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The Nauseating Hypocrisy Surrounding The Kathy Griffin Criticism

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She crossed the taste line—that’s all.

Cody Lyon, Huff Post

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06/02/2017 | There’s a vein of sad, pathetic hypocrisy running through both the left and right of the United States tonight. We live in times fueled by constant breaking media reports and self serving social media commentary. Adding fuel to the symptom, Americans are quick to take reactionary tones in times of tension. We’re quick to jump on the praise or condemnation express train- as if a stance will validate our individual moral compass.

There’s little doubt, Kathy Griffin’s photo with a fake bloody head was tasteless and offensive. But if that sort of crass blood soaked satire is not your thing, it’s easy to just ignore it. Turn the other way.

Cody LyonHuff Post Contributor, NYC writer/reporter

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America's Embrace of Willful Ignorance

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  • These new great men are great because of what makes them similar to the mass --a kind of crude common sense, brutality, and lack of culture. The handling of affairs may make then admirably cunning and remarkably good at the practice of politics. But to maintain their prestige and power, they must also maintain their lack of culture and brutality. They must remain primitives. --Jean Guehenno, Diary of the Dark Years, 1940-1944: Collaboration, Resistance, and Daily Life in Occupied Paris
  • Related: White America's Greatest Delusion: "They Do Not Know It and They Do Not Want to Know It"

Lenore Daniels, OpEdNews 

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5/30/2017 | Dark blue signs appeared on so many lawns. Trump/Pence.

"I just grab them by"." "When you're a star, they let you do it."

As I rode pass one lawn after and another, I thought those signs could have read: Whites Only!

Here, in Trump's Kenosha, otherwise known as America's Kenosha, I sit on a seat in the front of the bus. I walk on whatever side of the street suits me. I shop or eat at any store or restaurant downtown. Whites speak to me, and I speak to them. While the calendar indicates this is 2017, I am sure Rosa Parks would be familiar with the status quo here in the heartland of America. In other words, she would recognize white supremacy not only in the war chants of Richard Spencer and his ilk. But more important, Rosa would recognize the way Black Americans are still expected to inhabit a certain place and to do so in a certain way so as to acknowledge allegiance to the supremacy of whiteness.

When I saw all those "Trump/Pence" signs, I recalled those first few weeks when I arrived at a new campus and a new state. I had taught for over ten years by this time. A white colleague and I stood in a hallway at the university here watching predominantly white students walking to and from their classes. They are unsophisticated. I heard her in this noisy hallway, but I did not ask for an explanation. Instead, I felt as if I were miles away from her and these students. I looked closer at the students. They did not see me! I was somewhere where these young white people did not see me! And when they did, they looked down at the top of my head. Lessons from home mattered! Soon I realized the phrase referenced what was no longer contained as something local. After September 11, 2001, when the narrative of the patriotic full-fledged American made my critical critique of American politics and culture suspect and anti-American that same colleague informed me that I "didn't fit it." And this phenomena was neither local or personal either.

Lenore Daniels: Activist, writer, American Modern Literature, Cultural Theory

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Related:

White America's Greatest Delusion: "They Do Not Know It and They Do Not Want to Know It" Tim Wise, AlterNet

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  • It is the innocence which constitutes the crime.
  • Related: ‘We Must Actively Stand Up’: John Angelos’ Response to Racism at Fenway Park

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From the Archives | 28 Reasons I’m DONE Talking To My Conservative Friends And Family

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  • I’m very grateful and appreciative of my sane conservative friends who can actually participate in an intelligent and respectful discussion. Thank you, my dear ones, for being sane. For understanding that things aren’t always black and white. And for disagreeing with me without belittling my very existence. … And for never once calling me stupid or amoral for being a liberal.
  • Related: White America's Greatest Delusion: "They Do Not Know It and They Do Not Want to Know It"

Tiffanny Willis, Liberal America

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http://www.alternet.org/files/styles/story_image/public/story_images/screen_shot_2014-06-11_at_1.40.59_pm.png February 11, 2015 | I’m a Southern girl. Born in the South, raised in the South, and have rarely lived anywhere BUT the South. I actually love the South. I’ll die in the South. Being a Southern girl, I have more than my share of right-wing friends, neighbors, and family members — and some of you have in recent years crossed the line into nut-jobbery.

