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Bait-and-switch is a form of fraud used in retail sales but also employed in other contexts. First, customers are "baited" by merchants' advertising products or services at a low price, but when customers visit the store, they discover that the advertised goods are not available, or the customers are pressured by sales people to consider similar, but higher priced items ("switching").
While used by all presidential candidate, Obama can be called Prince of bait and switch tactics. Even "Slick Willy" with his "it's economy stupid" did not reach the higher of betrayal of the electorate delivered by Obama with his famous and completely fraudulent "change we can believe it".
Actually it is proper not to view Obama as a person. Obama is a brand, a puppet created by advertizing. Advertising is the rule of the game. And during presidencial elections cycle Obama managed to outspend republican McCain due to financial industry contributions. Tell me who is paying for your election and I will tell what policies you will persue ;-)
And Obama campaign once again demonstrated old truth: Democratic Party just plays the role of destroyer of radical left, while Republican Party plays the same role for radical right. This provides stability. Talks about democracy after 1963, when "shadow government" came in power in the USA is akin to advertizing trick.
Obama has close ties with the "deep state". Historically Obama spend some time working in Business International Corporation, the CIA outlet (Wikipedia)
In the late summer of 1983, future United States President Barack Obama interviewed for a job at Business International Corporation. He worked there for "little more than year." As a research associate in its financial services division, he edited Financing Foreign Operations, a global reference service, and wrote for Business International Money Report, a weekly financial newsletter. His responsibilities included "interviewing business experts, researching trends in foreign exchange, following market developments. . . . He wrote about currency swaps and leverage leases. . . . Obama also helped write financial reports on Mexico and Brazil.
See also Verified CIA Front, Business International Corp, Paid for Obama’s Columbia College Tuition Export Blueprint
After graduating from Columbia University in 1983, Barack Obama went to work for a firm called Business International Corporation (BIC), a firm that was linked to economic intelligence gathering for the CIA.
For one year, Obama worked as a researcher in BIC’s financial services division where he wrote for two BIC publications, Financing Foreign Operations and Business International Money Report, a weekly newsletter. An informed source has told WMR that Obama’s tuition debt at Columbia was paid off by BIC.
In addition, WMR has learned that when Obama lived in Indonesia with his mother and his adoptive father Lolo Soetoro, the 20-year-old Obama, who was known as “Barry Soetoro,” traveled to Pakistan in 1981 and was hosted by the family of Muhammadmian Soomro, a Pakistani Sindhi who became acting President of Pakistan after the resignation of General Pervez Musharraf on August 18, 2008. WMR was told that the Obama/Soetoro trip to Pakistan, ostensibly to go “partridge hunting” with the Soomros, related to unknown CIA business.
The covert CIA program to assist the Afghan mujaheddin was already well underway at the time and Pakistan was the major base of operations for the CIA’s support. Obama also reportedly traveled to India, again, on unknown business for U.S. intelligence. WMR has been told by knowledgeable sources that Obama has, in the past, traveled on at least three passports: U.S., Indonesian, and British. BIC also maintained a European subsidiary, Business International S.A., in Geneva. BIC had long been associated with CIA activities since being founded by Eldridge Haynes, a self-professed liberal Democrat. The BIC headquarters was located at the prestigious address of 1 Dag Hammarskjold Plaza in Manhattan. BIC held a series of off-the-record, no press, meetings between top U.S. business executives and top government officials, including the President, and the Secretaries of State, Defense, Treasury, Commerce, and Labor; the Attorney General, Senate leadership, and the heads of the Export-Import Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank. BIC held international meetings in locations like Brussels and Mexico City.
In 1986, BIC was bought by the Economist Group in London and its operations were merged with the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). There have been a number of reports that the EIU works as closely with Britain’s MI-6 intelligence service as BIC once worked with or for the CIA. One of BIC’s directors was the late Lord Pilkington, who was also a director of the Bank of England. Obama’s work for a company having ties to the CIA barely registered a blip on the 2008 presidential campaign radar screen. At the very least, Obama helped in providing economic intelligence to the CIA as a contract employee. At most, Obama was, like previous BIC employees who operated abroad for the CIA, a full-fledged non-official cover (NOC) agent. Since President Obama has backpedaled on CIA renditions and torture, as well as warrantless electronic surveillance by U.S. intelligence, he owes the American people a full explanation of the circumstances behind his being hired by BIC, what his job actually entailed, and whether he continued to have a relationship with BIC or any other CIA operation while attending Harvard Law School and thereafter.
In foreign policy Obama is simply Bush III, a stanch neocon, who is never tied of imperial adventures and bombing brown people (The Bush-Obama-Neocon Doctrine):
It’s official: When it comes to foreign policy, Barack Obama’s first term is really George W. Bush’s third. Bill Kristol, son of the late neoconservative godfather Irving Kristol and editor of the Weekly Standard, declared that Obama is “a born-again neocon” during a March 30 appearance on the Fox News Channel’s Red Eye w/Greg Gutfeld. Kristol’s remark came in the context of a discussion of Obama’s consultation with Kristol and other influential columnists prior to his March 28 address to the nation about his military intervention in Libya. Gutfeld quizzed Kristol about the President’s asking him for “help” with his speech. Kristol denied that Obama had sought his help. Instead, Kristol said,
In case anyone missed the significance of Kristol’s comment, Gutfeld made it clear: “We’ve got the drones. We’ve got military tribunals. We’ve got Gitmo. We’re bombing Libya. People who voted for Obama got four more years of Bush.”
Kristol agreed, adding: “What’s the joke — they told me if I voted for McCain, we’d be going to war in a third Muslim country…. I voted for McCain and we’re doing it.”
Of course, to Kristol, calling someone a neocon is a compliment. Indeed, Kristol praised Obama’s speech on the Weekly Standard blog, saying the President “had rejoined — or joined — the historical American foreign policy mainstream.” The speech was “reassuring,” Kristol explained, saying, “The president was unapologetic, freedom-agenda-embracing, and didn’t shrink from defending the use of force or from appealing to American values and interests.” In other words, it was a neocon speech, cloaking the use of violence in the language of liberty and treating the U.S. military as the President’s personal mercenaries to reshape the globe rather than as defenders of the territorial United States.
This is not the first time Kristol and other neocons have lauded Obama’s foreign policy. After Obama made a speech in 2009 announcing he was sending more troops to Afghanistan — that is, he was replicating Bush’s Iraq “surge” in another location — Michael Goldfarb, a Weekly Standard writer, asked Kristol for his reaction to the speech. “He said he would have framed a few things differently,” Goldfarb related, “but his basic response was: ‘All hail Obama!’”
Similarly, when the President last August claimed that “the American combat mission in Iraq has ended” while asserting that “our commitment to Iraq’s future is not” ending, New York Post resident neocon John Podhoretz applauded Obama for his “rather neoconservative speech, in the sense that neoconservatism has argued for aggressive American involvement in the world both for the world’s sake and for the sake of extending American freedoms in order to enhance and preserve American security.” [Emphasis in original.]
Sheldon Richman, writing in Freedom Daily, reminded readers of just exactly what neocon policies have wrought:
Just to be clear, the neocons were among the key architects of the war against Iraq in 1991, followed by the embargo that killed half a million children. That war and embargo set the stage for the 9/11 attacks, which were then used to justify the invasion and occupation of Iraq (an ambition long predating 9/11) and the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan, American’s [sic] longest military engagement — all of which have killed more than a million people, wreaked political havoc, and made life in those countries (and elsewhere) miserable. Let’s not forget the drone assassination and special ops programs being run in a dozen Muslim countries. The neocon achievement also has helped drive the American people deep into debt.
Nice crowd Obama is hanging with these days. And that’s no exaggeration. Frederick Kagan, one of the top neocon brains and a signatory of the Project of the New American Century imperial manifesto, now works for Gen. David Petraeus.
Barack Obama, the candidate of “change we can believe in,” turned out to be the President of “more of the same.” Lest there remain any doubt about this, one need only turn to establishment news organ Time magazine. There Mark Halperin, explaining “why Obama’s Libya address was strong,” states quite bluntly: “George W. Bush could have delivered every sentence.”
Oct 12, 2017 | www.theguardian.com
Oct 6, 2017here's was a moment in Steve Bannon's recent 60 Minutes inter view when the former presidential advisor was asked what he's done to drain "the swamp," the Trumpists' favorite metaphor for everything they hate about Washington DC. Here was Bannon's reply: "The swamp is 50 years in the making. Let's talk about the swamp. The swamp is a business model. It's a successful business model. It's a donor, consultant, K Street lobbyist, politician ... 7 of the 9 wealthiest counties in America ring Washington, DC."
With a shock of recognition I knew immediately what Bannon meant, because what he was talking about was the subject matter of my 2008 book, The Wrecking Crew – the interconnected eco-system of corruption that makes Washington, DC so rich.
The first chapter of my book had been a description of those wealthy counties that ring Washington, DC: the fine cars, the billowing homes, the expense-account restaurants. The rest of the book was my attempt to explain the system that made possible the earthly paradise of Washington and – just like Steve Bannon – I did it by referring to a business model: the political donors and the K Street lobbyists, who act in combination with politicians of the Tom DeLay variety.
My critique of Washington was distinctly from the left, and it astonished me to hear something very close to my argument coming from the mouth of one of the nation's most prominent conservatives. But in fact, Bannon has a long history of reaching out to the left – you might say, of swiping its populist language and hijacking its causes.
In this space back in February, for example, I described Bannon's bizarre 2010 pseudo-documentary about the financial crisis, which superficially resembles actual documentaries, but which swerves to blame this failure of the deregulated financial system on the counterculture of the 1960s.
Bannon's once-famous denunciation of Wall Street banks for their role in the financial crisis is another example. His fondness for the author Christopher Lasch is also revealing. As was his admiring phone call with Robert Kuttner, a well-known liberal editor, which happened just before Bannon left his high-ranking White House job in August.
Mimicry is supposed to be a form of flattery, right
Dig a little deeper, and it sometimes seems like the history of the populist right – with its calls to "organize discontent" and its endless war against "the establishment" and the "elites" – is nothing but a history of reformatting left-wing ideas to fit the needs of the billionaire class. Think of Ronald Reagan's (and Mike Pence's) deliberate reprise of Franklin Roosevelt. Or the constant echoes of Depression-era themes and imagery that one heard from the Tea Party movement.
Donald Trump's presidential campaign took this cynical strategy farther than any of his Republican predecessors, openly reaching out to alienated working-class voters, the backbone of so many left-wing protest movements.
Trump told us he was going to do something about Nafta, a left-wing bête noir since the 1990s. He promised to revive Glass Steagall. He claimed to care so very, very much about the people of the deindustrialized zones whose sufferings have been so thoroughly documented by left-wing authors.
So many fine, militant words. So many clarion calls rousing the people against corrupt elites. And now comes Steve Bannon, the terror of the Republican establishment, hectoring us about "the swamp" with ideas so strikingly similar to my own.
Look at deeds rather than words, however, and it seems as though Trump and his gang have been using The Wrecking Crew more as a how-to guide than anything else. In that book, for example, I pointed out that one of the hallmarks of modern conservative governance is the placement of people who are hostile to the mission of federal agencies in positions of authority in those very agencies.
This is an essential component of the Washington corruption Bannon loves to deplore – and yet this is precisely what Bannon's man Trump has done. Betsy DeVos, a foe of public schools, is running the Department of Education. Scott Pruitt, a veteran antagonist of the EPA, has been put in charge of the EPA. Rick Perry now runs the Department of Energy, an agency he once proposed to abolish.
Another characteristic of the DC wrecking crew is a war on competence within the Federal bureaucracy – and that, too, is back on, courtesy of the folks who rallied you against corruption so movingly last year.
Lobbying ? The industry appears to be gearing up for a return of its Reagan-era golden age. In the early days of the administration, lobbyists were appointed en masse to team Trump and a brigade of brash new K Street personalities is rising up to replace the old guard.
Privatization? The people in DC are trying it again, and this time on a gigantic scale. Trump's ultra-populist infrastructure promise now seems to be little more than a vast scheme for encouraging investment firms to take over the country's highways and bridges. Even the dreams of privatized war are back, brought to you courtesy of the enterprising Erik Prince, a familiar face from the worst days of the Iraq war.
Above it all towers the traditional Republican ideal of business-in-government. "The government should be run like a great American company," is how Jared Kushner puts it this time around; and with his private-jet-set cabinet Donald Trump is going to show the nation exactly what that philosophy looks like.
All the elements are here. The conclusion is unquestionable. The wrecking crew is back.
And why is it back? Because, among other things, Republicans are better at fulminating against the wrecking crew than are Democrats. Maybe that's because Democratic leaders feel it's inappropriate to use such blunt and crude language.
Maybe that's because, for 40 years or so, the leadership faction of the Democratic Party has been at war with its own left wing, defining us out of the conversation, turning a deaf ear to our demands, denouncing populism even as the right grabbed for it with both hands. Either way, the Democrats seem to have no intention of changing their approach now.
Maybe we on the left should take consolation in the things Steve Bannon says. Our own team may not listen to us, but at least there's someone out there in a position of power who apparently does. And mimicry is supposed to be a form of flattery, right?
No. All this is happening for one reason only: to steal the traditional base of the Democratic Party out from under us. That it will also enrich countless contractors and lobbyists and bunglers and wreckers is just a bonus.Thomas Frank is a Guardian columnist
Thirdparty -> bh_two , 9 Oct 2017 04:04Right. The traditional base of the Democratic Party stopped supporting it when it was taken over by right-wingers like the Clintons.Thirdparty , 9 Oct 2017 04:01On running the government like a business: That is exactly what the Trump regime is doing. Their business model is the mob. And to be fair, the idea of running government like a business makes precisely as much sense as running a business like a government.Aligarter , 9 Oct 2017 03:15Steve Bannon is part of the plan to de-democratize the USA and Republicans can only do that by lying on an industrial scale, which they do very efficiently and effectively. Why the need? Because although they are good at destruction, they are no good at all at building the nation or government.bh_two , 9 Oct 2017 01:27
The First Rule of Marketing says that if you give people what they want, they will give you dollars. The billionaires who fund the Republicans again and again do so not because they believe in good government, or have the slightest concern for the wealth, health and defense of the nation, but because they get what they want. It's a purchasing contract.curiouswes -> HauptmannGurski , 9 Oct 2017 01:22"....to steal the traditional base of the Democratic Party out from under us"
They aren't your servants to do your bidding and wait your table. Nor your political property. There is no more similarity of average working blokes to self-infatuated intellectuals of "the left" than a potato to a hubcap.
Working people left the party because they plainly are no longer welcome except during the brief hours when the polls are open.MD1212a , 8 Oct 2017 21:32
What are we at?
I haven't the vaguest idea. When Sanders decided to support HRC, I figured nothing will ever change. He built up a lot of hope (as did Obama), only to pull the rug out at the eleventh hour.Moving to the far towards the "progressive" left, the Democratic party abandoned the working and middle classes in favor of the coastal well to do city dwellers while trying to appeal to the "oppressed identity" single issue "groups". The only answer it presented to all problems was more government control over the economy and over all aspects of people's life. People got tired of losing their jobs to "globalization", with the government deciding what they can do with policies of "diversity", which is essentially a quota system, and with having ideologues and bureaucrats decide what is good or bad for them.DocDiv -> curiouswes , 8 Oct 2017 20:16TPP was a secret deal, which had written into it, its own right to trump the legal systems of signatory countries with TPP-sponsored arbitration and even mediation judgments. Trump saw that off on his first day.Lyndon Watson , 8 Oct 2017 20:02If we lost the base of the Democratic party it wasn't because it was stolen from us. It was because it was given away. We started giving it away when we learned the wrong lesson after Ronald Reagan and thought that we had to move to the right with Bill Clinton to win the presidency.Cas Ann -> J.K. Stevens , 8 Oct 2017 19:20
It was later given away when we didn't accomplish much when we had the majorities in the House, Senate and Presidency back in 2008. If Trump picked up our message it was because he took it, it was because it was just sitting there waiting to be picked up.Nonsense. Clinton is the ultimate Swamp Creature,and large reason for her loss is that she spent more time with her high dollar donors then in swing states. How do you think the "Clinton Foundation" got so big?JohnCan45 , 8 Oct 2017 17:11So the Democrats embraced the moneyed establishment because they felt they had to to win, while the Republicans denounced that same establishment but only as part of a bait-and-switch strategy. Meanwhile the establishment hedges their bets and wins no matter what the election outcome.curiouswes -> stderr2 , 8 Oct 2017 16:51budhudnut -> curiouswes , 8 Oct 2017 16:39
Conservatives argue against identity politics.
That is a good message. I'll be more supportive of the conservatives when they actually practice what they preach. But please don't get me wrong. Not all conservatives are into white supremacy. The problem I see is that if one is a white supremacist, the conservatives don't publicly denounce that position. It makes many people of color feel alienated by conservatism. At least the left openly denounces white supremacy. The right praises MLK but doesn't condemn those in Charlotteville. They had a right to protest and the left shouldn't have tried to silence them. However it was identity politics. They wouldn't be protecting the open display of the confederacy if they weren't into identity politics. That message seems to get lost as conservatism frowns on identity politics.
I don't know what that refers to.
NAFTA passed under Clinton , but more importantly, so did the Uruguay Round of GATT. When the Senate passed that (the House passed it to but technically the House doesn't ratify treaties), it severely curtailed the USA's ability to negotiate our own trade deals. All members of the WTO are vulnerable to financial penalties if any member nation tries to override the rulings set by the WTO. Not only did Ralph Nader recognize this as a problem and try to run for president because of it, so did Pat Buchanan. Buchanan saw this as lost sovereignty (in his words). Both Nader and Buchanan were of course unsuccessful because we vote in an FPTP voting system which tends to eliminate third parties form being successful.
The point is that Clinton forced Congress to pass the legislation just like Paulson forced Congress to approve a bailout of the banks during the financial crisis. It wasn't really all the republicans fault, but the oligarchy would have taken down the global economy if it didn't get bailed out. Anyway the WTO has a policy on dumping:
If a company exports a product at a price lower than the price it normally charges on its own home market, it is said to be "dumping" the product. The WTO Agreement does not regulate the actions of companies engaged in "dumping". Its focus is on how governments can or cannot react to dumping -- it disciplines anti-dumping actions, and it is often called the "Anti-dumping Agreement".
both dems and reps rant and rave about China dumping steel but nothing ever gets done to stop it because the WTO is there protecting China (or american companies making steel in China). Either way the american steel worker gets screwed in the process and that is why populists hate globalism. The American worker knows he's getting screwed but he may not be aware of the mechanism by which he is getting screwed. The media rarely talks about the WTO because if the American worker knew how he was getting screwed, he'd be screaming to get out of the WTO. Typically he only knows his jobs are gone and where they are. However it was Clinton who did this and the idea that anybody would even think of putting HRC back in the white house while she is still married to that dude is due to utter ignorance of the fact of what he did when he was there the first time.
I think both Clinton and W should be in jail, but this isn't about W.I agree, the New Deal was quite leftist, in the sense that it acknowledged the crisis which had struck the working class. It's atypical in the history of the Democratic Party, which has been devoted to advancing the interests of U.S. corporations and since the Clinton years, those of multinational business consortia. But even the New Deal was a far cry from a revolutionary call to arms. In fact, it was meant to curtail such agitation. Roosevelt said as much.ID6995146 , 8 Oct 2017 16:15There is no left movement in Washington. Each is going after money from lobbyists. I just see the USA rapidly consuming itself and fragmenting. It has poor social, medical, policing programs. And it continues to digest itself in petty hate between the Democrats and Republicans. It really has no serious governance and worse its flagship superior court is now being sold to capitalism. Capitalism will fail as predicted by Marx and those who really know about it. It is our children who will pick up the tab if they can survive.stderr2 -> curiouswes , 8 Oct 2017 15:19stderr2 -> curiouswes , 8 Oct 2017 15:12> Identity politics is what the oligarchy is using to divide us.
Conservatives argue against identity politics. I don't know what the oligarchy is supposed to be, in the context of the US. People in power often came from varied backgrounds, not usually all that rich backgrounds.
> upward mobility is being taken from us
Upward from what? If you are poor, there's a lot of upward that might be possible, but if you are middle class, whatever that means, you can't have everyone moving up or the definition of middle class would change to them.
> The worst thing that happened to us, happened under Clinton
I don't know what that refers to. Welfare reform? Various changes to banking regulations? Allowing bin Laden to hit us again and again but instead of doing what needed to be done, frolicking with a young frisky intern in the Oval Office? I doubt Bush Sr would've done that.curiouswes -> stderr2 , 8 Oct 2017 14:49> However if you stand up for the rights of one group and ignore the rights of another today some people still don't "get it".
They don't get what? When someone protests in the street, whether they are sweetness and light or racist or whatever, they have the right to protest. Plenty of people would argue that "hate speech" should be banned, them defining what "hate speech" means, of course. These people are arguing against settled constitutional law.
> I tend to think the US citizen should be protected by the bill of rights and not necessarily those here illegally.
Yet not protecting everyone with due process, for example, is a violation of constitutional law.I consider myself a populist. Not exactly from the left but certainly more left that right. Identity politics is what the oligarchy is using to divide us. I just think it is counterproductive to battle each other when the upward mobility is being taken from us. I wish others could see it. The worst thing that happened to us, happened under Clinton, but rest assured; HW Bush would have done it had he won the election in 92.budhudnut -> curiouswes , 8 Oct 2017 13:10My point was that calling the Democratic Party a leftist party requires a notion of that term drained of real meaning. The Democratic Party has always upheld the supremacy of capital and the necessity of forestalling a revolution. I realize that in the United States plenty of people regard President Obama and Hillary Clinton as communists, but that's simply a measure of how far to the right political discourse stands there. The American left was eliminated from public life in the 1940s and 1950s with the suppression of the Communist Party, the purging of the unions and professions, and strict mass indoctrination of the citizenry. And whenever new manifestations of leftist energy have appeared, they have been met with unremitting hostility from liberal and conservative centers of power.lsjogren -> dallasdunlap , 8 Oct 2017 10:27
Finally, the Democratic Party is a party not just of capital, but of empire. This was never more true than in last year's election, in which Donald Trump was able to appeal to marginal voters on the ambiguous claim that he was less warlike than Secretary Clinton. No, there's nothing in the two party set-up which expresses the basic demands of the modern left- an end to imperialism, nationalization of key industries, and so on. And when people restrict their political thinking to the narrow range offered by a business oligopoly, they're going to be misreading their own reality.The Republican Party has a big problem in that its agenda has at best a small grassroots following of perhaps 10% of the populace.lsjogren , 8 Oct 2017 10:22
Meantime, populist-nationalism is in sync with the views of I would estimate at least 50% of the US citizenry and perhaps as much as 60%. (the other 30% of the public are "progressives")
The establishment has maintained power by default. When our political system offers only a choice between a "progressive" Democrat and an establishment Repubilcan, many voters choose the latter as the lesser evil.
If and when voters actually are offered a genuine choice at the ballot box, watch out. I think you will start seeing this played out on a grand scale in the 2018 and 2020 Republican primaries.Fighting the corporate establishment has never been the exclusive province of the left.dallasdunlap , 8 Oct 2017 09:03
Immigration restrictionists in the US have for decades fought the corporate establishment. In fact, we have fought what are probably the most powerful coalitions of special interests in human history, coalitions of corporate predators, Big Labor, Big Religion, Big Media, and Big Government.
This movement is one of the grassroots pillars fueling Bannonism.There are plenty of populists in the Republican Party, but the governing portion of the party is solidly neocon. Hence the battle between President Trump and the "17 intelligence agencies," and the remarkable undermining of Trump's foreign policy proposals by his own cabinet.budhudnut , 8 Oct 2017 06:26
Just as the progressive base of the Democratic Party is suppressed by the corporatists at the DNC and other centralized party organs, the Republican base is a captive to its Washington elite power brokers.Thomas Frank's interesting and thoughtful pieces on the failure- or refusal- of the Democratic Party to come to terms with the depths of voter disaffection form an interesting contrast with the Guardian's DNC-supplied outlook. I suppose that's why he's been hired, to take up all that slack as the paper trudges ever rightward. Here's a link to an extended recent interview he gave with Paul Jay at The Real News.Christopher Oxley , 7 Oct 2017 16:53
http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=832&Itemid=74&jumival=1649Populist movements typically tend to involve more focus on complaining and raging about problems than coming up with any real solutions for them, so it doesn't really matter whether members self-identify as coming from the left or right. Given the Trump campaign was all about manipulation anyway, with Trump just a puppet to distract the public from seeing the corprate take-over of the state, it's not surprising they used a populist rhetoric, as seen in shock doctrine, that inherent rage blinds them from seeing they are being manipulated.Ben Groetsch -> sludgeco , 7 Oct 2017 15:48The last time the Democrats actually offered something to the American people was the War on Poverty and Civil Rights legislation by President Johnson in the 1960s. Other than the Democrats have been acting like an extended PR arm of corporate America by performing sideshows on social issues while failing to address the needs of working families. I clearly don't buy into the notion that the Democrats are a tad better than the Republicans. No, the Democrats need to be radically to the left like Bernie Sanders, not moderate Republican lite such as Bill Clinton or Barack Obama. This country simply cannot continue electing conservative governments all the time in Washington DC.sparkylab -> JoeintheMidwest , 7 Oct 2017 12:50Apparently 'isolationism' now means simply advocating for some restraint on endless global US military interventionism, hundreds and hundreds of bases in 80+ countries, and trillion dollar 'defence' budgets.JoeintheMidwest -> PennyCarter , 7 Oct 2017 12:25A broken clock is right twice a day. Yes, Republican isolationists are the only ones in their primarily interventionist party to ever make a principled critique of endless U.S. wars abroad. Sadly, the Democrats are, with some honorable exceptions like Dennis Kucinich, as committed to these endless wars as their partners across the aisle. This is one of the many reasons why Hillary Clinton lost. However, Buchanan's xenophobia makes his brand of anti-imperialism shallow--he still thinks "Western civilization" is superior to other cultures, and has denied the genocide against Native Americans. His views about Jews are also rather creepy. That said, I'll take an isolationist over a neo-con any day.money777 , 7 Oct 2017 07:21There is divisive manipulation on the left and the right, the pundits blame each other to keep America divided. The right stereotypes the left while the left stereotypes the right . The working class crazy white guy is oppressing the hispanic and blacks while the blacks and hispanic oppress the working class white. The left pundits make fun of the working class while the right pundits make fun of the left pundits. Both sides are entralled by business interests aka socoio-political interests. Afterall, this is a business world where ppl have to put food on the table.America is on the verge of becoming as divided as america was prior to the civil war. What am i supposed to do? Join the resistence of division taking place on the left and the right? Protest against another american at a divided left vs. right rally? Resistence is futile because resistence leads to more division.Ponderbelle -> America_Loves_Trump , 7 Oct 2017 05:16
Excuse my unedites grammar semtence structure lack of sense and not serious online commentTrump can't stop calling others names - with the absurd stance that he must bully people to create a sense of self respect.ID6823856 , 7 Oct 2017 04:10
Those who support Trump or Bannon generally have in common a refusal to see any viewpoint other than their own. They'll find a way to make most any belief, policy or decision which T&B uphold, look justified or non-offensive in motives.
Trump runs every which way, so, there are bound to be a few things one finds agreeable (even from the left). Bannon thinks democracy does not work. He'd like to see the federal government crash.
In fact, The USA has no true democracy. Like many developed nations we are under the total rule of organized business. Profit is superior and normalized whereas basic human needs are for the highest bid competition. Greed older than Methuselah's first breakfast. Bannon doesn't have a vision for the betterment and uplift of society any more than anyone else. Who cannot can see corporate greed has its tentacles around us? The common person on the street knows the scheme. What to do about it finds us in the land of inertia. Next crash (it is coming) the panicked cry for bailouts will be near impossible to put-up with. With billions on the planet we are in new territory, as to resources and competition. A system which cannot survive with its hand in our pocket while claiming free market enterprise will even out the system on balance - meaning for investors, and head in sand more of the same.The "base" of the Democratic party is now the same get rich ideologues of Clinton-ism who are happy to lobby and privatise with as much enthusiasm as any right wing Republican/Conservative/Tea Party ideologue. Every administration, Republican or Democratic, from Clinton, to Bush, to Obama, has held to the same policies of the Reagan administration. The "traditional base" of the Democratic Party was destroyed long ago by de-industrialisation, hollowing of labor law, and now by opioids of the masses. The present day DNC is run by and for their army of contractors, lobbyists, bunglers, and wreckers.rogerscorpion , 7 Oct 2017 04:06Mr. Frank, I found it surprising that you mentioned both Betsy de Vos and Erik Prince -- but didn't mention the fact that they are siblings.PeterOrmonde , 7 Oct 2017 03:45Yep - the big mistake with critters like Bannon is to ignore or dismiss everything they say and fail to detect what resonance they are striking with what audience.Maury A. Bousson , 7 Oct 2017 02:42
But it's awkward when you just read them and recognise grains of truthiness - they see the same problems it's just their solutions are all wrong. But they are actually cutting the left's grass - pinching the alienation and discontent that rightly belongs to progress, no? Now the NRA have got 'em - not even the GOP.
Be yer unfinished civil war this... grinding away slowly ... so now the whole place is riven by fear and suspicion - of race, wealth, cities, the guvvermint, of anything and everything really. A deeply traumatised culture you've got sitting down there - victims real and imagined wandering about and none of it getting fixed at all..
Not everyone or everywhere - but the most fearful and angry cluster are centred on the underlying issues of the era of Lincoln. Trump is speaking for and to them. There can be no more nonsense about lone gunmen - this is now part of US culture - systemic and systematic.
Yer 500 kiddies are just the price of open-carry freedoms according to the Vegas mayor. All the same old folk-wisdoms: can't have laws that stop bad people being bad?... why should the 1% of evildoers dictate our liberties?
But of course they do. That is how all laws work, whether murder or shoplifting - everyone shows their bags. In fact they are arguing for lawlessness - vigilantism and John Wayne cowboy myths. That's the Trump/Bannon audience ... National Enquirer readers packing heat .
Gonna get ugly before it's fixed.#TheHouseAlwaysWins The author gets so close to putting his finger on the problem and then at the last moment swerves off into partisan rhetoric. Wake up dude! Both of the things you think are opposite sides are out to get us.eastbayradical -> newyorkred , 7 Oct 2017 02:24The list below delineates the policies and initiatives that Hillary Clinton supported over course of her political career (including as a loyal First Lady to Bill Clinton). They help explain the depressed voter enthusiasm and turnout for the Dems among many of the groups to whom you say Frank, as a "well-to-do white man" pining for "white working class revolution," owes an apology:suddenoakdeath -> James F. , 7 Oct 2017 01:24
--Deregulation of the investment banks (and against reinstatement of Glass--Steagall)
--Deregulation of the telecommunications industry
--Deregulation of derivatives
--The destruction of welfare (which has caused the numbers living in extreme poverty to double since its passage)
--The Omnibus Crime Bill (increased the prison population massively)
--The sanctions regime against Iraq of the 1990s that killed 500,000 Iraqi children ("it was worth it," said her friend Madeline Albright)
--The Defense of Marriage Act
--CAFTA (granted stealthy support)
--The objectively-racist death penalty
--The private prison industry
--The Patriot Act
--The Iraq War
--The bombing of Libya
--Military intervention in Syria
--Israel's starvation blockade and blitzkrieg against Gaza
--The right-wing coup in Honduras
--Investor-friendly repression and cronyism in Haiti
--A 31 cents/hour minimum wage in Haiti (and against attempts to raise it)
--The recently announced 20 year, $1,000,000,000,000 (trillion) upgrade of the US's nuclear arsenal
--Historically-high numbers of deportations under the Obama Adm.
--Oil drilling in the Arctic
--The fight against free public university tuition
--The fight against single-payer health care
--Acceptance of tens of millions of dollars of corporate money
--Credit-card industry favored bankruptcy laws
--The bail-out of Wall Street....and America was convinced Trump cared about them, so says Thomas Frank.Alex W -> Ben Groetsch , 6 Oct 2017 21:21If you think America is bad, then try living in the UK. The UK is a hotbed of religious nutters. Just look at Margaret Thatcher, Tony Blair, David Cameron, and Theresa May.askzippy , 6 Oct 2017 21:09
- Tony Blair said 'God' told him to invade Iraq. BBC: Blair 'prayed to God' over Iraq
- David Cameron regularly talked about his Christian faith and the need to 'defend Christian values'. HuffingtonPost: David Cameron Urges Britons To Stand Up And Defend Christian Values
- Theresa May said she was 'praying to God' over the Brexit crisis. Telegraph: Theresa May says her Christian faith helps her make difficult decisions
- Oh, and let's not forget David Silvester -- a UKIP councilor who believes floods are 'punishment from God' for gay marriage. BBC: UKIP councillor blames storms and floods on gay marriage
The UK still has a "state-established" church (the Church of England). The UK's national anthem ' God Save the Queen ' mentions 'God' over 30 different times. And most British schools are still faith-based and funded by the church. Also, abortion and gay marriage are still banned in some parts of the UK, such as Northern Ireland.
Forget Donald Trump.... the UK is far more religious & dangerous.Lol, yeah it's only the Rs that do bad stuff in DC. HRC was the Queen of the system described above. An article designed to confuse those without eyes to see.sejong , 6 Oct 2017 20:55
The interesting thing for me is the hate levels on the left which appear to be almost off the scale at the moment. Identity politics seems to have a deep hold on your hearts.The national of USA should be changed from bald eagle to lone wolf. Forget e pluribis unum. War of all against all.Alex W -> Sharon Sekhon , 6 Oct 2017 20:04The U.S. is more liberal & secular than ever. The election of Trump doesn't change that. According to a 2011 Pew Report , the U.S. now has the 3rd largest atheist population in the world -- after China & Japan. On top of that, a 2015 Gallup Poll found that 60% of Americans would vote for an atheist President -- a record number that continues to grow every year.kmacafee -> Attu de Bubbalot , 6 Oct 2017 19:53
Additionally, gay marriage is legal in all 50 U.S. states. Marijuana is legal & taxed in 8 U.S. states. Euthanasia (assisted suicide) is legal in 6 U.S states -- including California (the largest state in America with over 40 million people). Even prostitution is legal & regulated in some U.S. states, such as Nevada!
*Sign into Youtube to watch this video about legal American brothels.
The U.S. constitution guarantees separation of Church & State -- unlike the UK, which still has a "state-established" church (the Church of England).Not really. They will be defeated in the next election and they are already facing charges and prison time. This will not end with a bang, but with a whimper and whining like you've never heard. There are many more in the one percent and the top 10% who are already disgusted with Mercer, Koch, Trump and the whole Putin cabal. Evil is evil and splashing some fake christianity on their hitler speeches is not fooling anyone but the already fooled; and they are a small lot getting smaller every single day.Zepp -> NYbill13 , 6 Oct 2017 18:21Most of Bannon's story about dear old dad is pure crap. He was already a right wing film-maker before the 2008 meltdown, and dear old dad would still have his money if he had listened to his two financier sons instead of the cable TV idiot Cramer. AT&T, in case you haven't heard, came through the crash intact.colacj , 6 Oct 2017 18:1615 billion dollars worth of missiles being sold to Saudi Arabia ........ while a few days ago Saudi Arabia goes to Moscow and talks to putin which is the first tie ever.......... so we sold them weapons to what , aim at us........Ben Groetsch -> MTavernier , 6 Oct 2017 18:15So, do you preferred two thirds of the American population to live on welfare aid like Medicaid which doesn't even covered dental and eye exams? As much you don't like the GOP approach to healthcare reform, the Democrats would rather bailed out the insurance industry by making consumers to buy unaffordable coverage and public assistance programs and refused to embraced Bernie Sanders approach to universal healthcare. The Democratic Party simply has no ideas, just empty tough talk against the President.Ben Groetsch -> Social36 , 6 Oct 2017 18:10I hate to say it to you, but Trump voters who live in Michigan, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Iowa weren't looking for upscale living and calling for lower corporate taxes etc. One out of four WV residents are living under economic distress. They just want decent jobs and a government that represents working people, not the wealthy.
Oct 12, 2017 | discussion.theguardian.com
Ben Groetsch -> Sharon Sekhon , 6 Oct 2017 18:02So, you're suggesting that Frank's political instincts are all wrong when he first wrote his book thesis on "What's the matter with Kansas," which lays out the scanting indictment of the pro-corporate wing of the Democratic Party and their wealthy supporters. Here's the reality that you Clinton bots don't understand: the rest of the country is like Kansas, not glamour LA or Wall Street NYC. People work in blue collar and grey collar professions, have modest wealth, and some are involved in trade unions. Many don't have a college degree; many also have no desires to go to a liberal arts school or state public university. Nearly eighty percent of middle America have a high school diploma. Only thirty percent have a college BA degree, and less than five percent have a advanced degree in Law or PH'D. Those numbers haven't changed since the 1960s. And yet, the corporate ruling class which showers money to both political parties have been selling the public a bill of false promises and lies about the necessary of getting a college degree in order to find gainful employment with living wages. Sorry, there isn't no living wage jobs. Our industrialized state has been devalued by NAFTA, a pro-corporate trade deal signed by Bill Clinton in the 1990s, had destroyed the fabric of mostly blue collar communities in middle America. Both Democrats and Republicans all conspired to gut the entire working classes out of the middle class status and into the underclass welfare state as a whole---first with welfare reform in the 1990s, followed by Bush era tax cuts, getting rid of Glass-Stegeall, awarding companies with job outsourcing, failure to provide affordable housing to the needy while selling risky sub-prime mortgages, making our higher educational system as a luxury commodity, destroying our pension system and replacing it with an inadequate 401K retirement package, allowing the one percent to hide their money overseas in tax haven accounts, subsidizing the rich, and control the media through corporate consolidation. We no longer have the ability to innovate, produce, or create a thriving working class middle. Instead, corporate dominance in our politics and our legal system makes it almost impossible to generate a fair, diverse, and expanding opportunities economy on the basis of progressive regulations that is desperately needed.Ben Groetsch , 6 Oct 2017 17:39
What Frank had in mind is what the donor class within the Democratic Party is scared about. That is, working people are being shoved aside due to the power of money in government, and yet the Democratic Party has to changed its tune in order to regain the working class voters in middle America.Well, Bannon is partly right given the fact that our government has been at the wheel of powerful lobbyists and wealthy donors for so long. However, given the dysfunctional and unfortunate circumstances surrounding the Trump Administration in DC, the Democrats seem to appear as aloof and tone deaf with the American people----a state of utter denial regarding a major political party that just lost the Presidential election to a dingbat D list reality tv star and real estate tycoon who has the mindset of a spoiled child.fabfreddy -> CivilDiscussion , 6 Oct 2017 17:05
The true reason behind Bannon's conquest for political votes is that the working class here in the US have been totally neglected and left behind by eight years of Obama and the last two terms of Bush Jr from the previous decade. Working people want actual middle class jobs and a shot of a decent life in retirement, not welfare checks from the government.Is that just about everybody? Or do you think there are people that wouldn't want to be billionaires?Rollmeover , 6 Oct 2017 16:56Democrats are so disorganized that to elect them is folly. We already have disorganization. Trump will win a second term.chunki , 6 Oct 2017 16:55The Left in English-speaking countries has been overtaken by upper-middle class people who are obsessed with sexual identity and race. They are snobby towards working class people and will abuse them as racist when they talk about problems with immigration or other social groups with different coloured skin. I moved from the first group into the second, and I know working class people are no more prejudiced than upper-middle class, but they don't have the vocabulary to express it in a way that "educated" people will recognise.jackrousseau -> EyeFullEnt , 6 Oct 2017 14:14
This snobbery towards possible complexities in the life of working class people is damning leftwing parties to continual oblivion.
(Working class people use blunt language, but they apply it to themselves equally. Those higher up the social ladder are not used to hearing that type of language.)Did anything I say indicate I support Trump? I described his administration as an economically centrist "kleptocracy". Trump Jr. taking thinly veiled payoffs on the speaking/grift circuit is par for the course.America_Loves_Trump -> EyeFullEnt , 6 Oct 2017 11:44
Though, I imagine Trump Jr. commands significantly less than Chelsea Clinton ($65,000 as of 2015). http://www.politico.com/story/2015/06/chelsea-clinton-speaking-fee-university-missouri-119580
And I imagine it's only a matter of time before we also see Obama's children "speaking" for thinly veiled payoffs. One already scored an prestigious internship with the socially progressive Weinstein Company. And Michelle's currently getting in excess of $200,000 for 1hr speeches. https://www.aol.com/article/news/2017/05/02/michelle-obama-s-speaker-fee-is-as-much-as-some-former-president/22065295 /
...All enough to make someone a little cynical about American politics.More misinformed nonsense.TheRexican , 6 Oct 2017 11:31
In fact, Breitbart gets criticism on the right for being too gung ho in embracing Israel. Steve Bannon quotes that give some of his supporters pause are things like "no media outlet is more pro-Israel than Breitbart". I guess politics is a factor but most of us don't like all the money we give them and how a major reason that the Muslim world is so angry at the Western one is it's unflinching backing of Israel, no matter how much of the West Bank they encroach upon, among other things.
The idea that Breitbart is anti-Semitic is an absurd Media Matters talking point going back to an article calling Bill Kristol a "Renegade Jew". The article was, obviously, written by a Jew. And the thrust of the article was that Bill Kristol (and others) making attempts to steal the Republican nomination from Trump (as the Dems had from Bernie Sanders) would ultimately harm Israel. So it was a Jew calling a Jew a Renegade Jew for making a decision he believed was bad for the Jewish homeland.
I know it's all very confusing but hopefully that's cleared up now."I did it by referring to a business model: the political donors and the K Street lobbyists, who act in combination with politicians of the Tom DeLay variety."America_Loves_Trump -> charlieblue , 6 Oct 2017 11:10
There are almost no members of Congress who are of any other sort than the "Tom Delay" variety you refer to. Very nearly every single member is corrupt. The game is ruined. Perhaps an end to gerrymandering (if we shoudl be so fortunate) will allow some mechanism for changing the guard in Congress. We need to remove them all. They sold us out and we need to exile them for life.
Don't think your rep is any better. This keeps us stuck.I don't JUST yell Hillary. I also mentioned Obama and the rest of the criminals who make up the Democratic Party. Whose list of proven criminality is simply staggering enough before you get in to the mountains of very damning circumstantial stuff that begs investigation.Whiplashed -> America_Loves_Trump , 6 Oct 2017 10:53
And when I mention the Democrats, you act as if it's some irrelevent non sequitur. IT IS NOT. Please remember that the choice was Trump OR Hillary. So whenever people lament how apparently terrible the President who has brought us 3.1% GDP growth for the first time in years and well over a million new jobs along with finally insisting that the law needs to be enforced for the first time in 8 years, the issue of the alternative to this IS of course relevant.
As I said: Clinton is a part of the establishment. A real swamp monster. One of the really big stinking ones, with huge wads of cash stuck to her blood soaked claws. Trump is not. And by the very low bar set by the past few Presidents, just not being more of the same is an improvement.
