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DNC and Podesta emails leak: blaming Vladimir Putin

Dems became the party of corruption: the DNC did conspire against Sanders

Who are those "experts" who tell us those were Russians? Are those the same "experts" who found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq? Or the same who claim that Hillary bathroom email server was never breached?

“The same people on the Clinton team who made enormous efforts to claim her private email server—which operated unencrypted over the Internet for three months, including during trips to China and Russia, and which contained top-secret national-security data—was not hacked by the Russians now are certain that the DNC server was hacked by the Russians” http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/unpacking-the-dnc-emails/

News US Presidential Elections of 2016 Recommended Links  Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Questions about Huma Abedin email forwarding Hillary Clinton email scandal Obama: a yet another Neocon
Hillary Clinton email scandal Demonization of Putin Who hacked whom propaganda game Swiftboating Trump: Khan gambit against Trump at the Democratic Convention Do the US intelligence agencies attempt to influence the US Presidential elections ? Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Deception as an art form
Media-Military-Industrial Complex Corporatist Corruption: Systemic Fraud under Clinton-Bush-Obama Regime Bill Clinton Is Hillary Clinton a toxic manager? Hillary Clinton defense of the middle aged rapist of a 12 years old girl Robert Rubin, the man who helped to convert the USA into banana republic Madeleine Albright
Clinton Cash The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich Crisis of Character A White House Secret Service Officer Discloses His Firsthand Experience with Hillary, Bill, and How They O Hillary the Other Woman Dolly Kyle Amazon.com Books The Clintons' War on Women Roger Stone, Robert Morrow Amazon.com Books Bill Clinton New Gilded Age President Patrick J. Maney 9780700621941 Amazon.com Books The Secret Life of Bill Clinton The Unreported Stories Ambrose Evans-Pritchard  Amazon.com Books Partners in Crime The Clintons' Scheme to Monetize the White House for Personal Profit Jerome Corsi  Amazon
Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism  Pathological lying Female Sociopaths American Exceptionalism Lawrence Summers Sandy Weill: the banker who bought Bill Clinton Financial Sector Induced Systemic Instability of Economy
Diplomacy by deception Corruption of Regulators The Deep State Machiavellism Noble Lie Hillary role in cover up of Bill Clinton sexapades Nation under attack meme
Neocolonialism as Financial Imperialism  Neocons Credibility Scam Leo Strauss and the Neocons Predator state The Iron Law of Oligarchy Elite [Dominance] Theory And the Revolt of the Elite  

Introduction

These people have no shame. Vote Trump!

USMarines, Guardian Jun 25, 2016

I didn’t have a conspiracy with that woman, Debbie Wasserman Schultz.  HRC

Today, while reading Hawthorne's The House of the Seven Gables ,
 I unexpectedly came across a passage which fittingly describes the DNC:

They are practiced politicians, every man of them, and skilled to adjust those
 preliminary measures which steal from the people, without its knowledge,
the power of choosing its own rulers…This little knot of subtle schemers
will control the convention, and, through it, dictate to the party.

Roland , July 28, 2016 at 7:39 am

Wikileaks proved beyond reasonable doubt that the Democratic National Committee under Debbie Wasserman Schultz, in fact, served as the Hillary Clinton Coronation Committee, operating, step by step, to ensure that the front-runner would become the party’s nominee. There nothing democratic about National Democratic Committee. It is an elitarian structure dominated by neoliberals (Clinton wing of the party), which have nothing to do with democracy, but a lot with Wall Street domination in the political life in the country.   They also served as a powerful catalyst of rising far right nationalism.  Essentially Bill Clinton created Trump.

But instantly after the revelations about DNC hack (and later Podesta email breach -- Podesta essentially gave up his password to people who were behind primitive the fishing attack on his Gmail account) neocon propaganda machine was put in overdrive. They fed the US lemmings (aka voters)  that the diabolical Russian hackers were behind the DNC hack. Everything they do not like now is the result of Russian hack. Primitive but pretty effective strategy. In other words this Rove-style "bait and switch" trick to brainwash the public into believing that what the DNC actually did was not reprehensible, but its exposure was:

For Dem [media] tycoons, it’s habit. They stand behind Hill for Imperial hegemony and Full Spectrum Dominance wherever money can be extorted, always the case in our squalid, half-assed military debacles. They get that looting nations and winning wars are not the same, and only one of them matters. For Repub Capos it’s a stickier wicket but not much. For a Conservative to even consider backing a Democrat, and a Clinton at that, would have been unthinkable last May, but since no Republicans actually are conservative, they figure why cling to yesterday, and they go with their lack of principles. What horrifies them in Trump is not his racism, sexism, or crudity: those are their hole cards, beloved of their Redneck Division. What actually outrages them is that in knocking imperialism, policing the world and puppeteering NATO and Japan, in shrinking empire and friending Russia, he threatens directly the War Machine and its limitless sugar tit from Congress.

After Comey testimony some fragments of the picture of DNC hack fall into place and one interesting hypothesis is that it was a false flag operation performed by the CrowdStrike, the same firm which were later assigned to investigate the hack. Which would be in best CIA traditions, stemming from JFK murder investigation and Warren commission.

 

And I am now not surprised that nobody investigated Comey for outsourcing (or forced to outsource by threats) the "DNC hack" investigation to the very questionable firm with strong Ukrainian connections. Which might well be hired to perform the hack and blame it on Russian to hide Seth Rich story.

If Trump would not be such an idiot, he would site this as a reason of firing Comey (gross unprofessionalism and criminal negligence) and the level of fear in Clinton Mafia after that might help him to survive.

The truth is that FBI never has any access to DNC computers. None. Unlike in case of Hillary emailgate, they never were in possession of actual hardware. And they never explored Ukrainian connection, so to speak. They took all results from Cloudstrike investigation at face value.

So I suspect all opinions of US intelligence agencies about this hack are just a part of color revolution scenario: the attempt to delegitimize the sitting government and install a new government via a coup d'état.

The fighting against Russiagate is about the defense of remnants of Democracy in the USA.

Regurgitation of MSM stories, like Fred is doing, does not add much value to this blog. It is essentially a propaganda exercise. If your urge to share them is too strong, as Mr.Bill mentioned a simple link would be enough (actually the desire to read on this topic NYT might be considered as an early sign of dementia, or Alzheimer)

Despite all this "Russians are coming" smoke screen and attempt to divert attention on Russia that Clinton campaign tried to propagate via subservant MSM, the truth is that the Democratic National Committee under its Obama-installed leader Wasserman-Schultz (and that means with direct blessing of the Obama, who put his political weight behind Hillary and shielded Hillary from criminal prosecution) had from day one schemed against other primary candidates and first of all Bernie Sanders to get Clinton elected. Welcome to the USSR comrades: Politburo knows everything and will decide what is best for you. You need just relax and vote as they say.  Everything will be fine (100-Page Report Shows Staggering Evidence of Election Fraud in Democratic Primary Cosmoso)

A recent report from Election Justice USA shows as many as 184 delegates were stolen from Bernie Sanders due to election fraud in the Democratic Primary

While it’s unclear whether the super delegates would have voted for Sanders, the EJUSA report does make one thing clear: Bernie Sanders won the majority of pledged delegates in the Democratic Primary at 2030 to Hillary Clinton’s 2021.

These numbers were arrived at by EJUSA’s intensive research and verification into claims of voter suppression, unintended party affiliation changes, heavy voter purging, and registrations never being honored by the Board of Elections in various counties throughout the U.S. during the Democratic Primary. In some cases, signatures were even forged on party affiliation documents and evidence of computer hacking being involved has come to light.

The fact that the emails exposed a coordinated effort to rob Bernie (which is a criminal offence in any state that called itself democratic as it interfere with the will of the people) was swiped under the carpet.  The DNC emails released by WikiLeaks showed that the Democratic National Committee has been implementing a coordinated multi-staged plan to undermine Bernie Sanders’ campaign. It also reveled an attempt to control media coverage (so that it benefitted Hillary) and the neoliberal MSM collusion with the DNC. It is now clear that the democratic presidential primary was rigged from the start and Hillary is an illegitimate candidate.

If nothing else, the crooked primaries process revealed just how much the DNC has become a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Clinton family, that can't even maintain the pretense of neutrality or impartiality--as the DNC's charter requires. And it's also exposed just how much the Fourth Estate has abandoned even the pretense of being the public's watch-dogs for the role of being the Clinton's lapdogs -- fitting classic definition of the "courtier press".  Now they are shamelessly preying on peoples' lack of understanding of computers trying to hide their criminal behaviour by "Putin did it" smoke screen.  They are also shamelessly preying on naive peoples' trust in experts, which has serious downstream effects when these "experts" are debunked. The way that the Russia-Trump storyline has been pounded into our consciousness by the media and the Democratic Party, including at the convention in prime time, is a calculated effort to take our eye off the ball and is a classic “shoot the messenger” tactic.

Clinton is trying to market herself as the Serious/Safe candidate, but her campaign is acting completely hysterical. Intead of welcoming transparency and investigating corrupt DNC officials involved in the plot against Sanders, they try to "kill the messenger" trick. This whole Putin-hack thing if a pure anti-Russian hysteria. There is no proof that Russia or Russian hackers were involved.  And if hack was really sophisticated there will be no proof as after certain amount of time evidence (connection logs on routers and such) disappeared.  NSA might still have something but they typically do not revel what they know.

\Instead this is another demonstration of how corrupt Hillary is as a politician. Like mafia boss she will stop at nothing at achieving her goals -- in this case the goal is to become the President of the USA. And this is not the first instance of "Hillary" poisonous  effect on anything she touches. Let's remember that she went into State Department to get the foreign policy experience and now has a record on it that should have every sane person saying keep her away from sharp objects and things that go "boom".

Funny though, formally Schultz takes her orders from Obama, as the Chairman of the Party, the DNC Board of Directors and team Hillary.   If any blame should go around, it should splash onto all individuals in DNC, not just Schultz.  Moreover, her boss, "constitutional scholar" Obama, in this particular case also looks like a regular Chicago Mafiosi: he and his DNC accomplishes  swindle the millions of Americans who donated on average $27 to Bernie's campaign hoping (falsely as we know now) that it was a fair contest... 

Why did "Crooked Hillary" directed her puppets in DNC to sabotage Bernie? She didn't need to, as she got super delegates in her pocket from the very start.  But like many sociopaths she did because she can. Now many Bernie backers won't vote for her. 

This election is about establishment (and that means that people are not voting for, they're voting against) and Hillary is an establishment candidate. A female successor of neoliberal "bait and switch" king Obama; who is widely hated because of his support of TPP. )

I think she lost quit a bit of votes due to this scandal.  This election cycle the vote against establishment politicians might be stronger than the vote for them. That's why Jeb Bush lost.

We shouldn't get roped into discussing allegations about who leaked the emails. That's what Hillary wants the conversation to be about. It is the content of emails and thier authenticity  that matter. The fact is these emails show the DNC fixed the nomination for Hillary. This has been so downplayed by the mainstream media as it shows them in their true light.  Compare their coverage (or the lack of thereof) to the 24x7 coverage Melania Trump's plagiarised speech got.

We shouldn't get roped into discussing allegations about who leaked the emails. That's what Hillary wants the conversation to be about. It is the content of emails and their authenticity  that matter. The fact is these emails show the DNC fixed the nomination for Hillary. This has been so downplayed by the mainstream media as it shows them in their true light.  Compare their coverage (or the lack of thereof) to the 24x7 coverage Melania Trump's plagiarized speech got.

Michael109,   

Clinton, who received 3.1m from Wall Street for speeches last year, and who was "extremely careless" with national security and who clearly lied under oath to Congress had the entire system rigged in her favour and millions of mostly younger people who supported Sanders have received a slap in the face by a corrupt Dem Party.

Clinton has dragged the party into the sewer with her. They should have told her to step down months ago. This is a shameful Dem convention

Like Clinton foundation and its affiliate entities, the DNC, could be considered a criminal enterprise or racketing influenced organization. Those who haven’t realized that, or worse, who shill for them are willfully ignorant, amoral, or unethical.  Clinton has dragged the party into the sewer with her. They should have told her to step down months ago. This is a shameful Dem convention

VietnamVet

The 2016 election cannot be looked at in isolation. The wars for profit are spreading from Nigeria through Syria to Ukraine. Turkey was just lost to the Islamists and is on the road to being a failed state. The EU is in an existential crisis due to Brexit, the refugee crisis and austerity. Western leadership is utterly incompetent and failing to protect its citizens.

Globalization is failing. Its Losers are tipping over the apple cart. Humans are returning to their tribal roots for safety. The drums for war with Russia are beating. Clinton / Kaine are 100% Status Quo Globalists. Trump / Pence are candidates of change to who knows what. Currently I am planning on voting for the Green Party in the hope it becomes viable and praying that the chaos avoids Maryland.

Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and DNC staff served as part of Clinton campaign and designed and amplified phony attacks on Sanders. Krugman plays the role of Clinton surrogate, using campaign talking points and spin to claim that Sanders is “over the edge”. They launched a a systematic attack  basically questioning his authenticity. These are mostly cheap swiftboating attacks and straw man arguments coming from the mainstream media and DNC insiders. The attacks are usually passive-aggressive, as in the New York Times ignoring him for long stretches and then coming up with the occasional dismissive "he can't possibly win, because we say so" tripe. They often reek of cheerful condescension. See this and this.

Then there was more dangerous theme casting Sanders as a convenient prop for Hillary Clinton, a supporting actor who exists only for the cosmetic purpose of "pushing her to the left." This trope is becoming so over-used that people are beginning to notice that it is a dirty trick. These are dangerous times for non-establishment politicians due to domination of neoliberal Political Correctness and corporate neoliberal propaganda (The Swift-boating of Bernie Sanders ):

We had the expected political reaction—the DNC, under the enlightened leadership of Hillary supporter Debbie Wasserman Schultz, has decided PAC money from lobbyists is OK after all, thus freeing up David Brock’s Hillary PAC to do whatever the hell it wants. The head of the Democratic party in Iowa, who has a pro-Hillary license plate, has ruled out any sort of recount on the voting in Iowa, about which a number of questions had been raised, but the media appears to have moved on... 

Hillary definitely has the 1% vote locked up ... but they are, after all, just 1%.

The best analysis of DNC leak that I have found so far is Peter van Buren article in American Conservative Unpacking the DNC Emails The American Conservative (July 26, 2016), His 11 point really cover all the bases:

... ... ...
  1. The same people on the Clinton team who made enormous efforts to claim her private email server—which operated unencrypted over the Internet for three months, including during trips to China and Russia, and which contained top-secret national-security data—was not hacked by the Russians now are certain that the DNC server was hacked by the Russians.
  2. Many in Camp Clinton and the media labeled Bernie Sanders’ supporters paranoid when they claimed that the DNC was working against them. The hacked emails confirm that the DNC was in fact working against them. One official proposed getting “someone,” presumably a reporter, to ask Sanders if he’s an atheist to discredit him in religious areas.
  3. Claims of pro-Clinton media bias were dismissed during the primaries. The hacked emails confirm that the DNC was working closely with the media to seek negative coverage of Sanders and positive coverage of Clinton.
  4. Politico now admits it was a “mistake” sending the DNC an article draft in advance. The writer showed the draft to the DNC even before his own editors saw it.
  5. Facebook admits to blocking WikiLeaks links to the DNC email hack from its newsfeeds (but blames spam filters).
  6. The DNC appears to have expended significantly more effort against Bernie Sanders than it did against any of the Republican candidates.
  7. Instead of focusing on the contents of the hacked emails and the dirty tricks they exposed, many mainstream-media outlets headlined instead the Clinton-campaign talking point that the Russians hacked the emails and released them in an effort to derail her candidacy in favor of Donald Trump’s. Many of the same stories suggest Trump is some sort of pro-Putin stooge.
  8. On 60 Minutes, Clinton refused to say that intervention by the DNC to favor one candidate was “improper.” Her non-answer was edited out of the broadcast when it ran on Sunday; the network later released it online.
  9. After DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced her resignation following this week’s Democratic convention, the Clinton campaign announced Wasserman Schultz would be hired by them as “honorary chair of Hillary’s campaign’s 50-state program to elect Democrats in every part of the country, and as a surrogate for her campaign nationally.”
  10. Wasserman Schultz will be replaced as DNC chair by (only now former) CNN commentator Donna Brazile. Brazile argued the pro-Clinton side of debates on CNN throughout the primary season.
  11. In the hacked emails, Brazile said “I will cuss out the Sanders camp!” over complaints by Sanders of inadequate representation by the DNC. In March, while still employed by CNN, Brazile called Sanders’ decision to run as a Democrat (rather than an independent) for the additional media exposure “extremely disgraceful.”

Sadly, Bernie Sanders, his campaign sabotaged by the DNC—and what were once “paranoid” accusations now proved—still endorses Hillary Clinton and will still speak at the Democratic National Convention. It pains me to say, as his once-supporter, that the man has no courage. Even Ted Cruz stood up for himself in front of the Republicans in Cleveland. It is a sad day when we learn Ted Cruz has more guts than Bernie Sanders.

Those who are calling all this a coup of sorts—they’re wrong. It’s a surrender. But in the words of Hillary Clinton, what difference does it make?

Peter Van Buren blew the whistle on State Department waste and mismanagement during the “reconstruction” of Iraq in his book We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People. He writes about current events at We Meant Well. His latest book is Ghosts of Tom Joad: A Story of the #99Percent. His next work will be a novel, Hooper’s War.

All this dirty tricks define the future of Democratic Party. Seriously. Less and less people are believing that Democrat represents them. I think half of trade union members will vote Trump. That's  a direct result of the sellout by Bill Clinton of Democratic Party to Wall Street.  A vote for Mrs Clinton means a continuation of the rule of financial oligarchy what we've experienced since Reagan, and that is not acceptable.  Another four years of amoral enrichment of transnational corporations that Hillary election guarantee is just kicking can down the road.

Attempt to blame Russians and Putin

Seems Putin controls Trump and Clinton! The man is amazing.

Only Jedi Knights can stop him.

“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,”
 Donald J. Trump said, referring to messages deemed personal by Hillary Clinton
 and deleted from her private email server.

 

Bullsh**t that MSM are now propagating is essentially a variation of the old theme  "The Russians are Coming".  Here is nice satire on the topic (washingtonsblog.com):

MC: President Putin, did the Russian government hack the DNC email server and then publically release those emails through Wikileaks the day before the Democratic convention?

Putin: Yes.

MC: Yes! Are you serious?

Putin: I’m quite serious.

MC: How can you justify this open meddling in United States politics?

MC: How can you justify this open meddling in United States politics?

Putin: Your question should be what took Russia so long. The US oligarchs and their minions surround us with military bases and nuclear missiles, damage our trade to Europe, and seek to destabilize our domestic politics.  These emails are nothing in the big picture. But they’re sort of funny, don’t you agree?

MC: I’m not sure that funny is the right word.  What do you mean by that?

Putin:   You’ve got Hillary Clinton running as a strong and independent woman. Of course, nobody would know who she is had she not married Bill Clinton. She’s not independent. Quite the contrary. She had to marry a philandering redneck to get to where she is. When it comes to strength, I can say only this. How strong can you be if you have to cheat and create a rigged game to win the nomination?

MC: Anything else about your leak to cheer us up?

Putin: This situation is the epitome of ironic humor. After the emails were released, the focus was all on DNC Chair and Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz. That’s fine for now but what happens when people start asking why Wasserman-Schultz had the DNC screw Sanders and boost Hillary? Did she just wake up one day and decide this on her own?. Not likely. She was and remains Hillary’s agent.   It will take people a while to arrive that answer. When enough people hear about Wasserman-Schultz’s key role in the Clinton campaign, everything will be clear.   It’s adios Hillary. That inevitable conclusion, by the way, is the reason the DNC made such a big deal about Russia hacking the DNC.  That was diversion one right out of the gate.

DNC and Clinton are going to push the Russian card very hard in anticipation of further stories and revelations of corruption, money laundering, etc.  Technical analysis provided is some idiotic, entry level nonsense. And it should ne complete bulsh*t as those cases are very complex and can used smokescreen -- deflecting attention from a read source (for example Israel) to Russians (Israel has large Russian speaking population, that is well represented in security services of the country; CIA can imitate Russian attack even better then Israel, actually they can imitate attacks from any country; hacks are a perfect opportunity to stage a false flag operation -- they there is not better specialists in this area that CIA ).

When the USA opened this can of worm with Stixnet (discovered around mid 2010) and Flame (discovered around 2012), they did not expect a blowback. Now it start coming: it is simply impossible to secure "normal" Microsoft-based IT system against any sophisticated adversary. Remember that we live in the period when developed by NSA and "friends" Flame and Stixnet worm are part of the recorded history. And  technologies used in them are well studied by all major world three letter agencies. They became a part of their workbook.  And the response to their devilishness they generated even more devilish methods of attack of any IT infrastructure based on Microsoft technologies, to say nothing about such low hanging fruit as completely  corrupt  DNC with semi-competent IT staff using pathetic Microsoft Exchange based email system: (naked capitalism):

However, in this short post I want to focus on a much narrower question: Can we ever know who hacked the DNC email? Because if we can't, then clearly we can't know the Russians did. And so I want to hoist this by alert reader JacobiteInTraining from comments :

Yup, as a former server admin it is patently absurd to attribute a hack to anyone in particular until a substantial amount of forensic work has been done. (read, poring over multiple internal log files…gathering yet more log files of yet more internal devices, poring over them, then – once the request hops out of your org – requesting logfiles from remote entities, poring over *those* log files, requesting further log files from yet more upstream entities, wash rinse repeat ad infinitum).

For example, at its simplest, I would expect a middling-competency hacker to find an open wifi hub across town to connect to, then VPN to server in, say, Tonga, then VPN from there to another box in Sweden, then connect to a PC previously compromised in Iowa, then VPN to yet another anonymous cloud server in Latvia, and (assuming the mountain dew is running low, gotta get cracking) then RDP to the target server and grab as many docs as possible. RAR those up and encrypt them, FTP them to a compromised media server in South Korea, email them from there to someones gmail account previously hacked, xfer them to a P2P file sharing app, and then finally access them later from a completely different set of servers.

In many cases where I did this sort of analysis I still ended up with a complete dead end: some sysadmins at remote companies or orgs would be sympathetic and give me actual related log files. Others would be sympathetic but would not give files, and instead do their own analysis to give me tips. Many never responded, and most IPs ended up at unknown (compromised) personal PCs, or devices where the owner could not be found anyway.

If the hacker was sloppy and left other types of circumstantial evidence you might get lucky – but that demographic mostly points back to script kiddies and/or criminal dweebs – i.e., rather then just surreptitiously exfiltrating the goods they instead left messages or altered things that seemed to indicate their own backgrounds or prejudices, or left a message that was more easily 'traced'. If, of course, you took that evidence at face value and it was not itself an attempt at obfuscation.

Short of a state actor such as an NSA who captures it ALL anyway, and/or can access any log files at any public or private network at its own whim – its completely silly to attribute a hack to anyone at this point.

So, I guess I am reduced to LOL OMG WTF its fer the LULZ!!!!!

And :

Just to clarify on the "…If the hacker was sloppy and left other types of circumstantial evidence…" – this is basically what I have seen reported as 'evidence' pointing to Russia: the Cyrillic keyboard signature, the 'appeared to cease work on Russian holidays' stuff, and the association with 'known Russian hacking groups'.

That's great and all, but in past work I am sure my own 'research' could easily have gotten me 'associated' with known hacking groups. Presumably various 'sophisticated' methods and tools get you closer to possible suspects…but that kind of stuff is cycled and recycled throughout the community worldwide – as soon as anything like that is known and published, any reasonably competent hacker (or org of hackers) is learning how to do the same thing and incorporating such things into their own methods. (imitation being the sincerest form of flattery)

I guess I have a lot more respect for the kinds of people I expect to be getting a paycheck from foreign Intelligence agencies then to believe that they would leave such obvious clues behind 'accidentally'. But if we are going to be starting wars over this stuff w/Russia, or China, I guess I would hope the adults in the room don't go all apesh*t and start chanting COMMIES, THE RUSSIANS ARE COMING!, etc. before the ink is dry on the 'crime'.

The whole episode reminds me of the Sony hack , for which Obama also blamed a demonized foreign power. Interestingly - to beg the question here - the blaming was also based on a foreign character set in the data (though Hangul, not Korean). Look! A clue!

JacobiteInTraining's methodology also reminds me of NC's coverage of Grexit. Symbol manipulators - like those in the Democrat-leaning creative class - often believe that real economy systems are as easy to manipulate as symbol systems are. In Greece, for example, it really was a difficult technical challenge for Greece to reintroduce the drachma, especially given the time-frame, as contributor Clive remorselessly showed. Similarly, it's really not credible to hire a consultant and get a hacking report with a turnaround time of less than a week, even leaving aside the idea that the DNC just might have hired a consultant that would give them the result they wanted (because who among us, etc.) What JacobiteInTraining shows us is that computer forensics is laborious, takes time, and is very unlikely to yield results suitable for framing in the narratives proffered by the political class. Of course, that does confirm all my priors!

Readers, thoughts?

Update Addition by Yves:

Another reader, Hacker, observed (emphasis original):

There is a problem with those who argue that these are sophisticated Nation State attackers and then point to the most basic circumstantial evidence to support their case. I'd bet that, among others, the Israelis have hacked some Russian servers to launch attacks from and have some of their workers on a Russian holiday schedule. Those things have been written about in attack analysis so much over the last 15-20 years that they'd be stupid not to.

Now, I'm not saying the Israelis did it. I'm saying that the evidence provided so far by those arguing it is Russia is so flaky as to prove that the Russia accusers are blinded or corrupted by their own political agenda.

Update [Yves, courtesy Richard Smith] 7:45 AM. Another Medium piece by Jeffrey Carr, Can Facts Slow The DNC Breach Runaway Train? who has been fact-checking this story and comes away Not Happy. For instance:

Thomas Rid wrote:

One of the strongest pieces of evidence linking GRU to the DNC hack is the equivalent of identical fingerprints found in two burglarized buildings: a reused command-and-control address - 176.31.112[.]10 - that was hard coded in a piece of malware found both in the German parliament as well as on the DNC's servers. Russian military intelligence was identified by the German domestic security agency BfV as the actor responsible for the Bundestag breach. The infrastructure behind the fake MIS Department domain was also linked to the Berlin intrusion through at least one other element, a shared SSL certificate.

This paragraph sounds quite damning if you take it at face value, but if you invest a little time into checking the source material, its carefully constructed narrative falls apart.

Problem #1: The IP address 176.31.112[.]10 used in the Bundestag breach as a Command and Control server has never been connected to the Russian intelligence services. In fact, Claudio Guarnieri , a highly regarded security researcher, whose technical analysis was referenced by Rid, stated that "no evidence allows to tie the attacks to governments of any particular country."

Mind you, he has two additional problems with that claim alone. This piece is a must read if you want to dig further into this topic.

NOTES

[1] More than a talking point but, really, less than a narrative. It's like we need a new word for these bite-sized, meme-ready, disposable, "throw 'em against the wall and see if they stick" stories; mini-narrative, or narrativelette, perhaps. "All the crunch of a real narrative, but none of the nutrition!"

[2] This post is not about today's Trump moral panic, where the political class is frothing and stamping about The Donald's humorous (or ballbusting, take your pick) statement that he "hoped" the Russians had hacked the 30,000 emails that Clinton supposedly deleted from the email server she privatized in her public capacity as Secretary of State before handing the whole flaming and steaming mess over to investigators. First, who cares? Those emails are all about yoga lessons and Chelsea's wedding. Right? Second, Clinton didn't secure the server for three months. What did she expect? Third, Trump's suggestion is just dumb; the NSA has to have that data, so just ask them? Finally, to be fair, Trump shouldn't have uttered the word "Russia." He should have said "Liechtenstein," or "Tonga," because it's hard to believe that there's a country too small to hack as fat a target as Clinton presented; Trump was being inflammatory. Points off. Bad show.

Pavel , July 28, 2016 at 4:01 am

For those interested, the excellent interviewer Scott Horton just spoke with Jeffrey Carr, an IT security expert about all this. It's about 30 mins:

Jeffrey Carr, a cyber intelligence expert and CEO of Taia Global, Inc., discusses his fact-checking of Josh Marshall's TalkingPointsMemo article that claims a close alliance between Trump and Putin; and why the individuals blaming Russia for the DNC email hack are more motivated by politics than solid evidence.

–The Scott Horton Show: 7/25/16 Jeffrey Carr

Carr makes the point that even supposed clues about Russian involvement ("the default language is Cyrillic!") are meaningless as all these could be spoofed by another party.

Separately it just shows again Team Clinton's (and DNC's) political deviousness and expertise how they –with the full support of the MSM of course –have managed to deflect the discussion to Trump and Russia from how the DNC subverted US democracy.

pretzelattack , July 28, 2016 at 4:15 am

and again, we see the cavalier attitude about national security from the clinton camp, aggravating the already tense relationship with russia over this bullshit, all to avoid some political disadvantage. clinton doesn't care if russia gets the nuclear launch codes seemingly, but impact her chances to win the race and it's all guns firing.

dk , July 28, 2016 at 4:59 am

"… all these could be spoofed by another party."

Well yeah, and I could be a bot, how do you know I'm not?

Absent any other evidence to work with, I can accept it as credible that a clumsy Russian or Baltic user posted viewed and saved docs instead of the originals; par for the course in public and private bureaucracies the world over. It would have been useful to see the original Properties metadata; instead we get crapped up copies. That only tells me the poster is something of a lightweight, and it at least somewhat suggests that these docs passed through multiple hands.

But that doesn't mean A) the original penetration occurred under state control (or even in Russia proper), much less B) that Putin Himself ordered the hack attempts, which is the searing retinal afterimage that the the media name-dropping and photo-illustrating conflation produces.

Unspoofed, the Cyrillic fingerprints still do not closely constrain conclusion to A, and even less to B.

Another name for the trick DNC used is "Catch a chief" -- a deflection of attention from their own criminal behaviour. But they should now be really afraid about what can come next from Wikileaks or elsewhere. I don't think Hillary was capable to understand how easy it is to find corruption, especially when there's a email trail.  And this lack of understanding is a typical feature of a sociopath (http://www.theblaze.com/contributions/could-hillary-clinton-be-a-sociopath/ )

As Guardian reported (The Guardian) Clinton campaign tried old "dog eat my homework" trick blaming everything on Putin and trying to ignore the content of them and the dirty laundry they expose:

Hillary Clinton’s campaign has accused Russia of meddling in the 2016 presidential election, saying its hackers stole Democratic National Committee (DNC) emails and released them to foment disunity in the party and aid Donald Trump.

Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, said on Sunday that “experts are telling us that Russian state actors broke into the DNC, stole these emails, [and are] releasing these emails for the purpose of helping Donald Trump”.

“I don’t think it’s coincidental that these emails are being released on the eve of our convention here,” he told CNN’s State of the Union, alluding to the party’s four-day exercise in unification which is set to take place this week in Philadelphia.

“This isn’t my assertion,” Mook said. “This is what experts are telling us.”

In a statement, the Clinton campaign repeated the accusation: “This is further evidence the Russian government is trying to influence the outcome of the election.”

Classic scapegoating. As Guardian commenter noted "Why is the (potential) perpetrator of the leak more significant than the content of the leak??

As life exceeds satire, one can imagine that within a week Wikileaks will produce those "missing e-mails". And later Hillary's Wall Street speeches, following the next appeal from Trump.

In any case a major US establishment party explicitly levied it's resources against a candidate it didn't like behaviors like a Mafioso clan, and when caught red handed start to deflect attention via corrupt and subservant MSM, changing focus into Russia and Putin instead. Great journalism!" The Guardian

 atopic  

I find very I interesting that, somehow, the initial DNC leak story failed to make a headline position (a day late, at that) on the Guardian, but now that it's blown up on other channels, the DNC's ridiculous conspiracy theory/distraction attempt gets top billing here. Ridiculous.

Why is the (potential) perpetrator of the leak more significant than the content of the leak?? A major US establishment party explicitly levied it's resources against a candidate it didn't like, and somehow we're talking about Putin instead. Great journalism.

 
Chanze Jennings ->  atopic

The Guardian has sunk to a new low and has entirely no shame. It's a sad day for journalism when Twitter has more integrity than most news outlets. And they wonder why newspapers are going the way of the Dodo. Remember when real journalists presented stories with little bias and tried hard to stick to the facts?

BTW there are some real experts on this and they have a different opinion. Check comments for the blog post: 

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2016/07/nsa-whistleblower-not-so-fast-on-claims-russia-behind-dnc-email-hack.html

Heat on Sanders for betrayal of his supporters

DNC betrayed Bernie Sanders and the rest of America. But at this moment Sanders already folded. In other words, the Clinton mafia again created a mess. And they are now turning to Sanders — the very one they betrayed — to come in and clean it up. In effect Clinton mafia wants Sanders persuade  his supporters not to harbor any ill feelings over being stabbed in the back. That gave him perfect opportunity to reneg of his promised and run as independent or with Green Party

Bernie caved. A pity really, but understandable given the fact that the collusion between a corrupt Hillary campaign and a mendacious "free" media meant that even getting to the Convention floor was a struggle.

NYT now is afraid to open comments on this as they will swamped with denunciation of Hillary.  Sanders lied to his supporters that Trump represents bigger danger then Killary. nobody represent bigger danger then Killary.  Bernie Sanders, hypocrite, or canny operator? Is this another hostage situation and with what Clinton criminal cartel threatened him ?  “This campaign is not really about Hillary Clinton, or Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders, or any other candidate who sought the presidency,” Sanders told a New Hampshire crowd Tuesday in a speech endorsing Hillary Clinton. “This campaign is about the needs of the American people and addressing the very serious crisis that we face.” Posting under the hashtag #SandersSellsOut, sanders supporters drew parallels with a previous uncomfortable endorsement of a presidential candidate, labeling it “another hostage situation.” Most view his endorsement on Monday, as the infidelity in a relationship and a bad break up.

Democratic voters are now splintered over neoliberal globalization, much like Republican supporters. Most already made decisions whom they will support and Clinton mafia has little chances to move those who reject their criminality and support of neoliberal globalization. It was actually Bill Clinton who sold the party to Wall Street making it another wing on neoliberal party of globalist and transnational corporations.

The Democrats' dirty laundry was aired at a worse possibly time for Hillary and I hope she will pay for DNC manipulations full price. It is clear after the Brexit vote and Donald Trump’s victory in the Republican presidential primaries that voters are revolting against the neoliberal globalization that dominated the US and Britain economic and foreign policy since the 1970th, if not earlier.  The willingness of people to be intimidated by bought neoliberal economists into supporting cosmopolitan outcomes appears for the moment to have been exhausted.

Corrupt to the core MSM ignore the event and try to distract readers with scapegoating nonsense

ABC and CNN are essentially part of the DNC propaganda wing. They and most other MSM were trying to reshape this mess to reduce the amount of damage.  Stephanopolis worked for Bill Clinton. And donated $75,000 to Hillary's campaign. And now he is trying to paint Trump as having ties to the Putin regime.

They try do not touch Hillary connections with Saudi, revive email scandal, touch Clinton cash skandal,  etc. They really behave like they are part of Clinton campaign. And readers noticed that as is evident from comments (The 4 Most Damaging Emails From the DNC WikiLeaks Dump - ABC News):

Kintbury  -> Mr. Fusion 21 hours ago

You are going to have to do a heck of a lot better than that. A Saudi Prince has admitted to funding a large portion of Hillary's campaign. That is a tie. All the money she took from those countries while benefiting them as Secretary of State is a tie.

Know Mei > deanbob
"Spoken like someone who has never been a member of the Democratic Party and has no understanding of what we do," Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Oh, believe me, Debbie, the American people know what the Democratic Party and the Republican Party does. Both parties embellish, manipulate, grant high positions to big donors, plot, backstab and railroad the vote of the American electorate. However, business as usual did not work well for the Republican Party elitists this primary season. Donald Trump beat the Republican Party elitists at their game. Bernie Sanders attempted to do the same to the Democratic Party.
Alti  -> ADLives 2 days ago

I think they are being short-sighted. Trump will in all likelihood win now and I don't see him sticking to the script. The media has completely betrayed the American public on this story. From Facebook and Twitter blocking and deleting stories re: same initially - to now with the non-articles we are getting from the big news agencies. Finding decent, honest news coverage shouldn't be so hard.

William Carr > Know Mei •

“Both parties embellish, manipulate, grant high positions to big donors, plot, backstab and railroad the vote of the American electorate”

America needs international monitors to oversee our elections

In reality Wikileaks exposed the blatant corruption of the primary process for voters. The elephant was in the room, but the real situation with Democratic Party primary process is now  suppressed.

Mysterious assassination of Seth Rich

Seth Conrad Rich, a 27-year-old who worked for the Democratic National Committee as the voter expansion data director died of multiple gunshot wounds in the 2100 block of Flagler Place on July 10, 2017. The police reported it as a robbery, but nothing on Seth was taken. Seth’s cash, phone, and belongings were all still on him when he was found.

Before Seth started working at the DNC two years ago, Rich was a research associate for Greenberg Quinlan Rosner for two years, according to his LinkedIn page. The 2011 Creighton University graduate also worked for former Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson’s campaign and interned in his office.

There are a lot of rumors going around about his death and if it was a hit job. Below OAN reported on the murder and below that is a possible explanation of his assassination and all of the information is documented.

From /u/MyKettleIsNotBlack:
    The Clintons have known the Kleebs since at least 2008. Scott Kleeb started a business the Clinton Global Initiative was found fraudulently supporting. Seth Rich was deeply entrenched with the Kleebs from their Nebraska Democratic work. Seth Rich was hired onto a position in the DNC out of a job from a data consulting firm which had previously worked with President Clinton, which was opened up because the Clintons pushed for the Voter Expansion project so that 2008 didn’t happen to Hillary in 2016. Seth Rich has at least 2 connections to the Clintons. Jane Kleeb is a voracious environmentalist/Sanders supporter who might’ve prompted Seth Rich to leak the emails, especially after their business was one month earlier revealed for fraudulency. The best way to cover their tracks would be to make this seem like another right-wing conspiracy. His murder was deemed a robbery, but nothing was missing from his person.

    2007: Seth Rich works on Ben Nelson campaign for Senate as assistant field coordinator https://www.linkedin.com/in/sethrich1
    2004-2007: Jane Fleming is Executive Director for Young Democrats of America http://docs.house.gov/meetings/IF/IF17/20130919/101321/HHRG-113-IF17-Bio-KleebJ-20130919.pdf
    2006: Scott Kleeb is running for Nebraska’s 3rd Congr. Seat, beaten by Republicans due to GWBush visit in the district and robo-calls https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scott_Kleeb
    2007: Scott Kleeb marries Jane Fleming Kleeb https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scott_Kleeb
    2007: Scott is “grassroots” Candidate, should run against Nelson http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lane-hudson/draft-kleeb-in-nebraska-a_b_74236.html
    2008: Scott doesn’t run for Ben Nelson’s seat but takes Chuck Hagel’s vacated nomination https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scott_Kleeb
    2008: Seth Rich works for Scott Kleeb for Senate https://www.linkedin.com/in/sethrich1
    2008: Hillary Loses Bid For President
    2009: Scott Kleeb launches Energy Pioneer Solutions https://www.linkedin.com/in/scott-kleeb-3335a625
    2010: Keystone Pipeline inspired Jane Kleeb (an environmentalist) to found Bold Nebraska in protest http://watchdog.org/99531/bold-nebraska-sees-keystone-xl-bogeyman-in-wrong-corner/ http://docs.house.gov/meetings/IF/IF17/20130919/101321/HHRG-113-IF17-Bio-KleebJ-20130919.pdf
    2010: Clinton Global Initiative gives innappropriate funds to Energy Pioneer Solutions at the behest of Bill Clinton Energy Pioneer Solutions is owned by Bill’s Friends http://nypost.com/2016/05/13/clinton-charity-arranged-2m-pledge-to-company-owned-by-bills-friend/
    McMahon, “Energizer” according to Secret Service for the Clintons, is 29% stakeholder. Kleebs, Weiner also stakeholders http://radaronline.com/celebrity-news/bill-clinton-mistress-energizer-julie-tauber-mcmahon-2-million-dollars-charity/ http://townhall.com/tipsheet/mattvespa/2016/05/13/quid-pro-quo-clinton-foundation-gave-money-to-forprofit-company-run-by-clinton-friends-n2162288
    What happened to Hillary’s Keystone Pipeline stances? Bold Nebraska got what it wanted, but what did Bill get from Scott?
    2014: Clintons push for Voter Expansion Project with DNC http://www.npr.org/sections/itsallpolitics/2014/02/27/283550311/clintons-provide-firepower-behind-dnc-voter-expansion-project
    2014: Seth Rich is hired onto Voter Expansion Project in Data Director Role and away from another job at Greenberg Quinlan Rosner https://www.linkedin.com/in/sethrich1 http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/08/22/the-dnc-knows-everything-about-you.html
    Greenberg Quinlan Rosner is the same firm which advised Bill Clinton for his presidency: https://www.campaignsandelections.com/campaign-insider/greenberg-quinlan-rosner-launches-in-canada
    May 2016: Energy Pioneer Solutions scandal is uncovered, people assume Bill’s just cheating again
    June 2016: Jane Kleeb is a Bernie Supporter, and big time. Beats a Hillary supporter for chair of Nebraska DNC, risking Hillary’s delegates http://www.omaha.com/news/nebraska/jane-kleeb-elected-leader-of-state-democratic-party/article_95b44a9c-ea5b-58b9-ad7a-1feab2a7bf84.html
    July 2016: DNC emails obtained by someone with access and hatred towards Hillary-run DNC
    July 10: Seth Rich murdered
    July 14/15: DNC emails leak
    7/25/2016: Julian Assange hints at insider http://dailycaller.com/2016/07/25/julian-assange-any-dnc-staffer-could-have-been-the-leaker/
Seth Conrad Rich’s unsolved murder on a Washington D.C. street was very suspecious because he was a staffer and self-described data analyst for the Democratic National Committee and has access to the emails that were leaked.

WikiLeaks is offering a $20,000 reward for information leading to a conviction in Rich’s death (that’s in addition to a previous $25,000 reward being offered in the case).

Most recently, Rod Wheeler, a private investigator recanted claims he made to Fox 5 in Washington D.C. about Rich and WikiLeaks – claims that are disputed by Rich’s own family. Newsweek has now reported that the FBI is not investigating the Rich murder, and is quoting the private investigator as denying he has any firsthand knowledge of purported Rich/WikiLeaks contact. According to the New York Times, the Rich family is demanding retractions from Fox.

For more details see

The leak of NSA document by Reality Winner

Skip Intro , June 12, 2017 at 4:36 pm

The NSA document was very important. It basically proved, according to Scott Ritter, that the NSA had no real evidence of any Russian involvement, and relied on speculation from a single source: DNC contractor CrowdStrike, which recently had to retract a similar claim about Russian hacking of Ukrainian artillery. The real story behind 'Reality Winner' remains, I am sure, unknown. This might well be a ploy to undermine the anti-Russia hype, though the media cartel has trumpeted it uncritically for the short-term rush of goosing the Comey spectacle.

This makes the refusal of the DNC to let the FBI examine those servers even more suspect. OTOH, one can see the thought processes in the DNC: A breach was discovered. If we blame the Russians not only do we further the neo-con agenda, but we also get to call anyone who publishes or cites the material taken from the servers a Russian tool.

In fact, if they knew they had internal leakers, it would still be worth claiming to have been hacked by the Russians, so that internally leaked material could be 'poisoned' as part of a Russian plot. Talking points to this effect were ubiquitous and apparently well coordinated, turning virtually every MSM discussion of the content of the leaks into a screed about stolen documents and Russian hackers. It also put a nice fresh coat of paint on the target painted on Assange, turning the undiscerning left against a once valuable ally.

Comey testimony

Comey was asked again about this curious oversight on June 8 by Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Richard Burr:

BURR: "And the FBI, in this case, unlike other cases that you might investigate – did you ever have access to the actual hardware that was hacked? Or did you have to rely on a third party to provide you the data that they had collected?"

COMEY: "In the case of the DNC, and, I believe, the DCCC, but I'm sure the DNC, we did not have access to the devices themselves. We got relevant forensic information from a private party, a high-class entity, that had done the work. But we didn't get direct access."

BURR: "But no content?"

COMEY: "Correct."

BURR: "Isn't content an important part of the forensics from a counterintelligence standpoint?"

COMEY: "It is, although what was briefed to me by my folks – the people who were my folks at the time is that they had gotten the information from the private party that they needed to understand the intrusion by the spring of 2016."

Here is  Ray McGovern  analysis NBCs Kelly Hits Putin With a Beloved Canard
Jun 13, 2017 | original.antiwar.com

To prove their chops, mainstream media stars can't wait to go head-to-head with a demonized foreign leader, like Vladimir Putin, and let him have it, even if their "facts" are wrong, as Megyn Kelly showed

NBC's Megyn Kelly wielded one of Official Washington's most beloved groupthinks to smack Russian President Vladimir Putin over his denials that he and his government were responsible for hacking Democratic emails and interfering with the U.S. presidential election.

In her June 2 interview with Putin, Kelly noted that all "17 intelligence agencies" of the US government concurred in their conclusion of Russian guilt and how could Putin suggest that they all are "lying." It's an argument that has been used to silence skeptics for months and apparently is so useful that no one seems to care that it isn't true.

For instance, on May 8, in testimony before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper conceded publicly that the number of intelligence agencies involved in the assessment was three, not 17, and that the analysts assigned to the project from CIA, FBI and NSA had been "handpicked."

On May 23, in testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, former CIA Director John Brennan confirmed Clapper's account about the three agencies involved. "It wasn't a full interagency community assessment that was coordinated among the 17 agencies," Brennan acknowledged.

But those public admissions haven't stopped Democrats and the mainstream media from continuing to repeat the false claim. In comments on May 31, failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton repeated the canard, with a flourish, saying: "Seventeen agencies, all in agreement, which I know from my experience as a Senator and Secretary of State, is hard to get."

A couple of days later, Kelly revived the myth of the consensus among the 17 intelligence agencies in her interview with the Russian president. But Putin passed up the opportunity to correct her, replying instead:

"They have been misled and they are not analyzing the information in its entirety. We have talked about it with former President Obama and with several other officials. No one ever showed me any direct evidence. When we spoke with President Obama about that, you know, you should probably better ask him about it – I think he will tell you that he, too, is confident of it. But when he and I talked I saw that he, too, started having doubts. At any rate, that's how I saw it."

