2021-02-19: News Headlines

Ted Rall (2021-02-19). Biden Offers Moderate Solutions to Radical Problems. counterpunch.org "Radical solutions require radical solutions," I wrote in my 2010 book "The Anti-American Manifesto," a polemic that calls upon us to save ourselves from imminent social, economic and political collapse by overthrowing the system and rebuilding society from the ground up. We currently face several radical problems. But we're not likely to rise to the

Brian Cloughley (2021-02-19). Britain's Double Standards in International Affairs. counterpunch.org On February 12 it was announced by the UN that a British lawyer had been elected as chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Court. No matter what one might think of the ICC, it is taking steps to investigate war crimes in Afghanistan and Yemen, so it can't be all bad. But a major point

Staff (2021-02-19). Democracy Now! Turns 25: Celebrating a Quarter-Century of Independent News on the Frontlines. democracynow.org Democracy Now! first aired on nine community radio stations on February 19, 1996, on the eve of the New Hampshire presidential primary. In the 25 years since that initial broadcast, the program has greatly expanded, airing today on more than 1,500 television and radio stations around the globe and reaching millions of people online. We celebrate 25 years of the War and Peace Report with an hour-long retrospective, including highlights from the show's early years, some of the most controversial interviews, and groundbreaking reports from East Timor, Standing Rock, Western Sahara and more.

PAI (2021-02-19). Pandemic's 1-2 punch: Unemployment up, life expectancy down. peoplesworld.org WASHINGTON (PAI)—The ongoing coronavirus pandemic packed a one-two punch against the nation's workers, federal agencies reported, as almost 1.38 million more people sought federal or state jobless aid in the week ending Feb. 13. Meanwhile, U.S. life expectancy dropped by a year in the first half of 2020, another federal report showed. And that second …

David Rosen (2021-02-19). The Culture Wars Continue: Biden Takes on Abortion. counterpunch.org Joe Biden is moving aggressively to redress many of the conditions left by Donald Trump's administration, notably the Covid-19 pandemic, the economic recession and white nationalism. However, the most intractable challenge that he will face may be the resistance of the culture wars, particularly a woman's right to an abortion. The culture wars long anchored

Mariah Denman and Caleb Kennedy (2021-02-19). Portland, OR power outages affect 300K residents after ice storm. liberationnews.org In a pandemic winter, when the risk of spreading COVID-19 between households is high, neighbors have had to take the risk to help each other by sharing generators, firewood, food, cooking equipment, clean water and more.

The Global Research Team (2021-02-19). Selected Articles: The Covid Deception Serves An Undeclared Agenda. globalresearch.ca By There is no scientific basis for the measures in place to deal with the alleged Covid Pandemic. Among experts the support for these measures …

Bruce E. Levine (2021-02-19). Politics & Science: Rahm Emanuel, Mike Pence, Homosexuality, Pandemics, Masks, Vaccines. counterpunch.org Aside from their icy-mobster visages, Rahm Emanuel and Mike Pence have something else in common. Both, as members of presidential administrations, tried to rewrite Centers for Disease Control (CDC) pandemic guidance for political purposes. The reason why one was successful and the other was not has nothing to do with courageous CDC scientists threatening to resign in protest; instead, the different outcomes had to do with politics.

Staff (2021-02-19). Amid G7 Meeting, Pressure Mounts for Biden to Remove Global Barriers to Vaccines. truthout.org President Joe Biden is meeting with the G7 leaders of other wealthy nations Friday to discuss global plans to defeat COVID. Meanwhile, the United States is under growing international pressure to reverse course from the Trump administration and lead the world toward ending massive global disparities in vaccine and treatment access that threaten to stretch the deadly pandemic out for years. | Hanging in the balance are an untold number of human lives — and the profit margins of privat…

RT (2021-02-19). Pandemic put US back on track to meet Paris climate goals, report finds, but at huge human cost. rt.com In what researchers have dubbed a "remarkable" reversal of fortunes, pandemic-induced lockdowns across the US have brought the country back on track to meet targets in the Paris climate accord, but at a grim human cost. | According to an independent report released Thursday, US renewable energy capacity broke new deployment records in 2020, thanks to numerous tax incentives and initiatives, while coal consumption dropped concurrently. | The proportion of electricity generated by renewables hit a record 20 percent of overall capacity, eclipsing coal, which dipped to 19 percent. Emissions from electricity use al…

