While the Democrats have some post-Soviet issues on the Far Left — and the Republicans seem to draw the White Far Right — I believe Americans are perceiving a deeply paranoid, aggressive, and vindictive Administration freighted with shady figures (like Manafort) on the ride in and packed with sycophants (like Stephan Moore, the latest nomination for the Fed), today.
It was just one book (by a liberal) and may be let go, but since its publication, there have been many others, each researched and defended by its author, most with impeccable credentials. Now even the Mueller Report is being redacted — whatever the “eyes only”, the public isn’t getting the whole story, so there has to be something of value in the volume worth keeping from the public.
Whatever this report says, here’s what I know: when I was at Cambridge Analytica, the company hired known Russian agents, had data researchers in St Petersburg, tested US voter opinion on Putin’s leadership, and hired hackers from Russia – all while Bannon was in charge.
Christopher Wylie in the below displayed tweet.
In the way of communists and fascists alike, Bannon, the “populist”, has decamped himself into an Italian monastery befitting his own self-concept.
Such impressions add up, albeit among those who follow the news and query the Internet. The image of the President and his helper has not been authentically “populist”.
With Donald Trump, his once-trusted lawyer, his once-esteemed campaign manager, his brag, “I just you all a lot richer”, his Miami real estate, one of the world’s dirtiest / most glamorous markets, the story’s just not going to wash away, not matter how loud he may be about vindication.
I own it, haven’t read it, but it’s the kind of thing that pops up on Amazon with the search string, “Trump, Collusion” — there are also Trump collusion dismissals, but in that category, Roger Stone places high — I’d rather read (and trust) Guardian veteran Luke Harding.
BackChannels cited a BackChannels post on Craig Unger’s book. Here’s the direct link to the book on Amazon:
In the way of professional journalism, much condensed and simplified, every editor and reporter must ask about his story: “Is it clear? Is it accurate? Is it complete?”
All authoritarian / autocratic / dictatorial governments diminish the power of the press because . . . they are keeping secrets and intend not to share the reality of their political space with their subjugated populations.
He can’t share anything having to do with his circles of criminal enterprise. Instead, he has to tell the people fairy tales in a loud voice.
However, and in defense of secrets keeping and to criticize popular democratic self-determination — or perhaps point out the limits of the same — the British governing class got a strong lesson when it allowed nationalist forces, induced by Moscow-backed Islamic Terrorism and Migration — I “read” Syria as a deliberate underhanded assault on Europe — to make an issue of integration with the European Union, which has been Great Britain’s nearest and greater market and trading partner. Some part of the voting public had had no idea about where its state really was. Instead, they were focused on the degrading of British life by jihadists and needy migrants coming out of the middle east. They chose to lower the portcullis in an attempt to insulate themselves from what they believed was happening in Europe and happening to them because of a unified Europe. They’re now on the cusp of paying for their misjudgment.
The Donald goes off script and holds forth like Castro, delivering two hours of rambling, crowd loving, rambunctious showmanship; and the Bern, ever more to the point, tells his lovers of his intent to turn the American enterprise system — our realpolitik mix of public functions and private incentives x specific U.S. geopolitical area — upside-down.
What compassionate, moderate, and reasoning American constituency wants to have to choose between the demagogue on the Far (Out) Left and the reactionary on the Far (Mostly White) Right?
While it may be too soon to fix the 2020 contest as “Sanders v Trump”, it’s not too soon to question the off-the-wall egotism and narcissistic motivation of leaders to whom applause from their respective mobs — the “narcissistic supply”; the love that heals all wrongs; the love that affirms their manhood or sense of personal and political efficacy and messianic self-concept and value; the love that is for each politician like no other drug on earth — may be more important than the practical adjusting of policies to create or obtain nationwide improvements in bottom-to-top American qualities of living.
After writing off the several preceding elected Administrations as “an old ruling class”, making the claims that “America is winning again; America is respected again”; moseying around the “Great Tariff Debate of 1938”; making fun of the Democrat’s “New Green Deal”; mocking the press, “Please Russia get the e-mail” he whines sarcastically while the crowd chants “Lock her up! Lock her up!”; viciously firing at “Shifty Schiff” and “The Collusion Delusion”, reliably turning his targets into cartoon caricatures and episodes; and slinging a few more arrows along the lines of, “You leave people in certain positions, and suddenly they’re all trying to take you out with bullshit” (big applause for that nasty note), Trump gets around to what it’s really all about:
We’re in the swamp of Washington, D.C., but you know what? We’re winning and they’re not . . . .
You know what I like about this?
Number one, I’m in love, and you’re in love, we’re all in love together.
There’s so much love in this room, it’s easy to talk. You can talk your heart out. You really can. There’s love in this room.
27:20 -> 19:48 “President Trump takes the state at CPAC”. Breitbart YouTube video displayed below.