As I noted in a Jan. 20 article about Obama's news conference two days earlier, "Did President Barack Obama acknowledge that the extraordinary propaganda campaign to blame Russia for helping Donald Trump become president has a very big hole in it, i.e., that the US intelligence community has no idea how the Democratic emails reached WikiLeaks? For weeks, eloquent obfuscation – expressed with 'high confidence' – has been the name of the game, but inadvertent admissions now are dispelling some of the clouds.

"At President Obama's Jan. 18 press conference, he admitted as much: 'the conclusions of the intelligence community with respect to the Russian hacking were not conclusive as to whether WikiLeaks was witting or not in being the conduit through which we heard about the DNC e-mails that were leaked .'" [Emphasis added]

Explaining the Technology

More importantly, Putin in his interview with Kelly points out that "today's technology" enables hacking to be "masked and camouflaged to an extent that no one can understand the origin" of the hack. "And, vice versa, it is possible to set up any entity or any individual that everyone will think that they are the exact source of that attack. Modern technology is very sophisticated and subtle and allows this to be done. And when we realize that we will get rid of all the illusions. "

Later, when Kelly came back to the issue of hacking, Putin expanded on the difficulty in tracing the source of cyber attacks.

"Hackers may be anywhere," Putin said. "There may be hackers, by the way, in the United States who very craftily and professionally passed the buck to Russia. Can't you imagine such a scenario? In the middle of an internal political fight, it was convenient for them, whatever the reason, to put out that information. And put it out they did. And, doing it, they made a reference to Russia. Can't you imagine it happening? I can.

"Let us recall the assassination of President Kennedy. There is a theory that Kennedy's assassination was arranged by the United States special services. If this theory is correct, and one cannot rule it out, so what can be easier in today's context, being able to rely on the entire technical capabilities available to special services than to organize some kind of attacks in the appropriate manner while making a reference to Russia in the process. "

Kelly: "Let's move on."

However carefully Megyn Kelly and her NBC colleagues peruse The New York Times, they might well not know WikiLeaks' disclosure on March 31 of original CIA documents showing that the agency had created a program allowing it to break into computers and servers and make it look like others did it by leaving telltale signs (like Cyrillic markings, for example).

The capabilities shown in what WikiLeaks calls the "Vault 7" trove of CIA documents required the creation of hundreds of millions of lines of source code. At $25 per line of code, that amounts to about $2.5 billion for each 100 million code lines. But the Deep State has that kind of money and would probably consider the expenditure a good return on investment for "proving" the Russians hacked into Democratic Party emails.

In other words, it is altogether possible that the hacking attributed to Russia was actually one of several "active measures" undertaken by a cabal consisting of the CIA, FBI, NSA and Clapper – the same agencies responsible for the lame, evidence-free report of Jan. 6, that Clapper and Brennan acknowledged last month was not the consensus view of the 17 intelligence agencies.

There is also the issue of the forensics. Former FBI Director James Comey displayed considerable discomfort on March 20, explaining to the House Intelligence Committee why the FBI did not insist on getting physical access to the Democratic National Committee's computers in order to do its own proper forensics, but chose to rely on the examination done by the DNC's private contractor, Crowdstrike.

The firm itself has conflicts of interests in its links to the pro-NATO and anti-Russia think tank, the Atlantic Council, through Dmitri Alperovitch, who is an Atlantic Council senior fellow and the co-founder of Crowdstrike.

Strange Oversight

Given the stakes involved in the Russia-gate investigation – now including a possible impeachment battle over removing the President of the United States – wouldn't it seem logical for the FBI to insist on its own forensics for this fundamental predicate of the case? Or could Comey's hesitancy to demand access to the DNC's computers be explained by a fear that FBI technicians not fully briefed on CIA/NSA/FBI Deep State programs might uncover a lot more than he wanted?

Comey was asked again about this curious oversight on June 8 by Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Richard Burr:

BURR: "And the FBI, in this case, unlike other cases that you might investigate – did you ever have access to the actual hardware that was hacked? Or did you have to rely on a third party to provide you the data that they had collected?"

COMEY: "In the case of the DNC, and, I believe, the DCCC, but I'm sure the DNC, we did not have access to the devices themselves. We got relevant forensic information from a private party, a high-class entity, that had done the work. But we didn't get direct access."

BURR: "But no content?"

COMEY: "Correct."

BURR: "Isn't content an important part of the forensics from a counterintelligence standpoint?"

COMEY: "It is, although what was briefed to me by my folks – the people who were my folks at the time is that they had gotten the information from the private party that they needed to understand the intrusion by the spring of 2016."

Burr demurred on asking Comey to explain what amounts to gross misfeasance, if not worse. Perhaps, NBC could arrange for Megyn Kelly to interview Burr to ask if he has a clue as to what Putin might have been referring to when he noted, "There may be hackers, by the way, in the United States who very craftily and professionally passed the buck to Russia."

Given the congressional intelligence "oversight" committees' obsequiousness and repeated "high esteem" for the "intelligence community," there seems an even chance that – no doubt because of an oversight – the CIA/FBI/NSA deep-stage troika failed to brief the Senate "oversight committee" chairman on WikiLeaks "Vault 7" disclosures – even when WikiLeaks publishes original CIA documents.

Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. He was an Army Infantry/Intelligence officer and CIA analyst for a total of 30 years and now servers on the Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). Reprinted with permission from Consortium News .

The mysterious role of CloudStike and Dmitry Alperovich

Credibility Of Cyber Firm That Claimed Russia Hacked The DNC Comes Under Serious Question Zero Hedge

Before I get to the meat of this post, we need to revisit a little history. The cyber security firm hired to inspect the DNC hack and determine who was responsible is a firm called Crowdstrike. Its conclusion that Russia was responsible was released last year, but several people began to call its analysis into question upon further inspection.

Jeffrey Carr was one of the most prominent cynics, and as he noted in his December post, FBI/DHS Joint Analysis Report: A Fatally Flawed Effort :

The FBI/DHS Joint Analysis Report (JAR) " Grizzly Steppe " was released yesterday as part of the White House's response to alleged Russian government interference in the 2016 election process. It adds nothing to the call for evidence that the Russian government was responsible for hacking the DNC, the DCCC, the email accounts of Democratic party officials, or for delivering the content of those hacks to Wikileaks.

It merely listed every threat group ever reported on by a commercial cybersecurity company that is suspected of being Russian-made and lumped them under the heading of Russian Intelligence Services (RIS) without providing any supporting evidence that such a connection exists.

If ESET could do it, so can others. It is both foolish and baseless to claim, as Crowdstrike does, that X-Agent is used solely by the Russian government when the source code is there for anyone to find and use at will.

If the White House had unclassified evidence that tied officials in the Russian government to the DNC attack, they would have presented it by now. The fact that they didn't means either that the evidence doesn't exist or that it is classified.

Nevertheless, countless people, including the entirety of the corporate media, put total faith in the analysis of Crowdstrike despite the fact that the FBI was denied access to perform its own analysis. Which makes me wonder, did the U.S. government do any real analysis of its own on the DNC hack, or did it just copy/paste Crowdstrike?

As The Hill reported in January:

The FBI requested direct access to the Democratic National Committee's (DNC) hacked computer servers but was denied, Director James Comey told lawmakers on Tuesday.

The bureau made "multiple requests at different levels," according to Comey, but ultimately struck an agreement with the DNC that a "highly respected private company" would get access and share what it found with investigators.

"We'd always prefer to have access hands-on ourselves if that's possible," Comey said, noting that he didn't know why the DNC rebuffed the FBI's request.

This is nuts. Are all U.S. government agencies simply listening to what Crowdstike said in coming to their "independent" conclusions that Russia hacked the DNC? If so, that's a huge problem. Particularly considering what Voice of America published yesterday in a piece titled, Cyber Firm at Center of Russian Hacking Charges Misread Data :

An influential British think tank and Ukraine's military are disputing a report that the U.S. cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike has used to buttress its claims of Russian hacking in the presidential election.

The CrowdStrike report, released in December , asserted that Russians hacked into a Ukrainian artillery app, resulting in heavy losses of howitzers in Ukraine's war with Russian-backed separatists.

But the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) told VOA that CrowdStrike erroneously used IISS data as proof of the intrusion. IISS disavowed any connection to the CrowdStrike report. Ukraine's Ministry of Defense also has claimed combat losses and hacking never happened.

The challenges to CrowdStrike's credibility are significant because the firm was the first to link last year's hacks of Democratic Party computers to Russian actors, and because CrowdStrike co-founder Dimiti Alperovitch has trumpeted its Ukraine report as more evidence of Russian election tampering.

How is this not the biggest story in America right now?

Yaroslav Sherstyuk, maker of the Ukrainian military app in question, called the company's report "delusional" in a Facebook post . CrowdStrike never contacted him before or after its report was published, he told VOA.

VOA first contacted IISS in February to verify the alleged artillery losses. Officials there initially were unaware of the CrowdStrike assertions. After investigating, they determined that CrowdStrike misinterpreted their data and hadn't reached out beforehand for comment or clarification.

In a statement to VOA, the institute flatly rejected the assertion of artillery combat losses.

"The CrowdStrike report uses our data, but the inferences and analysis drawn from that data belong solely to the report's authors," the IISS said. "The inference they make that reductions in Ukrainian D-30 artillery holdings between 2013 and 2016 were primarily the result of combat losses is not a conclusion that we have ever suggested ourselves, nor one we believe to be accurate."

In early January, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense issued a statement saying artillery losses from the ongoing fighting with separatists are "several times smaller than the number reported by [CrowdStrike] and are not associated with the specified cause" of Russian hacking.

But Ukraine's denial did not get the same attention as CrowdStrike's report. Its release was widely covered by news media reports as further evidence of Russian hacking in the U.S. election.

In interviews, Alperovitch helped foster that impression by connecting the Ukraine and Democratic campaign hacks, which CrowdStrike said involved the same Russian-linked hacking group-Fancy Bear-and versions of X-Agent malware the group was known to use.

"The fact that they would be tracking and helping the Russian military kill Ukrainian army personnel in eastern Ukraine and also intervening in the U.S. election is quite chilling," Alperovitch said in a December 22 story by The Washington Post .

The same day, Alperovitch told the PBS NewsHour : "And when you think about, well, who would be interested in targeting Ukraine artillerymen in eastern Ukraine? Who has interest in hacking the Democratic Party? [The] Russia government comes to mind, but specifically, [it's the] Russian military that would have operational [control] over forces in the Ukraine and would target these artillerymen."

Alperovitch, a Russian expatriate and senior fellow at the Atlantic Council policy research center in Washington, co-founded CrowdStrike in 2011. The firm has employed two former FBI heavyweights: Shawn Henry, who oversaw global cyber investigations at the agency, and Steven Chabinsky, who was the agency's top cyber lawyer and served on a White House cybersecurity commission. Chabinsky left CrowdStrike last year.

CrowdStrike declined to answer VOA's written questions about the Ukraine report, and Alperovitch canceled a March 15 interview on the topic. In a December statement to VOA's Ukrainian Service, spokeswoman Ilina Dimitrova defended the company's conclusions.

In its report last June attributing the Democratic hacks, CrowdStrike said it was long familiar with the methods used by Fancy Bear and another group with ties to Russian intelligence nicknamed Cozy Bear. Soon after, U.S. cybersecurity firms Fidelis and Mandiant endorsed CrowdStrike's conclusions. The FBI and Homeland Security report reached the same conclusion about the two groups.

If the company's analysis was "delusional" when it came to Ukraine, why should we have any confidence that its analysis on Russia and the DNC is more sound?

Answer: We shouldn't.

 

 


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[Jun 25, 2017] UKRAINE meddled in US 2016 election. In conspiracy to blackmail Trump, Ukraine provided DNC with false accusations against Manafort, hoping to derail Trump and install Deep State figurehead Hillary Clinton

Jun 25, 2017 | www.unz.com

RobinG June 24, 2017 at 4:32 am GMT

DEMOCRATS & REPUBLICANS: ONE BIRD, 2 WINGS . SAME SHIT

UKRAINE meddled in US 2016 election. In conspiracy to blackmail Trump, Ukraine provided DNC with false accusations against Manafort, hoping to derail Trump and install Deep State figurehead Hillary Clinton.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dEjZ5gI9GaM UNREAL: The real election interference scandal HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT

See the timeline, and smoking-gun email from Alexandra Chalupa. To steal election, DNC fabricated Trump-Russian collusion stories which have poisoned US-Russia relations in this administration and stoked impeachment fever. Anti-Russian hysteria serves Israel by killing Syria & Iran diplomacy. Great journalism by Lee Stranahan.

Exiled off mainstreet Show Comment Next New Comment June 24, 2017 at 5:59 am GMT

The fabricated collusion stories strike me as efforts to force Trump to put the US on an aggressive war footing against Russia in Syria and elsewhere. As such the constitute war crimes efforts and are not only criminal, but stupid in light of the unnecessary risk they put us to.

[Jun 23, 2017] Some People "Would Rather Have 1st Class Seats on the Titanic Than Change the Course of the Ship"

Notable quotes:
"... Being in control of the losing party is still being in control: deals can be made, hands can be shaken, backs can be rubbed. A reformed progressive party means that the current elite lose their relevance, influence and power. And they will have none of that. ..."
"... "Change cannot occur if the displaced ruling class is left intact after a revolution against them." Dems have been running away from Henry Wallace (Roosevelt too) since way before my time. ..."
"... outside ..."
"... The Dems are never going to change unless challenged from outside the party. Sanders' Titanic analogy isn't particularly valid since the first class passengers in this case have their own private lifeboats. ..."
"... Pelosi, Schumer, Clinton, Hoyer. They are all old. In 5 years time, the whole Democratic party could change. There is a saying attributed to Max Planck, "Science advances one funeral at a time.", I suggest the same applies to politics. ..."
"... I'm not sure how you look at the last election cycle and conclude that the 'Democrat' party is even remotely capable of reform from within. For all of Mr. Sanders laudable goals, I think he is still suffering from the delusion that enough people in the party have the courage and moral conviction to do the right thing rather than looking out for their own skin. The money suggests otherwise. ..."
"... These closet elitists espouse popular progressive policies on their face, but when push comes to shove they will happily throw a few people under the bus if it means they won't have to wait in line for their morning latte at Starbucks. ..."
"... Freud, referring to nationalism. called it "the narcissism of superficial differences." It seems to apply very well here, too. ..."
"... Fascinating stuff really, how in America Socialism=USSR=Stalin=Terrorism=Obama. Reminds me of that excellent wikileaks document talking about how they are content to have erased civics and worked to create a clueless population ..."
Jun 23, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
Posted on June 23, 2017 by Yves Smith 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 . GP article archive here . Originally published at DownWithTyranny

... ... ..

Protecting Their First Class Seats on the Titanic

The quote in the title of this piece is from Bernie Sanders , said in a recent interview with David Sirota. Here's just a part (emphasis and paragraphing mine):

Sirota: The Democratic Party leadership has lost the White House, Congress, 1,000 state legislative seats and many governorships. Why is the party still run by the same group of people who delivered that electoral record?

Sanders: Because there are people who, as I often say, would rather have first class seats going down with the Titanic, rather than change the course of the ship . There are people who have spent their entire lives in the Democratic Party, there are people who've invested a whole lot of money into the Democratic Party, they think the Democratic Party belongs to them . You know, they own a home, they may own a boat, they may own the Democratic Party.

I mean, that's just the way people are, and I think there is reluctance on some, not all, by the way - I mean, I ran around this country and I met with the Democratic Party leaders in almost every state in the country. Some of them made it very clear they did not want to open the door to working people, they did not want to open to door to young people. They wanted to maintain the status quo.

On the other hand, I will tell you, there are party leaders around the country that said, "You know what, Bernie? There's a lot of young people out there who want to get involved. We think that's a great idea, and we want them involved."

Those who said "You know what, Bernie? There's a lot of young people out there who want to get involved. We think that's a great idea" - they don't run the Party when it comes to its top layers of leadership. Not by a very long shot.

For the Message to Change, the Leadership Must Change

So what's a progressive to do? It should be obvious. The Democratic Party has to change its policy offering, from "You can't have what all of you want" to "If the people want a better life, we will give it to them."

Yet this is not so easily done. For the message to change, the leadership must also change.

Which raises the critical question: How do we depose Chuc​k Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer, and the rest of their kind and make people like Bernie Sanders and Jeff Merkley the Party leaders instead?

After all, if someone like Bernie Sanders isn't Senate Majority Leader, if a Sanders-like politician (Ted Lieu perhaps) isn't Speaker of the House, what's the point of electing more back-bench progressives, more "supporting cast" players? ​

If there's no way to do that - and soon, given the ticking clock - we're Sisphus pushing the same heavy bolder up the same high hill, year after year, decade after decade, till we die or the game is finally truly over. 2018 is around the bend. 2020 is coming. Après ça, le déluge . Not much time to solve this one.

Completely filling the Second Class cabins on the Titanic with our people (that is, populating Congress with progressives who are nevertheless kept from leadership and control) won't change what goes on in the Captain's cabin and on the bridge.

Put more simply, we need to control the Party , or when the clock truly runs out, all this effort will truly have been pointless. I'm not fatalistic. I assume there's a way. So here's my first shot at an answer.

Elected Progressives Must Openly Rebel Against Their "Leaders"

In order for the revolution inside the Democratic Party to work, our elected progressive congressional representatives senators, must work to depose Pelosi and Schumer (etc.) and take power. More - they must do it visibly, effectively and now , in order to convince the 42% of voters that someone inside the Party is trying to knock these people out of the Captain's chair.

We voters and activists have our own challenges. This is the challenge for the electeds we've already put in place. If our elected progressives don't do this - or won't do this - "tick-tick-tick" says the world-historical clock on the wall. And we can all go down together, steerage and First Class alike.

It's time to step up, elected progressives. It's also time to be seen to step up . Read the Paul Craig Roberts quote at the top again. If the Party's failed leaders aren't deposed, the revolution will have failed.

It's a moment for real courage, and moments of courage bring moments of great fear. I understand that this kind of open rebellion, open public confrontation, a palace coup in front of the TV cameras, is frightening.

It's also necessary.

My ask: If you agree, write to your favorite elected progressive and say so. No more gravy train for Democratic elites. Meat and potatoes for voters instead. Complete the Sanders revolution by changing House and Senate leadership - now.

I know this puts some very good people on the spot. But maybe that's a feature, yes?

Isotope_C14 , June 23, 2017 at 12:42 am

Though I believe climate change is well past the point that it can be mitigated, the attempt to depose the corporate democrats is a noble enough endeavor. Stephen Jaffe is running against Nancy Pelosi, a very thoughtful and progressive candidate.

https://twitter.com/Jaffe4Congress

David Hildebrand is running against Feinstein. Also very progressive and well worth some research. https://twitter.com/David4SenateCA

I'm sure these guys could use any help anyone is willing to offer. I believe they are both against PAC money, but they can accept donations through actblue.

xxxx, June 23, 2017 at 9:04 am

Yeah but so we have two white men running against women, and on top of that if my google is correct Jaffe is > 70yrs old?

No disrespect to the quality of the candidates, but . seems like more wheel spinning. Like I keep saying, I don't trust Tulsi as far as I can throw my gas guzzler, but she has the kind of profile we need.

Vatch , June 23, 2017 at 11:07 am

[Tulsi Gabbard] has the kind of profile we need.

Yes, she does. But she's from Hawai'i, and a 50 state strategy is needed. Nancy Pelosi and Dianne Feinstein are both Californians, and they're a couple of phonies. Despite the difficulties, any progressive Democrats who oppose them in the primaries deserve to be seriously considered for support. Here are some more web sites for these candidates:

David Hildebrand http://www.davidforcalifornia.com/

Stephen Jaffe https://jaffe4congress.com/

Tim Canova, who opposed Debbie Wasserman Schultz in the 2016 Democratic primary, has endorsed Stephen Jaffe:

https://jaffe4congress.com/endorsements/

Jaffe is 6 years younger than the 77 year old Pelosi:

http://www.latimes.com/politics/essential/la-pol-ca-essential-politics-updates-meet-the-liberal-who-is-trying-to-1494004055-htmlstory.html

Kim Kaufman , June 23, 2017 at 1:43 am

I love the spike in 2007 from Dems to Independents. That would be about the time Pelosi said "impeachment is off the table." They came back to vote for Obama and have been cratering ever since. And Pelosi is still there. But the problem is: the leadership has not been developing any new leaders. Pelosi is a disaster but whoever might replace could easily be worse.

jefemt , June 23, 2017 at 9:01 am

I shake my head in wonder at how 'middle America" seems to have been suckered by Trump, and continues to vote against its self-interest. Yet I see a comment with a 'conditional but(t) about Pelosi, and I think, "Well, that is just as inane?"

We need to dump BOTH sides of the same neocon , self-interested corrupt to the core coin, BOTH parties, and completely re-tool.

The collective 'we' must come up with a simple platform, over 300 new candidates for congress, as many candidates as there are for the upcoming Senate seats, in the next 18 months. Tall order, but, it really is up to 'us'. We 'the people'.

The platform that would rally the votes, or a Constitutional convention and re-work that would satiate the broad center of America is daunting if even possible.

I have trotted out some ideas, and they just don't resonate with closest like-minded friends, so how am I going to gain traction with folks that are of a deeper opposite philosophical perspective?

– Single payor, one system, NOT insurance, but care: same one for congress, the president, the military, and lowly tax mules like me
– No-deduction, simplified flat-rate income tax with four tiers, 5% 12% 20% top rate 40%- you tell me where we draw the gross income lines between the % rates
-Tax return has taxpayer- directed check boxes in front of a simplified matrix of 'government' , where individuals choose where they want their money to go. Initial 10 year period of a declining sliding scale- 90% goes general fund first year, 80% 2nd year, and so on so that by year 10 each taxpayor only gives 10% to the general fund, 90% is taxpayor-directed (direct democracy?) Allows lead time for the government to see the direction the nation, and not the elected officials, want to see their money go (infrastructure? Bombs and depleted uranium bullets destined for distant shores and brown people? National Parks and monuments? Starving disabled widows and children? Public universities and Community College/ Trade Schools?
-Currency tied to BTU/ energy– value of BTUs based on full-life cycle costs- including carbon or waste management externalities (Coal, oil/gas, nukes, hydro) analyzed energy units– incentivize individuals to print their own money with rooftop solar, wind, conservation, etc ( a new Gold standard :This is where all the displaced accountants and insurance/ medical staff can go after the tax code is simplified )
-Reintroduce The Draft, with mandatory service to include civilian work corps, get parents involved in directing our elected 'reps' to ponder the slelf licking ice cream cone of perpetual war

I'm sure I am missing many things but boy, between Trump. Pelosi, McConnell, Schumer, Ryan, Gianforte, we are according to my values and preferences headed in a 180 degree wrong direction!

B1whois , June 23, 2017 at 12:59 pm

Honestly, at this point, every single vote cast in the presidential election could be argued as being "against one's best interests". This hackneyed phrase needs to subsume under real qualitative analysis.

jrs , June 23, 2017 at 2:12 pm

it's going to be against one's self interest in all likelihood as the system one lives in is against most of our self-interest (including our corrupt money drenched political system). Some votes can at best be damage control, which I suppose is in one's self interest to a degree, but only to a degree.

Crazy Horse , June 23, 2017 at 3:40 pm

This entire discussion is based upon the false premise that there are two political parties in the United States. Objectively there is only one party- the War Party, Empire Party, Kleptocracy Party- call it whatever you wish. Within it are two factions with slightly different players and ownership, but both are totally unrepresentative of the real interests of 99.99% of the citizens.

From the standpoint of the commoners, the two parties are similar to football teams where fan support is based upon social conformity and quasi-religious delusion. Loyalty is fostered by staging huge circuses where the two contestants compete to see which one can fabricate the most appealing set of lies which they never intend to try to implement.

"Change cannot occur if the displaced ruling class is left intact after a revolution against them" The idea that one of these "political parties" can be captured and transformed into something other than its very essence is ludicrous. What exactly does the displaced ruling class (not being) left intact mean? Nancy Pelosi finally succumbing to old age? Pelosi, Obama, or Trump are hardly the ruling class- merely its' hired servants who can be replaced. Having the ruling class overthrown is more likely to mean the Buffets, Bezos', and Dimons of the world thrown into a maximum security cell In Guantanamo or burned at the stake than a mere shuffling of political actors.

And Gaius, what basis do you have for calling Trump the worst presidential candidate in modern history? In order to achieve that honor he will have to outperform Obama, he of the silver tongue who ruled for 8 years as a "progressive" while overseeing the destruction of the middle class, enabling the financialiization of the economy and the greatest transfer of wealth in history, and becoming the world's most prolific assassin using a fleet of remote controlled drones. Or be more evil than George Bush, who sat in the back row of an elementary classroom while Dick Cheney stage managed the false flag attack upon New York and the Pentagon and used that to turn the country into a Homeland Insecurity police state. Granted, Trump is trying hard to be even more destructive than his predecessors, but he hasn't yet succeeded.

Johnny Pistola , June 23, 2017 at 6:33 pm

You effectively echo my thoughts, Mr Horse. The children of the American Revolution are afraid to revolt perhaps they fear they will be demoted to economy class on the Titanic if they rebel?

Rhondda , June 23, 2017 at 6:45 pm

Excellent comment.

redleg , June 23, 2017 at 1:51 pm

Missing 2 big ones:
1. MONEY IS NOT SPEECH, and shall be subject to regulation by legislation and/or administrative rules;
2. Corporations ARE NOT PEOPLE and have absolutely ZERO inherent rights. Any rights assigned to corporations by legislation shall be subordinate to those of living beings.

Yes, I'm shouting.

jrs , June 23, 2017 at 2:18 pm

The U.S. Constitution IS ONE F'D UP DOCUMENT, that makes things so hard to change.

But really since it seems this requires an amendment to change these things, and that is nearly impossible to achieve (well we haven't had a new amendment in 45 years unless you count congressional pay – yea approaching near half a century without one), it does just underscore what a screwed up political construct we live under.

UserFriendly , June 23, 2017 at 2:00 am

I could not agree more if you paid me to.

Kim Kaufman , June 23, 2017 at 2:05 am

And here's something to listen to on the good ship Titanic:

Gavin Bryars – The Sinking Of The Titanic (1975, Obscure)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2oVMRADOq5s

I've always liked Gavin Bryars but just read the above is on Tom Waits' top ten list of music favorites. So here's something he did with Bryars, also part of the sinking of the Titanic:

Gavin Bryars Feat. Tom Waits – Jesus Blood Never Failed Me Yet (Long version)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gT0wonCq_MY

Lambert Strether , June 23, 2017 at 2:10 am

> They've totally had it.

Exactly.

Ignacio , June 23, 2017 at 3:13 am

This article shows that the Democratic party, all political parties with possibilities, are run like corporations. Period.

WobblyTelomeres , June 23, 2017 at 9:54 am

Or a crime syndicate.

allan , June 23, 2017 at 11:14 am

Or a lobbying firm. A flexian lobbying firm:

Prominent Democratic Fundraisers Realign to Lobby For Trump's Agenda [Intercept]

[ Long laundry list horror show of Obama/Clinton bundlers lobbying to advance Trump agenda. At the end:]

The Intercept spoke to several progressive activists who expressed outrage that leading Democratic Party officials are now advancing the Trump agenda, but were reluctant to comment on the record, for fear of angering powerful Democrats. But a few activists, like Democracy Sping's Newkirk, decided to speak on the record.

Becky Bond, an activist and former Bernie Sanders adviser who also spoke out, said, "When Democratic insiders team up with Comcast and the private prison industry, they make it pretty difficult to see how the party can recruit relationships with the voters it needs to bring back into the fold."

"Destroying the internet and maximizing the profitability of mass incarceration," she added, "is not what I would call a winning strategy for Democrats who want to take back power in 2018."

If the DNC wanted input from granola crunchers, they would ask for it.
Or, rather, have Blue State Digital ask for it and bill the DNC six figures.

I Have Strange Dreams , June 23, 2017 at 3:23 am

The doctor has correctly diagnosed the disease, but there is no cure; the prognosis is terminal. The D party are American to the core: grifting, hustling, murdering, stealing, tech-douchebaggery, vagina-hatted buffoonery, egotistical, self-obsessed anti-social psychopathic angry drunks of selfish parents. I.e, all-American.

HotFlash , June 23, 2017 at 8:56 am

There is a lot of truth in what you say. But perhaps you could make some new friends?

relstprof , June 23, 2017 at 3:29 am

"By my count, with the Georgia election Democrats have just blown their fifth chance in a row to make a new first impression"

Direct and simple. Publius has it right, like Hillel:

"There was an incident involving a Gentile who came before Shammai and said to him: 'Convert me to Judaism on condition that you will teach me the entire Torah while I stand on one foot.' Shammai pushed the man away with the building rod he was holding. Undeterred, the man then came before Hillel with the same request. Hillel said to him, 'That which is hateful unto you, do not do unto your neighbor. This is the whole Torah, all the rest is commentary.'" ( Shabbat 31a)

Imagine this scenario with a fast-food worker, a coal miner, an adjunct professor, a docks trucker. (Evidently Ossoff didn't imagine this, as reports surface that he didn't campaign for these kind of voters.)

Do not exploit. Single-payer. Debt relief. Free tuition. It's not going to be easy, but there's no need for fear.

relstprof , June 23, 2017 at 3:36 am

Edit: fearmongering ought to be the last word above.

HotFlash , June 23, 2017 at 10:47 am

I think leaving it at 'fear' is better.

Carla , June 23, 2017 at 7:53 am

"Do not exploit. Single-payer. Debt relief. Free tuition. It's not going to be easy, but there's no need for fearmongering."

As long as we keep bombing the shit out of Syria, Yemen, and anywhere else we please?

Oh, I forgot. "Do not exploit" only applies to Amuricans

cripes , June 23, 2017 at 3:47 am

As much as I would like to see a viable third party that owes nothing to the POS legacy Dems, it does seem like the more likely scenario is a takeover of the entire party apparatus and leadership.

The hour is getting late. (hat tip J Hendrix)

Hayek's Heelbiter , June 23, 2017 at 5:19 am

Actually, the line is by Nobel Laureate, Bob Dylan, from "All Along the Watchtower." which was, importantly, preceded by the line, "There's no reason to talk softly now."

ratefink , June 23, 2017 at 10:56 am

Eeeee

"Let us not talk falsely now, the hour is getting late."

voteforno6 , June 23, 2017 at 6:28 am

Actually, hat tip B. Dylan (b. R. Zimmerman).

Johnny Pistola , June 23, 2017 at 6:41 pm

Yeah, but I still like Jimi's version better.

Eureka Springs , June 23, 2017 at 8:17 am

I like PCR's quote.

"Change cannot occur if the displaced ruling class is left intact after a revolution against them .

I don't even detect this as a sincere goal among progressives/demos which is yet another reason I'm not d partying.

If anyone takes over the party without changing nearly every process then they are just seeking the same results by new faces.

Binding platform/policy established and maintained by as many people/votes as possible. And this should be done by nearly anyone but candidates/office holders. Officeholders should represent with instructions much like a jurist.

True party membership.

No more caucus. Individual private votes on paper ballots for all party processes. All off which must be counted immediately. Votes should be scheduled far in advance, with no last minute changes to questions/issues as we witnessed when given glimpses of inner party shenanigans.

Transparent, real time monitoring of all incoming and outgoing funds. Down to the office pencils and after hours beers if on party or contracted dimes.

Otherwise it's a private anti-democratic exclusionary party and you ain't in it.

Eclectic , June 23, 2017 at 4:59 am

Being in control of the losing party is still being in control: deals can be made, hands can be shaken, backs can be rubbed. A reformed progressive party means that the current elite lose their relevance, influence and power. And they will have none of that.

wellclosed , June 23, 2017 at 5:38 am

"Change cannot occur if the displaced ruling class is left intact after a revolution against them." Dems have been running away from Henry Wallace (Roosevelt too) since way before my time.

habenicht , June 23, 2017 at 6:26 am

Michael Hudson said this back on this site in March:

"It seems that only a new party can achieve these aims. At the time these essays are going to press, Sanders has committed himself to working within the Democratic Party. But that stance is based on his assumption that somehow he can recruit enough activists to take over the party from Its Donor Class.

I suspect he will fail. In any case, it is easier to begin afresh than to try to re-design a party (or any institution) dominated by resistance to change, and whose idea of economic growth is a pastiche of tax cuts and deregulation. Both U.S. parties are committed to this neoliberal program – and seek to blame foreign enemies for the fact that its effect is to continue squeezing living standards and bloating the financial sector."

Further I find it hard to conclude that the Democratic party is salvagable reading the post here. They have proven time and time again where their interest lie.

Unless there is a mutiny on the horizon for the democrats, maybe it is better to abandon ship!

Moneta , June 23, 2017 at 7:41 am

Donor money attracts the status seekers pushing for the status quo, guaranteeing low voter turnout. Leaders probably love it when the dissenters just give up and become even more individualistic.

A new party needs to get started promoting:
– pension protections
– universal healthcare
– affordable post secondary education

Susan the other , June 23, 2017 at 11:21 am

Interesting how Macron managed to recruit enough members of parliament to make his EM party viable – just that easily he ousted and replaced people. I thought it was all too smooth. Here it's a cat fight all the way. And in the end party politics gets corroded anyway. I'm thinking a party is secondary to policy, because it is always shifting. Whereas some bedrock policy, regardless of which "party" might be marching for it, can survive all the ups and downs of sack-of-potato politics. What we need is a movement that demands human rights. A constitutional convention would just be another cat fight – we need to start demanding the basics, as you list them and maybe a few more like a jobs guarantee program – the right to work for a living wage.

Moneta , June 23, 2017 at 11:45 am

IMO, the manifesto has to list requests that are

Human rights are too nebulous: one could see walking down the street holding a gun a god given right while the other sees being able to walk in a gun free city
a god given right.

Job guarantees are just as nebulous. Instead of offering job guarantees, you'd have to guarantee the creation of specific jobs: cleaning polluted areas, universal daycare, research into X, etc.

Moneta , June 23, 2017 at 11:50 am

Very specific.

Rhondda , June 23, 2017 at 6:53 pm

I don't think you can compare the situ with the Dems to Macron's feeble sweep up. He's a Globalist banker construct, a cutout. Obama v 2.0 a la Français. IMHO, of course.

Carolinian , June 23, 2017 at 7:47 am

Thank you. The Dems are never going to change unless challenged from outside the party. Sanders' Titanic analogy isn't particularly valid since the first class passengers in this case have their own private lifeboats. Of course you can get melodramatic and claim the fate of the world is at stake and therefore the planet itself is the Titanic due to AGW but that's a problem much bigger than political parties and changing one for the other isn't likely to make much of a difference.

Since the article brings up Walmart and Amazon perhaps they could serve as better analogies. They aren't really monopolies of course since they fear competition including each other and that may be all they fear. I see this in my own town as new competitors move in and Walmart cleans up its stores, offers new services etc.

So Michael Hudson had it right. Sanders would have made far more of a difference if he had started a third party rather than sheepdogging for the Dems. The barriers are huge and designed to be so but the people running the Dem party are not going to step aside for our convenience. It's the duopoly system itself that needs to be overturned and not this perpetual suggestion–that we've been hearing forever–that the Dems somehow reform themselves. Their idea of reform is to bring on somebody like Obama to fix the p.r.

a different chris , June 23, 2017 at 9:11 am

Lifeboats? They have manned helicopters.

a different chris , June 23, 2017 at 9:16 am

>Sanders would have made far more of a difference if he had started a third party

Not sure I agree with this. Now you can possibly convince me that he should, but I feel strongly that the initial attack right in the belly of the beast was necessary. Now everybody's heard of him, know who he is. He's on the TeeVee, he brings them eyeballs.

If he started a third party he would have just been ignored in the media, and the media is all.

DanB , June 23, 2017 at 11:09 am

He could have started a third party with the justification that the DNC sabotaged him. We'll never know what would have been the outcome in 2016, but since I see Bernie as a "first pancake" (don't eat it but it's necessary to get things going) breaking with the Dem. Party would have been important on several levels.

Vatch , June 23, 2017 at 11:16 am

You are absolutely correct - as a third party candidate, Sanders would have received even less media coverage than he did get from the mainstream media. I think he would have done better than the Greens, but he still would have lost badly. One of the major lessons of 2016 is that the deck is heavily stacked against third parties in the United States; neither the Greens nor the Libertarians in combination could muster 5% of the Presidential vote. To ignore that lesson would be tragic.

UserFriendly , June 23, 2017 at 2:09 pm

At the end of the primary this poll came out.
http://www.surveyusa.com/client/PollReport.aspx?g=16a737fe-f202-42b4-965f-e76b137ba826

In a 4-way election for President of the United States today, 06/10/16, with Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, and Gary Johnson all candidates on the ballot, Trump defeats Clinton 35% to 32%, with Sanders at 18% and Johnson at 4%, according to SurveyUSA research conducted for The Guardian. Of those who vote for Sanders if his name is on the ballot, 73% say theirs is a vote "for" Sanders, 19% say theirs is a vote "against" Trump, and 7% say theirs is a vote "against" Clinton.

In a 4-way election for President with Sanders' name not on the ballot, Clinton defeats Trump 39% to 36%, with Johnson at 6% and Jill Stein at 4%. 5% of all voters tell SurveyUSA they would "stay home and not vote" in this ballot constellation. Of those who vote for Sanders when Sanders' name appears on the ballot, 13% say they will stay home if Sanders name is not on the ballot, 41% vote for Clinton, 15% vote for Johnson, 11% vote for Stein, and 7% defect to Trump.

I can't help but think that as Sanders got to put his message out at the debates, when most voters are just starting to tune in, and then with comey and pussy grabbing there would be a significant shift to the only not insane candidate with a shot. That is if the media didn't go ape shit on him for 'handing the election to trump' as soon as he decided to go 3rd party. That is a big IF, but now I wonder how much of an effect that would have had with how much everyone loves the media ..

charles leseau , June 23, 2017 at 2:21 pm

If he started a third party he would have just been ignored in the media, and the media is all.

Exactly.

HotFlash , June 23, 2017 at 9:46 am

The Dems are never going to change unless challenged from outside the party.

Sanders' Titanic analogy isn't particularly valid since the first class passengers in this case have their own private lifeboats.

To your point the first, it is not an either-or situation. And think how effective it would be if the Dem Party leadership was challenged from *both* inside and outside!

To your point the second, the *very* first class passengers feel assured that they have lifeboats (and they could be wrong), but the hangers on? Not really. They have not adequately prepared, they are as few paychecks from disaster as the rest of us are, they are riding on their employers' ticket, and that is why they are hanging on to the "donor class" like grim death. The actual "donor class" doesn't pull the levers of power, they have staff to do that. It is the staff that we are after.

EricT , June 23, 2017 at 10:18 am

Pelosi, Schumer, Clinton, Hoyer. They are all old. In 5 years time, the whole Democratic party could change. There is a saying attributed to Max Planck, "Science advances one funeral at a time.", I suggest the same applies to politics.

Jeremy Grimm , June 23, 2017 at 12:18 pm

The history of third parties in the U.S. is not encouraging. Much as I respect Michael Hudson's writings on economics I tend to adhere to the writings of G. William Domhoff for analysis of power. [ http://www2.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/class_domination.html ] From the section "The Power Elite and Government":

" there can be only two main parties due to the structure of the government and the nature of the electoral rules."

"The fact that Americans select a president instead of a parliament, and elect legislators from "single-member" geographical areas (states for the Senate, districts for the House) leads to a two-party system because in these "winner-take-all" elections a vote for a third party is a vote for the person's least desired choice. A vote for a very liberal party instead of the Democrats, for example, actually helps the Republicans."

This last election cycle the Democratic Party too plainly exposed its empty hull within. It appears vulnerable to take over by mutiny or pirates from within.

Abandoning ship? - That sounds like a good way to drown. Neither of the main alternative parties show promise and riding the currents of the present seas will not carry us to a new island home.

Adam Eran , June 23, 2017 at 1:53 pm

The current situation is an echo of the post-Civil-War elections when the Farmers' Alliance and Peoples' Party actually elected officials from local to Federal. They lost, ultimately, to J.P.Morgan and his interests, but sparked genuine change (a central bank, among other things).

Hard to say we'll do much better now.

Chronic Illness , June 23, 2017 at 7:02 am

I'm not sure how you look at the last election cycle and conclude that the 'Democrat' party is even remotely capable of reform from within. For all of Mr. Sanders laudable goals, I think he is still suffering from the delusion that enough people in the party have the courage and moral conviction to do the right thing rather than looking out for their own skin. The money suggests otherwise.

I think it has been proven rather conclusively that political animals are first and foremost self-serving creatures. That being said, it's probably time people take the bull by the horns and proceed with forming a party that actually represents their collective interests rather than "the system".

I have been involved in a discussion group with some highly intelligent people (mostly PhD types here), and it is fascinating how many of them will apologize for the destruction created by the previous administration's policies. These people aren't necessarily wealthy, but they see themselves as the "resistance" when they are part and parcel part of the problem.

They, like many in the 'Democrat' party, still cling to the Hamiltonian principles that have alienated so much of the country. Obama was a perfect example of how destructive this mindset can be. These closet elitists espouse popular progressive policies on their face, but when push comes to shove they will happily throw a few people under the bus if it means they won't have to wait in line for their morning latte at Starbucks. These faux progressives see themselves as the thinkers and leaders in modern society (much like Orwell's Animal Farm pigs), and they have no intention of letting the peons without proper pedigrees institute change which would level the playing field for a more just and humane social and economic structure.

HBE , June 23, 2017 at 10:08 am

These closet elitists espouse popular progressive policies on their face, but when push comes to shove they will happily throw a few people under the bus if it means they won't have to wait in line for their morning latte at Starbucks.

This is a perfect definition of a dem tribalist, in all but words they are the exact same as those suburban republicans the dem party so desperately longs for, but will never have for the simple reason they are tribalists as well.

Dems are enraged enough to don little pink hats and march by the millions, not because of gross inequality, injustice or global warming, but because their moderate Republican lost.

They say they hate racists and racism, but they steadfastly support the policies that institutionalize racism. Mass incarceration, economic injustice, global war, the biggest drivers are just fine with them. The racism they don't like is the crass kind displayed by individuals that they see or here. Not really because it's racist but because it tarnishes their virtue bubble.

Dems are moderate suburban Republicans who don't have stiff enough constitutions to see, and own the effects of the policies they support. They are delusional hypocrites.

Third party please.

Michael Fiorillo , June 23, 2017 at 11:46 am

" they are they exact same as those suburban republicans the dem party so desperately longs for "

Freud, referring to nationalism. called it "the narcissism of superficial differences." It seems to apply very well here, too.

oh , June 23, 2017 at 4:45 pm

The crooked leadership in the DimRat party are only interested in fooling people so they can collect campaign contributions which they promptly lop off for their personal gain. They don't if they win or lose an election as long as they can fool people and loot campaign money. They'll swindle the honest people who stay within the DimRat party and throw them away like used rags. The people who desire to change the party from within are deluded. Bernie might have meant well and spoken some truths but when push came to shove, he ran back to Momma! Let's get with the program and support a third pary like the Greens who already have registration in ove 40 states.

David, by the lake , June 23, 2017 at 7:04 am

I washed my hands of the Democrat Party and national politics after the primary, with the exception of a possible Constitutional convention, which I see as the best chance we have to dismantle the American empire peaceably. I'll still vote, as disruptively as I can, but I'm not investing my energy in national issues only to be left a dry husk. Rather, that energy is being focused on my garden, my community, and my family.

David, by the lake , June 23, 2017 at 9:02 am

Your comment is appreciated, perhaps more than you realize. One can feel quite alone in a decision like this when the massed crowd insists on marching off the cliff and expects me to not only go along, but to agree that it is a good idea. Thank you.

Arizona Slim , June 23, 2017 at 9:40 am

You're very welcome.

And, shhh, don't tell anyone, but there are many more people like us. Our numbers are growing.

ErnestMold , June 23, 2017 at 10:44 am

Yep. Many, many more. We should create a secret handshake to identify one another in public. Or maybe we identify our comrades by the dirt under their fingernails, or the beet left dangling from their back pocket as a sign of solidarity.

freedeomny , June 23, 2017 at 2:16 pm

I don't think you are alone at all. I have been planning similarly for the past 3 years and know several other people who are doing the same. We have paid off mortgages, pinched pennies and are living a simple, anti-materialistic life with the end goal of moving to a rural/small town where we can be largely self-sustaining, focus on our communities and make due with a much smaller income.

That being said-I will continue to use my voice (in any way that I can) to express my outrage at the current state of the USA .

Johnny Pistola , June 23, 2017 at 7:19 pm

Yes! And you can find us at the local community food and music festivals across North America. National politics has become a toxic playground for futile argument.

Vatch , June 23, 2017 at 11:19 am

I'm not investing my energy in national issues only to be left a dry husk. Rather, that energy is being focused on my garden, my community, and my family.

Simply voting in the Democratic primary doesn't take a lot of energy. Your family and your community could benefit if you do so (I'm not sure about your garden).

Jeremy Grimm , June 23, 2017 at 1:14 pm

I strongly second this view! Independents and the alienated [David, by the lake you seem "alienated"] should register to one of the two parties - preferably Democratic. Registering for a party means you can vote in that party's primary and it means you might be called by pollsters and receive requests for contributions - all offering great potential for disrupting which are not otherwise available to Independents and the alienated.

Michael Fiorillo , June 23, 2017 at 12:00 pm

Not that I'm happy with what he does or plans to do, but isn't Trump already doing a pretty good job of dismantling the American empire?

Given our circumstances, and the patterns of history, isn't it a delusion for the anti-imperialist Left to think that the empire will shrink/dissolve into something resembling its preferred model, whatever that is? In fact, doesn't history show cronies/grifters/looters/shitheel relatives (think Kushner) as the ones who inherit a failing empire, and get their skim from the excess energy/capital generated by it collapse?

I've no patience at all for the "Putin did it" memes, but according to the Caligula/Nero model of imperial decline, he'd have been wise to do everything in his power to get Trump elected, since Donnie is likely to do more to undermine the empire than anyone imaginable.

