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Bernie Sanders: A turncoat socialist who endorsed neocon warmonger Hillary without fight for nomination on the convention

Bernie Sander has no moral right to participate in 2002 elections because he betrayed his voters in 2016 elections

Bernie Sanders endorsing Crooked Hillary Clinton is like Occupy Wall Street endorsing Goldman Sachs -- Donald Trump

Before

After

News US Presidential Elections of 2016 Recommended Links FBI Mayberry Machiavellians James Comey role in preventing Sanders from leading the Democratic ticket Venezuella: another "bombs for oil" scenario after Libya? Andrew McCabe role
Understanding Hillary Clinton email scandal Questions about Huma Abedin email forwarding Clinton Cash: Hillary Clinton links to foreign donors and financial industry Brennan elections machinations Steele dossier Hillary as a pathological liar Do the US intelligence agencies influence the US Presidential elections?
DNC emails leak: switfboating Bernie Sanders and blaming Vladimir Putin Is Hillary Clinton a toxic manager? Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Hillary role in Libya disaster Hillary role in Syria bloodbath Hillary the warmonger Russiagate -- a color revolution against Trump
Hillary "Warmonger" Clinton Female Sociopaths NIST Guidelines on Electronic Mail Security (dated February 2007) Beyond your cable modem - How not to do DOCSIS networks NIST Guidelines on Securing Public Web Servers Skeptic Quotations Humor

Introduction

As much as I want to vote for HRC, the stench of neocon corporatism is too much, the thin layer of accumulated grime from years of ethical expediency too toxic, the opaque lack of transparency too dangerous, and the shifting sands of her amorphous policy too treacherous.

Lester Smithson, Guardian, Jul 11, 2016

Trump has spoken against globalism. Trump has spoken against neocon wars. Trump wants to uphold our laws. Hillary is a globalist shill. Hillary is a warmongerer. Hillary thinks laws are for little people. The choice is simple.

Bernie just lost all the respect he has built over the last 12 months. Endorsing the warmongering neocon. What was he talking about in his campaign. Apparently nothing.

Anjeska , Guardian comment, Jul 12, 2016

You fooled me once, but now after what you have just done, feel my afterbern - Trump for President!

Puro, Guardian comment

First the neoliberal press tried to demolished his candidacy. With NYT and WaPo as two the most rabid pro-Hillary dogs. Despite neoliberal presstitutes efforts to sink his candidacy, Sanders managed to stay competitive almost all the way to the California primary in June. Then he folded and blatantly betrayed his voters, his principles and himself.

In December 2017 we leaned than it was FBI who actually pushed Bernie under the bus by swiping under the carpet changes against Hilary connected with her abuse of private email server. See Strzok-gate. This is like Praetorian Guard selection a new emperor.

But in retrospect this old fogey (he will be 80 in 2021) turned out to be a sellout. People who want to tame Wall street and restore some parts of the New Deal Capitalism regulations destroyed by neoliberals have no leader to represent their interests. I can now imagine a feelings of Bernie's supporters who will feel duped (M of A , Jun 13, 2016)

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

... ... ...

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

Betrayal of his own principles

June 12, 2016 was a very sad day when Bernie finds himself endorsing someone who is the complete opposite to the politics he claims to champion. What was his BS campaign and all that rhetoric for? A disgusting spectacle ( Democracy And The Future Of The United States - ICH):

Bernie is a fake. He was and I guess, still is a test case for the system. Lucifer wants to see how far he can go – and what is it that the people want to hear. Accordingly, will be adjusted the discourse of the two candidates. Sanders has a (Senate) voting record which does not portray what he pledges to stand for.

... ... ...

Sanders, early on has said that if he should not succeed, he would support Killary. Hello! what message does that convey? – That he would support a warmonger par excellence? – Europeans like many Americans have been fooled by Bernie's charm and rebellious appearance. All fake!

But signs of this were visible during Berne Sanders campaign. One that alerted many people is he carefully avoided to emphasize the weak spots in Hillary candidacy: her role in launching Libya war and serious of highly paid speeches (read bribes) from major Wall Street firms.

thebuzzinsider

Tuesday morning Bernie Sanders united the Democrat party by announcing his endorsement of Hillary Clinton, but not everyone is happy, with some of his supporters calling him a sell-out.

Beginning his speech by giving thanks to the 13 million Americans who voted for him during the primaries, Sanders announced that he would be endorsing Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nominee and intends to do everything he can to ensure that she will become the "next president of the United States."

"[T]his campaign is not really about Hillary Clinton, or Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders or any other candidate who sought the presidency," Sanders said in the rally. "This campaign is about the needs of the American people and addressing the very serious crises that we face."

Sanders began to compare Clinton with Republican nominee, Donald Trump, explaining the differences between the two and using these differences as his reasons for endorsing her. Sanders admitted during the rally that he and Clinton do disagree on a number of issues but he also claimed that on Sunday, July 10, during the Democratic Platform Committee the two campaigns were able to come together significantly.

"Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her here today," Sanders said at the end of the rally.

This proclamation is a far cry from how his stance was a couple months ago, when he claimed that Clinton wasn't qualified for the presidency.

"I don't believe that she is qualified," Sanders said in a Philadelphia rally back in April, as reported by thinkprogress.org. "[I]f she is, through her super PAC, taking tens of millions of dollars in special interest funds. I don't think that you are qualified if you get $15 million from Wall Street through your super PAC."

Trump was one of the first to call Sanders a sell-out on Twitter, comparing his endorsement of "Crooked Hillary Clinton" to Occupy Wall Street endorsing Goldman Sachs.

"I am somewhat surprised that Bernie Sanders was not true to himself and his supporters," Trump tweeted. "They are not happy that he is selling out!"

While some Democrats are happy that the party has seemed to have finally united, like the Communications Workers of America who have now changed their endorsement from Sanders to Clinton, other supporters share Trumps sentiments, feeling outraged and disappointed at Bernie's sudden change of heart.

"A Sanders endorsement of Clinton would be the ultimate betrayal of his supporters, especially those of us that poured money into his campaign."

"Bernie, if you endorse Hillary Clinton, after is NOW A PROVEN FACT she lied to the American people, then you sir are a FRAUD."

"Bernie, endorsing Clinton destroys every point you made and everything you stood for in the race. You are letting the people who supported you down. You made a promise to fight in the end, but instead you are conceding. You are not the elected leader you lead us to believe in. Shame on you."

These are just some of the comments people have been leaving on Sander's Facebook page, as reported on the Forward Progressives website.

Other supporters have asked him to wait for the Democrats Party convention, to run in a third-party or to join Jill Stein in the Green Party ticket.

Now that Sanders has endorsed Clinton, Clinton's campaign will most likely focus on convincing his supporters to join them in their fight for the presidency.

Some prominent left wing thinkers such as Chris Hedges viewed US Senator Sanders as a corporate sellout from the very beginning (Chris Hedges on Bernie Sanders and the Corporate Democrats)

Some prominent left wing thinkers such as Chris Hedges viewed US Senator Sanders as a corporate sellout from the very beginning (Chris Hedges on Bernie Sanders and the Corporate Democrats):

Nader: "Bernie Sanders wants to break up the New York banks, he wants to impose a Wall Street transaction tax, he wants to regulate drug prices, he's for full Medicare for all - everybody in, nobody out, free choice of doctor and hospital - he wants to get rid of these corporate tax havens, he's pushing for a $15 dollar an hour minimum wage, he wants to stronger labor unions. What's not to like?"

Hedges: "Because he [Bernie Sanders] did it within the Democratic establishment. . . .He's lending credibility to a party that is completely corporatized. He has agreed that he will endorse the candidate, which, unless there is some miracle, will probably be Hillary Clinton. So what he does is he takes all of that energy, he raises all of these legitimate issues and he funnels it back into a dead political system. . .

"That was the role of Van Jones in the last election," Hedges said. "He was running around, using the language of Occupy - Occupy the Vote - and that is what Bernie has done. I don't understand. He fought the Democratic establishment in Vermont his entire career. Now he has sold out to it."

"Bernie has also not confronted the military industrial complex at all," Hedges said. "On a personal level, having spent seven years in the Middle East, I'm just not willing to forgive him for abandoning the Palestinians and giving carte blanche to Israel. He was one of 100 Senators who stood up like AIPAC wind up dolls and approved Israel's 51-day slaughter last summer of Palestinians in Gaza - the Palestinians who have no army, no navy, artillery, mechanized units, command and control."

Some biographic details

Adapted from Wikipedia

Bernard "Bernie" Sanders (born September 8, 1941) is an American politician. He is the junior United States Senator from Vermont and has announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination in the 2016 presidential election. As a presidential candidate he is the candidate without a party, as Democratic Party established is controlled by financial oligarchy after Bill Clinton sold his party to Wall street ("Third Way betrayal", similar to the trick Tony Blair performed in the UK).

An independent politician since 1979, Sanders described himself as a democratic socialist (and probably with his political views might fit Social Democratic Party of Germany). He favors the creation of employee-owned cooperative enterprises and has praised Scandinavian-style social democracy. He caucuses with the Democratic Party and is counted as a Democrat for purposes of committee assignments. Since January 2015, Sanders has been the ranking Democratic member on the Senate Budget Committee. He is also associated with the Vermont Progressive Party and was a member of the Liberty Union Party from 1971 to 1979.

After several unsuccessful runs for office, Sanders was elected mayor of Burlington, Vermont's largest city, in 1981. He was reelected to three more two-year mayoral terms before being elected to represent Vermont's at-large congressional district in the United States House of Representatives in 1990. He served as a congressman for 16 years before being elected to succeed the retiring Republican-turned-independent Jim Jeffords in the U.S. Senate in 2006. In 2012 he was reelected by a landslide. Sanders was the only independent member of the House during most of his service and is the longest-serving independent in U.S. congressional history.

Since his election to the Senate, Sanders has emerged as a leading progressive voice on the issues of income inequality, climate change, and campaign finance reform. He rose to national prominence on the heels of his 2010 filibuster of the proposed extension of the Bush-era tax rates for the wealthy. In response to the speech, hundreds of people signed online petitions urging Sanders to run in the 2012 presidential election and pollsters began measuring his support in key primary states. As a supporter of President Obama, Sanders declined to run in 2012, but began expressing an interest in a 2016 presidential run in December of 2013.

Sanders announced his intentions to seek the Democratic Party's nomination for President on April 30, 2015, in an address on the Capitol lawn. His campaign was officially launched on May 26 with an event in Burlington, Vermont.

Dirty MSM games and tricks with election polls

It is well known that the key idea of polls is to influence electorate. Not to inform but influence. So int he USA they are a very dirty game. Desirable result that conditions those who did not yet decided to vote "for the winner" can be achieved in a very subtle way. For example if electorate of one candidate is younger, you can run poll using landline phones. How subgroup is selected is also important:

3.14e-9

Yes, how they ask the questions is important, and it's also important to note which subgroups were asked the questions. Some questions were limited to respondents who had voted in a previous Democratic primary. That means the results don't include Independents and Republicans who might cross party lines. Also, those who voted in a past primary are far more likely to be familiar with HRC than Sanders.

Lastly, confidence in Bernie rose for some questions. Interestingly enough, there was an increase in the number of people who thought he could competently handle a foreign crisis. Sargent's bias is pretty clear. Entire poll here:

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/11/12/us/politics/document-poll.html

Of course this election cycle much depends on how angry people really are with the establishment. I think many viscerally dislike Clinton and Jeb! for that reason. I think not many understand that Dem and Repug are actually one neoliberal party representing its soft and hard wings, correspondingly. And both intend to harm or even destroy the country with their neoliberal policies to serve interests on top 0.01%. And that the case with Dems since Bill Clinton sold the part to Wall Street. The vast body of american people wants change (and not Obama's fake "change we can believe in") but they don't have a place at the table…

Gaius Publius provide a good analysis of now MSM sell establishment candidate to lemmings in his July 10, 2015 post in Naked capitalism blog (The Clinton Campaign Notices the Sanders Campaign, or How to Read the Media)

Taking Apart the Insider Game

The most important thing to consider when thinking about the Sanders campaign is this. Everyone else who's running, on both sides, is an insider playing within - and supporting - the "insider game," the one that keeps insiders wealthy and outsiders struggling, the one where the wealthy and their retainers operate government for their benefit only. What sets Sanders apart is his determination to dismantle that game, to take it apart and send its players home (back to the private sector) or to jail.

Two examples should make this clear. One is Fast Track and the "trade" agreements being forced upon us. The pressure to pass these agreements is coming equally from mainstream Democrats like Barack Obama, a "liberal," and from mainstream Republicans, supposed "conservatives." They may differ on "rights" policy, like abortion rights, but not on money matters. Trade agreements are wealth-serving policies promoted by people in both parties who serve wealth, which means most of them. People like Sanders, Warren and others, by contrast, would neuter these agreement as job-killing profit protection schemes and turn them into something else.

A second example involves Wall Street banks, in particular, a policy of breaking them up, reinstating Glass-Steagall, and prosecuting Wall Street fraud. Can you imagine any announced candidate doing any of these things, save Bernie Sanders?

In both of these cases, Sanders would aggressively challenge the insider profit-protection racket, not just give lip service to challenging it. Which tells you why he is so popular. Many of us in the bleachers have noticed the insider game - after all, it's been happening in front of us for decades- and most of us are done with it. Ask any Tea Party Republican voter, for example, what she thinks of the bank bailout of 2008-09. She'll tell you she hated it, whether she explains it in our terms or not.

And that's why Sanders, like Warren before him, draws such enthusiastic crowds. The pendulum has swung so far in the direction of wealth that the nation may well change permanently, and people know it. People are ready, just as they were in 2008, prior to eight years of betrayal. People have been discouraged about the chance for change lately, but they're ready for the real thing if they see it.

The Clinton Campaign Notices Sanders

There's been an attempt to downplay the Sanders candidacy since the beginning, to sink his campaign beneath a wave of silence. That ended a bit ago, and the press has begun to take notice, if snippily. Now the Clinton campaign is noticing, if the New York Times is to be believed. I found the following fascinating, for a number of reasons.

The piece first along with some news, then a little exegesis (my emphasis):

Hillary Clinton's Team Is Wary as Bernie Sanders Finds Footing in Iowa

The ample crowds and unexpectedly strong showing by Senator Bernie Sanders are setting off worry among advisers and allies of Hillary Rodham Clinton, who believe the Vermont senator could overtake her in Iowa polls by the fall and even defeat her in the nation's first nominating contest there.

The enthusiasm that Mr. Sanders has generated - including a rally attended by 2,500 people in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on Friday - has called into question Mrs. Clinton's early strategy of focusing on a listening tour of small group gatherings and wooing big donors in private settings. In May, Mrs. Clinton led with 60 percent support to Mr. Sanders' 15 percent in a Quinnipiac poll. Last week the same poll showed Mrs. Clinton at 52 percent to Mr. Sanders's 33 percent.

"We are worried about him, sure. He will be a serious force for the campaign, and I don't think that will diminish," Jennifer Palmieri, the Clinton campaign's communications director, said Monday in an interview on MSNBC's "Morning Joe."

Some of Mrs. Clinton's advisers acknowledged that they were surprised by Mr. Sanders' momentum and said there were enough liberal voters in Iowa, including many who supported Barack Obama or John Edwards in 2008, to create problems for her there.

"I think we underestimated that Sanders would quickly attract so many Democrats in Iowa who weren't likely to support Hillary," said one Clinton adviser, who like several others spoke on the condition of anonymity to candidly share views about the race. "It's too early to change strategy because no one knows if Sanders will be able to hold on to these voters in the months ahead. We're working hard to win them over, but yeah, it's a real competition there."

I don't want to quote the whole thing (well, I do, but I can't). So I encourage you to read it. There's much there worth noticing.

What to Look at When the Times Reports on Clinton

Now, some exegesis, meta-reading of the media, especially corporate media like the Times. My three main points are bulleted below.

Bottom Line

If you like this exercise in reading behind the media, please read the article again with the above thoughts in mind. Is this original reporting (i.e., reporters starting a conversation), or did the campaign make the first approach? Does the article carry Clinton water, subtly support the campaign? Are any opposing viewpoints featured at the top, or are they buried below the point where most people stop reading?

This Times story may be a completely honest exercise in independent journalism. There certainly is a Sanders phenomenon, and it's detailed honestly and factually, so there's value in reading it. But there's an obvious bias toward Clinton messaging in the reporters' own prose, so I'm suspicious, and you should be as well.

I'll also say that most stories about campaigns operate this way, as do many other news stories involving public figures. What will make reporting the Sanders campaign different is what I wrote above - Sanders wants to take apart the insider game. What major media outlet will help Sanders do that, will shut the door to corporate favors, media access and other prizes from a future Clinton administration, in order to be even-handed?

My guess is few or none.

An interesting discussion on Naked Capitalism about Sanders candidacy

In the post by By Les Leopold, the director of the Labor Institute in New York 10 Economic Facts that Power the Sanders Insurgency (naked capitalism, Nov 13, 2015) and subsequent readers discussion contains so far the most interesting discussion of Sanders and his (pretty lonely) current position in the presidential race. Being a an anti-establishment candidate is a difficult job as economic and political power belong to the establishment by definition. BTW that's why you should not believe blindly the US polls -- they are designed to sway electorate, not to inform it).

Here are 10 crucial economic facts that provide the glue for the Sanders message. (The charts are taken from Runaway Inequality: An Activist's Guide to Economic Justice.)

1. The Rich are Getting Richer, The Rest of Us are Not.

There always has been a significant gap between the top 1 percent and the rest of America. But that gap was kept under control largely through governmental tax, banking and labor policies.

You could make a lot of money in this country, but after the New Deal, unions made sure you paid a decent wage to your workers, and government made sure the wealthy provided ample tax revenues. This allowed working people also to enjoy a rising standard of living.

But as the chart below shows the bond has been broken. After 1980, the incomes of the top 1% exploded while the wages of the bottom 90% stagnated….and not by accident.

average_income_of_top_1_percent

2. Wall Street/CEO Greed

Most of us haven't had a real raise (after inflation) for more than a decade. Meanwhile we see our CEOs and their Wall Street partners rake in astronomical sums. The data backs up what we see and sense. As this chart shows, the gap between the pay of the top CEOs and the average worker has jumped from 45 to 1 in 1970 to an astounding 829 to one today.

The game is rigged and Sanders is calling them on it.

wage_gap-top_100_ceos_vs_average_workers

3. The Biggest Banks are Getting Bigger.

One of the most outrageous economics facts of life is the engorgement of too-big-to-fail banks. We are told that they now are under control. But nothing could be further from the truth.

The top four banks have grown even larger since the Great Recession. No wonder crowds roar when Bernie says "If a bank is too big to fail, I think it's too big to exist."

percentage_of_all_banking_assets

4. Students are Crippled with Debt.

Sanders wants to tax Wall Street speculation and use the money to fund free higher education. And for good reason. Debt peonage is hitting college students as banks load them up with onerous loans. Sanders believes it's time for us to catch up with many other developed nations that already provide free higher education.

student_loans_1

5. We lead the developed world in child poverty

Nothing more clearly reflects the values of a country than how it treats its children. And nothing is more painful and inexcusable than children living in poverty.

The countries of northern Europe – Iceland, Finland, Nether­lands, Norway, Denmark and Sweden – have nearly eradicated childhood poverty. These also are the countries that have the lowest levels of inequality. They have made a conscious choice: less inequality, less child­hood poverty.

But in a country like ours so engulfed by runaway inequal­ity, child poverty becomes the responsibility of the poor. In other words, if your kids are poor it's your fault. Don't expect society to feed them.

Bernie does indeed expect society to feed the poor. And so should we.

percentage_of_children_living_in_poverty

6. You can't live on the minimum wage

America is the only country in the developed world in which you can work full time and still live in poverty. That's because our federal minimum wage is a disgrace. As the chart below shows, the real buying power of the minimum wage, after taking into account of inflation, has been on the decline since its peak in the 1960s. That's why one of Sanders' biggest applause lines is

"A minimum wage of $7 an hour is a starvation wage. I applaud those cities-Seattle, Los Angeles and others-that have raised the minimum wage to $15 an hour. And that is exactly what we will do at the federal level."

rise_and_fall_of_minimum_wage

7. The tax system favors the rich

We all know that the rich are not paying their fair share of taxes. They hire the best lawyers to help make their incomes vanish on IRS papers. They shift money abroad. They use their influence to create and abuse loopholes. And they sell us the lie that decreasing taxes on the rich make all boats rise.

The chart below shows the result on the state and local levels. The sad truth is that the poorer you are, the more you pay as a percent of your income.

rich_pay_lower_state_tax_rates

8. The Rich Buy the Political System

As our economy fractures under the weight of runaway inequality, so does our entire democracy. Money is pouring into politics, especially since the Citizens United Supreme Court ruling. As the chart below makes clear, corporations and financial institutions are taking full advantage as they flood the political process through Super PACS.

Sanders wants Super PACS outlawed and Citizens United overturned.

9. "The American Dream" is Fading Away

Many Americans still believe in the American Dream - the idea of genuine upward mobility. We cherish the idea that our children will do as well or better than we have done.

But we're getting a wake up call.

The chart below shows that the odds of rising above your father's economic position in the U.S. is about 50/50. In Denmark, you have about a seven to one chance of doing better.

No wonder Bernie wants us to learn a thing or two from the Danes

odds_youll_be_stuck_in_same_class_as_your_parents

10. The Largest Police State in the World

Freedom pays the price for runaway inequality. Because we refuse to use government to provide decent paying work for all those who are willing and able to work, we leave vast tracks of our cities mired in poverty.

We allow institutional racist practices (especially in housing, education and criminal justice) to trap more people of color on the lowest rungs of the economic ladder.

Instead of using government to create jobs, we use government to fund prisons.

Instead of a War on Poverty we have declared war on the poor.

As a result, we now have more prisoners both in absolute numbers and as a percentage of the population than any country in the world. And if you compare the chart below with the first chart in this article, you'll find that the incarceration surge started with the onset of runway inequality.

number_of_federal_and_state_prisoners

Taking Them On

Perhaps Bernie's biggest applause line is the one that sets us on our course. His campaign cannot succeed in one election. We need to connect with our neighbors and colleagues and help organize and mobilize for change.

"This campaign is sending a message to the billionaire class: Yes, we have the guts to take you on."

Let's hope he's right.

tim s

There is much more to a candidates platform than simply economics, which readers of NC know to be as much pseudo-science as anything, and the Fed, which fails to live up to ideals for the common good, and actually preserves the status quo which is such a problem these days.

RP is a mixed bag for certain, but you get a sense that he is at least honest, which is a radical change in itself, and there is much for readers of this blog to latch onto. For instance:

To be sure, many of his positions are headscratchers, for sure, such as his belief in privatization and "free markets". These are very idealistic, and as you probably focus on, the readers of NC will call BS on very quickly.

Still, when having to choose between the internally conflicted and the pathological liar, it is no surprise that many will choose the internally conflicted.

fresno dan, November 13, 2015 at 3:28 pm

I agree.
And one other point: Paul, and every one else elected, so far at least, is not a Napoleon or Caesar, so most platforms are 99.9% baloney. (well, more accurately, most platforms are the same as it ever was – the candidates just say a lot of words to make it appear they are going to do something different – yesterday's LINKS about how Obama didn't REALLY oppose Bush's policies, just that they didn't go through a process to make them legal)

At least with Paul, there was some evidence that he would TRY to dial back all the war mongering….

Jim Haygood, November 13, 2015 at 9:57 am

'Ron Paul knows nothing about the Fed and Economics for which he claims to be an expert.'

He only wrote a book about it:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/End_the_Fed

Perhaps you don't agree with his conclusions.

Lambert Strether, November 13, 2015 at 2:58 pm

To be fair, plenty of people write books on topics of which they know nothing, or worse/less than nothing. All neo-liberal economists, for example.

Nigelk, November 13, 2015 at 1:53 pm

Ron Paul? Seriously? Did I drive through a wormhole this morning and arrive in Fall 2007?

jrs, November 13, 2015 at 2:21 pm

That's what they'll be saying about Sanders in 4 years. I don't mind Sanders as the best choice there is perhaps. But come on folks, none of this stuff has any hope really. A revolution? Well I don't hope for one either, but at least movement building might work. Other than that it's 5 minutes in the voting booth and get on with your life.

Jagger, November 13, 2015 at 2:04 pm

I would be curious how anybody who reads this blog could possibly be for Ron Paul, let alone have voted for him.

Ron Paul is anti-war. Who else is anti-war amongst the Repub/Dem tickets? Maybe Sanders. He did vote against the Iraqi invasion but wouldn't condemn Israel over the last air war on Gaza. Jury is still out on him.

bob

Is this a different Ron Paul?

https://web.archive.org/web/20021212201652/http://www.house.gov/paul/tst/tst2001/tst100801.htm

washunate

We should remember that the image of the United Nations as a benevolent peacemaker is a myth, as evidenced by the sad history of its military actions over the past 30 years. In virtually every instance its so-called "peacekeeping missions" have done nothing but intensify regional conflicts. Kosovo and Somalia are poignant examples of UN policy gone bad, creating lasting resentment and instability rather than peace.

Uh, that sounds like pretty classic Ron Paul. Are you saying that acting as the world's police force bombing civilian infrastructure in Serbia was a good idea and that things are hunky dory in Somalia today? Do you support the current effort to wage war on the Assad government in Syria?

You didn't answer Jagger's question.

washunate, November 13, 2015 at 3:21 pm

Maybe we don't need experts. Maybe the God of Authority is a False God. Maybe instead of trying to fight war better, we should stop trying.

That's the thing about the three biggest things Paul stood for (end the Fed, end the drug war, end the Iraq war): they were ends. Not new programs that require advanced degrees and subject matter expertise, but rather, stopping horrible programs run by horrible people for horrible purposes.

Now maybe you disagree that they're horrible, and that's fine. Personally, I vehemently oppose the drug war and the US empire, but I'm not opposed to the Fed. To me, it just does what politicians tell it to do. But the point is, that's a matter of personal opinion, not expertise.

I wonder only half-jokingly if your comment is satire, too. I assume it was unintentional, but it sounds exactly like the whiny Democratic pundit enforcers complaining about Alan Grayson and FDL working with evil Republicans like Grover Norquist on Audit the Fed legislation. The era in which people can be intimidated via guilt by association is over. There are far more independents than Democrats today.

If you don't understand how a 2008 Ron Paul supporter could be interested in fearless commentary on finance, economics, politics, and power, then all I can surmise is that you don't want to understand. If you are genuinely curious, this link might be a particularly useful refresher on the tone of the day to day politics of the time:

https://shadowproof.com/2010/05/06/video-transcript-ron-paul-says-sanders-switched-and-watered-down-audit-the-fed/

TarheelDem, November 13, 2015 at 9:00 am

The rhetoric Occupy Wall Street was not usurped by the Democratic Party until it was crushed completed in an orchestrated multi-city police state take-down by Democratic and Republican mayors. I see no candidates talking about the right of free speech and assembly to petition government for the redress of grievances. I did not see that sort of repression happen with the Tea Party, which was receiving massive financing from the start. The two movements are not equivalent in how they have been received by the two parties.

wbgonne, November 13, 2015 at 10:21 am

Given that OWS and the Tea Party have been usurped by the respective national parties, and both movements are anti-status quo, my opinion is they should join forces. Also, considering there is little difference at the end of the day, between the republican and democrat parties, that they play both sides against the middle, if Trump and Sanders had an ounce of humility between them, they would both quit their party and run on a split ticket.

A couple of quibbles. First, OWS was not usurped by the Democrats: it was opposed, undermined and ultimately crushed by the Democratic Establishment, starting at the top with the Obama Administration all the way down to the mayors, many of whom were Democrats too. The Tea Party began as a populist movement but was largely hijacked by the GOP corporatists. That said, there is clearly a lot of populist energy on both the Right and the Left. Sanders carries the ball forward almost without misstep. Trump, however, is a decidedly mixed bag: while he is anti-TPP - a huge plus - he also opposes wage increases and probably holds many other anti-populist views that just haven't surfaced yet.

But the biggest problem with the merger you propose, however, is the one that has bedeviled populism since the 70s: identity politics issues. While I generally try not to over-emphasize such issues, they should not be discounted either. They should certainly not be disparaged. Let me put it this way: no self-respecting progressive could collaborate with someone who wishes Operation Wetback were our national immigration policy. Overt racism, sexism and homophobia cannot be accepted but political correctness should be rejected too as the antagonizing and divisive factor it is. In order for the merger you posit to occur - which would be a wonderful development - both the Left and the Right must downplay identity politics issues because those are the wedges that keep the two ends of economic populism from joining.

Jagger, November 13, 2015 at 2:11 pm

Identity politics is in the DNA of the Democratic party. Abandoning identity politics is simply not going to happen for a few generations at best.

WindyCity, November 13, 2015 at 3:17 pm

There is discontent on the left and the right. That's what feeding the candidacies of Tea Party darlings like Trump and Carson and the Democratic Socialist Sanders. Working- and middle-class folks across the political spectrum have been hit hard with unemployment, bankruptcy, foreclosure, debt-slavery, and on and on. Those on the right blame immigration, Obama, and big government; those on the left blame corporate tyranny and capitalist greed. It's probably naive of me, but I do see an opening for a Sanders to draw support from the right. His message ought to resonate with the disaffected, disenfranchised, and disillusioned in all quarters. I've already heard reports of some Tea Baggers throwing in with him. It will be interesting to see if this becomes a significant movement.

Eric Patton

But as the chart below shows the bond has been broken.

I don't like the passive voice here. Who broke the bond? And why?

I recommend Noam Chomsky. Pay attention to Chomsky's comments about the dismantling of the Bretton Woods system in the early 70s. Also pay attention when Chomsky talks about the "crisis of democracy" and the very conscious destruction of the US educational system.

cwaltz, November 13, 2015 at 7:03 am

I have to laugh at anyone who argues they don't like redistribution because it's the equivalent of saying I don't like an economy. The reality is in capitalism you have redistribution. Businesses don't keep the money you give it for goods and services, they redistribute it. The problem is they redistribute it poorly. They put an inordinately large emphasis on rewarding the guy on the top of the totem pole regardless of his contributions(that's why you have CEOs walking away with multimillion dollar parachutes) while paying peanuts to what is often the face of their organization.

The Tea Party has a real critical thinking issue if it thinks any of this has anything to do with winners and losers. You can be a hard worker spending 17 years busting your backside only to find a CEO like Trump has decided that the business isn't profitable enough. Guess what? When he files for bankruptcy he'll get to keep his house, and be insulated from economic consequences that led to the bankruptcy. Meanwhile the same couldn't be said for that worker whose major "bad decision" was placing his lot in with the wrong company at the wrong time under the wrong leadership.

Paul Tioxon, November 13, 2015 at 10:06 am

A Million Student March yesterday was the national day of protest across the nation by university students marching for the cancellation of student debt and $15/hr wages for student jobs. Locally, in Philly, they tied up traffic marching from North to South down Broad St and from West To East across Market St converging at City Hall for a rally against debt, for the $15/hr wage and in solidarity with Mizzou and Yale against racism on campus. Helicopter coverage and on site reporters interviewed the students, allowing them to get their message across in their own words. A Google news search shows similar coverage from Pittsburgh, Reno, Oakland, Vanderbilt etc etc. The report linked below references Bernie Sanders remarks as an inspiration. One student in front of City Hall demanding student debt cancellation presented the case that since a college degree is a necessity, why are they forced into debt for something that society requires of them to live any kind of life worth living? Necessities of life should not require you to borrow money and go into debt. That is similar to buying you supplies from the mining company so you can go down to the mines and work. Candles and picks are required to mine, so why does your paycheck have to cover that cost? The students are beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel!

http://6abc.com/news/philly-students-hit-the-streets-for-million-student-march/1081368/

Vatch , November 13, 2015 at 11:06 am

This is an excellent list of problems in the U.S. economy (some of them affect other parts of the world, too). Whether or not a person currently supports Senator Bernie Sanders, one should ask which candidates for public office are most likely to sincerely try to solve these problems. There are other non-economic issues, but the average person won't have a say in solving other problems unless most of the 10 problems in the list are, at the very least, partly solved.

3.14e-9, November 13, 2015 at 12:53 pm

This article won't convince anyone with half a brain of anything. It's a bunch of opinion, with weasel words such as "My strong impression is." That he cites Jeffrey St. Clair and Joshua Frank is all anyone needs to know. They've been hammering on the same opinion over and over with pretty much the same set of "facts," including inaccuracies such as Sanders's alleged support for the bombing of Gaza last summer. Sanders was one of a small minority of senators who actually didn't sign on to that resolution (S. Res. 498) and he didn't vote for it, because there is no vote on resolutions. They are approved by an arcane Senate rule called "unanimous consent," which is not what it sounds like, but it makes a great story for Chris Hedges and others who are just pissed off that Sanders chose to run as a Democrat.

Ultimately, this article is just more of the same ol' - which is ironic, given that that's what most of this crowd says about Sanders.

WindyCity, November 13, 2015 at 3:42 pm

Chris Hedges takes the same view. I am fully sympathetic with the harsh criticisms leveled at Sanders regarding his support for empire and his relative indifference to foreign policy. Also, he's clearly not a socialist (nor could he be, considering his support for US militaristic hegemony). He is a liberal social democratic in the FDR tradition, and what he advocates is the restitution and strengthening of New Deal restraints on capitalism aimed at reducing inequality. He does support worker self-directed enterprises (cooperative businesses owned and run by workers) and has introduced legislation to provide federal support for such endeavors. This does suggest he's mindful of what genuine socialism is about, though he hasn't highlighted these ideas in the campaign.

My own view is that Sanders could provide an impetus for more movement-led change, provided that the energy and hope that he has generated, especially among young people, be channeled into organizing efforts and civil disobedience after the election process has concluded. I have little doubt that Clinton will win the nomination, but if, instead of succumbing to depression and disillusionment after Sanders has been defeated, his enthusiastic supporters take their anger and commitment into movement-building, his campaign will have made an important contribution.

A big problem is that Sanders has pledged to support the Democratic candidate if it's not him. I don't see how he could really get behind the cynical, opportunistic neocon, neoliberal Clinton, but we'll see. It does look like he'll push the less worse argument on his supporters, and that would be unfortunate.

Vatch, November 13, 2015 at 12:37 pm

The article misrepresents some things. For example, these statements are false, or at the very least, exaggerations:

1) support for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, including President Obama's recent decision to maintain a troop presence; 2) blank-check support of Israel, including its savage bombing campaign in Gaza last year;

1 ) Sanders voted against the war in Iraq and against the Patriot Act. See this for links and this for the Iraq vote in the House.
2 ) Sanders has been very critical of Israel's behavior in Gaza. See this for more information and links.

Meant as a reply to Linda J.

Tom Stone, November 13, 2015 at 12:56 pm

Since reform is not going to happen we need to provide local police departments with more armored vehicles and finish doing away with the 2nd amendment.
The 1st and 4th are gone, it's time for sensible people to get with the program.
Wesley Clarke is calling for FEMA camps to be opened to hold "Extremists".
And he's considered a moderate…
The system is broken, get in line or get hurt.

Lonely fight against neoliberalism

Sanders is probably among very few US politicians who oppose both theory and practice of neoliberalism, which came to power in the USA with the election of Ronald Reagan. Now neoliberalism is 35 years old and already experienced one crisis (2008) which severely undermined its credibility. But it recovered and continue to exist in "zombie" (and really bloodthirsty) state: people understand that as a social system it is discredited, but have no viable alternative. What Sanders tried to propose is such an alternative in a form of resurrection of elements of New Deal. This is a tremendously difficult task. He does not enjoy support on financial oligarchy and thus face well organized and well fed Hillary campaign or discrediting him as a viable candidate. One positive thing about this duel that in rate face to face encounters Sanders might prevail over "not so bright" Hillary.

Neoliberalism is a new form of corporatism based on the ideology of market fundamentalism, dominance of finance in the economy (and restoration of the political power of financial oligarchy) and cult of the rich ("greed is good") instead of ideology based on racial or national superiority typical for classic corporatism. Like many religious doctrines it belongs to the class of Theological Voluntarism (with some pseudo mathematical voodoo attached as a justification; actually even this is not new. Iranian ayatollahs in the past needed to demonstrate proficiency in mathematics) , but unlike most philosophies and relations it does not try to suppress greed. On the contrary it pronounces it to be a virtue ("Greed is good"). All actions are covered under smokescreen of propaganda which is unprecedented in its cynicism, hypocrisy and contempt to the ordinary people. Probably exceeding cynicism of the USSR leadership which covered the same redistribution ( in case of the USSR mainly to military industrial complex and nomenklatura ) policies with Big Brother style slogans like "The Party cares for the wellbeing of the people". This is a tailor-made ideology for powerful interests, large international corporations who simply do want to have their way. They created a political system that is the very opposite of what our leadership, the mass media, opinion leaders, think tanks etc. proclaim as the world's foremost exemplary of democracy. The typical for corporatism union of corporate power and government was transformed by the US elite into a flavor of corporatism which Sheldon Wolin called "inverted totalitarianism" which is just another nickname for neoliberalism. Unlike traditional corporatism of Nazi Germany, and Italy the American neoliberal system is designed not to mobilize the populace, but to distract it, to encourage a sense of dependency (by cultivating fear, calling everything a "war", for example "war on terror") as well as encouraging political disengagement (as in Reagan quote: "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are "I'm from the government, and I'm here to help." ) . Those dirty tricks allowed corporate elite to take full political power and kill remnants of unions political power while citizenry shows little interest or concern. In other words powerful corporate interests which were the key promoters of neoliberalism and the key beneficiaries of its spread. They ingeniously used the Cold War as a pretext of dismantling of the New Deal ( Pt 1-8 Hedges & Wolin Can Capitalism and Democracy Coexist - YouTube):

HEDGES: And the Cold War. So the Cold War arises. And this becomes the kind of moment by which capital, and especially corporate capital, can dismantle the New Deal and free itself from any kind of regulation and constraint to deform and destroy American democracy. Can you talk about that process, what happened during that period?

WOLIN: Well, I think the first thing to be said about it is the success with which the governing groups manage to create a Cold War that was really so total in its spread that it was hard to mount a critical opposition or to take a more detached view of our relationship to the Soviet Union and just what kind of problem it created.

And it also had the effect, of course, of skewing the way we looked at domestic discontents, domestic inequalities, and so on, because it was always easy to tar them with the brush of communism, so that the communism was just more than a regime. It was also a kind of total depiction of what was the threat to -- and complete opposite to our own form of society, our old form of economy and government.

HEDGES: And in Politics and Vision, you talk about because of that ideological clash, therefore any restriction of capitalism which was defined in opposition to communism as a kind of democratic good, if you want to use that word, was lifted in the name of the battle against communism, that it became capitalism that was juxtaposed to communism rather than democracy, and therefore this empowered capital, in a very pernicious way, to dismantle democratic institutions in the name of the war on communism.

WOLIN: Oh, I think there's no question about that, the notion that you first had to, so to speak, unleash the great potential capitalism had for improving everybody's economical lot and the kind of constraints that had been developed not only by the New Deal, but by progressive movements throughout the 19th century and early 20th century in the United States, where it had been increasingly understood that while American economic institutions were a good thing, so to speak, and needed to be nurtured and developed, they also posed a threat.

They posed a threat because they tended to result in concentrations of power, concentrations of economic power that quickly translated themselves into political influence because of the inevitably porous nature of democratic representation and elections and rule, so that the difficulty's been there for a long time, been recognized for a long time, but we go through these periods of sleepwalking where we have to relearn lessons that have been known almost since the birth of the republic, or at least since the birth of Jeffersonian democracy, that capitalism has its virtues, but it has to be carefully, carefully watched, observed, and often controlled.

Later Wendy Brown, professor in Berkley advanced Professor Wolin ideas to a new level in her book Undoing the Demos: Neoliberalism's Stealth Revolution (Zone Books, 2015). Notable quotes from her interview (What Exactly Is Neoliberalism):

"... I treat neoliberalism as a governing rationality through which everything is "economized" and in a very specific way: human beings become market actors and nothing but, every field of activity is seen as a market, and every entity (whether public or private, whether person, business, or state) is governed as a firm. Importantly, this is not simply a matter of extending commodification and monetization everywhere-that's the old Marxist depiction of capital's transformation of everyday life. Neoliberalism construes even non-wealth generating spheres-such as learning, dating, or exercising-in market terms, submits them to market metrics, and governs them with market techniques and practices. Above all, it casts people as human capital who must constantly tend to their own present and future value. ..."

"... The most common criticisms of neoliberalism, regarded solely as economic policy rather than as the broader phenomenon of a governing rationality, are that it generates and legitimates extreme inequalities of wealth and life conditions; that it leads to increasingly precarious and disposable populations; that it produces an unprecedented intimacy between capital (especially finance capital) and states, and thus permits domination of political life by capital; that it generates crass and even unethical commercialization of things rightly protected from markets, for example, babies, human organs, or endangered species or wilderness; that it privatizes public goods and thus eliminates shared and egalitarian access to them; and that it subjects states, societies, and individuals to the volatility and havoc of unregulated financial markets. ..."

"... with the neoliberal revolution that homo politicus is finally vanquished as a fundamental feature of being human and of democracy. Democracy requires that citizens be modestly oriented toward self-rule, not simply value enhancement, and that we understand our freedom as resting in such self-rule, not simply in market conduct. When this dimension of being human is extinguished, it takes with it the necessary energies, practices, and culture of democracy, as well as its very intelligibility. ..."

"... For most Marxists, neoliberalism emerges in the 1970s in response to capitalism's falling rate of profit; the shift of global economic gravity to OPEC, Asia, and other sites outside the West; and the dilution of class power generated by unions, redistributive welfare states, large and lazy corporations, and the expectations generated by educated democracies. From this perspective, neoliberalism is simply capitalism on steroids: a state and IMF-backed consolidation of class power aimed at releasing capital from regulatory and national constraints, and defanging all forms of popular solidarities, especially labor. ..."

"... The grains of truth in this analysis don't get at the fundamental transformation of social, cultural, and individual life brought about by neoliberal reason. They don't get at the ways that public institutions and services have not merely been outsourced but thoroughly recast as private goods for individual investment or consumption. And they don't get at the wholesale remaking of workplaces, schools, social life, and individuals. For that story, one has to track the dissemination of neoliberal economization through neoliberalism as a governing form of reason, not just a power grab by capital. There are many vehicles of this dissemination -- law, culture, and above all, the novel political-administrative form we have come to call governance. It is through governance practices that business models and metrics come to irrigate every crevice of society, circulating from investment banks to schools, from corporations to universities, from public agencies to the individual. It is through the replacement of democratic terms of law, participation, and justice with idioms of benchmarks, objectives, and buy-ins that governance dismantles democratic life while appearing only to instill it with "best practices." ..."

"... Progressives generally disparage Citizens United for having flooded the American electoral process with corporate money on the basis of tortured First Amendment reasoning that treats corporations as persons. However, a careful reading of the majority decision also reveals precisely the thoroughgoing economization of the terms and practices of democracy we have been talking about. In the majority opinion, electoral campaigns are cast as "political marketplaces," just as ideas are cast as freely circulating in a market where the only potential interference arises from restrictions on producers and consumers of ideas-who may speak and who may listen or judge. Thus, Justice Kennedy's insistence on the fundamental neoliberal principle that these marketplaces should be unregulated paves the way for overturning a century of campaign finance law aimed at modestly restricting the power of money in politics. Moreover, in the decision, political speech itself is rendered as a kind of capital right, functioning largely to advance the position of its bearer, whether that bearer is human capital, corporate capital, or finance capital. This understanding of political speech replaces the idea of democratic political speech as a vital (if potentially monopolizable and corruptible) medium for public deliberation and persuasion. ..."

"... My point was that democracy is really reduced to a whisper in the Euro-Atlantic nations today. Even Alan Greenspan says that elections don't much matter much because, "thanks to globalization . . . the world is governed by market forces," not elected representatives. ..."


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[Jun 19, 2019] We're All Socialists Now!

Zero Hedge commenters are most libertarians (anarcho-capitalists -- unwitting supporters of neoliberalism) , but still changes after 2016 are noticeable.
Notable quotes:
"... Today I am proposing we complete the unfinished work of Franklin Roosevelt and the Democratic Party by putting forth a 21st century economic bill of rights. ..."
"... Operación Cóndor, also known as Plan Cóndor ; Portuguese : Operação Condor) was a United States –backed campaign of political repression and state terror involving intelligence operations and assassination of opponents, officially and formally implemented in November 1975 by the right-wing dictatorships of the Southern Cone of South America. ..."
"... The program, nominally intended to eradicate communist or Soviet influence and ideas, was created to suppress active or potential opposition movements against the participating governments' neoliberal economic policies, which sought to reverse the economic policies of the previous era. [6] [7] ..."
"... Due to its clandestine nature, the precise number of deaths directly attributable to Operation Condor is highly disputed. Some estimates are that at least 60,000 deaths can be attributed to Condor, roughly 30,000 of these in Argentina, [8] [9] and the so-called " Archives of Terror " list 50,000 killed, 30,000 disappeared and 400,000 imprisoned. [5] [10] American political scientist J. Patrice McSherry gives a figure of at least 402 killed in operations which crossed national borders in a 2002 source, [11] and mentions in a 2009 source that of those who "had gone into exile" and were "kidnapped, tortured and killed in allied countries or illegally transferred to their home countries to be executed . . . hundreds, or thousands, of such persons -- the number still has not been finally determined -- were abducted, tortured, and murdered in Condor operations." [1] Victims included dissidents and leftists, union and peasant leaders, priests and nuns, students and teachers, intellectuals and suspected guerillas. [11] Although it was described by the CIA as "a cooperative effort by the intelligence/security services of several South American countries to combat terrorism and subversion," [12] guerrillas were used as an excuse, as they were never substantial enough to control territory, gain material support by any foreign power, or otherwise threaten national security. [13] [14] [15] Condor's key members were the governments in Argentina , Chile , Uruguay , Paraguay , Bolivia and Brazil . Ecuador and Peru later joined the operation in more peripheral roles. [16] [17] ..."
"... The United States government provided planning, coordinating, training on torture [18] , technical support and supplied military aid to the Juntas during the Johnson , Nixon , Ford , Carter , and the Reagan administrations. [2] Such support was frequently routed through the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). ..."
Jun 19, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Via AntoniusAquinas.com,

Despite being probably robbed of the Democratic Party's nomination by the Clinton political machine, the success of the Bernie Sanders' 2016 campaign with his advocacy of "democratic socialism" was an ominous sign of things to come and, in some sense, more telling of the political climate than Donald Trump's improbable victory in November, 2016. The millions of votes garnered by Sanders in the Democratic primaries has emboldened other socialists to seek political office while socialist ideas are openly spoken of with little fear of political recriminations.

Sanders has doubled down on his advocacy of democratic socialism in a recent speech at George Washington University, calling for the completion of Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal of the 1930s:

Today I am proposing we complete the unfinished work of Franklin Roosevelt and the Democratic Party by putting forth a 21st century economic bill of rights.

Even supposedly "moderate" Democrats are trying to tout their "progressive" credentials, such as creepy Joe Biden who recently said:

I'm told I get criticized by the New Left. I have the most progressive record of anybody running for... anybody who would run.

While Sanders' chance of becoming the Democratic nominee in 2020 is still uncertain, President Trump has already indicated what is going to be a centerpiece of his election strategy: oppose socialism. The first hint of the strategy came at this year's State of the Union address when the President declared:

America will never be a socialist country.

While President Trump will espouse his supposed accomplishments (tax cuts, deregulation, trade) as a contrast to democratic socialism, his emphasis will also deflect attention away from his most solemn campaign pledge which has not been achieved – a border wall and a crack down and deportation of illegal immigrants.

Whether this is a winning formula remains to be seen. If the Democrats are led by Bernie Sanders in 2020, they will probably lose, unless the economy falls off a cliff (very possible) or the Donald follows the suicidal advice of the war-mongering team of Messrs Bolton and Pompeo and start a war with Iran.

While the Trump campaign narrative for 2020 may convince the masses who may still not be ready to vote for outright socialism, the country, like most of the Western world, has long ago imbibed and adopted many of the philosophy's tenets.

Frank Chodorov, one of the most perceptive and courageous writers of what was affectionately known as the "Old Right," pointed out over a half century ago that America had enacted many of the ideas which were enumerated in Marx and Engels' Communist Manifesto . Chodorov constantly chided the Cold War warriors of his time, such as William Buckley, that communism had come to America without one shot being fired by the Soviets.

Frank Chodorov, 1887-1966

In one of his most penetrating essays, "How Communism Came to America," Chodorov incisively pointed out the "long-term objectives of communism:"

Among them are government ownership of land, a heavy progressive income tax, abolition of inheritance rights, a national bank, government ownership or control of communication and transportation facilities, state-owned factories, a government program for soil conservation, government schools, free education.

He trenchantly asked:

" How many of these planks of the Communist Manifesto do you support? Federal Reserve Bank? Interstate Commerce Commission? Federal Communications Commission? Tennessee Valley Authority? The Sixteenth (income tax) Amendment? The inheritance tax? Government schools with compulsory attendance and support?"

Further in his piece, Chodorov describes how the American economy, even at the time, had taken on many features of state capitalism: deficit financing, insurance of bank deposits, guaranteed mortgages, control of bank credits, regulation of installment buying, price controls, farm price supports, agricultural credits, RFC loans to business, social security, government housing, public works, tariffs, foreign loans.

He again asked: "How many of these measures . . . do you oppose?"

The next financial downturn, which is staring America in the face, will be far more devastating than the last since nothing has been resolved financially while the cause of the Great Recession – the Federal Reserve – continues to operate with impunity. As things continue to deteriorate, there will be even greater calls and support for more socialism. The free market will be blamed.

... ... ...


Condor_0000 , 55 seconds ago link

Ever notice that no real socialist ever proposes killing lots of people? On the other hand, our capitalist ruling-class is always looking to do lots of killing.

--------------

Trump's Military Drops a Bomb Every 12 Minutes, and No One Is Talking About It

June 19, 2018

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/trumps-military-drops-a-bomb-every-12-minutes-and-no-one-is-talking-about-it/

Condor_0000 , 35 minutes ago link

Do you know what you never heard Bernie Sanders say and never will hear him say?

The most famous Karl Marx quote of all time, "Workers of the world, unite!" Why do you suppose that is?

---------------

Bernie Sanders: A right-wing capitalist posing as a socialist

By Tom Hall
18 June 2019

Last Wednesday, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders gave a speech on "democratic socialism" at George Washington University. The main function of the speech was to define his supposed "socialism" as entirely in conformity with the politics of the Democratic Party -- that is, a "socialism" devoid any opposition to capitalism and war.

Sanders' speech comes within the context of a ruling class that is increasingly fearful of the growing popularity of socialism. Donald Trump has presented himself over the last several months as a bulwark against a "socialist takeover" in America. This theme has also been taken up by many in the Democratic Party, who insist that any reference to socialism in the party's primaries is impermissible.

Sanders' speech attempts to accomplish the same ends through different means. It exposes Sanders' effort to combine populist and "socialist" rhetoric with a defense of American capitalism and the Democratic Party.

Three basic elements of Sanders' speech demonstrate this political fraud. First is Sanders' dishonest presentation of Franklin Roosevelt and the history of the Democratic Party.

In a speech billed as defining his conception of "democratic socialism," Sanders explicitly placed his own politics within the tradition of the Democratic Party, particularly the liberal New Deal reforms of President Franklin Roosevelt in the 1930s.

"Over eighty years ago Franklin Delano Roosevelt helped create a government that made transformative progress in protecting the needs of working families. Today, in the second decade of the 21st century, we must take up the unfinished business of the New Deal and carry it to completion," Sanders said. "This is the unfinished business of the Democratic Party and the vision we must accomplish."

Sanders quoted the "Economic Bill of Rights" proposed by Roosevelt, but never seriously pursued, in his 1944 State of the Union speech. The centerpiece of Sanders' speech was his call for a "21st Century Economic Bill of Rights" guaranteeing the right to a high-quality standard of living.

Sanders portrays Roosevelt as the leader of a popular revolt involving "organized labor, leaders in the African American community and progressives inside and outside the Party," and which "led a transformation of the American government and the American economy."

He declared, "Despite [the opposition of the rich], by rallying the American people, FDR and his progressive coalition created the New Deal, won four terms, and created an economy that worked for all and not just the few," Sanders claimed.

Sanders' glowing references to Roosevelt are designed to obscure the fact that the Democratic Party was, and is, a party of the ruling class. Roosevelt was not the political representative of popular struggles, much less a "democratic socialist," but a particularly astute representative of the capitalist class, who understood that concessions had to be made in order to preserve the capitalist system, which was in a state of collapse and widely discredited, and prevent the danger of socialist revolution.