The fact is — I love you guys and that will never change.

I’ll admit that I’m disappointed and disturbed to see intelligent and/or educated people who are willfully ignorant. But while it does change my opinion about you on some level, more than anything I’m embarrassed for you. It hurts me to see you post conspiracy theories on your Facebook timeline, only to have them debunked with a quick Snopes link. It hurts me to see you expressing unapologetic and blatant racism and ignorance. It absolutely tortures me to see you being on the wrong side of history on so many issues.

Tiffanny WillisLiberal Americas publisher, former staff writer for the Atlanta (GA) Journal-Constitution. Councilman for the mighty City of Pine Lake, population 680 not counting geese. Democrat.

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Related:

White America's Greatest Delusion: "They Do Not Know It and They Do Not Want to Know It" Tim Wise, AlterNet

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  • It is the innocence which constitutes the crime.
  • Related: ‘We Must Actively Stand Up’: John Angelos’ Response to Racism at Fenway Park

 

How Russia Became “Our Adversary” Again

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Photo by thierry hermann | CC BY 2.0

  • Perverse political logic works to sustain the strange new neo-McCarthyite anti-Russian madness, which is rooted in the U.S. imperial agenda, not any relevant Russian influence on U.S. life and politics.
  • Related: On Trump, McCarthyism, and the Russia Hacking Charges

Paul Street, Counterpunch

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May 19, 2017 | United States-of-Americans are routinely told by politicians and corporate media pundits and talking heads that Russia is their enemy – an “adversary state.”  The assertion has been normalized.  It passes without challenge or justification.

Forget for now the question of whether and how “our adversary Russia” intervened significantly on Donald Trump’s behalf in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.  Put aside the glaring absence of any smoking gun evidence to back that charge up and contemplate the fundamental matter of how and why Vladimir Putin’s Russia became “our enemy” in the first place.

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Paul Street is an independent radical-democratic policy researcher, journalist, historian, author and speaker. His latest book is They Rule: The 1% v. Democracy.

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Related:

On Trump, McCarthyism, and the Russia Hacking Charges, Victor Navasky, The Nation / Portside 

https://portside.org/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/field/image/army_mccarthy_hearings.jpg?itok=whaYgCd4Chief Counsel for the Army Joseph Welch (left) being questioned by Wisconsin Senator Joseph McCarthy during the McCarthy-Army hearings in 1954. credit - Wikimedia Commons / US Senate // The Nation

  • One legacy of the McCarthy era is the cloud of suspicion that still hangs over anything connected with the former Soviet Union. If Trump or his associates were indeed guilty of collaborating with the Russians by interfering in the American election, then they broke the law and should be held accountable. But in a world threatened by nuclear weapons, ISIS, and climate change, it seems to me more important than ever that we talk to our adversaries and work toward détente.
  • Related: If We’re Gonna Impeach Trump, Let’s Make Sure We’re Clear on A Couple Points.

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Series | Donald Trump, The Carnage Continues: Humiliation of the Word

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  • As Trump rails against “fake news” while presenting “alternative facts,” blatant lies, and trenchant denials, all opposition becomes the enemy, and all who oppose are branded liars. Language has become trivialized and ideas relevatized; rational dialogue is all but impossible.
  • To deliberately diminish the power of language, as the Trump team does with lies, is to cut into the heart of what it means to be a human being.

Jeff Dietrich, LA Catholic Worker Agitator

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http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/Donald%20Trump%20Caricature.jpg April, 2017 | The late social critic, philosopher, and theologian Jacques Ellul, in his book The Humiliation of the Word, tells us that the word is the essential reality, the word is what separates humans from the animal world. Another of my favorite social critics is the eminent linguist Noam Chomsky, who, unlike Ellul the Christian believer, is an atheist. Both Chomsky the atheist and Ellul the Christian have a profound faith in the word. Both believe that language is what makes us human.

