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Two Party System as Polyarchy

Version 2.0 (Jul 25, 2016)

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"There is one political party in this country, and that is the party of money. It has two branches, the Republicans and the Democrats, the chief difference between which is that the Democrats are better at concealing their scorn for the average man."

-- Gore Vidal

“The Democrats are the foxes, and the Republicans are the wolves – and they both want to devour you.” So what does that make Libertarians? Avian flu viruses?”

-- Leonard Pinkney

The race is no contest when you own both horses. That is why no matter which political party is in power nothing really changes other than the packaging. The puppets who drink at the champagne fountains of the powerful do the bidding of their masters. The people are superfluous to the process.

-- Daniel Estulin


Introduction

I subscribe to Kantian idea of the dignity in human, the idea that everyone is entitles to survival as well as thriving beyond survival. But does everybody is entitled to equal participation in ruling of the state ?  Or  election of state leaders? Which is what democracy means.

But at the same time the struggle for political equality which is often associative with the word "democracy" is a vital human struggle even if democracy itself is an unachievable and unrealistic ideal (see The Iron Law of Oligarchy).  In some sense too much talk about Democracy is very suspect and just characterize the speaker as a hypocrite with probably evil intentions, who probably is trying to mask some pretty insidious plans with "democracy promotion" smokescreen. That is especially true for "export of democracy" efforts. See color revolutions for details. 

Under neoliberalism we now face a regime completely opposite to democracy: we have complete, forceful atomization of public, acute suppression of any countervailing political forces (not unlike it was the case in the USSR) including  labor unions and other forms of self-organization for the lower 80% or even 99% of population.  Neoliberalism tries to present any individual as a market actor within some abstract market (everything is the market under neoliberalism). Instead of fight for political  and economic equality neoliberalism provides a slick slogan of "wealth maximization" which is in essence a "bait and switch" for wealth maximization for the top 1% (redistribution of wealth up - which is the stated goal of neoliberalism). It was working in tandem with "shareholder value" mantra which is a disguise of looting of the corporations to enrich its top brass via outsize bonuses (IBM is a nice example where such an approach leads) and sending thousands of white color workers to the street. Previously it was mainly blue-color workers that were affected. Times changed. 

Everything should be organized like corporation under neoliberalism, including government, medicine, education, even military. And everybody is not a citizen but a shareholder  (or more correctly stakeholder), so any conflict should be resolved via discussion of the main stakeholders. Naturally lower 99% are not among them.

In any democracy, how can voters make an important decision unless they are well informed?  But what percentage of US votes can be considered well informed?  And taking into account popularity of Fox News what percentage is brainwashed or do not what to think about the issues involved and operate based on emotions and prejudices? And when serious discussion of issues that nation faces are deliberately and systematically replaced by "infotainment" voters became just pawns in the game of factions of elite, which sometimes leaks information to sway public opinion, but do it very selectively. All MSM represent the views of large corporations which own them. No exception are allowed. Important information is suppressed or swiped under the carpet to fifth page in NYT to prevent any meaningful discussion. For example, ask several of your friends if they ever heard about Damascus, AR.

The great propaganda mantra of neoliberal governance, "wealth maximization" for society as a whole in reality is applied very selectively and never to the bottom 60% or 80%, or eve 99% of population.  In essence, it means a form of welfare economics for financial oligarchy while at the same time a useful smokescreen for keeping debt-slaves obedient by removing any remnants of job security mechanisms that were instituted during the New Deal. As the great American jurist and Supreme Court associate justice Louis Brandeis once said: “We can have huge wealth in the hands of a relatively few people or we can have a democracy. But we can’t have both.” As under neoliberalism extreme wealth is the goal of the social system, there can be no democracy under neoliberalism. And this mean that pretentions of the USA elite that the USA is a bastion of democracy is plain vanilla British ruling elite style hypocrisy.  Brutal suppression of any move to challenge dominance of financial oligarchy (even such feeble as Occupy movement)  shows that all too well.

Politically neoliberalism. like Marxism in the past, operates with the same two classes: entrepreneurs (modern name for capitalists and financial oligarchy) and debt slaves (proletarians under Marxism) who work for them. Under neoliberalism only former considered first class citizens ("one dollar -- one vote"). Debt slaves are second class of citizens and are prevented from 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 (see Empire of Illusion The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle by Chris Hedges) which decide nothing but helps to provide legitimacy for 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.

The difference between democrats and republicans as (at least partially) the difference in the level of authoritarism

Although politics at the US elite has been polarized since Reagan, when Republican drifted right and Democrats were bought by Wall Street. But still those parties reflect two different strata of the US population, which according to Marc J. Hetherington and Jonathan D. Weiler book Authoritarianism and Polarization in American Politics in the level of authoritarianism (for example, as measured by F-scale.). Many Republican politicians can be classified as Double High Authoritarians

If we assume that this is true, the the large part of "verge issues" that so skillfully played in each election, and which allow the elite to avoid addressing any fundamental issues facing the nation, duch as race, gay marriage, illegal immigration, and the use of force to resolve security problems -- reflect differences in individuals' levels of authoritarianism. This makes authoritarianism an especially compelling explanation of contemporary American politics. Events and strategic political decisions have conspired to make all these considerations more salient. While the authors acknowledge that authoritarianism is not the only factor determining how people vote, it does offer a an important perspective on the issue which goes a long way toward explaining the current election campaign: a lerge part (at least white Americans) flock to the particular party based on proximity to their own level authoritarism and correspoding worldview of the party.  In other words  the percentage of authoritarian/non-authoritarian personality in the population allow to predict, at least in part, the US "white block" public voting behavior.

Here are several Amazon reviews that illuminate some idea of the book (you should not blindly apply this distinction, authors are actually pretty nuaced):

a Midwest reviewer, February 28, 2016

 An eye-opening book in so many ways

This book's a total eye-opener in so many different ways. I spend time with people from a wide range of political and religious and work backgrounds, and find the Myers-Briggs personality characteristics of Judging vs Perceiving seems to explain a lot about how people react differently to the same situations. I often wondered what results you would get if someone measured how much the two political parties and different religious groups and denominations draw more people with either judging or perceiving personality types (Republicans/Democrats, evangelical Christians, Catholics, mainline Protestants, and unaffiliated/secular types, etc). If you're not familiar with Myers-Briggs personality types, judging types tend to reach decisions more quickly and see things in more black-and-white terms, while perceiving types are more likely to take time to make decisions, gather more evidence first, and aren't troubled by complexity and uncertainty. The best I could find when I tried an online search last year was some paper written by an undergrad who hardly looked at the judging/perceiving dimension of Myers-Briggs.

Yet even though I was primed to agree with their conclusions, I was blown away by just how strongly authoritarian/non-authoritarian personality types explain voting behavior.

I tend to view "trust" first and foremost in terms of honesty, accuracy, and telling the truth. So it baffled me how some candidates for the nomination in 2016 who score the very worst on PolitiFact fact checks would receive far more votes or consistently do better in polls than their opponents. My built-in assumption was that Americans will trust candidates who makes mostly accurate statements and distrust candidates who tell them lots of big whoppers. nytimes.com/2015/12/13/opinion/campaign-stops/all-politicians-lie-some-lie-more-than-others.
Hetherington and Weiler explain my assumption is a logical one: IF you're coming from the standpoint of people who rank as strongly NON-authoritarian on their scale. However about half of Americans lean towards the authoritarian end of their scale and when they perceive any kind of threat to "us" or "our team," these Americans first and foremost trust someone who shares their worldview and their personality type, rather than basing their trust on the accuracy of their individual statements. (see p. 44-46 hardcover ed, "Accuracy motivation")

My biggest criticism of a lot of political writing is that it makes assertions without convincing evidence. Anyone can select some anecdotes, examples and numbers to support their argument. Not this book. The evidence they present is amazing. The other reviewers are correct, the statistics make some parts of the book pretty dry reading. At the same time, it's the rigorous and careful statistics work that leaves me absolutely convinced their arguments are correct. Using data from sources like National Election Survey, they use statistical methods to demonstrate, for instance, that if you take an evangelical Christian who ranks high on the four authoritarian questions and compare them with an otherwise identical evangelical Christian who ranks low authoritarian, you find vast differences in responses to questions. And some of these authoritarian/non-authoritarian differences may be even larger than if you look at political party identification or labels like liberal or conservative. So rather than just reinforcing sweeping stereotypes about Republicans and Democrats, conservatives and liberals, and evangelicals and Catholics and secular non-believers, the authors demonstrate they have identified a personality characteristic that sometimes has an even bigger impact on political opinions and voting than these groups and labels. They've convinced me that this authoritarianism personality trait explains even more than I ever imagined.

And while this book probably has way too much nuance for most authoritarians, the authors say it's also too simplistic to simply label people as unchanging authoritarians or non-authoritarians. They argue that when Americans perceive a threat, moderate authoritarians are more likely to vote and behave like authoritarians, and some (not all) non-authoritarians are more likely to vote and behave like moderate authoritarians. So while authoritarians feel consistently threatened by difference and change and shades of gray most all the time, if Americans can be made to feel fearful and threatened and insecure, non-authoritarians will begin to vote more like authoritarians. And they say this means that understanding what causes changes in voting and attitudes of non-authoritarians may be even more important to understand than the more unchanging authoritarians.

Their views on immigration are another eye-opener. The authors argue that as a perfectly logical approach to win each coming election, the Republican party has positioning itself more and more to appeal to authoritarians since the 1970s, and that President Ford (not elected) was the last Republican president who did not fit this mold. The authors cover issues like national security, crime, race, gay marriage, civil rights, and terrorism and show how this was largely the result of intentional top-down decisions by Republican political elites to focus on "wedge" issues which encourage the more authoritarian to feel threatened and vote with their gut.

Many Republican elites did not want the party to be anti-immigration, feeling it was against their long-run interests to alienate the Latino vote. The authors argue that because these other wedge issues all had the unified effect of attracting authoritarian personality types away from the Democratic party to the Republican party, Republican party elites (such as Bush) who tried to pursue immigration reform found themselves blocked by a strong grassroots opposition on immigration.

Some have said America's two political parties today both have evolved a politically-convenient constellation of opinions which are ideologically inconsistent. In "The True and Only Heaven: Progress and Its Critics" Christopher Lasch does a marvelous job of showing just how much the notion of "conservative" made a complete reversal in some ways between 1940 and the 1980s. Hetherington and Weiler point out that while they may not seem intellectually or ideologically consistent from the standpoint of New Deal era political issues, today's Republican and Democratic parties are growing more and more consistently centered around authoritarian vs non-authoritarian personality types. So while the constellation of party positions today may seem highly inconsistent from the intellectual standpoint of a libertarian or a fiscal conservative, Republican elites cannot now pick and choose which issues they want to champion at random. Republican positions are growing more and more consistent when you view the party from a gut-level emotional and personality perspective.

And by no means are the eye-openers only about the Republican party. The authors dedicate a chapter to showing how in 2008 Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama may have taken very similar policy positions on the issues, yet Democratic voters were deeply divided between them based on more authoritarian vs less authoritarian personalities in the Democratic Party. How interesting that you can understand so little about the dynamics of that nomination fight based on policy positions, however you can suddenly explain a great deal if you know the answer to four questions about preferences in child-rearing.

And it probably goes without saying, but this book written in 2010 offers a spot-on explanation for why someone like Donald Trump can get more votes from evangelical Christians and conservatives in South Carolina than a candidate like Ted Cruz - a candidate who thought he was positioned correctly on all the issues to be the favorite of these voting blocs. The bottom line is, most American voters care a lot less about issues than either the Republican party or the Democratic party think.

Ideally you'd want to have some background in statistics to fully appreciate this book. However if you don't, their succinct political history of the past 40-50 years makes this book highly worth the read all by itself. I'm impressed that Hetherington and Weiler do put in explanations of things like regressions for people who don't remember Stats 101. Most books either leave out the statistics altogether, or else don't bother to explain them for the non-statisticians, so the authors are trying very hard to make the book accessible to a wider audience without throwing out their strong evidence in the process.

Eric John, March 2, 2016

Overgeneralized uses of data, over-simplified findings and assumptions

The authors’ analysis assumes to a degree that non-authoritarians will lean Democratic, and authoritarians will lean Republican. On p. 141, they recognize that, despite African-Americans being the most authoritarian racial group, they are consistently tied to the Democratic Party, so they remove blacks from their model. Is this problematic to simply remove an entire – and substantial – racial group from an analysis because it doesn’t fit your analytical definitions? Should there be more discussion of why blacks are more authoritarian (predominantly lower incomes, historically underprivileged, lower education rates, etc.)?

The authors, after setting up their measure of authoritarianism (child rearing preferences), go on to refer to authoritarianism as an inherent or “natural” disposition within individuals. They state that authoritarian people simply: a) have fewer cognitive tools, and b) feel more threat from ambiguity. They link less authoritarianism to greater education, but do not explore the roots of authoritarianism, but rather take it for granted as just “how some people are”. Can the link between privilege, education, and lack of threats in one’s life to non-authoritarianism explain why, many “authoritarian” populations are generally in impoverished regions?

In the analysis of chapter 9, which found that less authoritarian Democrats chose Obama over Hillary, how would factoring in the black vote change their findings? Would the roughly 9-to-1 margin of blacks (who are “predominantly more authoritarian”) who voted for Obama over Hillary spoil their conclusion?

Kenneth Buck, June 25, 2013

Worth the read

Hetherington and Weiler focus on a subject that is central to the divide we see in the U.S. and around the world today. The book is, I think, one of the better discussions on the two primary worldviews confronting each other today, authoritarianism and non-authoritarianism. It is not only an elaboration and expansion on ideas developed by Adorno in 1950 (The Authoritarian Personality) and Altemeyer in 2006 (The Authoritarians), but I think establishes new ground in the understanding of these two worldviews.

The focus on threat as the driving force behind authoritarianism and the polarization that occurs as a result of the variance in preceived threat is well documented in this book. The point that we all move further up the scale of authoritarianism the more we preceive a threat is an important point that is also well documented in this book. Hetherington and Weiler provide ample documentation to support their presentation and their bibliography is a wonderful source of further reading for those so inclined.

Lew Mills, April 1, 2013

 Great fruit about authoritarianism, but still on the vine of statistics

Authoritarianism is an important construct, and I'm glad the authors have brought it out of the shadows. But this was not the broad conceptual analysis I was hoping for. It is really an academic piece, laying the foundation for broader discussion of the concepts. They do a great job establishing that authoritarianism is a growing force in the polarization of American politics. But past that, I had difficulty seeing where they were going with it. I hope others will build on this.

I suppose that this is also a strength of the book. There was no hint of a political agenda behind the research. It really serves one basic purpose--to establish that authoritarianism is a real phenomenon, that it influences the world view of citizens, and that it is having an increasing impact on polarization in the United States.

In the face of what's on TV from FOX or MSNBC -- demonstrating florid polarization every day -- this was a pretty dry read, with an abundance of statistical explanations. I suspect that the authors felt it was overreaching to also try to draw broad conclusions about the ultimate meaning of authoritarianism and polarization in our political climate. To give it more context, my syllabus would include two other books on the same basic themes: "Moral Politics: How Liberals and Conservatives Think" by George Lakoff (2002), and "The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion", by Jonathan Haidt (2012).

The Ancient Simplicity, November 4, 2012

 Since the 1960's a big sort has been going on in American politics. Hetherington and Weiler (H&W) argue that the left and the right have become sorted not merely on the basis of issues or even on the basis of ideology but on something deeper. That something deeper is personality.

What do H&W mean by personality? In the book they specify there are large numbers of people who feel at an instinctive level the need to question authority while, in direct contrast, there is another large group who feel the need for order.

After WW II a vast literature was developed on what is now known as the authoritarian disposition. Those who score high in authoritarianism tend to have a greater need for order and to protect the existing norms of society than those who score low; they more easily perceive threats to order and norms and behave aggressively toward those groups perceived as threats. Those who score high also tend to see the world in concrete, black and white terms while those who score low see shades of grey and look for the complexity of things.

H&W are of the view that the personality disposition of authoritarianism is now the fundamental demarcation between Republicans and Democrats. As an example one can see this disposition at work on the issue of how to deal with terrorist threats and what civil liberties can be violated to sustain order. The different positions taken on this issue argue H&W are in large measure a function of one's level of authoritarianism. To a perilous degree each side has little or no empathy for the other's position, they not only talk past each other but fail to understand or even to accept the other's position as legitimate.

These are dangerous waters, as the example of France in the time of Dreyfus and its aftermath well demonstrates.

Civitas, February 14, 2010

An important explanation of how political differences arise and persist

I can say for myself why this book is so important, but I will just quote form Nicholas Kristoff's recent column about the book:

The book establishes "a fascinating framework of the role of personality types in politics, explored in a recent book, "Authoritarianism and Polarization in American Politics," by two political scientists, Marc J. Hetherington of Vanderbilt University and Jonathan D. Weiler of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. They start by exploring data showing a remarkably strong correlation between state attitudes toward spanking children and voting patterns. Essentially, spanking states go Republican, while those with more timeouts go Democratic.

Professors Hetherington and Weiler contend that the differences stem from profound differences in cognitive styles. Spankers tend to see the world in stark, black-and-white terms, perceive the social order as vulnerable or under attack, tend to make strong distinctions between "us" and "them," and emphasize order and muscular responses to threats. Parents favoring timeouts feel more comfortable with ambiguities, sense less threat, embrace minority groups -- and are less prone to disgust when they see a man eating worms."

So we have worldviews about many things, which means that how we raise our children maps on to our political views. This is a very important explanation about the differences between red and blue states.

Dr. Fontaine Moore, March 30, 2010

Insightful take on authoritarianism and politics

Because I'm working on a book in the area of personality and politics, one of the criteria on which I based my selection of this book came from one of its reviews indicating it addressed personality dimensions in relation to political orientation. It doesn't. While the book does center around the construct of authoritarianism, the authors emphasize that they are addressing authoritarianism as a worldview and attitude--not a dimension of personality. Perhaps the reviewer missed that distinction, although it can be an important one, depending on one's motivation for selecting this book. This is not to criticize the perspective the authors have chosen to take (they are political scientists and not psychologists), but to clarify how they approach authoritarianism. (In terms of dimensions of personality, you may want to do a little research on "The Big Five." These are probably the most "popular" personality dimensions within the psychology community. Some of these dimensions may be alluded to in the book, but only by inference. Wikipedia has a decent summary of them.)

Another useful attribute of the book for potential readers is its tone. While academic in nature, it hardly requires a PhD to understand the authors premises. But it also does not have the popular appeal of say Twenge and Campbell's "The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement." Assertions are invariably referenced which may be a drag for some readers but a boon for others.

Given the political climate in which we (Americans) currently live, this book provides a useful framework (authoritarianism) for understanding what's going on--at least from a social if not an individual level. Then again, the lack of impact of personality characteristics and how those are generated and relate to political behavior is what is motivating me to write my book.

Since I haven't yet finished "Authoritarianism and Polarization in American Politics," I can't say how or whether the authors address the problems they uncover. But I hope I've read enough to provide some useful decision-making information for prospective readers.

Mark E. Poynter on January 17, 2016

Must read for politics as well as interpersonal relationships

For people wondering about the popularity of Trump and Cruz, I point them to this book and "The Authoritarians" by Altemeyer which is available free online. For anyone else, I also believe that they should read these books.

The largest empire, whose military alone produces 5% of global emissions, is nominally at least still a democracy. A conversation about American politics without understanding authoritarianism is unlikely to be productive.

"Deep State" and American democracy

The term “Deep State” was coined in Turkey and means existence of  an interconnected network of  high-level elements within the intelligence services, military, security, judiciary and organized crime. In British author John le Carré’s latest novel, A Delicate Truth, a character describes the Deep State as

“… the ever-expanding circle of non-governmental insiders from banking, industry and commerce who were cleared for highly classified information denied to large swathes of Whitehall and Westminster.”

The term means an association of elements of government. security services, parts of top-level figures of financial oligarchy and industry that is effectively able to govern the United States without reference to the consent of the governed as expressed through the formal political process.

The neoliberal transformation of state, which proceeded in parallel with the conversion of system of governance to "deep state" (which started during Truman presidency) was virtually complete at the time of Reagan left his post.  And this fact alone essentially makes elections optional, but they still continue to exist in an emasculated "two parties system" form to provide legitimacy to the ruling elite.

That legitimizing  role actually includes the US Presidential elections. The selection of two candidates who face each other in elections is made somewhere else at the top echelons of Republican and Democratic Parties. There can be surprises like Trump and Sanders in 2015 cycle, but they are exceptions that confirm the rule. Also after triumph of neoliberalism in 80th we saw the phenomenon of "puppet" or "pcket" Presidents" (Clinton-Bush II-Obama) which definitely looked by being controlled by outside of White house forces. That is especially ture about Bush Ii and Obama. Clinton was just a willing sellout to Wall Street interests himself. Any of them have very little of no influence on the direction of the country (aka "change we can believe in"). Amazing consistany of the USA foreign policy during this period (which ideologically charged members of Bush administrating promoted under Obama administration as was the case with Victoria Nuland) is strong confirmation of this hypothesis.  

In other words deep state is a hidden set of political actors and powerful institutions that are concealed within the wider, “visible” state which, essentially, took over the functions of traditional state, leaving for such organization of Executive branch, President, Congress and courts mainly ceremonial role. Such transformation is well explained by the The Iron Law of Oligarchy and in various forms happened in Third Reich, the USSR (KGB and military in the USSR were a nice example of "deep state" which controlled  levels of power, while formaly not being in power), Turkey, China and many other countries.

In other words the current political system in the USA actually consists of two distinct governments. They are called "surface state" or Madisonians and "deep state" or Trumanites (national security establishment in alliance with selected members of financial oligarchy, media owners and technocrats). It was Truman who signed National Security Act of 1947  which created major three letter agencies (CIA, DOD, FBI and NSA).

Simplifying the complex relation between those two US governments (sometimes Madisonians fight back and have Trumanites to make a temporary retreat) we can say that:

Conversion of system of governance to "deep state" which happened in the USA almost immediately after 1947 essentially made elections optional, but they still continue to exist as a ceremonial function for the sake of providing the legitimacy in an emasculated "two parties system" form.  While relationship is more complex then simple dominance, in essence "deep state" is the tail that wag the dog. And JFK assassination meant first of all the triumph of "deep state" over "surface state". In this sense 9/11 was just the last nail in the coffin of democracy.

The term “Deep State” was coined in Turkey (and actually Wikipedia discusses only it) but it is widespread modern phenomenon which can also be found in most other states. The term means a shadow alliance of elements of government. security services, selected top-level figures of financial oligarchy, media and industry that is effectively able to govern the United States without reference to the consent of the governed as expressed through the formal political process. As any elite dominance project it is deeply anti-democratic although it uses fig leaf of democracy for foreign expansion via color revolutions and wars. 

Like in Third Reich this dominance is supported by relentless propaganda and brainwashing with mechanisms polished since Reagan to perfection. There is now no problem to create an "enemy of the people" when the elite wants and it does not matter which country or individual is selected as an enemy. The essence of elite politics in this area was best formulated by Hermann Goering, President of the Reichstag, Nazi Party, and Luftwaffe Commander in Chief

Naturally the common people don't want war: Neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.

In other words this is a hidden set of political actors and powerful institutions that are concealed within the wider, “visible” state which, essentially, took over the functions of traditional state, leaving such organization of Executive branch, President, congress and courts mainly ceremonial role. Such transformation is well explained by the The Iron Law of Oligarchy and in various forms happened in Third Reich, the USSR, Turkey, China and many other countries.

Here is how The American Conservative covers this topic:

Steve Sailer links to this unsettling essay by former career Congressional staffer Mike Lofgren, who says the “deep state” — the Washington-Wall-Street-Silicon-Valley Establishment — is a far greater threat to liberty than you think. The partisan rancor and gridlock in Washington conceals a more fundamental and pervasive agreement.

Excerpts:

These are not isolated instances of a contradiction; they have been so pervasive that they tend to be disregarded as background noise. During the time in 2011 when political warfare over the debt ceiling was beginning to paralyze the business of governance in Washington, the United States government somehow summoned the resources to overthrow Muammar Ghaddafi’s regime in Libya, and, when the instability created by that coup spilled over into Mali, provide overt and covert assistance to French intervention there. At a time when there was heated debate about continuing meat inspections and civilian air traffic control because of the budget crisis, our government was somehow able to commit $115 million to keeping a civil war going in Syria and to pay at least £100m to the United Kingdom’s Government Communications Headquarters to buy influence over and access to that country’s intelligence. Since 2007, two bridges carrying interstate highways have collapsed due to inadequate maintenance of infrastructure, one killing 13 people. During that same period of time, the government spent $1.7 billion constructing a building in Utah that is the size of 17 football fields. This mammoth structure is intended to allow the National Security Agency to store a yottabyte of information, the largest numerical designator computer scientists have coined. A yottabyte is equal to 500 quintillion pages of text. They need that much storage to archive every single trace of your electronic life.

Yes, there is another government concealed behind the one that is visible at either end of Pennsylvania Avenue, a hybrid entity of public and private institutions ruling the country according to consistent patterns in season and out, connected to, but only intermittently controlled by, the visible state whose leaders we choose. My analysis of this phenomenon is not an exposé of a secret, conspiratorial cabal; the state within a state is hiding mostly in plain sight, and its operators mainly act in the light of day. Nor can this other government be accurately termed an “establishment.” All complex societies have an establishment, a social network committed to its own enrichment and perpetuation. In terms of its scope, financial resources and sheer global reach, the American hybrid state, the Deep State, is in a class by itself. That said, it is neither omniscient nor invincible. The institution is not so much sinister (although it has highly sinister aspects) as it is relentlessly well entrenched. Far from being invincible, its failures, such as those in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, are routine enough that it is only the Deep State’s protectiveness towards its higher-ranking personnel that allows them to escape the consequences of their frequent ineptitude.
 

More:

Washington is the most important node of the Deep State that has taken over America, but it is not the only one. Invisible threads of money and ambition connect the town to other nodes. One is Wall Street, which supplies the cash that keeps the political machine quiescent and operating as a diversionary marionette theater. Should the politicians forget their lines and threaten the status quo, Wall Street floods the town with cash and lawyers to help the hired hands remember their own best interests. The executives of the financial giants even have de facto criminal immunity. On March 6, 2013, testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Attorney General Eric Holder stated the following: “I am concerned that the size of some of these institutions becomes so large that it does become difficult for us to prosecute them when we are hit with indications that if you do prosecute, if you do bring a criminal charge, it will have a negative impact on the national economy, perhaps even the world economy.” This, from the chief law enforcement officer of a justice system that has practically abolished the constitutional right to trial for poorer defendants charged with certain crimes. It is not too much to say that Wall Street may be the ultimate owner of the Deep State and its strategies, if for no other reason than that it has the money to reward government operatives with a second career that is lucrative beyond the dreams of avarice — certainly beyond the dreams of a salaried government employee. [3]

The corridor between Manhattan and Washington is a well trodden highway for the personalities we have all gotten to know in the period since the massive deregulation of Wall Street: Robert Rubin, Lawrence Summers, Henry Paulson, Timothy Geithner and many others. Not all the traffic involves persons connected with the purely financial operations of the government: In 2013, General David Petraeus joined KKR (formerly Kohlberg Kravis Roberts) of 9 West 57th Street, New York, a private equity firm with $62.3 billion in assets. KKR specializes in management buyouts and leveraged finance. General Petraeus’ expertise in these areas is unclear. His ability to peddle influence, however, is a known and valued commodity. Unlike Cincinnatus, the military commanders of the Deep State do not take up the plow once they lay down the sword. Petraeus also obtained a sinecure as a non-resident senior fellow at theBelfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard. The Ivy League is, of course, the preferred bleaching tub and charm school of the American oligarchy.

Lofgren goes on to say that Silicon Valley is a node of the Deep State too, and that despite the protestations of its chieftains against NSA spying, it’s a vital part of the Deep State’s apparatus. More:

The Deep State is the big story of our time. It is the red thread that runs through the war on terrorism, the financialization and deindustrialization of the American economy, the rise of a plutocratic social structure and political dysfunction. Washington is the headquarters of the Deep State, and its time in the sun as a rival to Rome, Constantinople or London may be term-limited by its overweening sense of self-importance and its habit, as Winwood Reade said of Rome, to “live upon its principal till ruin stared it in the face.”

Read the whole thing.  Steve Sailer says that the Shallow State is a complement to the Deep State. The Shallow State is, I think, another name for what the Neoreactionaries call “The Cathedral,” defined thus:

The Cathedral — The self-organizing consensus of Progressives and Progressive ideology represented by the universities, the media, and the civil service. A term coined by blogger Mencius Moldbug. The Cathedral has no central administrator, but represents a consensus acting as a coherent group that condemns other ideologies as evil. Community writers have enumerated the platform of Progressivism as women’s suffrage, prohibition, abolition, federal income tax, democratic election of senators, labor laws, desegregation, popularization of drugs, destruction of traditional sexual norms, ethnic studies courses in colleges, decolonization, and gay marriage. A defining feature of Progressivism is that “you believe that morality has been essentially solved, and all that’s left is to work out the details.” Reactionaries see Republicans as Progressives, just lagging 10-20 years behind Democrats in their adoption of Progressive norms.

You don’t have to agree with the Neoreactionaries on what they condemn — women’s suffrage? desegregation? labor laws? really?? — to acknowledge that they’re onto something about the sacred consensus that all Right-Thinking People share. I would love to see a study comparing the press coverage from 9/11 leading up to the Iraq War with press coverage of the gay marriage issue from about 2006 till today. Specifically, I’d be curious to know about how thoroughly the media covered the cases against the policies that the Deep State and the Shallow State decided should prevail. I’m not suggesting a conspiracy here, not at all. I’m only thinking back to how it seemed so obvious to me in 2002 that we should go to war with Iraq, so perfectly clear that the only people who opposed it were fools or villains. The same consensus has emerged around same-sex marriage. I know how overwhelmingly the news media have believed this for some time, such that many American journalists simply cannot conceive that anyone against same-sex marriage is anything other than a fool or a villain. Again, this isn’t a conspiracy; it’s in the nature of the thing. Lofgren:

Cultural assimilation is partly a matter of what psychologist Irving L. Janis called “groupthink,” the chameleon-like ability of people to adopt the views of their superiors and peers. This syndrome is endemic to Washington: The town is characterized by sudden fads, be it negotiating biennial budgeting, making grand bargains or invading countries. Then, after a while, all the town’s cool kids drop those ideas as if they were radioactive. As in the military, everybody has to get on board with the mission, and questioning it is not a career-enhancing move. The universe of people who will critically examine the goings-on at the institutions they work for is always going to be a small one. As Upton Sinclair said, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”

A more elusive aspect of cultural assimilation is the sheer dead weight of the ordinariness of it all once you have planted yourself in your office chair for the 10,000th time. Government life is typically not some vignette from an Allen Drury novel about intrigue under the Capitol dome. Sitting and staring at the clock on the off-white office wall when it’s 11:00 in the evening and you are vowing never, ever to eat another piece of takeout pizza in your life is not an experience that summons the higher literary instincts of a would-be memoirist. After a while, a functionary of the state begins to hear things that, in another context, would be quite remarkable, or at least noteworthy, and yet that simply bounce off one’s consciousness like pebbles off steel plate: “You mean the number of terrorist groups we are fighting is classified?” No wonder so few people are whistle-blowers, quite apart from the vicious retaliation whistle-blowing often provokes: Unless one is blessed with imagination and a fine sense of irony, growing immune to the curiousness of one’s surroundings is easy. To paraphrase the inimitable Donald Rumsfeld, I didn’t know all that I knew, at least until I had had a couple of years away from the government to reflect upon it.

When all you know is the people who surround you in your professional class bubble and your social circles, you can think the whole world agrees with you, or should. It’s probably not a coincidence that the American media elite live, work, and socialize in New York and Washington, the two cities that were attacked on 9/11, and whose elites — political, military, financial — were so genuinely traumatized by the events.

Anyway, that’s just a small part of it, about how the elite media manufacture consent. Here’s a final quote, one from the Moyers interview with Lofgren:

BILL MOYERS: If, as you write, the ideology of the Deep State is not democrat or republican, not left or right, what is it?

MIKE LOFGREN: It’s an ideology. I just don’t think we’ve named it. It’s a kind of corporatism. Now, the actors in this drama tend to steer clear of social issues. They pretend to be merrily neutral servants of the state, giving the best advice possible on national security or financial matters. But they hold a very deep ideology of the Washington consensus at home, which is deregulation, outsourcing, de-industrialization and financialization. And they believe in American exceptionalism abroad, which is boots on the ground everywhere, it’s our right to meddle everywhere in the world. And the result of that is perpetual war.

This can’t last. We’d better hope it can’t last. And we’d better hope it unwinds peacefully.

I, for one, remain glad that so many of us Americans are armed. When the Deep State collapses — and it will one day — it’s not going to be a happy time.

Questions to the room: Is a Gorbachev for the Deep State conceivable? That is, could you foresee a political leader emerging who could unwind the ideology and apparatus of the Deep State, and not only survive, but succeed? Or is it impossible for the Deep State to allow such a figure to thrive? Or is the Deep State, like the Soviet system Gorbachev failed to reform, too entrenched and too far gone to reform itself? If so, what then?

The second important thinker in this area is  Professor Michael J. Glennon who wrote the book  “National Security and Double Government.”

Here is how Amazon reviewer Mal Warwick summarized the book in his review written on December 22, 2014

Who makes national security decisions? Not who you think!

Why does Barack Obama's performance on national security issues in the White House contrast so strongly with his announced intentions as a candidate in 2008? After all, not only has Obama continued most of the Bush policies he decried when he ran for the presidency, he has doubled down on government surveillance, drone strikes, and other critical programs.

Michael J. Glennon set out to answer this question in his unsettling new book, National Security and Double Government. And he clearly dislikes what he found.

The answer, Glennon discovered, is that the US government is divided between the three official branches of the government, on the one hand — the "Madisonian" institutions incorporated into the Constitution — and the several hundred unelected officials who do the real work of a constellation of military and intelligence agencies, on the other hand. These officials, called "Trumanites" in Glennon's parlance for having grown out of the national security infrastructure established under Harry Truman, make the real decisions in the area of national security. (To wage the Cold War, Truman created the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Department of Defense, the CIA, the NSA, and the National Security Council.) "The United States has, in short," Glennon writes, "moved beyond a mere imperial presidency to a bifurcated system — a structure of double government — in which even the President now exercises little substantive control over the overall direction of U.S. national security policy. . . . The perception of threat, crisis, and emergency has been the seminal phenomenon that has created and nurtures America's double government." If Al Qaeda hadn't existed, the Trumanite network would have had to create it — and, Glennon seems to imply, might well have done so.

The Trumanites wield their power with practiced efficiency, using secrecy, exaggerated threats, peer pressure to conform, and the ability to mask the identity of the key decision-maker as their principal tools.

Michael J. Glennon comes to this task with unexcelled credentials. A professor of international law at Tufts and former legal counsel for the Senate Armed Services Committee, he came face to face on a daily basis with the "Trumanites" he writes about. National Security and Double Government is exhaustively researched and documented: notes constitute two-thirds of this deeply disturbing little book.

The more I learn about how politics and government actually work — and I've learned a fair amount in my 73 years — the more pessimistic I become about the prospects for democracy in America. In some ways, this book is the most worrisome I've read over the years, because it implies that there is no reason whatsoever to think that things can ever get better. In other words, to borrow a phrase from the Borg on Star Trek, "resistance is futile." That's a helluva takeaway, isn't it?

On reflection, what comes most vividly to mind is a comment from the late Chalmers Johnson on a conference call in which I participated several years ago. Johnson, formerly a consultant to the CIA and a professor at two campuses of the University of California (Berkeley and later San Diego), was the author of many books, including three that awakened me to many of the issues Michael Glennon examines: Blowback, The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemesis. Johnson, who was then nearly 80 and in declining health, was asked by a student what he would recommend for young Americans who want to combat the menace of the military-industrial complex. "Move to Vancouver," he said.

Here is how Christopher Bellavita in Homeland Security Watch summarize an interesting discussion at Cato think tank which I highly recommend to watch:

Why has American national security policy changed so little from the Bush administration to the Obama

That’s the question Michael J. Glennon asks in his book “National Security and Double Government.”

His answer: national security policy is determined largely by “the several hundred managers of the military, intelligence, diplomatic, and law enforcement agencies who are responsible for protecting the nation and who have come to operate largely immune from constitutional and electoral restraints.” The president, congress and the courts play largely a symbolic role in national security policy, Glennon claims.

You can read a Harvard National Security Journal article that outlines Glennon’s argument at this link: http://harvardnsj.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/Glennon-Final.pdf.  The paper is not an especially easy read, but I found it to be well researched and – for  me – persuasive.

His book adds more analysis to the argument, using (from Graham Allison’s Essence of Decision) the rational actor model, the government politics model, and the organizational behavior model. Glennon extends that framework by discussing culture, networks, and the myth of alternative competing hypotheses.  The book is richer, in my opinion.  But the core of Glennon’s position is in the paper.

This link takes you to a video of Glennon talking about his book at the Cato Institute: http://www.cato.org/events/national-security-double-government (the talk starts at the 5:20 mark).

From the Cato site:

In National Security and Double Government, Michael Glennon examines the continuity in U.S. national security policy from the Bush administration to the Obama administration. Glennon explains the lack of change by pointing to the enervation of America’s “Madisonian institutions,” namely, the Congress, the presidency, and the courts. In Glennon’s view, these institutions have been supplanted by a “Trumanite network” of bureaucrats who make up the permanent national security state. National security policymaking has been removed from public view and largely insulated from law and politics. Glennon warns that leaving security policy in the hands of the Trumanite network threatens Americans’ liberties and the republican form of government.

Some blurb reviews:

“If constitutional government is to endure in the United States, Americans must confront the fundamental challenges presented by this chilling analysis of the national security state.”
Bruce Ackerman

“Glennon shows how the underlying national security bureaucracy in Washington – what might be called the deep state – ensures that presidents and their successors act on the world stage like Tweedledee and Tweedledum.”
John J. Mearsheimer

“National Security and Double Government is brilliant, deep, sad, and vastly learned across multiple fields–a work of Weberian power and stature. It deserves to be read and discussed. The book raises philosophical questions in the public sphere in a way not seen at least since Fukuyama’s end of history.”
David A. Westbrook

“In our faux democracy, those we elect to govern serve largely ornamental purposes, while those who actually wield power, especially in the realm of national security, do so chiefly with an eye toward preserving their status and prerogatives. Read this incisive and richly documented book, and you’ll understand why.”
Andrew J. Bacevich

“…Michael Glennon provides a compelling argument that America’s national security policy is growing outside the bounds of existing government institutions. This is at once a constitutional challenge, but is also a case study in how national security can change government institutions, create new ones, and, in effect, stand-up a parallel state….”
Vali Nasr

“Instead of being responsive to citizens or subject to effective checks and balances, U.S. national security policy is in fact conducted by a shadow government of bureaucrats and a supporting network of think tanks, media insiders, and ambitious policy wonks. Presidents may come and go, but the permanent national security establishment inevitably defeats their efforts to chart a new course….”
Stephen M. Walt, Robert and Renee Belfer

I’ve spoken to three people I consider to be members of the “shadow national security state.”   One person said Glennon’s argument is nothing new.  The second told me he’s got it exactly right.  The third said it’s even worse.

 

Hiding the rule of oligarchy

In a very deep sense the party system is a very elegant trick that conceals and project a single party of oligarchy as two distinct parties and distract voters from any serious issues with meaningless cat fight between two faction of the same party during elections. In Lifting the Veil they mention one of the meaning of the term polyarchy is the system where voters are limited to voting between two pre-selected representatives of the oligarchy:

polyarchy: A system where the participation of masses of people is limited to voting among one or another representatives of the elite in periodic elections. Between elections the masses are now expected to keep quiet, to go back to life as usual while the elite make decisions and run the world until they can choose between one or another elite another four years later.

So polyarchy is a system of elite rule, and a system of elite rule that is little bit more soft-core than the elite rule that we would see under a military dictatorship. But what we see is that under a polyarchy the basic socio-economic system does not change, it does not become democratized.

▬William I. Robinson, Behind the Veil, Minute 1:29:15

Hiding the rule of oligarchy is the essence of two party system as implemented in the USA, Great Britain, Canada and several other countries. When, in the 1940s, Joseph Schumpeter argued that ordinary citizens should limit their participation in a democracy to electing its leaders, he was effectively arguing for polyarchy. Here is how Wikipedia defined the term (polyarchy):

In a discussion of contemporary British foreign policy, Mark Curtis stated that "polyarchy is generally what British leaders mean when they speak of promoting 'democracy' abroad.

This is a system in which a small group actually rules and mass participation is confined to choosing leaders in elections managed by competing elites." [8]

The whole idea (the rotation of the pre-selected representative of elite at the top) is somewhat similar to an intro marketing course on how to sell bogus products to gullible consumers forcing them to make adverse selection.

There is also related issue of information asymmetry between voters and elite (represented by Party functionaries). In reality, Democratic Party in not a separate party, but an integral part of the two prong bait-and-switch system with a special function of preventing meaningful reform. In other words in two party system both parties are essentially are two branches of a single party, the party of oligarchy.

But each branch in two party system (let's call them for simplicity Democrats and Republican parties as in the USA) has it's own "hidden" political function.

If the selection of candidates is performed strictly by the party machine (and according to the The Iron Law of Oligarchy, the party machine has innate tendency to self-organize into oligarchy), then subsequent elections is a pure formality, much like in the USSR. Or, more precisely, a political farce because the real voters are limited to top 1% who decide what candidates are selected within each party political machine (or, more correctly, the top 0.01%). In no way elections can be called democratic is public is completely disenfranchised in selection of the candidate. In this sense calling the US election democratic is pure hypocrisy of the ruling elite, who controls the MSM, and by extension the political discourse. This is a perfect trap, out of which there is no escape.

You are irrelevant: Instead of Trump's "you are fired",
 party apparatchiks create the situation in which regular members are really irrelevant

In this sense "regular" voters are irrelevant and play role of extras in the game of the elite (which might include power struggle between various factions). They will always face an adverse selection between between bad for their interests candidate and even worse, often disastrous candidate.

For example, between Obama (who in reality is closer to Bush III then many people think) and close to the Tea Party candidate. The choice is clear and wrong as neither candidate represents interests of the voters. So majority of "regular" voters is automatically disenfranchised by party machine in a very fundamental way. Exectly like in should be according to the The Iron Law of Oligarchy

Moreover, in this situation the vote for any third candidate automatically became a vote for Tea Party (remembers the role supporters of Ralph Nader played in the election if Bush II in Florida). So electorate is in not only held hostage by two (pre-selected by oligarchy) candidates and is allowed only to chose between them. They are royally punished for disobedience.

Again, the classic example of this mechanism in action was the role of Nader in Gore vs. Bush election. This is the key mechanism of “managed democracy” or, as it is also called, the “inverted totalitarianism”.

All mechanisms discussed about that "winner takes all" election system profoundly and fundamentally is nothing but a subtle and elegant way of enforcement of the rule of oligarchy in the form of polyarchy, with the only difference from military dictatorship (which represents the extreme form of the elite rule) that there is no dictator for life. But it's the same iron fist (in a velvet glove). Which is a definite improvement over military dictatorship, but this is not that big an improvement. You are still tightly controlled, but instead of brute force financial or other indirect methods are used. It is not an improvement even in comparison with Soviet Politburo election of the General Secretary of CPSU, although it definitely more entertaining and has better PR potential.

i would like to stress that in a very deep sense, so called "government by the people" in case of two party system is not that different than heredity monarchal or autocratic rule, or, for a change, rule of the Soviet Politburo. This also means that Constitution became just a peace fo paper, document which is optional and redundant for ruling elite as George Bush aptly demonstrated.

Constitutional provisions can't be controlled in any meaningful way if rulers are completely detached from the voters. So voters and their interests can be abused in whatever way oligarchy wishes. To lessen the pain they can be distracted by throwing them like a bone for the dog artificial issues like homosexual marriage and deciding key economic and political issues in private. Selection of the agenda is the privilege of ruling class and always was.

Ordinary people had no say then or now. and with two part system this is by design. According to John Jay, America’s first Supreme Court chief justice, the nation should be governed by people who owned it.

Illusion of democracy

The simple plurality voting system is a single-winner voting system also called winner-takes-all or first-past-the-post. The latter term is an analogy to horse racing, where the winner of the race is the first to pass a particular point (the "post") on the track, after which all other runners automatically lose.

Elections in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada belong to this category. In this type of voting there is no requirement that the winner gain an absolute majority of votes. And as we demonstrated above such system automatically means the rule of oligarchy. On the current stage of development of the USA political system this is financial oligarchy because the social system that exists in the USA now is neoliberalism. The latter automatically makes the whole social system prone to deep and devastating crises. And that increases demand for guard labor and militarization of police. In a very fundamental way rulers are much more afraid of proles in neoliberal regime then under New Deal regime.

Duverger's law is a principle which asserts that any plurality voting system elections naturally impose a two-party system That means that single-winner voting system essentially hand all the power to the elite as it is elite that controls the electability of candidates from both parties. The discovery of this tendency is attributed to Maurice Duverger, a French sociologist who observed the effect and recorded it in several papers published in the 1950s and 1960s.

In the course of further research, other political scientists began calling the effect a "law" or principle. Duverger's law suggests a nexus or synthesis between a party system and an electoral system: only a proportional representation (PR) system creates the electoral conditions necessary to foster to foster smaller parties development while a plurality system marginalizes smaller political parties, resulting in what is known as a two-party system.

only a proportional representation (PR) system creates the electoral conditions necessary to foster smaller parties development while a plurality system marginalizes smaller political parties, resulting in what is known as a two-party system.

At the same time, a two party system provides a pretty realistic illusion of democracy and is actually remarkably effective both in enforcing the rule of oligarchy and preserving this illusion. A perfect system for a small group to rule, as all “mass participation” is confined to choosing between two preselected by party brass candidates. In other word elections are just a puppet show controlled by oligarchy much like elections controlled by party nomenklatura of the USSR when only a single candidate existed, but still elections were called and votes were counted. Actually the fact that they did not adopt a two party system this is a testament of the ideological rigidity of the USSR nomenklatura, as such a system is perfectly compatible with a totalitarian society and is essence is a small, insignificant (but very elegant and deceptive) variation of the one party rule.

In addition “Winner takes all” system automatically, by design, co-opts small parties into either Democratic Party or Republican Party camp, before they can get any level of maturity. That means that, unfortunately, within the “winner takes all” framework emergence of third party is temporal as they are quickly co-opted into one of two wings of the establishment party. The latter can well be "the War Party" as jingoism is the credo of both Democrats and Republicans, and in many cases it is difficult to understand who is more jingoistic.

A two party system as a mediator between conflicting interests of factions of the elite

In Golden Rule Thomas Ferguson argues the US two party system functions as a mediator between conflicting business interests. Between two parts of the ruling elite.

Rodolfo Lazo de la Vega

Democracy, Capitalism & the State, December 27, 2010

This review is from: Golden Rule: The Investment Theory of Party Competition and the Logic of Money-Driven Political Systems (American Politics and Political Economy Series) (Paperback)

The central foundational principle of the capitalist nation-state is that it is a reflection of its economic constituencies. Those who own and control the means of production shape the state in the form that they desire. This truism - that money runs politics - is the central argument of Thomas Ferguson's "Golden Rule." He begins by asking what are political parties? They are organizations composed of blocs of major investors who come together to advance favored candidates in order to control the state. They do this through direct cash contributions and by providing organizational support through the making available of sources of contacts, fundraisers and institutional legitimation. Candidates are invested in like stocks. For them electoral success is dependent on establishing the broadest base of elite support. Candidates whom have best *internalized* investor values see their "portfolios" grow exponentially at the expense of candidates who have not internalized these values. So what you have is a filtering system in which only the most indoctrinated and business friendly of the intellectual class advance to state power. The higher you go up the ladder the more you've appealed to elite interests. Representatives of the major investors are also often chosen to fill political appointments after a favored candidate has achieved office. This political-economic model helps explain why the state largely functions to serve elite business interests on the domestic and international stages.

Of course, corporate interests vary and evolve. Capital-intensive corporations tend to invest in Democratic politicians. Labor-intensive corporations tend to invest in Republicans. That's because capital-intensive corporations can afford to sit in a party which also represent organized labor. The AFL-CIO rarely poses a threat to Wall Street; and vice-versa. So what would we expect from a system like this? One thing we would expect is that on issues which the public cares about but on which there is cross-party investor agreement no party competition will take place. That means that the issues the public is most interested in will not appear on the agenda. The polls have been pretty consistent on this point. Major public interest revolves around issues having to do with trade agreements, in favor of a single-payer health care system, increased spending for education, slashing the Pentagon budget and many other issues. At times the population has been able to organize successfully and force popular issues onto the agenda despite business opposition.

Ferguson details how the growth, development and fall of major industries correspond to the growth, development, and fall of their political parties. He examines the rise and fall of five major investment bloc party systems - the Federalist vs. Jeffersonian, the Jacksonian, the Civil War party system, the system of 1896 and the New Deal. The latter is dealt with in much detail.

The book, while highly informative, is not without its flaws. Ferguson's prose is obtuse and very, very dry. The charts are helpful but the ideas could have been presented in a more compact form. Regardless of these reservations, this book is very important for an understanding of how our political system functions and deserves a large audience, discussion and action.

One of early proponents of "elite [dominance] theory" James Burnham in his book, The Machiavellians, argued and developed his theory that the emerging new élite would better serve its own interests if it retained some democratic trappings — two party system, illusion of "free press" and a controlled "circulation of the elites."

Notes on Republican Party

As Anatol Leiven noted:

...the Republican Party is really like an old style European nationalist party. Broadly serving the interests of the moneyed elite but spouting a form of populist gobbledygook, which paints America as being in a life and death, struggle with anti-American forces at home and abroad.

It is the reason for Anne Coulter, Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh. That is the rhetoric of struggle acts as a cover for political policies that benefit a few and lay the blame for the problems of ordinary Americans on fictitious entities.

The main side effects of the nationalism are the current policies which shackles America to Israel uncritically despite what that country might and how its actions may isolate America from the rest of the world. It also justifies America on foreign policy adventures such as the invasion of Iraq.

In terms of the two-party system, Republicans are avid, pitiless, intolerant, unbending, predatory, anti-democratic, iron-willed ideologues who’ve sold out to big business while courting big religion.

Democrats ape them, thus creating a one-party climate that fulfills the wishes of corporate "citizens" and transnational elite (becoming this way just another neoliberal party), systematically neglecting the needs of the middle class (lower classes never have any meaningful political representation, so nothing changed for them). That combination produces an apathetic electorate which completely lost hope in the political process. This is the essence of "inverted totalitarism".

Note on Democratic Party

Democratic Party after Clinton became Republican Party light, the party of Wall Street, that has nothing to do with labor movement, which previously was its base. The reasoning is that labor is nowhere to go in any case, so it is safe for democratic establishment to serve financial oligarchy.

The current democratic president would be viewed as a moderate republican just 30-50 years ago, as politically he is positioned to the right in comparison with Dwight D. Eisenhower. Just compare his famous warning about Military-Industrial Complex and Obama behavior during Snowden revelations of NSA total surveillance regime. Even Nixon, who finished Vietnam war is in some major aspects to the left of Clinton and Obama. Note how unceremoniously Obama dumped labor immediately after being reelected for the second term.

Essentially under Obama the USA two party system became undistinguishable in its major features from the USSR one party system, as behind the façade of two parties there is a single party, the party of oligarchy, the party of top 0.01% much like CPSU was the party of Soviet nomenklatura, which was hostile to the interests of middle class of the USSR (which is perfectly provable by the very low standard living of the middle class in the USSR).

Democracy promotion as used by the USA foreign policy
is actually a promotion of polyarchy

This oligarchy system was actively promoted in third world countries via so called color revolutions. Democracy promotion term in the US foreign policy is nothing but promotion of polyarchy. It is the policy that strives to put pro-Western elite groups and large international companies in power using variety of "grey area" methods which come short of armed apprising against the demonized "evil" regime. That was very successful policy in post USSR space with Ukraine and Georgia as two prominent examples.

After such a revolution a new, more pro-Western part of the elite (lumpenelite) comes to power and exercise often brutal monopoly power in the interests of the USA and transnational corporations. Typically privatization of the county is in the cards. Which regimes of Boris Yeltsin, Viktor Yushchenko and Mikheil Saakashvili demonstrated all too well. Also important that as 1965 CIA report about Philippines stresses that "The similarity of the parties, nevertheless encourages moderation, readiness to compromise, and lack of dogmatism in the political elite". Philippines were a key client regime in 1950th and 1960th with Clark Air Base and Subtic Naval Base to be the largest military facilities outside US mainland (Promoting polyarchy globalization ... - William I. Robinson (p. 120))

Here is one Amazon review of the book:

Brilliant exposition of US policy and the global order June 12, 2001

By Geoff Johnson

Format:Paperback

In this difficult but extremely provocative and scholarly work, William I. Robinson presents a new model for understanding US foreign policy and the emergent global society as a whole. The crux of his thesis is this: US foreign policy has changed in the last twenty years or so from open support of authoritarian regimes in countries where the US has economic and/or strategic interests to a program of "democracy promotion" that strives to place minority elite groups who are responsive to the interests of the United States and transnational capital at the head of the political, economic, and civic structures of "third world" countries.

Contrary to popular opinion (and that of much of academia), the real goal of democracy promotion, or what Robinson refers to as "promoting polyarchy", is not the promotion of democracy at all, but rather the promotion of the interests of an increasingly transnational elite headed by the US who seek open markets for goods and an increase in the free flow of capital. This marks a conscious shift in foreign policy in which the US now favors "consensual domination" by democratically elected governments rather than authoritarian leaders and the type of "crony capitalism" made famous by the likes of Ferdinand Marcos and Anastacio Somoza.

The first sections of the book introduce numerous theoretical concepts (drawing heavily on the theories of the Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci, in particular his theory of hegemony) that are crucial to the understanding of the text. I personally found these sections extremely difficult but well worth the time it takes to read certain parts several times. Robinson then goes on to document four case studies-- the Phillipines, Chile, Nicaragua, and Haiti-- each of which fleshes out his conceptual framework in much more concrete terms. The result is a disturbing picture of US foreign policy and the current direction of "globalization." I would highly recommend this to anyone with a strong interest in foreign affairs and/or the future of humanity.

Here is an interesting review of Wolin's book: Inverted Totalitarianism in the US

The US is a self-declared empire that scholars have labeled a “superpower” since it achieved military and cultural hegemony in a “unipolar moment” at the “end of history” while seeking “full-spectrum dominance” of land, sea, air, cyberspace and outer space, as stated in the Department of Defense’s Joint Vision 2020.

In order to impede the Soviet Union’s imperial projects, the US likewise slung itself astride the globe using multilateral institutions, spy networks and covert operations which produced a “Cold War” that eliminated the idea of peacetime and demanded permanent military mobilization bolstered by the military-industrial-congressional complex while placing citizens on high alert against nuclear threats and a domestic infestation of “reds” that excused the government’s surveillance of citizens.

The Constitution, which limits power, and a democracy, which requires local control and citizen empowerment, are both profaned by superpower, which defies limits in its quest for global supremacy, overshadowing localities and overpowering citizens while projecting power outward and inward simultaneously.

To describe this configuration, the political philosopher Sheldon Wolin coined the term “inverted totalitarianism.”

In old totalitarianism, the state dominated the economy while iconic demagogues who permanently held office mobilized citizens and openly flaunted the blanketing power of the new order they were imposing. With inverted totalitarianism, the economy dominates the state wherein temporary “representatives” serve a permanent corporate regime that demobilizes citizens while claiming to protect individual liberty by reducing state power, thus concealing the totalitarian character.

In terms of the two-party system, Republicans are avid, pitiless, intolerant, unbending, predatory, anti-democratic, iron-willed ideologues who’ve sold out to big business while courting big religion, and Democrats ape them, thus creating a one-party climate that fulfills the wishes of corporate “citizens” while systematically neglecting the needs of regular citizens, producing an apathetic electorate that’s lost hope in the political process.

State power is legitimated by media events called “elections” that elites have learned to control through finance, marketing and media ownership, while politicians accept bribes called “contributions” that are considered “speech” – as defined by the Supreme Court, effectively using “free speech” to silence the citizenry while replacing constituents with lobbyists.

Citizens fear job loss and benefit loss due to downsizing and outsourcing, which maximize “efficiency,” while the government shreds social safety nets for the sake of “efficiency,” leaving citizens vulnerable and yet unable to protect themselves when states outlaw collective bargaining, thus criminalizing worker self-defense.

Contrary to popular belief, slashing federal programs enhances state power by making government less unwieldy and easier to control since it dilutes public involvement, thus depleting public power and solidifying executive power.

The idea of democracy is emptied of substance and used as a slogan to justify military invasion, occupation and torture while the doctrine of “preemptive war” renders all acts of aggression as defensive and undertaken for the sake of insuring “stability.” For example, deference to US demands and the protection of corporate assets – in a war against terrorism that lacks a specific geographic location and thus requires the globe-girdling ability to strike anywhere anytime.

Instead of a Politburo circulating state propaganda that touts one political ideology, the corporate media feigns democratic debate that features “both sides” who are portrayed as extreme opposites but actually reflect a slim range of political discourse, thus giving the appearance of freedom while relying on White House, State Department and Pentagon spokespeople to supply the “official” version of political affairs, which are broadcast into every home through television, thus manipulating the public rather than including them.

Democracy functions as a useful myth that obscures the totalitarian atmosphere in which citizens feel politically impotent and fearful as they are dwarfed by giant, rigid, top-heavy bureaucracies that respond to the protocols of a corporate state that collaborates with telecommunications companies to monitor the population and develop detailed digital profiles of citizens while local police forces cooperate with federal law enforcement agencies, augmenting the burgeoning prison industry as the state loosens laws that forbid army soldiers from patrolling US streets.

The corporate state defunds public programs and forces everything into the market, including health, education, social security, pensions, public broadcasting, prisons, water, soldiers, surveillance and national intelligence, while businesses commodify the environment and patent DNA.

Two Party System as an enabler of the Quiet Coup:
privatization by the elite of the whole country

In the “democracy” that America has evolved to, money counts more than people. In past elections, the votes were counted, now they are going to start weighing them.