And by the way, Hillary Clinton did commit multiple felonies. The private server = felony (whether "intent" was there or not, that was an irrelevant muddying of the waters). The storing and forwarding of classified info on this server = felony (whether or not she, after decades in government understood that (C) meant classified as it always had all along).
You've got your head in the sand, palYou seem to be taking Clinton Cash as evidence of something, but that is just a piece of propaganda meant to sway the election. Where are your reputable sources?boilingriver -> America_Loves_Trump , 6 Oct 2017 10:51There are some great videos on Youtube where he talks about economics.America_Loves_Trump -> NYbill13 , 6 Oct 2017 10:12
HAHA yes where he deliberately lies about the cause of 2008.
Where he is now silent on cohn who is now in charge of economic policy.
So, while Cohn was overseeing one team inside Goldman Sachs preoccupied with implementing the big short, he was in regular contact with others scrambling to offload its subprime inventory. One Goldman trader described the mortgage-backed securities they were selling as "shitty." Another complained in an email that they were being asked to "distribute junk that nobody was dumb enough to take first time around." A December 28 email from Fabrice "Fabulous Fab" Tourre, a Goldman vice president later convicted of fraud, instructed traders to focus on less astute, "buy and hold" investors rather than "sophisticated hedge funds" that "will be on the same side of the trade as we will."
Then there is Mnuchin( Treasury secretary) the foreclosure king, who made a fortune on taking peoples home, some for $1 mistake.
Why did republicans mot make up some laws to put them into prison. Why are they silent now when trump is deregulating by executive order.
Talk about fake outrage putting in the people who caused the problems as the solutions.Spoken from someone who has obviously never listened to what Steve Bannon said or his message.LittleTomcat , 6 Oct 2017 09:28
You obviously don't know, for example, that his Dad - a union guy - lost half of his life savings in the crash of 2008.
And you do not have a single quote where you can attribute "master race" stuff to Bannon. That's literally a smear based on nothing, created by the Clinton people as revenge for his role in the absolutely devastating expose Clinton Cash.
Those of us paying attention understand what he is: an unbelievably bright guy who was the first man who successfully harnessed the informed outrage of the alternative media to have an impact in national politics. He and Trump beat the rigging and achieved for the socially conservative anti-deepstate people what Bernie Sanders was unable to achieve on the Left... if he ever really had the stomach for the fight in the first place."That it will also enrich countless contractors and lobbyists and bunglers and wreckers is just a bonus." Mmmm, maybe not a bonus so much as the objective, perhaps? As an aside, the method of installing nomenclature to control agencies, such as the agency responsible for granting broadcast licences, was described, if I recall correctly, in Josef Korbel's 1959 "The Communist Subversion of Czechoslovakia, 1938-1948". For a funny take on the privatisation of perpetual military conflict, Christopher Buckley's "They Eat Puppies, Don't They?" might provide a laugh, if you don't think about how closely it matches reality.oiler , 6 Oct 2017 07:03The proletariat, or at least the opioid threatened, white and marginalized cadre on show in the Rust belt states, probably thought they had their man in DJT because he said what it took to get himself elected in the vernacular they prefer, feeling its authenticity made them look honest.. Ha! But look! They are no different from other vulnerables after all, and they will be and are, being screwed over accordingly. Turkeys and Christmas, Foxes and henhouses, its all been said and now its being done: educate yourselves, folks.. before its too late.HilltopRide , 6 Oct 2017 06:30Yep, judge em solely on their actions. Trump is about entrenching the corporate coup d'etat. Expanding the swamp, not draining it. The question is now, after Citizens United and with a conservative SCOTUS in perpetuity, whether it's too wide and deep ever to be drained.
Sep 29, 2017 | theintercept.com
... ... ...
Many of my colleagues, Republican colleagues, here in the Senate, for example, disparage the United Nations, he says, sitting across the table from me, in front of a wall of Vermont tourism posters. While clearly the United Nations could be more effective, it is imperative that we strengthen international institutions, because at the end of the day, while it may not be sexy, it may not be glamorous, it may not allow for great soundbites, simply the idea of people coming together and talking and arguing is a lot better than countries going to war.
... ... ...
The senator makes clear that unilateralism, the belief that we can simply overthrow governments that we dont want, that has got to be re-examined. After referencing the Iraq War -- one of the great foreign policy blunders in the history of this country -- the senator touches on another historic blunder which, to his credit, few of his fellow senators would be willing to discuss, let alone critique. In 1953, the United States, with the British, overthrew [Mohammed] Mossadegh, the prime minister of Iran – and this was to benefit British oil interests, he reminds me. The result was the shah came into power, who was a very ruthless man, and the result of that was that we had the Iranian Revolution, which takes us to where we are right now.
...So far this year, Sanders has hired Matt Duss , a respected foreign affairs analyst and former president of the Foundation for Middle East Peace (FMEP), as his foreign policy adviser, and has given speeches at the liberal Jewish lobbying group, J Street, where he condemned Israels continued occupation of Palestinian territories as being contrary to fundamental American values, and at the centrist Carnegie Endowment of International Peace, where he rebuked Russian President Vladimir Putin for trying to weaken the transatlantic alliance.
Last week, my colleague Glenn Greenwald penned a column in The Intercept headlined, The Clinton Book Tour Is Largely Ignoring the Vital Role of Endless War in the 2016 Election Result. Greenwald argued that Clintons advocacy of multiple wars and other military actions pushed some swing voters into the arms of both Donald Trump and third-party candidates, such as Jill Stein. I ask Sanders whether he agrees with this analysis.
I mean, thats a whole other issue. And I dont know the answer to that. I persist. Surely hed concede that foreign policy was a factor in Clintons defeat? He doesnt budge. I want to talk about my speech, not about Hillary Clinton. So foreign policy plays no role in elections?
... ... ...
The U.S. funding plays a very important role, and I would love to see people in the Middle East sit down with the United States government and figure out how U.S. aid can bring people together, not just result in an arms war in that area. So I think there is extraordinary potential for the United States to help the Palestinian people rebuild Gaza and other areas. At the same time, demand that Israel, in their own interests in a way, work with other countries on environmental issues. He then, finally, answers my question: So the answer is yes.
It is -- by the depressingly low standard of modern U.S. politics -- a remarkable and, dare I say it, radical response from Sanders. Aid to Israel in Congress and the pro-Israel community has been sacrosanct, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency noted earlier this year, and no president has seriously proposed cutting it since Gerald Ford in the mid-1970s.
Aug 13, 2017 | ronpaulinstitute.org
The Trump administration's foreign policy often resembles a Mad Hatter's Tea Party or a loose cannon on a ship deck. But every now and then, a good idea emerges from the fracas. Such is the case with a reform that could sharply reduce America's piety exports.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is revising the State Department mission statement to focus on promoting "the security, prosperity and interests of the American people globally." Washington pundits are aghast that "democracy promotion" is no longer trumpeted as a top US foreign policy goal. Elliott Abrams, George W. Bush's "democracy czar," complained, "We used to want a just and democratic world, and now apparently we don't the message being sent will be a great comfort to every dictator in the world."
But this is like presuming that any preacher who fails to promise to eradicate sin is a tool of the devil. Instead, it is time to recognize the carnage the US has sown abroad in the name of democracy.
The US has periodically pledged to spread democracy ever since President Woodrow Wilson announced in 1913: "I am going to teach the South American republics to elect good men!" Democracy is so important that the US government refuses to stand idly by when foreign voters go astray. Since 1946, the US has intervened -- usually covertly -- in more than 80 foreign elections to assist its preferred candidate or party.
In his 2005 inaugural address, President George W. Bush proclaimed that the US would "seek and support the growth of democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world." While Bush's invocation thrilled Washington, the rest of the world paid more attention to his support for any tyrant who joined his War on Terror.
President Barack Obama was supposed to redeem the honor of US foreign policy. In 2011, Obama portrayed the US bombing of Libya as a triumph of democratic values. After Libyan dictator Moammar Gaddafi was killed, Obama speedily announced that Libyans "now have the opportunity to determine their own destiny in a new and democratic Libya." But violence spiraled out of control and claimed thousands of victims (including four Americans killed in Benghazi in 2012). Similarly, Obama administration officials invoked democracy to justify arming quasi-terrorist groups in Syria's civil war, worsening a conflict that killed hundreds of thousands and created millions of refuges.
But the Obama team, like prior administrations, did not permit its democratic pretensions to impede business as usual. After Egyptian protestors toppled dictator Hosni Mubarak, Obama pledged to assist that nation "pursue a credible transition to a democracy ." But the US government disapproved of that nation's first elected leader, Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohamed Morsi. After the Egyptian military deposed Morsi in 2013, Secretary of State John Kerry bizarrely praised Egypt's generals for " restoring democracy ." Similarly, many Ethiopians were horrified when Obama visited their country in 2015 and praised its regime as " democratically elected " -- despite a sham election and its brutal suppression of journalists, bloggers and other critics.
Democracy promotion gives US policymakers a license to meddle almost anywhere on Earth. The National Endowment for Democracy , created in 1983, has been caught interfering in elections in France, Panama , Costa Rica , Ukraine , Venezuela, Nicaragua, Russia, Czechoslovakia , Poland , Haiti and many other nations. The State Department has a long list of similar pratfalls, including pouring vast amounts of money in vain efforts to beget democracy in Iraq and Afghanistan .
Democracy at its best is a wonderful form of government but many so-called democracies nowadays are simply elective despotisms. Elections abroad are often herd counts to determine who gets to fleece the herd. Many democracies have become kleptocracies where governing is indistinguishable from looting.
In some nations, election victories legitimize destroying voters en masse. This is exemplified by the Philippines, where the government has killed 7,000 suspected drug users and dealers , including several mayors . After President Rodrigo Duterte publicly declared that he would be " happy to slaughter " three million drug users, Trump phoned him and, according to a leaked transcript, said, "I just wanted to congratulate you because I am hearing of the unbelievable job [you're doing] on the drug problem." Similarly, Trump congratulated Turkish president Recep Erdogan after he won a referendum that awarded him quasi-dictatorial powers.
It is time to admit that America lacks a Midas touch for spreading democracy. Freedom House reported that, even prior to Trump's election, more than 100 nations have seen declines in democracy since 2005.
Rather than abandoning all moral goals in foreign policy, Washington could instead embrace a strict policy of "honesty in democracy promotion." Under this standard, the US government would cease trying to covertly influence foreign elections, cease glorifying tinhorn dictators who rigged elections to capture power, and cease bankrolling authoritarian regimes that blight democratic reforms in the bud. But the odds of Washington policymakers abiding by those restraints is akin to the chances that all of Trump's tweets will henceforth be edifying.
Rather than delivering political salvation, US interventions abroad more often produce "no-fault carnage" (no one in Washington is ever held liable). At a minimum, we should get our own constitutional house in order before seeking to rescue benighted foreigners. Ironically, many of the same people who equate Trump with Hitler still insist that the US government should continue its political missionary work during his reign.
James Bovard, author of Public Policy Hooligan , is a member of USA TODAY's Board of Contributors . Follow him on Twitter @JimBovard
Reprinted with author's permission from USA TODAY .
William Blum's "Cri de Coeur",
February 9, 2013
William Blum's Cri de Coeur
A review of "America's Deadliest Export: Democracy" by William Blum (Zed Books, London/New York, 2013.)
(As it has appeared at DissidentVoice, OpEdNews, etc.):
In activist-author-publisher William Blum's new book, America's Deadliest Export: Democracy, he tells the story of how he got his 15 minutes of fame back in 2006. Osama bin Laden had released an audiotape, declaring:
"If you [Americans] are sincere in your desire for peace and security... and if Bush decides to carry on with his lies and oppression, then it would be useful for you to read the book Rogue State."
Bin Laden then quoted from the Foreword of Blum's 2000 book, Rogue State: A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, in which he had mused:
"If I were... president, I could stop terrorist attacks [on us] in a few days. Permanently. I would first apologize... to all the widows and the orphans, the impoverished and the tortured, and all the many millions of other victims of American imperialism. I would then announce that America's global interventions... have come to an end. And I would inform Israel that it is no longer the 51st state of the union but... a foreign country. I would then reduce the military budget by at least 90% and use the savings to pay reparations to the victims. ... That's what I'd do on my first three days in the White House. On the fourth day, I'd be assassinated."
Unfortunately, Blum never made it to the White House! But, fortunately, for those who have read his books or follow his "Anti-Empire Reports" on the Web, he was not assassinated! And now he has collected his reports and essays of the last dozen years or so into a 352-page volume that will not only stand the test of time, but will help to define this disillusioned, morose, violent and unraveling Age.
America's Deadliest... is divided into 21 chapters and an introduction--and there's something to underline or memorize on every page! Sometimes it's just one of Blum's irrepressible quips, and sometimes it's a matter of searing American foreign or domestic policiy that clarifies that Bushwhackian question of yore: "Why do they hate us?"
Reading this scrupulously documented book, I lost count of the times I uttered, "unbelievable!" concerning some nefarious act committed by the US Empire in the name of freedom, democracy and fighting communism or terrorism. Reading Blum's book with an open mind, weighing the evidence, will bleach out any pride in the flag we have planted in so many corpses around the world. The book is a diuretic and emetic!
Blum's style is common sense raised to its highest level. The wonder of America's Deadliest ... is that it covers so much of the sodden, bloody ground of America's march across our post-Second-World-War world, yet tells the story with such deftness and grace-under-fire that the reader is enticed--not moralized, not disquisitionally badgered--, but enticed to consider our globe from a promontory of higher understanding.
Some of the themes Blum covers (and often eviscerates) include:
- Why they hate us;
- America means well;
- We cannot permit a successful alternative to the capitalist model to develop anywhere in the world;
- We will use whatever means necessary--including, lies, deception, sabotage, bribery, torture and war--to achieve the above idea.
Along the way, we get glimpses of Blum's experientially rich life. A note "About the Author" tells us that, "He left the State Department in 1967, abandoning his aspiration of becoming a Foreign Service Officer because of his opposition to what the US was doing in Vietnam. He then became a founder and editor of the Washington Free Press, the first "alternative" newspaper in the capital."
In his chapter on "Patriotism," Blum relates how, after a talk, he was asked: "Do you love America?" He responded with what we may take for his credo: "I don't love any country. I'm a citizen of the world. I love certain principles, like human rights, civil liberties, meaningful democracy, an economy which puts people before profits."
America's Deadliest... is a book of wisdom and wit that ponders "how this world became so unbearably cruel, corrupt, unjust, and stupid?" In a pointillistic approach, sowing aphoristic seeds for thought, Blum enumerates instances of that cruelty, often with wry, pained commentary. "War can be seen as America's religion," he tells us. Reflecting on Obama's octupling Bush's number of drones used to assassinate, collaterally kill and terrorize, he affirms:
"Obama is one of the worst things that has ever happened to the American left." And, he avers, "Capitalism is the theory that the worst people, acting from their worst motives, will somehow produce the most good." And then turns around and reminds us--lest we forget--how the mass media have invaded our lives, with memes about patriotism, democracy, God, the "good life": "Can it be imagined that an American president would openly implore America's young people to fight a foreign war to defend `capitalism'?" he wonders.
"The word itself has largely gone out of fashion. The approved references now are to the market economy, free market, free enterprise, or private enterprise."
Cynthia McKinney writes that the book is "corruscating, eye-opening, and essential." Oliver Stone calls it a "fireball of terse information."
Like Howard Zinn, Ralph Nader, Paul Craig Roberts, Cindy Sheehan and Bradley Manning, Blum is committed to setting the historical record straight. His book is dangerous. Steadfast, immutable "truths" one has taken for granted--often since childhood--are exposed as hollow baubles to entertain the un/mis/and dis-informed. One such Blumism recollects Lt. General Ricardo Sanchez's account of a videotape with a very undiplomatic Secretary of State, Colin Powell, and cowboy George Bush: "`We've got to smash somebody's ass quickly,'" Powell said. "`We must have a brute demonstration of power.'
Then Bush spoke: `Kick ass! If somebody tries to stop the march to democracy, we will seek them out and kill them! ... Stay strong! ... Kill them! ... We are going to wipe them out!'"
Blum's intellectual resources are as keen as anyone's writing today. He also adds an ample measure of humanity to his trenchant critiques. He juxtaposes the noble rhetoric of our professed values with the mordant facts of our deeds. The cognitive dissonance makes for a memorable, very unpretty picture of how an immensely privileged people lost themselves, while gorging on junk food, junk politics, junk economics, junk education, junk media. Like an Isaiah, a Jeremiah, he lambastes his own--us!--flaying layers of hypocrisy and betrayals while seeking to reveal the core values of human dignity, empathy and moral rectitude.
Gary Corseri has published and posted prose, poetry and dramas at hundreds of periodicals and websites worldwide, including CommonDreams, Countercurrents, BraveNewWorld.in, OpEdNews, CounterPunch, Outlook India, The New York Times, Dissident Voice. He has published novels, poetry collections and a literary anthology (edited). His dramas have been presented on PBS-Atlanta and elsewhere, and he has performed his work at the Carter Presidential Library. He has taught in US public schools and prisons, and at American and Japanese universities. Contact: email@example.com.
Aug 02, 2014 | CounterPunch
A specter is haunting Europe and Western world - it is this time, the specter of fascism. It came quietly, without great fanfare and parades, without raised hands and loud shouts. But it came, or it returned, as it has always been present in this culture, one that has, for centuries, been enslaving our entire planet.
As was in Nazi Germany, resistance to the fascist empire is again given an unsavory name: terrorism. Partisans and patriots, resistance fighters – all of them were and have always been defined by fascist bigots as terrorists.
By the logic of Empire, to murder millions of men, women and children in all corners of the world abroad is considered legitimate and patriotic, but to defend one's motherland was and is a sign of extremism.
German Nazis and Italian Fascists defined their rule as 'democratic', and so does this Empire. The British and French empires that exterminated tens of millions of people all over the world, always promoted themselves as 'democracies'.
And now, once again, we are witnessing a tremendous onslaught by the business-political-imperialist Western apparatus, destabilizing or directly destroying entire nations, overthrowing governments and bombing 'rebellious' states into the ground. All this is done in the name of democracy, in the name of freedom.
An unelected monster, as it has done for centuries, is playing with the world, torturing some, and plundering others, or both.
The West, in a final act of arrogance, has somehow confused itself with its own concept of God. It has decided that it has the full right to shape the planet, to punish and to reward, to destroy and rebuild as it wishes.
This horrible wave of terror unleashed against our planet, is justified by an increasingly meaningless but fanatically defended dogma, symbolized by a box (made of card or wood, usually), and masses of people sticking pieces of paper into the opening on the top of that box.
This is the altar of Western ideological fundamentalism. This is a supreme idiocy that cannot be questioned, as it guarantees the status quo for ruling elites and business interests, an absurdity that justifies all crimes, all lies and all madness.
This sacrificial altar is called, Democracy, in direct mockery to what the term symbolizes in its original, Greek, language.
In our latest book, "On Western Terrorism – from Hiroshima to Drone Warfare", Noam Chomsky commented on the 'democratic' process in the Western world:
"The goal of elections now is to undermine democracy. They are run by the public relations industry and they're certainly not trying to create informed voters who'll make rational choices. They are trying to delude people into making irrational choices. The same techniques that are used to undermine markets are used to undermine democracy. It's one of the major industries in the country and its basic workings are invisible."
But what is it that really signifies this 'sacred' word, this almost religious term, and this pinnacle of Western demagogy? We hear it everywhere. We are ready to sacrifice millions of lives (not ours of course, at least not yet, but definitely lives of the others) in the name of it.
All those grand slogans and propaganda! Last year I visited Pyongyang, but I have to testify that North Koreans are not as good at slogans as the Western propagandists are.
"In the name of freedom and democracy!" Hundreds of millions tons of bombs fell from the sky on the Laotian, Cambodian and Vietnamese countryside bodies were burned by napalm, mutilated by spectacular explosions.
"Defending democracy!" Children were raped in front of their parents in Central America, men and women machine-gunned down by death squads that had been trained in military bases in the United States of America.
"Civilizing the world and spreading democracy!" That has always been a European slogan, their 'stuff to do', and a way of showing their great civilization to others. Amputating hands of Congolese people, murdering around ten million of them, and many more in Namibia, East Africa, West Africa and Algiers; gassing people of the Middle East ( "I am strongly in favour of using poisonous gas against uncivilised tribes", to borrow from the colorful lexicon of (Sir) Winston Churchill).
So what is it really? Who is it, that strange lady with an axe in her hand and with a covered face – the lady whose name is Democracy?
It is all very simple, actually. The term originates from the Greek δημοκρατία (dēmokratía) "rule of the people". Then and now, it was supposed to be in direct contrast to ἀριστοκρατία (aristokratia), that means "rule of an elite".
'Rule of the people' Let us just visit a few examples of the 'rule of the people'.
People spoke, they ruled, they voted 'democratically' in Chile, bringing in the mild and socialist government of 'Popular Unity' of Salvador Allende.
Sure, the Chilean education system was so brilliant, its political and social system so wonderful, that it inspired not only many countries in Latin America, but also those in far away Mediterranean Europe.
That could not be tolerated, because, as we all know, it is only white Europe and North America that can be allowed to supply the world with the blueprint for any society, anywhere on this planet. It was decided that "Chile has to scream", that its economy had to be ruined and the "Popular Unity" government kicked out of power.
Henry Kissinger, belonging, obviously, to a much higher race and country of a much higher grade, made a straightforward and in a way very 'honest' statement, clearly defining the North American stand towards global democracy: "I don't see why we need to stand by and watch a country go Communist due to the irresponsibility of its people."
And so Chile was ravaged. Thousands of people were murdered and 'our son-of-a-bitch' was brought to power. General Pinochet was not elected: he bombed the Presidential palace in Santiago, he savagely tortured the men and women who were elected by the Chilean people, and he "disappeared" thousands.
But that was fine, because democracy, as it is seen from Washington, London or Paris, is nothing more and nothing less than what the white man needs in order to control this planet, unopposed and preferably never criticized.
Of course Chile was not the only place where 'democracy' was 'redefined'. And it was not the most brutal scenario either, although it was brutal enough. But it was a very symbolic 'case', because here, there could be absolutely no dispute: an extremely well educated, middle class country, voted in transparent elections, just to have its government murdered, tortured and exiled, simply because it was too democratic and too involved in improving the lives of its people.
There were countless instances of open spite coming from the North, towards the 'rule of the people' in Latin America. For centuries, there have been limitless examples. Every country 'south of the border' in the Western Hemisphere, became a victim.
After all, the self-imposed Monroe Doctrine gave North Americans 'unquestionable rights' to intervene and 'correct' any 'irresponsible' democratic moves made by the lower races inhabiting Central and South America as well as the Caribbean Islands.
There were many different scenarios of real ingenuity, in how to torture countries that embarked on building decent homes for their people, although soon there was evidence of repetitiveness and predictability.
The US has been either sponsoring extremely brutal coups (like the one in Guatemala in 1954), or simply occupying the countries in order to overthrow their democratically elected governments. Justifications for such interventions have varied: it was done in order to 'restore order', to 'restore freedom and democracy', or to prevent the emergence of 'another Cuba'.
From the Dominican Republic in 1965 to Grenada in 1983, countries were 'saved from themselves' through the introduction (by orders from mainly the Protestant North American elites with clearly pathological superiority complexes) of death squads that administered torture, rape and extrajudicial executions. People were killed because their democratic decisions were seen as 'irresponsible' and therefore unacceptable.
While there has been open racism in every aspect of how the Empire controlled its colonies, 'political correctness' was skillfully introduced, effectively reducing to a bare minimum any serious critiques of the societies that were forced into submission.
In Indonesia, between 1 and 3 million people were murdered in the years1965/66, in a US -sponsored coup, because there too, was a 'great danger' that the people would rule and decide to vote 'irresponsibly', bringing the Communist Party of Indonesia (PKI), at that time the third most numerous Communist Party anywhere in the world, to power.
The democratically elected President of Congo, Patrice Lumumba, was murdered in 1961, by the joint efforts of the United States and Europe, simply because he was determined to use the vast natural resources of his country to feed his own people; and because he dared to criticize Western colonialism and imperialism openly and passionately.
East Timor lost a third of its population simply because its people, after gaining independence from Portugal, dared to vote the left-leaning FRETILIN into power. "We are not going to tolerate another Cuba next to our shores", protested the Indonesian fascist dictator Suharto, and the US and Australia strongly agreed. The torture, and extermination of East Timorese people by the Indonesian military, was considered irrelevant and not even worth reporting in the mass media.
The people of Iran could of course not be trusted with 'democracy'. Iran is one of the oldest and greatest cultures on earth, but its people wanted to use the revenues from its oil to improve their lives, not to feed foreign multi-nationals. That has always been considered a crime by Western powers – a crime punishable by death.
The people of Iran decided to rule; they voted, they said that they want to have all their oil industry nationalized. Mohammad Mosaddeq, the democratically elected Prime Minister of Iran from 1951 to 1953, was ready to implement what his people demanded. But his government was overthrown in a coup d'état, orchestrated by the British MI6 and North American CIA, and what followed was the murderous dictatorship of the deranged Western puppet – Reza Pahlavi. As in Latin America and Indonesia, instead of schools, hospitals and housing projects, people got death squads, torture chambers and fear. Is that what they wanted? Is that what they voted for?
There were literally dozens of countries, all over the world, which had to be 'saved', by the West, from their own 'irresponsible citizens and voters'. Brazil recently 'celebrated' the 50th anniversary of the US-backed military coup d'état, which began a horrendous 20 year long military dictatorship. The US supported two coups in Iraq, in 1963 and 1968 that brought Saddam Hussein and his Baath Party to power. The list is endless. These are only some random examples.
On closer examination, the West has overthrown, or made attempts to overthrow, almost any democratically elected governments, on all continents attempting to serve their own people, by providing them with decent standards of living and social services. That is quite an achievement, and some stamina!
Could it be then that the West only respects 'Democracy' when 'people are forced to rule' against their own interests? And when they are 'defending' what they are ordered to defend by local elites that are subservient to North American and European interests? and also when they are defending the interests of foreign multi-national companies and Western governments that are dependent on those companies?
Can anything be done? If a country is too weak to defend itself by military means, against some mighty Western aggressor, could it approach any international democratic institutions, hoping for protection?
A good example is Nicaragua, which had been literally terrorized by the United States, for no other reason than for being socialist. Its government went to court.
The case was called: The Republic of Nicaragua v. The United States of America.
It was a 1986 case at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in which the ICJ ruled in favor of Nicaragua and against the United States and awarded reparations to Nicaragua.
The judgment was long, consisting of 291 points. Among them that the United States had been involved in the "unlawful use of force." The alleged violations included attacks on Nicaraguan facilities and naval vessels, the mining of Nicaraguan ports, the invasion of Nicaraguan air space, and the training, arming, equipping, financing and supplying of forces (the "Contras") and seeking to overthrow Nicaragua's Sandinista government.
Judgment was passed, and so were UN votes and resolutions. The UN resolution from 1986 called for the full and immediate compliance with the Judgment. Only Thailand, France and the UK abstained. The US showed total spite towards the court, and it vetoed all UN resolutions.
It continued its terror campaign against Nicaragua. In the end, the ruined and exhausted country voted in 1990. It was soon clear that it was not voting for or against Sandinista government, but whether to endure more violence from the North, or to simply accept depressing defeat. The Sandinista government lost. It lost because the voters had a North American gun pointing at their heads.
This is how 'democracy' works.
I covered the Nicaraguan elections of 1996 and I was told by voters, by a great majority of them, that they were going to vote for the right-wing candidate (Aleman), only because the US was threatening to unleash another wave of terror in case the Sandinista government came back to power, democratically.
The Sandinistas are now back. But only because most of Latin America has changed, and there is unity and determination to fight, if necessary.
While the Europeans are clearly benefiting from neo-colonialism and the plunder that goes on all over the world, it would be ridiculous to claim that they themselves are 'enjoying the fruits of democracy'.
In a dazzling novel "Seeing", written by Jose Saramago, a laureate for the Nobel Prize for literature, some 83% of voters in an unidentified country (most likely Saramago's native Portugal), decide to cast blank ballots, expressing clear spite towards the Western representative election system.
This state, which prided itself as a 'democratic one', responded by unleashing an orgy of terror against its own citizens. It soon became obvious that people are allowed to make democratic choices only when the result serves the interests of the regime.
Ursula K Le Guin, reviewing the novel in the pages of The Guardian, on 15 April 2006, admitted:
Turning in a blank ballot is a signal unfamiliar to most Britons and Americans, who aren't yet used to living under a government that has made voting meaningless. In a functioning democracy, one can consider not voting a lazy protest liable to play into the hands of the party in power (as when low Labour turn-out allowed Margaret Thatcher's re-elections, and Democratic apathy secured both elections of George W Bush). It comes hard to me to admit that a vote is not in itself an act of power, and I was at first blind to the point Saramago's non-voting voters are making.
She should not have been. Even in Europe itself, terror had been unleashed, on many occasions, against the people who decided to vote 'incorrectly'.
Perhaps the most brutal instance was in the post WWII period, when the Communist Parties were clearly heading for spectacular victories in France, Italy and West Germany. Such 'irresponsible behavior' had to be, of course, stopped. Both US and UK intelligence forces made a tremendous effort to 'save democracy' in Europe, employing Nazis to break, intimidate, even murder members of progressive movements and parties.
These Nazi cadres were later allowed, even encouraged, to leave Europe for South America, some carrying huge booty from the victims who vanished in concentration camps. This booty included gold teeth.
Later on, in the 1990's, I spoke to some of them, and also to their children, in Asuncion, the capital of Paraguay. They were proud of their deeds, unrepentant, and as Nazi as ever.
Many of those European Nazis later actively participated in Operation Condor, so enthusiastically supported by the Paraguayan fascist and pro-Western dictator, Alfredo Strössner. Mr Strössner was a dear friend and asylum-giver to many WWII war criminals, including people like Dr. Josef Mengele, the Nazi doctor known as the "Angel of Death", who performed genetic experiments on children during the WWII.
So, after destroying that 'irresponsible democratic process' in Europe (the post-war Western Empire), many European Nazis that were now loyally serving their new master, were asked to continue with what they knew how to do best. Therefore they helped to assassinate some 60,000 left-wing South American men, women and their children, who were guilty of building egalitarian and just societies in their home countries. Many of these Nazis took part, directly, in Operacion Condor, under the direct supervision of the United States and Europe.
As Naomi Klein writes in her book, Shock Doctrine:
"Operación Cóndor, also known as Plan Cóndor, Portuguese: Operação Condor) was a campaign of political repression and terror involving intelligence operations and assassination of opponents, officially implemented in 1975 by the right-wing dictatorships of the Southern Cone of South America. The program was intended to eradicate communist or Soviet influence and ideas, and to suppress active or potential opposition movements against the participating governments."
In Chile, German Nazis rolled up their sleeves and went to work directly: by interrogating, liquidating and savagely torturing members of the democratically elected government and its supporters. They also performed countless medical experiments on people, at the so-called Colonia Dirnidad, during the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, whose rule was manufactured and sustained by Dr. Kissinger and his clique.
But back to Europe: in Greece, after WWII, both the UK and US got heavily involved in the civil war between the Communists and the extreme right-wing forces.
In 1967, just one month before the elections in which the Greek left-wing was expected to win democratically (the Indonesian scenario of 1965), the US and its 'Greek colonels' staged a coup, which marked the beginning of a 7 year savage dictatorship.
What happened in Yugoslavia, some 30 years later is, of course clear. A successful Communist country could not be allowed to survive, and definitely not in Europe. As bombs fell on Belgrade, many of those inquisitive and critically thinking people that had any illusions left about the Western regime and its 'democratic principles', lost them rapidly.
But by then, the majority of Europe already consisted of indoctrinated masses, some of the worst informed and most monolithic (in their thinking) on earth.
Europe and its voters It is that constantly complaining multitude, which wants more and more money, and delivers the same and extremely predictable electoral results every four, five or six years. It lives and votes mechanically. It has totally lost its ability to imagine a different world, to fight for humanist principles, and even to dream.
It is turning into an extremely scary place, a museum at best, and a cemetery of human vision at the worst.
As Noam Chomsky pointed out:
Americans may be encouraged to vote, but not to participate more meaningfully in the political arena. Essentially the election is a method of marginalizing the population. A huge propaganda campaign is mounted to get people to focus on these personalized quadrennial extravaganzas and to think, "That's politics." But it isn't. It's only a small part of politics.
The population has been carefully excluded from political activity, and not by accident. An enormous amount of work has gone into that disenfranchisement. During the 1960s the outburst of popular participation in democracy terrified the forces of convention, which mounted a fierce counter-campaign. Manifestations show up today on the left as well as the right in the effort to drive democracy back into the hole where it belongs.
Arundhati Roy, commented in her "Is there life after democracy?"
The question here, really, is what have we done to democracy? What have we turned it into? What happens once democracy has been used up? When it has been hollowed out and emptied of meaning? What happens when each of its institutions has metastasized into something dangerous? What happens now that democracy and the Free Market have fused into a single predatory organism with a thin, constricted imagination that revolves almost entirely around the idea of maximizing profit? Is it possible to reverse this process? Can something that has mutated go back to being what it used to be?
After all that brutality, and spite for people all over the world, the West is now teaching the planet about democracy. It is lecturing Asians and Africans, people from Middle East and Sub-Continent, on how to make their countries more 'democratic'. It is actually hard to believe, it should be one of the most hilarious things on earth, but it is happening, and everyone is silent about it.
Those who are listening without bursting into laughter are actually well paid.
There are seminars; even foreign aid projects related to 'good governance', sponsored by the European Union, and the United States. The EU is actually much more active in this field. Like the Italian mafia, it sends covert but unmistakable messages to the world: "You do as we say, or we break your legs But if you obey, come to us and we will teach you how to be a good aide to Cosa Nostra! And we will give you some pasta and wine while you are learning."
Because there is plenty of money, so called 'funding' members of the elite, the academia, media and non-government organizations, from countries that have been plundered by the West – countries like Indonesia, Philippines, DR Congo, Honduras, or Colombia –send armies of people to get voluntarily indoctrinated, (sorry, to be 'enlightened') to learn about democracy from the greatest assassins of genuine 'people's power'; from the West.
Violating democracy is an enormous business. To hush it up is part of that business. To learn how to be idle and not to intervene against the external forces destroying democracy in your own country, while pretending to be 'engaged and active', is actually the best business, much better than building bridges or educating children (from a mercantilist point of view).
Once, at the University of Indonesia where I was invited to speak, a student asked me 'what is the way forward', to make his country more democratic? I replied, looking at several members of the professorial staff:
"Demand that your teachers stop going to Europe on fully funded trips. Demand that they stop being trained in how to brainwash you. Do not go there yourself, to study. Go there to see, to understand and to learn, but not to study Europe had robbed you of everything. They are still looting your country. What do you think you will learn there? Do you really think they will teach you how to save your nation?"
Students began laughing. The professors were fuming. I was never invited back. I am sure that the professors knew exactly what I was talking about. The students did not. They were thinking that I made a very good joke. But I was not trying to be funny.
As I write these words, the Thai military junta has taken over the country. The West is silent: the Thai military is an extremely close ally. Democracy at work
And as I write these words, the fascist government in Kiev is chasing, kidnapping and "disappearing" people in the east and south of Ukraine. By some insane twist of logic, the Western corporate media is managing to blame Russia. And only a few people are rolling around on the floor, laughing.
As I write these words, a big part of Africa is in flames, totally destroyed by the US, UK, France and other colonial powers.
Client states like the Philippines are now literally being paid to get antagonistic with China.
Japanese neo-fascist adventurism fully supported by the Unites States can easily trigger WWIII. So can Western greed and fascist practices in Ukraine.
Democracy! People's power!
If the West had sat on its ass, where it belongs, in Europe and in North America, after WWII, the world would have hardly any problems now. People like Lumumba, Allende, Sukarno, Mosaddeq, would have led their nations and continents. They would have communicated with their own people, interacted with them. They would have built their own styles of 'democracy'.
But all that came from the Bandung Conference of 1955, from the ideals of the Non-Aligned movement, was ruined and bathed in blood. The true hopes of the people of the world cut to pieces, urinated on, and then thrown into gutter.
But no more time should be wasted by just analyzing, and by crying over spilt milk. Time to move on!
The world has been tortured by Europe and the United States, for decades and centuries. It has been tortured in the name of democracy but it has all been one great lie. The world has been tortured simply because of greed, and because of racism. Just look back at history. Europe and the United States have only stopped calling people "niggers", but they do not have any more respect for them than before. And they are willing, same as before, to sacrifice millions of human lives.
Let us stop worshiping their box, and those meaningless pieces of paper that they want us to stick in there. There is no power of people in this. Look at the United States itself – where is our democracy? It is a one-party regime fully controlled by market fundamentalists. Look at our press, and propaganda
Rule of the people by the people, true democracy, can be achieved. We the people had been derailed, intellectually, so we have not been thinking how, for so many decades.
Now we, many of us, know what is wrong, but we are still not sure what is right.
Let us think and let us search, let us experiment. And also, let us reject their fascism first. Let them stick their papers wherever they want! Let them pretend that they are not slaves to some vendors and swindlers. Let them do whatever they want – there, where they belong.
Democracy is more than a box. It is more than a multitude of political parties. It is when people can truly choose, decide and build a society that they dream about. Democracy is the lack of fear of having napalm and bombs murdering our dreams. Democracy is when people speak and from those words grow their own nation. Democracy is when millions of hands join together and from that brilliant union, new trains begin to run, new schools begin to teach, and new hospitals begin to heal. All this by the people, for the people! All this created by proud and free humans as gift to all – to their nation.
Yes, let the slave masters stick their pieces of paper into a box, or somewhere else. They can call it democracy. Let us call democracy something else – rule of the people, a great exchange of ideas, of hopes and dreams. Let our taking control over our lives and over our nations be called 'democracy'!
Andre Vltchek is a novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. His discussion with Noam Chomsky On Western Terrorism is now going to print. His critically acclaimed political novel Point of No Return is now re-edited and available. Oceania is his book on Western imperialism in the South Pacific. His provocative book about post-Suharto Indonesia and the market-fundamentalist model is called "Indonesia – The Archipelago of Fear". He has just completed the feature documentary, "Rwanda Gambit" about Rwandan history and the plunder of DR Congo. After living for many years in Latin America and Oceania, Vltchek presently resides and works in East Asia and Africa. He can be reached through his website or his Twitter.
Jul 28, 2015 | Antiwar.com
Cold wars freeze despotism in place, and thaws in foreign relations melt it away
The recent Iran nuclear deal represents a thaw in the American cold war against that country. It is a welcome sequel to the Obama administration's partial normalization with Cuba announced late last year.
Hardliners denounce these policies as "going soft" on theocracy and communism. Yet, it is such critics' own hardline, hawkish policies that have done the most to ossify and strengthen such regimes.
That is because war, including cold war, is the health of the state. Antagonistic imperial policies - economic warfare, saber-rattling, clandestine interventions, and full-blown attacks - make the citizens of targeted "rogue states" feel under siege.
This activates what Randolph Bourne called their "herd mind," inducing them to rally around their governments in a militaristic stampede so as to create the national unity of purpose deemed necessary to defend the homeland against the foreign menace. When you lay siege to an entire country, don't be surprised when it starts to look and act like a barracks.
Rogue state governments eagerly amplify and exploit this siege effect through propaganda, taking on the mantle of foremost defender of the nation against the "Yankee Imperialist" or "Great Satan." Amid the atmosphere of crisis, public resistance against domestic oppression by the now indispensable "guardian class" goes by the board. "Quit your complaining. Don't you know there's a cold war on? Don't you know we're under siege?"
Moreover, cold wars make it easy for rogue state governments to shift the blame for domestic troubles away from their own misrule, and onto the foreign bogeyman/scapegoat ("bogeygoat?") instead. This is especially easy for being to some extent correct, especially with regard to economic blockades and other crippling sanctions, like those Washington has imposed on Cuba, Iran, etc.
Imperial governments like to pretend that affairs are quite the reverse, adopting the essentially terrorist rationale that waging war against the civilian populace of a rogue state will pressure them to blame and turn against their governments. In reality, it only tends to bolster public support for the regime.
The imperial "bogeygoat" is an essential prop for the power of petty tyrants, just as rogue state bogeymen are essential props for the power of grand tyrants like our own. Thus, it should be no surprise that the staunchest opponents to the Iran nuclear deal include both American and Iranian hardliners. Just as there is a "symbiosis of savagery" between imperial hawks and anti-imperial terrorists (as I explain here), there is a similar symbiotic relationship between imperial and rogue state hardliners.
The last thing hardliners want is the loss of their cherished bogeygoat. Once an emergency foreign threat recedes, and the fog of war hysteria lifts, people are then more capable of clearly seeing their "guardians" as the domestic threat that they are, and more likely to feel that they can afford to address that threat without exposing themselves to foreign danger. This tends to impel governments to become less oppressive, and may even lead to their loss of power.
Thus after Nixon normalized with communist China and belatedly ended the war on communist Vietnam, both of those countries greatly liberalized and became more prosperous. Even Soviet reforms and the ultimate dissolution of the Soviet Union only arose following American detente.
Simultaneously, as the American cold wars against communist Cuba and communist North Korea continued without stint for decades, providing the Castros and Kims the ultimate bogeygoat to feature in their propaganda, the impoverishing authoritarian grip of those regimes on their besieged people only strengthened.
Similarly, ever since the 1979 Islamic Revolution overthrew the puppet dictator that the CIA had installed over Iran in a 1953 coup, the Ayatollahs have been able to exploit ongoing hostility from the American "Great Satan" to retain and consolidate their repressive theocratic power.
All this is an object lesson for US relations with Putin's Russia, Chavista Venezuela, and beyond. Disastrously, it is being unheeded.
Even while thawing relations with Iran, the Obama administration has triggered a new cold war with Russia over Ukraine. This has only made Russian President Vladimir Putin more domestically popular than ever.
And even while normalizing relations with Cuba, Obama recently declared Venezuela a national security threat, imposing new sanctions. As journalist Alexandra Ulmer argued, these sanctions "may be godsend for struggling Venezuelan leader," President Nicolas Maduro. As Ulmer wrote in Reuters:
"Suddenly, the unpopular leader has an excuse to crank up the revolutionary rhetoric and try to fire up supporters, copying a tactic used skillfully for more than a decade by his mentor and predecessor, the late socialist firebrand Hugo Chavez.
A new fight with the enemy to the north may also help unite disparate ruling Socialist Party factions and distract Venezuelans from relentless and depressing talk about their day-to-day economic problems."
Jun 19, 2017 | www.unz.com
Like millions of other Americans, Sam believed Trump to be genuine and uncompromising. To the San Jose Mercury News, however, Sam hinted at a deeper insight, "He's kind of embraced his position, as you like me or you don't, but I'm not changing. It is almost a professional wrestling mentality and I have a sympathy for that." So there you have it. Trump has a professional wrestling mindset.
... ... ...
