foxy news

they push so hard.
fox complains about being perceived as shrill.

well, they bring it upon themselves,

Unarmed at the time of his death, Martin was carrying a bag of Skittles and a bottle of iced tea when he was shot in the chest by George Zimmerman.

at the time of his death?!

that really sounds like he was armed at other times, doesn’t it?

did fox really have to say that?
do you realize how craven and fucking insulting that sentence is?

that sentence fucking hurts me.

el movido del fox news continues twenty four hours a day.


john williams

returning to seattle in 2011, after time away,

i learned about john t. williams.
when you watch video of what happened, you may feel sick.
williams is clearly minding his own business.
just walking.
a peaceful citizen.
the officer jumps out of his car and chases after williams.
he mows williams down like a cluster of dandelions.

it’s clearly unwarranted to murder people who are minding their own business.
but apparently the courts saw it differently.

King County prosecutors will not pursue criminal charges against a Seattle police officer who shot and killed a homeless woodcarver in August, Prosecutor Dan Satterberg said Wednesday morning.

Announcing his decision on the controversial shooting, Satterberg said the evidence gathered does not support state charges against Officer Ian Birk in the slaying of John T. Williams.

this blows my mind.
the key detail can be seen on the video, and was voiced by satterberg himself, even as he declined to bring charges against officer birk:

“The officer seems to have made serious tactical errors that compounded the danger to others and himself,” Satterberg said.

“By his own actions, Officer Birk closed the distance between himself and the man with a knife.”

that is the point.

closed the distance.  attacked.

officer birk attacked john t. williams.
our friend george zimmerman seems to have done the same thing in sanford.

An affidavit made public by special prosecutor Angela Corey said her investigators determined Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer in a gated community in Sanford, Fla., was the one who pursued and confronted Martin.

you don’t get to feel threatened if you are the one doing the chasing.
you don’t get to claim that you fear for your life if you are moving closer and closer to the thing that frightens you.
this is just backward.

charge the officer.
he murdered john t. williams and got away with it.

rest in peace.

sanford history

as someone who never watches tv, i didn’t see the hype about the april 15th anniversary of jackie robinson becoming the first black american to play professional baseball.
that was sixty-five years ago.

many barriers to equality have been broken and many yet remain.
the few pictures i did see were quite moving.

one truly interesting detail about the anniversary was the occurrence of references to sanford, florida.
yes, that sanford.
the same one where zimmerman stood his ground.

the year before he began playing for the majors, robinson’s minor league team based their spring training in sanford. but the white residents of sanford didn’t want this black athlete in their town.

from the nation:

…The mayor of Sanford was confronted by what the author describes as a “large group of white residents” who  “demanded that Robinson…be run out of town.”

The Mayor caved. On March 5th, the Royals were informed that they would not be permitted to take the field as an integrated group. Rickey was concerned for Robinson’s life and sent him to stay in Daytona Beach.  His daughter, Sharon Robinson, remembered, “The Robinsons were run out of Sanford, Florida, with threats of violence.”

it helps to explain why the police seemingly made so many awful decisions in the wake of the trayvon shooting.
it’s just the way some people have always done business.

The Cover-Up

While watching Simon Schama’s show, Power of Art, on YouTube [link] on Pablo Picasso’s Guernica, the host mentions that a version of the painting was covered up in conjunction with Colin Powell’s speech to the United Nations on February 5, 2003.  That this happened is indisputable.  Beyond that, one must take a stand.  One may believe that the tapestry was covered up, because it was an inconvenient image to be on display in the midst of a fevered march to war in Iraq, or one may believe that fussy cameramen caused the whole incident.

The picture below is Guernica with a blue shroud being pulled over it.  You can read about the painting here [link], if you don’t already know about it.  The image below appeared on the cover of Harper’s April 2003 edition.

The painting actually hangs in the Museo Reina Sofía in Madrid, Spain.  A tapestry version of the painting hung near the Security Council room at the United Nations.  The original painting is black, white and gray.  The tapestry introduces brown and taupe, but is otherwise a reproduction of the original.  The original is almost indisputably one of the greatest artistic representations of the horror of war, and, in particular, aerial bombardment.  It is wonderful to think that a tapestry version of Guernica hung near the door to the U.N. Security Council.  It is even possible to imagine that such imagery could embarrass diplomats and cause a nation to reconsider its march to war.  Unless you want to believe the ‘Fussy Cameraman Theory,’ the Guernica tapestry became an inconvenience in the lead-up to the Iraq War, and the tapestry had to be covered up or else it might have risked reminding the viewing public of the consequences of war.

On January 27, 2003, Hans Blix spoke to the Security Council about weapons inspections in Iraq.  Here are two quote from the February 3, 2003 edition of the New York Observer with the first giving a summary of the Blix appearance:

The reason for all the commotion, of course, was that Hans Blix-the U.N.’s elegant, even-toned chief weapons inspector, who appears to have stepped out of a John Le Carré thriller-was delivering his report on Iraq’s dealings with the arms inspectors.

Further on in the story:

Afterward, dozens of journalists thronged outside the second-floor meeting room where Mr. Blix met with security members in private.  When they emerged, they spoke in front of a sheath that had been temporarily hung over a tapestry version of Picasso’s Guernica.  [emphasis added]

Keep in mind that this story came two days before Colin Powell’s appearance.  Another story appeared on February 3, 2003, by Betsy Pisik, in the Washington Times.  [Unable to find a direct link.]   Here we find out more about the ‘cover-up’ of Guernica and we are also are introduced to the fussy camerman and his great fear of horses and again this comes two days before the Powell speech:

Television cameras routinely pan the tapestry as diplomats enter and leave the council chambers, and its muted browns and taupes lend a poignant backdrop to the talking heads.

