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The Normalization of Evil in American Politics

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  • The misogynist, racist, nativist, anti-LGBT right wing that took over the GOP in 1980—of which (Family Research Council President Tony) Perkins himself is evidence—has much to answer for, not least of all, the rise of Donald Trump as the party’s standard-bearer. Trump may not have been the first choice of right-wing leaders, but they created the conditions that cleared his path to the nomination, and most have lined up behind him since he won it.
  • Related: Black Lives Don’t Matter to Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton
  • Related: Greasing The Outstretched Palms Of The Candidates

Adele M. Stan, the American Prospect / AlterNet

http://www.alternet.org/files/styles/story_image/public/story_images/trumphate.jpgPhoto Credit: uplift_the_world / Shutterstock.com 

September 14, 2016 | Time was when a presidential candidate who played footsie with segregationists and white supremacists would have banished to the fringes of the American political scene. But Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump has changed all that. 

Oh sure, there have been plenty of codes telegraphed to the anti-black base of the GOP’s southern flank: Ronald Reagan’s choice of Philadelphia, Mississippi, as the place to make a “states’ rights” speech in his 1980 presidential campaign; Richard Nixon’s southern strategy and “Silent Majority” framing. But after the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, expressions of outright racism were frowned upon in presidential politics. And articulations of misogyny were generally doled out in the form of withering condescension. <>

Adele M. Stan is AlterNet's  senior Washington editor, and a weekly columnist for the American Prospect. 

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Black Lives Don’t Matter to Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, Bill Blum, Truthdig

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  • One thing the (Black Lives Matter) BLM analyses don’t do, however, is endorse a presidential candidate. And that’s for an eminently good reason: The candidates of both major parties, in their quests for power, have chosen to snub and malign the movement and the cause it represents.
  • Related: The Normalization of Evil in American Politics

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Greasing The Outstretched Palms Of The Candidates, Michael Winship, Huffington Post 

http://i.huffpost.com/gen/4675052/images/n-CLINTON-TRUMP-628x314.jpgJim Young / Reuters

  • (Sen.Elizabeth) Warren believes “personnel is policy.” She and her colleagues have reserved an especially hot place for the Wall Street big shots and corporate nabobs who fancy a job in the Clinton administration. It’s called the “Hell No” list.
  • Attention must be paid to that list or with a Clinton back in office it’s four more dreary years of greased palms and the status quo. That could be a recipe for disaster almost but not quite as horrific as an egotistical know-nothing with his fingers in the piggy bank and worse, near the button.
  • Related: Corrupt and Deranged

There’s No Debate

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Something’s got to give. We can’t go on like this. We can no longer leave the electoral process to the two parties or the media conglomerates with whom they’re in cahoots. The stakes are too high.

Bill Moyers & Michael Winship, Moyers & Company

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http://www.truthdig.com/images/eartothegrounduploads/MoyersandCompanyDebates_590.jpg On Sept. 26 Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton will engage in their first face-to-face debate. (Disney & Gage Skidmore / CC 2.0)

Sep 19, 2016 | Let’s call the whole thing off.

Not the election, although if we only had a magic reset button we could pretend this sorry spectacle never happened and start all over.

No, we mean the presidential debates — which, if the present format and moderators remain as they are, threaten an effect on democracy more like Leopold and Loeb than Lincoln and Douglas.

Bill Moyers is an American journalist and liberal public commentator. He served as White House Press Secretary in the Johnson administration from 1965 to 1967. He also worked as a network TV news commentator for ten years.

& Michael Winship is senior writing fellow at Demos and a senior writer of the series, Moyers & Company, airing on public television.

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Mark Fiore | Deplorables / www.markfiore.com

 

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14 September 2016 | It’s been a tough week for Hillary, between her “basket of deplorables” comment and her keeling over from pneumonia on September 11th.  (I still, for the life of me, don’t understand why she said “I’m feeling great” about an hour after the keeling-over incident.  A normal human may have said something like, “I have pneumonia, not feeling so good but I’m getting better!”)

Rather than focus on the dueling medical reports, I wanted to dive deeper into candidate Clinton’s “deplorable” comment.  Her comments sure sounded a little reckless and unwise, but maybe there’s a bigger strategy I’m missing— although, however truthful, it just seemed like a stupid thing to say.  Maybe we should take a closer look at who is actually supporting Donald Trump.

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Section(s): 

Trump is the Symptom, Clinton is the Disease

 

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  • Now is the time to vote for someone who reflects our politics and begin the protracted process of building an opposition movement outside the two corporate parties.
  • “[Voting for] the lesser evil paves the way for the greater evil.” --Jill Stein, the Green Party presidential candidate 

Roger Harris, CounterPunch

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http://uziiw38pmyg1ai60732c4011.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/dropzone/2016/09/trumillary.png September 16, 2016 | I asked you who is the lesser evil when even the Washington Post posits Hillary Clinton to the “political right” of Trump on international issues?

And you responded: “So I guess I should vote for Trump?”

Gimme Shelter: Fleeing Trump to the Democrat’s Big Tent

You are right that there are differences between the Democratic and Republican presidential candidates. No one recognizes that better than the ruling elites who are tripping over each other to join the Clinton bandwagon.

Roger Harris is on the State Central Committee of the Peace and Freedom Party, the only ballot-qualified socialist party in California.

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Stop Whining About 'False Balance'

 

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Donald Trump speaks to reporters in 2015. Scott Olson/Getty

Everyone wants to blame reporters for the rise of Donald Trump. How about the media consumer?

Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone

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https://riseuptimes.files.wordpress.com/2014/04/journalism.jpg?w=240  September 16, 2016 | News media outlets are increasingly coming under fire for the sin of "false balance" or "false equivalency." The New York Times, one of the outlets most often accused of this offense, recently defined the term:

"The practice of journalists who, in their zeal to be fair, present each side of a debate as equally credible, even when the factual evidence is stacked heavily on one side."

The crime of The Times, according to some of its readers, has been its coverage of the Clinton email and Clinton Foundation stories. As one Times reader put it, "There's too much at stake in this election for the media to stoke the belief that Hillary's mistakes (which she has definitely made) are even close to par with Trump's."

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Section(s): 

Greasing The Outstretched Palms Of The Candidates

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Jim Young / Reuters

  • (Sen.Elizabeth) Warren believes “personnel is policy.” She and her colleagues have reserved an especially hot place for the Wall Street big shots and corporate nabobs who fancy a job in the Clinton administration. It’s called the “Hell No” list.
  • Attention must be paid to that list or with a Clinton back in office it’s four more dreary years of greased palms and the status quo. That could be a recipe for disaster almost but not quite as horrific as an egotistical know-nothing with his fingers in the piggy bank and worse, near the button.
  • Related: Corrupt and Deranged

Michael Winship, Huffington Post

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/evergreenedigest.org/files/Tom%20Stiglich%20%7C%20Political%20Nausea%20Bag%20copy_2.jpgSep 09, 2016 | The recipe could not be simpler. Mix cynicism with greed, quickly stir and voila! American politics and government served up on a platter to the highest bidder.

Call it low cuisine. And it doesn’t get any lower than what we’ve seen during this wretched campaign season — a presidential contest that, as one friend in Washington recently said, pits “the unethical versus the unhinged.”

Michael Winship: Senior writer, BillMoyers.com. Former senior writing fellow, Demos. President, Writers Guild of America, East.

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Corrupt and Deranged, Robert Gore, Straight Line Logic

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Truth can awaken minds and rouse people to action, posing an obvious threat to the corrupt and deranged. Should Trump win the election, he will assuredly be presented with the same choice as the child in the story: get with the program or die. Odds are he folds, in which case those of us rooting for meaningful change will be left with the hope that the inevitable collapse occurs before we die.

 

Joe Scarry | It's A Lock: Why the US Can’t Break Its Addiction to War

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  • [Franklin] Spinney talked about the systemic nature of the problem — military spending that penetrates every single Congressional district. In effect, we’re stuck. To break the hold of war on the US, we need to break the hold of military spending on every Congressional district.   
  • Let’s admit it: we’ve got a problem.
  • Related: Tom Engelhardt | A 9/11 Retrospective: Washington's 15-Year Air War

Joe ScarryScarry Thoughts / Rise Up Times

https://riseuptimes.files.wordpress.com/2016/08/5d1ff-general-atomics.jpg?w=587&h=411 “Technicians at Poway [CA]-based General Atomics Aeronautical Systems worked on the fuselage of a Sky Warrior drone . . . . The company’s unmanned-aerial-vehicle program includes the Sky Warrior, the Predator and the Predator B.” (2009 photo – John Gibbins / Union-Tribune)

August 17, 2016 | The new film about the arms trade, Shadow World, screened last night in Berkeley.

 

There is much that is provocative in the film, and everybody who cares about ending war should see it and share it with others in their community.

In particular, the segment about the Pentagon whistleblower Franklin Spinney caught my attention. Spinney talked about the systemic nature of the problem — military spending that penetrates every single Congressional district. In effect, we’re stuck. To break the hold of war on the US, we need to break the hold of military spending on every Congressional district.

Joe Scarry: My writing is intimately connected to my work with groups seeking elimination of nuclear weapons, war abolition, the end of drone warfare, freedom for Palestine, anti-racism, and other initiatives.

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Tom Engelhardt | A 9/11 Retrospective: Washington's 15-Year Air War, Tom Engelhardt, TomDispatch

  • https://static.wixstatic.com/media/25f54d_0b3f03a501c24802b7a7f2a0e3f8eba0.jpg/v1/fill/w_503,h_316,al_c,q_75,usm_0.50_1.20_0.00/25f54d_0b3f03a501c24802b7a7f2a0e3f8eba0.jpgPerhaps this September 11th, it’s finally time for Americans to begin to focus on our endless air war in the Greater Middle East, our very own disastrous Fifteen Years’ War.  Otherwise, the first explosions from the Thirty Years’ version of the same will be on the horizon before we know it in a world possibly more destabilized and terrorizing than we can at present imagine.
  • Bombs Away!
  • Their Precision Weaponry and Ours
  • Related: The endless aftermath: Since 9/11, we’ve had 15 years of bloodshed, terror and a constant fear of what’s next

A former Marine was fired as a W.Va. police officer after failing to shoot somebody

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Even though he was just 24 when West Virginia Police Department hired him, Stephen Mader was already a bonafide hero — one of the good guys. (Staff Sgt. Brian Buckwalter/U.S. Marines  

Shaun King, New York (NY) Daily News 

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http://cdn.thinkprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/30163700/Police-Have-Not-Been-Held-Accountable3-1125x635.jpg Tuesday, September 13, 2016 | On July 24, 2015, the Weirton, W.Va., Police Department announced the hiring of three new officers for the force. All three men were celebrated for bringing some much needed youth to an aging department in the sleepy rural city 35 miles outside of Pittsburgh.

Zach Springer was just 20.

Adam Mortimer was 21.

And the old head among them was Stephen Mader, who was 24.

Shaun King: Senior Justice Writer for the New York (NY) Daily News

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