Jesse Ventura, a wrestler turned politician, has repeatedly pointed out the similarity between American politics and professional wrestling. In 2010, Ventura said, "Politics today is pro wrestling. It is pro wrestling, and you know what I mean by that? I mean by that that the Dems and Repubs in front of you [reporters] and in front of the public is going to tell you how they hate each other, and how they're different, but as soon as the camera is off, in the backroom, they're all going out together, and they're all buddies cutting deals. It's just like pro wrestling. In front of the public, we hate each other, we're going to rip our heads off, but in the locker room, we're all friends. I'm suggesting politics is fake."
In 2016, Ventura told The Atlantic, "Many of these elected officials are just like wrestlers in the public and then they're the opposite in private. Case in point, do you remember a few years ago who was some congressman from Florida who voted against every gay bill and it turned out he was gay, do you remember that? Yeah, so there's a classic example of it. This guy who was gay hid the fact that he was gay, voted like he hated gays, and so he created a personality that was completely averse to what he really was. And wrestling's the same way."
Though American politicians are phonies, and American elections are farcically rigged, Americans continue to rabidly support their favorite political puppet, whether Obama, Hillary, Sanders, Trump or whoever. Going berserk over each cartoon savior or villain, most Americans don't even know they're being force-fed lucha libre.
Linh Dinh 's Postcards from the End of America has just been released by Seven Stories Press. He maintains an active photo blog .
Jun 17, 2017 | blackagendareport.com
Leftish Democrats insist they can reform the corporate-run, Russia-obsessed Democratic Party from the inside, but most pay little attention to war. However, "War is not a side issue in the United States; it is the central political issue, on which all the others turn." Some think Bernie Sanders should run with the Peoples Party. But, "Sanders is a warmonger, not merely by association, but by
"The United States does not have a national health care system worthy of the name, because it is in the war business, not the health business or the social equality business."
The United States is a predator nation, conceived and settled as a thief, exterminator and enslaver of other peoples. The slave-based republic's phenomenal geographic expansion and economic growth were predicated on the super-exploitation of stolen African labor and the ruthless expropriation of native lands through genocidal wars, an uninterrupted history of plunder glorified in earlier times as "Manifest Destiny" and now exalted as "American exceptionalism," an inherently racist justification for international and domestic lawlessness.
Assembled, acre by bloody acre, as a metastasizing empire, the U.S. state demands fealty to its imperial project as a substitute for any genuine social contract among its inhabitants – a political culture custom-made for the rule of rich white people.
The American project has been one long war of aggression that has shaped its borders, its internal social relations, and its global outlook and ambitions. It was founded as a consciously capitalist state that competed with other European powers through direct absorption of captured lands, brutal suppression of native peoples and the fantastic accumulation of capital through a diabolically efficient system of Black chattel slavery – a 24/7 war against the slave. This system then morphed through two stages of "Jim Crow" to become a Mass Black Incarceration State – a perpetual war of political and physical containment against Black America.
"The U.S. state demands fealty to its imperial project as a substitute for any genuine social contract among its inhabitants."
Since the end of World War Two, the U.S. has assumed the role of protector of the spoils of half a millennium of European wars and occupations of the rest of the world: the organized rape of nations that we call colonialism. The first Black U.S. president, Barack Obama, was among the most aggressive defenders of white supremacy in history -- defending the accumulated advantages that colonialism provided to western European nations, settler states (like the U.S.) and citizens -- having launched an ongoing military offensive aimed at strangling the Chinese giant and preventing an effective Eurasian partnership with Russia. The first phase of the offensive, the crushing of Libya in 2011, allowed the United States to complete the effective military occupation of Africa, through AFRICOM.
The U.S. and its NATO allies already account for about 70 percent of global military spending, but Obama and his successor, Donald Trump, demand that Europeans increase the proportion of their economic output that goes to war. More than half of U.S. discretionary spending -- the tax money that is not dedicated to mandated social and development programs -- goes to what Dr. Martin Luther King 50 years ago called the "demonic, destructive suction tube" of the U.S. war machine.
"The first Black U.S. president, Barack Obama, was among the most aggressive defenders of white supremacy in history."
The United States does not have a national health care system worthy of the name, because it is in the war business, not the health business or the social equality business. The U.S. has the weakest left, by far, of any industrialized country, because it has never escaped the racist, predatory dynamic on which it was founded, which stunted and deformed any real social contract among its peoples. In the U.S., progress is defined by global dominance of the U.S. State -- chiefly in military terms -- rather than domestic social development. Americans only imagine that they are materially better off than the people of other developed nations -- a fallacy they assume to be the case because of U.S. global military dominance. More importantly, most white Americans feel racially entitled to the spoils of U.S. dominance as part of their patrimony, even if they don't actually enjoy the fruits. ("WE made this country great.") This is by no means limited to Trump voters.
Race relations in the U.S. cannot be understood outside the historical context of war, including the constant state of race war that is a central function of the U.S. State: protecting "American values," fighting "crime" and "urban disorder," and all the other euphemisms for preserving white supremacy.
War is not a side issue in the United States; it is the central political issue, on which all the others turn. War mania is the enemy of all social progress -- especially so, when it unites disparate social forces, in opposition to their own interests , in the service of an imperialist state that is the tool of a rapacious white capitalist elite. Therefore, the orchestrated propaganda blitzkrieg against Russia by the Democratic Party, in collaboration with the corporate media and other functionaries and properties of the U.S. ruling class, marks the party as, collectively, the Warmonger-in-Chief political institution in the United States at this historical juncture. The Democrats are anathema to any politics that can be described as progressive.
"Race relations in the U.S. cannot be understood outside the historical context of war, including the constant state of race war that is a central function of the U.S. State."
Bernie Sanders is a highly valued Democrat, the party's Outreach Director and therefore, as Paul Street writes , "the imperialist and sheep-dogging fake-socialist Democratic Party company man that some of us on the 'hard radical' Left said he was." Sanders is a warmonger, not merely by association, but by virtue of his own positions. He favors more sanctions against Russia, in addition to the sanctions levied against Moscow in 2014 and 2016 for its measured response to the U.S-backed fascist coup against a democratically elected government in Ukraine. Rather than surrender to U.S. bullying, Russia came to the military aid of the sovereign and internationally recognized government of Syria in 2015, upsetting the U.S. game plan for an Islamic jihadist victory.
Back in April of this year, on NBC's Meet The Press, Sanders purposely mimicked The Godfather when asked what he would do to force the Russians "to the table" in Syria:
"I think you may want to make them an offer they can't refuse. And that means tightening the screws on them, dealing with sanctions, telling them that we need their help, they have got to come to the table and not maintain this horrific dictator."
Of course, it is the United States that has sabotaged every international agreement to rein in its jihadist mercenaries in Syria.
"We need a strong military, it is a dangerous world," Sanders told voters in Iowa."
Sanders is a regime-changer, which means he thinks the U.S., in combination with self-selected allies, is above international law, i.e., "exceptional."
"We've got to work with countries around the world for a political solution to get rid of this guy [Syrian President Bashar al-Assad] and to finally bring peace and stability to this country, which has been so decimated."
During the 2016 campaign, Sanders urged the U.S. to stop acting unilaterally in the region, but instead to collaborate with Syria's Arab neighbors -- as if the funding and training of jihadist fighters had not been a joint effort with Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf monarchies, all along.
According to Politico , "As late as 2002," Sanders' campaign website declared that "the defense budget should be cut by 50 percent over the next five years." But all the defense-cutting air went out of his chest after Bush invaded Iraq. Nowadays, Sanders limits himself to the usual noises about Pentagon "waste," but has no principled position against the imperial mission of the United States. "We need a strong military, it is a dangerous world," Sanders told voters in Iowa, during the campaign.
Like Paul Street said, he's an "imperialist...Democratic Party company man."
"A Sanders-led Party would still be an imperialist, pro-war party."
At last weekend's People's Summit , in Chicago, National Nurses United executive director RoseAnn DeMoro endorsed Sanders for a mission he finds impossible to accept: a run for president in 2020 on the Peoples Party ticket. Sanders already had his chance to run as a Green, and refused. He is now the second most important Democrat in the country, behind the ultra-corrupt Bill-Hillary Clinton machine -- and by far the most popular. On top of that, Sanders loves being the hero of the phony left, the guy who gimmick-seeking left-liberals hope will create an instant national party for them, making it unnecessary to build a real anti-war, pro-people party from scratch to go heads up with the two corporate machines.
Sanders doesn't even have to exert himself to string the Peoples Party folks along; they eagerly delude themselves. However, a Sanders-led Party would still be an imperialist, pro-war party.
The U.S. does need a social democratic party, but it must be anti-war, otherwise it commits a fraud on social democracy. The United States is the imperial superpower, the main military aggressor on the planet. Its rulers must be deprived of the political ability to spend trillions on war, and to kill millions, or they will always use the "necessity" of war to enforce austerity. The "left" domestic project will fail.
For those of us from the Black Radical Tradition, anti-imperialism is central. Solidarity with the victims of U.S. imperialism is non-negotiable, and we can make no common cause with U.S. political actors that treat war as a political side show, an "elective" issue that is separate from domestic social justice. This is not just a matter of principle, but also of practical politics. "Left" imperialism isn't just evil, it is self-defeating and stupid.
BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com .
Jun 17, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org
rickee | Jun 16, 2017 12:47:19 AM | 33
@15 You mistate/misunderstood: "There was a simultaneous vote..." There was not.
S.Amdt. 232 (increase sanctions on Russia and limit Trump) was an amendment to S. 722 (the Iranian sanctions bill).
Sanders voted for 232 because, frankly, he's all on board the Russia-Russia-Russia hysteria and demonizing Syria. He voted against 722 for the potential damage to the multi-lateral nuclear agreement with Iran. From his senate.gov website today:" I am strongly supportive of the sanctions on Russia included in this bill. It is unacceptable for Russia to interfere in our elections here in the United States, or anywhere around the world. There must be consequences for such actions. I also have deep concerns about the policies and activities of the Iranian government, especially their support for the brutal Assad regime in Syria.
I have voted for sanctions on Iran in the past, and I believe sanctions were an important tool for bringing Iran to the negotiating table. But I believe that these new sanctions could endanger the very important nuclear agreement that was signed between the United States, its partners and Iran in 2015. That is not a risk worth taking, particularly at a time of heightened tension between Iran and Saudi Arabia and its allies. I think the United States must play a more even-handed role in the Middle East, and find ways to address not only Iran's activities, but also Saudi Arabia's decades-long support for radical extremism."
@10 is correct: they're all in...
Jun 15, 2017 | marknesop.wordpress.comNorthern Star , June 13, 2017 at 10:51 am"The event was a political fraud from beginning to end. The basic thread running through all of the workshops and demagogic speeches was the fiction that the Democratic Party-a party of Wall Street and the CIA-can be transformed into a "people's party."marknesop , June 13, 2017 at 11:42 am
LOL!!! Totally spot the F on!!!!!
"Sanders lent his support to the neo-McCarthyite campaign of the Democrats and the military-intelligence apparatus, which sees Russia as the chief obstacle to US imperialism's drive for regime change in Syria and Iran. "I find it strange we have a president who is more comfortable with autocrats and authoritarians than leaders of democratic nations," Sanders said. "Why is he enamored with Putin, a man who has suppressed democracy and destabilized democracies around the world, including our own?"
Sanders?? No fool like an old fool and tool of TPTBOh, I doubt he's a fool; the creed of the western political class is recognition of its own and their interests over the interests of the majority. It is technically true that Putin is destabilizing governments around the world – 'democracies', if you will – but it would presuppose that western leaders are his accomplices. Because it is through them and their crackdowns and restrictions and surveillance, which they say they must introduce for our own protection (because, you know, freedom isn't free) that discontent and destabilization are born. Reply
Jun 13, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.comclarky90 , , , June 12, 2017 at 5:07 pmTvc15 , , June 12, 2017 at 5:48 pm
I believe that Hillary Clinton IS being, and broadcasting her authentic self. I support her 100% in this . I am not being snide. The curtains are being pulled aside on The Incompetent, Wizards of Oz (The Corrupt Over-class). Hillary C will be remembered as the Foolish Wizard who could not keep her curtain drawn! We got a glimpse into the innards of the Heath Robinson, Control Booth, Political Contraption. (George Soros playing with himself!)
I feel utterly betrayed and conned by Barack Obama. He looked, talked and exuded kind, "humanness". But he was a fraud that STILL evades the grok of huge parts of the World population. People generally find it difficult to accept that this beautiful man (Obama) with the beautiful family, is a tyrannical bastard.(Remember NYT's, Uncle Joe Stalin?).
Hillary Clinton, refreshingly (IMO), and bravely, is obviously a crazed maniac. Many noticed her authentic self during the campaign. Now that she is increasingly free to express her inner life, I expect people on both sides of the political divide (The Ups, AND the Downs) to wake up and smell the coffee. We are being lied to about almost everything, and it is not inadvertent.
(1) "One-third of world now overweight, with US leading the way"
http://edition.cnn.com/2017/06/12/health/global-obesity-study/index.htmlOpenthepodbaydoorsHAL , , June 12, 2017 at 7:20 pm
Clarky90 said, " We are being lied to about almost everything, and it is not inadvertent." Exactly!
And the only solace I have from the Trump show is that the curtains will be pulled back completely to expose the puppeteers of this charade they call a democracy.roxy , June 12, 2017 at 3:04 pm
Which should make it much easier to generate authentic opposition, doncha think? Trump was The Great Reveal, next up is The Great Reveal for Dems: that they too love War and Billionaire Corporo-FascismMyLessThanPrimeBeef , June 12, 2017 at 6:31 pm
"Everybody Needs to Stop Telling Hillary Clinton to Shut Up"
Throughout the campaign, culminating in the mindbogglingly stupid "deplorables" remark, Clinton's contempt for anyone who questioned her was clear. Her post election tour brings more of the same. So yeah, people are sick of hearing it, and have every right to say so.
She should be grateful that there are still people who bother to tell her to be quiet.
Me? I have ears but do not hear when it comes to her. Her spells can never penetrate my thick skull.
Jun 13, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
RGC June 13, 2017 at 08:31 AMThree Takeaways From Bernie Sanders' Speech At The People's Summit
"He may not be the leader of the free world, but to the 4,000 activists gathered at The People's Summit in Chicago, Sen. Bernie Sanders reigns supreme.
The former presidential candidate and senator from Vermont headlined the progressive activist conference Saturday night, drawing whoops, hollers, and standing ovations from the crowd that fought alongside him on the road to the White House. Sanders' new calling: turning the 'resistance' movement into action in the face of a president he's called a "fraud."
Sanders took aim at President Trump, the Democratic Party, and the outsized role of corporations in American politics, hitting the major themes from his campaign stump speech and introducing some new ones.
Jun 11, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Christopher H., June 09, 2017 at 06:29 PM"Alas the pretend progressives here cannot be bothered."Christopher H. - , June 09, 2017 at 06:34 PM
PGL you're the only "pretend progressive" here. Real leftists do well in an election and so PGL throws a little temper tantrum. You can't make him discuss it! He won't admit he was wrong! He supported Corbyn even though he didn't talk about the election once during the entire campaign. What a tedious phoney.
How Jeremy Corbyn Proved the Haters Wrong
By RACHEL SHABI
JUNE 9, 2017
LONDON - Among the many satisfying outcomes of Britain's general election has been the roll call of pundits reeling out apologies for getting it so wrong. The Labour Party has, against all odds, surged to take a 40 percent share of the vote, more than it has won in years. And so the nation's commentariat, who had confidently thought that the party under Jeremy Corbyn's leadership would be wiped off the political map, are now eating giant slices of humble pie.
Nobody is in politics to gloat. Labour's leadership team and supporters alike want the party to win not for the sake of winning, but in order to bring Labour's economic and social agenda to Britain, to measurably improve people's lives. Still, a little schadenfreude is definitely in order.
Mr. Corbyn, from the left of the party, unexpectedly took its helm in 2015 after a rule change allowed, for the first time, rank-and-file members to have an equal vote for their leader. And he has been ridiculed, dismissed and bemoaned ever since. Cast as an incongruous combination of incompetent beardy old man and peacenik terrorist sympathizer, Mr. Corbyn faced down a leadership challenge from his own party about a year ago and constant sniping, criticism and calls for him to quit throughout.
The political and pundit classes, in their wisdom, thought it entirely inconceivable that someone like him - so unpolished, so left wing - could ever persuade voters. After Britain's referendum decision, last June, to leave the European Union, more scathing criticism was piled upon the Labour leader for his decision to, well, accept the democratic referendum decision, however bad it was.
By the time Prime Minister Theresa May called a snap election six weeks ago, her party ran a 20-point poll lead ahead of Labour and her personal approval ratings were sky high while Mr. Corbyn's were abysmally low. Liberal pundits were aghast at the thought of the Labour Party self-destructing under Mr. Corbyn's supposedly toxic leadership. He was once again urged to step down.
Then the campaign started - and every prediction was turned on its head. The well-funded, hyper-efficient Conservatives and their chorus of supporters in Britain's mostly right-wing press ran a terrible campaign. Mrs. May came across as robotic and out of touch; she didn't seem to like engaging with the press, much less the public. The more people saw of her, the more her ratings sank.
For Mr. Corbyn, the opposite was true. His detractors said his appeal was limited to a niche of radical left activists, but in reality his quiet confidence, credibility and integrity - so refreshing at a time when politicians are viewed as untrustworthy careerists - drew crowds of enthusiastic supporters to ever-growing rallies. At one point, arriving to a televised debate just over a week before the election, he was greeted with solid cheers en route to the event. That was when his leadership team sensed something significant was taking place.
Part of this extraordinary success was a result of the party's campaign. Fun, energetic, innovative and inspiring, it created its own momentum, with organic support mushrooming out of the most unlikely places, flooding social media with viral memes and messages: Rappers and D.J.s, soccer players, economists and television personalities alike climbed aboard the Corbyn project. Momentum, a grass-roots organization of Corbyn supporters, activated the party's estimated 500,000 members - many of whom had joined because Mr. Corbyn was elected as leader - into canvassing efforts across the country, including, crucially, in up-for-grabs districts. Supporters were further encouraged by the sight of Labour candidates demolishing long-hated Conservatives on television, appearances that were swiftly turned into video clips and raced around the internet.
But the main mobilizer of support was the party's politics. For decades, Labour has been resolutely centrist, essentially offering a slightly kinder version of neoliberal consensus politics. Those on the left had long said that this was what had caused the party's slow decline, a hemorrhaging of support from its traditional working-class voters. With Mr. Corbyn at its helm, the party tacked firmly to the left, proposing to tax the few for the benefit of the many and offering major national investment projects, funding for the welfare state, the scrapping of university tuition fees and the re-nationalization of rail and energy companies.
It was a hopeful vision for a fairer society, offered at a time when the country is experiencing wage stagnation and spiraling living costs, with many buckling under because of the economic crash of 2008 and the Conservative Party's savage austerity cuts that followed. Given the chance for the first time in decades to vote for something else, something better, a surprising number of voters took it. Young people, in particular, seized this offer: With youth turnout unusually high at 72 percent, it's clear that Labour brought them to the ballot box in droves.
Labour's shock comeback has tugged the party, along with Britain's political landscape, and the range of acceptable discourse back to the left. In a hung Parliament, the Conservatives still came out of the election as the main party, and now looks set to go into coalition government with the homophobic, anti-abortion Democratic Unionist Party. But the Conservatives are now a maimed party with a discredited leader - weaknesses to be seized upon and exploited by a now united and empowered Labour party.
Bernie would have won.im1dc - , June 09, 2017 at 06:56 PMBernie couldn't beat Hillary therefore Bernie would not have won b/c he DIDN'T.Christopher H. - , June 09, 2017 at 07:45 PMBernie would have won if he had been the nominee. Not my fault the establishment Democrats wanted to lose again.Gibbon1 - , June 10, 2017 at 03:31 AMThe grifters in the party didn't lose you dope. They all got paid. It's all so very much like making a movie. So what if it didn't break even at the box office, everyone involved got theirs.Sanjait - , June 10, 2017 at 08:47 AM
Seriously though you are correct. Sanders would have won against Trump. Everyone knows that, except the die hard centerist Democrats that are trying hard not to look in mirror.
You wingnuts cant seem to comprehend that the Democratic primariesChristopher H. - , June 10, 2017 at 09:39 AM
was a series of state elections in which Hillary legitimately got more voters to vote for her. They picked Hillary, for all your bleating about "elites."Sandy, Sandy, so naive.RC AKA Darryl, Ron - , June 10, 2017 at 09:46 AMKrugman posited once that Bernie might win the nomination by beating Hillary with disaffected white voters in the red states despite being ultimately unelectable because of his radical views in the general election. Of course that is not at all what happened.Christopher H. - , June 10, 2017 at 10:09 AMThis is what Krugman wrote, which turned out to be exactly wrong.RC AKA Darryl, Ron - , June 11, 2017 at 03:55 AM
"....This ties in with an important recent piece by Zack Beauchamp on the striking degree to which left-wing economics fails, in practice, to counter right-wing populism; basically, Sandersism has failed everywhere it has been tried. Why?
The answer, presumably, is that what we call populism is really in large degree white identity politics, which can't be addressed by promising universal benefits. Among other things, these "populist" voters now live in a media bubble, getting their news from sources that play to their identity-politics desires, which means that even if you offer them a better deal, they won't hear about it or believe it if told. For sure many if not most of those who gained health coverage thanks to Obamacare have no idea that's what happened.
That said, taking the benefits away would probably get their attention, and maybe even open their eyes to the extent to which they are suffering to provide tax cuts to the rich.
In Europe, right-wing parties probably don't face the same dilemma; they're preaching herrenvolk social democracy, a welfare state but only for people who look like you. In America, however, Trumpism is faux populism that appeals to white identity but actually serves plutocrats. That fundamental contradiction is now out in the open."
I recall something more damning, but have not been able to find it after repeated attempts. My belief is that it was obviously so far off the mark that it has been taken down off Krugman's NYT blog and maybe any reference to it here at EV as well.
May 31, 2017 | jackrabbit.blogThere are numerous clues that point to the 2016 US Presidential Election as having been a set-up. Few seem willing to take a close look at these facts. But it is necessary for an understanding of the world we live in today.
Trump's first 100 days has come and gone and he has proven to be every bit the faux populist that Obama was (as I explained in a previous post). In hind-sight we can see how a new faux populist was installed.
- Sanders as sheep-dog Black Agenda Report called Sanders a sheep-dog soon after he entered the race . Sanders made it clear from the start that he ruled out the possibility of running as an independent. That was only the first of many punches that Sanders pulled as he led his 'sheep' into the Democratic fold. Others were:
>> "Enough with the emails!"
>> Not pursuing Hillary's 'winning' of 6 coin tosses in Iowa;
>> Virtually conceding the black and female vote to Hillary;
>> Not calling Hillary out about her claim to have NEVER sold her vote;
>> Endorsing Hillary despite learning of Hillary-DNC collusion;
>> Continuing to help the Democratic Party reach out to Bernie supports even after the election.
As one keen observer noted: Sanders is a Company Man .
- Trump as Clinton protege
May 10, 2017 | www.eutimes.net
Everything about France's new president Emmanuel Macron suggests a theatrical production of hype and illusion. He is being "sold" to the masses as an "outsider" and "centrist", a benign liberal.
In reality, enter the economic hitman who will blow French society apart in the service of the oligarchy.
At age 39, Macron has been described as a "political wonderboy" and France's "youngest leader since Napoleon Bonaparte." The former Rothschild banker who reportedly once had the nickname "the Mozart of Finance" is now promising to renew France and bring the nation together, where people will no longer "vote for extremes."
Fittingly for the Mozart of Finance, the new president used the "grandest of backdrops for entrance on the world stage," when he made his victory speech on Sunday night in the courtyard of the Louvre, noted the Financial Times. His dramatic walk to the stage through the world-famous museum courtyard took a full four minutes. The night lights and shadows played with Macron's unsmiling, stoney face as he strode purposely forward amid the strains of Beethoven's Ode to Joy. The choice of the European Union's national anthem, rather than France's, is a harbinger of Macron's political project and the globalist interests he serves.
The media says what??? Hillary Clinton complains about the media? Which media says that? Give us ONE single example Hillary! Just one where the media says you can't talk about that. Just pure hypocrisy
Geographically, the Louvre is situated midway between the traditional political venues of the Place de la Concorde for the right, and La Bastille for the left. Here was Macron intimating once again, as he did during his campaign, that he represents neither right or left. He has vowed to overturn the bipartisan structure of French politics, creating a new "centrist" movement. Just like his other moniker of being an "outsider," however, this image of Macron is a deftly manicured illusion.
Superficially, there is a semblance of variance from the political establishment. Macron formed his En Marche (Forward) movement only a year ago. He has never held elected political office. And until three years ago hardly anyone had ever heard of him. Now he is to become the eighth president of the French Fifth Republic.
Paradoxically, Donald Tusk, the head of the European Council, congratulated the French people for "choosing liberty, equality and fraternity, and saying no to fake news." Paradoxical because everything about Emmanuel Macron's "meteoric rise" through elite banking and his equally stellar crossover to politics smacks of fabrication and fakery. With his elite education at the Ecole National Academie (ENA) where future French political leaders are groomed, to his precocious elevation in investment banking, followed by his seamless entrance into top-flight government politics, Macron is evidently a person with powerful guiding forces behind him.
Former banking colleagues recall that he wasn't particularly capable in his four years at Rothschild's while on a multi-million-euro income. But he "mastered the art of networking." In a Financial Times profile published before the election, a senior banker is quoted as saying: "What Mr Macron lacked in technical knowledge and jargon at first, he made up for with contacts in government." Other sources recall that "it was never quite clear who Macron worked for."
As the Financial Times noted: "At the bank, Mr Macron navigated around the numerous conflicts of interest that arise in close-knit Parisian business circles, making good use of his connections as an Inspecteur des Finances - an elite corps of the very highest-ranking graduates from ENA."
After quitting private finance, Macron joined the government of Socialist President Francois Hollande, where he at first served as a "special advisor." In 2014, Hollande appointed him as economy minister where he drew up a draconian program to undermine French employment rights in favor of corporate profits. Macron resigned from his ministerial post only last year when he set up his own political party in anticipation of contesting the presidential election.
Macron's En Marche does not have any members in parliament. His government will thus likely be comprised of patronage and technocrats selected from years of networking in the financial and Élysée Palace establishment. What little is known about Macron's policies is his stated commitment to more stringent economic austerity, promises to slash €60 billion in public spending over the next five years and axe up to 120,000 state sector jobs. He is also setting to drive through more "business friendly" changes in labor laws that will allow bosses to more easily hire and fire employees. He is giving companies license to negotiate increased working hours and lower salaries outside of statutory law. So, the notion that Macron is some kind of benign "centrist" is an insult to common intelligence. He is a "centrist" only in the sense of illusory corporate media branding; in objective terms, Macron is a dedicated economic hitman for global capitalism.
Whatever one might think of his defeated rival Marine Le Pen of the Front National, she certainly had Macron accurately summed up when she referred to him as the "candidate of finance." Independent Socialist Jean-Luc Mélenchon, who was narrowly knocked out in the first round of the election on April 23, predicts that Macron will be a "disaster" for French society, blowing apart economic inequality and social contracts to turn the country into the kind of poverty-wage slavery seen in the US and Britain.
There is sound reason why the French and European political establishment exulted in Macron's victory. He is no outsider, overturning the status quo for a more democratic outcome. He is in fact a consummate insider who will pursue policies pandering to elite interests, at the expense of the great majority.
Macron's "centrist [sic] victory brought joy to Europe's political establishment," reported the New York Times, while the BBC informed of "palpable relief among European leaders." Outgoing President Francois Hollande – the most unpopular French leader ever – warmly congratulated Macron, as did incumbent prime minister Bernard Cazeneuve and other senior government figures. Macron had been endorsed by Hollande's so-called Socialist Party and the center-right Republicans. So much for his vaunted "outsider" image. Macron was also endorsed prior to the weekend vote by former US President Barack Obama and European leaders, including Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.
The irony of such brazen "electoral interference" is of course that this was what such Western leaders have accused Russia of. Again, it also shows that Macron will be a "centrist" in more ways than is meant. He will serve as a "dead-center" advocate of the transatlantic politics of Washington-led neoliberal capitalism and NATO militarism. The French President-elect published a political autobiography earlier this year entitled 'Revolution'. The only thing "revolutionary" about Macron's victory is that the political establishment has invented an image for itself that upturns reality.
The intense media marketing of Macron as a "centrist outsider" is a coup against the meaning of words and plain language. It is also worth noting that over 16 million French voters abstained or spoiled their votes against the 20 million who opted for Macron. French society, as for other Western nations, is riven by the ravages of global capitalism. And now here comes the "Mozart of Finance" to allegedly bring harmony from the appalling discord he and others like him have sown.
May 04, 2017 | twitter.comDronie Swag @ Delo_Taylor Apr 29
Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker etc sign letter criticizing UN's "mistreatment" of Israel, condemning
#BDS . #FreePalestine
Ådam @ pirjao Apr 29 Replying to @ MrDuckstep @ Jarulag @ Delo_Taylor
I'm so angry at Berno
Eureka Springs , November 16, 2016 at 8:21 am
Feb 12, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.commk , November 16, 2016 at 7:55 am
Where the Democrats went wrong CNBC.
Obama: "[O]ne of the issues that Democrats have to be clear on is that given population distribution across the country, we have to compete everywhere, we have to show up everywhere." Throwing Clinton under the bus
I yelled at the radio after hearing this, because he means just showing up, telling people what they want to hear, then doing whatever the hell you want after getting elected. Not one word about actually meeting peoples needs. EFF OBAMA and the DEMOCRATIC PARTY!!
If you didn't read this (linked yesterday), you should consider both reading and sharing far and wide. The entire system is designed to be anti-representative. Don't just get/stay mad, quit expecting a bunch of gangsters to function democratically. Get out of their box.
Now we have Trump.
Thanks a lot.
Reply Friday, February 10, 2017 at 12:09 PM pgl said in reply to Peter K.... I'm disappointed that you did not add your insight of the decade - calling him a stupid little troll. For the record - I don't like yuan. He actually writes reasoned comments rather calling people "stupid little trolls". Snicker. T here is no liberals in the USA per se. Most are in reality neoliberals and as such are the part of the right, if we define right as those who want to increase the power of capital vs. labor.
Reply Friday, February 10, 2017 at 01:07 PM Yikes said in reply to Peter K.... This is actually a good point. If only Hillary had made extravagant unkeepable promises she could have duped more people like you into voting for her. Reply Friday, February 10, 2017 at 01:58 PM ilsm said in reply to Yikes... The DNC and HRC thought they had the needed number of dupes, PeterK was not needed! Reply Friday, February 10, 2017 at 04:55 PM libezkova said in reply to Yikes... No. the train left the station. Obama was a sellout who used to speak right things and did completely opposite to please his sponsors.
Now the majority of the people do not believe anything coming from two major parties. The proper term is alienated. That's why Trump. Reply Saturday, February 11, 2017 at 06:02 AM libezkova said in reply to sanjait... Sanjait,
The problem with your views is that there is no liberals in the USA per se. Most are in reality neoliberals and as such are the part of the right, if we define right as those who want to increase the power of capital vs. labor.
This flavor of democracy for top 1% the they promote (one dollar one vote) should be property called "oligarchy" or at best "polyarchy" (the power of the top 10%).
The rest (aka "Debt slaves") are second class citizens and are prevented from political self-organization, which by-and-large deprives them of any form of political participation. In best Roman tradition it is substituted with the participation in political shows ("Bread and circuses"). In a way US election is the ultimate form of "bait and switch" maneuvers of the ruling elite.
The two party system invented by the elite of Great Britain proved to be perfect for neoliberal regimes, which practice what Sheldon Wolin called inverted totalitarism. The latter is the regime in which all political power belongs to the financial oligarchy which rules via the deep state mechanisms, and where traditional political institutions including POTUS are downgraded to instruments of providing political legitimacy of the ruling elite. Population is discouraged from political activity. "Go shopping" as famously recommended Bush II to US citizens after 9/11. Reply Sunday, February 12, 2017 at 11:30 AM
Jan 22, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.comBenIsNotYoda : , January 22, 2017 at 07:59 AMBernie Sanders just said on CBS that he is ready to work with Trump onPeter K. -> BenIsNotYoda... , January 22, 2017 at 08:31 AM
1) lowering drug prices by purchasing drugs from abroad and Medicare negotiate prices
2) infrastructure projects
3) better trade deals
Lets see if entrenched interests in the GOP and Democrat party let them work together. My guess is NOT.
What that would accomplish is lay bare the corruption that is part of both parties.Let's see if Trump actually wants to do any of those things Sanders wants. In other words will he "reach across the aisle."
Let's see if Republicans in Congress cooperate.
I think it's unlikely although not impossible (as Krugman etc do)
Trump thinks of himself as a reality TV star. He likes the drama. But he seems to have no interest in the details of policy. He found the border tax his advisers were floating as too complicated.
Jan 14, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
Peter K. -> Peter K.... January 13, 2017 at 11:39 AM , 2017 at 11:39 AMKrugman like PGL hates the left. That's why they're so dishonest.
The Truth About the Sanders Movement
May 23, 2016 6:17 pm 1134
In short, it's complicated – not all bad, by any means, but not the pure uprising of idealists the more enthusiastic supporters imagine.
The political scientists Christopher Achen and Larry Bartels have an illuminating discussion of Sanders support. The key graf that will probably have Berniebros boiling is this:
"Yet commentators who have been ready and willing to attribute Donald Trump's success to anger, authoritarianism, or racism rather than policy issues have taken little note of the extent to which Mr. Sanders's support is concentrated not among liberal ideologues but among disaffected white men."
The point is not to demonize, but, if you like, to de-angelize. Like any political movement (including the Democratic Party, which is, yes, a coalition of interest groups) Sandersism has been an assemblage of people with a variety of motives, not all of them pretty. Here's a short list based on my own encounters:
1.Genuine idealists: For sure, quite a few Sanders supporters dream of a better society, and for whatever reason – maybe just because they're very young – are ready to dismiss practical arguments about why all their dreams can't be accomplished in a day.
2.Romantics: This kind of idealism shades over into something that's less about changing society than about the fun and ego gratification of being part of The Movement. (Those of us who were students in the 60s and early 70s very much recognize the type.) For a while there – especially for those who didn't understand delegate math – it felt like a wonderful joy ride, the scrappy young on the march about to overthrow the villainous old. But there's a thin line between love and hate: when reality began to set in, all too many romantics reacted by descending into bitterness, with angry claims that they were being cheated.
3.Purists: A somewhat different strand in the movement, also familiar to those of us of a certain age, consists of those for whom political activism is less about achieving things and more about striking a personal pose. They are the pure, the unsullied, who reject the corruptions of this world and all those even slightly tainted – which means anyone who actually has gotten anything done. Quite a few Sanders surrogates were Naderites in 2000; the results of that venture don't bother them, because it was never really about results, only about affirming personal identity.
4.CDS victims: Quite a few Sanders supporters are mainly Clinton-haters, deep in the grip of Clinton Derangement Syndrome; they know that Hillary is corrupt and evil, because that's what they hear all the time; they don't realize that the reason it's what they hear all the time is that right-wing billionaires have spent more than two decades promoting that message. Sanders has gotten a number of votes from conservative Democrats who are voting against her, not for him, and for sure there are liberal supporters who have absorbed the same message, even if they don't watch Fox News.
5.Salon des Refuses: This is a small group in number, but accounts for a lot of the pro-Sanders commentary, and is of course something I see a lot. What I'm talking about here are policy intellectuals who have for whatever reason been excluded from the inner circles of the Democratic establishment, and saw Sanders as their ticket to the big time. They typically hold heterodox views, but those views don't have much to do with the campaign – sorry, capital theory disputes from half a century ago aren't relevant to the debate over health reform. What matters is their outsider status, which gives them an interest in backing an outsider candidate – and makes them reluctant to accept it when that candidate is no longer helping the progressive cause.
So how will this coalition of the not-always disinterested break once it's over? The genuine idealists will probably realize that whatever their dreams, Trump would be a nightmare. Purists and CDSers won't back Clinton, but they were never going to anyway. My guess is that disgruntled policy intellectuals will, in the end, generally back Clinton.
The question, as I see it, involves the romantics. How many will give in to their bitterness? A lot may depend on Sanders – and whether he himself is one of those embittered romantics, unable to move on.
Dec 26, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
Sanders betrayed them, but they still use him as a flag...PlutoniumKun , December 25, 2016 at 6:27 amWyoming , December 25, 2016 at 8:18 am
This is inspiring, but I hope they realise that opposing Trump is just one side of a two-front battle. Trump needs to be opposed when (as seems very likely) he will start to drive a very right wing pro-billionaire set of policies. But its increasingly obvious that there is an equally difficult battle to be fought against the 'centrists' in the Dems and elsewhere. If all the focus is on Trump, then there is the danger they just become the useful idiots of the Dem mainstream.johnnygl , December 25, 2016 at 8:38 am
I would go so far to say that their greatest opponent and biggest danger is not Trump and the Republicans at all. It is the Democratic Party and pretty much every significant office holding Democrat and their staffs.
Revolution starts at home. Fighting with Republicans will not accomplish much when the fifth columnists from the Democratic Party are going to sabotage every effort they make which shows promise of having an effect. They need to show their power by hamstringing targeted Democrats and thus herding the rest into line through fear. You do what we say and how we say it or we replace you. They have to own the left. No more liberal's in name only. You are against us or you are with us.Vatch , December 25, 2016 at 11:17 am
Primary them all! Schumer, pelosi, the whole bunch.
Win in 2020 and redraw those districts to wipe out those super-safe ones that are drawn to wipe out competition.Katharine , December 25, 2016 at 9:12 am
I agree - they must be opposed in the primaries. That's tough to do, and will take real dedication and money. The deplorable Debbie Wasserman Schultz won against Tim Canova in the 2016 primary, and the equally deplorable Chuck Schumer won reelection in 2016, so he won't be facing a primary opponent until the 2022 election season. Pelosi, of course is vulnerable every two years.
Please need to be willing to do more than just post comments on blogs. And lets not have any more of those comments bewailing the impossibility of overthrowing the status quo - it's difficult, but it's not impossible. (This paragraph isn't directed specifically to you, JohnnyGL or PlutoniumKun. I'm just concerned that some other commenters seem to try to prevent people from taking an active role in politics, and that is just plain wrong.)MyLessThanPrimeBeef , December 25, 2016 at 11:37 am
I think opposing Trump will naturally entail telling the centrists to shape up. That is of course only a start, but it is a start.jrs , December 25, 2016 at 12:06 pm
Sanders started, many moths ago, with the goal of taking over/reforming/remaking/revolutionizing the D party.
That start is not completed yet.Sorrynotsorry , December 25, 2016 at 6:43 am
uh why fight against a party with NO federal power? (state power in a few states so maybe relevant there)
Even if you get unanimous Dem opposition how much does it matter? Ok the Rs don't quite have a super-majority yet I guess but it is Rs who will be passing legislation. Fighting Dems is about like fighting WWII after it's all over. They have mouthpieces and foundations it is true, but no power.Synoia , December 25, 2016 at 7:16 am
Bwah ha ha ha ha! What are they doing? Anything except, you know, votingDirection , December 25, 2016 at 7:43 am
Better message is to be pro a set of policies:
1. Medicare for all
2. SS are a real retirement system
3. Job Guarantee
4. College for all – student debt
5. Taxes as social and business policy
6. No permanent standing military
Merry Christmas to allDirk77 , December 25, 2016 at 11:58 am
7. Money out of politics
8. Corporations are not people with inalienable rights.Reify99 , December 25, 2016 at 10:01 am
Irritated by the identity politics of the main article. That and would they have opened an office if Hillary had won? If not, I fear they don't understand and are doomed to repeat the same mistakes of their elders.
+1 to you and Synoia. Merry Christmas!Knifecatcher , December 25, 2016 at 11:23 am
Sanders is always on point moving toward the goal with minimal time spent talking about moving away from what Is opposed. Here's a sometime humorous case in point–
A candid conversation: Bernie Sanders and Sara Silverman
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mP5xavI0d_o&sns=emMyLessThanPrimeBeef , December 25, 2016 at 11:39 am
Waaaaay too many bullet points already, and I see that others are adding more. Not that I'm saying any of those are unimportant, but when you have a dozen goals you actually have none at all. My ideal progressive movement would hammer relentlessly on 3 major initiatives:
– Medicare for all
– $15 minimum wage
– Post office banking
All 3 provide tangible benefits to the majority of Americans, with the added bonus of poking a sharp stick in the eye of the oligarchs.Steeeve , December 25, 2016 at 1:28 pm
Perhaps these 2:
– Medicare and one Single Pesion (Socia Security) for all
– Basic Income (before retirement) for allfloatingcopy , December 25, 2016 at 8:15 am
I definitely agree about keeping the list of priorities short, but I feel that these two areas are foundational and systemically corrupting, and little else is likely to be accomplished without major reforms of both
– MIC/"Defense" spending (mostly spent on offense, not defending the borders of the USA from invasion)
– Campaign Finance – big money in politicsjohnnygl , December 25, 2016 at 8:43 am
9. Lifelong job education and skills-building for all unemployed and under-employed, paid for directly from corporate taxes.
10. Universal two-year commitment to the military or a full-time volunteer public service program.Marco , December 25, 2016 at 1:45 pm
11. Rewilding and reforesting polluted and abandoned land.
12. Anti-trust! More trust-busting needed!
13. Agricultural reform to ban feedlots, fertilizers and pesticides and reorganize farms to restore and rebuild soil. And yes, this will create jobs.jrs , December 25, 2016 at 12:20 pm
13 points already? We're toast.DJG , December 25, 2016 at 12:48 pm
"9. Lifelong job education and skills-building for all unemployed and under-employed, paid for directly from corporate taxes."
people don't know what a nightmare such scenarios are, ok it sucks if you are underemployed and have no way to retrain because finances, but it also sucks big league if you have to spend your entire life working full time AND pursuing more and more formal education, forever until you die. Is any of our utopias going to care about human beings being able to BE human beings? We are so so much more than just useful labor machines forever aquiring labor market useful skills.
Ok course a basic income guarantee or a labor market tilted for labor not capital (including government job creation sure – and sure there's other things that can tilt it for labor – lower Social Security age, unionization etc.) would nullify this objection as the competition for jobs would lessen enough perhaps.
"10. Universal two-year commitment to the military or a full-time volunteer public service program."
well this is even more self-evidently nightmarish but it hardly needs unpacking. 2 years of becoming hired killers for the imperialist murder machine. Yea I know you didn't specify military as mandatory, I'm just saying what is being encouraged.Direction , December 25, 2016 at 8:28 am
jrs: Agreed. Points 9 and 10 are non-starters. They will not lessen class warfare. Only a jobs policy and a commitment to full employment will. And this idea that U.S. citizens have to be drafted into some regimented public-service program isn't helpful.