The gains that were won during this period came not from the political establishment, but through the mass, insurrectionary struggles of the working class, which Roosevelt and the Democratic Party sought to contain. Moreover, poverty and unemployment remained endemic throughout the United States even after the New Deal. The gap between rich and poor, while lower than before, remained massive. In the South, which remained mired in rural backwardness, African-Americans continued to face segregation and lynch mob terror.

The New Deal reforms also proved unable to lift the United States out of economic crisis. This came through World War Two and its destruction of much of the European and world economy, and at least 60 million lives. Under Roosevelt's leadership, the United States entered World War II in December 1941.

Prior to and during the war, the "progressive" Roosevelt cracked down on democratic rights, jailing leaders of the Trotskyist movement, the most class conscious representatives of the working class, enforcing a ban on strikes with the assistance of the union bureaucracy and imprisoning hundreds of thousands of Japanese-Americans in concentration camps.

Roosevelt's "Economic Bill of Rights," proposed but never acted upon towards the end of the war, was a left-feint that reflected his fear that, if the end of the war brought with it a return to Depression-era conditions, world capitalism would face even more serious revolutionary convulsions than in the 1930s. One year after the speech, Roosevelt replaced his vice president, Henry Wallace, with Harry Truman -- a concession to the right-wing of the Democratic Party.

After the war, Roosevelt's program of liberal reforms, now coupled with Cold War anticommunism, was continued only as long as it could be financed out of rising productivity made possible by the emergence of the United States as world superpower. But the "Economic Bill of Rights," even during the zenith of American capitalism, remained a dead letter. By the end of the 1960s, with the end of the postwar boom and the beginning of the long-term decline of American hegemony, the Democrats abandoned these programs and moved sharply to the right.

But this is precisely the point at which Sanders' historical excursion stops. This enables him to suppress the fact that the Democratic Party long ago repudiated these reforms and is now a full partner in undermining and dismantling the very social programs whose further development Sanders presents as the "unfinished business" of the Democratic Party. In fact, as far the Democratic Party is concerned, their "unfinished business" is destroying every gain won by the working class in a century of struggle.

The second element of Sanders' speech is the complete absence of any reference to foreign policy or war. Events outside of the United States are barely mentioned at all. This guilty silence, which Sanders has long maintained in speeches meant for a broader audience, is aimed at covering for Sanders' support for imperialist war and American nationalism.

Sanders gives indirect signals to the ruling class of his support for war at points throughout his speech. When Sanders lists off a series of "authoritarian rulers" throughout the world, he tops off the list with Vladimir Putin in Russia and Xi Jinping in China, a sign of support for both his party's demands for confrontation with Russia and Trump's trade war measures against China .

Significantly, Sanders manages to avoid even mentioning World War II in a speech supposedly centered on the political legacy of Franklin Roosevelt. He also favorably cites former presidents Harry Truman and Lyndon Johnson, without referencing the fact that both were widely reviled as warmongers and mass murderers: Truman for his dropping of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and for the Korean War, and Johnson for his massive escalation of the Vietnam War.

The reference to Johnson is particularly significant. Johnson's Great Society programs foundered against the massive costs of the war in Vietnam, signaling the end of the whole period of liberal reform. By the late 1960s, the Democratic Party could no longer balance within itself welfare programs aimed at securing the support of working class with the needs of American imperialism.

As Sanders knows well, having begun his political career as a student protester in the 1960s, this pushed a whole generation of students and working-class youth to the left towards anti-capitalist and radical politics, among whom Johnson's name became virtually an epithet. A popular slogan during the protests against the Vietnam War was "Hey, Hey, LBJ, How many kids did you kill today?"

By glossing over this and presenting Johnson in a favorable, even "democratic socialist" light, Sanders is not only rehabilitating Johnson, he is promoting a more basic falsehood -- that an imperialist and militaristic foreign policy is compatible with democracy and social equality at home, a lie which forms the center of Sanders' own politics.

The third element of Sanders' speech is that he does not explain how it is possible to guarantee a high standard of living for everyone without a frontal assault on the capitalist system, especially under conditions where the ruling class considers even a modest increase in the share of income going to workers impermissible. In Sanders' "socialism," there is no there there He proposes a whole series of "rights," without any suggestion that they would require a fundamental change in social relations.

Moreover, the turn towards authoritarian forms of rule, a fact which Sanders himself is obliged to note, demonstrates that the levels of social inequality are no longer compatible with democratic rights. This is not only expressed in Trump, as Sanders implies, but also within the Democratic Party itself, which is engaged in palace coup methods in its internecine struggle against Trump.

If an "Economic Bill of Rights" was unachievable during the high point of American economic and political power, then it is all the more impossible today, when American capitalism is mired in a terminal decline. There can be no doubt that Sanders, were he elected president, would jettison this proposal even more rapidly than Roosevelt.

Indeed, while Roosevelt was prepared to take on powerful elements within the political establishment in order to force through his program of reforms, Sanders has already demonstrated his political spinelessness. The defining moment of Sanders' political career remains his groveling capitulation to Hillary Clinton in 2016 after an election campaign marred by corruption and fraud.

A genuine fight for the social rights of the working class, including the right to a job, a secure retirement, high quality healthcare and education, requires an uncompromising struggle of the working class against the capitalist system. This means the establishment of a workers government, in the United States and internationally, to massively redistribute wealth and transform the giant banks and corporations into publicly-owned utilities, democratically controlled by the working class.

This requires a persistent struggle against the influence of all forms of bourgeois ideology within the working class, above all "left" variants such as that promoted by Sanders.

ChaoKrungThep , 50 minutes ago link

Gotta love the Trumptards and Trailer Park Rednecks touting Capitalism. They've, never experienced real Capitalism or they'd be crying like babies, begging for mercy. Since FDR's New Deal in the 1930s the US has been partly (badly) Socialist.

So let's go Full Capitalist, tough guys: no minimum wage, line up each morning and bid lowest for a job; no health care at all, get sick, go die; food stamps, ha!, eat grass; no pension, work till you drop, then pauper's grave; no unions, every man for himself against the bosses. Like it so far?

Denmark is Socialist, cradle-to-grave health care, free education, minimum wage $43/hr. Oh, it's expensive but everyone's healthy, active and pretty friendly. No ******** billionaires like the Trumpster, Soros, Gates, people who wouldn't throw a starving man a crust. No American Dream, only Danish reality.

But no Walmart AR15 to shoot your neighbors. Right. America's better.

Condor_0000 , 54 minutes ago link

REALITY CHECK FOR RIGHT-WINGERS

Capitalist Barack Obama gave rich capitalists trillions of dollars in free-stuff bailouts and free-stuff military spending and free-stuff imperialist wars. Capitalist Donald Trump then came along and gave those raping, looting, murderous capitalists $1.5 trillion in free-stuff tax cuts.

Definitions

Socialism: Trillions of dollars of free stuff for the 99%, paid for by their labor

Capitalism: Trillions of dollars of free stuff for the super-rich 1%, paid for by the labor of the 99%.

snatchpounder , 52 minutes ago link

You described crony capitalism not capitalism.

Condor_0000 , 48 minutes ago link

Ever notice that your beloved ruling-class capitalists whose great wealth gives them the power to set all the laws and determine all the policy never make any attempt to stop crony capitalism?

Capitalism is inherently cronyism. The cronyism cannot be separated out and no rich capitalist would have any interest in doing so even if it could.

snatchpounder , 25 minutes ago link

Your support of a death cult ideology is duly noted and capitalism has lifted more people out of poverty than any other ism. Marx was a lunatic who never worked a day in his vile useless life. His writings inspired Stalin and Mao to murder millions.

Condor_0000 , 9 minutes ago link

Marx was a lunatic who never worked a day in his vile useless life.

You just described Donald Trump.

Decoherence , 43 minutes ago link

The government on both sides of the fence subsidize corporations at the expense of the masses, so your solution is to give the government total control and ownership? You're a fuckwit if you believe the elites won't have an even better time under socialism. They would have nothing in their way. The only solution is to privatize everything if you actually wanted a better life for the ones getting screwed, but I won't even waste my time. Carry on with your idiotic thoughts.

Condor_0000 , 38 minutes ago link

That government you right-wingers have all experienced in America and all despise is a capitalist government.

The battle between socialism and capitalism is the battle between the workers who produce the wealth and the parasites who take that wealth from the workers. That's why capitalism tells you that socialism is government. They can't tell you that socialism is society run by the producers of wealth rather than the parasites. Capitalists like to leave the working-class completely out of the equation. That's because they're scared shitless that the 99% might realize that they are actually all socialists.

Decoherence , 29 minutes ago link

Capitalism has nothing to do with the offenses you describe. You're simply gullible enough to believe politicians when they blame capitalism for their ill gotten gains, grease and dirt. When they have the rest of the masses as dumb as you, then socialism will make their job even easier.

me123me , 37 minutes ago link

So by your logic the money we earn isnt really ours.

me123me , 36 minutes ago link

You dont even know what socialism is. Your description is completely wrong.

Condor_0000 , 6 minutes ago link

RIGHT-WING MORONS: We trust our lying, cheating, stealing, warmongering, murderous, corrupt, criminal capitalist elite to tell us everything we need to know about socialism. They would never lie to us about socialism. They would never just define the working-class masses completely out of the equation even as Karl Marx specifically wrote, "Workers of the world, unite!"

Condor_0000 , 1 hour ago link

Operation Condor

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Operation Condor (Spanish: Operación Cóndor, also known as Plan Cóndor ; Portuguese : Operação Condor) was a United States –backed campaign of political repression and state terror involving intelligence operations and assassination of opponents, officially and formally implemented in November 1975 by the right-wing dictatorships of the Southern Cone of South America.

The program, nominally intended to eradicate communist or Soviet influence and ideas, was created to suppress active or potential opposition movements against the participating governments' neoliberal economic policies, which sought to reverse the economic policies of the previous era. [6] [7]

Due to its clandestine nature, the precise number of deaths directly attributable to Operation Condor is highly disputed. Some estimates are that at least 60,000 deaths can be attributed to Condor, roughly 30,000 of these in Argentina, [8] [9] and the so-called " Archives of Terror " list 50,000 killed, 30,000 disappeared and 400,000 imprisoned. [5] [10] American political scientist J. Patrice McSherry gives a figure of at least 402 killed in operations which crossed national borders in a 2002 source, [11] and mentions in a 2009 source that of those who "had gone into exile" and were "kidnapped, tortured and killed in allied countries or illegally transferred to their home countries to be executed . . . hundreds, or thousands, of such persons -- the number still has not been finally determined -- were abducted, tortured, and murdered in Condor operations." [1] Victims included dissidents and leftists, union and peasant leaders, priests and nuns, students and teachers, intellectuals and suspected guerillas. [11] Although it was described by the CIA as "a cooperative effort by the intelligence/security services of several South American countries to combat terrorism and subversion," [12] guerrillas were used as an excuse, as they were never substantial enough to control territory, gain material support by any foreign power, or otherwise threaten national security. [13] [14] [15] Condor's key members were the governments in Argentina , Chile , Uruguay , Paraguay , Bolivia and Brazil . Ecuador and Peru later joined the operation in more peripheral roles. [16] [17]

The United States government provided planning, coordinating, training on torture [18] , technical support and supplied military aid to the Juntas during the Johnson , Nixon , Ford , Carter , and the Reagan administrations. [2] Such support was frequently routed through the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

ChaoKrungThep , 47 minutes ago link

You've never read Marx. He never advocated overthrowing Capitalism; rather he predicted its demise due to its inherent chaos, waste and selfishness. It cannot exist in civilized society. Just look at America, and see he was right.

[Jun 15, 2019] Bernie is not the sheepdog you need to worry about

Notable quotes:
"... If Bernie happens to survive the collusion going on to tank his campaign, Trump and the GOP will "socialist" him to death from sun up to sun down. The clown car of establishment Democrats will also take more than a shot or two. His speech was simply his attempt to embrace and frame this dirty word into something Americans can relate to. For that, he gets mocked by the media and butchered by neolibs, libertarians, right-wingers, corporatists, and pompous lefties. ..."
"... He referenced MLK, FDR, and Marx trying to name a just few socialists that people can compare, contrast and relate to. ..."
"... The day after Bernie's speech, Trump came out with a plan to subsidize farmers, aka big ag, to make up for losses from his tariffs. No one asked "how will you pay for it". No hue or cry anywhere. ..."
"... I think it is highly probable that Bernie's ship, our ship, sailed in 2016; and he missed the boat by remaining in a system so vile and so corrupt that it can only be reformed by rising from the ashes. ..."
"... Warren hid in 2016, and she is sabotaging 2020. She is the real sheepdog that so many here, me on occasion too, accuse Bernie of being. She talks like a progressive and votes like a Republican. She is Obama 2.0, 2020's Trojan Horse. ..."
Jun 15, 2019 | caucus99percent.com

dkmich on Fri, 06/14/2019 - 12:36pm By all means, speak your piece.

But will someone please explain to me how in the hell everyone turned Bernie from social democrat into fucking Marx? Never once have I heard Bernie say that capitalism should not exist in the United States.

If Bernie happens to survive the collusion going on to tank his campaign, Trump and the GOP will "socialist" him to death from sun up to sun down. The clown car of establishment Democrats will also take more than a shot or two. His speech was simply his attempt to embrace and frame this dirty word into something Americans can relate to. For that, he gets mocked by the media and butchered by neolibs, libertarians, right-wingers, corporatists, and pompous lefties.

He referenced MLK, FDR, and Marx trying to name a just few socialists that people can compare, contrast and relate to.

Oh there are many, and of course we must define what qualifies someone to be a 'socialist'. For example, Bernie Sanders is largely considered a social democrat although many 'true' or 'hardcore' socialists will adamantly say he is not a true socialist because he doesn't advocated for the means of production to be controlled democratically by the workers.

For argument's sake we'll only use people who advocated or had a philosophy of altering the current system of economy to that of a traditionally socialist one. For this reason also, it will include Marxists whom were types of socialists too (until the term socialist was later used to differentiate itself from authoritarian communism).

Without further ado, I shall take you through the fascinating (and sometimes violent) world of socialism.

The point being, pick your choose. I bet people can argue over this list for days. It doesn't change the fact that Bernie was absolutely right. The government provides billionaires and corporations with cash and safety nets no questions asked. Privatize the profits and socialize the losses to use that word again.

The day after Bernie's speech, Trump came out with a plan to subsidize farmers, aka big ag, to make up for losses from his tariffs. No one asked "how will you pay for it". No hue or cry anywhere.

Jamie Dimon took his government handout and a bonus for committing fraud that no one ever went to jail for. He didn't even have to pass a drug test to get it.

Roads, firemen, cops, school are paid for with our public dollars. That means we own them and their means of production/service: fire halls, police stations, cop cars, school buildings, and wages. Why do you think privatization so outrageous and pisses so many people off? Because capitalists are taking our assets for pennies on the dollar so they can then charge us to use what we own. Again, privatizing the profits and socializing the losses.

I think it is highly probable that Bernie's ship, our ship, sailed in 2016; and he missed the boat by remaining in a system so vile and so corrupt that it can only be reformed by rising from the ashes. The party is manufacturing candidates faster than Bezos makes a billion hoping one of them will stick. At worst, they'll dilute the first round of voting enough for the superdelegates to step in and tell us kids where to sit.

Warren hid in 2016, and she is sabotaging 2020. She is the real sheepdog that so many here, me on occasion too, accuse Bernie of being. She talks like a progressive and votes like a Republican. She is Obama 2.0, 2020's Trojan Horse.

Here is the debate schedule. Since Warren is tied with Bernie for second place in CA, does it look like they set this up to protect her? Who at the kiddies table is going to lay a glove on her? Helping to assure people tune in for the warm up debate, they put it on night one.

Wednesday:

Booker
Castro
de Blasio
Delaney
Gabbard
Inslee
Klobuchar
O'Rourke
Warren

Thursday:

Biden
Bennet
Buttigieg
Gillibrand
Harris
Hickenlooper
Sanders
Swalwell
Williamson
Yang

[Jun 14, 2019] Bernie to give a speech on democratic socialism. Clearly sets him apart from others and has huge implications in regards to policy, organizing, and strategy:

Jun 14, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

Grant , June 12, 2019 at 2:41 pm

Bernie to give a speech on democratic socialism. Clearly sets him apart from others and has huge implications in regards to policy, organizing, and strategy:

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/06/12/watch-live-sanders-delivers-speech-why-democratic-socialism-only-way-defeat

Fiery Hunt , June 12, 2019 at 3:29 pm

Aaannnd .it's blocked on Bernie's you tube channel.

Music licensing behemoths Global Music Rights LLC and WMG

#bastards

nycTerrierist , June 12, 2019 at 3:39 pm

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QThknQs-gIc

fantastic speech, Bernie brought the FDR thunder:

"I welcome their hatred "

Lambert Strether Post author , June 12, 2019 at 3:41 pm

> "I welcome their hatred "

He really said that? Bring it!

nycTerrierist , June 12, 2019 at 3:43 pm

It was rousing!

brought tears to my eyes, but Bernie often does,

I find him v. moving, a real mensh amongst careerist clowns

Jonathan Holland Becnel , June 12, 2019 at 6:05 pm

YUUUUUUUUUP

Good to see Bernie exposing our wretched oligarchy.

richard , June 12, 2019 at 9:15 pm

yes, he directly quoted fdr in the context of that historical moment, got a standing o, then smiled and said something like "that does seem to apply to our era, doesn't it?"
it seemed a little like he'd planned on getting applause
makes me wonder, does someone over there visit nc regularly?

JohnnyGL , June 12, 2019 at 5:03 pm

He's definitely bringing the heat! If you thought he might shy away from Republican cries of 'socialism', banish those thoughts.

It's a little slow for the 1st 25 min or so. But he really gets going in the latter part of it. Talks a lot about "freedom" around the 40 minute mark.

Pitches a 21st Century 'Economic Bill of Rights'.
– right to a job
– paid living wage
– right to health care
– right to education
– right to affordable housing
– right to clean environment

flora , June 12, 2019 at 5:55 pm

Scene from the 2016 campaign: New Dealer vs Neo Liberal. ;)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kpHK4YIwY4

ambrit , June 13, 2019 at 11:07 am

Too many imponderables with this analogy. Such as, can you hear the Neo saying under his/her breath: "The Finance is strong with this one!" Or, an endless montage of ghostly voices whispering in political ears, "Run XXX, run!" And finally, where is the young and innocent farm toiler who will redeem the New Deal? Chelsea? She might fit the bill. She's the 'hidden' scion of powerful and 'connected' Nouveaux Aristocrats.

flora , June 12, 2019 at 8:25 pm

Thanks for the USA – Sanders' speech link.
Fantastic!

https://eus.rubiconproject.com/usync.html

https://c.deployads.com/sync?f=html&s=2343&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nakedcapitalism.com%2F2019%2F06%2F200pm-water-cooler-6-12-2019.html

https://acdn.adnxs.com/ib/static/usersync/v3/async_usersync.html <img src="http://b.scorecardresearch.com/p?c1=2&c2=16807273&cv=2.0&cj=1" /> Reply

Isotope_C14 , June 12, 2019 at 2:53 pm

Defining FDResque speech by Bernie:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndD23MCDF_k

I think the livestream is over now. It was being broadcast on C-span. I called my mother to see if she was watching, and she was, but it was "interrupted"

The oligarchy has two choices, Trump or Bernie. Which do you think they will pick?

Will the former pick cause the general strike?

Where's my popcorn?

Will youtube ban this video for inappropriate content?

Exciting times, in the 6th, happening "faster than expected".

Reply

Watt4Bob , June 12, 2019 at 3:33 pm

Clicked on link, message is something like;

Video Unavailable

"This video contains content from Global Music Rights LLC and WMG, one or more of whom have blocked it in your country on copyright grounds"

Yeah right, actually, it's part of what I deem the 'full-court-press'.

I can hear the DNC and DCCC glee-club in the bleachers chanting " Defense, Defense, Defense" from my desk in Minnesota.

Reply

nycTerrierist , June 12, 2019 at 3:42 pm

whoops! just saw this comment after I posted upstream

I watched live via USAToday on youtube, with no interruption

[Jun 08, 2019] Sanders burns Bill Kristol over 'foolish' pushing for Iraq war, asks where his apology is

May 28, 2019 | www.rt.com
Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders took a swipe at neoconservative Bill Kristol for his "foolish advocacy of the Iraq war," and questioned whether he had apologized to the country for it yet. Sanders was responding to a tweet Kristol sent that said, "#Never Sanders," and linked to a New York Times article about the longtime Vermont senator's opposition to war.

"Have you apologized to the nation for your foolish advocacy of the Iraq war?" Sanders tweeted , adding he makes "no apologies for opposing it."

Sanders' record of opposing wars like Vietnam and Iraq, and US meddling in Nicaragua, has recently been highlighted by the media as the 2020 presidential primaries approach.

pic.twitter.com/yZj2fC8xRB

-- #WithTheseHands 🙌🏻🙌🏼🙌🏽🙌🏾 Eowyn (@WestCoastGadfly) May 26, 2019

Has Biden apologized for his support of that war and so many others? Please answer my poll: https://t.co/Xxsa70K56o

-- (𝕊𝕠𝕔𝕚𝕒𝕝) 𝔻𝕖𝕞𝕠𝕔𝕣𝕒𝕔𝕪 ℕ𝕠𝕨! 🇺🇸 (@IStandWithIlhan) May 25, 2019

Feel the Bern, Bill. pic.twitter.com/LcouTg1XdG

-- Meghan McCain's Tears™ (@Smedley_Butler) May 25, 2019

NBC's Meet the Press came under fire last week for tweeting , "Sanders said he won't apologize for supporting anti-Vietnam War efforts and voting against the war in Iraq," which sparked ridicule among social media users and inspired Sanders to release a video in which he stood by his anti-war stance and promised to do everything to prevent a war with Iran.

I was right about Vietnam.

I was right about Iraq.

I will do everything in my power to prevent a war with Iran.

I apologize to no one. pic.twitter.com/Lna3oBZMKB

-- Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) May 24, 2019

Kristol tweeted his 'never Sanders' diss after the former Burlington mayor introduced a petition to prevent "military action against Iran without congressional approval," something that likely upset Kristol, who has been calling for regime change in Iran for over 13 years.

Kristol refused to apologize over his comments, instead calling on Sanders to engage in a "real debate on US foreign policy."

Nope. I dislike quasi-Stalinist demands for apologies. I've defended and will defend my views on Iraq, and Syria, and Milosevic, and the Soviet Union, and more, as you defend yours. How about a real debate on U.S. foreign policy--I'll ask for no apologies!--on a campus this fall? https://t.co/AdC0CelINz

-- Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) May 26, 2019

A co-founder of the neoconservative think tank the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), Kristol called for regime change in Iraq in 1998 in a series of articles and a letter to then-President Bill Clinton. Following 9/11, PNAC encouraged the George W. Bush administration to overthrow Saddam Hussein. Kristol ardently supported the war in Iraq, which he claimed would be a "two-month war" and repeatedly argued for sending more troops there to rectify the failing invasion.

During the 2006 Lebanon war, Kristol suggested the US take the opportunity to strike Iran's nuclear facilities, asking, "Why wait?"

If you like this story, share it with a friend!

[Jun 06, 2019] The Democratic base will simply not back another corporatist shill, especially after getting stabbed in 2016.

Notable quotes:
"... Here's the problem: it doesn't matter if you'd support Biden if he were to get the nomination, the Democratic base will simply not back another corporatist shill, ..."
"... No matter how much you think people should hold their nose and vote for the lesser of two evils, they're not going to get out of bed to go vote for someone they don't trust. The base is driving this election cycle, there is no way around it, if we don't hold the base we lose. ..."
"... Biden is a standard Joke in both parties known as an Obama lackey ..."
"... His first campaign fundraiser after his announcement was hosted by the CEO of Comcast. That is wholly out of touch with the middle class. ..."
"... She has passed Sanders in his relatively much more limited agenda, trumping him on policies castrating Wall St---Sanders has not much evolved beyond positions he's held since the 1970s, including understanding how to address the two largest parts of the Democratic base, women and blacks. ..."
"... Biden is not centre. If you think mainstream Democrats are centre, you're already to the right of people like the National Front (both UK and French). You're already a rabid extremist. Even someone like Sanders would be considered fairly firmly centrist in the rest of the free world. State funded health and education is accepted practice here, not a novel socialist/communist fantasy that will turn you into a Soviet drone. It's what we pay taxes for, not for a war machine to enforce business profit. ..."
"... Democrats are extreme right, Sanders is centrist...you don't actually have a left at all. ..."
"... That argument [ Elections are about preventing bad things from happening] is a double-edged sword. Many voters acted on that precept in 2016 which accounts for the creature that now squats in the White House. ..."
"... Are people who say this generally clueless or just unaware of the make up of Congress since January 2017? What change could Sanders have brought? What bills were the Republicans going to pass that Sanders would have signed? Do they not remember what Mitch McConnell said when Obama took office? Do they imagine that McConnell would shift his focus from stymieing any chance of enacting policies the president promoted with Sanders instead of Obama? ..."
"... Did you watching Bernie's townhall at Fox News? He seemed like he was in his 60s and handled many tough questions well. He seemed to be winning over some of the independents and conservatives in that crowd ..."
"... Finally the Guardian gets something right. We don't need these Clinton Era holdovers ..."
May 01, 2019 | discussion.theguardian.com

DoesNotComputer -> LibertineUSA , 30 Apr 2019 15:12

Here's the problem: it doesn't matter if you'd support Biden if he were to get the nomination, the Democratic base will simply not back another corporatist shill, especially after getting stabbed in the ankle in 2016.

No matter how much you think people should hold their nose and vote for the lesser of two evils, they're not going to get out of bed to go vote for someone they don't trust. The base is driving this election cycle, there is no way around it, if we don't hold the base we lose.

docjan , 30 Apr 2019 15:11
The writers and readers of the Guardian (aka the Fox of the Left) who believe that the American electorate has somehow shifted leftward remind me a delightful roommate that I had back in Pleistocene. He came home one day convinced that George McGovern would win. "How did you come up with that?" I asked. "I don't know a single person who is voting for Nixon."

It's that level of bubble-driven stridency that will keep many of you at home on election day and had another 4 years to the worst piece of crap to occupy the White House. Sure, there are many people preferable to Biden, but a piece of burnt toast is preferable to Trump.

The Dems won the midterms not on ideological grounds but by the pragmatic turnaround of middle class white suburban women. Clinton did not lose in '16 because she was a "zombie centrist" but because of her campaign's severe hubris, a lesson not learned from '08. Unless you prefer ranting [and lefties often seem to prefer being in opposition to actually doing the heavy lifting of compromise and governing], you will have to get rid of Trump by going with your n-th choice, not your first one.

Sorry, that's the way it works outside of Berkeley, Austin, Madison, Eugene, Brooklyn, Cambridge, and Asheville.

Duncan_Idaho , 30 Apr 2019 15:11
You're missing something. Plenty of people who support the actual left WILL be happy if we get Biden, if it means we no longer have Trump. The US system is built on compromise. Biden is a compromise, for sure. But would YOU rather have Trump again? Really?

I don't want Biden. But last time I figured the left couldn't lose to a fucking moron I was proven wrong.

DoesNotComputer -> Gelion , 30 Apr 2019 15:06
Literally all the polling conducted in the 2016 election showed Bernie annihilating Trump by a far higher margin than Clinton, who was losing in many polls. Biden is virtually a carbon copy of Clinton. He is an establishment shill with the same voting record and the same vulnerabilities that sank Clinton.

Like Hillary he shits on the most popular policies in the country, and he shits on the base pushing those policies, and has shown zero signs of learning from the 2016 catastrophe. He launched his campaign on a message of returning to the same empty neoliberal politics that delivered us Donald Trump. Meanwhile Bernie is in fact running on the most popular policies in the country. 70% of the American people, even a majority 52% of Republicans, support Medicare For All. 82% of Americans support raising the minimum wage. 76% of Americans support raising taxes on the rich. 60% of Americans support free college tuition. 70% of Americans want stricter laws on assault weapons. 94% of Americans support universal background checks. 58% of Americans support abortion rights in all or most cases. 62% of Americans support legalizing marijuana. 78% of Americans support stricter Wall Street regulation. 61% of Americans support ending the Afghanistan war. 72% of Americans support expanding Social Security. 80% of Americans support the Green New Deal. Literally all the data shows Bernie would be a far stronger candidate than a center right corporate Democrat like Biden.

factfynder , 30 Apr 2019 15:06
Biden is a standard Joke in both parties known as an Obama lackey and dim witted apologist who will be blown out of the hunt by a female Dark Horse candidate yet to rise up out of the dung pile of Democrat wannabes. The only real hope for the Democrats, guess who?
neonliberalism -> TheCheGuevara , 30 Apr 2019 14:57
His first campaign fundraiser after his announcement was hosted by the CEO of Comcast. That is wholly out of touch with the middle class.
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/comcast-executive-to-host-joe-biden-fundraiser /
NativeAngeleno -> ILEXcottage , 30 Apr 2019 14:56
The somewhat grating and professorial Warren, as if lecturing to kindergartners, is becoming the third choice in the polls behind Biden and Sanders due to her galaxy of hard-nosed, fully fleshed-out policies the public is embracing.

She has passed Sanders in his relatively much more limited agenda, trumping him on policies castrating Wall St---Sanders has not much evolved beyond positions he's held since the 1970s, including understanding how to address the two largest parts of the Democratic base, women and blacks.

I have no doubt Warren will be an important member of the cabinet where she can implement her policies, which is why she will be in Biden's cabinet. Biden has touched on gutting Wall St greed, signalling the rise of her influence. For all his centrist corruption he grasps the desires of the base, understanding his popularity would suffer if he didn't.

JohnLG , 30 Apr 2019 14:51
"The Democrats are the ones who were supposed to save us. It was their failure in this duty that allowed the catastrophes to pile up."

It's not just the failure. It is cynical collaboration to placate the financially powerful. The Republican project for at least the last 40 years has been to resurrect "Robber Baron" era neo-feudalism with Republican leadership lining up for their share of the take. Witness the breathless fawning of the likes of Scott Walker when he thought the prankster he was talking to was a Koch. Mainstream media long accepted that political outcomes can be bought, that lavishly funded lobbies can block popular initiatives and railroad publicly distasteful ones, and feature fundraising scorecards as a measure of electability. As a matter of fact, what does that say about our democratic process and equality under law? Back in the 1980s Business Week featured a discussion of how manufactures and retailers were backing away from a "middle class" centered focus to a "Tffany-Wallmart" strategy? Does such a move support E Pluribus Unum or feudalistic social bifurcation?

Sadly, the Clinton, Obama, Biden school is way to focused on go along to get along, while equity of opportunity and wealth, and equal protection under law has steadily diminished. Obama, who campaigned on "change you can believe in" and "the audacity to hope" was less than audacious when it came to the strangle-hold of too big to fail on the economy, and made them even bigger. Yes, he was far more socially responsible than his predecessor but hob nobbed with the "Great Recession's" architects and turned over redress for Mainstreet to the banks, with predictable results. Many who voted for Trump were seeking any kind of change over more of the same.

LauraInMadrid -> Quantum Ape , 30 Apr 2019 14:45
Better yet: progressive Democrats have realized a few key points:
* Medicare for all polls really damned well. Amazing well.
* Raising minimum wage polls really well. Hugely well.
* American progressive liberal policies, when not framed as such, poll really well. Americans want these things. These issues are winners.
* Turnout. Turnout. Turnout. It is not about getting people who always vote Democratic at every election to consider you. It is about getting people who do not regularly vote to turnout at the polls. (Look at Spain where the threat of Vox encouraged huge numbers of women to vote and the socialists and the left came out as winners.)

Biden is not on solid ground with issues supported by the electorate and catering to the center is going g to repress turnout. (Which could have ugly down ticket implications.)

kritikon -> AntiGuardianista , 30 Apr 2019 14:42

Biden is not centre. If you think mainstream Democrats are centre, you're already to the right of people like the National Front (both UK and French). You're already a rabid extremist. Even someone like Sanders would be considered fairly firmly centrist in the rest of the free world. State funded health and education is accepted practice here, not a novel socialist/communist fantasy that will turn you into a Soviet drone. It's what we pay taxes for, not for a war machine to enforce business profit.

GOP is fascistic, Democrats are extreme right, Sanders is centrist...you don't actually have a left at all.

CynicusCuratoris , 30 Apr 2019 14:39
"Elections are about preventing bad things from happening...:"

-- -- -- -- -
That argument [ Elections are about preventing bad things from happening] is a double-edged sword. Many voters acted on that precept in 2016 which accounts for the creature that now squats in the White House.

ehmaybe -> fiddler1 , 30 Apr 2019 14:37

Saunders would have beaten Trump and brought real change

Are people who say this generally clueless or just unaware of the make up of Congress since January 2017? What change could Sanders have brought? What bills were the Republicans going to pass that Sanders would have signed? Do they not remember what Mitch McConnell said when Obama took office? Do they imagine that McConnell would shift his focus from stymieing any chance of enacting policies the president promoted with Sanders instead of Obama?

It's just about the most ridiculous claim a person could make about American politics.

neonliberalism -> violagirl , 30 Apr 2019 14:36
Did you watching Bernie's townhall at Fox News? He seemed like he was in his 60s and handled many tough questions well. He seemed to be winning over some of the independents and conservatives in that crowd
StrategyKing , 30 Apr 2019 14:35
Finally the Guardian gets something right. We don't need these Clinton Era holdovers and we don't need anymore Geriatrics in the White House.

There are some great new younger candidates who understand the modern economy, the corrupt foreign policy and have good things to say. Try Yang and Gabbard. Get with the times people.

[Jun 05, 2019] Neoliberal MSM trashing Sanders

Jun 05, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

Anonymous Coward , June 5, 2019 at 3:11 pm

Here's a great example of hackish media framing of Bernie:
https://www.politico.com/story/2019/06/05/bernie-sanders-walmart-starvation-wages-1354268

The lede

Bernie Sanders showed up uninvited to a Walmart shareholders meeting Wednesday, blasting what he called the retail giant's "starvation wages" and imploring it to pay people at least $15 an hour.

But if you read further down

Sanders was invited to speak as a proxy for Walmart worker Cat Davis, a leader of the pro-worker group United for Respect. It was Davis' proposal that Sanders pitched.

So was he invited or uninvited? Why is the lede contradicted by the 5th paragraph in? Surely intentional, designed to make him look like a butt-in-ski rather than a proxy for a WMT employee.

WheresOurTeddy , June 5, 2019 at 3:59 pm

One of the most obvious and pervasive symptoms of our Empire's rapid decline and the crapification of literally everything is the absolute dearth of copy editors worth a damn.

Lambert Strether , June 5, 2019 at 4:14 pm

Obviously, if you're not invited by management, you're not invited.

zagonostra , June 5, 2019 at 5:27 pm

Everyday when I do my Google News view I see at least one or sometimes two pure propaganda hit pieces from the MSM trashing Sanders.

The one at below link is especially egregious in sandwiching a photo of Sanders with the Russian flag on one side and Venezuela on the other. This is just a day or two after a story showing a photo of him with a picture of two houses and a bag of money.

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/bernie-sanders-soviet-union-venezuela-not-examples-failed-socialism

Another Scott

The Politico article about unions and the Green New Deal discusses the disconnect between unions and elected Democrats while glossing over earlier policies that contributed to it. Unstated in the article is the years and decades that Democrats, once elected, enact policies (NAFTA, allowing China in the WTO, etc.) that hurt unions. Democrats occasionally pass legislation that tempers the decline of unions, but are always weak and less central than the party’s attempts to align with business and Wall Street. The unions have justifiable fear that Democrats won’t help them when the time comes. And I don’t think environmentalists are doing themselves any favors when using phrases like “just transition,” or emphasizing investments in new technologies. These sound similar to what unions heard about the impact of the trade deals, which haven’t worked out for union members.

Proponents of the Green New Deal should differentiate themselves from the Democratic proponents of free trade and similar policies if they are to gain the support of unions. One aspect that I keep getting to is mandating that the construction and operation of facilities must be done by unionized workers if it is to get government funding (including tax credits) or be used to meet any mandates. I’m not sold on this idea, but at the very least it is something tangible for unions.

[Jun 03, 2019] Hillary is still bitter

Notable quotes:
"... He campaigned for her! Which is why I'm only giving nominal support this time. ..."
Jun 03, 2019 | caucus99percent.com

@HenryAWallace
link

In a recent "off the record" conversation with Page Six's Cindy Adams, Clinton sounded off on the sprawling field of Democrat presidential candidates. According to Adams, Clinton has "no good words for Sanders, writing that the Obama-era secretary of state believes "Anyone overtaking him in a district considered his, he'll burn the place down."

Clinton has blamed her own election loss to President Trump on former President Barack Obama, fired FBI Director James Comey, the Democrat National Committee (DNC), and the nation of Russia. She has also blamed Sanders, who begrudgingly endorsed her, declaring at the time that she "will make an outstanding president."

span ed by The Voice In th... on Mon, 06/03/2019 - 6:04pm

Begrudgingly?

@gjohnsit
He campaigned for her! Which is why I'm only giving nominal support this time.

span ed by gjohnsit on Mon, 06/03/2019 - 6:12pm
The word you are looking for is "entitled"

@The Voice In the Wilderness
As in "the Democratic elite are entitled to your vote."
"the Democratic elite are entitled to the party nomination."
"the Democratic elite are entitled to praise and worship from the progressives that they betray."

[May 15, 2019] Bernie Sanders on trade with China, health care and student debt

Good domestic policy suggestions and debate skills. Horrible understanding of foreign policy (he completely subscribes to the Russiagate hoax)
His capitulation to Hillary in 2016 still linger behind his back despite all bravado. he betrayed his followers, many of who put money of this while being far from rich. he betrayed them all. As such he does not deserve to run.
Warren and Tulsi are definitely better options then Sanders for 2020.
May 07, 2019 | www.youtube.com

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., became a household name in 2016 when he ran a progressive campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination -- and came close to securing it. He's back in the 2020 race, but this time up against more than 20 other candidates. Sanders sits down with Judy Woodruff to discuss trade with China, health care, student debt, Russian election interference and more.

[May 12, 2019] Bernie seems to lack the spine. Tulsi on the other hand is a tough cookie -- but could she ever find adequate military and DOJ support?

May 12, 2019 | caucus99percent.com
@dfarrah

The real story behind this or any other presidency is Who could stand up to the deep state/neocons?

Trump is an outsider who is up against powerful, entrenched forces who apparently do whatever they want to do. (and they would be the same had Bernie won the presidency).

Bernie seems to lack the spine. Tulsi on the other hand is a tough cookie--but could she ever find adequate military and DOJ support?

[May 10, 2019] Bernie Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez Propose 15% Cap On Credit Card Rates; Visa, MC Tumble

May 10, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Bernie Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez Propose 15% Cap On Credit Card Rates; Visa, MC Tumble

by Tyler Durden Thu, 05/09/2019 - 10:37 3 SHARES

America's revolution to a socialist, government-planned society complete with reserve currency helicopter money also known as "MMT", may or may not be successful but it certainly will be attempted, and every moment will be not only televised but also tweeted.

On Thursday morning, Visa and MasterCard tumbled after the democratic party's "progressive" socialist wing consisting of Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, announced they would introduce legislation on Thursday to cap credit card interest rates at 15%, a sharp drop from current levels . The proposal follows not long after AOC also proposed the "Green New Deal" - which among its various policy proposals urged to give a generous and recurring cash handout to any and every American, regardless if they work or not, and which according to analysts would cost the US as much as $100 trillion over the next several years.

In addition to a 15% federal cap on interest rates, states could establish their own lower limits, under the legislation.

Sanders, the socialist Vermont senator running for the Democratic nomination for president, told the WaPo in an interview that a decade after taxpayers bailed out big banks, the industry is taking advantage of the public by charging exorbitant rates. " Wall Street today makes tens of billions from people at outrageous interest rates," he said.

Ocasio-Cortez, the socialist New York representative who is expected to run for the Democratic nomination for president as soon as she is eligible, will introduce the House version of the bill.

According to some, the proposal is quite timely, and comes just as credit card rates recently hit an all time high despite artificially low interest rates, according to Creditcards.com, which has been tracking the data since 2007 and compiles data from 100 popular cards. The median interest rate was 21.36% last week compared with 20.24% about a year ago and 12.62% about a decade ago, according to the website.

Rates have been rising fastest for those with the lowest credit scores , said Ted Rossman, an industry analyst for Creditcards.com. "Issuers are taking an opportunity to charge people with lesser credit a bit more," he said.

https://www.dianomi.com/smartads.epl?id=4855

For borrowers with high credit scores the average rate was 17.73 percent last week compared with 16.71 percent a year ago. For those with poor credit scores, the average is now about 24.99 percent compared with 23.77 percent a year ago. The difference in the increase is about 20 basis points higher for customers with a low credit score. A basis point is a common way to measure changes in percentages.

"It may not sound like that much, but that is just in one year," Rossman said. And even small increases in rates can be crippling to a cash strapped borrower, he said. "It is the ultimate slap in the face when you're already down."

That may well be, but we wonder what Sanders and AOC will do when the bulk of their supporters, those with the lowest credit rating and by implication paying the highest interest rates - are de-carded as credit card companies tighten standards "just enough" to eliminate all those who would be in the 15%+ interest universe anyway . Will they then force credit card companies to issue cheap (or free) debt to anyone? Inquiring minds want to know...

Meanwhile, considering that in a time of inverted yield curves banks are scrambling for every dollar in interest income, the proposal is expected to meet stern resistance from the banking industry, which brought in $113 billion in interest and fees from credit cards last year, up 35 percent since 2012, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence. It also has zero chance of passing the Senate for at least the next two years, where Republicans hold the majority.

"I am sure it will be criticized," Sanders said of the legislation. "I have a radical idea: Maybe Congress should stand up for ordinary people."

Quoted by the WaPo , the 15 percent cap would be the same as the one Congress imposed on credit unions in 1980, Sanders said. (The National Credit Union Administration, the industry's regulator, raised that cap to 18 percent in 1987 and has repeatedly renewed it at that higher level.)

The full proposal is below


Archeofuturist , 6 minutes ago link

Why not just ban all usury? Why stop at 15%?

Would that be considered anti-semitic?

Posa , 6 minutes ago link

Shrewd move from Sanders and AOC.. end usury now!

Silver Willie , 7 minutes ago link

Subprime consumers would discover their credit lines would be eliminated overnight. Could create a wave of bankruptcies in short order. If they really want to crack down they need to start tinkering with the rates these payday loan companies charge.

anduka , 14 minutes ago link

The banks own Congress. How is this ever going to pass?

3-fingered_chemist , 13 minutes ago link

Interest rate reflects that credit card debt is unsecured. If you cap it, most people will simply not have access to credit cards as the banks won't take the risk. Next, there will be a bill that ensures everyone has a credit card. Going into debt is an American past time, right?

beenlauding , 23 minutes ago link

This is an antisemitic attack on usury.

Wait, 15%-scratch that.

elctro static , 31 minutes ago link

Sure, lowering the interest rates banks can charge on credit cards is a good idea - at first glance - but, in reality, it is simply another "gatekeeper" move. That means addressing a symptom of an issue, rather than it's real causative reason for existing. The central banking system, and the banks it controls internationally, including the Fed and headquartered in Basil, Switzerland - is a criminal enterprise designed to transfer the wealth of sovereign nations into the pockets of a tiny minority of fiends, and in the process, handing over all power to govern victim nations - through the influence of money in politics. This tiny group of very sick people are behind 90% of the misery and death in this world - including all wars and profits derived therein. Since they also control the media they have also foisted an incredibly successful mind control program on their victims. Here in the US, people run around after whatever the latest "big story" is purported to be - always making sure to box themselves into their manufactured personalities, repeating what they have been programmed to say. Everyone is watching the giant circus, and misses the machinations of profound evil - resulting in horrific consequences for all life on Earth.

The Fed and the banks need to exposed for what they are and destroyed, and the fiends behind them exposed, stripped of all assets, and sentenced to hard labor. Unfortunately, the US government and it's various branches of "justice" is owned by said fiends and would have to be overthrown to do what needs to be done.

Either way, apocalypse is approaching.

[May 09, 2019] Bernie Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez Propose 15% Cap On Credit Card Rates; Visa, MC Tumble

May 09, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Bernie Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez Propose 15% Cap On Credit Card Rates; Visa, MC Tumble

by Tyler Durden Thu, 05/09/2019 - 10:37 3 SHARES

America's revolution to a socialist, government-planned society complete with reserve currency helicopter money also known as "MMT", may or may not be successful but it certainly will be attempted, and every moment will be not only televised but also tweeted.

On Thursday morning, Visa and MasterCard tumbled after the democratic party's "progressive" socialist wing consisting of Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, announced they would introduce legislation on Thursday to cap credit card interest rates at 15%, a sharp drop from current levels . The proposal follows not long after AOC also proposed the "Green New Deal" - which among its various policy proposals urged to give a generous and recurring cash handout to any and every American, regardless if they work or not, and which according to analysts would cost the US as much as $100 trillion over the next several years.

In addition to a 15% federal cap on interest rates, states could establish their own lower limits, under the legislation.

me width=

Sanders, the socialist Vermont senator running for the Democratic nomination for president, told the WaPo in an interview that a decade after taxpayers bailed out big banks, the industry is taking advantage of the public by charging exorbitant rates. " Wall Street today makes tens of billions from people at outrageous interest rates," he said.

Ocasio-Cortez, the socialist New York representative who is expected to run for the Democratic nomination for president as soon as she is eligible, will introduce the House version of the bill.

According to some, the proposal is quite timely, and comes just as credit card rates recently hit an all time high despite artificially low interest rates, according to Creditcards.com, which has been tracking the data since 2007 and compiles data from 100 popular cards. The median interest rate was 21.36% last week compared with 20.24% about a year ago and 12.62% about a decade ago, according to the website.

Rates have been rising fastest for those with the lowest credit scores , said Ted Rossman, an industry analyst for Creditcards.com. "Issuers are taking an opportunity to charge people with lesser credit a bit more," he said.

https://www.dianomi.com/smartads.epl?id=4855

For borrowers with high credit scores the average rate was 17.73 percent last week compared with 16.71 percent a year ago. For those with poor credit scores, the average is now about 24.99 percent compared with 23.77 percent a year ago. The difference in the increase is about 20 basis points higher for customers with a low credit score. A basis point is a common way to measure changes in percentages.

"It may not sound like that much, but that is just in one year," Rossman said. And even small increases in rates can be crippling to a cash strapped borrower, he said. "It is the ultimate slap in the face when you're already down."

That may well be, but we wonder what Sanders and AOC will do when the bulk of their supporters, those with the lowest credit rating and by implication paying the highest interest rates - are de-carded as credit card companies tighten standards "just enough" to eliminate all those who would be in the 15%+ interest universe anyway . Will they then force credit card companies to issue cheap (or free) debt to anyone? Inquiring minds want to know...

Meanwhile, considering that in a time of inverted yield curves banks are scrambling for every dollar in interest income, the proposal is expected to meet stern resistance from the banking industry, which brought in $113 billion in interest and fees from credit cards last year, up 35 percent since 2012, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence. It also has zero chance of passing the Senate for at least the next two years, where Republicans hold the majority.

"I am sure it will be criticized," Sanders said of the legislation. "I have a radical idea: Maybe Congress should stand up for ordinary people."

Quoted by the WaPo , the 15 percent cap would be the same as the one Congress imposed on credit unions in 1980, Sanders said. (The National Credit Union Administration, the industry's regulator, raised that cap to 18 percent in 1987 and has repeatedly renewed it at that higher level.)

The full proposal is below


Archeofuturist , 6 minutes ago link

Why not just ban all usury? Why stop at 15%?

Would that be considered anti-semitic?

Posa , 6 minutes ago link

Shrewd move from Sanders and AOC.. end usury now!

Silver Willie , 7 minutes ago link

Subprime consumers would discover their credit lines would be eliminated overnight. Could create a wave of bankruptcies in short order. If they really want to crack down they need to start tinkering with the rates these payday loan companies charge.

anduka , 14 minutes ago link

The banks own Congress. How is this ever going to pass?

3-fingered_chemist , 13 minutes ago link

Interest rate reflects that credit card debt is unsecured. If you cap it, most people will simply not have access to credit cards as the banks won't take the risk. Next, there will be a bill that ensures everyone has a credit card. Going into debt is an American past time, right?

beenlauding , 23 minutes ago link

This is an antisemitic attack on usury.

Wait, 15%-scratch that.

elctro static , 31 minutes ago link

Sure, lowering the interest rates banks can charge on credit cards is a good idea - at first glance - but, in reality, it is simply another "gatekeeper" move. That means addressing a symptom of an issue, rather than it's real causative reason for existing. The central banking system, and the banks it controls internationally, including the Fed and headquartered in Basil, Switzerland - is a criminal enterprise designed to transfer the wealth of sovereign nations into the pockets of a tiny minority of fiends, and in the process, handing over all power to govern victim nations - through the influence of money in politics. This tiny group of very sick people are behind 90% of the misery and death in this world - including all wars and profits derived therein. Since they also control the media they have also foisted an incredibly successful mind control program on their victims. Here in the US, people run around after whatever the latest "big story" is purported to be - always making sure to box themselves into their manufactured personalities, repeating what they have been programmed to say. Everyone is watching the giant circus, and misses the machinations of profound evil - resulting in horrific consequences for all life on Earth.

The Fed and the banks need to exposed for what they are and destroyed, and the fiends behind them exposed, stripped of all assets, and sentenced to hard labor. Unfortunately, the US government and it's various branches of "justice" is owned by said fiends and would have to be overthrown to do what needs to be done.

Either way, apocalypse is approaching.

[May 07, 2019] This pathetic sellout Bernie

So FBI pushed him under the bus by exonerating Hillary and he now wants Russians to be investigated for this achievement ?
May 07, 2019 | theintercept.com
5 days ago
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) called on Thursday for Congress to continue an investigation into Russia's role in the 2016 presidential election and whether President Trump sought to obstruct a law enforcement probe into the matter.

[May 07, 2019] The Democrats on Our Crazy Defense Spending and neocolonial wars

May 07, 2019 | www.laprogressive.com

The military sucks up 54% of discretionary federal spending. Pentagon bloat has a huge effect on domestic priorities; the nearly $1 trillion a year that goes to exploiting, oppressing, torturing, maiming and murdering foreigners could go to building schools, college scholarships, curing diseases, poetry slams, whatever. Anything, even tax cuts for the rich, would be better than bombs. But as then GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said in 2015, "The military is not a social experiment. The purpose of the military is to kill people and break things ." If you're like me, you want as little killing and breaking as possible.

Unfortunately, no major Democratic presidential candidate favors substantial cuts to Pentagon appropriations.

Current frontrunner Joe Biden ( 33% in the polls) doesn't talk much about defense spending. He reminds us that his son served in Iraq (so he cares about the military) and that we shouldn't prioritize defense over domestic programs. Vague. Though specific programs might get trimmed, Lockheed Martin could rest easy under a President Biden.

"Since he arrived in Congress, [runner-up] Bernie Sanders [19%] has been a fierce crusader against Pentagon spending , calling for defense cuts that few Democrats have been willing to support," The Hill reported in 2016. "As late as 2002, he supported a 50 percent cut for the Pentagon." Bernie is still a Pentagon critic but he won't commit to a specific amount to cut. He wouldn't slash and Bern. He'd trim.

Elizabeth Warren (8%) wants "to identify which programs actually benefit American security in the 21st century, and which programs merely line the pockets of defense contractors -- then pull out a sharp knife and make some cuts ."

... ... ...

Kamala Harris (5%) has not weighed in on military spending. She has received substantial campaign contributions from the defense industry, though.

The Democrats on Wars for Fun

As senator, Biden voted for the optional wars against Afghanistan and Iraq . He lied about his votes so maybe he felt bad about them. He similarly seems to regret his ro le in destroying Libya.

Sanders voted to invade Afghanistan . His comment at the time reads as hopelessly naïve about the bloodthirsty Bush-Cheney regime: "The use of force is one tool that we have at our disposal to fight against the horror of terrorism and mass murder it is something that must be used wisely and with great discretion." Sanders voted against invading Iraq , favored regime change in Libya ( albeit nonviolently ) and voted to bomb Syria .

There have been no major new wars since 2013, when Warren joined the Senate so her antiwar bona fides have not been tested. Like many of her colleagues, she wants an end to the "forever war" against Afghanistan. She also wants us out of Syria .

Democrats on NSA Spying Against Americans

... ... ...

Joe Biden, though to the right on other foreign-policy issues, was a critic of NSA spying for years, going back at least to 2006. Under Obama, however, he backtracked . Even worse, Biden called the president of Ecuador in 2013 to request that he deny asylum to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Bernie Sanders alone would end warrantless mass surveillance and said Snowden " did this country a great service ." Warren doesn't discuss it much except to say it would be nice to have " an informed discussion ." Harris favors some limits but generally keeps quiet.