America The Counter-Revolution - Salem-News.Com

“(T)he rich elites of (the USA) have far more in common with their counterparts in London, Paris, and Tokyo than with their fellow American citizens … the rich disconnect themselves from the civic life of the nation and from any concern about its well being except as a place to extract loot. Our plutocracy now lives like the British in colonial India: in the place and ruling it, but not of it.”

-- Mike Lofgren

Two party system also makes possible a very interesting recent phenomenon, which started under Reagan (or may be Nixon) and first fully demonstrated itself after the dissolution of the USSR: a deep split between the elite and the rest of population to the extent that the country because a hostage of the elite which now behave like a brutal occupiers, not as compatriots. In other work the self-serving(aka greedy) elite with its neoliberal ideology emerged as much more formidable threat to democracy then communist ideology of the past. Neoliberalism not only defeated Marxism, it also decimated the US labor movement. Neoliberalism is in essence transnational, so Marxist slogan "proletarians of all countries unite" materialized in a form "elite of all countries unite" ;-). and that spells deep troubles for the 99% of the USA population as labor arbitrage is used to lower their living standard.

Being transnational they treat their "host" country as occupiers. Their allegiance is with transnational elite not with old ("national") bourgeoisie. In some countries like Russia under Putin national bourgeoisie (and imprisonment of Khodorkovky was a watershed invent in this respect as it prevented sell-out of Russian oil reserves to the US corporations) managed partially displace transnational elite form command hights but it remain to be seen how stable this regime is.

They now crave for "materialization" of their status in a form of great wealth and reject moral and cultural values of the past. This was first noticed by Christopher Lasch in 1994 when he published his groundbreaking book The Revolt of the Elites and the Betrayal of Democracy. This was partly due to the book prophetic recognition that the elites of this country (and indeed the developed world) -- the professionals, top managers (upper-middle class and higher) -- were pulling away from the rest of the pack, tacitly renouncing their stake in and responsibility to society social contract, and slowly changing the rules of the game to increate economic inequality and appropriate the large share of society wealth. Tyler Durden writes Zero Hedge on Feb. 15, 2013, that 1% of Americans control over 40% of the United States’ wealth. But those making $10 million or more a year pay an average income tax rate of only 19%, less then people who are making 60K a year. As an old-school conservative, Lasch considered excessive economic inequality to be intrinsically undesirable: the difficulty of limiting the influence of wealth suggests that wealth itself needs to be limited.

Since the Reagan administration the USA has indeed accomplished a successful transformation to an effective One Party State with the financial oligarchy instead of Soviet nomenklarura and Wall Street instead of the Communist Party of the USSR. As Soviet nomenklatura had shown to the surprised world at one moment the elite can just privatize the whole country (with active participation of KGB which in theory should protect the regime). In other words the objective of the elite and their political handmaidens became to discredit and destroy the traditional nation state and auction its resources to themselves. This new ruling caste, schooled separately, brought up to believe in fairytales, lives in a world of its own, from which it can project power without understanding or even noticing the consequences. A removal from the life of the rest of the nation is no barrier to the desire to dominate it. In fact it appears to be associated with a powerful, almost psychopathic sense of entitlement. This transition of elite (which now is first and foremost financial elite) into brutal occupiers of their own country was recently popularized by Professor Simon Johnson under then name of "Quiet Coup":

The crash has laid bare many unpleasant truths about the United States. One of the most alarming, says a former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund, is that the finance industry has effectively captured our government -- a state of affairs that more typically describes emerging markets, and is at the center of many emerging-market crises. ...

…the American financial industry gained political power by amassing a kind of cultural capital -- a belief system. Once, perhaps, what was good for General Motors was good for the country. Over the past decade, the attitude took hold that what was good for Wall Street was good for the country. The banking-and-securities industry has become one of the top contributors to political campaigns, but at the peak of its influence, it did not have to buy favors the way, for example, the tobacco companies or military contractors might have to. Instead, it benefited from the fact that Washington insiders already believed that large financial institutions and free-flowing capital markets were crucial to America’s position in the world.

At least since Reagan years we’ve been witnessing a quiet, slow-motion coup d’etat whose purpose is to repeal every bit of progressive legislation since the New Deal and entrench the privileged positions of the wealthy and powerful — who haven’t been as wealthy or as powerful since the Gilded Age of the late 19th century. As professor Reich noted:

Its techique is to inundate America with a few big lies, told over and over (for example, the debt is Obama’s fault and it’s out of control; corporations and the very rich are the “job creators” that need tax cuts; government is the enemy, and its regulations are strangling the private sector; unions are bad; and so on), and tell them so often they’re taken as fact.

Then having convinced enough Americans that these lies are true, take over the White House, Congress, and remaining states that haven’t yet succumbed to the regressive right (witness Tuesday’s recall election in Wisconsin).

Preventing meaningful reform

Two party system proved to be ideal instrument for preventing any meaningful social and political reform as recent political history of the USA aptly demonstrates. Here are some relevant comments from Naked Capitalism forums:

kievite

I am pretty pessimistic about the current situation. There are some tectonic forces at work and politicians can do only so much to try to prevent an earthquake.

One aspect of the problem is that the society became way too complex.

Tainter in his book suggested that as societies become more complex, the costs of meeting new challenges increase, until there comes a point where extra resources devoted to meeting new challenges produce diminishing and then negative returns.

The USA has an interesting twist in this regard which make some form of drastic change more plausible: Republican Party. The current Republican Party (aka wrecking crew) is a textbook demonstration of the forces that prevent any meaningful reform. Democratic Party is another part of the same bait-and-switch system.

The amount of resources diverted to military industrial complex and financial companies probably serve as another severe limitation on what can be done to prevent new crisis.

And with 40% of population believing that Saddam was instrumental in 9/11 the chances of political change are slim. Looks like country is pretty evenly divided and multi-year brainwashing can’t be reverted until the current generation pass away.

Rampant unemployment and absence of meaningful jobs creation are two features that make the current situation unsustainable.

Simple solutions like some form of fascism are definitely becoming more attractive in this atmosphere. So we can be sure that attempts to explore this opportunity will be made. Clerical fascism is one possibility.

High unemployment is a powerful catalyst of mass support of any radical ideology.

Actually the beginning of this century looks in many ways similar to the beginning of the previous century. And we know how things developed in the previous century. We just do not know the form “change we can believe in” will take.

kievite:

Actually splitting UR into two parties which are just replica of the USA structure with Democratic/Republican parties is a fascinating idea. As the USA experience proved it can be pretty stable politically as one branch of the same “united oligarchy party” would marginalise left and the other can marginalise extreme right.

As Gore Vidal said

“There is one political party in this country, and that is the party of money. It has two branches, the Republicans and the Democrats, the chief difference between which is that the Democrats are better at concealing their scorn for the average man.”

This might be an interesting political innovation for Russia: substituting single party regime with the “dualism without choice” (or “choice we can believe in” if we use politically correct language ;-) . This dual party structure can serve as a powerful force for marginalising opposition both on left and right. reform. In this case both parties are the necessary and vital parts of the same bait-and-switch system.

As for Medvedev actions I think that few people either in mass population or elite forgot economical and political rape of Russia under Yeltsin.

As unforgettable George W. Bush said: “There’s an old saying in Tennessee — I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can’t get fooled again.”

A popular mock word for “democrats” — “der’mokcats” and for “liberals” — “liberasts” reflects the common attitude after Yeltsin reforms.

Among interesting attempt to explain the current electoral situation provided in "American Revolution Today- First Principles and Basic Precepts " have some merits:

What does the prospect of Revolution mean today in The United States? Well, the very fact that today we are a nation, whereas in the late eighteenth century our forefathers were simply a collection of subject farmers and tradesmen inhabiting a colonial outpost of The British Empire, puts us in a very different set of circumstances than our predecessors. And yet some of the very same intolerable conditions that impelled our colonial ancestors to revolt against an arbitrary and unresponsive British crown exist today.

In fact, if anything, the tax burden you and I face now is greater by a substantial sum than what existed at the outset of The American Revolution when the cry "Taxation Without Representation" was the clarion call for defiance against The British Crown. More troubling perhaps is that those individuals that stand today at the head of our leading institutions of public life, whether they be the Treasury Secretary, Federal Reserve Bank Chairman, Senior Congressmen and women, and even The President, seem every bit as disinterested in honestly addressing our legitimate concerns, and in answering our probing questions, as any eighteenth century British Parliamentarian or exhalted royal head of state were in addressing the complaints of the colonialists.

Some might offer that the answer to such a lamentable state of affairs is to simply replace, via the ballot box, recalcitrant and unresponsive leaders. Regrettably, it is the opinion of American Revolution Today that the mechanisms of government are now so deeply flawed, so intractably corrupt, that no such simple remedy is possible were it even allowed. In truth, it is the view of American Revolution Today that:

  1. The United States Federal Government, functioning primarily on behalf of monied interests, particularly big banking and Wall Street, has become a nemesis of "We The People."
  2. The entrenched two party system comprised of Democrats and Republicans is, in the main, obstructive of reform, and, by definition, utterly opposed to anything resembling revolutionary change.
  3. At this juncture, traditional means of political self determination may not be the way forward, but in any case, we at American Revolution Today are convinced that no candidate from either the Democratic or Republican parties should receive support; any affiliation with the two party system almost assures that such a candidacy would ultimately be antithetical to government benefiting "We The People."

Following on from that, no candidate who runs for Federal public office that does not feature the following planks in their campaign platform will be deemed suitable for election.

A.) Term limits
B.) Campaign Finance Reform
C.) Shortened Election Cycles
D.) Cessation of "Redistricting"
E.) Full Audit of The Federal Reserve
F.) The restoration of constitutional mandate for congressional control of U.S. currency.
G.) An end to further raising of the debt ceiling
H.) Immediate removal of all troops, personnel, and material from Iran and Afghanistan
I.) Replacement of income tax and estate taxes with new levies on consumption, and amended levies on capital gains by individuals and corporations.
J.) Health care reform that is first and foremost free market based with no governmental bias towards "Big Pharma" or the insurance industry.
K.) A multi-generational program designed to return some "reasonable sum" of manufacture back to the United States
L.) The complete overhaul of such government agencies as the SEC, The Bureau of Labor and Statistics, and Homeland Security, to name but a few.
M.) Full investigations of those individuals in and out of government who are alleged to have engaged in criminal activity associated with the collapse of various large banking concerns and quasi government agencies such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
N.) An end to the entire "alphabet soup" of programs funneling money to too big to be allowed to exist parasitic institutions such as AIG, BOA, GS, Citicorp, and JPM.
O.) A restoration of mark to market accounting standards, and the cessation of the writing of any more "standard performance contracts" aka OTC derivatives, until such time as a regulated exchange is instituted for their trade.
P.) A complete rollback of all cap and trade legislation.

If you are in agreement with the ideas and political initiatives expressed here, and feel as we do, join us in making the Second American Revolution a reality. Join us in reestablishing a nation where The Constitution is fully respected, and where good government is defined as one that governs least and always on behalf of the greater good.

Honest Elections Myth

Here is characterization by the USA MSM of the particular foreign election

They have the right to have an honest elections... We will have to disagree on the scale of the electoral fraud – from what I can see , the “elections”: were a total , crudely executed sham

In fact this characterization if perfectly applicable to the US elections as well. In fact elections are always stolen from people by oligarchy. There was an excellent observation here:

There’s no real skill in convincing people that they’re unhappy with the current state of affairs, and to set visions of sugarplums dancing in their heads (if I may be seasonal for a moment).

Everybody feels they’re entitled to something better, and the only thing left to do is identify the person or persons standing in the way of their getting it.

But everybody who isn’t a dolt usually says at some point, “Uhhh….how’s that going to work?”

I would add my two cents.

  1. When we face critic of elections who claim they are dishonest that classic Russian question arise " Who are the judges?" (Griboedov) .

    Judges are representatives of several political forces:

    Typically none of them is better then "current corrupt regime". That supports that statement that means that taking into account the alternative, the word democracy here is used as a Trojan force for regime change with the hope that the next regime will more suitable for geo-political security interests of the USA and Western Europe.

  2. Absolutization of the idea of "honest election" is nothing but dirty PR trick. I would remind here old, but still relvant work of Robert Michels who became famous for his formuation of "Iron law of oligarchies": He demostrated (in 1911 !) that the idea of "honest election" is a myth the covers the universal trend of democratic organizations towards oligarchy. And that elections are form of civilised struggle of different oligarchic groups represented by party functionaries for power. Which in turn represent so called "leading families". The latter is one (a) that develops, retains and renews its wealth over a number of generations; (b) in which some children in each generation secure good positions in the various elites of society; and (c) where the family holds together as a network for information on and influence over the development of a local community or ─ in certain cases ─ the country as a whole. More than one thinks, the history of Europe and America in the past century has consisted of the history of the leading families.

  3. It's natural that like after any dirty football game the fans of the winning team call it brutal but honest and fans of the losing team "dirty and dishonest". As there are some objective criteria of the level of "dirty tricks" played in election people who try to absolutize the idea of "honest election" are crooks who want to "rock the boat". .

Credibility trap of two party system

Credibility trap of one party system is well known. Two party system is more resilient in this respect but is not totally immune to credibility trap.

A credibility trap [in two party sytem] is a situation in which the regulatory, political and/or the informational functions of a society have been thoroughly taken in by a corrupting influence and a fraud, so that one cannot address the situation without implicating, at least incidentally, a broad swath of the power structure and the status quo who at least tolerated it, if not profited directly from it, and most likely continue to do so.

This lead to an interesting situation when voting became a special type of entertainment aptly described in John Chuckman Nov 6, 2013 essay HOW AMERICA LEARNED TO PLAY GOD

Just as there is a natural cycle in the life of great industries – the scores of early American car manufacturers are now reduced to a few functioning as an oligopoly, an historical pattern repeated in industry after industry – there appears to be a life cycle for a government organized like that of the United States. The duopoly which runs the American government consists of two parties which differ in almost no particulars except some social issues, but even that difference is rather a sham because the American government no longer has any interest in social issues. It is concerned overwhelmingly with representing and furthering the interests of the nation’s three great power centers of the military-industrial-intelligence complex. Social issues now are soap-box stuff for street-corner politicians and members of NGOs.

But in any case, all players in this political duopoly, no matter to which office they may be elected, know they can never challenge the immense authority and virtual omnipresence of America’s military, intelligence, corporate hierarchies and special interests like the Israel Lobby, powerful anti-democratic institutions which literally shape the space America’s politicians must inhabit.

Americans today quite simply could not vote in an informed manner if they wanted to do so (and many are not interested in voting at all, as we shall see): they are completely in the dark as to what happens inside their government, both its operations within the country and in international affairs. No one knows the full extent of spending on intelligence, nor do they know what dark programs are underway. No one knows the full extent of spending on the military, nor do they know to what questionable tasks it is being put around the world. No one knows the immense extent and complexity of lobbying and special interests in the American government. And of course no one is privy to the planning and operations of the great corporations, nor do they know anything of the dealings and financing arrangements between those corporations (or the wealthy individuals who own and run them) and the people’s supposed representatives, who all must spend a substantial part of their time just raising money for the next election (the average American Senator is said to spend two-thirds of his or her time doing just that).

Americans’ votes in elections have become to a remarkable extent meaningless, although an elaborate political stage play keeps the appearance of meaning and keeps those interested in politics involved and entertained. Almost certainly as a result of sensing how little their votes count, Americans often simply do not vote and do so in increasing numbers. The further down the political totem pole you go from the presidential elections which generate the most noise owing to the obscene amounts of money spent on marketing and advertising, the greater is this truth. Maybe 60% vote for president, a minority vote in other national elections, and a tiny fraction vote in state and local elections.

This vacuum is filled with Big Intelligence which become one of the "king makers":

The record of arrogance and abuse by security organizations, such as CIA or the FBI, is long and costly, filled with errors in judgment, abuse of power, incompetence, and immense dishonesty. Owing to the black magic of classified secrecy, much of the record involves projects about which we will never know, but even what we do know about is distressing enough. And I’m not sure that it can be any other way so long as you have Big Intelligence. Apart from Big Intelligence’s own propensity towards criminal or psychopathic behavior, one of the great ironies of Big Intelligence is that it will always agree to bend, to provide whatever suppressions and fabrications are requested by political leaders working towards the aims of the other great anti-democratic institutions, the military and the corporations. This became blindingly clear in the invasion of Iraq and, even before that, in the first Gulf War.

Among other things they provide powerful filtering system so that none undesirable slips into important office:

America’s political system, honed and shaped over many decades, fits comfortably with these institutions. National elections are dominated by a two-party duopoly (being kept that way through countless institutional barriers deliberately created to maintain the status quo) , both these parties are dominated by huge flows of campaign contributions (contributions which form what economists call an effective barrier to entry against any third party seriously being able to compete), both parties embrace much the same policies except for some social issues of little interest to the establishment, and election campaigns are reduced to nothing more than gigantic advertising and marketing operations no different in nature to campaigns for two national brands of fast food or pop. It takes an extremely long time for a candidate to rise and be tested before being trusted with the huge amounts of money invested in an important campaign, and by that time he or she is a well-read book with no surprising chapters.

If for any reason this political filtering system fails, and someone slips through to an important office without having spent enough time to make them perfectly predictable, there still remains little chance of serious change on any important matter. The military-industrial-intelligence complex provides a molded space into which any newcomer absolutely must fit. Just imagine the immense pressures exerted by the mere presence of senior Pentagon brass gathered around a long polished oak table or a table surrounded by top corporate figures representing hundreds of billions in sales or representatives or a major lobbying group (and multi-million dollar financing source for the party). We see the recent example of popular hopes being crushed after the election of Obama, a man everyone on the planet hoped to see mend some of the ravages of George Bush and Dick Cheney. But the man who once sometimes wore sandals and bravely avoided a superfluous and rather silly flag pin on his lapel quickly was made to feel the crushing weight of institutional power, and he bent to every demand made on him, becoming indistinguishable from Bush. Of course, the last president who genuinely did challenge at least some of the great institutional powers, even to a modest extent, died in an ambush in Dallas.

Disenfranchised Voters

Here are pretty typical comments about the recent Congress election in The Guardian (Oct 30, 2014):

UNOINO

It makes no difference to our Handlers whether we vote for Tweedledee or Tweedledum. None whatsoever because our Handlers own them both. Now, back to work.

jeni popa

All parties aside, the right hand still has to work with the left hand. Try using just one hand, not much gets done, right ? Now try together, thank you.

Stephen_Sean -> jeni popa

Sometimes one hand is all that is required, but I see your point.

UNOINO -> jeni popa

At the moment one force is controlling both hands. They are essentially both doing the same thing. What we need is a third hand, so to speak. A third party.

Wiscot -> UNOINO

If there is one thing that will always unite Republicans and Democrats at all levels of government, it is the desire to keep it a two-party system. Any third party will be marginalized by whatever means possible. They know that people hate Congress so much that any reasonable alternative would get votes. The Establishment will always protect itself.

"Myth about intelligent/rational voter"

"Myth about intelligent/rational voter" is pretty widespread despite many books that convincingly prove that this is a myth and that people are able consistently vote against their own interests including this virtual economic interests (in other words are easily brainwashed). There are some interesting facts on the ground that disprove this myth (Washington Post, ):

Two books on the subject that deserve attention are

There is one book with neoclassical perspective on the subject (and as such completely off the mark) but at least Amazon reviews (especially negative one start reviews ;-) are well worth reading:

The Myth of the Rational Voter Why Democracies Choose Bad Policies by Bryan Caplan

Gaetan Lion:
The Myth Caplan is rational, July 20, 2010

Caplan's thesis seems sensible. The voters are irrational as they have systematic biases including anti-market bias, anti-foreigner bias, anti-trade (or pro-protectionism) bias, and pro make-work bias. In turn, the voters elect politicians that reflect their biases. And, politicians execute detrimental social policies that reflect the biases of the voters. However, Caplan thesis is wrong on numerous counts.

First, the voters are not irrational. They are ignorant of counter-intuitive economic concepts. Those are two different things. One entails voters are crazy; they are not. The other entails they don't know macroeconomics; and they truly don't.

Second, politicians govern to get reelected. And, their main master is the economy as measured by GDP growth, inflation, and unemployment. Whether they are responsible or not for such indicators, politicians will suffer the blame or get credit for them. The pressure of delivering a strong economic performance easily overcomes any of the biases Caplan mentions.

Third, on economic policy it is often technocrats, not elected by voters, who run the show. Politicians are mainly lawyers not economists. On complex macroeconomic policies technocrats control the agenda. The main two ones are the Secretary of the Treasury and the Chairman of the Federal Reserve. These two pretty much dictate fiscal and monetary policies respectively. They also work jointly in times of crisis. A good example is the recent financial crisis. The various bail outs, fiscal stimulus, TARP plan, etc... were not initiated by George Bush or Obama. They were orchestrated by Henry Paulson, Secretary of the Treasury under Bush, and his successor Timothy Geithner, and Ben Bernanke, Chairman of the Fed. The public's strong anti-bank populist sentiment had no influence whatsoever on the implementation of those bail outs. Thus, recent history represents a devastating blow to Caplan's theory.

Fourth, international trade is another area that trumps Caplan's theories. His favorite theoretical examples address voters bias for protectionism and import tariffs. But, matters of international trade are now almost entirely subordinated to supranational entities such as the WTO. Additionally, you can't find a nation more in favor of free trade than the U.S. The latter has signed bilateral free trade agreements with North America (NAFTA) and many other countries. This is another embarrassing rebuttal to Caplan's theories that voters' biases result into poor economic policies. They don't. Political leaders and technocrats ignore voters' sentiments whenever they have to.

Fifth, Caplan's faith in the markets appears delusional. In his view, because democracy results in poor policies reflecting irrational voters' biases, you need an alternative. And, his alternative is the market. Quoting Caplan: "If people are rational as consumers but irrational as voters, it is a good idea to rely more on markets and less on politics." The timing of his libertarian manifesto could not have been worse. It gets published in 2007 just as we experience two spectacular market failures. The first one had been brewing up for decades: the health care crisis. That's where we found out that an unrestrained for profit health care system does not work. The second market failure was the aftermath of financial deregulation that had taken place over a decade and resulted in the current financial crisis. We should also add the recent market failure of unregulated deep sea oil drilling (the BP incident). So, for Caplan to state we should replace government by markets whenever we can is irrational.

Sixth, another weakness of Caplan's theory is that he uses data that is often over 20 years out of date. Such is the case, when he states that the elderly are less supportive of Social Security than the remainder of the public. He also states that women are less pro-choice than men. Had Caplan used current findings, it is likely that the opposite would be true.

Additionally, Caplan trips himself over basic economic concepts. Just as he goes on that economists are so smart and the rest of us are not; he demonstrates he is himself not so clear on economic concepts. Thus, when he attempts to teach us the basics of labor specialization he immediately contradicts himself. Quoting him on page 17: "If Crusoe's belief is correct, he wisely specializes in agriculture and has Friday do other kinds of work. But, if Crusoe's belief is blind to prejudice, keeping Friday out of agriculture reduces total production and makes both men poorer." As you noticed, whether Crusoe is correct or prejudice, the result is exactly the same.

David Moore wrote a far superior book pretty much on the same subject: The Opinion Makers: An Insider Exposes the Truth Behind the Polls. Moore's main point is that the public is often unqualified to answer polling questions. Meanwhile, such polls are mistaken for the voice of the Nation. But, again ignorance and craziness are not the same thing. Moore understands that. Caplan does not.

Loyd E. Eskildson "Pragmatist" (Phoenix, AZ.) 
  

1.0 out of 5 stars Boring and Adds Nothing to Today's Issues, October 1, 2007

"The greatest obstacle to social economic policy is not entrenched special interests but the popular misconceptions, irrational beliefs and personal biases of ordinary voters." I thought that was a good introduction and eagerly dived in. Then it all fell apart, beginning with page 1 and Caplan's assumption that free trade is unequivocally good for America.

Clearly free trade was good for America just after WWII when we were the only industrial entity of any consequence standing. Want cars, steel, electronics, refrigerators, TVs - whatever, we had it and they probably didn't. So Americans made out like bandits.

Today, its the Chinese, Indians, Koreans, Japanese, etc. who are raking in the benefits. While Americans lose jobs, pensions, health care coverage, and move to lower-paying jobs, economists remain isolated in their 18th century theories of free-trade developed in an era of only minor differences in standards of living, wage levels, and major limitations in communication speed and transportation.

On a macro level, Americans are also losing manufacturing capacity and skills. Shocked to see a senior Mattel executive publicly apologizing to the Chinese over issues leading to the recall of Chinese manufactured toys? Undoubtedly the Chinese have more than a little power over Mattel (and other toy makers), given that at least 75% of toys are now "Made in China" and we would have difficulty quickly substituting our own capabilities for theirs. In WWII the U.S. turned the tide of battle with its ability to mass-produce quality armaments. Today we have difficulty producing IED resistant vehicles and the most effective body armor.

The dollar's purchasing power is already another victim of today's free trade, with potentially far worse declines possible. Suppose we now suddenly decided to "bite the bullet," stop buying most low-cost items from China and reinvigorate our own manufacturing? Would China threaten retaliation by dumping the trillions of dollar IOUs they hold, wrecking our currency? Could we afford that risk?

Perhaps economists (including Caplan) will join the 21st century when Asian economists begin taking their jobs via Internet instruction in American colleges and universities. It is time to update their popular misconceptions, irrational beliefs, and personal biases.

Nicole

Don't confuse us with the facts!" June 8, 2007

Many people have noted that democracy seems not to work - policies are implemented that often are not in the best interest of voters, and when voters are surveyed they routinely lack even the most basic civic knowledge. The way people have typically answered this problem is to say that voters are uninformed, and that if they simply had more access to good information, they would use that information to make better choices. But even so, the tiny informed minority will sway elections because the uninformed majority will vote at random.

Here, Caplan directly challenges that view by asserting that voters are not simply ignorant but irrational, and that this is in fact predicted by economic theory. Voting is not like shopping - it is more like making use of a commons, because the costs of a "bad" vote are borne by the public at large, and the chance of an individual casting the deciding vote is tiny. Therefore, people will vote for what makes them feel good without bothering to find out whether it really is good - it simply doesn't matter.

... ... ...

The key idea here is that de facto educated people are not needed as voters so "diffusing" the vote to encompass a mass of uneducated people you get the situation similar when only top 1% has the right to elect. Intelligent voters are dangerous because they are heavier than control and manipulate (and if that means dismantling public education system so be it -- interest of oligarchy are more important).

What is important for elite is an illusion of choice not the choice itself. That simulates the sense of belonging for "shmaks" (aka red necks). Media, in this case is just a part of feedback control loop to manipulate the "dark masses" (aka shmaks), and the more ignorant people, the easier it is through such a control loop enables manipulation. Of course, neither of which involved such a dark reality of the population to the real issues of governance and the economy, it is not even going. After all we can't make happy all the people. So de facto, access to education is a powerful mean to make existing stratification of the society permanent. Of course, this policy creates  fundamental and unavoidable conflict with the requests for social justice. And as a result can lead to periodic shocks when masses slip out of control due to some gross injustice like financial crisis of 2008.

Actually this is what Russian elite (or at least part of Russian elite) openly proposes. Look at the transcript o Gref (the chairman of Sberbank). Recommended reading in order to better understand the real views of the ruling elite in the development and management and not to fall into some vain illusions. The second point here is that all those US cries about threats to democracy in Russia are the same cries that wolves do when they are deprived from guarding chickens. The was never democracy in Russia since 1991 and never will be as there is no democracy is the USA and never will be any.  The only differences is the methods of rotation of elite (and is this sense Russia is much more democratic then the USA).

 Yeltsin criminal regime was a dictatorship of comprador oligarchy centered around gangster syndicate of "Komsomol banksters" (Berezovsky, Khodorkovsky, Gusinsky and Co.). Shock therapy, methods of privatization used (under the direction of Harvard academic skunks) and shelling parlament proves that 100%. It was just economic rape of the country from which it did not fully recover. Actually under Yeltsin GDP dropped to level lower then during invasion of Hitler armies in WW2.

Putin partially dismounted this in favor of energy and military-industrial complex oligarchy. In a way his regime somewhat similar to George W Bush regime but with different personality and less hate toward middle class and common folks. As well as without subservience to neo-conservatives. But it looks like the same energy and military-industrial oligarchy bonsais rules the country. Medvedev tried to sit between two chairs. I think that's why Kudrin opposed growing milirary expenditures.

And this hysterical circus about votes falsifications is actually a perfect method to push voters to vote again their own economic and political interests. Consensus is very fragile as the county has huge unsolved problems. And hostility of the USA toward Russia which was quite determined to kill wondered foe should not be underestimated.

We have an example in a struggle between corrupt and criminal comprador oligarchy leaded by Yutchshenko-Timoshenko allies and industrial part of the oligarchy led by Yanokovich. In this case voters were quite successfully brainwashed. With the help of western money and consultants Yanukovich criminal past became a huge factor.

In other words common folds are always duped. For example millions of Americans who were taken for a ride by Bush II presidential campaign scripted from the pages of Niccolo Machiavelli’s "The Prince." The father of Realpolitik famously observed that “politics have no relations to morals,” and this aphorism serves as the motto for George Bush and company.  Richard Nixon once remarked, “You can’t fool all of the people, all of the time, but if you fool them once, it lasts for four years.”

Quotes

"You've Got to Cozy Up" More Politicians Admitting That Money Controls Politics

Three weeks ago I posted a collection of quotes from politicians acknowledging the obvious reality that money has a huge impact on what they do, and asked anyone with more examples to send them to me .

You really came through. Here are 15 more great examples, with credit to the people who suggested them.

Please keep them coming; I'm looking specifically for working politicians who describe a tight linkage between money and political outcomes. And I'd still love to speak directly to current or former politicians who have an opinion about this.

I'll continue to add all of them to the original post , so you can bookmark that for the complete collection.

• "I gave to many people, before this, before two months ago, I was a businessman. I give to everybody. When they call, I give. And do you know what? When I need something from them two years later, three years later, I call them, they are there for me. And that's a broken system." - Donald Trump in 2015.

• "This is what's wrong. [Donald Trump] buys and sells politicians of all stripes. … He's used to buying politicians." - Sen. Rand Paul , R-Ky., in 2015.

• "The millionaire class and the billionaire class increasingly own the political process, and they own the politicians that go to them for money. … We are moving very, very quickly from a democratic society, one person, one vote, to an oligarchic form of society, where billionaires would be determining who the elected officials of this country are." - Sen. Bernie Sanders , I-Vt., in 2015. (Thanks to Robert Wilson in comments .)

Sanders has also said many similar things, including : "I think many people have the mistaken impression that Congress regulates Wall Street. … The real truth is that Wall Street regulates the Congress." (Thanks to ND, via email.)

• "Today's whole political game, run by an absurdist's nightmare of moneyed elites, is ridiculous - a game in which corporations are people and money is magically empowered to speak; candidates trek to the corporate suites and secret retreats of the rich, shamelessly selling their political souls." - Jim Hightower , former Democratic agricultural commissioner of Texas, 2015. (Thanks to CS, via email.)

• "People tell me all the time that our politics in Washington are broken and that multimillionaires, billionaires and big corporations are calling all the shots. … It's hard not to agree." - Russ Feingold , three-term Democratic senator from Wisconsin, in 2015 announcing he's running for the Senate again. (Thanks to CS, via email.)

• "I can legally accept gifts from lobbyists unlimited in number and in value … As you might guess, what results is a corruption of the institution of Missouri government, a corruption driven by big money in politics." - Missouri state Sen. Rob Schaaf , 2015. (Thanks to DK, via email.)

• "When some think tank comes up with the legislation and tells you not to fool with it, why are you even a legislator anymore? You just sit there and take votes and you're kind of a feudal serf for folks with a lot of money." - Dale Schultz , 32-year Republican state legislator in Wisconsin and former state Senate Majority Leader, in 2013 before retiring rather than face a primary challenger backed by Americans for Prosperity.

Several months later Schultz said : "I firmly believe that we are beginning in this country to look like a Russian-style oligarchy where a couple of dozen billionaires have basically bought the government."

• "I was directly told, 'You want to be chairman of House Administration, you want to continue to be chairman.' They would actually put in writing that you have to raise $150,000. They still do that - Democrats and Republicans. If you want to be on this committee, it can cost you $50,000 or $100,000 - you have to raise that money in most cases." - Bob Ney , five-term Republican congressman from Ohio who pleaded guilty to corruption charges connected to the Jack Abramoff scandal, in 2013. (Thanks to ratpatrol in comments .)

• "American democracy has been hacked. … The United States Congress … is now incapable of passing laws without permission from the corporate lobbies and other special interests that control their campaign finances." - Al Gore , former vice president, in his 2013 book The Future. (Thanks to anon in comments .)

• "I will begin by stating the sadly obvious: Our electoral system is a mess. Powerful financial interests, free to throw money about with little transparency, have corrupted the basic principles underlying our representative democracy." - Chris Dodd , five-term Democratic senator from Connecticut, in 2010 farewell speech. (Thanks to RO, via email.)

"Across the spectrum, money changed votes. Money certainly drove policy at the White House during the Clinton administration, and I'm sure it has in every other administration too." - Joe Scarborough , four-term Republican congressman from Florida and now co-host of "Morning Joe," in the 1990s. (Thanks to rrheard in comments .)

• "We are the only people in the world required by law to take large amounts of money from strangers and then act as if it has no effect on our behavior." - Barney Frank , 16-term Democratic congressman from Massachusetts, in the 1990s. (Thanks to RO, via email.)

• "Money plays a much more important role in what is done in Washington than we believe. … You've got to cozy up, as an incumbent, to all the special interest groups who can go out and raise money for you from their members, and that kind of a relationship has an influence on the way you're gonna vote. … I think we have to become much more vigilant on seeing the impact of money. … I think it's wrong and we've got to change it." - Mitt Romney , then the Republican candidate running against Ted Kennedy for Senate, in 1994. (Thanks to LA, via email.)

• "I had a nice talk with Jack Morgan [i.e., banker J.P. Morgan, Jr.] the other day and he seemed more worried about [Assistant Secretary of Agriculture Rexford] Tugwell's speech than about anything else, especially when Tugwell said, 'From now on property rights and financial rights will be subordinated to human rights.' … The real truth of the matter is, as you and I know, that a financial element in the larger centers has owned the Government ever since the days of Andrew Jackson. … The country is going through a repetition of Jackson's fight with the Bank of the United States - only on a far bigger and broader basis." - Franklin D. Roosevelt in a 1933 letter to Edward M. House. (Thanks to LH, via email.)

• "Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government, owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people. To destroy this invisible government, to dissolve the unholy alliance between corrupt business and corrupt politics is the first task of the statesmanship of the day." - 1912 platform of the Progressive Party, founded by former president Theodore Roosevelt. (Thanks to LH, via email.)

 

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[Jul 26, 2016] He convinced none of us: Bernie Sanders diehards react to convention speech

Notable quotes:
"... See, I believe progressive people are sick of collecting the little scraps they're thrown after the real corporate agenda has been set in stone. If there was ever a time to not go along with this, stand firm and say ''No more'', this is it. ..."
"... This movement is bigger than Bernie Sanders. If Hillary loses to Trump, it won't be the fault of Sanders supporters, but the slimy lies and corruption of her and the DNC. It has been said that the Democratic party is the place where social movements die. Good to know that "Berners" still want to fight for the greater good, something establishment politics doesn't provide. ..."
"... Hillary Clinton = Jeb! + Gun Control ..."
"... Sanders supporters will get more for their vote with Trump than with Hillary. ..."
"... If Bernie truly believes that Hillary would "make an outstanding president" why did he stand against her in the first place? ..."
"... Hillary is an imperialist. If there's actually a "lesser evil" out of these two, I don't see it. ..."
"... A vote for Clinton is condemning Middle Eastern people to their deaths with the obvious invasions that she'll likely cook up. ..."
"... Trump wants to make jobs, better the education system and raise salaries. Voting for Trump will bring Sanders supporters more of what they want and less is they vote for Clinton. ..."
"... I cancelled my visit to the Democratic convention in Philadelphia when I realised it was going to be Hilary Clinton. She is a female version of Tony Blair, even, more dishonest and unscrupulous. Had the blacks and latinos voted for Sanders in numbers, this result could have been avoided. But we have to live with it. The hope is that Bernie has started a movement that will survive and perhaps one day we will have a social democratic president in the USA. ..."
"... Make Sanders VP and then Assange plus the FBI will take care of the details. Simple. ..."
"... I may have voted Hillary, but then "DWS". Tomorrow I become a independent. F@ck the DNC 30 years a Dem now a disappointed. ..."
"... It's Billary who intends to pursue a more 'muscular' foreign policy http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/hillary-clinton-middle-east_us_56f06ab2e4b09bf44a9e3177 ..."
"... Crooked Clinton and her crooked backers are laughing their asses off at Bernie. The old fool is being used. ..."
"... She's dishonest, She has no clear principles, and She has a long history of questionable judgement/ethics. The first two issues are ones of degree: just about all of us are guilty of the occasional fib, and people often alter their views to what is fashionable. Politicians tend to be especially bad in both regards. But even by the low standards of politicians, Clinton stands out. Clinton's "flexible reality" is really something to behold. ..."
"... Or take the Trans Pacific Partnership, which Clinton stewarded during her tenure as Secretary of State. Caught in a close fight with far-left candidate Bernie Sanders, Clinton was quick to jettison the TPP and distance herself from it, even though her husband and she have decades of unequivocal support for free trade. The list could go on and on. There are plenty of politicians who equivocate on important issues, and whose views "evolve" to magically fit what voters want. But Clinton is special in her ability to (a) voice strong views on various issues and then (b) act as though those who remember her prior views are crazy. The problem that most people have with Clinton is that if free trade returned to being en vogue in 2018, or there was a successful movement to amend the Constitution to prohibit gay marriage, there's a pretty good chance that Clinton would be at the forefront, claiming that those were "always" her views, and that prior statements to the contrary were taken out of context/the work of the "vast, right-wing conspiracy." ..."
"... Oh, and another thing, which I'll never get tired of repeating: if the past few years proved anything, is that a President can only do so much against a hostile House. ..."
"... While it's obvious why the Clinton camp would want to convince people a Trump presidency would bring forth the Armageddon, the true battle is not for the president: it's for the two houses. It will be the two houses that determine who the next SCOTUS is, it will be the two houses that pass legislation, it will be the two houses that approve or reject the next President's war plans. A red house will make a Clinton presidency irrelevant, and a blue house will make a Trump presidency harmless. ..."
"... Clinton on the other hand, is a chicken hawk psychopath establishment lackey who believes the rule of Law simply doesn't apply to her and also has a husband who deregulated all the financial sector, removed welfare, deregulated healthcare to the benefit of big business, has links to Iran Contra, is sexually dysfunctional and if you believe multiple credible authors (including Christopher Hitchens) is probably a rapist. She too would be a terrible President. ..."
"... I can't believe you're seriously suggesting that voting for a member of the Clinton Crime family is so much better and the only option but then again, you believe in the 2 party system and talk about Democrats and Republicans in a ridiculously tribal and childish way. It's time for you to wake up and smell the coffee. Trump is almost certainly a narcissistic, uneducated, racist, self-obsessed sociopath whose sole obsession in life is the acquisition of material wealth. He would undoubtedly be a terrible President. Clinton on the other hand, is a chicken hawk psychopath establishment lackey who believes the rule of Law simply doesn't apply to her and also has a husband who deregulated all the financial sector with disastrous results, removed welfare, deregulated healthcare to the benefit of big business, has links to Iran Contra, is sexually dysfunctional and if you believe multiple credible authors (including Christopher Hitchens) is probably a rapist. Clinton too would be a terrible President. ..."
"... The Clinton team have been busy insulting progressives for the past year and they did not give us much in the massaged platform. The choice of VP was another slap in the face along with Debbie's new job. ..."
"... The Clintonites are nothing but bullies, gutless wonders willing to grovel before power. In supporting her they betray every good thing this nation ever stood for. They are willing to accept corruption, lies, and incompetence for reasons I don't comprehend, ignoring clear lawbreaking in order to install their false idol. ..."
"... Leave it and join the Greens, join the Libertarians, join anything but the party of the corrupt, the party of betrayal, the party of the oligarchs. ..."
"... The Guardian comment on the leaked emails: 'this seems to mark a new development in the constant struggle of propaganda and disinformation' ... could easily be said about its own approach. Oh the irony. ..."
"... If you haven't seen this amazing rant by a Bernie delegate, your life is missing something: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ydIbIgg7djI ..."
"... This was never about Sanders. The Clinton folks spent so much time portraying us as blind followers that they started to believe their own hype. It was always about progressive policies and values and if Sanders endorses a candidate who doesn't share those valued, a candidate who will take to us war it's time to say: thanks you Sanders for all you've done but I can't join you on the path you are walking on now. ..."
"... Clinton and cronies will say or do anything to bring over the Bernie fans. When she no longer needs them she will throw them away along with their ideas. The important decisions were made long before anyone showed up in Phila. The fact DWS was given a job on HC's staff after getting fired says it all. Now Bernie sells out. Don't you feel just a little used? ..."
"... With the exception of one super delegate, the majority of the DNC super delegates had already endorsed Hilary before the first primary, and none changed his/her vote when Bernie got traction. Even his closest ally, in ideology, Liz Warren, did not endorse Bernie. That is how corrupt & controlling the DNC leadership has become: in this election they clearly are the king makers, while the GOP produced 18 well-known candidates that tore each other to pieces. That tells you how planned this whole thing was with the Democrats. Both parties are corrupt; but while the GOP suffers from internal Chaos & cannibalism, the DNC acted with a script that fits more the way Russians have been picking their presidents. ..."
"... Well, perhaps a Trump victory can finally help DNC internalize the message of America's Progressives. So, I have a better analogy for not voting & possibly seeing Trump win; sometimes you lose an arm in order to save the body. ..."
"... Chicken hawk psychopath with innumerable foreign policy disasters on her watch including Libya; ..."
"... Bought and paid for by the usual suspects - Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan etc; ..."
"... A security risk to the US i.e. used an unencrypted private server which was contrary to the rules, was routinely hacked by foreign powers, contained information about covert US black sites and was also obviously designed to hide Clinton Foundation business dealings/shenanigans. This had nothing to do with convenience; - Subverted the democratic process with regards to her nomination. ..."
"... Do I really need to go on? ..."
"... Reagan started deregulation, but Billy Boy and Robert Rubin continued with devastating abandon. Just one piece of legislation: Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 - largely the cause of the 2007/2008 subprime derivatives crisis. ..."
www.theguardian.com
newjerseyboi , 2016-07-26 12:50:36
HC stepping down in her acceptance speech 'for the good of the country'
One can dream..
Nash25 , 2016-07-26 12:41:16
Sanders is being just being a political realist. He knows that Hillary is a lying sociopath, but she will still be easier to deal with than Trump who is also stupid and erratic.

The best way to push Hillary to the left is to vote for her and then keep up the pressure through every political means available. Contribute to truly progressive organizations (not the DNC), volunteer, demonstrate, etc.

Lovecraftian , 2016-07-26 12:27:19
I think the problem here is that while it is only rational for Americans to vote Hillary to big up the anti-Trump vote and stop him getting in, there is a double bind in the sense that if Hillary takes power with her traditional Democrat big business/small time social reform politics, then it may make people complacent. I think this what the Bernie radical edge is concerned about; the last few decades have shown that people are really, really easy to pacify if they are able to just cruise on the mediocrity of self-interested neoliberal governments that throw a few crumbs from the table.

I don't necessarily think the argument is a good enough excuse if it means handing Trump the presidency. After all, he might not be able to do everything he says going to do with congress in the way, but he could still do an awful lot of damage whereever he can get support, and it's irresponsible to let him get away with it when you could have helped try to stop him.

The most important thing is that people do not forget that their job is to go above and beyond the supporting of any particular leader, and maintain pressure on whoever is in power to turn things around dramatically and irreversibly.

Nash25 , 2016-07-26 12:11:24
Sanders's supporters are correct not to trust Hillary. Throughout their careers in politics, both Clintons have repeatedly demonstrated that when they are caught up in personal scandals they react by making enormous concessions to conservatives, completely undermining the liberals who elected them.

This might not be a problem if the Clintons' scandals were rare, but Bill is a serial abuser of lower-status women and Hillary will do anything for money. They just can't control themselves. They are always involved in unsavory activities which is why they are so paranoid and secretive.

You would think that liberals would have realized that these two can't be trusted but many liberals are hopelessly naïve and they focus on rhetoric and not past behavior when choosing a candidate.

BunyipBluegum , 2016-07-26 12:10:28
Here are the 6 steps I recommend US progressives take in the coming months to get the best outcome from the November elections and beyond:
1) Support progressive Democratic candidates wherever they are running.
2) In the presidential race: in states that are solidly Democratic or Republican, vote for Jill Stein
3) In swing states, vote for Hillary Clinton to ensure Trump is defeated
4) Keep the pressure on Clinton to ensure she abides by the policy commitments she made to Bernie Sanders
5) Raise awareness among progressives, moderates and all minority groups about the need to change the voting system to proportional representation, and lobby Democratic politicians to support this change also
6) Keep building the political movement that Bernie has inspired, and be willing to transform ideals into action by becoming involved in politics and effective activism in a long-term way.
JWallac , 2016-07-26 12:06:17
The DNC is a corrupt organisation. There is no doubt.
So is the Republican party.

The choice people are faced with is unpalatable to say the least. It's one of the starkest examples of a lesser of two evils decision as I've ever seen.

Clinton is a right leaning democrat, heavily enmeshed in the Washington machine. She's 100% a part of the establishment. She's a hawk.
She's everything wrong with the political system in the US.
You would only vote for her if you were faced with something worse...

BunyipBluegum , 2016-07-26 12:02:02
The elephant in the room in the whole Hillary vs Bernie vs Trump debate is the US voting system. The current US electoral system is a variation of 'first past the post', which is the worst type of voting system it is possible to have in a democracy. Not only does it promote the dominance of one or two massive corporatised parties, but it punishes those who vote for smaller parties and independents by effectively denying their vote any value in determining the candidate who will be elected. The preferential system (used in Australia) is better, but still tends to result in a 2 party state.

If progressive activists want to create a more conducive environment for electing progressive leaders in the future, they need to start campaigning for a move to proportional representation, as favoured by the vast majority of democracies, including virtually all European states, New Zealand, Israel, South Africa and most developing nations. This system allows for greater representation for all voices in the political process, and does not disenfranchise those who vote for smaller parties.

This change is unlikely to happen in a hurry, but it does need to happen at some stage, unless progressives want to continually be forced into choosing between voting for an undesirable centre-right candidate such as Clinton, or voting for a stronger candidate, such as Bernie Sanders or Jill Stein, and potentially losing the value of their vote.

johnny5eyes , 2016-07-26 11:56:06
This does all beg the question as to why the Democrats couldn't find a better 'mainstream' candidate than Clinton if she's that unpopular. The answer I suspect is 'money'.
SeeNOevilHearNOevil , 2016-07-26 11:11:56

the Vermont senator was "bending reality in favour of what he feels is the most responsible course".

See, I believe progressive people are sick of collecting the little scraps they're thrown after the real corporate agenda has been set in stone. If there was ever a time to not go along with this, stand firm and say ''No more'', this is it.

It's about punishing the corrupt system that always gets away with murder and making it pay the price. Because the people WILL pay the price if either Trump or Hilary gets elected. And the blame for this won't lie with those that don't vote for a corrupt politician like Hilary, the blame will lie with those that rigged the system and those who did vote for her.

skyewhite , 2016-07-26 10:48:37
HC and Putin.

I am astonished that The Secretary of State would go on record and be filmed personally insulting Putin, when this is such a sensitive time, or at ANY time.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wJXJWL8XgY

hartebeest , 2016-07-26 10:21:02
Most of this sounds pretty reasonable to me- vote Clinton if a swing state, otherwise Stein; put pressure on Clinton to deliver concrete policy proposals (eg on TPP); recognition that progressive politics doesn't begin and end with Sanders (important because it means this isn't just populism focused on a single leader).

But...does anyone ever raise the possibility of voting reform in the US? Because the way the landscape is now cannot be comfortably accommodated by two parties. It should be no surprise that many Sanders supporters can't abide Clinton, (nor that trad republicans despair at Trump). In most Western democracies Clinton and Sanders would naturally belong in different parties.

Jennischum , 2016-07-26 09:58:05
He sold out to Hillary, who's got a billion dollars from Wall Street. So much for his principles
helpmejebus , 2016-07-26 09:34:35
Q: HRC meetings with Goldman and others?
I dunno. But I did public speaking. Its fun

Q: What do you think she is giving away in those meetings?

She doesn't want the people knowing about her relationships on Wall Street She wants to achieve consistency and the best way to do that is to keep the people ignorant

https://wikileaks.org/dnc-emails/emailid/4788

1iJack , 2016-07-26 09:32:38

Hillary is a liar, Bernie's exhausted.
- Donald Trump July 25, 2016

Don't worry, Bernie, you did good. Trump will kick her ass.

NTEightySix , 2016-07-26 09:32:32
The naivete of some people who still fall for the politics of "lesser evils" is staggering. There is no good outcome of this election. On one hand you have a fascist with little clue of what he's doing and has made a campaign of empty soundbites. The other is an imperialist war hawk for whom bombing people in the Middle East is a hobby and said Iraq brought good business opportunities.

Fascism at home and imperialism abroad are two sides of the same coin and if you actually dispute that, I feel sorry for you.

This movement is bigger than Bernie Sanders. If Hillary loses to Trump, it won't be the fault of Sanders supporters, but the slimy lies and corruption of her and the DNC. It has been said that the Democratic party is the place where social movements die. Good to know that "Berners" still want to fight for the greater good, something establishment politics doesn't provide.

1iJack , 2016-07-26 09:24:13
Hillary Clinton = Jeb! + Gun Control

Sanders supporters will get more for their vote with Trump than with Hillary.

Hillary = No Change At All

Hillary = Nothing

1iJack spider2 , 2016-07-26 09:52:08
The Bush and Clinton crime families stand for the same thing.

They are the same thing.

Wish Jeb! had won the GOP nomination? Vote for Hillary, you'll get the same thing (except you'll also lose the 2nd Amendment - that's the only difference).

yermelai , 2016-07-26 09:21:58
If Bernie truly believes that Hillary would "make an outstanding president" why did he stand against her in the first place?
NTEightySix rs959903 , 2016-07-26 09:37:33
Spoken like a true partisan hack.
Trump is a fascist, Hillary is an imperialist. If there's actually a "lesser evil" out of these two, I don't see it.

A vote for Trump is throwing America into the deep end, emboldening of the far right and likely to end in economic disaster. A vote for Clinton is condemning Middle Eastern people to their deaths with the obvious invasions that she'll likely cook up.

Anyone who calls themselves socialist after Bernie's campaign should realise that socialism is about resisting hatred at home and abroad

Kv Masters2015 , 2016-07-26 08:59:44
Trump wants to make jobs, better the education system and raise salaries. Voting for Trump will bring Sanders supporters more of what they want and less is they vote for Clinton.
mathanai , 2016-07-26 08:41:37
I cancelled my visit to the Democratic convention in Philadelphia when I realised it was going to be Hilary Clinton. She is a female version of Tony Blair, even, more dishonest and unscrupulous. Had the blacks and latinos voted for Sanders in numbers, this result could have been avoided. But we have to live with it. The hope is that Bernie has started a movement that will survive and perhaps one day we will have a social democratic president in the USA.
andrewppp , 2016-07-26 08:40:29
Make Sanders VP and then Assange plus the FBI will take care of the details. Simple.
Amanita_l , 2016-07-26 08:32:46
I may have voted Hillary, but then "DWS". Tomorrow I become a independent. F@ck the DNC 30 years a Dem now a disappointed.

OH no The orange man will destroy the world, who cares about Fracking, NATO, Monsanto, Health care and Pharmaceuticals... Not HIllary and her bestie's Debbie Wassermann Schultz, Barbara Boxer, Roberta Lange etc... Let it burn I seriously don't give a sh#t Whats the Donalds gonna do... Push through religious agendas?

OH that already happened while Obama was POTUS. Export jobs? that happened with NAFTA ( Bill Clinton ), close down woman's health clinics, take away women's rights to choose and right to preferred birth control? that happened. Triple the cost of Health Insurance? Pharmaceuticals? Back Monsanto? TPP? I guess either way we are just screwed... HILLARY+DONALD = Equally Toxic! Piss on the Press... vote in a new congress, house, state and local.

bugiolacchi , 2016-07-26 08:22:29
This fascinates me. I draw very close similarities with J. Corbyn over here. In short, in the Anglo-Saxon world the 'left' has split into a centre (your Clinton, T. Blair in the past) and a 'purer' left. Now, for us (Latins for instance) away from strict binary systems, it makes more sense if at least four parties were to represent most population's views: a 'harder' left, a centre-left-right, and a 'harder' right. I am aware of the potential pitfalls, such as unstable governments etc. but two parties cannot cover, or even attempt to cover, the political ideas spectrum of whole nations. And it can causes odd outcomes, such as Trump (!?!) as a representative for a whole electorate who doesn't want to vote Clinton. Could you have three-four candidates system?
iansim johung , 2016-07-26 08:44:02
Get your head straight

It's Billary who intends to pursue a more 'muscular' foreign policy http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/hillary-clinton-middle-east_us_56f06ab2e4b09bf44a9e3177

Trump at least is into more parochial concerns

Alex J Campbell , 2016-07-26 07:54:59
Crooked Clinton and her crooked backers are laughing their asses off at Bernie. The old fool is being used.

I have a problem with Clinton for three main reasons:

She's dishonest, She has no clear principles, and She has a long history of questionable judgement/ethics.
The first two issues are ones of degree: just about all of us are guilty of the occasional fib, and people often alter their views to what is fashionable. Politicians tend to be especially bad in both regards. But even by the low standards of politicians, Clinton stands out. Clinton's "flexible reality" is really something to behold.

Let's use a recent example of gay rights. Personally, I suspect that Hillary Clinton has always been a proponent of gay rights, and doesn't have a homophobic bone in her body. But in 2004, when gay marriage was a hot issue and many states were amending their constitutions to define marriage as being between a man and a woman, Clinton gave a speech on the Senate floor in defence of traditional marriage that could have been written by Jesse Helms. In other words, she didn't just bite her tongue or give lukewarm support to one side or the other; she went "all in" in her opposition to legalizing gay marriage, because that was a winning approach in 2004. Now that gay marriage is legal in all 50 states and the LGBT community is an important Democrat voting bloc, Clinton wants to pretend that she's always been at the vanguard on gay rights, as though her vocal opposition to gay marriage just a decade earlier somehow never happened. Indeed, Clinton has thrown out trial balloons suggesting that her opposition to gay marriage was somehow designed to defend gay rights from even more extreme elements in Congress!

Or take the Trans Pacific Partnership, which Clinton stewarded during her tenure as Secretary of State. Caught in a close fight with far-left candidate Bernie Sanders, Clinton was quick to jettison the TPP and distance herself from it, even though her husband and she have decades of unequivocal support for free trade. The list could go on and on. There are plenty of politicians who equivocate on important issues, and whose views "evolve" to magically fit what voters want. But Clinton is special in her ability to (a) voice strong views on various issues and then (b) act as though those who remember her prior views are crazy. The problem that most people have with Clinton is that if free trade returned to being en vogue in 2018, or there was a successful movement to amend the Constitution to prohibit gay marriage, there's a pretty good chance that Clinton would be at the forefront, claiming that those were "always" her views, and that prior statements to the contrary were taken out of context/the work of the "vast, right-wing conspiracy."

And as for crossing the line, there are too many examples to mention. The Clintons are not wrong to accuse Republicans of being out to get them, and too often, Republicans have played into the Clintons' hands by attempting to make mountains out of molehills. But the Clintons perpetually find themselves in hot water because they can't resist bending the rules and associating with questionable people. Does anyone really believe that Hillary Clinton legitimately made a small fortune trading cattle futures? Does anyone honestly believe that Clinton's use of a private email server while Secretary of State was due to a lack of technological sophistication and not a desire to subvert public record-keeping law? Does anyone accept that taking in millions of dollars in speaking fees/charitable donations from questionable sources has no impact on her ability to govern impartially? If you answered yes to any of those questions, I've got a bridge I'd like to sell you. The fact that Clinton hasn't gone to prison doesn't mean that she's conducted herself in a manner befitting the leader of the US.

notndmushroom , 2016-07-26 07:51:59
Oh, and another thing, which I'll never get tired of repeating: if the past few years proved anything, is that a President can only do so much against a hostile House.

While it's obvious why the Clinton camp would want to convince people a Trump presidency would bring forth the Armageddon, the true battle is not for the president: it's for the two houses. It will be the two houses that determine who the next SCOTUS is, it will be the two houses that pass legislation, it will be the two houses that approve or reject the next President's war plans. A red house will make a Clinton presidency irrelevant, and a blue house will make a Trump presidency harmless.

To recap, vote blue for the Congress, vote blue for the Senate (that applies for Republicans as well: if you're secretly scared of what Trump might do, keep him in check by electing a democrat house), but vote for whomever you want (Clinton, Trump, Johnson, Stein, Sanders, Claire Underwood or Tyrion Lannister. It really makes no difference) for President.

ID4777146 -> olderwiserheads , 2016-07-26 08:43:38
It's hard not to lose all respect for Americans when they suggest with a straight face that voting for a member of the Clinton Crime family is so much better and the only option.

Trump is almost certainly a narcissistic, uneducated, racist, self-obsessed sociopath whose sole obsession in life is the acquisition of material wealth. He would undoubtedly be a terrible President.

Clinton on the other hand, is a chicken hawk psychopath establishment lackey who believes the rule of Law simply doesn't apply to her and also has a husband who deregulated all the financial sector, removed welfare, deregulated healthcare to the benefit of big business, has links to Iran Contra, is sexually dysfunctional and if you believe multiple credible authors (including Christopher Hitchens) is probably a rapist. She too would be a terrible President.

You Americans, have the political system you deserve by continuously voting for a rigged, failed two party state that has been completely corrupted by Corporate lobbying. Someone once said "the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results." Yet, the US still do this every election cycle.

Anyone who continues to vote for the lesser evil is still voting evil so they're just as ridiculous as those voting Trump.

Either way, the US are in for a bumpy ride in the next 4 years especially when there's another financial crash - which is just around the corner.

ID4777146 -> Pitthewelder , 2016-07-26 08:50:01
I can't believe you're seriously suggesting that voting for a member of the Clinton Crime family is so much better and the only option but then again, you believe in the 2 party system and talk about Democrats and Republicans in a ridiculously tribal and childish way. It's time for you to wake up and smell the coffee.

