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Series | A Nation Under Trump, Conclusion: Book offers way to restore real American democracy: a review of 'One Nation After Trump'

 

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President Donald Trump addresses a crowd at a rally inside Freedom Hall in Louisville, Kentucky, on March 20, 2017. (Dreamstime/Joe Tabb)

  • The Series: As the anniversary of Donald Trump's election as president of the United States approached, the NCR staff wondered if the calls to action that persisted immediately following the election remained as urgent.
  • Conclusion: Our democracy, the authors argue, provides the tools to counter Trumpism and reform government. What the country needs is a sweeping re-energizing of American democracy like the New Deal or Great Society. It would start with reforming elections. 

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Editor%20Comment%20icon.jpg Evergreene Digest Editor's Note: To present this series in Evergreene Digest I have taken selections from it as it originally appeared in the National Catholic Reporter (NCR). The entire series can be found here.

Lewis Wolfson, National Catholic Reporter (NCR)

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http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/EJ%20Dionne%2C%20Jr.%20et%20al%2C%20One%20Nation%20Under%20Trump%20jacket%20illus.jpg~ E.J. Dionne, Jr., Norman J. Ornstein and Thomas E. Mann, 352 pages; St. Martin's Press; 2017

Nov 8, 2017 | The day after the election, I warned a Washington psychotherapist friend to get ready for a tidal wave of newly-anxious patients, mostly Democrats whose lives revolve around whoever runs the government in this one-industry town. 

The shrinks have been deluged. I have even tried political therapy to help people nervous about having one of the great square pegs of all time in the White House.

President Donald Trump has had devastating psychological and political effects on America.

Lewis Wolfson is American University emeritus professor of communication, a former Washington news bureau chief and longtime analyst of the president, Congress and the media.

Full story … 

Previously in this Series:

Part 10: Women's March inspires women to amplify their political voices post-inauguration.
http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-10-wo...

Part 9: How do we create a high-value health care system?
http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-9-how...

Part 8: Trump's environmental rollbacks lack 'moral compass'.
http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-8-tru...

Part 7: Trump threatens norms that make the Constitution work
http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-7-tru...

Part 6: In foreign relations, Trump shifts rhetoric but policy largely unchanged.
http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-6-for...

Part 5 - What have the Democrats learned since Trump's election?
http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-5-wha...

Part 4 - Poverty issues gain traction in first year of Trump presidency
http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-4-pov...

Part 3 - Trump has put anti-immigrant campaign promises into action <http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-3-tru...

Part 2 - The Trump presidency and Europe's dilemma, <http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-2-tru...

Part 1 - What has the GOP learned since Trump's election? <http://evergreenedigest.org/content/series-nation-under-trump-part-1-wha...

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An Empire Built on the Power of Hate and Fear at Home and Abroad

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  • Part 1: An Empire Built on Fear at Home and Abroad
  • By the time the masses finally discover that the greatest menace stalking the country is the fear-mongering propaganda, they will have read an epitaph for their untimely nuclear death.
  • Part 2: The Power of Hate and Fear
  • God is love, the Christian religion says.  Why then are we so open to hate and fear?
  • Related: Russia Madness on the Eve of Destruction: Hegemony Trumps Survival

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest 

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Part 1: An Empire Built on Fear at Home and Abroad

 

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By the time the masses finally discover that the greatest menace stalking the country is the fear-mongering propaganda, they will have read an epitaph for their untimely nuclear death.

James Petras, Information Clearinghouse

April 17, 2018 | Political leaders and the mass media deluge the public with a constant stream of frightening incidents caused by the enemy-of-the-week:  nerve gas killing dozens of little babies in Syria, Russian-directed poison assassination attempts in England and terror incidents throughout Europe, requiring an increase in domestic police state surveillance and spying.  Extensively monitored bank records, intrusive workplace controls, and all personal and, especially, political communications, are in the hands of state security officials or corporate security contractors.

Hundreds of prosecuting attorneys look forward to career-enhancing investigations in perpetuity, tracking the complex networks of extended personal and family links, including long forgotten acquaintances and the contents of casual conversations.  Everyone may be subject to interrogations without warrant or explanation.  And the ‘media’ cheers on the process.

