the right, rushing forward to say “I told you so” at this point, and a stack of media outlets, not necessarily on the right, eager to give them opportunities to repeat those claims. And the result is a lot of extremely sketchy claims getting extremely credulous reporting.

And, of course, there’s this.



This is exactly why Lindsey Graham called for the immediate impeachment of Donald Trump when he deliberately and callously abandoned Kurdish allies who had fought side by side with Americans for two decades. Except, of course, that he didn’t.


But don’t expect Graham to be the only one.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1
  • Like
Reactions: tgar

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1


ScreenShot2021-08-19at6.55.42PM.png


 
  • Like
Reactions: tgar

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1
Friday, Aug 20, 2021 · 2:03:30 PM EDT · Mark Sumner
AP reporter starts off by challenging Biden with unsourced criticism from allies, Biden responds by saying that he’s talking to our allies and hasn’t heard this criticism. Goes on to describe again why continuing American presence in Afghanistan is a bad idea.
......

Friday, Aug 20, 2021 · 2:04:59 PM EDT · Mark Sumner

Biden extends his earlier promise to get out American citizens to cover Afghans who worked with American military over the last two decades. Says U.S. is also working to help extract workers from NGOs.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1
Friday, Aug 20, 2021 · 2:14:35 PM EDT · Mark Sumner
Biden makes the point that trying to extend the U.S. stay in Afghanistan wasn’t a matter of just sitting there with 2,500 troops and no conflict. If they had tried to stay, it would have taken more forces and their would have been conflict.
......

Friday, Aug 20, 2021 · 2:16:07 PM EDT · Mark Sumner

“If we had decided to leave Afghanistan 15 years ago, it would have been really difficult. 5 years ago. It would be difficult if we stayed another decade.”
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1
Friday, Aug 20, 2021 · 2:27:47 PM EDT · Mark Sumner
After a 45 minute delay, President Joe Biden spoke to the situation in Afghanistan, explaining that the United States has already extracted 14,000 from Kabul airport over the last week. He acknowledged a delay of some hours on Friday as the U.S. worked with allies to locate new areas to stage evacuees that include U.S. citizens, citizens of other allied nations, Afghans who worked with the U.S. military over the last two decade, Afghans who were at some stage of applying for a U.S. visa, and Afghans who are simply trying to escape being ruled by the Taliban.

During the brief address, Biden assured American citizens still in Afghanistan that the U.S. would take any necessary action to get them home. In questioning, Biden later extended this promise to cover Afghans who have worked with the U.S. Biden stated that the U.S. was in contact with Taliban officials both in Kabul and in Doha, and that they were unaware of any U.S. citizen being unable to reach the airport because they were stopped by the Taliban.

Reporters repeatedly challenged Biden over failures to predict the speed at which the previous Afghanistan government and military forces collapsed, and for not beginning evacuations sooner. A number of reporters also challenged Biden over scenes of apparent chaos in Kabul or along the road to the airport, but while Biden reiterated that the U.S. would take necessary actions to extract U.S. citizens, he stopped well short of saying there would be any military action to extend the current perimeter around the military section of the Kabul airport.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1
Cullman, Ala., on Thursday declared a COVID-19-related state of emergency ahead of a scheduled Alabama GOP rally featuring former President Trump on Saturday as Alabama struggles with a surge in new infections and a shortage of hospital beds.

The state of emergency declaration allows the city to provide additional resources for the rally, a request that was made by the chief operating office of Cullman Regional Medical Center, which is experiencing overcrowding amid a spike in coronavirus-related hospitalizations.

Alabama saw 3,890 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, with a seven-day moving average of about 3,000 new infections, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Covid Data Tracker. Cullman Regional’s latest update on Wednesday showed that the hospital was treating 56 coronavirus patients, including 12 people who are on ventilators.

The Alabama Hospital Association also revealed on Wednesday that the state has run out of intensive care unit beds, reporting a 29-bed deficit........
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1
Jan. 6 insurrectionist may go back to jail—for watching Pillow Man's latest Big Lie nonsense
Aldous J Pennyfarthing

GettyImages-1294949307.jpg

Insurrectionist and QAnon enthusiast Doug Jensen (center) faces off with Capitol Police on Jan. 6

Okay, to be fair, I watched more of Mike Lindell’s goofy cyber symposium than I care to admit. And I may have hidden the full extent of my pathological obsession from my wife. And my therapist. And my dogs, for that matter. But, you know, I wasn’t literally banned from watching it.

