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The Liberal Apologies for Obama’s Ugly Reign

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  • U.S. liberals and progressives might want to learn something about how they’ve been manipulated by Democratic politicians and presidents again and again and decide to invest their hopes and energies in a different kind of more genuinely progressive and democratic politics beneath and beyond the big money-big media-major party-mass-marketed-candidate-centered presidential “electoral extravaganzas” that are staged as “yet another method for marginalizing the population” (Noam Chomsky, October 27, 2004) once every four years.
  • Dancing to His Masters' Tunes
  • Special Project | President Obama, Change we can believe in? Week Ending February 21, 2015

Paul Street, CounterPunch

Obama_Nope.jpgMay 15-17, 2015 | So this is how Barack Obama is moving into the final 20 months of his dismal neoliberal presidency, which he once (proudly) described as ideologically akin to the Eisenhower White House. He is nauseating much of his own Wall Street-captive party’s electoral base by trying to push through the absurdly regressive, secretive, eco-cidal, and global-corporatist Trans Pacific Partnership treaty – a massive investor rights measure that promises to reduce wages, deepen inequality, undermine popular sovereignty, and assault already endangered livable ecology in the name of (what else?) “free trade” and “growth.”

The treaty is so toxically capitalist and transparently authoritarian that even the leading right-wing corporate Democrats Bill and Hillary Clinton – champions of the arch-neoliberal North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) – have to keep their distance from it in accord with Mrs. Clinton’s presidential ambitions.

Paul Street’s latest book is They Rule: The 1% v. Democracy (Paradigm, 2014)

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Logo%20%7C%20Change%20You%20Can%20Believe%20In%3F%20%28Redacted%29.jpgSpecial Project | President Obama, Change we can believe in? Week Ending February 21, 2015, Compiled by David Culver <>, Ed., Evergreene Digest

  • "We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek." --Barack Obama
  • 8 New Items including:
    • Obama Is Leading the Way Toward Economic Catastrophe
    • Comparing MLK and Obama
    • How Obama is Making the World More Dangerous
    • Obama’s Narrative of Deceits
    • Our National Security State: A Self-Perpetuating Machine for American Insecurity
    • White House Forms Task Force to Address Police Brutality, Appoints Brutal & Abusive Cop to Lead
    • Ken Burns' 'The Roosevelts' Reveals Everything Wrong With Our Current Political Class
    • Cornel West: “(Obama) posed as a progressive and turned out to be counterfeit
    • How Obama Administration-Controlled Media Is Used to Avoid Scrutiny from the Press

Family Homelessness 2.0

  • Mark Twain said that “Nobody likes change except a wet baby.” 
  • Homelessness in America
  • America's Disgusting, Boundless Hatred for Poor People

Dan Brettler, Goron McHenry Jr., and David Werthheimer, Impatient Optimists / National Alliance to End Homelessness

05-13-2015_Family_silhouette_big.jpg/@s_1@q_100 May 13, 2015 | Those of us who have been engaged in efforts to end family homelessness over the past decade need to acknowledge one of two things: Either the work is extremely complex and difficult, or we’re not very good at our jobs. While both of these statements could be true, given the time, talent, and passion that so many have been focusing on this issue for so long, we conclude (and hope) that the first statement is more accurate.

There are many different crises that can catapult a family into homelessness: Loss of a job, domestic violence, accidents or serious illness, and inter-generational poverty – to name just a few. In addition, despite efforts to coordinate, past experiences in responding to homelessness have shown us that, although admirable, fragmented, non-integrated efforts to solve this problem by organizations and systems working independently and on their own have not stemmed the tide of this crisis.

The National Alliance to End Homelessness is a nonprofit, non-partisan, organization committed to preventing and ending homelessness in the United States. By improving policy, building capacity, and educating opinion leaders, the Alliance has become a leading voice on this issue.

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Homelessness in America, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

  • Another%20World%20Rainbow.jpgYou can’t fucking get rid of us. You can’t criminalize our existence. We’re here. And we’re no longer going to allow you to use the police, to use private security, to use discriminatory laws, to incarcerate us and harass us until we leave town. We no longer accept that as the way our relationship is going to function with local governments and communities where we happen to fucking live whether we have a house or not. We have the right to exist. And we’ll use that as a building base for getting strong enough, for overcoming the corporate influence of decision-making and government and all of that.
  • Part 1: Homelessness Isn't Inevitable But Rather A Manifestation of a Society that Is Sorely Lacking in Justice
  • Part 2: Luxury Hotel Canceled Prepaid Christmas Reservation Because The Guests Were Homeless
  • People are living — and dying — out in the cold

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America's Disgusting, Boundless Hatred for Poor People, Brittney Cooper, Salon 

  • We're now legislating away poor people's right to be happy.
  • Nixon's racial Southern Strategy applied to the economically poor.
  • Richer and Poorer: How much inequality can a democracy stand?