[May 06, 2019] Bernie's Degeneracy That's Democracy For Ya by Ilana Mercer

May 06, 2019 | www.unz.com

Multiculturalism means that you confer political privileges on many an individual whose illiberal practices run counter to, even undermine, the American political tradition.

Radical leaders across the U.S. quite seriously consider Illegal immigrants as candidates for the vote -- and for every other financial benefit that comes from the work of American citizens.

The rights of all able-bodied idle individuals to an income derived from labor not their own: That, too, is a debate that has arisen in democracy, where the demos rules like a despot.

But then moral degeneracy is inherent in raw democracy. The best political thinkers, including America's constitution-makers, warned a long time ago that mass, egalitarian society would thus degenerate.

What Bernie Sanders prescribes for the country -- unconditional voting -- is but an extension of "mass franchise," which was feared by the greatest thinkers on Democracy. Prime Minister George Canning of Britain, for instance.

Canning, whose thought is distilled in Russell Kirk's magnificent exegesis, "The Conservative Mind," thought that "the franchise should be accorded to persons and classes insofar as they possess the qualifications for right judgment and are worthy members of their particular corporations."

By "corporations," Canning (1770-1827) meant something quite different to our contemporary, community-killing multinationals.

"Corporations," in the nomenclature of the times, meant very plainly in "the spirit of cooperation, based upon the idea of a neighborhood. [C]ities, parishes, townships, professions, and trades are all the corporate bodies that constitute the state."

To the extent that an individual citizen is a decent member of these " little platoons " (Edmund Burke's iridescent term), he may be considered, as Canning saw it, for political participation.

"If voting becomes a universal and arbitrary right," cautioned Canning, "citizens become mere political atoms, rather than members of venerable corporations; and in time this anonymous mass of voters will degenerate into pure democracy," which, in reality is "the enthronement of demagoguery and mediocrity." ("The Conservative Mind," p. 131.)

That's us. Demagoguery and mediocrity are king in contemporary democracies, where the organic, enduring, merit-based communities extolled by Canning, no longer exists and are no longer valued.

This is the point at which America finds itself and against which William Lecky, another brilliant British political philosopher and politician, argued.

The author of "Democracy and Liberty" (1896) predicted that "the continual degradation of the suffrage" through "mass franchise" would end in "a new despotism."

Then as today, radical, nascent egalitarians, who championed the universal vote abhorred by Lecky, attacked "institution after institution," harbored "systematic hostility" toward "owners of landed property" and private property and insisted that "representative institutions" and the franchise be extended to all irrespective of "circumstance and character."

... ... ... "

Ilana Mercer has been writing a weekly, paleolibertarian column since 1999. She is the author of Into the Cannibal's Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa (2011) & The Trump Revolution: The Donald's Creative Destruction Deconstructed " (June, 2016). She's back on Twitter , after being suspended, and is also on Facebook , Gab & YouTube


imbroglio , says: April 27, 2019 at 1:24 pm GMT

The franchise should be granted by whom? You're forgetting the 800 pound gorilla and where he sits when he enters the room. Franchises and every other grant are granted by those who have the power to grant them.

Canning's "organic, enduring, merit-based communities" will emerge, in ghastly form, as the solipsistic constituencies of identity politics. Why do people like Omar laugh at America and Americans? "Here's a people so stupid as to clasp the adder to its breast. You're clasping? I'm biting."

Bernie is utopian. Utopians do terrible things if and when they have the power to do them. But you can't fault him for insincerity.

The younger Tsarnaev who hid out near my home town was doing what his older brother told him to do assuming that the bombing wasn't a false flag. Not an excuse. Only to say the kid had no political convictions and probably wouldn't bother to vote if he could.

anonymous [340] Disclaimer , says: April 27, 2019 at 2:01 pm GMT
Sanders is just a wine and cheese socialist, totally an armchair theorist. He has no background in actually doing anything besides being involved in politics which has provided a living for him. It's doubtful he could run a couple of Walmarts. This is his last go-around and he's out to see how much in contributions he can garner. Pushing the edge, theoretically of course, keeps him in the conversation. He's worthless but such is the state of politics where characters like him, Biden, and the rest of the Dem lineup could be taken seriously. Just one big clown show.
hamtok , says: May 5, 2019 at 6:15 pm GMT
@Jim Bob Lassiter Yes, but, his wife could steal money from a collapsing college to serve her daughter. Corruption must run in the family as Bernie has been conspicuously silent on this subject. He must feel the Burn!

[May 01, 2019] The president has said he doesn t want to see this country wrapped up in endless wars and I agree with that -- Bernie Sanders

Notable quotes:
"... In fact, Trump gave the Democrats his theme for peace by 2020 ..."
"... If Sanders emerged as the nominee, we would have an election with a Democrat running with the catchphrase “no more wars” that Trump had promoted in 2016. Thus, Trump would be defending the bombing of Yemeni rebels and civilians by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia. ..."
"... None of the main candidates for the 2020 Democratic nomination — Joe Biden, Sanders, Kamala Harris, Beto O’Rourke, Pete Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker– seems as aggressive as Trump has become. ..."
"... Trump pulled the United States out of the nuclear agreement with Iran, negotiated by Secretary of State John Kerry, and re-imposed severe sanctions against the Iranians. He declared the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran a terrorist organization, to which Tehran responded with the same action against the U.S. Central Command. ..."
"... Trump has recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, moved the U.S. embassy there, closed the consulate that was in charge of Palestinian affairs, cut off aid to Palestinians, recognized the annexation by Israel of the Golan Heights snatched from Syria in 1967 and kept silent about Netanyahu’s threat to annex the Jewish settlements in the West Bank. ..."
May 01, 2019 | www.counterpunch.org

Originally from: Who Will Be the War Candidate in 2020? by Manuel E. Yepe

"The president has said he doesn't want to see this country wrapped up in endless wars and I agree with that," Bernie Sanders said to the Fox News audience last week at Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Then, looking directly at the camera, he added: "Mr. President, tonight you have the opportunity to do something extraordinary: sign that resolution. Saudi Arabia must not determine the military or foreign policy of this country."

Sanders was talking about a resolution on the War Powers Act that would put an end to U.S. involvement in the 5-year civil war in Yemen. This war has created one of the biggest humanitarian crises in the world of our time, with thousands of children dead in the middle of a cholera epidemic and famine.

Supported by a Democratic Party united in Congress, and an anti-interventionist faction of the Republican Party headed by Senators Rand Paul and Mike Lee of Utah, the War Powers resolution had passed both houses of Congress.

But 24 hours after Sanders urged the President to sign it, Trump vetoed the resolution, describing it as a "dangerous attempt to undermine my constitutional authority."

According to journalist Buchanan J. Buchanan, “with enough Republican votes in both chambers to resist Trump’s veto, this could have been the end of the matter; but it wasn’t. In fact, Trump gave the Democrats his theme for peace by 2020.”

If Sanders emerged as the nominee, we would have an election with a Democrat running with the catchphrase “no more wars” that Trump had promoted in 2016. Thus, Trump would be defending the bombing of Yemeni rebels and civilians by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia.

In 2008, John McCain, hawk leader in the Senate, was defeated by the progressive Illinois Senator Barack Obama, who had won his nomination by defeating the bellicose Hillary Clinton who had voted for authorizing the war in Iraq. In 2012, the Republican candidate, Mitt Romney, who was much more aggressive than Obama in his approach to Russia lost.

However, in 2016, Trump presented himself as a different kind of Republican, an opponent of the Iraq war, an anti-interventionist, and promising to get along with Russian Vladimir Putin and getting out of the Middle East wars.

None of the main candidates for the 2020 Democratic nomination — Joe Biden, Sanders, Kamala Harris, Beto O’Rourke, Pete Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker– seems as aggressive as Trump has become.

Trump pulled the United States out of the nuclear agreement with Iran, negotiated by Secretary of State John Kerry, and re-imposed severe sanctions against the Iranians. He declared the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran a terrorist organization, to which Tehran responded with the same action against the U.S. Central Command.

Trump has recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, moved the U.S. embassy there, closed the consulate that was in charge of Palestinian affairs, cut off aid to Palestinians, recognized the annexation by Israel of the Golan Heights snatched from Syria in 1967 and kept silent about Netanyahu’s threat to annex the Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

Trump has spoken of getting all U.S. troops out of Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. However, they are still there.

Although Sanders supports Israel, he says he is looking for a two-state solution, and criticizes Netanyahu’s regime.

Trump came to power promising to get along with Moscow, but he sent Javelin anti-tank missiles to Ukraine and announced the US withdrawal of the 1987 Treaty of Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) subscribed by Ronald Reagan, who banned all ground-based nuclear intermediate range missiles.

When Putin sent a hundred Russian soldiers to Venezuela to repair the S-400 anti-aircraft and anti-missile system that was damaged in the recent blackouts, Trump provocatively ordered the Russians to “get out” of the Bolivarian and Chavista country. According to Buchanan, the gravity center of U.S. policy is shifting towards Trump’s position in 2016. And the anti-interventionist wing of the Republican Party is growing.

The anti-interventionist wing of the Republican Party together with the anti-war wing of the Democratic Party in Congress are capable — as they were War Powers Act resolution on Yemen– to produce a new bipartisan majority.

Buchanan predicts that in the 2020 primaries, foreign policy will be in the center and the Democratic Party would have captured the ground with the catchphrase “no more wars” that candidate Donald Trump exploited in 2016.

[May 01, 2019] Sanders is pushed into the swamp of neoliberal identity politics

May 01, 2019 | www.counterpunch.org

Originally from: What Happened to the New and Improved Bernie Sanders? by Daniel Falcone

Bernie Sanders kicked off his campaign just about two months ago in Brooklyn, New York opening with a speech saying, "we are going to defeat the most dangerous president in modern history." He urged for "an economy which works for all, not just the 1%." In the first sentences of his speech he remarked that "the underlying principles of our government will not be greed, hatred and lies. It will not be racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia and religious bigotry." The tone and approach of the speech sounded like a new and improved Bernie Sanders ready to tackle "identity" issues and oppression head on.

This however did not stop the Democratic establishment from staying on their anti-progressive message. Zerlina Maxwell , a paid Clinton operative and "MSNBC analyst" lamented that "twenty-three minutes in, Bernie finally mentioned race and gender." For Democrats that watch MSNBC and didn't hear Sanders's Brooklyn speech, it reinforced what they already thought about him and 2016. The only problem is that Maxwell's assertion was demonstrably false and the Sander's team should have been quick to correct the misinformation. In any event, the well-disciplined MSNBC panel sat silent after Zerlina Maxwell's untrue remarks just like the Sanders team.

Since his opening speech, Sanders has been ineffective in answering certain questions or has been beaten to the punch, on what too many white social democrats call, "identity politics." Sanders was in fact, one of two white elected officials that supported one of the most progressive political platforms in memory, Jesse Jackson's 1984 bid. For his Brooklyn speech, he was introduced by three prominent African-Americans, most notably, former Ohio state Senator Nina Turner .

Sanders discussed the current state of inequality as it relates to both the carceral state and xenophobic impulses. This was an enormous step for him and an incredibly important point of distinction from his previous run, but for some reason these points were nonexistent at his recent She the People Forum appearance. Sanders should avoid reading his press and needs to stop giving canned answers on race.

Why Sanders continues to stumble on the trail and has much more difficulty than he indicated in his speech is confounding. Why DSA rushed an endorsement vote when some Afro-Socialists Caucus members wanted to wait is also troubling. Few, if any, assume he himself lacks sincerity or principle on these matters. In his opening speech, he pointed to the GOP that actually 'weaponizes' "by color, origin, gender, religion, and sexual orientation." Also in his kickoff speech Sanders referenced his own family that "escaped widespread anti-Semitism."

He addressed these issues openly and repeatedly and incorporated them with a message about progressive foreign policy, single payer healthcare, housing, rent control, labor, and a living wage, to better "address the racial disparities of wealth and income," while reminding his base, "we are going to root out institutional racism wherever it exists." For many, all of these sentiments were indications that his 2020 run would be new and improved.

... ... ...

[Apr 29, 2019] Trump apparently thinks a Bernie primary victory along with another year of counter-Russiagate investigations will break the corporate Dems, and give DC lobbyists no place to lay their campaign cash but at his feet. Instead of draining the swamp, Trump wants to monopolize it.

Notable quotes:
"... Trump also seems to think he stands a better chance in a straight fight against Bernie (lobbyist vs grass roots) than a mixed bout against Biden (lobbyist vs lobbyist), so he's looking to take down the Clinton's, Obamas, and the whole motley crew to give Bernie an easier ride to the general. ..."
Apr 29, 2019 | caucus99percent.com

Not Henry Kissinger on Mon, 04/29/2019 - 2:30pm

Thanks Donny!

Too clever by half meddling in this pie fight.

Trump apparently thinks a Bernie primary victory along with another year of counter-Russiagate investigations will break the corporate Dems, and give DC lobbyists no place to lay their campaign cash but at his feet. Instead of draining the swamp, Trump wants to monopolize it.

Trump also seems to think he stands a better chance in a straight fight against Bernie (lobbyist vs grass roots) than a mixed bout against Biden (lobbyist vs lobbyist), so he's looking to take down the Clinton's, Obamas, and the whole motley crew to give Bernie an easier ride to the general.

Never interrupt your opponent when he's making a mistake, and especially when he's making that mistake against your other opponent. If Trump is so deluded as to think Biden is a more dangerous opponent than Bernie, then I say let him keep riling up Dem party insurgents and reminding Dem Exiters and indies why they want to vote for Bernie.

Because that hornet's nest he's poking today will be coming for him tomorrow.

[Apr 29, 2019] The 2020 Race Is Going Just Like Bernie Sanders Wanted

Apr 29, 2019 | www.theatlantic.com

Still, since some political observers and journalists haven't wrapped their head around the reality that he could be more than a spoiler who kneecaps the party en route to a complicated convention and maybe another loss to Donald Trump, Sanders has been able to do this without the attention or scrutiny that anyone else with his poll numbers, fundraising, and crowds would face.

"There's a three-out-of-four chance we are not the nominee," Faiz Shakir, Sanders's current campaign manager, says he tells the senator, "but that one-in-four chance is better than anyone else in the field."

... ... ...

So he's eagerly gotten into fights, like one over the weekend with the Center for American Progress about a video produced by an affiliated website that speciously accused him of profiting off his 2016 run. And then he's fundraised by citing the fights as evidence of resistance to the revolution he's promising.

[Apr 29, 2019] >Trump gives Bernie some good advice: this time please show a little more anger and indignation when you get screwed!

Apr 29, 2019 | caucus99percent.com

span y gjohnsit on Mon, 04/29/2019 - 11:53am Donald Trump The Liar is no fan of Bernie Sanders, so any advice he gives is totally self-serving. Nevertheless, he can occasionally tell the truth, if only by accident.

....for the more traditional, but not very bright, Sleepy Joe Biden. Here we go again Bernie, but this time please show a little more anger and indignation when you get screwed!

-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 28, 2019

Trump only cares about this primary rigging because it makes the Dems look bad, but that doesn't mean that he's wrong.

In related news, the dark money is rolling into the Democratic Party.

A group of Democratic operatives are launching a $60 million political group with plans to reclaim values-laden terms like "freedom" and "opportunity" for their party ahead of the 2020 election.

..."It's no great secret that the presidential race will be won or lost in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio -- if we can win back the narrative that the word 'Democrat' equals people who are fighting for folks who work hard every day, we can continue to win elections," Riddle said. "If [Democrats] get defined as being about socialism and these other words people can hear about out of Washington, then I worry."

Future Majority has enlisted advisers including Dan Sena, who was executive director of the DCCC for the last election, and Julianna Smoot, a deputy campaign manager on Barack Obama's 2012 reelection effort. Two major Democratic donors are co-chairing the group: Philip Munger, son of Berkshire Hathaway billionaire Charles Munger, and Dan Tierney, founder of high-speed trading company GETGO. Keith Mestrich, president and CEO of Amalgamated Bank, is also helping fund the group.

Ah, yes. CEOs and billionaires "fighting for folks who work hard every day". I guess the question here is who are "folks"?

During the 2018 midterm election, Future Majority briefed the DCCC on matters including strategies for talking to voters about the economy and how swing voters viewed the Democratic and Republican parties. Future Majority helped the DCCC "round out a narrative" that spoke to a broader swath of voters, Sena said, particularly when it came to discussing the economy.

Gee, lemme guess what that narrative about the economy sounded like. Speaking of narratives, this has got to be my favorite spin so far because it is so damn elitist.

Rather than a politics financed by special interests, Sanders is drawing funds from an army of local activists, whose commitment to the cause induces them to chip in $20 here or $40 there.
... Call me a contrarian, but I have my doubts about this mode of financing, too. Again, stipulating that donors have access or influence that average voters do not possess, is it really better for activists to be the main source of finance? Corporate lobbyists are going to invest in politics for their stockholders' interests, but activists have a wide array of ideological views that are often out of step with the rest of society. The Sanders voters in particular are far to the left of the average American -- and probably the average Democrat, too.

We complain so much about political polarization these days, and I think with good reason. But to what extent does the polarization in the last generation lead back to this revolution in campaign finance? Are grassroots extremists pulling candidates to the ideological fringes by increments of $20 apiece? It's very possible.

All of this speaks to some inconvenient truths that Americans have failed to fully grok: Politics is very expensive, somebody has to pay for it, and whoever does is going to get special access. Who do we want those persons to be? Special interests, activists, somebody else? We collectively don't know, as we tend not to think much at all about campaign finance. Maybe if a socialist captures the Democratic nomination this cycle, we'll think a little more clearly about whether we want our local hippies bankrolling politics.

He even manages to punch some hippies. He should get extra points for that.

[Apr 28, 2019] Sanders takes on Fox -- and emerges triumphant

Notable quotes:
"... That Trump's only chance in 2020 is if the Democratic candidate is Hillary (again) - or possibly Biden - has made me wonder about all the bafflegab of him working to get a huge war chest for his 2020 campaign. A link I saw today gives me a clue as to what may be happening. ..."
Apr 28, 2019 | www.politico.com

The key word in that link is "Fox". Sanders wasn't at some leftie flower-sniffing place, but went right into the lion's den. And the the other thing is that Trump was watching. (Fox!) Reports are that he was just a little bit impressed.

It was like somebody had thrown a small thimble full of cool water at him. The man truly does believe he is some kind of superhero and doesn't have a clue Hillary was probably the only person on the planet he could have defeated in 2016.

That Trump's only chance in 2020 is if the Democratic candidate is Hillary (again) - or possibly Biden - has made me wonder about all the bafflegab of him working to get a huge war chest for his 2020 campaign. A link I saw today gives me a clue as to what may be happening.

[Apr 28, 2019] Trump Warns Bernie He's Getting Screwed Again By DNC -- This Time To Help Biden

Apr 28, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

by Tyler Durden Sun, 04/28/2019 - 12:32 2 SHARES

President Trump on Saturday said over Twitter that the Democratic National Committee (DNC) is "again working its magic in its quest to destroy Crazy Bernie Sanders," in favor of "Sleepy" Joe Biden. Trump then wrote "Here we go again Bernie, but this time please show a little more anger and indignation when you get screwed! "

me title=

How was Bernie screwed?

Thanks to WikiLeaks and admissions by former DNC chair-turned- Fox News contributor Donna Brazile, we know that the DNC coordinated with the Clinton Campaign during the 2016 primaries to give Obama's former Secretary of State an unfair advantage over Sanders.

Not only did Brazile give Clinton's team CNN debate questions ahead of time - as revealed by WikiLeaks , the DNC cut off Sanders' access to a critical voter database in what Bernie suggested was a setup.

The Democratic National Committee (DNC) had hired an outside software partner, "NGP VAN," to manage its voter database. Founded by Nathaniel Pearlman - chief technology officer for Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign - NGP's 'VoteBuilder' software was designed for Democratic candidates (Bernie, Hillary, etc.) to track and analyze highly detailed information on voters for the purposes of 'microtargeting' specific demographics.

On December 16th, 2015, NGP VAN updated the Votebuilder with a patch that contained a bug - allowing the Sanders and the Clinton campaigns to temporarily access each other's proprietary voter information for around 40 minutes. Lo and behold, the Sanders campaign National Data Director, Josh Uretsky , was found to have accessed Clinton's information and was promptly fired.

Uretsky's excuse was that he was simply grabbing Clinton's data during the window of vulnerability to prove that the breach was real.

Bernie cried false flag!

Sanders claimed that Uretsky was a DNC plant - " recommended by the DNC's National Data Director along with NGP's Pearlman. Sanders sued the DNC in December 2015, only to drop the case four months later after a DNC investigation concluded that the wrongdoing did not go beyond Uretsky and three staffers under his command.

More DNC plotting - exposed by WikiLeaks and Donna Brazile:

In her 2017 book , Brazile said that she had discovered a 2015 deal between the Clinton campaign, Clinton's joint fundraising committee, and the DNC - which would allow Clinton's campaign to "control the party's finances, strategy, and all the money raised." Brazile said that while the deal "looked unethical," she found "no evidence" that the 2016 primary was rigged.

Meanwhile, in an email from early May , DNC CFO Brad Marshall wrote about a plot to question Sanders's religio n. While not naming the Vermont senator directly, it talks about a man of "Jewish heritage" Marshall believes to be an atheist. It makes reference to voters in Kentucky and West Virginia, two states that were holding upcoming primary elections.

"It might may no difference, but for KY and WVA can we get someone to ask his belief. Does he believe in a God. He had skated on saying he has a Jewish heritage. I think I read he is an atheist. This could make several points difference with my peeps. My Southern Baptist peeps would draw a big difference between a Jew and an atheist," the email says.

"AMEN," DNC Chief Executive Officer Amy K. Dacey replied.

me title=

Marshall did not respond to a request for comment. But he did tell The Intercept , which first noticed the email, "I do not recall this. I can say it would not have been Sanders. It would probably be about a surrogate."

DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz , meanwhile had written Bernie off completely - noting in a May 21 email (while there were still nine primary debates to go): "This is a silly story," adding " He isn't going to be president. " Of course, Sanders told CNN 's Jake Tapper that if he was elected president, Wasserman Schultz would be out at the DNC .

me title=

And what did Bernie do after he lost the primaries, knowing Clinton and the DNC conspired against him? He ran to Hillary's side like a lapdog and gave her his full-throated support.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/v_6BevfMygM

And no wonder DNC chair Tom Perez has urged Republicans not to use "stolen private data" during the 2020 campaign - since Wikileaks emails contiain massive evidence of the DNC's collusion against Sanders.

Tags Politics

[Apr 28, 2019] Biden has huge, exploitable weakness in relation Ukraine

Highly recommended!
Apr 28, 2019 | www.unz.com

A123 , says: April 25, 2019 at 12:33 am GMT

Democratic party candidate Biden has huge, exploitable weakness in relation Ukraine (1). Given that Biden is the most beatable name to come forward so far Trump and his administration will do nothing major to involve the U.S. with the internal affairs of Ukraine.

Macron and Merkel may wish to do something, but given personal unpopularity in their countries it is unclear what they can deliver.

For the next 12+ months nothing of any significance will happen. If the Dems are foolish enough to nominate Biden, it could become an issue next year. Trump and Putin would have aligned interests in stopping the Biden family's exploitation of Ukrainian resources.

____

(1) https://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/436816-joe-bidens-2020-ukrainian-nightmare-a-closed-probe-is-revived

[Apr 26, 2019] In the 2016 elections, Sanders betrayed millions of people that believed in him when after making the central point of his campaign the fight against Wall Street he instructed his followers to vote for Wall Street's candidate, war criminal/corporate criminal Hillary Clinton

Apr 26, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

frances , Apr 26, 2019 2:43:26 PM | link

Re Bernie, this is a zerohedge post that beautifully sums him up:

Tomsk on July 26, 2018 · at 12:08 pm EST/EDT

It is amazing how many people actually believe that Bernie Saunders is some kind of decent guy posing an "alternative" to the other 2 contenders when his sole purpose was to round up "dissenters" and funnel them into the Hillary camp.

As Alexander Azadgan points out –

1. He voted in favor of use of force (euphemism for bombing) 12 sovereign nations that never represented a threat to the U.S.:
1) Afghanistan.
2) Lebanon.
3) Libya.
4) Palestine.
5) Somalia
6) Syria.
7) Yemen.
8) Yugoslavia
9) Haiti
10) Liberia
11) Zaire (Congo)
12) Sudan

2. He has accepted campaign money from Defense contractor Raytheon, a defense contractor, he continues his undying support of the $1.5 trillion F-35 industry and said that predator drones "have done some very good things". Sanders has always voted in favor of awarding more corporate welfare for the military industrial complex – and even if he says he's against a particular war he ends up voting in favor of funding it.

3. He routinely backs appropriations for imperial wars, the corporate scam of Obamacare, wholesale surveillance and bloated defense budgets. He loves to bluster about corporate welfare and big banks but he voted for funding the Commodity Futures "Modernization" Act which deregulated commercial banks and created an "unregulated market in derivatives and swaps" which was the major contributor to the 2007 economic crisis.

4. Regardless of calling himself an "independent", Sanders is a member of the Democratic caucus and votes 98% of the time with the Democrats and votes in the exact same way as war criminal Hillary Clinton 93% of the time. Sanders campaigned for Bill Clinton in the 1992 presidential race and again in 1996 -- after Clinton had rammed through the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), vastly expanded the system of mass incarceration and destroyed welfare.

5. The sheepdog is a card the Democratic Party plays when there's no White House Democrat running for re-election. The sheepdog is a presidential candidate running ostensibly to the left of the establishment Democrat to whom the billionaires will award the nomination. Sheepdogs are herders, . charged with herding activists and voters back into the Democratic fold who might otherwise drift leftward and outside of the Democratic Party, either staying home. In 2004 he called on Ralph Nader to abandon his presidential campaign.

The Democratic Party has played this "sheep dog" card at least 7-8 times in the past utilizing collaborators such as Eugene McCarthy in 1968, Jesse Jackson in 1984 and 1988, Jerry Brown in 1992, Al Sharpton in 2000, Howard Dean in 2004, Dennis Kucinich in 2008 and in 2016 was Bernie Sanders' turn.

6. Regardless of calling himself a "socialist" he labeled the late Hugo Chávez, architect of the Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela responsible for lifting millions of lives out of poverty "a dead communist dictator." Then he saddled up for a photo op with Evo Morales at the Vatican and also voted to extradite former Black Panther member, Assata Shakur.

7. He refers to ISIS' godfather and warmonger extraordinaire John McCain as "my friend and a very, very decent person."

8. He routinely parrots the DNC lines: "the Russians hacked our elections" despite there is no evidence of such hacking, but lowered his head and tucked tail when the DNC actually rigged the primary elections against him, proving he is more loyal to the Democratic (war) Party than to the millions of people who supported him and donated to his fraudulent campaign.

9. He expressed staunch support for the aid of violently right-wing separatist forces such as the self-styled Kosovo Liberation Army, whose members were trained as Mujahideen, during Clinton's 100-day bombing of Yugoslavia and Kosovo in 1999. He has an extensive record of supporting jihadist proxies for the overthrow of sovereign governments in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Libya and Syria.

10. He supported Bill Clinton's sanctions against Iraq, sanctions that prohibited medicines for infants and children more than 500,000 innocents killed for no other reason than that they were Iraqi.

11. He said yes in a voice vote to the Clinton-era crime Bill, the Violent Crime Control & Law Enforcement Act of 1994, which expanded the death penalty to cover 60 offenses. So he is obviously pro-death penalty.

12. In the 2016 elections, he betrayed millions of people that believed in him when after making the central point of his campaign the fight against Wall Street he instructed his followers to vote for Wall Street's candidate, war criminal/corporate criminal Hillary Clinton.
https://imperianews.com/usa-news-analysis/liberalisms-hypocrisy-a-case-study-of-the-american-senator-bernie-sanders-and-the-ones-to-follow/
Reply

[Apr 26, 2019] Gabbard is serious person, while Sanders ais a sheepdog for Establishment

Apr 26, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jared , Apr 25, 2019 2:47:02 PM | link

Sanders will rally the FSA but that will go nowhere in general election.

Gabbard is serious person. The fact that DNC does approve is one of her strengths. Of course Wasserman will attempt a Tanya Harding but Tulsi can take her.
I hope she would not team with Biden.
I thing two good women might be powerful:
Behold: Gabbard/Omar.


Zachary Smith , Apr 25, 2019 2:54:22 PM | link

@ Rhisiart Gwilym #3

Sanders is already hip deep in the Deep State, and there is no denying it. In absolute terms he is an unacceptable candidate . But then a person recalls a famous Winston Churchill quote:

"Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others."

After stating the obvious fact Sanders just isn't much good, you have to ask, compared to what?

This election cycle it looks as if the Palestinians will be screwed yet again. But I can imagine that while Sanders will be extremely protective of the Holy Cesspool, he will stop the practice of kissing Netanyahu's ass to the point of inflammation.

As you say, if we get President Sanders we'd better not also be presented with Vice President Neocon. In that event I'd expect something or other to happen so as to suddenly have President Neocon.

Jackrabbit , Apr 25, 2019 3:35:22 PM | link
I agree with Rhisiart Gwilym @3 and james @4.

Hillary and Pelosi are against impeachment - which supports Trump - as I've explained here and here .

= = = =

Sanders is a Democratic Party sheepdog, as I described here .

<> <> <> <> <> <> <>

Sadly, I think b is caught in a mental framework, like many socialist-leaning Europeans, that prevents him from thinking critically about Sanders.

All the more strange because everyone can see how Obama and Trump failed to live up to their rhetoric, how powerful monied interests and the Deep State conduct "managed democracy" and give us the illusion of democracy . Yet some cling to the notion that democracy works! making it possible that a socialist hero can be elected.

Until democracy itself is made an issue (akin to the Yellow Vest protests) , we will continue to be played.

Altai , Apr 25, 2019 4:12:38 PM | link
Bernie Sanders may well have the best chance to beat Trump on domestic policies. But he is no progressive on foreign policy issues.

He has gotten better on this recently but he doesn't have the strength left in him to properly challenge the lobby, particularly being Jewish his extended family/social circle is a weakness they'll attack like with Goldstone.

Interestingly 'Beto' O'Rourke called Netanyahu a 'racist' not too long ago.
https://edition.cnn.com/2019/04/07/politics/beto-orourke-israel-netanyahu/index.html

Presumably he calculated that the infamously spiteful man won't be in office come January 2021 and that he can join in the scape-goating of Netanyahu as the unique 'bad-man' whose policies vis-a-vis the Palestinians and other neighbours wasn't highly popular and endorsed by Israeli society and we can all forget about it when somebody more presentable takes over despite engaging in the same policies.

dan , Apr 25, 2019 4:53:37 PM | link
With the exception of Gabbard, the running list looks like a who's who of industry and Israel lobbyists.

... ... ...

Ma Laoshi , Apr 25, 2019 4:59:43 PM | link
Bernie Sanders has been around in Washington. He knows that his domestic plans are unaffordable in the Red Scare climate which he's been pushing himself , since all money will go to the Deep State and the Armies of Mordor. The evidence is he's OK with that. Anyway, why spend time on this old geezer; he's already lost and in the time since then, he's exposed himself as a phony and liar.
donkeytale , Apr 25, 2019 5:33:58 PM | link
Z Smith isnt it crystal clear by now...Jack Rabbit is working...very hard it seems...for the re-election of Donald Trump.

The germane question: why? Is he falling back on the "same ol same ol" purity of the 3rd party gambit (the same one that has never worked throughout US history and surely has even less chance of success than ever in 2020)?

Is he ignoring or even against the plain fact that Democrats are trending leftier, less white and more female thanks in large part to so-called "sheepdog" Bernie's 2016 campaign and "movement"? Bernie far from being a sheepdog in fact played his hand rather intelligently and with self-discipline in 2016 rather than lashing out angrily at being fucked over by the party apparatus and reacting in a manner of which JR would surely approve...such as self marginalising himself into yet another in an endless string of 3rd party losers who are now footnotes in history at best.

There is evidence that Bernie voters stayed home or voted Trump in 2016 in those MW states with the slimmest margins for Trump. So the evidence indicates more that he fucked Hillary instead of being her sheepdog... and of course had she won Bernie would not be in the 2020 game, Obamacare would be solidified with the insurance companies, hospitals, physicians and drug companies, DLC centrist politics would rule the land and we would not be talking so loudly today about taxing the rich or advcating Medicare for all.

In several key states -- Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan -- the number of Sanders to Trump defectors were greater than Trump's margin of victory, according to new numbers released Wednesday by UMass professor Brian Schaffner.

Does JR simply believe electoral politics is a totally failed bit? I can grok that and agree...to a point. Problem is he offers exactly nothing as a defined alternative except...more of the same...vote 3rd party (like in, yawn, 2000, 2008, 2012, 2016) or join a "movement".

You are either for fascism or against it.

NemesisCalling , Apr 25, 2019 7:17:53 PM | link
think the doom and gloomers in here decrying Sanders/Gabbard chances as securing the nom are not being very sensible.

There is no doubt in my mind that Sanders will be the nom. Whether he picks Gabbard or not will be telling.

Gabbard, so far, has been the straight-up most respectable, classy, and well-spoken candidate hitting the media circuit. Whispers abound about her legitimacy and should not be discounted.

And they already denied Sanders once. That was their free pass and you only get one of those. Ask the Syria-interventionists and they will say the same: "We already burned through the pass in Iraq and Afghanistan. Otherwise, Assad would have been publicly strung up and hung on MSNBC by now."

There will be hell to pay if they deny Sanders again.

But this is all contingent on the fact that you don't already think that TPTB are setting the table specifically for Sanders because he is already an owned man.

Here we go again with the same ol' question for the office of POTUS: "WHO ARE YOU?"

Jen , Apr 25, 2019 7:22:22 PM | link
As long as Hunter Biden is still a director of Burisma Holdings (which includes at least one other unpleasant individual on the Board of Directors), there is always a chance that elements within or connected to the Ukrainian government (even under Volodymyr Zelenskiy's Presidency, when he has his back turned on his fellow politicians), the previous Poroshenko government or Poroshenko himself, and / or the Maidan Revolution - Crowdstrike, Dmitri Alperovich and Chalupa sisters, we're looking at all of you - might try to derail any or all of the Democratic Party presidential candidates in attempts to have Joe Biden declared the official Democrat presidential contender in 2020. The only question is how openly brazen these people are going to be in order to save their pet project in Kiev before Ukraine erupts in civil war (and it won't be civil war in the Donbass area) and the entire country goes down in flames.

Maybe someone who really, really hates Biden in the Democrat camp could remind the DNC of this little episode where Biden threatened Poroshenko in 2016 that the US would pull US$1 billion in guarantees if the Porky one didn't pull his Prosecutor General.

As for the rest of the 20 candidates, I would prefer Tulsi Gabbard out of the lot. In this respect India's general elections, already under way, are going to be important. Gabbard needs to let go of Narendra Modi and his Hindutva BJP party - her friendship with Modi and his association with Hindutva are sure to come under scrutiny as will also any connections she and her office staff have with The Science of Identity Foundation organisation.

VietnamVet , Apr 25, 2019 9:08:24 PM | link
I donated to Tulsi Gabbard's campaign so there would be one anti-war candidate in the Presidential debates. Having served in the first one, the restart of the Cold War is gut wrenching. Today it is far more dangerous than 40 years ago. "Détente" is archaic, Inequality in the West has reached the Gilded Age levels. The USA occupies East Syria even though its regime change campaign failed. With the estrangement of Western Allies, trade wars and economic sanctions against Russia and Iran, plus Joe Biden's trench war in Ukraine, the slightest misstep and the global economy will crash. If a conflict breaks out with Russia or China, the Trump Administration is too incompetent and arrogant to back down to avoid a nuclear war. The 2020 election may well be the last chance to save the earth.
ben , Apr 25, 2019 9:16:53 PM | link
Whatever Sanders and Gabbard are, remains to be seen, but I agree with b, they are the two best we've got.

Those who feel differently, no worries, unless I miss my guess, Biden is the one the party of $ will push.

Copeland , Apr 25, 2019 10:10:48 PM | link
Jackrabbit:

The accountability that is on offer in the upcoming election is to alter the structure of the Democratic Party. The deck was stacked against the progressive challenge in the last presidential election. Only a candidate who has genuine "fire-in-the-belly" has a chance to beat Trump. Bernie Sanders, Tulsi Gabbard, and Elizabeth Warren are the only ones I see who are holding these credentials. I think you are wrong when you say that Sanders is finished evolving, --and despite his age-- he is the most dynamic, among the older people Americans seem to prefer to be president. It would do him some good and improve his chance of success, if he chose for his running mate someone whose passion was equally sincere.

Political sour grapes and fatalism offer us no hope of coming through the next few years intact.

Jackrabbit , Apr 25, 2019 10:17:08 PM | link
Sanders is NOT anti-estblishment. He's just good at hiding his support for the establishment so that he can be used as foil / sheepdog / spoiler.
"Enough with the emails" - Bernie refused to raise "character issues" about Hillary despite the fact that she would face those same issues in the general election;

faux populist sell-out Obama campaigned for Bernie;

Bernie admitted that Hillary "a friend of 25 years" ;

Schumer refused to fund any Democratic Party candidate that would run against Sanders in Vermont;

Sanders votes with the Democrats >95% of the time.


<> <> <> <> <> <> <>

We can debate the merits of each establishment stooge until we're blue in the face but establishment plans for gaming the race are likely to have already made. It's be another good show that millions of American's tune in to watch.

My best guess: gay Mayor Pete gets most of the primary media coverage which focuses on his oh-so-sensible agenda, Obama-like likeability, and "historic" (did I mention that he's gay?) run for the Presidency. But Pete and his running mate Biden fail to unseat Trump.

2024: Mayor Pete loses Democratic nomination to a women (Chelsea Clinton? she'll be 44) and she wins the Presidency.

Unless, that is, Americans wake up and demand a real democracy.

Sigil , Apr 26, 2019 12:41:49 AM | link
'Bernie Sanders may well have the best chance to beat Trump on domestic policies. But he is no progressive on foreign policy issues'

He campaigned against the Vietnam war before he got elected, he later opposed the Iraq invasion, and recently led the Senate to oppose US involvement in Yemen. What is your standard for calling him a progressive? Does he have to be to the Left of Noam Chomsky (who, incidentally, says Sanders has the best policies out of any candidate)?

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2016/01/noam-chomsky-bernie-sanders-policies-election-160125180058899.html


Jackrabbit , Apr 26, 2019 1:33:35 AM | link
Those who cheer Sanders are ignoring both the hidden-in-plain-sight evidence for "managed democracy" (e.g. duopoly, money-based electoral system; lapdog media; and Imperial Deep State) and in-your-face lived history: Obama and Trump have both sweet-talked their 'base' but ruled as servants of the establishment and a member of the Deep State.

What's needed for real change is a Movement that is outside duopoly politics. That is what the establishment really fears. And that's why we are being pressed to get emotionally engaged in this sh*t show 18-months before the election. Because they don't want people to think of alternatives. You enslave yourselves.

Friar Ockham , Apr 26, 2019 2:21:34 AM | link
Both Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders are clowns. They do not have a chance to win against Pres. Trump, who will be the bankrupcy president. No one else would be able to handle it and the oligarchs know it. Democracy ? It stopped being a joke.
BM , Apr 26, 2019 11:38:54 AM | link
As for the rest of the 20 candidates, I would prefer Tulsi Gabbard out of the lot. In this respect India's general elections, already under way, are going to be important. Gabbard needs to let go of Narendra Modi and his Hindutva BJP party - her friendship with Modi and his association with Hindutva are sure to come under scrutiny as will also any connections she and her office staff have with The Science of Identity Foundation organisation.
Posted by: Jen | Apr 25, 2019 7:22:22 PM | 55

I checked out Jen's link regarding the Science of Identity Foundation - it is a very skillfully written Republican hit job, complete with multiple references to Gabbard's "support for foreign dictators" Putin and Assad, to her criticism of US fake allegations of Assad chemical attacks, to her alleged Islamaphobia for arguing that genuine muslims be differentiated from islamic terrorists, and her criticism of Obama for not bombing ISIS and al-Qaida. In Part 1 the ultirior motives are relatively well hidden, but the start coming into view in Parts 2 and 3, especially in her answers to comments in Part 3.

Interesting quote from Part 2 about Gabbard's guru Butler: "His father, the late Dr. Willis Butler, was well-known locally for his far-left political activism and his staunch opposition to U.S. involvement in foreign regime change wars, which he considered counterproductive. Dr. Butler was particularly concerned about U.S. funding of groups in Central America that he viewed as terrorists. " - sounds like at least Butler's father had his head screwed on the right way round. If that is the origin in part of Gabbard's opposition to regime change wars and US funding of terrorists then that at least was a positive influence (although implicitly painted as negative in the article!)

Having said that, the article raises a number of important questions and is in that respect an eye opener - it's just that the misleading and tainted manner in which the article is written is dangerous without verifying the information - classic fake news.

I agree with Jen about the dangers of her support for Modi. I can't help suspecting she sees the US (far-right) Indian-American elite as an important source of political funding for her seat, and that I see as problematic.

[Apr 23, 2019] Groupthink at the CIA by Philip Giraldi

Looks like tail wags the dog -- CIA controls the US foreign policy and in the last elections also played active role in promoting Hillary. A the level of top brass we have several people mentioned by Giraldi who are probably as dangerous as Allen Dulles was. Brennan is one example.
The parade of rogues that Philip describes is really alarming. Each with agenda that directly harms the USA as a country promoting the interest of military-industrial complex and neocon faction within the government...
Notable quotes:
"... Indeed, one can start with Tenet if one wants to create a roster of recent CIA Directors who have lied to permit the White House to engage in a war crime. Tenet and his staff knew better than anyone that the case against Saddam did not hold water, but President George W. Bush wanted his war and, by gum, he was going to get it if the CIA had any say in the matter. ..."
"... Back then as now, international Islamic terrorism was the name of the game. It kept the money flowing to the national security establishment in the false belief that America was somehow being made "safe." But today the terror narrative has been somewhat supplanted by Russia, which is headed by a contemporary Saddam Hussein in the form of Vladimir Putin. If one believes the media and a majority of congressmen, evil manifest lurks in the gilded halls of the Kremlin. Russia has recently been sanctioned (again) for crimes that are more alleged than demonstrated and President Putin has been selected by the Establishment as the wedge issue that will be used to end President Donald Trump's defiance of the Deep State and all that pertains to it. The intelligence community at its top level would appear to be fully on board with that effort. ..."
"... Remarkably, he also said that there is only "minimal evidence" that Russia is even fighting ISIS. The statement is astonishing as Moscow has most definitely been seriously and directly engaged in support of the Syrian Arab Army. Is it possible that the head of the CIA is unaware of that? It just might be that Pompeo is disparaging the effort because the Russians and Syrians have also been fighting against the U.S. backed "moderate rebels." That the moderate rebels are hardly moderate has been known for years and they are also renowned for their ineffectiveness combined with a tendency to defect to more radical groups taking their U.S. provided weapons with them, a combination of factors which led to their being denied any further American support by a presidential decision that was revealed in the press two weeks ago. ..."
"... Pompeo's predecessor John Brennan is, however, my favorite Agency leader in the category of totally bereft of his senses. ..."
"... Brennan is certainly loyal to his cause, whatever that might be. At the same Aspen meeting attended by Pompeo, he told Wolf Blitzer that if Trump were to fire special counsel Robert Mueller government officials should "refuse to carry out" his orders. In other words, they should begin a coup, admittedly non-violent (one presumes), but nevertheless including federal employees uniting to shut the government down. ..."
"... And finally, there is Michael Morell, also a former Acting Director, who was closely tied to the Hillary Clinton campaign, apparently driven by ambition to become Director in her administration. Morell currently provides commentary for CBS television and is a frequent guest on the Charlie Rose show. Morell considerably raised the ante on Brennan's pre-electoral speculation that there had been some Russian recruitment of Trump people. He observed in August that Putin, a wily ex-career intelligence officer, "trained to identify vulnerabilities in an individual and to exploit them [did exactly that] early in the primaries. Mr. Putin played upon Mr. Trump's vulnerabilities In the intelligence business, we would say that Mr. Putin had recruited Mr. Trump as an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation." ..."
"... Nothing new. In the '50s CIA was making foreign wars and cultivating chaos at home, and blaming all of it on Russia. In the '80s CIA was cultivating anti-nuke groups to undermine Reagan, and blaming it on Russia. CIA has been the primary wellspring of evil for a long time. ..."
"... Yes you read that right and they are going to the rotten core of this coup against the United States by presenting a report stating that the DNC was "Leaked" not hacked. The real hacking came from President Obama's weaponizing of our intelligence agencies against Russia. ..."
"... The CIA is the USA's secret army, it is not comparable to a real intelligence organization like the British MI5. The CIA is more like WWII SOE, designed to set fire to Europe, Churchill's words. ..."
"... As has been the case for decades the Deep State allows Presidents and legislators to make minor decisions in our government as long as those decisions do not in any way interfere with the Deep State's goals of total world hegemony and increase in overwhelming power and wealth. Those who make the important decisions in this country are not elected. The elected 'officials' are sycophants of the Deep State. ..."
"... The term is appropriated from the use to describe the mutually loyal corps of Ataturkians in the Turkish military and intelligence services who were united in service to uphold the ideal of Ataturkian secular modernisation. The term implies no public accountability or publicity unnecessary to its purposes. ..."
"... The CIA's source, its birth, is from British secret service. Brit spying. And Brit secret service, long before the official founding of MI5, did exactly the kinds of things you note the CIA has done. ..."
"... The Mossad is another direct fruit of Brit secret service, as is the Saudi General Intelligence Presidency. ..."
"... While there can be no doubt about the crackpots in high positions of the most powerful bureaucracies, it seems to me that the CIA loonies are merely shock troops for an even worse bunch of evil psychos, the bankster mafiosi. ..."
"... I am a retired CIA operations officer (something none of the men mentioned by Giraldi are – Brennan was a failed wanna be, couldn't cut it as an ops officer). He is spot on in his comments. The majority of people in the CIA, the ones who do the heavy lifting, are patriotic Americans who are proud of serving their country. I am sure that most voted for Trump as they all know too well the truth about the Clintons and Obama. ..."
"... Giraldi is not the only one to notice the upward progress of the most incompetent yes-men in the Agency. A close look at most of them reveals a track record of little or no operational success balanced by excellent sucking up skills. These characters quickly figured out how to get ahead and doing your job in the field is not it. Of course, most are ego maniacs so they are totally oblivious to their own uselessness. ..."
"... How "Russiagate" began: After the primaries, both Hillary and Donald faced divided political parties even though they had won the nomination. These divisions were worse than the normal situation after contested primaries. On the Democratic side, Hillay had just subverted the will of the voters of her party, who seemed to favor Bernie Sanders over her. Hillay had won with corrupt collusion and rigging amongst the DNC, the higher ranks of the Democratic Party, and major media such as the NYT and CNN. ..."
"... Then, a leak of emails from the DNC HQ publicized her interference in the democratic processes of the Democratic Party. This threatened to ene the Hillary for President campaign right then and there. If the majority of Democrats who'd favored Bernie refused to support Hillary because of her corruption and collusion in denying democracy within the party, she was a sure loser in the fall election. The Hillary camp then immediately started blaming Russia for the exposure of her corruption and rigging of the Democratic process. And that's how "Russiagate" began. ..."
"... Take that bunch of mediocre thinkers, and then make most of them obsessed with their own career advancement above all else. The most dangerous place for a career-obsessed individual is outside the group consensus. ..."
"... So, for instance, Trump should veto the act of war known as the recent sanctions bill. Who cares if it gets overridden? Then he goes back to the voters, who are clearly sick of endless war and who for obvious reasons don't want a nuclear war, and he says this is where I stand. Support me by electing Fill-In-The-Blank to Congress. With the nuclear Doomsday Clock pushing ever closer to midnight, he might just win that fight over the big money and media opposition he's sure to face. ..."
"... Not only has Trump failed to even try to fight the Deep State, but he's also failing to set himself up for success in the next elections. ..."
"... What we are seeing now is The Donald's role in the serial Zionist THEATER. Think deeper about the motive behind Mr. Giraldi's choice to use the Orwellian word "Groupthink" in characterizing the CIA zeitgeist? In the classic work "1984," one observes Big Brother as the catalyst in control of the proles' thought pattern & subsequent action. ..."
"... To rise & FALL as a POTUS is a matter of theater and the American proles are entertained by the political for either 4 or 8 years and the Zionists get their next Chosen actor/actress dramatically sworn in on a bible. ..."
Aug 01, 2017 | www.unz.com

Long ago, when I was a spear carrying middle ranker at CIA, a colleague took me aside and said that he had something to tell me "as a friend," that was very important. He told me that his wife had worked for years in the Agency's Administrative Directorate, as it was then called, where she had noticed that some new officers coming out of the Career Trainee program had red tags on their personnel files. She eventually learned from her boss that the tags represented assessments that those officers had exceptional potential as senior managers. He added, however, that the reverse appeared to be true in practice as they were generally speaking serial failures as they ascended the bureaucratic ladder, even though their careers continued to be onward and upward on paper. My friend's wife concluded, not unreasonably, that only genuine a-holes had what it took to get promoted to the most senior ranks.

I was admittedly skeptical but some recent activity by former and current Directors and Acting Directors of CIA has me wondering if something like my friend's wife's observation about senior management might indeed be true. But it would have to be something other than tagging files, as many of the directors and their deputies did not come up through the ranks and there seems to be a similar strain of lunacy at other U.S. government intelligence agencies. It might be time to check the water supply in the Washington area as there is very definitely something in the kool-aid that is producing odd behavior.

Now I should pause for a moment and accept that the role of intelligence services is to identify potential threats before they become active, so a certain level of acute paranoia goes with the job. But at the same time, one would expect a level of professionalism which would mandate accuracy rather than emotion in assessments coupled with an eschewing of any involvement in the politics of foreign and national security policy formulation. The enthusiasm with which a number of senior CIA personnel have waded into the Trump swamp and have staked out positions that contradict genuine national interests suggests that little has been learned since CIA Director George Tenet sat behind Secretary of State Colin Powell in the UN and nodded sagaciously as Saddam Hussein's high crimes and misdemeanors were falsely enumerated.

Indeed, one can start with Tenet if one wants to create a roster of recent CIA Directors who have lied to permit the White House to engage in a war crime. Tenet and his staff knew better than anyone that the case against Saddam did not hold water, but President George W. Bush wanted his war and, by gum, he was going to get it if the CIA had any say in the matter.

Back then as now, international Islamic terrorism was the name of the game. It kept the money flowing to the national security establishment in the false belief that America was somehow being made "safe." But today the terror narrative has been somewhat supplanted by Russia, which is headed by a contemporary Saddam Hussein in the form of Vladimir Putin. If one believes the media and a majority of congressmen, evil manifest lurks in the gilded halls of the Kremlin. Russia has recently been sanctioned (again) for crimes that are more alleged than demonstrated and President Putin has been selected by the Establishment as the wedge issue that will be used to end President Donald Trump's defiance of the Deep State and all that pertains to it. The intelligence community at its top level would appear to be fully on board with that effort.

The most recent inexplicable comments come from the current CIA Director Mike Pompeo, speaking at the Aspen Institute Security Forum. He began by asserting that Russia had interfered in the U.S. election before saying that the logic behind Russia's Middle Eastern strategy is to stay in place in Syria so Moscow can "stick it to America." He didn't define the "it" so one must assume that "it" stands for any utensil available, ranging from cruise missiles to dinner forks. He then elaborated, somewhat obscurely, that "I think they find anyplace that they can make our lives more difficult, I think they find that something that's useful."

Remarkably, he also said that there is only "minimal evidence" that Russia is even fighting ISIS. The statement is astonishing as Moscow has most definitely been seriously and directly engaged in support of the Syrian Arab Army. Is it possible that the head of the CIA is unaware of that? It just might be that Pompeo is disparaging the effort because the Russians and Syrians have also been fighting against the U.S. backed "moderate rebels." That the moderate rebels are hardly moderate has been known for years and they are also renowned for their ineffectiveness combined with a tendency to defect to more radical groups taking their U.S. provided weapons with them, a combination of factors which led to their being denied any further American support by a presidential decision that was revealed in the press two weeks ago.

Pompeo's predecessor John Brennan is, however, my favorite Agency leader in the category of totally bereft of his senses. In testimony before the House Intelligence Committee back in May, he suggested that some Trump associates might have been recruited by the Russian intelligence service. He testified that "I encountered and am aware of information and intelligence that revealed contacts and interactions between Russian officials and US persons involved in the Trump campaign that I was concerned about because of known Russian efforts to suborn such individuals. It raised questions in my mind whether or not Russia was able to gain the co-operation of those individuals."