But let's talk about reopening the Civilian Conservation Corps, as in point 11. Now that is a genuinely good idea. And people would gladly join–without feeling regimented.Montanamaven , December 25, 2016 at 12:47 pm
There was an interesting debate around the water cooler links on Festivus. I would like to recap and extend it here because I want to know more. First about how you, Lambert, see the take over of a single state Democratic party office breaking open a path to reform the party from within. I would like to hear what scenarios you feel are possible.
Walden pond wrote
"The elite control the D party (which is nothing but a criminal organization at this point). They will allow outsiders to have dog-catcher, but get uppity and run for a state position and that person will be out in an instant. The Ds are factually/legally a private club and they can select their membership and candidates in any way they choose or get a court to back them on every petty legal change they make to block outsiders. They change rules (legal contract) retroactively, they violate their own rules repeatedly and someone thinks they are going to get any farther than a few school board positions or city council is going to fail.
Taking over the D party is similar to proposing infiltrating gangs (fully backed by the legal system) with 13 year olds to 'save the neighborhood'."
I whole heartedly agree. I think it's important that people understand that the party is not just a "machine" waiting for someone new to guide it. It is not a set of empty offices and poster printing machines with helpful local people waiting for guidance. At the top, it is much more like an exclusive country club whose membership passes down through wealthy families who think they know what's best for the nation.
Anyhow, if you have a strategy on how to break it, I would like to support that discussion. I would like to hear more.JohnnyGL , December 25, 2016 at 1:31 pm
I'm glad you carried this discussion over to today. People hear have heard my sad tales of woe when I decided in 2004 to stop being inattentive and to actually try "to change the party from within" that talk show hosts like Thom Hartmann and "The Nation" gang call for every 4 years. Yes, I discovered what Walden Pond wrote; that there is an "elite" control of the state parties. They are almost hereditary positions. Yes, they will get excited by a newbie like me who was articulate, worked in Hollywood, married to a rancher for conservative creeds. But then I started to challenge their positions by advocating for single payer; stronger labor stances that they all paId lip service to but didn't really seem to care about. So no longer was I allowed to talk to the press at the DNC Convention. As I recall in 2006 or 2007 they changed a rule to make it harder to challenge Jon Tester in a primary.
Affairs like "Campaign for America's Future" conventions were always in D.C. And during the 2nd one I went to, I confirmed by observations that they were just big job fairs for people wanting jobs in the next administration or becoming lobbyists. That was actually what the convention in 2004 was too that I attended as a delegate. "Agriculture Salutes Tom Harking"; brought to you not by The Grange but by Monsanto and Carroll. Lavish party with handsome young men shucking tons of oysters. Ick.
I went in naive as I suspect many well meaning millennials will do now to this "house". But boy did I start to wake up and finally by 2009 after the failed single payer health care movement, I quit this dead donkey.funemployed , December 25, 2016 at 8:49 am
Christmas Rant!!! ***You've been warned***
There's a lot of contentious debate on whether to fight in the Democrat Party or build a 3rd one. The answer is both, always and constantly.
1) Start the fight within the Party, as seen in MI. What happened there is important to expose and embarrass the local party officials. I consider the incident an encouraging sign and hope there are more like it around the country (not happy with the guy getting assaulted, of course, but if it shows 'they are who we thought they were', then that's progress of a sort).
2) If you can fight within the party and the party leadership at the state level understands the need to change and gets on board (getting on board as defined by fighting for specific policies, organizing and party building, and going against the wishes of big donors), then work with them.
3) if the big donors and dinosaur party leaders don't get on board, then then need to be A) removed, if possible. Or, if not possible, B) they should be isolated. If Schumer and Pelosi can't be primary-ed out of existence (a-la Eric Cantor) then they should be stripped of leadership positions and isolated. Primary all of their allies in congress. Pelosi still got around 2/3 of the vote. Let's get it below 1/2. We're not starting from scratch, there's a base of opposition to work with.
4) Part of the contention between points 2) and 3) is protests like those seen recently protesting at Schumer's office by BLM and Occupy folks. Again, make them come to us on policy. Life should get increasingly uncomfortable for Party leaders and members that don't play ball. It should be clear that their current attitudes and policies are untenable and they need to get with the new program. Hassle them in their offices, at their public events. Anti-fracking protestors who harassed Cuomo over several years showed what to do. I think one of his kids joked that when they got lost on the way to an event, they could always find where they were going because the anti-fracking protestors were there waiting for them.
People like Pelosi and Schumer will cave to public pressure, they've done it in the past. Pelosi said no to medicare changes when Obama wanted to put entitlement reform on the table. These people are different than ideologues who will push their agenda regardless of public opinion. They're snakes, but they'll play ball under pressure.
5) Now in the case where we can't with the fight within the party, go outside. Socialist Alternative, Working Families and other 3rd parties that are built up at the local level can threaten and do real damage. Does anyone think Seattle gets a $15/hr min. wage without Sawant and Socialist Alternative? Working Families Party demonstrated exactly what NOT to do during NY Governor election. If Cuomo won't come to us and meet our demands, bring him down. Suck it up, deal with a Republican for a few years, if necessary. While the Republican is in charge, pressure them, too. Don't think about the election right now .that's short termism. Let's think 2, 3, 4 elections out. If you're not winning now, clear out the deadwood to win later.
6) Now, to face up to the 'lesser evil' arguments regarding 5). It's over, there's no more 'lesser evilism'. It's dead. Hillary Clinton and the elite Dems killed it. They put it all on display for all to see. They were willing to crush the left (again), squash voting rights through a variety of means, and risk Trump or another whacky 'Pied Piper' candidate in order to get their anointed candidate put in charge. THAT should tell you EXACTLY who we're dealing with here. They were perfectly willing to risk Trump to win, so that means if a 3rd party can get 3%-5% in a close election and play a spoiler role, then that 3rd party should DO it. Every time. Again, keep doing it until the Democrats adopt the platform of a 3rd party (which, presumably includes fight for $15, medicare for all, no wars, etc). Again, until the Dems come to us on policy, they will be opposed.
But, but Nader brought us Bush who brought us Iraq War! You cannot take risks like that! Must vote lesser evil!!! Oh really? Dems voted for Patriot Act, Dems voted for AUMF over and over again. Dems voted to keep funding the war, too. When Dems don't win the Presidency they want to sit back and wait for Repubs to do awful stuff so that Dems will be back in charge as seen in 2006-8. Pelosi and Reid did NOTHING to deserve a win, they just waited it out until people voted for change again. They want to do this again. We can't let them. Make them do their job. Make them act in opposition. Make them earn their next win, otherwise we'll get the same group and the same policies that have just been discredited.
7) From the article, I like Ahmed's strategy/tactics, but the concept of attacking Trump the person, seems flawed. Remember, policy is what matters!
Nixon passed an amendment that created the EPA. That doesn't happen if you oppose Nixon for who he is. Also, wikipedia reveals that the Clean Water Act got passed in spite of Nixon's veto! If Trump wants to move in the right direction, he should be praised for doing so. If he doesn't, go around him!
Trump is a guy that just slapped the Repub establishment silly and clearly is running at least partially out of vanity more than he wants to collect fat checks when he leaves office (like the Clintons, and probably Obama soon enough). There's value in this, by itself, and there's value on policy grounds, too.
Okay, I'm done. I hope anyone who bothers to read found this enjoyable. Happy for comments. Also, to be clear, I've got no experience in organizing or any kind of playbook to carry this plan out. :) So, feel free to mock my credentials, because they don't exist!Steven Greenberg , December 25, 2016 at 9:20 am
Sigh. We millennials might be smart about policy and pragmatic, but if this is our moonshot, we don't know jack about how to organize a successful social movement. Protesting "Trump" is stupid. Trump is not a policy. He is a person. Is our goal to make him feel bad about himself? And he did win the election. So his administration is, in fact, "legitimate" in any meaningful sense of the word.
I'd have slightly different lists, but I entirely agree that a pro-policy platform is an essential starting point. That said, protests basically always fail, and more often then not IMO, strengthen the opposition. When they succeed, or even make headway like NODAPL, they always share a common set of features.
1) One very specific policy. Today, if I were in charge, I'd choose Federally funded Medicare for all. Never mind details for protesting purposes.
2) A simple, clear message that appeals to values that most people in a body politic can agree on "Health Care is a Civil Right!"
3) A symbol that presents a clear, binary, moral choice. Sorry people, it makes me feel icky too, but this is where we go hunting for a dying grandma or kid with cancer who can't get medical care and make him/her our mascot (ideally, in a purely strategic realm, such person would refuse any care until it was guaranteed to all, then die at a decisive moment, thus becoming a martyr).
4) The ability to bring different folks together to agree on ONE thing. Organized bitch sessions about Obamacare in Trump country might work here, but we'd have to throw shit at the wall and see what stuck. I know for a fact that most Trump supporters, if pressed, will say that a family should not have to choose between impoverishment and treating mom's cancer. But protesting "Trump" is protesting them too, with the main goal of feeling like you are a better person because you know that gender is socially constructed or whatever (as if there is something magical in who you are that is the reason you got to go to a private liberal arts college, and you totally never would have been racist no matter what life circumstances you were born into).
It's not that I'm a single issue person, it's just protesting lots of things at once just makes a lot of noise, and a bunch of people trying to work together with competing agendas (lack of shared vision, in corporate speak), makes all human organizations dysfunctional. Basically, I support many issues, but think mixing them all together is not a good recipe for success.Reify99 , December 25, 2016 at 10:33 am
Didn't read the article. Seems like a misdirected effort to me. You don't win voters by being against something. You win them by being for something. I am getting tired of the "Ain't It Awful" game. Give me a vision to be for.
There is something called target fixation. When you concentrate on what you want to avoid, you end up going right toward it. Concentrate on where you want to go rather than spend all your time thinking about where you don't want to go.Katharine , December 25, 2016 at 10:38 am
This can be demonstrated by asking someone to follow your instructions and then issuing a number of imperative sentences:
Don't think of blue
Don't think about your left earlobe
Don't think about what Crazyman will do with this
Don't think of Trump
One has to think of those things in order to make sense of the words. Moving away from can be a powerful motivator but only toward will get you there. Sorry, clarifying the obvious again.jrs , December 25, 2016 at 12:34 pm
This effort is not about winning voters but about blocking really bad policy changes that will hurt millions of people. Organizing for an election campaign and organizing for issue-based activism are not the same. If Barb Mikulski forty-odd years ago had just gone around the city talking about her vision of good communities and good transportation policy, a lot of Baltimore neighborhoods would have been wiped out as the city was cut apart by an ill-placed interstate. She stopped it by organizing a fight against it. More recently, Destiny Watford, still in high school at the time, was the prime mover in the successful fight against an incinerator in her Curtis Bay neighborhood in south Baltimore.
There is a time and a place for everything. There are at least two other organizations focusing on electoral politics. This one has a different purpose.craazyman , December 25, 2016 at 10:00 am
Yes to be opposed to Trump is because they think a bunch of bad policies will come from his administration and they are likely not wrong. It doesn't need to be about Trump the person at all, though for some deluded people it may be. Now they could broaden it to opposing Paul Ryans congress etc. since they are hardly better but if any legistlaton is actually going to be passed a Republican congress and Trump will be working together.
A single issue focus, say it was Medicare for all, even if it was sucessful, would have let all the other issues a Trump administration will represent slide. Ok so if Trump passes tax cuts say that further enrich the plutocrats, an ever more unequal society might even destroy Medicare for all (the rich will just buy their way out). If Trump passes even more obviously anti-environmental legistlation, the fact Medicare for all was achieved would be a goal of it's own but would not change this. Maybe there are people enough for all movements, I don't know.alex morfesis , December 25, 2016 at 10:03 am
Oh man. More identity politics yada yada.
It'll never work & for good reason. It's a form of ideation contrary to gnostic principles and therefore to the highest spiritual values on this plane of existence.
Sad to see hopeful inspired people get lost in that maze of misery. Trust your perceptions in the silence of your mind without looking to anybody else for affirmation. People are people. That's what everybody who can figure things out figures out when they grow up.
Grow up & Merry Christmas. LOL
I'm wishing Trump well & am somewhat hopeful that - through the odd feedback loops in complex systems - the provocations of his originality will shape things in a direction even progressives will find appealing. Maybe I'll be wrong, I admit. But I'm usually not wrong. LOL. (Although I am sometimes, no lie.)jrs , December 25, 2016 at 12:39 pm
Firecracker puppies professional trainer who isists she knows about how people of color feel..hmmm a bunch of photos of ms nadine and her fellow associates something about dc that tells me the demographics are not the same as iowa does not look as she thinks there are any people of color who can train on what "she" calls "non violence" and her "famous" black female puppet to represent and protest against the military because the military is so black and female seems a bit tone deaf
Same old same old chameleons bending to the new hot button funding to keep the lights on
"As the international director of the committee to make noise and get nothing done, we strive to "
And ms bangladeshi her nov 27 tweet that anyone right of the democrats is a fascist does this child have an idea what that word means, or is it something she picked up at one of the "people" conventions she attended or spoke at
Not looking to be hyper cynical on this of all days but seems moumita has spent her entire adult life posing with her megaphone and for someone who is so "out there" mekantz find much about her except her self proclaimed relevance and for a person who claims this large network somewhat smallish set of followers on her chyrping account
I hope I am wrong
Peace on earth and goodwill to allmad as hell. , December 25, 2016 at 10:40 am
movements often outgrow their leadersdcblogger , December 25, 2016 at 10:42 am
The Washington police will now have to use a search warrant or a battering ram unlike Zuccotti park where night sticks and pepper spray were used. I don't see a problem getting those. Especially after agents have infiltrated. Well at least it is a start which I hope snowballs!beth , December 25, 2016 at 11:42 am
enter the sans coullottes! I am thrilled and will try to get in contact with them. depend upon it, the American people will turn to those who demonstrate the best ability to push back against Trump. Which is why Bernie has been doing that since the election.Montanamaven , December 25, 2016 at 10:53 am
No, I disagree. Bernie does not push back against Trump. No identity politics, no focus on personalities. Bernie pushes back against wrong-headed policies. Bernie wants policies that benefit the majority.
Let's pray our new president does some good that most of us do not expect. I hope he is more unpredictable than that. I may be wrong but I can hope.Denis Drew , December 25, 2016 at 10:55 am
Sounds like the Alternet crowd is up to its sheepdogging tactics again. Let's corral young energy and co-opt it for the Democrats. Co-opting is what I call "Skunking" because it sure stinks up the joint.
I'm with the majority here in finding this sad that these "organizers" have decided to go all negative. They are "going to hold him [Trump] accountable and delegitimize literally everything he is doing and not let him succeed." Well, how has that worked out so far.
New thinking and new solutions ae called for, not the same old feel good "protests" and voter drives that professional organizers love to do. If they had done any real introspection they would have come up with ways of forming new coalitions; and also realize the need to keep Schumer and Pelosi as accountable as Trump. But these are still party operatives in younger sheep's clothing. Many are poli sci majors who want to be in politics in Washington as a vocation. See, they are the wise "behind the scenes" people that will guide the "activists" . Ugh. Same old; Same old story.
And this smells of the same DLC Clinton gang since they are calling Trump's victory and presidency illegitimate. Again, they don't want to delve into why she lost. They wants jobs in D.C. And spend their energy "resisting" rather than coming up with anything remotely interesting. This is not Occupy. And I doubt they will embrace young Anarchists.fosforos , December 25, 2016 at 10:55 am
Re: How the Obama Coalition Crumbled, Leaving an Opening for Trump By NATE COHN
Wonderful shakeout by Cohn: Trump won by trading places with Obama . O appealed to less educated whites as their protector against the Wall Street candidate (47% time) Romney. (Crackpot) Trump appealed to them with same promise versus Wall Street candidate (true enough) Hill.
Upshot: Dems only have to get busy rebuilding labor union density at the state by progressive state level (or not so progressive; but be seen trying hard). Repubs will have no where to hide: once and for all political checkmate.
For some beginning thoughts and angles on what and how to - see here:
We are only asking state legislatures to make possible joining a union if you want to - without running an impassable gauntlet - no complicated policy issues at all.Yves Smith , December 25, 2016 at 11:56 am
Totally unpromising that they start with the calamitous premise of the whole Sanders campaign: "a campaign where Bernie specifically said, 'Do not attack the other person." Sanders knew he could run a campaign that would destroy the Clinton, a proven loser on the merits, and thereby make it possible to defeat any of the GOP's dumpster of deplorables, especially the Trumpe-l'oeil. But that would involve a political break with the whole record of the Obama administration in both domestic and foreign policy. So instead Sanders wound up saying the falsest single thing anyone said in the whole campaign–"nobody cares about those damn e-mails."walt , December 25, 2016 at 11:21 am
Sanders did not lose as a result of his position on the e-mails. The GOP was guaranteed to make a big issue of them and did.Gaylord , December 25, 2016 at 11:23 am
Youth may wish to have their bragging rights for their old age, but Trump has proven that power lies with the voters, who will be driven away to the likes of Reagan by this posturing.
Ahmed has not learned all the lessons of the 1960s.PhilK , December 25, 2016 at 11:26 am
We-The-Ppl rejected Gold Sacks's "shitty deal" Hillary, foisted on us by the Dems whose elites "assassinated" the best candidate since JFK; Repubs rejected "fool me again" Jeb in the Primary. Nasty Trump was put there to shoo-in Hill, but it backfired. Democracy? all gone. The Wild West is back.Katharine , December 25, 2016 at 11:41 am
They're still trying to grab Sanders' mike and take over his show.Reify99 , December 25, 2016 at 1:12 pm
He was always the first to point that this show is not about him but about all of us.Billy-bob , December 25, 2016 at 12:48 pm
True, otherwise we're lost in celebrity.
We need both "away from" and "toward" bullet points. The "away from" will naturally target Trump's onerous policies and will generate lots of energy. The "toward" bullet points will also "target" the "fake news" neoliberals because their support will prove to be tepid faint praise and lots of how it can't be done. Energy wise it will be more of a slog. They will also covertly seek to undermine progressive change. They will be called out on their crap.Reify99 , December 25, 2016 at 1:18 pm
To the naysayers I say: just shut up and fund it–I just did. It's an experiment and it might work.
At least these yunguns are DOING something.Jamie , December 25, 2016 at 1:11 pm
+1Elizabeth Burton , December 25, 2016 at 2:00 pm
Why didn't they set up this "permanent base" when Sanders voted for the 700 billion dollar F35 or when Obama claimed the legal right to indefinitely detain or kill anyone without judicial oversight?
"You can safely assume that you've created God in your own image,
when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do."
– Anne LamottChrisAtRU , December 25, 2016 at 2:11 pm
I assume all of those who have so arrogantly dismissed the efforts of these young people are all, therefore, engaged in alternative activities that support their respective opinions of how to effect the change that is our only salvation from neo-feudalism. Otherwise, I say put up or shut up.
Because I'm getting really sick of all the armchair quarterbacking, which to me is no different from the way the DNC elites treat anyone who isn't a member of their club. If people who object to the goals and/or methods of the District 13 House group have useful suggestions to make, why haven't they engaged in working to bring those suggestions to fruition. It's also precisely the kind of ivory-tower critique that has brought us to this pass, so do keep in mind that when pointing out the sins of others, one has three other fingers pointing in the opposite direction.
Natural skeptic/cynic at this point I go back to to Bernie's first statement after the election:
"Donald Trump tapped into the anger of a declining middle class that is sick and tired of establishment economics, establishment politics and the establishment media. People are tired of working longer hours for lower wages, of seeing decent paying jobs go to China and other low-wage countries, of billionaires not paying any federal income taxes and of not being able to afford a college education for their kids – all while the very rich become much richer.
"To the degree that Mr. Trump is serious about pursuing policies that improve the lives of working families in this country, I and other progressives are prepared to work with him. To the degree that he pursues racist, sexist, xenophobic and anti-environment policies, we will vigorously oppose him."
Now taken in that light, do we need a generic "anti-Trump" resistance house to "stick out like a sore thumb"?
Or do we need something that speaks to the deeper issues around which non-squillionaire people can unite?
I concur with those who posted above on sticking to the issues. If you stick to the issues, the face of the opposition (from within and without) doesn't matter. It's about getting people to realize that agents of the establishment on BOTH sides (Dem & Repub) of all various identarian flavors have betrayed us all.
Now granted, there's plenty of swamp left undrained to warrant being all up the new administration's grill like freckles. But please, let's get the focus where it should be – on what's being done and undone. Focusing on "Trump" is a non-starter.
Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah and FestivusForTheRestOfUs to everyone!
Nov 18, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.comchunder maker in that statement eh? Hope dashed! jo6pac November 17, 2016 at 3:13 pmcocomaan November 17, 2016 at 7:44 pm
Lambert you were on to something when you mention his twitter account.
I know my Muslim friends would never want to hurt anyone but this guy is as crazy as hillabillie.uncle tungsten November 18, 2016 at 7:25 am
Support for Syria and Libya interventions? Gross. No thanks.
Who else do we got? Wait this is it? WHAT?!!
Ellison is a dud, Bernie tweets support for Schumer "there's nobody I know better prepared and more capable of leading our caucus than Chuck Schumer"!
Well there's a good chunder maker in that statement eh? Hope dashed!
There are no doubt many who are better informed, more progressive and principled, more remote from Wall Street and oligarchic capture than Chuck Schumer and Ellison. So there you have it – this is reform in the Democrats after a crushing defeat.
Vale democrats, and now the journey becomes arduous with these voices to smother hope. A new party is urgently needed (I know how difficult that is) and these voices of the old machine need to be ignored for the sake of sanity.
Nov 18, 2016 | crookedtimber.org
bruce wilder 11.16.16 at 10:07 pm 30
At the center of Great Depression politics was a political struggle over the distribution of income, a struggle that was only decisively resolved during the War, by the Great Compression. It was at center of farm policy where policymakers struggled to find ways to support farm incomes. It was at the center of industrial relations politics, where rapidly expanding unions were seeking higher industrial wages. It was at the center of banking policy, where predatory financial practices were under attack. It was at the center of efforts to regulate electric utility rates and establish public power projects. And, everywhere, the clear subtext was a struggle between rich and poor, the economic royalists as FDR once called them and everyone else.
FDR, an unmistakeable patrician in manner and pedigree, was leading a not-quite-revolutionary politics, which was nevertheless hostile to and suspicious of business elites, as a source of economic pathology. The New Deal did not seek to overthrow the plutocracy, but it did seek to side-step and disable their dominance.
It seems to me that while neoliberalism on the right was much the same old same old, the neoliberal turn on the left was marked by a measured abandonment of this struggle over the distribution of income between the classes. In the U.S., the Democrats gradually abandoned their populist commitments. In Europe, the labour and socialist parties gradually abandoned class struggle.
In retrospect, though the New Deal did use direct employment as a means of relief to good effect economically and politically, it never undertook anything like a Keynesian stimulus on a Keynesian scale - at least until the War.
Where the New Deal witnessed the institution of an elaborate system of financial repression, accomplished in large part by imposing on the financial sector an explicitly mandated structure, with types of firms and effective limits on firm size and scope, a series of regulatory reforms and financial crises beginning with Carter and Reagan served to wipe this structure away.
When Obama came in, in 2008 amid the unfolding GFC, one of the most remarkable features of his economic team was the extent to which it conceded control of policy entirely to the leading money center banks. Geithner and Bernanke continued in power with Geithner moving from the New York Federal Reserve (where he served as I recall under a Chair from Goldman Sachs) to Treasury in the Obama Administration, but Geithner's Treasury was staffed from Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase and Citibank. The crisis served to concentrate banking assets in the hands of the top five banks, but it seemed also to transfer political power entirely into their hands as well. Simon Johnson called it a coup.
I don't know what considerations guided Obama in choosing the size of the stimulus or its composition (as spending and tax cuts). Larry Summers was identified at the time as a voice of caution, not "gambling", but not much is known about his detailed reasoning in severely trimming Christina Romer's entirely conventional calculations. (One consideration might well have been worldwide resource shortages, which had made themselves felt in 2007-8 as an inflationary spike in commodity prices.) I do not see a case for connecting stimulus size policy to the health care reform. At the time the stimulus was proposed, the Administration had also been considering whether various big banks and other financial institutions should be nationalized, forced to insolvency or otherwise restructured as part of a regulatory reform.
Here's the thing: the globalization and financialization of the economy from roughly 1980 drove both increasingly extreme distribution of income and de-industrialization. Accelerating the financialization of the economy from 1999 on made New York and Washington rich, but the same economic policies and process were devastating the Rust Belt as de-industrialization. They were two aspects of the same complex of economic trends and policies. The rise of China as a manufacturing center was, in critical respects, a financial operation within the context of globalized trade that made investment in new manufacturing plant in China, as part of globalized supply chains and global brand management, (arguably artificially) low-risk and high-profit, while reinvestment in manufacturing in the American mid-west became unattractive, except as a game of extracting tax subsidies or ripping off workers.
It was characteristic of neoliberalism that the policy, policy intention and policy consequences were hidden behind a rhetoric of markets and technological inevitability. Matt Stoller has identified this as the statecraft of neoliberalism: the elimination of political agency and responsibility for economic performance and outcomes. Globalization and financialization were just "forces" that just happened, in a meteorological economics.
It is conceding too many good intentions to the Obama Administration to tie an inadequate stimulus to a Rube Goldberg health care reform as the origin story for the final debacle of Democratic neoliberal politics. There was a delicate balancing act going on, but they were not balancing the recovery of the economy in general so much as they were balancing the recovery from insolvency of a highly inefficient and arguably predatory financial sector, which was also not incidentally financing the institutional core of the Democratic Party and staffing many key positions in the Administration and in the regulatory apparatus.
This was not your grandfather's Democratic Party and it was a Democratic Party that could aid the working class and the Rust Belt only within fairly severe and sometimes sharply conflicting constraints.
No one in the Democratic Party had much institutional incentive to connect the dots, and draw attention to the acute conflicts over the distribution of income and wealth involved in financialization of the economy (including financialization as a driver of health care costs). And, that makes the political problem that much harder, because there are no resources for rhetorical and informational clarity or coherence.
bruce wilder 11.16.16 at 10:33 pm ( 31 )The short version of my thinking on the Obama stimulus is this: Keynesian stimulus spending is a free lunch; it doesn't really matter what you spend money on up to a very generous point, so it seems ready-made for legislative log-rolling. If Obama could not get a very big stimulus indeed thru a Democratic Congress long out of power, Obama wasn't really trying. And, well-chosen spending on pork barrel projects is popular and gets Congressional critters re-elected. So, again, if the stimulus is small and the Democratic Congress doesn't get re-elected, Obama isn't really trying.
Again, it comes down to: by 2008, the Democratic Party is not a fit vehicle for populism, because it has become a neoliberal vehicle for giant banks. Turns out that makes a policy difference.
likbez 11.18.16 at 4:48 pm 121bruce wilder 11.16.16 at 10:07 pm 30
Great comment. Simply great. Hat tip to the author !
"… The New Deal did not seek to overthrow the plutocracy, but it did seek to side-step and disable their dominance. …"
"… It seems to me that while neoliberalism on the right was much the same old same old, the neoliberal turn on the left was marked by a measured abandonment of this struggle over the distribution of income between the classes. In the U.S., the Democrats gradually abandoned their populist commitments. In Europe, the labour and socialist parties gradually abandoned class struggle. …"
"… When Obama came in, in 2008 amid the unfolding GFC, one of the most remarkable features of his economic team was the extent to which it conceded control of policy entirely to the leading money center banks. Geithner and Bernanke continued in power with Geithner moving from the New York Federal Reserve (where he served as I recall under a Chair from Goldman Sachs) to Treasury in the Obama Administration, but Geithner's Treasury was staffed from Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase and Citibank. The crisis served to concentrate banking assets in the hands of the top five banks, but it seemed also to transfer political power entirely into their hands as well. Simon Johnson called it a coup. … "
"… Here's the thing: the globalization and financialization of the economy from roughly 1980 drove both increasingly extreme distribution of income and de-industrialization. …"
"… It was characteristic of neoliberalism that the policy, policy intention and policy consequences were hidden behind a rhetoric of markets and technological inevitability. Matt Stoller has identified this as the statecraft of neoliberalism: the elimination of political agency and responsibility for economic performance and outcomes. Globalization and financialization were just "forces" that just happened, in a meteorological economics. …"
"… This was not your grandfather's Democratic Party and it was a Democratic Party that could aid the working class and the Rust Belt only within fairly severe and sometimes sharply conflicting constraints. …"
"… No one in the Democratic Party had much institutional incentive to connect the dots, and draw attention to the acute conflicts over the distribution of income and wealth involved in financialization of the economy (including financialization as a driver of health care costs). And, that makes the political problem that much harder, because there are no resources for rhetorical and informational clarity or coherence. …"
"… If Obama could not get a very big stimulus indeed thru a Democratic Congress long out of power, Obama wasn't really trying. And, well-chosen spending on pork barrel projects is popular and gets Congressional critters re-elected. So, again, if the stimulus is small and the Democratic Congress doesn't get re-elected, Obama isn't really trying. …"
"… Again, it comes down to: by 2008, the Democratic Party is not a fit vehicle for populism, because it has become a neoliberal vehicle for giant banks. Turns out that makes a policy difference. …"
Nov 16, 2016 | www.unz.comAs the troubled Obama presidency winds down, the inevitable question is why so many people, including a few smart ones were so easily fooled. How did a man with such a fine pedigree-Columbia, Harvard-who sounded so brilliant pursue such political capital wasting and foolish policies as forcing schools to discipline students by racial quotas? Or obsessing over allowing the transgendered to choose any bathroom? And, of the utmost importance, how can we prevent another Obama?
I'll begin simply: Obama is an imposter, a man who has mastered the art of deception as a skilled actor deceives an audience though in the case of Obama, most of the audience refused to accept that this was all play-acting. Even after almost eight years of ineptitude, millions still want to believe that he's the genuine article-an authentically super-bright guy able to fix a flawed America. Far more is involved than awarding blacks the intellectual equivalent of diplomatic immunity.
When Obama first appeared on the political scene I immediately recognized him as an example of the "successful" black academic who rapidly advances up the university ladder despite minimal accomplishment. Tellingly, when I noted the paucity of accomplishment of these black academic over-achievers to trusted professorial colleagues, they agreed with my analysis adding that they themselves had seen several instances of this phenomenon, but admittedly failed to connect the dots.
Here's the academic version of an Obama. You encounter this black student who appears a liberal's affirmative action dream come true -- exceptionally articulate with no trace of a ghetto accent, well-dressed, personable (no angry "tude"), and at least superficially sufficient brain power to succeed even in demanding subjects. Matters begin splendidly, but not for long. Almost invariably, his or her performance on the first test or paper falls far below expectations. A research paper, for example was only "C" work (though you generously awarded it a "B") and to make matters worse, it exhibited a convoluted writing style, a disregard for logic, ineptly constructed references and similar defects. Nevertheless, you accepted the usual litany of student excuses -- his claim of over-commitment, the material was unfamiliar, and this was his first research paper and so on. A reprieve was granted.
But the unease grows stronger with the second exam or paper, often despite your helpful advice on how to do better. Reality grows depressing -- what you see is not what you get and lacks any reasonable feel-good explanation. The outwardly accomplished black student is not an Asian struggling with English or a clear-cut affirmation action admittee in over his head. That this student may have actually studied diligently and followed your advice only exacerbates the discomfort.
To repeat, the way to make sense out this troubling situation is to think of this disappointing black student as a talented actor who has mastered the role of "smart college student." He has the gift of mimicry, conceivably a talent rooted in evolutionary development among a people who often had to survive by their wits (adaptive behavior captured by the phrase "acting white" or "passing"). This gift is hardly limited to blacks. I can recall tales of insecure Eastern European Jewish immigrants pretending to be WASPS.
But what if the observer was unaware of it being only a theatrical performance and took the competence at face value? Disaster. Russell Crowe as the Nobel Prize winning John Nash in A Beautiful Mind might give a stunning performance as a brilliant economist, but he would not last a minute if he tried to pass himself off as the real thing at a Princeton economic department seminar. To be blunt, Barack Obama was less "a president" than a talented actor playing at being presidential.
Those of us who have encountered this deception are usually aware of its tell-tale signs, though, to be fair, it may have been diligently practiced for so long that it has become a "real" element of the perpetrator's core personality. For those unfamiliar with this deception, let me now offer a brief catalogue of these tactics.
Central is the careful management of outward physical appearances. In theatrical terms, these are props and depending on circumstances, this might be a finely tailored suit, wingtip shoes, a crisp white shirt, a smart silk tie and all the rest that announce business-like competence. Future college or foundation president here we come (Obama has clearly mastered this sartorial ploy). But for those seeking an appointment as a professor, this camouflage must be more casual but, whatever the choice, there cannot be any hint of "ghetto" style, i.e., no flashy jewelry, gold chains, purple "pimpish" suits, or anything else that even slightly hints of what blacks might consider authentic black attire.
Mastering "white" language is equally critical and in the academy this includes everything from tossing around trendy terms, for example, "paradigmatic," to displaying what appears to be a mastering of disciplinary jargon. Recall how the Black Panthers seduced gullible whites with just a sprinkling of Marxist terminology. Precisely citing a few obscure court cases or administrative directives can also do the trick. Further add certain verbal styles common among professors or peppering a presentation with correctly pronounced non-English words. I recall a talk by one black professor from the University of Chicago who wowed my colleagues by just using-and correctly so-a few Yiddish expressions.
Ironically, self-defined conservatives are especially vulnerable to these well-crafted performances. No doubt, like all good thinking liberals, they desperately want to believe that blacks are just as talented as whites so an Obama-like figure is merely the first installment of coming racial equality. The arrival of this long-awaited black also provides a great opportunity to demonstrate that being "conservative" does not certify one as a racist. Alas, this can be embarrassing and comical if over-done. I recall one (white) colleague who gave a little speech praising a deeply flawed dissertation written by a black assistant professor up for tenure. He told the assembled committee that her dissertation reminded him of Newton's Principia Mathematica (can't make that stuff up).
Alas, the deception usually unravels when the imposter confronts a complicated unstructured situation lacking a well-defined script, hardly surprising given the IQ test data indicate that blacks usually perform better on items reflecting social norms, less well on abstract, highly "g" loaded items. In academic job presentations, for example, a job candidate's intellectual limits often become apparent during the Q and A when pressed to wrestle with technical or logical abstractions that go beyond the initial well-rehearsed talk. Picture a job candidate who just finished reading a paper being asked whether the argument is falsifiable or how causality might be established? These can be killer questions that require ample quick footed intellectual dexterity and often bring an awkward silence as the candidate struggles to think on his feet (these responses may rightly be judged far more important than what is read from a paper). I recall one genuinely bewildered black job candidate who explained a complicated measurement choice with "my Ph.D. advisor, a past president of the American Political Science Association told me to do it this way."
Obama as President repeatedly exhibits these characteristics. It is thus hardly accidental that he relies extensively on canned Teleprompter speeches. According to one compilation published in January 2013, Obama has used Teleprompters in 699 speeches during his first term in office. There is also his aversion to informal off-the-cuff discussions with the press and open mike who-knows-what-will-happen "Town Hall" meetings. Obama is also the first president I've ever seen who often favors a casual blue jacket monogrammed "President of the United States."
Perhaps the best illustration of these confused, often rambling moments occurs when he offers impromptu commentary on highly charged, fast-breaking race-related incidents such as the Louis Henry Gates dustup in Cambridge , Mass ("the police acted stupidly") and the Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown shootings. You could see his pained look as he struggles with being a "good race man" while simultaneously struggling to sort out murky legal issues. This is not the usual instances of politicians speaking evasively to avoid controversy; he was genuinely befuddled.
Similar signs of confused thinking can also be seen in other spontaneous remarks, the most famous example might be his comment about those Americans clinging to their guns and Bibles. What was he thinking? Did he forget that both gun and Bible ownership are constitutionally protected and the word "cling" in this context suggests mental illness? Woes to some impertinent reporter who challenged the President to clarify his oft-repeated "the wrong side of history" quip or explain the precise meaning of, "That's not who were are"? "Mr. President, can you enlighten us on how you know you are on the Right Side of History"?
I suspect that deep down Obama recognizes that almost everything is an act not unlike Eddy Murphy playing Professor Sherman Klump in The Nutty Professor . It is no wonder, then, that his academic records (particularly his SAT scores) are sealed and, perhaps even more important, many of his fellow college students and colleagues at the University of Chicago where he briefly taught constitutional law cannot recall him. It is hard to imagine Obama relishing the prospect of going head-to-head with his sharp-witted Chicago colleagues.
Further add his lack of a publication in the Harvard Law Review, a perk as the President of the Law Review (not Editor) and the credible evidence that his two autobiographies where ghost written after their initial rejection as unsuitable for publication. All and all, a picture emerges of an individual who knows he must fake it to convince others of his intellectual talents, and like a skilled actor he has spent years studying the role of "President." President Obama deserves an Academy award (which, of course would also be a step toward diversity, to boot) for his efforts.
Carlton Meyer says: • Website
November 16, 2016 at 5:31 am GMT • 300 Words
This is why I often referred to Obama as a "Pentagon spokesman." Did you know his proposed military budgets each year were on average higher than Bush or Reagan? People forget that is first objective as President was to close our torture camp in Cuba. He could have issued an Executive Order and have it closed in one day. DOJ aircraft could fly all the inmates away within two hours before any court could challenge that, if they dared. It remains open.
Yet when Congress refused to act to open borders wider, he issued an Executive Order to grant residency to five million illegals. And under Soros direction, he sent DoJ attack dogs after any state or city that questioned the right of men who want to use a ladies room.
As a mulatto raised by white grandparents in Hawaii, Obama is not a black American, with no cultural ties to black Americans and slavery, yet he later learned to throw out a black accent to fool the fools. As Stephen Colbert once observed, white Americans love Obama because he was raised the right way, by white people. That was intended as humor, but
Obama has leased an ultra-expensive house in an exclusive neighborhood in DC just like the corrupt Bill Clinton prior to his multi-million dollar speaking and influence peddling efforts. Obama will not return to Chicago to help poor blacks, like Jimmy Carter did elsewhere after he left office. Obama doesn't need an Oscar, he got a Nobel Peace Prize for the same act.
November 16, 2016 at 5:34 am GMT • 100 Words
What to make of the Michael Eric Dysons and the Cornell Wests of the world ??
How do they rise up the ranks of academia , become darlings of talk shows and news panels , all the while dressed and speaking ghetto with zero talent or interest in appearing white . And zero academic competency ??
6.CCZ, November 16, 2016 at 6:08 am GMT
Our first affirmative action President? I have yet to hear that exact description, even in a nation with 60 million deplorable "racist" voters.
8.Tom Welsh, November 16, 2016 at 7:00 am GMT • 100 Words
Congratulations on noticing what it takes to be a successful politician in ANY "Western" democracy. It doesn't matter if you are black, white, aquamarine or candy-striped, or whether you are a college professor, an "economist", or a "businessman". It's all bluff and acting.
Why does anyone still find this surprising?
11.Alfa158, November 16, 2016 at 7:56 am GMT • 100 Words
The single most critical element of a successful con is not the hucksters appearance, or mannerisms, or even the spiel, it is simply making the con something that the sucker wants to believe. White people were desperate for a Magic Negro and they got one. Black people ended up suffering from deteriorating economics and exploding intramural murder rates.
12.whorefinder, November 16, 2016 at 8:02 am GMT • 300 Words
Strikes a chord with me, and with Clint Eastwood (recall the 2012 RNC, where Eastwood mocked Obama as an "empty chair").
I recognized Obama's type not from academia, but from corporate America. He was the token black higher up. He's smart enough not to obviously do something requiring termination (get drunk and harass a colleague at an office party, shred important document, etc.), and his mistakes can be blamed on team failures, so he gets "black guy's tenure"-a middle or upper management position after only a few years.
He then makes sure he shows up every weekday at 9am, but he's out the door at 5pm-and no weekends for him. He's there for "diversity" drives and is prominently featured on the company brochures, and might even be given an award or honorary title every few years to cover him, but he never brings in clients or moves business positively in anyway. But he's quick to take the boss up on the golfing trips. In short, he's realized he's there to be the black corporate shield, and that's all he does. He's a lazy token and fine with being lazy.
It's why Obama had little problem letting Pelosi/Reid/Bill Clinton do all the heavy lifting on Obamacare–not only was Obama out of his depth, he was just plain ol' fine with being out of his depth, because someone else would do it for him. So he went golfing instead.
This is also why that White House press conference where Bill Clinton took over for him halfway speaks volumes. Obama literally had no problem simply walking away from his presidential duties to go party-because someone else would do it for him, as they always had.
It's also why he seems so annoyed when asked about the race rioting going on as a result of his administration's actions. Hey, why do you think I gotta do anything? I just show up and people tell me I did a great job!
13.Ramona, November 16, 2016 at 8:04 am GMT
It's been said for years that Obama amounts to no more than a dignified talk show host. The observation has merit. Oscar-wise, though, only for ironic value.
15.Realist, November 16, 2016 at 9:50 am GMT • 100 Words
"I think Obama is pretty smart if not genius. His mother was no dummy, and his father seems to have been pretty bright too, and there are smart blacks."
Ann Dunham had a PhD in anthropology from a run of the mill university where she literally studied women textile weaving in third world countries. Pure genius .right.
16.Fran Macadam, November 16, 2016 at 9:54 am GMT • 100 Words
This critique applies to almost every Presidential candidate, regardless of ethnicity. So few of them have been other than those playing a role assigned by their donors. The most successful recent President was a former professional actor and thus well suited for the position. The latest President-elect is also a savvy media figure, and yet mocked for his obvious lack of intellectual heft. But in his case, he's not acting, it's reality TV.
17.Jim Christian says:
November 16, 2016 at 9:59 am GMT • 200 Words
PS. Maybe some Jews around Trump are beginning to feel that China is the real danger to US power in the long run. So, what US should really do is patch things up with Russia for the time being, drive a wedge between China and Russia, and use Russia against China and then go after Russia.
Really! Go after Russia? And how would you do that and why? What would "going after Russia" look like? What about the "horrific Rape of Russia" you spoke of? China and Russia have business to conduct, they're quite through with us, our dollar and our Fed. We'll be lucky if they allow us a piece of the action. Instead of Russia>China>Russia machinations, we might want to figure out strategies for doing some other business than patronizing our arms manufacturers. Hey, cap Jewish influence in the courts and business if you wish, but keeping the U.S. in an endless state of war, economic and otherwise is zero sum and worse for the little people.
20.timalex, November 16, 2016 at 11:58 am GMT
Americans voted for and elected Obama because it made them feel virtuous in their mind and in the eyes of the world. Obama has always been a psychopath. Psychopaths are good at lying and hiding things,even when Presidents.
21.The Alarmist , November 16, 2016 at 12:03 pm GMT
So, you're saying he was an affirmative action hire.
22.Anon, November 16, 2016 at 12:28 pm GMT
Yeah and every white person in a position of power and privilege is "authentically intelligent". America is a society run by and for phonies.