Jeremy Grimm , June 23, 2017 at 1:25 pm

In the BBC series "I Claudius" - Claudius believed favoring Nero would help bring a return of the Republic.

My chief hope from Trump was that he might draw down our Military and stop a few of our ruinous wars. Instead he seems to have "outsourced" control and direction of the Military to the Military. And Trump's domestic agenda seems oriented toward reducing most of the population to the condition of self-supporting slaves transferring what wealth they still hold into the hands of the very wealthy. I suppose this is one way to dismantle the American Empire.

redleg , June 23, 2017 at 2:47 pm

Trump and the GOP are doing exactly what they do. This might be dismantling (privatizing) society, but this is what they are and have been so for many years. They are malevolent, but relatively honest about it.

The Dems, however, speak through their hats. They are also malevolent, but do not broadcast it. They are masters of scapegoating and rationalization. They have been moving right since at least the Carter Presidency (yes, Carter) and appear to covet the GOP so much that they have effectively become the GOP of 5 to 10 years ago on a sliding scale. Since every election is The Most Important EVAH ™, they have kept those attempting to move the party back to the left unhappily in the party as "they have nowhere else to go". But the results over the last 50 years reveal the Dems as liars, and eventually the lessor of 2 evils strategy (not a typo – they are for lease) stops working as people slowly realize that the benefits of voting blue no matter who are minimal. Thus the increase in independents on the above graph.

We have hit the point, globally IMO, where people have had enough. "Vote GOP/fascist, and those empty-promise Dems/liberals will suffer with us- and we get to keep our guns." Or don't vote at all. Schadenfreude is a powerful motivator.

The Dems were the party of conservatives back in the 1800s (remember slavery?), took a little detour in the 1930s, and have reverted to what they were. The left (not the vichy-left that is left only relative to the GOP, but the progressive left) has no representation in US politics. The future for progressives lies outside of the Dem party – let the aristocratic Dems and GOP become one party with 2 factions discriminated by the amount of bible thumping they do.

Progressives need to start over very publicly, and the sooner the better. They need to clearly, loudly describe what they will do, how they intend to do it, and how it will benefit people. Corbyn and Sanders have demonstrated that there is a significant fraction of the population that will support this. It also uses the existing Schadenfreude as a political tool.
\rant)

FWX341844 , June 23, 2017 at 7:15 am

"For the message to change, the leadership must change."

For the Democratic-Party leadership to change, we have to get the new message [we will give you a better life] through to them. They're not listening to that new [old-school] message, because roughly half of us will vote for them no matter what the message is [say, the alternative is worse, ya' know] and the other half of us don't vote at all [read: what difference does it make?].

Let's address that last part first. We should be able to convince the people that their votes would make a difference if only they'd cast them for at least five consecutive election cycles. That might entail electing more of the same sort of Democrats that we have today. But if voter participation on the Democratic side of the choice increased sufficiently and persistently, then even the worst of the Democrats would have to remove the tampons from their ears to hear the people demanding a better life.

Be advised, though, that when the better life arrives–as it briefly did following the GI Bill, The Interstate Highway Act, the expansion of the suburbs, the era of urban decay and municipal budget crises wrought by bond down-grading–a fair number of the people will become Republicans and the great cycle of rent-seeking expropriation will begin anew.

Kokuanani , June 23, 2017 at 7:19 am

The foolish Democrats continue to send our house "surveys" as part of their begging. Usually I just throw them out or write a brief, nasty message in red marker. This time, with the two that are awaiting my action, I'm going to add a more detailed "get rid of Pelosi, Schumer, Hoyer etc." message.

Having worked in a Congressional office, I know that I'm not really "communicating" with anyone, but perhaps if they get a few more of these specific "suggestions," a light will go on in their lizard brains.

Northeaster , June 23, 2017 at 8:44 am

Bernie Sanders? Really? He is a hypocrite and a Socialist – GTFO of here with that nonsense.

This country may just have to duke it out and see what's left after the ashes fizzle out. It won't be Bernie Sanders, that's for sure.

Arizona Slim , June 23, 2017 at 9:45 am

You are saying "socialist" like it's a bad thing. Ever gone for a drive? To the library? You just dealt with two socialist entities, roads and libraries. I could go on, but the hour is getting late.

IsotopeC14 , June 23, 2017 at 9:54 am

Fascinating stuff really, how in America Socialism=USSR=Stalin=Terrorism=Obama. Reminds me of that excellent wikileaks document talking about how they are content to have erased civics and worked to create a clueless population

tegnost , June 23, 2017 at 10:49 am

Bernie played it masterfully, disrupting the democrat party and exposing the fraud, while maintaining an operational voice as a senator. The aforementioned elites would like nothing more than seeing him go away.

Big River Bandido , June 23, 2017 at 10:29 am

The entrenched power within the Democrat Party in Washington lies with the campaign committees (DNC, DCCC, DSCC) who are under the thumb of some of the most sleazy, corrupt people in politics - Democrat "consultants".

There will be no kind of change without decapitating the party of those scumbags. They, in turn, owe their jobs to the members of Congress who are elected by their caucus to "oversee" those campaign committees. DCCC is headed by Pelosi apparatchiks Lujan and Israel. Israel, in particular, is a poster child for the corrupt, antideluvian Democrat Party hack. Similar dynamics apply in the Senate, although the caucus "leaders" are not always what they appear to be on paper. (Feinstein has long been the "leader" of the Senate Democrats, though she has never held the title.)

roadrider , June 23, 2017 at 8:57 am

You might as well try to reform the Mafia.

The Democrats are dead to me and have been since 2006 when they "took impeachment off the table" and acquiesced to the "surge" in Iraq. Whatever inclination I might have had to remain with them was shattered in the 2008 primaries when any candidate voicing actual progressive thoughts was shunted aside by the party leadership and their media sycophants in favor of the two most conservative, war mongering (take another look at the second Obama-McCain debate if you think only Hellary was a war monger) , corporate/MIC lackeys.

It doesn't matter how many elections Pelosi, Schumer, et. al. lose or how hollowed out their representation in Congress and state houses become, They will continue to be supported by the mega-rich neoliberal establishment, celebrities, tech elites and the coastal intelligentsia. Without an outside challenge from the left nothing will change inside the party since they are correct in their observation that the left "have nowhere else to go", well except to stay home (like they did in 2016). This will result in more Trumps (who are smarter and more competent than the original model) and then the Dems will play the "unity" and "resistance" cards.

a different chris , June 23, 2017 at 9:29 am

I agree with 99% of what you say but, if they continue to lose then they will not be supported by the mega-rich etc.

The sad thing is we now have the Imperial Presidency, and I'd still probably bet (lightly) against Trump in 2020 so the Dems will probably get the Presidency again without Congress and the country will continue to spin its wheels.

lyman alpha blob , June 23, 2017 at 2:00 pm

They have been losing for decades now and yet they do continue to be supported by the mega rich. That's not going to dry up any time soon as those types do like to hedge their bets.

The Imperial Presidency didn't start in January. And I'll remind you that statusquObama had a Democrat majority in the House and a supermajority in the Senate when he took office. He had no need to compromise with the other side and could have pushed through any truly progressive reforms that he and the Democrats wanted to and yet the wheels continued to spin. All that came of that was a pro-corporate health insurance scam that is now on its last legs.

Please don't continue to labor under the delusion that if only they controlled more branches of government things would be different. If they actually wanted to help out the working class in this country they would have done so already. That they'd rather lose than help the 'deplorables' has become abundantly clear.

RenoDino , June 23, 2017 at 8:57 am

It's ALL one party with a scrum at the margins. St. Bernie stands atop the burning dumpster, railing about the injustice of it all, while being consumed by its flames. This is an Empire backed by a full-blown Police State. Nobody is going anywhere.

You are now free to go about your business enjoying the benefits of our consumer society. Thank you.

PKMKII , June 23, 2017 at 9:20 am

Democratic consultants are to politics as mutual fund managers are to Wall Street: Put on fronts of intelligence, talent, and insight well beyond their abilities, act like their expertise is crucial for success when their actual track record is mixed at best, act like their much more important to the process than they really are, and it doesn't matter if they win or lose, they get their hefty fees regardless.

Arizona Slim , June 23, 2017 at 9:52 am

I know such a consultant. He is oh-for-two with his last couple of candidates.

An acquaintance just hired this consultant to manage his campaign. Said acquaintance reminds me of Ossoff. And not in a good way.

Methinks that the well-paid consultant is about to go oh-for-three.

Daniel F. , June 23, 2017 at 9:47 am

Reforming the so-called Democratic Party is impossible in my opinion. It's torn between a corporate leadership (appeal progressives) and its regressive fringes. Let it burn to the ground and make a new party, for true progressives (am I going in the direction of a "no true Scotsman"?), who would represent the interests of "We, the people".

Then you have the real radicals, BLM, AntiFa, and the n th wave intersectional feminists, respectively crying about "systemic oppression", "goddamn nazis everywhere", "the Patriarchy", and collectively: "fugg da po-pos!". Yes, the Republicans also have their corporate leadership and fringes, but actual nazis and delusional AnCaps seem a lot less vocal or significant (at least from Europe) compared to any riot or the madness at the Evergreen State College. Then again, this is coming from someone living in Europe, so my perspective isn't very good. Still, I don't feel really good about the self-proclaimed Leader of the Free World (which it actually used to be) devolving further.

Louis Fyne , June 23, 2017 at 9:49 am

That's why as small donors, people need to starve the beast--no contributions to the any DC-based organization (to culturally appropriate Ronald Reagan). Support local individuals. Even $20 spent on a losing well-chosen local state rep. is better spent than $10 for the DNC.

Carolinian , June 23, 2017 at 10:01 am

Some relevant observations from St. Clair https://www.counterpunch.org/2017/06/23/democrats-in-the-dead-zone/

Left in Wisconsin , June 23, 2017 at 1:37 pm

I like the description of the Ossoff race as a Pyrrhic loss – so much invested by Dems into a candidate with so little to offer, that the loss looms larger than it would otherwise.

I'm for trying anything that might work, inside or outside the D Party. I am convinced the rules of the game in the US make it almost impossible for a 3rd Party to succeed. But there is no permanent reason the D Party has to be one of the two.

The problem/difficulty with taking over the D Party is not just the handful of leaders in DC. By my count, there are maybe 20 truly left-progressive Dems in the House and no more than 5 in the Senate (being truly charitable to people like Warren). So changing the nature of D representation in DC with require primary-ing the vast majority of current DC Dems. So the question is, does it make more sense to try to do this in D primaries and try to take over the D Party apparatus – no doubt against virtually the entire existing apparatus – or to run a complete slate of 3rd party candidates in Nov elections. I used to think the former strategy has a much higher likelihood of success. Now I am not so sure.

DJG , June 23, 2017 at 10:09 am

One concept that may help here is "party system." We are in the sixth party system of the U S of A. And it sure looks like we are opening the door to the seventh party system. So ruling out "third parties" isn't a great idea: Both of the political parties (D and R) are structures that are dry-rotted. One kick may send either or both tumbling. In some respects, Trump won the nomination because Republican voters perceived how corrupted the Republican party is. (He may be the stereotypical spoiled American businessperson, but to Republican voters, he was somehow more "real" and "new" than Romney, the well-scrubbed spoiled Republican businessperson.)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Party_system#United_States

The parties aren't permanent. Is anyone nostalgic for the Whigs? Should we argue that there was no way to get rid of the American Party (the Know-Nothings)?

justanotherprogressive , June 23, 2017 at 10:30 am

Sanders: "Because there are people who, as I often say, would rather have first class seats going down with the Titanic, rather than change the course of the ship."

And then there are those propaganda-gulping people who think that someday they too will get one of those 1st class berths if they just keep going along with what the elite wants

I can't believe some of the people I meet who think that somehow that the neoliberal game plan is going to make their lives better someday

Mike , June 23, 2017 at 11:08 am

Many here commenting upon G. P.'s post truly hope and wish for change (heard this one before?), both within the Democratic Party and outside. In both cases, the answers and suggestions given are very innocent.

To cleanse the entire nation of the influence of corporate cash, corrupted lackeys, and warmongers is absolutely necessary to accomplish both of those goals, and we often do not see this nor do we see any method to be used. How can anyone have the slimmest belief that the moneyed interests, their toadies, and the hired hands at DoD, State, the Fed, and NSA, FBI, CIA, etc. will go peacefully into the night when we challenge their puppets within the twin parties of death? Will they not double down on preserving this system that promises so much to them? Have they not killed those opposing them in other countries, as well as here in the good ol' USA? What do we do when we go to phase two (sorry- a wannabe poet)?

I'd like to see a discussion based upon that reality, with backup plans to initiate and defend a strategy that knows a "win" in one area of division of this system guarantees nothing until total victory over the entire ball of wax is accomplished. In short, we have no global ideology, no encompassing

My gut feeling is that the working poor know, deep in their bones, it was never as simple as presented by radicals of the sixties or those of us who have not thought this through to its conclusion. That is why they "oppose" such ideas and presentations (and, partly, due to well-earned suspicion that some ideas are meant to rope the poor into a losing proposition, all the better to hang them out to dry, eh?).

Plan piecemeal, if you must, but "act locally, think globally" means more than just a surrender to local politics and school board elections. It can also mean your whole philosophical outlook and approach to the question " after this, what do we do?".

tegnost , June 23, 2017 at 11:27 am

"around here" it's long been known that the reality is the dems can't win a school board election. You don't need a gut feeling. Their demise is as certain as their inability to see it coming.

Carolinian , June 23, 2017 at 12:10 pm

OK I'll bite .what do we do?

The sad truth is that history's lurches and spurts are usually the result of great violence–wars, revolutions. The Russian revolution shaped the history of the 20th century because the western oligarchs were so afraid that would happen to them that they had–temporarily it seems–to make concessions to the welfare state. Their other tactic was to try to destroy the source of the infection. Hitler and those backing him really had eliminating the Commies as their principal concern. Lots in the west were hoping he'd do it and this carried on into the Cold War.

At any rate while waiting for the cataclysm we can at least nibble at the edges and try to revive the Left to a degree. Sitting around worrying about what's going on with the hopeless Dems probably isn't all that useful.

Left in Wisconsin , June 23, 2017 at 1:46 pm

All true. But we are a young species still, and the world has changed so much in the last 100 years that I'm not sure how much of what happened before sets limits on what we can achieve going forward.

OTOH I certainly agree with Mike that electoral politics is just the tip of the iceberg. OTO we won't really know what we are up against until we have some electoral power. But, just as one example, I am not at all convinced that the grunts in the military would back a soft (or hard) coup against a left populist with a real strategy and political operation to improve the lives of most people. (I do think most cops probably would.) And it is still the case that corporations need customers to make money – in both the 1910's and 1930's, there were important splits in the world of big business that provided openings for left politics. One of our biggest problems is that a huge proportion of the remaining manufacturing in this country feeds the MIC and it will be hard to get working people to oppose that.

casino implosion , June 23, 2017 at 11:17 am

I did my part for the Sanders revolution by voting for Trump, who campaigned far to the left of Clinton. But I'm just a het white male brocialist, so what do I know.

Susan the other , June 23, 2017 at 11:34 am

Just one quibble. I don't want us to be at cross purposes. We have a global way of doing things – for lack of a better description it is "capitalism" but it falls way short of replacing government – even tho' it has been trying to do just that for a century. Government is basically a distribution system – the more equitable the better – and we still rely on Government to deliver. That is one side of the coin. And it is, so far, all about money. The other side of the coin is the planet, which has been polluted and exploited almost beyond recovery by a human population that is way too big and a blind faith in capitalism and trade. We are already living a contradiction. And we need to fix it quickly. In order for policies to do us any good they have to repair the planet while they keep us all alive at some level of comfort. An angry revolution that has all sides talking past each other won't help anybody. It will just waste precious time. And I submit that politics is the art of talking past each other. We need to get above it.

Left in Wisconsin , June 23, 2017 at 1:48 pm

Gov't is more than just distribution – it also structures the whole capitalist market system – there is no capitalism without limited liability, bankruptcy, contract law, etc. None of that should be taken as given or unchangeable.

Bobby Gladd , June 23, 2017 at 3:00 pm

Nice. Depressing that you have to point that out.

"If there were only one man in the world, he would have a lot of problems, but none of them would be legal ones. Add a second inhabitant, and we have the possibility of conflict. Both of us try to pick the same apple from the same branch. I track the deer I wounded only to find that y ou have killed it, butchered it, and are in the process of cooking and eating it.

The obvious solution is violence. It is not a very good solution; if we employ it, our little world may shrink back down to one person, or perhaps none. A better solution, one that all known human societies have found, is a system of legal rules explicit or implicit, some reasonably peaceful way of determining, when desires conflict, who gets to do what and what happens if he doesn't "

David Friedman, "Law's Order: What Economics Has to Do with Law and Why It Matters"

Oregoncharles , June 23, 2017 at 2:21 pm

", unless one wishes to scale the mountain of deliberate, structural impediments to forming a viable, 50-state third party."

Excuses, excuses. You'd rather scale the mountain of impediments to reforming the "Democrat" party?

After many years of mountain climbing (figurative), and many, many discussions with apologists for repeating what didn't work before, I've concluded the real determinant is not a rational calculation implied by Gaius' above quote; it's personality. Some people have a much lower tolerance for betrayal, and a lower attachment to institutions, than others. Personally, I walked away in disgust when Slick Willy was president and I realized he was really a Republican – only worse, because of the betrayal. So did others.

Others don't react that way; instead, they stay attached to the institution and hope to overturn its power structure. I think Bernie's extremely impressive campaign demonstrated the essential futility of that approach. So did thousands of Bernie supporters who turned around and joined the Green Party as soon as he lost. (Oregon has other more-or-less leftwing parties, so I don't think we caught them all.) The proportion changes over time because it depends on the severity of the provocation; deliberately choosing the weaker candidate, and cheating to do it, even in the face of a Trump candidacy, was a very severe provocation.

OTOH, I'm beginning to wonder what it will take to finish the job; the total self-immolation of the Dems – or maybe of the country? Just as individuals have breaking points, so do populations; where is it? My worst fear, and I now consider it quite likely, is that we shoot right past overturning the party structure to outright violent insurrection. It's easy to joke about torches-and-pitchforks, but I'm getting too old for that sort of thing, and the human costs are truly forbidding.

Cujo359 , June 23, 2017 at 4:02 pm

Politicians, like most people, do difficult things for only two reasons. Either they have to do them, or they really want to do them. No one does them because they think it would be a fine idea if someone does them someday.

This means that any strategy like the one proposed in this article needs to explain how we're going to convince our congress people that they have to oppose their leaders, not that it's a good idea. When progressives are willing, in sufficient numbers, to either vote for and support someone else or keep their votes and support in their pockets will those politicians think that what we want them to do this. Short of that, no amount of pleading or shaking our fists is going to matter.

If enough progressives in each Democratically-controlled district are willing to publicly state they'll withhold their votes and support until this happens, it has a chance of happening. Otherwise, I don't see how it's going to be any more of a priority than all the other things we want that aren't being done.

Synoia , June 23, 2017 at 6:04 pm

Change the funding: Candidates can only accept money from natural people in the constituency they wish to represent.

Ed , June 23, 2017 at 6:14 pm

I think most voters are very wary of the government's ability to deliver anything in terms of actual services what they want is money from them in some form or another.

People will vote Democrat again and then they will vote Republican but there isn't going to be some sea change in the actual policies either way.

[Jun 23, 2017] Hannity starts talking about murdered DNC staffer again

Jun 23, 2017 | www.msn.com

Sean Hannity spoke about the murder of late Democratic National Committee (DNC) staffer Seth Rich during his Thursday radio program, ending a temporary hiatus from the topic.

Hannity brought up the murder while speculating about leaks of damaging DNC emails that he believes may have come from "dissatisfied, disgruntled" staffers within the group.

"My guess is there are a lot of angry, disgruntled, whistleblowing truth tellers within the DNC that were there that saw the collusion, that saw that the fix was in against Bernie Sanders, that saw that there was corruption at the highest levels," Hannity said on his nationally-syndicated radio program.

Released emails via Wikileaks revealed an effort from top officials of the DNC to undermine the campaign of Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) during the primary campaign despite the organization insistence it was neutral in the race.

"Now I don't know anything about Seth Rich in this sense. I don't have any information about why he was murdered except that it was suspicious," Hannity continued. "And suspicious meaning it wasn't a robbery as they've claimed but otherwise why would you not steal his wallet, his phone, his necklace, his jewelry and watch and everything else."

[Jun 20, 2017] In Final Oliver Stone Interview, Putin Predicts When Russia-US Crisis Ends

Notable quotes:
"... "You've gone through four U.S. presidents: Clinton, Bush, Obama and now Trump. What changes?" Stone asks him. ..."
"... "Almost nothing. Your bureaucracy is very strong and it is that bureaucracy that rules the world," he says. Then, solemnly, "There is change...when they bring us to the cemetery to bury us." ..."
"... PUTIN: We didn't hack the election at all. It would be hard to imagine any country, even Russia, being capable of seriously influencing the U.S. election. Someone hacked the DNC, but I don't think it influenced the election. What came through was not a lie. ..."
"... They were not trying to fool anybody. People who want to manipulate public opinion will blame Russia. But Trump had his finger on the pulse of the Midwest voter and knew how to pull at their hearts. Those who have been defeated shouldn't be shifting blame to someone else....We are not waiting for any revolutionary changes. ..."
"... TRUMP: I hope I get along with Putin. I hope I do. But there is a good chance that I won't. ..."
"... PUTIN: It almost feels like hatred of a certain ethnic group, like antisemitism. They are always blaming Russians, like antisemites are always blaming the Jews. ..."
"... The editors then flashed to footage of John McCain on the floor of the Senate ranting and raving about Putin. Then Joseph Biden in the Ukrainian parliament, ranting about Russia. Putin tells Stone all of this is unfortunate. He thinks their view is"old world." He reminds Stone that Russia and the U.S. were allies in World War I and World War II. It was Winston Churchill that started the Cold War from London, despite having respect for Russia's strongman leader at the time, the real dictator, Joseph Stalin. ..."
Jun 20, 2017 | www.forbes.com
But with Trump in the White House, the Trump-Putin conspiracy theory is one reality TV show the news media can't shake. Stone's love for foreign policy intrigue at least makes him a Putin kindred spirit here. America's age old fear of the Russians, has made Putin public enemy number one and Stone his sounding board. For some unhappy campers, like John McCain, Putin has " no moral equivalent " in the United States. He's a dictator , a war criminal and tyrant .

"You've gone through four U.S. presidents: Clinton, Bush, Obama and now Trump. What changes?" Stone asks him.

"Almost nothing. Your bureaucracy is very strong and it is that bureaucracy that rules the world," he says. Then, solemnly, "There is change...when they bring us to the cemetery to bury us."

In the last installment of the Putin interviews, the Russian leader admitted to liking Trump. "We still like him because he wants to restore relations. Relations between the two countries are going to develop," he said. It's a sentence very few in congress would say, and almost no big name politicians outside of Trump would imagine saying on television. On Russia, you scold. There is no fig leaf.

In a recent sanctions bill in the senate, only Republicans Rand Paul and Mike Lee voted against it, making for a 97-2 landslide in favor of extra-territorial sanctions against Russian companies, namely oil and gas.

Stone asked him why did he bother hacking the Democratic National Committee's emails if he believed nothing would change on the foreign policy front.

STONE: Our political leadership and NATO all believe you hacked the election.

PUTIN: We didn't hack the election at all. It would be hard to imagine any country, even Russia, being capable of seriously influencing the U.S. election. Someone hacked the DNC, but I don't think it influenced the election. What came through was not a lie.

They were not trying to fool anybody. People who want to manipulate public opinion will blame Russia. But Trump had his finger on the pulse of the Midwest voter and knew how to pull at their hearts. Those who have been defeated shouldn't be shifting blame to someone else....We are not waiting for any revolutionary changes.

Just then, editors cut to a video of Trump talking about Putin.

TRUMP: I hope I get along with Putin. I hope I do. But there is a good chance that I won't.

PUTIN: It almost feels like hatred of a certain ethnic group, like antisemitism. They are always blaming Russians, like antisemites are always blaming the Jews.

The editors then flashed to footage of John McCain on the floor of the Senate ranting and raving about Putin. Then Joseph Biden in the Ukrainian parliament, ranting about Russia. Putin tells Stone all of this is unfortunate. He thinks their view is"old world." He reminds Stone that Russia and the U.S. were allies in World War I and World War II. It was Winston Churchill that started the Cold War from London, despite having respect for Russia's strongman leader at the time, the real dictator, Joseph Stalin.

See:

[Jun 17, 2017] Dumping the Democrats for good is the only way to resist Trump

Notable quotes:
"... The U.S. is engulfed in a "crisis of governance" that has been "intentionally misunderstood" by the corporate media and the political elite, said Danny Haiphong , a contributing political analyst at BAR. Anti-Russian hysteria has been whipped up "to medicate political consciousness." "They don't want to discuss how Russia has absolutely nothing to do with the millions of incarcerated people in the U.S., or the fact that it is the U.S. monopoly capitalist economy, not the emerging capitalist economy of Russia, which has automated many of the jobs and siphoned much of the wealth that once belonged to a privileged sector of U.S. workers," said Haiphong. "This system has run its course. War is all the system has left." ..."
"... "If you are resisting Russian collusion with Trump, then what you are resisting is a fantasy," BAR executive editor Glen Ford told the opening plenary of the Left Forum. "And, if you are simply resisting Trump, the idiot in the White House, then you are simply a tool of a Democratic Party strategy." ..."
Jun 17, 2017 | blackagendareport.com

"Dumping the Democrats for good is the only way to resist Trump," said Black Agenda Report editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley , addressing BAR's panel at the Left Forum, in New York City. "What have they done since Election Day?" Kimberley asked. "They have refused to give even the appearance that they are willing to push for even meager reforms. We have to talk about replacing them and having a true workers party, a true peace party."

Political Elite Use Russia-Baiting to "Medicate" U.S. "Crisis of Governance"

The U.S. is engulfed in a "crisis of governance" that has been "intentionally misunderstood" by the corporate media and the political elite, said Danny Haiphong , a contributing political analyst at BAR. Anti-Russian hysteria has been whipped up "to medicate political consciousness." "They don't want to discuss how Russia has absolutely nothing to do with the millions of incarcerated people in the U.S., or the fact that it is the U.S. monopoly capitalist economy, not the emerging capitalist economy of Russia, which has automated many of the jobs and siphoned much of the wealth that once belonged to a privileged sector of U.S. workers," said Haiphong. "This system has run its course. War is all the system has left."

A Real Left Would Demand Peace

"If you are resisting Russian collusion with Trump, then what you are resisting is a fantasy," BAR executive editor Glen Ford told the opening plenary of the Left Forum. "And, if you are simply resisting Trump, the idiot in the White House, then you are simply a tool of a Democratic Party strategy."

Ford said the nation needs a rejuvenated anti-war movement, "or else we are defenseless against this kind of strategy on the part of the Democrats, who pretend that they are an alternative to the fascist-sounding and definitely virulently white nationalist forces in the Republican Party, but are themselves intent upon a war policy that can mean the extinction of the human race."

[Jun 17, 2017] How Hillary Lost, In Her Own Words by Philip Giraldi

Jun 17, 2017 | www.theamericanconservative.com
Yes, I voted for Donald Trump. When people confront me and ask me why, I sort of shuffle off, head down, while muttering something about how "he wasn't the war candidate."

I even stuck with Trump until he launched cruise missiles at an airbase in Syria and overnight became the establishment favorite, with all the media and most politicians singing his praises for attacking a country with which the United States was not at war over an alleged atrocity that did not involve Americans-and could easily have been attributed to the terrorists that Damascus has been fighting. And then he did it again, using fighter bomber aircraft to attack a column of Syrian government-affiliated militiamen who were allegedly approaching and thereby threatening a position inside Syria where U.S.-supported "good" insurgents, accompanied by American advisers, were apparently hunkered down.

Someone should take out a map and show Trump where Syria is and outline its borders while explaining what "sovereign territory" is supposed to mean. If he could grasp the concept, possibly by relating it to Mexico, it just might suggest to him that we Yanks could actually be foreign invaders who have crossed a national border and are killing local people in gross violation of international law.

And then there is the foreign-policy finesse exhibited on his recent World Tour. It began with his predictable slobbering all over the Saudis and Israelis before stiffing the Palestinians. But then he elevated his game by angering the Pope, whining to the Germans because there are no Chevys on the streets of Berlin, pushing his way past the Montenegran Prime Minister and, finally, insisting on riding in a golf cart and arriving late to the photo-op ending the G7 meeting in Sicily while everyone else walked the 700 yards. His boorishness manifests itself as a nearly complete unwillingness to make even the smallest gesture that would ease the relations with other countries and leaders who are important U.S. partners. I guess he sees doing so as a sign of weakness. Class act all the way, Donald!

But then again, when I am really down on Trump and what he is doing or not doing, I think of Hillary Rodham Clinton. A good friend of mine Joe Lauria, formerly a Wall Street Journal correspondent, has recently introduced, edited, and provided extensive commentary for a book entitled How I Lost By Hillary Clinton . It is an indictment of the Clinton campaign "in her own words" and includes a foreword by Julian Assange of WikiLeaks, who discusses the leaks of Democratic National Committee (DNC) and John Podesta emails that together provide much of the material included in the text.

Lauria uses the source material to describe the Clinton campaign using her own speeches as well as the leaked emails of her close associates, and it really is refreshing to revisit what made the "inevitable" Hillary so unappealing, particularly as she is now trying to rebrand herself without assuming any serious blame for her shortcomings as a candidate. Along the way, documents reveal the road to Russiagate and Clinton's plans for more regime change, as well as expose corruption within the nominally "neutral" DNC, the latter of which led to the deliberate sabotage of the campaign of Bernie Sanders and the de facto anointment of Clinton as president-apparent.

The book is organized around two central themes, Hillary as an elitist and Hillary as a hawk. In his introduction, Lauria describes Clinton as "an economic and political elitist and a foreign-policy hawk divorced from the serious concerns of ordinary Americans-the very people she needed to vote for her." It is a fair assessment and in his introduction Joe also takes aim at Russiagate among other targets, asking why, after more than a year of investigation and assessment, there has been no National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on the alleged interference by Moscow in the U.S. election. NIEs are meticulously prepared to provide detailed analysis of an issue, to include sourcing and reliability assessments. They are carefully crafted products of the entire intelligence community and they include dissenting opinions. That there has been no NIE on Russiagate is unfathomable, unless of course such a report would reveal that Russiagate is itself a complete fabrication.

Lauria particularly assails Clinton foreign policy, describing her as a neoliberal interventionist who was the principal driving force behind a series of U.S.-led actions that turned Libya into a failed state while she was also urging tough action against Russia and yet another regime change in Syria. Joe notes that Saudi Arabia and Qatar were arming terrorists in Syria on her watch, which she was aware of from DIA reporting, while also contributing generously to the Clinton Foundation, which notoriously intermingled its ostensibly humanitarian programs together with the political activities of Hillary and Bill. And the Foundation also rewarded the Clintons directly through generous salaries and substantial perks for the whole family, to include foundation-funded travel on executive jets, which totaled $12 million in 2011 alone.

The Clinton sense of entitlement knew no limits, with Bill once accepting a $1 million birthday present from Qatar, the principal funder of al-Qaeda linked al-Nusra. Citing email evidence, the book documents how major foreign donors to the foundation were able to enjoy special access to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. Hillary's closest associate Huma Abedin was point person for much of the activity and was paid a $105,000 salary by the State Department, plus an undisclosed amount by a consulting firm linked to the foundation, a double dip arrangement of questionable legality.

Between April 2013 and March 2015, Hillary Clinton gave 91 speeches and earned over $21 million. The three speeches for Goldman-Sachs that she made during that time, for which she was paid $675,000, are the best known, mostly because soon-to-be candidate Clinton refused to release the transcripts. But she also spoke to just about any group who would pay her upwards of a $200,000 fee plus expenses. This included several public universities. In her speeches, she sometimes complained about how awful it was that many Americans had begun to look down on those who have a lot of money, including a comment to Goldman Sachs that "there is such a bias against people who have led successful and/or complicated lives." She was referring to herself and Bill.

It was rare that Hillary's mask would drop and she would say what she really thought, though it did happen sometimes. A speech at an LGBT fundraiser in New York included the now infamous line: "You could put half of Trump's supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right? The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, you name it they are irredeemable but thankfully they are not America." Or at least not an America that she would recognize.

Hillary's speeches and the emails of Podesta and her staff are quoted in extenso in the text and appendices. The most enduring impression is how boring most of what she said really was. Her political experience enabled her to say what her audience wanted to hear-no more, no less. She rarely spoke of actual policy in concrete terms and, for example, when speaking to Goldman Sachs, she was instead full of platitudes and generic praise for the "American way" of democracy promotion combined with good, solid, liberal, and free-market values. She included how the financial-services industry is in the forefront of all the positive changes taking place worldwide. There was nary a critical word about the role of the largely unregulated and predatory big banks in the great crash of 2008, and when she spoke of the suffering caused by that disaster, she was referring to the disruptions experienced by those in financial services and government who were made uncomfortable by being forced to respond to the crisis.

As Joe Lauria observes, Clinton's failure was clearly her inability to comprehend what many mostly white working-class people in the United States were experiencing. Her failure to see or understand inevitably became an inability to empathize with such audiences verbally in a way that would appear to be sincere. She came across as leaden and scripted. Her speeches increasingly became sustained attacks on Trump the man and his admittedly flawed personality, combined with appeals to women to vote for her purely because of her own gender. Her campaign was singularly lacking in any formula for addressing the real problems experienced by many in the country.

Speaking to bankers and other elitists from the Washington-New York axis and Hollywood was a lot easier for Hillary because she was, after all, one of them. She avoided campaign visits to working-class constituencies. And she compounded that with a bellicose world view that considered Washington's ambition to become some kind of benign but resolute global hegemon as both quite practical from a resources point of view and also the right thing to do, something that most Americans failed to relate to as a high priority.

So Hillary portrayed largely in her own words is well worth a read. Unfortunately for our country, there are a lot of Hillary clones still out there who have not learned the lesson of her defeat. Fortunately for conservatives, quite a few of them are still in charge of the Democratic Party.

Philip Giraldi, a former CIA officer, is executive director of the Council for the National Interest.

  • Nathan Meyer , says: June 15, 2017 at 11:39 pm
    I have little to argue with there; though the lack of a public NIE assessment on a subject does not mean that none exist? The tragic thing is that, bad as she is, Mrs. Clinton would have been better at performing the duties of the office than Mr. Trump. It was always a choice between flogged by Clinton or flayed by Trump. You can often survive a flogging, being flayed, not so much.
    EliteComInc. , says: June 16, 2017 at 12:15 am
    Exoneration is supposed to be freeing and yet,

    there's the sickening sense that there's a lot of trench-work to be done and it won't be pretty.

    "Fortunately for conservatives, quite a few of them are still in charge of the Democratic Party."

    it's where the rest are which should be disconcerting.

    Fran Macadam , says: June 16, 2017 at 1:53 am
    I share your view about the voting choices and what was surely our last, worst hope for change.

    But you know, causing disaffection among the "allies" who bear increasing resemblance to high maintenance satrapies making entreaties to the "benign hegemon" imperial court could be a good thing – the discontented gongs of divorce, breaking up that old gang o' mine.

    Jim Swarthout , says: June 16, 2017 at 3:32 am
    Hope this book made you feel better about your Dear Leader Donald! While I continue to dislike Hillary, and voted for her without any relish, the character, history, idiocy, and absurdity of DJT could make the most abject of politicians seem like Honest Abe. Even if you really, actually think 'Russiagate' is a "vast left-wing conspiracy," does that make you feel any better about this president? That's pretty cold comfort . . .
    Brandon Zicha , says: June 16, 2017 at 5:05 am
    . because conservatives have been such beneficiaries of the loss of the democratic opposition. Man, the conservative ideals are just going gangbusters!

    Or is this new GOP under Trump Conservatism. That would be news to me.

    genetuttle , says: June 16, 2017 at 5:16 am
    Reasonable 2016 sentiments might have paraphrased Churchill: Trump was the worst candidate for president, except for all those others.

    He has been narrowing the gap daily since then. Thanks for the reminder that he hasn't yet closed it completely.

    Mickey , says: June 16, 2017 at 6:39 am
    The alternative would have been a sane non sociopath adult. Even many conservatives recognize that fact. The white working class would be much better off with good health insurance, and maybe higher wages.
    Adriana I Pena , says: June 16, 2017 at 7:06 am
    Mr. Giraldi. NOTHING could be worse than putting Moe Howard in charge of U.S. military power.

    A fool is much more dangerous than a wicked man (or woman) because a wicked man can be trusted to know when he is cutting his own throat. A fool never.

    Jim Bovard , says: June 16, 2017 at 8:25 am
    Excellent piece. The opening chronology of Trump blunders & boneheadedness is an excellent setup for the Hillary demolition.
    EliteCommInc. , says: June 16, 2017 at 8:45 am
    There is no reason under God's blue earth that you should feel embarrassed about voting for Mr. Trump. Not a single one.

    Anyone listening to Sec. Clinton, speak she was unleashed over the last couple of weeks would know, exactly what this latest text is saying. Frankly, it's a bit frightening to hear that level of obtuse thinking. But then one listens to her hosts and the audience and its down right chilling.

    Whatever tentacles the liberal/republican/libertarian intelligentsia have born is long and deep even in the psyche of the people who benefit the least from such leadership.

    There are three articles about what is essential the primacy press concerning the global order and what all three indicate is that those running the show seem to have a common ethic about us poor people, if they could just get the rest of us to accept our lot in life as underlings of sorts all would be well.

    There are the clan of MustaphaMond. It is the nihilism of Buddhist, Hindi and other far eastern thought. And while it has been around for quite some time. It has never fully bonded with our politic openly in the US until now.

    When they talk about international law, they don't mean law, they mean the use of force to create order. And it should cause one pause as much as the common but ill used phrase "law and order" which stands for my oeder by force if necessary.

    connecticut farmer , says: June 16, 2017 at 9:15 am
    No new ground broken here. One nagging question remains: What DID Lynch and Clinton have to say to each other in that airplane hangar?
    Kurt Gayle , says: June 16, 2017 at 9:21 am
    Philip, I share some of your frustrations with President Trump. However, you should have mentioned that Trump (true to his word) has thus far kept us out of any new Middle East war and has (against a braying pack of Democratic, Republican, mainstream media, and deep state conspirator-jackals) continued to push for detente with Russia, the one power on earth with the nuclear weaponry to destroy us.

    Given your foreign policy expertise and concentration, it is understandable that you fail to mention that Trump has brought the burning issues of American jobs, trade deals, illegal immigration, and rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure front and center via his America First agenda.

    About our voting for Trump, Philip: I don't think there's any need to "sort of shuffle off, head down, while muttering something about how 'he wasn't the war candidate'." On the contrary, we should stand tall for Trump, because against all attempts to stop him, he is still fighting to fulfill his campaign promises.

    Just to add: Some of the most dedicated, loyal fighters for good causes that it has been my good fortune to meet could also get a little "boorish" from time to time.

    greenbook , says: June 16, 2017 at 9:24 am
    Who cares about Hillary Clinton?

    You know who still cares about Hillary Clinton, Trump supporters trying to deflect from the obvious incompetence, continual stupidity, overt corruption, scandal genocide (plague is too kind a word), and worthless policy that was supposed to be the new era for conservatism.

    So instead of trying to defend the indefensible, it is back to campaign 2016 to make it seem like you had no choice to go for the worst one possible despite the glaring red warning lights everyone was saying. But that's ok. At least Trump isn't a warhawk, even if he undermines the constitutional limitations of power.

    collin , says: June 16, 2017 at 10:13 am
    You know an administration is struggling when they are comparing themselves to the election loser 8 months after the election. (In reality, I wish HRC would go away for 1 year. She can come back with her husband next year and be popular again.)
    mrscracker , says: June 16, 2017 at 10:35 am
    I voted for Mr. Trump, too. I'm not bit ashamed of it. I'd rather we'd had a different GOP nominee, but it was what it was. And I really like VP Pence.
    Hillary was a dreadful candidate but no matter who the Democrats nominated, I wouldn't be able to vote for them in conscience because of the Democratic platform.
    And can you imagine what the Supreme Court might look like after 4-8 years of Democratic administration?
    Trump has carried through his promise re. the Supreme Ct. So that's something.
    Alex (from SF) , says: June 16, 2017 at 11:28 am
    But then again, when I am really down on Trump and what he is doing or not doing, I think of Hillary Rodham Clinton

    That's nice, and we all deserve some time in our happy places. But the 2016 election is over, and the guy you voted for is setting new gold standards for both corruption and Saudi boot-licking. How about using the public platform you have here to hold your guy accountable, rather than indulging in a long, self-justifying digression about how HRC would have been worse? Someone with your background probably has a lot of interesting things to say about the blockade of Qatar and Trump's support for it, the status of the Iranian nuclear deal, and why Trump and the foreign policy establishment are so beholden to the Saudis. I'd like to read those pieces.

    Dana Pavlick , says: June 16, 2017 at 11:47 am
    Excellent précis of the cause of Donald Trump's 2016 presidential win: we voted for the uncertainty of Trump delivering the goods to the American people over the certainty of Hillary Clinton delivering us up to the high priests of Mammonry.

    The Establishment might consider that the narrative they sell us that we erred in so voting, is undercut by their arriving at the same conclusion by attempting a coup to remove him from office.

    TR , says: June 16, 2017 at 12:02 pm
    The indictment of Trump in the first several paragraphs depresses me immensely as does the concluding paragraph on Hillary clones.

    Didn't read the middle. Mankind can only take so much reality.

    Paul , says: June 16, 2017 at 12:03 pm
    A more than interesting piece. I wish you had spelled out the acronym DIA, but not having done so did force me to learn about an agency of whose existence I was ignorant. Apparently, NIE's are ordered up by senior government officials. Couldn't the White House order one and, following your logic, thereby exonerate itself? This is a genuine question? I would be grateful for your opinion.
    One Man , says: June 16, 2017 at 12:09 pm
    I know this is a difficult concept to understand, but it's possible to dislike Hillary AND not want Trump to be president. I'm glad Trump is president, but I'm glad he's so incompetent. I laugh at him every day.
    Dan Green , says: June 16, 2017 at 12:14 pm
    I thought from the start of that torturous campaign Hillary either isn't all that bright , or possibly she and Bill just live in their own corner of the world, or lastly some influences told her she was a shoe in and just follow the Obama prior agenda.
    Dave skerry , says: June 16, 2017 at 12:56 pm
    As a long-time subscrber to A.C. Giraldi is brightest ,straight shooter aboard. I couldn't vote for the "know-it-all" and had to vote for Bill's spouse. However, to pile- on I have to add that she was a "kiss-ass" Israel firster which made me hold my nose even tighter.
    Mark Thomason , says: June 16, 2017 at 1:28 pm
    Hillary was awful. That does not make Trump acceptable. Still it was a race to the bottom, and she bottomed out worse.

    We'd have had a much bigger Syria War. We'd be back in her Libya disaster. We'd have gone into South Sudan. She'd have armed Ukraine and sent Special Forces.

    She'd have done that trade deal in the Pacific, her supporters are now clear on that despite her lies during the campaign. That is a symptom of the overall neo-liberal bullet we dodged.

    She would not have a scandal about Russia, but she'd have one about Wall Street and open bribery of the Clinton Foundation cash for access and selling her office.

    It would have been even worse.

    Joe the Plutocrat , says: June 16, 2017 at 4:02 pm
    Really? This is rearview mirror stuff. What's next, attempts to indict HRC for "obstruction of justice" because her establishment bona fides – arrogance, incompetence, and greed made the 'alternative establishment' – equally arrogant, incompetent and greedy – candidate more appealing?
    james , says: June 16, 2017 at 4:32 pm
    The reasons why Hillary lost are like sands on the beach, numberless. The reason HRC lost is because she is a woman and this is America. Oh I know too simple, it is, but consider too that McCain lost. hm, ah you're crazy. Could be, but twenty plus years of demonization must have some effect, you think. If you really want to know why Hillary lost read, 'The Destruction of Hillary Clinton' by Susan Bordo. That is if you seriously want to know. Challenge the sands.
    BobPM , says: June 16, 2017 at 4:45 pm
    Really! "She would not have a scandal about Russia, but she'd have one about Wall Street and open bribery of the Clinton Foundation cash for access and selling her office."

    Talk about weak tea. Most actual investigations found the Clinton Foundation fairly clean and the access amounted to small ball compared to the displays of patronage demanded daily by Trump. Did you read the recent investigation into the purchases of Trump properties by anonymous corporations, have you looked at the Wall Street tycoons in Trumps cabinet, or the number of lobbyists. Please spare me the hand wringing over your hypothetical Clinton administration.

    Donald , says: June 16, 2017 at 5:06 pm
    I voted for Clinton as the lesser evil and still think that was right. She and that whole wing of the Democratic Party are awful. But Trump is worse.

    And anyway, it isn't terribly relevant. Your man is in and he might be the dumbest most incompetent blowhard to ever occupy the WH.

    Hexexis , says: June 16, 2017 at 6:47 pm
    Elitist, hawk, sense of entitlement? Gee, who's that sound like?

    Months after the election (cf. sedition), press still tryna produce a dichotomy betw. Hi-C. & Trump. I never bought it & never will. The two parties tortured us w/ a female impersonator & a male one.

    Apparently, it came down to how they got their enormous wealth. But Trump's been "the king of greenmail" (the MCA fiasco, 1988) for lots longer than Frau Clinton's been barking expensive speeches. So, Junior Nutz there more experienced: right?

    Jake V , says: June 16, 2017 at 7:12 pm
    Trump is turning out to be pretty much what I expected. Far from perfect, but what he's done is far more conservative than any other Republican would have done. Still far better than Hillary.
  • [Jun 16, 2017] Political Disorder Syndrome - Refusal To Reason Is The New Normal

    Notable quotes:
    "... It could be argued a polarized America has joined a polarized world in taking the course of least resistance and that is to do nothing. It appears most of the developed countries across the world are in exactly the same boat. With Trump's greatest accomplishment being the rolling-back of the Obama agenda the article below argues this may be as good as it gets. ..."
    Jun 16, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
    Endgame Napoleon - Stuck on Zero , Jun 15, 2017 10:10 PM

    A lot of the debate by the MSM focuses on the careerist power struggle of elites at the top. That is not what brought Trump to power, nor is ideological purity of any kind the reason, although college students at elite universities may be motivated by ideology.