In his testimony, Brennan apparently forgot to mention that the CIA is not supposed to keep tabs on American citizens. Nor did he explain how he had come upon the information in the first place as it had been handed over by foreign intelligence services, including the British, Dutch and Estonians, and at least some of it had been sought or possibly inspired by Brennan unofficially in the first place. Brennan then used that information to request an FBI investigation into a possible Russian operation directed against potential key advisers if Trump were to somehow get nominated and elected, which admittedly was a longshot at the time. That is how Russiagate started.

Brennan is certainly loyal to his cause, whatever that might be. At the same Aspen meeting attended by Pompeo, he told Wolf Blitzer that if Trump were to fire special counsel Robert Mueller government officials should "refuse to carry out" his orders. In other words, they should begin a coup, admittedly non-violent (one presumes), but nevertheless including federal employees uniting to shut the government down.

A lesser known former CIA senior official is John McLaughlin, who briefly served as acting Director in 2004. McLaughlin was particularly outraged by Trump's recent speech to the Boy Scouts, which he described as having the feel "of a third world authoritarian's youth rally." He added that "It gave me the creeps it was like watching the late Venezuelan [President Hugo] Chavez."

And finally, there is Michael Morell, also a former Acting Director, who was closely tied to the Hillary Clinton campaign, apparently driven by ambition to become Director in her administration. Morell currently provides commentary for CBS television and is a frequent guest on the Charlie Rose show. Morell considerably raised the ante on Brennan's pre-electoral speculation that there had been some Russian recruitment of Trump people. He observed in August that Putin, a wily ex-career intelligence officer, "trained to identify vulnerabilities in an individual and to exploit them [did exactly that] early in the primaries. Mr. Putin played upon Mr. Trump's vulnerabilities In the intelligence business, we would say that Mr. Putin had recruited Mr. Trump as an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation."

I and others noted at the time that Putin and Trump had never met, not even through proxies, while we also wondered how one could be both unwitting and a recruited agent as intelligence recruitment implies control and taking direction. Morell was non-plussed, unflinching and just a tad sanctimonious in affirming that his own intelligence training (as an analyst who never recruited a spy in his life) meant that "[I] call it as I see it."

One could also cite Michael Hayden and James Clapper, though the latter was not CIA They all basically hew to the same line about Russia, often in more-or-less the same words, even though no actual evidence has been produced to support their claims. That unanimity of thinking is what is peculiar while academics like Stephen Cohen, Stephen Walt, Andrew Bacevich, and John Mearsheimer, who have studied Russia in some depth and understand the country and its leadership far better than a senior CIA officer, detect considerable nuance in what is taking place. They all believe that the hardline policies current in Washington are based on an eagerness to go with the flow on the comforting inside-the- beltway narrative that paints Russia as a threat to vital interests. That unanimity of viewpoint should surprise no one as this is more of less the same government with many of the same people that led the U.S. into Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. They all have a vested interested in the health and well-being of a fully funded national security state.

And the other groupthink that seems to prevail among the senior managers except Pompeo is that they all hate Donald Trump and have done so since long before he won the election. That is somewhat odd, but it perhaps reflects a fear that Trump would interfere with the richly rewarding establishment politics that had enabled their careers. But it does not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of CIA employees. Though it is admittedly unscientific analysis on my part, I know a lot of former and some current CIA employees but do not know a single one who voted for Hillary Clinton. Nearly all voted for Trump.

Beyond that exhibition of tunnel vision and sheer ignorance, the involvement of former senior intelligence officials in politics is itself deplorable and is perhaps symptomatic of the breakdown in the comfortable bipartisan national security consensus that has characterized the past fifty years. Once upon time former CIA officers would retire to the Blue Ridge mountains and raise Labradors, but we are now into something much more dangerous if the intelligence community, which has been responsible for most of the recent leaks, begins to feel free to assert itself from behind the scenes. As Senator Chuck Schumer recently warned "Let me tell you: You take on the intelligence community -- they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you."

exiled off mainstreet, August 1, 2017 at 5:06 am GMT

In jumping this fascist nihilist shark, the groupthinkers have closed themselves off from the logical conclusion to their viewpoint, which is final annihilation.

Dan Hayes, August 1, 2017 at 5:47 am GMT

Schumer's statement is true (and probably the only such one in his political career!).

annamaria, August 1, 2017 at 6:03 am GMT

Brennan, Morell, and Pompeo should better find ways to justify their salaries: the U.S. has suffered the greatest breach in cybersecurity on their watch:

" an enormous breach of the United States Security Apparatus by as many as 80 Democrat members of Congress (past and present). We rail on about the Russians and Trump, but t he media avoids providing nightly updates about these 5 spies that have compromised Congress ."

http://investmentwatchblog.com/the-awan-brothers-compromised-at-least-80-congregational-computers-and-got-paid-5-million-to-do-it-we-may-never-know-the-extent-of-the-breach/

"In total, Imran's firm was employed by 31 Democrats in Congress, some of whom held extremely sensitive positions on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the House Committee on Foreign Affair s."

polistra, August 1, 2017 at 6:17 am GMT

Nothing new. In the '50s CIA was making foreign wars and cultivating chaos at home, and blaming all of it on Russia. In the '80s CIA was cultivating anti-nuke groups to undermine Reagan, and blaming it on Russia. CIA has been the primary wellspring of evil for a long time.

Bruce Marshall, August 1, 2017 at 6:39 am GMT

And back to reality we have VIPS Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity.

Yes you read that right and they are going to the rotten core of this coup against the United States by presenting a report stating that the DNC was "Leaked" not hacked. The real hacking came from President Obama's weaponizing of our intelligence agencies against Russia.

That is war, World War Three and it would seem now that Congress is marching that way, but the report below hold the key to fighting back.

http://larouchepub.com/eiw/public/2017/2017_30-39/2017-30/pdf/37-41_4430.pdf

One of the VIPS is William Binney fomer NSA Technical Director, an important expert. leading the group is Ray McGovern with some whit and grace, well yes how about some sanity, to which humor is important to the insight and to stay in the sights of what is clever thievery and worse. Much worse, and there is a twinkle in the eye when realize that it is straight forward.

And Congress could stop it tout sweet, but well old habits but they have taken an Oath of Office, so, so what, yeah they did go after Bernie, so will you challenge your elected officials, either do their sworn duty or resign, for what this sanctions bill against Russia and Iran is a declaration of war, not only against Russia and Iran, but a declaration of war against the United States. for there is no reason to do this against Russia when indeed there are great opportunities to get along, but war is the insanity as it is sedition and treason. Tell them that,

https://larouchepac.com/20170731/breaking-lyndon-larouche-crush-british-coup-against-president

Priss Factor, • Website August 1, 2017 at 7:01 am GMT

Moderate Rebels = Toothfairy Rebels

jilles dykstra, August 1, 2017 at 7:21 am GMT

I wonder if groupthink exists. In any organisation people know quite well why the organisation exists, what the threats are to its existence. If they think about this, I wonder.

The CIA is the USA's secret army, it is not comparable to a real intelligence organization like the British MI5. The CIA is more like WWII SOE, designed to set fire to Europe, Churchill's words. If indeed Trump changes USA foreign policy, no longer trying to control the world, the CIA is obsolete, as obsolete as NATO.

animalogic, August 1, 2017 at 7:44 am GMT

" but President George W. Bush wanted his war and, by gum, he was going to get it if the CIA had any say in the matter."

Not to defend the CIA, but didn't Rumsfeld, doubt the enthusiasm of the CIA for providing the slanted, bogus, "sexed up" intelligence the Executive required to make its "destroy Iraq now" case ? So Rumsfeld therefore set up an independent intelligence agency within the Defence Dept to provide/create the required "intelligence" ?

The Alarmist, August 1, 2017 at 7:45 am GMT

I think they find anyplace that they can make our lives more difficult, I think they find that something that's useful."

Yeah, because that's what resource-constrained countries with limited ability to tap the global capital markets do. Methinks Mr. Pompeo is projecting his and the neocons' fantasies on the Russians.

Realist, August 1, 2017 at 10:14 am GMT

As has been the case for decades the Deep State allows Presidents and legislators to make minor decisions in our government as long as those decisions do not in any way interfere with the Deep State's goals of total world hegemony and increase in overwhelming power and wealth. Those who make the important decisions in this country are not elected. The elected 'officials' are sycophants of the Deep State.

CalDre, August 1, 2017 at 10:43 am GMT

If only Trump would really clean the swamp – particularly the neo-cons and other traitors and globalists. One can dream .

Wizard of Oz, August 1, 2017 at 11:04 am GMT

Being resistant to jargon and catch phrases it is only slowly that I have accepted that "Deep State" is not entirely pretentious waffle when used to describe aspects of the US. However I may not be your only reader PG who would appreciate a clear explanatory description of the American Deep State and how it works.

Here are some suggested parameters.

The term is appropriated from the use to describe the mutually loyal corps of Ataturkians in the Turkish military and intelligence services who were united in service to uphold the ideal of Ataturkian secular modernisation. The term implies no public accountability or publicity unnecessary to its purposes.
And its origins imply that it is not just one in a number of major influences ln government or those who vote for it.

So one has to acknowledge that in the US the Deep State has to be different in the important respect that levers of power are observably wielded by lobbies for the aged, gun owners and sellers, Israel, Wall Street, bio fuels, sugar and other ag, pharmaceuticals, oil and gas, the arms industry, Disney and other Hollywood and media, health insurers and the medical profession, and I could go on.

These are all relevant to legal events like votes on impeachment or to hold up appointments. The CIA and FBI together completely united (and note how disunited 9/11 showed them to be) wouldn't remotely approach the old Turkish Deep State's ability to stage a coup. Are all of the putative elements of the Deep State together today as powerful as J.Edgar Hoover with his dirt files on everyone? (A contrast and compare exercise of today's presumed Deep State configuration and modus operandi with the simpler Hoover days might shine some light on who does what and how today. And how effectively).

To avoid lack of focus can a convincing account of the US Deep State be best given in terms of a plausible scenario for

  1. getting rid of Trump as President and/or
  2. maintaining the lunacy and hubris which has the US wasting its substance on totally unnecessary antagonistic relations with China and Russia and interference in the ME?

I would read such accounts with great interest. (Handwavers need not apply).

Jake, August 1, 2017 at 11:26 am GMT

Of course the US Deep State must hate Russia. First, Jews have a very long history of hating Russia and Russians. That never changed. The USSR was not Russia; the USSR was Marxism replacing Russia. Jews tended to love that. Rich Jews from across the world, from the US and the UK of most interest to us, sent money to support the Bolshevik Revolution.

Russia managed to survive the USSR and is slowly coming back around to Russian common sense from the Christian perspective. Neither Jews nor their WASP BFFs can ever forgive that. They want Russia to act now to commit cultural and genetic suicide, like Western Europe and the entire Anglosphere are doing.

Jake, August 1, 2017 at 11:32 am GMT

@polistra The CIA's source, its birth, is from British secret service. Brit spying. And Brit secret service, long before the official founding of MI5, did exactly the kinds of things you note the CIA has done.

The Mossad is another direct fruit of Brit secret service, as is the Saudi General Intelligence Presidency.

jacques sheete, August 1, 2017 at 11:36 am GMT

While there can be no doubt about the crackpots in high positions of the most powerful bureaucracies, it seems to me that the CIA loonies are merely shock troops for an even worse bunch of evil psychos, the bankster mafiosi.

We should always keep that in mind.

Jake, August 1, 2017 at 11:37 am GMT

@CalDre If only

But doing so would mean a voluntary end to playing the role of Sauron, determined to find and wear the One Ring to Rule Them All. The average Elite WASP, and his Jewish BFF, definitely would prefer to destroy the world, at least outside their gated compounds of endless luxury, than to step down from that level of global domination.

Philip Giraldi, August 1, 2017 at 12:02 pm GMT

@Wizard of Oz Wiz – Here is an article I did on the Deep State two years ago. It was one of the first in the US media looking at the issue. It would have to be updated now in light of Trump, but much of what it states is still more-or-less correct.

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/deep-state-america/

Jake, August 1, 2017 at 12:09 pm GMT

@jacques sheete Yes, indeed.

But we need to make certain that your use of the word 'mafiosi' does not lead anyone to assume that group has more than a handful of Italians. Jews, WASPs, and continental Germanics each will outnumber Italians by at least 30 to 1.

Chris Bridges, August 1, 2017 at 12:46 pm GMT

I am a retired CIA operations officer (something none of the men mentioned by Giraldi are – Brennan was a failed wanna be, couldn't cut it as an ops officer). He is spot on in his comments. The majority of people in the CIA, the ones who do the heavy lifting, are patriotic Americans who are proud of serving their country. I am sure that most voted for Trump as they all know too well the truth about the Clintons and Obama.

Giraldi is not the only one to notice the upward progress of the most incompetent yes-men in the Agency. A close look at most of them reveals a track record of little or no operational success balanced by excellent sucking up skills. These characters quickly figured out how to get ahead and doing your job in the field is not it. Of course, most are ego maniacs so they are totally oblivious to their own uselessness.

Well before he was elected I had a letter delivered to President Trump in which I outlined in detail what would happen to him if he did not immediately purge the CIA of these assholes. I know that at least some people on his staff read it but, of course, my advice was ignored. Trump has paid dearly for not listening to an ordinary CIA guy who wanted to give him a reality brief on those vicious snakes.

Proud_Srbin, August 1, 2017 at 1:00 pm GMT

Historical facts teach humanity that Anglo-Saxon group of Nations was built on slavery, thuggery and theft of other peace loving Civilizations. We Slavs are the New "niggers", hate is the glue that holds you "toGether".
People of color have been successfully conditioned and practice it as well.
Time will tell how well it holds when balloon bursts and 99% gets called to serve as cannon fodder.
Terrorizing UNARMED and WEAKER is not true test of "superiority" and "exceptionalism".
Tiny, extremely tiny minority of Anglo-Saxons and Satraps understand this.

Bernie voter, August 1, 2017 at 1:20 pm GMT

How "Russiagate" began: After the primaries, both Hillary and Donald faced divided political parties even though they had won the nomination. These divisions were worse than the normal situation after contested primaries. On the Democratic side, Hillay had just subverted the will of the voters of her party, who seemed to favor Bernie Sanders over her. Hillay had won with corrupt collusion and rigging amongst the DNC, the higher ranks of the Democratic Party, and major media such as the NYT and CNN.

Then, a leak of emails from the DNC HQ publicized her interference in the democratic processes of the Democratic Party. This threatened to ene the Hillary for President campaign right then and there. If the majority of Democrats who'd favored Bernie refused to support Hillary because of her corruption and collusion in denying democracy within the party, she was a sure loser in the fall election. The Hillary camp then immediately started blaming Russia for the exposure of her corruption and rigging of the Democratic process. And that's how "Russiagate" began.

Beauracratic Mind, August 1, 2017 at 1:42 pm GMT

@jacques sheete

I wonder if groupthink exists.

It probably does as do group psychoses and group fantasies.. Anyone who's ever served in a beuaracracy knows that groupthink exists.

Take a bunch of mediocre minds. And, they do exist, as Garrison Keiler once famously made a joke out of with his line Welcome to Lake Woebegone, where all the children are above average.

Take that bunch of mediocre thinkers, and then make most of them obsessed with their own career advancement above all else. The most dangerous place for a career-obsessed individual is outside the group consensus. If everyone is wrong, then there is safety in the group. After all, if they are wrong, so was everyone else in the organization. Thus they are immune to attack and censure for being wrong. But if someone takes a position outside of the group consensus, that can be a career-ending move if they are wrong, as now everyone else will be in the I-told-U-So camp. And even if they are correct, they will still be hated and shunned just for being the person who pointed out to the group that they are wrong.

So, you take your typical average mind, and not only do they not have any great insights of their own, but they tend to stick to the group out of sheer survival and then when you take a mass of these mediocre minds you have 'groupthink'.

Eticon, August 1, 2017 at 2:00 pm GMT

@CalDre

If only Trump would really clean the swamp - particularly the neo-cons and other traitors and globalists. One can dream ....

What we've learned from Trump is that 'Draining the Swamp' will take more than an individual. It will take a political movement.

One sees this on the fringes of politics. Someone gets the idea of running for President, and they point out all that is wrong. But, they focus only on their own campaign, their own goal, and they thus gloss over the fact that they'll be outnumbered and powerless even if they win.

Seen this often on the Left. The most recent example is Bernie Sanders. Likewise, had Bernie been elected President, he too would face an entrenched establishment and media with only a small fraction of the Congress supporting him.

Change has to be built from the bottom up. There are no shortcuts. Electing a Trump, or a Nader or a Bernie does not lead to real change. Step one is to build the political movement such that it has real voting block power and which has already won voting majorities in the legislature before the movement achieves the election of a President.

What Trump has needed to be doing for this first two years is to form clear divisions that he could then take to his voters in the mid-term elections. He's needed to lay out his own agenda. So what if he loses votes in Congress? He then takes that agenda back to the voters in 2018 with a nationwide slate of Congressional candidates who support that agenda and runs a midterm campaign asking the voters to help him drain that swamp.

So, for instance, Trump should veto the act of war known as the recent sanctions bill. Who cares if it gets overridden? Then he goes back to the voters, who are clearly sick of endless war and who for obvious reasons don't want a nuclear war, and he says this is where I stand. Support me by electing Fill-In-The-Blank to Congress. With the nuclear Doomsday Clock pushing ever closer to midnight, he might just win that fight over the big money and media opposition he's sure to face.

Not only has Trump failed to even try to fight the Deep State, but he's also failing to set himself up for success in the next elections.

ChuckOrloski, August 1, 2017 at 2:19 pm GMT

@Jake Hey Jake,

It is a serious error to consider President Trump "naive."

What we are seeing now is The Donald's role in the serial Zionist THEATER. Think deeper about the motive behind Mr. Giraldi's choice to use the Orwellian word "Groupthink" in characterizing the CIA zeitgeist? In the classic work "1984," one observes Big Brother as the catalyst in control of the proles' thought pattern & subsequent action.

To rise & FALL as a POTUS is a matter of theater and the American proles are entertained by the political for either 4 or 8 years and the Zionists get their next Chosen actor/actress dramatically sworn in on a bible.

Mr. Trump is neither naive nor stupid. Sheldon Adelson would not donate $millioms to any POTUS wannabe who could not effectively lead the American Groupthink tradition. Subsequently, the political horror show is brought to you in the understandable form of the perpetually elusive Deep State which gets annual Academy Award.

Beware the fake, Jake!,

[Apr 22, 2019] Bernie Sanders and the Myth of the 1 Percent. The very rich are richer than people imagine.

Apr 22, 2019 | economistsview.typepad.com

anne , April 18, 2019 at 04:22 PM

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/18/opinion/bernie-sanders-tax.html

April 18, 2019

Bernie Sanders and the Myth of the 1 Percent
The very rich are richer than people imagine.
By Paul Krugman

A peculiar chapter in the 2020 presidential race ended Monday, when Bernie Sanders, after months of foot-dragging, finally released his tax returns. The odd thing was that the returns appear to be perfectly innocuous. So what was all that about?

The answer seems to be that Sanders got a lot of book royalties after the 2016 campaign, and was afraid that revealing this fact would produce headlines mocking him for now being part of the 1 Percent. Indeed, some journalists did try to make his income an issue.

This line of attack is, however, deeply stupid. Politicians who support policies that would raise their own taxes and strengthen a social safety net they're unlikely to need aren't being hypocrites; if anything, they're demonstrating their civic virtue.

But failure to understand what hypocrisy means isn't the only way our discourse about politics and inequality goes off the rails. The catchphrase "the 1 Percent" has also become a problem, obscuring the nature of class in 21st-century America.

Focusing on the top percentile of the income distribution was originally intended as a corrective to the comforting but false notion that growing inequality was mainly about a rising payoff to education. The reality is that over the past few decades the typical college graduate has seen only modest gains, with the big money going to a small group at the top. Talking about "the 1 Percent" was shorthand for acknowledging this reality, and tying that reality to readily available data.

But putting Bernie Sanders and the Koch brothers in the same class is obviously getting things wrong in a different way.

True, there's a huge difference between being affluent enough that you don't have to worry much about money and living with the financial insecurity that afflicts many Americans who consider themselves middle class. According to the Federal Reserve, 40 percent of U.S. adults don't have enough cash to meet a $400 emergency expense; a much larger number of Americans would be severely strained by the kinds of costs that routinely arise when, say, illness strikes, even for those who have health insurance.

So if you have an income high enough that you can easily afford health care and good housing, have plenty of liquid assets and find it hard to imagine ever needing food stamps, you're part of a privileged minority.

But there's also a big difference between being affluent, even very affluent, and having the kind of wealth that puts you in a completely separate social universe. It's a difference summed up three decades ago in the movie "Wall Street," when Gordon Gekko mocks the limited ambitions of someone who just wants to be "a $400,000-a-year working Wall Street stiff flying first class and being comfortable."

Even now, most Americans don't seem to realize just how rich today's rich are. At a recent event, my CUNY colleague Janet Gornick was greeted with disbelief when she mentioned in passing that the top 25 hedge fund managers make an average of $850 million a year. But her number was correct.

One survey found that Americans, on average, think that corporate C.E.O.s are paid about 30 times as much as ordinary workers, which hasn't been true since the 1970s. These days the ratio is more like 300 to 1.

Why should we care about the very rich? It's not about envy, it's about oligarchy.

With great wealth comes both great power and a separation from the concerns of ordinary citizens. What the very rich want, they often get; but what they want is often harmful to the rest of the nation. There are some public-spirited billionaires, some very wealthy liberals. But they aren't typical of their class.

The very rich don't need Medicare or Social Security; they don't use public education or public transit; they may not even be that reliant on public roads (there are helicopters, after all). Meanwhile, they don't want to pay taxes.

Sure enough, and contrary to popular belief, billionaires mostly (although often stealthily) wield their political power on behalf of tax cuts at the top, a weaker safety net and deregulation. And financial support from the very rich is the most important force sustaining the extremist right-wing politics that now dominates the Republican Party.

That's why it's important to understand who we mean when we talk about the very rich. It's not doctors, lawyers or, yes, authors, some of whom make it into "the 1 Percent." It's a much more rarefied social stratum.

None of this means that the merely affluent should be exempt from the burden of creating a more decent society. The Affordable Care Act was paid for in part by taxes on incomes in excess of $200,000, so 400K-a-year working stiffs did pay some of the cost. That's O.K.: They (we) can afford it. And whining that $200,000 a year isn't really rich is unseemly.

But we should be able to understand both that the affluent in general should be paying more in taxes, and that the very rich are different from you and me ­ -- and Bernie Sanders. The class divide that lies at the root of our political polarization is much starker, much more extreme than most people seem to realize.

anne -> anne... , April 18, 2019 at 04:35 PM
https://fred.stlouisfed.org/graph/?g=nEQS

January 30, 2018

Real Disposable Personal Income and Real Median Weekly Earnings, 1980-2018

(Indexed to 1980)


https://fred.stlouisfed.org/graph/?g=nEQX

January 30, 2018

Real Disposable Personal Income and Real Median Weekly Earnings, 1988-2018

(Indexed to 1988)

JohnH -> anne... , April 18, 2019 at 06:13 PM
The usual media suspects, the Trump-Putin conspiracy crowd, ignored this: Bernie was a smashing success on FoxNews Bethlehem, Pa townhall.
veryone agrees: Bernie Sanders' Fox News appearance was a major success.

"Sanders takes on Fox -- and emerges triumphant," proclaimed Politico. Vice judged Bernie's appearance "victorious." The Washington Post opined that Bernie's stellar performance "suggest[s] that [Trump] can, indeed, be beaten." The Atlantic, usually eager to declare that Bernie has blundered, conceded that "it paid off."

But most coverage restricts its analysis to Sanders' 2020 election prospects, overlooking the true significance of the event. It's not just that he's willing to make a pitch to Fox's viewership and thus stands a better chance at winning the presidency -- it's that the Right could lose some of the working-class support it doesn't deserve, a process that could easily snowball out of their control."
https://jacobinmag.com/2019/04/berni-sanders-town-hall-fox-news

And when Bernie asked the crowd if they would exchange their company health care plan for M4A, the crowd went nuts.

Of course, Krugman, Pelosi, and the corrupt, centrist Democratic establishment will continue to assure us that 'people are happy with their corporate coverage." BS!!!

The 'no, we can't' crowd here will undoubtedly assure us that 'sure, they'd love universal coverage, but it's not politically feasible.' They need to watch the Fox Town Hall. If it's not feasible, then it's because Democrats don't want it (in deference to insurance companies,) not because it's not feasible.

JohnH -> ken melvin... , April 18, 2019 at 10:14 PM
No surprise there. In geopolitics, one bad deed deserves another...US constantly interfering in others' politics, too. Sadly, Democrats will seize on this to push for confrontation with Russia. Question is, what do they want, nuclear war?

What's sickly ironic to me is that Democrats could care less about the security of the voting system, even after the stolen elections of 2000 and 2004.. Why is it OK for billionaires and corporation to rig electronic voting machines against Democrats? Where was a Mueller Commission back then?

Personally, I think that billionaires' election theft is much more effective and consequenctial than any Russian meddling, which was probably not that effective anyway.

JohnH -> ken melvin... , April 18, 2019 at 10:34 PM
Sanders has clearly demonstrated what resonates with progressive voters...and even with many Fox viewers.

But Pelosi and the corrupt Democratic establishment ignore that...and can't even come up with any coherent message or an appealing agenda at all. Instead, they insist on continuously replaying Hillary's sour grapes. What is the point? How many votes will Hillary's bitterness get for Democrats?

[Apr 21, 2019] Bernie Steals the 'No More Wars' Issue From Trump by Patrick J. Buchanan

Notable quotes:
"... Much like Brexit, an antiwar/anit interventionist in the USA has nowhere to go. Both parties have substantial hawkish wings. Any move to peace/antiintervention by the party in power is immediately attacked by the party out of power. MSDNC is practically howling for war with Russia. ..."
"... Of course Trump wants to take the war side. Saudi wants war. Israel wants war. Nothing else counts. ..."
"... Tulsi won't surrender. But she obviously won't win the nomination either. ..."
"... Trump may have said 'no more wars' but he never acted on it. So, someone else came along and picked up the discarded slogan. It's not stealing ..."
"... I wish Tulsi could get more traction. I voted trump believing his anti war statements. Hate his veto of Yemen resolution ..."
"... don't underestimate the perpetual war power's grip on the Democrat party. Pro war liberals like the NYtimes aren't going away in fact they are getting louder. ..."
"... It is remarkable that neither Buchanan nor Khanna would ever consider the necessity to impeach Presidents like Bush, Obama, and Trump for their unconstitutional and criminal acts of aggressive war – or the responsibility of The People to replace the Congress of incumbents with representatives that have not already repeatedly and persistently broken their oath of office to uphold and defend the Constitution. ..."
"... Instead, Buchanan delivers yet another installment of the Incompetence Dodge: if only the Czar wasn't a sociopathic criminal! If only he listened to us, his loyal supporters! ..."
"... Sanders never "stole" anything, Buchanan. What you're (slowly, dimly) realizing is that your boy Trump never cared a speck for a more sane, less bellicose U.S. foreign policy. ..."
"... I will never understand why Trump cultists ever believed he did. A clown who's big complaint about the Iraq war is that "we didn't take the oil" is an unlikely peace advocate. But to be a member of the Trump cult you have to engage in massive psychological projection, daily. ..."
Apr 19, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com
"The president has said that he does not want to see this country involved in endless wars . I agree with that," Bernie Sanders told the Fox News audience at Monday's town hall meeting in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Then, turning and staring straight into the camera, Bernie added: "Mister President, tonight you have the opportunity to do something extraordinary: sign that resolution. Saudi Arabia should not be determining the military or foreign policy of this country." Sanders was talking about a War Powers Act resolution that would have ended U.S. involvement in the five-year civil war in Yemen that has created one of the great humanitarian crises of our time, with thousands of dead children amidst an epidemic of cholera and a famine.

Supported by a united Democratic Party on the Hill, and an anti-interventionist faction of the GOP led by Senators Rand Paul and Mike Lee of Utah, the War Powers resolution had passed both houses of Congress. But 24 hours after Sanders urged him to sign it, Trump, heeding the hawks in his Cabinet and National Security Council, vetoed S.J.Res.7, calling it a "dangerous attempt to weaken my constitutional authorities." With sufficient Republican votes in both houses to sustain Trump's veto, that should have been the end of the matter.

It is not: Trump may have just ceded the peace issue in 2020 to the Democrats. If Sanders emerges as the nominee, we will have an election with a Democrat running on the "no-more-wars" theme Trump touted in 2016. And Trump will be left defending the bombing of Yemeni rebels and civilians by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia. Does Trump really want to go into 2020 as a war party president? Does he want to go into 2020 with Democrats denouncing "Trump's endless wars" in the Middle East? Because that is where he is headed.

In 2008, John McCain, leading hawk in the Senate, was routed by a left-wing first-term senator from Illinois, Barack Obama, who had won his nomination by defeating the more hawkish Hillary Clinton, who had voted to authorize the war in Iraq. In 2012, the Republican nominee Mitt Romney, who was far more hawkish than Obama on Russia, lost. Yet in 2016, Trump ran as a different kind of Republican, an opponent of the Iraq war and an anti-interventionist who wanted to get along with Russia's Vladimir Putin and get out of these Middle East wars. Looking closely at the front-running candidates for the Democratic nomination of 2020 -- Joe Biden, Sanders, Kamala Harris, Beto O'Rourke, Pete Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker -- not one appears to be as hawkish as Trump has become. Trump pulled us out of the nuclear deal with Iran negotiated by Secretary of State John Kerry and reimposed severe sanctions.

He declared Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps a terrorist organization, to which Tehran has responded by declaring U.S. Central Command a terrorist organization. Ominously, the IRGC and its trained Shiite militias in Iraq are in close proximity to U.S. troops.

Trump has recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital, moved the U.S. embassy there, closed the consulate that dealt with Palestinian affairs, cut off aid to the Palestinians, recognized Israel's annexation of the Golan Heights seized from Syria in 1967, and gone silent on Bibi Netanyahu's threat to annex Jewish settlements on the West Bank.

Sanders, however, though he stands by Israel, is supporting a two-state solution and castigating the "right-wing" Netanyahu regime. Trump has talked of pulling all U.S. troops out of Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Yet the troops are still there. Though Trump came into office promising to get along with the Russians, he sent Javelin anti-tank missiles to Ukraine and announced a pullout from Ronald Reagan's 1987 INF treaty that outlawed all land-based intermediate-range nuclear missiles. When Putin provocatively sent 100 Russian troops to Venezuela -- ostensibly to repair the S-400 anti-aircraft and anti-missile system that was damaged in recent blackouts -- Trump, drawing a red line, ordered the Russians to "get out."

Biden is expected to announce next week. If the stands he takes on Russia, China, Israel, and the Middle East are more hawkish than the rest of the field, he will be challenged by the left wing of his party and by Sanders, who voted "no" on the Iraq war that Biden supported. The center of gravity of U.S. politics is shifting towards the Trump position of 2016. And the anti-interventionist wing of the GOP is growing. And when added to the anti-interventionist and anti-war wing of the Democratic Party on the Hill, together, they are able, as on the Yemen War Powers resolution, to produce a new bipartisan majority.

Prediction: by the primaries of 2020, foreign policy will be front and center, and the Democratic Party will have captured the "no more wars" political high ground that candidate Donald Trump occupied in 2016.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of Nixon's White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever. To find out more about Patrick Buchanan and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators website at www.creators.com.


Adriana , says: April 18, 2019 at 9:04 pm

By the way, Pat, do you know that Jimmy Carter did NOT get the US into any war, nor any "intervention"? Have you showed him any appretiation for it? Or it was a time when you were all for it as long as it was against Commies?
treehugger , says: April 18, 2019 at 9:21 pm
Prediction: by the primaries of 2020, foreign policy will be front and center, and the Democratic Party will have captured the "no more wars" political high ground that candidate Donald Trump occupied in 2016.

Agree. But don't worry. On the second ballot, the super delegates will override the obvious preference of voters for a "no more wars" candidate and give it to Biden. Who will lose.

john , says: April 18, 2019 at 10:18 pm
Much like Brexit, an antiwar/anit interventionist in the USA has nowhere to go. Both parties have substantial hawkish wings. Any move to peace/antiintervention by the party in power is immediately attacked by the party out of power. MSDNC is practically howling for war with Russia.
SteveK9 , says: April 18, 2019 at 10:35 pm
No one to blame but himself. The anti-Russia insanity made it hard for him to stick to that part of his program, but there is a lot more he could have done, starting by not surrounding himself with war-mongering idiots like Pompeo and Bolton.
Jim Smith , says: April 19, 2019 at 2:57 am
I mean, can we actually be honest here? The Neocons simply do not see Sanders as a genuine threat. He has an unfair advantage. He can, for instance, criticize American foreign policy without being accused of anti-semitism.

Those who wish Trump had maintained a more maverick stance of foreign policy should ask themselves if they supported him energetically enough. He's a survivor first and foremost. If you aren't working to offer him a legit life preserver, this is all on you.

polistra , says: April 19, 2019 at 3:57 am
Of course Trump wants to take the war side. Saudi wants war. Israel wants war. Nothing else counts.

The question is whether Bernie can stick with the anti-war side, given his surrender to Hillary in 2016.

Tulsi won't surrender. But she obviously won't win the nomination either.

Kent , says: April 19, 2019 at 6:53 am
Mr. Buchanan nailed this one.
Christian J Chuba , says: April 19, 2019 at 8:03 am
>>When Putin provocatively sent 100 Russian troops to Venezuela<<<

And this is why Trump is going to win on the 'national security' issue. As long as U.S. troops don't actually fight and die in foreign countries the voters love U.S. 'being tough with its enemies'.
As long as Trump confines his actions to tormenting 3rd world countries, like Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua, Syria, and Yemen with sanctions and military assistance to other belligerents any opposition will be portrayed as 'hating or apologizing for America the force for good'.

Being objective, what is more provocative, sending a small number of specialists to prevent cyber sabotage for the standing govt, or trying to install a new President, seizing their assets and preventing their oil trade. We are the bullies and the day when we finally squander our wealth we will find out that we have no friends despite being an alleged force for good.

Scott in MD , says: April 19, 2019 at 9:05 am
I thought that we determined a long time ago that taking something out of another persons trash can was not stealing. Trump may have said 'no more wars' but he never acted on it. So, someone else came along and picked up the discarded slogan. It's not stealing
Patrick Constantine , says: April 19, 2019 at 10:34 am
I wish Tulsi could get more traction. I voted trump believing his anti war statements. Hate his veto of Yemen resolution. I still defend trump from unfair attacks but am not a supporter any more.

Pat – good analysis. But don't underestimate the perpetual war power's grip on the Democrat party. Pro war liberals like the NYtimes aren't going away in fact they are getting louder.

cka2nd , says: April 19, 2019 at 10:43 am
Adriana "By the way, Pat, do you know that Jimmy Carter did NOT get the US into any war, nor any 'intervention'? Have you showed him any appretiation [sic] for it? Or it was a time when you were all for it as long as it was against Commies?"

No, but he did initiate funding for the Mujahideen in Afghanistan BEFORE the Soviet "invasion," specifically to incite the Soviets to invade and get caught in their own Vietnam War-like quagmire. President Carter succeeded in that effort, but the world has suffered the unintended consequences of US funding for jihadist militants ever since.

Oh, and the Carter Administration also continued to recognize the Khmer Rouge as the "legitimate" government of Cambodia after the Vietnamese Stalinists drove them from power in 1978. I'm sure this was partly done with Cold War calculations in mind – US ally Communist China was an enemy to both the Soviet Union and its Vietnamese client state, and the Khmer Rouge were clients of China – but I do not doubt that sticking it to the Vietnamese who had so recently embarrassed the US played a part in that policy decision, too.

The Reagan Administration maintained both policies, by the way, by continuing to fund the Mujahideen and to uphold the fiction that the Khmer Rouge was still Cambodia's legitimate government (kind of like the fiction that Juan Guaidó is Venezuela's "legitimate" president).

baldy , says: April 19, 2019 at 2:04 pm
@Jim Smith

You are right, if I had just more energetically supported Trump he wouldn't be giving Israel and Saudi Arabia everything they want and trying to start a war with Iran. That poor guy. Would just saying nice things about him have been enough or should I have completely drank the koolade, MAGA hat and all?

Regarding Pat's argument as usual there is some truth here, but he keeps acting like this is a complete surprise and that Trump has "become" a hawk. Yes some of the campaign promises mentioned are accurate but he was talking about blowing up Iranian ships and tearing up the nuclear agreement on the campaign trail. He was never an anti-war candidate, he was just anti-whatever the previous presidents did candidate. Besides one statement about being even-handed there was every indication he was going to be at least as reflexively pro-Israel as any previous president and unsurprisingly he is more. Paul was the only anti-interventionist candidate and anyone who thinks otherwise was either willfully ignorant or not paying attention.

bgone , says: April 19, 2019 at 2:32 pm
"Trump's veto is an unconstitutional act." https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/04/americas-war-in-yemen-is-plainly-unconstitutional/

"We must override his veto." https://twitter.com/RoKhanna/status/1118307049891344384

It is remarkable that Buchanan considers Trump's veto to be constitutional, but then, so does Khanna. It is remarkable that neither Buchanan nor Khanna would ever consider the necessity to impeach Presidents like Bush, Obama, and Trump for their unconstitutional and criminal acts of aggressive war – or the responsibility of The People to replace the Congress of incumbents with representatives that have not already repeatedly and persistently broken their oath of office to uphold and defend the Constitution.

Instead, Buchanan delivers yet another installment of the Incompetence Dodge: if only the Czar wasn't a sociopathic criminal! If only he listened to us, his loyal supporters!

It is difficult to decide which kind of unprincipled opportunist is worse – the kind that successfully profits from Trump, like McConnell, or the kind that hopes in vain for their paleolithic cause to benefit.

Francis Flynn , says: April 19, 2019 at 3:13 pm
Besides breaking his "no more wars" campaign promises, Trump has not built a wall, jailed Hillary, capped the deficit, re-instated Glass-Steagall, overturned Obamacare, controlled the cost of prescription drugs, de-funded Planned Parenthood, nor pushed legislation for the infrastructure of the country. The potential "peace president" in 2016 is nothing more than another "perpetual war president".
sglover , says: April 19, 2019 at 3:19 pm
Sanders never "stole" anything, Buchanan. What you're (slowly, dimly) realizing is that your boy Trump never cared a speck for a more sane, less bellicose U.S. foreign policy.

I will never understand why Trump cultists ever believed he did. A clown who's big complaint about the Iraq war is that "we didn't take the oil" is an unlikely peace advocate. But to be a member of the Trump cult you have to engage in massive psychological projection, daily.

Of course in Buchanan's case there's another excuse: He's been so dazzled by Trump's relentless bigotry that everything else, every lie, every cheat, is simply a second- or third-tier concern, something to explain away. How many pathetic exercises in blame-shifting has The American Con published under Buchanan's byline since 2016? And all signs are that they'll keep right on with it until the happy day when Trump is finally gone.

[Apr 20, 2019] The Anti-Sanders Press Influenced the 2016 Primary. Will It Do the Same Again naked capitalism

Notable quotes:
"... The Clinton camp has demonstrated an almost monomaniacal focus on 'winning' to the exclusion of all else. ..."
"... If Sanders splits the Democrat Party, he will be handing Trump a second term, but laying the groundwork for a reformed and restored Democrat Party in later campaigns. If Sanders toes the line and supports Clinton for a second run, he will also be basically handing Trump a second term. (Unless something catastrophic happens between now and the election. Those Black Swans will pop up out of nowhere, as is their wont.) ..."
"... The Clinton phenomenon shows up a basic flaw in politics. Concentration of political power, no matter how effected, will end up in ruin. What is so sad is that the Clintons are not unique, but exemplars of a perennial trend; corruption, both personal and public. ..."
"... While I certainly don't doubt that the Clintonistas are banking on that strategy, it's dependent on all the not-Bernie candidates happily playing along being cannon fodder to stop Bernie. ..."
"... The present top predator class's basic mistake is a common one. After a string of success's, no group seriously considers the fact that nothing is permanent. That would bring the groups self identity as being "Exceptional" into doubt. Hopefully, this present apex predator class will suffer the same malign fate as have all others who have gone before. ..."
"... The Sanders staff and supporters and well-wishers should think about how to re-engineer Trump's "fake news" schtick as much or as little to be able to use it for the Sanders' Campaigns own self-defense and protection. ..."
"... Where is the congressional investigation of the role the press played in "the disinformation campaign against the American people and their presidential election of 2016?" now THAT would be news worthy. ..."
"... Some us remember that WaPo published 16 negative pieces on Bernie in 16 hours during the run up to the last election. By those standards, "our famously free press" is only getting warmed up but the electorate is ready this time. ..."
Apr 20, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

... ... ...

But let's start with a national problem in the 2016 election -- the role of the press in trying to make sure, to the extent it could, that Bernie Sanders would lose to Hillary Clinton. One of the best sources of information for this is Thomas Frank's long-form examination " Swat Team: The media's extermination of Bernie Sanders, and real reform ," written for the November 2016 issue of Harper's Magazine . (Unless you're a Harper's subscriber, the article is paywalled. An archived version can be found here .)

Frank states his goal: "My project in the pages that follow is to review the media's attitude toward yet a third politician, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who ran for the Democratic presidential nomination earlier this year. By examining this recent history, much of it already forgotten, I hope to rescue a number of worthwhile facts about the press's attitude toward Sanders. Just as crucially, however, I intend to raise some larger questions about the politics of the media in this time of difficulty and transition (or, depending on your panic threshold, industry-wide apocalypse) for newspapers."

His examination of the "press's attitude toward Sanders" produces a striking discovery:

I have never before seen the press take sides like they did this year, openly and even gleefully bad-mouthing candidates who did not meet with their approval.

This shocked me when I first noticed it. It felt like the news stories went out of their way to mock Sanders or to twist his words, while the op-ed pages, which of course don't pretend to be balanced, seemed to be of one voice in denouncing my candidate. A New York Times article greeted the Sanders campaign in December by announcing that the public had moved away from his signature issue of the crumbling middle class. "Americans are more anxious about terrorism than income inequality," the paper declared -- nice try, liberal, and thanks for playing. In March, the Times was caught making a number of post-publication tweaks to a news story about the senator, changing what had been a sunny tale of his legislative victories into a darker account of his outrageous proposals. When Sanders was finally defeated in June, the same paper waved him goodbye with a bedtime-for-Grandpa headline, HILLARY CLINTON MADE HISTORY, BUT BERNIE SANDERS STUBBORNLY IGNORED IT.

Frank marshalls much data to support his claims. I'll leave you to examine those details for yourself.

"Defining Sanders Out"

Frank then turns to the question of why this occurred (emphasis mine below):

I think that what befell the Vermont senator at the hands of the Post should be of interest to all of us. For starters, what I describe here represents a challenge to the standard theory of liberal bias. Sanders was, obviously, well to the left of Hillary Clinton, and yet that did not protect him from the scorn of the Post -- a paper that media-hating conservatives regard as a sort of liberal death squad. Nor was Sanders undone by some seedy journalistic obsession with scandal or pseudoscandal. On the contrary, his record seemed remarkably free of public falsehoods, security-compromising email screwups, suspiciously large paychecks for pedestrian speeches, escapades with a comely staffer, or any of that stuff.

An alternative hypothesis is required for what happened to Sanders, and I want to propose one that takes into account who the media are in these rapidly changing times. As we shall see, for the sort of people who write and edit the opinion pages of the Post , there was something deeply threatening about Sanders and his political views . He seems to have represented something horrifying, something that could not be spoken of directly but that clearly needed to be suppressed.

That threat was to their own status as insider Ivy League–educated friends-of-people-with-power, especially Democratic Party power, which had aligned itself with the upper 10%, the professional class, against the lower 90%, the great unwashed.

In Bernie Sanders and his "political revolution" I believe these same people saw something kind of horrifying: a throwback to the low-rent Democratic politics of many decades ago . Sanders may refer to himself as a progressive, but to the affluent white-collar class, what he represented was atavism, a regression to a time when demagogues in rumpled jackets pandered to vulgar public prejudices against banks and capitalists and foreign factory owners. Ugh.

Choosing Clinton over Sanders was, I think, a no-brainer for this group. They understand modern economics, they know not to fear Wall Street or free trade. And they addressed themselves to the Sanders campaign by doing what professionals always do: defining the boundaries of legitimacy, by which I mean, defining Sanders out.

And it wasn't just bias in the way the news was written; the editorials and op-eds were also brutal. As Frank points out, "the Post's pundit platoon just seemed to despise Bernie Sanders."

Four Year Later

It's been four years since 2015, when the upstart first reared his head and showed himself a viable threat. The forces arrayed against him have had time to reflect, as have the forces on his side.

Will the the leaders of the present Party do all they can to extinguish the threat of Sanders' "political revolution"? It's clear they've already started . Will the press do their part to stem the tide? The jury's out so far. Some coverage has been remarkably bad (also here ), while other coverage is surprisingly fair . We'll see.

In those four years the voters have also had time to reflect. Many took note of the 2016 sabotage, as they would call it, and many are ready, their remembered anger just waiting to be rekindled. Party leaders are aware of this. As a former vice-chair of the DNC said recently , "if we even have anybody raising an eyebrow of 'I'm not happy about this,' we're going to lose [the general election] and they'll have this loss on their hands," meaning the DNC.

It won't take much to make a martyr of Sanders in the eyes of his supporters, especially after 2016. The only questions are:

• Is the fear of Sanders and his political revolution, which would send many of them scrambling for other work and start to cut Party ties to the donor class, enough to make their opposition turn to obviously illegal means?

• If Sanders is indeed made "a martyr," as the party official quoted above fears, what will be the response of the independent voters who swell those stadium appearances?

The stakes were high in 2016. Given our greater nearness to looming catastrophes, climate being just one of them, the stakes are exponentially higher today. We do indeed live in interesting times .


ambrit , April 19, 2019 at 1:32 am

Putting on my Bespoke Tinfoil Hat, I'll posit that the "dirty tricks" are already happening. As Magister Strether declared, the Clintonistas also have had two years to plan for combating a strong Sanders campaign.

To the extent this is about politics, it is about institutional politics, not public policy politics. The Clinton camp has demonstrated an almost monomaniacal focus on 'winning' to the exclusion of all else.

So, I expect a crowded field of Democrat primary candidates to drown out Sanders as much as possible and to, most importantly, deny Sanders a first round win at the convention. Then, the "olde guard" comes into play and the Superdelegates can swing the nomination to H Clinton as a "Unity Candidate."

That is when Sanders will face his most difficult decision. Will he abandon the Democrat Party as a bad job? Sanders seems to be leaving a Third Party run option open with his development of a parallel structure to the Party apparatus.

If Sanders splits the Democrat Party, he will be handing Trump a second term, but laying the groundwork for a reformed and restored Democrat Party in later campaigns. If Sanders toes the line and supports Clinton for a second run, he will also be basically handing Trump a second term. (Unless something catastrophic happens between now and the election. Those Black Swans will pop up out of nowhere, as is their wont.)

The interesting problem here is whether or not any party can govern the nation with only ten or fifteen percent of the population's support. To manage such would, presumably, involve the full on imposition of an authoritarian state.

Our cousins to the South have much to teach us about how extremes of inequality play out "on the ground." Oligarchies will sail along without a care in the world until a major opposition rises up to contest for supremacy. Usually, as the Southern experience shows, those contests will end up in fire and bloodshed, over and over again, down the years.

The Clinton phenomenon shows up a basic flaw in politics. Concentration of political power, no matter how effected, will end up in ruin. What is so sad is that the Clintons are not unique, but exemplars of a perennial trend; corruption, both personal and public.

America was supposed to bring the "blessings of democracy" to the "less well off" of the southlands. The opposite is happening today.

PKMKII , April 19, 2019 at 10:40 am

While I certainly don't doubt that the Clintonistas are banking on that strategy, it's dependent on all the not-Bernie candidates happily playing along being cannon fodder to stop Bernie.

Problem is, the establishment isn't as unified as it was in 2016, and many of them would have no problem poking the rest of the establishment in the eye if they thought it would increase their chances of winning. A split convention with ~9 candidates coming in with delegates isn't just a threat to Bernie's chance, it's a threat to all but one candidate.

There's a strong motivation for them, even stronger than for Bernie quite frankly, to thin the herd out as fast as possible, and I think we're going to see some ugly politics done with that goal in mind. The establishment in-fighting is going to be nastier than the Bernie-establishment fighting.

Of course, if it does work out and they superdelegate Biden in even though Bernie had the most overall votes but shy of an outright majority, they'll be dooming themselves to not just giving Trump another term but relegating the Democrats to second place status in US politics for a generation. But clearly they're willing to pay that price to keep their country club in control of the party.

Skip Intro , April 19, 2019 at 1:50 pm

I think the crowd of establishment neoliberals is going to backfire on the DNC. They will fragment their loyalists while uniting the Sanders voters, who saw through the same shtick in 2016, and arguably in 2012.

In typical DNC fashion, their scheme to rig the election by bringing in superdelegates for the second round will be sabotaged by their arrogance and opportunistic minions all running for their own [x] slots, and diluting the strength of their donor owners.

NotTimothyGeithner , April 19, 2019 at 3:44 pm

The other side is not understanding HRC's support either. Her voters weren't all neoliberals. Between the certainty of her victory, the narratives of a secret "liberal" HRC, and her importance to an older generation, these are not transferrable to other candidates because Terry MacAuliffe or any celebrity says so.

Obama vowed to take it personally if African Americans don't show 2014 Democrats the same support he received in 2012. Cult like attention doesn't necessarily transfer.

ambrit , April 19, 2019 at 3:52 pm

Too true. And cults do not translate into populist movements. Quite the opposite. The very organizational form of a cult is an authoritarian one.

polecat , April 19, 2019 at 4:11 pm

What else would one expect, when rainbow swans swoop in, only to drown in a dirty pool of their own projection.

Mike , April 19, 2019 at 2:17 pm

True. And, if you wish to draw parallels, the demise of social-democratic parties in Europe, especially the British, German, and French, shows this is a global pattern being juiced by, and carried out by, a global elite of which the US is part and a leading member.

Bernie wants to have a rebuilt, renewed Democratic Party that reflects social-democratic norms as they have historically been in Europe. The problem? Soc-Dem parties have mostly surrendered to the neo-liberal agenda just as the Dems here have. Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands – all have shifted mightily to the Right.It is no mistake or error on their part. Their class interests demand they take sides. All these parties are outgrowths of professional upper middle-class elements who have taken these parties from the working class. In doing so, they dragged the "liberal" press with them to become propaganda mouthpieces for their true "brothers". The causes and particular results within each party could take volumes to describe – suffice it to say they wee all enemies of elites in their origin, and were treated as such, spied upon, infiltrated, and whatever else it took to tame them.

Off The Street , April 19, 2019 at 11:43 am

All of that seemingly coordinated effort would appear to tin-foil-hatters and many others to be evidence of some conspiring, if not RICOesque activity. Given the thrust of those noted anti-Sanders media efforts, the century-old Upton Sinclair quote may be repurposed.

It is difficult to get a man to understand report on something, when his salary (and social standing, and access to the best parties, tables, schools, et cetera) depends on his not understanding acknowledging it.

Freedom of the press keeps getting attacked from ever more clever enemies, thereby reinforcing its utter necessity.

ambrit , April 19, 2019 at 3:36 pm

True, a formal conspiracy is not necessary to have 'conspiracy like' outcomes. Feynman's addendum to the Challenger disaster report sets that out.

Read, the dreaded Appendix F : https://science.ksc.nasa.gov/shuttle/missions/51-l/docs/rogers-commission/Appendix-F.txt

Sinclair's Quote (TM) is famous exactly because it is applicable across all timelines, all classes of person, and all types of organization.
Human nature doesn't seem to have changed over the last hundred millennia or so.

Going back over the recent past several thousand years of human history, it becomes clear that the present assault on press freedom is but another evolution of the perpetual war on the individual's right to think independently.

The present top predator class's basic mistake is a common one. After a string of success's, no group seriously considers the fact that nothing is permanent. That would bring the groups self identity as being "Exceptional" into doubt. Hopefully, this present apex predator class will suffer the same malign fate as have all others who have gone before.

Happy Good Friday to all the religious out there. For the rest, enjoy a weekday without the stock market to worry about.

Cal2 , April 19, 2019 at 1:39 am

"How will these people respond if they think Sanders was cheated again?"

1.Stay home on election day or vote for Trump?