RT (2021-02-19). Left & right alike fume over Dems' bill to ban 'twice-impeached presidents' from burial at Arlington, any honoring of their names. rt.com House Democrats have apparently found time to plot more ways to punish Donald Trump — even as a pandemic and other troubles devastate their constituents — angering Americans of virtually all political persuasions. | The '

RT (2021-02-19). 'Idea of Sacrifice a complete nonstarter in US culture before Covid': Pandemic spurred major shift in American values, study finds. rt.com Researchers from UCLA and Harvard University analyzed internet activity, namely online searches and social media posts, and found a significant return to more traditional, rural American values emerged as the pandemic took hold. | The team In their analysis, they used Google searches as one metric to reflect societal mood and attitudes w…

Ramzy Baroud (2021-02-19). 'Leaving Aside' International Law: Why Democrats are as Dangerous as Republicans to a Just Peace in Palestine. counterpunch.org Motivated by their justifiable aversion to former US President Donald Trump, many analysts have rashly painted a rosy picture of how Democrats could quickly erase the bleak trajectory of the previous Republican administration. This naivety is particularly pronounced in the current spin on the Palestinian-Israeli discourse, which is promoting, again, the illusion that Democrats will

Eve Ottenberg (2021-02-19). The Atrocious Prosecution of Julian Assange. counterpunch.org What do Biden and Trump have in common? (Aside from jerking Iran around over the nuclear treaty, proclaiming support for a phony, unelected pretender to the Venezuelan presidency, Juan Guaido, and posturing aggressively toward China?) Both Biden and Trump support the utterly baseless Espionage Act case against journalist and publisher Julian Assange. Make no mistake,

Vijay Prashad (2021-02-19). Sometimes Marx's Capital is a pillow, sometimes it obliges us to deepen our struggles. mronline.org In 1911, a young Ho Chi Minh (1890-1969) arrived in France, which had colonised his homeland of Vietnam. Though he had been raised with a patriotic spirit committed to anti-colonialism, Ho Chi Minh's temperament did not allow him to retreat into a backward-looking romanticism.

Chauncey K. Robinson (2021-02-19). Man-made disaster: Capitalism and Republicans failed the people of Texas. peoplesworld.org Winter storms, freezing temperatures, and a failed power grid have left millions of Texans fighting for their lives this week. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz being caught attempting a family vacation to the warmth of Cancun, Mexico, while his constituents faced a humanitarian disaster is the epitome of an unequal system at work. The tragedy in …

W. T. Whitney Jr. (2021-02-19). UN report slams U.S. economic sanctions against Venezuela. peoplesworld.org Editor's Note: A group of 27 U.S. senators and representatives on Feb. 11 urged President Joe Biden to "consider the humanitarian impacts of sanctions." They did not name specific countries, but at the top of the list of countries currently on the receiving end of U.S. sanctions is Venezuela. The country was the target of …

Paul Street (2021-02-19). "Interesting" Times: Capitalism Kills Everything. counterpunch.org Yes, it's terrible that Joe Biden has refused to forgive more than a pittance of student debt. But do we not recall him telling a Los Angeles Times host that he had "no empathy, give me a break" for the plight of Millennials in the savagely unequal and environmentally unsustainable world he'd helped create over decades of Congressional service to corporate and financial America? No surprise.

Tim Wheeler (2021-02-19). Donation match: Will you meet my challenge for People's World? peoplesworld.org Dear readers, I recently posted on social media Marilyn Bechtel's story in People's World headlined, "U.S. and Russia Extend New START Nuclear Treaty for Five Years." Bechtel's article was the first I read about this hugely significant step by President Joe Biden reversing former President Trump's attempt to wreck the New START treaty. The people's …

PAI (2021-02-19). New York sues Amazon for not protecting workers against COVID, firing whistleblowers. peoplesworld.org NEW YORK (PAI)—Donald Trump isn't Letitia "Tish" James's only big legal target. Neither is the notorious radical right-wing U.S. gun lobby. Now she's taking on Amazon. James, New York state's Attorney General, is probing Trump's financial crimes committed through his private foundation. Last year, she sued the National Rifle Association and its top officers for …

Staff (2021-02-19). The Guardian shuts down criticism of Israel. therealnews.com Nathan Robinson's column at The Guardian US was shut down after a tweet criticizing US-Israel relations. Then, Tamara Payne explains how Malcolm Little became Malcolm X.