23.War for Blair Mountain, November 16, 2016 at 12:32 pm GMT • 100 Words
Barack Obama is a creation of the Cold War. His father was imported into the US through an anti-commie Cold War foreign student program for young Africans. Barack Obama's nonwhite Democratic Party Voting Bloc would not exist if the 1965 Immigration Reform Act had not been passed. The 1965 Immigration Reform Act was another creation of the anti-commie Cold War Crusade.
The anti-commie Cold War Crusade has been a Death sentence for The Historic Native Born White American Majority.
It is now time to rethink the Cold War .very long overdue..
24.AndrewR, November 16, 2016 at 12:55 pm GMT • 100 Words
I've called him that for years. And Dubya was possibly our first "legacy" president: chosen entirely based on whom he's related to not on any individual qualities that would suit him for such a high office. Had Dubya been raised by regular people, he would have probably ended up as a hardware store manager.
25.Rehmat, November 16, 2016 at 1:36 pm GMT • 100 Words
I think after wining Nobel Peace Award without achieving peace anywhere in the world – Obama deserve Oscar more than Nobel Prize for equating Holocaust as a religion with Christianity and Islam in his speech at the UNGA in September 2012.
Oscar has a long tradition to award top slot for every Holocaust movie produced so far.
"There's no business like Shoah business," says YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, established by Max Weinreich in Lithuania in 1925.
More than 70 movies and documentary on Jewish Holocaust have been produced so far to keep Whiteman's guild alive. Holocaust Industry's main purpose is to suck trillions of dollars and moral support for the Zionist entity. Since 1959 movie, The Diary of Anne Frank, 22 Holocaust movies have won at least one Oscar ..
27.jacques sheete says: November 16, 2016 at 2:20 pm GMT • 200 Words
Amen to all. The whole deal is a fraud. All successful politicians are imposters, people who've mastered the art of deception. I'd go even further and say that the majority of "authority figures" are probably parasites and frauds to one degree or another.
I enjoy democracy immensely. It is incomparably idiotic, and hence incomparably amusing. Does it exalt dunderheads, cowards, trimmers, frauds, cads? Then the pain of seeing them go up is balanced and obliterated by the joy of seeing them come down. Is it inordinately wasteful, extravagant, dishonest? Then so is every other form of government: all alike are enemies to laborious and virtuous men. Is rascality at the very heart of it? Well, we have borne that rascality since 1776, and continue to survive. In the long run, it may turn out that rascality is necessary to human government, and even to civilization itself – that civilization, at bottom, is nothing but a colossal swindle.
- H. L. Mencken, Last Words (1926)
28.anonymous, November 16, 2016 at 2:34 pm GMT • 200 Words
The bar was set ridiculously low by his predecessor the village idiot Bush who could barely put together a coherent sentence. After eight years of disaster people were hoping for something different. Having a deranged person like McCain as his opposition certainly helped. What choice did the American people have?
He received a Nobel Peace prize for absolutely nothing although I admit his reluctance to barge into Syria was quite welcome. How many wars would we be in had the war-crazed McCain gotten into office?
Overall, the current president has been a deception, a trivial self-absorbed person whose main concern has been himself turned outward onto issues of race and sexual orientation.
American politics at this level is fake. Everything is orchestrated, attire is handpicked, speeches are written by professionals and read off the teleprompter, questions from the public are actually from plants and rehearsed prior, armies of PR people are at work everywhere, journalists are just flunky propagandists, expressions of emotion are calculated, the mass media is the property of the billionaire and corporate class and reflects their interests, and so on down the line. The masses of Americans are just there to be managed and milked. Look back at the history of the US: When haven't they been lying to us?
29.nsa, November 16, 2016 at 2:44 pm GMT • 100 Words
President is a very easy job. Almost anyone could fake it even actors, peanut farmers, mulatto community organizers, illegitimate offspring of trailer park whores, haberdashers, developers, soldiers, irish playboys, bicycle riding dry drunks, low rent CA shysters, daft professors.
Play lots of golf. Hot willing young pussy available for the asking. Anyone call you a name, have them audited. Invite pals onto the gravy train. Everyone kissing your ass and begging for favors. Media nitwits hanging on every word. Afterwards, get filthy rich making speeches and appearances. Tough job .
30.Anonymous, November 16, 2016 at 3:03 pm GMT • 100 Words
Manchurian Candidate, or Kenyan Candidate? Whatever he may be called, our current White House resident is a colossal joke perpetrated on the world. Whoever covered all his tracks did a masterful task. He will be the subject of future dissertations about the failure of the American political process and the influence of media and third parties like Soros.
32.Lorax, November 16, 2016 at 3:17 pm GMT
Obama's grandfather, Stanley Armour Dunham, was a "furniture salesman," for which role he deserved an Oscar as well. It takes real acting ability to pull off a lifetime career in Intelligence Service: http://www.veteranstoday.com/2010/08/07/obama's-cia-pedigree/
34.JoeFour, November 16, 2016 at 3:56 pm GMT
"Had Dubya been raised by regular people, he would have probably ended up as a hardware store manager."
AndrewR, I know you didn't mean it, but you have just insulted all of the thousands of hardware store managers in this country.
Nov 16, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
mk November 16, 2016 at 7:55 amEureka Springs November 16, 2016 at 8:21 am
Where the Democrats went wrong CNBC. Obama: "[O]ne of the issues that Democrats have to be clear on is that given population distribution across the country, we have to compete everywhere, we have to show up everywhere." Throwing Clinton under the bus…
I yelled at the radio after hearing this, because he means just showing up, telling people what they want to hear, then doing whatever the hell you want after getting elected. Not one word about actually meeting peoples needs. EFF OBAMA and the DEMOCRATIC PARTY!!
If you didn't read this (linked yesterday), you should consider both reading and sharing far and wide. The entire system is designed to be anti-representative.
Don't just get/stay mad, quit expecting a bunch of gangsters to function democratically. Get out of their box.
Nov 15, 2016 | www.unz.comMichele Paccione / Shutterstock.com Universally, Trump was depicted as an anti-establishment candidate. Washington and Wall Street hated him, and the media were deployed to vilify him endlessly. If they could not discredit Trump enough, surely they would steal the election from him. Some even suggested Trump would be assassinated.
Acting the part, Trump charged repeatedly that the election was rigged, and he was right, of course. During the primaries, Hillary Clinton received debate questions in advance from CNN. More seriously, 30 states used voting machines that could easily be hacked.
A leaked tape of Trump making obscene comments about groping women became further proof that the establishment was out to get him. In spite of all this, Trump managed to win by a landslide, so what happened?
To steal an American election, one only needs to tamper with votes in two or three critical states, and since Hillary didn't win, we must conclude that she was never the establishment's chosen puppet. As Trump claimed, the fix was in, all right, except that it was rigged in his favor, as born out by the fact.
While everybody else yelped that Trump would never be allowed to win, I begged to differ. After the Orlando false flag shooting on June 12th, 2016, I wrote:
In 2008, Obama was touted as a political outsider who will hose away all of the rot and bloody criminality of the Bush years. He turned out to be a deft move by our ruling class. Though fools still refuse to see it, Obama is a perfect servant of our military banking complex. Now, Trump is being trumpeted as another political outsider.
A Trump presidency will temporarily appease restless, lower class whites, while serving as a magnet for liberal anger. This will buy our ruling class time as they continue to wage war abroad while impoverishing Americans back home. Like Obama, Trump won't fulfill any of his election promises, and this, too, will be blamed on bipartisan politics.
On September 24th, I doubled down:
Mind-fucked, most Americans can't even see that an American president's only task is to disguise the deep state's intentions. Chosen by the deep state to explain away its crimes, our president's pronouncements are nearly always contradicted by the deep state's actions. While the president talks of peace, democracy, racial harmony, prosperity for Main Street and going after banksters, etc., the deep state wages endless war, stages meaningless elections, stokes racial hatred, bankrupts nearly all Americans and enables massive Wall Street crimes, etc.
Only the infantile will imagine the president as any kind of savior or, even more hilariously, anti-establishment. Since the deep state won't even tolerate a renegade reporter at, say, the San Jose Mercury News, how can you expect a deep state's enemy to land in the White House?! It cannot happen.
A presidential candidate will promise to fix all that's wrong with our government, and this stance, this appearance, is actually very useful for the deep state, for it gives Americans hope. Promising everything, Obama delivered nothing. So who do you think is being primed by the deep state to be our next false savior?
Who benefits from false flag terrorist attacks blamed on Muslims? Who gains when blacks riot? Why is the Democratic Party propping up a deeply-despised and terminally ill war criminal? More personable Bernie Sanders was nixed by the deep state since it had another jester in mind.
The first presidential debate is Monday. Under stress, Hillary's eyes will dart in separate directions. Coughing nonstop for 90 minutes, her highness will hack up a gazillion unsecured emails. Her head will jerk spasmodically, plop onto the floor and, though decapitated, continue to gush platitudes and lies. "A Very Impressive Performance," CNBC and CNN will announce. Come November, though, Trump will be installed because his constituency needs to be temporarily pacified. The deep state knows that white people are pissed.
The media were out to get Trump, pundits from across the political spectrum kept repeating, but the truth is that the media made Trump. Long before the election, Trump became a household name, thanks to the media.
Your average American can't name any other real estate developer, casino owner or even his own senators, but he has known Trump since forever. For more than a decade, Trump was a reality TV star, with two of his children also featured regularly on The Apprentice. Trump's "You're fired" and his hair became iconic. Trump appeared on talk shows, had cameo roles in movies and owned the Miss Universe pageant. In 2011, Obama joked that Trump as president would deck out the White House in garish fashion, with his own name huge on the façade. The suave, slick prez roasted Trump again in 2016. Trump has constantly been in the limelight.
It's true that during the presidential campaign, Trump received mostly negative press, but this only ramped up support among his core constituency. Joe Sixpacks had long seen the media as not just against everything they cherished, but against them as people, so the more the media attacked Trump, the more popular he became among the white working class.
Like politicians, casinos specialize in empty promises. Trump, then, is a master hustler, just like Obama, and with help from the media, this New York billionaire became a darling of the flyover states. Before his sudden transformation, Trump was certainly an insider. He donated $100,000 to the Clinton Foundation, and Bill and Hillary attended his third wedding. Golf buddies, The Donald and Bill were also friends with one Jeffrey Epstein, owner of the infamous Lolita Express and a sex orgy, sex slave island in the Caribbean.
In 2002, New York Magazine published "Jeffrey Epstein: International Money of Mystery." This asskissing piece begins, "He comes with cash to burn, a fleet of airplanes, and a keen eye for the ladies-to say nothing of a relentless brain that challenges Nobel Prize-winning scientists across the country-and for financial markets around the world."
Trump is quoted, "I've known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy. He's a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it-Jeffrey enjoys his social life."
Bill Clinton shouts out, "Jeffrey is both a highly successful financier and a committed philanthropist with a keen sense of global markets and an in-depth knowledge of twenty-first-century science. I especially appreciated his insights and generosity during the recent trip to Africa to work on democratization, empowering the poor, citizen service, and combating HIV/AIDS."
Epstein gushes back, "If you were a boxer at the downtown gymnasium at 14th Street and Mike Tyson walked in, your face would have the same look as these foreign leaders had when Clinton entered the room. He is the world's greatest politician."
Even during a very nasty election campaign, Trump stayed clear of Clinton's association with Epstein because he himself had been chummy with the convicted pervert. Trump also never brought up the Clintons' drug running in Mena or the many mysterious deaths of those whose existence inconvenienced their hold on power.
With eight years in the White House, plus stints as a senator then secretary of state, Clinton is considered the ultimate insider. Though a novice politician, Trump is also an insider, and it's a grand joke of the establishment that they've managed to convince Joe Sixpacks everywhere that Trump will save them.
Knowing how angry the working class has become, the deep state could not install Hillary, for that would have been a tiresome rehash of another Clinton presidency. With NAFTA, Bill launched the job offshoring that has wrecked this country, and those most affected by it, working class whites, know damn well who's responsible. The Clinton brand has become anathema to middle America.
While Clinton says America is already great, Trump promises to make America great again, but the decline of the US will only accelerate. Our manufacturing base is handicapped because American workers will not put up with Chinese wages, insanely long hours or living in cramped factory dormitories. In a global economy, those who can suck it up best get the jobs.
On the foreign front, America's belligerence will not ease up under a Trump presidency, for without a hyper kinetic military to browbeat and bomb, the world will stop lending us money. The US doesn't just wage wars to fatten the military banking complex, but to prop up the US Dollar and prevent our economy from collapsing. The empire yields tangible benefits for even the lowliest Americans.
With his livelihood vaporized, the poor man does not care for LGBT rights, the glass ceiling or climate change. Supplementing his wretched income with frequent treks to the church pantry, if not blood bank, he needs immediate relief. It's a shame he's staking his hopes on an imposter.
The deep state ushered in Trump because he's clearly their most useful decoy. As the country hopes in vain, the crooked men behind the curtain will go on with business as usual. Trump is simply an Obama for a different demographic. Nothing will change for the better.
Linh Dinh is the author of two books of stories, five of poems, and a novel, Love Like Hate . He's tracking our deteriorating socialscape through his frequently updated photo blog, Postcards from the End of America .
Nov 14, 2016 | www.zerohedge.comby Submitted by Stefanie MacWilliams via PlanetFreeWill.com,
In his first post-election interview , Bernie Sanders has declared to should-be-disgraced Wolf Blitzer that Trump seeking to indict Hillary Clinton for her crimes would be "an outrage beyond belief".
When asked if President Obama should pardon Hillary Clinton, Sanders seems almost confused as to why a pardon would even be needed.
Blitzer notes that Ford pardoned Nixon before he could be charged, to which Bernie seemed again incredulous as to the comparison was even being made.
He goes on to state:
That a winning candidate would try to imprison the losing candidate – that's what dictatorships are about, that's what authoritarian countries are about. You do not imprison somebody you ran against because you have differences of opinion. The vast majority of the American people would find it unacceptable to even think about those things.
Either Senator Sanders is a drooling idiot, or he is being willfully obtuse.
No one wants to imprison Hillary Clinton because of her opinion.
They want to imprison Hillary Clinton because she has committed criminal actions that any other person lacking millions of dollars and hundreds of upper-echelon contacts would be imprisoned for.
Apparently, according to progressive hero Bernie Sanders, holding the elites to the same level of justice as the peons is undemocratic, authoritarian, and perhaps even dictatorial!
Enough with the damn emails?
Enough with any hope that the Democrats have retained a minute shred of credibility.
You can watch the full interview below:
Nov 11, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.comPaid Minion November 10, 2016 at 3:21 pm
The Democrats did a fine job of stomping out any enthusiasm by sabotaging Bernie Sanders.
The DNC became a wholly owned subsidiary of Clinton Family Inc. starting in about 2008. Control the rulemakers/money flow, and you can control who the nominee is. At least that is the conventional thinking, and Clinton Inc. is nothing if not conventional.
To buy the DNC, she chose to go to the Wall Street banksters, and others. Essentially an "up front" bribe. No smoking gun needed to be created. They knew what they were paying for, without it being said.
(I'm curious to see how many "donations" the Clinton Foundation receives, now that she's been pushed out on an ice floe.)
They never anticipated a challenger who didn't need the DNC, or it's cash.
They ignored the stats showing how many people wouldn't vote for Hillary Clinton under any circumstance. Just call them racist/sexist/dumbazz hicks, and call them "deplorables". Ask Mitt Romney how that worked out for him.
She lost an election to DONALD TRUMP. Even without the airwaves filled with Republican attack ads. (Lack of RNC enthusiasm for Trump? Or a recognition that Hillary's negatives couldn't be covered in a 30 second commercial?).
If it wasn't for the Clinton's collective ego, and lust for power/money (after all, we all now that in the current state of affairs, the moneyed class drives policy), we'd all (well, all of us who don't live in the rarefied air of the 1%ers/Banksters) be celebrating the upcoming inauguration of President Sanders.
According to a new Wikileaks email, Bernie Sanders was just a Manchurian candidate and a Clinton puppet all along. We finally have confirmation of what we have suspected since Bernie said "people are sick of hearing about your damn emails" all the way back in 2015 during one debate. That was a big give-away and a huge red flag which many have raised back then but now we finally have irrefutable proof that Bernie Sanders was just a SCAM candidate and a con artist.
Nov 07, 2016 | twitter.com
WikiLeaks Verified account
Sanders had non-aggression pact with Clinton who had "leverage" to enforce it Robby Mook ("re47") email reveals https://wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/47397#efmAAAAB2 …
Robert. @robbiemakestees · Nov 4
@wikileaks the plot thickens. He basically handed her this nomination. What did he honestly think was gonna happen?
Nov 06, 2016 | failedevolution.blogspot.grWikiLeaks series on deals involving Hillary Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta. Mr Podesta is a long-term associate of the Clintons and was President Bill Clinton's Chief of Staff from 1998 until 2001. Mr Podesta also owns the Podesta Group with his brother Tony, a major lobbying firm and is the Chair of the Center for American Progress (CAP), a Washington DC-based think tank.
An email from Gary Hirshberg, chairman and former president and CEO of Stonyfield Farm , to John Podesta on March 13, 2016, confirms why the lobbyists strongly opposed Bernie Sanders.
Hirshberg writes to a familiar person, as he was mentioned at the time as a possible 2008 Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate, requesting Obama should not pass the Roberts bill because " if President Obama signs this terrible legislation that blatantly validates Bernie's entire campaign message about Wall Street running our government, this will give Bernie a huge boost and 10,000 -20,000 outraged citizens (who WILL turn up because they will be so angry at the President for preemption vt) will be marching on the Mall with Bernie as their keynote speaker. "
But Hirshberg does not stop here. In order to persuade Podesta about the seriousness of the matter, he claims that " It will be terrible to hand Sanders this advantage at such a fragile time when we really need to save our $$$ for the Trump fight. "
Oct 21, 2016 | economistsview.typepad.compoint said...
"...Mrs. Clinton won the Democratic nomination fairly easily..."
which may be the story one wishes for. But if there were a spread to compare her win against, it was Bernie who massively beat the spread. I'll leave it as an exercise to others to determine if her unfair advantages were as large as the winning margin.
Peter K. -> kthomas... , October 21, 2016 at 11:46 AM"Why do people like you pretend to love Sen Sanders so much!?"
Why do you say he is pretending? What did he write to make you think that?
Are you just a dishonest troll centrist totebagger like PGL.
Peter K. -> to pgl...kthomas -> anne... , October 21, 2016 at 10:59 AM
What does that have to do with anything?
He makes a good point and you dismiss it. You bashed Bernie Sanders and "Bernie Bros" during the primary. Then you lie about it. That's why you're the worst. Dishonest as hell. Are most New Yorkers as dishonest as you, Trump, Guiliani, Christie, etc?No. I am a fan of Sen Sanders, and not even he would believe your nonsense. History will not remember it that way. What it will remember is how Putin Comrade meddled. And there is a price for that.Peter K. -> kthomas... , October 21, 2016 at 11:48 AM
Sen Sanders wanted one, stated thing: to push the narrative to the left. He marginally accomplished this. What he did succeed in was providing an opportunity for false-lefties like you and Mr Putin who seem to think that America is the root of all evil.
Remember one thing anne, America is not a country. It is an idea. You cannot arrest it, murder it, or pretend it isn't there. We as a people are not perfect. But Mr Putin is stabbing directly at our democracy, not Hillary Clinton and not Paul Krugman. Time to be a little more objective, of which you are even more capable of than me.I agree with Anne and completely disagree with those like you have drunk the Kool Aid. You're not objective at all.anne -> kthomas... , October 21, 2016 at 12:25 PMSen Sanders wanted one stated thing: to push the narrative to the left. He marginally accomplished this. What he did succeed in was providing an opportunity for false-lefties like --- and -- ----- who seem to think that America is the root of all evil....Julio -> kthomas... , -1
[ Better to assume such an awful comment was never written, but the McCarthy-like tone to a particular campaign has been disturbing and could prove lasting. ]"America is not a country. It is an idea. You cannot ...murder it..."likbez -> Julio ... , October 21, 2016 at 05:24 PM
[You're trying, with your McCarthyist comments.]Julio,cal -> anne... , October 21, 2016 at 11:28 AM
It is not exactly McCarthyism as stated (although kthomas with his previous Putin comments looks like a modern day McCarthyist). I think this is a pretty clear formulation of the credo of American Exceptionalism -- a flavor of nationalism adapted to the realities of the new continent.BS, a remarkable.Peter K. -> cal... , -1
No, I am sure he will be remembered more than that.
Bernard Sanders, last romantic politician to run his campaign on an average of $37 from 3,284,421 donations (or whatever Obama said at The Dinner). Remarkable but ineffectual. A good orator in empty houses means he was practicing, not performing.
Why does Obama succeed and Sanders fail? Axelrod and co.
He was written off by the like of Krugman, PGL, you, KThomas etc.pgl : , October 21, 2016 at 10:05 AM
He won what 13 million votes. Young people overwhelmingly voted for Sanders. He won New Hampshire, Colorado, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Washington, Oregon, etc. etc. etc. And now the "unromantic" complacent people have to lie about the campaign.
Josh Barro explains why he used to be a Republican but is now a Democrat:pgl -> pgl... , October 21, 2016 at 10:12 AM
He seems to have had it with Paul Ryan and Rubio.I was enjoying this until:likbez -> pgl...
"I have voted Republican, for example, in each of the past three New York City mayoral races."
Joe Llota was racist Rudy Guiliani's minnie me. How on earth did Josh think he should be mayor of my city.And Robert Kagan explained it earlier much better ... I wonder if Victoria Nuland and Dick Cheney vote for Hillary too.
Oct 14, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com
SharkBit Oct 14, 2016 9:20 AM To all Sanders supporters. Your hero sold out to the devil. Your party is corrupt to the core. If you care about America, voting Trump is the only way out of this Shit Show. Otherwise, we all die as that corrupt bitch of your party is crazy enough to take the USA into WWIII. You may not like Trump but he is nothing compared to the Clinton Crime Family and all its globalist tenacles.
Oct 14, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com
Crash Overide Paul Kersey Oct 14, 2016 10:16 AM "Is he remaining quiet because they promised him something?"
I mean I don't know, you tell me...
Bernie Sanders buys his 3rd home worth $600,000 shortly after he left the presidential race...
zuuma Crash Overide Oct 14, 2016 11:04 AM Nicely done for a man who never had a paying job until age 40.
And then only government jobs. Bastiat Crash Overide Oct 14, 2016 11:11 AM "Cha-ching!"
"Money, it's a hit
Don't give me none of that do-goody good bullshit"
Pink Floyd: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JkhX5W7JoWI
Oldwood Crash Overide Oct 14, 2016 11:41 AM bought and paid for
Oct 13, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
Neoliberal press serves its neoliberal paymasters. As simple of that. There is no even hint of Us press being press. In certain aspects US jounalists are more "solgers of the Party" then their colleagues in the Brezhnev time Pravda and Izvesia.
From [Essay] Swat Team, by Thomas Frank Harper's Magazine - Part 3 By Thomas FrankFor once, a politician like Sanders seemed to have a chance with the public. He won a stunning victory over Hillary Clinton in the New Hampshire primary, and despite his advanced age and avuncular finger-wagging, he was wildly popular among young voters. Eventually he was flattened by the Clinton juggernaut, of course, but Sanders managed to stay competitive almost all the way to the California primary in June.
His chances with the prestige press were considerably more limited. Before we go into details here, let me confess: I was a Sanders voter, and even interviewed him back in 2014, so perhaps I am naturally inclined to find fault in others' reporting on his candidacy. Perhaps it was the very particular media diet I was on in early 2016, which consisted of daily megadoses of the New York Times and the Washington Post and almost nothing else. Even so, I have never before seen the press take sides like they did this year, openly and even gleefully bad-mouthing candidates who did not meet with their approval.
This shocked me when I first noticed it. It felt like the news stories went out of their way to mock Sanders or to twist his words, while the op-ed pages, which of course don't pretend to be balanced, seemed to be of one voice in denouncing my candidate. A New York Times article greeted the Sanders campaign in December by announcing that the public had moved away from his signature issue of the crumbling middle class. "Americans are more anxious about terrorism than income inequality," the paper declared-nice try, liberal, and thanks for playing. In March, the Times was caught making a number of post-publication tweaks to a news story about the senator, changing what had been a sunny tale of his legislative victories into a darker account of his outrageous proposals. When Sanders was finally defeated in June, the same paper waved him goodbye with a bedtime-for-Grandpa headline, hillary clinton made history, but bernie sanders stubbornly ignored it.
I propose that we look into this matter methodically, and that we do so by examining Sanders-related opinion columns in a single publication: the Washington Post, the conscience of the nation's political class and one of America's few remaining first-rate news organizations. I admire the Post 's investigative and beat reporting. What I will focus on here, however, are pieces published between January and May 2016 on the paper's editorial and op-ed pages, as well as on its many blogs. Now, editorials and blog posts are obviously not the same thing as news stories: punditry is my subject here, and its practitioners have never aimed to be nonpartisan. They do not, therefore, show media bias in the traditional sense. But maybe the traditional definition needs to be updated. We live in an era of reflexive opinionating and quasi opinionating, and we derive much of our information about the world from websites that have themselves blurred the distinction between reporting and commentary, or obliterated it completely. For many of us, this ungainly hybrid is the news. What matters, in any case, is that all the pieces I review here, whether they appeared in pixels or in print, bear the imprimatur of the Washington Post, the publication that defines the limits of the permissible in the capital city.
... ... ...On January 27, with the Iowa caucuses just days away, Dana Milbank nailed it with a headline: nominating sanders would be insane . After promising that he adored the Vermont senator, he cautioned his readers that "socialists don't win national elections in the United States." The next day, the paper's editorial board chimed in with a campaign full of fiction , in which they branded Sanders as a kind of flimflam artist: "Mr. Sanders is not a brave truth-teller. He is a politician selling his own brand of fiction to a slice of the country that eagerly wants to buy it."
Stung by the Post 's trolling, Bernie Sanders fired back-which in turn allowed no fewer than three of the paper's writers to report on the conflict between the candidate and their employer as a bona fide news item. Sensing weakness, the editorial board came back the next morning with yet another kidney punch, this one headlined the real problem with mr. sanders . By now, you can guess what that problem was: his ideas weren't practical, and besides, he still had "no plausible plan for plugging looming deficits as the population ages."
... ... ...After the previous week's lesson about Glass – Steagall, the editorial board now instructed politicians to stop reviling tarp -i.e., the Wall Street bailouts with which the Bush and Obama Administrations tried to halt the financial crisis. The bailouts had been controversial, the paper acknowledged, but they were also bipartisan, and opposing or questioning them in the Sanders manner was hereby declared anathema. After all, the editorial board intoned:
Contrary to much rhetoric, Wall Street banks and bankers still took losses and suffered upheaval, despite the bailout-but TARP helped limit the collateral damage that Main Street suffered from all of that. If not for the ingenuity of the executive branch officials who designed and carried out the program, and the responsibility of the legislators who approved it, the United States would be in much worse shape economically.
As a brief history of the financial crisis and the bailout, this is absurd. It is true that bailing out Wall Street was probably better than doing absolutely nothing, but saying this ignores the many other options that were available to public officials had they shown any real ingenuity in holding institutions accountable. All the Wall Street banks that existed at the time of TARP are flourishing to this day, since the government moved heaven and earth to spare them the consequences of the toxic securities they had issued and the lousy mortgage bets they made. The big banks were "made whole," as the saying goes. Main Street banks, meanwhile, died off by the hundreds in 2009 and 2010. And average home owners, of course, got no comparable bailout. Instead, Main Street America saw trillions in household wealth disappear; it entered into a prolonged recession, with towering unemployment, increasing inequality, and other effects that linger to this day. There has never been a TARP for the rest of us.
... ... ...
Charles Krauthammer went into action on January 29, too, cautioning the Democrats that they "would be risking a November electoral disaster of historic dimensions" should they nominate Sanders-cynical advice that seems even more poisonous today, as scandal after scandal engulfs the Democratic candidate that so many Post pundits favored.
... ... ...
The Iowa caucuses came the next day, and Stephen Stromberg was at the keyboard to identify the "three delusions" that supposedly animated the campaigns of Sanders and the Republican Ted Cruz alike. Namely: they had abandoned the "center," they believed that things were bad in the United States, and they perceived an epidemic of corruption-in Sanders's case, corruption via billionaires and campaign contributions. Delusions all.
... ... ...
On and on it went, for month after month, a steady drumbeat of denunciation. The paper hit every possible anti-Sanders note, from the driest kind of math-based policy reproach to the lowest sort of nerd-shaming-from his inexcusable failure to embrace taxes on soda pop to his awkward gesticulating during a debate with Hillary Clinton ("an unrelenting hand jive," wrote Post dance critic Sarah L. Kaufman, "that was missing only an upright bass and a plunky piano").
The paper's piling-up of the senator's faults grew increasingly long and complicated. Soon after Sanders won the New Hampshire primary, the editorial board denounced him and Trump both as "unacceptable leaders" who proposed "simple-sounding" solutions. Sanders used the plutocracy as a "convenient scapegoat." He was hostile to nuclear power. He didn't have a specific recipe for breaking up the big banks. He attacked trade deals with "bogus numbers that defy the overwhelming consensus among economists." This last charge was a particular favorite of Post pundits: David Ignatius and Charles Lane both scolded the candidate for putting prosperity at risk by threatening our trade deals. Meanwhile, Charles Krauthammer grew so despondent over the meager 2016 options that he actually pined for the lost days of the Bill Clinton presidency, when America was tough on crime, when welfare was being reformed, and when free trade was accorded its proper respect.
... ... ...
The danger of Trump became an overwhelming fear as primary season drew to a close, and it redoubled the resentment toward Sanders. By complaining about mistreatment from the Democratic apparatus, the senator was supposedly weakening the party before its coming showdown with the billionaire blowhard. This matter, like so many others, found columnists and bloggers and op-ed panjandrums in solemn agreement. Even Eugene Robinson, who had stayed fairly neutral through most of the primary season, piled on in a May 20 piece, blaming Sanders and his noisy horde for "deliberately stoking anger and a sense of grievance-less against Clinton than the party itself," actions that "could put Trump in the White House." By then, the paper had buttressed its usual cast of pundits with heavy hitters from outside its own peculiar ecosystem. In something of a journalistic coup, the Post opened its blog pages in April to Jeffrey R. Immelt, the CEO of General Electric, so that he, too, could join in the chorus of denunciation aimed at the senator from Vermont. Comfort the comfortable, I suppose-and while you're at it, be sure to afflict the afflicted.
... ... ...It should be noted that there were some important exceptions to what I have described. The paper's blogs, for instance, published regular pieces by Sanders sympathizers like Katrina vanden Heuvel and the cartoonist Tom Toles. (The blogs also featured the efforts of a few really persistent Clinton haters.) The Sunday Outlook section once featured a pro-Sanders essay by none other than Ralph Nader, a kind of demon figure and clay pigeon for many of the paper's commentators. But readers of the editorial pages had to wait until May 26 to see a really full-throated essay supporting Sanders's legislative proposals. Penned by Jeffrey Sachs, the eminent economist and professor at Columbia University, it insisted that virtually all the previous debate on the subject had been irrelevant, because standard economic models did not take into account the sort of large-scale reforms that Sanders was advocating:
It's been decades since the United States had a progressive economic strategy, and mainstream economists have forgotten what one can deliver. In fact, Sanders's recipes are supported by overwhelming evidence-notably from countries that already follow the policies he advocates. On health care, growth and income inequality, Sanders wins the policy debate hands down.
It was a striking departure from what nearly every opinionator had been saying for the preceding six months. Too bad it came just eleven days before the Post, following the lead of the Associated Press, declared Hillary Clinton to be the preemptive winner of the Democratic nomination.
What can we learn from reviewing one newspaper's lopsided editorial treatment of a left-wing presidential candidate?
For one thing, we learn that the Washington Post, that gallant defender of a free press, that bold bringer-down of presidents, has a real problem with some types of political advocacy. Certain ideas, when voiced by certain people, are not merely debatable or incorrect or misguided, in the paper's view: they are inadmissible. The ideas themselves might seem healthy, they might have a long and distinguished history, they might be commonplace in other lands. Nevertheless, when voiced by the people in question, they become damaging.
... ... ...
Clinging to this so-called pragmatism is also professionally self-serving. If "realism" is recognized as the ultimate trump card in American politics, it automatically prioritizes the thoughts and observations of the realism experts-also known as the Washington Post and its brother institutions of insider knowledge and professional policy practicality. Realism is what these organizations deal in; if you want it, you must come to them. Legitimacy is quite literally their property. They dole it out as they see fit.
There is the admiration for consensus, the worship of pragmatism and bipartisanship, the contempt for populist outcry, the repeated equating of dissent with partisan disloyalty. And think of the specific policy pratfalls: the cheers for TARP, the jeers aimed at bank regulation, the dismissal of single-payer health care as a preposterous dream.
This stuff is not mysterious. We can easily identify the political orientation behind it from one of the very first pages of the Roger Tory Peterson Field Guide to the Ideologies. This is common Seaboard Centrism, its markings of complacency and smugness as distinctive as ever, its habitat the familiar Beltway precincts of comfort and exclusivity. Whether you encounter it during a recession or a bull market, its call is the same: it reassures us that the experts who head up our system of government have everything well under control.
It is, of course, an ideology of the professional class, of sound-minded East Coast strivers, fresh out of Princeton or Harvard, eagerly quoting as "authorities" their peers in the other professions, whether economists at MIT or analysts at Credit Suisse or political scientists at Brookings. Above all, this is an insider's ideology; a way of thinking that comes from a place of economic security and takes a view of the common people that is distinctly patrician.
Oct 10, 2016 | observer.comWikiLeaks hack reveals DNC's favoritism as Clinton staff in damage control over Hillary's support for DOMA
On October 10, Wikileaks released part two of their emails from Clinton campaign chair John Podesta.
Friday, Wikileaks released their first batch of Podesta's emails, which included excerpts from Clinton's Wall Street transcripts that reaffirmed why Clinton refused to release them in full. During the second presidential debate, Clinton confirmed their authenticity by attempting to defend one statement she made in the speech about having a public and private stance on political issues. She cited Abraham Lincoln, a defense comparable to her ridiculous invocation of 9/11 when pressed on her ties to Wall Street during a Democratic primary debate.
The latest release reveals current DNC chair Donna Brazile, when working as a DNC vice chair, forwarded to the Clinton campaign a January 2016 email obtained from the Bernie Sanders campaign, released by Sarah Ford, Sanders' deputy national press secretary, announcing a Twitter storm from Sanders' African-American outreach team. "FYI" Brazile wrote to the Clinton staff. "Thank you for the heads up on this Donna," replied Clinton campaign spokesperson Adrienne Elrod.
The second batch of emails include more evidence of collusion between the mainstream media and Clinton Campaign.
One email , received by prolific Clinton donor Haim Saban, was forwarded to Clinton staff, praising the friendly moderators in the early March 2016 Democratic primary debate co-hosted by Univision in Florida. "Haim, I just wanted to tell you that I thought the moderators for last nights Debate were excellent. They were thoughtful, tough and incisive. I thought it made Hilary appear direct and strong in her resolve. I felt it advanced our candidate. Thanks for Univision," wrote Rob Friedman, former co-chair of the Motion Picture Group.
Another email discusses planting a favorable Clinton story in The New York Times in March 2015. "NYT heroine. Should she call her today?" Podesta wrote to other Clinton campaign staffers with the subject line 'Laura Donohoe.' "I do think it's a great idea! We can make it happen," replied Huma Abedin. The story they referred to is likely " In New Hampshire, Clinton Backers Buckle Up," published in The New York Times on March 12, 2015 about Laura Donohoe, a retired nurse and Clinton supporter in New Hampshire.
John Harwood, New York Times contributor and CNBC correspondent, regularly exchanged emails with Podesta-communicating more as a Clinton surrogate than a journalist.
In an October 2015 email thread, Clinton staff were in damage control over Hillary's support for the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defined marriage as between a man and a woman. Hillary Clinton would not disavow her support for it. "I'm not saying double down or ever say it again. I'm just saying that she's not going to want to say she was wrong about that, given she and her husband believe it and have repeated it many times. Better to reiterate evolution, opposition to DOMA when court considered it, and forward looking stance."
Former Clinton Foundation director, Darnell Strom of the Creative Artist Agency, wrote a condescending email to Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard after she resigned from the DNC to endorse Bernie Sanders , which he then forwarded to Clinton campaign staff. "For you to endorse a man who has spent almost 40 years in public office with very few accomplishments, doesn't fall in line with what we previously thought of you. Hillary Clinton will be our party's nominee and you standing on ceremony to support the sinking Bernie Sanders ship is disrespectful to Hillary Clinton," wrote Strom.
A memo sent from Clinton's general counsel, Marc Elias of the law firm Perkins Coie, outlined legal tricks to circumvent campaign finance laws to raise money in tandem with Super Pacs.
In a March 2015 email , Clinton Campaign manager Robby Mook expressed frustration DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz hired a Convention CEO without consulting the Clinton campaign, which suggests the DNC and Clinton campaign regularly coordinated together from the early stages of the Democratic primaries.
Oct 09, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
Pavel October 9, 2016 at 10:40 aminteger October 9, 2016 at 10:59 am
For those who want a few laughs in these grim times, check out the excellent Jimmy Dore's video (6 minutes) comparing Bernie's rallies with Hillary's. There is a truly cringeworthy episode of HRC cheerleading in the clip.
Bernie Crowds vs Hillary Crowds - A Depressing, Hilarious ComparisonBecauseTradition October 9, 2016 at 12:34 pm
Heh. I liked this little exchange in the comments:
Of all the words you could chant, in the entire english language, they pick the ONE that rhymes with liar? What does Hillary! Fire! Even mean? I thought that was a joke at first. Wow.
Spot on mate. No one ever accused Hillbots of being very bright.
I kept thinking it should have been "Fire Hillary". I'd fire her before I'd hire her.
What does Hillary! Fire! Even mean?
Liar, liar pants on fire?
Oct 09, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
Oct 09, 2016 | www.zerohedge.comWith the media exclusively attuned to every new, or 11-year-old as the case may be, twist in the Trump "sex tape" saga, it appeared that everyone forgot that a little over 24 hours ago, Wikileaks exposed the real reason why Hillary was keeping her Wall Street speech transcripts - which we now know had always been within easy reach for her campaign - secret. In her own words : "if everybody's watching, you know, all of the back room discussions and the deals, you know, then people get a little nervous, to say the least. So, you need both a public and a private position." In other words, you have to lie to the general public while promising those who just paid you $250,000 for an hour of your speaking time something entirely different, which is precisely what those accusing Hillary of hiding her WS transcripts had done; and as yesterday's hacked documents revealed, they were right.
The Clinton campaign refused to disavow the hacked excerpts, although it quickly tired to pin the blame again on Russia: "We are not going to confirm the authenticity of stolen documents released by Julian Assange, who has made no secret of his desire to damage Hillary Clinton," spokesman Glen Caplin said in a prepared statement. Previous releases have "Guccifer 2.0 has already proven the warnings of top national security officials that documents can be faked as part of a sophisticated Russian misinformation campaign."
Ironically, it was literally minutes before the Wikileaks release of the "Podesta Files" that the US formally accused Russia of waging a hacking cyber attack on the US political establishment, almost as if it knew Wikileaks was about to make the major disclosure, and sought to minimize its impact by scapegoating Vladimir Putin.
And while the Trump campaign tried to slam the leak, with spokesman saying "now we finally get confirmation of Clinton's catastrophic plans for completely open borders and diminishing America's influence in the world. There is a reason Clinton gave these high-paid speeches in secret behind closed doors - her real intentions will destroy American sovereignty as we know it, further illustrating why Hillary Clinton is simply unfit to be president", Trump's campaign had its own raging inferno to deal with.
So, courtesy of what Trump said about some woman 11 years ago, in all the din over the oddly coincident Trump Tape leak, most of the noise created by the Hillary speeches was lost.
But not all.
According to Reuters , supporters of former Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on Saturday " seethed ", and "expressed anger and vindication over leaked comments made by Hillary Clinton to banks and big business that appeared to confirm their fears about her support for global trade and tendency to cozy up to Wall Street. "
Clinton, who last it emerged had slammed Bernie supporters as "basement dwellers" in a February fundraiser, with virtually no media coverage, needs Sanders' coalition of young and left-leaning voters to propel her to the presidency, pushes for open trade and open borders in one of the speeches, and takes a conciliatory approach to Wall Street , both positions she later backed away from in an effort to capture the popular appeal of Sanders' attacks on trade deals and powerful banks.
Needless to say, there was no actualy "backing away", and instead Hillary did what he truly excels in better than most: she told the public what they wanted to hear, and will promptly reneg on once she becomes president.
Only now, this is increasingly obvious to America's jilted youth: " this is a very clear illustration of why there is a fundamental lack of trust from progressives for Hillary Clinton," said Tobita Chow, chair of the People's Lobby in Chicago, which endorsed Sanders in the primary election.
" The progressive movement needs to make a call to Secretary Clinton to clarify where she stands really on these issues and that's got to involve very clear renunciations of the positions that are revealed in these transcripts," Chow said.
Good luck that, or even getting a response, even though Hillary was largely spared from providing one: as Reuters correctly observes, the revelations were immediately overshadowed by the release of an 11-year-old recording of Donald Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, making lewd comments about women. In fact, the revelations were almost entirely ignored by the same prime time TV that has been glued to the Trump slow-motion trainwreck over the past 24 hours.
Still, the hacked speeches could lead to further erosion in support from the so very critical to her successful candidacy, young American voter.
Clinton has worked hard to build trust with so-called progressives, adopting several of Sanders' positions after she bested him in the primary race. The U.S. senator from Vermont now supports his former rival in the Nov. 8 general election against Trump. Still, Clinton has struggled to win support from young "millennials" who were crucial to Sanders' success, and some Democrats expressed concern that the leaks would discourage those supporters from showing up to vote.
"That is a big concern and this certainly doesn't help," said Larry Cohen, chair of the board of Our Revolution, a progressive organization formed in the wake of Sanders' bid for the presidency, which aims to keep pushing the former candidate's ideas at a grassroots level. "It matters in terms of turnout, energy, volunteering, all those things."
Still, despite the Trump media onslaught, the message appeared to filter through to those who would be most impacted by Hillary selling out her voters if she were to win the presidency.
"Bernie was right about Hillary," wrote Facebook user Grace Tilly cited by Rueters, "she's a tool for Wall Street."
"Clinton is the politicians' politician - exactly the Wall Street insider Bernie described," wrote Facebook user Brian Leach.
Democratic strategist Steve Elmendorf said progressive voters would still choose the former first lady, even with misgivings. "I'd like to meet the Bernie Sanders supporter who is going to say, 'Well I'm a little worried about her on international trade, so I'm going to vote for Donald Trump'," he said.
He just may meet a few, especially if Bernie's supporters ask themselves why Bernie's support for Hillary remained so unwavering despite a leak confirming that Hillary was indeed all he had previously railed against.