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Why Are We Paying the NFL to Help the Pentagon Recruit Troops?

We know that the US Department of Defense doled out $5.4 million from 2011 to 2014 to fourteen NFL teams to stage these warm-hearted "Salute the Troops" events, as well as do product placement, advertising, and "casual" (otherwise known as "subliminal") mentions.

Dave Zirin, Nation

national_guard_nfl_ap_img.jpg New York National Guard members are sworn in during halftime of a game between the Buffalo Bills and the Kansas City Chiefs. (AP Photo/Bill Wippert)

May 13, 2015 | All-star first baseman Carlos Delgado was not a fan of the numerous military appreciation events taking place at the ballpark a decade ago. These were staged to bolster support for the Iraq war and doubled as recruitment stations, using sports to increase the ranks of the armed forces, which had thinned dramatically after George W. Bush decided to call for a permanent era of armed conflict. As Delgado said, "I won't stand for this war.… It's a very terrible thing that happened on September 11. It's [also] a terrible thing that happened in Afghanistan and Iraq. I just feel so sad for the families that lost relatives and loved ones in the war. But I think it's the stupidest war ever."

Now we can not only see that these events were politically transparent propaganda for a flagging war effort. We know they were paid for by us. We know that the US Department of Defense doled out $5.4 million from 2011 to 2014 to fourteen NFL teams to stage these warm-hearted "Salute the Troops" events, as well as do product placement, advertising, and "casual" (otherwise known as "subliminal") mentions.

Dave Zirin, the Nation’s sports correspondent, is the author, most recently, of Game Over: How Politics Has Turned the Sports World Upside Down. Named one of UTNE Reader’s “50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Our World,” Zirin is a frequent guest on MSNBC, ESPN and Democracy Now! He also hosts his own weekly Sirius XM show, Edge of Sports Radio. His other books include What's My Name Fool? (Haymarket Books), A People's History of Sports in the United States (the New Press), Bad Sports: How Owners Are Ruining the Games We Love (Scribner) and, with John Wesley Carlos, The John Carlos Story. You can find all his work at www.edgeofsports.com.

Full story … http://m.thenation.com/blog/207161-why-are-we-paying-nfl-help-pentagon-r...



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Kneeling in Fenway Park to the Gods of War, Chris Hedges, Truthdig

AP110530030227.jpgBoston Red Sox fans lean over "the Green Monster" to touch an American flag covering the wall during pregame ceremonies on Memorial Day in 2011. Photo by Winslow Townson

  • The use of the Morse jet to carry out extraordinary rendition exposes the dark side of professional sports, how it is used by oligarchs and the military to manipulate and control us.
  • The Myth of America’s Global Peacekeeping Past 

 

Conservatism as Top-Down Culture That Leads to Parasites and Psychopathologies

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  • Conservatism is built around core values and ways of seeing and being that are very much top-down. This can, when taken too far, manifest as psychological disorders or psychopathology.
  • Do Republicans Suffer From Mental Illness? 12 Points To Consider

Rob Kall, OpEdNews

s_300_i_ytimg_com_1_hqdefault_582.gifHierarchical Feudalism (image by YouTube) License DMCA

5/15/2015 | First to be clear, I am not suggesting that all conservatives are psychopaths or even mentally ill. I AM saying conservatism is built upon top-down values that can lead to psychological disorders and pathologies. This article started out on a different path-- trying to understand why conservatives oppose trains. But that took me to this bigger picture thinking.

Conservatism is built around some core values. An article by Morton C. Blackwell of the Leadership institute suggests the primary "principles" conservatives are devoted to are: limited government, free enterprise, strong national defense, and traditional values. He also says that liberals or progressives-- and he denigrates both terms-- represent "someone committed to, among other priorities, greater concentration of power in government, more government spending, and active opposition to traditional values."

Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer. He founded Opednews.com which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years.

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Do Republicans Suffer From Mental Illness? 12 Points To Consider, Samuel Warde, Liberals Unite

  • “The Republican Party is not a political party – it’s a mental condition. And I mean that seriously because if you are for crushing the poor, unprovoked wars, there is no climate change, immigrants. It’s like ‘who are we’?”
  • --Actor and comedian Richard Belzer
  • How to Diagnose Climate Change Denial Disorder

America's Disgusting, Boundless Hatred for Poor People

  • We're now legislating away poor people's right to be happy.
  • Nixon's racial Southern Strategy applied to the economically poor.
  • Richer and Poorer: How much inequality can a democracy stand?