2. Sanders + Tulsi = Democratic Victory.

Anything else? See number 1.

drumlin woodchuckles , April 19, 2019 at 7:02 pm

They could also come out and vote for one of the little Vanity Third Parties. If the DemParty ticket is not some combination of Sanders Warren Gabbard . . . . and several-to-many million Bitter Berners vote for a Third Party, and the Dem Ticket loses, and the numbers of Dem voters + the numbers of Third Party voters would add up to having been a victory for the Dems; then a message will have been sent about the cruciality of the Bitter Berner vote and how it can not be safely ignored if "winning the election" really is the goal.

skippy , April 19, 2019 at 2:12 am

I think its incumbent to remember its not Sanders per se that is causing orthodoxy to act out . its what he represents e.g. something that can throw a spanner in the good works of neoliberalism.

Sanders crimes are for enabling the unwashed an opportunity to consider options outside that dominate narrative.

rod , April 19, 2019 at 10:12 am

And he's reminding them and everyone with his new slogan–"It's not me-it's us"

skippy , April 19, 2019 at 6:35 pm

Challenging the the foundational cornerstone of methodological individualism and all the aspects bolted on too it – seems a critical point to advance. Lots of time and energy is spent on questioning the bolt-ons, yet for every one refuted the core can spit out more, dog chasing tail experience.

Even to the point of forwarding nationalism in one breath and bespoke individualism in the other – our nationalism protects my squillions . and the consequences of that is "Natural" [tm].

ambrit , April 19, 2019 at 3:43 pm

One of Sander's main 'crimes' is to offer the "unwashed" potentially 'real' Hope. The Obama-bot offered Hope in bad faith. Thus, both sides of the Classical Greeks' ambiguous view of 'Hope' are on display. Hope came last out of Pandora's box. The Chorus is still out on the verdict.

polecat , April 19, 2019 at 4:24 pm

With Obama's false hope, you'd be lucky to receive a dry sip from the water bag as you continue to grasp, with bloodied and blistered hands, that trireme oar, knowing in the back of your mind that you'll Never truly escape the chains holding you down to that hot, burning deck of death !

skippy , April 19, 2019 at 6:42 pm

I'm with you on the Hope [tm], albeit more a case of desperation than informed perspective.

drumlin woodchuckles , April 19, 2019 at 2:16 am

The Sanders staff and supporters and well-wishers should think about how to re-engineer Trump's "fake news" schtick as much or as little to be able to use it for the Sanders' Campaigns own self-defense and protection.

Whenever the media run a dishonest news article, the Sanders Campaign could call it Fake News. Whenever the media run a dishonest editorial, the Sanders Campaign could call it Fake Views. The Sanders Campaign could speak of Fake News and Views from the Rich Corporate MSM.

nathan , April 19, 2019 at 6:34 am

the "liberal", "progressive" upper class and most of the upper middle class democrats did well by trump's tax giveaway.
noam chomsky calls them moderate republicans. they stand for identity issues but not financial ones, nothing that would involve taxing them to give to the rest of the country.

when it comes down to it most of them will prefer to give trump four more years and hope for the best and taking back the white house with one of their own later than supporting a socialist. they're hoping not to face that prospect (in the mirror as well as otherwise) by defeating bernie – and probably warren, who isn't seen as a big threat now – in the primaries. if the bernie supporters sit the election out then trump is on them goes the view.

If biden falters early I see bloomberg coming in as a democrat. if bernie wins anyway i see schultz coming in as an independent.
it will take a near miracle

Kurt Sperry , April 19, 2019 at 11:34 am

I want to see a Sanders vs. Trump election not least because it I think the choice it forces will put the neoliberal, entitled 10% -- the same neoliberal Clinton supporters who derided and mocked those Sanders supporters who wouldn't or couldn't get on board with HRC -- in an a similar but reversed position.

Will they follow their own self-righteous admonitions from four years ago and vote for their hated primary opponent to remove Trump as they hectored Sanders supporters to do? Will they sit out the election, unable to hold their noses and vote a Sanders ticket likely to raise their taxes? Exactly the way many Sanders supporters did with HRC and were viciously excoriated by that same 10% for doing? Or will they go full "evil"/self-loathing and secretly vote for the Satan Trump to keep the country out of socialist hands and prevent having their taxes raised?

I can't wait to hear the neoliberal chattering classes trying to publicly reason it out. Many exploding heads, rank hypocrisy, and much cognitive dissonance will be on full public view.

I get schadenfreude just thinking about it.

John k , April 19, 2019 at 6:40 am

The article mentions that some media seems reasonably fair this time around maybe some thinking sanders can't be stopped, or the lack of somebody obviously about to be coronated.

If Biden doesn't take off more media will become fair institutions want to be on the winning side.

Andy Raushner , April 19, 2019 at 7:06 am

Anti-Sanders press? Oh come on. The Anti-Clinton press was in full bloom as well. Sanders has been a mess so far. SJW politics, health care reform and free college ..basically the Clinton 2016 playbook. It didn't build the enthusiasm to make her campaign electoral proof against the Trump Russian supporters hack, bots and fake news campaigns to ship up her likeability issues.

Then Biden comes out with what one union rep called kitchen table issues. Major corporate welfare for domestic manufacturers, multi trillion dollar infrastructure program, stuff Obama campaign ed on in 2008 but pivoted away from by September 2009 which in Biden's opinion, hurt his Presidency.

Bernie much like AOC live so much in esoteric fantasy, much like Hillary Clinton .which made him such a nice foil to her. The problem is this time, he is going to go against a bunch of other candidates that are bullshitters, reality manipulators and salesmen, he gets drowned. Well beyond Biden as well, there is going to be 15+ sniping away.

Bernie needs to pivot imo by fall of the union vote is going to turn on him

Donald , April 19, 2019 at 7:50 am

You seem confused. The press was anti Sanders and very much pro Clinton during the primaries.

The anti Clinton press played some role in the general election, but for the most part by noticing her actual flaws. There was also an enormous amount of anti Trump press, again based on his actual flaws, but he also received massive free publicity during the whole year and it turned out his voters simply didn't care about his flaws.

GramSci , April 19, 2019 at 7:55 am

Bernie is using the Clinton playbook? I don't think so. And as for the unions endorsing Biden, it's been at least 40 years since the rank-and-file voted with the union bosses.

tegnost , April 19, 2019 at 8:47 am

I know
Sanders has been a mess so far. SJW politics, health care reform and free college ..basically the Clinton 2016 playbook
what?

flora , April 19, 2019 at 8:34 am

The Union vote ain't what it once was. In 2016 the Union brass supported Clinton but the rank and file did not.

Mac na Michomhairle , April 19, 2019 at 9:14 am

If I say something enough times, especially if I have a big media outlet, it is true. Up is down; an orange is the city of Houston; DNC slicksters who would sell your grandmother for cat food are just reg'lar folks fighting for all of us

rob , April 19, 2019 at 9:21 am

wow, you don't think the press was aligned against bernie, that is stunning. What color is the sky in your world? Have you ever been to earth?
So bernie was using hillary's playbook? Hillary clinton?

I'm guessing you think you can just "say stuff", and it will be taken seriously. Fat chance with that drivel . time to get a clue even the most casual observer would remember the hit squad on bernie in every aspect of the media . but for those who don't have the ability to discern reality, the secret is to " bang the rocks together" . so dude.. watch your fingers.

Grant , April 19, 2019 at 12:38 pm

This is the most incoherent post I have seen on this site. I truly mean that. How in the world could anyone think that Bernie is copying Clinton of all people? SHE was the one leading on policy? What bubble do you live in?

"Bernie much like AOC live so much in esoteric fantasy"

Based on what? What policies that he supports are unpopular and would not work? When he goes to West Virginia and meets with a room full of Trump supporters, goes on Fox and connects with people there, are you claiming that most other candidates, especially left of center, could do the same? How could anyone, especially after the leaks, claim that the press wasn't fully on the side of the Clinton campaign, often openly colluding with the campaign?

Plenue , April 19, 2019 at 2:59 pm

https://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/presidential-races/304606-final-newspaper-endorsement-count-clinton-57-trump-2

Surely David Brock can afford better trolls than you.

drumlin woodchuckles , April 19, 2019 at 3:14 pm

You seem confused about who kept playing the SJW cards as well. I think I remember in the first Sanders-Clinton debate a point where Sanders called for re-breaking-up, re-Glassing and re-Steagalling the banks. And Clinton said " breaking up the banks won't do a THING about racism." And it is the anti-Sanders Neera Tandecrats seeking the nomination who are presenting themselves as a live action multi-choice menu of SJW Housekeeping Seal of Approval Identy choices.

You seem confused in many directions.

Carolinian , April 19, 2019 at 8:10 am

Sanders was here yesterday and as requested by Lambert I'll have something to say about it during Water Cooler. But I will say that the crowd was very enthusiastic and the press coverage fair. 2020 may not in fact be a replay of 2016. This time Trump including TDS is the spectre that hangs over the entire process.

jefemt , April 19, 2019 at 8:50 am

Remember when Bernie had pulled even, if not ahead of Hillarity, just prior to the 2016 Dim convention? And he had the Speech of His Life in either AZ or NV?
And Trump was set to speak at the identical time?
And the media focused on Trump's empty podium, mysteriously empty for 1.5 hours
And the media did not cover Bernies speech-of-the-year, not one whit?

Never, ever forget -- and treat the media with the derision and suspicion they have so justly earned

divadab , April 19, 2019 at 9:19 am

Yes the Dem press will be flinging poo at Sanders. But take a gander at Faux News and their town hall with Bernie – and Tucker Carlson's amazing mention of Dem Party cheating of Sanders in the primary. Just as the "liberal" press gave Trump tons of free publicity, so too the reactionary press seems to be giving free coverage to Sanders.

It will be nice to see Sanders wipe the floor with Biden. And if the Dems cheat again and nominate Biden or some other obedient and photogenic bought and paid for candidate, watch Trump wipe the floor with them.

Will the Dems fall on their swords again to keep Sanders out? They will try, helped by their pals in the propaganda apparatus.

Svante Arrhenius , April 19, 2019 at 11:59 am

It's kinda like how we used to tease our Nazi 'bagger, Republican friends, about Re-antimating Zombie Reagan to run, since they had nobody that wasn't a pathetic, waddling stereotype to vote for? Maybe, simply run Dead Kennedys. Meanwhile, perhaps a holographic Fred Rodgers, Sally Struthers' disembodied whine or comforting Dr Seuss character? Liberals all like Gandalf, right?

Empires FALL, it's what we do: https://mobile.twitter.com/alyssa_milano/status/1112869883069382656

drumlin woodchuckles , April 19, 2019 at 3:19 pm

The people here have more time than money. And they ( we) have invested our time in finding out enough things to where the spenders of fire hose-loads of money find us resistant to their propaganda.
So since the money will not be taken out of politics until the people who engineer the money into politics have been driven out of public life, the rest of us will have to fight on various un-monetized battlefields.

Time isn't money. Time is life itself.
A British-India Indian is once supposed to have said ( to the West in general . . .) " You have all the watches. But we have all the time."

rob , April 19, 2019 at 10:44 am

After a couple of years of " the press" yammering on with stories of "Russians" subverting our elections, when will we see the real "deplorable's" be shamed. The press, and their snide comments,their acts of omission,their down right lying, their assault on the hearts and minds of the voting population. The press is probably the most valuable group in the election of Donald trump. They are the ones who champion the lie and the smear, they are the ones who make the news "fake", so the supporters of trump have something to latch onto.

Where is the congressional investigation of the role the press played in "the disinformation campaign against the American people and their presidential election of 2016?" now THAT would be news worthy.

ChrisAtRU , April 19, 2019 at 11:33 am

Thanks for taking on this, Yves! I look forward to future installments!

IMO, it has become increasingly difficult for mainstream media (MSM) to de-legitimatize Bernie this time around. My take is that I see #TeamSanders taking steps to make sure the signal-to-noise ratio remains in Sanders' favor. MSM attempts this time around take on more of a mindless screeching tone, and thus far, given the Senator's now nationwide popularity, it appears that far less people are being moved by these attempts (see latest nationwide poll). But it's all going to play on repeat from 2015/2016. Krugman has already begun his insufferable tone policing and disqualifying .

Some us remember that WaPo published 16 negative pieces on Bernie in 16 hours during the run up to the last election. By those standards, "our famously free press" is only getting warmed up but the electorate is ready this time.

Joe Well , April 19, 2019 at 1:04 pm

Here's something that worries me about Bernie:

Here in Massachusetts, almost all the Our Revolution chapters are in affluent municipalities (if you've studied American history you've heard of them: Concord, Cambridge, Lexington, Amherst), with a couple that are supposedly forming in less affluent communities. The events that have been advertised have all been in these more affluent communities so I imagine that's where the real action is. I emailed the one chapter I saw for a more working class community like my hometown and got no response.

In the Our Revolution MA Facebook group, there are some wonderful people, but there has been almost no discussion of the housing crisis, which is the biggest progressive issue facing the state right now. The resolution to the housing crisis will require precisely overcoming opposition to new housing in those affluent municipalities.

So, how do your organize a real progressive movement when the people who call themselves progressives are overwhelmingly deeply embedded in the top 10%?

NotTimothyGeithner , April 19, 2019 at 1:49 pm

This is unfortunately Putnam's decline of bowling leagues. There isn't an easy answer. One of the points of The 50 State Strategy was the recognition of this problem and the need for support and even the ability to access space for the purposes of meeting places. Obama used his celebrity to stamp out much of these efforts. People can't do it forever, so in a sense everyone is starting over with an openly hostile DNC under Perez. Obviously, the decade of additional economic decline for most Americans is a problem.

One problem is the sympathetic among the 10% need to understand the "moderate suburban Republicans" have polished jackboots ready to go and have no interest in good government despite their seemingly "polite" nature. The DSA's brake light clinic is probably the model that needs to be followed, just expanded. Something like "free tax filing" assistance in January. Obviously, CPAs have to earn a living, but taxes don't need to be done in April. Maybe they could be paid.

Time and resources are obvious issues.

sharonsj , April 19, 2019 at 6:23 pm

If the establishment rigs the process once again and Sanders doesn't get the nomination, I will not vote for the anointed Democratic candidate. I forced myself to vote for Hillary Clinton and I will never do that again. I also will do everything in my power to burn down the Democratic party. I wonder if the establishment has a clue as to how furious most people are? Are they paying attention to what's happening throughout Europe–and I wonder how long it will be before you see weekly protests here? P.S. I'm ordering my yellow vest now .

[Apr 19, 2019] Bernie Steals the 'No More Wars' Issue From Trump by Patrick J. Buchanan

Trump betrayed anti-war republicans. As the result he lost any support of anti-war Republicans. That can't be revered as he proved to be a marionette of Israel lobby. How that will influence outcome of 2020 elections remains to be seen.
Apr 19, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

"The president has said that he does not want to see this country involved in endless wars . I agree with that," Bernie Sanders told the Fox News audience at Monday's town hall meeting in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Then, turning and staring straight into the camera, Bernie added: "Mister President, tonight you have the opportunity to do something extraordinary: sign that resolution. Saudi Arabia should not be determining the military or foreign policy of this country."

Sanders was talking about a War Powers Act resolution that would have ended U.S. involvement in the five-year civil war in Yemen that has created one of the great humanitarian crises of our time, with thousands of dead children amidst an epidemic of cholera and a famine.

Supported by a united Democratic Party on the Hill, and an anti-interventionist faction of the GOP led by Senators Rand Paul and Mike Lee of Utah, the War Powers resolution had passed both houses of Congress.

But 24 hours after Sanders urged him to sign it, Trump, heeding the hawks in his Cabinet and National Security Council, vetoed S.J.Res.7, calling it a "dangerous attempt to weaken my constitutional authorities."

With sufficient Republican votes in both houses to sustain Trump's veto, that should have been the end of the matter.

It is not: Trump may have just ceded the peace issue in 2020 to the Democrats. If Sanders emerges as the nominee, we will have an election with a Democrat running on the "no-more-wars" theme Trump touted in 2016. And Trump will be left defending the bombing of Yemeni rebels and civilians by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia.

Does Trump really want to go into 2020 as a war party president? Does he want to go into 2020 with Democrats denouncing "Trump's endless wars" in the Middle East? Because that is where he is headed.

In 2008, John McCain, leading hawk in the Senate, was routed by a left-wing first-term senator from Illinois, Barack Obama, who had won his nomination by defeating the more hawkish Hillary Clinton, who had voted to authorize the war in Iraq.

In 2012, the Republican nominee Mitt Romney, who was far more hawkish than Obama on Russia, lost.

Yet in 2016, Trump ran as a different kind of Republican, an opponent of the Iraq war and an anti-interventionist who wanted to get along with Russia's Vladimir Putin and get out of these Middle East wars.

Looking closely at the front-running candidates for the Democratic nomination of 2020 -- Joe Biden, Sanders, Kamala Harris, Beto O'Rourke, Pete Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker -- not one appears to be as hawkish as Trump has become.

Trump pulled us out of the nuclear deal with Iran negotiated by Secretary of State John Kerry and re-imposed severe sanctions.

He declared Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps a terrorist organization, to which Tehran has responded by declaring U.S. Central Command a terrorist organization. Ominously, the IRGC and its trained Shiite militias in Iraq are in close proximity to U.S. troops.

Trump has recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital, moved the U.S. embassy there, closed the consulate that dealt with Palestinian affairs, cut off aid to the Palestinians, recognized Israel's annexation of the Golan Heights seized from Syria in 1967, and gone silent on Bibi Netanyahu's threat to annex Jewish settlements on the West Bank.

Sanders, however, though he stands by Israel, is supporting a two-state solution and castigating the "right-wing" Netanyahu regime.

Trump has talked of pulling all U.S. troops out of Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Yet the troops are still there.

Though Trump came into office promising to get along with the Russians, he sent Javelin anti-tank missiles to Ukraine and announced a pullout from Ronald Reagan's 1987 INF treaty that outlawed all land-based intermediate-range nuclear missiles.

When Putin provocatively sent 100 Russian troops to Venezuela -- ostensibly to repair the S-400 anti-aircraft and anti-missile system that was damaged in recent blackouts -- Trump, drawing a red line, ordered the Russians to "get out."

Biden is expected to announce next week. If the stands he takes on Russia, China, Israel, and the Middle East are more hawkish than the rest of the field, he will be challenged by the left wing of his party and by Sanders, who voted "no" on the Iraq war that Biden supported.

The center of gravity of U.S. politics is shifting towards the Trump position of 2016. And the anti-interventionist wing of the GOP is growing.

And when added to the anti-interventionist and anti-war wing of the Democratic Party on the Hill, together, they are able, as on the Yemen War Powers resolution, to produce a new bipartisan majority.

Prediction: by the primaries of 2020, foreign policy will be front and center, and the Democratic Party will have captured the "no more wars" political high ground that candidate Donald Trump occupied in 2016.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of Nixon's White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever. To find out more about Patrick Buchanan and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators website at www.creators.com.

[Apr 18, 2019] Bernie's millionaire problem

Apr 18, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

John Doe , Apr 18, 2019 8:08:15 AM | link

Bernie's millionaire problem
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ee8GedvPmBU

[Apr 16, 2019] Fox News Crowd CHEERING LOUDLY at Bernie's Town Hall, For Gov't-Run Healthcare, Taxing the Rich, Protecting SS, etc. caucus99

Notable quotes:
"... Great description of the kind of panic I'm sure the network heads were feeling. Would love to hear the anxious chatter in the board rooms of how to disseminate it, how to selectively cut and edit clips for their own narrative, how to twist his words to tarnish him, etc (hope the Bernie folks only agreed under the direction that they'd get the whole video also). ..."
"... The campaign website, Pete for America, doesn't feature a policy section, something that has caught the attention of critics who say Buttigieg is an empty suit ..."
"... From the New York Times today: 'Stop Sanders' Democrats Are Agonizing Over His Momentum ..."
Apr 16, 2019 | caucus99percent.com

Fox News Crowd CHEERING LOUDLY at Bernie's Town Hall, For Gov't-Run Healthcare, Taxing the Rich, Protecting SS, etc.


Mark from Queens on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 8:11pm I ain't got much to say here. Just perusing Twitter and #BernieTownHall is trending, though obviously being overshadowed by the Notre Dame fire.

And while I don't believe much in electoral politics the message here, the evidence that the divide and conquer bullshit isn't as effective as we've been led to believe, the fact that when asked people on the Right do want many of the same things we want - are all something to behold.

We all know that here. But to actually witness that is always a good reminder, and goes a long way to dissolving the manufactured divisions that the corporate media manipulates.

And we all know what happened when he went to WV for a town hall that MSNBC hosted. Here's videos of coal miners thanking him for fighting for them , him consoling an overworked woman whose friends have died , converting propagandized folk into believers in socialist ideas.

Here's some clips and commentary about Bernie's Fox town hall tonight:

Should we raise the minimum wage to a living wage? Yes!
Should we rebuild our crumbling infrastructure? Yes!
Should we ensure veterans get health care they earned? Yes!
Should we protect Social Security and Medicare? Yes!

A majority of the American people agree. #BernieTownHall pic.twitter.com/qZmuBuA6MM

-- Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) April 16, 2019

Raise your hand if you're sick and tired of your private health insurance company. We need Medicare for All. #BernieTownHall pic.twitter.com/3euHRCjqn9

-- Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) April 15, 2019

Cheering wildly when he exposes Trump for being a fraud on taxes:

. @BernieSanders calls out Fox for not asking Trump what his tax rate is #BernieTownHall pic.twitter.com/VF7LRr5XYj

-- People for Bernie (@People4Bernie) April 15, 2019

People. Fucking. Hate. Insurance. Companies.

That backfired... #BernieTownHall pic.twitter.com/NCKNDIQauZ

-- DSA for Medicare for All (@dsam4a) April 15, 2019

Socialism:

Democratic socialism is about creating a government and economy that work for all Americans, not just the top 1%. #BernieTownHall pic.twitter.com/FybjC7SPPw

-- Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) April 15, 2019

. @BernieSanders closing statement at #BernieTownHall on @FoxNews pic.twitter.com/mrpB9jTgwn

-- People for Bernie (@People4Bernie) April 15, 2019

If you think Bernie isn't doing WORK converting some right leaning fence sitters watching this Fox News town hall you're delusional. Even if it's just 5% of the audience at home it's worth it. This is why you engage instead of shame! #BernieTownHall

-- Secular Talk (@KyleKulinski) April 15, 2019

"It is not anti Semitic to be critical of a right-wing government in Israel." - @BernieSanders #BernieTownHall

-- Briahna Joy Gray (@briebriejoy) April 15, 2019

. @BretBaier "Your plan calls for significant cuts in the military"

*audience cheers* #BernieTownHall pic.twitter.com/MYpkgAIoE9

-- People for Bernie (@People4Bernie) April 15, 2019

. @BernieSanders "CHECK OUT WHO FUNDS THE THINK TANKS" #BernieTownHall pic.twitter.com/Ysqfuquabj

-- People for Bernie (@People4Bernie) April 15, 2019

Forgot that this was taking place tonight.

When propaganda spectacularly blows up in the face of the propagandists it is something hopeful, at the very least.

Imagine being the CEO of United Healthcare or BlueCross and watching all the money you spent trying to scare people away from Medicare for All blow up this spectacularly #BernieTownHall . pic.twitter.com/gOmmKAXzt0

-- Hamid Bendaas (@HBendaas) April 15, 2019

@BernieSanders brought the heat at the #FoxNewsTownHall !

Not much has changed since he spoke out against Fox as a Congressman years ago. Explore Sanders's critiques of the network and more in our film Outfoxed: https://t.co/oOlpxf46YT #BernieTownHall pic.twitter.com/zGuiiqII9X

-- Brave New Films (@bravenewfilms) April 15, 2019

Wally on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 9:20pm
Please remind naysayers

@Mark from Queens

. . . who emphasize Bernie has less than 30% of the votes in polls (less than the 50% + 1 delegate required to get the nomination) that delegates are awarded by states via primaries (different formulas), not by total US % vote. So, he can possibly even pull it off on the first ballot, before the superdelegates' votes kick in.

There really is a chance to pull it off this time! Especially if Bernie does well in the early primaries and on the newly early Super Tuesday, March 3, 2020.

And for those emphasizing that it's still early. . . the debates start in June, only about two months away.

When propaganda spectacularly blows up in the face of the propagandists it is something hopeful, at the very least.

Imagine being the CEO of United Healthcare or BlueCross and watching all the money you spent trying to scare people away from Medicare for All blow up this spectacularly #BernieTownHall . pic.twitter.com/gOmmKAXzt0

-- Hamid Bendaas (@HBendaas) April 15, 2019

@BernieSanders brought the heat at the #FoxNewsTownHall !

Not much has changed since he spoke out against Fox as a Congressman years ago. Explore Sanders's critiques of the network and more in our film Outfoxed: https://t.co/oOlpxf46YT #BernieTownHall pic.twitter.com/zGuiiqII9X

-- Brave New Films (@bravenewfilms) April 15, 2019

Mark from Queens on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 8:36pm
Niko House already has a thorough overview if you're interested

https://www.youtube.com/embed/hhg4LIjonko

Le Frog on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 8:37pm
Bret Baier's face!

Thank you for posting these, Mark!

I enjoyed these snippets, and particularly how Bret constantly looked like he was debating pulling a fire alarm to break up this cheerfest or to just run and leave the cohost to deal with it.

Mark from Queens on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 8:48pm
Heh...They're running scared.

@Le Frog

Great description of the kind of panic I'm sure the network heads were feeling. Would love to hear the anxious chatter in the board rooms of how to disseminate it, how to selectively cut and edit clips for their own narrative, how to twist his words to tarnish him, etc (hope the Bernie folks only agreed under the direction that they'd get the whole video also).

This kind of thing blows their whole Us vs. Them cover. They'll probably not be doing this again.

gjohnsit on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 9:23pm
Fox Producer in the back room

@Le Frog
"Someone interrupt the cheering, for Gawd Sakes! Change the subject! Cut to commercial! Anything!"

The UnitedHealth employee who leaked The Post this video says: "I felt Americans needed to know exactly who it is that's fighting against the idea that healthcare is a right, not a privilege." https://t.co/fQAXmVTmdf

-- Jeff Stein (@JStein_WaPo) April 12, 2019

Cassiodorus on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 10:26pm
Ah yes. Pete Buttigieg.

@gjohnsit From this piece in "New York" magazine :

The campaign website, Pete for America, doesn't feature a policy section, something that has caught the attention of critics who say Buttigieg is an empty suit -- or, in his case, empty dress pants plus a white or blue shirt with the sleeves rolled up (tie, but no blazer). Buttigieg talks in specifics about the Electoral College (he wants to get rid of it) and the Supreme Court (he imagines an extreme reconfiguration, with 15 judges instead of nine, five of them confirmed by unanimous vote of the other ten, a way of ensuring nonpartisanship, he says). On other matters, he is less detailed. "I'm very specific on policy. I just think that we need to talk about values first. You can't just expect people to be able to derive your values by looking at the minutiae of your policy proposals," he told me.

So what are Pete Buttigieg's proposed policies? I gather he's trying to get a toehold on the "surprise me" vote. Oh, and policy is "minutiae," not the life-or-death matter for millions which it in fact is.

Dallasdoc on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 9:59pm
Divide and Conquer is Fox's business model

@Mark from Queens
It's too bad Bernie will probably never get live time on Fox again, and that the DNC idiots refused to have a debate on Fox. We all had stories of Republicans who liked Bernie in 2016, even those who would have voted for him over Trump. Democrats just cannot bring themselves to admit that the reason 2016 played out the way it did wasn't Vladimir Putin's fault, it was Hillary Clinton's.

Moron Beltway gasbags think that winning over Republican votes requires a conservative or a racist. No, it requires somebody with authenticity who wants to help average voters. Trump's scam has been played, and a lot of his 2016 voters won't fall for it again. As in 2016, Dems will lose if they run a milquetoast corporate poser. And as in 2016, they'll try their damnedest to do just that.

gjohnsit on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 8:58pm
That was f*cking brilliant!

How could you not love that?

There is no question that Fox News hates Bernie Sanders. Without a doubt Fox News hates the idea of Medicare For All. So when Bernie has a Town Hall on Fox, you can bet that they wanted to make him look bad. If you read Fox's review of the Town Hall that is exactly what happened. Except that isn't what happened.

What actually happened is that Fox moderator Bret Baier made the unforgivable mistake of asking the audience - a Fox News audience - what they thought of Medicare For All, and the reaction was poetry.

BTW, I found this article on insurancenewsnet.com

Medicare for All May Be Cheaper For Employers, But They Still Don't Like It

This is HUUUGE!

Medicare For All wouldn't just be great for the working class, it would probably be great for small businesses. Why haven't I heard more about this? It would immediately bump the approval rating for MFA by 10%-15%-20% in red states.

JtC on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 9:03pm
Beat you to it...

@Cassiodorus
within 100,000 of a second. I promoted it and as I came back to the CC page your comment was there.

Unless we still want to be in the 100,000s on Alexa...

Mark from Queens on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 9:11pm
Over on Reddit at the live thread commentary at WOTB,

which you can find here , I learned that the crowd was booing the Fox News host for some of their questions, one being a slimy insinuation that Bernie wanted to let felons vote because it would help him . They also chanted Bernie's name after his closing remarks (reminiscent of the NY debate).

Heh, remember this classic?

https://www.youtube.com/embed/a3QwnlXFgGE

This one just gets better with time, doesn't it?

lotlizard on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 12:20am
If Sanders can speak at Liberty U. and win people's respect,

@gjohnsit
he can go on FOX and do the same.

I hope FOX seizes the opportunity to, at least in part, reinvent itself under the radar and appeal to a broader demographic. FOX could carve out a new market niche occupying pro-Bernie populist territory, where other networks fear to tread.

A lot of FOX viewers are probably economically hard-pressed. It ain't a Bloomberg or CNBC audience we're talking about here.

#8
Boy, all those centrist assholes were right, it was totally a bad move for Sanders to go on Fox News for a townhall. What an embarrassing look for him, right?

Le Frog on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 12:29am
If nothing else, FOX made ratings

@lotlizard

having Bernie do that town hall. Meanwhile, things at CNN are disgusting. The blatant anti-Bernie agenda is burning like a thousand suns over there. The bias is so obvious but it's so strange to watch unfold. I just watched FOX host Bernie Sanders, with a FOX-curated audience chanting BERNIE! BERNIE! while CNN trashes him. I'm not saying CNN is a bastion of fair coverage and a beacon of the left, but this is madness in real time.

Pluto's Republic on Mon, 04/15/2019 - 10:45pm
I've been watching that encouraging trend.

Last night I was writing about this huge swathe of people across the nation -- the unrepresented and silenced Left -- who are stepping out into the light once more to show their strength and support for humane and intelligent national policies that benefit all of the people equally. They are out there and they know what they want.

Outrageous criminal greed among the ruling class is what is fueling the rise of the American Left. The Intelligence Cartel thinks an intense round of anti-communist fear and propaganda blasted across the general population will shut the Left down. The think the brainwashed centrists and corporate media will chase them back into their marginalized existence. It's always worked before.

The Democrat leaders, standing the ruins of their shattered Hoax, are not so sure this time. That's why they pushed a crowd of Democratic contenders into the race to dilute the focus on inconvenient issues. Fifteen years ago, these new candidates would have all looked promising -- but the betrayal of the neoliberals who screwed and exploited and abandoned the working class changed all that. Now, people want their share of government protection against the terrible economic downturns that the corruption of Wall Street and War Street have dumped on them -- and their families. They want their human right to a safe and healthy life, for starters. They want food for their hungry children and a roof over their heads, no matter what.

That bell cannot be unrung.

Snode on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 5:33am
Not only the protection of economic downturns

@Pluto's Republic but in a lot of ways protection from government. The conservatives have built their creds on the horror of "I'm from the government, I'm here to help" but in the end no matter who's in control the real horror has been "I'm from the government". It's why most people see no difference between the r's and d's. Neither will do them any good and both misread the support from their "base". The r's and d's serve their masters and it's why elections have devolved into the farce it is.

wokkamile on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 8:06am
Good points on

@gulfgal98 his potential cross appeal. And it was in his favor that he didn't go after Biden on the progressive question. Bernie is better off running an issues-only campaign in his competition with the other Ds; let the people decide who is truly progressive by their policies and their record.

He also did well in not running from the socialism tag, not that he has much choice. He will need to continue doing this as this country has been conditioned for decades to associate it with the hammer and sickle. Continued de-conditioning will be needed.

Also a positive was his feisty, fighting spirit in calling out some of the low-blow questions, esp the cheap shot from the female moderator about Bernie wanting rapists and murderers to be able to vote for him. My sense is this sort of tough, punch-back approach is going to resonate better with voters than the soft, polite, confrontation-averse types which the DP has so many of.

So overall a very good showing by the Bernmeister, a needed small victory for the D side, and for the moment that other issue, which didn't come up last night, is on the back burner.

Roy Blakeley on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 12:48pm
I grew up in an area that is now Trump central

@gulfgal98 but people were once FDR Democrats. They strongly support social security and decent wages. They are damned mad that their jobs have been shipped out of the country, and that their children's prospects are worse than theirs. They will never be corporate friendly. The Democratic Party left them, but they are not corporate Republicans.

Wally on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 7:49am
IT'S HAPPENING !!!

https://twitter.com/i/status/1117935444098994176

Jen on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 9:49am
There he is

There is the Bernie that I love. I did not realize how much I needed to see that until I was watching it with tears running down my face.

I will admit that I was having serious doubts because of how he jumped in the Russiagate boat and how he seemed to be on the wrong side of the Venezuela issue. I don't have those doubts anymore.

When talking about the MIC, more than once he said "we have to have a strong defense". I totally agree, but that's it - just defense. Cut that budget in half (or more) and there's still plenty for defense - just not enough to set up a base in every country that they are able to so.
When he mentioned the 12 year deadline is when the tears really started to flow. Have any of the other candidates even acknowledged that deadline?

I have never voted in my life. If Bernie is not cheated again and he gets on the ballot, I will register and I will cast my first vote ever. I bet I'm not the only one.

Wally on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 1:16pm
Bill McKibben on our window of opportunity

@Jen From Democracy Now with Amy Goodman:

//www.youtube.com/embed/ID_0jG8mxuk?modestbranding=0&html5=1&rel=0&autoplay=0&wmode=opaque&loop=0&controls=1&autohide=0&showinfo=0&theme=dark&color=red&enablejsapi=0

smiley7 on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 10:48am
I trust Bernie; have done so for decades.

Thanks for this good news and diary.

Wally on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 10:49am
David Brock speaks on Bernie

"There's a growing realization that Sanders could end up winning this thing, or certainly that he stays in so long that he damages the actual winner," said David Brock, the liberal organizer,

From the New York Times today: 'Stop Sanders' Democrats Are Agonizing Over His Momentum

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/16/us/politics/bernie-sanders-democratic...

WoodsDweller on Tue, 04/16/2019 - 12:57pm
Hmmm ...

@MrWebster
That is what I was thinking. Fox certainly knows how to stack an event like this. How could they possibly have failed to vet the audience members? On the other hand we saw an interview a couple of weeks ago with an "average Joe" in a greasy spoon somewhere in the rust belt who was all on board for (I think it was) Medicare for All.

Maybe their screens are faulty. They are making the mistake of screening for labels (are you a Republican? are you a conservative? did you vote for Trump?) and are themselves so ideologically blinded that they don't realize that even people who self-describe with all those labels still want New Deal policies?

Maybe they have an agenda. Visibly TRY but clearly FAIL to discredit Sanders, to set Sanders up as the Democratic candidate with the idea that Trump will easily beat him. Stupid or evil? That's always the question. In this case I'm coming up with "stupid or stupid".

[Apr 16, 2019] Sanders Takes the Campaign Against CAP to Eleven

Apr 16, 2019 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

By Thomas Neuberger. Originally published at DownWithTyranny!

One of my biggest concerns about the 2016 Sanders campaign was that, at least at the beginning, it was too easily forced to apologize for attacks on supposed "allies of progressives" in the Democratic ecosystem -- because "unity."

The prime example of that occurred when Sanders accused the Planned Parenthood Action Fund -- not Planned Parenthood the health care organization, Planned Parenthood AF, the highly Clintonist political action committee, which had early-endorsed Clinton despite Sanders' excellent record on women's issues -- of being "part of the establishment."

He was immediately accused by the rest of the establishment, falsely, of attacking Planned Parenthood clinics. And he backed down, unwisely in my view. (For more on that episode, read the first few paragraphs of this piece .)

Well, the highly Clintonist, highly corporate establishment is at it again, in the form of the corrupt Center for American Progress (CAP) and its online publication ThinkProgress . (For more on their corruption, see also here and here .) ThinkProgress published a video critical of Sanders, as Lee Fang (who also delves into their corruption) explains here:

In response to that video Sanders sent CAP a letter , saying in part:

Center for American Progress leader Neera Tanden repeatedly calls for unity while simultaneously maligning my staff and supporters and belittling progressive ideas. I worry that the corporate money CAP is receiving is inordinately and inappropriately influencing the role it is playing in the progressive movement . (emphasis mine)

Team Sanders then went a whole lot further than that in a public fundraising letter, parts of which are reproduced below. Note the expansion of the "corporate money" point from the CAP letter, and also the directness (emphasis mine throughout):

"We are under attack"

Sisters, Brothers, and Friends –

Just like that, our campaign is under attack from the corporate establishment .

This week, an organization that is the epitome of the political establishment -- the Center for American Progress (CAP) -- unleashed and promoted an online attack video against Bernie.

And behind the scenes on the day Bernie introduced his Medicare for All bill, they held a conference call with reporters attacking the bill.

That is the Center for American Progress' real goal. Trying to stop Medicare for All and our progressive agenda .

CAP's leadership has been pretty upfront about their disdain for Bernie -- and for all of us. They see our political revolution as a threat to their privilege and influence .

The Center for American Progress is an organization whose massive annual budget is bankrolled by billionaires and corporate executives that profit from finance, pharmaceutical companies, fossil fuels, and sending American jobs overseas.

Last year alone, they took funding from financial giants like Bank of America and Blackstone, whose CEO was chair of Trump's business council and is a leading Republican donor.

Before that, they cashed checks from companies like BlueCross Blue Shield, Pfizer, WalMart , and defense contractors like General Dynamics and BAE Systems .

They also took hundreds of thousands of dollars from the fossil fuel pumping United Arab Emirates while the country was bombing innocent civilians in Yemen – a war Bernie has led the fight to end.

The Center for American Progress has deep connections to the economic and political elites who have done so much damage to working families in every zip code. And what we must do today is send a message that we are prepared to fight back against those who are working day and night to defeat our movement .

In solidarity,

Team Bernie

That's powerful stuff, no-holds-barred truth-telling. Note the many bells it rings:

"corporate establishment" "epitome of the political establishment" "real goal stop Medicare for All and our progressive agenda" "threat to their privilege and influence" "massive annual budget is bankrolled by billionaires" "deep connections to the economic and political elites who have done so much damage to working families" "working day and night to defeat our movement"

The letter also names a few of the companies and countries that bankroll CAP -- Walmart, Bank of America, Blue Cross, Blackstone, the UAE. He could have listed a great many more. There are countless stories emerging from former ThinkProgress writers about CAP leadership squelching aggressive reporting because their reports were negatively affecting CAP fundraising. Read this twitter thread by former ThinkProgress reporter Zaid Jilani to see some of those. There are others as well .

Bernie Sanders is not backing down this time. Unlike 2016, this will be a battle with the enemy named out loud and its deeds detailed. Looks like the fight, the one our country has been avoiding for years, is finally on.


Lee , , April 16, 2019 at 11:01 am

This over at Daily Kos:

Fox crowd roars in approval as Bernie explains how M4A is more stable than private insurance
https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2019/04/16/1850603/-Fox-crowd-roars-in-approval-as-Bernie-explains-how-M4A-is-more-stable-than-private-insurance

And, FWIW, Bernie keeps kicking butt in their semi-monthly straw polls over there. There is a whole lot of anti-progressive, push-back but the Sanders Swarm is gathering strength on that centrist platform.
https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2019/4/15/1850407/-Daily-Kos-Democratic-Primary-Straw-Poll-Tax-Day

ambrit , , April 16, 2019 at 3:23 am

I commented about this on another thread to the effect that this is the beginning of a "Night of the Long Knives" quality power struggle in the Democrat Party.
Glad to see the Sanders campaign being proactive about the dirty dealing that is being used to try and stop them.
Now for Sanders to start framing the struggle as being between "Their" Democrat Party and "Our" Democrat Party. Sanders really needs to pull off what Trump managed to do in the Republican Party; a hostile takeover.

Brooklin Bridge , , April 16, 2019 at 3:45 am

Well Put. But regardless, this is still vastly better than 2016.

Left in Wisconsin , , April 16, 2019 at 11:32 am

Exactly right. Unlike Trump, however, Bernie will have to do it with the entire corporate and political establishments against him. And not even a "left" Fox News in his corner. It will truly be us against (all of) them.

Carolinian , , April 16, 2019 at 1:34 pm

Did Trump take over the Republican party or did the Republican party take over him? Winning the presidency is only part of the battle.

rob , , April 16, 2019 at 6:55 am

If any democrat wants to be real, they have to attack other democrats, because the democrats suck.
As a political party, they are so pathetic, they lost to donald trump.
The republicans are vile , and mornic.that is how they appeal to their base ..
So if anything is to be done to try and break the stalemate, it must be the debate of ideas. Not the battle of personalities , we have now.
The republicans have no real ideas, just worn out tropes. The democratic leadership, go around "saying", they are progressives ( pelosi interview),but really they are as tired in their way of thinking as the republicans .
Both groups are not worth a thing.
when pelosi pointed out AOC had a group of five she was being dismissive saying she was steering a bigger ship democrats of all stripes. even the republicans who won seats as democrats . but really her and her band of good for nothing democrats, doesn't count for anything near the five new democrats who are out spoken, and have the good character to be on the right side of history..
I for one, would vote for anyone who battles the democratic blob of a machine. and anyone who doesn't have a problem with the democratic party, is un-electable.

Pelosi needs to go.
So sanders should fight the democratic corporatists in the senate, if he is trying to be real. It is about time he needs that "audacity of hope" thingy.

https://c.deployads.com/sync?f=html&s=2343&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nakedcapitalism.com%2F2019%2F04%2Fsanders-takes-the-campaign-against-cap-to-eleven.html

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antidlc , , April 16, 2019 at 8:59 am

"Mr. Sanders's team remains convinced that the Democratic establishment worked behind the scenes to deprive him of the party's nomination in 2016.."

Well, yeah, it;s true.

Reply

Ashburn , , April 16, 2019 at 9:04 am

Bernie is definitely in it to win this time. Last night he crushed it on Fox News. He had the Fox Town Hall audience cheering and applauding. Yes, Fox News.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/04/16/backfired-watch-bernie-sanders-counter-right-wing-talking-point-make-case-medicare

I don't know of any announced candidate that could pull this off, or that would have the guts to go on Fox.

Reply

ChrisAtRU , , April 16, 2019 at 12:27 pm

It's exactly what both sides of the broken political duopoly feared. Trump's tweet on the subject bears testament to the latter . The pre #BernieFoxTownHall agita from pearl-clutching Dem cultists online serves as evidence of the former .

Bernie's in it to win it.

Reply

ChrisAtRU , , April 16, 2019 at 12:45 pm

Ooops meant to add "(Dem & GOP)" after duopoly – qualifies former and latter .

Reply

Michael C. , , April 16, 2019 at 9:54 am

Sanders is staying away from some issues, such as Assange arrest and Venezuela, which has caused some complaints from the Left. Personally, I think he is being tactical and smart in that he is attempting to reach the largest portion of the electorate. I doubt that he or his staff is ignorant on these type issues, but he is set on a goal and does not want to let issues that might divert his direction toward that goal. Or am I being unduly naïve? I am pretty skeptical of all politicians, but his consistent history gives me some confidence that he will be straight on these issues if elected/.

Reply

Spring Texan , , April 16, 2019 at 10:47 am

I agree. And he HAS to be tactical and smart to win.

Reply

Joe Well , , April 16, 2019 at 12:46 pm

We said the same about Obama in 08.

Reply

Grant , , April 16, 2019 at 1:19 pm

Saying something about two radically different people doesn't logically lead to the same thing. Obama was great at giving speeches, was a historic candidate and did try to (in a vague way) make it sound as if he wanted to change the system. He didn't. He pretended to want to re-negotiate NAFTA, but when the Canadians freaked a bit, his campaign assured them that it was just talk, cause it was. It was obvious before he took office, to anyone paying attention, that Obama was a neoliberal that wouldn't change much of anything. But Obama in 2008 is not Bernie then or now. Obama in 2008 is Beto or mayor Pete now. Empty platitudes, totally cut off from the struggles of working people, paid to not structurally change what needs to structurally change by people that benefit from the system as is. Obama was just much better at being that empty slate than the 2020 version of him. I can almost smell the mayor Pete book deal though, and I am sure he can too.

Reply

Carey , , April 16, 2019 at 1:50 pm

Thanks for this comment. I tried to read yesterday's New York piece
on the Democrats' Folksiest Heartland Hope, but between that
mcPhoto at the top, and the conversational, we're-all-in-this
together tone of the writer, stopped after a couple of paras.
The #resistance are all so tired; do they not realize that?

Regarding Mister Obama's speeches, to me they reeked of
hollowness. He had the gestures and cadences down, though.

Reply

deplorado , , April 16, 2019 at 1:15 pm

I think you are not being unduly naive. Watch some of Bernie's videos from the 80ies. He is very clear eyed about what he's dealing with – and has always said the same thing. He is being realistic, tactical and smart – raising powerful issues where there is clear daily pain for the common person that can bring a powerful response – is anyone really surprised about the Fox audience reaction? (Im only surprised they didnt stack the room with fakes who would boo him ).

The foreign policy issues are not so clear cut for the common working class person (please understand that!) and would muddle the message. He finally sees an opening and he is going for it. He knows what he's doing.

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jrs , , April 16, 2019 at 1:36 pm

it's likely tactical, but he may govern with the exact same tactical concerns

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John , , April 16, 2019 at 10:07 am

The other thing about Fox is that the owner Murdochs are amoral and apolitical. They go where the money is. Totally neoliberal. That is all they care about. They know the money train is coming to a very complex junction and are setting up to go with the money, whether corporate or little people's.

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voteforno6 , , April 16, 2019 at 10:16 am

I think this touches on what could be the most important aspect of a Sanders presidency – it's not so much the policies (they are important), but the people that would be brought into government. This letter is an indication that the usual suspects will not be running the show. In that regard, it could be similar to Reagan's time in office, except way, way better.

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Arizona Slim , , April 16, 2019 at 1:20 pm

Just got another email from Bernie's campaign. Here it is:

Subject: A serious threat to our campaign

The New York Times has an article today with the headline "'Stop Sanders' Democrats Are Agonizing Over His Momentum."

"From canapé-filled fund-raisers on the coasts to the cloakrooms of Washington, mainstream Democrats are increasingly worried " the article begins.

"The Bernie question comes up in every fundraising meeting I do," said one fundraiser.

"It has gone from being a low hum to a rumble," said an operative.

"He did us a disservice in the last election," said another.

"You can see him reading the headlines now," Mr. [David] Brock mused: "'Rich people don't like me.'"

Mr. Brock -- who smeared Anita Hill and who led an effort to stop our political revolution four years ago -- is almost correct. They don't just hate Bernie Sanders. They hate everything our political revolution embodies. They hate Medicare for All, the Green New Deal, breaking up big banks, free public college for all.

That is why, in the next 48 hours, we are launching a fundraising drive that I hope will send an unmistakable message to the political establishment about the strength of our political revolution.

That's why I'm asking you today:

[Link to donation site] Make a $27 contribution to our campaign as part of our emergency 48-hour fundraising drive to fight back against the "anti-Sanders" campaign being hatched by the financial elite of this country. [End link]

They may have "canapé-filled fundraisers." We have each other.

In solidarity,

Faiz Shakir
Campaign Manager

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Jen , , April 16, 2019 at 1:22 pm

Well, just moments after reading the NYT article in question, which is quite a doozy, this popped up in my in box:

"The New York Times has an article today with the headline "'Stop Sanders' Democrats Are Agonizing Over His Momentum."
"From canapé-filled fund-raisers on the coasts to the cloakrooms of Washington, mainstream Democrats are increasingly worried " the article begins.
"The Bernie question comes up in every fundraising meeting I do," said one fundraiser.
"It has gone from being a low hum to a rumble," said an operative.
"He did us a disservice in the last election," said another.
"You can see him reading the headlines now," Mr. [David] Brock mused: "'Rich people don't like me.'"
Mr. Brock -- who smeared Anita Hill and who led an effort to stop our political revolution four years ago -- is almost correct. They don't just hate Bernie Sanders. They hate everything our political revolution embodies. They hate Medicare for All, the Green New Deal, breaking up big banks, free public college for all.
That is why, in the next 48 hours, we are launching a fundraising drive that I hope will send an unmistakable message to the political establishment about the strength of our political revolution.
That's why I'm asking you today:
Make a contribution to our campaign as part of our emergency 48-hour fundraising drive to fight back against the "anti-Sanders" campaign being hatched by the financial elite of this country.

They may have "canapé-filled fundraisers." We have each other.
In solidarity,
Faiz Shakir
Campaign Manager

Forgetting nothing, learning nothing. One of the true, primal joys of Bernie's 2016 campaign was hitting the donate button every time the dollar dems dumped on him.

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Chuck T. , , April 16, 2019 at 2:03 pm

Likewise. I'm giving every time they dump on him, and again every time he hits back. At this pace, $27 may get to be too expensive. A good problem to have I'd say.

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[Apr 14, 2019] Another neocon controlled think tak to be beware of: Center For American Progress

Apr 14, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Zachary Smith , Apr 14, 2019 6:08:14 PM | link

Headline at the Neocon York Times:

"Bernie Sanders Accuses Liberal Think Tank of Smearing Progressive Candidates"

The "liberal" outfit under discussion is the Center For American Progress. This outfit is against "single payer" health care. It was in favor of Obama's escalation in Afghanistan. Funding comes from billionaires like Soros and corporations like Wal-Mart.

The blogger complaining about Sander's awful behavior is a Biden fan, I generally don't link to stupid sites, and all the connected ones in this case qualify.

[Apr 03, 2019] Krugman is irrelevant and his promotion of Hillary is disingenuous

This is from 2015 and it certainly characterize Krugman as a despicable political hack...
Notable quotes:
"... The big story he won't write about is that the Republicans wouldn't be such a threat if Team D was worth a damn. ..."
"... The spectacle of 2009-2010 cured me of any lingering desire to vote Democrat ever again – or to waste my time reading Krugman. ..."
"... Krugman is a collaborator. His wealth and prestige is built on his capacity for perpetuating falsehoods that have had vast and deadly consequences (Obama care, for instance). ..."
"... Not to mention he was a huge advocate of NAFTA. Something he never mentions. ..."
"... Krugman's defense of Obama care either indicates a lack of intellect, or in my view the more probable possibility, the inability to accept that the system is thoroughly corrupt, including most dems and economists ..."
"... It's no excuse for someone who actually thinks and writes about public policy, but could it be that Krugman is like my fellow guests and just never had to think about the cost of his health insurance simply because he could always afford it. So, I mean, he's never done the math. He's just done the "responsible thing" and carried insurance his whole life. ..."
www.nakedcapitalism.com

Steven D.

Used to be an avid Krugman reader. But I get bored reading about how bad the Republicans are. Tell me something I don't know. The big story he won't write about is that the Republicans wouldn't be such a threat if Team D was worth a damn.

It's like they got the ball in 2009 with the field wide open for a touchdown. But since the game was fixed Team D just danced around their own 20-yard line looking for the feeble Republican defense to block them. Every time they have an opening for a good play they panic over the prospect of scoring big and contrive to fumble the ball. The most they ever want is field goals and to prevent the Republicans from running away with the game too much.

That's why Krugman can write about how scary the Republicans are. But so what? Everyone knows that. Why are they in such a position? That's the interesting story.

Barmitt O'Bamney

Indeed, and seconded: Kruggers is irrelevant. However correct his critique may be, as far as it goes, it never goes far enough since he has chosen to mutilate himself into playing the role of partisan hack. There is a beam in the Republicans' eye? Well, there is a beam in his eye, too.

The spectacle of 2009-2010 cured me of any lingering desire to vote Democrat ever again – or to waste my time reading Krugman. If my choice is between voting against my own interests on the one hand, and voting against my interests on the other, I'll just stay home or else make my vote a protest against the party that assumes it has an unconditional right to my vote. Reading about how the Republicans are always wrong, with nary a mention of how Democrats are right there with them in the latrine of wrongness isn't worth a minute more of my time – and my time isn't even very valuable.

Benedict@Large

The problem (that leads to the boredom) with reading Krugman is not that he's always talking about how bad the Republicans are. That after all is true. The problem with reading Krugman is that he's always picking on the lowest hanging fruit; the easy cases that require no special nuance or understanding. Krugman is a smart man, and he is better than this. We have all too many of us capable of picking apart the 4th grade thinking and analysis that is so common in the GOP. To add Krugman to that list is a waste of (his and our) time.

tongorad

Krugman is a smart man, and he is better than this.