In a statement earlier, Sanders responded to the leak by saying that despite Hillary's paid speeches to Wall Street in which she expressed an agenda diametrically opposite to that espoused by the Vermont socialist, he reiterated his his support for the Democratic Party platform.
"Whatever Secretary Clinton may or may not have said behind closed doors on Wall Street, I am determined to implement the agenda of the Democratic Party platform which was agreed upon by her campaign," he said in a statement.
"Among other things, that agenda calls for breaking up the largest financial institutions in this country, re-establishing Glass-Steagall and prosecuting those many Wall Street CEOs who engaged in illegal behavior. "
In retrospect we find it fascinating that in the aftermath of October's two big surprises served up on Friday, Sanders actually believes any of that having read through Hillary's Wall Street speeches, certainly far more fascinating than the staged disgust with Trump who, the media is suddenly stunned to find, was no more politically correct 11 year ago than he is today.
Oct 09, 2016 | dailycaller.comHillary Clinton's presidential campaign collaborated with Bloomberg reporter Jennifer Epstein to create an anti-Bernie Sanders story prior to the Nevada caucus.
In the vast trove of Clinton emails leaked Thursday by the organization DCLeaks, there is an email exchange between Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook and Emily Ruiz, head of the campaign's Nevada operation. In the exchange, Ruiz and Mook discuss rumors that Sanders volunteers were posing as Clinton operatives and engaging in irritating behavior like knocking on voters' doors at 11 pm.
Then, Mook reveals that the campaign is working with Epstein on a piece bashing Sanders staff for underhanded tactics.
"We are also working with Jen Epstein for a story about this (not necessarily the 11pm knocks, which we are working to confirm) regarding Sanders staff coming to office openings, tracking us, lying about endorsements, other shady field activity, etc.," Mook says in the email.
Oct 01, 2016 | www.rt.com
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton made forthright remarks about Bernie Sanders' supporters during a private meeting with fundraisers, an audio from which has been leaked following an email hack.
"There's just a deep desire to believe that we can have free college, free healthcare, that what we've done hasn't gone far enough, and that we just need to, you know, go as far as, you know, Scandinavia, whatever that means, and half the people don't know what that means, but it's something that they deeply feel," Clinton said during a Q&A with potential donors in McLean in Virginia, in February, when she was still in a close primary race with Sanders.
The frontrunner to become the next US President said that herself and other election observers had been "bewildered" by the rise of the "populist, nationalist, xenophobic, discriminatory" Republican candidates, presumably Donald Trump, on the one side, and the radical left-wing idealists on the other.
Clinton painted herself as a moderate and realistic contrast to the groundswell.
"I am occupying from the center-left to the center-right. And I don't have much company there. Because it is difficult when you're running to be president, and you understand how hard the job is – I don't want to overpromise," said Clinton, who has customarily eschewed political spectrum labels.
According to the Washington Free Beacon, which posted the audio of Clinton's remarks, the recording was attached to an email sent out by a campaign staffer, which has been hacked. It is unclear if the leak is the work of the same hackers who got hold of a trove of Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails in July.... ... ...
In the session, Clinton called for an "understanding" of the motives of Sanders' younger backers, while describing them in terms that fluctuate between patronizing and unflattering.
"Some are new to politics completely. They're children of the Great Recession. And they are living in their parents' basement. They feel they got their education and the jobs that are available to them are not at all what they envisioned for themselves. And they don't see much of a future," said Clinton, who obtained the support of about 2,800 delegates, compared to approximately 1,900 for Sanders, when the results were tallied in July.
"If you're feeling like you're consigned to, you know, being a barista, or you know, some other job that doesn't pay a lot, and doesn't have some other ladder of opportunity attached to it, then the idea that maybe, just maybe, you could be part of a political revolution is pretty appealing."
Despite well-publicized tensions, particularly between the more vocal backers, Sanders endorsed Clinton at the Democratic National Convention two months ago, and the two politicians have campaigned together this week, sharing the stage.
Following the leak, the Clinton campaign has not apologized for the audio, insisting that it shows that the nominee and is "listening to the concerns" of "the most diverse, open-minded generation in history."
"As Hillary Clinton said in those remarks , she wants young people to be idealistic and set big goals," said her spokesman Glen Caplin. "She is fighting for exactly millennial generation cares more about – a fairer, more equal, just world."
In other parts of the 50-minute recording, Clinton spoke about US capacity to "retaliate" against foreign hackers that would serve as a "deterrence" and said she would be "inclined" to mothball the costly upgrade of the Long Range Standoff (LRSO) missile program.
- 'Another hostage situation': Sanders supporters meme their disappointment
- Sanders endorses Clinton, reversing everything he's said about 'Wall Street candidate' (QUOTES)And more votes for Trump it seems. GoodOlive Sailboat 2h
The more she runs her mouth the more support she loses.
Gold Carrot -> Olive Sailboat 6mGA 2h
Well if somebody is supported by Soros, Warren Buffet, Walmart family, Gates, Moskowitz, Pritzker, Saban and Session what do you expect. Give me 8 names of other Americans who can top their money worth. And even so called financial supporters of Republican party like Whitman and Koch brothers are not supporting Trump. Whitman actually donate to Clinton. In fact most of the donation for Trump campaign is coming from people who donate at average less than 200 dollars. Clinton represent BIG MONEY that... See more
Clinton has a supremacist problem, she considers all americans under deserving people, she thinks she is a pharaoh and we are little people. Reply Share 15
Red Ducky -> GA 23mRabid Rotty -> Red Ducky 9m
you think trump is different? ask yourself this question: Why do Rich people spend hundreds of millions of dollars for a job that only pays $400K a year?
And Trump has stated several times that he will not take the Presidential Salary
pHiL SwEeT -> Rabid Rotty 8m
Uh, yah, Red Ducky just explained how it's not about the money, they're already rich. It's about power, status, control and legacy.
Green Weights 2hOlive Basketball -> Green Weights 55m
if Clinton sends her followers and their families to concentration camps, they'll still continue supporting her. yes, that's how stupid they really are.
People who have the TV on all day and watch the news from the mainstream media are naturally going to get hoodwinked. They aren't the brightest, but they're also distracted and mislead.
Cyan Beer 2hNorm de Plume
She is the definition of implicit bias.Sure enough. The real Americans. Not people, like her, who have dedicated their lives to aggrandizing themselves living effectively tax-free at the people's expense.Seve141 7mAfter all, they are the deplorables. HRC is truly the most despicable, scandal ridden, lying war monger to ever grace American politics.Tornado_Doom 12mShame on Sanders for supporting that Nazi witch.Green Band Aid -> Tornado_Doom 12mSanders will be getting paid. All he does is for money.Tornado_Doom -> Green Band Aid 11mDoes an old rich man like him need money?Green Leaf 43mClinton's tenure as Secretary of State during Barack Obama's first term was an unmitigated disaster for many nations around the world. The media has never adequately described how a number of countries around the world suffered horribly from HC's foreign policy decisions. Millions of people were adversely harmed by her misguided policies and her "pay-to-play" operations involving favors in return for donations to the Clinton Foundation and Clinton Global Initiative.Green Leaf 45m
Countries adversely impacted by HC's foreign policy decisions include Abkhazia, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Central African Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Iraq, Kosovo, Libya, Malaysia, Palestine, Paraguay, South Sudan, Syria, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, Venezuela, Western Sahara, Yemen - one would think they had a visit from the anti-Christ instead of HC. Or is HC the anti-Christ in disguise?The majority of American's will vote Trump for 3 primary reasons.
1. National Security: They trust him when it comes to protecting national security and to stop illegal aliens from entering US boarders along with stopping the mass importation of un-vetted refugees from the middle east.
2. Economy: They know he knows how to get things done under budget and ahead of schedule.. and he knows how to make money. They want a successful businessman in office, not another political who is out to enrich his or herself at their expense. In addition he knows how to create jobs and he has a major plan to cut taxes to help the poor - no tax for anyone earning less then $50,000 and
3. Hillary's severe covered-up health problems: With all of the problems that the US is experience they don't want someone who passes out from a seizure in the middle of the day running the country. This is a severely ill woman is, evidently, of the rare kind that requires a permanent traveling physician and a "mystery man" who rushes to her side whenever she has one of her frequent and uncontrollable seizure "episodes" (or otherwise freezes up with a brain "short-circuit" during a speech). She has Parkinson's. The pneumonia was just a symptom for something much more serious. She even had a mini seizure during the debate for those with a medical background to see.
Oct 01, 2016 | economistsview.typepad.comJerry Brown : September 30, 2016 at 05:31 PMI won't say bad things about Clinton. Because she is far better than the alternative at this point. But Paul Krugman I have lost a lot of respect for. There was a candidate that people believed in and that stood up for working people and liberal values and that motivated people to come out and support him and his goals for the U.S.A. A candidate that would have neutralized Trump's appeal to the working class (which is mostly where I am). Krugman trashed him relentlessly using his very large soap box.
Now he is horrified that the polls are so close.
I can't say anything more without being negative. Except vote for Clinton- she's better than Trump. Which is a pathetic endorsement.
Oct 01, 2016 | economistsview.typepad.com
Peter K. : September 30, 2016 at 06:35 AM Clinton should be beating Trump easily in the polls. Sanders would be. Trump is the worst candidate in history.
Why isn't she don't better? It's because Clinton surrogates like PGL are hateful and obnoxious. The voters hate these people and don't agree with Clinton's centrism. The voters hate the BS we're expected to believe like how corporate trade is nothing but beneficial or that the Obama years were great.
It's not simply because she's a woman or because of the media (which the Clintonites were happy to use against Sanders.)
Reply Friday, September 30, 2016 at 06:35 AM Peter K. -> Peter K.... , Friday, September 30, 2016 at 06:47 AMThat's why Trump is appealing to Sanders voters.Peter K. -> Peter K.... , -1
Not because of policy, but because they *hate* Clinton's dishonest scumbags like Debbie Wasserman Shultz... They know them and hate them.
Clinton brags about how much she's done for the children meanwhile she's a millionaire who gives speeches to Goldman Sachs and does nothing but attend fundraisers thrown by rich donors.
I'll vote for Hillary but a lot of Sanders supporters have a visceral dislike of Sanders people who lied to them and about us... The dishonesty is blatant, just how Hillary lied about Sanders during the primary. But Sanders knows policywise Trump is much, much worse than Hillary even if she's not that good.
That's why Sanders is campaigning for Hillary. But wait until the election is over. The hatred toward Clinton and surrogates ... will come pouring out. That is if she wins.
Sep 28, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.comKim Kaufman September 28, 2016 at 2:23 pm
Occupy the DNC: A Bernie Delegate's account of the 2016 Democratic National Commercial
This is a very long read… and I haven't finished it yet but so far lots of good details.
Sep 12, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.comJerry Denim , March 9, 2016 at 1:53 pmMojaveWolf , March 9, 2016 at 6:11 pm
I really liked Charles Blow's insightful comment about two Black Americas and the great migration. I am white but I like to think that I know a little about Black America. I've travelled and lived all over the US now, but I grew up in the eighties in a small, racially divided southern town. I attended a public school that was 60% black and every black teacher of mine in elementary school was formerly employed by the "separate but equal" black school system prior to desegregation. I didn't realize how close I was to the bad ole' segregated south growing up, but it boggles my mind and certain things make more sense to me now looking back. I was raised by my working mother and two different black nannies. They were surrogate moms to me. I would play with their nieces, nephews and grand-children at their house sometimes and other times at my parents. I even attended church with them on a couple of different occasions. I left the south after graduating college but I didn't forget the lessons of my youth. I said from the very beginning of Sanders campaign, that an old, lefty, New York Jew is going to have a really tough time connecting with older, black voters in the south.
I don't think most Americans realize just how conservative southern blacks really are, particularly the ones old enough to remember the bad old days of segregation and before. The cultural DNA of the diaspora blacks of the north and the blacks that stayed behind is very different. Besides the attitudes and personality types that may have been more likely to migrate north or west, it's important to remember that the social climate in the south would reward and penalize behaviors by both whites and blacks in a manner very different from cultures found in the north and the west.
There are still plenty of strong pockets of racism today outside of the south, particularly in the northeast, appalachia, and the midwest but nowhere I've visited can compare to racism found in the deep southern states of the Gulf and Mississippi delta region.
Radical personalities and those who are quick to embrace new ideas don't fare very well in those parts of the country. Slow, steady, quite and modest is your best bet for survival.
Almost like Clinton's "slow incremental change" campaign theme. Clinton keeps running up the delegate score with the support of southern black grannies like the ones who raised me, but she is running out of deep south. Meanwhile Sanders is forging new coalitions and crushing the under-forty vote, so even if he can't win the DNC's rigged primary this year the future looks bright for leaders that want to pick up Sanders mantle in the near future.
Besides the attitudes and personality types that may have been more likely to migrate north or west, it's important to remember that the social climate in the south would reward and penalize behaviors by both whites and blacks in a manner very different from cultures found in the north and the west.
Very true & excellent point. I grew up in small town Alabama & permanently moved away in January 1990. It is a very pro-establishment place, where, at least back then, people who were willing to be noticeably different had to be very exceptional in some way or willing & able to fend for themselves, otherwise they would be ostracized or bullied. Birmingham & Tuscaloosa were better, at least in pockets, but outside of the university system you were still expected to behave in a very conservative manner. Going home to visit over the years & seeing giant billboards–in cities!–saying things like "Go to church or go to Hell" (that is an exact quote; I shall never forget it; horribly wrongheaded and asinine even from a fundamentalist Christian perspective) or "praise be the glory of the fetus, may those who harm it suffer eternal torment" (not an exact quote but pretty much an exact sentiment on a large # of signs) did not make me change my thoughts a whole hella lot, or–and this is kinda funny in light of my current politics–talking with a group of business owners in an airport who suddenly turned their backs on me & excluded me from conversation when they were trashing Hillary and I said "I like Hillary" & after a shocked silence one of them said "You need to listen to Rush Limbaugh son, learn some things" followed by "I've heard Rush. Not really a fan." That ended that conversation abruptly. Among other things.
And I have (or rather had, kinda lost touch) friends from Alabama involved in state & national democratic politics, and whatever their private inclinations they were just as conservative as the Republicans (among whom I had an equal # of friends) on most things in public, and kept very quiet about issues where they were not with the growing conservative majority there (it should be noted that this is a HORRIBLE long term strategy, if you have actual principles in opposition to the spreading & solidifying right-wing belief system). I had nonetheless expected better from the South, and am still disappointed/horrified at the voting there, but this reminder does explain a lot. With a lot of help from the DNC & MSM, they were convinced Bernie would not win, and might even lose by an amount they would find embarrassing, & knowingly fighting a lost cause is (or was) generally derided back there, and no one wants to be an object of derision. Also, a lot of Southerners just don't like people from the Northeast. End stop. I for some reason thought that would have changed by now, and/or that Bernie was sufficiently atypical for this to be a non-factor anyway. But maybe not. Plus it may be people still consider Hillary a Southerner from her time in Arkansas, and she's getting the "one of us" vote.
but she is running out of deep south.
Indeed. Temperaments out west are very, very different. =)
Jul 24, 2016 | cnn.com
Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz will not have a major speaking role or preside over daily convention proceedings this week, a decision reached by party officials Saturday after emails surfaced raising questions about the committee's impartiality during the Democratic primary.
The DNC Rules Committee on Saturday named Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio, as permanent chair of the convention, according to a DNC source. She will gavel each session to order and will gavel each session closed.
"She's been quarantined," another top Democrat said of Wasserman Schultz, following a meeting Saturday night. Wasserman Schultz faced intense pressure Sunday to resign her post as head of the Democratic National Committee, several party leaders told CNN, urging her to quell a growing controversy threatening to disrupt Hillary Clinton's nominating convention.
Wasserman Schultz reluctantly agreed to relinquish her speaking role at the convention here, a sign of her politically fragile standing. But party leaders are now urging the Florida congresswoman to vacate her position as head of the party entirely in the wake of leaked emails suggesting the DNC favored Clinton during the primary and tried to take down Bernie Sanders by questioning his religion. Democratic leaders are scrambling to keep the party united, but two officials familiar with the discussions said Wasserman Schultz was digging in and not eager to vacate her post after the November elections.
... ... ...
One email appears to show DNC staffers asking how they can reference Bernie Sanders' faith to weaken him in the eyes of Southern voters. Another seems to depict an attorney advising the committee on how to defend Hillary Clinton against an accusation by the Sanders campaign of not living up to a joint fundraising agreement.
Sanders on Sunday told CNN's Jake Tapper the release of DNC emails that show its staffers working against him underscore the position he's held for months: Party Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz needs to go.
"I don't think she is qualified to be the chair of the DNC not only for these awful emails, which revealed the prejudice of the DNC, but also because we need a party that reaches out to working people and young people, and I don't think her leadership style is doing that," Sanders told Tapper on "State of the Union," on the eve of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
"I am not an atheist," he said. "But aside from all of that, it is an outrage and sad that you would have people in important positions in the DNC trying to undermine my campaign. It goes without saying, the function of the DNC is to represent all of the candidates -- to be fair and even-minded."
He added: "But again, we discussed this many, many months ago, on this show, so what is revealed now is not a shock to me."
... ... ...
Several Democratic sources told CNN that the leaked emails are a big source of contention and may incite tensions between the Clinton and Sanders camps heading into the Democratic convention's Rules Committee meeting this weekend.
"It could threaten their agreement," one Democrat said, referring to the deal reached between Clinton and Sanders about the convention, delegates and the DNC. The party had agreed to include more progressive principles in its official platform, and as part of the agreement, Sanders dropped his fight to contest Wasserman Schultz as the head of the DNC.
"It's gas meets flame," the Democrat said.
Michael Briggs, a Sanders spokesman, had no comment Friday.
The issue surfaced on Saturday at Clinton's first campaign event with Tim Kaine as her running mate, when a protester was escorted out of Florida International University in Miami. The protester shouted "DNC leaks" soon after Clinton thanked Wasserman Schultz for her leadership at the DNC.
Sep 04, 2016 | angrybearblog.com
Zachary Smith August 31, 2016 12:13 am
Sanders is a touchy subject with me. The man was offered a spot on the Green party ticket, and obviously didn't take it. Considering the public disgust with the two slimeballs we're stuck with now, I believe he'd have had a real shot at the presidency. Despite my rating him as a C- at best, I'd have voted for the man. It's my opinion he'd have gotten a whole lot of Trump's base too. The poorer members of the GOP know they're getting the shaft, and I suspect a great many of them would have defected too.
There was a theory early-on that Sanders never was really serious, but instead was running as a "sheepdog" to lead the dirty hippy lefties to Clinton. That theory looks more plausible now than it did earlier.
Richard Le Sarcophage, July 28, 2016
Sanders was clearly the sheep-dog, and I won't be surprised if an e-mail showing that reality appears. He is, in fact, with his total and immediate roll-over, even as the corruption of the process was categorically exposed by the e-mails, making no pretense otherwise, spitting in the face of the latest generation of suckers who thought that the elite plutocracy of the USA could be 'reformed' from within. He was the geriatric Obama, dispensing more Hopium for the dopes. And when Clinton feigns adoption of Sanders policy, like not signing the TPP, she is LYING.
Diana, July 28, 2016
Sanders' own campaign called him the "youth whisperer", but sheepdog is accurate. I have been calling him a sheepdog since 2014 and predicting, correctly, that he would both lose the nomination and endorse Hillary. This was inevitable since he SAID he would endorse her from the start of his so-called campaign. Perhaps he did so hoping that the DNC would play fair, but that goes to show you he's no socialist. A real socialist would have been able to size up the opposition, not made any gentleman's agreements with them and waged a real campaign.
rtj1211, July 26, 2016
So far as I'm aware, there must be a mechanism for an Independent to put their name on the ballot.
If the majority of people in the USA are really thinking that voting for either Hillary or the Donald is worse than having unprotected sex with an HIV+ hooker, then the Independent would barely need any publicity. They'd just need to be on the ballot.
Course, the Establishment might get cute and put a far-right nutcase up as 'another Independent' so as they would have someone who'd do as they were told no matter what.
But until the US public say 'da nada! Pasta! Finito! To hell with the Democrats and the GOP!', you'll still get the choice of 'let's invade Iran' or 'let's nuke Russia'. You'll get the choice of giving Israel a blowjob or agreeing to be tied up and have kinky sex with Israel. You'll get the choice of bailing out Wall Street or bailing out Wall Street AND cutting social security for the poorest Americans. You'll get the choice of running the USA for the bankers or running the USA for the bankers and a few multinational corporations.
Oh, they'll have to fight for it, just as Martin Luther King et al had to fight for civil rights. They may have the odd candidate shot by the CIA, the oil men or the weapons men. Because that's how US politics works.
But if they don't want a Republican or a Republican-lite, they need to select an independent and vote for them.
The rest of us? We have to use whatever influence we have to try and limit what they try to do overseas…….because we are affected by what America does overseas…….
Aug 06, 2016 | www.democracynow.org
CHRIS HEDGES : Well, I didn't back Bernie Sanders because-and Kshama Sawant and I had had a discussion with him before-because he said that he would work within the Democratic structures and support the nominee.
And I think we have now watched Bernie Sanders walk away from his political moment. You know, he - I think he will come to deeply regret what he has done. He has betrayed these people who believed in this political revolution. We heard this same kind of rhetoric, by the way, in 2008 around Obama.
Aug 10, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
PERIES: Let's turn to Sanders's strategy here. Now, Sanders is, of course, asking people to support Hillary. And if you buy into the idea that she is the lesser of two evils candidate, then we also have to look at Bernie's other strategy – which is to vote as many people as we possibly can at various other levels of the elections that are going on at congressional levels, Senate level, at municipal levels. Is that the way to go, so that we can avoid some of these choices we are offered?
HUDSON: Well, this is what I don't understand about Sanders's strategy. He says we need a revolution. He's absolutely right. But then, everything he said in terms of the election is about Trump. I can guarantee you that the revolution isn't really about Trump. The way Sanders has described things, you have to take over the Democratic Party and pry away the leadership, away from Wall Street, away from the corporations.
Democrats pretend to be a party of the working class, a party of the people. But it's teetering with Hillary as it's candidate. If ever there was a time to split it, this was the year. But Bernie missed his chance. He knuckled under and said okay, the election's going to be about Trump. Forget the revolution that I've talked about. Forget reforming the Democratic Party, I'm sorry. Forget that I said Hillary is not fit to be President. I'm sorry, she is fit to be President. We've got to back her.
That means backing Wall Street, the neocons and the TPP. Shame on him! He told his followers to think of pie in the sky in the decades it will take to take over the Democratic Party from below, from school boards, etc.
Labor unions said this half a century ago. It didn't work. Bernie gave up on everything to back the TPP candidate, the neocon candidate.
What on earth is revolution if it doesn't include either remove the rot in the Democratic Party, the Wall Street control, or start another party? It had to be one or the other. Here was his chance. I think he missed it.
PERIES: I think there's a lot of people out there that agree with that analysis, Michael. He did miss his chance. Some people were suggesting that he should walk and form his own party. Particularly how the party treated him. But there is another choice out there. In fact, we at the Real News is out there covering the Green Party election as we are speaking here, Michael. Is that an option?
HUDSON: It would have been the only option for him. He had decided that you can't really mount a third party, because it's so hard. The Democrats and the Republicans together have made it almost impossible for a third party to get registered in every state. To run in every state. To get just all of the mechanics you need because of all the lawsuits against them. The Green Party is the only party that had already solved that. Apart from the Libertarian Party.
So here you have the only possible third party he could have run on this time, and he avoided it. I'm sure he must of thought about it. He was offered the presidency on it. He could of used that and brought his revolution into that party and then expanded it as a real alternative to both the Democrats and the Republicans. Because the Republican Party is already split, by the fact that the Tea Party's pretty much destroyed it. The oligarchs have joined the Republicans and the Democrats are now seen to be the same party, called the Democratic Party. Here was his chance to make an alternative.
I don't think there will be a chance like this again soon. I believe Hillary's the greater evil, not Trump, because Trump is incompetent and doesn't have the staff around him, or the political support that Hilary has. I think Bernie missed his chance to take this party and develop it very quickly, just like George Wallace could have done back in the 1960s when he had a chance. I think Chris Hedges and other people have made this point with you. I have no idea what Bernie's idea of a revolution is, if he's going to try to do it within the Democratic Party that's just stamped on him again and again, you're simply not going to have a revolution within the Democratic party.Butch In Waukegan ,, August 10, 2016 at 9:51 amcrittermom ,, August 10, 2016 at 12:18 pm
Sanders' convention endorsement:
I have known Hillary Clinton for 25 years. I remember her, as you do, as a great first lady who broke precedent in terms of the role that a first lady was supposed to play as she helped lead the fight for universal health care.
I served with her in the United States Senate and know her as a fierce advocate for the rights of children, for women and for the disabled.
Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her tonight!
Sanders' campaign was premised on exactly the opposite. How can anyone now take Bernie seriously?
Raymond Shaw is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful human being I've ever known in my life.
Okay. I know this comment will bring forth much backlash, but I'm gonna put it out there anyway since my 'give-a-shitter' was severely cracked over 4 yrs ago (when 2 sheriff's deputies evicted me from my home while I had been current on my pymts when the bank foreclosed and the response from EVERY govt agency I contacted told me to "hire a lawyer", which I couldn't afford, with one costing much more than I owed on my home of 20 yrs). I had bought my first house by the time I graduated h.s. and had owned one ever since until now.
My 'give-a-shitter' completely shattered this year with the election, so here goes:
So it seems we are offered 3 choices when we vote. Trump, Hillary or Green.
To someone who is among the 8-10 MILLION (depending on whose figures you believe) whose home was illegally taken from them by the banksters, I would welcome a 4th choice since none of the 3 offered will improve my life before I die.
The consensus seems to be that it'll take decades to create change through voting.
I'm a divorced woman turning 65. I don't feel I have decades to wait, while I am forced to live in a place that doesn't even have a flush toilet because it's all I can afford. To someone my age with no degrees or special skills, the job market is nonexistent, even if I lived in a big city (where I couldn't afford the rent).
When I see reports of an increase in new homes being built, I'd love to see a breakdown showing exactly how many of those homes will be primary residences and how many are second (or third, or fourth) homes.
There are 4 new custom homes being built within a half mile of me.
None will be primary residences. All will be 'vacation' homes.
Yet if we're to believe the latest figures, "the housing market is improving!"
Yes, I'm extremely disappointed that Bernie bailed on us. I doubt either of us will live long enough to see the change required to change this govt and save the planet with our current choices this election.
I fear the only thing that this election has given me was initially great hope for my future, before being plunged into the darkness of the same ol', same ol' as my only choices.
I was never radical or oppositional in my life but I would now welcome a revolution. I don't see me living long enough to welcome that change by voting. Especially with the blatant voter suppression and all else that transpired this election.
While the govt and political oligarchs may fear Russia & ISIS, if they met 8-10 million of us victims of the banksters, they would come to realize real fear, from those within their homeland.
Most are horrified when I offer this view, saying I'd be thrown in prison.
Hmmm…considering that…I'd be fed, clothed, housed-and I'd have a flush toilet!
Gads, I'd love to see millions of us march on Washington & literally throw those in power out of their seats onto the lawn, saying "enough is enough"!
So I guess my question is, does anyone else feel as 'at the end of their rope' as I do?
Can you even truly imagine being in my position and what you would do or how you would feel?
Yes. I screamed, cried, and wrote Bernie's campaign before his endorsement speech was even completed, expressing my disappointment, after foregoing meals to send him my meager contributions.
My hopes were shattered and I'm growing impatient for change.backwardsevolution ,, August 10, 2016 at 1:48 pm
crittermom/Bullwinkle – here's one of the articles by Chris Hedges on Bernie Sanders:
"Because the party is completely captive to corporate power," Hedges said. "And Bernie has cut a Faustian deal with the Democrats. And that's not even speculation. I did an event with him and Bill McKibben, Naomi Klein and Kshama Sawant in New York the day before the Climate March. And Kshama Sawant ,the Socialist City Councilwoman from Seattle and I asked Sanders why he wanted to run as a Democrat. And he said - because I don't want to end up like Nader."
"He didn't want to end up pushed out of the establishment," Hedges said. "He wanted to keep his committee chairmanships, he wanted to keep his Senate seat. And he knew the forms of retribution, punishment that would be visited upon him if he applied his critique to the Democratic establishment. So he won't."
http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/07/15/chris-hedges-on-bernie-sanders-and-the-corporate-democrats/Lambert Strether ,, August 10, 2016 at 3:34 pm
I don't get what's wrong with not ending up like Nader.
And if Sanders saved the left from another two decades of "Nader Nader neener neener!" more power to him, say I.backwardsevolution ,, August 10, 2016 at 8:55 pm
Fair enough. I don't know enough about Nader to care. To me, it was just the about-face that Bernie did, going from denouncing Hillary (albeit not very strongly) to embracing her. I think if I had been one of his supporters who cheered him on, sent him money, got my hopes raised that he would go all the way, I would have been very disappointed. Almost like a tease.crittermom ,, August 10, 2016 at 8:51 pm
Thanks for that link.
I'd wanted Bernie to run as an Independent more than anything, but I can understand him wanting to keep his Senate seat and chairs. Without them, he has no power to bring change.
I had believed he had a good chance to win, whipping a big Bernie Bird to both parties and changing things in my lifetime, running Independent.
I now realize just how completely corrupt our political system is. Far worse than I ever could have imagined. Wow, have my eyes been opened!
I'm beginning to think this election may just come down to who has the bigger thugs, Trump or HRC.EndOfTheWorld , August 10, 2016 at 5:04 amBenedict@Large , August 10, 2016 at 7:26 am
I agree with Hudson that HRC is the greater threat. I also agree with him that Bernie makes no sense. What the hell did Bernie have to lose? He could have accepted the prez nomination with the Greens. In fact, he should have run third party from the git-go. By sucking up to the dems that politically raped him, Bernie is exhibiting a variation of Stockholm syndrome.Roger Smith , August 10, 2016 at 11:34 am
Bernie's problem in the end is that he couldn't see that in order to gain power in the Democratic Party (i.e., in order to dislodge the Clintons), the Left might (probably would) have to lose an election.
The Democratic PoC (Party of Clinton) had to be shown as a party that could not win an election without its left half. He wrongly saw the powerless Trump as the greater threat, something that could only be done if he still at least marginally trusted Hillary to ever keep her word on anything. He will come to see that as his greatest mistake of all.Another Anon , August 10, 2016 at 7:27 am
Very well stated++diptherio , August 10, 2016 at 11:33 am
Bernie reminds me of Gorbachev. Both clearly saw what the problem was with their respective societies, but still thought that things could be fixed by changing their respective parties. Bernie it seems, like Gorbachev before him, can not intellectually accept that effective reforms require radical action on the existing power structures. Gorbachev could not break with the Communist system and Bernie can not break with the Democratic party.perpetualWAR , August 10, 2016 at 11:42 am
Bernie is too nice for his own good. He should have used the DNC machinations as an excuse to go back on his promise to endorse. "I made that promise on the assumption that we would all be acting in good faith. Sadly, that has proved not to be the case."
But no, he's too much of a politician, or too nice, or has too much sense of personal pride…or had his life and his family threatened if he didn't toe the line (not that I'm foily). Whatever his motivations, we don't get a "Get out of Responsibility Free" card just because one dude made some mis-steps. If that's all it takes to derail us, we're so, so screwed.Reply ↓Griffith W Jones , August 10, 2016 at 5:30 am
No, Bernie is exhibiting behavior of a man whose family was theatened. There's no other explanation for his pained face at the convention.Eman , August 10, 2016 at 5:33 am
I also agree with Hudson and EndOfTheWorld that HRC is the greater threat and that Sanders makes no sense.
Sure, the Dems probably threatened to kick him off of Congressional Committees and to back a rival in Vermont.
So what! With his tenure and at his age, what's really to lose? If he couldn't face off someone in his home state, it's probably time to retire anyway. And it's not like he was ever in it for the money.
The best he gets now is mild tolerance from his masters. "Give me your followers and lick my boots." What a coward, could have made history, now he's a goat.
Fortunately, his "followers" have more integrity…backwardsevolution , August 10, 2016 at 5:37 am
It's actually not so surprising given his long history of working within the mainstream system, simply along its fringes. I think many may have been falling into the '08 Obama trap of seeing what they wanted to see in him.
As a senator he's had plenty of opportunities to grandstand, gum up the works, etc, and he really never does. Even his "filibuster" a few years back wasn't all that disruptive.Reply ↓Butch In Waukegan , August 10, 2016 at 9:51 am
EndOfTheWorld- totally agree with you. I just shake my head at Bernie. Diametrically opposed to Clinton, he suddenly turns around and embraces her! What? I will never understand that.
"America needs an ineffective president. That's much better than an effective president that's going to go to war with Russia, that's going to push for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, that's going to protect Wall Street, and that's going to oppose neoliberal austerity."
He's right too. I am absolutely terrified of Hillary Clinton becoming President. She strikes me as having psychopathic tendencies. I mean, just look at the scandals she and Bill have been involved in, and then when she gets caught, she lies, feigns ignorance, deflects, blames others, lies some more. Power and money are her goals.
She has called Putin "Hitler", said she wants to expand NATO, and again said she wants to take out Assad. Well, how is she going to do that when Russia is in there? God, she is scary. I just hope that there's a big Clinton Foundation email leak to finish her off.
Trump is out there, but at least he wants to try to negotiate peace (of course, if war wasn't making so many people rich, it would be stopped tomorrow). He's questioning why NATO is necessary, never mind its continual expansion, and he wants to stop the TPP.
God, I'd be happy with even one of the above. Hillary will give us TPP, more NATO, more war, and a cackle. Please, if anyone has some loose emails hanging around, now is the time!backwardsevolution , August 10, 2016 at 1:33 pm
Sanders' convention endorsement:
I have known Hillary Clinton for 25 years. I remember her, as you do, as a great first lady who broke precedent in terms of the role that a first lady was supposed to play as she helped lead the fight for universal health care.
I served with her in the United States Senate and know her as a fierce advocate for the rights of children, for women and for the disabled.
Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her tonight!
Sanders' campaign was premised on exactly the opposite. How can anyone now take Bernie seriously?
Raymond Shaw is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful human being I've ever known in my life.Lambert Strether , August 10, 2016 at 3:35 pm
Butch – "…she helped lead the fight for universal health care." Did she now? Here's a good quote on how she felt about universal health care:
"Hillary took the lead role in the White House's efforts to pass a corporate-friendly version of "health reform." Along with the big insurance companies the Clintons deceptively railed against, the "co-presidents" decided from the start to exclude the popular health care alternative – single payer – from the national health care "discussion." (Obama would do the same thing in 2009.)
"David, tell me something interesting." That was then First Lady Hillary Clinton's weary and exasperated response – as head of the White House's health reform initiative – to Harvard medical professor David Himmelstein in 1993. Himmelstein was head of Physicians for a National Health Program. He had just told her about the remarkable possibilities of a comprehensive, single-payer "Canadian style" health plan, supported by more than two-thirds of the U.S. public. Beyond backing by a citizen super-majority, Himmelstein noted, single-payer would provide comprehensive coverage to the nation's 40 million uninsured while retaining free choice in doctor selection and being certified by the Congressional Budget Office as "the most cost-effective plan on offer."
That whole article deals with the "fake liberalism" exhibited by the Clinton's and Obama. It says they only "pretend" to care.
Perhaps Yves could highlight Hillary's disdain for single-payer healthcare on another post. Thanks.
Hillary Clinton: Single-payer health care will "never, ever" happen CBS
Aug 14, 2016 | www.counterpunch.org
On Tuesday afternoon, my friend Michael Colby, the fearless environmental activist in Vermont, sent me news that Bernie Sanders had just purchased a new waterfront house on in North Hero, Vermont. I linked to the story on my Facebook page, quipping that Bernie had cashed in on the Revolution that he had betrayed, citing as evidence the purchase of a third house for the Sanders family, a lakefront summer dacha for $600,000.
This ignited a firestorm on Zuckerburg's internet playpen. People noted that Bernie and Jane lived a penurious existence, surviving on coupons and the kindness of strangers, and the house was just a cramped four-bedroom fishing shack on a cold icy lake with hardly any heat–a place so forsaken even the Iroquois of old wouldn't camp there–which they were only able to afford because Jane sold her dead parents' house.
I said there might be more to the story, like the fact that Bernie had signed a book deal (ala the Clintons) where he would tell the story of his Glorious Revolution (which ended up with him dumping his foot soldiers into the vaults of the very machine they were warring against.) And guess what? I was right.
Coming in November to a bookstore near you….Our Revolution by Thomas Dunne Books.
The love for Bernie is truly blind. It's also touching. I've never seen Leftists defend the purchase of $600,000 lakefront summer homes with such tenacity!
... ... ...
By the way, the median cost of homes sold in North Hero, Vermont so far this year is $189,000.
... ... ...Fulfilling his pledge to Hillary, Bernie Sanders took to the pages of the Los Angeles Times to plead with his followers to get behind Clinton as the one person who could "unite the country" against Trump.
In the wake of this pathetic capitulation to the Queen of Chaos, our Australian Shepard, Boomer, drafted an Open Letter on behalf of all sheepdogs renouncing any association with Bernie Sanders. One of the signatories (a Blue Healer from Brentwood) swore, however, that she saw Sander's head popping out of Paris Hilton's handbag…
A friend lamented the fact that all of the fun and spirit had gone out of the election campaign since Sanders was "neutralized." Was Bernie neutralized? I thought that Bernie neutralized himself. And it was hard to watch. Like an x-rated episode of Nip/Tuck.
Bernie sold out. If not that, then he was simply in it as faux opposition from the start. Having unified the militant and disgruntled outliers, he then readily doffed his cap and sheperded his gullible followers towards the only practical Democratic alternative available.
Wasted effort. The 'masters' in the shadows are about to throw the harridan under the bus. Her brazen air of arrogance and entitlement is about to fade as she comes to realise, that albeit Comey having been got at, he's still succeeded in striking a severe blow against her, and also at the not-so-tin-hat conspiracy of inappropriate, and increasingly overt, institutional support, in the face of documented lies, in your face hypocrisy, and corruption oozing from every orifice of a maverick administration.
The seeds have been planted for a defense of diminished responsibility. Don't fall for it! Hillary, (and her illustrious spouse), deserve not a smidgen of pity.
''We came, we saw, he died'', she enthusiastically and unempathically cackled.
Just about sums it up
Michael109 fflambeau 2d ago
Bernie disgraced himself and drove a dagger through the heart of youth involvement in the democratic process. Millions of kids believd in him. He's is even more repellent that Clinton. Faced with evidence that the DNC had rigged the nomination process in favour of Clinton, what did he do? He backed her. Beyond shame.
August 05, 2016
Fred C. Dobbs :LA Times
Bernie Sanders: I support Hillary Clinton. So should everyone who voted for me http://fw.to/mVDxuLJ
The conventions are over and the general election has officially begun. In the primaries, I received 1,846 pledged delegates, 46% of the total. Hillary Clinton received 2,205 pledged delegates, 54%. She received 602 superdelegates. I received 48 superdelegates. Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee and I will vigorously support her.
Donald Trump would be a disaster and an embarrassment for our country if he were elected president. His campaign is not based on anything of substance - improving the economy, our education system, healthcare or the environment. It is based on bigotry. He is attempting to win this election by fomenting hatred against Mexicans and Muslims. He has crudely insulted women. And as a leader of the "birther movement," he tried to undermine the legitimacy of our first African American president. That is not just my point of view. That's the perspective of a number of conservative Republicans.
In these difficult times, we need a president who will bring our nation together, not someone who will divide us by race or religion, not someone who lacks an understanding of what our Constitution is about.
On virtually every major issue facing this country and the needs of working families, Clinton's positions are far superior to Trump's. Our campaigns worked together to produce the most progressive platform in the history of American politics. Trump's campaign wrote one of the most reactionary documents.
Clinton understands that Citizens United has undermined our democracy. She will nominate justices who are prepared to overturn that Supreme Court decision, which made it possible for billionaires to buy elections. Her court appointees also would protect a woman's right to choose, workers' rights, the rights of the LGBT community, the needs of minorities and immigrants and the government's ability to protect the environment.
Trump, on the other hand, has made it clear that his Supreme Court appointees would preserve the court's right-wing majority.
Clinton understands that in a competitive global economy we need the best-educated workforce in the world. She and I worked together on a proposal that will revolutionize higher education in America. It will guarantee that the children of any family in this country with an annual income of $125,000 a year or less – 83% of our population – will be able to go to a public college or university tuition free. This proposal also substantially reduces student debt.
Trump, on the other hand, has barely said a word about higher education.
Clinton understands that at a time of massive income and wealth inequality, it is absurd to provide huge tax breaks to the very rich.
Trump, on the other hand, wants billionaire families like his to enjoy hundreds of billions of dollars in new tax breaks.
Clinton understands that climate change is real, is caused by human activity and is one of the great environmental crises facing our planet. She knows that we must transform our energy system away from fossil fuels and move aggressively to energy efficiency and sustainable energy.
Trump, on the other hand, like most Republicans, rejects science and the conclusions of almost all major researchers in the field. He believes that climate change is a "hoax," and that there's no need to address it.
Clinton understands that this country must move toward universal healthcare. She wants to see that all Americans have the right to choose a public option in their healthcare exchange, that anyone 55 or older should be able to opt in to Medicare, and that we must greatly improve primary healthcare through a major expansion of community health centers. She also wants to lower the outrageously high cost of prescription drugs.
And what is Donald Trump's position on healthcare? He wants to abolish the Affordable Care Act, throw 20 million people off the health insurance they currently have and cut Medicaid for lower-income Americans.
During the primaries, my supporters and I began a political revolution to transform America. That revolution continues as Hillary Clinton seeks the White House. It will continue after the election. It will continue until we create a government which represents all of us and not just the 1 percent – a government based on the principle of economic, social, racial and environmental justice.
I understand that many of my supporters are disappointed by the final results of the nominating process, but being despondent and inactive is not going to improve anything. Going forward and continuing the struggle is what matters. And, in that struggle, the most immediate task we face is to defeat Donald
YouTubePublished on Jul 26, 2016
Most of us knew this already, but now here's proof. Is Bernie going down fighting for his political beliefs like a real presidential candidate would? Is he even being remotely honest with his supporters at this point? Nope. He's keeping his mouth shut and staying on script for Hillary - who everyone knows will be the worst kind of tyrannical dictator - saying, "I'm proud to stand with her".
For those of us who didn't know this, Bernie was like a magical fairy unicorn. People want so badly to believe it's real... but it just isn't... and it never was. Feel the burn...