    Many people who voted for Trump said they had not bothered to vote since Perot. That was the last time serious economic issues were addressed head-on. There were many cross-over voters in the Rust Belt and elsewhere, voting for Trump because their party, when not focused on one more layer of welfare/taxfare for single moms, focuses on racism, sexism and xenophobia.....

    ....in a "racist" era with a twice-elected Black president, where many government agencies have 80% Black staff and managers

    .....in a "sexist"' era where more than half of the MDs are women, as are half of the managers, in general, when wealth has never been more concentrated due to assortative mating

    ....in a "xenophobic" era, where even illegal immigrants are treated much better than millions of citizens, leading to $113 billion per year in welfare/taxfare expenditures for the illegal immigrants alone, not counting all of the freebies for 1 million legal immigrants admitted per year, particularly for those who reproduce

    CRM114 - Killtruck , Jun 15, 2017 9:08 PM

    When do you think it was crossed?

    End of the Cold War, I reckon. That's the last point when politicians being vaguely competent mattered.

    VWAndy - nmewn , Jun 15, 2017 8:56 PM

    Its a big club. An you and me aint in it. The left vs right thing is just a trick.

    Kyddyl , Jun 15, 2017 8:44 PM

    As I said in response to another article I've been off on a kick of reading about the American unCivil War. The heated rhetoric led up to violence far before either "side" was ready. It proved to be a messy disaster. Very few thought ahead far enough to even have their own families survive it. Be very careful of what you wish for. John Michael Greer's "Twilight's Last Gleaming" and "Retrotopia" should give us serious pause for thought. Our just in time grocery supply system would fail, fuel delivery from the few states with refineries would crawl and with all those nuclear power plants needing constant baby sitting everybody needs to settle down and really think this mess out. Inter US civil divisions would need careful and peaceful negotiations.

    Forbes , Jun 15, 2017 8:53 PM

    The messaging Henninger identifies was rampant for eight years of Obama ("Get in their faces!" and the Chicago Way--"They bring a knife, you bring a gun.") Social media is/was no different. Remember the Rodeo Clown wearing an Obama mask who was summarily fired. Any critique of Obama was automatically racist. I could go on and on with examples. The Left never policed its own, was constantly on-guard against the Right, with enforcement of political correctness job #1.

    The ankle-biting mainstream media is part and parcel the opposition and the resistence--and the Establishment Republicans at the WSJ are just now noticing?? Someone alert Captain Renault...

    Let it Go , Jun 15, 2017 9:00 PM

    In reality no intelligent plans have been written or are moving through the halls of Congress. It could be argued a polarized America has joined a polarized world in taking the course of least resistance and that is to do nothing. It appears most of the developed countries across the world are in exactly the same boat. With Trump's greatest accomplishment being the rolling-back of the Obama agenda the article below argues this may be as good as it gets.

    http://brucewilds.blogspot.com/2017/06/polarized-america-taking-course-of.html

    TeethVillage88s , Jun 15, 2017 9:05 PM

    But, But, ... that sounds like RINOs, DINOs, NeoCons, Neoliberals, those that think Economics is a Hard Science... Sounds like Propaganda by the Most Powerful Corporations and Family Dynasties...

    "Political Disorder Syndrome - "Refusal To Reason Is The New Normal"

    PDS - won't get traction since TPTB have to approve of this kind of thing!

    http://www.lyricsdepot.com/jimmy-buffett/banana-republics.html

    - Borders Are Destroyed to Attack the US Labor Rate (Deserved or Undeserved) - Globalism, CAFTA, NAFTA, Fast-Track by Bill Clinton, deployed to destroy US Labor Rate & US Jobs & US Middle Class = PROOF that Democrats are Treasonous, are working against the Worker (Either Communist Worker or Other worker) - US National Security is destroyed by the cost of MIC, $1 Trillion Annually - US Constitutional Republic is Destroyed, replaced by Globalism Ideology & Propaganda Deep Program to hide this Fact from Middle Class, from Workers, from Job Losers, from Voters, from Students, from Youth who will not see the entry level jobs...

    IT IS A REAL MESS, Propaganda is the name of the Problem! We all know the history of Propaganda. We know that Hillary Clinton engaged in an INFO-War long, long ago. 1971 William Renquist Memo pointed out to Republicans that they must gear up for Foundations to fight Democrats who were much stronger in Political Organizations at this time.

    Makes you think.

    ElTerco , Jun 15, 2017 10:26 PM

    I think main street has been extremely patient. I think after three decades of being slowly and consistently shit on though, enough is enough, and they are starting to lose it.

    [Jun 15, 2017] The basic thread running through all of the workshops and demagogic speeches was the fiction that the Democratic Party -- a party of Wall Street and the CIA-can be transformed into a peoples party

    Jun 15, 2017 | marknesop.wordpress.com
    Northern Star , June 13, 2017 at 10:51 am
    "The event was a political fraud from beginning to end. The basic thread running through all of the workshops and demagogic speeches was the fiction that the Democratic Party-a party of Wall Street and the CIA-can be transformed into a "people's party."
    LOL!!! Totally spot the F on!!!!!

    "Sanders lent his support to the neo-McCarthyite campaign of the Democrats and the military-intelligence apparatus, which sees Russia as the chief obstacle to US imperialism's drive for regime change in Syria and Iran. "I find it strange we have a president who is more comfortable with autocrats and authoritarians than leaders of democratic nations," Sanders said. "Why is he enamored with Putin, a man who has suppressed democracy and destabilized democracies around the world, including our own?"

    Sanders?? No fool like an old fool and tool of TPTB

    marknesop , June 13, 2017 at 11:42 am
    Oh, I doubt he's a fool; the creed of the western political class is recognition of its own and their interests over the interests of the majority. It is technically true that Putin is destabilizing governments around the world – 'democracies', if you will – but it would presuppose that western leaders are his accomplices. Because it is through them and their crackdowns and restrictions and surveillance, which they say they must introduce for our own protection (because, you know, freedom isn't free) that discontent and destabilization are born. Reply

    [Jun 14, 2017] Now some fragments of the picture of DNC hack fall into place and one interesting hypothesis is that it was a false flag operation performed by the CrowdStrike, the same firm which were later assigned to investigate the hack.

    Notable quotes:
    "... So from now on any contact with Russians officials are assumed to be poisonous, a threat to the USA security, and should be reported to Intelligence services. Like in the USSR were contacts with Western officials. ..."
    "... But now some fragments of the picture of DNC hack fall into place and one interesting hypothesis is that it was a false flag operation performed by the CrowdStrike, the same firm which were later assigned to investigate the hack. Which would be in best CIA traditions, stemming from JFK murder investigation and Warren commission. ..."
    "... This makes the refusal of the DNC to let the FBI examine those servers even more suspect. OTOH, one can see the thought processes in the DNC: A breach was discovered. If we blame the Russians not only do we further the neo-con agenda, but we also get to call anyone who publishes or cites the material taken from the servers a Russian tool. ..."
    "... In fact, if they knew they had internal leakers, it would still be worth claiming to have been hacked by the Russians, so that internally leaked material could be 'poisoned' as part of a Russian plot. ..."
    "... Talking points to this effect were ubiquitous and apparently well coordinated, turning virtually every MSM discussion of the content of the leaks into a screed about stolen documents and Russian hackers. It also put a nice fresh coat of paint on the target painted on Assange, turning the undiscerning left against a once valuable ally. ..."
    Jun 14, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    libezkova, June 14, 2017 at 11:20 AM

    ""I did not have communications with the Russians," Mr. Sessions said in response to a question no one asked - and despite the fact that he had, in fact, met with the Russian ambassador, Sergey Kislyak, at least twice during the 2016 presidential campaign. The omission raised questions not only about his honesty, but also about why he would not disclose those meetings in the first place."

    That's neo-McCarthyism plain and simple. Congradulations! We got it. Now we need to fire all Russian sympathizers from the government service, assuming that they exist. A very nice 17th century witch-hunt.

    The only thing we do not have is resurrected Senator McCarthy (McCain is not good enough -- he does not drink).

    So from now on any contact with Russians officials are assumed to be poisonous, a threat to the USA security, and should be reported to Intelligence services. Like in the USSR were contacts with Western officials.

    That means that the joke that Russia Foreign Ministry played on April 1 (Google it) about ordering Russian diplomat contact for your political opponent proved to be true.

    But now some fragments of the picture of DNC hack fall into place and one interesting hypothesis is that it was a false flag operation performed by the CrowdStrike, the same firm which were later assigned to investigate the hack. Which would be in best CIA traditions, stemming from JFK murder investigation and Warren commission.

    And I am now not surprised that nobody investigated Comey for outsourcing (or forced to outsource by threats) the "DNC hack" investigation to the very questionable firm with strong Ukrainian connections. Which might well be hired to perform the hack and blame it on Russian to hide Seth Rich story.

    If Trump would not be such an idiot, he would site this as a reason of firing Comey (gross unprofessionalism and criminal negligence) and the level of fear in Clinton Mafia after that might help him to survive.

    The truth is that FBI never has any access to DNC computers. None. Unlike in case of Hillary emailgate, they never were in possession of actual hardware. And they never explored Ukrainian connection, so to speak. They took all results from Cloudstrike investigation at face value.

    So I suspect all opinions of US intelligence agencies about this hack are just a part of color revolution scenario: the attempt to delegitimize the sitting government and install a new government via a coup d'état.

    The fighting against Russiagate is about the defense of remnants of Democracy in the USA.

    Regurgitation of MSM stories, like Fred is doing, does not add much value to this blog. It is essentially a propaganda exercise. If your urge to share them is too strong, as Mr.Bill mentioned a simple link would be enough (actually the desire to read on this topic NYT might be considered as an early sign of dementia, or Alzheimer)

    libezkova -> libezkova ... June 14, 2017 at 11:59 AM

    An interesting comment from Naked Capitalism

    http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2017/06/200pm-water-cooler-6122017.html#comment-2829184

    Skip Intro , June 12, 2017 at 4:36 pm

    The NSA document was very important. It basically proved, according to Scott Ritter, that the NSA had no real evidence of any Russian involvement, and relied on speculation from a single source: DNC contractor CrowdStrike, which recently had to retract a similar claim about Russian hacking of Ukrainian artillery. The real story behind 'Reality Winner' remains, I am sure, unknown.

    This might well be a ploy to undermine the anti-Russia hype, though the media cartel has trumpeted it uncritically for the short-term rush of goosing the Comey spectacle.

    This makes the refusal of the DNC to let the FBI examine those servers even more suspect. OTOH, one can see the thought processes in the DNC: A breach was discovered. If we blame the Russians not only do we further the neo-con agenda, but we also get to call anyone who publishes or cites the material taken from the servers a Russian tool.

    In fact, if they knew they had internal leakers, it would still be worth claiming to have been hacked by the Russians, so that internally leaked material could be 'poisoned' as part of a Russian plot.

    Talking points to this effect were ubiquitous and apparently well coordinated, turning virtually every MSM discussion of the content of the leaks into a screed about stolen documents and Russian hackers. It also put a nice fresh coat of paint on the target painted on Assange, turning the undiscerning left against a once valuable ally.

    [Jun 14, 2017] NBC Butchered Putins Thoughtful Responses to Megyn Kelly. Good for Ratings - and Warmongers by Gilbert Doctorow

    Notable quotes:
    "... In the NBC version, Putin's answer has been cut to one empty introductory statement that "Russia is on its way to becoming a democracy" bracketed by an equally empty closing sentence. In the full, uncut version , Putin responds to Kelly's allegations point by point and then turns the question around asking what right the USA and the West have to question Russia's record when they have been actively doing much worse than what was in Kelly's charges. He asks where is Occupy Wall Street today, why US and European police use billy clubs and tear gas to break up demonstrations, when Russian police do nothing of the sort, and so on. ..."
    "... In a word, you intentionally made Putin sound like an empty authoritarian, when he is in fact a very sophisticated debater who outranked your Megyn at every turn during the open panel discussion in the Forum, to the point she was the laughing stock of the day. ..."
    "... Kelly is like all Yanks, she sells herself for Money. A hired serf does what its told, says what its told to say or they are out-the-door on their arse. She may be a cool smart lady but has to tow- the-line. tom • 6 days ago ..."
    "... "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be". ..."
    "... CONFIRMED: DNC paid the 'Russian' founder of CrowdStrike to hack its server so it could be blamed on Russia!... ..."
    "... She's a media whore...nothing more, nothing less.... ..."
    "... Putin was fantastic on Kelly's show he is greatly admired by millions and millions in the west. ..."
    Jun 08, 2017 | russia-insider.com

    An open letter to NBC News about Megyn Kelly's manipulative and shameful interview with Vladimir Putin Thu, Jun 8, 2017 | 7080 90

    Dear NBC News Team,

    Congratulations! You have graduated from fake news to falsified news, arriving at a journalistic level that is identical to that in the Soviet Union in its heyday.

    A couple of days ago, the political talk show moderated by Vladimir Soloviev on state television channel Rossiya 1 broadcast two versions of a segment from Megyn Kelly's interview with Vladimir Putin last Friday in the St Petersburg on the sidelines of the International Economic Forum. One was the complete, uncut version that was aired on RT. The other was the cut-to-shreds version that you put on air for the American audience. ( Watch here, beginning 4 minutes into the program .)

    The segment was Megyn Kelly's aggressive question to Putin, asking his response to what she said was Americans' understanding of his government, namely one that murders journalists, suppresses political opposition, is rife with corruption, etc., etc. In the NBC version, Putin's answer has been cut to one empty introductory statement that "Russia is on its way to becoming a democracy" bracketed by an equally empty closing sentence. In the full, uncut version , Putin responds to Kelly's allegations point by point and then turns the question around asking what right the USA and the West have to question Russia's record when they have been actively doing much worse than what was in Kelly's charges. He asks where is Occupy Wall Street today, why US and European police use billy clubs and tear gas to break up demonstrations, when Russian police do nothing of the sort, and so on.

    In a word, you intentionally made Putin sound like an empty authoritarian, when he is in fact a very sophisticated debater who outranked your Megyn at every turn during the open panel discussion in the Forum, to the point she was the laughing stock of the day.

    Who wins from these games? You are only preconditioning the American public for the war that is coming, whether by intention or by accident. And there will be no one left to have the last laugh after the first day of that war. So you can forget about your stock options and retirement schemes, ladies and gentlemen of the News Team.

    have a nice day

    Gilbert Doctorow

    Brussels

    Gilbert Doctorow is an independent political analyst based in Brussels. His latest book Does Russia Have a Future? was published in August 2015. His forthcoming book Does the United States Have a Future? will be published on 1 September 2017.

    rosewood11 6 days ago

    The thing that everyone in the American media wants to ignore is this: If any President of any nation knew that one of the candidates in the national election of his biggest rival intended to start a nuclear war with his country as soon as they were elected, do you think he might be tempted to do anything possible to avoid the war? hillary clinton intended to go to nuclear war with Russia and everybody knew it. Why wouldn't Mr. Putin be tempted to try to keep her out of office. He says he didn't do so, and because I trust him (something I'm not so stupid as to do with hillary!!!), I choose to believe him. However, I wouldn't blame him if he had pulled out all the stops to keep her out of office, and can only thank him or any other "patriotic Russian" who saved America from a fate worse than death--namely having a fourth-degree black magic witch as President!!! And that's in addition to saving the lives of millions of people on both sides of the oceans.

    You mentioned in the article that RT ran an uncut version of Megyn Kelly's interview with Vladimir Putin. I tried going to the link you provided, but the show was in Russian without subtitles. Is there a version of the full interview offered anywhere with subtitles or voice-over for those of us in the US who would like to see it? I'd like to know what else Mr. Putin said. see more

    Peter Paul 1950 rosewood11 6 days ago

    Try you tube and enter "putin megyn kelly" and you'll find dozens of clips ... and as to why Putin never intervened may become clear if you take notice of the following .... already in the beginning of 2016 the Russians must have discovered that plans existed to murder Trump ... I read a leaked message that the Russians were ready for war should that occur ... and apparently sent a secret message ... long before the election they had already figured out that Trump was going to win the election because they knew of Hillary's true intentions also ... they had no need to intervene because there are and were forces opposed to her then existing plans to ignite war ... and there must be much more to that, because Putin sent an escort to Antarctica before Kyrill even went there .... and later met the Pope in Mexico ... Kyrill went on to declare a Holy War against Terror a year ago ... a long time before the election took place .... and Kerry slipped off on election day to visit Antarctica himself ... and fell out of bed and bumped his head doing so ... see more

    Peter Paul 1950 see more

    rosewood11 Peter Paul 1950 5 days ago I agree with Astrid (below) in thanking you for the youtube hint. You mentioned the Antarctic. I notice all the globalists seem to be making that a "destination," but I've never seen Putin go himself (good!!!). Anybody know what the fascination is--Is Steve Quayle right? see more

    Peter Paul 1950 rosewood11 5 days ago

    One can't really be sure who is right and if any kind of exaggeration plays a large part of all the tales that have become more public thanks to the internet ...
    ... it's shrouded in mystery that almost anything seems to make some kind of sense ... I first heard of the Nazi connection with the discovery and founding of Newschwabenland and Project High Jump with Admiral Byrd in a private conversation decades in my younger years, but only through the internet was it possible to find out more ... everyone seem so make it a great mystery that there is something there nobody dares to make official ... even Vault 7 appears to add to all the whisperings by adding a collection of photos without comment ... much room for speculation ... but it does seem to be of some importance ... see more

    Richard Burton rosewood11 4 days ago

    Kelly is like all Yanks, she sells herself for Money. A hired serf does what its told, says what its told to say or they are out-the-door on their arse. She may be a cool smart lady but has to tow- the-line. tom 6 days ago

    "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be".

    - Thomas Jefferson to Charles Yancey (1816)

    RussG 6 days ago

    Putin should sue NBC for falsifying his interview. And, Putin should never agree again to an interview by one of the US MSM. Vasya Pypkin 6 days ago Faked or falsified news. Could the author provide an example of similar news falsification by Soviet Union media. After many years I find that Soviet media actually was telling truth but smart assses among our population tended to believe lies by Western voices. Many who are still alive regret.

    Otherwise good article. The western media is nothing but lies cloaka. Soviet media also was not entertaining enough mostly talking about industries, crops, health and other substantial and important things while life was stable and predictable.

    Now Russian population is being constantly entertained, but there is little to report on industrial front and there is no confidence in future. Ruble is up and down and crude same. Was it worth to fjkuck up great country to have more entertainment and some artifial sausages varieties while losing what is the most important for human beings. Sorry for a rant. AMHants 6 days ago Surprise surprise, George Eliason - Op Ed News, was right, all along:

    CONFIRMED: DNC paid the 'Russian' founder of CrowdStrike to hack its server so it could be blamed on Russia!...

    http://themillenniumreport.... Nofearorfavor 5 days ago

    But we all expected this .... It is only that by law, Russia should be able to sue any newscast for editing and thus misrepresenting in particular -- the Russian president's words and thoughts, because of occupying the highest office in Russia. As Gilbert said, the gravity of what it could portend for Americans, is mounting daily...

    Rossiya 1 would perhaps be more cautious second time around ... make it a condition that what the president or any official of the Russian Federation said on tape, should be broadcast in full and no editing -- or face have their pants sued off . What a shameless and gutless excuse for a journalist this Kelly is!

    Strange Quark 5 days ago

    The West has never been a democracy! During the Cold War the so called "democracy" was just a voting facade to hide the fact that the West is OLIGARCHY. What choice do American citizens have in their elections? TWO (that is 2!) parties which both run basically the same imperialist, neocolonialist, hegemonic policy. And economic policy is also the same - neoliberal meaning privatization, outsourcing, policies that favor the rich and harm the poor... Only bloody revolutions can change things. You cannot change the system with voting pencils! Pencils have never changed anything anywhere. Robert Keith 6 days ago Megyn Kelly is, granted, a step above your run-of-the-mil, blond, airhead, TV talking head. I don't know whether President Putin suffered from the juxtaposition, what with her typical-for-TV mundane questions, but, probably not, because it allowed him to give down-to-earth answers to the questions that most Americans seem to be asking themselves, inane though they be. He is very skilled at this, because he makes himself available to his countryman in the same way on a regular basis it seems.

    If one searched elsewhere for the full video, which was available (on this blog), he came across very well, I must say. We will spare the readership any comment on the relative merits of his performance in comparison to what we night have heard from our Chief Executive.

    disqus_xp4GYx7DZk Robert Keith 6 days ago

    She's a media whore...nothing more, nothing less.... see more

    Isabella Jones 6 days ago

    Well, yes it's infuriating, but it was also so very predictable. When I complained about this wretched woman and her boring, predicted and repetitive questions leaving unasked anything to do with the forum leaders speeches and the masses of trade discussion that had happened during the meeting, I was told by many "that this is how Putin can show the West the truth".

    No - he can't, because we know they manipulate, cut, change, and frame it to make it look any way they want. Only those who need no convincing got to see the whole truth - and most of us know it already.

    The only thing to do is ignore America, treat it like the meaningless 3 rd World country it is rapidly sinking into - and get intelligent moderators from elsewhere. see more

    Peter Isabella Jones 6 days ago

    "... the meaningless 3 rd World country it is rapidly sinking into ..."

    *Exactly* the conclusion at which the known French demographer and historian Emmanuel Todd arrived in his 2001 book "Après L'Empire: essai sur la décomposition du système américain" ("After the Empire: The Breakdown of the American Order"). His scientific analysis was based primarily on purely demographic data, in addition to other factors: https://www.amazon.com/Afte... . An interesting reading.

    See also his 2003 interview on that topic to Neue Zürcher Zeitung, titled "Das eingebildete Imperium", https://www.nzz.ch/article8... the English translation "The Conceited Empire" is at http://www.countercurrents.... . see more

    Isabella Jones Peter 6 days ago

    Interesting. I had not heard of this man - so thank you for the link Peter. He seems to be thinking along the same lines as Dmitry Orlov, but coming from an Academic and Historian view point. Orlov just saw much of the Russian collapse - he has family in Russia, it is his native language, and he lived there during part of the 1990's if I understand him correctly. He drew a parallel between USSR and America - coming to the same conclusion as this Msr. Todd.

    We are all wondering, of course "when". ?

    It's like knowing the very obese man next door who already has heart and BP problems coupled with Diabetes, but takes no exercise and eats fast food like a hungry pig, is going to have a massive physical break down and die.

    It's just that there 's no way of predicting exactly when. Nofearorfavor Isabella Jones 5 days ago I remember when Putin agreed to be interviewed by Charlie Rose in Sep 2015, condition was that CBS produced the full 60 minutes uncut, which then ran into over 60 minutes. However found this interesting article on State of the Nation about the interview ... El Maestro wiping the floor with Rose and not doing anything to help along his flagging ratings ....now this Kelly tried to do the same and she fell flat on her face... no journalistic integrity at all ...

    http://stateofthenation2012...

    Pretty sorry ass she is ..

    L Garou 3 days ago NBC/CIA..

    Edward Mercer L Garou 2 days ago

    Clarification? see more

    L Garou Edward Mercer 2 days ago

    You can't spell M$M without the CIA..

    chris chuba 4 days ago

    My recommendation for anyone who is being interviewed for American TV is to find out how long the TV segment is and only allow the total interview time to be 1.5 times that amount to only allow reasonable editing, not the standard butchery. So in this case, a 15 minute interview would be sourced by 25 minutes, not the two hours that Putin must have given Kelly since he spent a day with her.

    In all fairness, they had to butcher the question on Russian democracy, journalist killings, etc because Kelly chose to spend 95% of the air time on moronic questions about 'election meddling' as if that deserved more than one question and the expected denial. What the heck did Kelly expect Putin to day about election meddling, yet she kept going back to it. see more

    Augustine 4 days ago

    Unlike in America, in the Soviet Union the people knew that there was no truth in the Pravda nor news in the Izvestya. Nowadays there are more Bolsheviks in New York than in St. Petersburg. see more

    Richard Burton 4 days ago

    nbc are msnbc the same degenerate-infested propaganda US/ BS.

    Putin was fantastic on Kelly's show he is greatly admired by millions and millions in the west.

    Of course the lying bums, the democrats hate it that their 'Miss Piggy' Clinton was beaten, they will keep on their crap for years, nbc and many other so-called news outlets are democrat-lapping rats who spew-out the lies, hate and shit everyday, those slime at cnn are the same pork as is the US poodle Canada's cbc. see more

    angrywhiteman 4 days ago

    More info on US democracy:

    BREAKING : This Powerful Seth Rich Video is GOING VIRAL http://truthfeed.com/breaki...

    Voter Fraud Federal Investigator Found Murdered http://yournewswire.com/vot...

    "The answer to why Seth Rich was killed, and why he gave to WikiLeaks is now out" https://kauilapele.wordpres...

    http://stateofthenation2012... see more

    Wanda Gumm 6 days ago

    Where Megyn failed, NBC succeeds in editorializing Putin as the village idiot. How long before these horse-driven dimwits drown in the cesspools they dig for others? I don't see any way out of this but war. It's not the fictitious 'deep state' Russia should be concerned with, but Trump himself. Playing the Elder.

    [Jun 14, 2017] If it looks like the Russians did it, I can guarantee you it was not the Russians

    Notable quotes:
    "... Some news now trickling into the blogosphere that the Democratic National Convention paid Crowdstrike – that's the cyber-security firm headed by Dmitri Alperovich with links to the Chalupa sisters and the Ukrainian diaspora in North America – to hack into its own server. ..."
    insider.foxnews.com
    Jun 09, 2017 | marknesop.wordpress.com

    Jen , June 8, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    Here's my good (?) deed for the day.

    Some news now trickling into the blogosphere that the Democratic National Convention paid Crowdstrike – that's the cyber-security firm headed by Dmitri Alperovich with links to the Chalupa sisters and the Ukrainian diaspora in North America – to hack into its own server.

    "DNC Russian Hackers Found!"
    http://stateofthenation2012.com/?p=62536

    "CONFIRMED: DNC paid the 'Russian' founder of CrowdStrike to hack its server so it could be blamed on Russia!"
    http://themillenniumreport.com/2017/06/dnc-hackers-finally-identified/

    Global Commenter , June 8, 2017 at 5:42 pm

    Earlier noted in this brilliant piece:

    http://www.eurasiareview.com/07062017-sanctioning-russia-analysis/

    Excerpt –

    "In the US, talk of a Donald Trump-Russian government collusion against Hillary Clinton gets more attention than some other possibilities. Cyber-security developer John McAfee said: "If it looks like the Russians did it, I can guarantee you it was not the Russians." There's a wave of anti-Russian sentiment, as evidenced by the lack of US mass media and body politic condemnation to former National Security Agency (NSA) Director James Clapper's bigoted anti-Russian comment.

    The subject of anti-Russian propaganda brings to mind the pro-Kiev regime leaning Atlantic Council and its cyber-security member CrowdStrike. Entities like them are silent in instances like when Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko falsely stated that Jews in Crimea are prohibited from observing their faith, since that area's reunification with Russia."

    [Jun 14, 2017] To say that Trump is idiot in foreign policy without saying that Obama was the same dangerous idiot, who pursued the same neocon policies is hypocritical, because they are manipulated by the same people in dark suits and are just marionettes, or, at best, minor players. Other people decide for them what is good for America

    Jun 12, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    libezkova, June 10, 2017 at 03:22 PM

    There are several problems with Krugman both as an economist and as a political commentator.

    First he does not understand that neoliberal system is inherency unstable and prone to periodic bubbles and crashes.

    FED plays destabilizing role by attempting to save large banks. It essentially provided insurance for reckless behaviour. This is very "Minsky" -- "stability is destabilizing".

    If we believe Jim Rogers, FED policies created a situation in which the next crash is a real possibility and might happen within a year, or two:

    http://www.msn.com/en-us/money/markets/jim-rogers-the-worst-crash-in-our-lifetime-is-coming/ar-BBCl6BS?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=ientp

    Politically Krugman switched to neocon views and sometimes is undistinguishable from Wolfowitz : " And consider his refusal to endorse the central principle of NATO, the obligation to come to our allies' defense... What was that about? Nobody knows..."

    NATO became obsolete with the dissolution of the USSR and now serves only as an instrument of the US foreign policy -- a tool for expansion and maintenance of neoliberal empire and keeping our European vassals in check.

    He also got into Russiagate trap, which is a sign of weak intellect (dementia in cases of Hillary and McCain), or of a neocon political hack. As Krugman does not have dementia, I suspect the latter.

    The standards he tries to apply to Trump would put in jail all three previous presidents starting from "change we can believe in" bait and switch artist.

    In other words his column is highly partisan and as such represents interest only for Hillary Bots and DemoRats (which are still plentiful and control MSM).

    For people who try to find a real way out of the current difficult situation (a crisis of confidence and, possibly, the start of revolt against neoliberal elite due to side effects of globalization) the USA now have find itself, this is just a noise. Nothing constructive.

    Trump position "get what you want with the brute force; f*ck diplomacy, UN and decency" is actually an attempt to find a solution for the problems we face. Abhorrent as it is. Kind of highway robbery policy.

    The key problem is whether we should start dismantling neoliberalism before it is too late, and what should be the alternative. Krugman is useless in attempts to answer those two key questions.

    And it is unclear whether it is possible by peaceful means. Those neolib/neocon guys like Bolsheviks in the past want to cling to power at all costs.

    Another question is whether the maintenance of global neoliberal empire led by the USA is now too costly for US taxpayers and need to be reconsidered. This is the same question British empire faced in the past. Do we really need 500 or so foreign bases? Do we really need to spend half a trillion dollars annually on military? Do we need all those never ending wars as in Orwellian "war is the health of the state" quote (actually this quote is not from 1984, this is the subtitle of the essay by Randolph Bourne (1918))

    What is the real risk of WWIII with such policies? Because there is a chance that nor only the modern civilization, but all higher forms of life of Earth in general seize to exists after it.

    Concentrating of Trump "deficiencies" Krugman does not understand that Trump is just a Republican Obama -- another "clean plate" offering to the US electorate, another "bait and switch" artist.

    With just different fake slogan "Make America great again" instead of "Change we can believe in".

    And as such any critique of Trump is an implicit critique of Obama presidency, which enabled Trump election.

    Teleprompter personally was a dangerous and unqualified political hack, not that different from Trump (no foreign policy experience whatsoever; almost zero understanding of economics), who outsourced foreign policy to the despicable neocon warmonger Clinton and got us into Libya, Ukraine and Syria wars in addition to existing war in Afghanistan.

    Continuing occupation of Afghanistan (which incorrectly called war) and illegal actions in Syria (there was no UN resolution justifying the USA presence in Syria) are now becoming too costly.

    Afghan people definitely want the USA out and will fight for their freedom. Taliban has supporters in Pakistan and possibly in other Islamic countries.

    In Syria the USA now clashed with Russian interests which make it a real power keg. And to this sociopaths in CIA like Mike "Kill-Russians" Morell and the fact that CIA is not under complete control of federal government and actually represent "state within the state" force in this conflict, and the situation looks really dangerous.

    And please note that Russia protects a secular government, and the USA supports Islamic fundamentalists in Syria, to make Israel even greater. Instead of "Making America great again". Such a betrayal of elections promises... The same policy that Hillary would adopt if she sits on the throne.

    So to say that Trump is idiot in foreign policy without saying that Obama was the same dangerous idiot, who pursued the same neocon policies is hypocritical, because they are manipulated by the same people in dark suits and are just marionettes, or, at best, minor players. Other people decide for them what is good for America.

    The US army is pretty much demoralized and even with advanced weapons and absolute air superiority can't achieve much because solders understand that they are just cannon fodder and it is unclear what they fighting for in Afghanistan.

    Because in Syria the USA support the same Islamic fundamentalists it is fighting in Afghanistan. Or even worse then those -- head choppers like guys from Al Nusra.

    So we fight secular government in Syria supporting Sunni fundamentalists (often of worst kind as KSA supported Wahhabi fighters) and simultaneously are trying to protect secular government in Afghanistan against exactly the same (or even slightly more moderate) Islamic fundamentalist forces. Is not this a definition of split personality?

    EMichael - , June 10, 2017 at 04:24 PM
    Do you really think there are many people that are deluded enough to not know who and what you are?

    You are a cancer on this blog.

    libezkova - , June 10, 2017 at 11:35 PM
    William S. Lind on Hillary:

    http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/what-trump-can-do-for-defense/

    "In the case of Hillary Clinton, not only does that mean more wasted money, it means more wars, wars we will lose.

    Hillary is a wild-eyed interventionist. She gave us the Libyan fiasco, and had Obama been fool enough to listen to her again, we would now be at war on the ground in Syria.

    The establishment refuses to see the limits of American power, and it also refuses to compel our military to focus on war against non-state opponents, or Fourth Generation war. The Pentagon pretends its future is war against other states.

    The political and foreign-policy establishments pretend the Pentagon knows how to win. They waltz together happily, unaware theirs is a Totentanz."

    [Jun 14, 2017] Bloomberg tried to keel Russian hacking story hot

    Is Mossad for some reasons also interested in fueling Russiagate ;-) ?
    Notable quotes:
    "... That's an extremely weak story from Bloomberg. The article itself doesn't actually refer to evidence on its own; rather, it comes from anonymous sources. ..."
    "... That's a maddening thing about this subject as it's treated by most mainstream news – it's called "Russian hacking" when, at best, it's an assumption that Russians, or at least the Russian government, were involved. ..."
    "... It's become the identifier for this issue, IOW, it's "Russian hacking", not "hacking of DNC" or "attempted phishing of voting machine administrators". ..."
    "... If the FBI is investigating these incidents, then its possible there actually is evidence we'll hear about eventually, but so far all we've see or heard is baseless assertions by the intel community. ..."
    Jun 14, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

    voteforno6 , June 13, 2017 at 4:02 pm

    Re: "Russian Cyber Hacks on U.S. Electoral System Far Wider Than Previously Known" [Bloomberg].

    That's an extremely weak story from Bloomberg. The article itself doesn't actually refer to evidence on its own; rather, it comes from anonymous sources.

    Also, it keeps attributing the source of the hacks to Russia, without even attempting to provide evidence of that. The closest it gets is mentioning that investigators attributed them to certain IP addresses.

    That's not all that convincing, as source IPs can be easily masked, which is one of the reasons why attribution is extremely difficult.

    There's much less in the story than meets the eye, particularly when it comes to placing blame on Russia (assuming that these hacks in fact took place, of course).

    Cujo359 , June 13, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    That's a maddening thing about this subject as it's treated by most mainstream news – it's called "Russian hacking" when, at best, it's an assumption that Russians, or at least the Russian government, were involved.

    It's become the identifier for this issue, IOW, it's "Russian hacking", not "hacking of DNC" or "attempted phishing of voting machine administrators".

    If the FBI is investigating these incidents, then its possible there actually is evidence we'll hear about eventually, but so far all we've see or heard is baseless assertions by the intel community.

    John k , June 13, 2017 at 9:05 pm

    There's a history of that

    [Jun 14, 2017] Strange Oversight by Comey tells us a lot by Ray McGovern

    Notable quotes:
    "... Given the stakes involved in the Russia-gate investigation – now including a possible impeachment battle over removing the President of the United States – wouldn't it seem logical for the FBI to insist on its own forensics for this fundamental predicate of the case? Or could Comey's hesitancy to demand access to the DNC's computers be explained by a fear that FBI technicians not fully briefed on CIA/NSA/FBI Deep State programs might uncover a lot more than he wanted? ..."
    Jun 13, 2017 | original.antiwar.com

    Given the stakes involved in the Russia-gate investigation – now including a possible impeachment battle over removing the President of the United States – wouldn't it seem logical for the FBI to insist on its own forensics for this fundamental predicate of the case? Or could Comey's hesitancy to demand access to the DNC's computers be explained by a fear that FBI technicians not fully briefed on CIA/NSA/FBI Deep State programs might uncover a lot more than he wanted?

    Comey was asked again about this curious oversight on June 8 by Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Richard Burr:

    BURR: "And the FBI, in this case, unlike other cases that you might investigate – did you ever have access to the actual hardware that was hacked? Or did you have to rely on a third party to provide you the data that they had collected?"

    COMEY: "In the case of the DNC, and, I believe, the DCCC, but I'm sure the DNC, we did not have access to the devices themselves. We got relevant forensic information from a private party, a high-class entity, that had done the work. But we didn't get direct access."

    BURR: "But no content?"

    COMEY: "Correct."

    BURR: "Isn't content an important part of the forensics from a counterintelligence standpoint?"

    COMEY: "It is, although what was briefed to me by my folks – the people who were my folks at the time is that they had gotten the information from the private party that they needed to understand the intrusion by the spring of 2016."

    Burr demurred on asking Comey to explain what amounts to gross misfeasance, if not worse. Perhaps, NBC could arrange for Megyn Kelly to interview Burr to ask if he has a clue as to what Putin might have been referring to when he noted, "There may be hackers, by the way, in the United States who very craftily and professionally passed the buck to Russia."

    Given the congressional intelligence "oversight" committees' obsequiousness and repeated "high esteem" for the "intelligence community," there seems an even chance that – no doubt because of an oversight – the CIA/FBI/NSA deep-stage troika failed to brief the Senate "oversight committee" chairman on WikiLeaks "Vault 7" disclosures – even when WikiLeaks publishes original CIA documents.

    Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. He was an Army Infantry/Intelligence officer and CIA analyst for a total of 30 years and now servers on the Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). Reprinted with permission from Consortium News .

    [Jun 13, 2017] The shining city on a hill sustains royalty, secures Wahhabi aims, wars to end unjust peace , ousts Qaddafi with no regard for how much turmoil millions endure and drops 27000 bombs on 7 Muslim countries during 2016 a year of peace overseen by a peace prize winner!

    Notable quotes:
    "... Are there no longer any Sunday PM rallies in US cities against the electoral college which denied the dnc crooks their conned prize? ..."
    "... "As for that cherished image of a shining city on a hill*? As my fiend Richard Pitkin says, there is a little city-on-a-hill in all Americans. It is a complicated sort of truth about which even Russian journalists and scholars may have a say." ..."
    "... The biggest threat to the republic comes from the fuzz exploding from domestic faux media. So much for diminishing fuzz in the US! Russia's vapid "influence" compares little to the scam run by a pair of political parties owned by Wall St. *The latest refuge of Comey; rolling out Dutch Reagan's 'shiny city' scam......... ..."
    Jun 13, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    ilsm - June 12, 2017 at 04:57 PM

    Corruption and stagnation.......

    Are there no longer any Sunday PM rallies in US cities against the electoral college which denied the dnc crooks their conned prize?

    David Warsh, June 11

    http://www.economicprincipals.com/issues/2017.06.11/2006.html

    Not Russian fuzz! Why question RT?

    Undiminshed fuzz is all the US gets from the dnc corrupted media!

    "As for that cherished image of a shining city on a hill*? As my fiend Richard Pitkin says, there is a little city-on-a-hill in all Americans. It is a complicated sort of truth about which even Russian journalists and scholars may have a say."

    The "shining city on a hill" sustains royalty, secures Wahhabi aims, wars to end "unjust peace", ousts Qaddafi with no regard for how much turmoil millions endure and drops 27000 bombs on 7 Muslim countries during 2016 a year of "peace" overseen by a 'peace prize' winner!

    The biggest threat to the republic comes from the fuzz exploding from domestic faux media. So much for diminishing fuzz in the US! Russia's vapid "influence" compares little to the scam run by a pair of political parties owned by Wall St. *The latest refuge of Comey; rolling out Dutch Reagan's 'shiny city' scam.........

    [Jun 11, 2017] Bernie would have won.

    Jun 11, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    Christopher H., June 09, 2017 at 06:29 PM

    "Alas the pretend progressives here cannot be bothered."

    PGL you're the only "pretend progressive" here. Real leftists do well in an election and so PGL throws a little temper tantrum. You can't make him discuss it! He won't admit he was wrong! He supported Corbyn even though he didn't talk about the election once during the entire campaign. What a tedious phoney.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/09/opinion/how-jeremy-corbyn-proved-the-haters-wrong.html?smid=tw-share&_r=0

    How Jeremy Corbyn Proved the Haters Wrong

    By RACHEL SHABI
    JUNE 9, 2017

    LONDON - Among the many satisfying outcomes of Britain's general election has been the roll call of pundits reeling out apologies for getting it so wrong. The Labour Party has, against all odds, surged to take a 40 percent share of the vote, more than it has won in years. And so the nation's commentariat, who had confidently thought that the party under Jeremy Corbyn's leadership would be wiped off the political map, are now eating giant slices of humble pie.

    Nobody is in politics to gloat. Labour's leadership team and supporters alike want the party to win not for the sake of winning, but in order to bring Labour's economic and social agenda to Britain, to measurably improve people's lives. Still, a little schadenfreude is definitely in order.

    Mr. Corbyn, from the left of the party, unexpectedly took its helm in 2015 after a rule change allowed, for the first time, rank-and-file members to have an equal vote for their leader. And he has been ridiculed, dismissed and bemoaned ever since. Cast as an incongruous combination of incompetent beardy old man and peacenik terrorist sympathizer, Mr. Corbyn faced down a leadership challenge from his own party about a year ago and constant sniping, criticism and calls for him to quit throughout.

    The political and pundit classes, in their wisdom, thought it entirely inconceivable that someone like him - so unpolished, so left wing - could ever persuade voters. After Britain's referendum decision, last June, to leave the European Union, more scathing criticism was piled upon the Labour leader for his decision to, well, accept the democratic referendum decision, however bad it was.

    By the time Prime Minister Theresa May called a snap election six weeks ago, her party ran a 20-point poll lead ahead of Labour and her personal approval ratings were sky high while Mr. Corbyn's were abysmally low. Liberal pundits were aghast at the thought of the Labour Party self-destructing under Mr. Corbyn's supposedly toxic leadership. He was once again urged to step down.

    Then the campaign started - and every prediction was turned on its head. The well-funded, hyper-efficient Conservatives and their chorus of supporters in Britain's mostly right-wing press ran a terrible campaign. Mrs. May came across as robotic and out of touch; she didn't seem to like engaging with the press, much less the public. The more people saw of her, the more her ratings sank.

    For Mr. Corbyn, the opposite was true. His detractors said his appeal was limited to a niche of radical left activists, but in reality his quiet confidence, credibility and integrity - so refreshing at a time when politicians are viewed as untrustworthy careerists - drew crowds of enthusiastic supporters to ever-growing rallies. At one point, arriving to a televised debate just over a week before the election, he was greeted with solid cheers en route to the event. That was when his leadership team sensed something significant was taking place.

    Part of this extraordinary success was a result of the party's campaign. Fun, energetic, innovative and inspiring, it created its own momentum, with organic support mushrooming out of the most unlikely places, flooding social media with viral memes and messages: Rappers and D.J.s, soccer players, economists and television personalities alike climbed aboard the Corbyn project. Momentum, a grass-roots organization of Corbyn supporters, activated the party's estimated 500,000 members - many of whom had joined because Mr. Corbyn was elected as leader - into canvassing efforts across the country, including, crucially, in up-for-grabs districts. Supporters were further encouraged by the sight of Labour candidates demolishing long-hated Conservatives on television, appearances that were swiftly turned into video clips and raced around the internet.

    But the main mobilizer of support was the party's politics. For decades, Labour has been resolutely centrist, essentially offering a slightly kinder version of neoliberal consensus politics. Those on the left had long said that this was what had caused the party's slow decline, a hemorrhaging of support from its traditional working-class voters. With Mr. Corbyn at its helm, the party tacked firmly to the left, proposing to tax the few for the benefit of the many and offering major national investment projects, funding for the welfare state, the scrapping of university tuition fees and the re-nationalization of rail and energy companies.

    It was a hopeful vision for a fairer society, offered at a time when the country is experiencing wage stagnation and spiraling living costs, with many buckling under because of the economic crash of 2008 and the Conservative Party's savage austerity cuts that followed. Given the chance for the first time in decades to vote for something else, something better, a surprising number of voters took it. Young people, in particular, seized this offer: With youth turnout unusually high at 72 percent, it's clear that Labour brought them to the ballot box in droves.

    Labour's shock comeback has tugged the party, along with Britain's political landscape, and the range of acceptable discourse back to the left. In a hung Parliament, the Conservatives still came out of the election as the main party, and now looks set to go into coalition government with the homophobic, anti-abortion Democratic Unionist Party. But the Conservatives are now a maimed party with a discredited leader - weaknesses to be seized upon and exploited by a now united and empowered Labour party.

    Christopher H. - , June 09, 2017 at 06:34 PM
    Bernie would have won.
    im1dc - , June 09, 2017 at 06:56 PM
    Bernie couldn't beat Hillary therefore Bernie would not have won b/c he DIDN'T.
    Christopher H. - , June 09, 2017 at 07:45 PM
    Bernie would have won if he had been the nominee. Not my fault the establishment Democrats wanted to lose again.
    Gibbon1 - , June 10, 2017 at 03:31 AM
    The grifters in the party didn't lose you dope. They all got paid. It's all so very much like making a movie. So what if it didn't break even at the box office, everyone involved got theirs.

    Seriously though you are correct. Sanders would have won against Trump. Everyone knows that, except the die hard centerist Democrats that are trying hard not to look in mirror.

    Sanjait - , June 10, 2017 at 08:47 AM
    You wingnuts cant seem to comprehend that the Democratic primaries
    was a series of state elections in which Hillary legitimately got more voters to vote for her. They picked Hillary, for all your bleating about "elites."
    Christopher H. - , June 10, 2017 at 09:39 AM
    Sandy, Sandy, so naive.
    RC AKA Darryl, Ron - , June 10, 2017 at 09:46 AM
    Krugman posited once that Bernie might win the nomination by beating Hillary with disaffected white voters in the red states despite being ultimately unelectable because of his radical views in the general election. Of course that is not at all what happened.
    Christopher H. - , June 10, 2017 at 10:09 AM
    This is what Krugman wrote, which turned out to be exactly wrong.

    https://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2017/03/14/populism-and-the-politics-of-health/

    "....This ties in with an important recent piece by Zack Beauchamp on the striking degree to which left-wing economics fails, in practice, to counter right-wing populism; basically, Sandersism has failed everywhere it has been tried. Why?