James Petras is a Bartle Professor (Emeritus) of Sociology at Binghamton University, New York.

Full story … 



Part 2: The Power of Hate and Fear

  • http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Yoda%20from%20Star%20Wars.jpgAnger, fear, aggression: that way leads to the dark side, as Yoda, that Jedi master, warned us.  Hate too, Yoda says, must be resisted, lest one be consumed by it.  Sure, he’s just an imaginary character in the “Star Wars” universe, but that doesn’t negate the truth of his message.
  • God is love, the Christian religion says.  Why then are we so open to hate and fear?

WJ Astore, LA Progressive

April 8, 2018 | Who are we supposed to hate today?  The Russians for allegedly throwing the presidential election?  The Chinese for allegedly stealing our jobs?  The North Koreans for allegedly planning our nuclear destruction?  The Iranians for allegedly working to acquire nuclear weapons?  The “axis of evil” for being, well, evil?

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt famously told Americans that the only thing they had to fear is fear itself.  However, recent American presidents have encouraged us to fear everything.  Let’s not forget the stoking of fear by people like Condoleezza Rice and her image of a smoking gun morphing into a nuclear mushroom cloud.  That image helped to propel America into a disastrous war in Iraq in 2003 that festers still.

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Wm%20J%20Astore%2C%20LA%20Progressive.jpgWJ Astore, a retired lieutenant colonel (USAF), is a TomDispatch regular. He has taught at the Air Force Academy, the Naval Postgraduate School, and the Pennsylvania College of Technology.

Full story … 

Related:

Russia Madness on the Eve of Destruction: Hegemony Trumps Survival, Paul Street, Truthdig

https://smhttp-ssl-62992.nexcesscdn.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/Statue-of-Liberty-and-Mushroom-Cloud-1024-850x567.jpgThere are good reasons to wonder if human civilization will exist a century from today. (Pixabay)

What will historians say a century from now, if they still exist? That the most intelligent known species in the universe lost its mind.
 

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Minneapolis Schools Face $33M Deficit After City, State Spent $500M on NFL Stadium.

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Former Minnesota Governor Arne Carlson, himself a passionate sports fan, has been one of many who have spoken out against the city’s choice to commit so much in financial resources to the stadium.

Nathan Wellman, Grit Post

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http://images.alternet.org/images/managed/storyimages_picture8_1268251845.jpg_310x220March 29, 2018 | Teachers and staff of Minneapolis schools are expecting hundreds of layoffs due to a $33 million deficit only a few years after the city and state completed a taxpayer-funded $1.1 billion football stadium.

Minneapolis Public Schools — the state’s third largest district currently tasked with educating 36,000 young people — is expected to lay off 350-400 full time employees after last fall’s announcement that the education budget’s deficit had doubled for the following school year.

Nathan Wellman is a journalist from Los Angeles who has written for US Uncut and Grit Post.

Full story … 

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Help expand your impact by forwarding this story to any friends looking to get involved in 2018.

Welcome to Evergreene Digest This Week, April 14, 2018.

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Including links to over 755 websites and over 35 highlighted items featuring:

Feature Article | Why America is the World’s Most Uniquely Cruel Society, umair haqueEudaimonia and Co 

  • Or, How Punching Down Became a Way of Life
  • Related: “No civilization would tolerate what America has done.”
  • Related: "Morally Obscene" Trump Budget Proposal Stands to Make America Cruel Again. 

Publisher's Choice War Pay: The Pentagon Wants to Spend $716 Billion Next Year. Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

  • http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Gaza%20Up%20in%20US%20%26%20Israeli%20Smoke_0.jpgPart 1: The Pentagon Wants to Spend $716 Billion Next Year
  • And they’re justifying it by playing on fear.
  • Part 2: War Pay
  • 
Another Good Year for Weapons Makers Is Guaranteed

 

Of Special Interest | The Religious Roots of America’s Gun Culture and the Gospel of American Nationalistic Christianity, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest 

  • http://images.alternet.org/images/managed/storyimages_picture2.jpg_310x220Part 1: Billy Graham and the Gospel of American Nationalistic Christianity
  • Billy Graham is finally at rest, but we still wrestle with his complicated legacy.
  • Part 2: A Locked and Loaded Covenant: The Religious Roots of America’s Gun Culture
  • Tracing the historical and religious roots attaching to the sanctity of the Second Amendment.