Truthstream Can Be Found Here:
Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use. Lemmy Fuque 1 day agoFor decades the Clintons have run a criminal organization of fraud, deception, hypocrisy, conspiracy, bribes, blackmail, espionage, treason, murder, assassination, money laundering, sex-slaves, pedophilia, etc. that would leave Capone and Giancana in awe. Leaked DNC emails is your proof that Bernie was just another Clinton pawn. (Add Seth Rich to the Clinton body count after leaking DNC emails). Though Bernie attracted a lot of followers, do NOT under estimate the stupidity of the brainwashed Libtard electorate to vote the skank criminal cunt for POTUS. Clintons run the $100B criminal Clinton Foundation & Global initiative and get what they want-or they will take you out. Libtards will be the easiest and first lead to FEMA camps for NWO depopulation.cros99 1 day agoYou can't blame Bernie for he is a Professional politician after all. To survive in that game, one has to play ball with party management. Half the trouble in this country comes from the two parties who make the decisions....Not the people.Garren Luce 5 hours agolike jessse venture said ..politics is exactly like wrestling - In front of the cameras they hate each other , but when it's off they eating lunch togetherj jay 4 hours agoBernies reaction that night when Clinton dared to thank him said it all ,sad fact is he refuses to say they fucked him and lied and cheated because she has offered him something or he is scared.
www.nakedcapitalism.comAPPENDIX II: Sanders' Role in the 2016 Election
We will have to wait for the campaign tell-alls to understand what the Sanders campaign believed its strategy was, and whether the campaign believes it was successful, or not. While it is true that reform efforts in the Democrat Party have a very poor track record, it's also true that third parties have a terrible track record. (It's worth noting that in the eight years just past, with the capitol occupations, Occupy proper, Black Lives Matter, fracking campaigns all on the boil, the Green Party was flatlined, seeminly unable to make an institutional connection with any of these popular movements. It may be that 2016 is different. It may also be that the iron law of institutions applies to the GP just as much as it does to any other party.) Therefore, "working within the Democrat Party" - which Sanders consistently said he would do; the label on the package was always there - is not, a priori , a poor strategic choice, especially if "working within" amounts to a hostile takeover followed by a management purge. And it's hard for me to recall another "working within" approach that garnered 45% of the vote, severed the youth of the party - of all identities - from the base of the ruling faction, and invented an entirely new and highly successful funding model. Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Coalition, which the dominant faction in today's Democrat Party destroyed, would be the closest parallel, and the material conditions of working people are worse today than they were in Jackson's time, and institutions generally far less likely to be perceived as legitimate. And if we consider the idea that one of Sander's strategic goals was not the office but the successful propagation of the socialist idea - as a Johnny Appleseed, rather than a happy warrior - then the campaign was a success by any measure. (That said, readers know my priors on this: I define victory in 2016 as the creation of independent entities with a left voice; an "Overton Prism," as it were, three-sided, rather than an Overton Window, two-sided. I've got some hope that this victory is on the way, because it's bigger than any election.)
With those views as background, most of the attacks on Sanders accuse him of bad faith. This was the case with the Green Party's successfully propagated "sheepdog" meme; it's also the case with the various forms of post-defeat armchair cynicism, all of which urge, that in some way Sanders succeeded by betraying his supporters in some way. (This is, I suppose, easier to accept than the idea that Sanders got a beating by an powerful political campaign with a ton of money and the virtually unanimous support of the political class.)
If Sanders had defined success as betraying his supporters, I would expect him to act and behave like a successful man. That's not the case. Here is Sanders putting Clinton's name into nomination:
It's a sad, even awful, moment, I agree, but politics ain't beanbag. While it would be irresponsible to speculate that Sanders looks so strained and unhappy because he found a horse's head in his bed ( "Mrs. Clinton never asks a second favor once she's refused the first, understood?" ), his body language certainly doesn't look like he's a happy man, a man who is happy with the deal he's made, or a man who has achieved success through the betrayal of others; you'd have to look at the smiling faces on the Democrat main stage for that.
....ambrit, July 29, 2016 at 1:38 pmToby613, July 29, 2016 at 2:59 pm
I don't know the psychology of Sanders, but, how much did he really expect to win in the early days of his campaign? Could "getting the Socialism ball rolling" have been his definition of success in the beginning? Like Trump, the other disruptional candidate, could his very success in the primary season have surprised him? If so, then his pivot back to the Senate and Socialist coalition movement building makes perfect sense.
In this sense, the anger focused on Sanders would be a displacement of the groundswell of anger by the general public at the sheer brazenness of the DNC's anti public policies. The DNC has shown contempt and disdain for the very people they purport to work for. Whoever shifted the popular anger from the DNC onto Sanders has done a masterful job of propaganda. Saint Bernays would be proud.Kurt Sperry, July 29, 2016 at 5:05 pm
I don't think he was expecting to win when he started, but at the same time he was probably thinking it was worth a running a primary challenge to change the conversation. His political strategy of trying to increase turnout of working class voters was not a bad one, considering that Democrat primary voters have lately been the demographics who support either neoliberalism or would be racially biased against a non-Christian candidate. He was mainly hurt by three things, two of which were largely out of his control: (1) he lacked the polish/media saavy to not get dragged into minor issues that distracted from his core message (like the flap about calling Clinton unqualified, or his visit to the Vatican), (2) he literally had the entire media and political establishment working against him, and arguably inciting voter suppression and fraud , and (3) his non-Christianity limited his ability to coalesce support from older African-Americans, which hurt him in the South and hurt him from a perception standpoint.
What remains to be seen is where his supporters go now. Dissatisfaction with the status quo will only continue to increase. Something interesting though, is that Tulsi Gabbard seems to be setting herself to be the continuation of the Sanders movement. I am unfamiliar with her policies, but her positioning is in stark contrast to the rest of the Democrat Party.
Older people–and older AAs are no exception–I think just are less receptive to the Sanders message. They've been propagandized for too long and too successfully. Actually I don't just think this, the polling data fairly screams it. It might be a waste of time chasing those AA church lady grandmothers, they are right wing conservatives in almost any objective sense who minus the identity politics woo woo would be Republicans but just need a safe space to be that way without rubbing shoulders with overt white racists, and the corporate neocon-neolib DP mainstream is a perfect fit for them.
Obama, who pretty much could be George W Bush in blackface, is the perfect identity politics totem for that role. The good news is obviously that this demographic is dying off and young AAs don't share their elders' pretty extreme right wing Christian viewpoint. I don't think the left needs to fix that "problem" or even can. Time will fix it and nothing much else can.
www.moonofalabama.orgFor those who have a Twitter account, checkout #dncleak or #dncleaks on the latest over the Wikileaks release of the DNC emails.
Here's one -"Hillary Clinton is now blaming the Russians for leaking the emails. Like that makes it any better that you rigged the primary."
Sanders to Chuck Todd on the leaks -
Todd: "So just to sum up here, these leaks, these emails, it hasn't given you any pause about your support for Hillary Clinton?"
Sanders: "No, no, no. We are going to do everything that we can to protect working families in this country. And again, Chuc, I know media is not necessarily focused on these things. But what a campaign is about is not Hillary Clinton, it's not Donald Trump. It is the people of this country, blah blah blah..."
"[...] And I'm going to go around the country discussing them [issues] and making sure Hillary Clinton is elected president."
So, there you have it. The guy who suspected his campaign was being intentionally marginalized by the party apparatus learns in fact he, his campaign and most importantly, his voters were indeed intentionally marginalized by the leadership of the Democratic Party. The chairman of the Party is Barack Obama. He appoints the Director who we all know is Wasserman Schultz. Thus, the entirety of the DNC leadership knowingly and with intent marginalized Sanders and his voters. Yet, Sanders remains loyal and naively believes his voters will stay with him if he sticks with the party and their chosen candidate that screwed him and them.
His response reminds me of battered wife syndrome. He has absolutely bonded with his abusers. He is a sick man as in mentally impaired, maybe fatigued, and should seriously consider some rest.
I cannot imagine learning after years of planning, hard work and personal sacrifices being made to fulfill my lifelong ambition to get within a whisker of achieving my goals, only to learn within weeks after capitulating, that my entire life's effort was undermined from the beginning by the very apparatus I aligned with, albeit as an Indy, for decades. An apparatus that must remain neutral.
Think about his response to Todd. Think about all that man has put himself, his family, his workers, his voters through this last year. His efforts were ginormous. Yet, within less than 48 hours the man dismisses the gravity of how his life's work was deliberately, with intent, sabotaged by the DNC and goes onto say it's not important, the issues are.
If I were a Bernie supporter I'd be starting a campaign to convince that man to take some serious time off. Go fishing. Go for hikes whatever. Just get away from the bubble and clear your head and soul.
Sure the issues are important to his voters but their learning the DNC put their resources behind their chosen candidate vs remaining neutral as their Bylaws require, would seriously piss me off. Hell it does piss me off and I'm not even a Sanders supporter.
And why on earth would any of Sanders voters ever believe that the same party that marginalized him and his efforts would ever give weight to the issues he's fighting for!
Posted by: h | Jul 24, 2016 1:24:40 PM | 11
Jul 12, 2016 | RT AmericaFollowing Sanders officially dropping out of the race, Stein reminded RT viewers of her proposal to step aside in order to offer him the nomination in her Green Party.
"We have been offering Bernie Sanders, basically to sit down and talk and to explore how we might be collaborate, because I can't give away the nomination," Stein told RT, stressing that even though she cannot take the delegates' role of assigning nominations, she "could certainly work with him for all sorts of possibilities, including leading the ticket."
This could be possible, she said, if Sanders "truly saw the light," meaning "the green light, that we do need independent politics."
In Stein's view, "the revolution is now being stuffed back into a counter-revolutionary party," whose standard bearer, Clinton, she scorns for "leading the charge for Wall Street, for wars and for the Walmart economy."
"Bernie said let's forget the past, but I don't think people can forget this movement that they've worked so hard to build," Stein said, adding that on Tuesday "there were a lot of people who were watching this endorsement in complete and utter disbelief."
.... ... ...
Sanders supporters have taken to social media in a stern backlash against the former Democratic presidential candidate.
"They also can't forget Hillary Clinton's record, which is very much the opposite of what they have been working for the past year," Stein says.
Dr. Jill Stein
The truth is that we cannot have a revolutionary campaign inside a counter-revolutionary party. jill2016.com/steins_respons e_to_sanders_endorsement_of_clinton …
2:45 PM - 12 Jul 2016
"I think there are a lot of broken hearts out there among the Bernie campaign. A lot of people who are feeling burned by the Democratic Party, who are not going to simply resign themselves to an election that offers them either a billionaire, one hand, or a cheerleader for the billionaires," she added.
She says that after primaries in California where "it became clear that the Democratic Party was really shutting [Sanders] out," her Green Party began to see people's interest surge.
"We are seeing that now, in the last 24 to 36 hours as well, as people realize that the game is over," Stein said.
Well, now it's Stein or Trump - time will tell.
Sanders is the worst kind of turncoat.
How can he possibly support the Laughing Butcher of Libya? He must have been a lost soul to begin with, or sold it long ago.
townhall.comWhat also stands out in the above criticism is that Sanders, seeking the Democratic nomination as a Tea Party of the Left outlier, has a long-standing history of supporting presidential military forays: anathema to aggressive progressives.
In 1999, Congressman Sanders signed onto President Bill Clinton's military interventions into Kosovo. Peace activists crashed his Burlington, VT Congressional Office. One of the protesters commented on the Liberty Union Party website :
In late April I was among the 25 Vermonters who occupied Congressman Bernie Sanders' Burlington office to protest his support of the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia and the ongoing war against Iraq. Calling ourselves the "Instant Antiwar Action Group," we decided to bring our outrage at Bernie's escalating hypocrisy directly to his office, an action that resulted in 15 of us being arrested for trespass.
Dissident Voices blasted Sanders not just for cozying up with the Democratic Party, but war authorizations throughout his tenure in the House of Representatives.
Despite his own claims, Sanders has not been an antiwar leader. . . . His hawkish [stance] drove one of his key advisers, Jeremy Brecher, to resign from his staff. Brecher wrote in his resignation letter, "Is there a moral limit to the military violence you are willing to participate in or support?"
Click on this link for Brecher's letter of resignation.
Dissident Voices continues:
Under the Bush regime, Sanders' militarism has only grown worse. While he called for alternative approaches to the war on Afghanistan, he failed to join the sole Democrat, Barbara Lee, to vote against Congress' resolution that gave George Bush a blank check to launch war on any country he deemed connected to the September 11 attacks.
Indeed, Barbara Lee (D-CA) was the lone vote against granting this extended power to President Bush. Sanders joined with both parties on this issue. Of course. While Presidential candidate Sanders has relaunched his speech on the House floor opposing the War on Iraq in 2002, Counterpunch has already exposed Sanders' connections with Bush 43's military ventures:
After thousands of people are killed in the World Trade Center and Pentagon, President George Bush and Congress declared war on Afghanistan. Sanders joined the bandwagon and voted to adopt the joint resolution that authorized the President to use the United States Armed Forces against anyone involved with the attacks of September 11th, 2001 and any nation that harbors these individuals.
While Sanders voted against the original authorization to use military force against Iraq, he followed that vote with several subsequent votes authorizing funding of that war and the debacle in Afghanistan.
Sanders has followed a pattern of voting against initial efforts to expand government resources into the War on Terror, then voted for funding them afterwards.
The Democratic Party's 2016 Presidential bench is a clown-car of political dysphoria. From Hillary Clinton's early yearning for Republican Barry Goldwater, to Lincoln Chafee's former GOP US Senator status, and Jim Webb's service in the Reagan Administration, now left-wing partisans can argue that "Weekend at Bernie" Sanders is right-wing warmonger .
RT AmericaSanders has spent a lot of time and energy convincing voters that Clinton had no place in the Oval Office.
The following are just a few examples.
1 – "Are you qualified to be President of the United States when you're raising millions of dollars from Wall Street whose greed, recklessness and illegal behavior helped to destroy our economy?" – Philadelphia rally, April 2016.
However, Sanders may be singing a different tune when he is back in Philadelphia for the Democratic National Convention. His change of heart Tuesday included telling the audience: "I have come here to make it as clear as possible as to why I am endorsing Hillary Clinton and why she must become our next president."
2 – "I proudly stood with the workers. Secretary Clinton stood with the big money interests" – Youngstown, Ohio March 14
Sanders has frequently attacked Clinton's use of Super PACs and potential interest from elite banks. While the former secretary of state has been endorsed by many unions, such as the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Sanders' speech swapped that rhetoric for something a little more flattering.
In his endorsement speech, he said: "Hillary Clinton understands that we must fix an economy in America that is rigged and that sends almost all new wealth and income to the top one percent."
3 – "Do I have a problem, when a sitting Secretary of State and a Foundation ran by her husband collects many millions of dollars from foreign governments, governments which are dictatorship… um yeah, do I have a problem with that? Yeah I do."
Sanders passionately attacked the Clinton Foundation in June, calling its reception of money from foreign governments such as Saudi Arabia a "conflict of interest." However, on Tuesday he told the audience that Clinton "knows that it is absurd that middle-class Americans are paying an effective tax rate higher than hedge fund millionaires, and that there are corporations in this country making billions in profit while they pay no federal income taxes in a given year because of loopholes their lobbyists created."
4 – "She was very reluctant to come out in opposition. She is running for president. She concluded it was a good idea to oppose the TPP, and she did."
Clinton's slow opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) raised the ire of both Sanders and his supporters. Perhaps through intense negotiations to make Clinton's campaign more progressive, he is now willing to focus more on Clinton's interior economy, saying, "She wants to create millions of new jobs by rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure – our roads, bridges, water systems and wastewater plants."
5 – "Well, I don't think Hillary Clinton can lead a political revolution"
Commenting on Clinton's potential to carry the torch for the political revolution he claimed he was spearheading, Sanders lacked faith in her ability to make the changes he deemed necessary back in June, when he was on CBS's "Face the Nation."
However, perhaps through negotiating the terms of his endorsement, Clinton's platform sounds more and more like Sanders' when he talks about it. Describing new platforms such as lowering student debt and making free education attainable without accruing massive amounts of debt, along with expanding the use of generic medicine and expanding community health centers all sound like shades of Sanders.
6 – "When you support and continue to support fracking, despite the crisis that we have in terms of clean water… the American people do not believe that that is the kind of president that we need to make the changes in America to protect the working families of this country."
Back in an April debate, many voters were frustrated when Clinton gave a lengthy, difficult explanation about her stance on fracking. Sanders, a longtime opponent of hydraulic fracturing.
However, since the CNN Democratic Debate, Sanders and Clinton may have both shifted their positions on the matter that was once clear cut for the senator from Vermont.
According to Sanders, "Hillary Clinton is listening to the scientists who tell us that if we do not act boldly in the very near future there will be more drought, more floods, more acidification of the oceans, more rising sea levels."
7 – "When this campaign began, I said that we got to end the starvation minimum wage of $7.25, raise it to $15. Secretary Clinton said let's raise it to $12 ... To suddenly announce now that you're for $15, I don't think is quite accurate."
At the same CNN debate in Brooklyn, Sanders hammered on Clinton's inconsistent stance on raising the minimum wage. While her opinion has shifted from debate to debate, it seems that Sanders' has as well.
"She believes that we should raise the minimum wage to a living wage," Sanders said, without specifying what the minimum wage would be increased to under her more progressive campaign.
8– "Almost all of the polls that… have come out suggest that I am a much stronger candidate against the Republicans than is Hillary Clinton."
Sanders might be eating crow for this one. His entire endorsement speech often focused on the party's need to defeat presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump. Throughout the speech, Sanders contrasted the new and improved Clinton strategy that includes more of Sanders' talking points with those from Trump.
Sanders went as far as to place the importance of the election on keeping Trump away from the Supreme Court, saying, "If you don't believe this election is important, take a moment to think about the Supreme Court justices that Donald Trump will nominate, and what that means to civil liberties, equal rights and the future of our country."
9 – "[Super predators] was a racist term and everybody knew it was a racist term."
Clinton's involvement with the criminal justice reform of the 1990s that contributed to the mass incarceration has frequently been a contentious point in this election. In 1996, she went on to warn the public about the existence of "super predators," or children with "no conscience, no empathy, we can talk about why they ended up that way, but first we have to bring them to heel."
However, both Clinton and Sanders have a track record of working with the civil rights movements, and now Sanders may not be so quick to put Clinton and racist in the same sentence.
"Hillary Clinton understands that our diversity is one of our greatest strengths," he said Tuesday.
Armstrong EconomicsOf course Bernie Sanders appears to have sold out emerging from a White House meeting with President Barack Obama vowing to work together with Hillary Clinton to defeat Donald Trump in November. Bernie would rather endorse a traitor who has sold her influence as Secretary of State just to save the Democratic Party. Obama assured Bernie, no doubt, that he would not allow Hillary to be indicted. And to further rig the game, the State Department refuses to release her emails until AFTER the election. But the actual date they gave was November 31st, 2016, which does not exist since November has only 30 days. Once she is president, no doubt they will vanish altogether.
It appears that Bernie is betraying all those who supported him. Hillary will raise $1 billion to buy the White House. That kind of money does not come from bankers without strings. Wall Street supports Hillary – not Trump. That says it all. How Bernie can just give up is amazing. What happened to his "revolution" will never be discussed.
naked capitalismSanders and Clinton in New Hampshire
So, what's happening with the Sanders list?
"Text of Bernie Sanders' speech endorsing Hillary Clinton" [MarketWatch]. Lambert here: Mene, mene, tekel, upharsin. The moment had to come, and now it has come. Will Sanders, in practice, have proven to be a sheepdog? Will Sanders' endorsement decapitate his movement? To me, the open question is what actions Sanders voters will take, going forward, beyond the ballot box, and as organizers. I'm not really sanguine about that, because the Chicago conference didn't give me confidence the left could unsilo itself, and distinguish itself, as a single institutional force ready to take power, from the (neoliberal) liberals (mostly Democrats) and the (neoliberal) conservatives (some Democrats, mostly Republicans). That said, the Sanders campaign did more than the left could have expected in its wildest dreams. To the text:
[SANDERS:] I have come here today not to talk about the past but to focus on the future. That future will be shaped more by what happens on November 8 in voting booths across our nation than by any other event in the world. I have come here to make it as clear as possible as to why I am endorsing Hillary Clinton and why she must become our next president.
During the last year I had the extraordinary opportunity to speak to more than 1.4 million Americans at rallies in almost every state in this country. I was also able to meet with many thousands of other people at smaller gatherings. And the profound lesson that I have learned from all of that is that this campaign is not really about Hillary Clinton, or Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders, or any other candidate who sought the presidency. This campaign is about the needs of the American people and addressing the very serious crises that we face. And there is no doubt in my mind that, as we head into November, Hillary Clinton is far and away the best candidate to do that.
I'd prefer the position that Clinton hasn't won the nomination until there's a vote on the convention floor, which I had understood to be the position of the Sanders campaign.
[SANDERS:] Hillary Clinton understands that we must fix an economy in America that is rigged and that sends almost all new wealth and income to the top one percent.
Assumes facts not in evidence.
[SANDERS:] This election is about the grotesque level of income and wealth inequality that currently exists, the worst it has been since 1928. Hillary Clinton knows that something is very wrong when the very rich become richer while many others are working longer hours for lower wages.
Assumes facts not in evidence.
[SANDERS:] I am happy to tell you that at the Democratic Platform Committee which ended Sunday night in Orlando, there was a significant coming together between the two campaigns and we produced, by far, the most progressive platform in the history of the Democratic Party. Our job now is to see that platform implemented by a Democratic Senate, a Democratic House and a Hillary Clinton president - and I am going to do everything I can to make that happen.
Platform as a highly inadequate baseline and a method to hold Clinton's feet to the fire? Yes. Not negligible, but not much. And Clinton immediately showed - before the rally! - that she didn't take it seriously.
[SANDERS:] Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her here today.
I don't see how the institutionalized corruption of both legacy parties generally and the Clinton Dynasty in particular make any of this possible. One door closes, another opens…
"'I can't help but say how much more enjoyable this election is going to be when we are on the same side,' [Clinton] said. "You know what? We are stronger together!'" [CNN]. Whichever Clinton operative decided to deploy the "stronger together" slogan shouldn't be expected to have known that it's also a slogan developed by the military junta in Thailand. But whatever.
"Tuesday's rally drew supporters of Clinton and Sanders, some of whom chanted 'Bernie' while others chanted 'unity.' Some Sanders supporters left their seats when Sanders endorsed Clinton. Earlier, when New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen said 'we need to elect Hillary,' she was interrupted by shouts of 'No!' and chants of "Bernie, Bernie' [USA Today]. "But there were deafening cheers as Sanders said Clinton would 'make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her here today.'"
"The most ringing portion of the endorsement came at the end, with Sanders bringing up some of the personal reasons why he had chosen to support Clinton. But even this portion felt a bit lifeless, with Sanders citing Clinton's intellect and passion on children's issues, and failing to address her integrity, which he directly challenged during the campaign and which will continue to be an issue the Republicans attack in the wake of the conclusion of the FBI's investigation into her email scandal" [Slate].
And what happened here?
Do we have any readers who were on that conference call?
"[I]n a nod to Sanders's successful fundraising efforts that brought in millions of dollars from small donors, with at one time an average donation of $27, Clinton's campaign has made $27 an option on its online donor page" [CNN].
"About 85 percent of Democrats who backed Mr. Sanders in the primary contests said they planned to vote for her in the general election, according to a Pew poll released last week. Yet she has struggled to appeal to the independents and liberals who rallied behind the senator's call for a 'political revolution' to topple establishment politicians, Mrs. Clinton included" [New York Times]. 85% of declared Democrats. Not such a good number from a third of the electorate.
"I am not voting for Hillary Clinton, regardless of her endorsement by Bernie Sanders. My decision isn't because of the scandal around her emails or because of some concern over her character. My reasons are pretty straightforward. I don't agree with her ideologically" [Eddie S. Glaude, Time].
"The final amendment to the Democratic Party platform was meant to sprinkle Hillary Clinton's name throughout the document, putting a contentious and drawn-out primary process to rest in favor of a unified party. It never came up for a vote" [Bloomberg]. "Despite having the support of both the Clinton and Bernie Sanders campaign staffs, the amendment hadn't been run by committee members or Sanders supporters in the audience, some of whom angrily shouted down the language because, they argued, Clinton isn't the official nominee yet. The moment highlighted the state of the party after a long weekend of intense debates in Orlando, Florida, that left some tempers frayed, and extensive back-room policy negotiations between the two campaigns…."
"On Tuesday, the [Trump and Indiana Governor Mike Pence] will put their compatibility to the test when they appear together at a rally near Indianapolis, the latest in a string of public auditions for the running mate role" [RealClearPolitics].
""Hillary Clinton's campaign is vetting James G. Stavridis, a retired four-star Navy admiral who served as the 16th supreme allied commander at NATO, as a possible running mate" [New York Times]. From the Wikipedia entry, which seems to have been written by a Clinton operative: "Stavridis has long advocated the use of "Smart Power," which he defines as the balance of hard and soft power taken together. In numerous articles and speeches, he has advocated creating security in the 21st century by ." I mean, come on.Roger Smith
Those that sent money to Bernie please let Lambert and us know if dddc or dnc ask for $$$$$$. Then may be it will just be a letter from the foundation asking for $$$$$$$$$$$$.Arizona Slim
I will update should I receive anything. I am curious about the list as well.Rick
I just unsubscribed from Bernie's e-mailing list.cwaltz
As did I. I will keep the poster I bought from his campaign as a reminder of a now passed moment of hope.
The moment hasn't passed unless you were expecting Bernie Sanders to do all the heavy lifting.
The reality is that each and every person disappointed today should make a concerted effort to let the DNC know in no uncertain terms did their lying, cheating and outright rigging of this primary mean that they'll be getting a vote this November. It also means that each and every person find their spine and support someone other than the Democratic nominee. Expect to hunker down for 4 years no matter what because if Clinton or Trump are the nominees then you can pretty much expect there won't be many benefits for average Americans.
thebuzzinsider.com"Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her here today," Sanders said at the end of the rally.
This proclamation is a far cry from how his stance was a couple months ago, when he claimed that Clinton wasn't qualified for the presidency.
"I don't believe that she is qualified," Sanders said in a Philadelphia rally back in April, as reported by thinkprogress.org. "[I]f she is, through her super PAC, taking tens of millions of dollars in special interest funds. I don't think that you are qualified if you get $15 million from Wall Street through your super PAC."
Trump was one of the first to call Sanders a sell-out on Twitter, comparing his endorsement of "Crooked Hillary Clinton" to Occupy Wall Street endorsing Goldman Sachs.
"I am somewhat surprised that Bernie Sanders was not true to himself and his supporters," Trump tweeted. "They are not happy that he is selling out!"
While some Democrats are happy that the party has seemed to have finally united, like the Communications Workers of America who have now changed their endorsement from Sanders to Clinton, other supporters share Trumps sentiments, feeling outraged and disappointed at Bernie's sudden change of heart.
"A Sanders endorsement of Clinton would be the ultimate betrayal of his supporters, especially those of us that poured money into his campaign."
"Bernie, if you endorse Hillary Clinton, after is NOW A PROVEN FACT she lied to the American people, then you sir are a FRAUD."
"Bernie, endorsing Clinton destroys every point you made and everything you stood for in the race. You are letting the people who supported you down. You made a promise to fight in the end, but instead you are conceding. You are not the elected leader you lead us to believe in. Shame on you."
These are just some of the comments people have been leaving on Sander's Facebook page, as reported on the Forward Progressives website.
Other supporters have asked him to wait for the Democrats Party convention, to run in a third-party or to join Jill Stein in the Green Party ticket.
Now that Sanders has endorsed Clinton, Clinton's campaign will most likely focus on convincing his supporters to join them in their fight for the presidency.
www.theguardian.comJul 12, 2016
Potyka Kalman, 2016-07-12 19:30:33So why exactly he endorses her? We still don't know.X Girl , 2016-07-12 19:18:28
The Democrats has good political operatives. There is Barack, the "change-no-change" "black not for blacks" candidate, and Bernie, The Revolutionary who stands staunchly behind Goldman Sachs and everything it presents.
Of course the real governing task is delegated to Hillary Clinton and the "experts" from the banks.
Hey guys. Good job. Just remember: ultimately there is that cliff you're marching towards.
Why is he not doing as he promised and taking his message and challenge all the way to the convention? The super delegates are still an play and I doubt they've even finished counting California...This is very disheartening... Prepare for eternal war.CivilDiscussion , 2016-07-12 18:51:45
Lyin' Bernie. A Trojan Horse for the corporate mafia from the very start.CrookedWilly99 , 2016-07-12 18:51:19I'd like to formally thank Bernie Sanders for endorsing my wife Hillary today. I know how tough it was for Bernie to stump for her today. Especially considering Hillary is even more crooked than my 4-inch yogurt slinger. As many of my young interns know, that's really crooked!Itsyaboi , 2016-07-12 18:47:10
I'd also like to formally apologize to Bernie for all the death threats and that severed horse's head my guys left in his bed. lol whoops! Ok, gotta go make another phone call to my good friend Trump now.....You could just crawl back into your socialist hole and not say anything Bernie, but no, you're just another fool brought by Clinton because she needs your votes like she needs air. Congratulations on becoming another member of the Clinton foundations bankrollDavid Michael , 2016-07-12 18:37:02The problem isnt her most recent rhetoric, it is her person, and trusting to do the things she says (as she has held every side of every position). The endorsement doesn't fix the problem that we still don't want her... I think many of us will be looking for at the third party alternatives. If we give into this lesser of two evils every election cycle, we'll soon find candidates worse than Trump.Falanx , 2016-07-12 18:30:071. Party platforms are consolation bullshit. They mean nothing, especially when the big money funding the campaign is against the platform. This is just a political fact.RobO83 , 2016-07-12 18:26:48
2. Therefore, Bernie's campaign has not started a revolution, but rather has dead-ended with a big bowl of nothing.
3. Parties are the vehicles through which policies get pushed and accomplished. Since it was re-engineered by the Clinton's in the 1990's, the Democratic Party is like a vehicle with its steering welded to turn right.
4. Therefore the only way to achieve a successful and peaceful political revolution is to re-engineer the vehicle; and this requires breaking it down and putting it back together.
In other words, for the sake of progress, the D.N.C. as presently constituted and managed had to be destroyed.
5. The only way to destroy the D.N.C. would have been to hand Hillary a defeat on a platter. This would have driven home, in the only way politicians understand, that progressive Americans will not be played and fooled.
6. The willingness to do this requires strategic fortitude -- a willingness to think in long term objectives and to endure immediate and temporary inconveniences. Four years of Trump will not be the "sky-is-falling" disaster the Hillary Hens are clucking over. Eight years of Hillary will only solidify the grip corporations, banks and neo-con militarists, have on the country.
7. Bernie should have run as an independent, precisely in order to defeat Hillary. Only then could a four year hiatus be used to clean out the D.N.C., and revitalize it with real progressive blood. Then and only then will progressives get the "platform" they want. Is four years of Clown Trump worth it? You bet.Clintons character is as dubious as her husbands pants after an afternoon with Monica.pull2open RobO83 , 2016-07-12 18:31:36But in comparison to her opponent?YetAnotherSimon RobO83 , 2016-07-12 18:32:56Or one of his 26 flights on sex-offender Jeffrey Epstein's plane the 'Lolita Express'fedback gooner4thewin , 2016-07-12 18:36:37
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/may/14/bill-clinton-ditched-secret-service-on-multiple-lo /Bernie is anti war, anti Wall St., anti TPP. If that is not a betrayal of his supporters and his principles what is it thenmikehowleydcu , 2016-07-12 18:25:02Chris Hedges was right all along.IanB52 mikehowleydcu , 2016-07-12 18:39:53I disagree. Chris Hedges believes that Sanders intended to mislead voters and intentionally funnel them back to Hillary Clinton under the belief that they would uncritically support her. That seems to be completely false, and even if it were true, it's seems he made a terrible sheepdog as many of us will not support Hillary. The problem was that although he saw no chance for an independent to win, the Democratic Party is a dead end for real change as well. I guess we all know that now.mikehowleydcu IanB52 , 2016-07-12 18:48:36Point taken.mikehowleydcu IanB52 , 2016-07-12 18:52:33
When it comes to intention I guess that I believed that he was genuine in his attempt to win and bring about change (except on the nation that cannot be criticised and on foreign policy) but the endorsement of HRC is another blow for the massive desire to remove these two corporatist parties.
With the DNC having decided to support fracking, settlements etc the American people (and the world) are in for more of the same, war, privatisation, alienation of the poor, secret trade deals that give more power to corporations and environmental destruction etc. etc. etcHere's what Chris said to Ralph NaderJeff1000 , 2016-07-12 18:20:34
"He's lending credibility to a party that is completely corporatized. He has agreed that he will endorse the candidate, which, unless there is some miracle, will probably be Hillary Clinton."Oh Bernie.Tuan Hoang hureharehure , 2016-07-12 18:58:45
You bottled it in the end. Sad. I never liked him much, but in running as an independent or siding with the Greens he could have showed that he stands for something. Endorsing Clinton is like taking a job at Goldman-Sachs.
Hell, maybe that's where he's headed.Oh, so he admitted it'd be better to support a lesser evil? How should you support an evil anyway? How about quietly withdrawing from the race and not saying anything that violates his own principles? I don't see what that's difficult to understand myself!novenator , 2016-07-12 18:20:35There was never a doubt that Democrats would eventually unite behind whoever ended up being the nominee. The problem is that all those NON-Democrats who so passionately supported Bernie will not. He was the real deal, and our best hope of actually engaging them, expanding our party, and having the wave election we need to actually get progress done.Tuan Hoang , 2016-07-12 18:20:01
I have been actively trying to recruit folks like this into our ranks for many years now, so trust me when I tell you that we are in very serious trouble this year. No matter what Bernie says or does, these non-Dems will not feel the bern for her. We are heading to a low voter turnout election with two major candidates that have record low net favorability ratings, and Republicans usually do best in situations like that since they have the most reliable voting base.In my book, when you've run against somebody, you must think that guy would be a bad choice. When you think a person is a bad choice, how come you endorse that person? Bernie lost my respect (even though he doesn't care)!RankinRalph , 2016-07-12 18:15:59F*** this lesser-of-two-evils rubbish. We paid for his campaign, to resist this criminal and what she represents with every fibre of his body and he's sold us out. Jill Stein offered him something that could have brought real change and he sold us out. He is there because of the money and faith we put in him.BennCarey , 2016-07-12 18:10:21
What a turncoat bastard. I am disgusted.For a vast library of information detailing the many crimes of the ghastly Clinton crime syndicate, please see the following link. http://www.arkancide.comDammitJim72 , 2016-07-12 18:10:05Super delegates have yet to vote, Hillary has not made it past the threshold, so if Sanders torpedos her, he gets booted out as a Dem nominee by party rules. So in order to stay to the convention he is doing what he has to.NoSerf , 2016-07-12 18:09:52
Has he conceded? No! If Bernie showed and asked me to vote for Hillary I would tell him no.
Bernie or Jill, never Hill! Still Sanders!Hillary is vetted by Netanyahu.wakeupbomb , 2016-07-12 18:08:41Another completely meaningless choice awaits the American people, how thrilling.Drewv , 2016-07-12 18:08:24At this point, Bernie's endorsement of Hillary does not matter at all. The genie of his movement is already out of the bottle, and it cannot be put back in.NadaZero , 2016-07-12 18:10:31
The movement never belonged to him, he belongs to the movement, and Bernie knows it. He knows it even as he pronounces the endorsement. He has played his enormously important part in that movement through his candidacy and now he will go back to fighting for the progressive cause from inside the Democratic party, because that is what he has been doing for twenty years and before he launched that candidacy. But the forces that he has unleashed will keep growing and gathering strength on their own.
Never Hillary!!Same old shit then. The Plutocrats won again and can freely go on selling 'war for profit' as 'fighting for freedoms.'ethane21 NadaZero , 2016-07-12 18:38:28
Christ on a fucking cracker.Anjeska , 2016-07-12 17:51:27With the useful benefit that La Clinton can now swan about on stage draped in a coat made from the hide of an old leftie.
Same old shit then. The Plutocrats won again and can freely go on selling 'war for profit' as 'fighting for freedoms.'
"We came, we saw we skinned it." And oh how the laughter rang out the entire length of Wall Street.Trump has spoken against globalism. Trump has spoken against neocon wars. Trump wants to uphold our laws.Merseysidefella , 2016-07-12 17:51:12
Hillary is a globalist shill.
Hillary is a warmongerer.
Hillary thinks laws are for little people.
The choice is simple.Even if Hillary chooses Pocahontas as her running mate, they will lose because everyone is fed up with the Regime.CriticalThinking4000 , 2016-07-12 17:45:57
The US is not a democracySo the warmongers and wall street win again. For the moment at least. The struggle continues. A new front opens under the banner of the Greens. In the UK the Grassoots on the left now have the whole power of the elite arrayed against them, with dirty tricks and media lies. The right wing blairites are using every trick in the book to split our Labouur Movement and remove our democratically elected Leader Corbyn. We are hanging in. Wish us luck, American friends! Looks like we are going to need it. No surrender!Jayarava Attwood CriticalThinking4000 , 2016-07-12 18:16:14There was never any doubt, in any election ever fought in the USA, that the military-industrial-financial complex would be the winner. They always are.NullPointerException , 2016-07-12 17:44:50
The left in the UK are tearing themselves apart Life of Brian style (how prescient that film was!). It will be generations before they every wield power in this country, if ever. I'll probably see out my days under a vicious Tory administration.It's a shame it has come to this but kind of expected.Jedermann , 2016-07-12 17:44:33
Bernie wants to stop Trump now, and he believes that his is the way to do it. I don't personally this will have the desired effect enough people despise Clinton, but we will see.
If I was a US citizen and had a vote, I would have thrown my full support behind Bernie, but this endorsement certainly would not make me vote for Hillary either (I certainly wouldn't support Trump, I'm not totally insane), I'd prefer to abstain completely.
Strategic voting is an expression of support for the rigid, corrupt and self-serving political system that led to self-serving cretins like Trump and Clinton being among the elite ruling class in the first place.
All it does is prolong the death rattles of the lower orders of society.He closed, thumping the lectern and proclaiming: "Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her today."imithemountain , 2016-07-12 17:44:02
How can he say that? I feel so very let down.Fellow Americans: Our country was demolished by Clinton, and Obama has been running a kill list for extra judicial killins, and he is the sitting president under wich a police force appears to be on a rampage to coloured people. The first black president leading a nation of multiple racist killings.SgtEmileKlinger , 2016-07-12 17:31:03
The word lie doesnt cover it. The word lying says it doesnt want anything to do with Democrats. Trump, or any other republican, is a far better bet. bring back George Bush jr for all I care. Anyone but a Demorcratic president. Dont do it.To endorse Hillary Clinton is to be in alliance with a cynical and utterly corrupt liar who is willing to say anything to get elected. By endorsing Hillary you, Bernie, have become a part of everything you have been complaining about. Never mind. It never was about you and your endorsement isn't worth shit.jimithemountain , 2016-07-12 17:24:51Fuck you, Bernie Sanders, and fuck off.Mike5000 , 2016-07-12 17:20:54Why did you sell out before the convention, Bernie?fedback , 2016-07-12 17:20:42Bernie has to work hard to pay back the 200 mio. dollars supporters donated to his campaign. The money was not meant to go to a Clinton endorsementMaryElla22 , 2016-07-12 17:19:51And?Histfel , 2016-07-12 17:15:54
If Brexit is any indicative: Trump won.After the progressive cause was successively sold out to Goldman Sachs by Paul Krugman, Gloria Steinem, John Lewis and the Congressional black caucus, Lena Dunham, Beyonce, George Clooney and Elizabeth Warren (Did I forget any of the earlier hate figures here?) it was inevitable that Bernie would ultimately also be revealed as a neoliberal sellout.NarodnayaVolya Porl D , 2016-07-12 17:08:47Has to be viewed in the context of the global threat of Donald Trump thoughID984302 , 2016-07-12 16:50:31
yeah imagine anyone daring to public oppose further neo-conservative onslaught.
Obviously the man's unhinged and has to be stopped pronto.
fortunately bill kristol, victoria nuland, robert kagan et al are hot on the case and 100% on board with hillary (& bill) on thisAh hello, Clinton Foundation?? Hasn't he read the FBI insider leaks??Lafcadio1944 , 2016-07-12 16:45:40
C'mon Putin, it's data dump time!!!Sanders and Warren are now subsumed into the maw of the Empire of the Exceptionals and are pledging their loyalty to it. Just like Obama all hopie changie during campaigns but when the chips are down they show their true colors as Neoliberal sycophants and support every policy the claimed to oppose.Declan Mccann , 2016-07-12 16:42:11I for one will never support a now proven corrupt and dishonest career politician. Sorry Bernie, but the political revolution can never take place within a party as establishment focused as the Democratic Party. A sad and depressing time for all real progressives.Vulpes Inculta Tystnaden , 2016-07-12 16:49:22Hillary is more dangerous.David Wiebelt II , 2016-07-12 16:39:40
Trump is a man whose uncompromising attitude means he'll get even less done than Obama. He'd be remembered as an ineffective washout of a president, unable to get anything done and sorely disappointing a lot of voters.
Hillary is a smooth political operator who's in it for her own gain and will get an awful lot done - just not the things you want her to do. She'll be hawkish against Russia, interventionist against the Middle East, she'll throw her full weight behind the establishment in both America and Europe, and she'll make sure her paymasters at Goldman Sachs aren't disappointed in her.Bought and sold Bernie. Bernie shows his true political colors as a tool of the elite class.cidcid , 2016-07-12 16:38:37Chicken and traitor. Deceived millions of naive young people who believed him.Montezuma74 Tystnaden , 2016-07-12 17:06:27He's a little traitor. Spending donor's money on his own whims, then betraying the people he said he'd stick up for.garrylee , 2016-07-12 16:38:10
Then, he joins the Goldman Sachs, George Soros, Saudi and Israeli owned Clinton, who, as Obama said, will promise everything and change nothing.
Not to mention, FBI director Comey just testified in court that HRC gave classified documents to those who should not have seen them.
Bernie sold out everyone who fought for him. Discusting, snivelling little coward. Unsurprising for most of us though.Oh,Bernie.What have you done?Legitimised a neo-liberal craven warmonger.You're not like Corbyn after all!LinearBandKeramik AndyCh , 2016-07-12 17:33:37steveOhollywood , 2016-07-12 16:31:07
Some people are just stupid.
I suppose voting for Hillary to stop Trump might be an unavoidable course of action. But few people realize the danger Hillary represents to the United States... not because of what she will do, but because of what she won't do.
Across the Western world, the centre is rapidly crumbling. Without a significant course correction, it will soon fall and what replaces it is hard to predict – but I doubt it will be pretty. Austria almost elected a far right president, the UK voted for Brexit, the GOP nominated Trump. You're a fool if you think this is the anti-establishment backlash... it's only the beginning, and these events are just canaries in the mine. The real backlash is yet to come.
With 4-8 years of a Clinton-led status quo government, resentment will grow, inequality and hopelessness will increase... and eventually a right wing demagogue who is much smarter than Trump will see an opportunity and pounce. I suspect it'll happen right after the next market crash, which Clinton will do nothing to prevent.