    The answer, presumably, is that what we call populism is really in large degree white identity politics, which can't be addressed by promising universal benefits. Among other things, these "populist" voters now live in a media bubble, getting their news from sources that play to their identity-politics desires, which means that even if you offer them a better deal, they won't hear about it or believe it if told. For sure many if not most of those who gained health coverage thanks to Obamacare have no idea that's what happened.

    That said, taking the benefits away would probably get their attention, and maybe even open their eyes to the extent to which they are suffering to provide tax cuts to the rich.

    In Europe, right-wing parties probably don't face the same dilemma; they're preaching herrenvolk social democracy, a welfare state but only for people who look like you. In America, however, Trumpism is faux populism that appeals to white identity but actually serves plutocrats. That fundamental contradiction is now out in the open."

    RC AKA Darryl, Ron - , June 11, 2017 at 03:55 AM
    I recall something more damning, but have not been able to find it after repeated attempts. My belief is that it was obviously so far off the mark that it has been taken down off Krugman's NYT blog and maybe any reference to it here at EV as well.

    [Jun 10, 2017] Krugman is a political hack for Clinton wing of Democratic Party and as such can not see was is wrong with Dems and what needs to be done after Hillary Fiasco

    Jun 10, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    libezkova June 10, 2017 at 03:22 PM

    There are several problems with Krugman both as an economist and as a political commentator.

    First he does not understand that neoliberal system is inherency unstable and prone to periodic bubbles and crashes. FED plays destabilizing role by attempting to save large banks. It essentially provided insurance for reckless behaviour. This is very "Minsky" -- "stability is destabilizing". If we believe Jim Rogers, FED policies created a situation in which the next crash is a real possibility and might happen within a year, or two:

    http://www.msn.com/en-us/money/markets/jim-rogers-the-worst-crash-in-our-lifetime-is-coming/ar-BBCl6BS?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=ientp

    Politically Krugman switched to neocon views and sometimes is undistinguishable from Wolfowitz : " And consider his refusal to endorse the central principle of NATO, the obligation to come to our allies' defense... What was that about? Nobody knows..."

    NATO became obsolete with the dissolution of the USSR and now serves only as an instrument of the US foreign policy -- a tool for expansion and maintenance of neoliberal empire and keeping our European vassals in check.

    He also got into Russiagate trap, which is a sign of weak intellect (dementia in cases of Hillary and McCain), or of a neocon political hack. As Krugman does not have dementia, I suspect the latter.

    The standards he tries to apply to Trump would put in jail all three previous presidents starting from "change we can believe in" bait and switch artist.

    In other words his column is highly partisan and as such represents interest only for Hillary Bots and DemoRats (which are still plentiful and control MSM).

    For people who try to find a real way out of the current difficult situation (a crisis of confidence and, possibly, the start of revolt against neoliberal elite due to side effects of globalization) the USA now have find itself, this is just a noise. Nothing constructive.

    Trump position "get what you want with the brute force; f*ck diplomacy, UN and decency" is actually an attempt to find a solution for the problems we face. Abhorrent as it is. Kind of highway robbery policy.

    The key problem is whether we should start dismantling neoliberalism before it is too late, and what should be the alternative. Krugman is useless in attempts to answer those two key questions.

    And it is unclear whether it is possible by peaceful means. Those neolib/neocon guys like Bolsheviks in the past want to cling to power at all costs.

    Another question is whether the maintenance of global neoliberal empire led by the USA is now too costly for US taxpayers and need to be reconsidered. This is the same question British empire faced in the past. Do we really need 500 or so foreign bases? Do we really need to spend half a trillion dollars annually on military? Do we need all those never ending wars as in Orwellian "war is the health of the state" quote (actually this quote is not from 1984, this is the subtitle of the essay by Randolph Bourne (1918))

    What is the real risk of WWIII with such policies? Because there is a chance that nor only the modern civilization, but all higher forms of life of Earth in general seize to exists after it.

    Concentrating of Trump "deficiencies" Krugman does not understand that Trump is just a Republican Obama -- another "clean plate" offering to the US electorate, another "bait and switch" artist.

    With just different fake slogan "Make America great again" instead of "Change we can believe in".

    And as such any critique of Trump is an implicit critique of Obama presidency, which enabled Trump election.

    Teleprompter personally was a dangerous and unqualified political hack, not that different from Trump (no foreign policy experience whatsoever; almost zero understanding of economics), who outsourced foreign policy to the despicable neocon warmonger Clinton and got us into Libya, Ukraine and Syria wars in addition to existing war in Afghanistan.

    Continuing occupation of Afghanistan (which incorrectly called war) and illegal actions in Syria (there was no UN resolution justifying the USA presence in Syria) are now becoming too costly.

    Afghan people definitely want the USA out and will fight for their freedom. Taliban has supporters in Pakistan and possibly in other Islamic countries.

    In Syria the USA now clashed with Russian interests which make it a real power keg. Add to this sociopaths in CIA like Mike "Kill-Russians" Morell and the fact that CIA is not under complete control of federal government and actually represent "state within the state" force in this conflict, and the situation looks really dangerous.

    And please note that Russia protects a secular government, and the USA supports Islamic fundamentalists in Syria, to make Israel even greater. Instead of "Making America great again". Such a betrayal of elections promises... The same policy that Hillary would adopt if she sits on the throne.

    So to say that Trump is idiot in foreign policy without saying that Obama was the same dangerous idiot, who pursued the same neocon policies is hypocritical, because they are manipulated by the same people in dark suits and are just marionettes, or, at best, minor players. Other people decide for them what is good for America.

    The US army is pretty much demoralized and even with advanced weapons and absolute air superiority can't achieve much because solders understand that they are just cannon fodder and it is unclear what they fighting for in Afghanistan.

    Because in Syria the USA support the same Islamic fundamentalists it is fighting in Afghanistan. Or even worse than those -- head choppers like guys from Al Nusra.

    So we fight secular government in Syria supporting Sunni fundamentalists (often of worst kind as KSA supported Wahhabi fighters) and simultaneously are trying to protect secular government in Afghanistan against exactly the same (or even slightly more moderate) Islamic fundamentalist forces. Is not this a definition of split personality?

    Reply Saturday, June 10, 2017 at 03:22 PM

    [Jun 10, 2017] New Labour (neoliberal democrats) especially what is called DemoRats in the USA (Clinton wing of the Democratic Party) sold themselves to financial oligarchy becoming a just a more moderate branch of the Republican party

    Notable quotes:
    "... they represent nothing less than the left hand of the plutocracy, Republicans representing the right hand. ..."
    Jun 10, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    libezkova, June 09, 2017 at 11:07 AM

    New Labour (neoliberal democrats) especially what is called DemoRats in the USA (Clinton's wing of the Democratic Party) sold themselves to financial oligarchy becoming a just a more moderate branch of the Republican party.

    They counted the working class has nowhere to go. They miscalculated. In the USA working class moved right. In case of GB -- left. But in both cases they were shown three finger salute.

    BTW why Putin was sleeping and did not interfere in elections like he did in France, leading to Macron victory ;-). His dream of Brexit now is in danger :-)

    Christopher H. said in reply to libezkova... , June 09, 2017 at 11:24 AM

    On twitter leftists in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. are ecstatic over the upset. But in this forum, not so much. This could be a turning point.

    :D

    JohnH, June 09, 2017 at 12:56 PM
    Not so much? The usual librul suspects here are downright depressed by Corbyn's success...first, we had their opposition to Bernie' now to Corbyn...they represent nothing less than the left hand of the plutocracy, Republicans representing the right hand.
    Christopher H. said...
    Owen Jones disagrees with SWL.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jun/09/jeremy-corbyn-prime-minister-labour

    Jeremy Corbyn has caused a sensation – he would make a fine prime minister

    by Owen Jones
    Fri. June 9 107

    This is one of the most sensational political upsets of our time. Theresa May – a wretched dishonest excuse of a politician, don't pity her – launched a general election with the sole purpose of crushing opposition in Britain. It was brazen opportunism, a naked power grab: privately, I'm told, her team wanted the precious "bauble" of going down in history as the gravediggers of the British Labour party. Instead, she has destroyed herself. She is toast.

    She has just usurped David Cameron as the "worst ever prime minister on their own terms" (before Cameron, it had been a title held by Lord North since the 18th century). Look at the political capital she had: the phenomenal polling lead, almost the entire support of the British press, the most effective electoral machine on Earth behind her. Her allies presented the Labour opposition as an amusing, eccentric joke that could be squashed like a fly that had already had its wings ripped off. They genuinely believed they could get a 180-seat majority. She will leave No 10 soon, disgraced, entering the history books filed under "hubris".

    But, before a false media narrative is set, let me put down a marker. Yes, the Tory campaign was a shambolic, insulting mess, notable only for its U-turns, a manifesto that swiftly disintegrated, robotically repeated mantras that achieved only ridicule. But don't let media commentators – hostile to Labour's vision – pretend that the May calamity is all down to self-inflicted Tory wounds.

    This was the highest turnout since 1997, perhaps the biggest Labour percentage since the same year – far eclipsing Tony Blair's total in 2005. Young and previous non-voters came out in astonishing numbers, and not because they thought, "Ooh, Theresa May doesn't stick to her promises, does she?" Neither can we reduce this to a remainer revolt. The Lib Dems threw everything at the despondent remainer demographic, with paltry returns. Many Ukip voters flocked to the Labour party.

    No: this was about millions inspired by a radical manifesto that promised to transform Britain, to attack injustices, and challenge the vested interests holding the country back. Don't let them tell you otherwise. People believe the booming well-off should pay more, that we should invest that money in schools, hospitals, houses, police and public services, that all in work should have a genuine living wage, that young people should not be saddled with debt for aspiring to an education, that our utilities should be under the control of the people of this country. For years, many of us have argued that these policies – shunned, reviled even in the political and media elite – had the genuine support of millions. And today that argument was decisively vindicated and settled.

    Don't let them get away with the claim that, "Ah, this election just shows a better Labour leader could have won!" Risible rot. Do we really think that Corbyn's previous challengers to the leadership – and this is nothing personal – would have inspired millions of otherwise politically disengaged and alienated people to come out and vote, and drive Labour to its highest percentage since the famous Blair landslide? If the same old stale, technocratic centrism had been offered, Labour would have faced an absolute drubbing, just like its European sister parties did.

    Labour is now permanently transformed. Its policy programme is unchallengeable. It is now the party's consensus. It cannot and will not be taken away. Those who claimed it could not win the support of millions were simply wrong. No, Labour didn't win, but from where it started, that was never going to happen. That policy programme enabled the party to achieve one of the biggest shifts in support in British history – yes, eclipsing Tony Blair's swing in 1997.

    Social democracy is in crisis across the western world. British Labour is now one of the most successful centre-left parties, many of which have been reduced to pitiful rumps under rightwing leaderships. And indeed, other parties in Europe and the United States should learn lessons from this experience.

    ....

    JohnH -> Christopher H.... June 09, 2017 at 01:09 PM

    Great catch!

    You will be hard pressed to find any such piece ever printed in the opinion pages of any newspaper in the American 'free' press.

    By shunning candidates like Bernie and Corbyn, the American librul commentariat has been exposed for what it is--corrupted by wealthy, powerful interests.

    [Jun 10, 2017] CrowdStrike, The DNCs Security Firm, Was Under Contract With The FBI

    Notable quotes:
    "... Neither the FBI nor CrowdStrike responded to requests for comment on the nature of the services provided. As of yet, the only entity known to receive primary access to the DNC servers is CrowdStrike. At a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in January, Comey testified that the FBI had been denied access to the servers by the DNC after repeated requests. And unnamed FBI officials told reporters , "The FBI repeatedly stressed to DNC officials the necessity of obtaining direct access to servers and data, only to be rebuffed until well after the initial compromise had been mitigated." ..."
    "... Effectively, information that is now central to massively consequential geopolitical disputes has been "privatized" and held exclusively by a profit-seeking entity. CrowdStrike's findings continue to be repeated by journalists and politicians with unflinching certainty - despite the fact that it was forced to retract a central element of another report involving related malware attribution, raising doubts about the reliability of its DNC conclusions. As Jeffrey Carr, a security researcher who has been critical of CrowdStrike's methods, told me: "The foundation of placing the blame on Russia was false." ..."
    "... Power to determine world events is increasingly being concentrated in the hands of a tiny group of self-proclaimed "experts" who aren't accountable to the public, but to clients and investors. CrowdStrike, evidently benefitting from the surge in PR, announced last month that it had been valued at one billion dollars. ..."
    Jun 10, 2017 | medium.com
    CrowdStrike, The DNC's Security Firm, Was Under Contract With The FBI

    Claims of "Russian interference" have been ubiquitous in U.S. political discourse for almost a full year now; these often amount to a melange of allegations ranging from "hacking" to "influence campaigns" to "online trolls" sent by the Kremlin to harangue unsuspecting Midwestern voters. "Hacking," however, remains the centerpiece of the narrative - the idea that Russian state actors "hacked" the Democratic National Committee and exfiltrated emails is routinely cited as the centerpiece of the overall "interference" thesis. After the alleged hacking, the DNC retained a private security firm - CrowdStrike - which made the determination that the Russian government was responsible, setting into motion a chain of Russia-related events that continue to unfold even now.

    https://medium.com/media/b15fd1fe3dbf2ead20873d6331996555?postId=c6f884c34189

    TYT can report that at the same time CrowdStrike was working on behalf of the DNC, the company was also under contract with the FBI for unspecified technical services. According to a US federal government spending database, CrowdStrike's "period of performance" on behalf of the FBI was between July 2015 and July 2016. CrowdStrike's findings regarding the DNC server breach - which continue to this day to be cited as authoritative by everyone from former FBI Director James Comey, to NBC anchor Megyn Kelly - were issued in June 2016, when the contract was still active.

    Last week at a forum with Vladimir Putin, Kelly listed all the authoritative American entities which she claimed have corroborated the conclusion that Russian state actors "interfered" in the 2016 presidential election. (Notwithstanding its vagueness and imprecision, the term "interference" has come to be the standard term American media personalities invoke when seeking to describe how "Russians" maliciously undermined the sanctity of the 2016 US election process.) Querying Putin, Kelly repeated the canard that "17 intelligence agencies" had all independently concluded that Russia indeed "interfered" - whatever that means, exactly. She then continued: "Even private, non-partisan security firms say the same that Russia interfered with the US election."

    The most prominent "private, non-partisan security firm" is CrowdStrike, and despite Kelly's use of the term "non-partisan" to describe the firm, its fiduciary relationship with the DNC suggests otherwise. As the journalist Yasha Levine wrote in The Baffler,

    Far from establishing an airtight case for Russian espionage, CrowdStrike made a point of telling its DNC clients what it already knew they wanted to hear: after a cursory probe, it pronounced the Russians the culprits. Mainstream press outlets, primed for any faint whiff of great-power scandal and poorly versed in online threat detection, likewise treated the CrowdStrike report as all but incontrovertible.

    In April 2016, two months before the June report was issued, former President Barack Obama appointed Steven Chabinsky, "general counsel and Chief Risk officer" for CrowdStrike, to a presidential "Commission for Enhancing Cybersecurity," further demonstrating CrowdStrike's intermingling with powerful Democratic Party factions.

    Neither the FBI nor CrowdStrike responded to requests for comment on the nature of the services provided. As of yet, the only entity known to receive primary access to the DNC servers is CrowdStrike. At a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in January, Comey testified that the FBI had been denied access to the servers by the DNC after repeated requests. And unnamed FBI officials told reporters , "The FBI repeatedly stressed to DNC officials the necessity of obtaining direct access to servers and data, only to be rebuffed until well after the initial compromise had been mitigated."

    Comey's long-awaited Congressional testimony on Thursday may provide additional insight into the FBI's reliance on the firm.

    Effectively, information that is now central to massively consequential geopolitical disputes has been "privatized" and held exclusively by a profit-seeking entity. CrowdStrike's findings continue to be repeated by journalists and politicians with unflinching certainty - despite the fact that it was forced to retract a central element of another report involving related malware attribution, raising doubts about the reliability of its DNC conclusions. As Jeffrey Carr, a security researcher who has been critical of CrowdStrike's methods, told me: "The foundation of placing the blame on Russia was false."

    Power to determine world events is increasingly being concentrated in the hands of a tiny group of self-proclaimed "experts" who aren't accountable to the public, but to clients and investors. CrowdStrike, evidently benefitting from the surge in PR, announced last month that it had been valued at one billion dollars.

    [Jun 09, 2017] Whether the Russians did it or not, the USA has the dismal failure by the leading political party to secure their digital communications

    The USA opened this can of works with Flame and Stixnet. Now it needs to face consequences of its reckless actions.
    Both Hillary staff and DNC staff behaves like complete idiots, taking into account the level of mayhem the USA caused in other countries, including Russia. Blowback eventually came and bite their ass. In addition Hillary "private" staff was definitely incompetent.
    Notable quotes:
    "... The validity of outrage anyway vis-a-vis the Russians, is, to some extent, misplaced ( ..everyone's doin' it aren't they? For starters, recall the Time cover of' '96: ..."
    Apr 28, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

    This is all really becoming exasperating!

    Incessantly reporting 24/7 on whether the Russians did it or not doesn't take into account the critical failure by a leading political party of the "free world" – a nation supposedly at the forefront of technology – to appropriately secure their digital communications along with those of a potential POTUS.

    This is a question of how US government, or a potential one, works, and how it should work in the future.

    The validity of outrage anyway vis-a-vis the Russians, is, to some extent, misplaced ( ..everyone's doin' it aren't they? For starters, recall the Time cover of' '96:

    http://content.time.com/time/covers/0,16641,19960715,00.html )

    [Jun 08, 2017] The Democrats' Davos ideology won't win back the midwest by Thomas Frank

    Notable quotes:
    "... The Glass Stegal repeal was passed under Clinton not Reagan. ..."
    "... Yep, the Dems would do well to drop the Russia/FBI swung the election thing and the all Red State inhabitants are poorly educated idiots mentality and concentrate on developing some policies that appeal to the majority of people. ..."
    "... There's a bit of bait 'n switch here. All this Davos/Deregulation/NeoLiberal whatever is a product of Republican -- right wing -- thinking. It first gained serious traction during the Reagan administration. The Democrats merely drifted into the vacuum formed by the Republican party lurching from Right/Center to Hard Right. Since then any drifting back has been subject to extreme criticism as 'socialism', 'communism' and the like. Now we're in the rather weird situation that the party of neoliberal economics is pushing the line that the Democrats are the party of entrenched money and they are the Party of the People. It beggars belief, especially when journalists take it up and run with it instead of calling the the BS that it is. ..."
    "... I am so glad that the Russians are responsible for electing Trump. It would be awful to think that it was because Democrats had a really, really bad candidate in Hillary Clinton. It just could not be -- she was, after all -- the MOST QUALIFIED PERSON EVER TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT, as we were instructed endlessly by Obama. Voters thought otherwise and their support for Trump was mainly to keep Hillary out, not to have a billionaire lunatic elected. But it would not matter since they all serve their master class bankers and war-makers. ..."
    "... Republicans starting with Reagan made refusing to enforce financial laws they did not like a policy. It was continued under Bush43/Cheney on speed. Regulator of mortgage brokers refused to let state AGs (including Maine) move against fraudsters and refused to act himself. Chris Cox ignored the risky complex financial products that tanked our economy. ..."
    "... Was Clinton an idiot to allow Rubin and Summers any where near financial market policy YES. Was Obama a bigger fool for bringing Summers into his admin- absolutely since he had already displayed financial incompetence at Harvard, YES. ..."
    Jun 04, 2017 | profile.theguardian.com

    Bogdanich -> lymans , 27 Apr 2017 16:06

    The Glass Stegal repeal was passed under Clinton not Reagan.

    Reagan did the Savings & Loan deregulation which led to the S&L bailout under G.W. Bush during which they prosecuted over 1,000 bank executives and got convictions including five sitting senators with four forced resignations.

    After Clinton did the deregulation that led to the financial crisis and Obama prosecuted zero, let me say that again, zero, bank executives and provided $9 trillion in bailout liquidity.

    Bogdanich , 27 Apr 2017 16:02
    They can offer the illusion with the proper candidate but with the same congressmen and senators that currently hold the seats none of the substance.
    Etienne LeCompte , 27 Apr 2017 15:15
    Take Amtrak between Chicago and Washington DC and witness wreckage of heartland industry along a corridor 800 miles long. People still live there, forgotten. Bernie Sanders is not finished. Listen to him; and put yourself up for election locally, on a Park District board; or a Township position; as an Election Judge or for County or State office. And listen to your neighbors, who are suffering. Then do something about it. When I ran for State Representative, the Democratic Party sent me a highlighted map instead of a check for my campaign. The map showed "70% Republican" voting registration in my State Representative district. No Party cash for my campaign was forthcoming. The only way to change this Gerrymandering is to be on-hand in the State House following the next decennial census in 2020. It will be "too late" to do anything -- again -- unless "we" change the Party; and the Party changes the re-districting scam. Bernie Sanders is right about pitching in to re-shape and re-form the Democratic Party. The Party, as constructed, is passé... and as hollowed-out as the miles and miles of decrepit buildings with thousands of gaping, broken windows that lie between Chicago and DC. Go see the devastation for yourself. Then get serious about answers.
    namjodh , 27 Apr 2017 14:05
    Yep, the Dems would do well to drop the Russia/FBI swung the election thing and the all Red State inhabitants are poorly educated idiots mentality and concentrate on developing some policies that appeal to the majority of people.

    I'm going to sound like a broken record, but Identity Politics has FAILED. The Dems are not going to cobble together some sort of Ruling Coalition out of Transgendered people and urban people of color. That's an insane strategy of hoping you will win national elections by appealing to 25% or less of the population of whom only half that number actually vote if you are lucky.

    I'm not saying abandon those struggles. Under a just system those struggles will continue and prevail - the Constitution guarantees that unless you get dishonest justices on the Supreme Court - which seems more likely the more national elections you blow. Democrats need to stop worrying about narrow single issues like that and focus on developing a BROAD national strategy to appeal to the Majority of Americans.

    So says the guy from Punjab who is NOT a poorly educated white person and who has voted Democrat since 1980.

    martinusher , 27 Apr 2017 13:09
    There's a bit of bait 'n switch here. All this Davos/Deregulation/NeoLiberal whatever is a product of Republican -- right wing -- thinking. It first gained serious traction during the Reagan administration. The Democrats merely drifted into the vacuum formed by the Republican party lurching from Right/Center to Hard Right. Since then any drifting back has been subject to extreme criticism as 'socialism', 'communism' and the like. Now we're in the rather weird situation that the party of neoliberal economics is pushing the line that the Democrats are the party of entrenched money and they are the Party of the People. It beggars belief, especially when journalists take it up and run with it instead of calling the the BS that it is.

    The problem with the Rust Belt states is that they keep on electing Republican state governments. These fail to deliver on anything useful for working people -- they're more interested in entrenching their power by tweaking the elections -- but then people turn to the Federal government as if this is some kind of savior capable of turning around their fortunes overnight.

    Anyway, don't take my word for it. Just keep electing those regressive state legislators (and keep drinking that tainted water....).

    --
    Claudius hureharehure , 27 Apr 2017 13:02
    Great comment on the article, but I think even you have been kind in your criticism of it. I can only hope that the writer started out with the intention of saying that while the GOP and their rich and big business political patrons are responsible for the impoverishment of those in the article, the Democrats have missed out on messaging and on more specific policies that addresses those wrongs committed against a voting block they can own. Instead the entire piece is written as though the Democrats have earned the scorn and anger of these voters. One can argue the Democrats have failed to focus more on the plight of these voters, but they are NOT the cause of these voters' plight; and there is nothing in this piece to make that distinction or about the irony of why these same voters flock to a political party primarily responsible for what has happened to them. In fact consider this below from the article:

    "Mention how the Democrats betrayed working people over the years, however, and the radio station's board immediately lights up with enthusiastic callers. "

    Yes, that is right! The political anomaly that Trump is can be be explained by the successful exploitation of the improvised classes by media outlets that voice these voters' anger to acquire a capture audience and then lay the blame for what has happened to them on immigrants & liberals. You never hear anything on those outlets about the unholy triad of the GOP political class, big business and media outlets in their orbit. I don't need to drive through these flyover states to know they are hurting; and I don't need to sit down with them to know they are real human beings with a great deal in common with me or to know that despite their general decency they are full of misplaced anger and resentment.

    CivilDiscussion , 27 Apr 2017 13:21
    I am so glad that the Russians are responsible for electing Trump. It would be awful to think that it was because Democrats had a really, really bad candidate in Hillary Clinton. It just could not be -- she was, after all -- the MOST QUALIFIED PERSON EVER TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT, as we were instructed endlessly by Obama. Voters thought otherwise and their support for Trump was mainly to keep Hillary out, not to have a billionaire lunatic elected. But it would not matter since they all serve their master class bankers and war-makers.
    kmtominey1923 , 27 Apr 2017 13:01
    Interesting he choices of examples for how liberals let the mid west down. Republican president Reagan deregulated S&Ls with predictable awful results. Republicans under Clinton (they controlled the Senate and house ) when Glass Steagsll was repealed. Republic Phil Gramm also rescinded the AntiBucket Shop Law which loosed the disaster of the naked CDS,

    Republicans starting with Reagan made refusing to enforce financial laws they did not like a policy. It was continued under Bush43/Cheney on speed. Regulator of mortgage brokers refused to let state AGs (including Maine) move against fraudsters and refused to act himself. Chris Cox ignored the risky complex financial products that tanked our economy.

    It was Republican Sen. Phil Gramm who said in hearings on CSPAN that these instruments of financial mass destruction (Warren Buffet's words) were too complicated to understand and therefore should not be regulated.

    Republicans wanted to free up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to buy subprime even NINJA loans and made it so.

    Was Clinton an idiot to allow Rubin and Summers any where near financial market policy YES. Was Obama a bigger fool for bringing Summers into his admin- absolutely since he had already displayed financial incompetence at Harvard, YES.

    But, it is republicans who either drove the bad financial ideas or controlled them. Republicans who support IRS rules and their laws that promote off shoring jobs and stashing cash untaxed off shore.

    Eisenhower, Goldwater, Ford, Bush41 - even Nixon - would not know these people.

    zolotoy Atomic Girl , 27 Apr 2017 12:16
    Oh, and as for the rest of the party and its defeats: A quick look at the numbers show that Democrats keep losing not because voters are switching to the Republican brand, but because they no longer bother to vote for Democrats who are just going to shiv them in the back with Republican economic policies.
    JayThomas , 27 Apr 2017 12:16

    Will they stand up to the money power?

    You mean the people who pay $400,000 for a speech?

    zolotoy Atomic Girl , 27 Apr 2017 12:15

    But now liberals and the Democratic Party are to get the lion's share of the blame for everything?

    As I've said on numerous occasions in the past: The reason Trump beat Hillary is the same reason Obama beat her in the 2008 primaries: Voters knew her and what she stood for -- and so were willing to take a chance on the other candidate.
    joAnn chartier zolotoy , 27 Apr 2017 12:55
    Thank you for the Abramson reminder -- as a retired journalist I know the importance of providing clear and accurate information to the general public. While Abramson and Frank and others are writing Opinion in the Guard and elsewhere, too many people do not understand positioning and propaganda. Media must make money to stay in business and often it is opinion writers/tv hosts etc that generate interest and coin to keep the words rolling and the money coming in.

    It is especially ironic as wages are cut, jobs disappear, cost of living rises so fewer people can afford to subscribe or pay for actual news and information. Not to mention the political idiocy of reducing school funding so that the electorate knows nothing of history or how politics works.

    Trump wants to take us back to Ronnie Reagan and Maggie Thatcher years that left us with trillion dollar deficits and decimation of the middle class that is now on the downward slide to actual poverty...

    MightyBuccaneer , 27 Apr 2017 12:07
    The People should really start to regularly book politicians for 400k speeches after they leave office.

    The People should create an army of lobbyists that constantly meet and mingle with politicians in Washington to make their wishes known.

    The People should up their campaign and Superpac spending.

    The People should create a newspaper devoted to there interests that can rival the NYT and the WaPo.

    Then, and only then, will there be populism, from any party.

    Annabel1968 Jabr , 27 Apr 2017 12:05
    No, it is a crap comment. From the neo-liberal 'pseudo science' that economics supposedly is (almost forgot to use the word neo-liberal, a must these days to make your point) , to the greed and the rapacity of the "one percenters".

    Such a simple problem isn't it? Let's just go back in time rather than find more creative and up-to-date solution for the problems there are. Globalisation isn't going to go away, the world is too small a place. Globalisation has created problems for people, but many more people have benefitted from it.

    Atomic Girl , 27 Apr 2017 11:33
    "The wreckage that you see every day as you tour this part of the country is the utterly predictable fruit of the Democratic party's neoliberal turn. Every time our liberal leaders signed off on some lousy trade deal, figuring that working-class people had "nowhere else to go," they were making what happened last November a little more likely. "
    ---

    As someone who's middle aged, I am getting sick and tired of this historical revisionist nonsense that all the country's woes and economic climate can be mostly pinned on the liberals and that somehow, it's something that they did wrong that is the reason why they "lost" constituents in the Midwest. Someone can peddle this nonsense over and over again with the smug belief that everyone on on the internet is too young to know whether what he's saying is true. But there are some of us "old folks" who are also on the internet and as an old folk, I have no issues calling out this article out for the nonsense that it is.

    Everything that is going on now in terms of jobs can be 100% attributable to Reaganomics--period, end of. It's nothing to do with liberals. It's 100% to do with the devastating rippling effect that his neoliberal policies has had on the country since the 1980s, only made 100x worse by Republican pols who have been further carrying out his neoliberalist agenda to full effect for the past several decades.

    It was under Reagan that the country began experiencing mass layoffs (euphemistically called "downsizing"). It was under Reagan that corporations began slashing benefits, cutting wages and closing up shop to ship thousands of jobs overseas. It was under Reagan that the middle class American dream died--aka, the expectation that if got a diploma, you could start working for a company full time straight out of college, work for decades with decent benefits and perks, save up enough money to buy a house and retire with a generous pension. Gone. All gone.

    Remember the "Buy American" grassroots campaign? That started in the 1980s, precisely because under Reagan, the country had relied increasingly on imported goods at the expense of domestic manufacturing. Here's an actual article from 1989 that shows you that the roots of everything going on now started decades ago. It's actually a defeatist article telling people to *stop* wasting their time to get everyone to "Buy American" because it had become virtually impossible to buy American-made goods.

    "Not Easy to 'Buy American'"
    https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1243&dat=19891227&id=Bm8PAAAAIBAJ&sjid=HYcDAAAAIBAJ&pg=2971,6271486

    As for the idea that there's always been a staunchly"Democratic" following in the Midwest that has been "lost" because of something that the party is doing wrong and that this caused them to turn to populism? False. It may have been true a very long time ago that this constituency has been staunchly Democratic and not amenable to populism, but not recently. It has voted on populist platforms before. Remember "welfare queens?" Remember "Willie Horton?" Willie Horton, the black bogeyman, was the "bad hombres" of today.

    In addition, this constituency has been increasingly voting against its best interests for decades since Reagan was voted into office. Why? Because demagogues like Rush Limbaugh and the large number of puppets at Rupert Murdoch's vast media empire have been selling them a bill of goods since the 1990s that the reason why they're becoming poorer is that liberals are giving all their "white" hard-earned money to shiftless, lazy blacks and immigrants and losing out to them because of affirmative action. In the famous words of South Park, "THEY TOOK R JERBS" and "IT'S ALL DUH LIBRUHL'S FAULTS!!"

    This constituency has developed such a deep-seated hatred and loathing for liberals because of the demagogues at FOX or news radio that even when Michael Moore directly spoke to their plight in Roger and Me, they derided him as a typical Communist-loving, anti-Capitalist pinko. Because, you see, according to FOX demagogues, calling out rich corporate fatcats who also happen to be white is attacking white people, a form of class warfare and anti-Capitalist.

    Given all that, for someone to try to paint a picture that this constituency would otherwise be embracing liberalism if not for the Democratic Party adopting an "ideology" is laughable. They were never going to win because anything short of ranting, "They took r jerbs" and "Damned brown people on welfare and illegals stealing taking all our money" was going to cost them the election.

    Bottom line, the Midwest was never the liberals' or Democratic Party's constituency to lose, and Reagan is behind all of the economic devastation that the region is experiencing. Anyone else trying to say otherwise is just using spin and historical revisionism.

    zolotoy Joel Marcuson , 27 Apr 2017 11:28
    That's exactly what America needs -- another neocon/neolib, just like Macron! As if Obama and the Clintons hadn't been neocon/neolib enough! Reply Share
    fan143 , 27 Apr 2017 11:28
    Frank is right that the white working class in the Midwestern states have been the swing votes for presidential elections since the Reagan election of 1984, when the white Democratic South became more fully the white Republican South. But he is wrong in not recognizing that the Democratic Party has three major constituents and it needs all of them to win elections and to do the progressive things while in office that would help people like those in the Midwest. Democrats need the votes of the white working class, but also of race/ethnic minorities, and the "new class" professionals and others. The problem is that these groups have been fighting with each other since the 1960s, continually undermining the chances for Democrats to win. In the period of the Civil Rights Movement and the Vietnam War, students and professionals joined with race and ethnic minorities to challenge the influence of the unionists, big city mayors, and white working class in the Democratic Party, which is what gave us Nixon, Reagan, and the Bushes. Through this period, predictably, more white working class people either stopped voting or moved to the Republican Party. In the 2016 election, with the Bernie Sanders influence, students and professionals began to attack the influence of race and ethnic minorities (and women?) in the Democratic Party, ostensibly in support of the white working class over "identity politics," with the result that we got Trump. Globalization is a difficult and complex issue, but the reality is that since the 1970s the U.S. economy has not been able to prosper, nor the working class jobs that it requires, by selling things only in the U.S. We have to be in global markets and integrated with other economies around the world and that requires trade deals that balance our interests against those of other countries. This has generated winners and losers in the economy, and it will continue to do so. While it may not be possible to bring back the same kinds of jobs that pay a middle class wage for those with not much education, it should be possible to create new jobs that pay a middle class wage and to invest in education and skill development, infrastructure, and a welfare state that sustains people through periods of disruption and transformation. The Republican Party and the New Right that took it over are fighting to the death to undermine what is left of the social safety net to force people to take whatever jobs are available at exploitative wages, and they have been successful exploiting anti-government sentiment by using racial animosity and more recently anti-immigrant hysteria. The right has been successful because those on the left who should support the Democratic Party and then fight for more progressive policies within it just keep fighting each other and in the last election delivered Trump by voting third party (along with gutting of the Voting Rights Act, voter suppression, Russian influences that helped Sanders and vilified Hillary Clinton, the rogue FBI, Citizens United, and so on). The only option for the left in a two party system is to support the Democratic Party. Staying home or voting third party is a vote for your worst enemy. France is experiencing the same thing, with the left candidate refusing to support the more centrist candidate against Le Pen. We all need to learn how to form coalitions and to keep our focus on winning elections, not winning ideological battles.
    zolotoy ehmaybe , 27 Apr 2017 11:26
    Umm, the real goals of labor unions have been beach houses and new SUVs for labor leadership. Unions have been adept at screwing over their memberships since at least the 1970s -- no wonder they keep supporting anti-union Dims.
    MonotonousLanguor Jared Hall , 27 Apr 2017 10:51
    Maddow has to defend the Corporate Democratic Establishment any way she can. Maddow to my knowledge has never mentioned:

    Russia's largest bank, Sberbank, has confirmed that it hired the consultancy of Tony Podesta, the elder brother of John Podesta who chaired Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, for lobbying its interests in the United States.

    The two Russian banks spent more than $700,000 in 2016 on Washington lobbyists as they sought to end the U.S. sanctions, according to Senate lobbying disclosure forms and documents filed with the Department of Justice. The Podesta Group charged Sberbank $20,000 per month, plus expenses, on a contract from March through September 2016.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-03-09/russias-largest-bank-confirms-hiring-podesta-group-lobby-ending-sanctions

    [Jun 07, 2017] Microsoft Windows Server 2012 for Dummies and other proposals for the title of Hillary new book

    Notable quotes:
    "... Deplorable You. ..."
    "... Me, Myself and I. ..."
    "... I Came, I Saw, My Campaign Died. ..."
    "... I Came, I Saw, My Campaign Died. ..."
    "... I Maimed, I Whored, I Lied. ..."
    Jun 07, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
    Jen , , June 5, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    Title for Hillary's new book:

    The Terrible, Awful, Very Bad, No Good Campaign

    Tenantlaw , , June 5, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    Hillary's memoir should be called: "Stop Me Before I Kill Again"

    allan , , June 5, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    "Readers, can you help her out?"

    Deplorable You.

    Me, Myself and I.

    I Came, I Saw, My Campaign Died.

    Massinissa , , June 5, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    "I Came, I Saw, My Campaign Died"

    Roger Smith , , June 5, 2017 at 2:53 pm

    If I Did It: Alternative Tales of Absolution

    "The Ceiling's Concrete!": Hillary's Guide to Hardware (complete with a bad photoshop of her in a yellow hard hat, blue button up holding a hammer)

    The Electorate Shrugged

    John k , , June 5, 2017 at 4:00 pm

    Losing together.

    Jane , , June 5, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    "I Leaned In and Fell Over"

    olga , , June 5, 2017 at 5:34 pm

    That's a good one!

    Eudora Weldy , , June 5, 2017 at 8:04 pm

    What Difference Does It Make?

    integer , , June 5, 2017 at 11:25 pm

    I Came, I Saw, My Campaign Died.

    Alternatively:

    I Maimed, I Whored, I Lied.

    Clive , , June 5, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    Hillary's book:

    "She Stoops to Conquer"

    "I Flirted With Victory But He Gave Me the Cold Shoulder"

    "That Craazyman Promised Me a Ten Bagger and I Like a Fool Believed Him"

    "Pantsuits for Beginners"

    "Microsoft Windows Server 2012 for Dummies"

    Lambert Strether Post author , , June 5, 2017 at 2:56 pm

    > "Microsoft Windows Server 2012 for Dummies"

    +1000!

    ex-PFC Chuck , , June 5, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    "It Takes A Pillage"

    jsn , , June 5, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    "The Russians are Comey"

    Knifecatcher , , June 5, 2017 at 2:58 pm

    With apologies to Barry O:

    "The Audacity of Nope"

    Anon , June 5, 2017 at 4:01 pm

    Hillary's Book Titles:

    "1.2 Billion Ways to Lose"

    "Like, With a Cloth or Something?: Story of My Campaign"

    "It's My Turn to Squander"

    "Onward Together into the Woods"

    "How to Have Massive Media Backing and Still Lose – Kinda the Story of My Campaign"

    John k , June 5, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    Angry Bird

    Eureka Springs , June 5, 2017 at 7:10 pm

    Hair On Fire

    Sore Loser

    With a – re re re re re re re re introduction of Myself

    It's My Pity Party (And I'll *itch Slap Everyone I Want Too)

    Putin On A Fit

    Red Mist In My Eye

    Hypocrisy Now!

    Neo Karma

    Me Me Meeeeee

    Uranium Homesick Blues

    sd , June 6, 2017 at 1:23 am

    It's Still My Turn

    funemployed , June 5, 2017 at 4:26 pm

    "I'm with Me"

    "Wronger Together"

    "The Unbearable Lightness of Being the Most Qualified Person Evah"

    "Do I Dream of Electric Deplorables? (I do, of killing them with drones)"

    "Ozywomandias"

    "Something Deplorable this way Comes"

    "The Fountain@$$"

    "The Great Patsy"

    "The Third Coming"

    JerseyJeffersonian , June 5, 2017 at 7:31 pm

    "Ozywomandias"

    I met a traveller from an antique land
    Who said: `Two vast and trunkless cankles of stone
    Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
    Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
    And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
    Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
    Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
    The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
    And on the pedestal these words appear -
    "My name is Ozywomandias, queen of queens:
    Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
    Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
    Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
    The lone and level sands stretch far away.

    [Jun 07, 2017] New Cold War which is continued by Democrats is damaging the Democratic party

    They became the party of neocons and defense establishment. The party of MIC lobbyists. nothing to do with the democracy.
    Notable quotes:
    "... What, pray tell, is the Democratic Party's message otherwise? That they don't like Russia, except when they did? That they believe Russia is the biggest national security threat to America, except when it wasn't? ..."
    "... Where the rubber meets the road for me is in the total abrogation of interest in controlling state legislatures and governorships. This is the level of governance where not only Congressional districting is decided, but also where influential policies and laws such as insurance regulation and such happens. ..."
    consortiumnews.com

    "The top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee said Sunday there is no "smoking gun" so far showing collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign in an effort to influence the 2016 election, adding that hearings this week will be crucial to congressional investigations into the matter" [ Wall Street Journal ]. "'Listen, there's a lot of smoke. We have no smoking gun at this point,' Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia said on CNN on Sunday. 'But there is a lot of smoke.'" Named sources with evidence the public can see would be nice, especially considering that some Democrats frame Russian "meddling" as a casus belli . I mean, in both the Gulf of Tonkin and the Iraq WMDs, the administration that wanted war had the common decency to fake some physical evidence; they didn't rely on anonymous "officials," "17 intelligence agencies," and so forth. (Oh, the word now seems to be "colluding." It used to be "meddling.")

    "The Latest: France says no trace of Russian hacking Macron" [ AP ]. I'm so old I remember when that was a done deal. Everybody believed it!

    "A Noun, a Verb and Vladimir Putin" [ Politico ]. "To those with a bit of distance from cable news-that is, every sane person in America-Democrats seem to be replaying the exact strategy that lost them the last election. What, pray tell, is the Democratic Party's message otherwise? That they don't like Russia, except when they did? That they believe Russia is the biggest national security threat to America, except when it wasn't? Democrats appear to have spent about two minutes trying to figure out why the voters of Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania and, very nearly, Minnesota rejected them only a few months ago. And why, despite an ostensibly popular Obama presidency, they now have less political power than at any point in memory. But this is hard and painful spadework, and what's unearthed might prove unpleasant. So why bother?"

    Realignment and Legitimacy

    "'We call for a #MarchForTruth on Saturday, June 3rd to raise our voices and let our elected leaders know that Americans want answers,' the site reads

    . 'The legitimacy of our democracy is more important than the interests of any party, or any President" [ Time ].

    Democrats doubling down on Russia. Crowd sizes: Chicago, hundreds ; Washington, DC, a thousand ; New York, hundreds .

    "A Field of Lavender Nourished by Trump's Tweets" [ HyperAllergic ]. "Using a Raspberry Pi, [artist Martin] Roth has synced grow lights on the small room's ceiling so the strength of their bulbs corresponds with the activities of nearly two dozen Twitter accounts. Most belong to people in President Trump's closest circle: feeds included along with @POTUS and @realDonaldTrump are those of Press Secretary Sean Spicer and White House counselor Kellyanne Conway. Other accounts represent the mainstream media, from CNN to Fox News. When any of these accounts retweets a tweet, the grow lights brighten, increasing in power if there's a flurry of retweets With all of this curious wiring, Roth intends to create a sort of underground retreat that transforms our media-born anxieties into something therapeutic.

    Lavender has long been used to soothe the mind and encourage better sleep in addition to healing physical wounds; the more these select politicians and pundits fire tweets, the stronger the scent to the installation's visitors ." You can visit the exhibit until June 21 if you are in the New York City area; here are the details .

    "RONALD REAGAN, THE FIRST REALITY TV STAR PRESIDENT" [ JSTOR ].

    "'Politics in the United States has always been a performance art,' writes Tim Raphael in his analysis of the branding and image-crafting that now dominate our political system . Throughout his eight years as president, Ronald Reagan had much more positive poll numbers (60-70%) as a person than did his actual policies (40%). Raphael attributes Reagan's success to the potent combination of advertising, public relations, and a television in every home. (There were 14,000 TVs in America in 1947; by 1954, 32 million; by 1962, 90% of American homes plugged in.) Ronald, Nancy, and four-year-old Patti were TV's 'first all-electric family' with 'electric servants' making magic as the folks at home watched and dreamed of the good life as seen on television."

    oho , June 5, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    >>Article lists Biden, Warren, cites Mike Allen approvingly on Kirsten Gillibrand, Mark Cuban (!), ..

    The Democrats have no bench. That's what you get when one circle of cronies has controlled the DNC apparatus since 1992. (even Obama is a partially Clinton creation as Obama's political career was propelled by William Daley, a Bill Clinton Chief of Staff)

    neo-realist , June 5, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    The DNC had some potential to build a bench when Howard Dean was running the show through his 50 state strategy with its grass roots level organizing in the states and its success in winning majorities in both houses. Opportunity that had the potential to bring new younger blood into the party and have them move up the food chain. Guess Barack and Rahm got too scared of the left getting the upper hand and scaring the big donors away, so they brought in stiffs like Tim Kaine and DWS to keep the donors happy, even at the expense of congressional majorities and bench building.

    JerseyJeffersonian , June 5, 2017 at 7:14 pm

    Where the rubber meets the road for me is in the total abrogation of interest in controlling state legislatures and governorships. This is the level of governance where not only Congressional districting is decided, but also where influential policies and laws such as insurance regulation and such happens.

    The Democrat party is all about centralized power in Washington. This enhances the effectiveness of Congressional grifting; toll gates ahead, mofos. To them states should only be administrative districts of the Federal government.

    Whoops, it's a federal republic; more limited than in the past due to overreach through the Interstate Commerce Clause expansion over time, and through the Feds' propensity to declare war on everything which has the effect of giving them primacy on matters that could equally well, or perhaps in a superior fashion, be addressed on a state (or even local) level.

    When the centralizing strategy comes a cropper, they have so disempowered themselves on the state level, that they got nothin'. Well, not them personally, 'cause they have generally seen to that aspect; but the citizens who might be habitual Democrat voters, and who favor old-school Democrat priorities are rude, screwed, and tattooed.

    Take a bow, assholes.

