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I Don't Think the Moral High Ground Exists Anymore

 

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  • Some thoughts on Al Franken's departure.
  • Related: Franken is no victim as he leaves the Senate.

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Charles P. Pierce, Esquire / Portside 

December 7, 2017 | I was going to let Dahlia Lithwick’s angry, lucid account in Slate of the end of Al Franken’s senatorial career speak for me, since Lithwick said everything I felt about this tawdry episode, and probably better than I could. Especially this part:

"Is this the principled solution? By every metric I can think of, it’s correct. But it’s also wrong. It’s wrong because we no longer inhabit a closed ethical system, in which morality and norm preservation are their own rewards. We live in a broken and corroded system in which unilateral disarmament is going to destroy the very things we want to preserve."

Charles P. Pierce is a staff writer for Grantland and the author of Idiot America. He writes regularly for Esquire, is the lead writer for Esquire.com’s Politics blog, and is a frequent guest on NPR.

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Franken is no victim as he leaves the Senate, Editorial Board,  Minneapolis (MN) Star Tribune

  • He deserves credit, however, for a decision that's best for Minnesota.
  • Related: Al Franken has to go.
     

 

One Nation, of Idiots and Evil People

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Maybe what divides Americans isn’t what they believe, but where they are.

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Justin Fox, Medium

Sep 29, 2017 | There’s a somewhat self-congratulatory saying among conservative intellectuals to the effect that … well, I’ll just let conservative intellectual Charles Krauthammer say it:

“Conservatives think liberals are stupid. Liberals think conservatives are evil.”

 

In the 2002 opinion column from which this quote was taken, Krauthammer called this a “fundamental law,” and he argued that it stemmed from the fact that liberals are naive about human nature and conservatives are realists (and thus favor policies that liberals consider unduly cruel, even evil). But when somebody repeated the saying to me last week, I was immediately reminded of a conversation I had in Alabama last fall. The pragmatic former small-town elected official I was visiting had shaken his head in contemplation of the upcoming presidential election, then called it “a contest between an idiot and an evil person.”The idiot was Donald Trump, the evil person Hillary Clinton. Which has gotten me thinking: Maybe the stupid/evil dichotomy has less to do with political philosophy than with where you are and what almost everyone around you thinks.

https://cdn-images-1.medium.com/fit/c/100/100/1*EaJCKy99KvoBMU_fq5hlUg.jpeg Justin Fox <>: Husband and father to the best pup in the world! After that, photography, scotch, traveler, watch lover and businessman.

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28 People Who Prove Our Education System Is Failing

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Reddit | Cnoordz

"Stay in school" is common advice that kids receive, but after seeing these people who are a product of our school system, I'm starting to think that we should just give up and not even bother with a formal education. Take a look at these pictures to see what I'm talking about.

dalton.lemert, Diply 

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http://img.diply.com/article-images/a/a3eff3c6-9653-45de-a303-7af18ddbd7f7.jpg?impolicy=desktop 1. If this guy is in charge of returning his phone, I don't think Adam has any hope of getting it back. I wonder how long it took for him to realize his mistake.

http://img.diply.com/article-images/a/5c1698b5-1c99-4ffb-909b-63e4663bc8e0.png?impolicy=desktop2. a 5nd time.

It's her 4rd time? I wonder what went wrong with the 1rd, 2st, and 3th times she tried piercing her nose. Hopefully she won't have to do it a 5nd time.

dalton.lemert : Diply contributor

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Trump’s Voter Fraud Endgame by Richard L. Hasen

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Donald Trump stands with Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach before their meeting at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey on Nov. 20.

His “election integrity” investigation is a pretext to repeal the National Voter Registration Act. It won’t work.

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Editor%20Comment%20icon.jpg Evergreene Digest Editor's Note: Although Trump has suspended the operations of his election integrity commission recently, his goal of suppressing votes remains, creating  a voting rights nightmare.

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Richard L. Hasen,   Slate /  Rise Up Times

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Millian%20Fists%20%7C%20Illusion_0.jpgAugust 22, 2017 | Donald Trump’s attempt at voter suppression through his “election integrity” commission is a voting rights nightmare that is being enacted so clumsily it just might backfire.

Both before and after the election, Trump made wild and unsubstantiated claims about voter fraud and the system being “rigged.” Before the election, many of the claims were about voters voting five, 10, or 15 times by impersonating other voters. The ridiculous and unproven charges of voter fraud had a racial tinge, with suggestions the fraud would happen in majority minority communities.* According to the New York Times, he told an audience in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, a few weeks before Election Day: “I just hear such reports about Philadelphia. … I hear these horror shows, and we have to make sure that this election is not stolen from us and is not taken away from us.” He added for emphasis: “Everybody knows what I’m talking about.”

Richard L. Hasen is a professor of law and political science at the University of California, Irvine, School of Law and is the author of Plutocrats United: Campaign Money, the Supreme Court, and the Distortion of American Elections.

