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A Brutal Assessment of US Elections from Abroad

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  • To my friends (in the US), I feel your pain, suffering through another phony election for president of the USA.  Unlike most citizens of The Empire, you have an understanding that the winner of the election will be a regent for the true rulers, the international bankers and their supportive capitalist apparatus that have so much influence over your life.
  • Ralph Nader & Abby Martin on US Rigged Corporate Elections

Jack Balkwill, Dissident Voice

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/Millian%20Fists%20%7C%20Illusion.jpg February 10th, 2016 | It’s come to my attention that André Vltchek, writing in Pravda, has demystified the entire US presidential election scam in a piece titled “Please do not poison my brain with the US elections.”  Americans should understand how our elections are seen by people abroad.

To my American friends I feel your pain, political phone calls will disrupt everything you do until the election in November, when you will be asked to step into a polling booth to vote for a lesser evil, which often seems like a choice between Hitler and Satan.  You will hold your nose and wretch, finally writing in the name of a person who has no chance, because that person has a heart and integrity.

Jack Balkwill is an activist in Virginia. 

Full story … 

Related:

Ralph Nader & Abby Martin on US Rigged Corporate Elections, Ralph Nader and Abby Martin (@AbbyMartin), Media Roots

  • A long-time political figure with unique experience fighting from the center of Washington, Nader joins Abby Martin on The Empire Files to discuss today’s political climate, the corporate government and rigged elections. 
  • Vote all you want. The secret government won’t change.

8 Times the Helpers Eased the Pain of Sad Situations in 2015

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Even in the tragic and sad times, there were so many people who showed us the very best of humanity. So many people who reminded us that the good far outweighs the bad.

Laura Willard, Upworthy

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December 18, 2015 | Sometimes the helpers are those who, in the

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 wake of a tragedy, are quite literally saving lives. There are also the quieter helpers. The ones who are there to do what they can, long after the news cameras have gone. The ones who see serious everyday problems and know that even small gestures of compassion can make a world of difference.

There were a lot of helpers in 2015.

Here are eight of them that I want to remember because they remind me of the good in the world and inspire me to do my part when I can, no matter how small, to help make the world a better place.

Laura Willard

Full story …

There’s Nothing “Transformative” About Bernie Sanders (He’s Just Not Hillary)*

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  • “Sanders cannot divorce himself from – or even cease praising – the president and the party that has been a full partner in creating the economic devastation he so dutifully cites at every campaign stop.”
  • I'm not Ready for Bernie Sanders, May 6, 2015

Glen Ford, Black Agenda Report

http://blackagendareport.com/sites/default/files/styles/image-400x300/public/GLEN_BernieGirls.JPG?itok=bI0frmq- Wed, 02/17/2016 | Black America, the most left-leaning constituency in the United States on issues of social and economic justice and peace, will ensure that corporate mercenary and pathological warlord Hilllary Clinton wins the Democratic presidential nomination. The ax will fall in the South Carolina Democratic primary on the last Saturday of this month, when Blacks overwhelmingly reject the appeals of self-identified “democratic socialist” Bernie Sanders, a candidate whose positions on domestic issues are much closer to their own. A CNN poll shows Clinton leading Sanders 65 to 28 percent, although the Vermont Senator will doubtless close the gap a bit over the next ten days. White Democrats, a minority of the state Party, break 54% for Sanders, bringing his current share of the primary vote to 38 percent.

“The party’s rich masters know full well that Blacks seek protection, not accountability, from the Democrats.”

The statistic that is key to understanding the great paradox is that 75 percent of Black voters view Clinton as having a better chance to defeat the Republicans in November. In the context of the U.S. duopoly system, that’s all Black folks need to know, or think they know, to make a decision in national elections. For Blacks, the Democratic Party’s purpose is to beat back the existential threat posed by the Republicans, the White Man’s Party, whose organizing principle is white supremacy. (See “Throw Off the Dead Weight of the Democratic Party,” BAR, February 10, 2016.) All else is considered secondary, or irrelevant.