Brittney Cooper, Salon

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Money%20Pie.jpgApril 22, 2015 | Conservative disdain for the poor has reached new heights with the recent passage of the HOPE Act in Kansas earlier this month. This bill, signed into law by Governor Sam Brownback, prohibits those who receive TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) from using funds to go to movies, to go swimming, to go to theme parks, to gamble, to visit strip clubs or bars.

Conservative disdain for the poor has reached new heights with the recent passage of the HOPE Act in Kansas earlier this month. This bill, signed into law by Governor Sam Brownback, prohibits those who receive TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) from using funds to go to movies, to go swimming, to go to theme parks, to gamble, to visit strip clubs or bars.

Brittney Cooper is a contributing writer at Salon.

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Richer and Poorer: How much inequality can a democracy stand? Jill LePore, New Yorker

  • Accounting for inequality.
  • People are living — and dying — out in the cold.

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Modern Politicians Bewilder Us Into Submission By Treating Reality Like Conceptual Art

From Putin’s Russia to Cameron’s UK, to Obama’s United States, information has become increasingly baffling and contradictory, which helps if you’re an oligarch trying to rob the public blind. 

 

Peter Z. Scheer, Truthdig / Rise Up Times

 

 

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February 4, 2015

 

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Peter Z. ScheerManaging editor of Truthdig.com and host of Truthdig Radio.

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Henry A. Giroux: Liberalism's Failures in a Time of Increasing Violence, Racism, Inequality and State Terrorism

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Giroux argues that the country is in the midst of a counter-revolution, one that cannot be understood simply by pointing to police brutality. He claims the left needs a larger theoretical and political framework to understand the uniqueness of the current historical moment, one that has forged a number of fundamentalisms, including educational fundamentalism, military fundamentalism, economic fundamentalism and religious fundamentalism, which together have given rise to a new form of financial and cultural totalitarianism or more broadly a pernicious and unique brand of authoritarianism.

Henry A. Giroux, E-Socialist

img.pandawhale.com/post-62524-Henry-A-Giroux-Liberalism-s-Fa-qhPc.jpegMay 4, 2015 | In these two far-reaching interviews on the “Soap Box” with Eric Poulin, Henry Giroux talks about the failure of liberalism in a time of increasing violence, racism, inequality, state terrorism, and the rule of the financial elite over every commanding social, cultural and political institution in the United States. He elaborates on the failure of many liberals to move both beyond the call for weak reforms that do not challenge the fundamental structures of domination and their willingness to often align themselves with repressive policies that benefit the rich and powerful. He points, for instance, to liberalism’s refusal to name the corruption and misery produced by neoliberal capitalism and its willingness to align itself with policies of the right such as the Iraqi War, state torture, a health-care program that largely benefits big insurance companies, and the massive suffering caused by the growing inequality in wealth, income and power. He also points to the refusal on the part of liberals to protest a grotesque and dangerous incarceration and surveillance state, and the failure to address the issue of what it takes to reinvent politics so as not to serve the interests of the rich and powerful – the failure in short to name a counter-revolution politics that has corrupted both political parties. He argues that liberals are more afraid of the left than the right and have consistently, especially under President Obama, gone out of their way to compromise with the right while moving the Democratic Party into more conservative territory, all the while refusing to bear responsibility for destroying the conditions that make a real democracy possible.



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Liberals and conservatives represent a social formation in the service of big money, and by chasing after power, they have become corrupt and morally irresponsible. He argues that liberals fail to address the obvious, which is that capitalism and democracy are not the same thing and that the economic and ideological elements of the current capitalism system are ever more powerful in their ability to destroy the lives of the poor, the middle class, public servants and others who now make up the expanding web of the precariat. All the while, liberals are either silent or complicitous in the ongoing systemic evisceration of social provisions, the war waged against poor minority youth, the militarization of everyday life, the devaluing of the commons and the public good. At the core of their beliefs in capitalism is a bankrupt notion of self-interest that is antithetical not only to those social formations, values, and relationships that sustain a real democracy, but also supports a failed sociality and American society’s descent into a form of social death.

Henry A. Giroux currently holds the Global TV Network Chair Professorship at McMaster University in the English and Cultural Studies Department and a Distinguished Visiting Professorship at Ryerson University.

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To read more articles by Henry A. Giroux and other authors in the Public Intellectual Project, click here

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