Evidence, please.

Krugman is a collaborator. His wealth and prestige is built on his capacity for perpetuating falsehoods that have had vast and deadly consequences (Obama care, for instance).

hidflect

Not to mention he was a huge advocate of NAFTA. Something he never mentions.

fresno dan

Krugman's defense of Obama care either indicates a lack of intellect, or in my view the more probable possibility, the inability to accept that the system is thoroughly corrupt, including most dems and economists

Ulysses

I think the most serious problem that Paul Krugman has, in accepting that the system is thoroughly corrupt, is his internalization of the meritocratic myth. The syllogism runs as follows:

1) I have "merit"

2)The system has lavished wealth and renown on me

3)Therefore, those who claim that our system "isn't really meritocratic" must themselves lack "merit," or be deluded from too much sentimentality, or too much attention to "exceptions that prove the rule."

Tom Allen

He's also prone to defending politicians and economists with whom he's personal friends - and there are a lot of them. That's human nature, but it tends to make one skeptical of his objectivity when, for example, Larry Summers or Ben Bernanke is involved.

NotTimothyGeithner

He's also preaching to the choir. Who is Krugthullu's audience? Outside of New Yorkers, it's largely people who fantasize about finishing the Sunday crossword despite not actually trying and love to have a simplified "liberal" world view reinforced. Given how Obots use to swarm, would he have survived not towing the company line? Without his column, Krugthullu is just another economics professor without the backing of a billionaire who keeps him around as a pet. Maybe Warren Buffet would put up a nice fence to keep Krugthullu in his yard, but he would likely have to spend time in Omaha.

The flip side is Krugthullu has likely burned too many bridges to regain his 2009 status. The Obots can't handle criticism, and it's rather late to join the Obama anonymous support group.

jrs

I mostly think they keep Krug around to justify "trade" agreements. That the little battles don't matter so much compared to "trade" agreements (and in fact they don't, on the issue of healthcare, "trade" agreements are a serious threat to even those countries with better medical systems. "Trade" agreements can override other political battles, even those where Krugs position might be decent).

jo6pac

Thanks for LOL, so true.

GlobalMisanthrope

Yeah, I am completely mystified by his defense of the ACA. My employers think of themselves as good liberals (although they do not provide health insurance but rather a health stipend to a handful of top managers that we can apply toward our purchase of insurance on the exchange) and have trotted out Krugman on occasion when I have argued against the Act.

I was at a dinner party before Christmas with a diverse group of professionals hosted by a friend who is a wine maker. There were several people from the food and beverage industry, a university professor and her law school administrator spouse, an obstetrical surgeon, a rancher and three others I never got a chance to learn anything about. The subject of "Obamacare" came up. I was truly astonished by the completely fact-free conversation that ensued. So much so that I stayed silent for a long time, really not knowing what to say.

My friend, the host, noticed my expression and asked me what I thought about Obamacare. So I described it as the boondoggle that it is and went into some detail debunking many of the claims made by the other guests. Honestly, I mean they were more or less polite, but they didn't think I knew what I was talking about. What can account for this?

Well, one of the things that came out was that I was, by some distance, the lowest paid person at the table.

It's no excuse for someone who actually thinks and writes about public policy, but could it be that Krugman is like my fellow guests and just never had to think about the cost of his health insurance simply because he could always afford it. So, I mean, he's never done the math. He's just done the "responsible thing" and carried insurance his whole life.

Anyway, it was a cold shower to realize how intractable their belief in the system is. As I find myself saying a lot lately, I was not heartened.

flora

The whole ACA thing reminds me of the urban renewal projects of the 50s and 60s. Those were supposedly progressive projects to replace blighted areas with modern housing. In fact it was political snake oil that didn't help the poor so much as help large cities fill their coffers. It replaced poor dwellings with middle class dwellings that increased the cities' tax revenues. The poor were left to fend for themselves as their poor but stable neighborhoods were destroyed. The designers of the projects thought they were doing good.

I wonder how many people sitting around the table with you tried to buy their mandated insurance on the ACA web portal or on the open market? ACA sounds good in theory.

Lexington

It's no excuse for someone who actually thinks and writes about public policy, but could it be that Krugman is like my fellow guests and just never had to think about the cost of his health insurance simply because he could always afford it. So, I mean, he's never done the math. He's just done the "responsible thing" and carried insurance his whole life.

Yup.

I have my frustrations with Krugman too, but I think progressives need to cut the guy some slack: he's a professor at Princeton, a Nobel laureate, and has a trophy case full of professional honours and twenty books plus a couple of hundred articles under his belt. He's in the sanctum sanctorum of the elite.

If he never penned another op ed or blog post or participated in another public debate it wouldn't make the slightest difference to his legacy. Yet there he is, the very model of a public intellectual, actually inviting non specialists to engage in a discussion about economics and public policy, and fighting the good fight for liberalism. You can be sure he isn't doing it to win plaudits from his peers. ...

[Mar 31, 2019] US Army Major Warns Dems Trump Will Wipe The Floor In 2020 Unless You Fix Foreign Policy

I think Trump completely discredited himself in foreign policy due to appointment of Bush II team of neocon which drive it.
So the only chance for him to win is if US voters do not care about foreign policy. Demagogy will not work like in 2016 as he now have a dismal record including attempt in regime change in Venezuela.
Notable quotes:
"... the vast majority of Americans don't give a hoot about issues of war, peace, and international diplomacy. Why should they care? It's not as though anything is asked of them as citizens. By cynically ditching the draft, Tricky Dick Nixon took the wind out of the sails of current and future antiwar movements, and permanently cleaved a gap between the U.S. people and their military ..."
"... Mothers no longer lose sleep over their teenage sons serving their country and they – along with the rest of the family – quit caring about foreign policy. Such it is, and so it will be, that the 2020 presidential election is likely to be decided by "kitchen-table" affairs like healthcare, immigration, race, and taxes. ..."
"... In 2016, he (correctly) made Hillary"regime change" Clinton out to be the true hawk in the race. Trump, on the other hand, combined tough guy bravado (he'd "bomb the shit" out of ISIS) with earthy good sense (there'd be no more "stupid" Iraq invasions. And it worked. ..."
"... Mark my words: if the DNC – which apparently picks the party's candidates – backs a conventional neoliberal foreign policy nominee, Trump will wipe the floor with him or her. ..."
"... If they want to stand a chance in 2020, the Dems had better back a nominee with a clear, alternative progressive foreign policy or get one the domestic-focused candidates up to speed and fast. ..."
"... So here's how my mental math works: a progressive candidate needs to win over libertarian-minded Republicans and Independents (think Rand Paul-types) by force of their commonsense alternative to Trump's foreign policy. ..."
"... Still, there's more than a little reason for concern . Look at how "Nasty" Nancy Pelosi and the establishment Dems came down on Ilhan Omar for that representative's essentially accurate tweets criticizing the Israel Lobby. ..."
"... Tulsi Gabbard, though she still looks the long shot, remains intriguing given here genuine antiwar (and combat veteran) credentials. ..."
"... Then again, even Bernie has his foreign affairs flaws – such as reflexively denouncing the BDS movement and occasionally calling for regime change in Syria. Nevertheless, both Bernie and Tulsi demonstrate that there's some promise for fresh opposition foreign policy. ..."
Mar 31, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by US Army Major Danny Sjursen (ret.) via TruthDig.com, Still Waiting: 2020 Fever and the Quest for a Progressive Foreign Policy

The 2020 election will not turn on global issues – and more's the pity. After all, thanks to decades upon decades of accumulating executive power in an increasingly imperial presidency, it is in foreign affairs that the commander-in-chief possesses near dictatorial power. Conversely, in domestic policy, a hostile Congress can – just ask Barry Obama – effectively block most of a president's agenda.

Still, the vast majority of Americans don't give a hoot about issues of war, peace, and international diplomacy. Why should they care? It's not as though anything is asked of them as citizens. By cynically ditching the draft, Tricky Dick Nixon took the wind out of the sails of current and future antiwar movements, and permanently cleaved a gap between the U.S. people and their military.

Mothers no longer lose sleep over their teenage sons serving their country and they – along with the rest of the family – quit caring about foreign policy. Such it is, and so it will be, that the 2020 presidential election is likely to be decided by "kitchen-table" affairs like healthcare, immigration, race, and taxes.

Be that as it may, serious observers should pay plenty of attention to international strategy.

So, while Dems can't win the White House with foreign policy alone, they can lose it by ignoring these issues or – oh so typically – presenting a muddled overseas strategy.

This is serious.

Just in case there are any out there still underestimating Trump – I, for one, predict he'll win in 2020 – make no mistake, he's no pushover on foreign policy. Sure he doesn't know much – but neither does the average voter. Nonetheless, Trump is no dope. He's got the pulse of (white) voters across this country and senses that the populace is tired of spending blood and cash (but mostly its cash) on Mideast forever wars. In 2016, he (correctly) made Hillary"regime change" Clinton out to be the true hawk in the race. Trump, on the other hand, combined tough guy bravado (he'd "bomb the shit" out of ISIS) with earthy good sense (there'd be no more "stupid" Iraq invasions. And it worked.

So, with 2020 in mind, whether you're a progressive, a libertarian, or just a Trump-hater, its vital that the opposition (most likely the Dems) nominate a candidate who can hang with Trump in foreign affairs.

Mark my words: if the DNC – which apparently picks the party's candidates – backs a conventional neoliberal foreign policy nominee, Trump will wipe the floor with him or her. And, if the Dems national security platform reads like a jumbled, jargon-filled sheet full of boring (like it usually does) than Joe the proverbial plumber is going to back The Donald.

That's what has me worried. As one candidate after another enters an already crowded field, this author is left wondering whether any of them are commander-in-chief material. So far I see a huge crew (Liz, Kirsten, Kamala, Beto) that live and die by domestic policy; two potentially conventional foreign policy guys (Biden and Booker); and two other wildcards (Bernie and Tulsi). That's not a comprehensive list, but you get the point. If they want to stand a chance in 2020, the Dems had better back a nominee with a clear, alternative progressive foreign policy or get one the domestic-focused candidates up to speed and fast.

So here's how my mental math works: a progressive candidate needs to win over libertarian-minded Republicans and Independents (think Rand Paul-types) by force of their commonsense alternative to Trump's foreign policy. That means getting the troops out of the Mideast, pulling the plug from other mindless interventions and cutting runaway defense spending. Then, and only then, can the two sides begin arguing about what to do with the resultant cash surplus. That's an argument for another day, sure, but here and now our imaginary Democratic (or Third Party?) nominee needs to end the wars and curtail the excesses of empire. I know many libertarians – some still nominally Republican – who could get behind that agenda pretty quickly!

Still, there's more than a little reason for concern . Look at how "Nasty" Nancy Pelosi and the establishment Dems came down on Ilhan Omar for that representative's essentially accurate tweets criticizing the Israel Lobby. Then there's Joe Biden. Look, he's definitely running. He's also definitely been wrong time and again on foreign policy – like how he was for the Iraq War before he was against it (how'd that turn out for John Kerry in 2004?). And, for all the talk of a progressive "blue wave" in the party ranks, Biden still polls as the top choice for Democratic primary voters. Yikes.

Behind him, thankfully, is old Bernie – who sometimes shows potential in foreign affairs – the only candidate who has both backed Omar and been consistent in a career of generally antiwar votes. Still, Bernie won his household name with domestic policy one-liners – trashing Wall Street and pushing populist economic tropes. Whether he can transform into a more balanced candidate, one that can confidently compose and deliver a strong alternative foreign policy remains to be seen.

Tulsi Gabbard, though she still looks the long shot, remains intriguing given here genuine antiwar (and combat veteran) credentials. Still, she'll have her hands full overcoming problematic skeletons in her own closet: ties to Indian Hindu nationalists, opposition to the Iran deal, and sometime backing of authoritarians and Islamophobes. Then again, even Bernie has his foreign affairs flaws – such as reflexively denouncing the BDS movement and occasionally calling for regime change in Syria. Nevertheless, both Bernie and Tulsi demonstrate that there's some promise for fresh opposition foreign policy.

Here's (some) of what that would look like:

Our imaginary candidate would need to convey this commonsense course to a war-weary American people as plainly and coherently as Trump can. No jargon, no Clintonian wonky crap – simple and to the point. Imagine it: a commonsense course for a clear-eyed country!

Less war and more investment at home. Less war and more middle-class tax cuts. Whatever. That fight will come and the progressives and independents/libertarians will fight it out. For now, though, what's essential is checking the war machine and military-industrial behemoth before its too late (it may be already!).

None of this will be easy or likely, of course. But count on this much: the establishment Democrats, media-mogul "left," and centrist DC think tanks won't save us from the imperial monster or deliver a Trump-defeating strategy in foreign affairs. The Mueller-will-save-us, Mattis-was-a-hero, reflexively anti-Trump, born-again hawks like Rachel Maddow and the other disappointing chumps at MSNBC or CNN aren't on our side. Worse yet, they're born losers when it comes to delivering elections.

All of this may be far-fetched, but is not impossible. Neither libertarians nor progressives can countenance Trump. Nor should they. One of their only true hopes for compromise rest on foreign policy and a genuine antiwar message. It can be done.

Look, on a personal note, even America's beloved and over-adulated soldiers are reachable on this issue – that's how you know the foreign policy alliance has potential! For every rah-rah war-fever cheerleader in uniform, there's an exhausted foot soldier on his Nth tour in the Mideast. There's also a huge chunk ( 40%! ) who are racial minorities – usually a reliably anti-Trump demographic. Finally, among the white men and women in uniform I've personally met a solid core of libertarians. And the data backs up my anecdotal observation – Ron Paul was highly popular among active-duty military members and their families. A progressive foreign policy alliance with the libertarian wing of Republicans and Independents would sell better with these such voters both in and out of uniform. You know the type: sick of war but just as sick of stereotypical liberal snowflakes.

So here's a plea to the "opposition" such at it is: avoid the usual mistakes – don't cede foreign affairs to the Trump and the Republicans; don't nominate anyone remotely resembling Joe Biden; don't alienate libertarians and independents with wonky or muddled international policy.

Try something new. Like winning

* * *

Danny Sjursen is a retired U.S. Army officer and regular contributor to antiwar.com . He served combat tours with reconnaissance units in Iraq and Afghanistan and later taught history at his alma mater, West Point. He is the author of a memoir and critical analysis of the Iraq War, Ghostriders of Baghdad: Soldiers, Civilians, and the Myth of the Surge . Follow him on Twitter at @SkepticalVet .

[Mar 29, 2019] Trump Slams US Wars in the Middle East

During 2016 election campaign: "On foreign policy Hillary is trigger happy" says Trump and he is right 100%... And he continued Hillary policies.
And the he behaves as 100% pure militarist.
Notable quotes:
"... I've always thought that Hillary's support for the broader mission in Libya put the president on the 51 side of the line for a more aggressive approach ..."
"... Had the secretaries of state and defense both opposed the war, he and others said, the president's decision might have been politically impossible. ..."
"... Except for that last minute of Trump_vs_deep_states, I almost thought that was a Bernie speech. An interesting general election plan is to take Bernie's ideas with a healthy dash of Trump spice in an attempt to coalesce the angry populist vote. ..."
"... Sanders is the last hope to avoid total disaster. Maybe he can help mitigate HRC's hawk stance in the ME. I think Israel is a lost cause though as the problem child with nukes. ..."
"... A political strategy based on xenophobia and divisiveness supports those who benefit from xenophobia and divisiveness – those who exploit labor (including Trump who outsources jobs, hires H2-B workers, and exploits workers domestically and overseas), and those who benefit from the military-industrial-security-serveillance complex; and harms the rest of us. ..."
"... Obama and the Democrats did everything they could to undermine and stamp out progressive organization. ..."
"... Except it's recent US actions which have undermined the Middle East in general. From Saddam to Libya to ISIS etc etc. ..."
"... if you pay them enough. ..."
"... "We have been killing, maiming and displacing millions of Muslims and destroying their countries for the last 15 years with less outcry than transgender bathrooms have generated." ..."
"... Good point. I keep wondering why Hillary the Hawk's actual illegal war and murdering of Muslims is worse than Trump's ban. ..."
"... Imagine Trump running to the left of Hillary on defense / interventionism, trade, and universal healthcare. That would sure make things interesting. He could win. ..."
"... James Carville, astute handicapper that he is, has already sniffed out that Hillary now needs Bernie more than Bernie needs Hillary. ..."
"... even in comparison with Hillary Clinton ..."
"... "core voters come from communities where a lot of people have fought in the post-9/11 Middle Eastern conflicts. Our armed forces are stretched to the breaking point. Trump has strong support among veterans and active duty soldiers" ..."
"... "As a small business owner, not only are you trying to provide benefits to your employees, you're trying to provide benefits to yourself. I have seen our health insurance for my own family, go up $500 dollars a month in the last two years. We went from four hundred something, to nine hundred something. We're just fighting to keep benefits for ourselves. The thought of being able to provide benefits to your employees is almost secondary, yet to keep your employees happy, that's a question that comes across my desk all the time. I have to keep my employees as independent contractors for the most part really to avoid that situation, and so I have turnover" ..."
"... "We do not qualify for a subsidy on the current health insurance plan. My question to you is not only are you looking out for people that can't afford healthcare, but I'm someone that can afford it, but it's taking a big chunk of the money I bring home." ..."
"... "What you're saying is one of the real worries that we're facing with the cost of health insurance because the costs are going up in a lot of markets, not all, but many markets and what you're describing is one of the real challenges." ..."
"... "There's a lot of things I'm looking at to try to figure out how to deal with exactly the problem you're talking about. There are some good ideas out there but we have to subject them to the real world test, will this really help a small business owner or a family be able to afford it. What could have possibly raised your costs four hundred dollars, and that's what I don't understand." ..."
"... You echo my feelings. My loathing of Clinton knows no bounds, and I cannot vote for her, no matter what. But I simply don't trust Trump. He's a gold-digger extrodinaire, and quite the accomplished showman. He knows how to play to the crowd, and he's clearly quite quick to shape shift. The wrecked tatters of what's called the USA "media" gives Trump a YOOOGE pass on simply everything and anything the man says or does. ..."
"... if Donald wins, he could just end up the loneliest man in DC, be ignored, get nothing done ..."
"... Trump doesn't need to see the Zapruder film. He was alive then and knows the story, just like everyone else of a certain age. Nay, verily, he just means to cash in on it. ..."
"... Being Left of Hillary is a really really really low bar. He probably is, but thats probably because Hillary is right wing. You know, like almost all American politicians from both parties. Trumps not left of Bernie (at least not yet or not right now: I expect hes going to swing left in the general to scoop up Bernie voters), and Bernies just an Eisenhower Republican, which is admittedly to the left of basically all the other politicians today. ..."
May 18, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com

There are good reasons to harbor serious reservations about The Donald, given that he changes his position as frequently as most people change their clothes. But so far, he has been consistent in making an argument that is sorely underrepresented in the media and in policy circles: that our war-making in the Middle East has been a costly disaster with no upside to the US. Trump even cites, without naming him, Joe Stiglitz's estimate that our wars have cost at least $4 trillion.

As Lambert put it, "I hate it when Trump is right."

If you think Trump is overstating his case on Hillary's trigger-happiness, read this New York Times story, How Hillary Clinton Became a Hawk .

And on Clinton's role in Libya , which Obama has since called the worst decision of his presidency:

Mrs. Clinton's account of a unified European-Arab front powerfully influenced Mr. Obama. "Because the president would never have done this thing on our own," said Benjamin J. Rhodes, the deputy national security adviser.

Mr. Gates, among others, thought Mrs. Clinton's backing decisive. Mr. Obama later told him privately in the Oval Office, he said, that the Libya decision was "51-49."

"I've always thought that Hillary's support for the broader mission in Libya put the president on the 51 side of the line for a more aggressive approach," Mr. Gates said. Had the secretaries of state and defense both opposed the war, he and others said, the president's decision might have been politically impossible.

And yes, that's this Ben Rhodes .

kj1313 , May 13, 2016 at 7:15 am

Best assessment yet. This is a great speech bite from Donald but I have no idea if he means it. (Though I don't agree with it just look at his Muslim Ban stance) Half the time he makes coherent reasonable arguments, the other half the time I think he definitely is a Clinton Mole. I don't know which Trump I'm getting hour to hour much less day to day.

MtnLife , May 13, 2016 at 8:02 am

Except for that last minute of Trump_vs_deep_states, I almost thought that was a Bernie speech. An interesting general election plan is to take Bernie's ideas with a healthy dash of Trump spice in an attempt to coalesce the angry populist vote. It'll be interesting to watch Hillary circle the wagons of the content, elite center in an attempt to hold off the marginalized hordes of angry "savage plebs", especially if the convention seems stolen. Still hoping for some miracle to pull Sanders through.

Jus' Sayin' , May 13, 2016 at 1:32 pm

Miracle indeed, Sanders is the last hope to avoid total disaster. Maybe he can help mitigate HRC's hawk stance in the ME. I think Israel is a lost cause though as the problem child with nukes.

jgordon , May 13, 2016 at 8:22 am

In all seriousness, why is his Muslim ban idea bad? Or for that matter why would it, in principle, be a bad idea to ban nearly all foreigners from entering the US? After all, it's not as if the US has some actual need for foreigners to enter considering the large and growing desperately poor domestic population. Especially considering that heretofore (let's be real here) both legal and illegal immigration has been mainly exploited to destroy domestic labor conditions in the US.

This is a fact a lot of ostensibly good-hearted progressive and wealthy liberals conveniently ignore (they'd probably cry themselves to sleep if they could no longer help to improve the lot of that below minimum wage illegal immigrant maid they hired). Well, the working poor aren't ignoring it, and the lid is going to blow soon if this keeps up. Donald Trump and the popularity of his Muslim ban is only an early sign of the brewing discontent.

marym , May 13, 2016 at 9:24 am

He didn't propose banning Muslims as a way to address our jobs and economic problems (which it isn't), he proposed it as a way to address domestic terror (which it isn't). It's a political tactic to stir up and implicitly sanction hate, prejudice, divisiveness, and violence.

jgordon , May 13, 2016 at 10:09 am

Not arguing your point, however how are Trump supporters reading this? These people are already against any immigrant coming into the US for economic reasons, and in all honesty they are looking for any excuse whatsoever to view immigrants in a bad light.

Just to add to that a bit, it's also why immigrant crime is always being hyped up and exaggerated by Trump supporters. The real issue deep down is that immigrants are threatening them economically, and they'll use any justification whatsoever to get rid of them.

Is it right? I don't really know how to objectively answer that. But for the people doing it, this could work out in economic terms for them. So at least from their perspective it's a good idea.

fresno dan , May 13, 2016 at 11:05 am

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2013/02/silicon-valley-h1b-visas-hurt-tech-workers

AS WELL AS
https://pando.com/2014/03/22/revealed-apple-and-googles-wage-fixing-cartel-involved-dozens-more-companies-over-one-million-employees/

I think people are just so angry with how the squillionaries use "politically correct" proper thinking about immigration to hide their illegal suppression of wages that even outrageous and outlandish statements by The Donald will not dissuade his supporters – – after all, the supporters could ask why is this issue of wage suppression, "by any means necessary", that affects FAR, FAR more people who ARE US citizens so scrupulously IGNORED by the media (media owned by rich??? – of course). As disturbing as what The Donald says, what is NOT SAID by the ENTIRE (except Sanders) US political establishment, is far more disturbing, as I think it shows an utterly captured political caste. As well as the rank hypocrisy that if any of these immigrants don't have health care after they arrive, the squillionaires couldn't care less if they died in the streets – no matter how rich they are, they want to make more people poorer. They are such an evil enemy that people will put up with The Donald.

It is a fact that these tech billionaires engaged in an illegal activity. It is a fact the US government simply ignored enforcing laws and refuses to punish them.

Trump in my view will not be able to do even a quarter of some of this crap like banning Muslims – laws do have to be passed. But the fact remains that Trump will probably be the only presidential nominee (not presidential candidate, i.e., Sanders), and the last one in 40 years, to even merely talk about these issues.
The fact that Trump succeeds just shows how famished people are to some challenge to the war mongering, coddling of the rich that is passed off as something that the majority supports.

marym , May 13, 2016 at 11:46 am

A political strategy based on xenophobia and divisiveness supports those who benefit from xenophobia and divisiveness – those who exploit labor (including Trump who outsources jobs, hires H2-B workers, and exploits workers domestically and overseas), and those who benefit from the military-industrial-security-serveillance complex; and harms the rest of us.

It seems no more likely that Trump as president will actually promote policies that will "work out in economic terms" for ordinary people as it was to think Obama would put on this "comfortable shoes" and join a picket line (though I bought that one at the time).

NotTimothyGeithner , May 13, 2016 at 12:21 pm

Hillary basically won relatively well to do minorities who voted for her in 2008 just in smaller numbers. Poorer minorities stayed home in Southern states where Internet access is less available and progressive organizations are just churches. On the surface, Sanders sounds very much like the media perception of President Hope and Change who isn't as popular as much as no one wants to admit the first non white President was terrible or they actively applauded terrible policy.

Free college probably didn't appeal to people with junk degrees from for profit diploma mills. The damage is done. People need jobs not school at this point or incomes. A green jobs guarantee act would have been a better push front and center, but again, this is with hindsight. Many minority voters simply didn't vote, and Hillary pushed that "you don't know Bernie" line to scare voters that Sanders was another Obama.

Obama and the Democrats did everything they could to undermine and stamp out progressive organization.

jrs , May 13, 2016 at 2:22 pm

Agree that jobs should be the focus (or income and meeting basic needs). Education as the focus appeals to the under 25 years old college bound crowd, but not so much to anyone older having to survive out there in the work world everyday.

B , May 13, 2016 at 11:59 am

I am a Trump supporter and I am not against immigrants or immigration. I am opposed to doing nothing in the face of a broken immigration system. I do not think it is wise for any country to have millions and millions of undocumented workers in its midst. I believe we should legalize those that are here. Those that have committed crimes not related to immigrating or over staying visas should absolutely be deported and lose the privilege of living in the US. I live in Spain, but am an American. If I broke minor laws, such as drunk driving, assault or drug possession I would be deported too, seems fair to me. I believe we have to revamp border security, though I don´t think a wall spanning the entire border would be wise or effective I personally think Trump is speaking hyperbolically and symbolically about the wall. Nonetheless, our elites sure do love living behind big walls and gated communities, with armed security, maybe we should ask them why, walls are just racist anyways, no?

Immigrant crime is not some myth, its real and sometimes it is a very tragic consequence of a broken immigration system. The fact that the cartels also exploit our broken border and immigration system is not a myth either, it is reality.

And as for a temporary ban on Muslims coming from Syria, Libya and other locations that have been devastated by the covert and overt wars of the US I support it totally, for no other reason than public safety, which is the first reason we institute government. Remember this happened just after Paris, public safety is a very legitimate concern. Also, why are Islamic countries such as Saudi Arabia or the Gulf States taking in a single refugee? The Saudis have the money and the capacity to to do this. They have tents used only during the hajj that house thousands upon thousands. Where is that wonderful, charitable side of Islam?

I wish the world were different. I don´t harbor prejudice against anyone. Those that want to come and live, grow and contribute to American civilization, Come, please!! But our world is very dangerous, and we have created enemies that seek to do harm to our society and civilization in anyway that they can. We have to protect ourselves and our nation. I wish beyond wishing, that it was someone besides the Donald saying these things, but, it is what it is. I am not gonna shoot the messanger cuase I dont like his personality, or because I would not be friends with someone like him.

kj1313 , May 13, 2016 at 3:17 pm

Except it's recent US actions which have undermined the Middle East in general. From Saddam to Libya to ISIS etc etc.

jrs , May 13, 2016 at 2:17 pm

Illegal immigration could likely be enforced in some industries (on the lower paid scale in garment making sweatshops and so on). And this could probably best be done by prosecuting the employers doing the hiring. But I'm not at all convinced the country could run without immigrants entirely. Who would pick the crops? Ok maybe lots of people at a $15 an hour minimum wage. But at current compensation? Though I don't know if this really needs to be done via illegal immigration, it could be done by much more formalized guest worker programs I suppose.

Tony S , May 13, 2016 at 3:59 pm

Or, we could just let the market work. You WILL get American workers to perform just about any job if you pay them enough. Obviously, the reasonable price point for labor is currently well below what a US citizen will accept. But if I offered a million dollars to get my lawn mowed, I would have a line out the door of American workers begging to have the job.

Guest workers are just another way to depress US citizens' wages. And immigration reform is best tackled at the employer level, like you said - anybody who doesn't make this part of his or her "reform" plan is not to be taken seriously. (I regularly mention this to conservatives, and they always look for a way to justify going after the powerless immigrants anyway.)

John Wright , May 13, 2016 at 6:04 pm

High wages can encourage more automation or substitution of crops that require less manual labor or even cause people to exit farming as uneconomic.. But the number of workers employed in farming is relatively small.

Per this USDA document http://www.ers.usda.gov/media/259572/eib3_1_.pdf in 2000, 1.9 percent of the workforce worked in agriculture.

The World Bank has the USA workforce at 161 million in 2014 and if about 2% of this workforce is employed in farming, this is about 3.2 million people throughout the USA. And the 3.2 million count is probably not all illegal immigrant workers. This report suggests government price supports have encouraged more people to work in agriculture, implying that the government is indirectly creating low wage jobs by price supports.

From the above pdf. "For example, the institutionalization of what began as emergency income support in the 1930s has likely slowed the movement of labor out of the farm sector."

I am of the opinion that the law of one price will apply if there is relatively free movement of workers, legally or illegally, across borders.

Note, Trump never suggests e-verify and employer enforcement, which would be a low cost way of enforcing citizen employment and would avoid a costly "great wall".

Trump and HRC's investments are probably more profitable due to a lower labor cost influenced by low wage workers.

Katniss Everdeen , May 13, 2016 at 11:45 am

And people don't OPPOSE his restrictions on Muslim immigration because they feel so charitable towards and accepting of Muslims.

We have been killing, maiming and displacing millions of Muslims and destroying their countries for the last 15 years with less outcry than transgender bathrooms have generated. And we've allowed our own civil liberties to be radically infringed. All because " THEY hate us for our 'freedoms.' " Who the hell do you think THEY are?

But it's Trump who is hateful, prejudiced, divisive and bigoted? As if "welcoming" some immigrants from countries that we callously destroyed perfectly absolves those who were busy waiting in line for the newest i-gadget and couldn't be bothered to demand an end to the slaughter.

Get a clue. Trump's not talking about murdering anybody. And no amount of puffed up "outrage" and name-calling is going to get the stain out. Not to mention it's the most sane and humane way to protect the "homeland" from the "terrorism" that we, ourselves, created.

lindaj , May 13, 2016 at 3:09 pm

"We have been killing, maiming and displacing millions of Muslims and destroying their countries for the last 15 years with less outcry than transgender bathrooms have generated."

Good point. I keep wondering why Hillary the Hawk's actual illegal war and murdering of Muslims is worse than Trump's ban.

Pespi , May 13, 2016 at 9:26 am

"I'm against all immigration, as it's merely a lever to lower wages." "I'm against the immigration of muslims, because they're bad terrorists." There is a difference in these two statements.

Vatch , May 13, 2016 at 9:55 am

You are correct that there is too much immigration to the U.S., and it causes economic and environmental problems. However, Trump's Muslim ban would cover more than immigration. He would also ban temporary visits by Muslims (except for the mayor of London, I suppose).

I object very strongly to Muslim extremism, and a lot of Muslims have extremist views. But not all of them do. And many Christians, Hindus, and whatever also have extremist views which should be opposed. Trump's not proposing a bad on travel by extremist Christians; he's singling out Muslims because they scare millions of Americans. It's demagoguery.

jgordon , May 13, 2016 at 10:39 am

You are not quite right there. Trump supporters do indeed want to ban Christian immigrants as well (the vast, overwhelming majority of immigrants from Mexico, central, and South America are Christians of some sort) although in the case of Christians the excuse is "violent crime" since obviously Trump supporters can not disparage Christians specifically for their Christianity. Seriously, watch any Trump speech and you'll see that he spends more time talking about why all American (Christian) immigrants need to be banned (crime) than why Muslim immigrants need to be banned (terror). Economic insecurity is at the root of all of it.

Vatch , May 13, 2016 at 3:56 pm

Has Trump demanded that Christians from Europe or Canada be prevented from entering the U.S.? I'm pretty sure he hasn't. If he's really motivated by economic reasons, there's no need to specify a particular religion, such as Islam, or a particular nationality, such as Mexicans.

jgordon , May 13, 2016 at 5:09 pm

People from Europe and Canada already have high salaries. Or they are perceived to have high salaries in their home countries. IE they are not percieved as an economic threat. I guarantee you, show me a poor, third world country that is sending a lot of people to US right now and and I'll show you an ethnic groups that faces some prejudice. Come on, it's not well paid people with stable jobs and incomes who are going around being prejudiced against immigrants. It's the poor and the desperate who are doing it.

There is a reason for that. Ignoring that reason and pretending that it's some bizarre and unfathomable psychological illness just coincidentally affecting people who are also offing themselves from despair left and right isn't going to make it go away. Rather, you are inviting something terrible to happen. The Germans didn't decide to follow Hitler because times were good, and a friendly PR campaign encouraging openness and acceptance among the poor misguided racists and immigrant haters out there will do exactly nothing to help matters.

pictboy3 , May 13, 2016 at 10:56 am

I don't think anyone (most anyone anyway) would disagree that there are plenty of Muslims who are not extremists. The problem for us is, how do you tell the difference? The San Bernadino shooter was a health inspector, had a wife, kids, a middle class job, ties to the community and still decided to shoot up his co-workers with his wife in tow. Plenty of the European ISIS recruits come from middle class families that are seemingly well-adjusted. If these people (keep in mind Farook was a US citizen) can become terrorists, how can we possibly screen new entrants with any sort of efficacy?

I'd say it's probably worth the miniscule risk of possible immigrants turning out to be terrorists if there was some other benefit to having them come in, but if we agree there's too much immigration to the US already and it is hurting actual US citizens, what exactly is the upside to keep allowing Muslims in?

By the way, I've been lurking on this site for a few weeks now, first time commenter. It's nice to find some quality discussion on the internet. Nice to meet everyone.

Jim , May 13, 2016 at 11:29 am

Where are these "extremist Christians" burning and burying people alive, beheading hostages, blasting away at crowds in night clubs? "Christian extremism" is a figment of your imagination. The attempt to equate Moslem violence with conservative Christians is utterly absurd. Do you seriously believe that soime Amish dude is going to run amuck in a New York night club and slaughter hundreds of people?

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 2:38 pm

The Bush administration?

cm , May 13, 2016 at 2:45 pm

A cheap shot. Please explain how the Obama administration differs from the Bush administration.

Skippy , May 13, 2016 at 6:07 pm

Obama does not get is morning SITREP delivered with biblical headers

"The religious theme for briefings prepared for the president and his war cabinet was the brainchild of Major General Glen Shaffer, a committed Christian and director for intelligence serving Mr Rumsfeld and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

In the days before the six-week invasion, Major General Shaffer's staff had created humorous covers for the briefings to alleviate the stress of preparing for battle.

But as the body count rose, he decided to introduce biblical quotes.

However, many of his Pentagon colleagues were reportedly opposed to the idea, with at least one Muslim analyst said to be greatly offended.

A defence official warned that if the briefing covers were leaked, the damage to America's standing in the Arab world 'would be as bad as Abu Ghraib' – the Baghdad prison where U.S. troops abused Iraqis.

But Major General Shaffer, 61, who retired in August 2003, six months after the invasion, claimed he had the backing of the president and defence secretary. When officials complained, he told them the practice would continue because it was 'appreciated by my seniors' – Mr Rumsfeld and Mr Bush.

The briefing covers were revealed for the first time by GQ after they were leaked to the U.S. magazine by a source at the Pentagon."

Disheveled Marsupial . whilst I understand the acts committed transcend time and political party's . never the less in – The Name Of – can not be white washed away

cassandra , May 13, 2016 at 5:14 pm

cm has a point; you should have included Obama/Clinton.

Yves Smith , May 13, 2016 at 2:48 pm

Did you manage to miss Trump's point in the video that the US has killed millions in the Middle East, and that if US presidents had gone to the beach for the last 15 years. everyone would have been better off? And that we murder people by drone in addition to all our undeclared wars? You are seriously pretending Christians not only have blood on their hands, but started these wars and have killed people in vastly bigger numbers than we have? I'm not defending terrorists, but your position is a remarkable airbrushing.

Ulysses , May 13, 2016 at 3:31 pm

The worst domestic terrorist the U.S. ever produced, Timothy McVeigh, wasn't Amish, yet neither was he Muslim. Denying people the opportunity to immigrate here– based solely on religion– contradicts the principles of tolerance on which this country was founded.

JTMcPhee , May 13, 2016 at 3:42 pm

Yah, this is a Great Country, isn't it, where everyone has the right to own assault weapons, and the opportunity to assemble and detonate giant bombs hidden in rental trucks, and you can do pretty much whatever you can get away with, depending on one's degree of immunity and impunity and invisibility

But the Panopticon will Save us

Vatch , May 13, 2016 at 4:01 pm

Eric Rudolph and Robert Lewis Dear, Jr., are more examples of Christian terrorists. Outside the country, there's Anders Breivik (well, he's only partially Christian, but he's definitely not Muslim).

TG , May 13, 2016 at 12:20 pm

Kudos. Well said.

lyman alpha blob , May 13, 2016 at 2:16 pm

I get your point from a labor standpoint but who gets to decide to shut the door and say 'no more room at the inn'? Unless it's First Peoples I think it would be pretty hypocritical coming from the descendants of all the other immigrants who crossed over themselves at some point.

PS: I haven't heard this talked about much but does anyone really believe Trump is serious with all this immigrant-bashing rhetoric? If he is anywhere near as rich as he claims to be, he got there at least in part, and likely in large part by exploiting cheap labor. While I've never stayed in a Trump property to see for myself I'm guessing that all the hotel employees aren't direct descendants of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Vatch , May 13, 2016 at 2:23 pm

Unless it's First Peoples I think it would be pretty hypocritical coming from the descendants of all the other immigrants who crossed over themselves at some point.

Everybody outside of Africa, including "First Peoples" (if I understand that phrase correctly), is a descendant of immigrants. The ancestors of the Amer-Indians (probably) came from Siberia over the Bering land bridge during the late ice age.

It might be hypocritical for an actual immigrant to advocate restrictions on immigration, but that's not the case for descendants of immigrants. But if there are restrictions, they shouldn't be based on religion or race.

lyman alpha blob , May 13, 2016 at 11:14 pm

I don't really think shutting down immigration is the answer. It's not practical and isn't likely to solve the problems blamed on immigration even if you could keep people out.

People don't leave their countries en masse unless there's some kind of disaster. A little less imperialism turning nations to rubble would be a much better solution.

anon , May 13, 2016 at 2:37 pm

So you believe that no people, anywhere, ever, have a right to determine who can join their community, contribute to their community, or undercut their community's wages and values. Except if some "First Peoples" show up and endorse the idea? Do they have divine right of kings or something? What if we got one Indian to agree? A plurality of them?

If it was right for the natives to resist the destruction of their way of life in 1492-1900, and it was, it is right for the natives to resist of the destruction of their way of life now. Even if those natives' skin now comes in multiple colors.

Tony S , May 13, 2016 at 4:09 pm

Well, I have trouble believing that Trump is serious about his TPP-bashing and Iraq-war-bashing, I have trouble believing Trump's words are credible on just about any issue.

It's going to be a rough four years, whether Trump wins or loses.

Vatch , May 13, 2016 at 4:50 pm

Well, Sanders still has a chance, although he's a long shot. Democratic voters in Kentucky, Oregon, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, California, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, and the District of Columbia have a chance to save the nomination for him.

In Puerto Rico, Montana, and North Dakota, the election events are open, so anyone who's registered can vote for Sanders. In California, registered independents can also vote for Sanders.

different clue , May 13, 2016 at 9:50 pm

If its hypocritical, perhaps we should live with that if it is also reality-based and pragmatic. As in " we've got a good thing going here and we don't need nobody else muscling in on our sweet racket".

Separately, many advocates of ILLEGAL immigration carefully pull a sleight-of-mouth bait-and-switch between ILLEGAL immigration and legal immigration. Accepters of carefully controlled legal immigration can still reject ILLEGAL immigration for pragmatic social-survival reasons.

steelhead23 , May 13, 2016 at 5:28 pm

Quite simply, the idea of banning Muslims entry to the U.S. is an affront to the very nature of the American experiment, of plurality, equality, and religious freedom. However, recent events in Europe, specifically the sexual assaults in Cologne and elsewhere show that some young Muslim men are a problem. So are some young American men. An issue we need to wrestle with is how to reduce this problem. Such problems are not about religion, they are cultural, they are about interpersonal respect and behavior. But, the West, broadly speaking, has shown horrendous disrespect to Moslems. The U.S. has attacked wedding parties and funerals, destroyed cities and countries, behaving like Crusaders. Perhaps were the West to display less barbarism toward Moslems, they would express more respect toward us. Seems worth a try.

NotTimothyGeithner , May 13, 2016 at 9:29 am

He doesn't have to mean anything. Trump needs to drive potential Democratic turnout down. On one hand, reminding people how awful Hillary is effectively destroys volunteer efforts which is how voters get registered and identified for gotv. The other side is what is the perception of the average Democratic voter of Hillary's record. Hillary supporters have pushed the "tested," "likely to win, " and "inevitable" arguments for a long time now. How many people in the potential electorate understood Hillary was a hawk when they voted or didn't bother to show up? Bernie used words such as "poor judgement" for fear of being labeled sexist. Trump won't hold back.

Perhaps, Trump was a mole, but what can Bill offer that the GOP can't? Air Force One might not be the most luxurious plane, but its the Air Force plane wherever the President is. Thats respect no one can buy. Reagan was carted through the White House, so why not Trump?

MikeNY , May 13, 2016 at 7:17 am

Imagine Trump running to the left of Hillary on defense / interventionism, trade, and universal healthcare. That would sure make things interesting. He could win.

bowserhead , May 13, 2016 at 9:22 am

It ain't over. She's got one countermove left which is to somehow get Bernie on the ticket and grab the enthusiastic and politically correct (if not fully-informed) millenial vote. Otherwise the dilution of the blue vote in the swing states will loom large. James Carville, astute handicapper that he is, has already sniffed out that Hillary now needs Bernie more than Bernie needs Hillary.

NotTimothyGeithner , May 13, 2016 at 10:19 am

Sanders on the ticket would only undermine Sanders. This Is about the DLC or the status quo. The length of Sanders career has made him credible, but Hillary has already lost this same race to an empty suit. The Democrats have bled support since Obama went full Reagan, but in many ways, this is a conflict between Democratic elites and their loyalist followers and everyone else. Accepting assimilation will only hurt Sanders. Forcing a Vice President onto Hillary such as Gabbard would be a far better aim. Sanders supporters aren't interested in a status quo candidate, supported by the usual list of villains.

Hillary can get a begrudging vote, but she will never endive enthusiasm. Bernie and Hillary uniting will only annoy people.

Michael Fiorillo , May 13, 2016 at 7:29 am

Yes, and then, as his long history with customers, contractors, vendors and creditors has shown, he'll fuck us.

Please don't take this as advocacy for the Other One, but Donnie's entire career is based on screwing people over; this is just another, albeit far bigger, hustle.

Don't think for a second that you could rely on him to follow through honestly about anything; it's always and forever about Donnie.

anon , May 13, 2016 at 7:51 am

As if HRC wont?

jgordon , May 13, 2016 at 8:43 am

Hey, there's at least a 1% chance that Trump won't go out if his way to screw the American people considering the blackbox nature of his candidacy, whereas there is at least a 100% chance that HRC will screw the American people hard. And add in the fact that she is a known psychopath with an itchy trigger finger who will have the Red Button on her desk if she gets into the oval office Yeah. Trump isn't looking too bad now, is he?

Ian , May 13, 2016 at 9:05 am

I gotta admit that Trump has always been a wild card for me, and while he is likely to screw us, Hillary definitely will. Still the only candidate worth supporting in any conceivable sense is Bernie.

Jason , May 13, 2016 at 2:54 pm

Given his gleeful endorsement of torture, advocacy for war crimes, nods to totalitarianism and fascism, his own clear psychopathy, along with his racism, xenophobia, and apparent ignorance on everything from medicine to the environment, and nuclear weapons, yes he looks bad, even in comparison with Hillary Clinton , which says a great deal about just how awful he truly is.

Ulysses , May 13, 2016 at 3:17 pm

They are both truly awful!! If they turn out to be the top two candidates on the ballot, I will have no choice but to write in Bernie, or vote Green.

Jason , May 13, 2016 at 3:49 pm

I'm personally more frightened by Trump than Clinton. I've lived through almost 8 years of Obama, plus Bush and Clinton how much worse than those could another 4-8 years of the same be? Trump is a terrifying like my house on fire. But at the same time, I can certainly understand the desire to vote for the Green with a clear conscience.

Perhaps we'll get lucky, and Hillary's campaign will collapse before the convention. Bernie would be the first candidate I could really vote for (and who'd have a real chance at winning).

steelhead23 , May 13, 2016 at 6:29 pm

Why not put your vote where your words are? We're Senator Bernie Sanders to be the candidate, my vote would be his. If he's not, and he endorses Secretary Clinton, then my vote goes to Doctor Jill Stein, my favorite candidate anyway. Given the momentum Sanders has generated, were he, instead of supplicating himself to Clinton following her coronation, to stand behind Ms. Stein Only in my dreams. Sigh

different clue , May 13, 2016 at 9:56 pm

The DLC Third-Way Clintonite Obamacrats will not let Bernie become nominee no matter what. If the party can't coronate Clinton, the party will try to bolt the severed head of Joe Biden onto Clinton's headless body . . and run THAT.

jgordon , May 13, 2016 at 3:58 pm

"We came. We saw. He died. [Raucous laughter]"

That right there is what convinced me that the woman is a psychopath. She should have been carried out out of the interview in a straight jacket, and yet there are some people who trying to make her president. Trump may be a narcissist, but I would not say that he's psychotic.

If nothing else you need to support Trump for the survival of humanity.

flora , May 13, 2016 at 10:52 am

Thinking about a Trump/hillary_clinton. contest reminds me of the movie 'The Sting'; where a couple of honest con men take down a dishonest con man who killed their friend. I see Hillary as the dishonest con man.

jrs , May 13, 2016 at 2:34 pm

In reality Trump is NOT to the left of Hillary on universal healthcare. Read his website.

Look since the guy is a major presidential candidate whether one likes that or not, I have no problem directing people to his website. See how he puts his actual policy positions, such as they are, in his own words.

Interventionism and trade remain to be seen as personally I think his positions on them are likely to still uh evolve as they say during the campaign season. So I'm leaving the verdict out there.

MtnLife , May 13, 2016 at 8:06 am

I brought up this idea right when he became the presumptive nominee but this isn't really a pivot left. He's always been less of a hawk than Hillary. One of the few positions he has been relatively consistent on. I see him biding his time for a full pivot until Bernie is out of the picture. Here's to hoping that doesn't happen.

MikeNY , May 13, 2016 at 8:18 am

Like all of my best thoughts, unoriginal. :-p

MtnLife , May 13, 2016 at 10:00 am

My apologies, my friend. Didn't mean to step on you. Meant it as a concurrence. Sipping coffee slowly today. You're one of my favorite people here for your regularly spot on, insightful comments.

MikeNY , May 13, 2016 at 10:10 am

Kind words, TY.

Yves Smith , May 13, 2016 at 8:24 am

Yes, my big effort to tell myself that Life Under Trump may not be as horrible as I fear is that the record of outsider presidents (Carter) and celebrity governors (Schwarznegger and Jesse Ventura) is they get very little done.

NotTimothyGeithner , May 13, 2016 at 9:57 am

Modern governors are bound by devolution and mandates. They are just glorified city managers with the staff to do the city manager's job. Even popular, insider governors can do very little. The President can set the terms by which the governors operate.

John Wright , May 13, 2016 at 10:02 am

I'm concerned that HRC will get more done than the Donald, but little of HRC's actions will be positive.

California handled Schwarznegger without too many problems as he tried unsuccessfully to "break down boxes".

He replaced, via recall, the forgettable democratic Governor Gray Davis who simply disappeared from politics.

As I recall, Davis papered over the CA energy crisis until after the election, figuring that when the s**t hit the fan, he'd have been safely reinstalled in office.

The recall campaign proved this a bad assumption.

Schwarznegger actually tried to do something about climate change, see http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/tech/big-energy-gamble.html

I see HRC as possibly getting more wars started, TPP/TTIP approved, a grand bargain done on SS, and providing more coddling to the financial, medical and insurance industries.

If many or all of HRC's possible negative accomplishments will not be done by Trump, then that could justify electing a president who accomplishes little..

jrs , May 13, 2016 at 2:46 pm

Yea Schwarznegger was ok. He made a few very devoted enemies in a few unions. But he was probably far better on pushing environmental issues than Jerry fracking Brown ever was or will be. If it was him versus Jerry at this point, I might very well prefer Arnold.

jsn , May 13, 2016 at 11:37 am

I think Trump at least understands that you can't take money from people who don't have any. His casino enterprise in Atlantic City may have taught him that.

Like Anne Amnisia's link yesterday, I feel like I know where I stand with a Mussolini and can envision taking a bullet honorably in resistance where the DNC method has been slowly killing me my whole adult life and, short of Bernie, I can't see how to resist!

If he's ineffectual and doesn't start more wars, at least its more time to organize and Trump's the kind of "leader" that might give focus to resistance.

Deloss Brown , May 13, 2016 at 4:08 pm

Yves, I wish I thought you were right. But The Duck is so bizarre, so definitively unhinged, that no one can predict what he'll do. He changes positions as the wind blows. And when he follows any philosophy at all, it's the "Conservative" philosophy. He doesn't believe in global warming. He once said that there should be NO minimum wage. I'm a Bernie fan, not a Hillary fan, but I would never, ever take the risk of letting the Hare-Brained Jabberwocky into any position of power, which means, probably, that I have to vote for Hillary, and even start sending her money after the primaries. Probably.

marym , May 13, 2016 at 8:48 am

His healthcare plan on his campaign website is the usual Republican gibberish – repeal Obamacare, sell insurance across state lines, block grant Medicaid.

He suggested 20-30,000 troops to Syria in response to a debate question, then said he would never do that, but send " air power and military support" instead. ( LINK )

marym , May 13, 2016 at 8:57 am

edit: Position on the website is also to give veterans the ability to "choose" healthcare outside the VA system. (I'm not knowledgeable to say if this would actually help current pressing VA issues, but it is a move from a national public health service model to a private care model, so not leftward).

MikeNY , May 13, 2016 at 9:30 am

Thanks for that. I think the general idea holds, though: it's a populist remake of politics, and I think if Trump stakes out some 'unconventional' positions that are to the 'left' of HRC, he could beat her.

marym , May 13, 2016 at 12:39 pm

Well, if by left you meant 'left' then we agree :) His appeal is much broader, though IMO a combination of rightward demagoguery and leftward populist-i-ness.

MikeNY , May 13, 2016 at 5:05 pm

You're right about the demagoguery. So again, we agree!

JTMcPhee , May 13, 2016 at 9:43 am

That VA notion is a dagger pointed at the heart of all those people who for whatever reason, "took the King's shilling" or drew the short straws in the draft lotteries or, before that, were nailed and "inducted" just by living in heavy-draft-quota areas. And of course the Greatest Generation, so many of whom got drug into earlier US imperial wars (Narrative notwithstanding.)

Sending GIs to docs outside the VA system (itself under siege for generations now by the same shits who bring on the Forever War that generates ever more damaged people needing those "services"), to docs who in my experience pretty uniformly have zero knowledge of vet-specific problems and diseases and injuries, who will be paid how much to treat what quota of veterans, again? Crucifying GIs on the HMO cross, so people can pretend there's "care" for them, via docs who are even more likely than VA docs (who at least have some protections against arbitrary rules and policies and firings, in a "system" run by many who institutionalize actual CARE as the main idea) to "go along with the minimization-hurry-up-and-die program"?

The whole notion is straight Rule #2: "GO DIE, FOKKER! And do it quietly, out of sight, and with minimum fuss, in a structure that so diffuses the abuses over space and time that it's extremely difficult for the affected population to even gather the numbers to show how bad it is." Straight "more continuing more opaque fog of war" bullshit. The same kind of sales BS as used to sell the rest of neoliberalist misery ("Don't whine now, fools - you voted for it, I have the validated results of the elections right here, so now it's All Nice And Legal, seeee?) from NAFTA and preceding frauds and vast FIREs, on up to the present scams.