Trump is almost certainly a narcissistic, uneducated, racist, self-obsessed sociopath whose sole obsession in life is the acquisition of material wealth. He would undoubtedly be a terrible President.

Clinton on the other hand, is a chicken hawk psychopath establishment lackey who believes the rule of Law simply doesn't apply to her and also has a husband who deregulated all the financial sector with disastrous results, removed welfare, deregulated healthcare to the benefit of big business, has links to Iran Contra, is sexually dysfunctional and if you believe multiple credible authors (including Christopher Hitchens) is probably a rapist. Clinton too would be a terrible President.

You Americans, have the political system you deserve by continuously voting for a rigged, failed two party state that has been completely corrupted by Corporate lobbying. Someone once said "the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results." Yet, you and many others in the US still do this every election cycle.

The Democrats and Republicans are 2 cheeks of the same arse both funded by and told what to do by the financial sector, the military industrial complex, oil and big business. You'll eventually realise this if you ever wake up.

Anyone who continues to vote for the lesser evil is still voting evil so they're just as ridiculous as those voting Trump.

Either way, the US are in for a bumpy ride in the next 4 years especially when there's another financial crash - which is just around the corner.

Mckim , 2016-07-26 06:56:22
The Clinton team have been busy insulting progressives for the past year and they did not give us much in the massaged platform. The choice of VP was another slap in the face along with Debbie's new job. I am so glad the Sanders supporters are protesting the very questionable elections. If the DNC Were behaving like rational adults, they would have given us more at the platform and chosen a more Left VP and stopped the insults. We have not been treated with respect that our election numbers merit.
apacheman aardivark , 2016-07-26 07:06:49
Time for Clintonites to show some moral strength and some semblance of ethical behavior, and stop supporting corruption, stop blaming those who DO have some sense of ethics and what's best for this nation for voting their conscience.

The Clintonites are nothing but bullies, gutless wonders willing to grovel before power. In supporting her they betray every good thing this nation ever stood for. They are willing to accept corruption, lies, and incompetence for reasons I don't comprehend, ignoring clear lawbreaking in order to install their false idol.

The contemptuousness with which they attack those who desire some modicum of honesty, empathy , and ethical behavior in a candidate is utterly shameful.

They, like all bullies, seem to think that insults, threats, and contempt will force the results they want.

Little do they realize that they are only making enemies of those who wanted to be friends,creating an anger that won't fade for years.

Never vote for Democrats again, that party has entirely lost what little credibility it had left.

Leave it and join the Greens, join the Libertarians, join anything but the party of the corrupt, the party of betrayal, the party of the oligarchs.

They've had more than enough chances to prove their worth, and have failed miserably.

citizencane , 2016-07-26 06:11:44
The Guardian comment on the leaked emails: 'this seems to mark a new development in the constant struggle of propaganda and disinformation' ... could easily be said about its own approach. Oh the irony.
DanInTheDesert , 2016-07-26 06:11:37
If you haven't seen this amazing rant by a Bernie delegate, your life is missing something: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ydIbIgg7djI
Heathenlullaby DanInTheDesert , 2016-07-26 09:41:15
She's spot on & I entirely sympathize with her. Thanks for the link.
anInTheDesert , 2016-07-26 06:06:18
This was never about Sanders. The Clinton folks spent so much time portraying us as blind followers that they started to believe their own hype. It was always about progressive policies and values and if Sanders endorses a candidate who doesn't share those valued, a candidate who will take to us war it's time to say: thanks you Sanders for all you've done but I can't join you on the path you are walking on now.

#dropouthillary
#DNCleak
#BernieorJill

kcma79 , 2016-07-26 06:02:56
Clinton and cronies will say or do anything to bring over the Bernie fans. When she no longer needs them she will throw them away along with their ideas. The important decisions were made long before anyone showed up in Phila. The fact DWS was given a job on HC's staff after getting fired says it all. Now Bernie sells out. Don't you feel just a little used?
somebody_stopme , 2016-07-26 05:55:21
The mistake of establishment - Thinking people will obey Bernie's orders, nope they will get convinced only Hillary changes some policies. 15$ and free education was a good start and that showed good poll results for her but after this Dncleak she needs to do more than this.
Claudius somebody_stopme , 2016-07-26 07:03:46
The mistakes of the establishment, in this case the DNC, were numerous. The DNC thought they knew better than anyone else who should be the party's nominee. Form the time HRC lost to Obama, they planned for Hilary to run essentially unchallenged by any other Democrat in 2016. Her campaign manager was made the DNC chairwoman who as we now know did her best to diminish Bernie's chances; Hilary was offered the position of SOS to boost her credentials. She knew she could quit being SOS in 2012 to prepare to run in 2016; and she lied for the next three years about whether or not she would run for President because she could, as a private citizen, continue to cash in on her speeches to the business elite and set up a network of political and business elite who could then support her.

I have no explanation why Kerry or Biden did not run for President except that they knew better than to challenge what was already decided. The only person willing to go for it was the most discounted Senate member, an Independent, who for two decades had made no attempt to build a support system within the political establishment.

With the exception of one super delegate, the majority of the DNC super delegates had already endorsed Hilary before the first primary, and none changed his/her vote when Bernie got traction. Even his closest ally, in ideology, Liz Warren, did not endorse Bernie. That is how corrupt & controlling the DNC leadership has become: in this election they clearly are the king makers, while the GOP produced 18 well-known candidates that tore each other to pieces. That tells you how planned this whole thing was with the Democrats. Both parties are corrupt; but while the GOP suffers from internal Chaos & cannibalism, the DNC acted with a script that fits more the way Russians have been picking their presidents.

Despite the huge surprise success of Bernie's campaign, the passion he aroused, the young he managed to draw in, and the millions of $27 contributions he raised, the DNC continued to weigh more on HRC's side and, as we now know, tried to work against him behind the scenes.

The DNC's biggest mistake, however, is that they are out of touch with the young Progressives that are their future voters, despite the fact that they can see how a sense of betrayal and disappointment has caused the virtual demise of the GOP political elite. HRC shares the arrogance of the DNC in thinking she can collect millions of dollars from special interests in speaking fees and then tell us she is for Bernie's reforms. She thinks she can regurgitate much of what Bernie says, then choose the most centrist Democratic politician to be her running mate, and still count on the majority of Bernie's supporters to vote for her because … well, Trump is a monster. She is wrong; the DNC is also wrong; real progressive do not cast their vote because they are afraid of Trump; they vote for what they believe in. Voting for HRC from fear of Trump is a vote for status quo; it does not help me if I am against status quo. The DNC has no sense of what Bernie Sanders evoked in the young Progressive because like their GOP counterparts they too are political automatons out of touch with real humans.

I have been told that by not voting in November, I am cutting off my nose to spite my face, because Trump may win. Well, perhaps a Trump victory can finally help DNC internalize the message of America's Progressives. So, I have a better analogy for not voting & possibly seeing Trump win; sometimes you lose an arm in order to save the body.

ID4777146 -> artobest , 2016-07-26 10:17:46
I don't judge Hillary just on the actions of her husband. There's plenty to get my teeth into:

- Chicken hawk psychopath with innumerable foreign policy disasters on her watch including Libya;
- Bought and paid for by the usual suspects - Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan etc;
- A security risk to the US i.e. used an unencrypted private server which was contrary to the rules, was routinely hacked by foreign powers, contained information about covert US black sites and was also obviously designed to hide Clinton Foundation business dealings/shenanigans. This had nothing to do with convenience;
- Subverted the democratic process with regards to her nomination.

Do I really need to go on?

ID4777146 -> batfunk , 2016-07-26 10:20:28
Reagan started deregulation, but Billy Boy and Robert Rubin continued with devastating abandon. Just one piece of legislation: Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 - largely the cause of the 2007/2008 subprime derivatives crisis.
saladbowl -> somebody_stopme , 2016-07-26 11:30:54
The DNC and media said Hillary Must Be President. In the end, Sanders bent the knee as expected.

[Jul 25, 2016] Bernie Sanders Gets Booed When He Asks Delegates to Elect Hillary Clinton

www.legitgov.org
July 26, 2016

Bernie Sanders Gets Booed When He Asks Delegates to Elect Hillary Clinton | 25 July 2016 |The crowd of delegates in the convention center ballroom didn't come for unity: They came for Bernie Sanders. Sanders, the Vermont senator whose bid to beat back Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination fell short, took the stage this afternoon to speak to his delegates before he'll take a bigger stage in a few hours-at the Democratic National Convention on its opening night, in a bid to promote unity in the party as it gears up to face Republican Donald Trump in the fall. The packed ballroom cheered and chanted as Sanders recounted the successes of his campaign...But when he finally got around to speaking about the woman who will actually be the Democratic nominee, the crowd soured on their hero.

[Jul 25, 2016] Sanders response to Wikileaks: betrayal of supporters or battered wife syndrome

Notable quotes:
"... 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 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. ..."
"... 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! ..."
"... AFAICT he got very little for his support (will he get a cabinet position for himself?). He didn't have to endorse Hillary. He doesn't have to speak at the Convention (but he will tonight). ..."
www.moonofalabama.org
For 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.

UNFRIGGINBELIEVABLE!

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

Jackrabbit | Jul 24, 2016 2:28:41 PM | 25

h @11:

His response reminds me of battered wife syndrome.
You are assuming that Sanders is a victim instead of a conspirator.

Why would anyone give any politician in our corrupt system the benefit of the doubt? Even one that seems to be against 'the system'?

Why didn't Bernie release more than one year of tax returns?

Especially since Hillary cited this as a reason not to release the transcripts of her speaches to Goldman Sachs.

Why didn't Bernie use the emails against Hillary after the State Department Inspector General released their report?

This official report clearly demonstrated that Hillary had consistently misled the nation about her emails.

Why didn't Bernie attack Obama's record on Black/Minority affairs?

Obama's support is part of the reason that Blacks/Minorities were voting for Hillary. Obama never went to Feruson or New York or Baltimore. Obama's weak economic stimulous and austerity policies have been very bad for blacks/minorities. Obama bailed out banks that targeted minorities for toxic loans. Etc.

Why does Bernie, at 74-years old, care more about Hillary (which he calls a friend of 25 years) and the Democratic Party than his principles?

AFAICT he got very little for his support (will he get a cabinet position for himself?). He didn't have to endorse Hillary. He doesn't have to speak at the Convention (but he will tonight).

[Jul 25, 2016] Sanders responce to Wikileaks reminds me of battered wife syndrome

Notable quotes:
"... 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. ..."
"... 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. ..."
"... 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! ..."
www.moonofalabama.org
For 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.

UNFRIGGINBELIEVABLE!

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 23, 2016] Donald Trump's United States of #MAGA

theintercept.com

Maisie July 23 2016, 10:07 p.m.

Trump may not know or care to know that Barack Obama has spent eight years pounding on al Qaeda, not only in Iraq and Afghanistan but also through the use of drones and other covert campaigns in Syria, Somalia, and Yemen. In his two terms, George W. Bush ordered 49 drone strikes against al Qaeda and Taliban-associated targets in the tribal areas of Pakistan. Obama, during his first two years of office, ordered 174. These are facts, but to Trump and Giuliani, they may not matter. After all, what good does killing radical Islamic terrorists do if Obama refuses to call the enemy by its name?

1). You uncritically express the establishment line that "Obama is killing radical terrorists," when the most accurate description is "Obama is killing people suspected of something, and also killing those near them."

2). 90% of drone strike victims are not the intended target.

3). Obama's militarism is founded on Full Spectrum Dominance for corporate America and allied interests, not "fighting terrorism."

4). Chest-pounding to boast Obama is a violent bastard like the Republicans is – while true – obscene.

W0X0F July 23 2016, 9:57 p.m.
Giuliani is one of the bad guys. He has helped cover up the 9/11 deception. Bldg 7 contained his emergency HQ. We all know it was "pulled"!

Orville, July 23 2016, 9:05 p.m.

Alas, Guliani is still around. I remember how the media announced him as the winner of a presidential debate, solely for going against Ron Paul's factual statement that we are hated for our overseas meddling. (Never mind that various intelligence figures backed Paul- including Michael Scheuer, who endorsed Paul the next day, or that the voters themselves backed Paul in the polls and primaries.

George C, July 23 2016, 8:40 p.m.

"Man has an intense need for certainty; he wants to believe that there is no need to doubt that the method by which he makes his decisions is right. In fact, he would rather make the "wrong" decision and be sure about it than the "right" decision and be tormented with doubt about its validity. This is one of the psychological reasons for man's belief in idols and political leaders. They all take out doubt and risk from his decision making; this does not mean that there is not a risk for his life, freedom, etc., after the decision has been made, but that there is no risk that the method of his decision making was wrong. For many centuries certainty

Fromm, Erich. The Revolution of Hope: Toward a Humanized Technology

photosymbiosis -> rrheard, July 23 2016, 8:45 p.m.

I don't know, I appreciate the focus on Giuliani who is an utter slimeball in the same mold as Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld and the Clintons.

However, a more careful analysis of Giuliani's background in the second section ('Altar Boys') would have had a more devastating impact. Giuliani is the perfect example of a corrupt prosecutor; his claim to fame was prosecuting a Italian mafia drug ring – and then he went to work for the Purdue Pharma oxycontin drug ring. He's also a close long-time associate of FBI Director Louis Freeh, who notably went to work for the Wall Street credit giant MBNA (#2 Bush donor after Enron) after his FBI term ended. MBNA was later bought by Bank of America, who wrote off $60 billion in shady MBNA credit loans from 2008-2010, probably got a taxpayer bailout for that too. Who are the crooks, again?

See David Vise's "The Bureau and the Mole" about FBI agent / Soviet mole (and Opus Dei member) Robert Hannsen, about the Giuliani-Freeh connection.
http://blogcritics.org/spy-vs-spy-the-bureau-and/

Really, all of Giuliani's talk about "law and order" is utter BS; the guy is a crook as his lobbying the DEA to get Purdue Pharma off criminal charges for illegal oxycontin distribution shows. This was all done through a shady firm he set up after leaving office called "Giuliani Partners" c.2002

Crooked Rudy Giuliani, Lyin' Rudy Giuliani – basically a con artist in the same mold as the Clintons, cashing in with the corporate crooks every chance they can get. (Giuliani pulled in $11 million in speaking fees in 2006 alone, outdoing Clinton I think).

Fellow Citizen, July 23 2016, 7:29 p.m.

How are Republicans going to make America great again when the problem is Democrats becoming Republicans by destroying the American middle class, and placeing our poor in what now has become a state of abject poverty?


[Jul 20, 2016] Sanders Delegation Plotting in Public and Secretly to Shake Up Democratic Convention

Notable quotes:
"... On Monday night, aides for the former secretary of state held a private conference call with members of the Democratic National Committee's Rules Committee and laid out how the campaign would like those members to vote at an upcoming rules meeting in Philadelphia. The purpose of the conference call was to answer any questions and ensure that the Rules Committee members, picked by DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz and by Clinton, remained in lockstep with the presumptive Democratic nominee. ..."
"... The stars will ultimately align and the convention will go smoothly and without a hitch. Bernie and Liddy Warren will continue their unabashed endorsement of Her, the party will be united, and the good of the American people will be top priority on the go forward. Curtain. Exit stage left. Thank you for attending another Clinton Theater production. ..."
www.nakedcapitalism.com

naked capitalism

3.14e-9 , July 20, 2016 at 6:31 am

Looks like there's a slightly different dynamic in the Clinton camp:

On Monday night, aides for the former secretary of state held a private conference call with members of the Democratic National Committee's Rules Committee and laid out how the campaign would like those members to vote at an upcoming rules meeting in Philadelphia. The purpose of the conference call was to answer any questions and ensure that the Rules Committee members, picked by DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz and by Clinton, remained in lockstep with the presumptive Democratic nominee.

The roughly 30-minute call was a glimpse into how Clinton officials have sought to shape the party platform and party rules with minimal public drama. Campaign officials have corresponded with members via text messages to direct them how to vote and counseled them to bring concerns directly to the campaign, rather than follow a process laid out by the DNC for submitting amendments and resolutions. …

The plea to keep any policy disputes in-house, and off-camera, underscores the campaign's determination to present a united front at the convention, and stave off any conflict between the Clinton-aligned committee members and Sanders members during the drafting process. A few months ago, Sanders was vowing to take his policy sticking points all the way to the convention floor.

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/07/dnc-convention-2016-delegate-fight-225798?cmpid=sf

Patricia , July 20, 2016 at 8:45 am

Vid about the larger protesting groups going to D convention (6min):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8sh0tGvGgo

Pirmann , July 20, 2016 at 10:24 am

This is nothing more than a ploy to get Sanders supporters to watch the convention coverage, so we can become acquainted with the "new" Hillary Clinton, and thus vote for Her in November.

"Let's all tune in; maybe the Bernie delegates will turn the party upside down". Expect to be disappointed.

The stars will ultimately align and the convention will go smoothly and without a hitch. Bernie and Liddy Warren will continue their unabashed endorsement of Her, the party will be united, and the good of the American people will be top priority on the go forward. Curtain. Exit stage left. Thank you for attending another Clinton Theater production.

Oh, and none of the speeches will result in legislation that actually benefits the American people, but at least they won't be plagiarized!

[Jul 20, 2016] Ron Paul on the Turkey Coup – Is It Over

Antiwar.com

Three days after the mysterious Turkish coup that was put down almost instantly, Turkish president Erdogan has conducted massive purges of the judiciary and the military. He even referred to the coup as a "godsend" that would allow him to rid the government of those who are disloyal. The purges have focused attention in Washington and Brussels, where he is being warned that talks for EU membership - and even existing NATO membership - may be at risk if the government crackdown gets more serious. Is the US and EU bluffing? After all, Erdogan currently has nearly three million Syrian refugees on Turkish soil that he could send to Europe at any time. And closing the US base at Incirlik would create havoc for US "power projection" in the region. We examine these and more in today's Ron Paul Liberty Report:

[Jul 20, 2016] The Saudis Did 9-11

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity

News reports about the recently released 28 pages of the Joint Inquiry into the 9/11 attacks are typically dismissive: this is nothing new, it's just circumstantial evidence, and there's no "smoking gun." Yet given what the report actually says – and these news accounts are remarkably sparse when it comes to verbatim quotes – it's hard to fathom what would constitute a smoking gun.

To begin with, let's start with what's not in these pages: there are numerous redactions. And they are rather odd. When one expects to read the words "CIA" or "FBI," instead we get a blacked-out word. Entire paragraphs are redacted – often at crucial points. So it's reasonable to assume that, if there is a smoking gun, it's contained in the portions we're not allowed to see. Presumably the members of Congress with access to the document prior to its release who have been telling us that it changes their entire conception of the 9/11 attacks – and our relationship with the Saudis – read the unredacted version. Which points to the conclusion that the omissions left out crucial information – perhaps including the vaunted smoking gun.

In any case, what we have access to makes more than just a substantial case: it shows that the Saudi government – including top officials, such as then Saudi ambassador to the US, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, and other members of the royal family – financed and actively aided the hijackers prior to September 11, 2001.

[Jul 19, 2016] US releases Saudi documents 9-11 coverup exposed

Notable quotes:
"... The Obama administration, like the Bush administration before it, maintained this secrecy for several reasons. First, it was concerned that the documents would jeopardize its relations with Saudi Arabia, which, after Israel, is Washington's closest ally in the Middle East, a partner in bloody operations from Afghanistan to Syria to Yemen, and the world's biggest buyer of American arms. ..."
"... Even more importantly, it was concerned that the 28 pages would further expose the abject criminality of the US government's role in facilitating the attacks of 9/11 and then lying about their source and exploiting them to justify savage wars of aggression, first against Afghanistan and then against Iraq. These wars have claimed over a million lives. The false narrative created around the September 11 attacks remains the ideological pillar of the US campaign of global militarism conducted in the name of a "war on terror." ..."
"... The report focuses in part on the role of one Omar al-Bayoumi, who was described to the FBI as a Saudi intelligence officer, and, according to FBI files, "provided substantial assistance to hijackers Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi after they arrived in San Diego in February 2000." ..."
"... According to the report, al-Bayoumi had previously worked for the Saudi Civil Aviation Association and, in the period leading up to 9/11, was "in frequent contact with the Emir at the Saudi Defense Ministry responsible for air traffic control." Phone records showed him calling Saudi government agencies 100 times between January and May of 2000. ..."
"... Bassnan's wife also received a monthly stipend from Princess Haifa, the Saudi ambassador's wife, to the tune of $2,000 a month. As well, the FBI found one $15,000 check written by Bandar himself in 1998 to Bassnan. The report states that FBI information indicated that Bassnan was "an extremist and supporter of Usama Bin Ladin," who spoke of the Al Qaeda leader "as if he were god." ..."
"... The obvious anomalies in the Pentagon incident and the Shanksville, Pennsylvania crash merely add to the mountain of evidence that exists pointing to some cabal that ran a MIHOP operation that day. This is not new information and has been made available by the many independent investigators who have been diligently digging into this signal event for nearly 15 years now. ..."
"... Much more likely suspects would be those Americans named by Kevin Ryan in his book "Another Nineteen", and/or the Israeli Mossad and military agents (5 of whom were arrested in New Jersey while making a video record of "the event" and who were noticed by an outraged citizen who called local police who arrested them and the spent 2 months in U.S. jails, finally released by dual Israeli / U.S. citizen Michael Chertoff, 3 of them appeared later on Israeli TV and bragged about the operation in plain Hebrew). ..."
"... My father was a structural design engineer who designed heavy steel structures like the WTC and also nuclear power plants and wind tunnels for NASA. He was an expert on types of steel, how it was made and what its properties were. The moment he saw the first tower collapse into it own footprint, he said 'That's a controlled demolition." He knew that fire alone would not have been enough to even dent the steel in the WTC, let alone pulverize it. Everything in the building could have burned and the steel would have remained standing, slightly scorched, but largely intact. To believe otherwise is not to believe in the laws of physics or the science of metallurgy. ..."
"... 9/11 was/is a criminally managed event involving some of America's highest officials. ..."
"... Ahhhh yes, and no less a group of people than members of the NYFD who charged up into those buildings were not concerned about them collapsing. In fact one team of firefighters who made it up to the impact zone in one of the towers reported the fire there as "no big deal" and "easily controlled". Other firefighters and various police did, however, report many explosions, most of them deep in the buildings far below the impact zones. ..."
"... Dutch controlled demolition expert Danny Jowenko, upon seeing a video of the collapse of Tower 7 immediately said (I think this comment was made in 2007) "This is controlled demolition"; of course he died in a suspicious one car accident, in which his car hit a tree head on on July 16th, 2011 (similar to how some of the JFK assassination witnesses were eliminated). A couple of videos of his comments can be seen in a "Veteran's Today" article found at < http://www.veteranstoday.com/2... >. ..."
"... One should ask why the Mossad and the extremely powerful Israel lobby have seen fit to participate in the cover-up for so long. They certainly would have ignored the U.S. government's desire for secrecy and gotten this information out (which they surely knew from their own sources) if they didn't have something to hide. But that cover-up continues. ..."
"... The true "smoking gun" of the 9/11 atrocities is the eight-second symmetrical free-fall collapse of WTC #7. The claim that this occurred because of office fires is ludicrous, entirely impossible. It was a conventional implosion, carried off in one of the most secure buildings in NYC, sheltering the CIA, FBI and the mayor's emergency bunker and would have taken weeks to prepare. ..."
"... I saw the video on TV and was surprised that it went unquestioned on why it collapsed. Even the clean symmetrical fall of the second tower to collapse, was neat and symmetric. ..."
"... In my educated opinion, supported by facts of the case conveniently omitted, the release of the small section of the Congressional report kept secret for 13 years is what they call in the CIA a "limited hangout", which is contains a mix of both truth and omissions or outright lies, and exposes the audience to a falsity more dangerous and misleading than an outright lie. ..."
"... The best evidence if this were ever taken to court, would be the stand down by the military that morning in the intercepting of these "hijackers" as they made their way to their targets. And Cheneys barking orders to a subordinate in the crisis control room beneath the white house that yes the orders still stand, as flight 175? made its way toward the Pentagon ..."
"... Excuse me, but the towers of the WTC WERE very heavy structurally. Particularly the central cores, which contained heavily redundant layers of steel, and special steel at that. ..."
July 16, 2016 | World Socialist Web Site
The Obama White House, the CIA, the Saudi monarchy and the corporate media have all tried to portray the documents-released on a Friday afternoon to assure minimal exposure-as somehow exonerating the Saudi regime of any culpability in the 9/11 attacks.

"This information does not change the assessment of the US government that there's no evidence that the Saudi government or senior Saudi individuals funded al-Qaeda," Josh Earnest, the White House press secretary said Friday, boasting that the main significance of their release was its proof of the Obama administration's commitment to "transparency."

In reality, the 28 pages have been kept under lock and key since 2002, with only members of Congress allowed to read them, in a Capitol Hill basement vault, while prohibited from taking notes, bringing members of their staff or breathing a word of their content.

The Obama administration, like the Bush administration before it, maintained this secrecy for several reasons. First, it was concerned that the documents would jeopardize its relations with Saudi Arabia, which, after Israel, is Washington's closest ally in the Middle East, a partner in bloody operations from Afghanistan to Syria to Yemen, and the world's biggest buyer of American arms.

Even more importantly, it was concerned that the 28 pages would further expose the abject criminality of the US government's role in facilitating the attacks of 9/11 and then lying about their source and exploiting them to justify savage wars of aggression, first against Afghanistan and then against Iraq. These wars have claimed over a million lives. The false narrative created around the September 11 attacks remains the ideological pillar of the US campaign of global militarism conducted in the name of a "war on terror."

Media reports on the 28 pages invariably refer to the absence of a "smoking gun," which presumably would be tantamount to an order signed by the Saudi king to attack New York and Washington. The evidence is described as "inconclusive." One can only imagine what would have been the response if, in place of the word "Saudi," the documents referred to Iraqi, Syrian or Iranian actions. The same evidence would have been proclaimed an airtight case for war.

Among those who were involved in preparing the report, John Lehman, the former secretary of the navy, directly contradicted the official response to the release of the previously censored section. "There was an awful lot of participation by Saudi individuals in supporting the hijackers, and some of those people worked in the Saudi government," he said. "Our report should never have been read as an exoneration of Saudi Arabia."

... ... ...

The report focuses in part on the role of one Omar al-Bayoumi, who was described to the FBI as a Saudi intelligence officer, and, according to FBI files, "provided substantial assistance to hijackers Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi after they arrived in San Diego in February 2000."

The inquiry report deals with al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar only from after they arrived in California, and says nothing about the circumstances under which they were allowed to enter the country in the first place. Both were under CIA surveillance while attending an Al Qaeda planning meeting in 2000 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and placed on a "watch list" for FBI monitoring if they came to the United States. Nonetheless, the two men were allowed to enter the United States on January 15, 2000, landing at Los Angeles International Airport, eventually going to San Diego. From then on, they were permitted to operate freely, attending flight training school in preparation for their role as pilots of hijacked planes on September 11, 2001.

Al-Bayoumi, the report establishes, "received support from a Saudi company affiliated with the Saudi Ministry of Defense," drawing a paycheck for a no-show job. The report states that the company also had ties to Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.

According to the report, al-Bayoumi had previously worked for the Saudi Civil Aviation Association and, in the period leading up to 9/11, was "in frequent contact with the Emir at the Saudi Defense Ministry responsible for air traffic control." Phone records showed him calling Saudi government agencies 100 times between January and May of 2000.

FBI documents also established that the $465 in "allowances" that al-Bayoumi received through the Saudi military contractor, jumped to over $3,700 shortly after the arrival of al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar. During this period, al-Bayoumi initially allowed the two future hijackers to stay in his apartment before finding them their own place-with an informant of the San Diego FBI-cosigning their lease and advancing them a deposit and the first month's rent.

The report states that FBI investigations following 9/11 indicated that al-Bayoumi had "some ties to terrorist elements." His wife, meanwhile, was receiving a $1,200 a month stipend from Princess Haifa Bint Sultan, the wife of Prince Bandar, then the Saudi ambassador to the US and later head of Saudi intelligence.

Also named in the document as a likely Saudi intelligence agent is one Osama Bassnan, who lived across the street from the two hijackers in San Diego and was in telephone contact with al-Bayoumi several times a day during this period. He apparently placed the two in contact with a Saudi commercial airline pilot for discussions on "learning to fly Boeing jet aircraft," according to an FBI report. Bassnan's wife also received a monthly stipend from Princess Haifa, the Saudi ambassador's wife, to the tune of $2,000 a month. As well, the FBI found one $15,000 check written by Bandar himself in 1998 to Bassnan. The report states that FBI information indicated that Bassnan was "an extremist and supporter of Usama Bin Ladin," who spoke of the Al Qaeda leader "as if he were god."

Appearing before the Congressional inquiry in October 2002, FBI Executive Assistant Director for Counterterrorism Pasquale D'Amuro reacted with undisguised cynicism and contempt when asked about the payments from the Saudi ambassador's wife to the wives of the two reputed intelligence agents involved with the 9/11 hijackers.

"She gives money to a lot of different groups and people from around the world," he said. "We've been able to uncover a number of these… but maybe if we can discover that she gives to 20 different radical groups, well, gee, maybe there's a pattern here." Spoken like a man who believes he is above the law in defense of a figure that he clearly sees as untouchable.

dmorista 2 days ago

Mr Van Auken presents a Let It Happen on Purpose (LIHOP) position in this article. Clearly it is better to have arrived at that level of awareness than to just swallow the absurd "official story" that is, unfortunately, the position of much of the so-called Left in the U.S., e.g. Noam Chomsky and his ilk. The LIHOP position suffers from a fatal flaw, the 3 towers that collapsed in Lower Manhattan that could not conceivably have done so due to just the plane impacts (on Towers 1 & 2, which were specifically designed to withstand impacts by one or more Boeing 707s full of fuel, a plane similar in size to the 767s that did hit the towers) and/or the fairly insignificant office fires the occurred in all three towers (this includes Tower 7 that collapsed after some minor office fires and was never hit by a plane). Tower 7 was an absolutely classic example of a controlled demolition / implosion, while Towers 1 & 2 are modified controlled demolitions meant to make it look like the planes had caused the collapses. The implications of controlled demolitions are that only a Make it Happen on Purpose (MIHOP) process can actually explain what happened in New York on that day.

The obvious anomalies in the Pentagon incident and the Shanksville, Pennsylvania crash merely add to the mountain of evidence that exists pointing to some cabal that ran a MIHOP operation that day. This is not new information and has been made available by the many independent investigators who have been diligently digging into this signal event for nearly 15 years now.

Certainly Bin Laden (dying from kidney failure and reportedly in his cave in Afghanistan) and his team of largely dim-witted plotters (some of whom spent a lot of time at titty bars snorting cocaine and drinking whisky) did not have the wherewithal to 1). place the explosives in the 3 towers and the Pentagon, 2). run the 45 or more related drills, over 15 of which were in operation on that very day, including such actions as sending the bulk of the fighter aircraft to northern Canada or the Caribbean, placing fake radar images on military and FAA radar sets, 3). order the flight in Pennsylvania to be shot down and leave an 8 mile long debris field with absolutely no debris where it supposedly crashed, 4). supposedly make the impossible approach to the Pentagon, hitting the area where various accountants and Naval investigators were working on some issues, including the trillions of dollars missing from Pentagon accounts, rather than make the easy crash into the roof in the area where the high command offices were located, 5). ensure that the FBI immediately confiscated all 85+ video recordings that had some view of the Pentagon crash site, and so on and so on.

Much more likely suspects would be those Americans named by Kevin Ryan in his book "Another Nineteen", and/or the Israeli Mossad and military agents (5 of whom were arrested in New Jersey while making a video record of "the event" and who were noticed by an outraged citizen who called local police who arrested them and the spent 2 months in U.S. jails, finally released by dual Israeli / U.S. citizen Michael Chertoff, 3 of them appeared later on Israeli TV and bragged about the operation in plain Hebrew).

The Left Forum, held at John Jay College, had several worthwhile sessions about the Deep State and 9-11, the sessions are archived at NoLiesRadio < http://noliesradio.org/archive... > and are well worth a watch. The evidence for MIHOP orchestrated by the U.S. Deep State and its Zionist faction/allies is overwhelming, no doubt the Saudis played a role in all this, but a secondary one.

Carolyn Zaremba -> dmorista 2 days ago
My father was a structural design engineer who designed heavy steel structures like the WTC and also nuclear power plants and wind tunnels for NASA. He was an expert on types of steel, how it was made and what its properties were. The moment he saw the first tower collapse into it own footprint, he said 'That's a controlled demolition." He knew that fire alone would not have been enough to even dent the steel in the WTC, let alone pulverize it. Everything in the building could have burned and the steel would have remained standing, slightly scorched, but largely intact. To believe otherwise is not to believe in the laws of physics or the science of metallurgy.
Robert B. Livingston Carolyn Zaremba a day ago
To brutally manipulate public opinion, 9/11 was/is a criminally managed event involving some of America's highest officials.

Too many characters in the 9/11 truth movement, and their observations have often engrossed me -- until I got weary of discovering the inevitable snake oils always up for sale.

That said, some people might find this contribution of my own interesting/amusing/puerile:

https://archive.org/details/oz...

In general, I've found that the WSWS has taken the proper perspective with regard to 9/11: to take a broad perspective as events unfold.

dmorista -> Carolyn Zaremba a day ago
Ahhhh yes, and no less a group of people than members of the NYFD who charged up into those buildings were not concerned about them collapsing. In fact one team of firefighters who made it up to the impact zone in one of the towers reported the fire there as "no big deal" and "easily controlled". Other firefighters and various police did, however, report many explosions, most of them deep in the buildings far below the impact zones.

Dutch controlled demolition expert Danny Jowenko, upon seeing a video of the collapse of Tower 7 immediately said (I think this comment was made in 2007) "This is controlled demolition"; of course he died in a suspicious one car accident, in which his car hit a tree head on on July 16th, 2011 (similar to how some of the JFK assassination witnesses were eliminated). A couple of videos of his comments can be seen in a "Veteran's Today" article found at < http://www.veteranstoday.com/2... >.

This does not change my extremely high opinion of WSWS and Bill Van Auken in particular, it was just a bit disappointing to see them still hewing to a fairly standard line on this critical issue. The whole bottom falls out of the Global War on Terror argument if the average person realizes who really attacked the U.S. on that day.

Aaron Aarons 3 days ago
One should ask why the Mossad and the extremely powerful Israel lobby have seen fit to participate in the cover-up for so long. They certainly would have ignored the U.S. government's desire for secrecy and gotten this information out (which they surely knew from their own sources) if they didn't have something to hide. But that cover-up continues.
TonyVodvarka -> Aaron Aarons 2 days ago
We might ask the several Israeli Mossad agents (they were later interviewed on Israeli TV as such) who were filming the atrocity from across the river in New Jersey, dancing about and high-fiving in celebration as the towers came down. They were arrested, held for a few weeks and released without comment.
TonyVodvarka 3 days ago
The true "smoking gun" of the 9/11 atrocities is the eight-second symmetrical free-fall collapse of WTC #7. The claim that this occurred because of office fires is ludicrous, entirely impossible. It was a conventional implosion, carried off in one of the most secure buildings in NYC, sheltering the CIA, FBI and the mayor's emergency bunker and would have taken weeks to prepare.
Carolyn Zaremba -> TonyVodvarka 2 days ago
See my comment above regarding my father, an engineer and an expert on steel. He recognized instantly that the building was "blown" -- i.e., controlled demolition.
Vijay Kumar -> TonyVodvarka 2 days ago
I saw the video on TV and was surprised that it went unquestioned on why it collapsed. Even the clean symmetrical fall of the second tower to collapse, was neat and symmetric.
Gordon 3 days ago
In my educated opinion, supported by facts of the case conveniently omitted, the release of the small section of the Congressional report kept secret for 13 years is what they call in the CIA a "limited hangout", which is contains a mix of both truth and omissions or outright lies, and exposes the audience to a falsity more dangerous and misleading than an outright lie.

Of course the Saudis were involved, but if you research exactly what they did, it was simply to escort a handful of patsies around the country on behalf of the CIA and give them money to spend, creating a story to be later used as a diversion. The fact is, half the supposed hijackers within a week of the buildings exploding made their presence known to authorities, saying yoo-hoo, here we are, what's all this news regarding our deaths aboard airplanes?

Second point is that airplanes loaded with fuel don't cause buildings like the Trade Towers to collapse from heat, this is an engineering impossibility and has been proven dozens of times. In addition, a plane constructed of a thin aluminum skin stretched on an aluminum frame with a hollow nose can't penetrate a steel curtain wall like the ones the towers were built with. But the YouTube videos show the planes being absorbed into the buildings as though the craft were made of liquid.

To assume that the release of this is significant, is to be fooled by the tricks of the intelligence agencies who were responsible for the massacres in the first place.

Jim Gordon 2 days ago
My friend, you are mistaken, 120 ton airliners at a speed of 500 miles an hour can and have penetrated building facades before (Empire State Bldg). This theory by some that these planes were holograms or some sort of visual trickery is absurd and of course a distraction.

The world trade centers towers 1 and 2 were a combination of steel curtain and precast spandrels at spans between several floors of approx. 30'. They are not that strong. The edges of the concrete floors consist of angle iron between the floor joists which span from 4' to 6' on centers. If buildings were constructed strong enough to stop or substantially slow a commercial airliner, they would 1. be too heavy structurally and 2. thus be prohibitively costly.

The best evidence if this were ever taken to court, would be the stand down by the military that morning in the intercepting of these "hijackers" as they made their way to their targets. And Cheneys barking orders to a subordinate in the crisis control room beneath the white house that yes the orders still stand, as flight 175? made its way toward the Pentagon

Carolyn Zaremba -> Jim 2 days ago
Excuse me, but the towers of the WTC WERE very heavy structurally. Particularly the central cores, which contained heavily redundant layers of steel, and special steel at that.

[Jul 19, 2016] Bern Out: Beyond Cowardly Lion Leftism

www.counterpunch.org
I doubt many public figures were happier than Bernie Sanders to see the seemingly endless presidential election carnival overtaken by other news last week. Beneath the headlines on race and criminal justice, the nominal socialist "revolution" advocate Sanders got to make his official endorsement of the right-wing corporatist and war hawk Hillary Clinton with the public's eyes focused on different and more immediately hideous matters.

Anyone on the left who was surprised or disappointed by Bernie's long-promised Cowardly Lion endorsement of Mrs. Clinton one week ago hadn't paid serious attention to his campaign and career. Sanders' "democratic socialism" has always been a leaky cloak for a mildly social-democratic liberalism that is fiscally and morally negated by his commitment to the nation's giant Pentagon System. More

[Jul 19, 2016] Turkish variant of Brexit?

peakoilbarrel.com
Ves , 07/16/2016 at 1:15 pm
Caelan,

It is pre-emptive coup :-) (fake coupe in order to clear the military deck)

It looks to me that this time Turkish political elite pulled pre-emptive coup on Turkish military so it can purge her from the elements that are influenced by remote control from outside the country.
In one word this is Turkish version of Brexit. Basically financial, political, and military international structures that were established after II world war are crumbling because the interests of individual countries are so diametrical.

Fred Magyar , 07/16/2016 at 2:08 pm
In one word this is Turkish version of Brexit. Basically financial, political, and military international structures that were established after II world war are crumbling because the interests of individual countries are so diametrical.

Oh Shit! Get ready for a new, old style caliphate and the ushering in of another couple hundred years of dark ages… The Ottomans are coming!

Ves , 07/16/2016 at 3:01 pm
Fred, Ottomans are not coming.. Chinese are coming with trade deals on Orient express train from Beijing…via Istanbul…you guys are so misinformed about what's going in the world that you will be in state of shock when IMF, EU, NATO close the shop all in one day.

[Jul 18, 2016] Democrats struggle for unity as protesters swarm Netroots convention US news

The Guardian

Stephen Mitchell

1. Sanders: Clinton has backed "virtually every trade agreement that has cost the workers of this country millions of jobs"
2. Sanders: Clinton is in the pocket of Wall Street
3. Sanders: Hillary Clinton = D.C. Establishment
4. Sanders: Democrat Establishment immigration policies would drive down Americans' wages, create open borders
5. Sanders: Clinton supports nation-building in Middle East through war and invasion

Sanders: "And now, I support her 100%."

DurbanPoisonWillBurn

Anyone who believes Hillary is progressive deserves the horrible outcome a Hillary presidency will bring. How ANYONE can still support Hillary is beyond me. The woman has accomplished NOTHING except chaos & failure. Wake up folks. Hillary does NOT care about you. She cares about power, money, and making deals that benefit HER. Vote Jill Stein

[Jul 16, 2016] the fight is between Islamists and secular elements of the state.

Notable quotes:
"... It appears the Army has the MIT Headquarters under siege right now with scattered reports that Army helicopters are firing on it. Too soon to tell but we might be looking at a Turkish civil war. ..."
"... The Turkish military is quite good at fulfilling it's role as the protector of the country and arbiter of the Constitution. Which usually means overthrowing Islamist governments that brazenly cross over legal lines. ..."
www.nakedcapitalism.com
Kurt Sperry , July 15, 2016 at 5:05 pm

From a friend in Ankara minutes ago, "Oh shit, this has all the hallmarks of a fight between two fractions within the state. It's said that Fethullah Gulen and his supporters in the military tried this because of the imminent purge. There was a armed clash in Ankara between the military forces (Gulen movement) and tgr police/intelligence agency (Tayyip). It's been going for a while, this feud. Now it seems like it's grown a full blown war. Airports are also closed. "

Andrew Watts , July 15, 2016 at 7:21 pm

Good observation by your friend. Broadly speaking I'd say the fight is between Islamists and secular elements of the state. The Islamists have purged the police and MIT (intelligence) of any secular influence under Erdogan. With the secular crowd maintaining it's traditional hold over the military.

It appears the Army has the MIT Headquarters under siege right now with scattered reports that Army helicopters are firing on it. Too soon to tell but we might be looking at a Turkish civil war.

OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL , July 15, 2016 at 9:01 pm

I'll just be the first with the conspiracy theory about the usual suspects: US, regime change, Obama, and the Clinton Foundation:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G%C3%BClen_movement
They would like a much more compliant government in place than Erdogan.
Also interesting that Germany refused Erdogan asylum after his plane was turned away in Istanbul.
Very bad move for Erdogan to head out of town at a time like this as lots of Roman emperors could attest.

Andrew Watts , July 15, 2016 at 10:17 pm

I'm skeptical that the Gulen movement is behind this. The Turkish military is quite good at fulfilling it's role as the protector of the country and arbiter of the Constitution. Which usually means overthrowing Islamist governments that brazenly cross over legal lines. Furthermore Colonel Muharrem Kose ( wiki ) might've been purged for being associated with Gulen but it doesn't make the allegations true.

As a matter of principle I'm not in favor of military coups but for Erdogan I can make an exception.

Buttinsky , July 15, 2016 at 5:13 pm

Turkish Prime Minister Yildirim broadcast a statement that the situation is being dealt with by "security forces" from an apparently privately owned TV channel, while soldiers have been reported at the state broadcaster TRT in Ankara.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2016/jul/15/turkey-coup-attempt-military-gunfire-ankara

allan , July 15, 2016 at 5:47 pm

Irony died tonight:

Erdogan: I urge the Turkish people to convene at public squares and airports. There is no power higher than the power of the people.

#TheocratLivesMatter

Steve C , July 15, 2016 at 7:01 pm

Let's see if Obama's reaction is the same as it was with the Thai and Honduran coups. Talk of looking forward not backward. Calling for new elections.

OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL , July 15, 2016 at 7:29 pm

I'm wondering if the Turkish military wants more or less war than Erdogan, could be like the generals at the Pentagon, telling the White House they didn't think a Libya war was a wise idea while Hilary was shrieking for more blood.

(We came…we saw…he died).

Or maybe the military wants more secularism than Erdogan?

different clue , July 15, 2016 at 7:45 pm

If the military still has enough left-over Kemalists inside it to be bitter at the Erdogist degradation of secular republican Turkey into an Islamic Emirate in-the-making; those Kemalists may indeed be making one last try to purge and erase Erdogism from all positions of power and re-Kemalize the State.

NotTimothyGeithner , July 15, 2016 at 8:34 pm

The politics are different. This isn't the Cold War. Any coup government done without street support (outside Istanbul, this might be tough and even then…a military coup isn't good precedence) is going to have problems.

The issue isn't the Kemalists, but the Kemalists are too far removed from Attaturk. An Attaturk aide will simply have more legitimacy than some, random preening general. Well, the aides are dead by now. The successors of the aides have no legitimacy without an election.

I don't think the coup will fly without serious repercussions.

craazyboy , July 15, 2016 at 7:55 pm

"Vote for The Sultan – it's important!"

Lambert Strether Post author , July 15, 2016 at 9:25 pm

+100.

(Not making a comment on Turkish politics, about which I know nothing, nothing, but it's a splendid snowclone.)

NotTimothyGeithner , July 15, 2016 at 9:45 pm

The Kemalists traditionally tend to lavish attention on Istanbul and the coastal elites while dealing with the Kurds and their role in NATO.

The heartland (Anatolia. What's that about Constantinople?) has traditionally been ignored by the Kemalists. The Kemalists would say they took important small steps and not to throw the baby out with the bathwater. In the mean time, the religious nuts took power and used private charity to do poorly what the government wasn't doing and found sympathy with the majority. I know it sounds familiar.

External pressure especially from the EU forced electoral reforms which gave power to the majority of the country in the heartland instead of being controlled by coastal elites.

Erdogan's policies have provoked anger, but his actions against the old guard have never seemed to irritate even the coastal population, partially because the old guard wasn't that great. They just received good press. Better dead than Red.

My sense is young coastal Turks are more or less like their counterparts in other European cities, so I imagine the army making decisions won't go over too well.

Erdogan is popular in the heartland, largely because he delivered on promises to improve infrastructure, jobs, and so forth even though he skims. For rural Turkey, everything of nothing is still nothing, so who cares if Erdogan skims?

abynormal , July 15, 2016 at 6:30 pm

scrolled right past ya allan…any idea what set it all off?

NotTimothyGeithner , July 15, 2016 at 6:25 pm

Erdogan. ..more like Erdo well he's not going to be there anymore.

Let's see:

-Merkels refugee plan
-NATO dealing with a coup after the fall of the USSR
-Syria
-ISIS
-Kurds
-collapse of Turkish tourism
-Erdogan was popular in the Anatolian heartland

Ottawan , July 15, 2016 at 6:36 pm

Whatever anyone thinks of Erdogan, its hard to imagine how to keep a lid on the pot in Turkey these days.

NotTimothyGeithner , July 15, 2016 at 6:47 pm

Erdogan's Sultan project wasn't an effort to keep a lid on Turkey's problems. Many of the problems are of his direct action.

That Which Sees , July 15, 2016 at 6:58 pm


TURKEY: The at least 4 sided coup attempt

Words of caution to everyone. There are at least four [4] armed sides participating in tonight's chaos:

1) Military (obviously)
2) Armed National Police (pro-Erdogan)
3) Criminals (who are exploiting the situation as cover to settle scores) - Cannot prove this, but it is consistent with prior civil unrest history in other nations.
4) Terrorists - IS / Daesh. Probably not organized, but shooting unarmed civilians on camera would exacerbate the situation as both major sides blame each other.
______________

The RUSSIAN Reaction?

Not advocating a conspiracy theory, but ex-KGB Putin has a jet downed by Erdogan's government. There may be Russian involvement.

Even if the Russians were surprised, the Russian Black Sea Fleet needs to be able to transit the Bosphorus to support Syrian operations. Expect Putin to quickly make favorable offers to the new military leadership if Erdogan falls.

Andrew Watts , July 15, 2016 at 7:43 pm

You forgot Kurds as a potential player. I have no clue what PKK or TAK will do under these circumstances but I imagine it wouldn't necessarily involve doing nothing.

Eureka Springs , July 15, 2016 at 7:54 pm

In the game of U.S. neolibralcons, If Erdo or Gulen prevail… don't 'we' win either way?

I mean Gulen sure sucks up a lot of U.S. education dollars.

http://turkishinvitations.weebly.com/list-of-us-schools.html

Andrew Watts , July 15, 2016 at 8:46 pm

I don't think Gulen is primarily behind the coup. I mean I know that's what Erdogan said but when the military released it's first letter to the public it had Kemalist written all over it.

don't 'we' win either way?

Uhh, it's complicated. Secretary of State Kerry is in Moscow today negotiating an anti-jihadi pact/alliance in Syria. While a few days ago Kerry publicly labeled the Saudi-back Jaish al-Islam as no different from Al Qaeda and the neocon crowd had a hissyfit over it. The gap between how the US and Russian governments perceive the rebel-jihadi alliance is closer than it's ever been.

Meanwhile it just so happens that the 28 pages from the 9/11 report implicating Saudi involvement and a military coup in Turkey is overthrowing the Islamist government of Erdogan. Both governments have supported the rebel-jihad alliance in Syria so this could just be a huge coincidence… except I don't believe in coincidences that strain my gullibility.

Any speculation beyond that point is tin foil hat territory.

Alex morfesis , July 15, 2016 at 10:25 pm

German fingerprints on turkish coup…not foily…ribbi gulan is in a very historic german german bund part of Pennsylvania…not by my laptop to scrape reports but there have been continued reports of sultan erdo asking for and receiving asylum from Germany…

of all the places to go hang out…

schaeubleland is not one of them…

my other thought was the sah-oodz since that little 28 page thingee was distributed on a friday, just a few hours before the parade in istanbul…

I call it a parade as the new coup position information is there was a grand total of less than 150 gulanis involved…

which made sense since the same photos of hardly 50 soldiers kept getting played over and over…

the saud argument is technically more foily…

but my money would be on field marshall schaeuble…

would put money down that he "resigns/retires" for health reasons in 90 dayz if sultan erdo "holds" as he now appears to have landed his plane at the airport in istanbul…

On a technical side, two weeks from now there is the annual kiss the sultans ring moment in the military and it has been suggested erdo was going to ax in a very publicly some gulanis…

and some colonel that has been named as a top coup boy had recently been bounced due to his ties to the gulanis….

So much for the boris jokes…

What a week…

[Jul 16, 2016] Sanders much-vaunted e-mailing list has a pesky shrinkage problem

Bernie on Monday to his supporters : Thanks for comin', see ya!
Notable quotes:
"... Donations to Jill Stine skyrocket after Sander's endorsement. https://www.rt.com/usa/351129-jill-stein-bernie-donations/ ..."
"... And, let me guess: Sanders' much-vaunted e-mailing list has a pesky shrinkage problem. Which started on Tuesday. ..."
"... Bernie denouement is the best thing that could have happened to Stein and the Greens. ..."
"... The Stein campaign seems unprepared. They simply don't have any staff to deal with volunteers. There is a well trained group out there now, so they need gear, packets, flyers, talking points. ..."
"... Sanders will attempt to maintain his supporters by focusing their time, skills and money on his new institute. Should serve to keep a good number from paying attention to Stein. ..."
www.nakedcapitalism.com
Code Name D , July 15, 2016 at 3:24 pm

Donations to Jill Stine skyrocket after Sander's endorsement. https://www.rt.com/usa/351129-jill-stein-bernie-donations/

Arizona Slim , July 15, 2016 at 4:06 pm

And, let me guess: Sanders' much-vaunted e-mailing list has a pesky shrinkage problem. Which started on Tuesday.

Steve C , July 15, 2016 at 6:17 pm

Bernie denouement is the best thing that could have happened to Stein and the Greens. If Bernie and West had started with the Greens, they would have gotten zero traction. Another noble cause no one's ever heard of. Instead, Bernie started something that came close to blowing up the Democrats the way Trump blew up the Republicans.

Now a lot of the Bernie sisses and bros are looking for somewhere to go. Stein is well placed to pick up the pieces if she knows what to do with them.

Waldenpond , July 15, 2016 at 9:52 pm

The Stein campaign seems unprepared. They simply don't have any staff to deal with volunteers. There is a well trained group out there now, so they need gear, packets, flyers, talking points.

Sanders will attempt to maintain his supporters by focusing their time, skills and money on his new institute. Should serve to keep a good number from paying attention to Stein.

The Stein campaign has a narrow window.

[Jul 16, 2016] Trump Bernie Just Lost The FBI Primary; Today Proves He Was Right About The Rigged System Video RealClearPolitics

www.realclearpolitics.com

Donald Trump comments on the end of what he called the "FBI Primary," saying that Bernie Sanders has so far refused to drop out of the race for the Democratic nomination in hopes that Clinton might be indicted. He says that the FBI's recommendation not to indict proves Sanders was right when he said the Democratic primary was "rigged."

Today is the best evidence ever that we have seen that our system is totally, absolutely rigged," Trump said at a rally in North Carolina.

"It's rigged," Trump said. "And I used that term nationally when I was running in the Republican primaries, and I was the first to use it, and then all of a sudden it became a hot term and everyone was using the word rigged, rigged, rigged. But if you remember, I won Louisiana. And I didn't get enough delegate, what happened? Places like Colorado, which was so good to me, but all of a sudden we find out that they don't have the vote... I'll be honest, if I didn't win in landslides, I wouldn't be standing here. You would be watching some politician who will lose to Hillary.

"I learned about the rigged system really fast. All of a sudden, Bernie started using it and now everyone talks about the system being rigged," he said.

"I'm going to keep using it because I was the one that brought it up."

"I asked a couple of political pros," he said. "Think of Bernie Sanders. I think the one with the most to be angry about. The one with the most to lose is Bernie Sanders, because honestly, he was waiting for the FBI primary, and guess what? He just lost today the FBI primary!"

"He lost the FBI primary! Bernie, my poor Bernie, oh, Bernie! I feel so badly for Bernie, but you know what? A lot of Bernie Sanders supporters are going to be voting for Trump, because Bernie Sanders was right! Bernie Sanders was right about a couple of things. He's right about the system being rigged, but he's also right about trade. Our trade deals are a disaster. They're killing our jobs. They're killing our families. They're killing our incomes."

[Jul 16, 2016] Presidential Candidate Bernie Sanders Sheepdogging for Hillary and the Democrats in 2016 Black Agenda Report

blackagendareport.com

Bernie Sanders is this election's Democratic sheepdog. The sheepdog is a card the Democratic party plays every presidential primary season when there's no White House Democrat running for re-election. The sheepdog is a presidential candidate running ostensibly to the left of the establishment Democrat to whom the billionaires will award the nomination. Sheepdogs are herders, and the sheepdog candidate is charged with herding activists and voters back into the Democratic fold who might otherwise drift leftward and outside of the Democratic party, either staying home or trying to build something outside the two party box.