Glen Ford, Executive Editor, Black Agenda Report

Full story … 

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http://www.blackagendareport.com/sites/default/files/styles/image-400x300/public/hillarys-pocket.jpg?itok=-DYWaFaN I'm not Ready for Bernie Sanders, May 6, 2015, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

  • I'd rather have him running than not. But … 
  • Part 1: Invest in Activism, Not Bernie Sanders
  • Part 2: The Problem with Bernie Sanders
  • Why the 99 Percent Keeps Losing
  • From the Archives | Let's Not Be Fooled By Bernie Sanders & Elizabeth Warren

*Evergreene Digest Editor's Note: 

Evergreene Digest does not endorse any candidate or political party. But we will publish articles that have a serious or substantial intellectual content challenging or supporting the ideas of any of the candidates. 

You can submit articles that deal with the stated content of the candidates' positions and public record of what they have done in the past in their political offices or in their dealings with social movements, non-profits, the poor, the oppressed, the environment, or the super-wealthy. 

You can also comment on or send rebuttals to this article or anything else we publish on-line at www.evergreenedigest.org. Send them to me, David Culver <>, Ed., Evergreene Digest

Ralph Nader | Hillary Clinton Sugarcoating Her Disastrous Record – OpEd*

 

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  • The transformation of Hillary Clinton from a progressive young lawyer to a committed corporatist and militarist brings shame on the recent endorsement of her candidacy by the Congressional Black Caucus PAC.
  • I'm Not Ready for Hillary, March 24, 2015

doctom2010, Progressive Activists Voice

https://i0.wp.com/www.eurasiareview.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/Ralph-Nader.jpg?resize=777%2C437

Republished from Eurasia Review

February 13, 2016 | Bernie Sanders is far too easy on Hillary Clinton in their debates. Clinton flaunts her record and experience in ways that Sanders could use to expose her serious vulnerabilities and disqualifications for becoming president. Sanders responds to Clinton’s points, but without the precision that could demolish her arrogance.

For example, she repeatedly says that Sanders has not levelled with people about the cost of full Medicare for all, or single-payer. Really? In other countries, single-payer is far simpler and more efficient than our present profiteering, wasteful, corporatized healthcare industry. Canada covers all of its citizens, with free choice of doctors and hospitals, for about $4,500 per capita, compared to the over $9,000 per capita cost in the U.S. system that still leaves tens of millions of people uninsured or underinsured.

Ralph Nader is a consumer advocate, lawyer, and author. His latest book is The Seventeen Solutions: Bold Ideas for Our American Future. Other recent books include, The Seventeen Traditions: Lessons from an American Childhood, Getting Steamed to Overcome Corporatism: Build It Together to Win, and "Only The Super-Rich Can Save Us" (a novel). 

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I'm Not Ready for Hillary, March 24, 2015, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest 

  • http://theantimedia.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/clinton.jpgPart 1: The Warmongering Record of Hillary Clinton
  • Part 2: Ukraine oligarch ‘top cash contributor’ to Clinton Foundation prior to Kiev crisis

 

*Evergreene Digest Editor's Note: 

Evergreene Digest does not endorse any candidate or political party. But we will publish articles that have a serious or substantial intellectual content challenging or supporting the ideas of any of the candidates. 

You can submit articles that deal with the stated content of the candidates' positions and public record of what they have done in the past in their political offices or in their dealings with social movements, non-profits, the poor, the oppressed, the environment, or the super-wealthy. 