. . . thank you all for being part of a political revolution that is going to transform America
(Chanting: “Bernie! Bernie! Bernie! Bernie!) –
No, no, no — it is not Bernie, it you. It’s us together.
We are going to transform this country and finally create an economy and a government which works for all of us, not just the one percent.
3:30 –> 4:47 – “Bernie Sanders’ FULL Brooklyn speech”, Rebel HQ YouTube video as displayed.
Bernie’s crowd loves the way he panders to them, and it’s not too bad, for who would not be for economic, social, racial, and environmental justice?
Bernie and his followers have perhaps been seeing America’s regulated capitalist system become unbridled: “We will no longer tolerate the greed of corporate America and the billionaire class . . . greed which has resulted in this country having more income and wealth inequality than any other major country on earth” (6:35 -> 6:55).
However, who is going to pay for that guaranteed health care?
What anti-social steps may Big Pharma take to reduce the cost of prescription drugs (hint: offer less tested — and cheap — generics?); how will that heightened minimum wage avoid becoming simply inflationary? The eternal “crumbling infrastructure” issue (that’s been on BC’s plate since Lester Brown’s heyday) — Trump offered it too: any progress?
Tuition free public college and university educations: whose pockets, how, and how soon?
Of the two Big Dreamers, BC believes one far more social and concerned with the general American experience, but wonders as well whether applause has been more the motivation for heightened American messianism on the campaign trail than perception of the much needed nuts-and-bolts adjustments that would treat the nation’s land base and people with the care and respect required for better-than-functional politically coherent national survival.
Cohen’s hearing before the Congressional committee turned into a fine display of Republican viciousness. Cohen, convicted of earlier Trump-associated crimes, i.e., lying to Congress to protect The Boss, made a fair target for discrediting, but the barrage of indictments and innuendo launched by Representatives Jordan, Green, Comer, Hice, and Gosar, among others, either served to deflect attention from President Trump or to provide a lasting display of the kind of persons the Republican Party has seen elected to power.
Below: C-Span’s live feed of the hearing.
Showing up on Twitter during the early portion of the hearing:
Assad the Tyrant, using snipers to make his statement — and arresting school children to make it clear — turned a modest popular protest into possibly the most sadistic “civil war” on earth and in history. Unrivaled in its abuses of noncombatant Syrians, he managed to destroy his state, for all intents, and have it serve as a platform for Hezbollah, the Russian Army, and sundry attempts (impeded by Israel) at the manufacturing and delivery of advanced missiles for launching in southern Lebanon.
The Soviet Union collapsed in bankruptcy 26 years ago this December 25.
It turns out that Soviet / Post-Soviet Russia has become truly the “Mafia State” — Luke Harding’s term — and not the least reformed as an aggressive and barbarous monstrosity.
Prompt: the claim that had the west stayed out of Syria, Syrians would be happily alive and domiciled.
Screen capture, LiveUAMap, December 23, 2018 at 10:30 a.m. EST.
While the now Honorable Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez appears on the American scene as a “democratic socialist”, one may hope that the nation indeed produces grassroots politicians, the kind that like Lyndon B. Johnson got mud on their boots and knocked on doors. Times have changed, and a Go-Fund-Me account seems to work, but the politician has still to knock on doors, something the Congressional freshman has apparently mastered.
The complaints may be guessed from the comment: socialist; knows nothing, and who would educate her — Bernie?
Why not you? Us? Moderates (if there are any left)? She has to listen to her district and seek reelection like any other representative; she has also to know how Washington works; and she is going to have to revisit or visit anew the basics tenets of our democracy. In the meantime, she has seen a lot of misery on her streets. Ours is a modern Judeo-Christian Greco-Roman democracy. We address our issues. Always have. And we try to find what works in the best ways. She has a right to her voice (and her voice will change with time); her district has a right to its voice, and one should hope that it will do better with time and with better public policy.
Back in the 1960s, which formed our impressions, the Soviet Union put money behind Angela Davis and the Communist Party here in the United States. We know how that worked out. It’s better by far having a grassroots and young politician representing her part of our nation.
I don’t endorse those she admires, but if a bigot like Farrakhan is popular where she lives, that may tell about the failure of America to bring those people closer to our Revolutionary and Constitutional ideals, laws, values, and principles. Our democracy has been designed to make course corrections and, very early in that writing, with interest in domestic tranquility.
As this blog frequently references “Soviet / post-Soviet” politics, one may recall the suite of dictatorships from Cuba to Venezuela and all over the middle east that were within or close to the Soviet sphere of influence. Most were awful in relation to greater internal economic development in their heyday and most have failed.
Socialism as known has been the premier sales pitch of dictatorship.
The social political element in modern democracies more effectively produces basic systems supporting common business interests that then through revenue and expansion feed back into working economies. They allow people in freedom to invent new ideas and produce wonderful things, essentially heightening domestic and foreign exchange. All good things. Where there are abuses, only the democracies prove responsive to needed adjustments and amelioration.