 

Bloggers & Columnists | Amy Goodman & Juan Gonzalez, Caitlin Johnstone, Tom Englehardt



All this and more in:


Books, Literature, & Ideas

When A Government Declares A Verdict Before An Investigation, It’s Because There’s A Preexisting Agenda. Caitlin Johnstone, Medium 

  • Isn’t it interesting how just as its data begins warning that the western empire is approaching post-primacy and will likely lose its dominant position in the world if it doesn’t take drastic action, all this information begins pouring out about a longtime rival of that very empire? It’s almost as if there is a preexisting vendetta to cripple oppositional governments, and then crimes are being discovered which just so happen to advance that preexisting agenda.
  • Related: The Normalization of War

 

Critical Thinking

Michael Jacobson | Knowledge / Timeline Photos

The greatest enemy of knowledge isn't ignorance …


Foreign Affairs

Massacre in Gaza: Israeli Citizens Watch As Their Military Attacks Unarmed Palestinians. Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest 

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  • Part 1: Israeli Citizens Watch As Their Military Attacks Unarmed Palestinians
  • At least 18 Palestinians have died in Gaza after Israeli forces opened fire Friday on a protest near the Gaza Strip’s eastern border with Israel.
  • Part 2: Israeli Citizens Watch As Their Military Attacks Unarmed Palestinians
  • In an outrageous display of inhumanity, Israeli citizens reportedly gathered on Gaza border to watch their military kill Palestinian civilians.
  • Related: Israel Kills Palestinians and Western Liberals Shrug. Gaza -  An Inquest into Its Martyrdom.

Gender & Sexuality

What #MeToo Can Teach the Labor Movement, Jane McAlevey, In These Times

  • http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Chicago%20Teacher%27s%20Union%20Strike%20Rally.jpgAll of it comes down to a disrespect and disregard for women, especially women of color. If we focus on the power analysis, the answer is staring us in the face. There is no time to waste. Everyone has to be all-in for rebuilding unions.
  • Related: How did we let modern slavery become part of our everyday lives?

Government & Politics

Series | A Nation Under Trump, Part 10: Women's March inspires women to amplify their political voices post-inauguration. Dawn Araujo-Hawkins, National Catholic Reporter (NCR) 

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Women%27s%20March%20on%20Washington%20Jan.%2021.jpgParticipants walk toward the U.S. Capitol during the Women's March on Washington Jan. 21. (CNS/Bob Roller)

  • The Series: As the anniversary of Donald Trump's election as president of the United States approached, the NCR staff wondered if the calls to action that persisted immediately following the election remained as urgent.
  • Part 10: In the last year, women in the U.S. have, en masse, become more politically active.

Human Rights

http://assets.pewresearch.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/7/2016/09/PH_2016.09.20_Unauthorized-01.pngWhat we know about illegal immigration from Mexico, Ana Gonzalez-Barrera and Jens Manuel Krogstad, Pew Research Center 


Here’s what we know about illegal immigration from Mexico.

Peace & Non-violence

Special Report | Syria: Military Escalation? Towards a US-Russia Confrontation? Week Ending April 14, 2018, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

  • Part 1: Triggering War. A Manufactured “Catalytic Event” Which Will Initiate An All Out War?
  • Are We Going to Let this Happen Again?
  • Part 2: The Geopolitics of Targeting Russia
  • The aim … is to compel Moscow to submit to the hegemonic power of the Washington elite.

Donald Trump Is Proof That America’s Wars Come Home. Tom Engelhardt, the Nation 

https://www.thenation.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/trump-military-bomber-ap-img.jpg?scale=896&compress=80President Donald Trump in Virginia in 2017. (AP Photo / Steve Helber)

… And other lessons from 17 years of American defeat abroad.