    [Jun 07, 2017] Hillary was so corrupt and her judgment and actions so bad, that there was a never-ending stram of bad news about her. In no way they were fake news

    Notable quotes:
    "... I posted 99% anti-Hillary material. It consisted mostly of newspaper articles about many issues, ranging from her support for a right wing coup in Honduras that resulted in an escalation of violence, to her massive pay to play at the State Dept, to her disastrous regime change attempts in Libya and Syria (not to mention her support for the coup in Ukraine and the installation of a Neo Nazi regime). There were also many articles about her numerous campaign promise betrayals, such as her support for bad trade deals with Colombia, South Korea, and Singapore, despite her promises to oppose these (her change of position re: Colombia was after getting a $10 million donation). These articles were all from mainstream sources, including The Nation, The Hill, even the NYT. ..."
    "... The thing is, Hillary was so corrupt and her judgment and actions so bad, that there was a seemingly never-ending wealth of bad things to post about her. It wasn't fake news, it was the actual historical record of her dastardly deeds. It wasn't just I who did this. This is what folks on FB and other social media sites did throughout. She probably would refer to what we all posted as "fake news" because she psychopathically denies the truth on a continual basis. ..."
    "... Keep in mind that I had not mentioned where I'd gotten my information; I simply said I had done broad research of St. Hillary's history and found it bore little to no resemblance to what the media said about her. ..."
    "... When I patiently explained this (and added my journalist's credentials), the attack-cultist then switched to their second favorite: I support Trump, and am guilty of his election. I don't know how long she kept on posting her foam-mouthed mantras, because I departed using my standard response: I no longer engage in battles of facts with unarmed opponents. ..."
    Jun 07, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
    Anonymous , June 5, 2017 at 9:30 pm

    Lots of people, including myself, created FB accounts solely to post material related to the 2016 Democratic Primary and the election. I have just under 5,000 friends on FB, all of whom are "friends in Bernie."

    I posted 99% anti-Hillary material. It consisted mostly of newspaper articles about many issues, ranging from her support for a right wing coup in Honduras that resulted in an escalation of violence, to her massive pay to play at the State Dept, to her disastrous regime change attempts in Libya and Syria (not to mention her support for the coup in Ukraine and the installation of a Neo Nazi regime). There were also many articles about her numerous campaign promise betrayals, such as her support for bad trade deals with Colombia, South Korea, and Singapore, despite her promises to oppose these (her change of position re: Colombia was after getting a $10 million donation). These articles were all from mainstream sources, including The Nation, The Hill, even the NYT.

    The thing is, Hillary was so corrupt and her judgment and actions so bad, that there was a seemingly never-ending wealth of bad things to post about her. It wasn't fake news, it was the actual historical record of her dastardly deeds. It wasn't just I who did this. This is what folks on FB and other social media sites did throughout. She probably would refer to what we all posted as "fake news" because she psychopathically denies the truth on a continual basis.

    kimsarah , June 5, 2017 at 11:18 pm

    So please tell us your Russian connections.

    Elizabeth Burton , June 6, 2017 at 3:24 pm

    It consisted mostly of newspaper articles about many issues, ranging from her support for a right wing coup in Honduras that resulted in an escalation of violence, to her massive pay to play at the State Dept, to her disastrous regime change attempts in Libya and Syria (not to mention her support for the coup in Ukraine and the installation of a Neo Nazi regime).

    Funny you should mention. I responded to yet another episode of Russian hysteria yesterday and was immediately attacked by a Clinton cultist. Understand, this woman had no idea who I am and clearly didn't bother to find out. I said something against St. Hillary, and was therefore the enemy. Of course, the basis of her attack was that my sources of information were all "fake news."

    Keep in mind that I had not mentioned where I'd gotten my information; I simply said I had done broad research of St. Hillary's history and found it bore little to no resemblance to what the media said about her.

    When I patiently explained this (and added my journalist's credentials), the attack-cultist then switched to their second favorite: I support Trump, and am guilty of his election. I don't know how long she kept on posting her foam-mouthed mantras, because I departed using my standard response: I no longer engage in battles of facts with unarmed opponents.

    [Jun 04, 2017] beccabunny09

    Jun 04, 2017 | profile.theguardian.com
    TheCubanGentlemen , 27 Apr 2017 10:42 Sorry Mr. Cuban but Barney has a point. Sympathy for criminals? How about a system that extracts wealth by taking family members that have made a mistake hostage. Private prisons are incredibly corrupt. They pay their guards $7 an hour, barely train them and then throw them into a hellhole of starved and abused prisoners, prisoners who's families are charged $2-5 a MINUTE to talk to them! Prisoners who are charged for laundry, for new underwear, for sanitary napkins, for extra food anything they can, they charge them for, all to meet a higher quarterly profit. If they work, prisoners get only .25 an hour! Menawhile, the items they make get a proud MADE IN AMERICA sticker and sold at a premium netting the company MORE money. This is a direct threat to DEMOCRACY! Why not contract our work to prisons with no liability and infinitesimal wages to lower costs. Gee, doesn't that sounds like a threat to low skilled workers?! Everything matters because EVERYTHING IS CONNECTED!!! -- , iamwhiskerbiscuit Ramus , 27 Apr 2017 09:35
    Very little differences between neoncons and neoliberals these days. They're both in Goldman Saacs corner, they both support war even when they claim otherwise during their election... Both laugh at the idea of emulating countries that offer free Healthcare, free college, higher minimum wage and lower cost of living. Bush tax policy = Obama tax policy. Bush stance on war = Obama stance on war. Whats the difference? Abortion and gun rights. That's pretty much all thats different. Pro militarist, world police, globalists who favor a regressive tax system. Don't like it? Don't vote... You have no say in this debate.
    , Hmpstdhth , 27 Apr 2017 09:17
    Yes, the Democratic Party are essentially corporate shills who talk pretty to the poor and oppressed and then serve their corporate masters. But that isn't why people voted against them. That would be assuming some sort of political sophistication among the masses. It is rather, IMHO, the corporate owned media in the form of AM radio, cable and local news outlets, and most local newspapers who either report on nothing that might change the status quo or are actual propaganda outlets for the ultra right. The fact that Fox news and right wing radio is the background music of mid America, should not be discounted. And secondly, the seizure of nearly all of the church pulpits by the 'religious' right. People vote the way their pastor tells them to vote. This isn't rocket science. When there is a coup, the first order of business has always been to seize the radio and TV stations. Bernie who ?

    --

    , Monesque , 27 Apr 2017 09:09
    In a close election, there is something of everything. But this concept that the election turned on these displaced workers is hilarious. In truth, we've been talking about things like this since the 70s or before. Why now? Because now, a wave of xenophobia and racism swept the world and that was the wave Trump rode to office. Many of his so-called displaced workers overlap with those groups. Add the religious evangelicals. That's how Trump won... take away the evangelicals, take away the racists, take away the xenophobes, take away the screaming about the Mexican this, the Muslims that, the Syrians, the pandering to far-right groups who in the past were considered the underbelly of the country..and Trump doesn't have a chance. This is a man with Mike Pence as vice president. This is a man who brings people like Steve Bannon into the administration. That's how he won and that's how he remains popular with his base. The rest is an illusion
    , iamwhiskerbiscuit , 27 Apr 2017 09:00
    What happens to those good old days when a job could support an entire family? Reagan happened. Massive tax cuts for the wealthy, building up our military 10 times as big as the next largest military, deregulating banks and brokerage... Then Clinton continued to deregulate further. Then Bush brought about more tax cuts for the rich and Obama kept his tax policy on place. In 68, a minimum wage worker with 3 kids fell 500 dollars above the poverty line. (5,000 in today's money). Today, a minimum wage worker with 3 kids falls 10,000 below the poverty line. And the neocon/neoliberal answer to that is women must work, single people need roommates and the wealthy need tax relief. What a load of crap.
    , Ramus , 27 Apr 2017 08:57
    The Democratic Party is still owned and operated by the Wall Street, fossil fuel and war interests. The fact that the DNC installed Tom Perez, who is not inspired by the idea of health care as a human right, is telling. The DNC is the enemy of lower-middle class working (or non-working) people. The DNC nominated the candidate least likely to win over Trump. The Democrats need to send their bank/war/oil candidates to the Republicans. We need a whole new truly progressive party..but since our governement has been sold to the highest bidder, it make take some unpleasantness in the streets to achieve power over the special interests. And EVERYONE must vote EVERY TIME.
    , soundofthesuburbs , 27 Apr 2017 08:55
    The problem is US elites, who are only exceptional in their stupidity.

    "Income inequality is not killing capitalism in the United States, but rent-seekers like the banking and the health-care sectors just might" Nobel-winning economist Angus Deaton

    The exceptionally stupid US elite are going for the easy money and destroying their nation.

    Its elites are always rigging stuff in their favour and forgetting the reality they have hidden.

    There is a huge difference between wealth creation and wealth extraction, but today we have no idea of even the concept of wealth extraction.

    Well, one of our 21st Century Nobel prize winning economists, Angus Deaton, has just remembered the problem.

    The Classical Economists of the 19th Century were only too aware of the two sides of capitalism, the productive side where wealth creation takes place and the parasitic side where wealth extraction takes place.

    The US was a key player in developing neoclassical economics and it's what we use today.

    It looks after the interests of the old money, idle rich rentiers.

    The distinction between "earned" income (wealth creation) and "unearned" income (wealth extraction) disappears and the once separate areas of "capital" and "land" are conflated. The old money, idle rich rentiers are now just productive members of society and not parasites riding on the back of other people's hard work.

    It happens at the end of the late 19th and early 20th Centuries, but doesn't blow up until the 21st century when the exceptionally stupid US elite have forgotten what they have done.

    Monetary theory has been regressing for the last one hundred years.

    Credit creation theory -> fractional reserve theory -> financial intermediation theory

    " banks make their profits by taking in deposits and lending the funds out at a higher rate of interest" Paul Krugman, 2015.

    One of today's Nobel Prize winning economists spouting today's nonsense.

    Progress in monetary theory has been in the reverse direction, leading to many of today's problems.

    There was massive debt and money creation in the US leading up to the 2008 bust:

    http://www.whichwayhome.com/skin/frontend/default/wwgcomcatalogarticles/images/articles/whichwayhomes/US-money-supply.jpg

    The fools forgot the reality they hid.

    Get back to the Classical Economists to learn how you tax "unearned" income to provide subsidized housing, healthcare, education and other services to provide a low cost economy whose workforce isn't priced out of the global market place.

    When you understand money you can see in the money supply when Wall Street is getting really stupid and about to blow up the economy.

    , BarneyDee , 27 Apr 2017 08:45
    Throughout history, the "people" were ruled by the powerful even if the powerful were idiots, thieves, rapists and murderers. Times have changed. People don't accept that anymore. But if Democrats have made a blanket error it was in assuming that everyone sees the world as they do, and in assuming that everyone is a rational being committed to the ideals of a republic. Clearly that is not the case. And the "people" want leaders, not pals. They want security. Democrats need a person who combines the guile of a Machiavelli with the smarts of an Obama and the steel fist of a Cromwell. Thing is, under such conditions, it's doubtful if the "people" are governable anymore, in the sense of making decisions based on reality as opposed to a combination of superstition, myth, and misinformation. Oh, and vanity is an important factor: ask Susan Sarandon and her proxy vote for Trump--she voted for Stein.
    , marshwren Martyn Richard Jones , 27 Apr 2017 08:20
    It was the DLC ("Democrats Led by Clintons") that brought the DP to its current condition of self-satisfied atrophy and irrelevance by embracing Davos "meritocracy" and neo-liberal economics combined with neo-conservative foreign policy for the past 30 years. They sealed their fate by turning the Party (DNC, DSCC, DCCC, DGA, most state committees) into stale and pale imitations of Reagan's GOP; and Party 'leaders' are far too comfortable with their own sense of entitlement to power and wealth to understand either the fallacies of their tunnel vision, or the consequences (like electing Trump and keeping the GOP in control of Congress and most states) of their blinkered myopia.
    The only hope for the DP is to let the genuine 'progressives' (aka the socialist/green 'left') take over management of the political apparatus because what passes for 'liberalism' these days is no longer an electoral/policy option, at least as far as the electorate is concerned. And all the early indications are that the from the DNC down the Party establishment is more concerned about stamping out the Bernie Bro and Ho heresies than defeating Republicans.
    , greenwichite , 27 Apr 2017 06:44
    Our politicians have been brainwashed by neoliberal economists.

    These economists produce models that factor-in all the upsides to globalisation, but fail to model any of the crippling, expensive-to-treat consequences of shutting down entire towns in places like Michigan or Lancashire.

    They assume people live frictionless lives; that when the European ship-building industry moves to Poland, riveters in Portsmouth can just up-sticks and move to Gdansk with no problem. They encourage a narrative that implies such an English riveter are lazy if he fails to seize this opportunity.

    (Let's drop a few economists in Gdansk with £100 in their pockets, and see how their families do.)

    Economics is a corrupt pseudo-science that gives a pseudo-scientific justification for the greed and rapacity of One Percenters. Its methodological flaws are glaring. It's time economists went back to the social science faculty, where they belong.

    [Jun 03, 2017] Putin hits on false flag operation to implicate Russians

    Notable quotes:
    "... "The most important this is that we don't do that on government level," he said. "Secondly, I can imagine that some purposefully does that, building the chain of these attacks in a way to make it seem that Russia is the source of these attacks. Modern technology allows to do that quite easily." ..."
    "... On high level like in case of Iranian hacks only state actors can operate. But they are not needed with such suckers like completely incompetent and arrogant Hillary. Here anybody suffice and that can be "lesser states" hostile to Russia (such as Ukraine, or Estonia) or even the USA agencies themselves (false flag operation) ..."
    "... The level of incompetence demonstrated by "bathroom server" saga is simply staggering, to say the least: State Department essentially is as close to a security agency as one could get: they took over some former CIA functions ("color revolutions" is one such function) and generally they work in close cooperation. And this close cooperation is typical not only for the USA. But here we have a server in comparison with which many colleges email server installations are paragons of security. ..."
    Jun 02, 2017 |

    http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/01/politics/russia-putin-hackers-election/index.html

    It contain even more important quote about how Russia can be intentionally framed:

    While he maintained Thursday that the Russian government wasn't behind the attacks, he said hackers anywhere could make their efforts appear like they came from the state.

    "The most important this is that we don't do that on government level," he said. "Secondly, I can imagine that some purposefully does that, building the chain of these attacks in a way to make it seem that Russia is the source of these attacks. Modern technology allows to do that quite easily."

    And there is some evidence in favor of his hypothesis

    1. On high level like in case of Iranian hacks only state actors can operate. But they are not needed with such suckers like completely incompetent and arrogant Hillary. Here anybody suffice and that can be "lesser states" hostile to Russia (such as Ukraine, or Estonia) or even the USA agencies themselves (false flag operation)

    The level of incompetence demonstrated by "bathroom server" saga is simply staggering, to say the least: State Department essentially is as close to a security agency as one could get: they took over some former CIA functions ("color revolutions" is one such function) and generally they work in close cooperation. And this close cooperation is typical not only for the USA. But here we have a server in comparison with which many colleges email server installations are paragons of security.

    And her staff incompetence was also simply amazing. IMHO they all were criminally incompetent.

    To hack such idiots for state actors is highly unusual -- they instantly suspect that this is a mousetrap, so called honeypot.

    2. As for "gullible Podesta" he was such a joke that it hurts; this idiot (with very strange inclinations) did not even managed to buy a $15 USB security key that Google provides for two factor authentication.

    https://arstechnica.com/security/2014/10/google-offers-usb-security-key-to-make-bad-passwords-moot/

    Here too "state actor" would think that this is a trap. To give up password for nothing. For the "grey cardinal" of DNC ? You are kidding.

    2. Doublethink demonstrated in this case suggest nefarious goals. Of course, Hillary bathroom server hacks are disputed. Both by Hillary and MSM :-). Who simultaneously are convinced about DNC hacks ;-).

    This is really from 1984: "Doublethink is the act of simultaneously accepting two mutually contradictory beliefs as correct, often in distinct social contexts." (Wikipedia)

    3. There is a more plausible version about DNC "hack", which is swiped under the rag. That it was actually a leak, not hack and it involves Seth Rich. Here it is even more probably that Russian are framed. Nobody in MSM wants to touch this theme. How one would explain such a lack interest to what is really sensational material? By the State Department talking points?

    4. Also now we know that CIA can imitate attack of any state actor including Russia, China or North Korea. They have special tools for this. So if one puts such a name as "Felix Edmundovich Dzerzhinsky" ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Felix_Dzerzhinsky ) into malware this is clearly not a Russian. Can be Polish hacker. Can well be some guy from Langley with perverse sense of humor ;-). BTW Alperovitch, the head of the company CrowdStrike, to which investigation of DNC hack was mysteriously outsourced (see below) never asked himself this simple question.

    5. Another interesting fact is that investigation of "DNC hack" was outsourced by FBI to a shady company run by Dmitry Alperovitch ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dmitri_Alperovitch )

    Can you imagine that ? We need to assume that FBI does not have specialists, so FBI decided to use a "headlines grabber" type of security company to perform this important for national security investigation:

    https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/crowdstrike-needs-address-harm-causedukraine-jeffrey-carr

    Cue bono from such a decision? That is the question :-)

    IMHO this action alone raises serious questions both about Comey and the whole DNC hack story (I like the term "Fancy Bear" that Alperovitch used; this bear might reside well outside of Russia and in reality be a panda or even a skunk :-)

    6. Hacking is a simply perfect ground for false flag operations. So in any objective investigation this hypothesis needs to be investigated. Nobody even tried to raise this question. Even once. Including honchos in Congress. Which for an independent observer increases probability that this might well be a false flag operation with a specific purpose.

    All-in-all we have more questions then answers here. So jumping to conclusions and resulting witch hunt of the US media and the behavior of some US officials is really suspicious.

    [Jun 03, 2017] The Democrats Davos ideology wont win back the midwest by Thomas Frank

    Notable quotes:
    "... Tell people about how the Russians stole the election for Trump and everyone knows you're just reiterating a Beltway talking point. Mention how the Democrats betrayed working people over the years, however, and the radio station's board immediately lights up with enthusiastic callers. Remind people of the ways in which the Democrats have reoriented themselves around affluent, tasteful white-collar people and you hear a chorus of angry yesses; talk about how the Democrats live to serve the so-called "creative class" and a murmur of recognition sweeps the room. ..."
    "... People in the labor movement that I met in my turn around the midwest expressed complicated feelings about Donald Trump. On the one hand, everyone understands that he is an obvious scoundrel and they fear that his administration will bring about (via a possible supreme court ruling against public-sector unions) an epic defeat for organized labor. ..."
    "... Economics is a corrupt pseudo-science that gives a pseudo-scientific justification for the greed and rapacity of One Percenters. Its methodological flaws are glaring. It's time economists went back to the social science faculty, where they belong. ..."
    Jun 03, 2017 | www.theguardian.com

    ... ... ...

    Another thing that is inexcusable from Democrats: surprise at the economic disasters that have befallen the midwestern cities and states that they used to represent.

    The wreckage that you see every day as you tour this part of the country is the utterly predictable fruit of the Democratic party's neoliberal turn. Every time our liberal leaders signed off on some lousy trade deal, figuring that working-class people had "nowhere else to go," they were making what happened last November a little more likely.

    Every time our liberal leaders deregulated banks and then turned around and told working-class people that their misfortunes were all attributable to their poor education, that the only answer for them was a lot of student loans and the right sort of college degree ... every time they did this they made the disaster a little more inevitable.

    Pretending to rediscover the exotic, newly red states of the Midwest, in the manner of the New York Times , is not the answer to this problem. Listening to the voices of the good people of Ohio, Wisconsin, and Michigan is not really the answer, either. Cursing those bad people for the stupid way they voted is an even lousier idea.

    What we need is for the Democratic party and its media enablers to alter course. It's not enough to hear people's voices and feel their pain; the party actually needs to change. They need to understand that the enlightened Davos ideology they have embraced over the years has done material harm to millions of their own former constituents. The Democrats need to offer something different next time. And then they need to deliver.

    They are already failing on this front. Consider the idea, currently approaching revealed truth among American liberals, that last November's electoral upset was in fact an act of political vandalism attributable to some violation of fair play by the Russians or the FBI director; that it had no greater historical significance than does an ordinary act of shoplifting.

    I met few who are actually buying that line. Tell people about how the Russians stole the election for Trump and everyone knows you're just reiterating a Beltway talking point. Mention how the Democrats betrayed working people over the years, however, and the radio station's board immediately lights up with enthusiastic callers. Remind people of the ways in which the Democrats have reoriented themselves around affluent, tasteful white-collar people and you hear a chorus of angry yesses; talk about how the Democrats live to serve the so-called "creative class" and a murmur of recognition sweeps the room.

    People in the labor movement that I met in my turn around the midwest expressed complicated feelings about Donald Trump. On the one hand, everyone understands that he is an obvious scoundrel and they fear that his administration will bring about (via a possible supreme court ruling against public-sector unions) an epic defeat for organized labor.

    In the union hall of the Steelworkers local that represents workers at the Indianapolis Carrier plant – a union hall where you might expect Trump to be venerated – I spotted instead a flyer depicting the billionaire president with his famous pompadour on fire. The headline: "Lying Con and Volatile Gasbag is Enemy of the Working Class."

    On the other hand, Trump at least pretended to be a friend of the working class, and it was working-class people in this part of America who turned against the Democrats and helped delivered him into the White House. By a certain school of thought, this should make working-class people the Number One swing group for Democrats to court.

    Of course it isn't working out that way. So far, liberal organs seem far less interested in courting such voters than they do in scolding them, insulting them for their coarse taste and the hate for humanity they supposedly cherish in their ignorant hearts.

    Ignorance is not the issue, however. Many midwesterners I met share an outlook that is profoundly bleak. They believe that the life has gone out of this region; indeed, they fear that a civilization based on making things is no longer sustainable.

    They tell me about seniors falling prey to Fox News syndrome and young people who are growing up without hope. And just about everyone I talked to believes that the national Democratic party has abandoned them. They are frustrated beyond words with the stupidity of the party's leadership.

    One thing we must never forget about the midwest, however, is that radicalism lurks just beneath the surface. The region has always swung back and forth between contentment and outrage; between Chicago Tribune-style business-worship and Eugene Debs-style socialism. I was reminded of this one night in Minneapolis, when a friend told me the story of a local Teamsters strike in 1934, a conflict that briefly plunged the Twin Cities into something akin to civil war.

    I have no doubt that people in this part of America would respond enthusiastically to a populist message that addressed their unhappy situation – just look, for example, at the soaring popularity of Bernie Sanders.

    As things have unfolded thus far, however, our system seems designed to keep such an alternative off the table. The choice we are offered instead is between Trumpian fake populism and a high-minded politics of personal virtue. Between a nomenklatura of New Economy winners and a party of traditional business types, willing to say anything to get elected and (once that is done) to use the state to reward people like themselves. The public's frustration with this state of affairs, at least as I heard it on my midwestern trip, is well-nigh overwhelming.

    The way I see it, the critical test for our system will come late next year. The billionaire great-maker in the Oval Office has already turned out to be an incompetent buffoon, and his greatest failures are no doubt yet to come. By November 2018, the winds of change will be in full hurricane shriek, and unless the Democratic Party's incompetence is even more profound than it appears to be, the D's will sweep to some sort of mid-term triumph.

    But when "the resistance" comes into power in Washington, it will face this question: this time around, will Democrats serve the 80% of us that this modern economy has left behind? Will they stand up to the money power? Or will we be invited once again to feast on inspiring speeches while the tasteful gentlemen from JP Morgan foreclose on the world?

    Robert Glass , 29 Apr 2017 15:38

    Writing that Trump is an 'incompetent buffoon' only highlights the foolishness of the Washington establishment, and why millions see the media with disdain.
    While you may dislike the man, you still have to contend with the fact that the guy has been successful, and he is a byproduct of a system that rewards success. It is similar to the derision that Obama experienced when he claimed that 'you didn't build that."
    Historically hard work and self determination has been a shared American value, and during the campaign we saw one who skated through process and the other who worked his butt off to win. To dismiss this American value as incompetent and buffoonery is the height of elitism from a pointed headed pencil pusher. Reply Share Share on Facebook Facebook Share on Twitter Twitter | Pick - > Report -> mmercier0921 -> deborahmconner , 29 Apr 2017 15:32 Americans of age are not bolshevik's. What is killing the rat party is reality that the immigrants here tend to want freedom or anarchy, not old communists loading over them. The stunted domestic children's have proven mostly... dysfunctional at the political levels so far, and a burden on us all.

    The only hope for the Democrat party at this point is economic colapse and war... their only remaining tried and true methods.

    mmercier0921 - > ThinkThankThunk , 29 Apr 2017 15:21

    Trump is the third party. This is why he is so hated by both. --

    ID269211 - > Ima Right , 29 Apr 2017 12:19

    According to NYT on Obama $400K speech, Obamas already have $12 million plus receiving $80 million for their biography/books. --
    RobertAnglin , 29 Apr 2017 11:38
    Mr. Frank may be overestimating the Democrats' chances next year. My senator is one of the most liberal but already this year she has voted for new sanctions on Iran and admitting Montenegro into NATO.

    I'm seriously considering staying home on election day next year -- for the first time in my life.

    Stranger1548 -> RedKrayola , 29 Apr 2017 08:24
    It wasn't Bill Clinton who in February 2001 called on Fannie and Freddie to get busy while simultaneously calling on the private sector to get "creative" so low income mortgages could be written. That was Bush!
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/21/business/worldbusiness/21iht-admin.4.18853088.html?pagewanted=all

    The turmoil in financial markets was triggered by a dramatic weakening of underwriting standards for subprime mortgages, beginning in late 2004 through 2007. That's when Republicans controlled all branches of government. The share of mortgages held by Fannie and Freddie during that time went from 48% to 24%, being eclipsed by private mortgage banks. http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2008/10/12/53802/private-sector-loans-not-fannie.html

    Bush's Securities and Exchange Commission allowed the nation's largest financial institutions to "self-regulate;" taking the cops off the beat. Unregulated mortgage brokers sold subprime loans aided by the NINA (No Income No Assets) program. Major financial institutions packaged those bad mortgages into securities and sold them as low-risk investments.
    In 2007, FOX News taking heads, Art Laffer, Ben Stein and others laughed themselves silly over an impending housing collapse they had championed. They said "It can't happen," claiming lasting wealth had been created by subprime loans. Check it out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zz_yw0kq3MM

    ydobon - > J Nagarya , 29 Apr 2017 05:15
    First of all, the idea that the nationalist right is exclusively 'Nazi', or that Trump is a 'white supremacist', is more than a bit silly, but regardless:

    My argument has absolutely nothing to do with Trump's tax cuts (which, fwiw, I'm hugely opposed to). --

    ungruntled - > ChipKennedy , 29 Apr 2017 01:59
    A complete overhaul of Economics is needed, the Austrian school of Mises, Hated and Friedman is now obsolete and broken, it can never be relevant again. The Inequality it has given us in the name of progress is toxic, and must be addressed.
    https://dangerousglobe.com/news/finance/introducing-delicious-new-way-delivering-21st-century-economics-doughnut /
    ungruntled , 29 Apr 2017 01:19
    As an outside observer I am not well enough informed to dig deep into regional issues in America, but on a national level many can see the some root causes.
    The US has a political system that does not monitor and control election spending by parties or candidates. You get the best people that money can buy, not the best people.
    You have an electoral "commission" that is a privately run club of 2 parties whose stated aim is to keep it like that, and do so by strangling any dissent at birth.
    You also have a media circus with players like Rupert Murdoch involved and wherever he goes you find mischief, spin, downright lies all mobilised to get you all to believe in whatever movement is generating him the most cash.
    You also have a large and powerful group of dark suits that "advise" the administration, whoever it is, on foreign policy and how to control, manipulate or even overthrow, foreign governments of countries that have resources America needs.
    As a result, your idea of living in a Demoracy is just that, a nice idea.
    You can argue with me all day long, but the fact remains, that I have watched all of the above actually happen over a 70 year period, with my own eyes, while still of sound mind.
    Much the same is happening in the UK too, creating diabolical levels of inequality that are destroying large sections of society.
    It will get much worse before it gets much better. Will it get better before the planet shrugs humans off it though?
    justanotherflyboy - > OXIOXI20 , 28 Apr 2017 18:27
    not like electing Hillary would have helped us. she's just as complacently sure that neoliberalism works. well, yeah, for the billionaires it does. hasn't done us much good though.

    I'm not supporting Trump's election. but as far as economic problems, neither of the two main candidates offered us much of anything but more of the same.

    justanotherflyboy - > OXIOXI20 , 28 Apr 2017 18:27
    not like electing Hillary would have helped us. she's just as complacently sure that neoliberalism works. well, yeah, for the billionaires it does. hasn't done us much good though.

    I'm not supporting Trump's election. but as far as economic problems, neither of the two main candidates offered us much of anything but more of the same.

    rvail136 - > deborahmconner , 28 Apr 2017 17:14

    They won the popular vote ONLY because of Democrats overwhelming strength in Los Angeles, California & New York City...if you remove the votes for BOTH Hillary & Donald from those two regions, Trump would have won by 2 million votes. That alone is why the men who wrote the US Constitution instituted the Electoral College. It was to keep a few large cities from choosing the president and essentially ignoring the rest of the country. It was called the Virginia Compromise...
    Bfunuconn - > deborahmconner , 28 Apr 2017 17:04
    I'm an analytics professional that worked on Obama's primary & re-election where I saw first hand a robust machine learning process. Electoral politics is so insanely tribal because you're seeing voter outcomes reflect voter self image based on their general zip code/geographic living space.

    Electorally we don't know how Bernie would have performed because it's unknown how the oppo research would have impacted older voters outcomes. This is even harder to predict because of the $$ spent required to run in a general. You can assume Bernie would have gotten 60% of Millennials instead of Hillary's 55% (matching Obama's number in 2012). However; we don't know what happens in the reverse manner.

    Hillary had entrenched Democratic loyalty with urban blanks/latinos/Asians /Jews/White educated women. Because Latino/Asian turnout rates increased from 46% to 56% Clinton basically outperformed Obama in ever major metro area except ( Detroit / Milwaukee). That's because black turnout rates dropped from 64% to 54%. And these two metros are heavily AA .

    Hillary slightly outperformed Obama in Philly metro; but she was brutalized in literally all these heavily white working class areas.

    Pat McGroyne , 28 Apr 2017 16:13

    "The wreckage that you see every day as you tour this part of the country is the utterly predictable fruit of the Democratic party's neoliberal turn."

    Yup! And the means doing away with public sector unions in their present form, it means securing the borders, it means getting big banks and wall street under control, it means dropping the left wingnut social policies and getting the government out of peoples lives, not the other way 'round.

    Ain't gonna happen.

    The liberal/progressive leftist totalitarians are in charge of the party, and unless they change their ways, as previously described, they are going to wander in the wilderness for a very long time.

    simpledino, 28 Apr 2017 13:57
    It's fine to blame the Democratic Party and let it go at that, but let's frame the problem somewhat more clearly: the United States hasn't managed its transition from industrial capitalism to post-industrial capitalism wisely, or really at all.

    The Republican Party? Well, everyone pretty much expects them to act like worshipers of the Great God Mammon; they wrongly think any kind of capitalism is perfect, so they offer no modifications to a situation that has left millions of Americans behind.

    The Democrats? You would expect them at least to show some appreciation of the problem and to go beyond lip service when it comes to economic justice and opportunity for all. But you would be mostly mistaken in that, since they have (if at times ambivalently) embraced the shifting lay of the land -- an attitude that amounts to a species of fatalism. That leaves them little to offer except support for some important but not fully curative improvements in American life: support for equality for LGBTQI people, for example. That support, proper though it is, then gets slammed by vicious, sneering Republicans as elitism or extremism. The truth is that if the Dems appear to be all about such issues, it's only because right-wing morons oppose them with primitive ferocity at every turn, making the Dems' steadfast belief in fairness look like a mere obsession with "boutique" issues that only directly affect very small segments of the population. So the answer isn't for Democrats to drop their support for civic and human rights for all people -- that isn't the problem.

    This is a genuine dilemma because the pain the country's going through has fundamentally to do with our economic system and the technological shifts to it, and we really aren't going to jettison that system. But I suggest that the Democrats are better positioned to become the great "rearticulators" of why we are in the fix we are in and of a more compassionate social system that won't ignore the working class, won't embrace some kind of neoliberal fatalism that writes people off as "collateral damage" of an inevitable shift.

    Marcel Williams , 28 Apr 2017 12:55
    The Democratic Party has gradually become the party of the status quo and business as usual instead of the progressive-- working people's party-- it use to be under Roosevelt, Truman, and Kennedy. Even Obamacare is a concept originally conceived by the Republicans to force all Americans into the arms of the private health insurance companies.

    Instead of more trickle down economics, Democrats should be trying to focus on creating a worker's paradise in order to re-energize the American economy:

    1. A 32 hour work week (overtime beyond 32 hours):

    2. Up to six weeks of annual Federally mandated paid vacation

    3. Reduction of individual income tax to just 1% for individuals that make less than $60,000 a year

    4. Employer payment of all Federal payroll taxes for all employees that make less than $60,000 a year

    5. A $1000 a year workers rebate from the Federal government if you work full time or part time or employ full time or part time workers

    6. Federal infrastructure program providing matching funds for cities that want to build affordable urban-- rental housing-- for senior citizens and the working class families and individuals, who don't own their own home who make less than $60,000 a year.

    7. Federal and employer financed medical savings accounts for all American citizens

    8. High tariffs (15% to 100%) on all imports coming in from nations that are not free and democratic (China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Iran, etc.). Low tariffs (1% to 10%) on imports from nations that are free and democratic. How Democrats could have ever gone along with allowing a fascist state like China to have full and free trading access to the American economy is almost incomprehensible (and it also cost Americans more than 3 million jobs)!

    Marcel

    hureharehure - > Darin Brown , 28 Apr 2017 12:33
    Us coastal elites in NY have just passed a free college program. It isn't perfect but it's a good start.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/cuomo-bold-college-aid-program-article-1.3071144

    The coastal elites in California are progressing toward single payer healthcare, as I mentioned in another comment on this article:

    http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article145846229.html

    http://inthesetimes.com/article/20051/single-payer-here-we-come-california-jerry-brown-healthcare-sanders

    I'm at a loss as to why anyone would think voting for Trump conveys a desire for these things. He has spent his entire career taking advantage of working class people who had the misfortune to be employed by him, and he was literally fighting charges for running a fraudulent, for-profit university during the campaign.

    https://www.usatoday.com/pages/interactives/trump-lawsuits /

    https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/03/31/us/trump-university-settlement.html

    jimmyc1955 , 28 Apr 2017 12:07
    Lets review the key points of Democratic politics as they now pronounce it (through words and action)

    1 - Save the planet - translation - regulate any and all forms of energy to be too expensive then subsidize renewable energy. This means a few major companies will win huge government contracts to put up windmills while, power plant operators, miners, natural gas workers and countless supporting industries go dark.

    2 - Identity Politics - Translation - Vast swaths of America are understood only in context of their race, gender (chosen or otherwise) or political perspective. They will be administered according to an as yet unpublished preference chart favoring some over others. Meaning that individuals don't matter and needs don't matter. Only that you fit into some defined category where political messaging will tell you why your oppressed and that only democrats can free you.

    3 - Free Trade Agreements - In short - how to off shore manufacturing to cheap labor countries. That one is very simple.

    4 - Sanctuary Cities - People who arrived into this country illegally will be protected from deportation, even identifcation as illegal regardless of the law. This reduces the cost of labor for less skilled workers and drives up costs - which drive up taxes to provide services. In point of fact California is in the process of creating a single payer healthcare system that will provide free (only if your don't earn and income) healthcare to anybody in California - no questions asked.

    What is missing? Jobs. There are zero plans to bring back jobs. The coasties don't care about manufacturing. They only buy the highest quality imports with the right labels on them anyway. Their answer - why more government "programs" designed to robe Peter to pay Paul. Job training for jobs that don't exist where people live, and often disappeared years ago.

    I don't think that plays well in the midwest.

    RobinSchulberg , 28 Apr 2017 11:49
    I am entirely sympathetic to Frank's point of view. My question is what kind of economic policy would help the working class people he is talking about. I'm reading Eric Hobsbawm's The Age of Revolution (1789-1848) and here's what he has to say about the mechanization of the cotton industry in Britain: "Everywhere weaving was a mechanized a generation after spinning, and everywhere, incidentally, the handloom weavers died a lingering death, occasionally revolting against their awful fate, when industry no longer had any need for them." You can't stop technological progress. Nor (although I'm less sure of this) does it seem like a good idea for governments to intervene in preventing production from migrating to the countries where it is cheapest. What public policy can do is offer displaced persons a choice: government support to go back to school to learn a skill that will make you employable; or government employment at a job that uses the skills you already have on projects that the private sector would not undertake but which fulfills a social need (from infrastructure to building affordable housing in low income areas to driving a bus from poor neighborhoods to jobs). Financed, of course, by higher taxes on the wealthy.
    tommydog , 28 Apr 2017 11:48
    Thomas Frank is at least a liberal who recognizes that the Democrats offer nothing to the working class, but he fails to really see how Democratic policies have made states under Democratic governance less attractive to those businesses that would actually hire the working class. He make make snide remarks about lousy trade deals, yet many foreign car manufacturers have set up some of the most sophisticated plants in the US, but in southern states. In fact, US manufacturing output is near all time highs, but it is ever more automated. Even some rust belt states, under Republican governance, are attracting industry back to these states.

    The Dems really crises is going to come when blue collar Hispanics conclude that their economic interests are not dissimilar to those of blue collar whites. They too might conclude that their best course is to deal with those who might actually hire them as opposed to those that will never hire them but who want to set the terms whereby others might. That will surely dash the idea (or fantasy) that changing demographics portend a coming brown progressive paradise led by old white hippies.

    W.a. Thomaston , 28 Apr 2017 11:35
    Meritocracy?
    The best of the best of the best?
    Not for the Smugatocratic World Rigging Nepotistic 'Davos' Elite!

    (Busy "Late Night" Offices)

    Seth Myer's Secretary

    Seth! Call; "Line 1" You better take it

    Seth Myers

    Hello?

    Member of "Smugatocratic" Elite

    Seth My Dear Boy I really need you to do me a solid
    you remember my Granddaughter Brittany?


    Seth Myers

    Ummm .Not really .?
    Who is this?

    Member of "Smugatocratic" Elite

    No matter .You met her last year at Davos

    Seth Myers

    Ahhh .I didn't actually go to Davos last year?

    Member of "Smugatocratic" Elite

    Well she just graduated from Emerson Gawd knows what they learn there?
    AAAAAANYWAAAYS .
    this whole "Clinton Kerfuffle" has kind of put us in a little bind

    Seth Myers

    Oh really?

    Member of "Smugatocratic" Elite

    And Britt had her dear little heart set on interning with Hilly and Billy

    Seth Myers

    Oh....She did?

    Member of "Smugatocratic" Elite

    Now, she'd really like to work on your show

    Seth Myers

    My show?

    Member of "Smugatocratic" Elite

    Oh .She's a really good writer

    Seth Myers

    Writer .Wow .Why not just host?

    Member of "Smugatocratic" Elite

    You think? Well, maybe?
    K Thanks Gottah Run Love Yah' Bunches Britt will just be so thrilled!
    See you at Davos .

    Seth Myers

    Wait I'm not go

    Seth Myer's Secretary

    Seth! Call; "Line 2" You better take it

    Seth Myers

    Hello?

    Member of "Smugatocratic" Elite

    Seth .My Dear Boy I really, really need you to do me a solid you remember my Granddaughter...Gemma?

    On the children of the Elite and their remarkable ability to obtain internships?
    "Internships Are Not a Privilege"
    (Breaking a Cycle That Allows Privilege to Go to Privileged)
    "TALENT is equally distributed, but opportunity is not. And while many Americans believe fervently and faithfully in expanding opportunity, America's internship-industrial complex does just the opposite."
    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/05/opinion/breaking-a-cycle-that-allows-privilege-to-go-to-privileged.html?partner=rss&emc=rss&_r=0

    "How a Ruthless Network of Super-Rich Ideologues Killed Choice and Destroyed People's Faith in Politics"
    "Neoliberalism: the deep story that lies beneath Donald Trump's triumph"
    http://evonomics.com/ruthless-network-super-rich-ideologues-killed-choice-destroyed-peoples-faith-politics /

    "Robert Reich: 7 Truths Democrats Need to Understand"
    http://chicago.suntimes.com/opinion/robert-reich-7-truths-democrats-need-to-understand /

    NO MORE NEOLIBERAL LIES OR NEOCON CONS!

    Benjohn6379 - > jcm124 , 28 Apr 2017 09:59
    Special interests are intertwined with the Dems as much as they are with Repubs now, that's what's changed. The article speaks of the neoliberal policies that are destroying the Democratic party (deregulation, pro-corporate/anti-worker policies).

    Yes, Republicans do those things and always have, but the point is that the Dems now do them too. And they need to step away from neoliberal policies like that if they want to be relevant again.

    sassafrasdog - > Citizen0 , 28 Apr 2017 08:16
    The 1970s were the beginning of the end because oil was no longer cheap, and our factories were in northern cities and both ran on oil. Unions didn't help with strikes and corruption. Unions were also divided on race. Manufacturing was more expensive in terms of energy and labor in the North than in the South. Since then paper mills and auto plants have followed areas where unions never caught on, the growing season for trees is short, and which have mild winters. This is logic, not NAFTA.

    Now we glorify unions of a hazy past, but then they seemed to have gotten too big for their britches. Midwesterners voted for Reagan and neoliberal policies back then, which is ignored in this discussion.

    NAFTA, passed under George HW Bush, and signed when Clinton was new in office, recognized that industry was changing. It also created new markets for agriculture, which is also a Midwest product, let it not be forgotten. Oh, but agriculture was Republican territory. Which is why it was passed under Bush.

    NAFTA isn't the issue but is an excuse. The refusal of the auto industry to wake up until they had to in the recent recession or refusal to face the cost of energy that fueled it is the issue. It couldn't have been the companies where people could work for $25/hr with only a H.S. Diploma?? No, it must be those "others" from far away, right?

    direwolf7 , 27 Apr 2017 22:48
    While it is true that Hillary and the Neoliberal wing of the Democrats has prevailed, until 2016 the Neoliberals were the only wing of the Republicans. Trump can talk a good game offer some hope to the Rust Belt Hopeless, but does anyone really believe the commercial interests that have been the backbone of the GOP since Lincoln are going to let Trump cancel NAFTA, reimpose tariffs and cut of the flow of cheap labor?

    No doubt about it, the industrial towns of the Midwest have been savaged by Globalization and the wages of a lot on essentially unskilled worker have fallen behind but there are a lot of people who have benefited from it as well, like everyone who shops at Walmart or drives a car.

    How much more are you willing to pay for "stuff" so that somebody in Youngstown Ohio can get the $25 an hour job he thought would be waiting for him when he graduated from H.S.?

    Changes in the world economy create winners and losers and losers seek relief from the federal government. They don't want help navigating the changed situation they find themselves in, they want things back to the way they were before.

    Mkjaks , 27 Apr 2017 22:14
    I equate neoliberalism with MBA NATION. The stupidity of book learning the economics of numbers but not of their effects on human life.

    I recall hearing an interview with an economist who was dismissing something Trump said about how he'd handle certain things in the economy. "Sure," the economist huffed, "It would put more money in average people's pockets but it wouldn't improve the GDP or the economy as a whole."

    The interview didn't call the "expert" out on this nonsense. It stopped me in my tracks (I was walking past the office lunch room). As a citizen, I would very much like to be living in a world where we put more money in my neighbours' pockets (as well as my own, of course) than watch it magnetize to the rich and ever-more-powerful, making the big numbers look impressive while the average person abandons all hope of a decent future for themselves and their children.

    I am not a Trump supporter, but I will say that I am an MBA NATION loather. Free trade that lines the pockets of rich people and robs citizens of the right to intervene or shift or change the deal is obscene.

    trp981 , 27 Apr 2017 19:34

    "What we need is for the Democratic party and its media enablers to alter course. It's not enough to hear people's voices and feel their pain; the party actually needs to change. They need to understand that the enlightened Davos ideology they have embraced over the years has done material harm to millions of their own former constituents."

    Yes of course. But that's not gonna happen. Demanding such a thing is demanding that rational self-interested individuals go against their entrenched self-interest, which goes against everything held sacred in an enlightened market economy and against the sacred neoclassical tenet of the rational homo economicus . You don't wish to be perceived as an apostate now Mr. Frank, do you? It is in the interest of the operatives and functionaries of the party to maintain the current status quo by acting in the interest of Wall Street and Silicon Valley and other top economic players to the detriment of their base.

    The Democratic party took a drubbing from the right with the dawn of the Reagan era. The emergence of the so-called Third Way in the 1990s was an acknowledgement of this defeat. Clinton's major political innovation was to secure a source of funding for the Democrats by prostrating before the financial sector. This is a formula that has proven successful, and no Democratic candidate will deviate from this script as long as it continues to be so. Essentially, the Democratic party transformed itself from the "loser" representative of unions, teachers, and ordinary folk in general, to a "kinder, gentler" version of the Republican party. The they-have-nowhere else-to-go strategy was quite rational and has worked for more than two decades, and will conceivably work for at least four more presidential election cycles. However, the initial givenness of the Democratic base in 1992 was a finite source of electoral fuel, and as the election of Trump has shown this resource is nearing depletion.

    "One thing we must never forget about the midwest, however, is that radicalism lurks just beneath the surface."

    Please, that ship sailed a long time ago, at least a century to be more precise. This is red-state Heartland territory now through-and-through, respect the empirical data.

    "The choice we are offered instead is between Trumpian fake populism and a high-minded politics of personal virtue. Between a nomenklatura of New Economy winners and a party of traditional business types, willing to say anything to get elected and (once that is done) to use the state to reward people like themselves."

    To use a quantitative scale, the choice offered to the non-elite voters is between a zero-to-slightly-positive socially liberal neoliberalism, and a negative socially conservative neoliberalism. Put another way, economically the choice is between the nothing of the Democrats and the worse-than-nothing of the Republicans. The calm and stability at the center of wealth and power masks the constant rattling sound of the lives perturbed and dislocated by the dominant economic forces. At this point, the relation of the non-elite voters to the D-R duopoly resembles sadomasochism. Or perhaps the working people voting for Trump is a form of supplication before their god: "Shoot me now Lord, please."

    To be more generous and grant the Heartland left-behind a measure of agency and rationality, they - and one group in particular, the Reagan Democrats - took a chance on his and his descendants' rhetoric of the shining city upon a hill, and when they realized that the end result was the loss of jobs and diminution of their standards of living and that of their offspring, they graciously accepted the verdict and had the fortitude and decency to bear the burden of their own decision. There is nothing the matter with Kansas, the only thing that needs attention is the inconsistency between its pronunciation and that of Arkansas.