You can also comment on or send rebuttals to this article or anything else we publish on-line at www.evergreenedigest.org. Send them to me, David Culver <evergreenedigest@earthlink.net>, Ed., Evergreene Digest  

Choosing War

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A memorial for U.S. soldiers killed in the Iraq war, North Church, Boston (Dixie Lawrence / Flickr)

  • As long as we continue talking as if war were a fact of nature and not a political choice, we’re going to stay locked in the same wartime mentality. As long as our government keeps showing the world that Iraqi, Afghan, Muslim, and Arab lives don’t matter, our police will keep drawing the same conclusion about black lives. Until we reckon with the things we’ve done, we will find no peace, because we will not have owned up to the fact that war is not “nature” but a choice, a choice we keep making again and again.
  • Afterwar: Healing the Moral Wounds of Our Soldiersby Nancy Sherman, Oxford University Press, 2015, 256 pp.
  • The Price They Paid: Enduring Wounds of War, by Michael Putzel, Trysail Publishing, 2015, 364 pp.

Winter 2016 | By the time the English Civil War had ended, after nine years of fighting across England, Scotland, and Ireland, historians estimate that 868,000 people had been killed out of a total population of around 7.5 million. The intensity of the war’s violence, which included Cromwell’s genocidal campaign in Ireland, made the English Civil War more than five times as deadly, per capita, as the American one two centuries later.

Across the Channel in Paris, Thomas Hobbes watched the war end with grim relief. He had fled England in 1640, and reports of the war’s devastation spurred him to deepen his reflections on sovereignty and power. In 1651, he published Leviathan, almost instantly recognized as a major work of political philosophy. One of the most influential ideas in the book was his new story of the “state of nature”: whereas the Bible described humanity’s exile from an innocent Eden, Hobbes told a tale of humanity’s escape from a constant, anarchic war for resources, where “the life of man [was] solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.”

Roy Scranton is the author of Learning to Die in the Anthropocene (City Lights, 2015) and co-editor of Fire and Forget: Short Stories from the Long War (Da Capo Press, 2013). He is a postdoctoral research fellow at Rice University.

Full story … 

Increasing the 'cost' of crime doesn't make us safer

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  • Problem-solving courts that invest in individuals do more to deter crime and heal communities than ever-longer prison sentences. 
  • Due Process is Dead: A Staggering 95% of All Inmates in America Have Never Received a Trial

Michael Friedman, Minneapolis (MN) Star Tribune 

http://stmedia.stimg.co/ows_145653429657613.jpg?w=525  Wes Bausmith/Los Angeles Times/TNS Org 

February 26, 2016 | I appreciate D.J. Tice’s interest in greater rationality when it comes to discussions about criminal justice (“On crime, how times have changed,” Feb. 21), in particular as inquiry into its possible excesses has become the agenda. To continue the conversation, it may help to recognize two key problems in the way the system operates.

One is that decisions about imprisonment are almost all front-loaded. The other is that these front-loaded decisions are based on misapplied “economic” notions.

Michael Friedman is executive director of the Legal Rights Center in Minneapolis.

Full story … 

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Due Process is Dead: A Staggering 95% of All Inmates in America Have Never Received a Trial, Claire Bernish, Free Thought Project  

  • http://tftppull.freethoughtllc.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/prison-state-usa.jpgJustice, as an untold — though no doubt, appalling — number can attest, has been utterly abandoned for the interests of the careless expedience, apathetic convenience, and unabashed profiteering of the U.S. prison-industrial machine.
  • Scalia Funeral | Crooks rule; Officialdom Honors a Partisan Shameless Grafter

 

Special Project | Why I'm Not Ready for Bernie Sanders, Week Ending February 20, 2016*

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  • Class-struggle militants are not “feeling the Bern.” We are anti-Bernie, anti-Hillary, anti-Democrat, anti-Republican, anti-Green. Yes, we’re pretty much against everything that passes for “politics” these days, because it’s all about who will be the CEO of bloody, racist U.S. capitalism, and Bernie is no exception. We will oppose any endorsements or other forms of support by our unions for Sanders or any of the current candidates.
  • The problem with Bernie Sanders
  • “If [Bernie Sanders] were elected, I think he’d be the one, from the current candidates ... with the best policies,” the renowned linguist and activist recently told Al-Jazeera in an interview.
  • Part 1: Bernie Sanders? No! We Need a Class-Struggle Workers Party
  • Part 2: Noam Chomsky: Bernie Sanders Is Not a Socialist, He’s a ‘Decent, Honest New-Dealer’