Youth, Education, & Children

Marquette's Pride Prom to go on as planned despite backlash, petition. Caroline White, National Catholic Reporter (NCR) 

"You wear a fancy ball gown. You wear a suit. You get all dressed up. There's going to be music and dancing," Bunczak said. "Prom is something that is so important, and it's really important for some LGBT individuals who couldn't go to prom in their high schools dressed the way that they feel most expresses themselves." --Maria Bunczak, president of Empowerment, an intersectional feminism club which is co-sponsoring Pride Prom.

and much more. Enjoy!

We’re adding new material daily. Come back and visit us often.

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Section(s): 

Russia Madness on the Eve of Destruction: Hegemony Trumps Survival

https://smhttp-ssl-62992.nexcesscdn.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/Statue-of-Liberty-and-Mushroom-Cloud-1024-850x567.jpg

There are good reasons to wonder if human civilization will exist a century from today. (Pixabay)

What will historians say a century from now, if they still exist? That the most intelligent known species in the universe lost its mind.

Paul Street, Truthdig

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April 04, 2018 | Noam Chomsky’s 2016 book “Who Rules the World?” contains a passage in which the great left thinker asks readers to “imagine you’re a historian a hundred years from now—assuming there are any historians a hundred years from now, which is not obvious—and you’re looking back on what’s happening today.” This reflection appears in a chapter titled “The Eve of Destruction.”

It’s a bracing thought. Given the current state and rate of environmental destruction, the continuing advance in the destructive power of nuclear weapons systems, and the likelihood of pandemics in a warmer and more globalized world, there are good reasons to wonder if a human civilization with historians will exist a century from today. We may well be standing near the “end of history,” and not the glorious bourgeois-democratic one that Francis Fukuyama imagined with the end of the Cold War.

Paul Street holds a doctorate in U.S. history from Binghamton University. He is former vice president for research and planning of the Chicago Urban League. Street is also the author of numerous books.

Full story … 

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Demand Change: The Grave Danger of Information Monopolies

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  • Part 1: Google, Twitter & Facebook: The Grave Danger of Information Monopolies
  • If you control the flow of information, you can control everything. You can control most of what anyone see and knows.
  • Part 2: In the wake of the Facebook scandal
  • Demand real change

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

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Part 1: Google, Twitter & Facebook: The Grave Danger of Information Monopolies

If you control the flow of information, you can control everything. You can control most of what anyone see and knows.

Devin Foley, Intellectual Takeout

http://www.intellectualtakeout.org/sites/ito/files/field/image/zuckerberg_eyes_.jpgApril 13, 2018 | Increasingly, you will find articles critical of the power of Google, Facebook, and Twitter. Some of these articles argue that between Google and Facebook, the two giants control 85% of all ad revenue. And, of course, anyone who uses the internet knows that Google is the primary portal through which one seeks and finds information while Twitter and Facebook are the means to communicate broadly.

From a free market position, all of that seems fine so long as they’re not using government to smash their competition -- the consumers have spoken, right? 


http://www.intellectualtakeout.org/sites/ito/files/styles/medium/public/screen_shot_2017-11-10_at_10.53.46_am.png?itok=ubE10kJZ Devin Foley is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Intellectual Takeout and a graduate of Hillsdale College where he studied history and political science.

Full story … 



Part 2: In the wake of the Facebook scandal

Click here to sign the open letter calling for big tech companies to take these steps to protect our data and our democracy. 

Laila at Fight for the Future (FFTF) 

April 4, 2018 | Forget privacy. The Facebook data harvesting scandal is about manipulation. It illuminates how our data can be used against us, not just to pry into our personal lives, but to change how we think.
Everyone’s asking: what can be done to make sure this never happens again?

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Demand real change: click here to sign the open letter telling Facebook and all other tech companies to take the 5-step Security Pledge and protect our data from abuse. 