    DavidEG , 27 Apr 2017 18:42
    Thomas Frank offers an advice to democrats - break up with your neoliberal fallacies and embrace Bernie Sanders. It clearly means a break up with their true (core) base - big money. Such choice is too stark, hard to believes they are willing or capable of making it.
    Rather than pleading with them, I could offer a better option - reject republico-cratic duopoly (and its enterprising scoundrels) altogether, and embrace an American version of La France insoumise
    maha - > martinusher , 27 Apr 2017 16:12 Contributor
    "All this Davos/Deregulation/NeoLiberal whatever is a product of Republican -- right wing -- thinking." Yes, originally, but the Clinton-third way wing of the Democratic Party went along with it and adopted neoliberalism lite. That's the problem. Instead of offering an alternative vision to what Republicans were doing, they offered "me, too."
    Bogdanich -> - > lymans , 27 Apr 2017 16:06

    The Glass Stegal repeal was passed under Clinton not Reagan. Reagan did the Savings & Loan deregulation which led to the S&L bailout under G.W. Bush during which they prosecuted over 1,000 bank executives and got convictions including five sitting senators with four forced resignations. After Clinton did the deregulation that led to the financial crisis and Obama prosecuted zero, let me say that again, zero, bank executives and provided $9 trillion in bailout liquidity. --

    Bogdanich , 27 Apr 2017 16:02

    They can offer the illusion with the proper candidate but with the same congressmen and senators that currently hold the seats none of the substance. --
    Etienne LeCompte , 27 Apr 2017 15:15
    Take Amtrak between Chicago and Washington DC and witness wreckage of heartland industry along a corridor 800 miles long. People still live there, forgotten. Bernie Sanders is not finished. Listen to him; and put yourself up for election locally, on a Park District board; or a Township position; as an Election Judge or for County or State office. And listen to your neighbors, who are suffering. Then do something about it. When I ran for State Representative, the Democratic Party sent me a highlighted map instead of a check for my campaign. The map showed "70% Republican" voting registration in my State Representative district. No Party cash for my campaign was forthcoming. The only way to change this Gerrymandering is to be on-hand in the State House following the next decennial census in 2020. It will be "too late" to do anything -- again -- unless "we" change the Party; and the Party changes the re-districting scam. Bernie Sanders is right about pitching in to re-shape and re-form the Democratic Party. The Party, as constructed, is passé... and as hollowed-out as the miles and miles of decrepit buildings with thousands of gaping, broken windows that lie between Chicago and DC. Go see the devastation for yourself. Then get serious about answers.
    namjodh , 27 Apr 2017 14:05
    Yep, the Dems would do well to drop the Russia/FBI swung the election thing and the all Red State inhabitants are poorly educated idiots mentality and concentrate on developing some policies that appeal to the majority of people.

    I'm going to sound like a broken record, but Identity Politics has FAILED. The Dems are not going to cobble together some sort of Ruling Coalition out of Transgendered people and urban people of color. That's an insane strategy of hoping you will win national elections by appealing to 25% or less of the population of whom only half that number actually vote if you are lucky.

    I'm not saying abandon those struggles. Under a just system those struggles will continue and prevail - the Constitution guarantees that unless you get dishonest justices on the Supreme Court - which seems more likely the more national elections you blow. Democrats need to stop worrying about narrow single issues like that and focus on developing a BROAD national strategy to appeal to the Majority of Americans.

    So says the guy from Punjab who is NOT a poorly educated white person and who has voted Democrat since 1980.

    martinusher , 27 Apr 2017 13:09
    There's a bit of bait 'n switch here. All this Davos/Deregulation/NeoLiberal whatever is a product of Republican -- right wing -- thinking. It first gained serious traction during the Reagan administration. The Democrats merely drifted into the vacuum formed by the Republican party lurching from Right/Center to Hard Right. Since then any drifting back has been subject to extreme criticism as 'socialism', 'communism' and the like. Now we're in the rather weird situation that the party of neoliberal economics is pushing the line that the Democrats are the party of entrenched money and they are the Party of the People. It beggars belief, especially when journalists take it up and run with it instead of calling the the BS that it is.

    The problem with the Rust Belt states is that they keep on electing Republican state governments. These fail to deliver on anything useful for working people -- they're more interested in entrenching their power by tweaking the elections -- but then people turn to the Federal government as if this is some kind of savior capable of turning around their fortunes overnight.

    Anyway, don't take my word for it. Just keep electing those regressive state legislators (and keep drinking that tainted water....).

    Claudius - > hureharehure , 27 Apr 2017 13:02
    Great comment on the article, but I think even you have been kind in your criticism of it. I can only hope that the writer started out with the intention of saying that while the GOP and their rich and big business political patrons are responsible for the impoverishment of those in the article, the Democrats have missed out on messaging and on more specific policies that addresses those wrongs committed against a voting block they can own. Instead the entire piece is written as though the Democrats have earned the scorn and anger of these voters. One can argue the Democrats have failed to focus more on the plight of these voters, but they are NOT the cause of these voters' plight; and there is nothing in this piece to make that distinction or about the irony of why these same voters flock to a political party primarily responsible for what has happened to them. In fact consider this below from the article:

    "Mention how the Democrats betrayed working people over the years, however, and the radio station's board immediately lights up with enthusiastic callers. "

    Yes, that is right! The political anomaly that Trump is can be be explained by the successful exploitation of the improvised classes by media outlets that voice these voters' anger to acquire a capture audience and then lay the blame for what has happened to them on immigrants & liberals. You never hear anything on those outlets about the unholy triad of the GOP political class, big business and media outlets in their orbit. I don't need to drive through these flyover states to know they are hurting; and I don't need to sit down with them to know they are real human beings with a great deal in common with me or to know that despite their general decency they are full of misplaced anger and resentment.

    CivilDiscussion , 27 Apr 2017 13:21
    I am so glad that the Russians are responsible for electing Trump. It would be awful to think that it was because Democrats had a really, really bad candidate in Hillary Clinton. It just could not be -- she was, after all -- the MOST QUALIFIED PERSON EVER TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT, as we were instructed endlessly by Obama. Voters thought otherwise and their support for Trump was mainly to keep Hillary out, not to have a billionaire lunatic elected. But it would not matter since they all serve their master class bankers and war-makers.
    kmtominey1923 , 27 Apr 2017 13:01
    Interesting he choices of examples for how liberals let the mid west down. Republican president Reagan deregulated S&Ls with predictable awful results. Republicans under Clinton (they controlled the Senate and house ) when Glass Steagsll was repealed. Republic Phil Gramm also rescinded the AntiBucket Shop Law which loosed the disaster of the naked CDS,

    Republicans starting with Reagan made refusing to enforce financial laws they did not like a policy. It was continued under Bush43/Cheney on speed. Regulator of mortgage brokers refused to let state AGs (including Maine) move against fraudsters and refused to act himself. Chris Cox ignored the risky complex financial products that tanked our economy.

    It was Republican Sen. Phil Gramm who said in hearings on CSPAN that these instruments of financial mass destruction (Warren Buffet's words) were too complicated to understand and therefore should not be regulated.

    Republicans wanted to free up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to buy subprime even NINJA loans and made it so.

    Was Clinton an idiot to allow Rubin and Summers any where near financial market policy YES. Was Obama a bigger fool for bringing Summers into his admin- absolutely since he had already displayed financial incompetence at Harvard, YES.

    But, it is republicans who either drove the bad financial ideas or controlled them. Republicans who support IRS rules and their laws that promote off shoring jobs and stashing cash untaxed off shore.

    Eisenhower, Goldwater, Ford, Bush41 - even Nixon - would not know these people.

    zolotoy - > Atomic Girl , 27 Apr 2017 12:16
    Oh, and as for the rest of the party and its defeats: A quick look at the numbers show that Democrats keep losing not because voters are switching to the Republican brand, but because they no longer bother to vote for Democrats who are just going to shiv them in the back with Republican economic policies. Reply Share
    JayThomas , 27 Apr 2017 12:16

    Will they stand up to the money power?

    You mean the people who pay $400,000 for a speech? Reply Share

    zolotoy - > Atomic Girl , 27 Apr 2017 12:15

    But now liberals and the Democratic Party are to get the lion's share of the blame for everything?


    As I've said on numerous occasions in the past: The reason Trump beat Hillary is the same reason Obama beat her in the 2008 primaries: Voters knew her and what she stood for -- and so were willing to take a chance on the other candidate.
    joAnn chartier - > zolotoy , 27 Apr 2017 12:55
    Thank you for the Abramson reminder -- as a retired journalist I know the importance of providing clear and accurate information to the general public. While Abramson and Frank and others are writing Opinion in the Guard and elsewhere, too many people do not understand positioning and propaganda. Media must make money to stay in business and often it is opinion writers/tv hosts etc that generate interest and coin to keep the words rolling and the money coming in.

    It is especially ironic as wages are cut, jobs disappear, cost of living rises so fewer people can afford to subscribe or pay for actual news and information. Not to mention the political idiocy of reducing school funding so that the electorate knows nothing of history or how politics works.

    Trump wants to take us back to Ronnie Reagan and Maggie Thatcher years that left us with trillion dollar deficits and decimation of the middle class that is now on the downward slide to actual poverty...

    MightyBuccaneer , 27 Apr 2017 12:07
    The People should really start to regularly book politicians for 400k speeches after they leave office.

    The People should create an army of lobbyists that constantly meet and mingle with politicians in Washington to make their wishes known.

    The People should up their campaign and Superpac spending.

    The People should create a newspaper devoted to there interests that can rival the NYT and the WaPo.


    Then, and only then, will there be populism, from any party.

    Annabel1968 - > Jabr , 27 Apr 2017 12:05
    No, it is a crap comment. From the neo-liberal 'pseudo science' that economics supposedly is (almost forgot to use the word neo-liberal, a must these days to make your point) , to the greed and the rapacity of the "one percenters".

    Such a simple problem isn't it? Let's just go back in time rather than find more creative and up-to-date solution for the problems there are. Globalisation isn't going to go away, the world is too small a place. Globalisation has created problems for people, but many more people have benefitted from it.

    Atomic Girl , 27 Apr 2017 11:33
    "The wreckage that you see every day as you tour this part of the country is the utterly predictable fruit of the Democratic party's neoliberal turn. Every time our liberal leaders signed off on some lousy trade deal, figuring that working-class people had "nowhere else to go," they were making what happened last November a little more likely. "
    ---

    As someone who's middle aged, I am getting sick and tired of this historical revisionist nonsense that all the country's woes and economic climate can be mostly pinned on the liberals and that somehow, it's something that they did wrong that is the reason why they "lost" constituents in the Midwest. Someone can peddle this nonsense over and over again with the smug belief that everyone on on the internet is too young to know whether what he's saying is true. But there are some of us "old folks" who are also on the internet and as an old folk, I have no issues calling out this article out for the nonsense that it is.

    Everything that is going on now in terms of jobs can be 100% attributable to Reaganomics--period, end of. It's nothing to do with liberals. It's 100% to do with the devastating rippling effect that his neoliberal policies has had on the country since the 1980s, only made 100x worse by Republican pols who have been further carrying out his neoliberalist agenda to full effect for the past several decades.

    It was under Reagan that the country began experiencing mass layoffs (euphemistically called "downsizing"). It was under Reagan that corporations began slashing benefits, cutting wages and closing up shop to ship thousands of jobs overseas. It was under Reagan that the middle class American dream died--aka, the expectation that if got a diploma, you could start working for a company full time straight out of college, work for decades with decent benefits and perks, save up enough money to buy a house and retire with a generous pension. Gone. All gone.

    Remember the "Buy American" grassroots campaign? That started in the 1980s, precisely because under Reagan, the country had relied increasingly on imported goods at the expense of domestic manufacturing. Here's an actual article from 1989 that shows you that the roots of everything going on now started decades ago. It's actually a defeatist article telling people to *stop* wasting their time to get everyone to "Buy American" because it had become virtually impossible to buy American-made goods.

    "Not Easy to 'Buy American'"
    https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1243&dat=19891227&id=Bm8PAAAAIBAJ&sjid=HYcDAAAAIBAJ&pg=2971,6271486

    As for the idea that there's always been a staunchly"Democratic" following in the Midwest that has been "lost" because of something that the party is doing wrong and that this caused them to turn to populism? False. It may have been true a very long time ago that this constituency has been staunchly Democratic and not amenable to populism, but not recently. It has voted on populist platforms before. Remember "welfare queens?" Remember "Willie Horton?" Willie Horton, the black bogeyman, was the "bad hombres" of today.

    In addition, this constituency has been increasingly voting against its best interests for decades since Reagan was voted into office. Why? Because demagogues like Rush Limbaugh and the large number of puppets at Rupert Murdoch's vast media empire have been selling them a bill of goods since the 1990s that the reason why they're becoming poorer is that liberals are giving all their "white" hard-earned money to shiftless, lazy blacks and immigrants and losing out to them because of affirmative action. In the famous words of South Park, "THEY TOOK R JERBS" and "IT'S ALL DUH LIBRUHL'S FAULTS!!"

    This constituency has developed such a deep-seated hatred and loathing for liberals because of the demagogues at FOX or news radio that even when Michael Moore directly spoke to their plight in Roger and Me, they derided him as a typical Communist-loving, anti-Capitalist pinko. Because, you see, according to FOX demagogues, calling out rich corporate fatcats who also happen to be white is attacking white people, a form of class warfare and anti-Capitalist.

    Given all that, for someone to try to paint a picture that this constituency would otherwise be embracing liberalism if not for the Democratic Party adopting an "ideology" is laughable. They were never going to win because anything short of ranting, "They took r jerbs" and "Damned brown people on welfare and illegals stealing taking all our money" was going to cost them the election.

    Bottom line, the Midwest was never the liberals' or Democratic Party's constituency to lose, and Reagan is behind all of the economic devastation that the region is experiencing. Anyone else trying to say otherwise is just using spin and historical revisionism.

    zolotoy - > Joel Marcuson , 27 Apr 2017 11:28
    That's exactly what America needs -- another neocon/neolib, just like Macron! As if Obama and the Clintons hadn't been neocon/neolib enough! Reply Share
    fan143 , 27 Apr 2017 11:28
    Frank is right that the white working class in the Midwestern states have been the swing votes for presidential elections since the Reagan election of 1984, when the white Democratic South became more fully the white Republican South. But he is wrong in not recognizing that the Democratic Party has three major constituents and it needs all of them to win elections and to do the progressive things while in office that would help people like those in the Midwest. Democrats need the votes of the white working class, but also of race/ethnic minorities, and the "new class" professionals and others. The problem is that these groups have been fighting with each other since the 1960s, continually undermining the chances for Democrats to win. In the period of the Civil Rights Movement and the Vietnam War, students and professionals joined with race and ethnic minorities to challenge the influence of the unionists, big city mayors, and white working class in the Democratic Party, which is what gave us Nixon, Reagan, and the Bushes. Through this period, predictably, more white working class people either stopped voting or moved to the Republican Party. In the 2016 election, with the Bernie Sanders influence, students and professionals began to attack the influence of race and ethnic minorities (and women?) in the Democratic Party, ostensibly in support of the white working class over "identity politics," with the result that we got Trump. Globalization is a difficult and complex issue, but the reality is that since the 1970s the U.S. economy has not been able to prosper, nor the working class jobs that it requires, by selling things only in the U.S. We have to be in global markets and integrated with other economies around the world and that requires trade deals that balance our interests against those of other countries. This has generated winners and losers in the economy, and it will continue to do so. While it may not be possible to bring back the same kinds of jobs that pay a middle class wage for those with not much education, it should be possible to create new jobs that pay a middle class wage and to invest in education and skill development, infrastructure, and a welfare state that sustains people through periods of disruption and transformation. The Republican Party and the New Right that took it over are fighting to the death to undermine what is left of the social safety net to force people to take whatever jobs are available at exploitative wages, and they have been successful exploiting anti-government sentiment by using racial animosity and more recently anti-immigrant hysteria. The right has been successful because those on the left who should support the Democratic Party and then fight for more progressive policies within it just keep fighting each other and in the last election delivered Trump by voting third party (along with gutting of the Voting Rights Act, voter suppression, Russian influences that helped Sanders and vilified Hillary Clinton, the rogue FBI, Citizens United, and so on). The only option for the left in a two party system is to support the Democratic Party. Staying home or voting third party is a vote for your worst enemy. France is experiencing the same thing, with the left candidate refusing to support the more centrist candidate against Le Pen. We all need to learn how to form coalitions and to keep our focus on winning elections, not winning ideological battles.
    zolotoy - > ehmaybe , 27 Apr 2017 11:26
    Umm, the real goals of labor unions have been beach houses and new SUVs for labor leadership. Unions have been adept at screwing over their memberships since at least the 1970s -- no wonder they keep supporting anti-union Dims.
    MonotonousLanguor - > Jared Hall , 27 Apr 2017 10:51
    Maddow has to defend the Corporate Democratic Establishment any way she can. Maddow to my knowledge has never mentioned:

    Russia's largest bank, Sberbank, has confirmed that it hired the consultancy of Tony Podesta, the elder brother of John Podesta who chaired Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, for lobbying its interests in the United States.
    The two Russian banks spent more than $700,000 in 2016 on Washington lobbyists as they sought to end the U.S. sanctions, according to Senate lobbying disclosure forms and documents filed with the Department of Justice. The Podesta Group charged Sberbank $20,000 per month, plus expenses, on a contract from March through September 2016. http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-03-09/russias-largest-bank-confirms-hiring-podesta-group-lobby-ending-sanctions

    beccabunny09 - > TheCubanGentlemen , 27 Apr 2017 10:42

    Sorry Mr. Cuban but Barney has a point. Sympathy for criminals? How about a system that extracts wealth by taking family members that have made a mistake hostage. Private prisons are incredibly corrupt. They pay their guards $7 an hour, barely train them and then throw them into a hellhole of starved and abused prisoners, prisoners who's families are charged $2-5 a MINUTE to talk to them! Prisoners who are charged for laundry, for new underwear, for sanitary napkins, for extra food anything they can, they charge them for, all to meet a higher quarterly profit. If they work, prisoners get only .25 an hour! Menawhile, the items they make get a proud MADE IN AMERICA sticker and sold at a premium netting the company MORE money. This is a direct threat to DEMOCRACY! Why not contract our work to prisons with no liability and infinitesimal wages to lower costs. Gee, doesn't that sounds like a threat to low skilled workers?!

    Everything matters because EVERYTHING IS CONNECTED!!! -

    iamwhiskerbiscuit - > Ramus , 27 Apr 2017 09:35

    Very little differences between neoncons and neoliberals these days. They're both in Goldman Saacs corner, they both support war even when they claim otherwise during their election... Both laugh at the idea of emulating countries that offer free Healthcare, free college, higher minimum wage and lower cost of living. Bush tax policy = Obama tax policy. Bush stance on war = Obama stance on war. Whats the difference? Abortion and gun rights. That's pretty much all thats different. Pro militarist, world police, globalists who favor a regressive tax system. Don't like it? Don't vote... You have no say in this debate.
    Hmpstdhth , 27 Apr 2017 09:17
    Yes, the Democratic Party are essentially corporate shills who talk pretty to the poor and oppressed and then serve their corporate masters. But that isn't why people voted against them. That would be assuming some sort of political sophistication among the masses. It is rather, IMHO, the corporate owned media in the form of AM radio, cable and local news outlets, and most local newspapers who either report on nothing that might change the status quo or are actual propaganda outlets for the ultra right. The fact that Fox news and right wing radio is the background music of mid America, should not be discounted. And secondly, the seizure of nearly all of the church pulpits by the 'religious' right. People vote the way their pastor tells them to vote. This isn't rocket science. When there is a coup, the first order of business has always been to seize the radio and TV stations. Bernie who ?

    --

    Monesque , 27 Apr 2017 09:09
    In a close election, there is something of everything. But this concept that the election turned on these displaced workers is hilarious. In truth, we've been talking about things like this since the 70s or before. Why now? Because now, a wave of xenophobia and racism swept the world and that was the wave Trump rode to office. Many of his so-called displaced workers overlap with those groups. Add the religious evangelicals. That's how Trump won... take away the evangelicals, take away the racists, take away the xenophobes, take away the screaming about the Mexican this, the Muslims that, the Syrians, the pandering to far-right groups who in the past were considered the underbelly of the country..and Trump doesn't have a chance. This is a man with Mike Pence as vice president. This is a man who brings people like Steve Bannon into the administration. That's how he won and that's how he remains popular with his base. The rest is an illusion
    iamwhiskerbiscuit , 27 Apr 2017 09:00
    What happens to those good old days when a job could support an entire family? Reagan happened. Massive tax cuts for the wealthy, building up our military 10 times as big as the next largest military, deregulating banks and brokerage... Then Clinton continued to deregulate further. Then Bush brought about more tax cuts for the rich and Obama kept his tax policy on place. In 68, a minimum wage worker with 3 kids fell 500 dollars above the poverty line. (5,000 in today's money). Today, a minimum wage worker with 3 kids falls 10,000 below the poverty line. And the neocon/neoliberal answer to that is women must work, single people need roommates and the wealthy need tax relief. What a load of crap.
    Ramus , 27 Apr 2017 08:57
    The Democratic Party is still owned and operated by the Wall Street, fossil fuel and war interests. The fact that the DNC installed Tom Perez, who is not inspired by the idea of health care as a human right, is telling. The DNC is the enemy of lower-middle class working (or non-working) people. The DNC nominated the candidate least likely to win over Trump. The Democrats need to send their bank/war/oil candidates to the Republicans. We need a whole new truly progressive party..but since our governement has been sold to the highest bidder, it make take some unpleasantness in the streets to achieve power over the special interests. And EVERYONE must vote EVERY TIME.
    soundofthesuburbs , 27 Apr 2017 08:55
    The problem is US elites, who are only exceptional in their stupidity.

    "Income inequality is not killing capitalism in the United States, but rent-seekers like the banking and the health-care sectors just might" Nobel-winning economist Angus Deaton

    The exceptionally stupid US elite are going for the easy money and destroying their nation.

    Its elites are always rigging stuff in their favour and forgetting the reality they have hidden.

    There is a huge difference between wealth creation and wealth extraction, but today we have no idea of even the concept of wealth extraction.

    Well, one of our 21st Century Nobel prize winning economists, Angus Deaton, has just remembered the problem.

    The Classical Economists of the 19th Century were only too aware of the two sides of capitalism, the productive side where wealth creation takes place and the parasitic side where wealth extraction takes place.

    The US was a key player in developing neoclassical economics and it's what we use today.

    It looks after the interests of the old money, idle rich rentiers.

    The distinction between "earned" income (wealth creation) and "unearned" income (wealth extraction) disappears and the once separate areas of "capital" and "land" are conflated. The old money, idle rich rentiers are now just productive members of society and not parasites riding on the back of other people's hard work.

    It happens at the end of the late 19th and early 20th Centuries, but doesn't blow up until the 21st century when the exceptionally stupid US elite have forgotten what they have done.

    Monetary theory has been regressing for the last one hundred years.

    Credit creation theory -> fractional reserve theory -> financial intermediation theory

    " banks make their profits by taking in deposits and lending the funds out at a higher rate of interest" Paul Krugman, 2015.

    One of today's Nobel Prize winning economists spouting today's nonsense.

    Progress in monetary theory has been in the reverse direction, leading to many of today's problems.

    There was massive debt and money creation in the US leading up to the 2008 bust:

    http://www.whichwayhome.com/skin/frontend/default/wwgcomcatalogarticles/images/articles/whichwayhomes/US-money-supply.jpg

    The fools forgot the reality they hid.

    Get back to the Classical Economists to learn how you tax "unearned" income to provide subsidized housing, healthcare, education and other services to provide a low cost economy whose workforce isn't priced out of the global market place.

    When you understand money you can see in the money supply when Wall Street is getting really stupid and about to blow up the economy.

    BarneyDee , 27 Apr 2017 08:45
    Throughout history, the "people" were ruled by the powerful even if the powerful were idiots, thieves, rapists and murderers. Times have changed. People don't accept that anymore. But if Democrats have made a blanket error it was in assuming that everyone sees the world as they do, and in assuming that everyone is a rational being committed to the ideals of a republic. Clearly that is not the case. And the "people" want leaders, not pals. They want security. Democrats need a person who combines the guile of a Machiavelli with the smarts of an Obama and the steel fist of a Cromwell. Thing is, under such conditions, it's doubtful if the "people" are governable anymore, in the sense of making decisions based on reality as opposed to a combination of superstition, myth, and misinformation. Oh, and vanity is an important factor: ask Susan Sarandon and her proxy vote for Trump--she voted for Stein.
    marshwren - > Martyn Richard Jones , 27 Apr 2017 08:20
    It was the DLC ("Democrats Led by Clintons") that brought the DP to its current condition of self-satisfied atrophy and irrelevance by embracing Davos "meritocracy" and neo-liberal economics combined with neo-conservative foreign policy for the past 30 years. They sealed their fate by turning the Party (DNC, DSCC, DCCC, DGA, most state committees) into stale and pale imitations of Reagan's GOP; and Party 'leaders' are far too comfortable with their own sense of entitlement to power and wealth to understand either the fallacies of their tunnel vision, or the consequences (like electing Trump and keeping the GOP in control of Congress and most states) of their blinkered myopia.

    The only hope for the DP is to let the genuine 'progressives' (aka the socialist/green 'left') take over management of the political apparatus because what passes for 'liberalism' these days is no longer an electoral/policy option, at least as far as the electorate is concerned. And all the early indications are that the from the DNC down the Party establishment is more concerned about stamping out the Bernie Bro and Ho heresies than defeating Republicans.

    greenwichite , 27 Apr 2017 06:44
    Our politicians have been brainwashed by neoliberal economists.

    These economists produce models that factor-in all the upsides to globalisation, but fail to model any of the crippling, expensive-to-treat consequences of shutting down entire towns in places like Michigan or Lancashire.

    They assume people live frictionless lives; that when the European ship-building industry moves to Poland, riveters in Portsmouth can just up-sticks and move to Gdansk with no problem. They encourage a narrative that implies such an English riveter are lazy if he fails to seize this opportunity.

    (Let's drop a few economists in Gdansk with £100 in their pockets, and see how their families do.)

    Economics is a corrupt pseudo-science that gives a pseudo-scientific justification for the greed and rapacity of One Percenters. Its methodological flaws are glaring. It's time economists went back to the social science faculty, where they belong.

    [Jun 02, 2017] Racism as the reason of Hillary defeat is fake explanation of her defeat. Destruction of jobs under neoliberalism is a better one

    Racism if fake reason because the same voters managed somehow to elect Obama.
    Notable quotes:
    "... "...despite significant evidence that Trump voters were largely driven by racism." This is one of two main Dems "Monday morning quarterbacking" storylines. I am not so sure. I think the most significant factor in the recent election was voters rejection of neoliberal establishment and, specifically, neoliberal globalization, that destroyed American jobs. In other words, people voted by-and-large not "for" but "against". That's why Trump have won. ..."
    Jun 02, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    DrDick -

    , June 01, 2017 at 07:07 AM
    Actually, they seem to completely dance around this, despite significant evidence that Trump voters were largely driven by racism.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2017/04/17/racism-motivated-trump-voters-more-than-authoritarianism-or-income-inequality/?utm_term=.a860825280ef

    https://theintercept.com/2017/04/06/top-democrats-are-wrong-trump-supporters-were-more-motivated-by-racism-than-economic-issues/

    libezkova - , June 01, 2017 at 07:48 PM
    "...despite significant evidence that Trump voters were largely driven by racism." This is one of two main Dems "Monday morning quarterbacking" storylines. I am not so sure. I think the most significant factor in the recent election was voters rejection of neoliberal establishment and, specifically, neoliberal globalization, that destroyed American jobs. In other words, people voted by-and-large not "for" but "against". That's why Trump have won.

    [Jun 02, 2017] Both parties now represent oligarchy: in the 2016 election, the economic elite voted 47 percent for Clinton and 46 percent for Trump

    Notable quotes:
    "... During his primary campaign against Hillary Clinton, Senator Bernie Sanders, a self-proclaimed socialist, lived up to the grand Democratic tradition of favoring the underdog at the expense of the rich. He proposed hammering the affluent by raising taxes in the amount of $15.3 trillion over ten years. New revenues would finance about half the cost of a $33.3 trillion boost in social spending ..."
    "... Trouble brews when a deeply held commitment to the underdog comes into conflict with the self-interested pocketbook and lifestyle concerns of the upper middle class. ..."
    "... In rhetoric reminiscent of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Harry Truman, Sanders declared: We must send a message to the billionaire class: "you can't have it all." You can't get huge tax breaks while children in this country go hungry.But Sanders spoke to the Democratic Party of 2016, not the Democratic Party of the Great Depression. ..."
    "... In days past, a proposal to slam the rich to reward the working and middle classes meant hitting Republicans to benefit Democrats. ..."
    "... Even as recently as 1976, according to data from American National Election Studies, the most affluent voters, the top 5 percent, were solidly in the Republican camp, 77-23. Those in the bottom third of the income distribution were solidly Democratic, 64-36. ..."
    "... In the 2016 election, the economic elite was essentially half Democratic, according to exit polls: Those in the top 10 percent of the income distribution voted 47 percent for Clinton and 46 percent for Trump. Half the voters Sanders would hit hardest are members of the party from which he sought the nomination. ..."
    Jun 02, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com
    Christopher H. , June 01, 2017 at 06:23 AM
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/01/opinion/democratic-party-rich-thomas-edsall.html?smid=tw-nytopinion&smtyp=cur&_r=0

    Has the Democratic Party Gotten Too Rich for Its Own Good?
    by Thomas B. Edsall

    JUNE 1, 2017

    During his primary campaign against Hillary Clinton, Senator Bernie Sanders, a self-proclaimed socialist, lived up to the grand Democratic tradition of favoring the underdog at the expense of the rich. He proposed hammering the affluent by raising taxes in the amount of $15.3 trillion over ten years. New revenues would finance about half the cost of a $33.3 trillion boost in social spending

    The Sanders tax-and-spending plan throws into sharp relief the problem that the changing demographic makeup of the Democratic coalition creates for party leaders. Trouble brews when a deeply held commitment to the underdog comes into conflict with the self-interested pocketbook and lifestyle concerns of the upper middle class.

    The nonpartisan Tax Policy Center found that under the Sanders plan, a married couple filing jointly with an income below $10,650 would continue to pay no income tax; everyone else would pay higher taxes. Those in the second quintile would pay an additional $1,625 and those in the middle quintile would see their income tax liability increase by $4,692. Those in the top quintile would pay $42,719 more.

    Higher up the ladder, the tax increase would grow to $130,275 for those in the top 5 percent, to $525,365 for those in the top one percent and to $3.1 million for the top 0.1 percent.

    When the additional revenues from the Sanders tax hike are subtracted from the additional spending his proposals would demand, the net result is an $18.1 trillion increase in the national debt over 10 years, according to the center.

    In rhetoric reminiscent of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Harry Truman, Sanders declared: We must send a message to the billionaire class: "you can't have it all." You can't get huge tax breaks while children in this country go hungry.But Sanders spoke to the Democratic Party of 2016, not the Democratic Party of the Great Depression.

    In days past, a proposal to slam the rich to reward the working and middle classes meant hitting Republicans to benefit Democrats.

    Even as recently as 1976, according to data from American National Election Studies, the most affluent voters, the top 5 percent, were solidly in the Republican camp, 77-23. Those in the bottom third of the income distribution were solidly Democratic, 64-36.

    In other words, 41 years ago, the year Jimmy Carter won the presidency, the Sanders proposal would have made political sense.

    But what about now?

    In the 2016 election, the economic elite was essentially half Democratic, according to exit polls: Those in the top 10 percent of the income distribution voted 47 percent for Clinton and 46 percent for Trump. Half the voters Sanders would hit hardest are members of the party from which he sought the nomination.

    The problem for the Democratic Party is that "them" has become "us."

    ...

    As the Democratic elite and the Democratic electorate as a whole become increasingly well educated and affluent, the party faces a crucial question. Can it maintain its crucial role as the representative of the least powerful, the marginalized, the most oppressed, many of whom belong to disadvantaged racial and ethnic minority groups - those on the bottom rungs of the socioeconomic ladder?

    This will be no easy task. In 2016, for the first time in the party's history, a majority of voters (54.2 percent) who cast Democratic ballots for president had college degrees. Clinton won all 15 of the states with the highest percentage of college graduates.

    The steady loss of Democratic support in the white working class, culminating in Trump's Electoral College victory on the backs of these white voters, must inevitably send a loud and clear signal to the Democratic elite: The more the party abandons the moral imperative to represent the interests of the less well off of all races and ethnicities, the more it risks a repetition of the electoral disaster of 2016 in 2018, 2020 and beyond.

    [May 31, 2017] Seth Rich murder is becoming more and more suspicious

    Why they try to suppress Kim Dotcom evidence... Why on the Earth Cloudflare was allowed to investigate DNC leak by FBI? Is it really based in Ukraine ?
    Notable quotes:
    "... CrossTalking with Hank Sheinkopf, H. A. Goodman, and Alex Christoforou. ..."
    "... The Company Cloudflare who investigated the server is based out of the Ukraine, you can also find the connection to Soros. Media is just covering up the truth. ..."
    May 29, 2017 | RT

    On July 10, 2016, DNC staffer Seth Rich was murdered in Washington D.C. Was Rich the source who provided Wikileaks with the DNC's internal emails? Some have speculated that this is the reason for his murder. If true, what becomes of the mantra "Russia did it?"

    CrossTalking with Hank Sheinkopf, H. A. Goodman, and Alex Christoforou.

    dontdoleft

    The facts are the collusion was thought up between Robbie Mook, Hillary Clinton and John Podesta. Read on politico's site a article by Kenneth Vogel, "Ukrainian Efforts to Sabotage Trump Backfires"

    The only colluding going on was by the Ukraine and the Democrats.

    The Company Cloudflare who investigated the server is based out of the Ukraine, you can also find the connection to Soros. Media is just covering up the truth.

    [May 30, 2017] Democrats are falling for fake news about Russia

    A pretty accurate (for Vox ;-) description of Neo-McCarthyism hysteria that the USA currently experience...
    Notable quotes:
    "... Twitter is the Russiasphere's native habitat. Louise Mensch, a former right-wing British parliamentarian and romance novelist, spreads the newest, punchiest, and often most unfounded Russia gossip to her 283,000 followers on Twitter . Mensch is backed up by a handful of allies, including former NSA spook John Schindler ( 226,000 followers ) and DC-area photographer Claude Taylor ( 159,000 followers ). ..."
    "... Experts on political misinformation see things differently. They worry that the unfounded speculation and paranoia that infect the Russiasphere risk pushing liberals into the same black hole of conspiracy-mongering and fact-free insinuation that conservatives fell into during the Obama years. ..."
    "... Mensch is quite combative with the press. When I asked her to email me for this piece, she refused and called me a "dickhead." But she's backed up by an array of different figures, who spend a lot of time swapping ideas on Twitter. ..."
    "... One of them is Schindler, the former NSA spook. A former Naval War College professor who resigned in 2014 after a scandal in which he sent a photograph of his penis to a Twitter follower , he thinks Mensch doesn't get it right all the time. But he does think she was onto the truth about Trump and Russia "long before the MSM cared" (the two have been amiably chatting on Twitter since 2013 ). ..."
    "... "Louise has no counterintelligence background, nor does she speak Russian or understand the Russians at a professional level, and that makes her analysis hit or miss sometimes," he told me. "That said, very few people pontificating on Kremlingate have those qualifications, so if that's disqualifying, pretty much everyone but me is out." ..."
    "... dezinformatsiya ..."
    "... These three - Mensch, Schindler, and Taylor - form a kind of self-reinforcing information circle, retweeting and validating one another's work on a nearly daily basis. ..."
    "... The Palmer Report, and its creator, little-known journalist Bill Palmer, is kind of a popularizer of the Russiasphere. It reports the same kind of extreme, thinly sourced stuff - for instance, a story titled "CIA now says there's more than one tape of Donald Trump with Russian prostitutes" - often, though not always, sourced to Mensch and company. This seems to personally irk Mensch, who has occasionally suggested the Palmer Report is ripping her off . ..."
    "... Yet nonetheless, Palmer appears to have built up a real audience. According to Quantcast , a site that measures web traffic, the Palmer Report got around 400,000 visitors last month - more than GQ magazine's website. The Russian prostitute story was shared more than 41,000 times on Facebook, according to a counter on Palmer's site; another story alleging that Chaffetz was paid off by Trump and Russia got about 29,000. ..."
    "... "Misinformation is much more likely to stick when it conforms with people's preexisting beliefs, especially those connected to social groups that they're a part of," says Arceneaux. "In politics, that plays out (usually) through partisanship: Republicans are much more likely to believe false information that confirms their worldview, and Democrats are likely to do the opposite." ..."
    "... actual conspiracy. ..."
    "... For instance, after the New York Times published the Mensch piece back in March, former DNC chair Donna Brazile tweeted out the story, with a follow-up thanking Mensch for "good journalism": ..."
    "... What you've got are prominent media figures, political operatives, scholars, and even US senators being taken in by this stuff - in addition to the tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of ordinary people consuming it on Twitter and Facebook. These people, too, are letting their biases trump interest in factual accuracy. ..."
    "... Will the mainstreaming of the Russiasphere speed up - and birth something like a Breitbart of the left? If so, it'll create an environment where the people most willing to say the most absurd things succeed, pulling the entire Democratic Party closer to the edge - and leaving liberals trapped in the same hall of mirrors as conservatives. ..."
    May 30, 2017 | www.vox.com

    President Donald Trump is about to resign as a result of the Russia scandal. Bernie Sanders and Sean Hannity are Russian agents. The Russians have paid off House Oversight Chair Jason Chaffetz to the tune of $10 million, using Trump as a go-between. Paul Ryan is a traitor for refusing to investigate Trump's Russia ties. Libertarian heroine Ayn Rand was a secret Russian agent charged with discrediting the American conservative movement.

    These are all claims you can find made on a new and growing sector of the internet that functions as a fake news bubble for liberals, something I've dubbed the Russiasphere. The mirror image of Breitbart and InfoWars on the right, it focuses nearly exclusively on real and imagined connections between Trump and Russia. The tone is breathless: full of unnamed intelligence sources, certainty that Trump will soon be imprisoned, and fever dream factual assertions that no reputable media outlet has managed to confirm.

    Twitter is the Russiasphere's native habitat. Louise Mensch, a former right-wing British parliamentarian and romance novelist, spreads the newest, punchiest, and often most unfounded Russia gossip to her 283,000 followers on Twitter . Mensch is backed up by a handful of allies, including former NSA spook John Schindler ( 226,000 followers ) and DC-area photographer Claude Taylor ( 159,000 followers ).

    There's also a handful of websites, like Palmer Report , that seem devoted nearly exclusively to spreading bizarre assertions like the theory that Ryan and Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell funneled Russian money to Trump - a story that spread widely among the site's 70,000 Facebook fans.

    Beyond the numbers, the unfounded left-wing claims, like those on the right, are already seeping into the mainstream discourse. In March, the New York Times published an op-ed by Mensch instructing members of Congress as to how they should proceed with the Russia investigation ("I have some relevant experience," she wrote). Two months prior to that, Mensch had penned a lengthy letter to Vladimir Putin titled "Dear Mr. Putin, Let's Play Chess" - in which she claims to have discovered that Edward Snowden was part of a years-in-the-making Russian plot to discredit Hillary Clinton.

    Last Thursday, Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) was forced to apologize for spreading a false claim that a New York grand jury was investigating Trump and Russia. His sources, according to the Guardian's Jon Swaine, were Mensch and Palmer:

    Members of the Russiasphere see themselves as an essential counter to a media that's been too cautious to get to the bottom of Trump's Russian ties.

    "There's good evidence that the Kremlin was planning a secret operation to put Trump in the White House back in 2014," Schindler told me. "With a few exceptions, the MSM [mainstream media] hasn't exactly covered itself in glory with Kremlingate. They were slow to ask obvious questions about Trump in 2016, and they're playing catch-up now, not always accurately."

    Experts on political misinformation see things differently. They worry that the unfounded speculation and paranoia that infect the Russiasphere risk pushing liberals into the same black hole of conspiracy-mongering and fact-free insinuation that conservatives fell into during the Obama years.

    The fear is that this pollutes the party itself, derailing and discrediting the legitimate investigation into Russia investigation. It also risks degrading the Democratic Party - helping elevate shameless hucksters who know nothing about policy but are willing to spread misinformation in the service of gaining power. We've already seen this story play out on the right, a story that ended in Trump's election.

    "One of the failures of the Republican Party is the way they let the birther movement metastasize - and that ultimately helped Donald Trump make it to the White House," says Brendan Nyhan, a professor at Dartmouth who studies the spread of false political beliefs. "We should worry about kind of pattern being repeated."

    Anatomy of a conspiracy theory

    The Russiasphere doesn't have one unifying, worked-out theory - like "9/11 was an inside job" or "Nazi gas chambers are a hoax." Instead, it's more like an attitude - a general sense that Russian influence in the United States is pervasive and undercovered by the mainstream media. Everything that happens in US politics is understood through this lens - especially actions taken by the Trump administration, which is seen as Kremlin-occupied territory.

    There are, of course, legitimate issues relating to Trump's ties to Russia - I've written about them personally over and over again . There are even legitimate reasons to believe that Trump's campaign worked with Russian hackers to undermine Hillary Clinton. That may or may not turn out to be true, but it is least plausible and somewhat supported by the available evidence .

    The Russiasphere's assertions go way beyond that.

    Take Mensch, who is probably the Russiasphere's most prominent voice. She actually did have one legitimate scoop, reporting in November that the FBI had been granted a warrant to watch email traffic between the Trump Organization and two Russian banks ( before anyone else had ). Since then, though, her ideas have taken a bit of a turn. In January, she launched a blog - Patribotics - that's exclusively dedicated to the Trump/Russia scandal. It's ... a lot.

    Liberals fall for lies for the same reasons conservatives do: partisanship

    "Sources with links to the intelligence community say it is believed that Carter Page went to Moscow in early July carrying with him a pre-recorded tape of Donald Trump offering to change American policy if he were to be elected, to make it more favorable to Putin," Mensch claimed in an April post . "In exchange, Page was authorized directly by Trump to request the help of the Russian government in hacking the election."

    Another post , allegedly based on "sources with links to the intelligence community," claimed that Trump, Mike Pence, and Paul Ryan were all going to be arrested on racketeering charges against "the Republican party" owing to collaboration with Russia.

    "Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah, who was the 'Designated Survivor' at the inauguration of Donald Trump (yes, really) is likely to become President," Mensch writes.

    She's also suggested that Anthony Weiner was brought down as part of a Russian plot to put the Clinton emails back in the news:

    I can exclusively report that there is ample evidence that suggests that Weiner was sexting not with a 15 year old girl but with a hacker , working for Russia, part of the North Carolina hacking group 'Crackas With Attitude', who hacked the head of the CIA, and a great many FBI agents, police officers, and other law enforcement officials.

    And that the protests against police brutality in Ferguson were secretly a Russian plot:

    Mensch is quite combative with the press. When I asked her to email me for this piece, she refused and called me a "dickhead." But she's backed up by an array of different figures, who spend a lot of time swapping ideas on Twitter.

    One of them is Schindler, the former NSA spook. A former Naval War College professor who resigned in 2014 after a scandal in which he sent a photograph of his penis to a Twitter follower , he thinks Mensch doesn't get it right all the time. But he does think she was onto the truth about Trump and Russia "long before the MSM cared" (the two have been amiably chatting on Twitter since 2013 ).

    "Louise has no counterintelligence background, nor does she speak Russian or understand the Russians at a professional level, and that makes her analysis hit or miss sometimes," he told me. "That said, very few people pontificating on Kremlingate have those qualifications, so if that's disqualifying, pretty much everyone but me is out."

    Schindler's role in the Russiasphere is essentially as a validator, using his time working on Russia at the NSA to make the theories bandied about by Mensch seem credible. Schindler peppers his speech with terms pulled from Russian spycraft - like deza , short for dezinformatsiya (disinformation), or Chekist , a term used to describe the former spies who hold significant political positions in Putin's Russia.

    This lingo has become common among the Russiasphere, a sort of status symbol to show that its members understand the real nature of the threat. Schindler and Mensch will often refer to their enemies in the media and the Trump administration using the hashtag #TeamDeza, or accuse enemies of being Chekists.

    Claude Taylor is the third core member of the Russia sphere. He's a DC-area photographer who claims to have worked for three presidential administrations; his role is to provide inside information into the alleged legal cases against the president. He also routinely claims to have advance knowledge what's happening, even down to the precise number of grand juries impaneled and indictments that are on the way.

    These anonymous intelligence community tip-offs lead him to tweet, with certainty, that Trump is finished. His tweets routinely get thousands of retweets.

    These three - Mensch, Schindler, and Taylor - form a kind of self-reinforcing information circle, retweeting and validating one another's work on a nearly daily basis. A quick Twitter search reveals hundreds of interactions between the three on the platform in recent months, many of which reach huge audiences on Twitter (judging by the retweet and favorite counts). They're also reliably boosted by a few allies with large followings - conservative NeverTrumper Rick Wilson , the anonymous Twitter account Counterchekist , and financial analyst Eric Garland (best known as the "time for some game theory" tweetstormer.)

    The Palmer Report, and its creator, little-known journalist Bill Palmer, is kind of a popularizer of the Russiasphere. It reports the same kind of extreme, thinly sourced stuff - for instance, a story titled "CIA now says there's more than one tape of Donald Trump with Russian prostitutes" - often, though not always, sourced to Mensch and company. This seems to personally irk Mensch, who has occasionally suggested the Palmer Report is ripping her off .

    Yet nonetheless, Palmer appears to have built up a real audience. According to Quantcast , a site that measures web traffic, the Palmer Report got around 400,000 visitors last month - more than GQ magazine's website. The Russian prostitute story was shared more than 41,000 times on Facebook, according to a counter on Palmer's site; another story alleging that Chaffetz was paid off by Trump and Russia got about 29,000.

    This stuff is real, and there's a huge appetite for it.

    These theories are spreading because the Russia situation is murky - and Democrats are out of power

    To understand how Democrats started falling for this stuff so quickly, I turned to three scholars: Dartmouth's Nyhan, the University of Exeter's Jason Reifler, and Temple's Kevin Arceneaux. The three of them all work in a burgeoning subfield of political science, one that focuses on how people form political beliefs - false ones, in particular. All of them were disturbed by what they're seeing from the Russiasphere.