Ron Jacobs (2021-02-19). Go St. Pauli! Beat Fascism! counterpunch.org Most sports teams have a dedicated fan base. Most often, that fan base is mostly composed of people who live or lived in the region the team is located. Many of these fans grew up with their favorite team, watching players come and go, championships missed and won; they have opinions on the players, the

Richard Moser (2021-02-19). Organizing White Workers When the Klan is in the Shop. counterpunch.org With the rise of the extreme right, the Klan and its modern descendants are definitely "in the shop." Here's a story from a long time ago but it could have happened only yesterday. This is not a heroic tale just a memory of day-to-day struggle and the lessons learned. As a young organizer in the mid-1970s, I went to work for District 65, an independent radical union. Martin Luther King called District 65 "The Conscience of the Labor Movement" after their early and staunch support for the civil rights movement. Our dress pin was a black hand and a white hand working both ends of an old fashioned two-man tree- saw…

Ed Rampell (2021-02-19). 'This is the Way We Rise': Hawaiian poetry in motion. peoplesworld.org The Tidal Wave of Indigenous Cinema continues to swell with Hawaiian filmmaker Ciara Lacy's stirring This is the Way We Rise, a poetic short about Polynesian slam poet Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio that recently screened as part of the Sundance Film Festival. Jamaica is the daughter of Jon Osorio, Dean of Hawai ªinuiƒÅkea School of Hawaiian Knowledge …

Peoples Dispatch (2021-02-19). Social movements and organizations condemn arrest of 21-year-old Indian climate activist. mronline.org 21-year-old Disha Ravi was arrested on charges of sedition and criminal conspiracy for her involvement with a 'toolkit' which contained campaign material in support of the the ongoing farmers' agitation in the country. Two other activists also face arrest.

G. Dunkel (2021-02-19). George Jackson on the role of prisons, 50 years after his death. workers.org This year will mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of George Jackson, an African American prison leader sentenced to a life sentence as a teenager for "stealing" $40 from a gas station. His 11 years behind the walls were spent in California's Soledad and San Quentin prisons. Jackson became . . . |

The Conversation (2021-02-19). 40,000 BC: Earth's magnetic field flipped, causing massive sudden climate change and Extinction of Neanderthals. juancole.com By Chris Fogwill, Alan Hogg, Chris Turney, and Zoà´ Thomas | — The world experienced a few centuries of apocalyptic conditions 42,000 years ago, triggered by a reversal of the Earth's magnetic poles combined with changes in the Sun's behaviour. That's the key finding of our new multidisciplinary study, published in Science. This last major …

Steve Sweeney (2021-02-19). Bogazici resistance is about more than liberal notions of academic freedom, it is a fight against the whole system of oppression. mronline.org TURKEY'S revolutionary forces said today that protests centered on Bogazici University must remain a fight against fascism and oppression—not for "liberal ideas of academic freedom."

People's World (2021-02-19). Communist Alphaeus Hunton drew together anti-fascist, anti-racist, anti-colonial struggles. peoplesworld.org People's World is happy to reprint below an article from the Feb. 15, 1945 issue of the Daily Worker by W. Alphaeus Hunton, then the educational director of the Council on African Affairs (CAA). Hunton, considered "one of the most neglected African American intellectuals" in U.S. history, partly due to his membership in the Communist …

Tom Engelhardt (2021-02-19). America's Sick Metamorphosis: Have we Awoken to find our Country a Trump Roach Hotel? juancole.com ( Tomdispatch.com) — Like Gregor Samsa, the never-to-be-forgotten character in Franz Kafka's story "The Metamorphosis," we awoke on January 7th to discover that we, too, were "a giant insect" with "a domelike brown belly divided into stiff arched segments" and numerous "pitifully thin" legs that "waved helplessly" before our eyes. If you prefer, though, you …

