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Welcome! "The Evening Blues" is a casual community diary (published Monday - Friday, 8:00 PM Eastern) where we hang out, share and talk about news, music, photography and other things of interest to the community.  

Just about anything goes, but attacks and pie fights are not welcome here.  This is a community diary and a friendly, peaceful, supportive place for people to interact.  

Everyone who wants to join in peaceful interaction is very welcome here.

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features the pioneering gospel guitarist, singer and songwriter who might be called the "Godmother of Rock and Roll, Sister Rosetta Tharpe

Sister Rosetta Tharpe: The Godmother of Rock and Roll

“You show me a capitalist, and I'll show you a bloodsucker”

  -- Malcolm X

News and Opinion

The Decline of Democracies

Democracy is in decline all over the world as the 1% uses its purchased governments to enforce their demands for profit, control and indemnity from the effects of their corrupt and duplicitous business dealings.

The !% is getting increasingly brazen in its behaviors.  This weekend, Mayor 1% Bloomberg underlined the 1%'s attitude towards all of us, "little people."  His statement shows that the 1% demands will be enforced, "whether you like it or not," their edicts are beyond appeal.  They intend to control every aspect of our lives from our civil liberties to our economic lives.

Mayor 1% Bloomberg lets us all know our place.  It's funny, back when I was in school we had a class called, "civics" in which they explained that we the people decided how things were going to be and our elected officials were our paid servants.  Funny how things change.

Stop Whining About Privacy, Bloomberg Says

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg thinks your concerns about privacy in a world of city- and drone-mounted surveillance cameras are unimportant. His advice to radio audiences Friday morning? “Get used to it!”

“You wait, in five years, the technology is getting better, there’ll be cameras everyplace ... whether you like it or not,” Bloomberg said.

A People's Revolt in Cyprus: Richard Wolff on Protests Against EU Plan To Seize Bank Savings

Cyprus is significant for several reasons. First, it marks an escalation in what we call austerity economics. It is an effort to pay for the cost of this now six-year-old global crisis in a new way. It is an effort to fund the bailouts of banks in a new way. And the new way was agreed last week by the European forces that control this—the central bank, the European Union and the IMF—and to impose on Cyprus this new step, which is literally to go into the bank accounts of the citizens of Cyprus, roughly a million people on a small island in the middle of the Mediterranean, and snatch money out of their accounts. See, unlike other austerity, where you levy a tax and you cut back social programs, like we’re doing here in the United States, that money dribbles in over a year or longer period. This way, the government can get the money to bail out the banks quickly and cleanly and neatly. Friday night, the people of Cyprus went to bed with a certain amount of money in their accounts—they thought—and Monday morning, last Monday, they were supposed to awake with X percent less money because the government had taken it. So, that’s an amazing new step of austerity. It suggests that this crisis is far from over and that the authorities are desperate to find the money, other than by taxing corporations, other than by taxing the wealthy, in order to solve their problems. ...

This is blackmail. This is basically the officials of the banks and the political leaders going to be mass of people and saying to them, "This awful deal that makes you, who have nothing to do with the crisis and didn’t get any bailout, pay the costs of the crisis and the bailout. You must do this, because if you don’t, we will do even more damage to you and your economy. So give us your deposits, give us your money, pay more taxes, suffer fewer social programs, because if you don’t, we will impose even worse on you." It’s the basic idea of austerity across the board and in our country, too. And I think it’s the confrontation of a system that does not work with the mass of the people, saying, "We will go down and take you with us, unless you bail us out."

The broken Euro

Once full capital controls are imposed, a Euro in Cyprus will no longer be the same as a Euro anywhere else in the Euro area. It cannot leave the island. The Cyprus Euro will in effect be a new domestic currency. The imposition of capital controls in Cyprus is therefore the end of the single currency in its present form. ...

But it is not just the single currency that will be compromised. The isolation of Cyprus is clearly in breach of the founding principles of the European Union. ... The European Union was founded on "four freedoms": free movement of goods, free movement of services, free movement of capital and free movement of people. Capital controls are direct prevention of free movement of capital. In fact it is worse than that, because strict capital controls also severely curtail free movement of goods and services and free movement of people - the other founding principles. Will other countries want to trade with Cyprus, if it is difficult to get money out of the island? How can anything other than subsistence-level trade within the island operate, if payments can only be made in cash? How can people move in and out of Cyprus, if they can't take any money with them? Indeed, how can any of these freedoms be said to operate in a country with capital controls as tight as those now signed into law in Cyprus? In effect, Cyprus is no longer a full member of the European Union.