    "I'm worried? Alarmed? Disheartened is the right word - disheartened by the degree to which the left is willing to accept conspiracy theory claims or very weakly sourced claims about Russia's influence in the White House," Reifler says.

    The basic thing you need to understand, these scholars say, is that political misinformation in America comes principally from partisanship. People's political identities are formed around membership in one of two tribes, Democratic or Republican. This filters the way they see the world.

    "Misinformation is much more likely to stick when it conforms with people's preexisting beliefs, especially those connected to social groups that they're a part of," says Arceneaux. "In politics, that plays out (usually) through partisanship: Republicans are much more likely to believe false information that confirms their worldview, and Democrats are likely to do the opposite."

    In one study , Yale's Dan Kahan gave subjects a particularly tricky math problem - phrased in terms of whether a skin cream worked. Then he gave a random subset the same problem, only phrased in terms of whether a particular piece of gun control legislation worked.

    The results were fascinating. For the people who got the skin cream problem, there was no correlation between partisanship and likelihood of getting the right answer. But when people got the same question, just about gun control, everything changed: Republicans were more likely to conclude that gun control didn't work, and Democrats the other way around. People's political biases overrode their basic mathematical reasoning skills.

    "[Some] people are willing to second-guess their gut reactions," Arceneaux says. "There just aren't that many people who are willing to do that."

    In real-life situations, where the truth is invariably much murkier than in a laboratory math problem, these biases are even more powerful. People want to believe that their side is good and the other evil - and are frighteningly willing to believe even the basest allegations against their political enemies. When your tribe is out of power, this effect makes you open to conspiracy theories. You tend to assume your political enemies have malign motives, which means you assume they're doing something evil behind the scenes.

    The specific nature of the conspiracy theories tends to be shaped by the actors in question. So because Obama was a black man with a non-Anglo name, and the Republican Party is made up mostly of white people, the popular conspiracy theories in the last administration became things like birtherism and Obama being a secret Muslim. This was helped on by a conservative mediasphere, your Rush Limbaughs and Fox Newses and Breitbarts, that had little interest in factual accuracy - alongside one Donald J. Trump.

    There have been random smatterings of this kind of thing catering to Democrats throughout the Trump administration, like the now-infamous Medium piece alleging that Trump's Muslim ban was a "trial balloon for a coup." But most conspiracy thinking has come to center on Russia, and for good reason: There's suggestive evidence of an actual conspiracy.

    We know that Trump's team has a series of shady connections to the Kremlin. Some of Trump's allies may have coordinated with Russian hackers to undermine the Clinton campaign. But we still don't know the details of what actually happened, so there's a huge audience of Democratic partisans who want someone to fill in the blanks for them.

    "Conspiracy entrepreneurs are filling the void for this kind of content," Nyhan says. "If you're among the hardcore, you can follow Louise Mensch, and the Palmer Report, and John Schindler and folks like that - and get an ongoing stream of conspiracy discourse that is making some quite outlandish claims."

    This kind of thing is poisonous. For Republicans, it made their party more vulnerable to actual penetration by hacks - the "Michele Bachmanns" and "Sean Hannitys," as Nyhan puts it. It allows unprincipled liars and the outright deluded to shape policy, which both makes your ideas much worse and discredits the good ones that remain. In the specific case of the Russia investigation, the spread of these ideas would make the president's accusations of "fake news" far more credible.

    Luckily for the Democratic Party, there isn't really a pre-built media ecosystem for amplifying this like there was for Republicans. In the absence of left-wing Limbaughs and Breitbarts, media outlets totally unconcerned with factual rigor, it's much harder for this stuff to become mainstream.

    But hard doesn't mean impossible. The most worrying sign, according to the scholars I spoke to, is that some mainstream figures and publications are starting to validate Russiasphere claims.

    For instance, after the New York Times published the Mensch piece back in March, former DNC chair Donna Brazile tweeted out the story, with a follow-up thanking Mensch for "good journalism":

    A current DNC communications staffer - Adrienne Watson - favorably retweeted a Mensch claim that the Russians had "kompromat," or blackmail, on Rep. Chaffetz:

    Two former Obama staffers, Ned Price and Eric Schultz, favorably discussed a Palmer Report story aggregating Mensch's allegations about Chaffetz ("interesting, if single-source," Price tweeted). Larry Tribe, an eminent and famous constitutional law professor at Harvard, shared the same Palmer Report story on Twitter - and even defended his decision to do so in an email to BuzzFeed 's Joseph Bernstein.

    "Some people regard a number of its stories as unreliable," Tribe wrote of Palmer. Yet he defended disseminating its work: "When I share any story on Twitter ... I do so because a particular story seems to be potentially interesting, not with the implication that I've independently checked its accuracy or that I vouch for everything it asserts."

    And Keith Olbermann made a popular video for GQ based on Taylor's allegations about imminent arrests, adding that "Claude and his sources know their stuff."

    What you've got are prominent media figures, political operatives, scholars, and even US senators being taken in by this stuff - in addition to the tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of ordinary people consuming it on Twitter and Facebook. These people, too, are letting their biases trump interest in factual accuracy.

    This is the key danger: that this sort of thing becomes routine, repeated over and over again in left-leaning media outlets, to the point where accepting the Russiasphere's fact-free claims becomes a core and important part of what Democrats believe.

    "Normal people aren't reading extensively about what Louise Mensch claims someone told her about Russia," Nyhan says. "The question now is whether Democrats and their allies in the media - and other affiliated elites - will promote these conspiracy theories more aggressively."

    That's how the GOP fell for conspiracy thinking during the Obama years. There's nothing about Democratic psychology that prevents them from doing the same - which means the burden is on Democratic elites to correct it.

    Democratic partisans and liberal media outlets are the ones best positioned to push back against this kind of stuff. Rank-and-file Democrats trust them; if they're saying this stuff is ridiculous, then ordinary liberals will start to think the same thing. Even if they just ignore it, then the Russiasphere will be denied the oxygen necessary for it to move off of Twitter and into the center of the political conversation.

    "Scrutiny from trusted media sources and criticism from allied elites can help discourage this kind of behavior," Nyhan says. "It won't suppress it - there are always places it can go - but on the margin, allies can help limit the spread of conspiracy theorizing inside their party."

    So that's the key question going forward: Will the mainstreaming of the Russiasphere speed up - and birth something like a Breitbart of the left? If so, it'll create an environment where the people most willing to say the most absurd things succeed, pulling the entire Democratic Party closer to the edge - and leaving liberals trapped in the same hall of mirrors as conservatives.

    [May 30, 2017] George Webb claims to have identified Seth Rich's killers.

    May 30, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com

    Ed Jobb - junction , May 30, 2017 10:38 PM

    George Webb claims to have identified Seth Rich's killers.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqY2QP-DNaQ

    [May 30, 2017] Putin Russian Meddling Is A Fiction Democrats Invented To Divert Blame For Their Defeat

    The Russia-screwed-the-Dems meme is obviously fantastical bullshit and it's absolutely disgraceful that the neoliberal MSM are running this garbage 24/7 like it's the gospel truth.
    Notable quotes:
    "... "Therefore, we should not build up tensions or invent fictional threats from Russia, some hybrid warfare etc.," the Russian leader told his French hosts. "What is the major security problem today? Terrorism. There are bombings in Europe, in Paris, in Russia, in Belgium. There is a war in the Middle East. This is the main concern. But no, let us keep speculating on the threat from Russia." ..."
    "... Case in point, in the latest attempt to stir up an anti-Russian frenzy, America's biggest neocon, John McCain said that Russia is even more dangerous than ISIS . "You made these things up yourselves and now scare yourselves with them and even use them to plan your prospective policies. These policies have no prospects. The only possible future is in cooperation in all areas, including security issues." ..."
    "... It is glaringly obvious that the (worthless) Rats painted themselves into a small corner. Blaming the Russians is both desperate and hilarious. ..."
    May 30, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
    With McCarthyism 2.0 continues to run amok in the US, spread like a virulent plague by unnamed, unknown, even fabricated sources , over in France one day after his first meeting with French president Emanuel Macron, the man who supposedly colluded with and was Trump's pre-election puppet master (but had to wait until after the election to set up back-channels with Jared Kushner) Vladimir Putin sat down for an interview with French newspaper Le Figaro in which the Russian president expressed the belief that Moscow and Western capitals "all want security, peace, safety and cooperation."

    "Therefore, we should not build up tensions or invent fictional threats from Russia, some hybrid warfare etc.," the Russian leader told his French hosts. "What is the major security problem today? Terrorism. There are bombings in Europe, in Paris, in Russia, in Belgium. There is a war in the Middle East. This is the main concern. But no, let us keep speculating on the threat from Russia."

    Case in point, in the latest attempt to stir up an anti-Russian frenzy, America's biggest neocon, John McCain said that Russia is even more dangerous than ISIS . "You made these things up yourselves and now scare yourselves with them and even use them to plan your prospective policies. These policies have no prospects. The only possible future is in cooperation in all areas, including security issues."

    "Hacking" Clinton And the DNC

    Even with the FBI special investigation on "Russian collusion" with the Trump campaign and administration taking place in the background, Putin once again dismissed allegations of Russian meddling in last year's U.S. presidential election as "fiction" invented by Democrats to divert the blame for their defeat. Putin repeated his strong denial of Russia's involvement in the hacking of Democratic National Committee emails that yielded disclosures that proved embarrassing for Hillary Clinton's campaign. Instead, he countered that claims of Russian interference were driven by the " desire of those who lost the U.S. elections to improve their standing ."

    "They want to explain to themselves and prove to others that they had nothing to do with it, their policy was right, they have done everything well, but someone from the outside cheated them," he continued. "It's not so. They simply lost, and they must acknowledge it. " That has proven easier said than done, because half a year after the election, Hillary Clinton still blames Wikileaks and James Comey for her loss . Ironically, what Putin said next, namely that the "people who lost the vote hate to acknowledge that they indeed lost because the person who won was closer to the people and had a better understanding of what people wanted," is precisely what even Joe Biden has admitted several weeks ago , and once again yesterday . Maybe Uncle Joe is a Russian secret agent too...

    In reflecting on the ongoing scandal, which has seen constant, daily accusations of collusion and interference if no evidence (yet), Putin conceded that the damage has already been done and Russia's hopes for a new detente under Trump have been shattered by congressional and FBI investigations of the Trump campaign's ties to Russia. In the interview, Putin also said the accusations of meddling leveled at Russia have destabilized international affairs

    Going back to the hotly debated topic of "influencing" the election, Putin once again made a dangerous dose of sense when he argued that trying to influence the U.S. vote would make no sense for Moscow as a U.S. president can't unilaterally shape policies. " Russia has never engaged in that, we don't need it and it makes no sense to do it ," he said. " Presidents come and go, but policies don't change. You know why? Because the power of bureaucracy is very strong ." Especially when the bureaucracy in question is the so-called "deep state."

    Asked who could have been behind the hacking of the Democrats' emails, The Russian leader added that he agreed with Trump that it could have been anyone. "Maybe someone lying in his bed invented something or maybe someone deliberately inserted a USB with a Russian citizen's signature or anything else," Putin said. "Anything can be done in this virtual world." This echoed a remark by Trump during a September presidential debate in which he said of the DNC hacks: "It could be Russia, but it could be China, could also be lots of other people. It could be someone sitting on their bed that weighs 400 pounds."

    Assad, Red-Lines and Chemical Weapons

    Putin was asked about French President Emmanuel Macron's warning that any use of chemical weapons in Syria was a "red line" that would be met by reprisals, to which the Russian president said he agreed with that position. But he also reiterated Russia's view that Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces weren't responsible for a fatal chemical attack in Syria in April. Putin said Russia had offered the U.S. and its allies the chance to inspect the Syrian base for traces of the chemical agent. He added that their refusal reflected a desire to justify military action against Assad. "There is no proof of Assad using chemical weapons," Putin insisted in the interview. "We firmly believe that that this is a provocation. President Assad did not use chemical weapons."

    "Moreover, I believe that this issue should be addressed on a broader scale. President Macron shares this view. No matter who uses chemical weapons against people and organizations, the international community must formulate a common policy and find a solution that would make the use of such weapons impossible for anyone," the Russian leader said.

    On NATO's Military Buildup across Russian borders

    Weighing on the outcome of the recent NATO summit, at which Russia was branded a threat to security, Putin pointed to the ambiguous signals Moscow is receiving from the alliance. "What attracted my attention is that the NATO leaders spoke at their summit about a desire to improve relations with Russia. Then why are they increasing their military spending? Whom are they planning to fight against?" Putin said, adding that Russia nevertheless "feels confident" in its own defenses. Washington's appeal to other NATO members to ramp up their military spending and alleviate the financial burden the US is forced to shoulder is "understandable" and "pragmatic," Putin said.

    But the strategy employed by the alliance against Russia is "shortsighted," the Russian president added, referring to the NATO's expanding missile defense infrastructure on Russia's doorstep and calling it "an extremely dangerous development for international security." Putin lamented that an idea of a comprehensive security system envisioned in the 1990s that would span Europe, Russia and US has never become a reality, arguing that it would have spared Russia many challenges to its security stemming from NATO. "Perhaps all this would not have happened. But it did, and we cannot rewind history, it is not a movie."

    junction -> Boris Badenov •May 30, 2017 10:03 PM

    Paging Seth Rich. Oh, he can't say anything about the reason why the Democrats lost. Maybe Hillary could try to contact him using witchcraft and the Satanist arts she follows. Then again, her old reliable is her hit team of FBI agents, not her sacrifices to Moloch.

    GooseShtepping Moron •May 30, 2017 10:01 PM

    Putin packs more truth into one newspaper interview than the entire Western media publishes in a year.

    Francis Marx •May 30, 2017 10:01 PM

    Who would they blame if Russia was suddenly gone?

    rejected -> Francis Marx •May 30, 2017 10:05 PM

    Iran.

    GooseShtepping Moron -> Francis Marx •May 30, 2017 10:06 PM

    Me and you, the basket of deplorables.

    Billy the Poet -> rwmctrofholz •May 30, 2017 10:25 PM

    I find this little cut and paste job to be effective when addressing this issue:

    Background to "Assessing Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections": The Analytic Process and Cyber Incident Attribution

    "DHS assesses that the types of systems Russian actors targeted or compromised were not involved in vote tallying."

    "Disclosures through WikiLeaks did not contain any evident forgeries."

    https://www.dni.gov/files/documents/ICA_2017_01.pdf

    Yars Revenge •May 30, 2017 10:23 PM

    The Russia-screwed-the-Dems thing is obviously fantastical bullshit and it's absolutely disgraceful that the mainstream media are running this garbage 24/7 like it's the gospel truth.

    ogretown •May 30, 2017 10:43 PM

    It is glaringly obvious that the (worthless) Rats painted themselves into a small corner. Blaming the Russians is both desperate and hilarious. But who else could they blame? If instead they had started a campaign that focused on the Muslims trying to ruin America and (correctly) identified Saudi Arabia as America's greatest enemy, imagine the votes they would have received from the soft-right, independents, (relatively) sane liberals. If the (worthless) liberals opted for a moratorium on squandering any more money on the pseudo-science of global warming and insisted on a balanced panel to investigate the issue once and for all - even more votes.

    Ditto with exotic pro-globalist trade deals...instead if the (worthless) Rats would have opted for town hall discussions on how a vast international trade deal would have may be helped America, they would have been viewed as the party of balance, consideration and the thoughtful.

    But all of that means having smart and dedicated people as either part of the party or willing to trust the party - none of which exist. Instead the party of bankrupt ideals and impoverished morality finger point the Russians and try to blame it all on them.

    [May 30, 2017] The Strata-Sphere DNCs Russian Hack NOT Investigated By FBI – But By DNC Contractor by AJStrata

    Something was really wrong with Comey. Such an unprofessionalism is not excusable.
    Notable quotes:
    "... Three days after his discovery, Alperovitch was on a plane to Washington. He'd been asked to vet a paragraph in a speech by the secretary of state, Hillary Clinton . She'd decided, for the first time, to call out another country for a cyberattack. "In an interconnected world," she said, "an attack on one nation's networks can be an attack on all." ..."
    "... So these guys had FBI contacts and they had Clinton contacts. What else did they have? Would anyone believe connections to DHS : ..."
    "... To recap, all the claims of Russian involvement with DNC (and by extension Team Trump) is based on claims by a firm with roots back to the Obama FBI, to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and to DHS? This is the only evidence we have of Russian efforts to tilt this election (as opposed to efforts by Democrat operatives in the Deep State to tilt the election)? ..."
    "... note: this site is a bit tinfoil hat for me, but I liked the way these paragraphs summarized where we are on this ..."
    "... In fact, only two hackers were found to have been in the system and were both identified by Alperovitch as Russian FSB (CIA) and the Russian GRU (DoD). It is only Alperovitch who claims that he knows that it is Putin behind these two hackers. ..."
    "... The ridiculously fake cyber-attack assessment done by Alperovitch and CrowdStrike naïvely flies in the face of the fact that a DNC insider admitted that he had released the DNC documents. ..."
    "... I just seems crazy that all this diversion by the news media and Democrats is based on the unsubstantiated claims of a company that epitomizes what it means to be part of the Political Industrial Complex ..."
    "... The Political Industrial Complex encompasses all those elites whose livelihoods are predicated on central-control of resources and who determine who is allowed to succeed in society. It is a bipartisan exclusive club. It includes the Politicians and their career staffers. It includes crony donors and lobbyists who reap government windfalls and special treatment that average citizens cannot obtain. It includes the PIC industrial base of pollsters, consultants, etc. And it includes the pliant news media, whose success rest on access to those in power, and in return for access making sure no bad news will disrupt said power. ..."
    Apr 02, 2017 | strata-sphere.com

    The fantasy story line inside the Political Industrial Complex* (PIC) is that Team Trump colluded with Russia to tilt last year's election to Trump. Of course the endless screw ups by Team Clinton, and the high level of frustration across this great land with PIC and its elites, had nothing to do with the election results. It has to be those pesky Russkies!

    The story goes that the FBI – and all 16 intelligence agencies – concur that the Russians were targeting the Democrats, and this began with the exposure of DNC emails prior to the Democrat convention last year.

    Well, that's ONE STORY

    A fuller picture is becoming evident. One where nearly all the conclusions of Russian influence are based upon a report from one company – a company contracted by the DNC !

    On Thursday, a senior law enforcement official told CNN that the DNC "rebuffed" the agency's request to physically examine its computer servers after the alleged hacking. Instead, the FBI relied on CrowdStrike's assessment that the servers had most likely been hacked by Russian agents.

    "The FBI repeatedly stressed to DNC officials the necessity of obtaining direct access to servers and data, only to be rebuffed until well after the initial compromise had been mitigated," CNN quoted the senior law enforcement official as saying. "This left the FBI no choice but to rely upon a third party for information.

    Sounds just like Hillary Clinton and her email server – where the government cannot do a real investigation of the actual computer evidence. If this sounds fishy, it is. Because this company is not a middle of the road, independent agent.

    It is, in fact, a young start-up with much of its prior success tied to the Obama administration (less now than when it began 6 years ago), and of course its future rests in the hands of the Intelligence Community and the niche community of federal cyber-security specialists. All who make their living off the federal government in one way or the other. They know who is lining their bank accounts

    One of the founders is Dmitri Alperovitch who was born in Moscow, Russia in 1980 and who moved with his family to the US in 1990. Clearly he had not forged nefarious ties to Putin's regime by the age of 10 when he emigrated, so his Russian background is not really of much interest. But he does have an interesting past, which I will get to in a second.

    While I was attempting to do some digging on all this I discovered someone had done all the work already. So let me give credit where credit is due: CrowdStrike leadership has significant ties to Obama and the Democrats:

    Founder Dmitri Alperovitch has been the best known face of CrowdStrike, partly due to the profile feature done on him by Esquire in late 2016. But his co-founder, George Kurtz – like Alperovitch, a former executive at McAfee – has had a high professional profile as well.

    Worth noting at the outset is that Kurtz obtained a $26 million financing deal for the CrowdStrike start-up in February 2012 from equity giant Warburg Pincus , after Kurtz had been serving there as the "entrepreneur in residence."

    This equity firm is where the initial seed money for CrowdStrike came from (Warburg was the only capital investor at the beginning; Google came in with the $100 million in 2015).

    Warburg Pincus remains a primary investor in CrowdStrike, along with Google and Accel Partners . In 2016, Warburg, whose president since 2014 has been Tim Geithner , Obama's former secretary of the treasury, raised $29,709 for Hillary Clinton , the largest single recipient of campaign funds raised by Warburg employees and PACs. (No contributions were made through Warburg-related entities to Donald Trump.)

    Then there's the linked-ness of the CrowdStrike executive stable. Steven Chabinsky, CrowdStrike's General Counsel and Chief Risk Officer, was named to Obama's Commission on Enhancing National Cybersecurity in April 2016 .

    That's partly because Chabinsky was Deputy Assistant Director of the FBI's Cyber Division and Chief of the FBI's Cyber Intelligence Section before he left the Bureau for private life in 2012 (the year he joined CrowdStrike ).

    But there's more. [Shawn] Henry is the president of CrowdStrike Services, and the Chief Security Officer (CSO) for the company. But when he came on with CrowdStrike, in April 2012 , he was coming off his final position with the FBI: Executive Assistant Director of the Criminal, Cyber, Response, and Service Branch. (Or, as he was usually referred to, the "FBI's top cyber official.")

    In other words, CrowdStrike scored the FBI's two biggest Obama-era cybersecurity names – Henry and Chabinsky – the year it was formed as a start-up .

    Strong ties to Obama's FBI, and one would assume FBI Director Comey. Hmmm .

    Let's get back to Dimitri now, and his connections to the Democrats :

    Alperovitch's first big break in cyberdefense came in 2010 , while he was at McAfee. The head of cybersecurity at Google told Alperovitch that Gmail accounts belonging to human-rights activists in China had been breached. Google suspected the Chinese government. Alperovitch found that the breach was unprecedented in scale; it affected more than a dozen of McAfee's clients.

    Three days after his discovery, Alperovitch was on a plane to Washington. He'd been asked to vet a paragraph in a speech by the secretary of state, Hillary Clinton . She'd decided, for the first time, to call out another country for a cyberattack. "In an interconnected world," she said, "an attack on one nation's networks can be an attack on all."

    Now just hold on one second here. How in the world does a nobody at MacAfee get on a plane to meet the Secretary of State in just 3 days? No vetting? No preliminaries with underlings? Just fly out to DC to review a single paragraph??

    This has to be fictional drama.

    BTW, earlier in the same article we have this contrary story line:

    In 2011, he was working in Atlanta as the chief threat officer at the antivirus software firm McAfee. While sifting through server logs in his apartment one night, he discovered evidence of a hacking campaign by the Chinese government. Eventually he learned that the campaign had been going on undetected for five years, and that the Chinese had compromised at least seventy-one companies and organizations, including thirteen defense contractors, three electronics firms, and the International Olympic Committee.

    While Alperovitch was writing up his report on the breach, he received a call from Renee James, an executive at Intel, which had recently purchased McAfee. According to Alperovitch, James told him, "Dmitri, Intel has a lot of business in China. You cannot call out China in this report."

    Alperovitch removed the word China from his analysis, calling the operation Shady Rat instead. He told me that James's intervention accelerated his plans to leave Intel.

    So which story-line is the right one? Not sure, but let's just say not just anyone gets called to review Hillary's speeches.

    So these guys had FBI contacts and they had Clinton contacts. What else did they have? Would anyone believe connections to DHS :

    Through their common roots in McAfee, Alperovitch and Kurtz have an extensive history with top cyber expert Phyllis Schneck, who appears in the Esquire piece from October. In fact, Alperovitch and Schneck were at Georgia Tech together (see the Esquire article), and later were vice presidents of McAfee at the same time Kurtz was McAfee's chief technology officer (CTO). Alperovitch has obviously had a close professional relationship with Schneck; their names are both on four separate patent applications .

    What is Schneck doing today? Since 2013, she's been the Deputy Under Secretary for Cybersecurity and Communications for the National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) – i.e., the chief cybersecurity official for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) .

    To recap, all the claims of Russian involvement with DNC (and by extension Team Trump) is based on claims by a firm with roots back to the Obama FBI, to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and to DHS? This is the only evidence we have of Russian efforts to tilt this election (as opposed to efforts by Democrat operatives in the Deep State to tilt the election)?

    Some final perspectives on how this is all playing out [ note: this site is a bit tinfoil hat for me, but I liked the way these paragraphs summarized where we are on this ]

    Also remember that it is only Alperovitch and CrowdStrike that claim to have evidence that it was Russian hackers . In fact, only two hackers were found to have been in the system and were both identified by Alperovitch as Russian FSB (CIA) and the Russian GRU (DoD). It is only Alperovitch who claims that he knows that it is Putin behind these two hackers.

    The ridiculously fake cyber-attack assessment done by Alperovitch and CrowdStrike naïvely flies in the face of the fact that a DNC insider admitted that he had released the DNC documents.

    It is also absurd to hear Alperovitch state that the Russian FSB (equivalent to the CIA) had been monitoring the DNC site for over a year and had done nothing. No attack, no theft, and no harm was done to the system by this "false-flag cyber-attack" on the DNC – or at least, Alperovitch "reported" there was an attack.

    I just seems crazy that all this diversion by the news media and Democrats is based on the unsubstantiated claims of a company that epitomizes what it means to be part of the Political Industrial Complex*

    * The Political Industrial Complex encompasses all those elites whose livelihoods are predicated on central-control of resources and who determine who is allowed to succeed in society. It is a bipartisan exclusive club. It includes the Politicians and their career staffers. It includes crony donors and lobbyists who reap government windfalls and special treatment that average citizens cannot obtain. It includes the PIC industrial base of pollsters, consultants, etc. And it includes the pliant news media, whose success rest on access to those in power, and in return for access making sure no bad news will disrupt said power.

    Tags: Clinton , CrowdStrike , DNC , Obama , Russian Hack , Trump

    [May 30, 2017] New Bombshell Documentary "Who Killed Seth Rich"

    Notable quotes:
    "... When establishment mainstream media "blacklists" the topic, it just makes us all suspect "they" have something to hide. Why can't we have an open and honest exploration of what really happened? ..."
    May 30, 2017 | truthfeed.com

    Tremendous kudos goes to OANN network for putting together this powerful documentary. The fact of the matter is the Seth Rich murder is unanswered and people want the truth.

    When establishment mainstream media "blacklists" the topic, it just makes us all suspect "they" have something to hide. Why can't we have an open and honest exploration of what really happened?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OomLn6gut7E

    Eddie Turner

    America is in lots of trouble this is one of many deaths around the Clinton crime family do your own research see what comes up suicides with 2 shots back of head weird accidents people just disappearing these people must not be like my family high powered rifles and crack shots we would make sure justice was served.

    Carlette Duperior

    What a great documentary well done filled in a lot of blanks and questions that I had very professional very objective nice to see Great reporting.

    [May 29, 2017] BREAKING Man Investigating FRAUD Charges Against the DNC Found DEAD

    Notable quotes:
    "... A lawsuit last year against the DNC was filed in the Southern District of Florida by attorney Shaun Lucas. ..."
    "... A month after Lucas filed the papers to sue the DNC, he was found dead at the age of 38. 14 prosecutors have been killed in 100 years. ..."
    "... One of those was Lucas - the man who served the DNC papers. ..."
    "... The lawsuit was filed on June 28 by Bernie Sanders supporters against the DNC and then DNC chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who resigned in the wake of the WikiLeaks email scandal. ..."
    "... And now a young federal prosecutor working in the Southern District of Florida is also found dead. Florida Prosecutor Beranton J. Whisenant Jr., 37, was investigating fraud and visa case in Wasserman-Schultz's back yard district. Was he working on the case against the DNC? ..."
    May 29, 2017 | truthfeed.com

    A Florida federal attorney who was investigating against the DNC, specifically, Wasserman-Shultz district, was found dead on a beach with what authorities describe as "head trauma."

    COINCIDENCE?

    A lawsuit last year against the DNC was filed in the Southern District of Florida by attorney Shaun Lucas.

    A month after Lucas filed the papers to sue the DNC, he was found dead at the age of 38. 14 prosecutors have been killed in 100 years.

    One of those was Lucas - the man who served the DNC papers.

    The lawsuit was filed on June 28 by Bernie Sanders supporters against the DNC and then DNC chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who resigned in the wake of the WikiLeaks email scandal.

    And now a young federal prosecutor working in the Southern District of Florida is also found dead. Florida Prosecutor Beranton J. Whisenant Jr., 37, was investigating fraud and visa case in Wasserman-Schultz's back yard district. Was he working on the case against the DNC?

    From wptv.com

    HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (AP) - The body of a federal prosecutor has been found on a Florida beach with possible head trauma.

    Hollywood police spokeswoman Miranda Grossman said Thursday that the body of 37-year-old Beranton J. Whisenant Jr. was found early Wednesday by a passerby on the city's beach. She said detectives are trying to determine if the death was a homicide, suicide or something else.

    Whisenant worked for the U.S. Attorney's Office in Miami in its major crimes unit. He had joined the office in January. Court records show he had been handling several visa and passport fraud cases.

    Acting U.S. Attorney Benjamin G. Greenberg said in a statement that Whisenant was a "great lawyer and wonderful colleague." The office declined to comment on the investigation.

    Amy Moreno is a Published Author , Pug Lover & Game of Thrones Nerd. You can reach her on Facebook here .

    [May 29, 2017] Russia Expert Says No Evidence Russia 'Hacked the Election'

    Notable quotes:
    "... Why didn't the FBI do their own investigation? ..."
    "... "They say that, but it's bogus," Cohen argued. "When Clapper, the director of national intelligence, signed that report in January, technically he represents all seventeen. I'll bet you a dime to a nickel you couldn't get a guest on, unprepared, who could name ten of them. This figure -- seventeen -- is bogus!" ..."
    "... "The one agency that could conceivably have done a forensic examination on the Democratic computers is a national security agency ..."
    May 29, 2017 | pjmedia.com
    Professor Stephen Cohen: Not One Piece of Factual Evidence That Russia 'Hacked the Election' By Debra Heine March 31, 2017 chat 176 comments Prof. Cohen: Not One Piece of Factual Evidence That Russia 'Hacked the Election'

    Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies at New York University and Princeton, spoke Thursday evening with Fox News' Tucker Carlson about the latest shoes to drop in the investigations into the Trump campaign's possible ties to Russia.

    The Wall Street Journal reported late Thursday that Michael Flynn, President Trump's former national security advisor, has told the FBI and congressional investigators that he is willing to be interviewed in exchange for a grant of immunity from prosecution -- not a particularly good sign for the Trump White House.

    Cohen, one of the country's foremostexperts on Russia, has been arguing for months that the anti-Russia hysteria in Washington, D.C., is becoming a "grave national security threat."

    Carlson began the discussion by bringing up what he sees as the core issue-- the allegations that the Russian government "hacked our election" by breaking into email accounts at the DNC and the Clinton campaign office.

    "Everyone assumes this is true," he said. "We're all operating under the assumption that it's true. Do we know it's true?"

    "No," Cohen answered flatly. "And if you listen to the hearings at the Senate today, repeatedly it was said -- particularly by Senator Warner, the Democratic co-chair of the proceedings -- that Russia had hijacked our democracy. What he means is that, the Russians, at Putin's direction, had gone into the Democratic National Committee's emails, which were embarrassing to Mrs. Clinton, given them to Wikileaks, Wikileaks then released them to damage Mrs. Clinton and put Trump in the White House."

    He noted, "This is a very dramatic narrative and they're saying in Washington that this was an act of war.... So whether or not it's true is existential. Are we at war?"

    After studying Russian leadership for 40 years, focusing on Putin in particular, Cohen said it was hard for him believe that the Russian president would have done such a thing.

    "I could find not one piece of factual evidence," he said. "The only evidence ever presented was a study hired by the Clintons -- the DNC -- to do an examination of their computers.They [Crowdstrike] concluded the Russians did it. Their report has fallen apart." He added, " Why didn't the FBI do their own investigation? "

    Tucker pointed out that even Republicans say that seventeen U.S. intelligence agencies (including Coast Guard Intelligence!) have concluded that Russian intelligence was behind this.

    "They say that, but it's bogus," Cohen argued. "When Clapper, the director of national intelligence, signed that report in January, technically he represents all seventeen. I'll bet you a dime to a nickel you couldn't get a guest on, unprepared, who could name ten of them. This figure -- seventeen -- is bogus!"

    The professor made one more critical point: "The one agency that could conceivably have done a forensic examination on the Democratic computers is a national security agency ," he said.

    He continued: "When they admit that they have no evidence, they fall back on something else which I think is very important. They say Putin directed Russian propaganda at us and helped elect Trump. I don't know about you, Tucker, but I find that insulting -- because the premise they're putting out ... at this hearing is that the American people are zombies. ... It's the premise of democracy that we're democratic citizens," he said. "That we have a B.S. detector in us and we know how to use it."

    [May 29, 2017] OAN Offers $100,000 for Information on Seth Rich Murder, Total Reward $245,000

    May 29, 2017 | www.thegatewaypundit.com
    On July 8, 2016, 27 year-old Democratic staffer Seth Conrad Rich was murdered in Washington DC. The killer or killers took nothing from their victim, leaving behind his wallet, watch and phone .

    Shortly after the killing, Redditors and social media users were pursuing a "lead" saying that Rich was en route to the FBI the morning of his murder, apparently intending to speak to special agents about an "ongoing court case" possibly involving the Clinton family .

    Seth Rich's father Joel told reporters, "If it was a robbery - it failed because he still has his watch, he still has his money - he still has his credit cards, still had his phone so it was a wasted effort except we lost a life."

    ,,, ,,, ,,,

    The Metropolitan police posted a $25K reward for information on Rich's murder.

    In August Wikileaks offered a $20,000 reward for information on the murder of DNC staffer Seth rich.

    Julian Assange also suggested in August that Seth Rich was a Wikileaks informant.
    Via Mike Cernovich :

    now OAN, cable news channel, offers $100K reward for details leading to arrest of Seth Rich killer - Washington Times

    One America News Network (OAN) is offering a $100,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of a suspect in former DNC staffer Seth Rich 's murder case.

    The Herring Networks, Inc. media company OAN joins a number of individuals and groups that are willing to pay for information that solves the July 10, 2016, killing of Mr. Rich . The election-season murder continues to spark conspiracy theories based on the suggestion that Mr. Rich provided DNC data to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks.

    "One America News believes solving this case - and bringing Rich 's murderer to justice - is essential to exposing the truth for the American people," OAN's Greta Wall reported Monday. "We are offering a $100,000 reward for any information that leads to the arrest of a suspect in the case. If you have any information, please email us at tips@oann.com."

    Others offering rewards include the Washington, D.C. Police Department ($25,000); WikiLeaks ($20,000); and Republican strategist Jack Burkman ($130,000).

    [May 29, 2017] Martin Shkreli Announces $100,000 Reward for Info on Seth Rich's Murder

    May 29, 2017 | www.eutimes.net
    businessman and investor Martin Shkreli is putting up $100,000 for information leading to the arrest of the person responsible for the murder of Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich.

    Shkreli, former chief executive officer of Turing Pharmaceuticals and KaloBios Pharmaceuticals Inc., made the announcement via his Facebook page Friday.

    Rich, 27, was the voter expansion data director at the DNC, according to Roll Call, and had been employed for two years. Rich also worked on a computer application to help voters locate polling stations, and had just accepted a job with Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign.

    According to Washington D.C. Metropolitan Police reports, officers patrolling the Bloomingdale neighborhood heard gunshots at around 4:20 a.m. on the morning of July 10, 2016. Officers discovered a "conscious and breathing" Rich at 2100 Flagler Place NW.

    Police have not yet solved the case, but surmised that Rich was a victim of a botched robbery. Police said that they found his wallet, credit cards and cellphone on his body. The band of his wristwatch was torn but not broken. The current theory maintains that the shooters panicked after shooting Rich and immediately fled the scene.

    Source

    [May 28, 2017] Hillary Monday morning quarterbacking

    May 28, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    EMichael May 27, 2017 at 09:12 AM

    "You are graduating at a time when there is a full-fledged assault on truth and reason. Just log on to social media for ten seconds. It will hit you right in the face. People denying science, concocting elaborate, hurtful conspiracy theories about child-abuse rings operating out of pizza parlors, drumming up rampant fear about undocumented immigrants, Muslims, minorities, the poor, turning neighbor against neighbor and sowing division at a time when we desperately need unity. Some are even denying things we see with our own eyes, like the size of crowds, and then defending themselves by talking about quote-unquote 'alternative facts.'

    "But this is serious business. Look at the budget that was just proposed in Washington. It is an attack of unimaginable cruelty on the most vulnerable among us, the youngest, the oldest, the poorest, and hard-working people who need a little help to gain or hang on to a decent middle class life. It grossly under-funds public education, mental health, and efforts even to combat the opioid epidemic. And in reversing our commitment to fight climate change, it puts the future of our nation and our world at risk. And to top it off, it is shrouded in a trillion-dollar mathematical lie. Let's call it what it is. It's a con. They don't even try to hide it.

    "Why does all this matter? It matters because if our leaders lie about the problems we face, we'll never solve them. It matters because it undermines confidence in government as a whole, which in turn breeds more cynicism and anger. But it also matters because our country, like this College, was founded on the principles of the Enlightenment – in particular, the belief that people, you and I, possess the capacity for reason and critical thinking, and that free and open debate is the lifeblood of a democracy. Not only Wellesley, but the entire American university system – the envy of the world – was founded on those fundamental ideals. We should not abandon them; we should revere them. We should aspire to them every single day, in everything we do.

    "And there's something else. As the history majors among you here today know all too well, when people in power invent their own facts, and attack those who question them, it can mark the beginning of the end of a free society. That is not hyperbole. It is what authoritarian regimes throughout history have done. They attempt to control reality – not just our laws and rights and our budgets, but our thoughts and beliefs."

    ... ... ...

    Paine - , May 27, 2017 at 01:33 PM
    Hillary should be in a hut somewhere in the Canadian north staring at election returns. Her shameless ambition her heedless self seeking industry and undaunted entitled drive reminds me of the worst results of meritocracy

    [May 27, 2017] Neoliberals tears about Hillary loss might create dragons teeth effect

    Notable quotes:
    "... One thing we don't need are "progressives" who whine about irregularities (without proof) when they lose a close election. That will help the right wing more than anything they themselves can do. She is clearly not mature enough to take any leadership role anywhere. ..."
    "... "neoliberal tears" about Hillary loss might create "dragon's teeth" effect... For example look at the Twit: "Fmr Kasich Supporter: Hostile Media Makes Me Support Trump " Chinese torture of Trump using well timed leaks also can have the same effect. ..."
    "... sections of Trump voters and population in general now harbored "a uniform distrust of the national news media." ..."
    "... There are still a lot of morons who voted for Trump and are sure he will do the part of his promises they listened to and believed. He is brilliant at the short con. That is how he made his money (or is it failed to loss his inheritance). He promises whatever he sense that the costumer want to hear and get a signature on the deal. Then as soon as the costumer have handed over their money (votes) he runs away from what he promised. ..."
    "... That (short) con works in real estate where he really don't need to do another deal with people after he conned them. In politics he will be faced with the voters he conned in the first place, so either he chose to be a one-term president or he will realize why a one-trick pony shouldn't try to do a new trick. ..."
    May 27, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    DeDude - , May 26, 2017 at 02:41 PM

    One thing we don't need are "progressives" who whine about irregularities (without proof) when they lose a close election. That will help the right wing more than anything they themselves can do. She is clearly not mature enough to take any leadership role anywhere.
    libezkova - , May 26, 2017 at 07:47 PM
    "One thing we don't need are "progressives" who whine about irregularities (without proof) when they lose a close election"

    That's a very good point. I would say more: "neoliberal tears" about Hillary loss might create "dragon's teeth" effect... For example look at the Twit: "Fmr Kasich Supporter: Hostile Media Makes Me Support Trump " Chinese torture of Trump using well timed leaks also can have the same effect.

    that all means that it's not only just former #NeverHillary types who still stand by the president. Other sections of Trump voters and population in general now harbored "a uniform distrust of the national news media."

    see also http://reason.com/blog/2017/05/24/trump-nixon-watergate-culture-war

    from which this quote was taken.

    Christopher H. - , May 26, 2017 at 01:24 PM
    https://twitter.com/StephanieKelton/status/868131695215738880

    Stephanie Kelton‏ @StephanieKelton

    Stephanie Kelton Retweeted Pedro da Costa

    There should be less pushback on Trump's growth forecast, per se, and more focus on the question Growth For Whom?

    8:48 AM - 26 May 2017

    DeDude - , May 26, 2017 at 02:32 PM
    There are still a lot of morons who voted for Trump and are sure he will do the part of his promises they listened to and believed. He is brilliant at the short con. That is how he made his money (or is it failed to loss his inheritance). He promises whatever he sense that the costumer want to hear and get a signature on the deal. Then as soon as the costumer have handed over their money (votes) he runs away from what he promised.

    That (short) con works in real estate where he really don't need to do another deal with people after he conned them. In politics he will be faced with the voters he conned in the first place, so either he chose to be a one-term president or he will realize why a one-trick pony shouldn't try to do a new trick.

    But it will almost certainly take at least a year before a large number of the Trump voters realize that they have been conned. It is very difficult for people to admit that they made a stupid mistake - especially difficult for stupid people.

    libezkova - , May 26, 2017 at 08:00 PM
    "But it will almost certainly take at least a year before a large number of the Trump voters realize that they have been conned."

    Not true. I know many who already "get it " ;-)

    "That (short) con works in real estate where he really don't need to do another deal with people after he conned them. In politics he will be faced with the voters he conned in the first place, so either he chose to be a one-term president or he will realize why a one-trick pony shouldn't try to do a new trick."

    But both Bush II an Barack Obama were reelected. So "bait and switch" game might not be that fatal for politicians in the USA as it is in some other countries.

    I agree that shortermism is the name of the game.

    "It is very difficult for people to admit that they made a stupid mistake"

    Large part of "alt-right" (anti war right) already abandoned Trump. Those did it first. Paleoconservatives followed and now are one just step from open hostility mostly because of media attacks on Trump.

    Libertarians, especially former Ron Paul supporters, now are openly hostile and their critique is really biting.

    Do not know about evangelicals and other fringe groups, but I doubt that any of them still have illusions about Trump.

    IMHO, the only factor that still allows Trump to maintain his base is unending attacks of neoliberal media and this set of well coordinated leaks.

    [May 27, 2017] Democrats may have some difficulty winning elections, but they've become quite adept at explaining their losses

    Notable quotes:
    "... Democrats may have some difficulty winning elections, but they've become quite adept at explaining their losses. ..."
    "... According to legend, Democrats lose because of media bias, because of racism, because of gerrymandering, because of James Comey and because of Russia (an amazing 59 percent of Democrats still believe Russians hacked vote totals). ..."
    "... the "deplorables" comment didn't just further alienate already lost Republican votes. It spoke to an internal sickness within the Democratic Party ..."
    "... About 2/3 in that election voted early -- before the slam down. ..."
    "... I agree with you that Democrats should make unions a priority instead just regurgitating the usual pablum about how they support unions without doing anything. ..."
    "... The dem pols alliance outside the south with organized " private sector " unions was the legacy of the new deal and the CIO uprising. That alliance broke down in the 70's with the rise of the cultural liberals after the civil rights and anti war struggles. Union often seen by Clintons as reactionary saw their economic interests pushed aside... ..."
    May 27, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

    Christopher H., May 27, 2017 at 06:31 AM

    http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/features/taibbi-the-democrats-need-a-new-message-w484569

    The Democrats Need a New Message. After another demoralizing loss to a monstrous candidate, Democrats need a reboot

    by Matt Taibbi
    19 hours ago

    ... ... ...

    The electoral results last November have been repeated enough that most people in politics know them by heart. Republicans now control 68 state legislative chambers, while Democrats only control 31. Republicans flipped three more governors' seats last year and now control an incredible 33 of those offices. Since 2008, when Barack Obama first took office, Republicans have gained somewhere around 900 to 1,000 seats overall.

    There are a lot of reasons for this. But there's no way to spin some of these numbers in a way that doesn't speak to the awesome unpopularity of the blue party. A recent series of Gallup polls is the most frightening example.

    Unsurprisingly, the disintegrating Trump bears a historically low approval rating. But polls also show that the Democratic Party has lost five percentage points in its own approval rating dating back to November, when it was at 45 percent.

    The Democrats are now hovering around 40 percent, just a hair over the Trump-tarnished Republicans, at 39 percent. Similar surveys have shown that despite the near daily barrage of news stories pegging the president as a bumbling incompetent in the employ of a hostile foreign power, Trump, incredibly, would still beat Hillary Clinton in a rematch today, and perhaps even by a larger margin than before.

    If you look in the press for explanations for news items like this, you will find a lot of them. Democrats may have some difficulty winning elections, but they've become quite adept at explaining their losses.

    According to legend, Democrats lose because of media bias, because of racism, because of gerrymandering, because of James Comey and because of Russia (an amazing 59 percent of Democrats still believe Russians hacked vote totals).

    Third-party candidates are said to be another implacable obstacle to Democratic success, as is unhelpful dissension within the Democrats' own ranks. There have even been whispers that last year's presidential loss was Obama's fault, because he didn't campaign hard enough for Clinton.

    The early spin on the Gianforte election is that the Democrats never had a chance in Montana because of corporate cash, as outside groups are said to have "drowned" opponent Rob Quist in PAC money. There are corresponding complaints that national Democrats didn't do enough to back Quist.

    A lot of these things are true. America is obviously a deeply racist and paranoid country. Gerrymandering is a serious problem. Unscrupulous, truth-averse right-wing media has indeed spent decades bending the brains of huge pluralities of voters, particularly the elderly. And Republicans have often, but not always, had fundraising advantages in key races.

    But the explanations themselves speak to a larger problem. The unspoken subtext of a lot of the Democrats' excuse-making is their growing belief that the situation is hopeless – and not just because of fixable institutional factors like gerrymandering, but because we simply have a bad/irredeemable electorate that can never be reached.

    This is why the "basket of deplorables" comment last summer was so devastating. That the line would become a sarcastic rallying cry