Chomsky believes that there was no extensive evolutionary develop ment of language; it surprisingly did not evolve from our ancestral ape relatives’ use of simple sign language. “The reality,” he says, “is becoming increasingly clear that the uniquely modern (human) sensibilitywas almost certainly crucially abetted by the invention of what is the single most remarkable thing about our modern selves: language” (What Kind of Creatures Are We?).

Jeff Dietrich is an editor of the LA CAtholic Worker Agitator

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White America's Greatest Delusion: "They Do Not Know It and They Do Not Want to Know It"

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  • It is the innocence which constitutes the crime.
  • Related: ‘We Must Actively Stand Up’: John Angelos’ Response to Racism at Fenway Park

Tim Wise, AlterNet

http://www.alternet.org/sites/default/files/styles/story_image/public/story_images/screen_shot_2015-05-06_at_10.41.19_am_0.png?itok=r5Y8N1gNMay 6, 2015 | Though perhaps overused, there are few statements that so thoroughly burrow to the heart of the nation's racial condition as the following, written fifty-three years ago by James Baldwin:

"…this is the crime of which I accuse my country and my countrymen and for which neither I nor time nor history will ever forgive them, that they have destroyed and are destroying hundreds of thousands of lives and do not know it and do not want to know it ... but it is not permissible that the authors of devastation should also be innocent. It is the innocence which constitutes the crime."

Tim Wise is an antiracism educator and author of six books on race.

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https://www.thenation.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/adamjones-baltimore-ap-img.jpg?scale=896&compress=80 ‘We Must Actively Stand Up’: John Angelos’ Response to Racism at Fenway Park, Dave Zirin, the Nation


Baltimore Orioles player Adam Jones at a game against the Tampa Bay Rays in Baltimore, Maryland, on April 25, 2017. (AP Photo / Patrick Semansky)

The Baltimore Orioles COO has had enough of racism at the ballpark and enough of a society that is breeding more and more hate.

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How to Reason with the Climate Change Denier in Your Life

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Talking about climate change can be tough and uncomfortable, but the conversation is always worth having.    Photo: Raymond Forbes LLC / Stocksy

A new book by two philosophy scholars imagines conversations with skeptics and deniers. Here are four lessons we learned from it.

Mary Catherine O'Connor, Outside

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Apr 26, 2017 | Everyone working to address climate change, from activists to scientists, knows that success depends in large part on their ability to convert climate change skeptics (or even straight-up deniers) into proponents for action. Most of us have someone in our lives—a family member, co-worker, or friend—whose views on climate change conflict with the latest science, and you’ve likely had some exasperating, polarizing, unconstructive conversations with them.

Philip Kitcher, an MIT professor of philosophy, and Evelyn Fox Keller, an MIT professor emerita of history and philosophy of science, have co-written a book that imagines six of those very conversations. The Seasons Alter: How to Save the Planet in Six Acts (W.W. Norton; $25) reads like six screenplays set in different locations and with two different people in each act. The dialogue—well, it probably won’t pass your sniff test. The authors describe the conversations in the book as “constructive, careful, and amicable,” but they mostly sound stiff.

https://www.outsideonline.com/sites/default/files/styles/thumbnail_medium/public/migrated-images/mary1.jpg?itok=IdaTz811Mary Catherine O'Connor is a freelance journalist who writes the Adventure Ethics column, about the intersection of adventure and environment, for Outside online. 

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Column: The political lies we tell ourselves in an age of extremes

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A London work by the street artist Bambi, titled Lie Lie Land, depicts a dancing British Prime Minister Theresa May and President Donald Trump. Too many of us are convinced that our political opponents cannot tell the truth. Associated Press

We blame politicians for our nation's problems, but take no personal responsibility in voting in those inept individuals who put the party and themselves ahead of the national interest.

Darryl Paulson, Tampa Bay (FL) Times

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Tuesday, April 25, 2017 | Almost all of us think of ourselves as honest, as tellers of the truth. But if you are like most Americans you lie — and often — about politics.

Let me give just a few examples of our political lies. Americans like to think of themselves as open-minded, but not when it comes to all things political.

Darryl Paulson is emeritus professor of government at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg specializing in Florida politics and elections. 

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