In the meantime, the Military-Industrial Juggernaut continues to gain mass and momentum. Trump can natter about "war in the Mideast is a bad deal for the US" (Mideast seemingly not including AfPak, China, Africa, South America, etc.) as a "bad deal." But will he have any interest in spooling down the turbines on the enormous Milo Minderbinder Enterprises machine that is daily being "upgraded" and "up-armored" and "re-weaponed" and "re-doctrined" and "mission-creeped," with the happy participation of every business, large and small, that can wangle or "extend" a procurement or "study" contract to expand and lethality and simple bureaucratic-growth size and incompetence (as a military force, in the old sense of what armies are supposed to do for the Emperoro) of the monster, even as we blog participants do our mostly ineffectual (if intellectually pleasing) nattering?

Civilian Control of the Military is a dishonest myth - true only in the sense that the Captains of MICIndustry and drivers of "policy" are not currently Active Duty, though they all, along with the generals (who live like kings, of course) belong to the same clubs and dip deeply into the same MMT Cornucopia. And the MIC, from what I read, is quite open and pleased about the state of affairs

whine country , May 13, 2016 at 10:07 am

I would argue that the MIC is simply part of the 20 percent that derive their middle class existence by serving at the beck and call of the 1 percent. You are describing the symptoms and not the disease.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 2:35 pm

Yep.

Felix_47 , May 13, 2016 at 10:41 am

We are in the grip of "credentialled" doctors and lawyers. Just as most litigation and most of what lawyers do is destructive to the average person, it is estimated that half of all surgeries done in the US are unnecessary. the HIC (health industrial complex) has brainwashed the public to believe that we need $20,000 per month medications and artificial discs. As you have doubtless seen the third leading cause of death in the US is medical mistakes. They happen in the VA and in the private sector. Maybe the notion of more medical care is better is simply not valid. At some point we will have to realize that rationing in a rational way is going to have to happen. I would rather have someone who went to medical school decide on what is going to be rationed than some lawyer or business administrator.

JTMcPhee , May 13, 2016 at 2:46 pm

There sure is a lot packed into that comment. But my experience with VA doctors and other caregivers (speaking as a retired "private sector" nurse, VA care recipient and former attorney) is that except for the psychiatrists and some of the docs that perform disability examinations, the VA caregivers actually provide care, and they seem to do it pretty well, given the constant attrition of resources and burgeoning case load the neolibs are imposing. Personal tale: the Medicare 'provider" at the full-spectrum clinic I used to use was all hot to perform a "common surgical procedure that most older men need." A fee-generating TURP, which pretty rarely improves the victim's life. The VA doc, looking at the same condition and presentation, noted the down-sides pretty carefully and said that until I was a lot more "restricted," there was no way I "needed" any such invasive procedure. But then his income is not influenced by the number of cuts he makes

Most of what lawyers do any more, and this has been true for a long time, is combat over wealth transfers, economic warfare. Ever since partnership was killed off as the mandatory form of lawyer business operations, with attendant personal liability for partner actions, the rule is "eat what you kill, and kill all you can." Most doctors I know have caregiving as their primary motivation in going into medicine. (Most nurses, the same to a much greater extent, and since they start with smaller debt and fewer chances to bleed the patient and the system that bleeds the nurse pretty badly, they can carry that decency forward.)

Interesting, of course, that more and more doctors have joint MD and MBA credentials. And working with other operatives, are gradually and maybe inexorably forcing more of their fellows into "medical cooperatives" like HCA and JSA, where they become salaried wage slaves with productivity targets and metrics, and thus "rationers" de facto, by having to respond to "metrics" that are all driven by the basic business model: "More and more work, from fewer and fewer people, for less and less money, for higher and higher costs, with ever more crapified outcomes for the mope-ery." Although, I might offer, there are some of my fellow mopes who actually do benefit from those back surgeries (yes, maybe most of them are unwarranted, but not all) and meds that only cost "$20,000 per month" because of MARKETS.

Jim Haygood , May 13, 2016 at 11:27 am

'Imagine Trump running to the left of Hillary on defense / interventionism, trade, and universal healthcare.'

It would be like FDR vs Hoover - with Goldwater girl Hillary playing the role of Hoover.

inode_buddha , May 13, 2016 at 6:41 pm

Imagine Trump winning as a GOP canidate by running to the left of the DNC canidate. The vision of the GOP having a collective ulcer/Rovian Meltdown is making me giggle like a schoolgirl all day.

Frankly, I'm *much* more worried about HRC in the Whitehouse than I am about Trump. Reason why is that he's a relative outsider, not an Establishment guy - and there is always Congress to deal with. Its not like he would have a total dictatorship, whereas HRC would be able to do far more and deeper damage to the nation.

My position is Sanders or bust, and I say that as a 20-year member of the GOP (now independent).

Nick , May 13, 2016 at 7:22 am

Like you said, he changes his positions all the time, and Clinton is no doubt a serious warmonger/war criminal, but he did also say that he would "bomb the s- out of ISIS," which one might also be inclined to characterize as trigger happy.

I am equally terrified at the prospect of having Clinton or Trump at the nuclear controls, which is why we should all send Bernie a few bucks today. The MSM have already gone into full Clinton v Trump general election mode, though that is certain to change once Bernie wins California.

Yves Smith , May 13, 2016 at 7:30 am

If you read what Trump has said about our foreign policy, he has been consistent in his view that the US can't and shouldn't be acting as an imperalist. He does not use those words, but he's said this often enough that I've even linked to articles describing how Trump is willing to depict America as being in decline, and this as one manifestation. In addition, his foreign policy speech was slammed basically because it broke with neocon orthodoxy. I have not read it but people I respect and who are not temperamentally inclined to favor Trump have, and they said it was sensible and among other things argued that we could not be fighting with China and Russia at the same time, and pumped for de-escalating tensions with Russia as the country whose culture and interests were more similar to ours than China's.

Having said that, calling out our belligerence and TPP as bad ideas seem to be the only issues on which he's not been all over the map (well, actually, he has not backed down on his wall either .)

The other reason to think he might stick with this position more consistently than with others is that his core voters come from communities where a lot of people have fought in the post-9/11 Middle Eastern conflicts. Our armed forces are stretched to the breaking point. Trump has strong support among veterans and active duty soldiers, and it's due to his speaking out against these wars.

Trump can probably get away with continuing to shape shift till Labor Day, since most voters don't make up their minds till close to the election. It's not pretty to watch him make a bold statement and then significantly walk it back in the next 24 hours, particularly if it's an issue you care about and he's said something that is so nuts that it sounds like he cares more about his Nielsen rating than what makes sense for the country. If he can't put enough policy anchors down by the fall and stick to them, he will lose a lot of people who might give him a shot out of antipathy to Clinton.

P , May 13, 2016 at 7:45 am

This guy has been writing some great stuff this cycle.

http://theweek.com/articles/622864/how-hillary-clinton-could-blow

miamijac , May 13, 2016 at 8:06 am

like's bait and switch.

Nick , May 13, 2016 at 8:05 am

That may well be the case and he was right to call out the Iraq war as a "mistake" during that debate (given his otherwise unconventional rhetoric, however, I was actually a bit disappointed that he didn't use the more correct term war crime), but he has also said that he wants to bring back torture and then some.

As far as I'm concerned though, the race right now is between Clinton and Bernie and I'm fairly confident that Bernie still has a good chance since he is sure to take California (which, luckily for Bernie, will seem like a huge surprise).

In a match up between Trump and Clinton my own personal thoughts (that a democratic – i.e. neoliberal – white house will at least continue to move people to the left, whereas a republican white house will only galvanize people around bringing another neoliberal to the white house) are irrelevant because I have virtually no doubt that Trump will win.

Yves Smith , May 13, 2016 at 8:30 am

Yes, his enthusiasm for torture is pretty creepy and you get a taste of it here indirectly: "That Saddam, he was a really bad guy but he sure could take care of those terrorists!" While Trump does seem to genuinely disapprove of all the people our wars have killed for no upside (a commonsense position in absence among our foreign policy elites), he seems overly confident that we can identify baddies well and having identified them, we should have no compunction about being brutal with them.

bowserhead , May 13, 2016 at 8:50 am

"That Saddam, he was a really bad guy but he sure could take care of those terrorists!"

His meaning here is we should have stayed out of it and let the "really bad guy" (Saddam) handle Al Quaeda. Of course, the Bush neocons dishonestly morphed Saddam into Al Quaeda. You know the rest of the story.

jgordon , May 13, 2016 at 9:34 am

I'm willing to bet that he's saying a lot of this stuff for his audience–people who are generally a pretty angry and bloodthirsty lot. I'm not saying that he's not going to come out for peace, love and contrition when he's elected president, but I think it is safe to say that his rhetoric now is completely unrelated to how he'd go about actually governing.

OK, so normally that'd be a horrible admission–if the Democrats hadn't had the brilliant idea of foisting Hillary onto the American people. What a brain-dead move! I myself could have been persuaded to support Bernie, but Hillary is the Devil incarnate as far as I'm concerned.

fresno dan , May 13, 2016 at 11:23 am

One fact that we have to remember is all the people who designed, advocated for, implemented, and defended "enhanced interrogation" and than who use "Clintonisms" to say we no longer use torture (because we never did – "enhanced interrogation") AND because we are "rendering" them someplace else and our friends are doing the enhanced interrogation – well, such lying devious people in my view are far, far worse than The Donald.
In my view, there appears to be considerable evidence that the US still defacto tortures – and that is far, far worse than the appalling, but at least truthful statement of how Trump feels. And of course, pink misting people may not be torture, but it can't be separated.

Again, which is worse:
A. The Donald up front advocates a policy (of torture), people can be mobilized to oppose it. No legalisms, dissembling, and every other term that can be used to obfuscate what the US is REALLY doing.
B. The US government asserts it no longer tortures. How many readers here have confidence that that is a factually true statement, that can be said without word games?
Is saying we should torture WORSE than saying we don't torture, but WE ARE???

ggm , May 13, 2016 at 2:17 pm

I feel the same way. It's preferable to have someone take the morally reprehensible pro-torture stance than to pretend to be against it while secretly renditioning prisoners and so forth.

jrs , May 13, 2016 at 2:51 pm

A good argument for reelecting George W Bush I suppose. Everything was pretty out in the open in the W administration you have to admit.

pretzelattack , May 13, 2016 at 4:16 pm

except for the fake wmds that started it. and abu ghraib. and the reasons the contractors were hung in fallujah. and the fake alliance between saddam and al quaida. and outing valerie plame when joe wilson blew the whistle on the fake purpose of the aluminum tubes.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 7:44 pm

Let's not forget the warrantless surveillance program!

Also, Wilson blew the whistle on the yellowcake uranium. The aluminum tubes were another mole in the whack-a-mole game.

Seas of Promethium , May 13, 2016 at 7:44 pm

Everything was pretty out in the open in the W administration you have to admit.

"The United States does not torture." -GWB

Ian , May 13, 2016 at 9:10 am

Enough electoral fraud has been evidenced that I think that the numbers are going to be gamed to be closer to the non-representative polling that flood the MSM. He may win, but they aren't going to allow him to win by a lot in such a delegate heavy state.

Rhondda , May 13, 2016 at 11:22 am

Unfortunately, I think you are quite right that the California numbers will be rigged/gamed. I had become quite cynical about American politics, thanks to Obama the More Effective Evil's reign and the Bush and the Supremes Florida gambit back in 2000. But this primary vote rigging has really moved my marker so far that I am not even sure what word to use what's more cynical than super duper cynical?

I no longer believe - any of it .

jrs , May 13, 2016 at 2:54 pm

So here's an idea I've been pondering how can the people try to prevent or find this? Could we exit poll outside the voting places? Yes it would be a limited sample of just one local place but it's something and in aggregate if lots of people were doing this

I too think they might try to game California. And this is quite alarming considering California is usually too unimportant to even game. I figure the elections are usually honest here, probably because they just don't matter one whit. But this time it might matter and they might steal the vote.

Northeaster , May 13, 2016 at 8:45 am

"core voters come from communities where a lot of people have fought in the post-9/11 Middle Eastern conflicts. Our armed forces are stretched to the breaking point. Trump has strong support among veterans and active duty soldiers"

This.

People tend to also forget that there's a lot of us Gen-X'ers that were deployed over there over 25 years ago, when it was popular, for the same damned thing. Nothing has changed. Sure, some leadership folks have been taken out, but the body count of Americans soldiers has only risen,and the Region is now worse off.

The "first time" we had more folks die from non-combat related accidents than from actual combat. Some of us are sick of our political and corporate establishment selling out our fellow soldiers and Veterans, even worse is the way they have been treated when they come home. I'm not a Trump supporter, but this part of his message not only resonates with me, but angers me further. Why? Because I know that if Hillary Clinton walks into The Oval Office, even more Americans are going to die for lust of more power and influence.

HRC is simply the evilest human being I have ever seen in politics in my lifetime. Trump may be an idiot, crass, authoritarian, and any number of negative things, but he is not "evil" – she is.

Roger Smith , May 13, 2016 at 7:25 am

If the mash up continues as Clinton v. Trump and barring any character sinking actions of Trump, this man will win in November. To paraphrase Shivani, Clinton is speaking entirely in high minded self-interest, while Trump has latched onto and is pressing a actual truths of reality (regardless of his personal convictions or what he wlll actually do if elected).

Trump is more liberal than Clinton here. What exactly are her redeeming qualities again?

Pavel , May 13, 2016 at 8:01 am

I can't really think of any HRC redeeming qualities. "Retail politicking" doesn't seem to be one of them. Lambert, you no doubt saw this video of her confronted with rising health insurance costs post-ACA? Her word salad response doesn't begin to address the real issues

During a recent town hall event, a small business owner explained to the Democratic front-runner that her health insurance has gone up so significantly for her family that the thought of providing benefits to her employees is secondary at this point.

"As a small business owner, not only are you trying to provide benefits to your employees, you're trying to provide benefits to yourself. I have seen our health insurance for my own family, go up $500 dollars a month in the last two years. We went from four hundred something, to nine hundred something. We're just fighting to keep benefits for ourselves. The thought of being able to provide benefits to your employees is almost secondary, yet to keep your employees happy, that's a question that comes across my desk all the time. I have to keep my employees as independent contractors for the most part really to avoid that situation, and so I have turnover"

"We do not qualify for a subsidy on the current health insurance plan. My question to you is not only are you looking out for people that can't afford healthcare, but I'm someone that can afford it, but it's taking a big chunk of the money I bring home."

To which Hillary responded, to make a long story short, that she knows healthcare costs are going up, and doesn't understand why that would ever be the case.

"What you're saying is one of the real worries that we're facing with the cost of health insurance because the costs are going up in a lot of markets, not all, but many markets and what you're describing is one of the real challenges."

"There's a lot of things I'm looking at to try to figure out how to deal with exactly the problem you're talking about. There are some good ideas out there but we have to subject them to the real world test, will this really help a small business owner or a family be able to afford it. What could have possibly raised your costs four hundred dollars, and that's what I don't understand."

"What could have possibly raised your costs four hundred dollars, and that's what I don't understand." - this from a woman who ostensibly is an expert on health care delivery?

The link is from Zero Hedge but in any case watch the video. Or wait for it to appear in a Trump campaign ad:

"What Could Have Possibly Raised Your Costs" – Hillary Can't Answer Why Obamacare Costs Are Soaring

Roger Smith , May 13, 2016 at 9:16 am

"Or wait for it to appear in a Trump campaign ad" Haha!

I am surprised she didn't pull out the "90% coverage" false-positve. We haven't seen that pony enough. The notion of imploring "scientific" method here is interesting in light of the party's blood oath to meritocracy. "There are some good ideas out there but we have to subject them to the real world test ". It also implies that the process is natural and no accountability is necessary.

Another great DNC experiment. Throwing the blacks in jail for 20 years over nothing "oh well, we need to try more!" I cannot imagine being in prison right now for some minor drug offense and hearing the Clintons spew this nonsense.

That bagel spread though

P , May 13, 2016 at 7:37 am

This is going to be one hell of an election If nothing else those slimeballs that Clinton represent will be killed off. Finally.

samhill , May 13, 2016 at 7:41 am

joe-stiglitz-tells-democracy-now-that-war-cost-will-reach-5-to-7-trillion

It's a cost to the 99%, to the 1% it's profit – a damn whole lot of profit.

bowserhead , May 13, 2016 at 8:13 am

Jeff Gundlach, one of the few iconoclasts and reigning king of bonds on Wall Street:

"People are going to start putting greater focus on Hillary (Clinton). Voters are going to say, 'No. I don't want this,'" he told Reuters. "Hillary is going to evolve into an unacceptable choice. If she is such a great candidate, how come (Bernie Sanders) is beating her?"

JustAnObserver , May 13, 2016 at 10:05 am

IIRC Gundlach's outfit is based in California, not Wall Street. Left coast plutos for Bernie ?

bowserhead , May 13, 2016 at 10:54 am

Good point.

JustAnObserver , May 13, 2016 at 1:40 pm

Even more. He's based in LA so there's a 400 mile air gap between him in the goldbugging, glibertarian, wannabe John Galt culture of the Valley exemplified by Peter Theil.

How about a picture of Gundlach for tomorrow's antidote ?

Yaacov Kopel , May 13, 2016 at 9:29 am

It is warm heartening to see this site who consistently leaning left warming for the Donald. Clinton is a horrible candidate, flawed human being and her presidency is guaranteed to be marred by scandal after scandal and deep polarization.
Bern would be a great choice but he has no chance, the corrupt Democratic establishment will stick with Clinton.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 2:34 pm

The post has nothing to do with "warming" to the Donald. It's policy focused.

jgordon , May 13, 2016 at 4:24 pm

I inuited months ago that the warming to Donald thing would happen. I have a growing conviction that most of the people here, maybe even you, are going to vote for Donald in November. Even Jason will vote for Donald (unless he is being employed by that pro-Hillary super pac which I don't think is the case but just throwing it out there since there are empirically speaking people being paid to produce pro Hillary comments on the internet). Barring something truly interesting and novel happening between now and then that is.

The way things are going now this plane seems set for an effortless autopilot victory for Trump. I have no doubt that everyone will regret too. They'll even regret before they cast the vote, and do it anyway. Oh man, that's some truly black humor. OK I'll make an even grander prediction: Trump will inaugurate the post postmodern era (whatever historians eventually decide to call it) where our entire conception and perception of reality as a society undergoes a radical and unpleasant change. It's a unique time to be alive. Aren't we lucky?

jgordon , May 13, 2016 at 5:38 pm

Wait. I just had an incredible insight. We're already out of the postmodern era, and I can date it from Sept. 11, 2001as the exit. Historian are going to say that this was a short era, a transitional era of illusions, delusions and fear, where complete non-reality Trumped the real for an ever so short period of time. But now we're going to be shocked awake, and what's coming next is going to be incredible and horrific. Damn, it's such an awesome and strange feeling to see things so clearly all of a sudden! It's really happening. So this why I've been obsessing over this stuff much recently.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 7:42 pm

I tried to find a short clip of Brunhilde riding her horse into the flames in Gotterdammerung right before Valhalla collapses, which is what voting for Trump would be like for me, but I couldn't find out.

Noonan , May 13, 2016 at 9:38 am

The worst result of the Obama presidency is the disappearance of the anti-war left from every form of mainstream media.

NotTimothyGeithner , May 13, 2016 at 9:52 am

There was an antiwar left on the msm during the Bush years? Kerry's campaign message was "Ill be W 2.0." Kerry himself was that awful, but there was no antiwar left in the msm. I thought the absence was the direct cause for the rise of blogs. The real crisis is the shift of websites such as TalkingPointMemo and CrooksandLiars to Team Blue loyalist sites or when Digby brought on Spoonfed.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 7:40 pm

Yep. 2006 was when the Dems decapitated the left blogosphere, and as a result we have no independent media, except for lonely outposts like this one, and whatever those whacky kidz are doing with new media.

TedWa , May 13, 2016 at 10:01 am

I keep donating to Bernie because even if he somehow doesn't win the nomination, he can force Hillary to be much more like him – if HRC wants Bernie voters to clinch the deal for her. Bernie staying in and fighting to the end (and my money says he wins) is great and if Hillary doesn't become Bernie, then the only one that can beat Trump is Bernie, and the super-delegates have got to see that.
Bottom line, Hillary has to become Bernie to beat Trump. Is that going to happen? We'll see.

Praedor , May 13, 2016 at 10:34 am

Bernie staying in until the very end serves two purposes (he CAN still win, especially when he carries California). The first is, again, he CAN win. The second purpose is to prevent Hillary from shifting right the way she REALLY wants to for the general. She will have to keep tacking left to fend off a major slide towards Bernie. The "center" (actually right wing) is out of reach for her as long as Bernie is there.

TedWa , May 13, 2016 at 10:43 am

Exactly, and I'm loving it :^)

ewmayer , May 13, 2016 at 6:49 pm

Sorry to rain on your thesis, but absent the nomination, all Bernie can do is to force Hillary to *message* more like him. With her, the operative phrase is "words are wind". There is nothing whatever to keep her from immediately ditching every progressive-sounding campaign stance once she is in office, just as Obama did. And I guarantee you that if she does become president, that is precisely what she will do.

ke , May 13, 2016 at 10:13 am

Trump knows the counterweight better than anyone. He's the guy you keep on the job because he's entertaining, knowing he will sell you out if you let him, and you let him, when it serves a purpose, to adjust the counterweight.

POLITICS, RE feudalism, is a game, and he loves it, despite the heartburn. All that debt inertia.preventing the economic motor from gaining traction is psychological. That much he knows, which is a lot more than the rest of the politicians, making him a better dress maker. But like the others, he has no idea what to do about it.

He vascillates to maintain options, including a path to the future, while others rule themselves out. Of course hiring good people is the answer, but most Americans are politicians, like anywhere else, wanting to know little more than their cubicle, because the net result of majority behavior is punishing work, in favor of consumers, competing for advantage.

If you spent this time developing skills and finding a spouse that won't cut your throat, you will do quite well. The casino isn't life; it just keeps a lot of people busy, with busy work. Government is hapless.

dingusansich , May 13, 2016 at 10:31 am

It's hard to know if Trump sees militarization and imperialism as bad because they're bad or bad because it's not Donald Trump in charge, with a great big straw sucking Benjamins between those rectally pursed lips. It may take an agent provocateur bullshitter to call bullshit, but that says nothing about what Trump will do as president. What's likeliest, given his record, is an opportunistic seizure of the Treasury to rival the occupation of Iraq. When I gaze into my crystal ball at a Trump administration I see cronyism, graft, corruption, nepotism, and deceit of monumental dimensions, just like the gold letters spelling Trump plastered over everything he lays his stubby little hands on. Because the Clintons are appalling doesn't make Trump appealing. It's a farcical contest, and every way, we lose.

RUKidding , May 13, 2016 at 2:43 pm

You echo my feelings. My loathing of Clinton knows no bounds, and I cannot vote for her, no matter what. But I simply don't trust Trump. He's a gold-digger extrodinaire, and quite the accomplished showman. He knows how to play to the crowd, and he's clearly quite quick to shape shift. The wrecked tatters of what's called the USA "media" gives Trump a YOOOGE pass on simply everything and anything the man says or does.

I don't trust Trump, and although, yes, he has says a few things that I agree with – and usually stuff that no one else at his level will ever say – it's essentially meaningless to me. I think Trump would be a disaster as President, and my "take" – which is based on my own opinion – is that he'll be Grifter El Supremo and make sure that he walks off with stacks and gobs and buckets of CA$H. For him. And if the country really tanks and goes bankrupt? So What?

Plus all this about Trump not being a War Hawk? I don't trust it. With the other breath, he's constantly spewing about "building up" the damn military, which, allegedly Obama has "weakened." Like, we really need to be spending another gazillion of our tax dollars "building up" the Military??? WHY? If The Donald is so against all these foreign wars, then why do we need to spend even more money on the Military??? All that signals to me is that Donald expects to go large on MIC investments for HIMSELF.

Won't get fooled again.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 7:38 pm

"cronyism, graft, corruption, nepotism, and deceit of monumental dimensions"

Rather like the Clinton Foundation, though the Clintons have more tasteful building fixtures

"Because the Clintons are appalling doesn't make Trump appealing"

Very true, and vice versa.

hemeantwell , May 13, 2016 at 10:32 am

The Saudi 9/11 connection is now front stage:.
http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/may/13/september-11-saudi-arabia-congressional-report-terrorism#comment-74155478
Trump can legitimately harp on this and likely will as part of his battle both with the R establishment and the Ds. HRC will probably respond "judiciously" in a way that will make her claim to "expertise" appear to be nothing more than what it is, lockstep parroting of neocon positions. Sanders?

ke , May 13, 2016 at 11:38 am

Story time: so, when I married the Mrs, I offered to fix the mother in laws old bug. She turned me down and has since demand that I fix what is now a rust bucket, not worth one manhour of my time, going around to the neighbors, all critters on govt checks rapidly falling behind RE inflation, to build consensus to the end, among women using men and men using women, all of them having thrown their marriages under the bus, as if majority vote is going to get me to do something I have no intention of doing.

When hospital gave Grace that shot and sent her to the ICU, per Obamacare expert protocol, all the critters went into CYA mode, and ultimately called the family, to confirm that the wife and I must be on drugs, which they did. I don't blame the morons running the court system, and she's the mother in law.

That debt is nothing more than psychology, but it is more effective than a physical prison. Silicon Valley is the as is abutment, simply reinforcing stupid with ever greater efficiency, but it is the endpoint on a collapsing bridge with no retreat, because automation has systematically destroyed the skill pool and work ethic required to advance further, replacing them with make work and make work skills.

Competing with China and the Middle East to build carp infrastructure to keep As many economic slaves as busy as possible is not the path forward. As you have seen, govt data is far closer to being 180 degrees wrong than being correct, as designed, which you should expect, from those holding out ignorance as a virtue.

There are far more elevators that need fixing than I could ever get to, and I am quite capable of fixing them in a manner that generates power. Who becomes president is irrelevant.

ke , May 13, 2016 at 11:54 am

My family in Ohio is massive, they made a killing on RE and currency arbitrage, after selling all the family farms, and have nothing real to show for it, but rapidly depreciating sunk costs, waiting to do it again. Rocket scientists.

Watt4Bob , May 13, 2016 at 12:30 pm

The way I read this situation is this;

If the GWOT has cost us $4 Trillion, somebody made $4 Trillion.

That/those somebodies are not about to give up the kind of behavior that makes that kind of money.

If there is any real, actual third-rail in American politics, it's the MIC budget.

This fact has never been openly acknowledged, even though the American people are pretty sure that threatening the will of the MIC cost the life of at least one well known politician.

Trump may talk about that enormous waste now, but after his private screening of the Zapruder film he's going to STFU and get with the program like all the rest.

OTOH, like Yves has pointed out, if Donald wins, he could just end up the loneliest man in DC, be ignored, get nothing done, and I'm not sure I see a down-side to that.

Roger Smith , May 13, 2016 at 1:35 pm

if Donald wins, he could just end up the loneliest man in DC, be ignored, get nothing done

Exactly my feeling. He will be hated and fought constantly, whereas Clinton (if nominated) is guaranteed to screw things up. Like her husband (who by the way will be there whispering in ears and making passes at maids) she will triangulate on issues and pass destructive GOP legislation and likely drag this country into another foreign policy blunder, where I am betting more young, under-educated, poor citizens with no prospects or options will be sent to slaughter (themselves and others).

RUKidding , May 13, 2016 at 2:49 pm

EH? I think The Donald will just go Large on MIC investments for himself. He talks a good game, but he keeps saying that he's going "build up" the Military, even as he's stating that we shouldn't be fighting in all of these wars. Why, then, do we need to "build up" the Military?

No one ever said Trump was stupid. I'm sure he's rubbing his grubby tiny vulgarian mitts with glee thinking about how he, too, can get in on that sweet sweet SWEET MIC payola grift scam. Count on it.

Trump doesn't need to see the Zapruder film. He was alive then and knows the story, just like everyone else of a certain age. Nay, verily, he just means to cash in on it.

fresno dan , May 13, 2016 at 6:31 pm

Watt4Bob
May 13, 2016 at 12:30 pm
"OTOH, like Yves has pointed out, if Donald wins, he could just end up the loneliest man in DC, be ignored, get nothing done, and I'm not sure I see a down-side to that."

I too view that as a feature and not a bug. Seriously, in the last 10, 20, 30 years, I would ask, what law is viewed as making things better? Was Sarbanes Oxley suppose to do something??? Maybe the law is OK, they just won't enforce it

I know Obamacare is relentlessly disparaged here, others think it is better than nothing.
Many of you youngsters don't realize this, but there was a time, when dinosaurs roamed the earth, that there were no deductibles, co-pays, narrow networks, and that you had confidence that your doctor may have over treated and tested you, but you weren't afraid that you would die because it was too expensive to treat you.
Just like I don't care if GDP goes up because i won't see any of it, I don't care about all the cancer research because I am certain I won't be able to afford it, even though I have health "insurance" .

fresno dan , May 13, 2016 at 7:44 pm

And this
http://www.latimes.com/business/hiltzik/la-fi-hiltzik-retiree-health-insurance-20160511-snap-story.html

"Employer-sponsored retiree health coverage once played a key role in supplementing Medicare," observe Tricia Neuman and Anthony Damico of the foundation. "Any way you slice it, this coverage is eroding."

Since 1988, the foundation says, among large firms that offer active workers health coverage, the percentage that also offer retiree health plans has shrunk to 23% in 2015 from 66% in 1988. The decline, which has been steady and almost unbroken, almost certainly reflects the rising cost of healthcare and employers' diminishing sense of responsibility for long-term workers in retirement.
.
Financial protection against unexpected healthcare costs is crucial for many Medicare enrollees, especially middle- and low-income members, because the gaps in Medicare can be onerous. The deductible for Medicare Part A, which covers inpatient services, is $1,288 this year, plus a co-pay of $322 per hospital day after 60 days. Part B, which covers outpatient care, has a modest annual deductible of $166 but pays only 80% of approved rates for most services.
====================================================
80% of 100,000$ means 20K is left over – with cancer treatments*, kidney treatments, cardiovascular treatments, such a scenario is more likely than a lot of people will imagine.

*treatments don't include those foam slippers that they charge you 25$ for .

fresno dan , May 13, 2016 at 7:48 pm

AND

But the consequences of the shift away from employer-sponsored retiree benefits go beyond the rise in costs for the retirees themselves. Many are choosing to purchase Medigap policies, which fill in the gaps caused by Medicare's deductibles, cost-sharing rates and benefit limitations. That has the potential to drive up healthcare costs for the federal government too. That's because Medigap policies tend to encourage more medical consumption by covering the cost-sharing designed to make consumers more discerning about trips to the doctor or clinic. Already, nearly 1 in 4 Medicare enrollees had a Medigap policy - almost as many as had employer-sponsored supplemental coverage.
..
The trend is sure to fuel interest on Capitol Hill in legislating limits to Medigap plans. Such limits have supporters across the political spectrum: Over the past few years, proposals to prohibit Medigap plans from covering deductibles have come from the left-leaning Center for American Progress, the centrist Brookings Institution and conservatives such as Sens. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.).

================================
please stop going to the doctor, its expensive .just expire

singfoom , May 13, 2016 at 2:44 pm

First time poster, long time lurker. You don't think that Sanders success in the race pushed HRC to embrace debt free 4 year public college?

We'll see what specific policy commitments come out of the convention, but I don't think the current campaign would have the same issues if Bernie wasn't there.

Please don't mistake me either, ideologically I'm with Sanders and was supporting him until the NYDN article and the delegate math became pretty much impossible. If I had my druthers, he'd be the candidate, but it looks quite quite unlikely now.

I'm concerned that HRC will pivot after the election and give support to the TPP but even then I'm still anti-Trump more.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 10:50 pm

Actually, a poster with your email commented in 2014 under another handle. There seems to be a rash lately of infrequent or new commenters who "support Sanders but" or "supported Sanders until" lately. For some reason.

That said, you could be right on college ( see here for a comparison of the plans ). It's just that Clinton's talking point about not wanting to pay for Trump's children is so unserious I can't believe the plan is serious.

Paper Mac , May 13, 2016 at 6:40 pm

I dunno. I see a lot of people decry Trump's immigration ban on Muslims, but Hillary's record as SecState was incredibly violent toward Muslims internationally and also includes presiding over a defacto immigration ban from specific "problem" states- banning people for security reasons being much more tactful than banning Muslims per se.

The nativist appeal Trump is making doesn't go much farther than naming the intent of policy Hillary has been actually pursuing. Trump wants to use the demonisation of Muslims since 9/11 as a political lever to gain power and will use anti-Muslim or anti-immigrant (weird to see the two conflated so frequently) sentiment to achieve specific political goals, preferably sublating it into keynesian infrastructure programs (wall building or whatever). Hillary intends to keep bombing societies that are increasingly visibily disintegrating from the cumulative effects of climate change, colonial oppression and marginalisation, foreign intervention, etc. It's not obvious who gets the benefit of the doubt in a lesser evil contest.

Code Name D , May 13, 2016 at 1:24 pm

Trump is breaking the "lesser of two evils" argument.

Let's be clear about something here. The "lesser of two evils" is not an argument to find which candidate is "the less evil." It's an argument used to justify the assumption that your candidate is the less evil of the other. While else is it that Democrats say Clinton is the less evil while Republicans argue that Trump is the less evil.

It's obvious watching leftist pundits (many of whom I respect) come out and flatly assert "Clinton is the better of the two." And there heads usually explode right off their shoulders when they run into someone who disagrees or is simply skeptical of the claim.

The real problem is when Trump dose speak on trade and war policy, he exposes the fallacy of the argument. We can't take Trump's word for it – even though we already know Hillary is likely lying, so it's still a tie. The notion that Trump might actually be honest here isn't even permitted to be considered because that would make Trump the less evil of the two.

The problem I keep running into is just how do you measure "evil?" This gets even harder to do when you can't take either at their word. There is always some deeper calculous we are expected to project on the candidates in order to arrive at our pre-supposed conclusion that our candidate is always the less evil.

It's the main reason I will not be voting for either.

bowserhead , May 13, 2016 at 1:43 pm

Forgive me for piling on today Btw,.anyone know who this Carmen Yarrusso is? Excerpt from Counterpunch (today)

"Trump may be a (loose-cannon) unpredictable evil. But then, based on her long track record, Clinton is a very predictable evil. In fact, Trump is left of Clinton on such things as legal marijuana, NATO aggression, and trade policy. His crazy proposals (e.g. Mexican wall, banning Muslims) are just bluster with zero chance of becoming reality. If Congress can stop Obama, it can stop Trump. But Clinton has a predictable pro-war track record (Iraq, Libya, Syria) and a predictable track record of changing positions for political expediency (e.g. Iraq war, NAFTA, Bankruptcy Reform Act of 2000, immigration, gun control, the Keystone XL pipeline, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, same-sex marriage). How can you be sure she won't conveniently change her current progressive positions as president? A Trump presidency just might force Democratic Party elites to start seriously addressing the populist concerns they now arrogantly ignore.

If you vote for Clinton as the lesser of two evils, you're compromising your moral values, you're condoning the Democratic Party's shoddy treatment of millions of progressives, and you're sabotaging future real change. You're virtually guaranteeing the Democratic Party elites will put you in this position again and again. If you refuse to vote for the lesser of two evils, maybe you'll help elect Trump (or maybe your write-in or third party choice will win). But you'll certainly send a very clear message to Democratic Party elites that you'll no longer tolerate being ignored, marginalized, or shamed with false lesser of two evil choices."

http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/05/13/lesser-of-two-evils-vote-is-counterproductive-and-morally-corrupt/

Bernard , May 13, 2016 at 1:44 pm

lol watching people attack Trump well, not sure if it's Clinton's army out to scare us about the horrors Trump will cause. now it's like the Devil we know vs the Devil we don't know. Kind of hard to compare Trump to Hillary. Hillary's effective brand of evil is well established and is quite thorough, shown by the primary votes in NY and AZ, for example. watching the Elites attack, belittle and completely ignore the existence of Bernie gives us a little clue of what is in store if Hillary gets her way. Trump is the "known unknown" to use Rumsfeld terminology.

Evil is as evil does. aka Hillary

this is perhaps the one and only time I ever will vote Republican. and I abhor Republicans. Hillary has earned her reputation, Trump.. well Trump or no Trump, it won't be Hillary getting my vote. Keeping Bernie out, we all lose.

singfoom , May 13, 2016 at 2:54 pm

No, I don't support the current administration's drone war, nor did I support the horrible Iraq war of 2003, but that doesn't answer my question. I don't understand "Hillary is lying" as a tautology and the conclusion being that Trump is a better bet than HRC because of that.

But in regards to your question, do you think that the drone war stance will change in the next administration whether's it's HRC or Trump? Trump said he wants to get more aggressive on terrorists than we currently are, explicitly endorsing torture.

jrs , May 13, 2016 at 3:09 pm

Well even Sanders has come out in favor of drones, so probably, unless one is die hard Jill Stein all the way. Then one's hands are entirely clean if also entirely ineffective.

Massinissa , May 13, 2016 at 7:06 pm

Yeah, because voting for drone strikes, imperialism and corruption is more effective at getting rid of those things than not voting for drone strikes, imperialism and drone strikes

Massinissa , May 13, 2016 at 7:04 pm

Because its totally impossible for Republican talking points to be true right?

If you havnt noticed, the Republicans are liars, but so are Clintonista Democrats.

Massinissa , May 13, 2016 at 7:09 pm

Hey, let me tell you a secret

Theyre both liars. If youre trusting Donald to not drone strike or trusting Hillary to not torture, youre being duped.

As for your comment further down about Trump saying he wants to torture people more Its not as if Obama has stopped Bush's torture regime or closed Guantanamo. Hillary too would continue more things.

Honestly I still dont understand why Trump is so much scarier than Hillary. Their differences are mostly kayfabe. All that xenophobic racist demagogy Trump is doing? More kayfabe. Im still voting Stein, because I dont vote for corrupt imperialists.

Seas of Promethium , May 13, 2016 at 8:04 pm

Stein is likewise kayfabe. If the party had gone with Anderson he might well have pulled a Bernie in the last general election. That just wouldn't do, so the party was rather brazenly railroaded into nominating Stein.

Jerry Denim , May 13, 2016 at 2:01 pm

Just as the best lies are 99% truth the best con-jobs are the ones containing the maximum amount of truthiness. Some days I like the things I hear Trump saying, the next he gives me a sick feeling with chills down my spine. Sure, he's not sticking to the approved neo-con, neo-lib, Washington consensus script but just how stupid do you have to be to not know that Saddam Hussein was a secular Bathist dictator who executed anyone who he saw as a threat to his power, especially muslim extremists. Just because Trump can spout off a truthy factoid that is only news to the brain-dead Fox News masses doesn't mean he is any more of an honest dealer than Bush Jr. Does anyone think Bush, Cheney or Rumsfield were operating under any illusions that Saddam Hussein had anything to do with 9/11? Of course not, they either saw an opportunity or they engineered an opportunity to do what they wanted to do. Trump has shown himself to be a bully comfortable with marshaling mob violence or the threat of mob violence. He is an authoritarian and no defender of civil liberties, habeous corpus or the Geneva convention. He's exactly the type of megalomanic that would try and seize power in an ailing democracy like our own, and I have no doubts that if elected he will create some sort of Constitutional crisis that could end in a military coup or Trump installed as a dictator. He already has a silent pissed-off army of violent brown shirts on his side. I don't like the way this situation looks and people on the left with intelligence and a grasp of history are deluding themselves if they think Trump isn't a very dangerous person.

In a possibly unrelated note, I'm 99% sure someone deeply keyed the full length of my car (truck actually) yesterday while I was surfing for no other reason than my Bernie Sanders bumper sticker right here in sunny, liberal southern California. Could it have been a Clinton supporter or a joy vandal who likes keying random people's cars – sure. But if Trump wins I wonder how long it is before halal restaurants and muslim dry cleaners start getting their windows smashed, then burned. How long before Hindus and brown people start getting attacked (as a common occurrence, not outlier events that are punished as they are now) because they are confused as being Muslim or Mexican or deliberately because they just aren't white and should go home. There's a very nasty underbelly to this Trump thing and I don't like it.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 2:28 pm

I agree on the nasty underbelly. On the other hand, I find it refreshing that Trump mentions the millions of people slaughtered by our foreign policy. I don't hear that from Clinton, at all.

Jerry Denim , May 13, 2016 at 3:25 pm

" I find it refreshing that Trump mentions the millions of people slaughtered by our foreign policy. I don't hear that from Clinton, at all."

Ditto, me too, but I'm not about to cherry-pick Trump's schizophrenic and ever shifting talking points then soft-peddle candidate Trump while telling people not to worry. I like silver-linings, staying optimistic and being contrarian (I wouldn't hang out here otherwise) but why ignore the very troubling subtext in the rest of Trump's speech? The anti-democratic, sneering remarks about suspected terrorists being executed immediately in Saddam's Iraq instead of "on trial for fifteen years" in pansy-cakes weak, habeas corpus America. Trump offhandedly mentions; 'Oh by the way, don't buy the lowball collateral damage numbers you hear from the Pentagon, we're unnecessarily killing a lot of brown people abroad.' But then he fans the flames of racism with stump speeches about building a wall and banning all muslims from entering the USA. I can tell you which message his supporters are comprehending if you're unsure. Despite being a politically heterodox chameleon Trump is showing his true colors. Just because Trump is willing to break with the orthodoxy while he is campaigning doesn't mean he isn't an aspiring tyrant. Don't be fooled. Trump isn't enlightened or altruistic, he's a talented demagogue pulling a Con on America- that's it.

Jerry Denim , May 13, 2016 at 3:33 pm

By the way, I wanted to add I am not in any way considering a vote for Hillary if she does in fact become the Democratic nominee. I am very troubled by the prospect of a President Trump but I will not allow my vote to be held hostage by the DNC and the very tired "lesser of evils arguments" I realized my last comment might be construed as a "Trump must be stopped at all costs" Clinton rationalization. It was not. Trump will be on the conscience of those who vote for him and those who have enabled him.

Ron Showalter , May 13, 2016 at 2:20 pm

Maybe we should look at what Trump recently said at AIPAC – y'know, that itsy bitsy little lobby that seems to strike fear into the hearts of all US politicians Trump included – to get a sense of his ME policy, shall we ?

snip

'In Spring 2004, at the height of violence in the Gaza Strip, I was the Grand Marshal of the 40th Salute to Israel Parade, the largest single gathering in support of the Jewish state."

"My number one priority is to dismantle the disastrous deal with Iran. I have been in business a long time. I know deal-making and let me tell you, this deal is catastrophic – for America, for Israel, and for the whole Middle East."

"First, we will stand up to Iran's aggressive push to destabilize and dominate the region. Iran is a very big problem and will continue to be, but if I'm elected President, I know how to deal with trouble. Iran is a problem in Iraq, a problem in Syria, a problem in Lebanon, a problem in Yemen, and will be a very major problem for Saudi Arabia. Literally every day, Iran provides more and better weapons to their puppet states.

Hezbollah in Lebanon has received sophisticated anti-ship weapons, anti-aircraft weapons, and GPS systems on rockets. Now they're in Syria trying to establish another front against Israel from the Syrian side of the Golan Heights."

Just last week, American Taylor Allen Force, a West Point grad who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, was murdered in the street by a knife-wielding Palestinian. You don't reward that behavior, you confront it!

It's not up the United Nations to impose a solution. The parties must negotiate a resolution themselves. The United States can be useful as a facilitator of negotiations, but no one should be telling Israel it must abide by some agreement made by others thousands of miles away that don't even really know what's happening.

When I'm president, believe me, I will veto any attempt by the UN to impose its will on the Jewish state.

Already, half the population of Palestine has been taken over by the Palestinian ISIS in Hamas, and the other half refuses to confront the first half, so it's a very difficult situation but when the United States stands with Israel, the chances of peace actually rise. That's what will happen when I'm president.

We will move the American embassy to the eternal capital of the Jewish people, Jerusalem – and we will send a clear signal that there is no daylight between America and our most reliable ally, the state of Israel."

Yup, it's like he and Hillary are just night and day, huh?

I mean other than the fact that Hillary actually BACKS the Iran Deal but don't let that get in the way of a good "but Hillary" meeting.

The two candidates will be identical where it's most important – e.g. w/ Israel and the ME – just like all of the presidential candidates.

You would think the Obama administration may have taught us something about perceiving reality oh wait that's right, it really was Hillary and not poor Obama who's been doing all that killing over the last 8 years and the Donald's really a renegade "outsider" billionaire who's just scaring the pants off of the Establishment, right?

Wow. Just wow.

Obama Hope Junkies so desperate that they're shooting Trumpodil straight into their minds.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 2:24 pm

I'm confused. What does this have to do with the topic of the post? The YouTube has nothing to do with the deplorable Beltway consensus on Israel, of which Trump is a part.

Ron Showalter , May 13, 2016 at 2:40 pm

Why, I am glad you asked.

War Is Realizing the Israelizing of the World

snip

As US-driven wars plummet the Muslim world ever deeper into jihadi-ridden failed state chaos, events seem to be careening toward a tipping point. Eventually, the region will become so profuse a font of terrorists and refugees, that Western popular resistance to "boots on the ground" will be overwhelmed by terror and rage. Then, the US-led empire will finally have the public mandate it needs to thoroughly and permanently colonize the Greater Middle East.

It is easy to see how the Military Industrial Complex and crony energy industry would profit from such an outcome. But what about America's "best friend" in the region? How does Israel stand to benefit from being surrounded by such chaos?

Tel Aviv has long pursued a strategy of "divide and conquer": both directly, and indirectly through the tremendous influence of the Israel lobby and neocons over US foreign policy.

A famous article from the early 1980s by Israeli diplomat and journalist Oded Yinon is most explicit in this regard. The "Yinon Plan" calls for the "dissolution" of "the entire Arab world including Egypt, Syria, Iraq and the Arabian peninsula." Each country was to be made to "fall apart along sectarian and ethnic lines," after which each resulting fragment would be "hostile" to its neighbors." Yinon incredibly claimed that:

"This state of affairs will be the guarantee for peace and security in the area in the long run"

According to Yinon, this Balkanization should be realized by fomenting discord and war among the Arabs:

"Every kind of inter-Arab confrontation will assist us in the short run and will shorten the way to the more important aim of breaking up Iraq into denominations as in Syria and in Lebanon."

And another link:

The Unfolding of Yinon's "Zionist Plan for the Middle East": The Crisis in Iraq and the Centrality of the National Interest of Israel

And another:

Who is Israel's Biggest Enemy?

So, you can see that Trump has said the right things into the right ears – read: AIPAC – as far as anyone of import is concerned – read: not any of us – and so now he's free to say whatever else he thinks he needs to.

I mean, Sheldon Adelson endorsed him so he can't be THAT scary to Israel-first billionaires and their bed-buddies, right?

Ooops, I forgot he's an outsider that everyone's scared of. My bad. Hillary will be so much worse.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 7:31 pm

You may be glad I asked, but that doesn't mean you answered.

Chauncey Gardiner , May 13, 2016 at 2:21 pm

Robert Parry at ConsortiumNews has written an insightful article about the damage that has been caused by both the neocon ideologues' control of US foreign policy and the neoliberals' control of economic policy, their powerful political and propaganda apparatus, and what we can expect from the legacy political party candidates for the presidency, focusing on Clinton and her past positions regarding the Middle East.

https://consortiumnews.com/2016/05/11/neocons-and-neolibs-how-dead-ideas-kill/

It is noteworthy that the dominance of failed neocon and neoliberal policies over the past few decades has coincided with consolidation and concentration of ownership of corporate media in very few hands. As with restoring the Glass-Steagall Act and breaking up the TBTFs, reinstating limits on media ownership and control is an important and necessary measure to breaking the influence these few individuals have had over national policy.

John , May 13, 2016 at 2:59 pm

I'm actually considering the possibility that Trump is to the left of Hillary. He appears to be on foreign policy, at least. What do you guys think?

Massinissa , May 13, 2016 at 7:01 pm

Being Left of Hillary is a really really really low bar. He probably is, but thats probably because Hillary is right wing. You know, like almost all American politicians from both parties. Trumps not left of Bernie (at least not yet or not right now: I expect hes going to swing left in the general to scoop up Bernie voters), and Bernies just an Eisenhower Republican, which is admittedly to the left of basically all the other politicians today.

Lambert Strether , May 13, 2016 at 7:55 pm

Quoting from memory, context foreign policy: "If our Presidents had gone to the beach every day of the year fifteen years ago, we would have been in much better shape." (Note this includes Bush.)

He's right, you know.

[Mar 28, 2019] Bernie Repeats CIA Talking Points On Venezuela

King of Faustian bargain of a US politician. Bernie showed his colors in the 2016 primaries. He can't be trusted...
What Bernie is doing is eliminating chances for Tulsi...
Notable quotes:
"... Thank you Jimi, for calling out even Bernie when he buys the corporate bullshit ..."
"... Seriously, if you still support this clown, you are part of the problem. ..."
"... There's nothing progressive about silence, tepidness, or even support for destructive policies abroad by the same forces -- & for the same interests -- that we claim to oppose at home. ..."
"... this is the bargain Bernie made to run as a Democrat ..."
"... Bernie lost credibility when he endorsed Hilary in 2016... Tulsi is the one for 2020... ..."
Feb 26, 2019 | www.youtube.com

Jools Tyler , 1 day ago

Thank you Jimi, for calling out even Bernie when he buys the corporate bullshit, You restored my faith in you man.

Cindy Klenk , 1 day ago

Aloha! Tulsi for President! No excuses!!! Bernie is compromised. Peace, Love and Aloha #Tulsi2020

poofendorf , 1 day ago (edited)

Here's a list of Bernie's foreign policy stances:

  1. Supported bombing of Yugoslavia.
  2. Supported Afghanistan war.
  3. Supported Israeli bombing of Gaza.
  4. Demanded that Gaddafi step down as leader of Libya and supported no-fly zone over Libya thus making way for US regime change.
  5. Supported CIA narrative of Assad using chemical weapons.
  6. Supported CIA narrative on Venezuela.
  7. Supported CIA narrative of Russia/collusion conspiracy theory.
  8. Supported CIA and MIC candidate Hillary Clinton even after getting cheated by her campaign.
  9. Supported CIA efforts in Ukraine.

Seriously, if you still support this clown, you are part of the problem.

Eric Anderson , 1 day ago

Aaron Maté tweets -- Do we need a new category for progressives whose progressive values stop at the US border?

There's nothing progressive about silence, tepidness, or even support for destructive policies abroad by the same forces -- & for the same interests -- that we claim to oppose at home.

Vas Sagar , 18 hours ago

this is the bargain Bernie made to run as a Democrat..

b cornejo , 23 hours ago

Bernie lost credibility when he endorsed Hilary in 2016... Tulsi is the one for 2020...

pandastratton. 23 hours ago

Donate to Tulsi to get her on the debate stage!!!!

Dionysos, 19 hours ago

Jimmy I know Tulsi is the best candidate in terms of foreign policy, but Bernie is our only chance at getting a real progressive in the White House!

People are suffering economically and that is the issue where the vast majority of support lies. If stuff like this splits the progressive support and allows someone like Kamala to win in the primaries, things will get really bad.

Robert Rowland23 hours ago

Jimmy (God love ya), the Military Industrial Complex is the single most gut-wrenchingly ruthless, most awesome entity on the planet. It has the ability to kill pretty much anyone they want without repercussion. No domestic political movement, even one that holds the Whitehouse, is capable of bringing them down or even reining them in. They will eventually meet their demise through bad management in combination with a series of misfortunes resulting in defeat in all-out global war. Until then, and while we as a nation are still able, the best we common folks can hope for is this juggernaut (the true boss) to give us some measure of these desperately needed social reforms. In other words, Bernie is just being realistic.

Meanwhile, Tulsi, The Real Deal Gabbard (God bless her soul), if successful, will be on a course to join the ranks of JFK, RFK, and MLK.


Our much-vaunted democracy is a sham and our freedom isn't actually what it is represented as being. May I suggest you watch this video and view it as a metaphor. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vb8Rj5xkDPk

[Mar 28, 2019] Sanders was and is a full of Schiff lying bastard

Notable quotes:
"... Bernie Sanders said he on Wednesday, "felt compelled to address Russian interference during the US election. Sunday.... he was not aware and believes Russian bot promoting him and went as far to said WikiLeaks published Hillary's email stolen by the Russia....." ..."
"... Can you really trust that lying bastard? I'm probably one of the few MoA refused to believe and trust Bernie Sanders and the fuckup Democrats . ..."
Jan 02, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

OJS , Feb 21, 2018 8:27:10 PM | link

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-02-21/they-had-more-information-us-sanders-blames-clinton-not-exposing-russian-meddling

"They Had More Information Than Us" - Sanders Blames Clinton For Not Exposing Russian Meddling

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=WRnBPKFcAKo

Bernie Sanders said he on Wednesday, "felt compelled to address Russian interference during the US election. Sunday.... he was not aware and believes Russian bot promoting him and went as far to said WikiLeaks published Hillary's email stolen by the Russia....."