And this sets a dangerous precedent. The Troika's mishandling of the Greek crisis and the ensuing contagion to Cyprus has fundamentally weakened the European project. If it can bully one state into imposing capital controls in clear breach of the principles of the European Union, and in so doing destroy the integrity of the single currency, then it can do it to others. And this is on top of the damage already caused by the disastrous attempt to impose losses on small depositors in Cyprus, and the imposition of highly damaging "deficit reduction" programmes against the will of the people in a number of states including Cyprus. The Troika has already demonstrated that it will sacrifice democracy in the cause of the European project. But now it shows that it will sacrifice the very principles of that project to maintain the sham of unity. How much longer before the whole thing unravels?

Bailout Closing: Cyprus & lenders agree on taxing deposits

Cyprus bailout: last-ditch deal agreed - as it happened

* Laiki bank to close with only insured deposits safe
* Accounts above €100,000 frozen to address debt
* Without deal islands faced possible eurozone exit

Deal outline

So here's a wrap-up of what appears to be the shape of tonight's last-ditch deal between Cyprus and international lenders:

• A €10bn bailout that will shut down Cyprus' second largest bank and inflict heavy losses on uninsured depositors, including wealthy Russians.

• The deal will spare the country a financial meltdown by winding down Popular Bank of Cyprus, also known as Laiki, and shifting deposits below €100,000 to the Bank of Cyprus to create a "good bank".

• Deposits above €100,000, which under EU law are not guaranteed, will be frozen and used to resolve debts, and Laiki will effectively be shuttered, with thousands of job losses.

Cyprus, capital controls

Restrictions in daily withdrawals

Ban on premature termination of time savings deposits

Compulsory renewal of all time savings deposits upon maturity

Conversion of current accounts to time deposits

Ban or restrictions on non cash transactions

Restrictions on use of debit, credit or prepaid debit cards

Ban or restriction on cashing in checks

Restrictions on domestic interbank transfers or transfers within the same bank

Restrictions on the interactions/transactions of the public with credit institutions

Restrictions on movements of capital, payments, transfers

Any other measure which the Finance Minister or the Governor of Cyprus Central Bank see necessary for reasons of public order and safety

From London to New York to Cyprus, Fraud and Financial "Insanity"

The people of Detroit check their supplies of pitchforks and torches:
Pro-Democracy Movement Rises Against 'Disaster Capitalism' in Detroit

As new 'emergency manager' Kevin Orr takes over in 'bloodless coup,' community plans revolt

Community and pro-democracy activists in Detroit have no intention of rolling over and playing dead for Kevyn Orr, the city's new 'emergency manager' appointed by Republican Gov. Rick Snyder, who will begin his contract to run the city as a one-person government on Monday. ...

"We've waited long enough. We need action around the law because it's anti-democratic," said the Rev. Charles William II, pastor at Historic King Solomon Baptist Church where hundreds of Detroit residents gathered on Saturday to mark their disgust and plan their next move.

As the Detroit News reports:

At least 500 residents attended the meeting at the church, where they were encouraged to engage in protests and civil disobedience to voice their anger and disgust over Orr's appointment earlier this month. ...

On Monday a group will be busing to Cleveland to protest outside of the law firm Jones Day, where Orr was a partner. Buses are scheduled to leave at 8 a.m. Monday from Eastern Market.

Another group plans to meet in front of the Spirit of Detroit statue near the City County Building at 11 a.m. Monday to protest Orr's appointment.

Other protests were also planned, including more freeway protests like those earlier this month where slow-moving traffic clogged I-94 during rush hour.

stop screaming

Canada's 1% government has its answer to their nagging problem of dissent:

'There Is No Right to Protest': Montreal Police Deny Charter Rights

Friday night, before the protest had even begun, and without so much as a hurtful word to serve as pretext, Montreal police descended on a crowd of protesters who were, without exception, peaceful and arrested the lot of them. ...

Last night's shameful spectacle came courtesy of Municipal By-Law P-6, the little known municipal counterpart to the universally denounced, and now repealed, Bill 78/ Law 12. The municipal bylaw shares the requirement that protests must submit their route for approval by the police 24 hours in advance. Among other goodies, it also allows Montreal's Executive Committee to prohibit any peaceful assembly indefinitely, at their discretion and without notice. It should be noted that this almost certainly unconstitutional bylaw was passed by a municipal government with all the credibility and moral authority of a turnip.

At last night's demonstration the police declared the protest illegal before it began for failing to provide a route and ordered protesters to disperse. However, they waited only seconds between giving that order and kettling protesters, giving them no chance to comply.