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

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Part 1: Bernie Sanders? No! We Need a Class-Struggle Workers Party

  • Class-struggle militants are not “feeling the Bern.” We are anti-Bernie, anti-Hillary, anti-Democrat, anti-Republican, anti-Green. Yes, we’re pretty much against everything that passes for “politics” these days, because it’s all about who will be the CEO of bloody, racist U.S. capitalism, and Bernie is no exception. We will oppose any endorsements or other forms of support by our unions for Sanders or any of the current candidates.
  • The problem with Bernie Sanders

Class Struggle Workers -- Portland (OR) 

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/Bernie%20Sanders%2C%20Clinton%20Sheep%20Dog.jpg February 13, 2016 | The first votes won’t be cast for many months, but the presidential election season is already upon us, and pressure is building on the unions to choose their candidates. Among labor activists and the left, attention is focused on the figure of Bernie Sanders, senator from Vermont. Sanders, who sometimes claims to be an “independent” and a “democratic socialist” is running to be nominated as the Democratic candidate for president in 2016. Labor Notes, the voice of “progressive” union bureaucrats who sometimes pose as “troublemakers,” hyped Sanders in a 17 July 2015 article by Dan DiMaggio:

“Sanders’ platform includes a $15-an-hour minimum wage, guaranteed vacations and sick leave, lifting the payroll tax cap on Social Security, and single-payer health care. He’s a vocal opponent of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the latest corporate-friendly trade deal. He rails against income inequality and how the ‘billionaire class’ dominates politics.”

Worker militants from the greater Portland, Oregon, area have come together to form Class Struggle Workers -- Portland. We have been active and played leading roles in a number of area working-class struggles fighting for labor solidarity and independence from the capitalist state. 

Full story … 

Related: 

The problem with Bernie Sanders, Ashley Smith, Socialist Worker 

We need to win the new left born out of Occupy, public-sector union struggles and the Black Lives Matter movement to breaking with the Democratic Party and building an electoral alternative as a complement to struggle from below. Bernie Sanders' campaign inside the Democratic Party is an obstacle to that project.



Part 2: Noam Chomsky: Bernie Sanders Is Not a Socialist, He’s a ‘Decent, Honest New-Dealer’

“If [Bernie Sanders] were elected, I think he’d be the one, from the current candidates ... with the best policies,” the renowned linguist and activist recently told Al-Jazeera in an interview.

Noam Chomsky, Truthdig

Feb 17, 2016 | “If [Bernie Sanders] were elected, I think he’d be the one, from the current candidates ... with the best policies,” the renowned linguist and activist recently told Al-Jazeera in an interview. Chomsky adds, however, that in the current American system of “bought elections,” he doesn’t think Sanders has much chance of winning. He goes on to outline the differences between the Democrats and Republicans who are running.

Noam Chomsky is an American linguist, philosopher, cognitive scientist, logician, political commentator and activist. He is perhaps best known as a critic of all forms of social control and a relentless advocate for community-centered approaches to democracy and freedom. Over the last several decades, Chomsky has championed a wide range of dissident actions, organizations and social movements.

Full story … 

 

*Evergreene Digest Editor's Note: 

Evergreene Digest does not endorse any candidate or political party. But we will publish articles that have a serious or substantial intellectual content challenging or supporting the ideas of any of the candidates. 

You can submit articles that deal with the stated content of the candidates' positions and public record of what they have done in the past in their political offices or in their dealings with social movements, non-profits, the poor, the oppressed, the environment, or the super-wealthy. 

You can also comment on or send rebuttals to this article or anything else we publish on-line at www.evergreenedigest.org. Send them to me, David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

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