[Jul 15, 2016] How U.S. And UK Liberals Disfranchise Their Party Members

Notable quotes:
"... Bernie supporters are crowing about his great success at influencing the Democratic Party platform. How exciting is that? Is there anything less useful than the platform of a political party? Screen doors in a submarine come to mind. A political party platform has all of the significance and impact of a good healthy a fart in the midst of a hurricane. ..."
"... bernie sanders, when it comes right down to it, is either a liar, or is willing to support hillary in spite of who and what she stands for.. trumps comments on this are indeed bang on. ..."
"... The Sanders move is straight out of the Democratic Party playbook of the last 100 years, as so many predicted. The Democrats have co-opted every grass-roots movement that has arisen in the US, co-opted and quashed it. ..."
"... The party primaries in the USA are not intended to be representative, democratic elections: they simply serve as a sort of consumer survey to see which of their candidates would be most popular in the general election. ..."
"... Bernie Sanders claims some concessions were achieved in the platform committee document. But one issue of greatest importance, on trade issues,--specifically the rejection of TPP, is a lost cause. Bernie threw in the towel. The phony sideshow of reconstituted New Deal hoopla is merely the same tired fantasy narrative that the Democrats predictably trot out for every presidential election. ..."
"... The dear old man who started this campaign with this gem of rhetoric: "What we need is a revolution in the streets", is ending his monkeyshines with a ringing endosement of one of the most politically corrupt figures in our history. ..."
"... Jill Stein, who ran for president on the Green Party platform, says that Bernie's endorsement of Hillary is the "last nail in the coffin" which turns Sanders' revolution over to a counter-revolutionary party. ..."
"... Trump would do well to attract Bernie Voters now, by exploiting areas of agreement. The TPP is one example. ..."
"... He led people to believe that he had principles - that he really was against Wall St. and SuperPACs and all that Hillary stands for. He also (late in the race) began talking about 'revolution' to play to the discontented and young idealists. ..."
"... Its all just bullshit when he ultimately supports Hillary. But those who support Hillary (like rufus does) try hard to finesse Sanders failing because they value the "service" that Sanders performed for the Obama-Hillary "Third Way" Democratic Party. ..."
"... What chance do we have with Hillary?--a back-stabbing, forked-tongue, daughter of Goldman Sachs, whose speeches to the industrialists and bankers are practically a state secret? Yes, Hillary!--who is coated from head to toe with a patina of blood, and smells of corpses? ..."
"... US corporations aren't stupid. They know bad, expensive education, decaying infrastructure and violence in the street are bad for business. They might even realize that corruption is bad for them. And that worker representation makes life easier all around. ..."
"... In fact, Sanders pulled several key punches in the race ..."
"... he failed to call Hillary out on her emails after the State Inspector General report was release and it was CLEAR that she had lied about her emails; ..."
"... he is close/friendly with all of the top Democrats: Obama campaigned for him to win his Senate seat; Schumer endorses him; he calls Hillary a 'friend' of 25 years. ..."
"... Except in style, Hillary is no different than Obama, Bush II, or her husband. Whereas earlier presidents felt the need to put on a show of decency -- well, okay, Bush II let it drop now and then -- H. Clinton will be a bitch Cheney, going out of her way to rub everyone's face in it and bragging there's nothing they can do about it. ..."
"... There's a bright side however. She's dumb and knows no bounds. Think Louis XVI. That, along with her arrogance, may finally bring a tipping point of sorts. With things coming apart everywhere, a smooth-talking fraud like Reagan or Obama might be able to somehow hold it together a little longer. Hillary's nastiness could actually bring real change. God in his infinite irony. ..."
"... To say there is a deep state controlling Clinton may be an over simplification. More likely their are lots of competing and conflicting forces working in the dark, none with any clear idea or plan (or inkling of what other powers are doing) each pushing for immediate gains without a thought for the future. ..."
"... In the struggle for power everyone. including H. Clinton, is a useful fool and a potential patsy. Those hidden powers have a history of eating their own. ..."
"... Sanders has been a great disappointment. In order to prevent Trump from getting the votes, he is embracing and selling his soul and his supporters to a demon! In fact Sanders has more in common with Trump that he has with Hillary. ..."
"... "Bernie Sanders endorsing Crooked Hillary Clinton is like Occupy Wall Street endorsing Goldman Sachs" ..."
"... His followers were fools. I think some of them know that now. ..."
"... I for one, hoped for more than "sheepdog" from Sanders, but, alas, those who said so, were totally correct ..."
"... in American politics, none of these people are for dismantling the biggest budgetary fraud & boondoggle in human history: the pentagon. anybody saying they are for "small gov't" who doesn't immediately propose to slash the military/para-military budget (not the VA, not now) by 50% every year for the next 500 years is lying. ..."
"... Hillary represents a continuation of the last 8 years, or even perhaps the last 16 or 24+ years. There is absolutely no doubt about that. ..."
"... People taken in by Sanders learned no lessons from gushing over Obama. They hurt themselves again and are sociopathically indifferent to the far greater harm they have done to those who were not gullible. ..."
"... Even if she had given any "significant concession", it would have been meaningless noise with not an iota of intention to implement such concessions. She is a POS who will say anything at all to get elected. The only thing we really know is she relishes confrontation on the foreign policy scene. Otherwise nobody can rely on her to act in their interests in the domestic realm, except big corporate entities. ..."
"... It is stupid for B to keep linking to Trumps quotes exclusively. Why does b not link to Jill Stein criticism. Sure Trumps criticism of evil Hillarys corruption will gather important support, but exclusively giving torture loving warmongering Trump ammunition, strangles other better candidates in their political birth in the alternative to status quo attention. In the same way that the Sanders, Chomsky, and other shortsighted cowards react by strangle politically strangling a desperate new movement. ..."
"... Congrats to those who labeled the 'Sheepdog' so early. Such an apt description. Good call. ..."
"... Sanders released only one year of tax returns (2015). His campaign manager claimed his taxes held no surprises. Well they didn't for 2015. But why didn't Sanders release earlier years? Any serious Presidential candidate would expect to release at least 3 years of tax returns. ..."
"... Given the 'service' that he performed, it might be especially interesting to have seen his taxes for 2014, the year before he entered the race. The lack of transparency and Sanders' 'sheepdogging' raises questions of whether he received any inducements to enter the race. ..."
"... The Plan was always from the start for Bernie to hold down the Left, so Hillary could capture Center-Right, and Donald could lead the Far Right into Smackdown. Then Bernie would deliver the Left to Hillary. And so it has come to pass. ..."
"... Strange bedfellows? Not at all. The Israelis and the GCC countries, the USG and EU, are all soul brothers : tiny 'elite' minorities attempting to rule their respective roosts by technological means encompassing everything from drones to the media to their ubiquitous taps. ..."
"... in loco parentis ..."
"... In 1963 there was a coup in America. Since then the military-industrial complex has run the country. It has been most apparent in its foreign policy, which has been the conquest of natural resources (especially oil and gas) worldwide. America's resentment with the USSR/Russia has to do with their living on top of resources. ..."
"... But in order to continue the illusion of democracy in the US, it was necessary to maintain some differences between the two parties so that Americans would think that they have a choice. Meanwhile, the party that is supposed to represent the working class has been sliding into the arms of the corporatists. Essentially, in order to give Americans a "choice" Trump has been pushed as the demonic clown versus H. Clinton. Unfortunately, for good reasons as well as because of endless propaganda from the right, most Americans distrust Clinton, as well they should. Her casual announcement about enforcing a "no-fly zone" over Syria is essentially a declaration of war against Russia. ..."
"... Going back to the coup in 1963, in order to maintain control of the population it was necessary for the ruling class to continue to generate candidates each election cycle to pretend to care about the working class. I have long suspected that early on in their careers both Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton were recruited by US intelligence. During his time in Britain Bill's classmates assumed that he was CIA. ..."
"... I suspect it was the beginning of her career in US power politics. Shortly after she wrote a pro-Vietnam speech for Melvin Laird in 1968, she was involved with the various Black Panther trials around the US. ..."
"... It's hard to believe that the Hillary who stands before us now was ever a political ally of the Panthers. Rather, I suspect she was observing for an intelligence agency, the FBI or CIA. She sat through a Panther trial in New Haven, Connecticut, and then spent a summer in Oakland working for the law firm that was representing the Panthers in the Bay Area. Essentially, she was in the right place at the right time to glean information for COINTELPRO, the massive spying program directed against anti-war and black movements. A few years later she worked on the Democrats' legal team for Watergate, another good place for a government informant to be. Bill, during his time at Oxford, would have functioned like the thousands of informants who sat in on peace group meetings across American campuses. ..."
"... Later, when the CIA was dumping cocaine at Mena, Arkansas, Bill Clinton was in position to make sure state police left the operation alone. It's not surprising that George W. Bush's first head of the DEA was Asa Hutchinson, who'd been the incurious federal prosecutor over that part of Arkansas when the drugs came in. ..."
"... The Clintons were prominent in the Democratic Leadership Council, which was an organization within the Democratic Party pushing it to the right. In 1992 Bill pushed trade agreements that would destroy the American middle class. Since then the party has been hopelessly corrupted by Wall Street money. ..."
"... I cannot think of another president in memory who is more wed to military adventurism than Hillary. ..."
"... But if she polls badly enough, Democratic establishment may see the light and go for Sanders. ..."
Jun 13, 2016 |

Bernie Sanders folded. This without gaining any significant concession from Hillary Clinton on programmatic or personal grounds. (At least as far as we know.) He endorsed Clinton as presidential candidate even as she gave no ground for his voters' opinions. This disenfranchises the people who supported him.

... ... ...

I expect the "Not Hillary" protest vote to be very strong in the November election. There is still more significant dirt to be dug up about her and her family foundation. Trumps current lows in the polls will recover when the media return to the "close race" mantra that makes them money. He still has a decent chance to win.

V. Arnold | Jul 13, 2016 1:04:11 AM | 1
It is long, long past the time to see the world we really live in; the realities of our western faux democracies. Until and unless we recognise the facts, as they are, nothing can be changed. The problem/s must be identified for it/them to be solved.

It doesn't take a critical mass of people; but it takes more than a few; far more than evidenced this election cycle...

Bill H | Jul 13, 2016 1:07:34 AM | 2
Bernie supporters are crowing about his great success at influencing the Democratic Party platform. How exciting is that? Is there anything less useful than the platform of a political party? Screen doors in a submarine come to mind. A political party platform has all of the significance and impact of a good healthy a fart in the midst of a hurricane.
james | Jul 13, 2016 1:27:48 AM | 3
thanks b, for highlighting these sad realities. bernie sanders, when it comes right down to it, is either a liar, or is willing to support hillary in spite of who and what she stands for.. trumps comments on this are indeed bang on.

the labour. party is run by a gang of thugs.. i hope the people who want corbyn are able to overcome the mostroisity the labour party has become.

i echo @1 v. arnolds comments..

@2 bill..bernie spporters better not show how stupid they are by also voting for hillary..

Grieved | Jul 13, 2016 2:46:33 AM | 4
The Sanders move is straight out of the Democratic Party playbook of the last 100 years, as so many predicted. The Democrats have co-opted every grass-roots movement that has arisen in the US, co-opted and quashed it.

Even as deliberately unplugged as I've been from this race, it's been easy to see at a glance that Sanders magnetized the next wave of concerned citizens - of course the young people rallied to his banner - and will now leave them broken and in disarray, or delivered to the Democrats.

He was an independent. He so simply could have turned the Green Party into a ten-percent force in the US, making it hugely important, and advancing in one leap the cause of multi-party governance.

He didn't.

Brunswick | Jul 13, 2016 2:48:56 AM | 5

http://www.vox.com/2016/7/1/12083494/bernie-sanders-democratic-party-concessions

okie farmer | Jul 13, 2016 5:04:31 AM | 10

Thomas Frank: It's Bill Clinton Who Wrecked the Democratic Party.
https://youtu.be/pmCibWptzZQ

ralphieboy | Jul 13, 2016 6:25:21 AM | 11
The party primaries in the USA are not intended to be representative, democratic elections: they simply serve as a sort of consumer survey to see which of their candidates would be most popular in the general election.

Registering for a party does not mean that you are a member of a particular party or even support it, you are simply choosing to vote in their primary elections (if you live in a state with closed primaries). That is something a lot of Bernie supporters found out much too late. But that is not a "rigged system", those rules were in place long before Sanders decided to run as a Democrat.

And rules differ from state to state: some places allot delegates proportionally, in others it is winner-take-all. Some states hold a general election, other hold a caucus:you have to travel to a certain place at a certain time to cast your vote, which means you have to have the time and money in order to participate.

I have never seen a similar system in place anywhere else. Usually it is only card-carrying, dues-paying party members who are allowed to select their candidates.

nmb | Jul 13, 2016 7:13:16 AM | 13
From Tsipras to Corbyn and Sanders: This is not the Left we want
rufus magister | Jul 13, 2016 7:29:34 AM | 15
Further to 14 -- Big Legacies of Bernie Sanders' Historic Campaign.
Seventh is the real possibility Bernie has inspired of a third party – if the Democratic Party doesn't respond to the necessity of getting big money out of politics and reversing widening inequality, if it doesn't begin to advocate for a single-payer healthcare system, or push hard for higher taxes on the wealthy - including a wealth tax - to pay for better education and better opportunities for everyone else, if it doesn't expand Social Security and lift the cap on income subject to the Social Security payroll tax, if it doesn't bust up the biggest banks and strengthen antitrust laws, and expand voting rights.

If it doesn't act on these critical issues. the Democratic Party will become irrelevant to the future of America, and a third party will emerge to address them.

From the first I hoped that the revolutionary left would be able to capitalize on the issues raised by Sanders' insurgency. You will win support by winning concrete gains for real people. Not by shrill denunciations of the masses ignorance or gullibility.

Copeland | Jul 13, 2016 7:56:07 AM | 18
Very good observations from b. Bernie Sanders claims some concessions were achieved in the platform committee document. But one issue of greatest importance, on trade issues,--specifically the rejection of TPP, is a lost cause. Bernie threw in the towel. The phony sideshow of reconstituted New Deal hoopla is merely the same tired fantasy narrative that the Democrats predictably trot out for every presidential election.

The dear old man who started this campaign with this gem of rhetoric: "What we need is a revolution in the streets", is ending his monkeyshines with a ringing endosement of one of the most politically corrupt figures in our history. And once again, every 1930s, New Deal trope and hurrah, is to be trotted out, even though the former Clinton administration drove a stake into the heart of most of FDR's work.

Get in line sheep. Mutton will be served.

Jill Stein, who ran for president on the Green Party platform, says that Bernie's endorsement of Hillary is the "last nail in the coffin" which turns Sanders' revolution over to a counter-revolutionary party.

fast freddy | Jul 13, 2016 8:11:02 AM | 19
Trump would do well to attract Bernie Voters now, by exploiting areas of agreement. The TPP is one example.

Owned by Goldman Bilderberg and the CFR, the Den of Lying Thieves and Whores - aka the Democratic Party - now has sneakily moved forward to tee up the TPP for passage by Crooked Hillary if not Oilbomber.

Note: The Republican Party is also a Den of Lying Thieves and Whores.

Jackrabbit | Jul 13, 2016 8:26:49 AM | 21
rufus: Sanders did what he said he would from the start ...

He led people to believe that he had principles - that he really was against Wall St. and SuperPACs and all that Hillary stands for. He also (late in the race) began talking about 'revolution' to play to the discontented and young idealists.

Its all just bullshit when he ultimately supports Hillary. But those who support Hillary (like rufus does) try hard to finesse Sanders failing because they value the "service" that Sanders performed for the Obama-Hillary "Third Way" Democratic Party.

Those who said that Sanders was a sheepdog from the start were right: the Democratic Party led by "Third Way" sellouts is hopeless. Long past time to move on.

Vote Green Party.

Bluemot5 | Jul 13, 2016 8:33:17 AM | 23
Jill Stein response to Bernie endorsement of Hilary:
http://www.jill2016.com/sanders_endorsement_clinton
dahoit | Jul 13, 2016 8:35:54 AM | 24
16;Heru;You gotta throw that ideology crap in the can.

Wtf do think Trumps support is, but democrats and republicans tired of Israeli shills?

Trump will win, as the only way the pos crud could is by Trumps assassination.

Did you hear what he said about Ginsburg? Her mind is shot! An Israeli on the SC.3 in fact. sheesh.

Copeland | Jul 13, 2016 8:54:37 AM | 26
Now now Jackrabbit, go easy on rufus. You have to remember that cognitive dissonance is infinitely extensible across a mind that is captured by delusion.

Yes Virginia, they are all hucksters ! Surely the microscopic communist party, or its pale American likeness, of which rufus is a mustache twirling member, is less of a political fantasy, than the Green Party!

What chance do we have with Hillary?--a back-stabbing, forked-tongue, daughter of Goldman Sachs, whose speeches to the industrialists and bankers are practically a state secret? Yes, Hillary!--who is coated from head to toe with a patina of blood, and smells of corpses?

somebody | Jul 13, 2016 9:46:28 AM | 30
@harrylaw | Jul 13, 2016 9:18:24 AM | 27

So it is basically the British Trade Unions making sure their members dominate in the leadership election?

The US democratic party is a huge income generating corporation with some worker representation. Sanders is correct to stay inside if he wants to change politics. If Sandernistas continue the fight (they will, it is generational, same as the Clintons were generational) seat for seat they will change the party. They will get changed themselves in the process for sure.

It seems the Libertarian party succeeds in splitting Republicans. For Sanders to split Democrats would be voting for Trump. He would have to live with this fame outside of the Democratic Party with no one to team up in the Senate.

US corporations aren't stupid. They know bad, expensive education, decaying infrastructure and violence in the street are bad for business. They might even realize that corruption is bad for them. And that worker representation makes life easier all around.

Jackrabbit | Jul 13, 2016 9:48:55 AM | 31
Bluemot5 @23

Jill goes easy on Sanders in her statement because she wants to attract his supporters.

In fact, Sanders pulled several key punches in the race:

> he was late in calling out Hillary-DNC collusion - campaign financing got the headlines but what about the DNC's silence about: a) media bias toward Hillary and b) voter irregularities: AP called the race for Hillary the day before California voted based on secret polling of Super-delegates! ;

> he failed to attack Obama's record on black/minority affairs - despite Sanders having conducted a fake filibuster over the Fiscal Cliff/Sequester - Hillary walked away with the black vote;

> he failed to call Hillary out on her emails after the State Inspector General report was release and it was CLEAR that she had lied about her emails;

And Sanders is not an "independent" as any ordinary person would interpret that term:

> he has caucused with the Democrats for a very long time (nearly 20 years?);

> he runs in the Vermont Democratic Primary when running for House/Senate with the understanding that he will not run in general election as a Democrat (this effectively blocks opposition from a Democratic candidate);

> he is close/friendly with all of the top Democrats: Obama campaigned for him to win his Senate seat; Schumer endorses him; he calls Hillary a 'friend' of 25 years.

Felicity | Jul 13, 2016 10:35:54 AM | 33
I "stole" this great piece for Global Research, with so many thanks again:

http://www.globalresearch.ca/how-u-s-and-uk-liberals-disfranchise-their-party-members/5535699

RIP democracy in the US and UK, finally out of it's misery, been gasping it's last for a very long time.

Jackrabbit | Jul 13, 2016 10:45:08 AM | 34
Kshama Sawant: Bernie Sanders Abandons the Revolution
The strategy of lesser evilism has been an utter disaster for the 99%. Effectively unchallenged by the left, the Democratic Party helped the Republican Party to push the agenda steadily to the right over the past decades. As Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein has aptly put it, "the politics of fear has delivered everything we were afraid of."

... Bernie's endorsement will be used in an attempt to prop up that same rotten establishment ... [that makes] Sanders endorsement of Clinton is [sic] a fundamental failure of leadership.
...
We can't afford to follow Bernie's error. It is time for us to move on. ... That is why I'm endorsing Green Party candidate Jill Stein. ... There can be no doubt that Jill's campaign is the clear continuation of our political revolution, and deserves the broadest possible support from Sandernistas.

Ken Nari | Jul 13, 2016 10:55:38 AM | 35
Mark Stoval @ 16 -- We've had a fascist economic system (since the 30s)...

Even before. At least since 1913 with the establishment of the Federal Reserve, which transferred the holdings of the U.S. treasury to international bankers.

b, me too. For the first time I think Clinton may actually be president. Sanders never had a chance for the simple reason -- never stated -- that he is too old. When he took office he would have been only a few years short of the age Reagan was when he left.

(For some reason age has never come up with this elderly bunch. Both Bill Clinton (as co-president) and Trump will be older than Reagan was on election day, and Hillary will be only a few months younger. You'd think we'd be seeing clips of Hillary chopping logs and Trump free climbing the face of cliffs -- the sort of stuff they put poor old Ron through.)

A scary thought is that age has never come up because the powers that pick presidents don't intend for them to be in office long.

Except in style, Hillary is no different than Obama, Bush II, or her husband. Whereas earlier presidents felt the need to put on a show of decency -- well, okay, Bush II let it drop now and then -- H. Clinton will be a bitch Cheney, going out of her way to rub everyone's face in it and bragging there's nothing they can do about it.

Her style's different, but the same game will go on.

There's a bright side however. She's dumb and knows no bounds. Think Louis XVI. That, along with her arrogance, may finally bring a tipping point of sorts. With things coming apart everywhere, a smooth-talking fraud like Reagan or Obama might be able to somehow hold it together a little longer. Hillary's nastiness could actually bring real change. God in his infinite irony.

To riff off a comment by Banger a few posts back. To say there is a deep state controlling Clinton may be an over simplification. More likely their are lots of competing and conflicting forces working in the dark, none with any clear idea or plan (or inkling of what other powers are doing) each pushing for immediate gains without a thought for the future.

It's often said here that the plan is chaos. Maybe, or it could be that there is such confusion and turmoil and chaos is so prevalent, that it looks like it must be a plan. Or taking a longer view, it could be what we're seeing everywhere is the inevitable collapse of a vast culture that has grown too complex.

In the struggle for power everyone. including H. Clinton, is a useful fool and a potential patsy. Those hidden powers have a history of eating their own.

virgile | Jul 13, 2016 11:04:50 AM | 36
Sanders has been a great disappointment. In order to prevent Trump from getting the votes, he is embracing and selling his soul and his supporters to a demon! In fact Sanders has more in common with Trump that he has with Hillary.

One hopes that disenchanted Sanders supporters will either abstain or vote for Trump.
Having the choice only of two candidates is an absurdity.

Stan | Jul 13, 2016 11:26:42 AM | 41
"Bernie Sanders endorsing Crooked Hillary Clinton is like Occupy Wall Street endorsing Goldman Sachs" is not a valid statement.

Sanders is a long time member of The Party and Congress. One cannot be a member of those clubs for so long -- particularly during the years spanning the turn of the last century -- and not be rotten to the core.

His followers were fools. I think some of them know that now.

Jack Smith | Jul 13, 2016 12:14:52 PM | 44
@Grieved | Jul 13, 2016 2:46:33 AM | 4

Excuse me, not meant to be offensive. :-)

Like million and millions of Americans you have been fooled not once but repeatedly and still believe in democracy and Democratic party. Get real, Sanders probably a better lair than most liars but not as good as Obomo and Hillary. Understands million and millions still believe these two liars (dun believes me look at the most recent poll).

Do the smart things vote the opposite what the masses or MSM tells you. Better still vote Trump and end the drip, drip and drips. Buy yourself a good cheap pitchfork, snows shovel or whatever in yr local Craigslist or yard sales. Get ready for the final solution.

Good luck. :-)

ben | Jul 13, 2016 12:23:08 PM | 47
Good take b, thanks.

I for one, hoped for more than "sheepdog" from Sanders, but, alas, those who said so, were totally correct. Trump and HRC are 2 sides of the same coin. It matters not who wins. With either one, workers of the world are fucked. The corporate global takeover rolls on.

I will "vote" for Jill Stein.

On the efficacy of E-voting in the U$A.

http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=14545

jason | Jul 13, 2016 12:29:05 PM | 48
jules @ 46: in American politics, none of these people are for dismantling the biggest budgetary fraud & boondoggle in human history: the pentagon. anybody saying they are for "small gov't" who doesn't immediately propose to slash the military/para-military budget (not the VA, not now) by 50% every year for the next 500 years is lying.
Jules | Jul 13, 2016 12:34:42 PM | 51
@rufus magister | Jul 13, 2016 8:29:00 AM | 22

I would have thought anyone with half a brain could see why there is an attraction for Trump.

Hillary represents a continuation of the last 8 years, or even perhaps the last 16 or 24+ years. There is absolutely no doubt about that.

Trump represents someone who's just so mad he might well blow up the entire global trading system starting trade wars left right and centre.

How do you think a US trade war with China will go down?

It will destroy the G20, WTO, perhaps even the US trading relations with Europe in the backdraft!

For anyone who is against the NWO, this can surely be only a good thing.

Also, Trump's stated foreign policies are basically bomb and kill all the terrorists and leave the various thug governments alone.

Sounds better to me than NeoCon Wars all over the place "of choice".

Ala, Iraq, Libya, Syria etc.

ben | Jul 13, 2016 12:37:14 PM | 52
PS-I guess, to distill the question, one might say.. Should corporations serve the people, or should people serve the corporations? As of now, "the powers that are", believe in the latter.
Stan | Jul 13, 2016 2:31:27 PM | 68
@juliania | Jul 13, 2016 2:00:54 PM

People taken in by Sanders learned no lessons from gushing over Obama. They hurt themselves again and are sociopathically indifferent to the far greater harm they have done to those who were not gullible.

Casowary Gentry | Jul 13, 2016 2:57:06 PM | 70
"Bernie Sanders folded. This without gaining any significant concession from Hillary Clinton on programmatic or personal grounds. (At least as far as we know.) He endorsed Clinton as presidential candidate even as she gave no ground for his voters' opinions. This disenfranchises the people who supported him."

Even if she had given any "significant concession", it would have been meaningless noise with not an iota of intention to implement such concessions.
She is a POS who will say anything at all to get elected. The only thing we really know is she relishes confrontation on the foreign policy scene. Otherwise nobody can rely on her to act in their interests in the domestic realm, except big corporate entities.

tom | Jul 13, 2016 5:13:00 PM | 82
Syriza...oops, Sanders, was always more loyal to the Democratic party then his ideology. ALWAYS.
I don't know why his supporters are surprised. Did they actually think he was lying when he said he would support Hillary Clinton.
And not only that, he out right lied saying that the Democrats have the most progressive platform in Democrat history !!! A fucking ludicrous lie to protect evil Hillary. Disgraceful.

Most of The left are so pathetic it's embarrassing, it's a great invitation to be dominated by the right wing.
I believe every threat that the despicable right wing will bring, I do not believe the ideology commitment the vast majority of the left wing in power. Miserable lying cowards.

It is stupid for B to keep linking to Trumps quotes exclusively. Why does b not link to Jill Stein criticism. Sure Trumps criticism of evil Hillarys corruption will gather important support, but exclusively giving torture loving warmongering Trump ammunition, strangles other better candidates in their political birth in the alternative to status quo attention. In the same way that the Sanders, Chomsky, and other shortsighted cowards react by strangle politically strangling a desperate new movement.

MadMax2 | Jul 13, 2016 5:41:33 PM | 83
Congrats to those who labeled the 'Sheepdog' so early. Such an apt description. Good call.
Yesterday I had two emails from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, giddy with joy over Sanders endorsement of Clinton. Today I had another, which made me giddy with joy:
After Bernie's call for unity yesterday, we just figured Democrats would...well...unify.

But instead, everything is falling apart.

FIRST: We heard barely a peep from grassroots Democrats.
THEN: A Quinnipiac poll showed Trump and Clinton tied in Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania.
NOW: We're questioning whether the Democratic Party can unify at all.

Great to hear that they're falling on their faces. The DCCC recruits ex-Republicans, Republicans-Lite, and conservative Democrats to run for Congress, and actively oppose liberal candidates. Long may they fail. Support worthy individual candidates.
karlof1 | Jul 13, 2016 7:56:55 PM | 86
Don't know if anyone's mentioned this book: "The Clinton's war on Women." There's a good long review posted here, http://thesaker.is/the-clintons-war-on-women/ Lots of potential mud for Trump to sling that will stick.
Jackrabbit | Jul 13, 2016 8:36:09 PM | 90
Sanders released only one year of tax returns (2015). His campaign manager claimed his taxes held no surprises. Well they didn't for 2015. But why didn't Sanders release earlier years? Any serious Presidential candidate would expect to release at least 3 years of tax returns.

Given the 'service' that he performed, it might be especially interesting to have seen his taxes for 2014, the year before he entered the race. The lack of transparency and Sanders' 'sheepdogging' raises questions of whether he received any inducements to enter the race.

Donald Trump is even worse. He hasn't released any tax info. He claims that the IRS is auditing him (and that they have for many years) . But why not release estimates and/or earlier tax returns?

ALberto | Jul 13, 2016 9:26:55 PM | 91
We have gone through the looking glass. This evening on Public Broadcasting Service television news hour Dr. Assad was interviewed by Judy Woodruff, a talking head teleprompter reading hand puppet. Dr. Assad was asked if Donald Trump was elected President would his lack of foreign relations diplomacy chops hinder his administrations abilities to achieve their goals. The question was of no import. Nor was the answer. THE FACT THAT DR. ASSAD WAS TREATED AS AN EQUAL and not "Assad must go" is a very significant event. VERY SIGNIFICANT!

Just me opinion...

rufus magister | Jul 13, 2016 9:29:33 PM | 92
in re 82 --

He's a democratic socialist, so such affiliations and tactics are not unusual. The Democratic Socialists of America, for example, a Socialist International section, is wholly within the Democratic Party.

Cho Nyawinh | Jul 13, 2016 10:17:28 PM | 94
The Plan was always from the start for Bernie to hold down the Left, so Hillary could capture Center-Right, and Donald could lead the Far Right into Smackdown. Then Bernie would deliver the Left to Hillary. And so it has come to pass.

I thought everyone knew Bernie, Hillary and Donald are all bought and sold by Goldman? Hillary and Donald sold their progeny to The Tribe, and Bernie is a woo-woo already. The traitor Chosen sold US into slavery with Gramm-Leich-Bliley, and fawning sycophant Al-Clintonim signed that bill into 'law' (sic), in return for her US Senate seat from NY.

Badda-boom, badda-bing!

These are the Vampire Squid, the Takers, Mafia Elites 'who settled the Western Frontier' and now are the 'Disruptors' of the Public Space into a privatized Fivrr-Uber hell. They own you. You are owned by the Private Central Bankim. Even a small child will tell you that your only real 'free choice' is to write-in "HELL NO!" in November, then flee to the 3W.

"We did not know" Lol, sure you didn't.

Jackrabbit | Jul 13, 2016 10:36:03 PM | 99
followup @89

Sanders didn't release his other tax returns even when it became an issue in the campaign .

Hillary said that she wouldn't release the transcripts of her Goldman speeches until Sanders had released more tax returns. Her reasoning: she had complied with what was expected of a Presidential candidate while the other had not yet done so.

Why wouldn't he immediately release those returns - which his campaign had claimed contained no surprises - so as to force Hillary to release the transcripts?

Very suspicious.

rufus magister | Jul 14, 2016 8:21:04 AM | 112
Here's an indicator of what sort of transparency in government one might expect from the Trump "Administration."

Trump Sues Ex-Staffer For $10 Million For Breaking Nondisclosure Agreement.

Not only are staffers subjected to this, volunteers are as well. "The tight control of volunteers stands in stark contrast to not only American political-campaign norms but also Trump's reputation for speaking his mind."

Combine that with his statement that he'd like to change libel laws to make it easier for himself to sue news organizations that down fawn all over him. Does he seem like the sort to encourage whistle-blowers like Manning or Snowden? Will he be logging all his email traffic for future FOIA requests? Or maybe he'll kill that off, too.

PavewayIV | Jul 14, 2016 2:57:23 PM | 122
News Flash: Israel wins U.S. election; Iran to be nuked during inauguration

Trump just picked Mike Pence as running mate. And from ((( Forward ))):

"...Pence has said his support of Israel is deeply rooted in his Christian faith, as well as in his strong relationship with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. Pence was introduced to AIPAC members in 2009 by then-board member Marshall Cooper at an AIPAC policy conference.

"Let me say emphatically, like the overwhelming majority of my constituents, my Christian faith compels me to cherish the state of Israel," then-Rep. Pence said.

Cooper described Pence to the audience as "Israel's good friend."..."

So whether Hillary or Trump gets the job (or Obama declares a national emergency an remains) Israel will be the de-facto new commander-in-chief of the U.S., henceforth to be know as Palestine West.

jfl | Jul 14, 2016 7:28:16 PM | 126
Israeli Mass Surveillance System Launched in UAE

The new Falcon Eye surveillance system-sold to the UAE by an Israeli defense contractor-"links thousands of cameras spread across the city, as well as thousands of other cameras installed at facilities and buildings in the emirate," the Abu Dhabi Monitoring and Control Center said in an official statement. The Falcon Eye will "help control roads by monitoring traffic violations while also monitoring significant behaviors in (Abu Dhabi) such as public hygiene and human assemblies in non-dedicated areas."

Strange bedfellows? Not at all. The Israelis and the GCC countries, the USG and EU, are all soul brothers : tiny 'elite' minorities attempting to rule their respective roosts by technological means encompassing everything from drones to the media to their ubiquitous taps.

Totalitarianism is alive and well in the Middle East ... and in North America, the UK, Europe ... the last thing to be tolerated, the first things to be crushed, are 'human assemblies in non-dedicated areas' over which their corporate selves would rule.

The Powers That Are are thicker than thieves. Among mere thieves competition remains. The PTA are acting in loco parentis ... taking 'care' of us all for their own good.

Mike Gravel used to describe our present political situation as 'adolescent': mature enough to understand the fix we're in, too immature to do anything but complain to 'those in charge'.

We're in charge. We've just been asleep at the wheel. Time to wake up, finally? Before our whole world become Nice?

Bob In Portland | Jul 14, 2016 8:02:35 PM | 127
I agree that if Sanders had gone on to the Green Party he could have gotten significant support, enough to guarantee Clinton's loss. But that's not what he wanted to do, whatever his reasons for running. Folks overseas who think that Trump is anything more than a loudmouth, racist who would be controlled by the same forces as Clinton is controlled by are fooling themselves. If Sanders ran as a "pied piper" it wasn't successful. If anything, he presented a contrast to what the Democratic Party has become.

In 1963 there was a coup in America. Since then the military-industrial complex has run the country. It has been most apparent in its foreign policy, which has been the conquest of natural resources (especially oil and gas) worldwide. America's resentment with the USSR/Russia has to do with their living on top of resources.

But in order to continue the illusion of democracy in the US, it was necessary to maintain some differences between the two parties so that Americans would think that they have a choice. Meanwhile, the party that is supposed to represent the working class has been sliding into the arms of the corporatists. Essentially, in order to give Americans a "choice" Trump has been pushed as the demonic clown versus H. Clinton. Unfortunately, for good reasons as well as because of endless propaganda from the right, most Americans distrust Clinton, as well they should. Her casual announcement about enforcing a "no-fly zone" over Syria is essentially a declaration of war against Russia.

Going back to the coup in 1963, in order to maintain control of the population it was necessary for the ruling class to continue to generate candidates each election cycle to pretend to care about the working class. I have long suspected that early on in their careers both Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton were recruited by US intelligence. During his time in Britain Bill's classmates assumed that he was CIA. At about this time Hillary, who'd been raised a rabid Republican, went to both the Republican and Democratic national conventions in 1968. Not only was it a rather expensive thing to do for a college student, but most people who are interested in one party aren't interested in the other. I suspect it was the beginning of her career in US power politics. Shortly after she wrote a pro-Vietnam speech for Melvin Laird in 1968, she was involved with the various Black Panther trials around the US.

It's hard to believe that the Hillary who stands before us now was ever a political ally of the Panthers. Rather, I suspect she was observing for an intelligence agency, the FBI or CIA. She sat through a Panther trial in New Haven, Connecticut, and then spent a summer in Oakland working for the law firm that was representing the Panthers in the Bay Area. Essentially, she was in the right place at the right time to glean information for COINTELPRO, the massive spying program directed against anti-war and black movements. A few years later she worked on the Democrats' legal team for Watergate, another good place for a government informant to be. Bill, during his time at Oxford, would have functioned like the thousands of informants who sat in on peace group meetings across American campuses.

Later, when the CIA was dumping cocaine at Mena, Arkansas, Bill Clinton was in position to make sure state police left the operation alone. It's not surprising that George W. Bush's first head of the DEA was Asa Hutchinson, who'd been the incurious federal prosecutor over that part of Arkansas when the drugs came in.

The Clintons were prominent in the Democratic Leadership Council, which was an organization within the Democratic Party pushing it to the right. In 1992 Bill pushed trade agreements that would destroy the American middle class. Since then the party has been hopelessly corrupted by Wall Street money.

It's now Hillary's turn. If you've always wanted to take a vacation somewhere or wanted to do something before you die, I suggest you make time for it this year. I cannot think of another president in memory who is more wed to military adventurism than Hillary.

Piotr Berman | Jul 14, 2016 9:19:55 PM | 129
Proportional representation etc. is not a panaceum. I think that party solidarity, even if the party is only partially satisfactory is a good tool. What is happening is that Sanders who represents "turn left" for Democrats is now more electable than Clinton. This has a potential for a big change, much bigger than ephemeral "relative success" of the Greens, who are fated to collect less votes than Libertarians (they may have their best year in a long, long time).

Of course, the "right wing of the left" discards party solidarity with ease. They more or less rejected McGovern and Carter. Hillary's health care reform had the same fate. But they have very hard time copying with change. Hillary basically promised good old times, and this is not good enough. I suspect that her game plan is to unload full blast of "Trump's corruption" ads closer to elections and keep the "positive tone" for now, and that may even work.

But if she polls badly enough, Democratic establishment may see the light and go for Sanders.

[Jul 15, 2016] US media trouncing Trump 24-7 proves democracy a charade

Notable quotes:
"... The mainstream US news media have never liked the brash billionaire Trump. He makes good circulation figures for sure, but the large coverage the Republican contender has received from the outset is preponderantly negative. ..."
"... Trump's campaign has instead been buoyed by the popular vote, not by endorsement from the elite establishment, including the Republican Party leadership and the corporate media. Now that the race for the presidency is turning into a two-horse contest between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Trump, the media's antipathy towards Trump is moving to an all-out barrage of attacks. Attacks, it has to be said, that are bordering on hysteria and which only a corporate machine could convey. ..."
"... Trump vehemently rebuffed the claims. He said it was simply a star, like the ones that US Marshals use. When his campaign team reacted to the initial media furor by replacing the red star with a circle it only served to fuel accusations against Trump because he was seen to be acting defensively. However, he later defiantly rebuked his campaign team and said they should have stuck with the star image and let him defend that choice of image as simply an innocuous star shape. For what it's worth, Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who is Jewish, subsequently rallied to the tycoon's defense and said he was not racist nor anti-Semitic and that the controversy was a media-contrived storm in a teacup. ..."
"... Trump makes a valid point that Clinton's abuse of state secrecy – whether intentional or negligent – has in fact posed a national security threat. Yet the media focus is decidedly not on his Democrat rival. It is rather centered on overblown concerns about the wealthy real estate developer. ..."
"... Trump is right. The political system in the US is rigged . Not just in terms of double standards of the justice system, but in the bigger context of how candidates are screened and vetted – in this case through undue vilification. ..."
"... Trump's reactionary views on immigration, race relations and international politics are certainly questionable. His credibility as the next president of the US may be dubious. But is his credibility any less than that of Hillary Clinton? Her melding of official capacity with private gain from Wall Street banks and foreign governments acting as donors to her family's fund-raising Clinton Foundation has the pungent whiff of selling federal policy for profit. Her penchant for criminal regime change operations in Honduras, Libya, Syria and Ukraine speak of a political mafia don. ..."
"... American politics has long been derided as a "dog and pony show" ..."
"... But what we are witnessing is a brazen display of how the powers-that-be (Wall Street, media, Pentagon, Washington, etc) are audaciously intervening in this electoral cycle to disenfranchise the voting population. ..."
www.rt.com

RT Op-Edge

Presidential hopeful Donald Trump is right: the 'system is 'rigged'. The media barrage against the billionaire demonstrates irrefutably how the power establishment, not the people, decides who sits in the White House.

Trump is increasingly assailed in the US media with alleged character flaws. The latest blast paints Trump as a total loose cannon who would launch World War III. In short, a "nuke nut".

In the Pentagon-aligned Defense One journal, the property magnate is described as someone who cannot be trusted with his finger on the nuclear button. Trump would order nuclear strikes equivalent to 20,000 Hiroshima bombings as "easy as ordering a pizza", claimed the opinion piece.

If that's not an example of "project fear" then what is?

The mainstream US news media have never liked the brash billionaire Trump. He makes good circulation figures for sure, but the large coverage the Republican contender has received from the outset is preponderantly negative.

Trump's campaign has instead been buoyed by the popular vote, not by endorsement from the elite establishment, including the Republican Party leadership and the corporate media. Now that the race for the presidency is turning into a two-horse contest between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Trump, the media's antipathy towards Trump is moving to an all-out barrage of attacks. Attacks, it has to be said, that are bordering on hysteria and which only a corporate machine could convey.

Like a giant screening process, the Trump candidacy and his supporters are being systematically disenfranchised. At this rate of attrition, by the time the election takes place in November the result will already have been all but formally decided – by the powers-that-be, not the popular will.

The past week provides a snapshot of the intensifying media barrage facing Trump. Major US media outlets have run prominent claims that Trump is a fan of the former brutal Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. Those claims were based on a loose interpretation of what Trump said at a rally when he referred to Saddam's strong-arm suppression of terrorism. He didn't say he liked Saddam. In fact, called him a "bad guy". But Trump said that the Iraqi dictator efficiently eliminated terrorists.

A second media meme to emerge was "Trump the anti-Semite". This referred to an image his campaign team tweeted of Hillary Clinton as "the most corrupt candidate ever". The words were emblazoned on a red, six-pointed star. Again, the mainstream media gave copious coverage to claims that the image was anti-Semitic because, allegedly, it was a Jewish 'Star of David'.

Trump vehemently rebuffed the claims. He said it was simply a star, like the ones that US Marshals use. When his campaign team reacted to the initial media furor by replacing the red star with a circle it only served to fuel accusations against Trump because he was seen to be acting defensively. However, he later defiantly rebuked his campaign team and said they should have stuck with the star image and let him defend that choice of image as simply an innocuous star shape.

For what it's worth, Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who is Jewish, subsequently rallied to the tycoon's defense and said he was not racist nor anti-Semitic and that the controversy was a media-contrived storm in a teacup.

Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump. © Jim YoungLawsuit that may break The Donald's back: Virginia GOP delegate challenges Trump
In the same week that the alleged dictator-loving, anti-Semitic Trump hit newsstands, we then read about nuclear trigger-happy Donald.

Not only that but the Trump-risks-Armageddon article also refers to him being in the same company as Russian leader Vladimir Putin and North Korea's Kim Jung Un who, we are told, "also have their finger on the nuclear button".

Under the headline, 'How to slow Donald Trump from pushing the nuclear button', a photograph shows the presidential contender with a raised thump in a downward motion. The answer being begged is: Don't vote for this guy – unless you want to incinerate the planet!

This is scare-tactics to the extreme thrown in for good measure along with slander and demonization. And all pumped up to maximum volume by the US corporate media, all owned by just six conglomerates.

Trump is having to now spend more of his time explaining what he is alleged to have said or did not say, instead of being allowed to level criticisms at his Democrat rival or to advance whatever political program he intends to deliver as president.

The accusation that Trump is a threat to US national security is all the more ironic given that this week Hillary Clinton was labelled as "extremely careless" by the head of the FBI over her dissemination of state secrets through her insecure private email account.

Many legal experts and former US government officials maintain that Clinton's breach of classified information is deserving of criminal prosecution – an outcome that would debar her from contesting the presidential election.

Why the FBI should have determined that there is no case for prosecution even though more than 100 classified documents were circulated by Clinton when she was Secretary of State (2009-2013) has raised public heckles of "double standards".

The controversy has been compounded by the US Attorney General Loretta Lynch also declaring that no charges will be pressed and the case is closed – a week after she met with Hillary's husband, Bill, on board her plane for a hush-hush chat.

Trump makes a valid point that Clinton's abuse of state secrecy – whether intentional or negligent – has in fact posed a national security threat. Yet the media focus is decidedly not on his Democrat rival. It is rather centered on overblown concerns about the wealthy real estate developer.

Trump is right. The political system in the US is rigged. Not just in terms of double standards of the justice system, but in the bigger context of how candidates are screened and vetted – in this case through undue vilification.

Trump's reactionary views on immigration, race relations and international politics are certainly questionable. His credibility as the next president of the US may be dubious. But is his credibility any less than that of Hillary Clinton? Her melding of official capacity with private gain from Wall Street banks and foreign governments acting as donors to her family's fund-raising Clinton Foundation has the pungent whiff of selling federal policy for profit. Her penchant for criminal regime change operations in Honduras, Libya, Syria and Ukraine speak of a political mafia don.

American politics has long been derided as a "dog and pony show", whereby powerful lobbies buy the pageant outcome. Trump's own participation in the election is only possible because he is a multi-billionaire who is able to fund a political campaign. That said, however, the New York businessman has garnered a sizable popular following from his maverick attacks on the rotten Washington establishment.

But what we are witnessing is a brazen display of how the powers-that-be (Wall Street, media, Pentagon, Washington, etc) are audaciously intervening in this electoral cycle to disenfranchise the voting population.

Clinton has emerged as the candidate-of-choice for the establishment, and the race to the White House is being nobbled – like never before.

US democracy a race? More like a knacker's yard.

[Jul 15, 2016] Sanders Prepares to Bow Down to Hillary, But Many of His Supporters Won't

www.blackagendareport.com

Black Agenda Report

It is difficult to imagine how the Trump rank and file and the party's corporate "establishment" will paper over their irreconcilable differences, rooted in the party's failure to preserve skin privilege and good jobs in a White Man's Country.

Just as brazenly, Trump, the rabble rousing billionaire, has violated the most sacred ruling class taboos by rejecting the national security rationale for the hyper-aggressive, ever-expanding, global U.S. military presence. If Trump fails to convincingly recant such heresies, the rulers will deal with him with extreme prejudice.

[Jul 15, 2016] The 28 pages regarding the Saudi involvement in 9/11 were finally released today:

www.nakedcapitalism.com

naked capitalism

    1. Vatch

      Thanks. A quick visual inspection suggests that they "only" blacked out about 10% of the document. Some pages almost everything is visible, and on a few, almost half of the text is obscured.

      A couple of days ago there was a discussion of infantilization by politicians via the use of emojis. I think that preventing people from reading the full report is a far more serious form of infantilization. Only the elite philosopher kings are allowed access to information. The rest of us children might be traumatized if we could read the full report.

      Reply
    2. WJ

      The information about the dry-run of 1999 on America West flight from Phx to DC Saudi Embassy party was especially interesting to me. I suspect that Saudi Arabia played both sides (al-quaeda and the US) in order to bring about the Sunni alliance we are currently being worked out in Libya and Syria. Iraq was on this analysis definitely an expected casualty of the events of 9/11, which suggests that the Saudis had good reason to believe that US officials were already waiting for any excuse to take over that country.

      Reply
    3. sd

      Sober reading.

      There's this sort of hole prior to 9-11-2001 where it sounds like no one knows anything but actually, the Joint Forces intelligence group knew quite a bit. The Joint Inquiry never interviewed anyone from DO-5.

      Reply
      1. Alex morfesis

        While saudis offer big bux to turkish military to stage a coup to distract the audience…???

        a coup..???

        in turkey in the 21st century ??

        How silly is that ?…

        Reply
        1. Barmitt O'Bamney

          So strange! Why it seems just yesterday Chancellor Merkel and other wise EU leaders were trying to get Turkey admitted to the European Union, enabling Turks to move freely about the Continent, and they were pressing that nice Mr. Erdogan to accept billions of Euros to handle Muslim refugees for them. How could a stable European society like Turkey still be experiencing things like military coups? There must be a more polite explanation for what's really going on over there.

[Jul 15, 2016] How Dissent Has Shaped the US An Interview With Author Ralph Young

Notable quotes:
"... I think that dissent will continue as long as the United States continues. We don't know exactly what forms it will take, or what causes dissenters will take up. But we do have a pretty good idea from history that dissenters will always push for more freedom, more liberty, more economic equality, and that there will be counter-dissenters who will seek to deprive them of these goals. There always seems to be that for every two steps forward, there's one step back. ..."
www.truth-out.org

What do you foresee as far as the future of dissent is concerned in the United States?

I think that dissent will continue as long as the United States continues. We don't know exactly what forms it will take, or what causes dissenters will take up. But we do have a pretty good idea from history that dissenters will always push for more freedom, more liberty, more economic equality, and that there will be counter-dissenters who will seek to deprive them of these goals. There always seems to be that for every two steps forward, there's one step back.

What is gained for leftist movements today by anchoring themselves a positive account of the nation's founding (accounts that suggest that this nation has leftist impulses at its core)?

I think that leftist movements today have a deep, abiding faith in "democracy." And in that way, they are the true heirs of the American Revolution. Even if most of the "founding fathers" like [George] Washington and [Alexander] Hamilton and [Thomas] Jefferson were elites who distrusted the masses, they did give lip service to liberty and equality, and they did formulate fundamental arguments promoting the idea of a government of the people. Today, their ideas are more broadly conceived than they themselves conceived them. Because leftists today believe in the value of democracy, what they are in essence doing is holding America's feet to the fire. They are demanding that the United States live up to those ideals ensconced in our founding documents. "Be true to what you said on paper," as Martin Luther King Jr. expressed it in his last speech on April 3, 1968, in Memphis.

What is inevitably lost or papered over when one embraces a positive founding narrative about a nation-state?

What is papered over is that the majority of the "founding fathers" were slave owners. And the institution of slavery gave them the leisure time to devote to thinking and writing about such high-fallutin' and precious concepts as democracy, liberty and republican forms of government. Historian Edmund S. Morgan, in his book American Slavery, American Freedom, makes a compelling argument that the notions we have of freedom, that the basis for American freedom is slavery. If it weren't for slavery, we would never have developed as we have. So it is rather presumptuous of us, even for the left, to feel that we've embraced freedom and believe in equality for all. Still, despite that, it doesn't mean we should throw the baby out with the bath water. What it does mean is that we should aspire to those ideals, even if the "founding fathers" didn't fully believe in them themselves, even if they were disingenuous hypocrites who framed a constitution solely to benefit and protect the property rights and aristocratic status of their class.

Today, we need to take those ideals seriously and work toward making the reality of American society more closely resemble the ideals they espoused in the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

[Jul 14, 2016] 'Final nail in the coffin' Green Party's Jill Stein to RT on Sanders endorsement of Clinton

Notable quotes:
"... "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," ..."
"... "could certainly work with him for all sorts of possibilities, including leading the ticket." ..."
"... "truly saw the light," ..."
"... "the green light, that we do need independent politics." ..."
"... "the revolution is now being stuffed back into a counter-revolutionary party," ..."
"... "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," ..."
"... "there were a lot of people who were watching this endorsement in complete and utter disbelief." ..."
"... "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. ..."
Jul 12, 2016 | RT America
Following 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
✔ ‎@DrJillStein

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.

@MajorCallowayLeader

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.

[Jul 14, 2016] Sanders Warmongering Corporate Sell-out - Arthur Schaper

Notable quotes:
"... 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 ..."
"... 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?" ..."
"... Dissident Voices ..."
"... 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. ..."
"... Counterpunch ..."
"... 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. ..."
townhall.com

What 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.

And then:

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 .

[Jul 14, 2016] Sanders endorses Clinton, reversing everything he's said about 'Wall Street candidate' (QUOTES)

RT America
Sanders 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.

READ MORE:

[Jul 13, 2016] 'You Broke My Heart' Supporters of Bernie Sanders React to Endorsement

Note the NYT was afraid to open comment section for this article :-)
Notable quotes:
"... "Intelligent Bernie supporters will NEVER support her because she stands for everything were fighting against," he said. "Just because Bernie has left our movement does not mean it is over." ..."
"... Despite Hillary's penchant for flip-flopping rhetoric, she's spent decades serving the causes of the Wall Street, war, & Walmart economy. ..."
Jul 12, 2016 | The New York Timeul

Daniel Whitfield, of Discovery Bay, Calif., insisted that the political revolution Mr. Sanders had championed did not have to end just because the senator had given up. However, he said that voting for Mrs. Clinton was not an option.

"Intelligent Bernie supporters will NEVER support her because she stands for everything were fighting against," he said. "Just because Bernie has left our movement does not mean it is over."

... ... ...

Some of the lesser-known candidates running for president sought to capitalize on the moment.

Jill Stein, the Green Party's presidential nominee, sent out a barrage of Twitter posts as Mr. Sanders made his endorsement arguing that Mrs. Clinton's policies were antithetical to a liberal progressive agenda.

Dr. Jill Stein
✔ ‎@DrJillStein

Despite Hillary's penchant for flip-flopping rhetoric, she's spent decades serving the causes of the Wall Street, war, & Walmart economy.


Gov. Gary Johnson
✔ ‎@GovGaryJohnson

If joining Sen. Sanders in the Clinton Establishment isn't a good fit, there IS another option... #afterthebern

For those who believed that Mr. Sanders still had a chance to snatch the nomination at the convention in Philadelphia, it was too soon after his endorsement to consider alternatives. It would take time for the mix of anger and disbelief to subside.

"You chose her over us," Jessica Watrous Boyer, of Westerly, R.I., wrote on Mr. Sanders's Facebook page, lamenting that he had broken his promise to take the fight to the convention. "Truly shocked and saddened by this."

[Jul 13, 2016] Sanders supporters lash out following Clinton endorsement

www.foxnews.com

Fox News

Some of Bernie Sanders' most loyal backers have turned into his biggest bashers on the heels of his Hillary Clinton endorsement.

The Vermont senator, who slammed Clinton repeatedly during the presidential primary campaign, offered his unwavering support to the presumptive Democratic nominee at a rally in New Hampshire Tuesday.

"Hillary Clinton will make a great president and I am proud to stand with her today," he said.

What followed was an avalanche of angry tweets, blogs and other social media posts from those who had been feeling the 'Bern' -- and now just feel burned.

In New York, Monroe County Sanders activist Kevin Sweeney told the Democrat & Chronicle he's shifting his donations to Green Party candidate Jill Stein. "A lot of Bernie supporters are making $27 donations to Jill Stein's campaign today," he said.

Others were more direct, as the hashtag #SelloutSanders and others took off on Twitter....

... ... ...

Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, jumped in on the action.

He tweeted, "Bernie Sanders endorsing Crooked Hillary Clinton is like Occupy Wall Street endorsing Goldman Sachs. "

brendajc

Bernie supporters.......trump welcomes you

1. We are and have been socialist since FDR....welfare...unemployment ...medicare....social security. ...,studebt loans....these a3 socialist programs.

nobody wants these socialist programs gone

We just don't want communism

And we want fiscal responsibility.

Come join us.

are122

I sometimes think Bernie was nothing more then a setup or a patsy encouraged to run by the DNC. With all the "superdelegates" supporting HC, the Bern had to know he virtually had no chance to win but put on a show anyway. He's suddenly very nice to all those that basically shafted him in advance.

hotdogsdownhallways

Cannot wait until we find out how much the Clinton Foundation gave him.


[Jul 13, 2016] Bernie Sanders Wrong Beliefs, but Laudably Principled

From Twitter: Bernie Sanders, We didn't donate $230M to vote for a warmonger with 4 superPACs, scam charity and $150M speeches who sabotaged your campaign
Notable quotes:
"... Today, you decided to officially express your support for Hillary Clinton in the race for president of the United States. Unlike many, I will not label you a "sellout." Though I'm disappointed in your decision, I would also like to thank you for your contribution to American politics. ..."
"... But I reject the political hive-mind's notion that you had to endorse Hillary. You did not. You've been an independent for decades, refusing to officially associate yourself with a party that you didn't fully believe in. ..."
National Review

Dear Bernie,

Today, you decided to officially express your support for Hillary Clinton in the race for president of the United States. Unlike many, I will not label you a "sellout." Though I'm disappointed in your decision, I would also like to thank you for your contribution to American politics.

... ... ...

Like me and many other conservatives, your supporters now stand without a candidate to believe in. And, like me, they are disappointed in your decision to bow to the pressure exerted by the political muscle that the Clintons have been flexing for decades. I understand that your arm has been twisted by every establishment Democrat from the top down...

But I reject the political hive-mind's notion that you had to endorse Hillary. You did not. You've been an independent for decades, refusing to officially associate yourself with a party that you didn't fully believe in. Throughout the campaign, you highlighted all of the problems with your opponent, and even went so far as to declare her "unfit" for the office of the presidency. You told America that you were starting a political revolution. By its very nature, though, a revolution refuses to be cowed by the protectors of the status quo. It can concede temporary defeat in certain battles, sure, but it can't survive if betrayed by its leaders. It is disingenuous for you to pretend that you will continue your revolution despite your endorsement - or even worse, imply that Hillary will. I thought you were better than that.

...During your endorsement speech, once more you called out the Wall Street billionaires for whom you've so often expressed unqualified loathing over the last 14 months. But this time, something was wrong: There stood, bobbing her head next to you, someone who has made a career out of selling favors to those very same billionaires. I thought you were someone who put principles before politics, and that you would never hesitate to stick to your guns, regardless of the pressure. I guess not. Despite feeling disappointed and deflated, I want to thank you for helping to rekindle my faith and interest in politics.

... ... ...

Sincerely, Andrew - Andrew Badinelli is an intern at National Review.

Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/437758/bernie-sanders-wrong-beliefs-ideologically-principled

[Jul 12, 2016] Democracy And The Future Of The United States

www.informationclearinghouse.info
By Peter Koenig and Alessandro Bianchi

July 12, 2016 " Information Clearing House " - Alessandro Bianchi from the Anti- Diplomatico in Italy interviewed distinguished author and economist Peter Koenig on Democracy and the Future of the United States . The Interview was published in Italian.

Alessandro Bianchi: I would start from a brutal question: what kind of country has become one that offers Donald Trump as the best candidate?

Peter Koenig: The United States is a country, almost hermetically closed to the rest of the real world, brainwashed to the core with lies and propaganda – and every day being told how great America is. This propaganda is not new, though. It has been going on for as long as the US exists, but has rapidly intensified after WWII and especially during the Cold War – and then again after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

And thus, Americans, meaning North Americans – not mixing them up with Latin America which is also part of the Americas – the vast majority of the US citizens cannot see what is really going on. They are blinded by propaganda – and immobilized by their comfort. They love comfortable lives, many of them – and although they do realize that something is not as it should be, it would give them an uneasy feeling searching for the truth. The truth they suspect is too hard to swallow.

In such an ambiance someone like Donald Trump can flourish. He is different and he has a personality the populace in general lack. The populace is unhappy with what's going on in their country, though they are 'comfortable' how they live and how they lived all their lives. Change is uncomfortable. Trump personalizes their change, without having to do anything. And Trump reconfirms their values – of a great country – supremacy above all. – Trump is an 'old Nazi', while Hillary, better called 'Killary' is a new Nazi, or a neo-Nazi.

You see – fascism is difficult to escape in the US of A.

But what's the alternative to Trump? – Killary? –

With her you know whom she is working for – the Zionists, of whom she is actually part; neoliberals, of whom she is part; corporate and financial elites by whom she is paid; Israel, as the Israeli influence through AIPAC in the US and the US Congress is unparalleled and unbeatable to the point of the going saying that "the tail (Israel, the Zionists) wags the Dog (US)". They, the Zionists support her, she supports them. The circle is perfect. And both go to war. They want the total chaos in the Middle East, to be dominated by the Israel of Netanyahu and Washington. Killary is the war candidate – perfect for the Pentagon and the Military Industrial Complex.

So – I believe, the 'system' – the 'elite system' behind the mysterious Lucifer eye on top of the pyramid on the dollar bill, this system will make Killary their next president. She is perfect for them. She and trump are but two sides of the same coin. Therefore, no chance that anything will change towards peace in the US of A in the coming years. Change may come only if people at home wake up and take politics in their own hands – seeking peace, seeking true unification – not dominion – with the rest of the world.

Peoples of the world do not need a sledgehammer, a dictator – one that enslaves them, robs them, rapes and exploits them, kills them if they don't behave as the Masters in Washington deem necessary. People in the US suffer the same from a Trump or Killary as would the rest of the world. Poverty and injustice, the advancement of the police- and military dictatorship in the US is alarming, depriving citizens of their rights, their livelihood, their freedom. But they must wake up to stop this process.

AB: In a recent survey over 53% of Americans were against both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. How long will we continue to consider the United States a democracy? And why, in your opinion, abstention is the only form of "rebellion" of a completely excluded from the decision-making stage population?

PK: I don't know anyone, other than the mainstream media (MSM), that considers the US a democracy. Indeed, the last form of 'rebellion' – of active protest that no military can stop, is abstention from voting, not going to the polls – staying home. In a system where the people are given the candidates that the evil eye pre-selects for them – and where none of theirs would stand a chance – in such a system NOT voting may be the only solution, the only way to send a strong message of disagreement. It would, however, take an organization of campaigning much harder than folding into the mood of every four years, listening to the same lies and propaganda over and over again – and what's worse, taking the candidates seriously. Debating Killary and Trump is already taking them too seriously, giving them credit they don't deserve. They are both criminals – with Killary being a murderer.

AB: Bernie Sanders was really the change that many in Europe have described?

PK: Not at all. Bernie is a fake. He was and I guess, still is a test case for the system. Lucifer wants to see how far he can go – and what is it that the people want to hear. Accordingly, will be adjusted the discourse of the two candidates. Sanders has a (Senate) voting record which does not portray what he pledges to stand for. He is someone who when it suits him to be politically correct, calls Chavez a dead dictator, distancing himself from this great mentor of a free world.

What kind of a worthy candidate would do that?
Sanders, early on has said that if he should not succeed, he would support Killary. Hello! what message does that convey? – That he would support a warmonger par excellence? – Europeans like many Americans have been fooled by Bernie's charm and rebellious appearance. All fake!

AB: What would happen to the world with a Hillary Clinton's presidency?