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Special Project | A Christmas Holiday Reader

 

Jimmy Margulies | GOP Tax Cuts for the Rich
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A journey through a land of extreme poverty: welcome to America * Debunking Myths About Estrangement * Outside in America: At Christmas, families on the edge of homelessness must choose: gifts or rent? * Remembering the Christmas Truce * God Bless Us, Every Robber Baron

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Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest 

  • Part 1: A journey through a land of extreme poverty: welcome to America, Ed Pilkington, The Guardian 
  • The UN’s Philip Alston is an expert on deprivation and wants to know why 41m Americans live in poverty. The Guardian joined him on a mission into the dark heart of the world’s richest nation.

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Part 2: Debunking Myths About Estrangement, Catherine Saint Louis, New York (NY) Times 

https://static01.nyt.com/images/2017/12/19/science/19SCI-ESTRANGEMENT/merlin_130736456_2df727af-2b9a-4858-bc45-ac680a1da644-superJumbo.jpgDec. 20, 2017 | New research challenges the deeply held notion that family relationships can’t be dissolved and suggests that estrangement is not all that uncommon.
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Part 3: Series | Outside in America: At Christmas, families on the edge of homelessness must choose: gifts or rent? Erin McCormick, The Guardian

Part 4: Remembering the Christmas Truce, Zach Carter, HuffPost <https://www.veteransforpeace.org>

During World War I, on and around Christmas Day 1914, the sounds of rifles firing and shells exploding faded in a number of places along the Western Front in favor of holiday celebrations in the trenches and gestures of goodwill between enemies.
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Part 5: God Bless Us, Every Robber Baron, Zach Carter, HuffPost

https://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/5a39a036150000490049c9ee.png?cache=ogbugypatr&ops=scalefit_720_noupscale12/23/2017 | How did Charles Dickens’ beloved Christmas story become a trophy for a Wall Street titan?

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No Justice!  No Peace!  Please share this post.

Whether or Not Trump Remains in Office, We Must Contend With the Forces That Enabled His Rise

http://www.truth-out.org/images/Images_2017_11/2017_1113rr-tr4_.jpg(Image: Jared Rodriguez / Truthout)

  • The forces that pushed Donald Trump to the forefront are intrinsic to the US project, and they will not go away with him, should he be cast out.
  • Related: Special Report | Donald Trump’s first anniversary: Democracy on life support; How do we resist Donald Trump’s malignant reality?

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William C. Anderson, Truthout

Tuesday, November 14, 2017 | Denounced by many but stopped by no one, the Trump administration has been an odd sort of juggernaut. Tearing down past policies and building up walls (both literally and figuratively), this administration has been a rush of drastic action. While most modern presidents have tended to define themselves by what they are creating, it would seem this president is most concerned with the opposite. The "Trump doctrine" seems to be the reversal of the Obama legacy and anything seen as even mildly progressive. The eagerness of the current administration to reverse progress on multiple fronts raises questions about what exactly it is that we're witnessing and why. Every day under Trump feels much longer to exhausted dissenters, and no one's quite sure where the nation is headed.

The denunciation of President Trump is a very low bar for which to praise someone.
The utter ridiculousness of the current presidential predicament has led some, even within the ranks of the ruling Republican Party, to distance themselves from the president, which has raised the hopes of some desiring an impeachment or forced resignation. Many Democrats and liberals have uncritically celebrated Republican Trump detractors like the Bushes, Sen. John McCain, Sen. Bob Corker and Sen. Jeff Flake, seemingly forgetting the atrocities of all Republicanism and not just "Trumpism." "We need all the help we can get" has become a sorrowful, disempowering liberal talking point, as if "help" from someone who seeks to harm us (albeit by slightly different methods) is actually help. The terrible pasts of Trump's Republican denouncers is erased as soon as they proclaim their disapproval.

William C. Anderson is a freelance writer. His work has been published by the Guardian, MTV and Pitchfork, among others. You can read many of his writings at Truthout or at the Praxis Center for Kalamazoo College, where he's a contributing editor covering race, class and immigration. He contributed an essay to Truthout's anthology Who Do You Serve, Who Do You Protect? about the pressing need for an international Black movement against state violence, called "Killing Africa."

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Related:

Special Report | Donald Trump’s first anniversary: Democracy on life support; How do we resist Donald Trump’s malignant reality? Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Ryan%2C%20Trump%2C%20McConnell.jpg Paul Ryan; Mitch McConnell; Donald Trump (Credit: AP/Getty/Salon)

  • Part 1: Democracy on life support: Donald Trump’s first anniversary
  • Ignorance is a terrible wound when it is self-inflicted.
  • Part 2: One year later: How do we resist Donald Trump’s malignant reality?
  • A year after Trump's election, a numbness has set in. We must resist that too; it's poisonous to democracy.
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