Dean Baker (2021-02-19). How Will Our Children Know They Face a Crushing Debt Burden? counterpunch.org That may seem like a silly question. Of course they will know because there are a number of well-funded policy shops that will be spewing out endless papers and columns telling them that they are facing a crushing debt burden. And, because these policy shops are well-funded and well-connected we can be sure that major

Matthew Stevenson (2021-02-19). Who Won the Impeachment? counterpunch.org If you're Donald Trump, watching the last act of your impeached presidency, you don't need a Weatherman to tell you which way the wind is blowing, which is in the direction of a District of Columbia courtroom, where you will either be convicted as an accessory to second-degree murder ("an extreme indifference to human life…") or a runaway jury will award plaintiffs (the Capitol police injured or killed in the riot) $1.8 billion in damages (which by the way Deutsche Bank will not cover with another overdraft).

Martin Billheimer (2021-02-19). Idiocy in Theory and Practice. counterpunch.org Idiocy is as complex as genius. In fact, we like to think them indistinguishable, joined by the ruthless common denominator of an innocence which makes both conditions holy. The lives of geniuses are bestsellers because everyone wants to see themselves in there, which nourishes our profound self-interest and even more profound masochism. Read about the

Lisa Hajjar (2021-02-19). 'The Mauritanian' rekindles debate over Gitmo detainees' torture—with 40 still held there. mronline.org "The Mauritanian," directed by Kevin Macdonald, is the first feature film to dramatize how the war on terror became a war in court.

Staff (2021-02-19). And then there was X: Malcolm's life and legacy. therealnews.com Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021, marks the 56th anniversary of the assassination of freedom fighter Malcolm X. To honor Malcolm's life and legacy, we revisit this powerful 2015 documentary, "X: Malcolm's Final Years," produced by The Real News Network.

Staff (2021-02-19). Illegal checkpoint arrest tied to a controversial shooting. therealnews.com In the small town of Talking Rock, Georgia, a man was supposedly stopped for avoiding a roadblock, had his car searched without consent, and was arrested for having balding tires. But residents say the story of gross overpolicing in their area goes much deeper.

Monica Moorehead (2021-02-19). George Jackson on the role of prisons, 50 years after his death. workers.org This year will mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of George Jackson, an African American prison leader sentenced to a life sentence as a teenager for "stealing" $40 from a gas station. His 11 years behind the walls were spent in California's Soledad and San Quentin prisons. Jackson became . . . |

Alan Macleod (2021-02-19). Biden's First Month Marked by Broken Promises. mintpressnews.com Biden kicked off his campaign by telling wealthy donors that "nothing would fundamentally change" under his presidency. After one month in office, it appears as if that is one campaign promise he is likely to keep.

Staff (2021-02-19). And then there was X: Malcom's life and legacy. therealnews.com Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021, marks the 56th anniversary of the assassination of freedom fighter Malcolm X. To honor Malcolm's life and legacy, we revisit this powerful 2015 documentary, "X: Malcolm's Final Years," produced by The Real News Network.

Anthony DiMaggio (2021-02-19). Limbaugh's Legacy: Normalizing Hate for Profit. counterpunch.org Rush Limbaugh's death represents a moment for reflection on the state of American politics. Limbaugh amassed a fortune of more than $600 million over 32 years in the talk radio business, in the process building up more than 15 million regular listeners. It was no exaggeration when CNN referred to him as a "pioneer of AM talk-radio." He made possible the rise of propagandistic partisan media, demonstrating that this format could be incredibly profitable for news channels looking for low-budget programming filled by pundits who tell audiences what they want to hear, while strengthening their prior beliefs and value…

PAI (2021-02-19). Trailblazing former Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis dies at 68. peoplesworld.org CHICAGO (PAI)—If you're looking for who started "Red for Ed," figuratively if not literally, you'll find Karen Lewis. Because it could arguably be said that Lewis, the former President of the Chicago Teachers Union/AFT Local 1, who died in early February at 68 after a long battle with cancer, originated the combination of teacher activism …

Bezaleel Jupiter and Satya Vatti (2021-02-19). Snowstorm + capitalism = disaster for more than 100K in Mississippi. liberationnews.org The unpreparedness of the utility giants, and the pathetic response of the capitalist government at the local and federal level, is nothing short of criminal neglect by those motivated solely by profit making.