Fight for the Future (FFTF) is a nonprofit advocacy group in the area of digital rights founded in 2011. The group aims to promote causes related to copyright legislation, as well as online privacy and censorship through the use of the Internet.

Full story … 

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Life, liberty and the pursuit of profit: America’s assault on arts funding is cultural suicide.

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The new federal spending bill ups funding for the NEA, thankfully. But at the state level, outlooks aren’t so rosy (Credit: Getty/Salon)

  • The shortsighted and simpleminded can justify America’s assault on the arts and education with dubious conservative slogans like “fiscal responsibility,” “belt tightening” and “real world metrics,” but no euphemism can conceal its true nature. It is a form of cultural suicide.
  • A nation that values nothing will produce nothing of value.

David Masciotra, Salon

http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Orchestra%20Musician.jpg03/24/18 | any American historians, especially when they shapeshift into the role of nationalistic boosters, enjoy referencing the praise Alexis de Tocqueville bestowed upon “Democracy in America” when he visited the new nation from his native France in the early nineteenth century. Most tend to omit or overlook the eternally relevant indictment de Tocqueville issued against the dominant value system of American life. “As one digs deeper into the national character of the Americans,” de Tocqueville wrote a friend in a private letter, “one sees that they have sought the value of everything in this world only in the answer to this single question: how much money will it bring in?”

The ultimate criterion of judgment in the United States destroys that which is most elemental to the maintenance of an excellent and enjoyable civilization. Profit is essential for creating a high standard of living, and it does energize a creative spirit in many individuals, but if made central to a culture, it becomes vampiric — slowly sucking the blood out of anything that cannot perpetually produce treasure for money managers, financiers, investors, bankers and agents.

David Masciotra is the author of four books, including "Mellencamp: American Troubadour" (University Press of Kentucky, 2015) and "Barack Obama: Invisible Man" (Eyewear Publishing, 2017).

Full story … 

Why America is the World’s Most Uniquely Cruel Society

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  • Or, How Punching Down Became a Way of Life
  • Related: “No civilization would tolerate what America has done”
  • Related: "Morally Obscene" Trump Budget Proposal Stands to Make America Cruel Again

umair haqueEudaimonia and Co

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Feb 19, 2018 | In this essay, I want to share with you a tiny theory of what it means to be American. It is up to you to judge, as ever, whether it carries any weight. All that I will say is that when I look around, it explains, a little, what I see.

Any theory of being American must explain one salient and striking fact: cruelty. America is the most cruel nation among its peers — even among most poor countries today. It is something like a new Rome. It has little, if any, functioning healthcare, education, transport, media, no safety nets, no stability, security. The middle class is collapsing, and life expectancy is falling. Young people die for a lack of insulin they cannot crowdfund. Elderly middle-class people live and die in their cars. Kids massacre each other in schools — when they’re not self-medicating the pain of it all away. The combination of these pathologies happens nowhere else — not a single place — in the world. Not even Pakistan, Costa Rica, or Rwanda. Hence, the world is aghast daily at the depths of American cruelty — yet somehow, they seem bottomless.

https://cdn-images-1.medium.com/fit/c/100/100/0*lI5-avJvcBbQDmA2.jpeg umair haque <>, vampire

Full story … 


Related:

“No civilization would tolerate what America has done.” David Masciotra, AlterNet / Salon 

  • (We) have … been programmed into cruelty and apathy by (our) schools, churches, families, politics, and pop culture(.)
  • Institutional racism. Rampant income inequality. A broken justice system. America may never be a great society.
  • Torture Is Who We Are

Related:

"Morally Obscene" Trump Budget Proposal Stands to Make America Cruel Again, Deirdre Fulton, Common Dreams

http://www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files/styles/cd_large/public/headlines/trump-nashville.jpg?itok=hTc06Em8 President Donald Trump in Nashville on Wednesday. Analysts said his budget proposal would hurt those voters who helped get him elected. (Photo: AP)

  • Environment, public education, worker protections, and cultural institutions all stand to lose under Trump's "cruel" budget blueprint.
  • Related: What It Really Means To ‘Defund’ Planned Parenthood

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