So it was a surprise for many of the envoys to arrive at U.N. headquarters last Monday for a Security Council briefing by chief weapons inspectors, only to find the searing work covered with a baby-blue banner and the U.N. logo.

“It is, we think, we hope, only temporary,” said Faustino Diaz Fortuny, a Spanish envoy whose government owns the original painting.

U.N. officials said last week that it is more appropriate for dignitaries to be photographed in front of the blue backdrop and some flags than the impressionist image of shattered villagers and livestock.

“It’s only temporary.  We’re only doing this until the cameras leave,” said Abdellatif Kabbaj, the organization’s media liaison.  He noted that the diplomats’ microphone, which usually stands in front of a Security Council sign, had to be moved to accommodate the crowd of camera crews and reporters.  With the Picasso as a backdrop, Mr. Kabbaj said, no one would know they were looking at the United Nations.

The drapes were installed last Monday and Wednesday — the days the council discussed Iraq — and came down Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, when the subjects included Afghanistan and peacekeeping missions in Lebanon and Western Sahara.

So when Secretary of State Colin L. Powell enters the council Wednesday to present evidence of Iraq’s acquisition of mobile biological weapons labs and terrorism ties, he will walk in front of flags that wouldn’t look out of place in the auditorium of a high school gymnasium.

U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who keeps a Matisse tapestry and a Rauschenberg collage in his private 38th-floor conference room, denies he had anything to do with the “Guernica” cover-up.

“If you heard all the things done in my name, you’d think I was everywhere,” he joked Friday. “I heard it was artistic.”

Mr. Kabbaj amplified thus: “We had a problem with, you know, the horse.”

 It was, of course, a camera crew that noticed that anyone who stood at the U.N. microphone would be photographed next to the backside of a rearing horse.  [emphasis added]

Maureen Dowd at the New York Times picked up on the story, and on February 5, 2003, the same day of the famous Colin Powell speech, she wrote the following [link]:

 When Colin Powell goes to the United Nations today to make his case for war with Saddam, the U.N. plans to throw a blue cover over Picasso’s antiwar masterpiece, ”Guernica.”

Too much of a mixed message, diplomats say. As final preparations for the secretary’s presentation were being made last night, a U.N. spokesman explained, ”Tomorrow it will be covered and we will put the Security Council flags in front of it.”

Mr. Powell can’t very well seduce the world into bombing Iraq surrounded on camera by shrieking and mutilated women, men, children, bulls and horses.

Reporters and cameras will stake out the secretary of state at the entrance of the U.N. Security Council, where the tapestry reproduction of ”Guernica,” contributed by Nelson Rockefeller, hangs.

The U.N. began covering the tapestry last week after getting nervous that Hans Blix’s head would end up on TV next to a screaming horse head.

(Maybe the U.N. was inspired by John Ashcroft’s throwing a blue cover over the ”Spirit of Justice” statue last year, after her naked marble breast hovered over his head during a televised terrorism briefing.)

Nelson Rockefeller himself started the tradition of covering up art donated by Nelson Rockefeller when he sandblasted Diego Rivera’s mural in the RCA Building in 1933 because it included a portrait of Lenin. (Rivera later took his revenge, reproducing the mural for display in Mexico City, but adding to it a portrait of John D. Rockefeller Jr. drinking a martini with a group of ”painted ladies.”)

Right on, we are now are back to war-mongers as cowards before the power of art.  One screwed up looking horse could really step on Colin Powell’s whole speech.  We all know that the Dowd interpretation could not be allowed to stand.  It must be corrected.  Remember this happened in 2003, so there must be a correction in the true Foucault, winner write history, form.  The following piece is an attempt to get history right if you believe in the Fussy Cameraman Theory.  The following is from the April 16, 2003 edition of the Weekly Standard, entitled, “Guernica Myth.”  [link]

Tuesday I asked a British diplomat assigned to the Security Council what had actually happened. A spokeswoman for the U.N. Secretariat independently confirmed the diplomat’s version of events in all its particulars. I paraphrase:

Early this year, as the Iraq drama was playing out at the United Nations, the press corps covering the Security Council swelled. The usual press stakeout, where ambassadors routinely take reporters’ questions outside the Security Council, simply couldn’t hold the numbers–expected to reach 800 for Powell’s address on February 5. So the Secretariat moved the stakeout down the hallway.

As over 200 cameramen were setting up, they complained that the background at the new location didn’t work for them. Powell would be speaking in front of the tapestry, of which only indecipherable shapes would be visible. Couldn’t a plain background be provided, like the white wall the cameramen were used to outside the Security Council chamber, which is ornamented only by the words Security Council / Conseil de Securite in brass letters?

The temporary solution, provided by the Secretariat, was a U.N.-blue backdrop. Said the British diplomat, “The Secretariat did it, to meet the visual requirements of the TV guys.”

It was only afterwards that comments were heard about the unfortunate symbolism of blocking out “Guernica.” [emphasis added]  As a result of these, the Secretariat moved the press stakeout to a third location halfway between the first two. Now cameras could take their choice: They could pan across “Guernica” and some flags to the speaker, standing in front of the blue backdrop against the plain white wall, or they could content themselves with the usual head shot.

If you read the Weekly Standard article you will find no meniton of Hans Blix’s January 27, 2003 speech, nor will you find any mention of the comments that preceded the Colin Powell speech, including Maureen Dowd’s comments in that underground newspaper where her stuff is published.  What you will find is that Weekly Standard piece appears in almost every Google search of this matter.  Foucault evidently understood Google too.

It is over 9 years since all of this happened.  Events in Iraq may have wound down, but the U.S. addiction to aerial bombardment continues unabated.  Would our current leaders try to sell us on drone warfare in front of Guernica?  Would another fussy cameraman emerge to complain about a horse’s head?