C.J. Atkins (2021-02-19). Why the Alabama Amazon struggle matters to workers everywhere. peoplesworld.org Sometimes a fight at one particular workplace can be so important that workers and their allies everywhere need to take notice. The struggle going on right now at the Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama, is one of those fights. From now until March 29, nearly 6,000 employees at the Amazon order fulfillment and processing center …

Marie Kelly (2021-02-19). 'Black Freedom Fighters in Steel' — a book review. workers.org Ruth Needleman's "Black Freedom Fighters in Steel: The Struggle for Democratic Unionism," tells of five Black union activists who took on the steel industry of Indiana's Calumet Region along Lake Michigan at Youngstown Sheet and Tube, Inland Steel and U.S. Steel. (Cornell University Press, 2003) Needleman's rich narrative contains interviews . . . |

Ed Rampell (2021-02-19). '41st & Central: The Untold Story of the L.A. Black Panthers' to be screened Feb. 20. peoplesworld.org The 29th Pan African Film Festival has moved online, taking place Feb. 28—March 14. This year's PAFF is screening at least three Black Panther Party-related films: The documentary Truth to Power: Barbara Lee Speaks for Me and Judas and the Black Messiah, probably Hollywood's best political feature in years. The third is a reprise of …

Steven Krichbaum (2021-02-19). The 30 x 30 Protection Plan and the George Washington National Forest Ark. counterpunch.org The Biden administration's recent announcement of the 30 by 30 conservation initiative was a welcome ray of light in the dark of winter. The goal is to have 30% of America's lands "protected" by 2030. But what exactly is meant by and would qualify as "protected"? In this age of ecological meltdown and mass extinction/extermination,

Liberation Staff (2021-02-19). Haywood County, North Carolina car protest: 'Fund services, not jails'. liberationnews.org In North Carolina's Haywood County a car protest was organized on Feb. 1 by the Party for Socialism and Liberation to oppose Haywood County's plan to expand the existing jail in Waynesville, North Carolina.

Nadda Osman (2021-02-19). Western Sahara activists facing crackdown following Morocco-Israel deal. middleeasteye.net Western Sahara activists facing crackdown following Morocco-Israel deal | From torture to surveillance and house arrests, activists say they have faced unprecedented repression in recent weeks | Fri, 02/19/2021 – 11: 00 | People call for the independence of the Western Sahara in a protest (AFP/Illustration: Mohamad Elasaar/MEE) | Activists in Western Sahara say they are facing a brutal crackdown in the wa…

MEE staff (2021-02-19). Key US lawmakers call for sanctions on killers of Hezbollah critic. middleeasteye.net Key US lawmakers call for sanctions on killers of Hezbollah critic | Top members of House Foreign Affairs Committee urge invoking Global Magnitsky Act to address murder of Lebanese activist Lokman Slim | Fri, 02/19/2021 – 16: 56 | A memorial ceremony for Lokman Slim in garden of family residence in Beirut, 11 February (AFP) | Two key US legislators are calling on President Joe Biden to invoke the Global Magnit…

RT (2021-02-19). 'What is this, 1998?' Twitter users astonished that Tony Blair is opining on Covid roadmap… and MEDIA COVERS IT as 'news'. rt.com Brits may have wondered if they woke up in the right century after seeing ex-prime minister Tony Blair giving his policy prescription for the Covid-19 pandemic — and being cited as an authority on the topic by major media outlets. | The former Labour Party leader on Friday published his own "roadmap" out of the UK's Covid-19 lockdown, complete with a "traffic light system" dictating data-based parameters for opening and closing decisions. Mainstream media outlets jumped on the report as big news, with some portraying it as influential in setting the current government's policy. | We believe a credible lo…