Can you really trust that lying bastard? I'm probably one of the few MoA refused to believe and trust Bernie Sanders and the fuckup Democrats .

[Mar 28, 2019] Dear Mr President, while many of us disagree on ideology and values, we agree on practical things like obeying the constitution and not letting big corporations and the wealthy run everything

Feb 26, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

donkeytale , Feb 25, 2019 7:56:23 AM | link

Dear Mr President,

While many of us disagree on ideology and values, we agree on practical things like obeying the constitution and not letting big corporations and the wealthy run everything.

Your 35-day government shutdown was a senseless abuse of power. So too your "national emergency" to build your wall with money Congress refused to appropriate.

When you passed your tax bill you promised our paychecks would rise by an average of $4,000 but we never got the raise. Our employers used the tax savings to buy back their shares of stock and give themselves raises instead.

Then you fooled us into thinking we were getting a cut by lowering the amounts withheld from our 2018 paychecks. We know that now because we're getting smaller tax refunds.

At the same time, many big corporations aren't paying a dime in taxes. Worse yet, they're getting refunds. For example, GM is paying zilch and claiming a $104m refund on $11.8bn of profits. Amazon is paying no taxes and claiming a $129m refund on profits of $11.2bn. (This is after New York offered it $3bn to put its second headquarters there.) They aren't breaking any tax laws or regulations. That's because they made the tax laws and regulations. You gave them a free hand.

You're supposed to be working for us, not for giant corporations. But they're doing better than ever, as are their top executives and biggest investors. Yet nothing has trickled down. We're getting shafted.

Which is why more than 75% of us (including 45% who call ourselves Republicans) support Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's proposed 70% tax on dollars earned in excess of $10m a year.

And over 60% of us support Elizabeth Warren's proposed 2% annual tax on households with a new worth of $50m or more.

You've also shown you don't have a clue about healthcare. You promised us something better than the Affordable Care Act but all you've done is whittle it back.

A big reason we gave Democrats control of the House last November was your threat to eliminate protection for people with pre-existing conditions.

Are you even aware that 70% of us now favor Medicare for all?

Most of us don't pay much attention to national policy but we pay a lot of attention to home economics. You've made our own home economics worse.

We'll give you official notice you're fired on 3 November 2020, if not before. Until then, you can keep the house and perks, but you're toast.

Respectfully,

[Robert Reich]

[Mar 23, 2019] Sanders was a sheepdog that prevented progressives from breaking with the Democratic Party

Something is rotten in the state of Denmark. Hamlet (1.4), Marcellus to Horatio. This line spoken by Marcellus (and not Hamlet as is commonly believed) is one of the most recognizable lines in all of Shakespeare's works. Fully applicable to Sanders, Hillary and Trump
The context of the quote is also interesting and fully applicable: Marcellus, shaken by the many recent disturbing events and no doubt angered (as is Hamlet) by Claudius's mismanagement of the body politic, astutely notes that Denmark is festering with moral and political corruption. Horatio replies "Heaven will direct it" (91), meaning heaven will guide the state of Denmark to health and stability.
Mar 23, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jackrabbit , Mar 22, 2019 9:17:01 PM | link

Circe @58:
This investgation was a convenient sham to cover for the real collusion and Trump was the Zionist 1 percenters choice and nothing was going to foil that and many of you here fell for the entire charade hook, line and sinker believing Trump was a poor victim all along.
I think you're mostly right but there's more to it, like:
>> Complicity of Christian Zionists and other enablers and hangers on;

>> Deep-State CYA after the lost war in Syria;

>> New Cold War as AZ Empire re-orients to respond to Russia-China challenge.

AIPAC/Israel's power in US politics is well known. And they have great influence on BOTH Parties. Your focus on as the embodiment of this evil suggest that you think that if he were not elected in 2016 then Zionist influence would be eliminated or greatly diminished. That is certainly not the true.

What strikes me about the 2016 Presidential election is not that wealthy Jews donated to Trump but that the election was manipulated in numerous ways. Highlights:

>> Trump was the only Republican populist (out of 19 contenders!);

>> Sanders and Trump were both long-time friends of the Clintons;

>> Sanders was a sheepdog that prevented progressives from breaking with the Democratic Party;

>> Hillary didn't need to collude with DNC - that added very very little to the money she raised for her campaign - but it did allow her to treat Sanders and his supporters shabbily;

>> Hillary also alienated other important groups, like blacks and white conservatives ("deplorables");

>> Trump played along by bringing on Manafort, asking Russia to find Hillary's emails, and breaking his campaign promise to investigate Hillary within days of the election;

>> Trump has brought allies of his supposed enemies into his Administration: VP Pence was close to McCain (as was Lindsey Graham who was anti-Trump during the election); Gina Haspel is Brennan's gal at CIA; Bolton and Abrams are neocons (neocons were 'Never Trump'); Attorney General William Barr is close with Robert Mueller; etc.

[Mar 23, 2019] Bernie betrayed his supporters again and again

Bernie only he served as a sheepdog for Hillary, he want to serve a sheep dog in elections 2020
Notable quotes:
"... Sen. John McCain was a friend and a man of great courage and integrity. We need a president who will fight for our veterans, not attack the memory of an American hero. ..."
"... "How many of these war millionaires shouldered a rifle?...How many of them knew what it meant to go hungry in a rat-infested dug-out? How many of them spent sleepless, frightened nights, ducking shells and shrapnel and machine gun bullets?" - Smedley Butler, "War is a Racket" ..."
Mar 23, 2019 | twitter.com

Mike Gravel ‏ 5:26 AM - 21 Mar 2019

While I respect Bernie, I disagree with him strongly on this. John McCain was a war hawk who sent American youth to fight and die and never met a problem he didn't think could be solved through invasion or intervention. The real heroes are those who fought for PEACE.

Bernie Sanders ‏ 4:17 PM - 20 Mar 2019

Sen. John McCain was a friend and a man of great courage and integrity. We need a president who will fight for our veterans, not attack the memory of an American hero.

Mike Gravel ‏ 5:28 AM - 21 Mar 2019

"How many of these war millionaires shouldered a rifle?...How many of them knew what it meant to go hungry in a rat-infested dug-out? How many of them spent sleepless, frightened nights, ducking shells and shrapnel and machine gun bullets?" - Smedley Butler, "War is a Racket"

[Mar 20, 2019] Sanders was a sheepdog>

Notable quotes:
"... There are numerous clues that point to the 2016 US Presidential Election as having been a set-up. Few seem willing to take a close look at these facts. But it is necessary for an understanding of the world we live in today. ..."
"... Sanders as sheep-dog Black Agenda Report called Sanders a sheep-dog soon after he entered the race . ..."
"... "Enough with the emails!" ..."
"... Not pursuing Hillary's 'winning' of 6 coin tosses in Iowa ..."
"... Virtually conceding the black and female vote to Hillary ..."
"... Not calling Hillary out about her claim to have NEVER sold her vote ..."
"... Endorsing Hillary despite learning of Hillary-DNC collusion ..."
"... Continuing to help the Democratic Party reach out to Bernie supports even after the election ..."
"... As one keen observer noted: Sanders is a Company Man . ..."
May 31, 2017 | jackrabbit.blog
There are numerous clues that point to the 2016 US Presidential Election as having been a set-up. Few seem willing to take a close look at these facts. But it is necessary for an understanding of the world we live in today.

Trump's first 100 days has come and gone and he has proven to be every bit the faux populist that Obama was (as I explained in a previous post). In hind-sight we can see how a new faux populist was installed.

Evidence

  1. Sanders as sheep-dog Black Agenda Report called Sanders a sheep-dog soon after he entered the race .

    Sanders made it clear from the start that he ruled out the possibility of running as an independent. That was only the first of many punches that Sanders pulled as he led his 'sheep' into the Democratic fold.

    Others were:

    • ; "Enough with the emails!"

    • ; Not pursuing Hillary's 'winning' of 6 coin tosses in Iowa;

    • ; Virtually conceding the black and female vote to Hillary;

    • ; Not calling Hillary out about her claim to have NEVER sold her vote;

    • ; Endorsing Hillary despite learning of Hillary-DNC collusion;

    • ; Continuing to help the Democratic Party reach out to Bernie supports even after the election.

    As one keen observer noted: Sanders is a Company Man .

  2. Trump as Clinton protege

[Mar 20, 2019] Fool me once... Here is an interesting info of the stage of public mind mid 2016. I see no poseter that suspect that Sanders is a turncoat, who eesentially spend all those hard earned money and then folded to hillry formally giving her votes of people who supported Sanders becuase that hate Hillar and neoliberalims too much. I wonder how many suckers will support him for 2020

Notable quotes:
"... "Defiant leftwinger" is a bit rich. "Defiant leftwinger" only in relation to an artificially skewed spectrum represented by Fox News, Casino Trump, and a corporate funded neoliberal nominee toeing a rightwing foreign policy line. ..."
"... Bernie Sanders is a social democrat in the tradition of FDR whose policies are centrist in relation to other industrialised nations. ..."
"... He has focused on four planks he wants in the Democratic Party platform: the creation of an economy that works for all citizens, breaking up the five "too-big-to-fail" banks, a carbon tax to address climate change, and a single-payer healthcare system. ..."
"... Of course Bernie needs to stay. Hillary is under FBI investigation. If she ends up in an orange pantsuit in the big house Bernie will look very stupid and basically has thrown out over 200 mio. dollars which is the amount he has spent on his campaign so far. Given to him by his supporters. It is his duty to them to stay in. ..."
"... " the Guardian are stuck in the old, failed new Labour/Lib Dem politics and do everything to undermine him.( Corbyn )" ..."
"... The Clinton camp is attempting to pressure Sanders to force him out before the convention to make sure that doesn't happen. The Sanders camp is just following the rules and playing fairly. ..."
"... Britain began its retreat from this post WWII social democracy in 1979, 37 years ago when Thatcher took over. The essentially neo-liberal agenda has been actively pursued by every government since then - Thatcher-Major-Blair-Brown - and indeed has accelerated under Cameron. ..."
"... There is nothing to indicate that the average american will be worse off with Trump in office as opposed to Clinton. That's how far to the right her actual policies are. Not the crap she claims, but the stuff she has been doing for the past 20 years. ..."
"... People wonder why there is such animosity towards Americans. You support a woman for president whilst disregarding her most vile traits as a joke? Clinton is a real danger towards the Middle East and that is partly because of her warmongering and absolute support for Israel, wrong or right. There are girls in Sirte, Libya currently being used as sex slaves by ISIS who may think your not so funny. ..."
"... "He tapped into deeply held sentiments about a rigged economy and a broken political system, and built a mass movement of people who believe we can do better and demand solutions that match the scale of the crises." Corbyn has the same agenda in the UK and given the internecine struggle in the Tory Party has an even better chance of winning in 2020. Pity that progressive newspapers like the Guardian are stuck in the old, failed new Labour/Lib Dem politics and do everything to undermine him. ..."
"... And, who knows, elsewhere could possibly prove better - your guess is as good as mine. Clinton is neo-liberal establishment through-and-through. The darling of the global capitalist corporations. ..."
"... Yes, what is wrong with the idiots? Why don't they just lie on their backs and surrender to the neo-liberalist elite? ..."
"... Just a few years ago Americans prised themselves from an unelected monster, G. W. Bush - he and his monster crowd being the key architects/facilitators of the current economic woes and mayhem in the middle east. That's pretty well indisputable. People can try to dispute it but they are flat out wrong and they know it. So given that, why would America now want to place another monster in power? ..."
"... Funny, cancer works this way on the human organism confusing the immune system so much that the body thinks a tumour is okay, a genuine part of the body. Until it's too late. ..."
"... So the American presidential race is down to a contest between the supporter of Oligarchy (Clinton) and the Oligarch (Trump). Of course this would never lead you to believe that American politics serves only the Oligarchy and funds only their candidates. ..."
"... Dems are only about 29% of registered voters, btw, so that is 6% of 29% of voters backing her right now. Yep. Trump has a good chance of winning against that - a write-in campaign for a soggy loaf of bread has a good chance of winning against that. ..."
"... You really don't get what created Trump's opportunity do you, its the same that has seen a new options becoming a political force throughout Europe, its ever & constant growth of disenchantment with the Clinton's, Cameron's & the rest of the political establishment.......sadly the US people need Sanders far more than he needs them of so it would seem. ..."
"... It is no longer "God Bless America". It's "God Help America". With the choice of Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. Bill (Mr. Zippy) Clinton is already interviewing the interns and glad that he can now get Cuban cigars. From President to "First Man". Remember " I did not have sexual relations with this woman." Just a Blow Job. ..."
"... However they must take a leaf out of the Tea Party's book and start getting their candidates elected as State and congress candidates. There is no point in having a radical president and a reactionary congress. ..."
"... No, those who propped up the corrupt Hitlery, knowing full-well that the system is rigged and the super delegates are bought and paid for, are to blame. ..."
"... Republicans have more of a spine than the Hitlery voters, because they voted for who they actually wanted, not who they were told to. ..."
"... Bernie is an Independent, he should run as one. F*ck Clinton and f*ck the DNC. ..."
"... The 67-year-old Democratic front-runner has been "frequently plagued" by "blinding headaches" and a series of strokes over the course of the campaign which have left her second-guessing her chances of winning in 2016, says the upcoming book "Unlikeable - The Problem with Hillary." ..."
"... The Democrat Party is controlled by the Right and the the representatives at [almost] all levels appear untouchable. The key to the future, not just for Sanders but for the Left he has mobilised, will be in opening up the Party to democracy and accountability. ..."
"... It is truly depressing that the democrats had the chance to put a decent trustworthy person in the White House but instead opted for Clinton, who represents the interests of Wall Street and the Party of Perpetual War. By opting for her they have handed the keys to the repulsive Trump. ..."
"... For decades tens of millions of Americans who are left politically on major issues (whether they identify as "left-wing" or not) have voted for politicians who have carried water for Wall Street, the Pentagon, and the national security apparatus--often more effectively than the Republicans they depict themselves as the progressive alternative to. ..."
"... Money buys power - always has; always will. Read 'Clinton Ca$h'. Or just read something besides MSM. ..."
"... I'm not saying that there are not people who fully support her (and Obama's) IMF/World Bank/USAID/Clinton Foundation approach to international development and international trade, her center aisle approach to use of armed force, her (and Obama's) preference for private insurance based health reform, her approach to Haiti ..."
"... Remember!, it wasn't all sweetness and light under warmonger Hillary. C. ..."
"... "save America" - if Clinton or Trump gets into the White House, NOTHING will save America! ..."
"... "In Syria, militias armed by the Pentagon fight those armed by the CIA" ..."
"... ISIS was not reversed in Syria until Russia became involved, and they were in full decline within a month. Years of Obama's war against them and they expanded to holding 80% of Syria , and beyond. ..."
www.theguardian.com

greven -> truebluetah 9 Jun 2016 04:53

There is a difference isn't it? The Clintons are career politicians who have amassed a bigger fortune than Trump (and they are not the only ones that's become wealthy representing corporations) Bernie has amassed a few hundred thousand from a life in politics representing the voters.

SoxmisUK -> Shelfunit 9 Jun 2016 04:50

Compared to all the vile insults, conspiracy theory wailing and holy-than-thou posts by Sanders supporters over the last few months it's nothing

Let me amend that for you: "Compared to all the vile insults, conspiracy theory wailing and holy-than-thou posts by Clinton's supporters over the last few months it's nothing.."

There. Fixed.

Not true in either case, as one has been as bad as the other, but good to see you sticking your British oar in where it's clearly not wanted. You shit-stir enough for the Tories here in the UK.


WhigInterpretation 9 Jun 2016 04:50

"Defiant leftwinger" is a bit rich. "Defiant leftwinger" only in relation to an artificially skewed spectrum represented by Fox News, Casino Trump, and a corporate funded neoliberal nominee toeing a rightwing foreign policy line.

Bernie Sanders is a social democrat in the tradition of FDR whose policies are centrist in relation to other industrialised nations.

He has focused on four planks he wants in the Democratic Party platform: the creation of an economy that works for all citizens, breaking up the five "too-big-to-fail" banks, a carbon tax to address climate change, and a single-payer healthcare system.

Victorious1 -> Herr_Settembrini 9 Jun 2016 04:50

Sorry, but you cannot compare Ron Paul to Sanders and say they have little to show. One ran for many years and despite his sincerity and common sense came nowhere being nominated at any point in time and the other started a political revolution in his first run as nominee, drawing tens of thousands in crowds, more individual contributions than ever before and incredibly nearly won the nomination and probably would have done if he wasn't largely ignored by the media and the superdelegates weren't a bunch of establishment corrupt cronies.

ungruntled -> killedbydrones 9 Jun 2016 04:47

The election isnt over until the Party congress. In politics people often lie. A bunch of folk have said they will vote one way........but they may vote another(they may have been lying, or they may just change their minds.)

When the dust settles, and a few more wobbly polls are applied, it may transpire Clinton has no chance against Trump. In which case Clinton could easily be shown the VP's seat or...........

Seeing as there is little difference between Dems and Repubs, they might put the top heads of each party together in a room and dream up some other staretegy to screw over the American people. Clinton might get arrested. The possibilities are pretty endless

But the next POTUS is yet to be chosen
And Bernie is fighting on, just because he can. He isnt playing the stupid "I will bow out gracefully to keep the party together" bollocks because the party needs to be blown apart. Democracy in the USA is a joke.
Its all about who can buy the power, and Clinton and Trump are living proof of that fact.
Sanders sees that as corrupt and unnaceptable to the American people, (so do I) and anything he can do to upset the apple cart/gravy train, is fine with me

Ummmmm -> Suckspencil 9 Jun 2016 04:41

I agree with a fair amount of what you're saying, but with all due respect, you're missing the point, which is that what Sanders is proposing is eminently affordable for any developed nation. The Czech Republic, Greece, Norway, Sweden and Estonia, among others, do, I believe, provide free higher education. If Estonia, why not the US?

As things stand, most of Europe still has a healthcare system free at the point of delivery. Europe has more stringent climate legislation than the US. That's one of the reasons that TTIP poses such a threat.

And you'll find that the Callaghan government was ahead of the Thatcher government that followed it in retreating from post WWII social democracy: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/cabinetpapers/themes/sterling-devalued-imf-loan.htm

fedback 9 Jun 2016 04:37

Of course Bernie needs to stay. Hillary is under FBI investigation. If she ends up in an orange pantsuit in the big house Bernie will look very stupid and basically has thrown out over 200 mio. dollars which is the amount he has spent on his campaign so far. Given to him by his supporters. It is his duty to them to stay in.

ID6512838 -> Herr_Settembrini 9 Jun 2016 04:35

corporations will just do business elsewhere (especially in emergent markets like India and China). The result will be a relative decline in living standards for the lower and middle classes in the U.S. (good bye cheap kitchen appliances, cellular phones, and big screen tvs) and a further erosion in jobs.

Corporations do business where the consumers. The USA is going to be a consumer society for many more years - they have been trained over many years to consume more and more.

HNS1684 9 Jun 2016 04:30

As I said before: the very fact that Clinton has only "won" VERY NARROWLY in New Mexico, Nevada, South Dakota, Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Connecticut, Massachusetts and probably other states as well, the fact Bernie got nearly half the votes in these states, means that there is STILL at least some hope left for Bernie Sanders.

ArchibaldLeach 9 Jun 2016 04:30

Sanders campaign did a lot to move Hilary to the left but it's not enough. He needs to start moving from his campaign to building a grassroots liberal activist movement. (Not just supporting people who endorsed him). My hope is that the next Democratic nominee will be more liberal. Sanders showed us that liberalism is alive and well and he brought crucial issues to the debate that were being ignored.

snakeatzoes kirby1 9 Jun 2016 04:30

" the Guardian are stuck in the old, failed new Labour/Lib Dem politics and do everything to undermine him.( Corbyn )"

The latest, yesterday, in the middle of the Euro debate, was an astonishing attack by Blair, who clearly is about to" have his collar felt " over Iraq .

aaronpeacock 9 Jun 2016 04:30

what a load... it's a bitter pill and no one wants to eat it.

Clinton supporters have done little to nothing in the way of policy/platform inclusion, and the general election means she will pivot to the right shortly, where she always lived anyway.

It's going to take yet another cycle of right-wing idiocy, it seems, before the Democrats will realize that pushing a strong left/liberal candidate is what's required for electoral success. Get ready for a President Trump.

Lagasse 9 Jun 2016 04:29

Right now the delegate count stands at 2,178 to 1,810. Neither can get enough in the final primary to clinch the nomination. It has to go to the convention for a decision, therefore. Either candidate could be given the nomination at the convention, per DNC rules.

The Clinton camp is attempting to pressure Sanders to force him out before the convention to make sure that doesn't happen. The Sanders camp is just following the rules and playing fairly.

SoxmisUK -> Deborah Holloway 9 Jun 2016 04:27

That's twice you've posted that. Trolling for some reason? The only reason Bernie lost was that Clinton got a massive head start from the DLC as part of the institution and she was married to a former president.

If Sanders had another 3 months (Possibly much less..) he'd have wiped the floor with her and re-written politics in the USA. You can crow all you wish now, but the truth is come the next time around there will be a popular vote that stands firmly on the foundations Sanders has (Quite remarkably..) built.

Suckspencil Ummmmm 9 Jun 2016 04:26

what Sanders proposes is no more than bog-standard, post WWII social democracy - the sort of infrastructure that most of the rest of the developed world has enjoyed for the past seven decades

Britain began its retreat from this post WWII social democracy in 1979, 37 years ago when Thatcher took over. The essentially neo-liberal agenda has been actively pursued by every government since then - Thatcher-Major-Blair-Brown - and indeed has accelerated under Cameron.

These are the issues which Sanders has campaigned on:

getting big money out of politics, his plan to make public colleges and universities tuition-free, combating climate change and ensuring universal healthcare,"

I wonder if Ummmmm could remind me which of those we still have in the UK. The struggle must continue here as well, I think. I wouldn't mind a bit of Sanders' "crazed pipe dream".

Ziontrain -> anemag 9 Jun 2016 04:24

There is nothing to indicate that the average american will be worse off with Trump in office as opposed to Clinton. That's how far to the right her actual policies are. Not the crap she claims, but the stuff she has been doing for the past 20 years.

Spare us the scaremongering. If you wanted to vote for a republican, why would you do so under the "Democratic party" banner?

p0winc -> Ummmmm 9 Jun 2016 04:22

Completely agree. What he wants to implement is what the rest of us take as ordinary and for granted. 643,000 People in the states went bankrupt from Medical bills last year. He has however started something unique in the states, showing it's possible to fund and at times out fund the political establishment from individual small donations and not have to compromise on policies.

Bookseeker -> snakeatzoes 9 Jun 2016 04:22

'La Lucha Continua' was also a slogan used by the CNT on its 100th anniversary.

JayJ66 -> R. Ben Madison 9 Jun 2016 04:21

People wonder why there is such animosity towards Americans. You support a woman for president whilst disregarding her most vile traits as a joke? Clinton is a real danger towards the Middle East and that is partly because of her warmongering and absolute support for Israel, wrong or right. There are girls in Sirte, Libya currently being used as sex slaves by ISIS who may think your not so funny.

kirby1 9 Jun 2016 04:20

"He tapped into deeply held sentiments about a rigged economy and a broken political system, and built a mass movement of people who believe we can do better and demand solutions that match the scale of the crises." Corbyn has the same agenda in the UK and given the internecine struggle in the Tory Party has an even better chance of winning in 2020. Pity that progressive newspapers like the Guardian are stuck in the old, failed new Labour/Lib Dem politics and do everything to undermine him.

chrisdix15 9 Jun 2016 04:18

Trump and Clinton are a double headed coin. I would hope Sanders keeps himself away from either but ensures his supporters vote for neither - don't join the Corrupters Bernie, but stay where you are and keep the struggle going within Congress to show that both Trump and Clinton mean and do the same things. Only doing this will ensure people see a real alternative to the strait-jacket the Democrat/Republican parties stand for. The struggle has only just begun.


ryanpatrick9192 -> fedback 9 Jun 2016 04:39

If Hillary is indicted then that does not make Bernie the nominee by default. The superdelegates can still back Clinton and let her pick a replacement they approve of. Why would they choose Bernie? He doesnt have enouh support to win a general election. Trunp got more votes in the primary than Bernie for crying out loud.

Suckspencil -> Shotcricket 9 Jun 2016 04:35

How could you, even in jest, suggest such a thing possible? We in the West, are blessed to be led by fearless god-fearing moderates who believe in justice, peace, equality and the rule of law. Shame on you!

Suckspencil -> Cleggatemyhamster 9 Jun 2016 04:31

And, who knows, elsewhere could possibly prove better - your guess is as good as mine. Clinton is neo-liberal establishment through-and-through. The darling of the global capitalist corporations.


Suckspencil -> twiglette 9 Jun 2016 04:30

Yes, what is wrong with the idiots? Why don't they just lie on their backs and surrender to the neo-liberalist elite?

BruceRobbie 9 Jun 2016 04:15

Despite this dreadful situation one thing remains, Sanders and Trump supporters simply do not TRUST Clinton to deliver on her promises and she needs them to trust her if she is to get people go out and to vote for her. Voting requires effort for many people, and if they don't believe, they will simply stay at home on Election Day. In which case Clinton will lose, because a majority of Americans actually don't like her.

She is also perceived by a large numbers of Americans as little more than a Manager of the American nation; the leaders, the CEOs of America, sit in board rooms of corporate America waiting for their "manager" to deliver on their investment in her campaign.

Due to her untrustworthiness and serpentine character, Sanders has wisely shifted his efforts to Congress and the Senate, so that Clinton if elected, is held to account for electoral promises, Clinton is adept at avoiding difficult situation, emails and Goldman Speeches, and will try to wriggle out of any commitment if her leaders deem it necessary. She and the DNC have fought a disgraceful, campaign of deceit, corrupt electoral practise and voter suppression. So when she spouts her Democratic rhetoric in the coming months, her words will ring hollow as a drum. Good luck America, I fear you're going to need it as your choice of leader this time around truly is the lesser of two evils.

LouisianaAlba 9 Jun 2016 04:13

The story foisted upon us so far in this electoral cycle is a reasonably but not very complicated narrative - a few players strutting, ranting and pouting about the country in a predictable plot. In keeping with this predictability let's keep any analysis simple - fairytale level. Let's talk about monsters.

Just a few years ago Americans prised themselves from an unelected monster, G. W. Bush - he and his monster crowd being the key architects/facilitators of the current economic woes and mayhem in the middle east. That's pretty well indisputable. People can try to dispute it but they are flat out wrong and they know it.

So given that, why would America now want to place another monster in power?

Another age of the political monster is looming. Two loom over the world in the coming battle, with a third in the wings by marriage who wants another shot at power as well, the man who signed away the last threads of Glass Steagall's legal powers.

What is it with Americans and their love affair with these political monsters? Can't Americans choose a good and decent human being who cares for the people and the country. A person who doesn't treat the country and the world as fools.

Even on the money front, it can be so simple, as economists often say - a confident happy people can lead to economic prosperity. It won't guarantee it I concede and I won't trade arguments on government or no government intervention, but a happy people is a better bet for a good economy than the opposite. Keeping it all at the fairytale level of course. Treating people well leads them to be disposed, motivated towards treating others well. Most times. Okay then there is psychopathology and the narrative gets complicated.

But the simple truth is - the simple story has been hijacked because a simple story is too easily managed and a country easily managed is not so easily fooled. And if you can't fool a country and the world, it is not so easy to get away with complicated crimes. Which is the usual way a monster gets away with them or gets to be rich, complicating things so much we aren't aware fast enough to stop any of it. Then after we know we are so beaten down and weakened we're simply not strong or ready enough to fix blame where it belongs.

Funny, cancer works this way on the human organism confusing the immune system so much that the body thinks a tumour is okay, a genuine part of the body. Until it's too late.

NickDaGeek 9 Jun 2016 04:13

So the American presidential race is down to a contest between the supporter of Oligarchy (Clinton) and the Oligarch (Trump). Of course this would never lead you to believe that American politics serves only the Oligarchy and funds only their candidates.

God help us if Trump wins and the idiots in Whitehall sign up to TTIP. If that happens Brexit will swap Brussels for Washington and we will still be a vassal state of a huge power block run by tax avoiding globalist monopoly capitalists.

Lagasse -> MrBrownley 9 Jun 2016 04:13

the large majority who didn't vote for him

Where did that happen? Democratic primary turnout has been around 11%. So far she's got about 6% of Dem voters, meaning that around 94% of registered Dems that could have voted for her, didn't.

Dems are only about 29% of registered voters, btw, so that is 6% of 29% of voters backing her right now. Yep. Trump has a good chance of winning against that - a write-in campaign for a soggy loaf of bread has a good chance of winning against that.

She polls terribly with the largest group of registered voters: Independent (however Sanders does quite well).

Meanwhile, the GOP has had higher primary turnouts. More votes were cast in their primaries even though there are fewer registered Rep voters.

GOP voters are fired up while Dem voters aren't fired up to vote for an unpopular, DNC-annointed candidate - that's a recipe for losing, ask Martha Coakley.

Clinton and her supporters better up their games and quick.


Shotcricket -> pucksfriend 9 Jun 2016 04:10

You really don't get what created Trump's opportunity do you, its the same that has seen a new options becoming a political force throughout Europe, its ever & constant growth of disenchantment with the Clinton's, Cameron's & the rest of the political establishment.......sadly the US people need Sanders far more than he needs them of so it would seem.

Clinton is the old way, Sanders is the new way...the irony of that should not be lost on anyone.


SonOfFredTheBadman 9 Jun 2016 04:10

It is no longer "God Bless America". It's "God Help America". With the choice of Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. Bill (Mr. Zippy) Clinton is already interviewing the interns and glad that he can now get Cuban cigars. From President to "First Man". Remember " I did not have sexual relations with this woman." Just a Blow Job.

ga gamba 9 Jun 2016 04:09

Shrewd move by Sanders, I think. Many believe that Clinton will veer sharply to the right when she nominated and campaigns for the general election. Withholding an endorsement until late October keeps her honest; if she backtracks on her "progressive" promises made during the primaries Sanders can endorse Jill Stein. In a sense, Sanders is the conscience Clinton doesn't possess.

He said it was a revolution, so Clinton and her supporters shouldn't be surprised that he's using revolutionary tactics.

Oudeis1 -> fahkingobserving 9 Jun 2016 04:09

I thank you -primarily for you actually typing-out your rationale. Mere 'carping' is the more common response to my posts, thanks again - for processing and expounding. And yes, I know enough of American Football to appreciate your analogy.

On the Green invitation to Sanders: I have been aware of this for some time. I'm sure that it is sincere, I'm also certain that it was a little too soon. Sanders does indeed know much about US Politics, and his conduct throughout this contest has been consistent enough for most observers to discern a clear pattern:

-His ideas are more important to him that his personal success.

-His 'read' on the electoral niceties, possibilities, probabilities and 'desirabilities' is sagacious.

-His initiation of his campaign by way of the Democrat Party is entirely logical.

-A firm commitment from the DNC & HRC on some of his more important policy-planks would allow him to conclude that his job was (well) done. And to then advise his supporters to get behind the renewed and revitalized HRC ticket.

Personally, inline with my own take on these things, Senator Sanders will not concede without (firm & meaningful) concessions. Should no such concessions be forthcoming...

He may then - if this is how things pan out, turn to his supporters for their opinion, or 'knowing' full well there likely response, turn directly to the Greens and add Jill Stein to his then Independent ticket, and run as a third option.
These last two options represent at least as much chance of the defeat of Trump, and very likely more chance of doing that, than his caving-in (selling his soul) to the DNC.
-Yes, I am aware that Sanders has firmly denied that he has any wish at all to run as a third option - this stance is both inline with his desire to see the Democrat Party turn away from the neoliberal/Republican-lite present and his overall objective of getting his policies promoted in November.
However: Nobody can promote the fundamentals of US Democracy and then deny them.

MajorRoadRage -> abdul maulud 9 Jun 2016 04:05

I would rather see Trump in office and see Hillary's supporters endure the same punishment as if we had all voted for her to begin with. Hillary is in it for herself and her corporate sponsors. So if I'm gonna be screwed, so will Hillary supporters, even with mountains of evidence available that she is NOT the candidate to run for presidency people still smile and nod their heads with complacency. Wake up and smell the corruption.

Bitty31985 -> powellscribe 9 Jun 2016 04:08

As I said; if you want some one to blame , blame the media and the DNC. I am never wasting my vote on the lesser of two evils ever again. You WILL never ever convince me to do otherwise. I vote for who I BELIEVE IN. Good luck trying to guilt people into supporting that sociopath.

wiseowler 9 Jun 2016 04:06

If Sanders can get people who support his core radical progressive changes onto key Democratic committees and positions of power, plus get support at the convention for these policies then he may be bale to set in train a transformation of the Democratic Party and the possibility of a real change candidate winning the next election.

However they must take a leaf out of the Tea Party's book and start getting their candidates elected as State and congress candidates. There is no point in having a radical president and a reactionary congress.

If he can achieve this then maybe his momentum can help transform the Clinton campaign - which is in sore need of some radical and youthful energy if she is to defeat Trump

artvandalay316 -> abdul maulud 9 Jun 2016 04:01

No, those who propped up the corrupt Hitlery, knowing full-well that the system is rigged and the super delegates are bought and paid for, are to blame. Spineless cowards who would rather tow the establishment line and never see any real change than vote for something a bit different for once. The most amusing thing is, the Republicans have more of a spine than the Hitlery voters, because they voted for who they actually wanted, not who they were told to.

Shotcricket 9 Jun 2016 03:57

"Sanders will discuss a wide range of issues, including getting big money out of politics, his plan to make public colleges and universities tuition-free, combating climate change and ensuring universal healthcare"

Almost The Guardian mantra of many a year

And yet The Guardian has been pro Clinton throughout the nomination campaign.....& very negative toward Sanders, just what does The Guardian believe in, other than the longevity of the political establishment ?


SilverTui 9 Jun 2016 03:45

L.A. County Supervisors Demand Answers Day After CBS2 Investigation Uncovers Deceased Voters Casting Ballots

so this is how Clinton won California - zombies

http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2016/05/24/l-a-county-board-of-supervisors-demand-answers-day-after-cbs2-investigation-uncovers-deceased-voters-casting-ballots/


Virginia Fast -> gaiayceleste 9 Jun 2016 03:29

How can people believe their vote counts when it is opposed by endless money, lies and manipulation ? For example, how could the media make free tuition, last signed into law, by Abe Lincoln and existing in California until a couple of decades ago, seem strange ? And it's normal in all other countries as a matter of course. I cannot believe you can have that debt at such a young age and manage. It seems the last economic conflict exploited by capitalism is conflict--which should not be--is between old people and young people. Young people more and more are excluded from that American economic leveler, education.


blackerdog -> StephenChin 9 Jun 2016 03:20

The super delegates are all full paid up members of the establishment that's why Clinton get their vote.
She won't win against Tump, she has blood on her hands legal problems and can't control her own house never mind the lives of hundreds of millions.
Trump is a buffoon but he hasn't been bought. Middle America won't vote for her.


Flugler -> Virginia Fast 9 Jun 2016 03:18

Bill Clinton stripped the social security fund dry and used it to balance the budgets. Americans retiring in the near future are screwed. Cheers bill.


Virginia Fast -> Flugler 9 Jun 2016 03:14

With Clinton putting Hubby in charge of financial affairs, better get ready to bail out the banks and lose whatever you managed to keep last time. If only the fools who voted for them suffered --

It's a nightmare of endless war and homeless filling th streets. More of the same forever and ever.......the future as igtmare


Mynameistoocommon -> turn1eft 9 Jun 2016 02:50

If this were true the FBI should get the hell on with it and not play political games. It is certainly not any of their concern whether Clinton could be pardoned by Obama (which would surely kill her campaign in any event). Since she is innocent until proven guilty, the suspicion that the investigation places over her is itself damaging. If it could ever be proven that the FBI had deliberately taken their time in order to prolong the doubt, before clearing her, that would be a very serious allegation. I can't really see why they would bother though.


JK1875 9 Jun 2016 02:50

Bernie is an Independent, he should run as one. F*ck Clinton and f*ck the DNC.

robinvp11 -> Highgatecemetry 9 Jun 2016 02:47

I lived in the US for twelve years. Bernie Sanders is not a 'socialist;' in the UK, he'd be a Tory - not entirely sure where. Maybe liberal Tory but on a lot of things, he'd be to the right ie his views on guns (yes, he's pro-limited control but he buys into the NRA idea that it's 'mental health' issue).

trow 9 Jun 2016 02:46

Clinton was not elected she was appointed by so called super delegates .The election process was exposed as a farce .


turn1eft 9 Jun 2016 02:44

Sanders is only hanging on because the FBI have said they will prosecute Hillary on treason and racketeering.

Which sound strange to our ears. But racketeering was revived during the 1920s and treason during the Cold War.

Clintons email server didnt just include top secret documents illegally it also included information about illegal donations from foreign backers.

I think the FBI are undecided whether to press charges now - with a high chance Obama will pardon her - or press charges after the election in November when she will be spending the rest of her life dealing with this case.

ShaneFromMelbourne saddam 9 Jun 2016 02:43

Under Obama's watch:
Too big to fail banks....they're even BIGGER
1.5 Quadrillion dollar derivatives market that scares the shit out of even the hedge funds.
Dodd-Frank Act that has loopholes you could drive a truck through.
Unemployment still out of the park (as if anyone believes the BS statistic of 4.9%)
The US economy is still so shit the the Fed can't increase interest rates (that's right, there will be no interest rate hike this year or the next)
8 years hasn't improved much.....

qelt17 -> Aquarius9 9 Jun 2016 02:38

The 67-year-old Democratic front-runner has been "frequently plagued" by "blinding headaches" and a series of strokes over the course of the campaign which have left her second-guessing her chances of winning in 2016, says the upcoming book "Unlikeable - The Problem with Hillary."
http://nypost.com/2015/09/22/hillary-is-dealing-with-mounting-health-issues-new-book-claims/

FrankLeeSpeaking -> Mea Mea 9 Jun 2016 02:26

You must be a Killkary feminist. Sanders has deep rooted integrity and a fire to make the US a better place, unlike Killary ready to make the next killing, physically and financially speaking.

SilverTui 9 Jun 2016 02:15

A well funded and organised exit poll, which included mail in ballots, had a deficit of 16 percent from the reported results in California.

A deficit of 2 percent is sufficient to trigger an official investigation in Denmark.

Just saying.

https://public.tableau.com/profile/paulmitche11#!/vizhome/CapitolWeeklyDemPresidentialPrimaryAVExitPoll/USDEMPRIM

Also millions of California independents were given "placebo" affidavit ballots, that are not counted.

passtherockplease -> davidlen 9 Jun 2016 02:14

I believe we are already there. I think it will be very close but Trump will win -- republican tend to vote for their 'side' no matter whom it is. Those of us on the left seem to like purity, more than getting power to get things done. It is why These people only come out at Presidential elections forgetting there are three branches to governing in the US, Check out off year voting patterns GOP vote numbers stay firm. Democrats less so it is why there is no Democratic control senate and house and the house, well that is lost at least until the next census.

Go look at things like Young Turks and the like. They really think Clinton is worse than Trump.

gwynnechris -> Dennis25 9 Jun 2016 02:13

Lessor 'evilism' argument don't work. Trump may have different style, but politically/economically he's similar to Clinton. (Technically he's not a Fascist. He does not have bullyboys physically attacking left-wing/Trade Union meetings. eg Germany 1930's). I guess many people in USA want something different to Corporate dominance; which I believe will require a Labour Party formed from the Trade Unions. So Trump gets elected. Big deal. People will soon see their mistake and change. Politics has moved beyond the illusionary middle-ground as the election of Jeremy Corbyn indicates.


queequeg7 9 Jun 2016 01:52

The Democrat Party is controlled by the Right and the the representatives at [almost] all levels appear untouchable. The key to the future, not just for Sanders but for the Left he has mobilised, will be in opening up the Party to democracy and accountability.

In much the same way as Corbyn's election must make Labour MPs and Councillors more accountable to the Party membership, so Sanders' campaign must now find a way of challenging both the individuals and the process.


eastbayradical 9 Jun 2016 01:51

Here some wondrous policies and initiative enacted or supported by Bill Clinton and Barack Obama during their presidencies, almost all of which Hillary Clinton supports:

--Deregulation of telecom and finance
--The Omnibus Crime Bill
--The sanctions regime against Iraq (which killed 500,000 Iraqi children)
--NAFTA
--CAFTA
--TPP
--Fracking
--The objectively-racist death penalty
--Don't Ask, Don't Tell
--The Defense of Marriage Act
--Historic levels of repression against whistle-blowers
--Preservation of Bush-era tax cuts on the rich
--Expansion of NSA spying
--Years of foot-dragging on climate change
--Support for Israeli atrocities
--Support for the right-wing coup in Honduras
--Support for fraudulent election in Haiti
--Support for the Saudi dictatorship
--Support for a 31 cents/hour minimum wage (and against attempts to raise it)
--Arctic Drilling
--$1 trillion 20 year modernization of nuclear weapons arsenal
--Historically high numbers of deportations
--Drone missile strikes that kill large numbers of civilian an inflame anti-US hatred
--Health care reform that fortifies the power of the insurance cartel
--The bail-out of Wall Street


eastbayradical -> MikaelRogers 9 Jun 2016 01:48

Mikael supports the candidate that has backed the destruction of welfare, the private prison industry, the objectively-racist death penalty, fortification of the police state, deregulation of investment banks, NAFTA, the Iraq War, the bombing of Libya, the right-wing coup in Honduras, Israel's starvation blockade and blitzkrieg of Gaza, and the fight against raising the minimum wage in Haiti from 30 cents/hour to 60 cents/hour--all policies from which non-white people hav disproportionately suffered--yet every chance she gets, Mikael accuses the Sanders' campaign and supporters of being the racists.


Nietzschestache 9 Jun 2016 01:37

It is truly depressing that the democrats had the chance to put a decent trustworthy person in the White House but instead opted for Clinton, who represents the interests of Wall Street and the Party of Perpetual War. By opting for her they have handed the keys to the repulsive Trump.

Guest Oo -> saddam 9 Jun 2016 01:30

If Bernie took in all the BIG MONEY like the corrupt politicians, he would accomplished a lot more for the oligarchy and corporations and forget the people. He would also be a multi-millionaire by now.

Bernie chose the route to have a government for the PEOPLE and that does not work anymore. Majority of the corrupt Democrat voters chose a GOVERNMENT FOR THE CORPORATIONS by voting for Hillary.

johnnyhacket NigelRG 9 Jun 2016 01:29

The lesser of two evils is an argument that holds no water.
Read this for a different perspective I do not agree with it all but it will make a change from all the Trump is evil you must vote HRC stuff that is coming our way .
http:// https://off-guardian.org/2016/06/06/the-myth-of-the-spoiler-why-the-machine-elites-fear-democracy/www .

eastbayradical HilltopRide 9 Jun 2016 01:25

For decades tens of millions of Americans who are left politically on major issues (whether they identify as "left-wing" or not) have voted for politicians who have carried water for Wall Street, the Pentagon, and the national security apparatus--often more effectively than the Republicans they depict themselves as the progressive alternative to.

Every four years we're told "yes, X Democrat is a corporate-backed, warmongering stooge, but look at how horrible Y Republican is! If you don't vote for the Democrat you're voting for the Republican!" It's the same scare tactics year after year after year--and year after year the political center of gravity shifts further to the right. This is the anatomy of our demise.

Finally, millions that have for years dutifully voted for the corporate, warmongering pseudo-progressive stooge with the (D) next to his name are waking up and saying to the Democrats: Try to win without out us you corporate scum!

joeblow9999 -> saddam 9 Jun 2016 01:16

Hilly's accomplishments?

Iraq War
Setting the stage for ISIS
Kicking off the next Cold War

She is a sham.

Jill McLean 9 Jun 2016 01:15

What I don't get is everyone's surprise. Just one example: A $29 billion deal with Saudi Arabia goes down, and the Clinton Foundation gets a $10 mil contribution. What kind of payback could Bernie get for petitioning for 'equal rights'? Come one, people. Money buys power - always has; always will. Read 'Clinton Ca$h'. Or just read something besides MSM.

duncandunnit 9 Jun 2016 01:03

Hillary Clinton is a warmongering she devil, that will only ever work with problems rather than solutions. She will be very happy for the usa to continue selling billions of dollars of weapons to wasabi jihadists at saudi instruction (which caused the European refugee crisis), she will continue the usa track record of the usa sticking in puppet presidentas into countries denying them democracy. She will continue the usa using propaganda as a weapon.

sammy3110 9 Jun 2016 00:48

After Hillary's coronation, I'll change my registration from D to I, and I hope others will consider doing the same. I'm not leaving the D Party, the D Party has left me.

ynnej1964 -> garth25 9 Jun 2016 00:42

I have to wonder. Among my pro-Clinton friends the dominant arguments were a) her 'qualification' b) it's time for a woman c) Bernie is less qualified, and so to chose him over hillary might indicate unconscious sexism.

I'm not saying that there are not people who fully support her (and Obama's) IMF/World Bank/USAID/Clinton Foundation approach to international development and international trade, her center aisle approach to use of armed force, her (and Obama's) preference for private insurance based health reform, her approach to Haiti , but I don't think that is why my clinton friends supported her. I can't speak for all. But i'd say these are more things they would forgive her for, rather than their first choice on policy.

daWOID -> eastbayradical 9 Jun 2016 00:36

Sorry, friend, I happen to know a good deal about voter fraud in New York State, where I worked for a few decades as Inspector of Elections. Don't know much about California. So here's what I can contribute:

a) In New York State at least, provisional ballots are exactly the joke you describe. All it takes is a poll worker who doesn't like your looks and they'll pretend they can't find you on the rolls and why don't you simply fill out a provisional ballot?

b) And of course the provisional ballots never get counted, because to have your ballot counted you would have to go before a judge to determine whether or not you were rightly denied your vote.

c) The amount of voter fraud and voter suppression perpetrated in the Democratic Primary this year has surpassed anything I've ever seen in my lifetime, excepting my work during the Civil Rights Era, where it was just as bad but considerably less sophisticated. So is it likely that the same applied in California? Well, duh...

macktan894 9 Jun 2016 00:32

These are crucial issues that most people have repeatedly bitched about over the years in these forums. It makes no sense to plunge kids into bankruptcy and lifelong debt with outrageous fees and interest rates who are tying to get an education. We have seniors whose social security checks are being garnished because they still owe on college loans. We have people who are afraid to see a doctor or go to an emergency room, even though they pay yearly escalating premiums, because they fear the debt it will trigger. Yet Elected Officials seem only able to act when it comes to Endless Wars and surveillance; no problem spending trillions on defense, just don't ask them to spend it on the American people lest they feel entitled.

I'm hardly surprised that the Status Quo wants Bernie to just shut up and disappear. Who's lauding him for running a campaign financed by people who voted for him, not by corporations and billionaires? And I'll continue to donate to him because he is the people's lobbyist. Go, Bernie!

GigabitG 9 Jun 2016 00:31

So is the Guardian arguing that Clinton fought a fair campaign? Really? Try a little harder please, you know full well that Clinton hobbled Sanders at every step. Throughout this campaign the Guardian has chosen to ignore all the reports of widespread disenfranchisement and polling irregularities that prevented millions of Sanders supporters from voting and instead lazily point to the inevitability of Clinton. Depressing news from a complicit Guardian.

RogersRoy ChrisD58 9 Jun 2016 00:29

Sad to see Sanders ego and self delusion providing even more opportunity for the monster that is Trump

Remember!, it wasn't all sweetness and light under warmonger Hillary. C.

The Republican & Democrat DNA is within 1% of each other. These parties have loads of Corporate corrupt White House monsters.

When our governments; the White House and their British Parliamentary lackeys use our taxes to pay their terrorists to overthrow legitimate sovereign countries and their elected leaders and organise assassinations then I say; it's high time this incompetent maverick nonsense stopped!!.

I Refuse To Pay These Illegal Bills.

eastbayradical 9 Jun 2016 00:07

Both my wife and I registered as Democrats in California in the last month.

My wife received a ballot in the mail but she was still listed as a Green. When she went to the precinct to vote she was given a provisional ballot that allowed her to vote in the Democratic primary. I just asked her if her name was on the voter rolls and she said she doesn't know, that the precinct workers "didn't know what they were doing, they just gave me a provisional ballot."

Unlike my wife I did receive confirmation that I had been registered as a Democrat and I received a ballot with the Democratic primary choices on it. Despite getting the ballot in the mail I wanted to vote at the precinct. I found when I got to the precinct that my name wasn't listed on voter rolls. The precinct worker recommended that I vote by provisional ballot, which I didn't like the idea of. I decided to fill out my ballot at the precinct and I was told to put it into a blue bag with a slot on the top. The precinct worker assured me that my ballot would be counted.

Journalist Greg Palast reports that provisional ballots, like the one my wife voted with, are essentially "placebo ballots"--that a very large percentage of them are never counted. He additionally reports that there are hundreds of thousands of provisional ballots in California that have yet to be counted. There is every reason to believe that provisional ballots, since they're given to newly-registered voters, were disproportionately given to Sanders' voters like my wife. Palast also reports that very large numbers of voters found that there names were not on voting rolls when they went to vote. It would seem that this would also disproportionately affect newly-registered voters.

On top of all this, there are many thousands of ballots that were sent on Monday and Tuesday that have yet to be counted.

Does anyone have any thoughts on this matter? Is Greg Palast wrong about provisional ballots? Are all the votes going to be counted? I'm happy to hear the thoughts of people who think that Palast is full of shit, so long as they're actually engaging in thinking.

Janosik53 -> sandi78 8 Jun 2016 23:55

Published May 11, 2016

Hillary Clinton for months has downplayed the FBI investigation into her private email server and practices as a mere "security inquiry."

But when asked Wednesday about Clinton's characterization of the bureau's probe, FBI Director James Comey said he doesn't know what "security inquiry" means -- adding, "We're conducting an investigation. That's what we do."

Hillary Clinton is a pathological liar.

iammaynard -> drpage1 8 Jun 2016 23:38

Your leaders, Clinton and Obama created ISIS

I wish I had the middle east figured out as well as you got it. If you understand the causes so clearly, when will you be bringing your solutions? Those must obviously as clear to you, yes?


Carenshare -> Annie Rainier 8 Jun 2016 23:31

Re: Your points.....

"bags" - Both Clintons drag around more baggage than American Airlines
"old man" - Sanders isn't much older than Clinton
"God" - There is no God
"save America" - if Clinton or Trump gets into the White House, NOTHING will save America!

But 'Good Luck' anyways!

Girl 8 Jun 2016 23:27

Super delegates don't count until the convention... The Guardian has aided the fruad and been a champion for the DNC...Hillary is goin' down, either the e mails, the clinton foundation, or Trump, she is done...

drpage1 -> nevesone 8 Jun 2016 23:19

Your leaders, Clinton and Obama created ISIS. Here is a clue:

http://www.latimes.com/world/middleeast/la-fg-cia-pentagon-isis-20160327-story.html

"In Syria, militias armed by the Pentagon fight those armed by the CIA"

"...a string of embarrassing setbacks which included recruits being ambushed and handing over much of their U.S.-issued ammunition and trucks to an Al Qaeda affiliate."

ISIS was not reversed in Syria until Russia became involved, and they were in full decline within a month. Years of Obama's war against them and they expanded to holding 80% of Syria , and beyond.

DesertPear -> Jared Hall 8 Jun 2016 23:06

The US Military-Industrial Complex is possibly the largest user of fossil fuels in the world and the information is not transparent nor available. We absolutely must turn away from war as a solution if we are to slow climate change! And the only way to change the military is to get money out of politics.

mbidding -> notmurdoch 8 Jun 2016 21:34

Student financial aid is not extremely generous in the US and generally does not cover the full cost of tuition at modestly priced state schools, let alone books. Loans, of course, are available, but financial aid is nothing like it was before Reagan gutted federal financial aid in the eighties and the states started divesting from their public universities at the same time.

[Mar 18, 2019] DNC is GOP lite. They are a bunch of greedy corrupted thugs. MSNBC Host: I'd Vote Trump Over Bernie!

Mar 18, 2019 | www.youtube.com

Troy Rudd , 3 days ago

Wow. The same people blaming "bernie bros" for Trump are gonna teach us a lesson by giving us more of what they are mad about. Now, that's some "unity" for ya! #Bernie2020

James<