But don't worry, say the police, they aren't infringing on anyone's right to protest, because no such right exists.

"Starting with the last three demonstrations, we have been intervening faster," Sergeant Jean-Bruno Latour, a spokesperson for the SPVM, told La Presse. "We do not want to hold citizens who wish to go to downtown Montreal hostage. The Charter [of rights and freedoms] protects the right to freedom of expression, but there is no right to protest." [Translated from French]

You can create the illusion of democratic process by dragging the 1%ers before a congressional committee to be asked unpleasant questions about their criminal behavior.  You can investigate their actions and report on their criminal behavior.  But you can't make the Obama administration do its job and prosecute the 1% criminals.  Welcome to American Demockery.
JP Morgan Chase's Crime Spree with Matt Taibbi

A tip of the hat to Lady Libertine:
Read the comments on this drone toy page

[here's a representative sample]

"I have two words for you, 'predator drones.' You will never see it coming., January 11, 2013

By Maurice Cobbs "Better Living through Evil Science"

Durability:3.0 out of 5 stars   Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars   Educational:5.0 out of 5 stars
This review is from: Maisto Fresh Metal Tailwinds 1:97 Scale Die Cast United States Military Aircraft - US Air Force Medium Altitude, Long Endurance, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) RQ-1 Predator with Display Stand (Dimension: 6" x 3-1/2" x 1") (Toy)

You've had a busy play day - You've wiretapped Mom's cell phone and e-mail without a warrant, you've indefinitely detained your little brother Timmy in the linen closet without trial, and you've confiscated all the Super-Soakers from the neighborhood children (after all, why does any kid - besides you, of course - even NEED a Super-Soaker for self-defense? A regular water pistol should be enough). What do you do for an encore?

That's where the US Air Force Medium Altitude, Long Endurance, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) RQ-1 Predator from Maisto comes in. Let's say that Dad has been labeled a terrorist in secret through your disposition matrix. Rather than just arrest him and go through the hassle of trying and convicting him in a court of law, and having to fool with all those terrorist-loving Constitutional protections, you can just use one of these flying death robots to assassinate him! Remember, due process and oversight are for sissies. Plus, you get the added bonus of taking out potential terrorists before they've even done anything - estimates have determined that you can kill up to 49 potential future terrorists of any age for every confirmed terrorist you kill, and with the innovative 'double-tap' option, you can even kill a few terrorist first responders, preventing them from committing terrorist acts like helping the wounded and rescuing survivors trapped in the rubble. Don't let Dad get away with anti-American activities! Show him who's boss, whether he's at a wedding, a funeral, or just having his morning coffee. Sow fear and carnage in your wake! Win a Nobel Peace Prize and be declared Time Magazine's Person of the Year - Twice!

This goes well with the Maisto Extraordinary Rendition playset, by the way - which gives you all the tools you need to kidnap the family pet and take him for interrogation at a neighbor's house, where the rules of the Geneva Convention may not apply. Loads of fun!

The Day That TV News Died

The descent was gradual—a slide into the tawdry, the trivial and the inane, into the charade on cable news channels such as Fox and MSNBC in which hosts hold up corporate political puppets to laud or ridicule, and treat celebrity foibles as legitimate news. But if I had to pick a date when commercial television decided amassing corporate money and providing entertainment were its central mission, when it consciously chose to become a carnival act, it would probably be Feb. 25, 2003, when MSNBC took Phil Donahue off the air because of his opposition to the calls for war in Iraq.

Donahue and Bill Moyers, the last honest men on national television, were the only two major TV news personalities who presented the viewpoints of those of us who challenged the rush to war in Iraq. General Electric and Microsoft—MSNBC’s founders and defense contractors that went on to make tremendous profits from the war—were not about to tolerate a dissenting voice. Donahue was fired, and at PBS Moyers was subjected to tremendous pressure. An internal MSNBC memo leaked to the press stated that Donahue was hurting the image of the network. He would be a “difficult public face for NBC in a time of war,” the memo read. Donahue never returned to the airwaves.

The celebrity trolls who currently reign on commercial television, who bill themselves as liberal or conservative, read from the same corporate script. They spin the same court gossip. They ignore what the corporate state wants ignored. They champion what the corporate state wants championed. They do not challenge or acknowledge the structures of corporate power. Their role is to funnel viewer energy back into our dead political system—to make us believe that Democrats or Republicans are not corporate pawns. The cable shows, whose hyperbolic hosts work to make us afraid self-identified liberals or self-identified conservatives, are part of a rigged political system, one in which it is impossible to vote against the interests of Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, General Electric or ExxonMobil. These corporations, in return for the fear-based propaganda, pay the lavish salaries of celebrity news people, usually in the millions of dollars. They make their shows profitable. And when there is war these news personalities assume their “patriotic” roles as cheerleaders, as Chris Matthews—who makes an estimated $5 million a year—did, along with the other MSNBC and Fox hosts.