Historically illiterate people are constantly looking out for the "next Hitler" and so point their finger at the likes of Trump. But that's the wrong question. Anyone who understands the events that led to Nazism realizes the true question is who is the next Von Hindenburg . Clinton looks like a pretty good candidate in that respect.OK. I am officially un-endorsing Bernie Sanders.
www.theguardian.comjparmetler , 2016-03-13 08:44:03You are absolutely right as far as these five questions are concerned. Yet you forgot an important one: TTIP as well as the Trans-Pacific Partnership. These so-called free trade agreements are a fatal threat to democracy as they invest more power in corporations than in parliaments and additionally they are detrimental to labour and the environment in the concerned countries.Robert Maxwell , 2016-03-13 02:59:28It's a good article and reflects some of the questions I've been having.mothersuperior5 , 2016-03-13 01:34:11
My curiosity was aroused when the first CIA-directed drone killed its first victims, a terrorist leader and some comrades in Yemen years ago. I'd thought that the CIA's assassination of anyone in a foreign country was illegal. Evidently the rules have changed but I don't recall hearing about it.
The media are always an easy target but lately I think their responsibility for our collective ignorance has increased. The moderators in the TV debates seem deliberately provocative. I can remember the first televised debate -- Kennedy vs. Nixon -- when both men soberly addressed the camera when answering questions of substance.
The first interaction BETWEEN debators was a brief remark in 1980 by Reagan aimed at Jimmy Carter. "There you go again." Before then, the debates were sober and dignified, as in a courtroom. After that, the debates slowly slid into the cage fights they've become.
I'm afraid I see the media as not setting the proper ground rules. Fox News is the absolute worst. The result is a continuous positive feedback loop in which we are gradually and unwittingly turned into those people who buy gossip tabloids at the supermarket checkout counter.
BREAKING NEWS! HILLARY WETS BED UNTIL TWELVE YEARS OLD!
If we wind up with one of these egomaniacal clowns in the White House, we'll deserve what we get.here it is again Cruz: right now in Fox: Iran wants to kill us; 'Donald' wants to negotiate deals with Iran and Cuba. We don't negotiate with terrorists. By failing to note what Trump actually says and by pretending that Hillary is not a neocon - a subtle one to be sure - you are revising the facts. actually as the facts appear. think about it and be clear. the moderate Islam routine BY Cruz Rubio Kasich is not about islam. its about the supposed sunni supposed allies. like please. add some insight. at least a bit.mothersuperior5 , 2016-03-13 01:20:33Yeah. Painting the Syria/Libya crisis as Hillary vs the Repubs however is dishonest. not lacking insight or clarity. dishonest. On the Repubs: all the candidates except Trump said at the debate a few days ago that peace was not in the interests of Israel and therefore a US President would betray Israel by SEEKING peace.michtom , 2016-03-12 20:10:53
Trump said he'd be even-handed for the purpose of negotitating a peace deal. the other candidates say - reading from a script, certainly not thinking - that the trick was to get Saudi Arabia and Turkey to fight ISIS. sure, except they wont. Their agenda is anti-Assad in the name of conservative sunni-ism. the moderate arab sheikdom theocracy routines IS part of the problem. frankly the other Repub candidates would flirt with nuking Iran. Iran must be part of the solution like it or not. Hillary said at the townhall before Miss/MI that 'if we'd taken out Assad earlier like we did Gaddafi then Syria would only be as bad as Libya'. Your Hillary vs the Repubs routine is dishonest. This is the neocon oligrachy fighting for its life election. do not fake it in the name of Hillary.Isn't the reason for most foreign policy decisions that they will make money for the Military Industrial Complex?Powerspike michtom , 2016-03-12 22:29:01
"Modernizing" nuclear weapons? Helping Saudi Arabia slaughter citizens of Yemen? Destabilizing multiple countries so that MORE weapons become "necessary" to deal with the instability?
All the question should be framed on that basis: "Is there any reason to 'modernize' our nuclear weapons other than to enhance the bottom line of the companies involved, especially when we are supposed to be working against nuclear proliferation?"An excellent statement of reality - sometimes it needs saying.normankirk , 2016-03-12 19:06:03
http://fff.org/2016/03/11/the-u-s-middle-east-killing-racket /Fantastic article, absolutely spot on. Its been a long wait , thank you.Powerspike lorimerhotshot , 2016-03-12 21:56:21
The Obama administration has redefined the word "militant " to be a "male of military age within the strike zone" and here's the killer ..."unless POSTHUMOUSLY proven to be innocent"
Democrats or Republicans alike, foreign policy is predicated on the American drive to maintain global dominance, whatever illegal murderous callous action it takes.Try this websiteFeatherstone1 , 2016-03-12 17:41:16
http://www.antiwar.com /Ramos ought to have asked Hilary exactly why Gadaffi was deposed, and came back at her fiercely with statistics and independent reports if she dared to even muse the suggestion that it was another "humanitarian intervention".Michronics42 , 2016-03-12 17:34:44
Sanders should be pressed on Israel, and whether he can formally condemn the state for repeatedly breaking promises re: settlement on the West Bank and for committing war crimes during the Gaza strip conflict.If Hillary's two decade history of war mongering was exposed for what it really represents by "journalists" in the corporate media, she would no longer be insulated from the scrutiny her deeply flawed decision making warrants. If democracy and transparency actually functioned in the media, Hillary would be exposed as a neocon, whose terrible policy decisions have led to one global disaster after another, fomenting terrorism. (Even the New York Times-which endorsed Hillary-detailed her disastrous decisions in Libya).FraidyMan , 2016-03-12 16:46:27
Unfortunately, the American public have only independent news sites like the Intercept, Truthdig, the Jacobin, Harpers Magazine, Mondoweiss, and a few others from which to evaluate the real damage Hillary has caused.
But, like her domestic policies-historically: from Clintonomics to mass incarceration; welfare reform; the war on drugs; education (especially in Arkansas); disastrous "free" trade agreements; rampant fascism in the form of corporatism; plus, the millions donated to her campaign from dark money super pacs; and her sham "foundation; Hillary continues to represent the worst that politics offers, both globally and domestically.
And the list above also includes the devolution of the Democratic Party from FDR-like socialism to Clinton dominated corporate hacks, since Bill's election in 1992.
Until Clinton, Inc is stopped from commanding allegiance from "democratic" politicians on everything from the macro to micro levels of Democratic Party matters, voters will continue to be denied a true forum for change.What gives Amerika the right to intervene in the affairs of other nations in the first place? Are they unaware that the rest of the world fears American terrorism more that anything else, or more likely, do they care? No wonder Hillary and the Republican hawks are worrying the planet.jokaz , 2016-03-12 16:34:27"Currently Saudi Arabia is engaged in an indiscriminate bombing campaign in one of the world's poorest.."jokaz , 2016-03-12 16:34:27
Saudi Arabia is bombing with logistical help from US and UK, we're not only silent on the crimes of KSA, we help them"Currently Saudi Arabia is engaged in an indiscriminate bombing campaign in one of the world's poorest.."Bogdanich , 2016-03-12 16:01:59
Saudi Arabia is bombing with logistical help from US and UK, we're not only silent on the crimes of KSA, we help themHillary was the push behind the U.S. Participation in Ukraine, Syria and Libya. Just a pathological warlord. She appointed VIc Nuland as undersecretary of state for Gods sake. A neo-con. The people that brought us the Iraq war. If she's elected you will get more of the same in a big way as she will increase the force structure and the involvement.no1ban , 2016-03-12 15:55:05This is the kind of informative and vital article I am buying the Guardian to read and which these days is all too rarely printed.Hanwell123 no1ban , 2016-03-12 16:49:52Try the Independent, it is much more forthcoming about foreign affairs and doesn't just parrot the stock Neo conservative stance.alberto grieve , 2016-03-12 15:20:07It is futile to expect reason from people whose foreign policy education comes primarily from Hollywood. It used to be that 96 % of people in congress had never left the country, even less lived abroad with other people and learned a foreign language. The ignorance is truly amazing and it would be funny if these people were not those that decide what happens in the world.MrConservative2016 David Ellis , 2016-03-12 14:45:33
If the US keeps meddling in world affairs then the whole world should vote in their elections.Don't exactly celebrate the US 'wag my tail' relationship with Wahhabi Arabia but on Syria, the only good option is to ally with President Assad and bomb out the Wahhabi infestation.knightpestle , 2016-03-12 14:26:03Libya is the dog that doesn't bark in the night in UK politics too.Kevin P Brown MrConservative2016 , 2016-03-12 14:35:03
During the debate on bombing Syria, speaker after speaker alluded to the disastrous intervention in Iraq, for which the guilty parties are no longer in the house.
But not one brought up the disastrous intervention in Libya, for which the guilty party was currently urging us into another intervention.
Having an amateurish, inward-looking Labour party doesn't help, of course.
The only people who have called Cameron out on Libya in the past year are Nigel Farage and Barack Obama. Ye gods."According to the 24 February 2010 policy analysis "The Year of the Drone", released by the New America Foundation, the civilian fatality rate since 2004 is approximately 32%. The study reports that 114 reported UAV-based missile strikes in northwest Pakistan from 2004 to present killed between 830 and 1,210 individuals, around 550 to 850 of whom were militants."nnedjo , 2016-03-12 14:18:49
You can quibble about the exact number of civilians killed, but the moment you approve of your local police bagging bad guys even if your family gets killed then you can maybe make a comment.mothercourage , 2016-03-12 14:13:56After reading " The Dron Papers " Edward Snowden came to the conclusion that drones do not really chase the terrorists, but they chase their mobile phones. Hence so many innocent victims, because who can guarantee that the mobile phone which was earlier in the possessions of some terrorist, is not now in the hands of entirely innocent people.
Many human rights organizations have called them illegal, and retired military leaders have said they backfire, creating more terrorists than they kill.
So, in addition to many ethical questions about the use of drones, this raised another question on how much "high-tech killing" is indeed reliable.Excellent article.SergeantPave , 2016-03-12 14:10:37
Informative and quite rightly challenging.
America is really running away with itself on who, where, how and why they attack.
Britains 'special' relations with the US, should be curtailed, forthwith, because they have the audacity to now start pressuring us about the EU refferendum, too.
Obama had the nerve to say that we were free loading on the back of "US might" and their attempts at "global order", his words. While neatly avoiding the questions you ask here, about their role in Libya, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, drones etc., etc, etc.
Britain should fight back with these facts and distance ourselves from this aggression.Hardly amazing. There's not one American in a thousand for whom these issues will determine their vote.jez37med SergeantPave , 2016-03-12 14:24:56quite rightnnedjo , 2016-03-12 13:55:54nnedjo , 2016-03-12 13:43:40This is also a proof of the "schizophrenic" Obama-Clinton foreign policy. US administration is doing everything to solve the problem of the Iranian nuclear program, and at the same time doing everything to spoil relations with the other nuclear power in the world, Russia.
While an enormous amount of time during this campaign has focused around the Iran nuclear deal, almost no attention has been given to any country that actually has nuclear weapons and what they plan to do with them over the coming years and decades.
The curiosity of its kind is that Russia, which is also affected by the US sanctions, helps US to resolve its dispute with Iran and suspend sanctions against this country. And not only that, but Russia agrees to relocate enriched uranium from Iran to its territory and thus provide a practical implementation of the agreement on the Iranian nuclear program.kattw Kevin P Brown , 2016-03-12 14:57:33Yes, Trevor Timm also criticized this in some of his previous articles, as well as Ron Paul, who also often criticized Obama for this fact. It's completely unclear why Obama continues to rely on the two authorizations that George W. Bush has got from Congress "to punish the perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks", and for "the destruction of Saddam Hussein's [non-existent] WMD". This is particularly unclear given that Obama himself came to power mainly due to his criticism of Bush's war adventures.
yet the presidential candidates are almost never asked about why congress has not authorized the military action like the constitution requires.
It is possible that Obama does not have enough confidence that he can get authorization from the GOP dominant Congress to combat Isis in Syria and Iraq. However, by using authorizations for the old wars for something that has nothing to do with the new wars, Obama is not only acting illegally, but also provides an opportunity for the conclusion that he now supports Bush for the same thing for which he criticized him earlier, that is, for the Afghan and Iraq war.'course I wouldn't approve. And I doubt most countries approve of being invaded (except for the folks who DO approve anyways).
"The US must stop acting as the world police.' Great phrase. You hear it a lot. Totally insupportable. Here's the fundamental problem: the globe is a small place these days. Countries really are no longer isolated entities than can act with little to no impact on anybody else. What one does, others feel. And leadership is a thing - somebody will always lead. Right now, there are very few candidates for that. With the fall of imperial England, the US became the only real superpower left (other than Russia, which has since collapsed, and is busy trying to come back). Thus, whether it likes it or not, the US has a leadership role to play. If it abdicates that position, and does as you and so many other less-than-brilliant folks demand? Power abhors a vacuum. Most likely is that either Russia or China will take over the role currently played by the US. And if you think either of THOSE countries will do a better job than the US, well... enjoy your personal delusion.
As for 'scratching heads and bleating' about intervention... we did not have to intervene. Said that before, saying it again, get it through your skull - we did not have to intervene. We could, in fact, totally disarm and just sit back and do nothing, anywhere. But. THIS WOULD HAVE CONSEQUENCES TOO. Seriously. Understand that. Doing nothing is doing something. Sitting out is still an action one can take. And it is INCREDIBLY likely that things would be WORSE in Libya right now had we not intervened. Not guaranteed, but likely.
The situation sucks. It would have been great if it had all turned out better. It didn't. But it probably would have been worse had we made a substantially different choice. Yeah, sure, you could then pat yourself on the back, and pretend that at least the US wasn't responsible, but, well, as a certain red-and-blue clad superhero says, with great power comes great responsibility. The US has great power - if we didn't intervene, and horrible things happened, it'd be just as much our fault as it is now that we DID intervene, and bad things happened. Because it would have been in our power to stop it, and we didn't.
Business International Corporation (BI) is a known CIA front company; it is very likely that our precious Barack Obama is better understood as an asset of one or more intelligence agencies, and is certainly controlled by some very serious interests *above* the Wall Street level (i.e. Brzezinski, Rockefeller, Kissinger, Soros, etc.) Look at the work his mother Ann Durham did for the Ford Foundation in Indonesia: who was her boss there? None other than Timothy Geithner's father. Please tell me the odds of that coincidence.
I don't believe in coincidence. I also don't abide with broad conspiracy theories. I DO believe that people act on what they perceive to be their best interests. I think that had President Obama determined that it was in his best interest to support BI, purportedly the left-wing advocate for the ruling class, I can't see how he figured that leaving the company, and serving for several years as a community organizer in Chicago would get him what he might have been looking for at BI - as an 'undercover' agent. Or 'tool' for that matter.
He needed some left wing credentials going forward. I'm sure he had periodic contact with his BI recruiters as they continued to groom him for bigger and better things. Everything, from his membership in Rev Wright's church community to the demographics of the state congressional district of his Chicago home address was figured in.
sgt_doomat 2:55 pm Effing A, Cornel be the MAN!DownSouth
Truly, the only individuals worth following today in Amerika are the super-economist, Michael Hudson, brilliant philospher thinker, Michael Parenti, Glen Ford (blackagendareport.com), Glenn Greenwald (brilliant talk he gave recently in Santa Fe (see site below, please), and Chris Hedges. There's really not much left anymore in Amerika, sadly!
http://podcast.lannan.org/2011/03/13/glenn-greenwald-presentation-8-march-2011-video/at 9:40 pm Check out Scott Noble and his new video on Obama Lifting the Veil.DownSouth
It's pretty damned good stuff, and he covers most of the bases.at 10:24 pm You might also want to check out this interview:Jerry 101
In an interview with Democracy Now's Amy Goodman, Dr. Cornel West discusses his…epic dispute with White House economic adviser - then Harvard President - Larry Summers.
"Larry Summers, I think, he had a long history of arrogance and relative ignorance about poor people's culture and working people's culture and so forth," West told Goodman. Their dispute began shortly after Summers was appointed President of Harvard, and ultimately led West to leave Harvard and join the faculty of Princeton. According to West, Summers accused him of canceling classes and called his interest in hip-hop an "embarrassment," among other slights.
West added that he was surprised when Obama selected Summers for his council of economic advisers:
I said, here's somebody who has no history whatsoever of sensitivity to poor people or working people, who had been supporting deregulation for a long time as a Clintonite, in the Clinton administration. What is going on here? Or has Obama already become so comfortable with the establishment that you had to have an economist who was legitimate to the establishment in order for him to get his regime off the ground? OK. I mean, if that's the kind of argument you have, then put it forward. But don't tell me you're a progressive, then, and generate that kind of support or major advisers speaking to you–speaking to you every day.at 2:56 pm Andrew Jackson, yes.Tertium Squid
But JFK? no.
I think that what we really need at this time is for a new Huey Long to emerge. Someone who can really scare the bejeezus out of the oligarchs. Someone who really wants to gut the system.
Then, maybe, just maybe, we can get a Roosevelt (either one, or a combination of both – The New Dealer and The Trust Buster) to start cleaning up this mess.at 2:59 pm I think the modern analogue for Huey Long is Hugo Chavez. Woo hoo Hueygo.Jamesat 8:47 pm Alas, Cornel West always strikes me as "academically naive." Perhaps that's even a complement.F. Beardat 1:47 pm "Chains you can believe in"James
Poor Obama. It would take an Andrew Jackson or a JFK to deal with the bankers today but I guess Mr. Obama will settle for being the last black President for the next 100 years.
Find your backbone, Mr Prez; your time is running out.at 7:06 pm "Mr Prez"Jojo
Clearly that's an honorary title. Too bad for all of us normal people Obama's been anything *but* honorable since taking office.
And as we're all now belatedly waking up to realize, he never was. Imagine that! A lying politician (and from Chicago of all places)! Who would have guessed?at 2:02 pm Throwing a little more tinder on the fire: ---– March 31, 2011 Many Jobs Seen as Failing to Meet the Basics By MOTOKO RICHHal Horvath
Hard as it can be to land a job these days, getting one may not be nearly enough for basic economic security.
The Labor Department will release its monthly snapshot of the job market on Friday, and economists expect it to show that the nation's employers added about 190,000 jobs in March. With an unemployment rate that has been stubbornly stuck near 9 percent, those workers could be considered lucky.
But many of the jobs being added in retail, hospitality and home health care, to name a few categories, are unlikely to pay enough for workers to cover the cost of fundamentals like housing, utilities, food, health care, transportation and, in the case of working parents, child care.
A separate report being released Friday tries to go beyond traditional measurements like the poverty line and minimum wage to show what people need to earn to achieve a basic standard of living.
The study, commissioned by Wider Opportunities for Women, a nonprofit group, builds on an analysis the group and some state and local partners have been conducting since 1995 on how much income it takes to meet basic needs without relying on public subsidies. The new study aims to set thresholds for economic stability rather than mere survival, and takes into account saving for retirement and emergencies.
"We wanted to recognize that there was a cumulative impact that would affect one's lifelong economic security," said Joan A. Kuriansky, executive director of Wider Opportunities, whose report is called "The Basic Economic Security Tables for the United States." "And we've all seen how often we have emergencies that we are unprepared for," she said, especially during the recession. Layoffs or other health crises "can definitely begin to draw us into poverty."
According to the report, a single worker needs an income of $30,012 a year - or just above $14 an hour - to cover basic expenses and save for retirement and emergencies. That is close to three times the 2010 national poverty level of $10,830 for a single person, and nearly twice the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour.
A single worker with two young children needs an annual income of $57,756, or just over $27 an hour, to attain economic stability, and a family with two working parents and two young children needs to earn $67,920 a year, or about $16 an hour per worker.
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/01/business/economy/01jobs.htmlat 3:11 pm Isn't the median wage (different from the household median income of course, as households have an average of more than 1 worker) about $26K or so?MyLessThanPrimeBeefat 3:14 pm The economic strategists all agree it's unwise to fight economic war on two fronts.Cedric Regula
Military wars – it seems possible these days.
So, it is hard to envision how to emerge victorious combatting 'outsourcing of jobs' and 'insourcing of cheap labor (legal and illegal)?'
It's possible that if we let them all in, we can make it just a one-front struggle – no more worrying about outsourcing.at 5:31 pm There is a fast track to legal US citizenship…join the military. So there is a method to their madness….Bill
Not to mention the defense industry has been hiring Indian and Chinese engineers on work visas as soon as they graduate college.
Back in 70s at my Alma Mater, Purdue, located in the eastasia province of Indiana, routinely had a MS graduate class consisting of about 80% rich kid Indians and Chinese on foreign government scholarships. Could have been Korean or Taiwanese, I guess. Hard to tell from the graduating class pictures. But it does make me wonder what was going on at CA universities.at 7:56 pm Those numbers seem a little high for my area. On 60,000 per year here, a young couple with two children can own a home, provide for all expenses and still sock away 20 to 25k per year for retirement. The one thing that could really hurt is a catostrophic illness that our health care only pays 90% of. That could bankrupt us quite easily.Wendyat 2:07 pm I am going to suggest this at the originating site but would also like to suggest here, that being pro-management or pro-owners is NOT being "pro-business", any more than being pro-labor is "pro-business" (and probably less so).Hal Horvath
the term has been co-opted to throw workers in a bad light – any opposition to worker demands is called "pro-business" and workers themselves (or those who want jobs) are somehow "anti-businesss" but this is incorrect, as well as very misleading, as well as awarding honor (to management/onwers) when the opposite is what is deserved.at 2:18 pm Obama is in a form of 'regulator capture.' One of the prime responsibilities of a President is to be a kind of super- or meta-regulator.bob
I figure the cognitive capture is largely via the very convincing Timothy Geithner, who is himself in cognitive capture.
What's the antidote? Only 2 I can think of: direct experience in small business (more than a few months), and/or having some kind of unusual experience and then an epiphany.
Could Obama have an epiphany? Well, it's not impossible.
btw, on a previous topic, for those interested in a convenient way to learn about radiation risks, NPR's program "Science Friday" today is exactly about that, via interview with neutral expert. I find this kind of thing useful to allow me to take care of mundane tasks while learning something valuable and immediately relevant.at 3:03 pm http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2Wsy8jHPk4Tertium Squidat 3:07 pm "Find your backbone, Mr Prez"F. Beard
"Could Obama have an epiphany? Well, it's not impossible."
The dream dies hard. I know it wasn't till Katrina ("Hecuva job, Brownie!") that the scales fell from MY eyes about the Bush administration specifically and the conservative movement generally.
…and that their actions, haphazard and chaotic as they may have been, were a very accurate reflection of what they wanted to do.
Don't worry, you'll get there. If Libya isn't enough I'm sure something even more outrageous is coming at us.at 7:09 pm The dream dies hard. Tertium SquidJames
I never had the dream; I wrote in Ron Paul in 2008. Still I had hope for Obama; at least he wasn't McCain.at 9:45 pm Still I had hope for Obama; at least he wasn't McCain.Jojo
Faint praise that. Still feel so good about your decision? Me neither.at 11:16 pm I think many more people are disappointed in Obama because our expectations were so high after 8 years of Bush.Craig A. Jenkins
OTOH, McCain would have been plain awful. But then we would have expected that.at 3:14 pm Mr. Obama became president at a crucial moment in our history. The "Great Recession" of 2007-2009 was the second great failure of essentially laizze faire capitalism of the last 70 years. Clearly, the business of America needed to be done differently.nonclassical
Rather than leave consumers to be preyed upon by business entities, a new partnership was needed. The false dichotomoy of management v. labor no longer works, especially not for the working people of America. Instead, management must recognize "labor" is not just the hands who make the products or provide the services, but are also the consumers who comprise the domestic market which businesses need to survive and to thrive.
Mr. Obama, by linking his future to the very interests who caused the recession, has not only squandered this moment of history, but set-up the nation for even bigger failures in the future by not reining in the banks and other institutions which nearly burned the world's economy to the ground. The corosive effect of money in national politics, which will only get worse as corporations pursue their new found freedom to support candidates after the Citizens United decision, means money talks and the concerns of the generally poorer public are secondary concerns at best.
This would be class warfare if the middle and working classes resisted the tide of the monied classes. Sadly, we are not. Yet.2:07 am Folks,Dave of Maryland
The historical documentation=truth. U.S. "democratic" capitalism only "re-sets" when everyone has lost everything.
Allowing those "in charge" to remain so, belies transparency, oversight, accountability. Read Geisst's, "Wall $treet-A History". We have ignorantly allowed corporatocracy to move us from FDR's "New Deal" to robber baron's "Old Deal".
Propping up what remains is no answer.at 3:38 pm Obama is a boot-licker.Yves Smith
Say it OUT LOUD.
Obama is a boot-licker.
Obama also collects titles. He's now got the two most impressive titles on the planet: President, and Nobel Prize Winner.
Elsewhere Yves has wondered about females & cups of coffee. No, Obama is not a skirt-chaser.
Like Sarah P., Obama never stays with anything. Will he run next year? Obama's never run for re-election in his life. He's got the title. That's all he wanted.
Betcha he pretends to run, and then bows out at the very last minute. He doesn't want the office. Just the title. Too bad we can't persuade him to resign now.at 7:47 pm I was not accusing him of being a skirt chaser, merely using an unflattering metaphor and making sure it was memorable. I suppose I could have used a sports metaphor instead, like saying he claimed to have won a blue ribbon for every race he entered.Jamesat 10:28 pm All due, calling NoBama a "boot-licker" is merely calling – forgive me here – a spade a spade, is it not? No use belaboring the obvious is there?Dave
NoBama! Once upon a time I(we) was(were) young, stupid, and naive. Yes indeed! Those were the days!
No sir, we won't get fooled like that again, NO SIR!
Not until, oh, I dunno, at least 2012 I guess at least. HELL NO!
We'll show 'em them for sure we will! Bastards!at 3:38 pm You find more coverage of poor people overseas from the MSM, than even a mention of the poor people in this country. Even Obama doesn't mention the poor, only the middle class. Joe Bageant, who sadly recently died, chronicled the plight of the poor white class in this country. What, there's a poor class in America, the greatest country ever? What a joke. America's going to burn again, and it's just a matter of timeMichael Hat 4:25 pm Thanks Dave, for mentioning Joe Bageant.nonclassical
I'd never heard of him until he died recently, since then I've heard the name mentioned once or twice, and after reading your post I decided to look him up and found this:
"…He tells of that huge class of unnoticed people in America, the white underclass of a thousand small towns and countryscapes…He had no patience for smug commentators in Washington who talked at half a million bucks a year….
"His politics may have confused the chattering classes. Joe was the least racist guy who ever lived, but he wrote about the white poor, whose very existence runs against hallowed doctrine. He was also explicitly in favor of the Second Amendment, noting that ninety pounds of dressed venison matters a whole lot to many families. These are families that reviewers of books have never heard of."
I'm adding Joe Bageant to my list of recent American writers who write about poverty. And it's a very short list.2:09 am Thomas Frank has heard of them…optimader11:25 am Joe Bageant was heroic and is missednotexactlyhumanat 5:32 pm Just yesterday received Bageant's Rainbow Pie: A Redneck Memoir. From a preliminary perusal, it appears the new book may well be even better than Deer Hunting with Jesus: Dispatches from America's Class War. Joe was one of the greats.craazyman
Anyway, on another note, from Taibbi:
"Exactly how tough do you think all these ex-Wilmer lawyers will be on current Wilmer clients like Goldman, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, General Electric, Credit Suisse, and practically every other major financial services company? The shamelessness factor is growing by the minute. "
http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/taibblog/the-s-e-c-s-revolving-door-from-wall-street-lawyers-to-wall-street-watchdogs-20110330at 6:32 pm I guess there aren't any poor white people in Princeton.acontra
The professor needs to get out and about. LOL.at 7:09 pm I'm sure Prof. West is aware of the existence of poor white people. However, it's a much more endemic problem for non-whites:kevin de bruxelles
poverty rates: white - 13% black - 35% hispanic - 36%
Source: http://www.statehealthfacts.org/comparetable.jsp?ind=14&cat=1&sub=2&yr=199&typ=24:49 am Yes but even with those percentages, the overall numbers of poor are not kind to whites. And in a democracy, where overall numbers count, it seems foolish to split the poor by obsessing on race. Obvously there is ambiguity with Latinos since it is not a race and many would be considered white. But ignoring that we get the following total numbers:James
Blacks at 13% of population at 35% poverty rate equals 4.5% of 310 million equals around 14 million poor blacks.
Latinos at 16% of population at 34% poverty rate equals 5.4% of 310 million equals around 17 million poor Latinos.
Whites at 65% of population at 13% poverty rate equals 8.45% of 310 million equals around 26 million poor whites.
Personally I would be doing everything I could to combine the 14 million poor blacks with the 17 million poor Latinos and together with the 26 million poor whites. Working together gives us around 57 million poor people fighting the rich. Obsessing on race means we have about 31 million fighting against 26 million and basically just cancelling each other out.at 7:43 pm Poor people pointing fingers at each other is *exactly* the goal of TPTB. Poor is poor. Where do our *real* allegiances lie in the modern world, at least once the shit-on poor are smart enough to realize it?kevin de bruxelles
Nation states? Are you kidding?
Local states/villages? Maybe, depending on your specific situation.
Talk to me about social/economic opportunity and your speaking my language. Every truly poor and oppressed minority knows this already in their bones. *Rest assured*, every rich and privileged majority in this world will *very soon* come to know the truth of those words.3:58 am I too was disappointed with his rather foolish decision to split the poor in half by referencing race. That is not to say that he is factually wrong, I'm sure black and brown are disproportionately poor. But the overall numbers, depending on how you define poor, will come out with at least as many poor whites as poor black and browns. So he handed the wealthy a nice little strategic victory by refusing to focus on class alone but instead falling into the trap of splitting the poor in half by obsessing about their race. I mean how did a poor white person feel listening too him – is his poverty somehow more acceptable due to his lack of melanin?EMichael
What you don't see is the rich dividing themselves up by race. So I suppose tenure at an elite university comes at a price.
In any case Obama is happy to have blacks attack him; just like he strongly encourages the retarded left to beef with him. All that talk in 2007 about Obama not being an authentic African-American certainly did him no harm. It just helps validates him to "centrist" voters. Because at the end of the day, since the poor refuse to organise and vote for a Social Democratic party, where in the hell else are they going to go on election day? They have zero leverage on Obama and the Democrats. At best they can stay home but if the Republicans continue their attacks on unions, then Obama can count on plenty of scared people voting for him, hoping against hope that he will serve as a defensive bulwark against the change coming from the Right.11:23 am I would rewatch the clip of Mr. West if I were you. And also try to find other comments from him that include "it is not just about poor blacks".abelenkpeat 6:53 pm That is a great clip. We certainly do need a jobs program in this country. Thanks for posting!Jamesat 7:31 pm It's hard to take this post seriously, in that the only people who could not know the truth of it from their own day to day experience are NoBama's remaining loyal constituents – the Wall Street and MIC plutocracy – or his most heated enemies – the very people this post points its finger at, but for many reasons too deep to explore here (but have been explored nonetheless by many a political/sociological tome) are simply too damn stupid to notice that they've been targeted by BOTH political parties.Patrick
All that said, what's to be done about it? How do you educate a populace that's simply too damn stupid to realize that they're merely lambs being led to the slaughter (a *totally* convenient religious metaphor that – imagine that! – has been called into service of the cause), especially when you consider that big money driven marketing campaigns delivered through TV and internet are the modern equivalent of "big brother?"?
Answer: In the short term at least, you can't, and the battle – to be brutally honest – cannot and will not be won. That simple bit of bracing reality is the best message that can be transmitted for the foreseeable future. Absent a *transformational* political and sociological awakening in the US (particularly) immediately, we are *all* about to go down some alternative paths that almost all of us are not going to find *at all* agreeable.at 7:32 pm The campaign slogan was "Yes, we can". The result was either "No he couldn't, or No he wouldn't". I can't make my mind up which it is, but with every passing day I'm leaning towards the latter.Masonboro
The joke is that come 2012 the bankers he's helped to protect will put a large part of their "taxpayer" money behind his opponent.at 7:39 pm Not to pick nits but using Michael Jordan as an example of rising from poverty is not a good choice. I worked with James Jordan (Father) for a number of years at the local GE plant and he was a manager with a decidedly middle class lifestyle when Michael was at Carolina. Great guy and hard worker BTW.gil mendozza zuntzes
Jimat 7:58 pm hum… hum… Subprime Bonds are coming Back!… Federal Reserve Bank Board Chairman, Ben Bernanke speaks in Washin-gton yesterday to Snister,Swindler & Lier Barack Obama, Bernanke says; Recession very unlikely to be over… Bad for U.S. economic recovery. Suprime can trigger another financial crisis. New home sales fell 15%; the lowest level since 2008, and Oil prices had risen sharply, Crude Oil Barrel could top $200 by the last quarter of 2011. He could not guarantee any expectations for a dull recovery–Bernanke said will be hard to get credit for consumers and businesses and He believes the economy won't turn around untill the year 2015; and that the United States is coming apart.Deniseat 8:29 pm @ Patrick: The bazillionaires and corporatists won't have to put their money behind Obama's opponent for a second term. He is their candidate. He's done everything they wanted. It's no coincidence there isn't yet a declared Republican candidate. Obama will coast to a second term, no problem. Of course there'll be a big show put on for We The Sheeple but it's a foregone conclusion.Paul Tioxon
This is the first time I've heard of Cornell and I do like what he's got to say.
Yves, I only recently became a huge fan of Joe Bageant's and am sorry at his passing. Absolutely one of the most brilliant writers I've read. Glenn Greenwald is brilliant also, as is Michael Hudson (to agree with a previous poster).at 10:39 pm Well it's official, the He's not Black enough for me from the more Mau Mau than thou- argument. Most people in America after going through the political uprisings of the 60's have seen the office of transgressive behavior go the rich white boy in the room who was first to say "As I look around this room, I don't see any people color". This first commandment handed down to the immediately impressed allowed the Great Announcer the power over the group by showing, beyond a shadow of a doubt, their failure in not recognizing that they were all white, and did not even have enough revolutionary fervor by which to tap their radical Black Compatriots.required
Well, with all due respect to Mr Harrison, who appears to be Black by the picture he provides us, Cornell appears to be the first official radical Black ass you have provided for your Wall St and other viewership. A new step forward for NC. And no doubt, the political cover necessary for all of the white people who post here who just can't stand Obama because his policy choices just suck ass. And I feel your pain. It is the Obama administration, and the 2 year Democratic legislative majority that has failed to do much, if any, of the heavy lifting to transform the nation.
And let me put my cards on the table. Obama, if we was going to transform society, he would do exactly what Hugo Chavez did, and nationalize the oil, coal and gas industries. After all, most of it is owned by foreigners. This gusher of cash sold to China, India and Korea would balance a lot current accounts in favor of team USA. Furthermore, if he was going to transform society, he would place health care as a right by amending the constitution, as it is in the United Mexican States and setting up single payer government managed health insurance.
And of course, all of the gun toting rioting tea baggers would be locked up and beaten by the police and finally discredited. But that did not happen. And the betrayal of the rule of law in face of the galactic scale of economic theft and destruction seems to be the biggest problem for most NC viewers. It is a problem. But the reformist nature of the demands here and the underlining debunking of neo liberalism and the Washington Consensus serves up only a surgically repaired and physically rehabbed doomed system. Doomed, not by historical determinism, but by the analysis here and in other rigorous social science studies. Obama is none other than a capitalist politician, but clearly, not one that will change the system into something else, more egalitarian, more liberating or economically stable. He is in the tradition of the old Liberal consensus, where you could smell freedom, blowing in the wind from just over the horizon, just a further bit down the road, but not quite there yet. But, in the mean time, a measure of dignity, a small but more than adequate slice of the pie in the sky, but here on earth in back yard bar b ques from sea to shining sea, next to 2 car garages.
He is practitioner of the disjointed incrementalist approach to talking about progress, actually allowing some of it and repairing the cracks in the system while holding back the reactionary capitalists that will more than gladly turn the politics over to brutal, violent, terrorizing oppression, in order to ensure the system goes on for another day. Yes, you are all not insane, he is protected the unjustifiable looting of the nation and world by banks. It is also, for now the only system we have. The small steps he has taken, in allowing for 99 weeks of unemployment insurance benefits, expanding the Pell Grants to take young Americans off the street and job market as well as nationalizing the student loan system are small potatoes. I can not over estimate the serious disaster of the alternative. We have only seen the sneak preview trailer for republican world. I urge many of the people here to not give up and allow even more republican control, and if anything, get into the democratic party and take as much control of it as you can at the level you can. If the militant right wing of the republican party can do it, you can as well.at 10:44 pm I've been calling obama a FR$UD for almost two years now – mainly for not prosecuting the fraud.Salviatiat 11:50 pm What many self proclaimed 'black academics' like Cornell West failed to acknowledge in the run up to the 2008 selection was that Barack Obama represented the ultimate realization of Malcolm X's worst nightmare. Here was a man that ran on a platform rhetoric of "change", and has very cynically manipulated the politics of race to shore up and maintain support from the communities that he turns around and screws. As a result progressive politics is in shambles while the poor, working class and primarily people of color are being devastated.Martin Finnucane
Perhaps this is a price worth paying to have the first black president. I don't know, I wish it were different.12:12 am I've always found Cornel to be a bit jejune. But maybe I've been wrong - I find that I agree with every bit of this. President Obama has given us a peculiar, perhaps post-modern, version of racial uplift: lots of warm-hearted photo-ops and imaginary race conciliation, but with a most-definite "screw y'all" to poor youth, who are disproportionately black, brown, and red, as Professor West says.Random Blowhard
Professor West is also an enemy of Larry Summers, which makes him okey-dokey in my book.12:34 am Almost correct, Obama is for WALL STREET only. EVERYONE else gets the trickle down.abcx1:09 am It amazes me sometimes how prescient the Who were back in the day. Bunch of kids but their words stand the test of time I think.Patrick
We'll be fighting in the streets With our children at our feet And the morals that they worship will be gone And the men who spurred us on Sit in judgment of all wrong They decide and the shotgun sings the song
I'll tip my hat to the new constitution Take a bow for the new revolution Smile and grin at the change all around me Pick up my guitar and play Just like yesterday And I'll get on my knees and pray We don't get fooled again Don't get fooled again
Change it had to come We knew it all along We were liberated from the fall that's all But the world looks just the same And history ain't changed 'Cause the banners, they all flown in the last war
I'll tip my hat to the new constitution Take a bow for the new revolution Smile and grin at the change all around me Pick up my guitar and play Just like yesterday And I'll get on my knees and pray We don't get fooled again Don't get fooled again No, no!
I'll move myself and my family aside If we happen to be left half alive I'll get all my papers and smile at the sky For I know that the hypnotized never lie
There's nothing in the street Looks any different to me And the slogans are replaced, by-the-bye And the parting on the left Is now the parting on the right And the beards have all grown longer overnight
I'll tip my hat to the new constitution Take a bow for the new revolution Smile and grin at the change all around me Pick up my guitar and play Just like yesterday Then I'll get on my knees and pray We don't get fooled again Don't get fooled again No, no!
Meet the new boss Same as the old boss7:10 am Cornel still trying to be the corner hipster of the 60's. In the end he will vote for Obama regardless of his short comings. He knows it and so does Obama.Dan Duncan9:53 am A Baby-Boomer-Blogger links to a Baby-Boomer-Race-Baiter, to the bellow of fellow Baby-Booming-Beatnik-Bloviators.
The Me-My-Mine-Generation that will go down forever as The Peter Pans That Could…and then couldn't. The Peter Pans who made it out of adolescence–barely–only to languish as Perpetually Entitled 20 Somethings. The Generation of Brats that wantonly destroyed everything in its path.
It'd be easier to get some scuba gear, an underwater writing pad, and teach a school of fish about the concept of water than to get Boomers to understand the concept Selfish Indulgence.
..."It's official: When it comes to foreign policy, Barack Obama's first term is really George W. Bush's third. Bill Kristol, son of the late neoconservative godfather Irving Kristol and editor of the Weekly Standard, declared that Obama is "a born-again neocon" during a March 30 appearance on the Fox News Channel's Red Eye w/Greg Gutfeld. Kristol's remark came in the context of a discussion of Obama's consultation with Kristol and other influential columnists prior to his March 28 address to the nation about his military intervention in Libya. Gutfeld quizzed Kristol about the President's asking him for "help" with his speech. Kristol denied that Obama had sought his help. Instead, Kristol said,
In case anyone missed the significance of Kristol's comment, Gutfeld made it clear: "We've got the drones. We've got military tribunals. We've got Gitmo. We're bombing Libya. People who voted for Obama got four more years of Bush."
Kristol agreed, adding: "What's the joke - they told me if I voted for McCain, we'd be going to war in a third Muslim country…. I voted for McCain and we're doing it."
Of course, to Kristol, calling someone a neocon is a compliment. Indeed, Kristol praised Obama's speech on the Weekly Standard blog, saying the President "had rejoined - or joined - the historical American foreign policy mainstream." The speech was "reassuring," Kristol explained, saying, "The president was unapologetic, freedom-agenda-embracing, and didn't shrink from defending the use of force or from appealing to American values and interests." In other words, it was a neocon speech, cloaking the use of violence in the language of liberty and treating the U.S. military as the President's personal mercenaries to reshape the globe rather than as defenders of the territorial United States.
This is not the first time Kristol and other neocons have lauded Obama's foreign policy. After Obama made a speech in 2009 announcing he was sending more troops to Afghanistan - that is, he was replicating Bush's Iraq "surge" in another location - Michael Goldfarb, a Weekly Standard writer, asked Kristol for his reaction to the speech. "He said he would have framed a few things differently," Goldfarb related, "but his basic response was: 'All hail Obama!'"
Similarly, when the President last August claimed that "the American combat mission in Iraq has ended" while asserting that "our commitment to Iraq's future is not" ending, New York Post resident neocon John Podhoretz applauded Obama for his "rather neoconservative speech, in the sense that neoconservatism has argued for aggressive American involvement in the world both for the world's sake and for the sake of extending American freedoms in order to enhance and preserve American security." [Emphasis in original.]
Sheldon Richman, writing in Freedom Daily, reminded readers of just exactly what neocon policies have wrought:
Just to be clear, the neocons were among the key architects of the war against Iraq in 1991, followed by the embargo that killed half a million children. That war and embargo set the stage for the 9/11 attacks, which were then used to justify the invasion and occupation of Iraq (an ambition long predating 9/11) and the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan, American's [sic] longest military engagement - all of which have killed more than a million people, wreaked political havoc, and made life in those countries (and elsewhere) miserable. Let's not forget the drone assassination and special ops programs being run in a dozen Muslim countries. The neocon achievement also has helped drive the American people deep into debt.
Nice crowd Obama is hanging with these days. And that's no exaggeration. Frederick Kagan, one of the top neocon brains and a signatory of the Project of the New American Century imperial manifesto, now works for Gen. David Petraeus.
Barack Obama, the candidate of "change we can believe in," turned out to be the President of "more of the same." Lest there remain any doubt about this, one need only turn to establishment news organ Time magazine. There Mark Halperin, explaining "why Obama's Libya address was strong," states quite bluntly: "George W. Bush could have delivered every sentence."