PK: The short answer – WWIII – if it hadn't already started as one of Obama's last agenda item to be achieved before leaving office. Killary and Israel – they would certainly not stop from annihilating the Middle East on the way to achieve The PNAC's (Plan for a New American Century) sole objective – Full Spectrum Dominance – controlling the world. To do so, wars with Russia and China are unavoidable. I still hope – Hope dies last! – that Presidents Putin and Xi, the real visionaries and excellent chess players in this geopolitical game, will be able to gently pull out all the plugs from the monster octopus, deflating the beast economically – so as to spill as little blood as possible -and, so as the rest of the world can continue living with a peaceful economic and monetary system, the one being designed by Russia, China, India (the BRICS, now without the 'B'), the central and eastern Asian countries of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, and those also belonging to the EEU (Eurasian Economic Union) covering some 50% of the world population and controlling about a third of the world's economic output.

AB: What did you feel when you saw Obama speaking recently at Hiroshima not apologizing for what was done by his country and declaring almost sarcastically – as the head of the world's first atomic power – to hope for a world without nuclear weapons?

PK: Utter disgust – a hypocrite on top of his class.

AB: Will the growing US expansionism come to a breaking point and collision with China?

PK: As I said before, let's hope China and Russia will be able to deflate the monster's steady aggressions through encroachment of Russia by NATO and China by the US Navy fleet in the South China Sea. They are a constant provocation. But so far Russia and China haven't fallen into the trap.
What is more worrisome – the European vassals, especially Germany, France and the UK, they are totally enslaved- or bought? – by Washington. They let the expansion of NATO going on, even pay for it!!! – while not realizing – are they really so blind? – that the next war, WWIII, would play out again in Europe? – Europe the third time in 100 years the theatre of war, destruction and annihilation. This time to the end of life – very likely.

AB: Although it is NATO that is bringing his installations more and more to the east, in Europe our information feeds a danger of an aggressive Russia. Who benefits feed this feeling of Russophobia?

PK: The information in Europe and elsewhere in the western world is controlled to literally 90% by 6 giant Anglo-Zionist media corporations. Every piece of propaganda news – LIES – is repeated at nauseatum by all the MSM outlets. It's an old doctrine, Hitler and many before him knew, when you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth. That's happening to an agonizing degree in Europe – a sheer continent of vassals. – They harm themselves most – and, of course, support Lucifer behind his clandestine eye on top of the pyramid.

AB: Since the advent of the so-called Arab Spring, which began with the famous Obama's speech at the University of Cairo in 2009, the Eastern Mediterranean has become a powder keg. Was it an external plan planned destruction of states hostile rulers in Washington, Libya and Syria in particular, or real quest for democracy and freedom?

PK: Well, my friend, you know that it had and has nothing to do with democracy. The 'Arab Spring' was as planned by the CIA, Mossad and other secret services of the evil powers as were the so-called Color Revolutions in the former Soviet Republics – and of course, the last one we have witnessed to the extreme, Ukraine, where Washington didn't relent before a pure Nazi Government was installed; a Nazi Government – for which such (in)famous newspapers like the Swiss NZZ (Neue Zürcher Zeitung) seek support by asking the west to go to war against Russia. Can you imagine!

None of the destroyed states were 'hostile' to Washington. It is, as always, the other way around, hostility is instigated by Washington, to provoke wars and 'regime change' that's precisely what has happened in the Middle East – and continues to happen until all those countries that have to fall – as it is planned in the PNAC – will eventually fall. The only ones that can stop that merciless killing machine are Russia and China.

AB: Is right to define today Aleppo as the "Stalingrad of Syria" and "the cemetery of the dreams of fascist Erdogan" as stated by the Syrian President Assad?

PK: Yes, President Assad may be right. This is an interesting allegation and association. But then again – Aleppo still stands today and Mr. Putin will not let it fall.

AB: What do you think will be the final scenario for Syria. It risks a crystallization like Cold War-style situation between the two blocks – Damascus, Russia and regional allies, on the one hand, and Kurds with the United States on the other – with Raqqa which will become a new Berlin?

PK: It's very difficult to predict the outcome of the Syria conflict – a US instigated conflict, let me make that very clear. In any case, as it stands now, the axis Syria-Iran is still alive and well. China, the single largest client of Iran's hydrocarbons, will not let Iran fall. Mr. Putin, likewise, will, in my opinion, not let Mr. Assad be overthrown by Lucifer and his minions. And let's hope that they prevail. To prevail, however, Washington would have to take some major blows, some weakening blows. This is currently the case. The empire is on its last legs, as many say – breathing heavily, like an angry beast in agony – it lashes around itself and kills indiscriminately whatever it can, so nobody may survive its demise. This could well happen. The US triggering WWIII – a nuclear annihilation. But let's hope it will NOT happen.

AB: What role, in your opinion, the human rights NGOs play in the current international context?

PK: What Human rights NGOs? – There is none left that deserves the term. They are all bought. Have you ever seen, for example, Amnesty international accusing the empire of whatever human rights abuses they have carried out – the most flagrant human rights abuser in the universe is never mentioned by AI? – What a joke! – Same with Human Rights Watch and others. They are all subdued, even Green Peace – probably all financed by the dollars of which the FED has taken on its own the power to create unlimited quantities from thin air.

AB: 14 years ago, the coup in Venezuela against the democratically elected President Hugo Chavez failed and began the US exit from Latin America. Shortly after, the US invaded Iraq. Today that the hegemony in the eastern Mediterranean wobbles, Washington uses all its weapons known to return in Latin America. Was in your opinion the President Rafael Correa right when he says that we are facing a new Plan Condor in the region?

PK: Of course, President Correa is right, when he refers to a new Plan Condor. It is happening very fast. Thinking of it makes one sick. We – those who foster hope to the end – have been hoping that at least one important part of the world, Latin America, or especially South America, will withstand the pressure of Washington. But no. These governments, Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, they seem to be too honest – maybe not astute enough – to use the same weapons the neoliberals do. For example, it goes beyond me that Dilma Rousseff did not stop the propaganda media, kick them out, declare Martial Law to reinstate the rule of Law, of the democratically elected Government. Macri, as you know, closed immediately TeleSUR, the only media that brings the truth to South America. He got away with it. He is the neo-Nazi leader of Argentina.

The same with Mr. Maduro. Why does he not order the military to distribute food to the stores and assure that the electricity grid functions? We know that food is available, but the distribution is interrupted by the local rightwing forces supported and trained by Washington. The same that the CIA did in Chile to organize a coup against President Allende – they interrupted the food chain, and people took to the streets. It's all orchestrated from Washington. Old methods in new clothes. Especially if it worked the first time, why wouldn't it work a second and third time? – People have very short memories.

AB: And if so, considering also what happened in Brazil, Ecuador and Bolivia, which techniques are used today?

PK: The techniques of infiltration. Vulnerable, buyable locals from the opposition are bought, trained in the US or even sometime on location, by the CIA and other foreign and western forces – some in the form of foreign do-gooder 'NGOs', to create and instigate peoples' unhappiness – through strikes, blockages, as mentioned before, interruptions of food chains. The media propaganda. In all these countries the foreign media is by far domineering. And the local media are in the hands of oligarchs, the elite, and of course want any left-leaning government to disappear as fast and lasting as possible. And they get the steady support from Washington. The 'election coup' in Argentina was orchestrated largely by the media. Although there was some fraud going on during and after the elections. But most of it was done by the western rightwing media.

The 'parliamentary coup' in Brazil, and before in Paraguay in 2012, were remote-guided from Washington. That is not surprising. But what is surprising to me is that people just let it happen, that Dilma Rousseff just looked on as her government was being destroyed – by corrupt scoundrels who themselves should be and will eventually be in prison. Michel Temer, Brazil's interim President, is constitutionally not allowed to stand for public office for the next at least 8 years, as he is convicted for corruption in the 'Car Wash' scandal. Yet, he heads Brazil's interim government. What a farce. It's like kids' play – they – Lucifer's vassals – go as far as they can, until somebody stops them. Nobody, inside or outside Brazil has had the guts to say 'stop' and take the necessary actions.
Never forget, money is plentiful. May it cost whatever ridiculously astronomic amount is needed to influence and buy people, money is just being produced by the empire which still has the dollar monopoly – that the rest of the world – except Russia and China – adheres to. So, that's how everything is financed – weapons, including a destructive media bulldozer. Other, 'normal' countries do not have access to unlimited amounts of money. Therefore, they will not win a media war. Unless, they do what they are allowed to do: stop a slander and lie-driven media campaign, by force. This has nothing to do with free-press or freedom of expression. The Government has a democratic and constitutional right to stop lies and slander. Dilma did not use her power to stop the media lies and slander.

AB: The future of the world offers at the moment two possible tracks: a US unilateralism, particularly in the event of Clinton's presidency, made up of areas of "free" trade treaty around the world on the NAFTA model (such as the TTIP in Europe), with millions the desperate poor products, profits only for multinationals and the planned destruction of all countries who rebel against this vision in Libya and Syria style; or, second hypothesis, a period of multilateralism, respect for sovereignty, self-determination and peace if to prevail is the alternative project to the Washington Consensus of the Brics and the regional integration in Latin America designed and built by Chavez, Lula and Kirchner. Are we a lot far from reality? And which of the two views will prevail in your opinion?

PK: US unilateralism, or a free world of sovereign countries, peacefully trading with each other… well, you know which one should prevail, and I must say that a positive outlook has a lot to do with what eventually will happen. The 'power of the mind' effect of human thinking and will-power is amazing. But, indeed, it may take a long time until we will be living in a world of peace, justice and equality. Foremost, it will take awakening of the "We, the People" to a different consciousness. Even if darkness will prevail for a while longer – light will overwhelmingly outshine darkness, eventually.

Peter Koenig is an economist and geopolitical analyst. He is also a former World Bank staff and worked extensively around the world in the fields of environment and water resources. He writes regularly for Global Research, ICH, RT, Sputnik, PressTV, Chinese 4th Media, TeleSUR, The Vineyard of The Saker Blog, and other internet sites. He is the author of Implosion – An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed – fiction based on facts and on 30 years of World Bank experience around the globe. He is also a co-author of The World Order and Revolution! – Essays from the Resistance .

[Jul 12, 2016] Bernie betrays all his supporters

www.armstrongeconomics.com

Armstrong Economics

Of 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.

[Jul 12, 2016] Was Sanders a sheepdog corraling voters for Hillary?

Notable quotes:
"... Mene, mene, tekel, upharsin ..."
www.nakedcapitalism.com

naked capitalism

Sanders 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 Trail

"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[17] and speeches, he has advocated creating security in the 21st century by building bridges, not walls." I mean, come on.

    1. jo6pac

      Those that sent money to Bernie please let Lambert and us know if dddc or dnc ask for $$$$$$. Then may be it will just be a letter from the foundation asking for $$$$$$$$$$$$.

      Reply
          1. Rick

            As did I. I will keep the poster I bought from his campaign as a reminder of a now passed moment of hope.

            1. cwaltz

              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.

[Jul 12, 2016] Bernie Sanders Supporters: 'Bernie is a fraud'

Notable quotes:
"... "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." ..."
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.

[Jul 12, 2016] If that is not a betrayal of his supporters and his principles what is it then

Bernie is anti war, anti Wall St., anti TPP. If that is not a betrayal of his supporters and his principles what is it then. Endorsing Clinton is like taking a job at Goldman-Sachs.
www.theguardian.com
Jul 12, 2016

Potyka Kalman

, 2016-07-12 19:30:33
So why exactly he endorses her? We still don't know.

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.


X Girl , 2016-07-12 19:18:28
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 18:51:19
I'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!

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.....

Itsyaboi , 2016-07-12 18:47:10
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 bankroll
David Michael , 2016-07-12 18:37:02
The 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 18:30:07
1. 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.

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.

RobO83 , 2016-07-12 18:26:48
Clintons character is as dubious as her husbands pants after an afternoon with Monica.
pull2open RobO83 , 2016-07-12 18:31:36
But in comparison to her opponent?
YetAnotherSimon RobO83 , 2016-07-12 18:32:56
Or one of his 26 flights on sex-offender Jeffrey Epstein's plane the 'Lolita Express'
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/may/14/bill-clinton-ditched-secret-service-on-multiple-lo /
fedback gooner4thewin , 2016-07-12 18:36:37
Bernie is anti war, anti Wall St., anti TPP. If that is not a betrayal of his supporters and his principles what is it then
mikehowleydcu , 2016-07-12 18:25:02
Chris Hedges was right all along.
IanB52 mikehowleydcu , 2016-07-12 18:39:53
I 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 18:48:36
Point taken.

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. etc

mikehowleydcu IanB52 , 2016-07-12 18:52:33
Here's what Chris said to Ralph Nader

"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."

Jeff1000 , 2016-07-12 18:20:34
Oh Bernie.

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.

Tuan Hoang hureharehure , 2016-07-12 18:58:45
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 18:20:35
There 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.

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.

Tuan Hoang , 2016-07-12 18:20:01
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 18:15:59
F*** 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.
What a turncoat bastard. I am disgusted.
BennCarey , 2016-07-12 18:10:21
For a vast library of information detailing the many crimes of the ghastly Clinton crime syndicate, please see the following link. http://www.arkancide.com
DammitJim72 , 2016-07-12 18:10:05
Super 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.

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!

NoSerf , 2016-07-12 18:09:52
Hillary is vetted by Netanyahu.
wakeupbomb , 2016-07-12 18:08:41
Another completely meaningless choice awaits the American people, how thrilling.
Drewv , 2016-07-12 18:08:24
At 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.

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!!

NadaZero , 2016-07-12 18:10:31
Same old shit then. The Plutocrats won again and can freely go on selling 'war for profit' as 'fighting for freedoms.'

Christ on a fucking cracker.

ethane21 NadaZero , 2016-07-12 18:38:28

Same old shit then. The Plutocrats won again and can freely go on selling 'war for profit' as 'fighting for freedoms.'

With the useful benefit that La Clinton can now swan about on stage draped in a coat made from the hide of an old leftie.
"We came, we saw we skinned it." And oh how the laughter rang out the entire length of Wall Street.
Anjeska , 2016-07-12 17:51:27
Trump has spoken against globalism. Trump has spoken against neocon wars. Trump wants to uphold our laws.

Hillary is a globalist shill.
Hillary is a warmongerer.
Hillary thinks laws are for little people.

The choice is simple.

Merseysidefella , 2016-07-12 17:51:12
Even if Hillary chooses Pocahontas as her running mate, they will lose because everyone is fed up with the Regime.
The US is not a democracy
CriticalThinking4000 , 2016-07-12 17:45:57
So 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 18:16:14
There 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.

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.

NullPointerException , 2016-07-12 17:44:50
It's a shame it has come to this but kind of expected.

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.

Jedermann , 2016-07-12 17:44:33
He closed, thumping the lectern and proclaiming: "Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her today."

How can he say that? I feel so very let down.

imithemountain , 2016-07-12 17:44:02
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.

Do
Not
Ever
Vote
Democrats
Again

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.

SgtEmileKlinger , 2016-07-12 17:31:03
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 17:24:51
Fuck you, Bernie Sanders, and fuck off.
Mike5000 , 2016-07-12 17:20:54
Why did you sell out before the convention, Bernie?
fedback , 2016-07-12 17:20:42
Bernie 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 endorsement
MaryElla22 , 2016-07-12 17:19:51
And?

If Brexit is any indicative: Trump won.

Histfel , 2016-07-12 17:15:54
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 17:08:47
Has to be viewed in the context of the global threat of Donald Trump though

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 this

ID984302 , 2016-07-12 16:50:31
Ah hello, Clinton Foundation?? Hasn't he read the FBI insider leaks??

http://beforeitsnews.com/alternative/2016/07/fbi-insider-leaks-all-clinton-foundation-exposed-involves-entire-us-government-3381515.html

C'mon Putin, it's data dump time!!!

Lafcadio1944 , 2016-07-12 16:45:40
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 16:42:11
I 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 16:49:22
Hillary is more dangerous.

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.

David Wiebelt II , 2016-07-12 16:39:40
Bought and sold Bernie. Bernie shows his true political colors as a tool of the elite class.
cidcid , 2016-07-12 16:38:37
Chicken and traitor. Deceived millions of naive young people who believed him.
Montezuma74 Tystnaden , 2016-07-12 17:06:27
He's a little traitor. Spending donor's money on his own whims, then betraying the people he said he'd stick up for.

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.

garrylee , 2016-07-12 16:38:10
Oh,Bernie.What have you done?Legitimised a neo-liberal craven warmonger.You're not like Corbyn after all!
LinearBandKeramik AndyCh , 2016-07-12 17:33:37

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.

steveOhollywood , 2016-07-12 16:31:07
OK. I am officially un-endorsing Bernie Sanders.

[Jun 29, 2016] Why the Sanders Revolution Must Take on the Permanent War State

Notable quotes:
"... The permanent war state is the 800-pound gorilla in US society and political life. As the old joke goes, the answer to the question, "Where does an 800-pound gorilla eat?" is, "Anywhere he likes." As long as the organs of "national security" continue to retain the extraordinary power to appropriate budgetary resources and to involve the United States in foreign conflicts without real accountability, US politics will be grotesquely distorted to the profound disadvantage of the movement for fundamental change. The Pentagon, the CIA and the National Security Agency will continue to control most of the $1.1 trillion federal discretionary spending budget, crowding out programs that would benefit people. And beyond wielding that obvious financial power, by maintaining the premise that the United States must continue to make war indefinitely, they will also wield an ideological weapon that helps the economic elite maintain the status quo. ..."
"... For more original Truthout election coverage, check out our election section, "Beyond the Sound Bites: Election 2016." ..."
"... But that fundamental obstacle to change was not even mentioned by any of the speakers who introduced the main themes of the conference on the first night. On the second day, US Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) strongly denounced moves by powerful interests for a new war for regime change in Syria, but she did not address the underlying system of institutional interests and power that keeps the United States at permanent war. There was one breakout session entitled "Healthcare Not Warfare," which highlighted what people already know -- that spending for war and preparation for war robs the people of resources needed to build a more prosperous and equitable society. But it was evidently an afterthought for conference organizers, and did not interest many of the attendees, drawing perhaps 30 people. ..."
"... The Sanders campaign never explicitly raised the issue of the permanent war state during the primary election contest, either. He did present a sharp contrast to Hillary Clinton when they debated foreign policy, effectively demolishing her position urging a more militarily aggressive policy in Syria. He called for a policy that "destroys ISIS" but "does not get us involved in perpetual warfare in the quagmire of the Middle East."But he never talked about ending the unprecedented power that national security institutions have seized over the resources and security of the American people. ..."
"... The power of the military-industrial-congressional complex that has morphed into a permanent war state has long been the real "third rail" in US politics, which anyone aspiring to national office touches only at the risk of being branded "anti-American." News media coverage constantly reinforces the idea that US global military presence and aggressiveness are legitimate responses to foreign threats. So, for politicians, explaining why the power of that combination of institutions is a danger not only to people's economic interests, but also to their physical security is seen as extremely difficult and fraught with political risk. Sanders, who had no problem opposing specific wars, undoubtedly feared that an effort to deal with the interests and power behind the wars that most Americans oppose would force him to respond to attacks from the Clinton camp and the corporate media, and thus interfere with his populist message. ..."
"... Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare ..."
www.truth-out.org
The People's Summit in Chicago June 17-19 dramatically displayed both the strengths and the vulnerabilities of what has emerged in 2016 as one of the most potentially powerful movements for fundamental change in the United States in many decades. The event, which brought together 3,000 committed movement activists to rally in support of the "political revolution" given impetus by Bernie Sanders' campaign, was an opportunity to ensure that the movement will not dissipate in the wake of Hillary Clinton's clinching the Democratic nomination.

The leaders of the movement sought to use the summit to reconcile conflicting activist views on the relationship between movement organizations and electoral politics. The summit may have succeeded in keeping the coalition of those who privilege electoral politics and those who see it as a distraction from their local struggles from splitting up. But despite the political sophistication and pragmatism of the organizers, the gathering failed to deal seriously with the problem of the "permanent war state" -- the central power bloc in the US government that looms menacingly over everything the movement hopes to accomplish.

The permanent war state is the 800-pound gorilla in US society and political life. As the old joke goes, the answer to the question, "Where does an 800-pound gorilla eat?" is, "Anywhere he likes." As long as the organs of "national security" continue to retain the extraordinary power to appropriate budgetary resources and to involve the United States in foreign conflicts without real accountability, US politics will be grotesquely distorted to the profound disadvantage of the movement for fundamental change. The Pentagon, the CIA and the National Security Agency will continue to control most of the $1.1 trillion federal discretionary spending budget, crowding out programs that would benefit people. And beyond wielding that obvious financial power, by maintaining the premise that the United States must continue to make war indefinitely, they will also wield an ideological weapon that helps the economic elite maintain the status quo.

For more original Truthout election coverage, check out our election section, "Beyond the Sound Bites: Election 2016."

But that fundamental obstacle to change was not even mentioned by any of the speakers who introduced the main themes of the conference on the first night. On the second day, US Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) strongly denounced moves by powerful interests for a new war for regime change in Syria, but she did not address the underlying system of institutional interests and power that keeps the United States at permanent war. There was one breakout session entitled "Healthcare Not Warfare," which highlighted what people already know -- that spending for war and preparation for war robs the people of resources needed to build a more prosperous and equitable society. But it was evidently an afterthought for conference organizers, and did not interest many of the attendees, drawing perhaps 30 people.

The permanent war state is the 800-pound gorilla in US society and political life.

The Sanders campaign never explicitly raised the issue of the permanent war state during the primary election contest, either. He did present a sharp contrast to Hillary Clinton when they debated foreign policy, effectively demolishing her position urging a more militarily aggressive policy in Syria. He called for a policy that "destroys ISIS" but "does not get us involved in perpetual warfare in the quagmire of the Middle East."But he never talked about ending the unprecedented power that national security institutions have seized over the resources and security of the American people.

It is not difficult to see why Sanders did not take on that larger issue. The power of the military-industrial-congressional complex that has morphed into a permanent war state has long been the real "third rail" in US politics, which anyone aspiring to national office touches only at the risk of being branded "anti-American." News media coverage constantly reinforces the idea that US global military presence and aggressiveness are legitimate responses to foreign threats. So, for politicians, explaining why the power of that combination of institutions is a danger not only to people's economic interests, but also to their physical security is seen as extremely difficult and fraught with political risk. Sanders, who had no problem opposing specific wars, undoubtedly feared that an effort to deal with the interests and power behind the wars that most Americans oppose would force him to respond to attacks from the Clinton camp and the corporate media, and thus interfere with his populist message.

The permanent war state also appears to be outside the political comfort zone of National Nurses United, the single most influential organization in planning and funding the People's Summit. As a senior official of National Nurses United explained, the organization is able to talk about corporate control of the health care system because nurses constantly see the consequences in their own work, but most have no such personal experiences enabling them to talk about the war system.

But despite these understandable reasons for taking a pass on the issue, the leadership of the movement inspired by the Sanders campaign is making a big mistake by failing to take on the problem of the permanent war state. The popular organizations represented in Chicago understand this, but they have hesitated to go up against the most powerful combination bureaucratic interests the world has ever known, in part because they have not had any clear idea about how those interests could be defeated. What has been not been tried, however, is a strategy that attacks the war system where it is most vulnerable -- the fact that the war system bureaucrats have systematically pursued their own personal and institutional interests at the expense of the American people.

The publicly available records of US intervention and war, especially since the beginning of the Cold War, reveal an endless succession of policies and programs that were utterly useless and provoked reactions from states and from non-state actors that threatened the safety of the American people. But the policy makers preferred those policies, because they gave them and their organizations more power, more budgetary resources, more people under their command, more new technology, more foreign bases and perquisites, and more lucrative jobs and contracts when they leave the government for private companies.

All the services were looking for a boost in military appropriations when they pushed Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson to intervene militarily in Vietnam. The US Air Force sold its "shock and awe" strategy for regime change in Iraq to then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in order to capture a larger share of the military budget. The CIA got control over a major new mission when it convinced President George W. Bush to launch a drone war in Pakistan.

But the American people suffered the direct and indirect consequences of these wars in each case.

The fundamental conflict between the national interest and the personal and bureaucratic interests of the policy makers of the permanent war state explains why the system has continued to produce uniformly disastrous policies decade after decade.

So the strategy of the movement that the Sanders campaign has mobilized must include a broadly concerted campaign that explains to young people, disaffected working-class people and others how the permanent war state produces winners and losers. The winners are the national security organs themselves, as well as those who make careers and fortunes from the permanent state of war. The losers are those who must suffer the socioeconomic and other consequences of such reckless policies. Such a campaign should aim at nothing less than taking away the flow of money and the legal authority that the permanent war state has seized on the pretext of "threats" that are largely of its own making.

Even though the permanent war state seems to be at the peak of its power, like all essentially hollow institutions, it has a serious political vulnerability. Millions of Americans know that the wars the war-state agencies have wrought over the past half century -- from the Vietnam War to the war in Afghanistan -- were worse than useless. So the legitimacy of the permanent war state is extremely tenuous. A determined campaign to challenge that legitimacy, carried out with sufficient resources over a few years with the participation of a broad coalition, could shake it to its roots. Such a campaign must be included in the work to open up new political spaces and propel the movement for change. Copyright, Truthout. May not be reprinted without permission .

Gareth Porter is an independent investigative journalist and historian writing on US national security policy. His latest book, Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare , was published in February of 2014. Follow him on Twitter: @GarethPorter .

[Jun 28, 2016] What the American revolution can teach us about Brexit

www.theguardian.com
by James Nevius

gettinggolder , 2016-06-28 16:40:56
You know the American Revolution was not in any way I can see equivalent to machinations with the EU. Plenty is written belowon the history, and the fourth with all the fireworks is approaching.

The idea that the colonies revolted to avoid immigration is nothing short of absurd. To this day one of the largest ethnic groups are Germans descended from mercenary solders who stayed and farmed on what they saw as widely available farmland.

Obelisk1 , 2016-06-28 16:23:38
The Brexit motivations have quite a lot in common with those that drove US independence.

The most important thing for Americans to realize, when trying to understand the EU/UK relationship is that the citizens of the UK never gave the functionaries permission to make the citizens subject to law made overseas. The entire EU is built on a very shaky platform that has no democratic underpinnings.

svann21 , 2016-06-28 16:16:01
As was said in Dune, no matter who owns Arrakis "the spice must flow".

Bob999 , 2016-06-28 16:08:04
Another lesson to take from the UK-US relationship supports the view that the UK-EU economic relationship has a future.

American independence did not sever economic ties between the two countries, at least after 1815, when the second US-UK war (the war of 1812) was concluded.

For example, the Louisiana Purchase, which added more than half of what is now the contiguous US west of the Mississippi, was financed by London banks. The US bought the land from Napoleon, who was trying to finance his wars against Britain and others, and British bankers must have concluded that the US was going to get the money someone (it was the property deal of the century), so it might as well be them.

Throughout the 19th century, much of the investment that turned the US into the world's largest economy came from London financial markets. The cowboy period of the Old West was about rounding up herds of feral cattle that roamed the Western plains. Great Britain was a primary market for that cattle (canned meat), and British financing was key. So when you see Hollywood cowboy movies, remember that those roundups were often financed by British firms. Britain was a dominant source of finance in the US throughout the 19th century. Wall Street didn't catch up to the City of London as a financial center until World War I.

Just as the American revolution did not end the economic relationship between the US and the UK, there is no reason to believe Brexit will end the economic relationship between the UK and Europe. Economic ties rarely stay broken.

Alfreda Weiss , 2016-06-28 15:55:31
At the time of the US revolution Britain was a great colonial/pirate power controlling India where they took great wealth off the backs of the locals. Same for what became America where the British took wealth away from the natives and taxed the colonies to pay for their wars of choice. Now manufacturing has been off-shored to "Third World" cheap labor/slave places. In the empty areas of both the UK and US there is little ability to live beyond a backyard garden and small amounts of money for old people. Youth are ignored. Brexit was a beginning of the end for the West. The rest of the world will try to rise in what may be a dark time in history. The West needs to return to some respect for humanity and not giving total power to the 1%.
inyermush , 2016-06-28 15:53:15
What arrant nonsense. The Declaration of Independence specifically enumerates the reasons for leaving the empire and none of those reasons is xenophobia. For the benefit of the great Guardian uneducated, i share the exact text with you here:

"When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

Part II

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good. He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them. He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only. He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures. He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness of his invasions on the rights of the people. He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within. He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands. He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers. He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries. He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance. He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures. He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power. He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation: For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us: For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States: For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world: For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent: For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury: For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences: For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments: For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever. He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us. He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people. He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation. He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands. He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Scott Anderson , 2016-06-28 14:59:22
The EU has lost respect by failing to address high unemployment and has only itself to blame for continual losses when real people vote. Germany's unilateral decision to allow for unfettered immigration made things worse. The British exit has nothing to do with the American Revolutionary War. Likewise, Donald Trump has nothing to do with it as well. Trump's negative poll numbers reflect that he is not going to be the next President of the United States despite running against a relatively weak Hillary Clinton.

I think Cameron has been lame as the British PM. He should have insisted on all four regions having to vote yes to the British exit. Scotland and Northern Ireland voted no. So this vote has created divisions that may lead to the breakup of the UK.

emphisTigerFan89 , 2016-06-28 14:31:01
"Those in the UK who voted to leave the EU may think they've won a small victory in tightening Britain's borders, but if America's history is a model, there's little that can actually be done to slow immigration."

That is absolutely not true! But the will to stem the tide of unlimited immigration has to be accepted by politicians of both parties. The borders can be enforced if there is the political will to do so.

Americans have shown repeatedly that they accept immigrants who come here lawfully. We are a nation of LAWS, not of lawbreakers! Granted, there are issues with the new comers in every generation (see the treatment of the Irish in the early 1900's), but after those waves of immigration, they gradually assimilated into American culture.

The biggest issue of the current wave of immigration is there has been no pause since 1965. Wave after wave of immigrants from all over the world without a pause for assimilation is a recipe for disaster, as shown by the rise in strong Anti-American sentiments within the borders of the US, from not only majority Hispanic communities, but also Syrian, Somali, Iraqi, and other countries around the world.

Once upon a time, immigrants came to the US to be part of a greater nation. Today, immigrants come to the US, but want to recreate the country they left behind within the borders of the US.

DylanJohn , 2016-06-28 14:25:22
I don't know when it was first used, but Margaret Roberts used "make Great Britain great again" in the 1950 general election. Source: http://www.margaretthatcher.org/document/100858
Sandya Narayanswami DylanJohn , 2016-06-28 14:32:23
The term Great Britain originated as a means of differentiating it from Brittany, La Petite Bretagne v La Grande Bretagne. Both Britain and Brittany are "Bretagne", in French. The term has nothing to do with greatness per se.
ConBrio , 2016-06-28 14:12:06
The political spiel at the end of the article only highlights the rhetorical mendacity permeating the article.

Couching the American Revolution in terms of racism or religion is dishonest. While there may have been elements of religious bias from person to person, the fact remains that the Constitution created a secular government which protects religious liberty, and in fact prohibits any "religious test" for holding office.

Indeed, the delegates at the Constitutional Convention even attended a Mass en mass, one Sunday.

While attitudes may change in response to immediate dangers, the millions of people who have been welcomed to this country since the Founding put the lie to the rhetorical deceit that ethnic or religious bias have played a significant role in our national agenda.

[Jun 15, 2016] Sanders: "We have to replace the current Democratic National Committee leadership

Notable quotes:
"... shouldn't ..."
"... Liberals, unsurprisingly like conservatives, are neoliberals. The left is not. One of the nicer clarifications of the 2016 election so far as been the emergence of this distinction, which the Democrat Establishment will doubtless to haze over. Dayen's attending the Phoenix meeting, and writes: ..."
"... A lot of liberals are not even aware that they are neolioberals-so effective the morphing has been: ..."
"... Yes, this is astonishing to me. I threw away my Obama T-shirt years ago but I didn't recognize that there is a Corporate Psy-Ops underway to install Hillary Clinton until this year. I was aware of Neo-Cons back in 2003. But, I wasn't aware of the neo-liberal campaign to crucify the disenfranchised from Greece to mid-America. Deregulation, privatization, free movement of people and capital plus non-stop wars and the resulting chaos are their tools of subjugation and pillaging. ..."
"... If corporate media wins and the Neo's stay in control, this will become violent. ..."
"... Agree PP. If and when the "party platform" becomes the litmus test for EVERY party member, then it will serve a unifying purpose. As it stands right now, the REAL party platform is neo-liberalism all day, every day. ..."
www.nakedcapitalism.com

naked capitalism

The Trail

"Hillary ushers her guest to the door. 'We're going to be a great girl squad,' she says, squeezing Warren's hand. 'It will be so easy to beat this airhead. I bet he doesn't even know what Cafta is. Sorry to cut this short. I need to call Tim Kaine. But I will dictate a nice tweet about you'" [MoDo, New York TImes (Carolinian)]. This is very funny. Dowd seems to have returned to form, however temporarily.

"Clinton, Sanders Hold 'Positive' Meeting After DC Primary" [Talking Points Memo]. "The Clinton statement said that the two talked about 'unifying the party,' but the Sanders statement did not, as NBC News noted." The results of that meeting - attendees Clinton, Podesta, Mook, Sanders, Jane Sanders, Devine - seem to be quite closely held; no leaks that I've encountered as of this writing. Readers? Oh, and it's crossed my mind that "positive" corresponds to "a full and frank exchange of views" in diplospeak. Clever of Sanders to, in essence, give the Clinton campaign a hard deadline by scheduling a video speech for his supporters tomorrow; Sanders will deliver the speech from Vermont, and there are no travel advisories for reporters (here's the tweet for an RSVP, which sadly requires a mobile phone).

"Bernie Sanders's Democratic Party reforms focus on things that would've helped Bernie Sanders win" [Philip Bump, WaPo]. Oh! Oh! Sanders wants to win! Oh my goodness! This from the guy who thought he had a scoop and a gotcha when the Sanders average contribution jumped from $27 to $29. A good politician wants to win. Sanders is a pretty good politician, considering that he started from zero money and zero name recognition. There seems to be a general assumption in the Beltway that the left shouldn't have any operational skill, shouldn't hire professional staff, shouldn't have any money. Not that they don't; they shouldn't. Hopefully, the Sanders campaign has changed that.

"Will Hillary Clinton sacrifice Wasserman Schultz to appease Bernie Sanders?" [Orlando Sun-Sentinel]. Depends on what DWS has on Clinton, I guess. Sanders: "We have to replace the current Democratic National Committee leadership. We need a person at the leadership of the DNC who is vigorously supporting and out working to bring people into the political process. Yeah, I know political parties need money. But it is more important that we have energy, that we have young people, that we have working lass [sic (!!)] people who are going to participate in the political process and fight for their kids and for their parents."

"As the sun set over the capital city, which had the unpleasant distinction of voting after every other state and territory in the country, it was easy to forget how close the 2016 presidential contest came to going sideways for Democratic Party elders" [NBC]. " They had so carefully cleared the way for Clinton to be their next leader. But if a few votes had gone differently in Iowa's exceptionally tight caucus, or if Bernie Sanders had run a more effective campaign in Nevada, the insurgent could have given Clinton a real run for her money." As it were.

"Will Bernie Sanders Win the Platform?" [David Dayen, The New Republic (GF)]. "Because of the unusually high stakes-and scrutiny-that's come with Sanders's focus on the platform, the hearings that continue this week in Phoenix (with St. Louis and Orlando to follow) have become a kind of public trial on the party's future. If the first week's hearings were any indication, stakeholders are signaling to Clinton that the party's sins of the past will no longer be tolerated." Dayen, unfortunately, confused liberals with the left. Liberals, unsurprisingly like conservatives, are neoliberals. The left is not. One of the nicer clarifications of the 2016 election so far as been the emergence of this distinction, which the Democrat Establishment will doubtless to haze over. Dayen's attending the Phoenix meeting, and writes:

Listening to the first two days of testimony, I was struck by the witnesses' desire to wake up the political establishment to realities outside the Beltway. Multiple experts and ordinary people testified that the U.S. economy simply isn't working for most of its citizens. And they pointed to some interesting root causes. For example, Sabrina Shrader, Vice President of West Virginia Healthy Kids and Families, blamed oligopolistic electricity companies in her state for high heating costs. "One runs the northern part and another runs the southern part," she said.

If only the Czar knew? Perhaps. Perhaps not.

"Bernie Sanders's Down-Ballot Effect" [The Atlantic]. On Lucy Flores. We'll see!

"Millennials Rage Against the Machine (and Lose)" [Roll Call].

  1. Brindle

    So true. A lot of liberals are not even aware that they are neolioberals-so effective the morphing has been:

    "Liberals, unsurprisingly like conservatives, are neoliberals. The left is not. One of the nicer clarifications of the 2016 election so far as been the emergence of this distinction,"

    Reply
    1. VietnamVet

      Yes, this is astonishing to me. I threw away my Obama T-shirt years ago but I didn't recognize that there is a Corporate Psy-Ops underway to install Hillary Clinton until this year. I was aware of Neo-Cons back in 2003. But, I wasn't aware of the neo-liberal campaign to crucify the disenfranchised from Greece to mid-America. Deregulation, privatization, free movement of people and capital plus non-stop wars and the resulting chaos are their tools of subjugation and pillaging.

      An electoral civil war being waged right now. If corporate media wins and the Neo's stay in control, this will become violent.

    1. YankeeFrank

      Well that was quick. The "Vichy Left" is already plotting to co-opt our revolution and make it palatable to the corrupt DNC leadership and its oligarchic backers.

      1. YankeeFrank

        Huge irony of course being the conceit that the 20-something Millennials who backed Bernie's medicare-for-all, $15/hr min wage, etc., etc., are somehow the mid-90's retreads here and not Clinton and the decrepit and corrupt DNC.

      1. cwaltz

        The pro and con of this particular generation is their cynicism. I wish the DNC lots of luck convincing them to join and stay simply by putting something in their platform like they've done with my generation(and yes I suspect it took me considerably longer than it will probably take my kids to quit the Democratic party.)

        I'm sure the Bernie supporters are going to get graphics, I'm almost as sure that the pretty words will mean fairly little.

    1. grayslady

      The guy who wrote this is a member of a think tank called New America. David Brooks is a member of the Board of Directors. Can we just stop linking to anything from the NYT? The Grey Lady doesn't have a shred of credibility left.

          1. Archie

            Agree PP. If and when the "party platform" becomes the litmus test for EVERY party member, then it will serve a unifying purpose. As it stands right now, the REAL party platform is neo-liberalism all day, every day. (As one of the clever commenters here put it: Eat shit and like it! Or go to bed hungry.)

            It has been the case,since at least the 60s, that politicians regard average citizens as just not smart enough to understand all the nuances of government. Therefore, we should just let the politicians do what they know is "right" and go on about our daily lives. I have been pissed off at this condescending attitude my entire adult life. All of us 90% ers (at least) have been in an abusive relationship with our national and state governments for as long as I care to remember. Every time I have made a contribution to Bernie's campaign, I have sent a personal message that indeed, I do not see this election to be about "Bernie", but for the first time in way, way too long, Bernie has called out the bullshit in that relationship and that is why I support him.

            Hopefully enough others have urged him on for similar reasons and he feels the Bern in all of us. Maybe I'm setting myself up for another Charlie Brown moment, but all I'm looking for at this point is for Bernie to do the right thing. He has spoken much truth to power in this primary cycle, and he has experienced both the brute force of the establishment and the love and sincerity of his supporters. I am only a couple of years younger than Bernie and if it were me, I'd take the f##kers down. This is a defining moment in history and I sense that Bernie knows that. Senate committee chairmanships, etc., are meaningless in the face of the neo-liberal assault that is TPP and TTIP. This is the real end game, imho.

            Reply
  1. Vatch

    The party has failed half of the people who typically vote Democratic. And those are the people who are supporting Bernie.

    Actually, the party has also failed a significant fraction of the people who voted for Hillary Clinton. They should have voted for Sanders, but they didn't know eanough about him (because of the media blackout), or they just continued on auto-pilot and voted for a familiar name. A few might have been voluntarily ignorant (sports, Dancing with the Stars, etc.), but those people usually don't vote in primaries.

[Jun 12, 2016] M of A - U.S. Election Thread 2016-03 - Yves Smith On Not Hillary!

Notable quotes:
"... Naked Capitalism ..."
"... Trump isn't even far right, he's just a populist. He's nationalist, but not national socialist. He's for diplomacy, not for invading every country the MIC identifies as "terrorist" (the new, politically-correct n-word for people we can kill with impunity). ..."
"... Trump just represents people who want their jobs and their country back, and for you to malign these followers as far right is nothing short of elitism. ..."
"... Trump will do an 'Alexander' on the US's Gordian knot of a political system. At least that's the hope of the many frustrated and disillusioned. And like Obama, Day-2 in the White House will business-as-usual according to the MIC-Wall St script. ..."
"... Unfortunately, lesser of evils at voting time has not resulted in lesser of evils Presidents. Every time I keep thinking that the new guy can't possibly be as bad as the last, he proves that he can be. ..."
"... Trump appears to be an outsider until you meet his foreign policy team or his economic advisers or watch his virtual oath of fealty to AIPAC to etc. Loose cannons can backfire. The only Never-Hillary alternative beyond Trump is Sanders. ..."
"... Unemployment & underemployment are destroying the lives of US Citizens. Life expectancy of US Citizens is going down. Trump's plan to decrease the number of non-citizens in the US is highly popular among US Citizen voters. ..."
"... Today I read an example. Millions of Americans are scrapping by and rely on so-called payday loans. The Administration tightened regulations on those loans, Republicans oppose, Hillary promises to defend them. Bernie proposed a postal bank as exists in most countries which would eliminate most cases where such loans could start. Sanders plan is realistic, simple to understand and much more effective, and would hurt so called "pay day loan industry" much more, and this is too much for "bleeding liver liberals". ..."
"... Although the legal issues are complicated, what we know for sure is that Clinton played fast and loose with National Security because she deemed that it was more important to secure HER OWN communications. This was NOT a 'judgment call' on a policy issue but a deliberate choice to ignore some of the most grave obligations of her office so as to advantage herself. ..."
"... To any reasonable person, this simple fact is further evidence of Hillary's corrupt elitism and unquestionably disqualifies her for the Presidency. ..."
"... This misconception is still alive and kicking. Killary wasnt the mastermind behind Libya's invasion, she was just a frontwoman for "color revolution" plans which were well under way before she come into power, and will continue when she fades into obscurity. ..."
"... Another misconception is Obama's "peace-loving" nature, its just an illusion he and his PR people are pushing. "Obama is good, its these others who want war", and people still fall for that? :)) The only difference between Bush jr and Obama is that one likes to fight wars directly (US cant afford that anymore), and another through proxy terrorists and drones, its cheaper this way, and even more destructive. ..."
"... As far as I can see, Trump's the only person calling for diplomacy & a de-escalation of tensions with the Chinese & the Russians. His obsession with capitalism, making money & deal-making may paradoxically prove to be his best feature; if you blow up the world, no more deals! ..."
"... Taking formerly unified & regionally powerful countries resistant to USA domination & turning them into defenseless mini-statelets is "strategically pointless"? It amazes me how progressives can look the strategy straight in the eye... and then deny it. ..."
"... Iraq was hostile to Iran before the invasion and Saddam was easy to deal with. Syria used to be stable and sell oil. Now Iraq is aligned with Iran and Syria is a disaster and has given Russia an opportunity to demonstrate loyalty to allies and the effectiveness of the Russian military and weapons. ..."
"... About Obama being an organizer. He seems to have frontend for the FIRE sector: ..."
"... Breaking States is essential and specifically mentioned in the Oded Yinon Plan for Greater Israel. The PNAC Plan for Full Spectrum Dominance with the Global War on Terror further reinforces and justifies the Yinon Plan. ..."
"... Don't miss the event ... all signs are pointing towards the inevitable! ..."
"... "Hillary's experience is one of failure." ..."
"... HRC is a shill politician supporting Israel in the Middle East . Her vote for the Iraq war, her run as senator for NY with the backing of Rupert Murdoch and her abominable policy as Secretary of State versus Libya and Syria. She used the worst of advisors at State to run her affairs. The buck stop at Obama's desk, he is ultimately responsible for the decisions made. ..."
"... Early take on Hillary's foreign policy speech: pot shots at Trump (easy), interspersed with scare-mongering, chest-thumping and neocon talking points like: "we never ever stop trying to make our country a better place" (how exceptional!). ..."
"... Seems Neocons loved HRC's Trump bashing speech as this recap details, https://www.commentarymagazine.com/politics-ideas/campaigns-elections/hillary-clinton-anti-trump-speech/ ..."
"... I have to agree with @1 that it is not at all clear that Trump is "far right". He's a populist, sure, he is. Maybe he even fits the definition of a demagogue. But that doesn't place him on the "far right", it just places him "outside the system". ..."
"... Trump appears to be all in favour of replacing a foreign policy that relies upon a robust military with one that is based upon active diplomacy i.e. that jaw-jaw is better than war-war. ..."
"... Actually, for Germany, Sanders is very much "middle". Hillary would be "right wing" minus the classism and racism. Trump is close to classical National Socialism with a very special US American "businessman" flavor (there is a traditional disdain for business in Germany) ..."
"... So, I guess you could sum up the conclusion to all these comments that there is absolutely no one worth voting for because the electoral system is irrevocably broken due to psychopathic or ponerological "infection". You can thrash out the debate as to who is the greater or lesser of evils chosen for the parade this time around but it's a waste of energy since the foundations upon which elections are built have long been rotten to the core. ..."
"... So, voting for such theatre is surely perpetuating the scenario. The president is already chosen. Period. ..."
"... What must be understood and highlighted is who the political class works for- the savage capitalists. The US government is merely the front for the ruling class. It merely carries out the policies of the over-civilized, well-manicured capitalist thugs. ..."
"... Voting is a ritual that reinforces obedience to state authority. It creates the illusion that "the people" control the state, thereby masking elite rule. That illusion makes rebellion against the state less likely because it is seen as a legitimate institution and as an instrument of popular rule rather than the oligarchy it really is. Embedded within all electoral campaigns is the myth that "the people" control the state through voting. ..."
"... "Who wins the election in the capitalist system makes no difference because all politicians in this system must do what the ruling class want. Elections are a scam whose function is to neutralize resistance movements and dupe ordinary citizens into thinking they have a say in matters of the state." ..."
www.moonofalabama.org

Not Hillary!

Yves Smith of the Naked Capitalism explains why many of her progressive acquaintances will either not vote, or vote for Trump in the upcoming U.S. election. I recommend to read this in full.

For starters two excerpts:

Hillary's experience is one of failure. And she did not learn from it.

Hillary has a résumé of glittering titles with disasters or at best thin accomplishments under each. Her vaunted co-presidency with Bill? After her first major project, health care reform, turned into such a debacle that it was impossible to broach the topic for a generation, she retreated into a more traditional first lady role. As New York senator, she accomplished less with a bigger name and from a more powerful state than Sanders did. As secretary of state, she participated and encouraged strategically pointless nation-breaking in Iraq and Syria. She bureaucratically outmaneuvered Obama, leading to U.S. intervention in Libya, which he has called the worst decision of his administration. And her plan to fob her domestic economic duties off on Bill comes off as an admission that she can't handle being president on her own.

And the conclusion:

The Sanders voters in Naked Capitalism 's active commentariat also explicitly reject lesser-evilism, the cudgel that has previously kept true lefties somewhat in line. They are willing to gamble, given that outsider presidents like Jimmy Carter and celebrity governors like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jesse Ventura didn't get much done, that a Trump presidency represents an acceptable cost of inflicting punishment on the Democratic Party for 20 years of selling out ordinary Americans.

The Clintons, like the Bourbons before the French Revolution, have ensconced themselves in such a bubble of operative and media sycophancy that they've mistakenly viewed escalating distress and legitimate demands from citizens as mere noise.
...
If my readers are representative, Clinton and the Democratic Party are about to have a long-overdue day of reckoning.

To vote for the far right because the former center (left) has lost its bearing is a somewhat dangerous gamble. The U.S. has a relative stable, inertial system with lots of checks and balances that make this move less risky than similar moves underway in Poland, Germany or France. But unless the center left/right politicians recognize that they have lost their former majority there is no chance they will shun the neoliberal globalization nonsense they impose on their constituency.

Voting for a stronger movement towards a genuine left is be a better strategy than voting for the far right. But notorious lack of unity within the left, center-right control over the media and the absence of a successful current archetype will keep a majority away from taking that step.

I agree that the day of reckoning is a long-overdue day. But it may not bring the reckoning we want.

Cahaba | Jun 2, 2016 6:36:54 AM | 2
Trump isn't even far right, he's just a populist. He's nationalist, but not national socialist. He's for diplomacy, not for invading every country the MIC identifies as "terrorist" (the new, politically-correct n-word for people we can kill with impunity).

Trump just represents people who want their jobs and their country back, and for you to malign these followers as far right is nothing short of elitism.

x | Jun 2, 2016 7:33:38 AM | 4
Trump will do an 'Alexander' on the US's Gordian knot of a political system. At least that's the hope of the many frustrated and disillusioned. And like Obama, Day-2 in the White House will business-as-usual according to the MIC-Wall St script.
lysias | Jun 2, 2016 7:44:43 AM | 5
The way to refute the argument that third party votes are wasted votes is for more and more people to vote third party. If Hillary is nominated, I intend to vote for Jill Stein (whom there seems to be a media conspiracy to ignore -- even when they're discussing what Sanders supporters might do, they never mention her).
curtis | Jun 2, 2016 8:09:46 AM | 6
"nation-breaking." I'll have to remember that. That is a very descriptive term for US middle-east policy in recent decades. Brzezinski and Kissinger may not admit as much but it's true; look at the results.

Unfortunately, lesser of evils at voting time has not resulted in lesser of evils Presidents. Every time I keep thinking that the new guy can't possibly be as bad as the last, he proves that he can be.

Trump appears to be an outsider until you meet his foreign policy team or his economic advisers or watch his virtual oath of fealty to AIPAC to etc. Loose cannons can backfire. The only Never-Hillary alternative beyond Trump is Sanders. Would Sanders truly reign in the mid-east wars or continue R2P destruction? Can he stand up to Wall Street? I don't know.

Formerly T-Bear | Jun 2, 2016 8:13:44 AM | 7
@ U.S. Election Thread 2016-03 - Yves Smith …

Do you realise just what you're asking? To even click on that site I'd rather 'do' dishes; doing the "Black Plague" is preferable to doing dishes and root canal is just above that.

The only way to regain control of this political system is: Never vote Republican AND Never vote incumBENT Democrat. Why no one realises 95+ % of the problem comes from having 95+ % incumBENTs returned election after election. Stop that and the problem soon becomes manageable. Throwing your vote after unelectables just throws your vote away - to no discernible effect and is downright foolishness.

Anonymous 1 | Jun 2, 2016 8:56:55 AM | 8
Unemployment & underemployment are destroying the lives of US Citizens. Life expectancy of US Citizens is going down. Trump's plan to decrease the number of non-citizens in the US is highly popular among US Citizen voters.

Voting for Goldman Sachs' sock puppet Hillary Clinton is a vote for immediate self destruction.

Piotr Berman | Jun 2, 2016 9:12:38 AM | 9
I do not think that Clinton's chief problem is with people who would rather vote for Jill Stein. Her problem is in the "middle", who are often "culturally" sympathetic to GOP but responding to a concrete populist message.

Today I read an example. Millions of Americans are scrapping by and rely on so-called payday loans. The Administration tightened regulations on those loans, Republicans oppose, Hillary promises to defend them. Bernie proposed a postal bank as exists in most countries which would eliminate most cases where such loans could start. Sanders plan is realistic, simple to understand and much more effective, and would hurt so called "pay day loan industry" much more, and this is too much for "bleeding liver liberals".

Trump has a realistic chance of winning in Ohio and Florida against Hillary, and thus becoming a president, and this is not because of wide awareness of how wrong Hillary was on Libya (her failed work on health care reform is known more widely, I presume). Actually, both cases are an indictment not of Hillary but of the liberal establishment in general. On Libya, Hillary basically followed the herd (from liberal think tanks). On health care reform, the methodology was liberal: improve the lot of the consumer without affecting the "industries" too much and concocting a "child that only mother could love", plus the particular child mothered by Hillary was torned to pieces by fellow liberals (certain Moynihan comes to my mind). "Single payer", like it or not, is something that somewhat clueless "centrist voters" can understand, and again, it works even as close to USA as Canada.

jeffroby | Jun 2, 2016 9:38:00 AM | 10
As I have written, There Are No Safe Choices and arguing over greater or lesser evils is an exercise in futility at best. The question is, how do we build our own forces of resistance? To vote for Hillary is to commit an act of unilateral disarmament. A massive write-in for Sanders would not be wasted, although the votes would not even be counted until weeks after the election.

A vote for Stein will immediately register. I am not a great fan of the Green Party, but a Stein vote gives us a tactic to organize our own resistance while we dig in and build something new.

Jackrabbit | Jun 2, 2016 9:46:23 AM | 11
Yves is lobbying Super-delegates on behalf of Sanders. That's why she doesn't mention Jill Stein or the Green Party.

The problem with Sanders is that he choose Party over principle. That's why he doesn't attack Hillary on her emails or Obama wrt black issues (Hillary gets the black vote largely because Obama supports her) .

Although the legal issues are complicated, what we know for sure is that Clinton played fast and loose with National Security because she deemed that it was more important to secure HER OWN communications. This was NOT a 'judgment call' on a policy issue but a deliberate choice to ignore some of the most grave obligations of her office so as to advantage herself.

To any reasonable person, this simple fact is further evidence of Hillary's corrupt elitism and unquestionably disqualifies her for the Presidency.

But Sanders remains quiet about the emails DESPITE THE STATE DEPT INSPECTOR GENERAL REPORT which showed that she has been dishonest and deceptive about her email server.

To better understand the legal issues, see: Do I really need to worry about Hillary's emails? Yes, she will be indicted .

<> <> <> <> <> <> <>

Is it sufficient for Bernie to sit back and let Trump attack Hillary on the emails? Does it help him to 'unify the party' later? On both counts I would argue: NO!!!

1) The Democratic Party establishment is anti-Sanders. They like things the way they are. If Hillary is disqualified, they will find someone else to take her place. There are already serious rumors about Biden (Biden-Warren ticket?).

What the establishment really cares about is that Hillary beats Sanders in delegates and votes cast so that Hillary can be a King-maker if she can't be a candidate.

2) Bernie's silence:

> contributes to the view that the email server is just a partisan football;

> contributes to the view that it is just a question of judgement;

> undermines his 'man of principle' positioning;

> undermines his argument that Clinton is a flawed candidate;

> undermines his claim to have better judgement than Hillary (as explained above - her decision to operate a private email server is disqualifying);

Bernie's silence doesn't help him to win or to win over the Party. By pulling punches (once again!) Bernie is choosing Party over Principle. This seems to confirm that he is indeed just a sheepdog for the DNC as described by Black Agenda Report and Talking Points Memo .

<> <> <> <> <> <> <>

One can only hope that this election season Progressives will finally WAKE UP and understand that the Democratic Party establishment is too corrupt and too entrenched for reform.

Bernie supporters and left-leaning independents should join/vote GREEN PARTY.

jo6pac | Jun 2, 2016 9:46:26 AM | 12
I'll be voting Green Party and were there aren't any Greens I'll vote against incumbent Demodogs.
JohnH | Jun 2, 2016 9:52:42 AM | 13
I recommend voting third party...any third party. In most states, the outcome is already known, because most states are reliably either Democratic or Republican.

In all but a handful of battleground states, voters are free to vote their conscience. Only in battleground states need they consider voting for the lesser of the evils.

Voting third party is important--it conveys a message of disgust with the establishment duopoly. OTOH NOT voting only conveys complacence and apathy, which the duopoly is totally OK with.

Harry | Jun 2, 2016 10:06:53 AM | 14
She bureaucratically outmaneuvered Obama, leading to U.S. intervention in Libya, which he has called the worst decision of his administration.

This misconception is still alive and kicking. Killary wasnt the mastermind behind Libya's invasion, she was just a frontwoman for "color revolution" plans which were well under way before she come into power, and will continue when she fades into obscurity.

Another misconception is Obama's "peace-loving" nature, its just an illusion he and his PR people are pushing. "Obama is good, its these others who want war", and people still fall for that? :)) The only difference between Bush jr and Obama is that one likes to fight wars directly (US cant afford that anymore), and another through proxy terrorists and drones, its cheaper this way, and even more destructive.

Jackrabbit | Jun 2, 2016 10:48:38 AM | 15
Harry @13

Thank you!

The assumption of Obama's progressivism has been found to be misguided time and time again. It is a con. It is a lubricant.

Black?

He is ethnically half-white and culturally about 90% white.

Community organizer?

Wall Street bailouts and faux mortgage relief. 11-dimensional chess excuses for inaction (he had majorities in both houses of Congress when he was elected)

Bush tax cuts made permanent - poor get austerity.

Solution for inequality? More low-paying jobs.

Constitutional lawyer?

War on Whistle-blowers; assault on civil liberties; IRS scandal; etc.

Constitution-shredding, anti-democracy trade deals.

War without Congressional approval.

Nobel peace-prize?

Awarded for simply being NOT-Bush. Approved everything the neocons wanted and asserted the neocon mantra of American exceptionalism.

The faux conflict between Netanyahu and Obama over Iran is just for show. Sanctions weren't working and the Syrian conflict has dragged out longer than expected (they are not yet ready to take on Iran).

Note: The above list only scratches the surface of the deceitfulness.

dahoit | Jun 2, 2016 11:10:22 AM | 16

Trump far right? That's Obomba, Clinton, the shrub and HRC, the worst rightists in American history.

Trump is left-right and in the middle, a non ideologue, who will bring back American prosperity, get US out of this wacko world domination idiocy and protect our borders,all nationalist endeavors ,and as right as rain. The moron bubblehead says Trumps foreign policy aims will upset the world order. My God,shes a retard. Never in the history of this planet has such an empty vessel ever sought such a high office.