Capitol rioter Douglas Jensen was banned, however. In fact, as a condition of his release from jail following his part in Donald Trump’s Jan. 6 Bumble**** Putsch, he was prohibited from using the internet at all. No cat videos. No Candy Crush. No Garfield Minus Garfield. No Stormfront Sudoku puzzles. Jensen was pretty much limited to Hitler Week on the History Channel (yes, I know; that’s every week), and old, dog-eared William F. Buckley columns about the looming dangers of decoupling the dollar from the gold standard.

So maybe you can see why he couldn’t resist. I mean, having no access to the internet in this day and age is almost as barbaric as trying to overthrow the legitimate government of your own country. Which, to be clear, Jensen also (allegedly) did.

Buzzfeed:

[Jensen is] accused of leading a mob of rioters who chased US Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman through the Capitol and of carrying a knife in his pocket at the time. In July, however, a judge agreed to release him over the government’s objection, imposing a strict set of conditions that Jensen had to follow if he wanted to go home.
Those conditions included a prohibition on using devices with internet access, including cell phones. But according to the government, 30 days after he was released from jail, a court officer assigned to check on him arrived at his house and found Jensen in his garage listening to news on a WiFi-connected iPhone through the video platform Rumble. The government didn’t say what exactly Jensen was listening to but included a link to a Washington Post article that described how the site was popular among conservatives.
More than that, though, the government described how Jensen also eventually admitted to the pretrial services officer that he’d spent two days watching a “cyber symposium” hosted by MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, one of the most prominent and prolific proponents of the election fraud conspiracy theories and lies that fueled the Jan. 6 riots.

Imagine going back to jail because you couldn’t keep yourself away from the rhapsodic shrieking mustache that is Mike Lindell. Right about now, Manson Family murderer Squeaky Fromme is reading this from her prison cell and thinking, “Jesus Lingonberry Christ, what a nut!”

Jensen was also an admitted QAnon follower—at least before his lawyer told the court that “he feels deceived, recognizing that he bought into a pack of lies.” Of course, that could either mean he put too much stock in conspiracy theories or purchased pillows, mattress toppers, and Bible-verse pillowcases for 50% off using the promo code Audit45. Or both. Who really knows?

Now authorities are questioning whether he ever really quit Q at all. As Assistant U.S. Attorney Hava Mirell wrote, “Jensen’s swift violation confirms what the Government and this Court suspected all along: that Jensen’s alleged disavowal of QAnon was just an act; that his alleged epiphany inside the D.C. Jail was merely self-advocacy; and that, at the end of the day, Jensen will not abandon the misguided theories and beliefs that led him to menacingly chase U.S. Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman up the Senate staircase on January 6, 2021.”

Gee, ya think?

Of course, it’s tough to deprogram people and reintroduce them to the wild when there are so many agitators out there—such as Lindell, Steve Bannon, and the ocher abomination himself—feeding their delusions.


That may be a flimsy excuse, but the truth is, people like Jensen—and that big, avuncular wad of derp Lindell—are mere symptoms. The tumor is still growing unchecked in Mar-a-Lago and Bedminster. That said, the more of his wayward minions we can put in the stir, the better.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1
A Tennessee community went viral for anti-mask violence. Now a school is closed due to COVID-19
Walter Einenkel

Tennessee’s public education system has been the focus of Republican attacks for some time now. With a raging pandemic, economic uncertainty, and a Democratic Party offering up proactive legislation to help ameliorate working peoples’ lives, GOP officials have set to turning schools into battlegrounds. This is because while conservatives believe every fetal cell inside of a woman’s uterus is sacred, the moment that child is born they consider them to most likely be criminals here to steal capitalism away from the donor class. To this end, the Republican Party has moved to stop Tennessee schools from teaching about African American history or people of color in general. They have also kicked this political football into the public health sphere.