Blackout TV: US media turn blind eye to Gitmo hunger strike

As Iraq Anniversary Fades, America's “Strategic Narcissism” Stands Out

After a week of retrospectives on the tenth anniversary of Washington’s ill-fated invasion of Iraq, the most compelling consisted of a retrospective of the retrospectives.

It came from Marc Lynch, an expert on Arab public opinion at George Washington University and prominent blogger on the website. The flood of retrospectives that materialised over the week, he wrote, has “almost exclusively been written by Americans, talking about Americans, for Americans.” ...

Most major newspapers – and cable news channels — ran a scattering of stories from Iraq in which officials and citizens voiced their satisfaction or, more often, their disillusionment with the results of the invasion and subsequent eight-year occupation, as well as their hopes and fears for the future. But these were largely overshadowed on the international news front by the growing drumbeat for U.S. intervention in Syria and President Barack Obama’s trip to Israel.

"Strategic narcissism,” as Lynch called it, is neither new in U.S. relations with the rest of the world, nor is it something that the still-reigning global superpower has by any means shed as a result of the Iraq debacle. “The notion that what the United Sates does is the most important aspect of every development pervades American foreign-policy punditry, whether about Iraq or Egypt, Syria and the Arab uprisings,” he wrote.

'Senate’s Big Oil Benefactors' Slammed for Keystone XL Vote

10 KXL amendment co-sponsors took $8 million from fossil fuel industry

In a 62-37 vote late Friday, the US Senate passed a non-binding amendment calling for the approval of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline.

Environmental groups and climate activists were quick to condemn the vote, but said the "symbolic vote" was valuable because it revealed which members of the Senate have received the message on the seriousness posed by climate change and which continue to bend to the demands of industry lobbyists.

A post-vote analysis by Oil Change International, in fact, revealed that supporters of the amendment "received 3.5 times more in campaign contributions from fossil fuel interests" than those who voted against it. In total, the researchers found that supporters took an average of $499,648 from the industry before voting for the pipeline, for a total of $30,978,153.

Blog Posts of Interest

Here are diaries and selected blog posts of interest on DailyKos and other blogs.
What's Happenin'

New York Times Understands Historical Import of Manning Trial - FINALLY

How not to behave in the men's room

Okiciyap - We Help

Mixed reaction in Greece to 'painful' bailout deal for Cyprus

Double Fail: WaPo Kills Story Critical of Its Iraq Coverage

Hiding public comments on the Keystone XL pipeline from the public

Everything You Need to Know About the "Work-'til-You're-Dead" Meme In One Chart

Welcome to the Daily Kos Social Security Defenders Blogathon

#HandsOffMySocialSecurity, Dean Baker photo SSDDeanBakerPromo1.png

A Little Night Music

Sister Rosetta Tharpe, France 1960 - That's All, Trouble In Mind, Down By The Riverside (Study War No More)

Sister Rosetta Tharpe- What Is the Soul of Man

Sister Rosetta Tharpe - Up Above My Head

Lucky Millinder/Sister Rosetta Tharpe-Rock Me

Sister Rosetta Tharpe - This Train

God Don't Like It - Sister Rosetta Tharpe

Sister Rosetta Tharpe - The Lonesome Road

Sister Rosetta Tharpe - Strange things happening everyday

Sister Rosetta Tharpe - Don't Take Everybody to be Your Friend

Rosetta Tharpe-Lucky Millinder-Shout,Sister,Shout

Sister Rosetta Tharpe - Ain't No Grave Hold My Body Down

Black History Month 2011 - Biographer Gayle Wald - The Legacy of Sister Rosetta Tharpe

It's National Pie Day!

The election is over, it's a new year and it's time to work on real change in new ways... and it's National Pie Day.  This seemed like the perfect opportunity to tell you a little more about our new site and to start getting people signed up.  

Come on over and sign up so that we can send you announcements about the site, the launch, and information about participating in our public beta testing.

Why is National Pie Day the perfect opportunity to tell you more about us?  Well you'll see why very soon.  So what are you waiting for?!   Head on over now and be one of the first!

Originally posted to DFH writers group on Mon Mar 25, 2013 at 05:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Team DFH and Protest Music.


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