Mark | Jun 2, 2016 12:08:39 PM | 17
Trump is far-right? It seems obvious that when it comes to foreign policy he's to the left of everyone; Clinton has already promised to "totally obliterate" Iran, lusts after confrontation with Russia & is clearly willing to hit the button. For his part, Sanders says "The Saudis (ISIS) should play a bigger role in the Middle East," and says the military option is on the table vis a vis Russia (which of course means nuclear weapons, since USA could obviously never win a conventional war with Russia - it can't even defeat a few thousand lightly armed Taliban). As far as I can see, Trump's the only person calling for diplomacy & a de-escalation of tensions with the Chinese & the Russians. His obsession with capitalism, making money & deal-making may paradoxically prove to be his best feature; if you blow up the world, no more deals!
strategically pointless nation-breaking in Iraq and Syria

Taking formerly unified & regionally powerful countries resistant to USA domination & turning them into defenseless mini-statelets is "strategically pointless"? It amazes me how progressives can look the strategy straight in the eye... and then deny it.

Noirette | Jun 2, 2016 12:30:15 PM | 18
Naked C. Article is 'factual' within the US landscape from a certain pov..

Always said that:

1) Killary cannot win. Already a one time loser, not enough 'base', her and hubby's past, corruption etc. etc.

2) that the PTB (deep state, military ind. complex, big corps, Finance..) could accomodate to a Sanders presidency but not a Trump one.

What Dem alternatives remain? If Killary is indicted for the homey-cellar-e-mail boondoggle, plus the fact she could not win (say, most likely, as article hints at) against Trump, the Dems need to put forward another candidate, Biden? Ensuring that the Dems lose the election but the overall system is maintained. (Keeping the lid on Sanders supporters, switching from Bernie to X (other candidate) will be a disaster.)

On the Repub. side the picture is the same. They can't support Killary openly and to prevent Trump from triumphing they need to launch a candidate that splits Repubs. + conservatives votes, some X 'respectable' candidate getting some 6 better 9-10 or .. % of the vote, enough to throw the election to the Dem candidate. So that the Repubs. lose the election but the system is maintained (bis).

The prez. race has turned into vaudeville where different parties are fighting to lose while conserving their advantages within the status quo.

:) :)

All wll be done to keep the 2-party system alive and put a lid on ALL opposition.

Jackrabbit | Jun 2, 2016 12:56:44 PM | 19
Mark @16

Great comment, especially wrt:

strategically pointless nation-breaking in Iraq and Syria
I have found that the US "Left" is generally anti-Empire and simply see any discussion of foreign affairs as mere details. They easily fall for the 'chaos' simplification/cloaking.

I have made the case that oligarchs and fundamentalism are global problems and that they reinforce each other across national and social divides. It's a complex dance that is destructive and anti-human. The details matter because opening people eyes requires examples.

tony | Jun 2, 2016 1:05:38 PM | 20
@Mark

Iraq was hostile to Iran before the invasion and Saddam was easy to deal with. Syria used to be stable and sell oil. Now Iraq is aligned with Iran and Syria is a disaster and has given Russia an opportunity to demonstrate loyalty to allies and the effectiveness of the Russian military and weapons.

About Obama being an organizer. He seems to have frontend for the FIRE sector:
http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/05/exclusive-how-obamas-early-career-succes-was-built-on-fronting-for-chicago-real-estate-and-finance.html

fastfreddy | Jun 2, 2016 1:27:45 PM | 23
Mark 16 "strategically pointless nation-breaking in Iraq and Syria"

Taking formerly unified & regionally powerful countries resistant to USA domination & turning them into defenseless mini-statelets is "strategically pointless"? It amazes me how progressives can look the strategy straight in the eye... and then deny it.

Not strategically pointless by any measure! Complete Bullshit. Breaking States is essential and specifically mentioned in the Oded Yinon Plan for Greater Israel. The PNAC Plan for Full Spectrum Dominance with the Global War on Terror further reinforces and justifies the Yinon Plan.

NATO and The US acting as Aggressor (pre-emptive war & war for regime change) is illegal and Criminal - War Crimes as spelled out clearly in NATO Manifesto.

Oui | Jun 2, 2016 1:35:34 PM | 24
Don't miss the event ... all signs are pointing towards the inevitable!

The Next Revolution: War On Inequality

Shh | Jun 2, 2016 2:13:24 PM | 27
Part of the problem is that what you refer to as centrist is actually extreme conservatism bordering on fundamentalism in exactly the same vein as Wahhabism, only in the name of Christ.

I'm one who would certainly vote for Trump over Clinton explicitly to punish the faux left for perpetrating and perpetuating Obama's treasonous betrayal of every last vestige of progressive idealism.

As one of the many, many people who don't self identify with political terms like left, right, democrat and republican, it's not a matter of which camp wins, it's a matter of establishing a pattern of public policy that over the long term balances out the needs of varying constituencies in a manner that results in the greatest long-term benefit to the common weal.

Sanders clearly represents a needed swing back to sound investment in infrastructure and establishing necessary limits on a global oligarchy with no nationalist interests.

Unless a miracle happens and he gets past the concerted effort to defeat him, then Trump represents the best opportunity to diminish the effectiveness of the current cabal. There should be no illusions that Trump won't fall into line immediately though.

The reaction against Clinton is purely punitive. We don't need more status quo. Either way, there will be massive amounts of pain for all as we go through the death of the current paradigm - and it's coming regardless of who desecrates democracy and the Office of the President.

Oui | Jun 2, 2016 3:11:45 PM | 36
@Yonathan

"Hillary's experience is one of failure."

This statement is very true ... HRC is a shill politician supporting Israel in the Middle East . Her vote for the Iraq war, her run as senator for NY with the backing of Rupert Murdoch and her abominable policy as Secretary of State versus Libya and Syria. She used the worst of advisors at State to run her affairs. The buck stop at Obama's desk, he is ultimately responsible for the decisions made.

Secr. Clinton's Embrace of Erdogan, Muslim Brothers and Chaos

Mark | Jun 2, 2016 3:17:45 PM | 38
@tony

Iraq was hostile to Iran before the invasion and Saddam was easy to deal with. Syria used to be stable and sell oil. Now Iraq is aligned with Iran and Syria is a disaster and has given Russia an opportunity to demonstrate loyalty to allies and the effectiveness of the Russian military and weapons.

I agree with your first point - a strengthened Iran was certainly one of the few *truly* unintended consequences of the invasion/destruction of Iraq - which Bush recognized/sought to address in his 2006 "redirection" plan - but I don't know to what extent the current govt in Iraq is "aligned with Iran." My understanding (admittedly limited) is that al-Abadi is mostly powerless to resist US dictates; for instance, after Russia intervened in Syria, he made some fuss about potentially requesting RU assistance against ISIS, but then ultimately backed down. The destabilization of Syria has enabled NATO to simply steal the country's oil via ISIS - a major win for USA.

Jack Smith | Jun 2, 2016 3:26:30 PM | 40
@Oui | Jun 2, 2016 2:56:48 PM | 30

My sincere apology learned fren, dun mean to sound mean. To me the endless killing must end, Israel continue to mass killing including Palestinians teenagers and if the US cannot, unable or unwilling to do it.

It's the voters faults continue to votes for the Democratic party and Repug.

Jackrabbit | Jun 2, 2016 3:32:27 PM | 41
Early take on Hillary's foreign policy speech: pot shots at Trump (easy), interspersed with scare-mongering, chest-thumping and neocon talking points like: "we never ever stop trying to make our country a better place" (how exceptional!).

Trump's response will be . . . entertaining.

Jackrabbit | Jun 2, 2016 3:45:24 PM | 42
Clinton just demonstrated that she has no clue why people are upset with the establishment.

She seems to think all the fuss come from Trump's populist skills and his overblown ego.

Penelope | Jun 2, 2016 5:39:03 PM | 50
C'est posible that Bernie has been the intended candidate all along. Could all the vote-stealing from Bernie, balanced by the threat of a Clinton indictment have been a distraction? With no interference and an accurate vote-count Bernie would have long-since emerged as the candidate. In which case-- the microscope would have been on policy & the policies that we WANT. There might even have been a little attention left over to witness the continued subjugation of South America.

As it is, the US presidential campaign has been greatly side-tracked towards personality, and the illusion of a horse race. I daresay Bernie's controllable and he's it.

Hillary can go right on coveting Presidential power (of which there is precious little).

Anonymous 1 | Jun 2, 2016 6:41:50 PM | 54
Breaking down the 2 party system is tricky, but long term possible. States with initative processes need to enact preference voting (aka instant runoff) so that somewhat similar candidates do not wind up splitting the vote as they do with the first-past-the-post system.

After 4-6 parties regularly elect officials at the state and local level, there be enough infrastructure to flow up to the national level.

Top down pushes will collapse back to 2 parties. Hopefully, the TRUMP run will push all the 'gag' neocon/neolibs into the Democratic party of multicultural globalism. Lindsey Graham and John McCain would make wonderful Democrats. This would buy America some time, but is not a stable end state.

jfl | Jun 2, 2016 7:12:02 PM | 55
The Bigger Nuclear Risk: Trump or Clinton?

I can't tell Tweedle-dum from Tweedle-dee

... The Tweedle brothers never contradict each other, even when one of them, according to the rhyme, "agrees to have a battle". Rather, they complement each other's words. ...

Girl with Daisy and Atomic Bomb Explosion (1964) - Lyndon B. Johnson Campaign Ad

Write-in the name of someone you'd actually want to be President/Senator/Congressional representative on November 8. The stakes are too high for you to stay home.

Let 2016 be the beginning. First time, everytime, write-in your candidate, work with your neighbors toward convergence. 2016, 2018, 2020, 2022, 2024, 2026, 2028 ... if we'd set out in 2004 we'd be home by now.

karlof1 | Jun 2, 2016 7:33:43 PM | 57

Seems Neocons loved HRC's Trump bashing speech as this recap details, https://www.commentarymagazine.com/politics-ideas/campaigns-elections/hillary-clinton-anti-trump-speech/
ProPeace | Jun 2, 2016 7:52:21 PM | 59
Some Internet gossip that should not be readily dismissed, many facts do check out:
...an elite team of Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) assassins controlled by President Obama have gunned down the husband of a US prosecutor who was preparing to charge former President William (Bill) Clinton with crimes relating to his having had sex with an underage girl child kept as a sex slave by his close personal billionaire friend Jeffery Epstein...

In the "exact/near similar" location this CIA "hit squad" had been operating in ... and shortly after their departure from the Atlanta region, local police officers were called and discovered the body of Shahriar Zolfaghari who was the husband of Georgia's statewide prosecutor for human trafficking Camila Wright-and whom Atlanta Police Major Adam Lee III reported had been shot twice in the chest at close range and said: "It's a mystery as to why someone would harm him"...

the "possible/supposed" reason for Zolfaghari's killing was a "death message" to his wife Camila to stop her from charging former President Clinton with child sex crimes and to cease her sex trafficking investigation all together.

As to Prosecutor Wright's exact criminal case against President Clinton, ... it involves the "contracting/deal making" with a number of underage female girls living in the Atlanta region by New York-British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, Sarah Kellen and Nada Marcinkova-all three of whom were tasked by convicted pedophile, and billionaire, Jeffery Epstein to procure underage sex slaves for his private Caribbean island compound known as "Pedophile Island" that catered to the world's rich and famous, including President Clinton and Prince Andrew.

Ghislaine Maxwell, who has been labeled as "Epstein's pimp mama", ... was the main "dealmaker/contractor" for the underage Atlanta female sex slaves preferred by her close friend President Clinton during his visits to "Pedophile Island"-and which recently discovered flight log reports have shown him visiting numerous times, and many without his Secret Service detail.

to whom President Putin ordered this single Hillary Clinton email released to, it doesn't appear to be that hard to figure out as one hour later the international, non-profit, journalistic organization Wikileaks, that publishes secret information, news leak and classified media from anonymous sources, sent out a Twitter message containing this email under the headline Is
this email the FBI's star exhibit against Hillary Clinton ("H")?

?

The grave implications to Hillary Clinton in regards to this email... is that it provides conclusive proof that she personally ordered top secret and other type classifications to be stripped from emails sent to her private unsecured computer server in violation of US law-and, also, directly contradicts what it says on her presidential campaign website: "Clinton only used her account for unclassified email. No information in Clinton's emails was marked classified at the time she sent or received them."

... another Hillary Clinton statement on her campaign website that says: "Was it allowed? Yes. The laws, regulations, and State Department policy in place during her tenure permitted her to use a non-government email for work", has, likewise, been exposed as being untrue by the US State Department's Inspector General who last week said that not only wasn't this allowed, he detailed how Jonathan Scott Gration, the former US Ambassador to Kenya, who ignored instructions in July 2011 not to use commercial email for government businesses, was forced to resign, in mid-2012, when then Secretary Clinton herself initiated disciplinary action against him, while at the same time she was doing the exact same thing, but keeping it secret.

...many US media news sites ... agreeing that the most serious US laws violated by her were Executive Order 13526-Classified National Security Information and 18 U.S.C Sec. 793(f)-Gathering, Transmitting or Losing Defense Information of the federal code that make it unlawful to send or store classified information on personal email.

Also AangIrfan has been doing great reporting exposing the dirt on that sleaze-bag Trump:
ISRAELI TERRORISM; NETANYAHU; 9 11; TRUMP; MAFIA

Yet Trump, clearly a puppet of some powerful faction of the global deep state (most probably involving Rocefellers who are e.g. abandoning oil and want to legalize drug business, basically come out of this current war with clean hands on the victorious side), has been sending many confusing signals. Could it be that the goal of masters is too fool not the regular, 'good' people, but the enemies of the humanity (CIA, MI6, Rothshilde, Clinton, Bush, Petreaus, Romney, Koch, Adelson, Erdogan, Saudi, Netanyahoo, Kolomoiski cabal centered in the City of London living off the illegal drug trade since the opium wars)?

Mind you that we've already seen the "bifurcation" in the USG action in the Me, most recently when the Pentagon/Obama rebels been fighting the CIA "rebels".

Jack Smith | Jun 2, 2016 8:37:16 PM | 63
@Inkan1969 | Jun 2, 2016 6:39:02 PM | 52

Unfair hitting below the belt. What makes you think, getting rid of politicians shedding so much bloods here, Libya, Syria, Afghan... and blames others "so eager to spill other humans' blood on the street?"

You believe protecting motherfuckers (excuse me Hmmmm..) Liars, murderers, warmongers so no more blood on the streets? Understands, Enuff, is Enuff, the killing, lying, fake videos must end. This is not my view, majority Americans feel the same both sides of the fences, Dem or Repug. We are not the minority but the majority. The differences how to get rid these motherfuckers!!

To be clear, I'm a passive pacifist, believe in the rule of laws.

Asked many Blacks, you know what going on in Ukraine, Crimea, Syria or Greece? Most were clueless. Never heard of Ukraine etc. Otherwise - Its Putin Faults, Assad the regime must go, Its Repug faults, Congress faults but Never Obomo! More than 80% voted for Obama twice base on racial line. Now don't call me a racist. A Cop almost shot me after questioning him in public.....

Jack Smith | Jun 2, 2016 9:30:32 PM | 66
@raga the logo | June 2, 2016 6:15:07 PM | 51

" buy a pitchfork and hit the streets. Anything less is a cop-out and playing the game."

Dunno if you followed Kazzura, Anna News, Liveleak before and after Feb 2014 Maiden uprising they awakened the Separatists. Igor Strelkov, the shooter was fighting Kiev Regime, forced to leave Sloviansk with a handful fighter moved to Donbass. Farmers, doctors, mother, lawyers, grandfather and children with pitchforks and antique weapons guarding building, road blocks and checkpoints with burning tires tried to stopped advancing Kiev troops in Donetsk and Lugansk Obasts.

However, in Odessa, well-dress school children, women and men sitting calmly on the sidewalks, filling Molotov cocktails to massacre separatist holed up in the Union bldg.

Ask Neoliberal, the lesser of evils and apologists who were the blood thirsty killers?

dh | Jun 2, 2016 10:00:53 PM | 68
@63 "BTW what happened to the Repubs wanting to STOP Trump from being nominated AT ALL COST theme?

That was so last week. Ryan just endorsed Trump... "I feel confident he would help us turn the ideas in this agenda into laws to help improve people's lives. That's why I'll be voting for him this fall," Ryan wrote.

Jackrabbit | Jun 2, 2016 11:24:24 PM | 70
Reaction to Yves Politico article:

At politico.com
Pro-Hillary commenters have been harshly critical. Many say that potential Trump voters are NOT progressive and/or are comfortable elites that won't lose anything.

At nakedcapitalism.com
A large number of commenters have said that instead of Trump, they would support the GREEN PARTY!

At MoA
There has been concerns raised about 1) Sanders reluctance to attack Hillary and 2) the naivete of Yves': "strategically pointless nation-breaking in Iraq and Syria" .

<> <> <> <> <> <> <>

Note: Yves has explained that she initially tried to make the article into one that describes Sanders supporters anti-Hillary feelings. She says that editor(s) at politico guided the story to Sanders supporters that would vote Trump as it seemed to be a more dramatic story.

Jack Smith | Jun 3, 2016 1:09:28 AM | 71
Holy cow, no one will believe me - Bernie advertises in RT!! First time ever, sneaking pass Ghostly blocker - reaching out to RT viewers.

The message... College should be free, tax Walls street pay for college education. Bernie you lying shit!! I'll never vote for you even if force to eat cat food.

This what John Pliger wrote in SOTT, 27 May of Bernie...

Stunning silence in America as it prepares to vote for one side of the same coin

"Sanders, the hope of many young Americans, is not very different from Clinton in his proprietorial view of the world beyond the United States. He backed Bill Clinton's illegal bombing of Serbia. He supports Obama's terrorism by drone, the provocation of Russia and the return of special forces (death squads) to Iraq. He has nothing to say on the drumbeat of threats to China and the accelerating risk of nuclear war. He agrees that Edward Snowden should stand trial and he calls Hugo Chavez - like him, a social democrat - "a dead communist dictator". He promises to support Clinton if she is nominated...."

Penelope | Jun 3, 2016 1:13:50 AM | 72
Dahoit @ 15,

Trump:

""I didn't come here tonight to pander to you about Israel. That's what politicians do: all talk, no action… My number one priority is to dismantle the disastrous deal with Iran… We have rewarded the world's leading state sponsor of terror with $150 billion and we received absolutely nothing in return… Iran is a problem in Iraq, a problem in Syria, a problem in Lebanon, a problem in Yemen, and will be a very major problem for Saudi Arabia. Literally every day, Iran provides more and better weapons to their puppet states… We will totally dismantle Iran's global terror network. Iran has seeded terror groups all over the world. During the last five years, Iran has perpetrated terror attacks in 25 different countries on five continents. They've got terror cells everywhere, including in the western hemisphere very close to home. Iran is the biggest sponsor of terrorism around the world and we will work to dismantle that reach. . . . When I become President, the days of treating Israel like a second-class citizen will end on Day One."

Yeah, Right | Jun 3, 2016 1:22:52 AM | 73
I have to agree with @1 that it is not at all clear that Trump is "far right". He's a populist, sure, he is. Maybe he even fits the definition of a demagogue. But that doesn't place him on the "far right", it just places him "outside the system".

Trump appears to be all in favour of replacing a foreign policy that relies upon a robust military with one that is based upon active diplomacy i.e. that jaw-jaw is better than war-war.

Which certainly places him way, way to the left of many Democrats (certainly to the left of Hillary) and almost all Republicans.

He also appears to be all in favour of weighing up Trade Deals based upon what effect they have on the working and middle class of American society, rather than how much those deals enrich the 1%.

Again, that places him way, way, way to the left of most mainstream politicians in either party.

Sure, his "immigration" policies appear to be racist, and he doesn't appear to have thought thru many of his *ahem* policies.

But it is very clear to me that the major reason why he blew away a far-right crowd that contained repulsive Neanderthals as Rubio and Cruz is because he made a deliberate decision to run to the left of them. And I have no doubt that he'll seek to win the Presidency by running to the left of Hillary.

Not that it would be hard for anyone to run to the left of Hillary, but, still......

Jack Smith | Jun 3, 2016 1:28:16 AM | 74
Up Date - RT Live 7/24

Chris Hedges will be on RT On Contact soon.

Penelope | Jun 3, 2016 1:29:08 AM | 75
ProPeace @ 64, You ask "Who are the oligarchs?"
http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-federal-reserve-cartel-the-eight-families/25080?print=1
http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-four-horsemen-behind-america-s-oil-wars/24507
Penelope | Jun 3, 2016 1:54:34 AM | 76
Oh, nuts! I just realized. I didn't follow the Egypt plane crash at all. Are they going to frame LIBYA & use it as a pretext to attack? I'm only just starting to look at it. Is this possible?
MRW | Jun 3, 2016 2:10:36 AM | 77
@56, so Commentary Magazine, the cooking magazine for the neocon set, think HRC's Trump bashing speech was the cat's meow.

Colonel Lang asked this question on his site tonight:

Am I correct in saying that HC's speech in San Diego was not made to some existing group but rather was an event arranged by her campaign staff in a hired venue with an audience created by them from her supporters in the area? pl
Someone in the comments said it was closed to the public, and another said it was attended by 200 donors.
Krollchem | Jun 3, 2016 2:52:02 AM | 78
@Calathai

What do you think of Gary Johnson as an alternative to the Repubicrat choices? He is antiwar and supports many of the same social issues that Jill Stein supports. He is also a proven manager, having served as a popular two time governor of New Mexico.

I share your opinion of the Green Party after what they did to Ralph Nader. There is also the fact that Green Parties in Europe are filled warmongers, especially in Germany.

somebody | Jun 3, 2016 3:43:11 AM | 79
Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jun 2, 2016 9:12:38 AM | 9

The "middle" has been decimated enonomically. That's why traditional politics don't work anymore.

Actually, for Germany, Sanders is very much "middle". Hillary would be "right wing" minus the classism and racism. Trump is close to classical National Socialism with a very special US American "businessman" flavor (there is a traditional disdain for business in Germany).

How he could prevail with US demography, economy/business interests, and mentality, apart from winning an election where everyone stays home out of disgust, I just can't see. But a large part of German Jews (and Social Democrats and Trade Unionists - they said let it blow over it will pass) did not see it coming in 1933.

So if I was "left" in the US - or just a normal citizen - I would vote Hillary and organize for my interests to prevail in Congress, in the Senate and finally in 2020 plus refuse to be separated on lifestyle choice. My impression is that the Sandernistas will be doing just that.

M.K. Styllinski | Jun 3, 2016 7:11:12 AM | 80
So, I guess you could sum up the conclusion to all these comments that there is absolutely no one worth voting for because the electoral system is irrevocably broken due to psychopathic or ponerological "infection". You can thrash out the debate as to who is the greater or lesser of evils chosen for the parade this time around but it's a waste of energy since the foundations upon which elections are built have long been rotten to the core.

So, voting for such theatre is surely perpetuating the scenario. The president is already chosen. Period. Maybe there's a bit of infighting between Establishment factions but I think it's a done deal. Similarly, any attempt to grow something truly creative and which actually lasts inside the toxicity of Western culture will inevitably fail for the same reason: psychopathy and lesser forms of pathology define our social systems at this stage and it's on an interminable loop that needs to be reset. (And I suspect Mother nature will have a hand in that fairly soon). Time to start building community outside of the state and realise just how much creative power we have away from authoritarian rule in all its guises.

jfl | Jun 3, 2016 8:18:19 AM | 81
@79 somebody.

Some folks would make exactly your argument against the rise of Hillary.

@80 MKS

Agree completely. Culture is larger than the politics, politics is part of culture and, as you point out, culture is a sum over all its parts. It's from beneath the larger, cultural arch that we can simply takeover politics, from the outside. My suggestion is write-in voting, a de facto implementation of open elections . There's much too much harm being done now by the broken political machine, we need to get it under control.

john | Jun 3, 2016 8:31:46 AM | 82
M.K. Styllinski

yes, presumably among our inalienable rights is the right not to vote, as the electoral process, in its present manifestation, can only impede our collective creativity.

The Tale That Might Be Told

Allen | Jun 3, 2016 8:41:59 AM | 83
What must be understood and highlighted is who the political class works for- the savage capitalists. The US government is merely the front for the ruling class. It merely carries out the policies of the over-civilized, well-manicured capitalist thugs.

Anyone who thinks that simply "voting the bums out" (no matter how much Bern they been feeling lately) is a viable action in such a profoundly corrupt system is in deep denial as to the scope of our problems.

The system is not broken- it is working exactly as designed- by and for those who designed it.

In a bourgeoisie democracy the power of the electorate is a legal fiction.

Wasting energy on electoral kabuki Sanders-Style falls into that category belonging to all strategies based on "trying to push the Dems to the left." It can never happen. The Dems are officially sanctioned precisely because the business plutocracy is 100% confident that the Party can't be "pushed to the Left," even if the proverbial Apocalypse threatens. The Dem Party's essential political function is pretending to sound sympathetic to ordinary citizens, while actually doing the bidding of the financial elite.

In America, the ovens will not be disguised as showers; they will be marked "Voting Booth".

Guk Tahdar | Jun 3, 2016 8:53:39 AM | 84

Reagan was a failed Governor and fake WW2 fighter pilot who embraced the early PNAC after his first term Super Recession, then got elected by a landslide. Same with Bush2. So policy failures or weak leadership has nothing whatsoever with electability, and you can vote red, blue or purple, the Clinton Cash Machine will still dominate the Selections in November.
Jackrabbit | Jun 3, 2016 9:27:28 AM | 85
@MKS, @Allen

Wringing hands because there is "no democracy" or the duopoly candidates are so bad is a cop-out.

You have choices.

Personally, I would vote third-party instead of staying at home or write-in.

Also consider:

1) there are grass-roots organizations that are very effective - join one!

2) Hillary was supposed to be coronated. Her downfall (via email scandal) shows that things are not as hopeless/inevitable as some claim - don't lose heart!

3) A door has been opened. People see and talk about the 'rigged' political and economic system like never before.

4) You have to be a smart voter. TPTB rely on voter apathy and ignorance. Educate those around you! (carefully! a 'know it all' attitude or partisanship is counterproductive)

In USA only half of eligible voters actually vote. If everyone that gave up on voting were to vote third-party we would have a viable alternative.

Notably, the only Party that supports preference voting (which makes third-parties viable and greatly diminishes 'lesser-evil' voting) is the GREEN PARTY.

dahoit | Jun 3, 2016 9:58:48 AM | 87
72;Ah Iran.Yes,Trump for some reason(Neocon votes?)has it in for Iran, but Iran is not central to American prosperity, far away and being a Muslim nation makes it a little inviting for American pol bashing, but hey, hopefully he'll stop this on election.

And yeah, he is trying to get the monsters on his side, or at least to stop the daily demonization campaign against him, which anyone can see, if they are honest.

He will win based on the economy(66,000 jobs in May,the worst in 6 years btw) and the feelings of patriotic Americans sick of being Zio boy toys,and sick of furriners coming here and rioting against American citizens.That got him a few more million votes.

America first, a winning hand, but anathema to the Zionists, our mortal enemy.

dumbass | Jun 3, 2016 10:05:27 AM | 88
>> given that outsider presidents like Jimmy Carter
>> and celebrity governors like Arnold Schwarzenegger
>> and Jesse Ventura didn't get much done,

Says who? They got us through 4+ years without heaping a ton of sh** on us. Reagan, Clinton, Obama, and Bush did a lot of damage, such that we wish they would've done less.

dahoit | Jun 3, 2016 10:07:18 AM | 89
77; I read that her speech was before the US Pacific Fleet, a bunch of military morons. She is going full bore dominatrix. She said Trump coddles dictators;Sheesh,you mean like Mubarak,Sissi,Saudis,Bahrain,Dubai and all points east and west thugs of Clinton favor? A moron, with hypocrisy enough to name a wing of a museum of political liars after her evil self.

Penelope; Yes, if Trump turns out to be a liar re his plans, the pushback will be the next election cycle, with an actual clone of Hitler as candidate. We've had enough of these monsters, who use US and abuse US daily.

Jack Smith | Jun 3, 2016 10:13:42 AM | 93
@ M.K. Styllinski | Jun 3, 2016 7:11:12 AM | 80

....there is absolutely no one worth voting for because the electoral system is irrevocably broken due to psychopathic or ponerological "infection". You can thrash out the debate as to who is the greater or lesser of evils....

Ahaaa, Not so, you have another choices. Votes for the MOST ABHORRENT CANDIDATE POSSIBLE, Erdogan or Avigdor Lieberman if they are in the running or Hillary or Thump.

Allen | Jun 3, 2016 10:23:40 AM | 94
@jackrabbit #85

Better to place this action in an institutional context. The forces placed on the elected person by the state machinery and pressures from big business dictate the outcome. In the current system your vote is meaningless. You can argue all you want that "We need to keep up the pressure to demand Politician______ needs to listen to ordinary citizens, not to business" and you will rot on the vine as your words disappear into the indifferent air.

There is a difference between the state and government. The state is the permanent collection of institutions that have entrenched power structures and interests. The government is made up of various politicians. It is the institutions that have power in the state due to their permanence, not the representatives who come and go. We cannot expect different politicians to act in different ways to the same pressures. However, this is all ignored by the voting political consumer who wishes Politician______ was more a socialist, green, populist etc. and could ignore the demands of the dominant class in society while in charge of one part of its protector and creature, the state.

Who wins the election in the capitalist system makes no difference because all politicians in this system must do what the ruling class want. Elections are a scam whose function is to neutralize resistance movements and dupe ordinary citizens into thinking they have a say in matters of the state.

Elections in the capitalist system do not secure popular control over the state, they do help secure state control over the populace. Voting is a ritual that reinforces obedience to state authority. It creates the illusion that "the people" control the state, thereby masking elite rule. That illusion makes rebellion against the state less likely because it is seen as a legitimate institution and as an instrument of popular rule rather than the oligarchy it really is. Embedded within all electoral campaigns is the myth that "the people" control the state through voting.

dumbass | Jun 3, 2016 10:26:36 AM | 95
>> Had Sanders run as an independent he would be getting literally no coverage and likely achieving very little success. ... If he ran as an independent this wouldn't be the case.

Not crazy. But, I disagree.

Implicit in your reasoning is this assumption: In an alternate timeline in which Clinton was *not* primaried, DNC primary voters would've been unaware of or overlooked her horrible record. But, that assumption is undermined by the record in the current timeline:

ben | Jun 3, 2016 11:32:16 AM | 100
Allen @ 94 said:

"Who wins the election in the capitalist system makes no difference because all politicians in this system must do what the ruling class want. Elections are a scam whose function is to neutralize resistance movements and dupe ordinary citizens into thinking they have a say in matters of the state."

Well said Allen, and, I believe, true. I will however, vote, because I've always voted. The therapy is beneficial. So, in closing, vote people vote. Keeping in mind the subtle reminder below.
http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=14545

[Jun 12, 2016] Is Trump the lessee evil ? So-called progressive groups have sold out in siding with Clinton

Is Hillary doomed? Probably considerably mor e Hillary "No passaran" progressives will vote for Trump...than Nevertrumpers republicans will vote for Hillary...
Notable quotes:
"... I think the entire point of this article is the absolute truth. In a Trump vs. Clinton race, their is no progressive candidate. ..."
"... Clinton has pretty much shown herself to be against the masses and for the plutocrats. She lives in a bubble of the super-wealthy and has a disgusting political record of lying, corruption and scandal. She and Bill use political power for whatever idiotic purpose they see fit. They buy the black vote outright through welfare programs that actually keep the black population in the gutter instead of real reforms. ..."
"... For HRC, the world of politics is merely a world where she can attain her ideal amount of control and power over others. Trump may be a narcissistic asshole, but he doesn't reach this level of sociopathic tendency. He is also completely clueless in politics, which is actually a good thing. ..."
"... Mark, Politico IS part of corporate media - if you believe otherwise, I've got some lovely swampland in Florida to sell you. ..."
"... Arthur, if the Green Party gets 5% of the vote, they get federal funding and automatic ballot access - it's a far more attractive option than voting for one evil to stop another form of evil. Using the scary Republican boogeyman didn't work for John Kerry, and it won't work for $Hillary Clinton. ..."
"... I'll vote for Trump over Clinton (if Bernie doesn't get the nomination). More important than even those points above (and 20 others I've researched) I can sum it up so: Trump = maybe war Clinton = war for sure ..."
"... Clinton wants more ME war. Syria for sure. Maybe Iran. ..."
"... Trump is vacuous policy free blowhard. Clinton is a war-mongering, duplicitious, corrupt sociopath. Which is worse? Given that choice, she is not the lesser of two evils. ..."
"... So this is what our political system has given us. The Republican who is involved in fraud litigation on both coasts, and is perhaps involved in up to 3,500 civil cases. Then there is Clinton. Do I believe that she used a private e-mail server to avoid transparency and FOIA? Yes. Do I believe that there was/is a "pay to play" relationship between wealthy corporations, governments and the Clinton Foundation? The circumstantial evidence to me is pretty compelling. Do I think that her foreign policy in places like Honduras, Haiti, and Libya (among others) is misguided? Yes. Do I think that she is too cozy with the big banks? Yes. Do I think that she changes a policy position based on political expediency? Again, yes. ..."
"... Sanders supporters are already starting to move onto the next step with brandnewcongress.org in an effort to elect more progressives into the legislature. ..."
"... The biggest chunk of Sanders voters that will go to Trump are the less ideological voters who may agree with Trump on trade and little else, but who despise Clinton and see her as another dishonest, globalist politician, and who more than anything want to shake up both parties in Washington. ..."
"... HRC is a horrible, self-enriching, dishonest, pandering power hungry politician who is going to lose in November due to an unlikely coalition of Americans who are just fed up with the status quo. ..."
"... Clinton is an islamophobic racist and viciously anti-Palestinian. She's also a vehement Russophobe. She has no problems with unleashing mass slaughters of innocents so that her friends in big business can increase their already bloated profits. Vote for her by all means. But don't pretend to be a progressive or to speak for progressives. You are not. ..."
"... Yves Smith sums it up perfectly and we are witnessing this political process in many Western nations, a process whereby much of the electorate is sick and tired of 'neoliberalism' and the greed it sponsers and espouses. For us Brit's, we feel much the same about the Blair's as many in the USA think about the Clinton clan, that is they are greedy buggers more concerned with the depth of their own pockets than their own citizens. Oh, and then we have to add the social justice warrior BS to everything. ..."
"... As for foreign policy, we'll at least Trump has no blood on his hands and you Clinton suppoters cannot say that of Shrillary I'm afraid to say, who'd welcome WWIII if it meant more coin for her and the elite! ..."
"... The question remains: why should we progressives accept a Democratic Party that has sold its soul to the 1%? And if we don't accept this, then how does a corrupt party get fixed or replaced? In other words, where is the party to represent the 99%? ..."
"... So as a lifelong active progressive my question remains - and its not whether Trump supporters are morons - its what alternative do we have to build a corruption-free political movement for the 99% if Sanders is not elected? We should at least separate out the symptoms from the root causes. Perhaps that is too radical of a notion for you, but that will help us figure out where to go next. ..."
"... Arthur C. Hurwitz LOL. I actually have been working in the trenches for many decades. While that doesn't give me a pipeline to the truth, I at least know an armchair progressive when i see one. I could easily say to you that you have swallowed the Kool aid of "anyone but Trump." But that goes nowhere. ..."
"... Voting for Trump is an insult to Bernie and all he stands for. It makes no sense at all to vote for Trump to send a message that the Dems are corrupt; it sends the message that the Dems are not corrupt enough! ..."
"... Why the hell did this article leave out the Green Party as an option??? The Green Party is as Progressive as Bernie. If your conscience won't allow you to vote for Hillary, make your vote count and vote Green. Don't give the GOP a mandate! ..."
www.politico.com
Dianne McCarthy . Jun 1, 2016 4:30pm
So-called progressive groups have sold out in siding with Clinton. Many of these groups have received donations from the Clintons and others are simply too afraid of the DNC's power. Still others like Barney Frank are as corrupt as Clinton is. Lastly, are the ignorant pragmatists who believed the tripe of Bernie's inelectability. With all the cheating going on, Bernie is very close, despite the best efforts of the corporate media, the DNC and Clinton's other attack dogs. My bottom line against her, is that she is a pathological liar, just like Ftrump, so how can anyone believe a word she says?

Pairc Chuil · Jun 2, 2016 6:06am Works at MassGen

I won't be voting Trump but won't be voting Clinton either. I've just recently left the Democratic party after having served on committees, volunteered, donated, and canvassed for Democratic candidates my entire voting life. But oligarchy is a bridge too far for me. And yes, I'm highly educated and will vote for Bernie or Green in the GE.

Brooke Doris ,

No smart progressive in their right mind would ever vote for Trump. That would mean abandoning all their principles. Pure drivel.

Gail Newman

Not true. Trump is more liberal than Hillary in very important areas.

Dianne McCarthy · Works at Currently Underemployed

Anyone voting for #ChickenTrump is NOT progressive...really stupid article. "Smart" people understand that #SleazyTrump is just as corrupt as # NeverClinton . He has bragged about buying politicians and has lied and flip-flopped just as much as she has. His racist, sexist and xenophobic comments are deplorable, whether he really believes them or is just pandering to the yokels. His foreign policy naivete and warmongering comments allude to his being, just as bad as #NeverHillary on continuing war. His ignorance of climate change is ridiculous and his comments on it, totally irresponsible. Finally, anyone who votes for a lesser of evils is still voting for evil, to paraphrase Jerry Garcia. Pragmatism is not necessarily intelligence. I'll vote my conscience which is either Bernie or Jill.

Brian Jennings · Metropolis, Illinois

Arthur C. Hurwitz , Fracking? War? Workers organizing? Labeling food? Etc...Hillary is not a progressive , she is a Republican.
I do not want her or Trump picking SCOTUS judges.......

I think the entire point of this article is the absolute truth. In a Trump vs. Clinton race, their is no progressive candidate.

Arthur C. Hurwitz

The problem here is that as much as they might be dissatisfied with the status quo, even justifiably, they lack the awareness that everything could be much worse. Sanders betrayed the most important ideal from his Brooklyn Socialist Jewish background and that is that Fascism is the greatest threat to humanity....

David Jan West · Northwestern University

America today is absolutely nothing like Germany post WWI. Please read some history. Comparing Trump to Hitler is like comparing an Orange to Hitler. Our society is not nearly as racist. Our society is thousands of times more diverse than Germany. And, our nationalistic pride is pretty much nowhere these days. I find that more Americans hate America, as in the Government and the corporate culture, than they do a single race. We are not reeling from a disatrous war in which we lost a 3rd of our population and lost a generation of men (and on that point, Obama is the most militaristic president America has ever seen in terms of expanding military budgets and powers, and length of warfare).

Clinton has pretty much shown herself to be against the masses and for the plutocrats. She lives in a bubble of the super-wealthy and has a disgusting political record of lying, corruption and scandal. She and Bill use political power for whatever idiotic purpose they see fit. They buy the black vote outright through welfare programs that actually keep the black population in the gutter instead of real reforms. They used presidential pardons to get Fillipino votes in New York when Hillary was running for Senate in New York. They have amassed an insane amount of money that should be impossible for a strictly politics couple, have been caught in inside trading schemes, gifting schemes, etc.

For HRC, the world of politics is merely a world where she can attain her ideal amount of control and power over others. Trump may be a narcissistic asshole, but he doesn't reach this level of sociopathic tendency. He is also completely clueless in politics, which is actually a good thing. Because, the worst people in history are not the idiots, they are those who are smart, ambitious, but have a twisted morality.

Hitler was not stupid in any way. He nearly managed to pull off eradicating the Jewish and other minority populations in Europe and successfully defeated and invaded the surrounding countries. Stalin was similarly quite astute and dangerously successful. He held Soviet Russia and a good half of Europe in a vicelike grip for 30 years and killed millions in the process. Trump can barely manage to keep his head combed over. I think America will manage just fine.

Kristin Marie

More like many progressives will vote for Jill Stein of the Green Party - god forbid another progressive option be mentioned in corporate media.

Kristin Marie

Mark, Politico IS part of corporate media - if you believe otherwise, I've got some lovely swampland in Florida to sell you.

Arthur, if the Green Party gets 5% of the vote, they get federal funding and automatic ballot access - it's a far more attractive option than voting for one evil to stop another form of evil. Using the scary Republican boogeyman didn't work for John Kerry, and it won't work for $Hillary Clinton.

Gail Newman

America is a feudal country calling itself a democracy. We evicted feudalism when the nations united in a treaty called the Articles of Confederation. We reinforced that decision after the Constitution, when voter enfranchisement exploded. We were returned to feudalism in 1819 when the Supreme Court through out our Constitutional Republic and replaced it with a Common Law government with itself at the head, serving as dictator (sharing a throne) as well as the nation's God (decider of morality). We don't know that because in America, students in public schools are taught provable lies about our history.

Bernie is about ending feudalism. Hillary serves the feudal lords and aristocrats. #NeverHillary. If Bernie doesn't get the nomination, I'll vote Jill Stein because my state doesn't allow write-ins that would threaten the status quo. If I lived in a blue or swing state, I would vote Trump.

Jack Albrecht · Lamar University

I'm an early 50's (I) ex-pat living in Austria. I own 3 flats and have my own company. I've got mine. We've already got democratic socialism here. My son starts university next year. It will cost me nothing additional (just one example).

I'll vote for Trump over Clinton (if Bernie doesn't get the nomination). More important than even those points above (and 20 others I've researched) I can sum it up so:
Trump = maybe war
Clinton = war for sure

Last year Austria had 85k asylum applications. That is 1% of the population. In. One. Year.

Clinton wants more ME war. Syria for sure. Maybe Iran. Europe's governments are being destabilized because the people don't when the flood of refugees will end. With Clinton, it is sure to increase. She'd destablize the entire EU, the US's biggest trading partner, just to satisfy her blood lust. Watch the video of "We came, we saw, he died" as Clinton laughs about Ghaddafi's lynching. Disgusting.

Trump is vacuous policy free blowhard. Clinton is a war-mongering, duplicitious, corrupt sociopath. Which is worse? Given that choice, she is not the lesser of two evils.

Nadeem Ahmed · Works at Salesforce

This is one of the dumbest things ever written in the history of man. Every single issue that was written about ignores reality. Obamacare for one - it passed with 1 vote - 1 vote. If they had done single payer it was a snowball in hell. Neither President Obama or President Clinton were dicatators - they needed congress and the senate to get thigs done. If Sanders were somehow to become Presidnet - how in the name of all that is holy will he get single payer through congress and the Senate? At this point the author is dilusional. Significant progress was made under both presidencies. The long arch of history has bended towards justice. The idea that progress is not incremental ignores, common sense, reality and truth. To beleive otherwise is just a way to rationalize you mysogony.

Fiasco Linguini · Junior Assistant Flunky / Peon at The Galactic Empire

You make some fair points until you assert that true Progressives who are fed up with our corrupt system are all mysogynists. That's stupider than the article we both dislike. You undermine yourself when you say stupid shit like that.

Regan Farr Gonzalez · Gig Harbor, Washington

Insightful article; thank you. The knee-jerk talking points and highly aggressive pushback by Clinton supporters here is a startlingly clear example of how this interesting phenomenon affects our ability to choose: http://billmoyers.com/story/voting-with-their-stone-age-brains/

Mike Wood · Trout Lake, Washington

As a 59 year old male with a graduate degree, five grandkids and a professional career, I cannot and will not vote for Hillary Clinton for all the reasons listed in the article. The Bern movement is the wake up call. So wake up. The only obstacle to a more fair and just economy is the Dems who won't get on board. Trump is not the enemy. He is a sideshow. Clinton and all she stands for is the real enemy of meaningful change.

Bill Bartlett · Indiana University

On the political spectrum I consider myself a Progressive. Am I one of the "smartest?" I don't know. Yves' blog "Naked Capitalism" is on my daily reading list. There is an important point being overlooked in all of this. It's not just Donald Trump that's part of this election, it's the rest of the Republican party. Here's my take on what a Trump presidency may be like. Like most of his business ventures, the Trump presidency will be merely a brand applied to the broader Republican agenda. Reporting is that Trump is looking for someone to do the parts of the job that he doesn't want to do. Like public policy. He'll rely on the likes of Newt Gingrich (who the author cited earlier) to advise him. Grover Norquist famously said "We are not auditioning for fearless leader. We don't need a president to tell us in what direction to go. We know what direction to go. We want the Ryan budget. ... We just need a president to sign this stuff. We don't need someone to think it up or design it." Trump will be such a president. A puppet like GW Bush was.

A Trump election will also mean that the House would definitely remain in GOP hands, and possibly the Senate. If that is true, it's "game over." McConnell would not hesitate to abolish the filibuster. And we'll get every horrible policy that they push now. The ACA (Obamacare) while imperfect, does manage to get more Americans into healthcare. Absent the ACA the worst abuses of the health insurers will return. Policy rescission, denial of coverage, double digit rate increases year after year. Will the Republicans offer an alternative? Not likely. Will Attorney General Chris Christie pursue action against "bathroom laws?" Will he take up voting rights cases? Will Secretary of State Jeff Sessions or John Bolton work for peace? What will happen with the Paris climate accord? Although inadequate IMO, it has at least united the world to start taking action. What will happen with the Iran nuclear agreement? The US may withdraw, but the others will not, isolating us with Israeli warmongers. Despite his public pronouncements, Trump will rubber stamp free trade deals. He will be persuaded by his GOP cohorts that these are actually good for average Americans. And then there is the Supreme Court. The court is effectively nine robed kings and queens whose word is law and they cannot be challenged. Trump has promised more Scalias. The next two vacancies could easily be the liberals Ginsberg and Breyer. Do we want Scalias, young Scalias, in those chairs?

So this is what our political system has given us. The Republican who is involved in fraud litigation on both coasts, and is perhaps involved in up to 3,500 civil cases. Then there is Clinton. Do I believe that she used a private e-mail server to avoid transparency and FOIA? Yes. Do I believe that there was/is a "pay to play" relationship between wealthy corporations, governments and the Clinton Foundation? The circumstantial evidence to me is pretty compelling. Do I think that her foreign policy in places like Honduras, Haiti, and Libya (among others) is misguided? Yes. Do I think that she is too cozy with the big banks? Yes. Do I think that she changes a policy position based on political expediency? Again, yes.

But the answer to those issues is not to hand the reins of government to a dangerous, unbalanced, narcissist like Trump and the ghouls in the Republican party. I'd rather that Sanders, and his supporters mobilize with other progressives in Congress (Warren, Franken, Brown, Ellison just to name a few) and keep her on a more progressive path. Sanders supporters are already starting to move onto the next step with brandnewcongress.org in an effort to elect more progressives into the legislature.

In the meantime we need to stay strong and vote against trade agreements that harm Americans. Withhold support for cabinet members that come from corporate boardrooms.

Vote against changes/cuts to programs like Social Security and Medicare. Propose legislation to accomplish the goals that will benefit the majority of Americans. Constantly, consistently, and relentlessly push the President to do the right thing. Will we win all of these battles, no. But at least they will be the right battles and we will win some of them.

Peter Meyer

I disagree with the premise that true liberals will vote for Trump in large numbers. The biggest chunk of Sanders voters that will go to Trump are the less ideological voters who may agree with Trump on trade and little else, but who despise Clinton and see her as another dishonest, globalist politician, and who more than anything want to shake up both parties in Washington.

About 1/3 of Bernie voters will vote for Trump, 1/3 for HRC and 1/3 won't vote at all. HRC is a horrible, self-enriching, dishonest, pandering power hungry politician who is going to lose in November due to an unlikely coalition of Americans who are just fed up with the status quo.

Alexander Sebastian Ruiz · Austin, Texas

Doug Von This author claims that most of their followers would either sit out or vote for Trump over Hillary during this election because they are both just as bad. Racism exists among all races. But Trump has made it clear that his racism does not extend towards two very specific categories: White and Christian. Therefore those with the least to lose by him winning an election during this season are people who fall under both of those banners. Not all Whites are racists and I believe this person is exaggerating about their following, but their argument leads me to the conclusion that they are White. I know several people of different races who are just as unimpressed by Clinton, some outright hating her, but, and this is unfortunate for the way this election has played out, they will vote for Clinton because its become a matter of how their basic rights could be curtailed under a Trump Presidency, not just our coutry's very problematic financial systems.

John Giles

Clinton is an islamophobic racist and viciously anti-Palestinian. She's also a vehement Russophobe. She has no problems with unleashing mass slaughters of innocents so that her friends in big business can increase their already bloated profits. Vote for her by all means. But don't pretend to be a progressive or to speak for progressives. You are not.

Chris Rogers · "The Boss" at My Own Business Institute

There seem to be some seriously deluded Clinton nutters posting on this story, but fact remains Yves Smith sums it up perfectly and we are witnessing this political process in many Western nations, a process whereby much of the electorate is sick and tired of 'neoliberalism' and the greed it sponsers and espouses. For us Brit's, we feel much the same about the Blair's as many in the USA think about the Clinton clan, that is they are greedy buggers more concerned with the depth of their own pockets than their own citizens. Oh, and then we have to add the social justice warrior BS to everything.

I'm proud I worked for a Jeremy Corbyn election victory within the UK's Labour Party last year - a honest man like Sanders, both of whom represent a threat to the status quo, and as such, much maligned by neoliberals and the media. Still, the revolution will come and business as usual is now not an option, unless you want your homes three feet under water due to global warming, that's if you are lucky to have a roof over your head. As for foreign policy, we'll at least Trump has no blood on his hands and you Clinton suppoters cannot say that of Shrillary I'm afraid to say, who'd welcome WWIII if it meant more coin for her and the elite!

Mark Anderlik · Union organizer at Union

Arthur C. Hurwitz The question remains: why should we progressives accept a Democratic Party that has sold its soul to the 1%? And if we don't accept this, then how does a corrupt party get fixed or replaced? In other words, where is the party to represent the 99%?

Arthur C. Hurwitz

Mark Anderlik It isn't about what you accept or don't accept. It is what there is and the actually to be realized potential outcomes. If the Democratic Party "sold its soul" or not. It still is far more progressive on many issue than Trump and the Republican Party will ever be. Moreover, a President Trump will be a disaster for our country and for many of its citizens, and of course, the world. If you can't see that, you obviously don't know anything about the rise of Fascism in Europe during the 1930's.

Mark Anderlik · Union organizer at Union

Arthur C. Hurwitz You need to reread this article. Seriously. It is not a call for progressives to vote for Trump. And Yves is no "nutjob," far from it. I am a daily reader of her blog and I learn way more about finance, economics and politics from a progressive perspective that from many "progressive" news shows on MSNBC and the like.

The point is it is precisely because of corrupt politicians like Clinton, and many parts of the Democratic Party, that fascist politicians like Trump have and will emerge. I am a Sanders supporter and will never vote for Trump. But if you can't see Trump's emergence as a true fascist candidate has at its root the corruption and hypocrisy of the "progressive" parties, then you are not seeing what is before your eyes. Read a little Chomsky if you want to open your eyes. We are now witnessing today a re-emergengce of fascism - one also almost won in Austria, and others are also emerging in the "advanced" countries.

And it is, in the end, what you and I, and millions of others, do and don't accept. That is the very core of real progressive politics - that a better world can be made for all people (and other living things) through conscious, intentional, and collective human action.

So as a lifelong active progressive my question remains - and its not whether Trump supporters are morons - its what alternative do we have to build a corruption-free political movement for the 99% if Sanders is not elected? We should at least separate out the symptoms from the root causes. Perhaps that is too radical of a notion for you, but that will help us figure out where to go next.

Mark Anderlik · Union organizer at Union

Arthur C. Hurwitz LOL. I actually have been working in the trenches for many decades. While that doesn't give me a pipeline to the truth, I at least know an armchair progressive when i see one. I could easily say to you that you have swallowed the Kool aid of "anyone but Trump." But that goes nowhere.

I also know what vision I have for a better society is supremely relevant for how I decide to act in this crazy time. Yes, not only do I believe in the vision of "by the people and for the people" I also believe that it is the only effective way of creating a better world for the 99%. I find it difficult to see what you would fight for, besides the right to post smarmy commentary to avoid fascism. Prove me wrong. Tell us your vision of how we get to a political party that is corruption-free that serves the interests of the 99%.

Fiasco Linguini · Junior Assistant Flunky / Peon at The Galactic Empire

Voting for Trump is an insult to Bernie and all he stands for. It makes no sense at all to vote for Trump to send a message that the Dems are corrupt; it sends the message that the Dems are not corrupt enough!

And withholding your vote is not defiance, it's surrender!

Why the hell did this article leave out the Green Party as an option??? The Green Party is as Progressive as Bernie. If your conscience won't allow you to vote for Hillary, make your vote count and vote Green. Don't give the GOP a mandate!

Julian Castor

Bernie and Trump coming up in 2016 is no coincidence.

Their unexpected political success is simply a result of the appallingly -- and consistently -- egregious performance by both major parties and their ruling elites.

Yancey Tobias · University of Delaware

Excellent perspective from the consistently clear eyed Smith------i have been saying the same thing since the campaign started. There is no way any progressive should vote for Clinton---she simply is not progressive nor morally credible.

[Jun 11, 2016] Gaius Publius Puerto Rico Democratic Party Reduced Primary Votes to 8% of What Was Expected

This is not a Democratic Party. Far from that. This is party of neoliberal bottom feeders
naked capitalism
By Gaius Publius , a professional writer living on the West Coast of the United States and frequent contributor to DownWithTyranny, digby, Truthout, and Naked Capitalism. Follow him on Twitter @Gaius_Publius , Tumblr and Facebook . Originally published at at Down With Tyranny . GP article here

Just three facts and a video. You can add them up as easily as I can.

1. Puerto Rican officials expected 700,000 people to vote in the 2016 Democratic primary. Think Progress, from a much longer article :

[A]n estimated 700,000 Puerto Ricans will vote this Sunday[.]

That's a lot of voters.

The Democratic Party cut the number of polling places by two-thirds, from more than 1500 to less than 500. In addition, because there were two simultaneous elections - one for local officials and one for the presidential race - voters had to go to two separate locations if they wanted to cast both ballots. Then the Party cut the voting hours, the window of time during which any voting could be done.

A longer clip from the same Think Progress article (my emphasis):

In early May, Puerto Rico's Democratic Party announced that more than 1,500 polling places would be available for the island's June 5 Democratic primary. A few weeks later, they slashed that number to just over 430 - a reduction of more than two thirds.

In 2008, the island's last competitive Democratic primary, there were more than 2,300 polling places.

Some are warning of long lines and voters left unable to access the ballot box, as an estimated 700,000 Puerto Ricans will vote this Sunday, and polling places will only be open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m . .

Worse, many voters will have to visit two separate locations to cast ballots in the presidential primary and the local primaries held the same day. Voter turnout and engagement has for years been much higher on the island than in the 50 U.S. states, but these changes may present too heavy a burden for low-income residents who lack transportation options or who need to work.

Supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) are up in arms about the polling place reductions, calling it a "fix" and drawing parallels to Arizona's disastrous primary . Arizona's most populous county closed two-thirds of its polling locations ahead of its April primary, forcing some voters to wait in line more than six hours to cast a ballot.

They got the result they wanted….

3. The number of votes actually cast in the Democratic presidential primary totaled just over 60,000 . If my math is correct, that about 8% of the expected total, or a voter suppression rate of 92%. Again, the Puerto Rico Democratic Party, all good loyal Democrats I'm sure, suppressed 92% of their own vote, by reducing voting locations and hours.

Why? You decide. My answer? Too much democracy for the "Democratic" Party.

... ... ...

How corrupt is the current leadership, top to bottom, of many of the arms of the Democratic Party? Looks like "very" to me. The willingness to corrupt the process seems to exist at many of the state and county committees as well. (It's not a conspiracy if you don't have to tell the county committeewoman what to do, if she already knows, in other words, when and where to stick in the knife.)

How determined is the Democratic Party to commit seppuku on a national electoral stage? Same answer. Flying high on hubris usually lead to a crash landing. Pride and a fall.

For more on the situation in Puerto Rico, check out this short video, made just before the election.

Looks like the Clinton-led Democratic Party isn't even trying to hide this stuff any more. Looks like they don't think they need to.


flora , June 8, 2016 at 10:06 am

Clinton practiced her ground game in Haiti and Ukraine.

Jim Haygood , June 8, 2016 at 1:17 pm

Jeb! offered some helpful tips too, from his successful Florida effort in 2000.

All in the family!

marym , June 8, 2016 at 10:20 am

Final vote count still not reported for Puerto Rico. CBS and CNN showing the same vote counts, CBS calling it 59% reporting, CNN 69%

TheCatSaid , June 8, 2016 at 10:29 am

I learned a lot from this short clip linked by NC reader Bev.

I learned more from the full video at trustvote.org The RICO lawsuit filed by Bob Fitrakis and Cliff Arnebeck deserves attention. They are highly experienced election lawyers. Their evidence and legal strategy is explained in the video.

The new report "Fraction Magic" at blackboxvoting.org has more bombshells.
And the recent Greg Palast revelations about the issues with the NPP ballots in CA.

AND–short video clips from many of the top experts in US election fraud are at lawyer Bob Fitrakis' website . These are all people with lengthy experience documenting election irregularities of many kinds, including but not limited to the tactics for voter disenfranchisement used in Puerto Rico.

And guess what–the election consultant hired by Trump was a key player in past election irregularities.

Since the late 1990s in many (most?) places we have not had true elections, we've had competitions in vote rigging by multiple parties and interests, using a wide range of tactics and technology.

Bev , June 8, 2016 at 2:05 pm

To TheCatSaid from TheDogHowled-Bev, so true. And, Bev Harris has more bomshells: I am going there now, but to let you know some of your links do not work. It's time to get back our democracy from the criminals rigging our elections.

Wasn't the last protest at a Trump rally, which usually promotes violence against protesters, this time instead had protesters turning violent against Trump backers, found out later to be Clinton's people? Isn't that correct? There is your preview of how these anti-democracy, authoritarian leaders intend to win as TheCatSaid, by rigging the vote in many ways, accusing each other of rigging and violence, and by beating the crap out of each other, a la brown shirts. NO.

To all sports fans, the following will change our future for the better by rescuing our democracy and our kids.

With some few edits, via: http://www.forums.mlb.com/discussions/Chicago_Cubs/General/ml-cubs/1?tsn=77&tid=443191&redirCnt=1&nav=messages
The GOP's new plan for voter suppression

via: https://richardcharnin.wordpress.com/2016/05/28/democratic-primaries-is-clinton-leading-by-3-million-votes/
Democratic Primaries: Is Clinton leading by 3 million votes?
Richard Charnin

BREAKING NEWS: Election Attorney Cliff Arnebeck filed a major RICO racketeering lawsuit June 6, 2016 against the voting machine companies whose code that fractionalized votes and so delegate distribution was found by Bev Harris ( http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-1/
Fraction Magic – Part 1: Votes are being counted as fractions instead of as whole numbers ), and against the media that was complicit in covering up the crime of election theft by adjusting the exit polls to match the fraudulent voting machine counts which was found by Richard Charnin and Beth Clarkson ( http://showmethevotes.org/ ).