Piggybacking on anti-vaxxer parents’ rights to endanger other people’s children, conservatives in the state have fought vociferously against mask mandates in schools. A little less than two weeks ago, as the delta variant of the COVID-19 virus increased its spread across the country, the Williamson County school board in Tennessee decided to pass a mask mandate for the upcoming start of the school year. This came as Tennessee released data showing that in the first two weeks of August, almost 14,000 children were making up almost 25% of Tennessee’s new cases of COVID-19. Still, parents screamed and threatened board members and had to be herded off by local law enforcement as they hurled real threats like “We know where you live” at the board members who were voting to save their children from them.

In the end, only elementary-age students were mandated to wear masks. Guess what’s happening in Williamson County, Tennessee, as of Aug. 19, 2021? School’s closed.

..........
On Friday, Fairview Middle School in Williamson County will be closed. Williamson County Board of Education member Rick Wimberly tweeted that “Fairview Middle to be closed tomorrow because of COVID cases (187 of 560 students, 23 of 77 faculty). We'll have to use one of ten weather days for them and no remote learning can be offered because of new State requirements.”

These numbers are quite a bit higher than they were just a few days ago when Williamson County Schools updated their data. The Tennessean reports that new numbers are to be released on Friday—a new decision as they had planned on only releasing numbers on Tuesdays.* This comes on the same day that WSMV, a Nashville NBC affiliate reported that Williamson County has had “3,500 mask exemptions for religious or medical reasons have been filed.” That number is reportedly set to increase as Gov. Bill Lee signed an executive order on Monday allowing parents to just opt out of mask mandates.

Not every parent in Tennessee represents this failure of public health policy. There are many in the Volunteer State who believe, even on a rudimentary level, that the cognitive dissonance it takes to defend sexist dress codes for schools while blathering on about how wearing a mask hurts their child’s freedom is an untenable position. And sadly, like the rest of anti-mask and anti-vaccine activism, this battle is not isolated to Tennessee. From Florida to Kentucky to Texas, school boards and conservative governors are pushing truly dangerous public health positions. The sheer illegal overreach on the part of people like Gov. Greg Abbott has been keeping the shine off the veneer of sanity in the upcoming school year.

And just because there is a very vocal group of death-panel-like conservative operatives sowing the seeds of dissent with loud and violent rhetoric, the majority of Americans in all walks of life do not agree at all with these terrible public health positions.

Here’s a reminder of the group of parents who read a thing somewhere and heard a thing about the Constitution at some point, and have decided they know a thing or two about public health and safety. They’re protesting school board members who are trying to vote to protect their children.



And here is the dialectic response to a community of anti-science parents.



And a reminder of how much these communities actually value their children’s education and the people that make their children’s education possible.



*New data has not yet been released as of the writing of this story.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
103,611
18,493
1
DeSantis picked Education Board to withhold state funds from two school districts with mask mandates
Kerry Eleveld

Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran announced Friday the state would withhold state funds from two school districts that issued mask mandates to protect students and faculty: Broward and Alachua public schools.

The state Board of Education, handpicked by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis, voted earlier this week to take punitive action against school districts that defied the governor's mask mandate ban. The state board is reportedly targeting the salaries of school board members and other officials in Broward and Alachua—the first districts in the state to mandate masks. Officials in those two districts could start losing their salaries as soon as next week if they don't reverse course on their masking policies. Broward is the second-largest school district the state (only Miami-Dade is larger) and sixth-largest in the country, serving some 370,000 students, according to its website.
.......
On Wednesday, President Joe Biden vowed to stand with schools and educators working to protect kids, adding that existing federal pandemic funds could "100%" be used to compensate them.

"If a governor wants to cut the pay of a hardworking education leader who requires masks in the classroom, the money from the American Rescue Plan can be used to pay that person’s salary — 100%," Biden said during a press conference at the White House.

Biden has also instructed the Department of Education to take punitive action against governors who ban in-school mask mandates.

Leaders in both Broward and Alachua have remained steadfast in their commitment to following the science on masking and doing as much as possible to protect students while still providing in-school instruction.

This week, three other school districts joined Broward and Alachua in mandating in-school masking: Miami-Dade, Palm Beach, and Hillsborough public schools.

Punishing school districts and local governments that mandate masks polls at a dismal 22%, with 77% of Americans opposing such action. But DeSantis is clearly desperate to tie up the GOP fringe vote—Florida students and their parents will simply have to pay the price for his political star to rise.