This is a Very Strong RICO lawsuit involving State and Federal Courts, involving current and past election crimes, that importantly involves ALL THE STATES, that means Illinois, Cub fans, for the collection of evidence to determine the correct vote counts, and delegate counts.

Arnebeck says that by the time of the Republican Convention which is before the Democratic Convention, that this RICO racketeering lawsuit will have changed history, and the minds of politicians and the public so that the true winner, Bernie Sanders, will be demanded. What a great legacy.

See the short video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_IAJ5fAm3Cs
http://trustvote.org/

PROTECTING OUR ELECTIONS
Bob Fitrakis, Cliff Arnebeck and Lori Grace
………..

NYT, Ap and other media are reporting that Hillary has "clinched" the nomination. They, having jumped the shark, want to tell you how she did it. Now they can tell a judge how they did it because the media have been RICOed.

Attorney Cliff Arnebeck says it does not matter what the media says or Hillary Clinton says, the law, this RICO case will prevail. This will save our Democracy.

Today is a great day. Today is the beginning of getting our democracy back.

Thanks to all election integrity people who so trust regular people to create a better future for us all, that you fight for a democracy. What a great day.

snip

Please spread this important RICO event all around everywhere. Because, I think the media will have a hard time reporting that they have been sued for racketeering. We will have to report widely.

RUKidding , June 8, 2016 at 10:33 am

We're supposed to feel victorious that Maggie Thatcher, uh, Hillary Clinton allegedly "won" the D Primary all fair and square. To suggest that shenanigans happened means that I'm a putative Bernie Bro who is clearly clueless, stupid, worthless and should STFU.

Oh well. C'est la vie. Hillary was certainly bound to be inevitable this time around… by hook or by CROOK.

IMO, the PTB were much more worried about Bernie Sanders than Trump. Clinton? Eh, Hillary's their fair haired girl. The rightwing noise machine may vent and spew about Clinton, but pay no attention to that man behind the curtain. Clinton's the poodle of Wall St, the Hedgies, the MIC. CHA CHING!!

The masses can content themselves with the glass ceiling allegedly having been broken. Whoopee.

different clue , June 9, 2016 at 12:18 am

The TIFFANY glass ceiling. The Tiffany Glass Ceiling that Upper Class feminists of privilege want the rest of us to care about even though we are dealing with Cinder Block Ceilings of our own.

Pepe Aguglia , June 8, 2016 at 10:46 am

Although Bernie never had a chance of getting the nomination (not because he couldn't win enough votes but because the party would have never nominated him even if he had won every single state primary), he has performed a great public service by exposing what a sordid farce the Democratic party is. For this, I am eternally grateful to the Bernster. It is now clear for all to see, if there was any doubt previously, that We the People will never be able to overthrow the plutocracy until we drive a stake through the Democratic Party's heart and stick a fork in its bloated carcass.

YankeeFrank , June 8, 2016 at 11:07 am

Yes, the greatest betrayer of a cause is all too frequently the guy right next to you. The one who says he is on your side. The "liberals" were always going to be the revolution's most dangerous foes.

I visited that extremely mixed bag of a blog "lawyersgunsandmoney" yesterday just to see how they'd been covering the Dem primary and was not let down at all. They attempted to skewer Yves' politico piece with glib and snide inline comments that fell completely flat, but I think my favorite comment was when the author of the piece used Obama's recent words on expanding social security as proof that the Dem establishment is becoming more progressive. I mean, there is room for argument about tactics for moving the Dems to the left, but if we are going to pretend that Obama hasn't spent the past 7 years trying to gut social security in order to "save" it, and that his recent empty words signify anything more than a pathetic 11th hour attempt to get in front of the revolution and call it his parade, then our worldviews are just fundamentally irreconcilable.

jhallc , June 8, 2016 at 12:03 pm

I saw that yesterday and having never been to that site before and given the site's name, I had a very different expectation about it's leanings. I immediately realized they were shilling for Hillary. Wonder how Warren Zevon would feel about his lyrics being used for neoliberal propoganda.

YankeeFrank , June 8, 2016 at 2:27 pm

The site is definitely mixed tho, not all bad. What confuses me the most is their hostility to those who see incrementalism as a fraud, but I guess thats because they truly think its the only thing that works (history be damned). I remember I lost patience with them when they started celebrating Janet Yellen's appointment over Larry Summers. I pointed out that while she is better than him she is still a complete neoliberal tool and wont change anything. They couldn't handle that apparently. Honestly, when it comes to econ they don't know what they don't know. Its a major blind spot for them esp. given Obama's major betrayals have been economic.

Still, Erik Loomis' posts on labor history are very interesting.

NotoriousJ , June 8, 2016 at 11:23 pm

Zevon would not have been amused. However, he may have given permission to use his lesser known classic "my shit's fucked up" – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qHDdqubE7zQ

Carla , June 8, 2016 at 11:48 am

"he has performed a great public service by exposing what a sordid farce the Democratic party is. For this, I am eternally grateful to the Bernster."

Not to take anything away from Bernie, but Obama has been doing this for the last seven and a half years!

Punxsutawney , June 8, 2016 at 12:32 pm

Indeed, the over the top TPP/TTIP shilling makes me want to puke.

Steve C , June 8, 2016 at 1:26 pm

But he's so smooth. And he's such a great husband and father. And he's friends with JayZee and Beyoncé. How could such a nice young man be lying to us about the TPP?

polecat , June 8, 2016 at 5:06 pm

nothing 'nice' about him, save his smooth, conniving words !

jfleni , June 8, 2016 at 4:07 pm

Although it's early yet, after the right, royal, hosing Bernie has gotten since he started, he should realize that Doctor Stein is progressing well on getting Greens on all state ballots, and consider carefully her offer to run with them.

A presidential election has much less room for the slimy tricks we have seen so much of, and the turd Democrats will be flushed down the toilet of history, as Bernie puts his program into action.

AnEducatedFool , June 8, 2016 at 11:03 am

I am still numb. My anger will come back later today but there is no effective outlet in this part of the country other than the internet.

Morning Joe was comparing Sanders to RFK especially after seeing the crowds in Puerto Rico then California. Instead of assassinating Sanders they simply stole the election. I think Sanders will pull a move similar to Jerry Brown in 1992.

It also looks like Warren will get the nod for VP so the Democrats can have two former Republicans running for President and the Libertarians will have two former Republicans and the Republicans will have a former Democrat running on their ticket.

I do not think that people realize that Elizabeth Warren is hated by dedicated Bernie supporters. Only a fraction of the 25% that say they will not vote for Clinton will change their mind based on Warren. Many others will vote for Stein, Johnson and in competitive states they may vote for Trump just to keep her out of office.

And the media, the fucking media, they are going to point to that absurd "foreign policy" speech as the turning point for Clinton.

pretzelattack , June 8, 2016 at 11:24 am

so if we want the closest thing to a democrat we have to vote republican? i'm so confused. i'm looking for somebody that didn't support reagan, the iraq war or the trade treaties.

Carla , June 8, 2016 at 11:50 am

Vote for Jill Stein.

pretzelattack , June 8, 2016 at 12:22 pm

she is the closest to me politically, but right now i'm thinking what is the most effective way to pry off the suckers of the vampire squid, and some of the criticisms of the green party i've read on nc make me wonder–long term we have to have another party, agreed. put me in the "8 more years of this neoliberal bullshit is a disaster" camp.

Optic , June 8, 2016 at 12:46 pm

I just started following this site a couple of days ago. I'm curious to hear what are some of the criticisms of the green party that have been voiced here.

redleg , June 8, 2016 at 12:55 pm

Very little downticket ground game, for starters.

flora , June 8, 2016 at 1:01 pm

In my state the Green Party isn't on the presidential ballot.
My state's recognized presidential parties are the Democratic Party, Libertarian Party, and Republican Party.

In my state the rules are:
"To obtain official recognition in[my state], party organizers must submit a petition that contains signatures of voters registered in the state and abides by the petition regulations outlined in [my state's] law. The total number of valid signatures required for a successful petition is equal to 2 percent of the total votes cast for all candidates for governor in the most recent general election for governor. …
"There are two requirements for recognized political parties to maintain their official status with the state. At each general election for national and state offices, parties must: (a) nominate a candidate for at least one office that is elected statewide (e.g., governor, commissioner of insurance or state treasurer), and (b) at least one such candidate of the party must receive at least 1 percent of the total votes cast in the election for that office…."

Voting for Stein as a write-in won't have any effect on the Green Party's viability as competitive party. There's a lot of dogged groundwork that would need to be done, that hasn't been done, and from what I see isn't being done in my state. Other states may have done that work and I'd love to see a Green elected to congress from one of those states, or elected to state office in one of those states.

Unorthodoxmarxist , June 8, 2016 at 1:29 pm

As a longtime Green, former candidate and professional campaign manager, I have to say that developing a "ground game" for downticket races is extremely difficult when you are not running as a Democrat/Republican and have little support from the professional orgs that usually provide cash or people (PACs/Labor). We've often done well with what we have, but until there's a serious break from the Dems and those people who have wasted their time for decades trying to reform that party come over to us in a serious way, the left will continue to spin its wheels.

bob , June 8, 2016 at 11:41 pm

The history of the greens is a good start for any reform minded individual. It shows just how much work is required, and where.

Hint- It ain't twitter.

Steve C , June 8, 2016 at 1:33 pm

Passage of instant runoff voting in Maine in November would be a sea change for the Greens and other third parties. Unless there is something wrong with this particular referendum, this is something NCers should follow and support.

jrs , June 8, 2016 at 3:03 pm

yes

lyman alpha blob , June 8, 2016 at 1:41 pm

Worked with the Greens in my state until I discovered that they were unorganized and corrupt. That last one was the deal-breaker for any further involvement from me. They'd cooperate with the right wing to stick it to the Dems which is a very stupid strategy if you're looking for more progressive outcomes. Stealing clean election funds to run unviable candidates didn't sit well with me either.

Carla , June 8, 2016 at 1:40 pm

Vote third parties to help them maintain ballot access. We're going to need them.

washunate , June 8, 2016 at 12:24 pm

The foreign policy speech is an interesting marker in another way, though. Through the primary season, there was some effort to downplay Clinton's hawkishness, to distance her from the neoconservatives, to ridicule Sanders on trying to make foreign policy distinctions.

That speech put that effort to rest. She openly embraced the war on terror specifically and the whole neoconservative interventionist mindset more generally.

Teejay , June 8, 2016 at 9:56 pm

I'm a "dedicated Bernie supporter" and I don't "hate" Warren. She's fandamtastic and it would be a colossal waste of her talent to have her VP.
She has far more power in the Senate than she would have as VP. Heh may be the abbreviation really stand for veal pen.

ladycurmudgeon , June 8, 2016 at 10:20 pm

I don't dislike Warren. I thought the reason they might pick her as VP candidate is to neutralize her. She is active in the Sen. VP goes to funerals.

different clue , June 9, 2016 at 12:23 am

I must not be a DEDicated Bernie supporter because Warren is not hated by me. I hope she stays in the Senate and keeps doing her focused work against certain FIRE sector perpetrators and cover-lending regulators.

It would be a shame if she accepted the VP nomination with Clinton. The SS Clinton is a ship I would rather see Warren NOT go down with.

Otis B Driftwood , June 9, 2016 at 8:53 am

I respect and admire Warren, but adding her to the ticket won't make a difference for me in November. Indeed, quite the opposite as she is/would be more effective as a senator than veep. #NeverTrump #NeverHIllary #NoneOfTheAbove

TheCatSaid (aka "TheCatSquid") , June 8, 2016 at 11:12 am

OMG, OMG, OMG. I've just watched this short video clip of Bev Harris explaining what was discovered in just recent months.

I've never heard the story in this way and seen the time line. It started by looking at local elections, and uncovered something HUGE in the last few months.

This affects thousands of voting jurisdictions in the USA. (And outside the USA, too–wherever this popular vote tabulating software is used, by a range of voting machine companies.)

And now we'll have to listen to political analysts trying to figure out why X candidate did so well or so poorly in location ABC. If you watch this video (and the other videos at the Fitrakis link above, too) you'll see that our election results do not necessarily have any relation to actual votes.

No matter how much I thought I knew about election irregularities, this is shocking . It is widespread . We should be talking about election fraud–and doing something about it–instead of wasting our time trying to understand what are fictionalized election results.

Edward Qubain , June 8, 2016 at 2:52 pm

After watching that disgusting video I feel like everyone should just publicly declare their votes and compare a public tally with the electronic voting results.

hunkerdown , June 8, 2016 at 4:40 pm

Blockchains are good for something.

TheCatSaid , June 8, 2016 at 8:43 pm

Preserving voter anonymity is important for a host of reasons. It's one of the reasons electronic voting is maybe impossible to do well.

What works well is hand-counting paper ballots in public (with multiple observers who are concerned citizens–not election staff) in the precinct location where they were cast. It's also really fast!

Another solution is to scan all the actual ballots at the voting precinct and make them available to the public online so anyone who wants to can count & check the results for themselves.

Receipts are worse than nothing–potential for selling your vote, and doesn't guarantee your vote was counted the same way it was cast. Any solution has to enable observers to monitor ALL the ballots, not just their own.

Lambert Strether , June 8, 2016 at 10:49 pm

All very true. The additional nice thing about hand counting paper ballots in public is that it's an opportunity for civic conviviality, at least afterward. I remember the Quebec referendum - 6 million population, votes counted in an evening, and some chicanery promptly exposed. Very much unlike this country!

Edward Qubain , June 8, 2016 at 10:58 pm

Ordinarily voting should be anonymous. I am thinking here about what citizens can do when they think their vote has been stolen and the crooked government will not investigate the problem. Where I live the voting is electronic and there is no paper ballot as far as I can tell. If, say, there was a precinct where there was evidence of cheating and the public wanted to do something they could attempt to compile a public tally of how people voted and compare it with the electronic results. Even an incomplete list could reveal a problem.

Edward Qubain , June 8, 2016 at 11:32 am

It is not obvious to me why fewer voting locations translates into a Clinton win. The locations would need to be chosen to favor Clinton voters over Sanders voters. More details are needed.

At the rate this sorry campaign is going, only millionaires and T.V. pundits will be able to vote.

Tertium Squid , June 8, 2016 at 11:47 am

This isn't Clinton v. Sanders anymore. This is about the sort of participation the party wants from American citizens.

flora , June 8, 2016 at 11:50 am

Clinton wins the early mail-in votes. Suppress the day-of votes to make sure the mail-in votes count the most. And if that still doesn't work stop the counting and have the MSM declare her the winnah!

flora , June 8, 2016 at 11:51 am

adding: first time voters almost never do mail-in voting.

TheCatSaid , June 8, 2016 at 12:38 pm

Also, mail-in / absentee ballots are one of the easiest ways to perpetrate fraud.

If you look at the Bev Harris clip, where she reads out the specifications of the coding job, they include attaching a unique bar code for every specific voter. (Strictly illegal but there you go.) The code allowing for weighting each race (and each voter, or each demographic–as specific as you like) makes it possible to weight multiple races across multiple districts in seconds .

The code in question is in use in the tabulating computers (the ones that accumulate the results from various machines and jurisdictions) all over the country.

Edward Qubain , June 8, 2016 at 1:19 pm

"…attaching a unique bar code for every specific voter"

Wow– so much for having an anonymous ballot.

Edward Qubain , June 8, 2016 at 1:17 pm

Hi flora,

That makes sense but is it enough to explain such a lopsided Clinton vote?

Arizona Slim , June 8, 2016 at 12:26 pm

That is what happened here in AZ. The Hillster won the mail-in votes and then there was massive suppression on primary day.

hunkerdown , June 8, 2016 at 3:07 pm

"Disqualify, defeat, put the Party back together later" - didn't think she meant us, did we?

TheCatSaid , June 8, 2016 at 8:49 pm

"It is not obvious to me why fewer voting locations translates into a Clinton win. The locations would need to be chosen to favor Clinton voters over Sanders voters."

Yes, that's exactly what happened. When voting machine numbers are reduced, it is done in carefully chosen locations to achieve a specific goal.

Ironically, the first time I tried to vote, as a university student, there were long lines and after more than an hour I had to leave because I had something that I could not miss. At the time I had no idea this kind of thing could have happened deliberately.

In the current primary, my mother showed up to vote and found out the voting location had changed, but she hadn't been notified. It was too late in the day for her to find out and get to the new location. It never occurred to her that this kind of thing could have been deliberate.

This kind of thing can be devastatingly effective. Puerto Rico is an exaggerated version of a tactic that's been used by both parties for 16 years or more.

TheCatSaid , June 8, 2016 at 8:54 pm

I should have clarified better. By reducing the machines most acutely in the poorest, most crowded areas Sanders' share of the vote was impacted more than Clinton's. I saw a video talking about this some days before the actual primary. The reduction in poll opening hours also impact the poorest voters the most, the implication being that those were the voters trending towards Sanders.

Lambert Strether , June 8, 2016 at 10:42 pm

"I saw a video." Oh.

different clue , June 9, 2016 at 12:30 am

For charges this severe about a problem this serious, we need to be able to demonstrate that the video you saw is a "real" video rather than an "O'keefe" video.

dc , June 8, 2016 at 1:23 pm

The Vulture Vote

NYPaul , June 8, 2016 at 3:20 pm

Not meant to be absurd or perfectly analogous,

but,

just as the National Socialist German Worker's Party couldn't be reformed

neither can

The Democrats or Republicans.

Walk away, start anew

Lambert Strether , June 8, 2016 at 3:43 pm

700,000 vs. 60,000?

Let it never be said the Democrat Party is not effective!

cassandra , June 8, 2016 at 4:04 pm

Although TheCatSaid mentioned him above, unsung but deserving investigative reporter Greg Palast , deserves mention on his own. In addition to the CA shenanigans, he has been documenting election fraud on a continuing basis for over a decade. Don't be put off by his sensationalist style. Many of his revelations are truly unique; see, for example, his comparison of BP's operations in the Caspian in Ajerbaijan with the Gulf of Mexico fiasco.

TheCatSaid , June 8, 2016 at 8:36 pm

You're right. Palast has done amazing investigative work on many crucial issues.
* His revelations about the fracking accidents in the Caspian that preceded the Deepwater Horizon accident in the Gulf were damning (in order to get the license to drill in the Gulf of Mexico, BP had lied on its application by stating that they had not had any accidents)
* His uncovering of the deliberate negligence and economic interests that led to the devastation of Hurricane Katrina
* His detailed work on vote purging in Florida and elsewhere

His saucy style belies the devastating amount of detail he routinely uncovers.
And he is absolutely fearless.

Teejay , June 8, 2016 at 10:14 pm

I am put off my his sensationalistic style. It hurts his credibility. He covers important issues which I applaud him for. Sometimes I feel like I'm watching a Nick Danger sketch.

digi_owl , June 8, 2016 at 6:29 pm

The banana republic has come home to roost…

ballard , June 9, 2016 at 2:41 am

"What some people don't understand is that the privatization of the surveillance state, the collection of all your information like phone calls, emails, Tweets, comments online, communication in your car, communication in your home, Facebook turning on the mic on your phone so they can listen to you throughout the day… all this information is USED by someone.

One way they may use it, could be to figure out how you are going to vote. And that may determine whether or not your name is "mistakenly" left off a voter role when you go to cast your vote."

More from Scott Creighton on the California election fraud:

https://willyloman.wordpress.com/2016/06/08/california-election-fraud/

Luis E. Pacheco , June 9, 2016 at 5:59 pm

Puerto Rico is a colony of the United States. We cannot vote for the president. We have no vote in Congress, supposedly only 'voice'. So the very notion of participating in the primaries for people for whom we are not allowed to actually vote, is the height of hypocrisy.

[Jun 10, 2016] Lets make make the Democratic party pay for their neoliberal orientation, luxuriant insularity and hubris

Notable quotes:
"... If they focused on party building efforts that would result in actual political power - such as winning effective state legislative blocs outside their safety demographics (who don't show up for them as it is), or running a strong gubernatorial campaign in a state like, say, Oregon that garnered lots of attention from potential supporters, they'd be in a much stronger position to begin building more than a mixed medley of long-time dedicatees, but to attract (as Sanders has) progressive Democrats, Independents, and others to the prospect of a national party with something to show for itself. ..."
"... On the other hand, the threat of voting for Trump over Clinton, or simply not voting for Clinton, does send a very strong message that, if they fail to take it seriously, will instill the 'fear of God' in the party (as well as further seriously piss them off). ..."
"... Sitting still for corporate malfeasance is exactly the "bad faith" by which people are rejecting the Establishment candidates. ..."
"... I would suggest, as hunkerdown did, that Sanders should realize there's no honor among thieves. As per usual, the establishment often leverages a person's "integrity" for their own aims. ..."
"... Hillary is a murderer (by proxy of course), a liar, a receiver of bribes - the so-called "Queen of Chaos". That's not the sort of person you ever, in good conscience, support. ..."
"... Clinton is a predator and her operation exists to assimilate progressives like Sanders and his supporters by using their good intentions and faith in humanity against them. Installing his lieutenants on party platform committees or paying lip service to a $15 minimum wage is all in a day's work considering Clintonistas have no intention of following through on any ideological construct outside the ever increasing accumulation of wealth and power. ..."
"... If Sanders fights Trump and "supports" Hillary by raising his own money for downticket Dems like Canova, and in addition does stuff like stumping against fracking and for single payer in Colorado, that might not be so bad. ..."
"... I think that Yves also made a superb point in her essay - those of us who have been reading NC have developed a far more sophisticated (I would even say 'principled') opposition to the kind of neoliberal incrementalism that Clinton personifies. ..."
"... "Incrementalism" -> "excrementalism." Fixed it for ya. ..."
"... Yeah Obama pretty much laid the once potent "but… the Supreme Court ZMOG!!!" argument to rest for good when he nominated a Republican. I mean what's even the point of voting Democrat at this juncture? ..."
"... A Clinton candidacy would be toxic for Dem. candidates down the whole ballot. Hillary is trying to win over scared/disgusted republicans to vote for a corporatist anti-Trump, despite their years of anti-Clinton conditioning. ..."
www.nakedcapitalism.com
DaGraDix
Relax, you're not being attacked, you don't need to accuse Yves of hypocrisy just because she disagrees with you over reasons she provided.

Initially, back in 2014, when Bernie began publicly floating the idea of a presidential run, my thought was that it would be more beneficial for progressive issues if he remained in the Senate. His campaign has radically altered that opinion.

However, compare what Sanders has accomplished with the prospect of a Green party alternative. What Yves is proposing is building precisely the kind of foundation that Sanders has, that has allowed him to build a threateningly effective campaign. Sanders has a long and strong record of legislative achievements, and it showcases his moral compass and political acumen. The Green party has no national legislative record, they have no major state-level achievements (the environmentalist movement does), and they don't have a national party organization.

It is politically very possible for the Green party to win 1 or 2 seats in the Senate, in places that favor them (northwest, northeast). If the Green party dedicated themselves to electoral victories that put party members on the national stage, and if they took a page from Bernie's legislative playbook, getting workable legislation in as amendments to larger bills, then they would have a basis for persuading voters that they are an actual alternative. If they focused on party building efforts that would result in actual political power - such as winning effective state legislative blocs outside their safety demographics (who don't show up for them as it is), or running a strong gubernatorial campaign in a state like, say, Oregon that garnered lots of attention from potential supporters, they'd be in a much stronger position to begin building more than a mixed medley of long-time dedicatees, but to attract (as Sanders has) progressive Democrats, Independents, and others to the prospect of a national party with something to show for itself.

This isn't selling out to the status quo, nor is separate from building out of Bernie's campaign a resilient and persisting political bloc. It can be a very important part of that. I don't read Yves' critique as perpetuating a self-fulfilling prophecy of defeatism, but as pointing out what the Green party should do to begin to change the status quo. Isn't it defeatist to just vote for a party that can't possibly win in the state it currently exists in? On the other hand, the threat of voting for Trump over Clinton, or simply not voting for Clinton, does send a very strong message that, if they fail to take it seriously, will instill the 'fear of God' in the party (as well as further seriously piss them off).

I live in California. I am voting for Bernie next week. I will not vote for Hillary if she's the nominee in the General. I'll vote for Jill Stein, but I know that that will be little more than a symbolic protest vote. I disagree with the Rumsfeldian framed argument that it is a less risky bet to support the putatively unknown unknown and make the Democratic party pay for their luxuriant insularity and hubris. However - as that is the way Politico edited the message of Yves' article - I understand and respect the argument.

You don't need to accept "lesser evilism" in order to put forward a sensible critique and proposal for a party that doesn't have a real chance at this point.

hunkerdown

Sitting still for corporate malfeasance is exactly the "bad faith" by which people are rejecting the Establishment candidates. I'd suggest taking account of the bad faith of the Democratic National Committee and other Party organs in dealing with him, no more than a token of satisfice, and going his own way to defeat Trump without providing aid or comfort to Hillary.

openvista, June 3, 2016 at 11:35 am

I would suggest, as hunkerdown did, that Sanders should realize there's no honor among thieves. As per usual, the establishment often leverages a person's "integrity" for their own aims.

Hillary is a murderer (by proxy of course), a liar, a receiver of bribes - the so-called "Queen of Chaos". That's not the sort of person you ever, in good conscience, support.

That's not to say Trump is preferable. If the binary choice is lose-lose, isn't it possible to have more than one enemy in a given Presidential election?

openvista, June 5, 2016 at 10:36 am

I agree that Sanders is the rarest of forms, a sincere politician. I don't see ambition or graft behind any motivation of his to support Clinton, assuming that's the outcome. At worst, it would be naivety.

If we take him at his word, he thinks of Clinton as a decent public servant with differing ideas. Perhaps, he's less sincere than we think. But, assuming that is his take on her, he has greatly under-estimated his adversary and that can only end badly for him at least as far as the nomination is concerned.

Clinton is a predator and her operation exists to assimilate progressives like Sanders and his supporters by using their good intentions and faith in humanity against them. Installing his lieutenants on party platform committees or paying lip service to a $15 minimum wage is all in a day's work considering Clintonistas have no intention of following through on any ideological construct outside the ever increasing accumulation of wealth and power.


Lambert Strether, June 3, 2016 at 10:51 pm

If Sanders fights Trump and "supports" Hillary by raising his own money for downticket Dems like Canova, and in addition does stuff like stumping against fracking and for single payer in Colorado, that might not be so bad.

I can see scenarios where Clinton, from her corrupt perspective, will rue the day that Sanders "supported" her. And if they try to muzzle him, that won't work out real well.


Steeeve, June 2, 2016 at 11:59 am

I will continue to support and hopefully vote for Bernie Sanders. In the event he's not the nominee I will happily vote for Jill Stein as I did in 2012 – she has the strongest platform – similar to Sanders but including what I consider to be a fundamental requirement to win my vote: "End the wars and drone attacks, cut military spending by at least 50% and close the 700+ foreign military bases that are turning our republic into a bankrupt empire." I was initially reluctant to support Sanders for the lack of inclusion of a plank along these lines. Ending quagmires is at least a step in the right direction. But a conversation about economic injustice is severely lacking without a strong statement on the MIC such as Stein's.


Liz Buiocchi, June 2, 2016 at 11:55 am

The only way that gridlock will end is with Sanders in the White House, at least one branch of Congress in Democratic hands, and members of the other house sufficiently scared of voters that they try to represent the interests of the 99%–in other words, a revolution. I don't know how that happens with the media so complicit in the "Hillary is the nominee" narrative, but I can hope.

I'm another 50-something white life-long liberal who has come to the conclusion that voting for Trump is the lesser of some great evils. I'm somewhat relieved to know that I'm not the only one–it feels like it goes against everything I stand for, but I just can't vote for Clinton, nor will I refuse to vote in protest.

HotFlash, June 2, 2016 at 3:26 pm

A-yup. Trump at least says (or said on at least one occasion) that we should get out of the Middle East. Which makes him better than Hillary. And he has not *to date* committed any war crimes (I have standards, and one of them is that I will not vote for a war criminal).

But I still don't understand why it has to come down to Trump or Hillary. Can't we just have Bernie?

DWBartoo, June 3, 2016 at 9:30 am

One wonders, Watt4Bob, should Trump emerge triumphant as President-elect, just how long it would take for the Clintons and other neoliberal Democrats to suck up to him? Hillary would have us believe that she considers Trump evil incarnate even as Clinton's daughter and Trump's daughter are friends … who, very likely, do not see the others parent(s) as any sort or kind of meaningful threat or existential danger.

One is certain that the Clinton team, if Trump wins, will find the means and the "intestinal fortitude" to "work"with him for the bettterment of incrementalism everywhere.

Frankly, a Trump presidency would offer the Democratic party a most wonderful opportunity to reveal "where" the party really, and actually "stands" … and what they really are willing to "stand" and fight for … somehow I doubt that genuine humanity and actual reason would stand much of a chance against continuing, perpetual war and continued "security dominance", as foreign and domestic policy preference.

The essential purpose of "public service", in the United States of Depravity, today, is to enrich oneself and protect the Divine Right of Money.

DW

willnadauld, June 2, 2016 at 8:55 pm

White working class, almost college educated here. Reading almost exclusively Yves for eight years. I feel I owe Yves,Lambert and the regular posters here a giant thank you for giving me a viable perspective from which to judge the actions of politicians, and the complicit media in destroying democracy completely. I inhabit the bubble of truth that you folks create, and I am greatly disturbed by the comments at politico. I understand generalized stupidity, and laziness, but the complete disconnect from reality I encounter whenever I venture from my truth bubble still amazes me. People have forgotten how to read, and how to think. I like Bernie. I will vote Trump over Biden in November. Elizabeth would never sell us all that far down the river. Shes kind of like team blues Paul Ryan that way. What the hell, maybe Michelle should run.

Roger Smith, June 2, 2016 at 11:41 pm

Seconded, one of the reasons. I've always scoffed at the "we're going downhill" or general end times mentality, favoring instead that it was just moving laterally and depressingly, but this season and the environment this site provides has helped me see the frailty of this society. It is fragile, we are approaching a point of no return, and people still won't read the damn signs.


Pat, June 2, 2016 at 10:54 am

One of the reasons con games are successful beyond the greed of humans is that people do not like to admit they have been fooled/taken in/played. Denial is deeply ingrained in humans.

My own personal observation is that her most zealous of supporters are either the newest converts or the ones desperately trying to avoid their growing realization that they have been a patsy. I really do believe we are seeing a whole lot of the latter among the reactions to ideas like this article or questions like 'where is your evidence that Trump is more evil than Clinton? I can list the following things that are actual actions by Clinton along with HER ever shifting rhetoric, you can list what?'

Vatch, June 2, 2016 at 11:22 am

Obama fooled me in 2008, so I voted Green in 2012. I will not let either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump fool me in 2016, and although I still hope that somehow Bernie Sanders will be the Democratic nominee, I expect to vote Green again in 2016.

readerOfTeaLeaves, June 2, 2016 at 1:10 pm

I didn't read the comments, but you may want to consider that a good portion of them may very well be from paid commenters. I think that Yves and Lambert look dimly on such practices.

I think that Yves also made a superb point in her essay - those of us who have been reading NC have developed a far more sophisticated (I would even say 'principled') opposition to the kind of neoliberal incrementalism that Clinton personifies.

Hence, the Politico commenters don't grasp the economic fraud and bogus theories that are driving a lot of public policy disasters. On the upside, even my electrician and manufacturing relatives have started asking some very probing questions about economics in the US.

Lambert Strether, June 2, 2016 at 2:41 pm

"Incrementalism" -> "excrementalism." Fixed it for ya.

Phil, June 6, 2016 at 5:56 am

Since the IMF's "Neoliberalism Oversold" a few weeks ago I've been watching google trends for neoliberalism some increase, which is good. Also amusing that VT is the state that searches that the most. http://www.google.com/trends/explore?hl=en-US&q=/m/0n29_&geo=US&cmpt=q&tz=Etc/GMT%2B5&tz=Etc/GMT%2B5&content=1

Kurt Sperry, June 2, 2016 at 5:05 pm

Yeah Obama pretty much laid the once potent "but… the Supreme Court ZMOG!!!" argument to rest for good when he nominated a Republican. I mean what's even the point of voting Democrat at this juncture? They hate their base, and swoon over billionaires and Republicans. I'd probably be cheering on the Republican to humiliate Clinton on if it weren't Trump, and even as much as I despise Trump I hardly care whether he or Hillary wins. That's how horrible the Democrats are now.

Skip Intro, June 3, 2016 at 3:49 am

You are not alone. A Clinton candidacy would be toxic for Dem. candidates down the whole ballot. Hillary is trying to win over scared/disgusted republicans to vote for a corporatist anti-Trump, despite their years of anti-Clinton conditioning. Meanwhile the democrats stay home and progressive independents stay home and a new generation of Americans learn powerlessness.

[Jun 09, 2016] The Guardian

Notable quotes:
"... "Defiant leftwinger" is a bit rich. "Defiant leftwinger" only in relation to an artificially skewed spectrum represented by Fox News, Casino Trump, and a corporate funded neoliberal nominee toeing a rightwing foreign policy line. ..."
"... Bernie Sanders is a social democrat in the tradition of FDR whose policies are centrist in relation to other industrialised nations. ..."
"... He has focused on four planks he wants in the Democratic Party platform: the creation of an economy that works for all citizens, breaking up the five "too-big-to-fail" banks, a carbon tax to address climate change, and a single-payer healthcare system. ..."
"... Of course Bernie needs to stay. Hillary is under FBI investigation. If she ends up in an orange pantsuit in the big house Bernie will look very stupid and basically has thrown out over 200 mio. dollars which is the amount he has spent on his campaign so far. Given to him by his supporters. It is his duty to them to stay in. ..."
"... " the Guardian are stuck in the old, failed new Labour/Lib Dem politics and do everything to undermine him.( Corbyn )" ..."
"... The Clinton camp is attempting to pressure Sanders to force him out before the convention to make sure that doesn't happen. The Sanders camp is just following the rules and playing fairly. ..."
"... Britain began its retreat from this post WWII social democracy in 1979, 37 years ago when Thatcher took over. The essentially neo-liberal agenda has been actively pursued by every government since then - Thatcher-Major-Blair-Brown - and indeed has accelerated under Cameron. ..."
"... There is nothing to indicate that the average american will be worse off with Trump in office as opposed to Clinton. That's how far to the right her actual policies are. Not the crap she claims, but the stuff she has been doing for the past 20 years. Spare us the scaremongering. If you wanted to vote for a republican, why would you do so under the "Democratic party" banner? ..."
"... People wonder why there is such animosity towards Americans. You support a woman for president whilst disregarding her most vile traits as a joke? Clinton is a real danger towards the Middle East and that is partly because of her warmongering and absolute support for Israel, wrong or right. There are girls in Sirte, Libya currently being used as sex slaves by ISIS who may think your not so funny. ..."
"... "He tapped into deeply held sentiments about a rigged economy and a broken political system, and built a mass movement of people who believe we can do better and demand solutions that match the scale of the crises." Corbyn has the same agenda in the UK and given the internecine struggle in the Tory Party has an even better chance of winning in 2020. Pity that progressive newspapers like the Guardian are stuck in the old, failed new Labour/Lib Dem politics and do everything to undermine him. ..."
"... And, who knows, elsewhere could possibly prove better - your guess is as good as mine. Clinton is neo-liberal establishment through-and-through. The darling of the global capitalist corporations. ..."
"... Yes, what is wrong with the idiots? Why don't they just lie on their backs and surrender to the neo-liberalist elite? ..."
"... Just a few years ago Americans prised themselves from an unelected monster, G. W. Bush - he and his monster crowd being the key architects/facilitators of the current economic woes and mayhem in the middle east. That's pretty well indisputable. People can try to dispute it but they are flat out wrong and they know it. So given that, why would America now want to place another monster in power? ..."
"... Funny, cancer works this way on the human organism confusing the immune system so much that the body thinks a tumour is okay, a genuine part of the body. Until it's too late. ..."
"... So the American presidential race is down to a contest between the supporter of Oligarchy (Clinton) and the Oligarch (Trump). Of course this would never lead you to believe that American politics serves only the Oligarchy and funds only their candidates. ..."
"... Dems are only about 29% of registered voters, btw, so that is 6% of 29% of voters backing her right now. Yep. Trump has a good chance of winning against that - a write-in campaign for a soggy loaf of bread has a good chance of winning against that. ..."
"... You really don't get what created Trump's opportunity do you, its the same that has seen a new options becoming a political force throughout Europe, its ever & constant growth of disenchantment with the Clinton's, Cameron's & the rest of the political establishment.......sadly the US people need Sanders far more than he needs them of so it would seem. ..."
"... It is no longer "God Bless America". It's "God Help America". With the choice of Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. Bill (Mr. Zippy) Clinton is already interviewing the interns and glad that he can now get Cuban cigars. From President to "First Man". Remember " I did not have sexual relations with this woman." Just a Blow Job. ..."
"... However they must take a leaf out of the Tea Party's book and start getting their candidates elected as State and congress candidates. There is no point in having a radical president and a reactionary congress. ..."
"... No, those who propped up the corrupt Hitlery, knowing full-well that the system is rigged and the super delegates are bought and paid for, are to blame. ..."
"... Republicans have more of a spine than the Hitlery voters, because they voted for who they actually wanted, not who they were told to. ..."
"... Bernie is an Independent, he should run as one. F*ck Clinton and f*ck the DNC. ..."
"... The 67-year-old Democratic front-runner has been "frequently plagued" by "blinding headaches" and a series of strokes over the course of the campaign which have left her second-guessing her chances of winning in 2016, says the upcoming book "Unlikeable - The Problem with Hillary." ..."
"... The Democrat Party is controlled by the Right and the the representatives at [almost] all levels appear untouchable. The key to the future, not just for Sanders but for the Left he has mobilised, will be in opening up the Party to democracy and accountability. ..."
"... It is truly depressing that the democrats had the chance to put a decent trustworthy person in the White House but instead opted for Clinton, who represents the interests of Wall Street and the Party of Perpetual War. By opting for her they have handed the keys to the repulsive Trump. ..."
"... For decades tens of millions of Americans who are left politically on major issues (whether they identify as "left-wing" or not) have voted for politicians who have carried water for Wall Street, the Pentagon, and the national security apparatus--often more effectively than the Republicans they depict themselves as the progressive alternative to. Every four years we're told "yes, X Democrat is a corporate-backed, warmongering stooge, but look at how horrible Y Republican is! If you don't vote for the Democrat you're voting for the Republican!" It's the same scare tactics year after year after year--and year after year the political center of gravity shifts further to the right. This is the anatomy of our demise. Finally, millions that have for years dutifully voted for the corporate, warmongering pseudo-progressive stooge with the (D) next to his name are waking up and saying to the Democrats: Try to win without out us you corporate scum! ..."
"... Money buys power - always has; always will. Read 'Clinton Ca$h'. Or just read something besides MSM. ..."
"... I'm not saying that there are not people who fully support her (and Obama's) IMF/World Bank/USAID/Clinton Foundation approach to international development and international trade, her center aisle approach to use of armed force, her (and Obama's) preference for private insurance based health reform, her approach to Haiti ..."
"... Remember!, it wasn't all sweetness and light under warmonger Hillary. C. ..."
"... "save America" - if Clinton or Trump gets into the White House, NOTHING will save America! ..."
"... "In Syria, militias armed by the Pentagon fight those armed by the CIA" ..."
"... ISIS was not reversed in Syria until Russia became involved, and they were in full decline within a month. Years of Obama's war against them and they expanded to holding 80% of Syria , and beyond. ..."
www.theguardian.com


greven -> truebluetah 9 Jun 2016 04:53

There is a difference isn't it? The Clintons are career politicians who have amassed a bigger fortune than Trump (and they are not the only ones that's become wealthy representing corporations) Bernie has amassed a few hundred thousand from a life in politics representing the voters.


gottliebvera 9 Jun 2016 04:53

Keep going, Bernie...keep tweaking at their conscience. Besides, it isn't over until the fat lady has sung.


Celtiberico 9 Jun 2016 04:52

Well, if they can reshape US politics, the world will owe them a lot.


SoxmisUK -> Shelfunit 9 Jun 2016 04:50

Compared to all the vile insults, conspiracy theory wailing and holy-than-thou posts by Sanders supporters over the last few months it's nothing

Let me amend that for you: "Compared to all the vile insults, conspiracy theory wailing and holy-than-thou posts by Clinton's supporters over the last few months it's nothing.."

There. Fixed.

Not true in either case, as one has been as bad as the other, but good to see you sticking your British oar in where it's clearly not wanted. You shit-stir enough for the Tories here in the UK.


WhigInterpretation 9 Jun 2016 04:50

"Defiant leftwinger" is a bit rich. "Defiant leftwinger" only in relation to an artificially skewed spectrum represented by Fox News, Casino Trump, and a corporate funded neoliberal nominee toeing a rightwing foreign policy line.

Bernie Sanders is a social democrat in the tradition of FDR whose policies are centrist in relation to other industrialised nations.

He has focused on four planks he wants in the Democratic Party platform: the creation of an economy that works for all citizens, breaking up the five "too-big-to-fail" banks, a carbon tax to address climate change, and a single-payer healthcare system.


Victorious1 -> Herr_Settembrini 9 Jun 2016 04:50

Sorry, but you cannot compare Ron Paul to Sanders and say they have little to show. One ran for many years and despite his sincerity and common sense came nowhere being nominated at any point in time and the other started a political revolution in his first run as nominee, drawing tens of thousands in crowds, more individual contributions than ever before and incredibly nearly won the nomination and probably would have done if he wasn't largely ignored by the media and the superdelegates weren't a bunch of establishment corrupt cronies.


ungruntled -> killedbydrones 9 Jun 2016 04:47

The election isnt over until the Party congress.
In politics people often lie
A bunch of folk have said they will vote one way........but they may vote another(they may have been lying, or they may just change their minds.)
When the dust settles, and a few more wobbly polls are applied, it may transpire Clinton has no chance against Trump.
In which case Clinton could easily be shown the VP's seat
or...........
Seeing as there is little difference between Dems and Repubs, they might put the top heads of each party together in a room and dream up some other staretegy to screw over the American people.
Clinton might get arrested
The possibilities are pretty endless
But the next POTUS is yet to be chosen
And Bernie is fighting on, just because he can. He isnt playing the stupid "I will bow out gracefully to keep the party together" bollocks because the party needs to be blown apart. Democracy in the USA is a joke.
Its all about who can buy the power, and Clinton and Trump are living proof of that fact.
Sanders sees that as corrupt and unnaceptable to the American people, (so do I) and anything he can do to upset the apple cart/gravy train, is fine with me


Ummmmm -> Suckspencil 9 Jun 2016 04:41

I agree with a fair amount of what you're saying, but with all due respect, you're missing the point, which is that what Sanders is proposing is eminently affordable for any developed nation. The Czech Republic, Greece, Norway, Sweden and Estonia, among others, do, I believe, provide free higher education. If Estonia, why not the US?

As things stand, most of Europe still has a healthcare system free at the point of delivery. Europe has more stringent climate legislation than the US. That's one of the reasons that TTIP poses such a threat.

And you'll find that the Callaghan government was ahead of the Thatcher government that followed it in retreating from post WWII social democracy: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/cabinetpapers/themes/sterling-devalued-imf-loan.htm


fedback 9 Jun 2016 04:37

Of course Bernie needs to stay. Hillary is under FBI investigation. If she ends up in an orange pantsuit in the big house Bernie will look very stupid and basically has thrown out over 200 mio. dollars which is the amount he has spent on his campaign so far. Given to him by his supporters. It is his duty to them to stay in.

ID6512838 -> Herr_Settembrini 9 Jun 2016 04:35

corporations will just do business elsewhere (especially in emergent markets like India and China). The result will be a relative decline in living standards for the lower and middle classes in the U.S. (good bye cheap kitchen appliances, cellular phones, and big screen tvs) and a further erosion in jobs.

Corporations do business where the consumers. The USA is going to be a consumer society for many more years - they have been trained over many years to consume more and more.


HNS1684 9 Jun 2016 04:30

As I said before: the very fact that Clinton has only "won" VERY NARROWLY in New Mexico,Nevada, South Dakota, Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Connecticut, Massachusetts and probably other states as well, the fact Bernie got nearly half the votes in these states, means that there is STILL at least some hope left for Bernie Sanders.


ArchibaldLeach 9 Jun 2016 04:30

Sanders campaign did a lot to move Hilary to the left but it's not enough. He needs to start moving from his campaign to building a grassroots liberal activist movement. (Not just supporting people who endorsed him). My hope is that the next Democratic nominee will be more liberal. Sanders showed us that liberalism is alive and well and he brought crucial issues to the debate that were being ignored.


snakeatzoes kirby1 9 Jun 2016 04:30

" the Guardian are stuck in the old, failed new Labour/Lib Dem politics and do everything to undermine him.( Corbyn )"

The latest, yesterday, in the middle of the Euro debate, was an astonishing attack by Blair, who clearly is about to" have his collar felt " over Iraq .


aaronpeacock 9 Jun 2016 04:30

what a load... it's a bitter pill and no one wants to eat it.

Clinton supporters have done little to nothing in the way of policy/platform inclusion, and the general election means she will pivot to the right shortly, where she always lived anyway.

It's going to take yet another cycle of right-wing idiocy, it seems, before the Democrats will realize that pushing a strong left/liberal candidate is what's required for electoral success. Get ready for a President Trump.


Lagasse 9 Jun 2016 04:29

Right now the delegate count stands at 2,178 to 1,810. Neither can get enough in the final primary to clinch the nomination. It has to go to the convention for a decision, therefore. Either candidate could be given the nomination at the convention, per DNC rules.

The Clinton camp is attempting to pressure Sanders to force him out before the convention to make sure that doesn't happen. The Sanders camp is just following the rules and playing fairly.


SoxmisUK -> Deborah Holloway 9 Jun 2016 04:27

That's twice you've posted that. Trolling for some reason? The only reason Bernie lost was that Clinton got a massive head start from the DLC as part of the institution and she was married to a former president.

If Sanders had another 3 months (Possibly much less..) he'd have wiped the floor with her and re-written politics in the USA. You can crow all you wish now, but the truth is come the next time around there will be a popular vote that stands firmly on the foundations Sanders has (Quite remarkably..) built.


ianiles -> kirby1 9 Jun 2016 04:26

The Guardian has become increasingly less progressive ever since the Scott Trust became the Scott Trust Limited


Suckspencil Ummmmm 9 Jun 2016 04:26

what Sanders proposes is no more than bog-standard, post WWII social democracy - the sort of infrastructure that most of the rest of the developed world has enjoyed for the past seven decades

Britain began its retreat from this post WWII social democracy in 1979, 37 years ago when Thatcher took over. The essentially neo-liberal agenda has been actively pursued by every government since then - Thatcher-Major-Blair-Brown - and indeed has accelerated under Cameron.

These are the issues which Sanders has campaigned on:

getting big money out of politics, his plan to make public colleges and universities tuition-free, combating climate change and ensuring universal healthcare,"

I wonder if Ummmmm could remind me which of those we still have in the UK. The struggle must continue here as well, I think. I wouldn't mind a bit of Sanders' "crazed pipe dream".

Ziontrain -> anemag 9 Jun 2016 04:24

There is nothing to indicate that the average american will be worse off with Trump in office as opposed to Clinton. That's how far to the right her actual policies are. Not the crap she claims, but the stuff she has been doing for the past 20 years.

Spare us the scaremongering. If you wanted to vote for a republican, why would you do so under the "Democratic party" banner?

p0winc -> Ummmmm 9 Jun 2016 04:22

Completely agree. What he wants to implement is what the rest of us take as ordinary and for granted. 643,000 People in the states went bankrupt from Medical bills last year. He has however started something unique in the states, showing it's possible to fund and at times out fund the political establishment from individual small donations and not have to compromise on policies.

Bookseeker -> snakeatzoes 9 Jun 2016 04:22

'La Lucha Continua' was also a slogan used by the CNT on its 100th anniversary.

JayJ66 -> R. Ben Madison 9 Jun 2016 04:21

People wonder why there is such animosity towards Americans. You support a woman for president whilst disregarding her most vile traits as a joke? Clinton is a real danger towards the Middle East and that is partly because of her warmongering and absolute support for Israel, wrong or right. There are girls in Sirte, Libya currently being used as sex slaves by ISIS who may think your not so funny.

kirby1 9 Jun 2016 04:20

"He tapped into deeply held sentiments about a rigged economy and a broken political system, and built a mass movement of people who believe we can do better and demand solutions that match the scale of the crises." Corbyn has the same agenda in the UK and given the internecine struggle in the Tory Party has an even better chance of winning in 2020. Pity that progressive newspapers like the Guardian are stuck in the old, failed new Labour/Lib Dem politics and do everything to undermine him.

chrisdix15 9 Jun 2016 04:18

Trump and Clinton are a double headed coin. I would hope Sanders keeps himself away from either but ensures his supporters vote for neither - don't join the Corrupters Bernie, but stay where you are and keep the struggle going within Congress to show that both Trump and Clinton mean and do the same things. Only doing this will ensure people see a real alternative to the strait-jacket the Democrat/Republican parties stand for. The struggle has only just begun.


ryanpatrick9192 -> fedback 9 Jun 2016 04:39

If Hillary is indicted then that does not make Bernie the nominee by default. The superdelegates can still back Clinton and let her pick a replacement they approve of. Why would they choose Bernie? He doesnt have enouh support to win a general election. Trunp got more votes in the primary than Bernie for crying out loud.


Suckspencil -> Shotcricket 9 Jun 2016 04:35

How could you, even in jest, suggest such a thing possible? We in the West, are blessed to be led by fearless god-fearing moderates who believe in justice, peace, equality and the rule of law. Shame on you!

Suckspencil -> Cleggatemyhamster 9 Jun 2016 04:31

And, who knows, elsewhere could possibly prove better - your guess is as good as mine. Clinton is neo-liberal establishment through-and-through. The darling of the global capitalist corporations.


Suckspencil -> twiglette 9 Jun 2016 04:30

Yes, what is wrong with the idiots? Why don't they just lie on their backs and surrender to the neo-liberalist elite?


BruceRobbie 9 Jun 2016 04:15

Despite this dreadful situation one thing remains, Sanders and Trump supporters simply do not TRUST Clinton to deliver on her promises and she needs them to trust her if she is to get people go out and to vote for her. Voting requires effort for many people, and if they don't believe, they will simply stay at home on Election Day. In which case Clinton will lose, because a majority of Americans actually don't like her.

She is also perceived by a large numbers of Americans as little more than a Manager of the American nation; the leaders, the CEOs of America, sit in board rooms of corporate America waiting for their "manager" to deliver on their investment in her campaign.

Due to her untrustworthiness and serpentine character, Sanders has wisely shifted his efforts to Congress and the Senate, so that Clinton if elected, is held to account for electoral promises, Clinton is adept at avoiding difficult situation, emails and Goldman Speeches, and will try to wriggle out of any commitment if her leaders deem it necessary. She and the DNC have fought a disgraceful, campaign of deceit, corrupt electoral practise and voter suppression. So when she spouts her Democratic rhetoric in the coming months, her words will ring hollow as a drum. Good luck America, I fear you're going to need it as your choice of leader this time around truly is the lesser of two evils.


LouisianaAlba 9 Jun 2016 04:13

The story foisted upon us so far in this electoral cycle is a reasonably but not very complicated narrative - a few players strutting, ranting and pouting about the country in a predictable plot. In keeping with this predictability let's keep any analysis simple - fairytale level. Let's talk about monsters.

Just a few years ago Americans prised themselves from an unelected monster, G. W. Bush - he and his monster crowd being the key architects/facilitators of the current economic woes and mayhem in the middle east. That's pretty well indisputable. People can try to dispute it but they are flat out wrong and they know it.

So given that, why would America now want to place another monster in power?

Another age of the political monster is looming. Two loom over the world in the coming battle, with a third in the wings by marriage who wants another shot at power as well, the man who signed away the last threads of Glass Steagall's legal powers.

What is it with Americans and their love affair with these political monsters? Can't Americans choose a good and decent human being who cares for the people and the country. A person who doesn't treat the country and the world as fools.

Even on the money front, it can be so simple, as economists often say - a confident happy people can lead to economic prosperity. It won't guarantee it I concede and I won't trade arguments on government or no government intervention, but a happy people is a better bet for a good economy than the opposite. Keeping it all at the fairytale level of course. Treating people well leads them to be disposed, motivated towards treating others well. Most times. Okay then there is psychopathology and the narrative gets complicated.

But the simple truth is - the simple story has been hijacked because a simple story is too easily managed and a country easily managed is not so easily fooled. And if you can't fool a country and the world, it is not so easy to get away with complicated crimes. Which is the usual way a monster gets away with them or gets to be rich, complicating things so much we aren't aware fast enough to stop any of it. Then after we know we are so beaten down and weakened we're simply not strong or ready enough to fix blame where it belongs.

Funny, cancer works this way on the human organism confusing the immune system so much that the body thinks a tumour is okay, a genuine part of the body. Until it's too late.


NickDaGeek
9 Jun 2016 04:13

So the American presidential race is down to a contest between the supporter of Oligarchy (Clinton) and the Oligarch (Trump). Of course this would never lead you to believe that American politics serves only the Oligarchy and funds only their candidates.

God help us if Trump wins and the idiots in Whitehall sign up to TTIP. If that happens Brexit will swap Brussels for Washington and we will still be a vassal state of a huge power block run by tax avoiding globalist monopoly capitalists.

Lagasse -> MrBrownley 9 Jun 2016 04:13

the large majority who didn't vote for him

Where did that happen? Democratic primary turnout has been around 11%. So far she's got about 6% of Dem voters, meaning that around 94% of registered Dems that could have voted for her, didn't.

Dems are only about 29% of registered voters, btw, so that is 6% of 29% of voters backing her right now. Yep. Trump has a good chance of winning against that - a write-in campaign for a soggy loaf of bread has a good chance of winning against that.

She polls terribly with the largest group of registered voters: Independent (however Sanders does quite well).

Meanwhile, the GOP has had higher primary turnouts. More votes were cast in their primaries even though there are fewer registered Rep voters.

GOP voters are fired up while Dem voters aren't fired up to vote for an unpopular, DNC-annointed candidate - that's a recipe for losing, ask Martha Coakley.

Clinton and her supporters better up their games and quick.


Shotcricket -> pucksfriend 9 Jun 2016 04:10

You really don't get what created Trump's opportunity do you, its the same that has seen a new options becoming a political force throughout Europe, its ever & constant growth of disenchantment with the Clinton's, Cameron's & the rest of the political establishment.......sadly the US people need Sanders far more than he needs them of so it would seem.

Clinton is the old way, Sanders is the new way...the irony of that should not be lost on anyone.


SonOfFredTheBadman 9 Jun 2016 04:10

It is no longer "God Bless America". It's "God Help America". With the choice of Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. Bill (Mr. Zippy) Clinton is already interviewing the interns and glad that he can now get Cuban cigars. From President to "First Man". Remember " I did not have sexual relations with this woman." Just a Blow Job.


ga gamba 9 Jun 2016 04:09

Shrewd move by Sanders, I think. Many believe that Clinton will veer sharply to the right when she nominated and campaigns for the general election. Withholding an endorsement until late October keeps her honest; if she backtracks on her "progressive" promises made during the primaries Sanders can endorse Jill Stein. In a sense, Sanders is the conscience Clinton doesn't possess.

He said it was a revolution, so Clinton and her supporters shouldn't be surprised that he's using revolutionary tactics.


Oudeis1 -> fahkingobserving 9 Jun 2016 04:09

I thank you -primarily for you actually typing-out your rationale. Mere 'carping' is the more common response to my posts, thanks again - for processing and expounding.
And yes, I know enough of American Football to appreciate your analogy.

On the Green invitation to Sanders: I have been aware of this for some time. I'm sure that it is sincere, I'm also certain that it was a little too soon.
Sanders does indeed know much about US Politics, and his conduct throughout this contest has been consistent enough for most observers to discern a clear pattern:
-His ideas are more important to him that his personal success.
-His 'read' on the electoral niceties, possibilities, probabilities and 'desirabilities' is sagacious.
-His initiation of his campaign by way of the Democrat Party is entirely logical.
-A firm commitment from the DNC & HRC on some of his more important policy-planks would allow him to conclude that his job was (well) done. And to then advise his supporters to get behind the renewed and revitalized HRC ticket.

Personally, inline with my own take on these things, Senator Sanders will not concede without (firm & meaningful) concessions. Should no such concessions be forthcoming...
He may then - if this is how things pan out, turn to his supporters for their opinion, or 'knowing' full well there likely response, turn directly to the Greens and add Jill Stein to his then Independent ticket, and run as a third option.
These last two options represent at least as much chance of the defeat of Trump, and very likely more chance of doing that, than his caving-in (selling his soul) to the DNC.
-Yes, I am aware that Sanders has firmly denied that he has any wish at all to run as a third option - this stance is both inline with his desire to see the Democrat Party turn away from the neoliberal/Republican-lite present and his overall objective of getting his policies promoted in November.
However: Nobody can promote the fundamentals of US Democracy and then deny them.

MajorRoadRage -> abdul maulud 9 Jun 2016 04:05

I would rather see Trump in office and see Hillary's supporters endure the same punishment as if we had all voted for her to begin with. Hillary is in it for herself and her corporate sponsors. So if I'm gonna be screwed, so will Hillary supporters, even with mountains of evidence available that she is NOT the candidate to run for presidency people still smile and nod their heads with complacency. Wake up and smell the corruption.

Bitty31985 -> powellscribe 9 Jun 2016 04:08

As I said; if you want some one to blame , blame the media and the DNC. I am never wasting my vote on the lesser of two evils ever again. You WILL never ever convince me to do otherwise. I vote for who I BELIEVE IN. Good luck trying to guilt people into supporting that sociopath.


wiseowler 9 Jun 2016 04:06

If Sanders can get people who support his core radical progressive changes onto key Democratic committees and positions of power, plus get support at the convention for these policies then he may be bale to set in train a transformation of the Democratic Party and the possibility of a real change candidate winning the next election.

However they must take a leaf out of the Tea Party's book and start getting their candidates elected as State and congress candidates. There is no point in having a radical president and a reactionary congress.

If he can achieve this then maybe his momentum can help transform the Clinton campaign - which is in sore need of some radical and youthful energy if she is to defeat Trump

artvandalay316 -> abdul maulud 9 Jun 2016 04:01

No, those who propped up the corrupt Hitlery, knowing full-well that the system is rigged and the super delegates are bought and paid for, are to blame. Spineless cowards who would rather tow the establishment line and never see any real change than vote for something a bit different for once. The most amusing thing is, the Republicans have more of a spine than the Hitlery voters, because they voted for who they actually wanted, not who they were told to.

Shotcricket 9 Jun 2016 03:57

"Sanders will discuss a wide range of issues, including getting big money out of politics, his plan to make public colleges and universities tuition-free, combating climate change and ensuring universal healthcare"

Almost The Guardian mantra of many a year

And yet The Guardian has been pro Clinton throughout the nomination campaign.....& very negative toward Sanders, just what does The Guardian believe in, other than the longevity of the political establishment ?


SilverTui 9 Jun 2016 03:45

L.A. County Supervisors Demand Answers Day After CBS2 Investigation Uncovers Deceased Voters Casting Ballots

so this is how Clinton won California - zombies

http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2016/05/24/l-a-county-board-of-supervisors-demand-answers-day-after-cbs2-investigation-uncovers-deceased-voters-casting-ballots/


Virginia Fast -> gaiayceleste 9 Jun 2016 03:29

How can people believe their vote counts when it is opposed by endless money, lies and manipulation ? For example, how could the media make free tuition, last signed into law, by Abe Lincoln and existing in California until a couple of decades ago, seem strange ? And it's normal in all other countries as a matter of course. I cannot believe you can have that debt at such a young age and manage. It seems the last economic conflict exploited by capitalism is conflict--which should not be--is between old people and young people. Young people more and more are excluded from that American economic leveler, education.


blackerdog -> StephenChin 9 Jun 2016 03:20

The super delegates are all full paid up members of the establishment that's why Clinton get their vote.
She won't win against Tump, she has blood on her hands legal problems and can't control her own house never mind the lives of hundreds of millions.
Trump is a buffoon but he hasn't been bought. Middle America won't vote for her.


Flugler -> Virginia Fast 9 Jun 2016 03:18

Bill Clinton stripped the social security fund dry and used it to balance the budgets. Americans retiring in the near future are screwed. Cheers bill.


Virginia Fast -> Flugler 9 Jun 2016 03:14

With Clinton putting Hubby in charge of financial affairs, better get ready to bail out the banks and lose whatever you managed to keep last time. If only the fools who voted for them suffered !

It's a nightmare of endless war and homeless filling th streets. More of the same forever and ever.......the future as igtmare


Mynameistoocommon -> turn1eft 9 Jun 2016 02:50

If this were true the FBI should get the hell on with it and not play political games. It is certainly not any of their concern whether Clinton could be pardoned by Obama (which would surely kill her campaign in any event). Since she is innocent until proven guilty, the suspicion that the investigation places over her is itself damaging. If it could ever be proven that the FBI had deliberately taken their time in order to prolong the doubt, before clearing her, that would be a very serious allegation. I can't really see why they would bother though.


JK1875 9 Jun 2016 02:50

Bernie is an Independent, he should run as one. F*ck Clinton and f*ck the DNC.


robinvp11 -> Highgatecemetry 9 Jun 2016 02:47

I lived in the US for twelve years. Bernie Sanders is not a 'socialist;' in the UK, he'd be a Tory - not entirely sure where. Maybe liberal Tory but on a lot of things, he'd be to the right ie his views on guns (yes, he's pro-limited control but he buys into the NRA idea that it's 'mental health' issue).


trow 9 Jun 2016 02:46

Clinton was not elected she was appointed by so called super delegates .The election process was exposed as a farce .


turn1eft 9 Jun 2016 02:44

Sanders is only hanging on because the FBI have said they will prosecute Hillary on treason and racketeering.

Which sound strange to our ears. But racketeering was revived during the 1920s and treason during the Cold War.

Clintons email server didnt just include top secret documents illegally it also included information about illegal donations from foreign backers.

I think the FBI are undecided whether to press charges now - with a high chance Obama will pardon her - or press charges after the election in November when she will be spending the rest of her life dealing with this case.


ShaneFromMelbourne saddam 9 Jun 2016 02:43

Under Obama's watch:
Too big to fail banks....they're even BIGGER
1.5 Quadrillion dollar derivatives market that scares the shit out of even the hedge funds.
Dodd-Frank Act that has loopholes you could drive a truck through.
Unemployment still out of the park (as if anyone believes the BS statistic of 4.9%)
The US economy is still so shit the the Fed can't increase interest rates (that's right, there will be no interest rate hike this year or the next)
8 years hasn't improved much.....


qelt17 -> Aquarius9 9 Jun 2016 02:38

The 67-year-old Democratic front-runner has been "frequently plagued" by "blinding headaches" and a series of strokes over the course of the campaign which have left her second-guessing her chances of winning in 2016, says the upcoming book "Unlikeable - The Problem with Hillary."
http://nypost.com/2015/09/22/hillary-is-dealing-with-mounting-health-issues-new-book-claims/


FrankLeeSpeaking -> Mea Mea 9 Jun 2016 02:26

You must be a Killkary feminist. Sanders has deep rooted integrity and a fire to make the US a better place, unlike Killary ready to make the next killing, physically and financially speaking.


SilverTui 9 Jun 2016 02:15

A well funded and organised exit poll, which included mail in ballots, had a deficit of 16 percent from the reported results in California.

A deficit of 2 percent is sufficient to trigger an official investigation in Denmark.

Just saying.

https://public.tableau.com/profile/paulmitche11#!/vizhome/CapitolWeeklyDemPresidentialPrimaryAVExitPoll/USDEMPRIM

Also millions of California independents were given "placebo" affidavit ballots, that are not counted.


passtherockplease -> davidlen 9 Jun 2016 02:14

I believe we are already there. I think it will be very close but Trump will win -- republican tend to vote for their 'side' no matter whom it is. Those of us on the left seem to like purity, more than getting power to get things done. It is why These people only come out at Presidential elections forgetting there are three branches to governing in the US, Check out off year voting patterns GOP vote numbers stay firm. Democrats less so it is why there is no Democratic control senate and house and the house, well that is lost at least until the next census.

Go look at things like Young Turks and the like. They really think Clinton is worse than Trump.


gwynnechris -> Dennis25 9 Jun 2016 02:13

Lessor 'evilism' argument don't work. Trump may have different style, but politically/economically he's similar to Clinton. (Technically he's not a Fascist. He does not have bullyboys physically attacking left-wing/Trade Union meetings. eg Germany 1930's). I guess many people in USA want something different to Corporate dominance; which I believe will require a Labour Party formed from the Trade Unions. So Trump gets elected. Big deal. People will soon see their mistake and change. Politics has moved beyond the illusionary middle-ground as the election of Jeremy Corbyn indicates.


queequeg7 9 Jun 2016 01:52

The Democrat Party is controlled by the Right and the the representatives at [almost] all levels appear untouchable. The key to the future, not just for Sanders but for the Left he has mobilised, will be in opening up the Party to democracy and accountability.

In much the same way as Corbyn's election must make Labour MPs and Councillors more accountable to the Party membership, so Sanders' campaign must now find a way of challenging both the individuals and the process.


eastbayradical 9 Jun 2016 01:51

Here some wondrous policies and initiative enacted or supported by Bill Clinton and Barack Obama during their presidencies, almost all of which Hillary Clinton supports:

--Deregulation of telecom and finance
--The Omnibus Crime Bill
--The sanctions regime against Iraq (which killed 500,000 Iraqi children)
--NAFTA
--CAFTA
--TPP
--Fracking
--The objectively-racist death penalty
--Don't Ask, Don't Tell
--The Defense of Marriage Act
--Historic levels of repression against whistle-blowers
--Preservation of Bush-era tax cuts on the rich
--Expansion of NSA spying
--Years of foot-dragging on climate change
--Support for Israeli atrocities
--Support for the right-wing coup in Honduras
--Support for fraudulent election in Haiti
--Support for the Saudi dictatorship
--Support for a 31 cents/hour minimum wage (and against attempts to raise it)
--Arctic Drilling
--$1 trillion 20 year modernization of nuclear weapons arsenal
--Historically high numbers of deportations
--Drone missile strikes that kill large numbers of civilian an inflame anti-US hatred
--Health care reform that fortifies the power of the insurance cartel
--The bail-out of Wall Street


eastbayradical -> MikaelRogers 9 Jun 2016 01:48

Mikael supports the candidate that has backed the destruction of welfare, the private prison industry, the objectively-racist death penalty, fortification of the police state, deregulation of investment banks, NAFTA, the Iraq War, the bombing of Libya, the right-wing coup in Honduras, Israel's starvation blockade and blitzkrieg of Gaza, and the fight against raising the minimum wage in Haiti from 30 cents/hour to 60 cents/hour--all policies from which non-white people hav disproportionately suffered--yet every chance she gets, Mikael accuses the Sanders' campaign and supporters of being the racists.


Nietzschestache 9 Jun 2016 01:37

It is truly depressing that the democrats had the chance to put a decent trustworthy person in the White House but instead opted for Clinton, who represents the interests of Wall Street and the Party of Perpetual War. By opting for her they have handed the keys to the repulsive Trump.


Guest Oo -> saddam 9 Jun 2016 01:30

If Bernie took in all the BIG MONEY like the corrupt politicians, he would accomplished a lot more for the oligarchy and corporations and forget the people. He would also be a multi-millionaire by now.

Bernie chose the route to have a government for the PEOPLE and that does not work anymore. Majority of the corrupt Democrat voters chose a GOVERNMENT FOR THE CORPORATIONS by voting for Hillary.


johnnyhacket NigelRG 9 Jun 2016 01:29

The lesser of two evils is an argument that holds no water.
Read this for a different perspective I do not agree with it all but it will make a change from all the Trump is evil you must vote HRC stuff that is coming our way .
http:// https://off-guardian.org/2016/06/06/the-myth-of-the-spoiler-why-the-machine-elites-fear-democracy/www .


eastbayradical HilltopRide 9 Jun 2016 01:25

For decades tens of millions of Americans who are left politically on major issues (whether they identify as "left-wing" or not) have voted for politicians who have carried water for Wall Street, the Pentagon, and the national security apparatus--often more effectively than the Republicans they depict themselves as the progressive alternative to.

Every four years we're told "yes, X Democrat is a corporate-backed, warmongering stooge, but look at how horrible Y Republican is! If you don't vote for the Democrat you're voting for the Republican!" It's the same scare tactics year after year after year--and year after year the political center of gravity shifts further to the right. This is the anatomy of our demise.

Finally, millions that have for years dutifully voted for the corporate, warmongering pseudo-progressive stooge with the (D) next to his name are waking up and saying to the Democrats: Try to win without out us you corporate scum!


joeblow9999 -> saddam 9 Jun 2016 01:16

Hilly's accomplishments?

Iraq War
Setting the stage for ISIS
Kicking off the next Cold War

She is a sham.


Jill McLean 9 Jun 2016 01:15

What I don't get is everyone's surprise. Just one example: A $29 billion deal with Saudi Arabia goes down, and the Clinton Foundation gets a $10 mil contribution. What kind of payback could Bernie get for petitioning for 'equal rights'? Come one, people. Money buys power - always has; always will. Read 'Clinton Ca$h'. Or just read something besides MSM.


duncandunnit 9 Jun 2016 01:03

Hillary Clinton is a warmongering she devil, that will only ever work with problems rather than solutions. She will be very happy for the usa to continue selling billions of dollars of weapons to wasabi jihadists at saudi instruction (which caused the European refugee crisis), she will continue the usa track record of the usa sticking in puppet presidentas into countries denying them democracy. She will continue the usa using propaganda as a weapon.


sammy3110 9 Jun 2016 00:48

After Hillary's coronation, I'll change my registration from D to I, and I hope others will consider doing the same. I'm not leaving the D Party, the D Party has left me.


ynnej1964 -> garth25 9 Jun 2016 00:42

I have to wonder. Among my pro-Clinton friends the dominant arguments were a) her 'qualification' b) it's time for a woman c) Bernie is less qualified, and so to chose him over hillary might indicate unconscious sexism.

I'm not saying that there are not people who fully support her (and Obama's) IMF/World Bank/USAID/Clinton Foundation approach to international development and international trade, her center aisle approach to use of armed force, her (and Obama's) preference for private insurance based health reform, her approach to Haiti , but I don't think that is why my clinton friends supported her. I can't speak for all. But i'd say these are more things they would forgive her for, rather than their first choice on policy.


daWOID -> eastbayradical 9 Jun 2016 00:36

Sorry, friend, I happen to know a good deal about voter fraud in New York State, where I worked for a few decades as Inspector of Elections. Don't know much about California. So here's what I can contribute:

a) In New York State at least, provisional ballots are exactly the joke you describe. All it takes is a poll worker who doesn't like your looks and they'll pretend they can't find you on the rolls and why don't you simply fill out a provisional ballot?

b) And of course the provisional ballots never get counted, because to have your ballot counted you would have to go before a judge to determine whether or not you were rightly denied your vote.

c) The amount of voter fraud and voter suppression perpetrated in the Democratic Primary this year has surpassed anything I've ever seen in my lifetime, excepting my work during the Civil Rights Era, where it was just as bad but considerably less sophisticated. So is it likely that the same applied in California? Well, duh...


macktan894 9 Jun 2016 00:32

These are crucial issues that most people have repeatedly bitched about over the years in these forums. It makes no sense to plunge kids into bankruptcy and lifelong debt with outrageous fees and interest rates who are tying to get an education. We have seniors whose social security checks are being garnished because they still owe on college loans. We have people who are afraid to see a doctor or go to an emergency room, even though they pay yearly escalating premiums, because they fear the debt it will trigger. Yet Elected Officials seem only able to act when it comes to Endless Wars and surveillance; no problem spending trillions on defense, just don't ask them to spend it on the American people lest they feel entitled.

I'm hardly surprised that the Status Quo wants Bernie to just shut up and disappear. Who's lauding him for running a campaign financed by people who voted for him, not by corporations and billionaires? And I'll continue to donate to him because he is the people's lobbyist. Go, Bernie!


GigabitG 9 Jun 2016 00:31

So is the Guardian arguing that Clinton fought a fair campaign? Really? Try a little harder please, you know full well that Clinton hobbled Sanders at every step. Throughout this campaign the Guardian has chosen to ignore all the reports of widespread disenfranchisement and polling irregularities that prevented millions of Sanders supporters from voting and instead lazily point to the inevitability of Clinton. Depressing news from a complicit Guardian.


RogersRoy ChrisD58 9 Jun 2016 00:29

Sad to see Sanders ego and self delusion providing even more opportunity for the monster that is Trump

Remember!, it wasn't all sweetness and light under warmonger Hillary. C.

The Republican & Democrat DNA is within 1% of each other. These parties have loads of Corporate corrupt White House monsters.

When our governments; the White House and their British Parliamentary lackeys use our taxes to pay their terrorists to overthrow legitimate sovereign countries and their elected leaders and organise assassinations then I say; it's high time this incompetent maverick nonsense stopped!!.

I Refuse To Pay These Illegal Bills.


eastbayradical 9 Jun 2016 00:07

Both my wife and I registered as Democrats in California in the last month.

My wife received a ballot in the mail but she was still listed as a Green. When she went to the precinct to vote she was given a provisional ballot that allowed her to vote in the Democratic primary. I just asked her if her name was on the voter rolls and she said she doesn't know, that the precinct workers "didn't know what they were doing, they just gave me a provisional ballot."

Unlike my wife I did receive confirmation that I had been registered as a Democrat and I received a ballot with the Democratic primary choices on it. Despite getting the ballot in the mail I wanted to vote at the precinct. I found when I got to the precinct that my name wasn't listed on voter rolls. The precinct worker recommended that I vote by provisional ballot, which I didn't like the idea of. I decided to fill out my ballot at the precinct and I was told to put it into a blue bag with a slot on the top. The precinct worker assured me that my ballot would be counted.

Journalist Greg Palast reports that provisional ballots, like the one my wife voted with, are essentially "placebo ballots"--that a very large percentage of them are never counted. He additionally reports that there are hundreds of thousands of provisional ballots in California that have yet to be counted. There is every reason to believe that provisional ballots, since they're given to newly-registered voters, were disproportionately given to Sanders' voters like my wife. Palast also reports that very large numbers of voters found that there names were not on voting rolls when they went to vote. It would seem that this would also disproportionately affect newly-registered voters.

On top of all this, there are many thousands of ballots that were sent on Monday and Tuesday that have yet to be counted.

Does anyone have any thoughts on this matter? Is Greg Palast wrong about provisional ballots? Are all the votes going to be counted? I'm happy to hear the thoughts of people who think that Palast is full of shit, so long as they're actually engaging in thinking.


Janosik53 -> sandi78 8 Jun 2016 23:55

Published May 11, 2016

Hillary Clinton for months has downplayed the FBI investigation into her private email server and practices as a mere "security inquiry."

But when asked Wednesday about Clinton's characterization of the bureau's probe, FBI Director James Comey said he doesn't know what "security inquiry" means -- adding, "We're conducting an investigation. … That's what we do."

Hillary Clinton is a pathological liar.


iammaynard -> drpage1 8 Jun 2016 23:38

Your leaders, Clinton and Obama created ISIS

I wish I had the middle east figured out as well as you got it. If you understand the causes so clearly, when will you be bringing your solutions? Those must obviously as clear to you, yes?


Carenshare -> Annie Rainier 8 Jun 2016 23:31

Re: Your points.....

"bags" - Both Clintons drag around more baggage than American Airlines
"old man" - Sanders isn't much older than Clinton
"God" - There is no God
"save America" - if Clinton or Trump gets into the White House, NOTHING will save America!

But 'Good Luck' anyways!


Girl 8 Jun 2016 23:27

Super delegates don't count until the convention... The Guardian has aided the fruad and been a champion for the DNC...Hillary is goin' down, either the e mails, the clinton foundation, or Trump, she is done...


drpage1 -> nevesone 8 Jun 2016 23:19

Your leaders, Clinton and Obama created ISIS. Here is a clue:

http://www.latimes.com/world/middleeast/la-fg-cia-pentagon-isis-20160327-story.html

"In Syria, militias armed by the Pentagon fight those armed by the CIA"

"...a string of embarrassing setbacks which included recruits being ambushed and handing over much of their U.S.-issued ammunition and trucks to an Al Qaeda affiliate."

ISIS was not reversed in Syria until Russia became involved, and they were in full decline within a month. Years of Obama's war against them and they expanded to holding 80% of Syria , and beyond.


DesertPear -> Jared Hall 8 Jun 2016 23:06

The US Military-Industrial Complex is possibly the largest user of fossil fuels in the world and the information is not transparent nor available. We absolutely must turn away from war as a solution if we are to slow climate change! And the only way to change the military is to get money out of politics.


mbidding -> notmurdoch 8 Jun 2016 21:34

Student financial aid is not extremely generous in the US and generally does not cover the full cost of tuition at modestly priced state schools, let alone books. Loans, of course, are available, but financial aid is nothing like it was before Reagan gutted federal financial aid in the eighties and the states started divesting from their public universities at the same time.

[Jun 07, 2016] Symbolic End To Farcical Democratic Primary Anonymous Super-Delegates Declare Winner Through Media Zero Hedge

Notable quotes:
"... "Any night that you have a primary or caucus, and the media lumps the superdelegates in-that they basically polled by calling them up and saying who are you supporting -- they don't vote until the convention. And so, they shouldn't be included in any count." ..."
"... Yet the AP and other media continued to do so. Why? It's just blatant bias from the ostensibly neutral mainstream media for the status quo candidate Hillary Clinton. ..."
"... This is a paper that's supposed to represent and inform Californians. There's only one word that comes to mind: disgusting . Particularly so when you see the polling numbers for independents in California: ..."
"... Superdelegates exist solely to manipulate voters through the media. Something that has happened consistently throughout the primary. ..."
www.zerohedge.com
Jun 7, 2016 4:25 PM Submitted by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

I bet this poll had a lot to do with the decision to call democratic race for Hillary. They're scared. #VoteBernie pic.twitter.com/lSFP7ZG1T8

- Christie Sparrow (@sparrows1981) June 7, 2016

Last night, Associated Press – on a day when nobody voted – surprised everyone by abruptly declaring the Democratic Party primary over and Hillary Clinton the victor. The decree, issued the night before the California primary in which polls show Clinton and Bernie Sanders in a very close race, was based on the media organization's survey of "superdelegates": the Democratic Party's 720 insiders, corporate donors and officials whose votes for the presidential nominee count the same as the actually elected delegates. AP claims that superdelegates who had not previously announced their intentions privately told AP reporters that they intend to vote for Clinton, bringing her over the threshold. AP is concealing the identity of the decisive superdelegates who said this.

This is the perfect symbolic ending to the Democratic Party primary: The nomination is consecrated by a media organization, on a day when nobody voted, based on secret discussions with anonymous establishment insiders and donors whose identities the media organization – incredibly – conceals. The decisive edifice of superdelegates is itself anti-democratic and inherently corrupt: designed to prevent actual voters from making choices that the party establishment dislikes. But for a party run by insiders and funded by corporate interests, it's only fitting that their nomination process ends with such an ignominious, awkward and undemocratic sputter.

That the Democratic Party nominating process is declared to be over in such an uninspiring, secretive, and elite-driven manner is perfectly symbolic of what the party, and its likely nominee, actually is. The one positive aspect, though significant, is symbolic, while the actual substance – rallying behind a Wall-Street-funded, status-quo-perpetuating, multi-millionaire militarist – is grim in the extreme. The Democratic Party got exactly the ending it deserved.

– Glenn Greenwald, writing at The Intercept

Last night, the American public witnessed the most egregious example of mainstream media malpractice of my lifetime. By declaring Hillary Clinton the Democratic nominee based on the pledges of superdelegates who have not voted, and will not vote until the convention on July 25th, the Associated Press performed a huge disservice to American democracy on the eve of a major primary day, in which voters from the most populous state in the union (amongst others) head to the polls. If you are a U.S. citizen and you aren't outraged by this, there's something seriously wrong with you.

In this post, I have three objectives. First, I will set the stage by explaining how incredibly sleazy the move by the AP was. Second, I will outline the preposterous and unjustifiable nature of having superdelegates in the first place. Third, I will attempt to convince all true Bernie Sanders supporters to commit themselves to never supporting Hillary Clinton. Let's get started.

1. Journalistic Malpractice

Let's start with the Associated Press , which I have lost every single ounce of respect for. The "news" organization is now the most discredited entity in journalism as an result of what it did. Some are excusing its public betrayed as merely "trying to get a scoop" and call the race over before the other networks on Tuesday night. Personally, I think that's only a small factor in what happened.

I've noticed for months now, that the AP from the very beginning was including super delegates in a way that was intentionally misleading. For example, this is how the graphics to their "delegate tracker" appear:

Notice that the big, bold numbers to the left representing the total, includes superdelegates who have not yet voted. There can be absolutely no doubt that the AP is being intentionally misleading by doing this, and is committing journalistic malpractice. How can I be so sure? Let's take a look at this video clip from CNN aired earlier this year.

As you saw, Luis Miranda, the Communications Director at the Democratic National Committee, specifically told Jake Tapper that it is wrong to include superdelegates in the tally total for the Democratic primary. There can be no other interpretation. He said:

"Any night that you have a primary or caucus, and the media lumps the superdelegates in-that they basically polled by calling them up and saying who are you supporting -- they don't vote until the convention. And so, they shouldn't be included in any count."

Yet the AP and other media continued to do so. Why? It's just blatant bias from the ostensibly neutral mainstream media for the status quo candidate Hillary Clinton.

That should be enough to turn the U.S. population away from these organizations forever. Yet there's more. In calling the nomination for Hillary, the Associated Press had to get commitments from a few more super delegates. They achieved that feat yesterday evening (mind you, they still haven't actually voted), and they kept the names anonymous. Yes, you read that right.

Of course, it wasn't just the AP , it was virtually all mainstream media proclaiming the same thing in a unified chorus. Indeed, they seemed to relish in it. Particularly inexcusable was reporting from the LA Times. As Wall Street on Parade noted :

Particularly outrageous was the unethical conduct of the largest newspapers in California, where 1.5 million new voters have registered since January 1. California is an open primary, meaning Independents can vote. That fact, together with the massive new voter registrations and the tens of thousands who have turned out for Sanders' rallies, was signaling a potential upset for Clinton in the state. That would not only be embarrassing but could lead to defections among the superdelegates prior to the Convention in July.

The Los Angeles Times, which calls itself "the largest metropolitan daily newspaper in the country, with a daily readership of 1.4 million," was one of the most egregious in their reporting. After running the headline "Hillary Clinton Clinches Nomination in a Historic First," it then ran an article that asked in the headline: "After AP calls nomination for Clinton, will voters still turn out Tuesday?"

This is a paper that's supposed to represent and inform Californians. There's only one word that comes to mind: disgusting . Particularly so when you see the polling numbers for independents in California:

So let's recap. The Associated Press and virtually all other mainstream media declared Hillary Clinton the winner of the Democratic primary on the eve of a huge voting day with 694 pledged delegates at stake. They declared her the winner on a day in which no American primaries or caucuses were held, and via word of mouth from a handful of anonymous superdelegates. I don't know what to call that, but it's certainly not journalism.

2. Superdelegates as a Concept is Preposterous

I've read all the arguments and spin and there's simply no reasonable justification for having superdelegates other than to manipulate the voting public via "delegate tracker" graphics such as what is used by the AP in order to always show Hillary Clinton with a big lead irrespective what's actually happening on the ground. While Clinton has certainly won more pledged delegates thus far, the voting public has been intentionally manipulated from day one via the use of superdelegates.

As the Sanders campaign pointed out last night:

Secretary Clinton does not have and will not have the requisite number of pledged delegates to secure the nomination. She will be dependent on superdelegates who do not vote until July 25 and who can change their minds between now and then. They include more than 400 superdelegates, who endorsed Secretary Clinton 10 months before the first caucuses and primaries and long before any other candidate was in the race.

Think about that for a second. 400 superdelegates pledged their loyalty to Hillary 10 months before any voters had a chance to make their opinions heard. These superdelegates have not switched based on the desires of the voters in their states, and their early loyalty oaths allowed the media to manipulate the public from day one by including these lopsided figures.

How lopsided are they? With a vast majority of the primaries completed, here's the math.

Pledged delegates

Clinton: 1,812
Sanders: 1,521

Superdelegates

Clinton: 571
Sanders: 48

Anyone else see a problem with that? While Clinton still has a comfortable lead in pledged delegates, she is slaughtering him in superdelegates. We can draw two important conclusions from this reality.

  1. Superdelegates do not proportionately represent the will of the voters.
  2. Superdelegates exist solely to manipulate voters through the media. Something that has happened consistently throughout the primary.

The fact that superdelegates exist solely to manipulate voters should be perfectly clear at this point. Perfect proof of this can be seen in the incomprehensible answer DNC chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz gave to why they exists:

[Jun 03, 2016] The Wall Street Journal had an article yesterday saying that Hillary might not be the nominee

Notable quotes:
"... The Wall Street Journal had an article yesterday saying that Hillary might not be the nominee, ..."
"... For damn sure parachuting someone in ahead of him in line would be the death of the Democratic party, and good riddance. And good riddance to Al Gore, who wouldn't even fight his own election battle. He's as fake a standard bearer as Elizabeth Warren. ..."
"... Plus Bernie supporters don't support Bernie because he's a Democrat, they support him because of what he is campaigning about. A replacement head bolted onto the decapitated Clinton campaign would never in a zillion years be for anything Sanders is for, and… we're not stupid enough to believe it would be. ..."
"... This is surely the year the skull beneath the skin of both political parties gets revealed. ..."
"... Several months ago I was having a political discussion with my youngest brother and he asked me what my best and worst case scenarios were. I told him that the best case scenario was the implosion of both legacy parties. The worst case scenario was some sort of constitutional crisis emerging. I had negligently never considered the possibility that both could occur. ..."
"... This is about jobs. The DNC employs a whole slew of Beltway careerists, both directly and indirectly, who will be out of a job if Sanders becomes President. These careerists believe that they are entitled to the jobs they hold, and that someone like Sanders should never be allowed to take their jobs away. There is a great debate going on right now about how the American people can be lied to, and told that it's not about these jobs, but is rather "for the good of the country". But do not be fooled. It is about these jobs. ..."
"... Now THOSE are the sort of entitlements that I'd like to see done away with !! Let the careerists live on the street …… in appliance boxes, for all I care ……it would serve them right ! ..."
"... The idea that the Dems think they are still a force to reckon with when less than one-third of the voters self-identify as a Dem is ludicrous. ..."
"... less than one-third of the voters self-identify as a Dem ..."
"... Yes, and something else. Half the country doesn't vote, which means the Democrats comprise about one-sixth of eligible voters, with Republicans even fewer. Which means that one-third of the population controls the only two viable political vehicles in the country. ..."
"... Our political duopoly represents just a tiny slice of the spectrum. This is an ultra-conservative system designed to ensure stability in a well-functioning democratic republic that is responsive to the people. But we now live in an oligarchy and our hijacked, corrupted political duoploly only serves the oligarchs. ..."
"... I see much of American politics since the mid-20th as a struggle between two philosophies (or extremes) of the ruling and wealthy elite. One advocates a "squeeze the proles until they bleed to death" approach, while the other is smart enough to realize, "we need them happy enough to prevent violent revolution, or they'll try to kill us all, which is bad for business". And the former approach has gained too much ground, so we're seeing the public heating towards their boiling point. ..."
"... With the ruling classes' reluctance to yield any of their ever-growing, ever-concentrated wealth to the masses, I worry that they'll try war as a distraction next. The War on Terror has mostly flopped by this point, but it can be used as stage setting for what comes next. Either a "real" war against China and/or Russia, or an orders of magnitude upswing in domestic terrorism and strife. (I wonder who would be good for getting such violence started, without tarnishing the reputation of the ruling class even further…) ..."
"... Trump's problem are his negatives, which are so extreme that only Hillary Clinton could compete on that field, and secondly the likely ephemerallity of the outsider status his whole persona is marketed on. As he is embraced by the GOP establishment, his outsider appeal will become smothered by its embrace. ..."
"... Meanwhile, there's someone for whom millions of people have actually cast a ballot, and those people are going to lose their sh!t if Debbie Wasserman Schultz tries to pull off a coup and toss Sanders on the trash heap. ..."
"... Her pardoning herself is the only real protection she can count on. Obama has a legacy as such as it is. He can't handle blanket pardons, and the House will be GOP regardless (here's to DWS and Pelosi). They will investigate the Clintons regardless of who the next President is. ..."
"... It may be that the FBI has a digital image of that boil from the backup copy of the server that Platte River (seems to have) accidentally put in the cloud. ..."
"... Don't miss "Brexit: The Movie" Should be mandatory watching for every politician around the globe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYqzcqDtL3k ..."
"... Short vid of Jill Stein making way to much sense. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2NjkCfjU-FY&feature=youtu.be ..."
"... In fact, I had to show them polls of Bernie beating Trump by a way wider margin than Hillary to convince them otherwise. That just goes to show you how successful the Clinton PR machine (not to mention a complicit media) has been at pushing her narrative. Even if people want Bernie to win and strongly dislike her, the general feeling seems to be that she is inevitable. ..."
"... That assumes the AG declined to prosecute, or otherwise blocked the charges. That doesn't clear HRC, so no double jeopardy. What's to stop a Republican House and Senate from conducting their own investigation (starting with evidence leaked by the FBI) and impeaching her? ..."
"... Beware, he speaks with forked tongue!! He never says what he means, nor means what he says. ..."
"... Look, Bernie sees the problem and offers solutions. Trump just sees the problem. Hillary denies that a problem even exists. ..."
"... Well, on Diane Reem today (NPR) was a discussion on why fascist parties are growing in Europe. Both Cohen and the clowns on NPR missed the forest for the trees. The reason Trump and Sanders are doing well in the US while fascists are doing well in Europe is the same reason: neoliberalism has gutted, or is in the process of gutting, societies. ..."
"... The US and NATO destabilize countries with the intent of stealing their resources and protecting their markets, cause massive refugee flows which strain social structures in Europe (which falls right into the hands of the gutters and cutters of neoliberalism). Of course the people will lean fascist. ..."
"... In the US we don't have the refugees, but the neoliberalism is further along and more damaging. There's no mystery here or in Europe, just the natural effects of governments failing to represent real people in favor of useless eater rich. ..."
www.nakedcapitalism.com
Elliot , June 1, 2016 at 4:32 pm

The Wall Street Journal had an article yesterday saying that Hillary might not be the nominee, and while DNC faithful want us all to assume that if that happened, it would not be Sanders, that's emphatically not what the rest of the US will assume, nor, I think, stand for.

For damn sure parachuting someone in ahead of him in line would be the death of the Democratic party, and good riddance. And good riddance to Al Gore, who wouldn't even fight his own election battle. He's as fake a standard bearer as Elizabeth Warren.

Plus Bernie supporters don't support Bernie because he's a Democrat, they support him because of what he is campaigning about. A replacement head bolted onto the decapitated Clinton campaign would never in a zillion years be for anything Sanders is for, and… we're not stupid enough to believe it would be.

~~~~

Trump's been involved in some 3.5K lawsuits, he only wrote his check to the Veterans' charity the day the reporter grilled him about stiffing them, his TrumpYours University taught cheating and scorched earth sales tactics, he wants to sell off the public lands, privatize Social Security, etc etc ad infinitum. He is emphatically not what Bernie supporters are looking for, either.

This is surely the year the skull beneath the skin of both political parties gets revealed.

Archie , June 1, 2016 at 5:32 pm

I agree with you 1000% Elliot. Several months ago I was having a political discussion with my youngest brother and he asked me what my best and worst case scenarios were. I told him that the best case scenario was the implosion of both legacy parties. The worst case scenario was some sort of constitutional crisis emerging. I had negligently never considered the possibility that both could occur.

Peter Bernhardt , June 1, 2016 at 10:13 pm

Hear hear!

Benedict@Large , June 1, 2016 at 4:27 pm

This is about jobs. The DNC employs a whole slew of Beltway careerists, both directly and indirectly, who will be out of a job if Sanders becomes President. These careerists believe that they are entitled to the jobs they hold, and that someone like Sanders should never be allowed to take their jobs away. There is a great debate going on right now about how the American people can be lied to, and told that it's not about these jobs, but is rather "for the good of the country". But do not be fooled. It is about these jobs.

At the end of the day, there may be some scraps left over, and should they fall from the table, the quick among us will certainly be allowed to have them. Thank you very much for voting. See you again in four years.

tegnost , June 1, 2016 at 7:24 pm

On the bright side, they'll be eligible for food stamps and medicaid

polecat , June 1, 2016 at 10:11 pm

Now THOSE are the sort of entitlements that I'd like to see done away with !! Let the careerists live on the street …… in appliance boxes, for all I care ……it would serve them right !

grayslady , June 1, 2016 at 7:57 pm

I'm with you, Katiebird. If there's one thing this campaign year has shown, it's that "we the people" are as powerful as we choose to be. There really is no one else in D.C. who is as decent as Bernie. No one. I've maintained for some time that the Democrats are already dead as a party; they've just been refusing to recognize it.

The Repubs have been clearly shown to be a dead party–first through the Tea Party, and now through this election. The question is whether or not the Dems want to survive as a party.

If they do, Bernie is their only hope. They are in denial now–they think Bernie voters are Dems. They aren't. It all depends on how forcefully Bernie delegates and voters are willing to make their case that it's Bernie or Bust. The idea that the Dems think they are still a force to reckon with when less than one-third of the voters self-identify as a Dem is ludicrous.

wbgonne , June 1, 2016 at 8:38 pm

less than one-third of the voters self-identify as a Dem

Yes, and something else. Half the country doesn't vote, which means the Democrats comprise about one-sixth of eligible voters, with Republicans even fewer. Which means that one-third of the population controls the only two viable political vehicles in the country.

Our political duopoly represents just a tiny slice of the spectrum. This is an ultra-conservative system designed to ensure stability in a well-functioning democratic republic that is responsive to the people. But we now live in an oligarchy and our hijacked, corrupted political duoploly only serves the oligarchs.

Ranger Rick , June 1, 2016 at 3:21 pm

That Cohen quote is choice, in more ways than one. "I am afraid of my fellow Americans."

You know, I'm used to hyperbole during an election year ("my opponent is literally Satan Himself!") but this is genuinely alarming. I'm reminded of a (paraphrased) quote from an online discussion:

"When the revolution for the people, by the people comes, 'the people' are not going to be your people. They are the homeless, the jobless, the uneducated, the rural. They are the butt of your redneck jokes and elided in your 'urban youth' euphemisms. And they hate you, no matter how much you claim to be on their side, because you have not suffered as they have."

Jason , June 1, 2016 at 4:02 pm

I see much of American politics since the mid-20th as a struggle between two philosophies (or extremes) of the ruling and wealthy elite. One advocates a "squeeze the proles until they bleed to death" approach, while the other is smart enough to realize, "we need them happy enough to prevent violent revolution, or they'll try to kill us all, which is bad for business". And the former approach has gained too much ground, so we're seeing the public heating towards their boiling point.

(I personally think Trump is nothing but a con-man trying to ride the resentment as a shortcut to putting himself in the big chair, but I can empathize with those so desperate they see no better alternative to bloody revolution.)

With the ruling classes' reluctance to yield any of their ever-growing, ever-concentrated wealth to the masses, I worry that they'll try war as a distraction next. The War on Terror has mostly flopped by this point, but it can be used as stage setting for what comes next. Either a "real" war against China and/or Russia, or an orders of magnitude upswing in domestic terrorism and strife. (I wonder who would be good for getting such violence started, without tarnishing the reputation of the ruling class even further…)

Once the Next War has begun (domestic or foreign doesn't matter, as long as its bigger and scarier to everyone) it will be blamed for all sorts of ills and used to justify excesses of the worst sort for the better part of a generation. (I doubt it has ever occurred to Our Dear Rulers that the public might not go along with their Next War, or that it may not play out according to their plans.)

Praedor , June 1, 2016 at 4:13 pm

Would THIS war do the trick?

http://johnhelmer.net/?p=15751

JerseyJeffersonian , June 1, 2016 at 7:14 pm

Yeah, nobody is listening at all to President Putin and the wider Russian policy and military establishments as they warn, attempt diplomacy, and give the clearest possible indication by the actions of their military that they feel themselves seriously – very seriously – threatened by the aggressive actions on their borders by the US and the NATO pink poodles.

Probably, The Moustache of Understanding, Thomas Friedman, would consider this to be no problem for him, his family, and the US. So what if Romanians, Poles, whatever, die? The conflict would remain contained to Central Europe, right? Think of the propaganda opportunities. They're just dizzying. Get Vicky, Samantha, Michele on the job, stat!

But you know what? If those harridans set foot in Central Europe, they would be in serious danger of being lynched by the terrified peoples of those nations with whose lives they so casually dice, and rightly so. Playing with matches in a dynamite factory is to be discouraged, and that is all that these fools seem capable of.

Some people seem mystified by why the Russians have pulled some of their air assets out of Syria while the outcomes of the war are still in doubt. Well, they're being redeployed back to Russia against the need to throw them into combat against the US and the NATO pink poodles (who seem to love to sidle up to Russia and lift their legs to piss on their President and their national security; talk about your stoopid dogs). So, no, there is no mystery here at all. Things have gotten dead serious now that these missiles are actually being deployed, and no longer being dissimulated as being directed against possible lunatic Iranian aggression; their true target, always known for anyone with two neurons to spark against one another, is Russia. As opposed to past invasions from the west, when their nation is threatened by hypersonic missiles, there is no strategic depth provided by the landmass of Russia. The Russians know this all too well, and they are not blowing smoke here. Finally, President Putin has learned that he has no "partners", one of his favorite phrases in the past when referring to the west, with whom to have a serious dialogue. Instead, he has only that callow jackass Obama and the compliant dwarves of Europe leering at him, and ipso facto, no one with whom dialogue is possible.

As they say here in Southern New Jersey when the Pine Barrens are dry as tinder, we have a Red Flag Warning, and a forest fire is an imminent danger. The consequences of such a localized event are as nothing compared to the dire danger into which our western fools are blithely tripping.

God save us all.

Kurt Sperry , June 1, 2016 at 5:59 pm

Trump's problem are his negatives, which are so extreme that only Hillary Clinton could compete on that field, and secondly the likely ephemerallity of the outsider status his whole persona is marketed on. As he is embraced by the GOP establishment, his outsider appeal will become smothered by its embrace. He will get endorsements from mainstream partisans that will actually be counterproductive, he will need to regularly produce more outrageous statements to retain an outsider cred and each will alienate off another chunk of his support. The *only* possible way Trump wins is vs. a damaged Hillary, I don't see him even beating a barely legitimate Plan B like Biden.

Anne , June 1, 2016 at 3:48 pm

Sometimes I think that people are forgetting that these are people who have never, ever given up; Hillary Clinton is an eyelash away from being nominated for the highest office in the land, she's survived countless investigations, scandals, humiliations. She's withstood everything from hearings to vile sexist and misogynist taunts and labels. She swallowed her pride and sold what was left of her soul for a promise she could move into the White House in January, 2017.

And you think she's possibly going to step down now?

No. That doesn't happen unless she has a real medical issue she can't hide (she'd have to collapse in a very public venue – otherwise, I think whatever medical issues she has remain hidden), there is some sort of family tragedy, or the pus-filled boil that is the nexus between her public office and the Clinton Foundation gets popped in an undeniably damning way before the convention.

And then what? The only people who want Biden are the insiders; if there was that much love for Biden out among the electorate, he would not have been stashed where his mouth could do the least amount of damage. Meanwhile, there's someone for whom millions of people have actually cast a ballot, and those people are going to lose their sh!t if Debbie Wasserman Schultz tries to pull off a coup and toss Sanders on the trash heap.

I think the only fair/decent/small-d Democratic way to do this is to release delegates from their pledges and hold as many votes as it takes to get a nominee. If that's Sanders on the first ballot or the second or the tenth, fine. If it's Gore or Biden or Kerry on the 15th ballot at 5:30 in the morning, well, maybe that's okay, too. As long as it's a participatory process and not an end-run, back-door wheel-and-deal, complete with threats and "incentives" operation, the voters might go along with it and not take to the streets with the torches and pitchforks.

But here's the thing: can't speak for anyone else, but I have seen nothing so far in this election season that gives me any confidence that such an event would be conducted in an ethical, moral manner. And if they decide to substitute their own corrupt judgment for what should be allowed to be the will of the people, they will have only themselves to blame for it being Trump's porcine fingers on the bible come inauguration day.

NotTimothyGeithner , June 1, 2016 at 3:56 pm

Her pardoning herself is the only real protection she can count on. Obama has a legacy as such as it is. He can't handle blanket pardons, and the House will be GOP regardless (here's to DWS and Pelosi). They will investigate the Clintons regardless of who the next President is.

ambrit , June 1, 2016 at 4:02 pm

Something to look forward to! Porcine Maquillage, Trump style! Some of the recent pictures suggest that someone is already putting lipstick on.

PlutoniumKun , June 1, 2016 at 4:58 pm

You are certainly right that she would fight tooth and nail against it, but I think if it is put as an issue of 'you are likely going to prison, but take the noble option and you get a pardon' (while passing over the whiskey and revolver), could do the trick. Even the Clintons could not stand up against a delegation of the party saying 'its this or massive public humiliation'. The classic example was of Margaret Thatcher, who only released her grip on power when one by one each senior cabinet member went in to her and said 'its over'.

Interestingly, I've been looking at some betting sites – they only give odds for three Dems for president – Hilary, Bernie and Biden (at a surprising 33/1).

Lambert Strether Post author , June 1, 2016 at 10:23 pm

> the pus-filled boil that is the nexus between her public office and the Clinton Foundation

It may be that the FBI has a digital image of that boil from the backup copy of the server that Platte River (seems to have) accidentally put in the cloud.

OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL , June 1, 2016 at 3:52 pm

Don't miss "Brexit: The Movie" Should be mandatory watching for every politician around the globe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYqzcqDtL3k

jo6pac , June 1, 2016 at 3:56 pm

Short vid of Jill Stein making way to much sense. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2NjkCfjU-FY&feature=youtu.be

Kurt Sperry , June 1, 2016 at 6:24 pm

If Bernie isn't on my ballot, Jill Stein is who I'll be voting for. Again.

She's excellent, much better than Clinton or obviously Trump, I agree with her on 90% of her positions. If voting *for* someone rather than *against* someone is how democracy should work (and I would argue so) then it would be a waste of my vote to spend it on anyone else. Conservatives should consider Gary Anderson for the same reasons. These minor parties need to reach the 5% threshold to get ballot access and matching funding, I think it's an excellent cause to support just to have a greater diversity in the US political system. Shame on the people who are trying to scare you into voting for someone you don't believe in instead of voting your actual beliefs, it's not right to do.

Nickname , June 1, 2016 at 4:17 pm

I can't help but find it extremely wise of Bernie never to take the bait on that email question because it would inevitably only be used against him and the narrative would then be that he was "backtracking" on when he said that he didn't want to discuss them.

And anyhow, he probably knows that he doesn't need to join the chorus for that story to stay hot. Though I hope and presume that this is a focal talking point if and when he courts superdelegates.

On another note, I live in Sweden and the topic of the election came up with some friends tonight and my friends – all of whom would like to see Bernie be president – all seemed to think that Clinton was a stronger candidate (as in more people favored her) against Trump. In fact, I had to show them polls of Bernie beating Trump by a way wider margin than Hillary to convince them otherwise. That just goes to show you how successful the Clinton PR machine (not to mention a complicit media) has been at pushing her narrative. Even if people want Bernie to win and strongly dislike her, the general feeling seems to be that she is inevitable.

diptherio , June 1, 2016 at 4:26 pm

Somebody mentioned Trump piñatas the other day. Here ya go: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3a5JBxZICas

Trump is the new best-seller, replacing El Chapo.

Lambert Strether Post author , June 1, 2016 at 10:25 pm

I wonder if the piñatas are made in China, like the Trump masks.

EGrise , June 1, 2016 at 4:29 pm

Re: tarhairbabyball – what if Clinton manages to drag things out long enough to get not just the nomination, but the White House?

That assumes the AG declined to prosecute, or otherwise blocked the charges. That doesn't clear HRC, so no double jeopardy. What's to stop a Republican House and Senate from conducting their own investigation (starting with evidence leaked by the FBI) and impeaching her? Nothing that I can see: pardoning herself on her first day in office would mean exactly nothing to the GOP. And if there's evidence of revealing the identities of agents or protecting the backers of the Benghazi plot, an impeachment will have a lot more public support than one over an extra-marital affair.

But further down that road, what if there was some question of negligence or malfeasance by her boss, the president? What would stop congress from going after ex-president Obama? "What did the (ex-)president know and when did he know it?" Talk about tarnishing a legacy.

So am I barking up the wrong tree here, or is the above part of the Dem/BHO decision calculus?

tegnost , June 1, 2016 at 5:04 pm

investigations could provide a smokescreen for all of their darker designs…..

MyLessThanPrimeBeef , June 1, 2016 at 6:10 pm

A few exceptional people thrive under investigation. No mere mortals can come even close that kind of omnipotence.

Lambert Strether Post author , June 1, 2016 at 10:41 pm

The Republicans could certainly impeach her, and I bet some of them are champing at the bit to do so (even the ones not enthusiastic about Trump).

However, they tried that once with Bill Clinton and failed (very much because of their personal defects, but also because of their defects as a party). I would bet on their failing again, simply because the Benghazi hearings were such a cluster, at least so far as constructing a coherent narrative.

Bob , June 1, 2016 at 4:39 pm

Thousands of voters in limbo after Kansas demands proof they're American
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-votingrights-kansas-insight-idUSKCN0YN4AQ

marym , June 1, 2016 at 4:54 pm

President Obama Proposes Expanding Social Security Benefits

Speaking at a high school in Elkhart, Indiana, Obama noted there are some Americans who don't have retirement savings and those who might not be able to save money because they are unable to pay the bills.

"…. not only do we need to strengthen its long term health, it's time we finally made Social Security more generous and increased its benefits so today's retirees and future generations get the dignified retirement that they have earned."

Apparently he was just keeping his powder dry….

tegnost , June 1, 2016 at 5:07 pm

chained cpi, actions speak louder than words….could be considered proof that he's concerned about his legacy?

Amateur Socialist , June 1, 2016 at 5:16 pm

Has anybody asked Madame Secretary what she thinks of this proposal?

Archie , June 1, 2016 at 5:41 pm

Beware, he speaks with forked tongue!! He never says what he means, nor means what he says.

Left in Wisconsin , June 1, 2016 at 6:41 pm

That is about the funniest/saddest thing I have read this year.

Mo's Bike Shop , June 1, 2016 at 7:36 pm

"strengthen its long term health"

A rise in payroll taxes. I'll leave the rest for others who want to play.

marym , June 1, 2016 at 8:27 pm

Sanders Applauds Obama Support for Expanding Social Security

PALO ALTO, Calif. – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders on Wednesday applauded President Barack Obama's support for expanding Social Security by asking the "wealthiest Americans to contribute a little bit more."

Sanders urged Hillary Clinton to back legislation endorsed by leading Democrats and seniors' advocates to strengthen the retirement program.

"I applaud President Obama for making it clear that it is time to expand Social Security benefits," Sanders said. "Millions of seniors, disabled veterans and people with disabilities are falling further and further behind on $10,000 or $11,000 a year Social Security," he added.

Amateur Socialist , June 1, 2016 at 5:01 pm

Is Elizabeth Holmes broke?

sd , June 2, 2016 at 4:42 am

Ouch. That's gotta be leaving skid marks.

edmondo , June 1, 2016 at 5:03 pm

"Trump has taught me to fear my fellow Americans" [Richard Cohen, WaPo]. " I always knew who Trump was. It's the American people who have come as a surprise."

I guess he thought they would never fight back?

Look, Bernie sees the problem and offers solutions. Trump just sees the problem. Hillary denies that a problem even exists.

If you are treading water economically just trying to get by and are hoping for someone, anyone to pin your hopes on, why the hell would it be Hillary? November is going to be very interesting and not in a good way.

aliteralmind , June 2, 2016 at 8:15 am

Insightful candidate summaries.

optimader , June 1, 2016 at 5:10 pm

This will be a good summer read for the election season
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/review/the-romanovs

Praedor , June 1, 2016 at 5:37 pm

So Richard Cohen now fears American voters because of Trump.

Well, on Diane Reem today (NPR) was a discussion on why fascist parties are growing in Europe. Both Cohen and the clowns on NPR missed the forest for the trees. The reason Trump and Sanders are doing well in the US while fascists are doing well in Europe is the same reason: neoliberalism has gutted, or is in the process of gutting, societies.

Workers and other formerly "safe" white collar workers are seeing their job security, income security, retirement security all go up in smoke. Neoliberals are trying to snip and cut labor protections, healthcare, environmental regulations all for corporate profit. In Europe this is all in addition to a massive refugee crisis itself brought on by neoliberalism (neocon foreign policy is required for neoliberal social policy, they go hand-in-hand). The US and NATO destabilize countries with the intent of stealing their resources and protecting their markets, cause massive refugee flows which strain social structures in Europe (which falls right into the hands of the gutters and cutters of neoliberalism). Of course the people will lean fascist.

In the US we don't have the refugees, but the neoliberalism is further along and more damaging. There's no mystery here or in Europe, just the natural effects of governments failing to represent real people in favor of useless eater rich.

Make the people into commodities, endanger their washes and job security, impose austerity, and tale in floods of refugees. Of COURSE Europeans stay leaning fascist.

readerOfTeaLeaves , June 1, 2016 at 5:42 pm

Lambert, for the good of the order, something from out of an old bookmarked file, Bernie Sanders filibustering Obama's tax cuts in Dec 2010. Watching this, what Bernie is doing is totally consistent with his economic analyses going back years:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=syBBzXixioc

Incredible.
Truly amazing to watch today.

Back in 2010, he was pointing out to the US Senate that one single tax cut for the Walton family would pay for money for disabled Vets and Seniors. Just incredible.

Lambert Strether Post author , June 1, 2016 at 10:44 pm

But Federal taxes don't pay for Federal spending, so Sanders boxed himself in.

John k , June 2, 2016 at 3:42 am

It is not possible for any politician to push that concept, the electorate expects taxes to pay for spending no matter how important the spending is. So all of his proposals are pay as you go, otherwise he presents the neoliberals with an easy target.
Even if by some miracle he gets the bully pulpit he will have to be circumspect. Change out the fed, get Mmt types appointed, let them take the lead in educating the public. This would be a long tarm campaign.
Meanwhile he is boxed in by the 98% of the public that think they know how our economy works.

EGrise , June 1, 2016 at 7:48 pm

Just remembered an interview at the end of April with Seymour Hersh ( This is Hell! podcast ) where the interviewer asks how much HRC influenced BHO in the Libyan bombing campaign and what that might say about a Hillary Clinton administration. Here's what Sy said in response (transcript mine):

"You don't need me to answer that question. I can tell you, I'm not done reporting about that. There's a lot more to that than meets the eye. But, uh…I'm in to something. So I don't want to be coy with you. But there's no question that, just based on the emails that have been released […] she was much more aggressive about it."

Listening to it, one gets the impression that he just did not want to talk about HRC. Would love to know what Hersh knows, and what he's up to now.

Lambert Strether Post author , June 1, 2016 at 10:45 pm

I love the "This is Hell" podcast, and I remember the Hersh interview specifically; Hersh is very, very funny.

Yves Smith , June 2, 2016 at 12:39 am

The NYT Sunday Magazine cover story, Top Gun, gives chapter, book and verse of how Hillary outmaneuvered Obama on Libya.

Pat , June 1, 2016 at 8:26 pm

So a financial analyst whose expertise is the Middle East has told CNBC who Saudi Arabia wants to be President. Three guesses and the first two don't count…

http://www.cnbc.com/2016/06/01/heres-who-saudi-arabia-want-as-the-next-us-president-oil-analyst.html

Pat , June 1, 2016 at 8:29 pm

More from CNBC: Trump will be President. The author's last mistake: not guessing how bad Hillary Clinton's campaign would be.

http://www.cnbc.com/2016/06/01/i-was-wrong-trump-will-be-the-next-president-commentary.html

Cry Shop , June 1, 2016 at 9:09 pm

http://nautil.us/blog/alienation-is-killing-americans-and-japanese

Tends to fit in with my experience as an expat in both nations that they are both insular cultures and generally hostile to new comers, though at least the young generations in both countries seem to be breaking away from this behavior.

Synoia , June 1, 2016 at 9:12 pm

but economists face a fundamental challenge with respect to innovation

I read the article. Not a mention of Chaos theory.

This is the best they can do: Economy Is a Highly Dynamic System That Can Go Far From Equilibrium and Become Trapped in Sub optimal States. (Sub Optimal for Who one could ask/)

The Economy is a Chaotic System where Equlibria are Unpredictable, both in time and position.

Jim Haygood , June 1, 2016 at 10:16 pm

Bryan Pagliano to take the Fifth in Judicial Watch deposition next week.

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/06/bryan-pagliano-fifth-amendment-223796

What immunity was he granted already? It's a secret.

Unfortunately, young Bryan's refusal to cooperate only bolsters the justification for compelling testimony from the 'beest herself.

What are Californians and New Jerseyans to make of this? Assume the worst, comrades. And you'll still be underestimating how bad it is.

Cleaning out the Augean stables was child's play compared to decontaminating the Clintons' noisome racketeering empire.

Lambert Strether Post author , June 1, 2016 at 10:47 pm

Is it typical for Federal prosecutors to grant immunity without a grand jury having been empaneled?

Waldenpond , June 1, 2016 at 10:27 pm

Recent polling has Sanders within 2 in CA but it could get glitchy as CA news was reporting the State has 85% of indies not requesting a D ballot. If you are registered undeclared, you must request a D ballot or you automatically receive one without the Presidential candidates. The number of already returned undeclared ballots was not listed which would have been useful.

Voting takes persistence. A regular voter had to make two requests to be switched to D. Still did not receive a D ballot and had to contact again for another ballot. I think people just give up.

Jim Haygood , June 1, 2016 at 10:37 pm

"if you are registered undeclared, you must request a D ballot or you automatically receive one without the Presidential candidates"

Kinda like joining a craft beer club, and receiving a shipment of O'Doul's because you failed to declare a preference between IPA and porter.

Gotcha … [suckah]

Lambert Strether Post author , June 1, 2016 at 10:49 pm

Why, it's almost as if they're trying the suppress voters!

sd , June 2, 2016 at 3:59 am

NPP voters may bring their Vote By Mail ballot to their polling place and exchange it for a Democratic Party primary ballot. If they do not have their Vote by Mail ballot, and have not used their Vote by Mail ballot, they may still vote on a provisional ballot.

If they are just registered as NPP and do not use Vote by Mail, they just simply request the Democratic Party ballot at their polling place.

And yes, it has been extremely confusing and not well publicized.

aab , June 2, 2016 at 4:46 am

Actually, it's a little more complicated than that. I got trained this week as a Los Angeles County poll worker. NPP people get separate crossover ballots for each of the three parties they can crossover to. So you don't exchange it for a Democratic party ballot, you exchange it for (or simply receive upon first request) an NPP Crossover Democratic ballot. It's got a separate little design on top and everything.

Also, if you are brand new voter, you have to bring your ID with you to the polling place, or you may be forced to use a provisional ballot - I couldn't tell whether that was a Los Angeles county thing, or a state thing.

Oh, and rumors are flying that a) Hillary people are going around claiming to be Bernie volunteers, gathering up completed Vote By Mail ballots from people at home and then presumably dumping them (as was done in Oregon); and b) that the state did not print enough NPP Crossover Democratic ballots, and will run out, possibly before election day. Given that our Secretary of State is known to be corrupt and a Clinton backer, these both seem like plausible tactics, in a huge state where county registrars have a lot of autonomy and almost 75% of the votes will be Vote By Mail. But I have no idea whether there is evidence for either. Given how the election theft and media propaganda on Clinton's behalf has been systematic and blatant, people's paranoia rachets up daily, as their trust in institutions sinks. Nice work, Clintonland. That won't be a problem going forward at all.

On the bright side, we were told that the LA registrar will count every valid provisional ballot, no matter what the percentages are. Again, I don't know if that's true in other counties. But I've had numerous interactions with the registrar staff, and they seem genuinely committed to doing the right thing and helping people vote, regardless of whom they're voting for.

The problems with people accidentally registering as American Ind