Thursday, October 20, 2016

Trump Is Destabilizing the U.S.- Should Progressives Worry?

Donald Trump is aggravating the fissures in U.S. society. A narcissist running a demagogic campaign for president of the U.S., his aim is his own self-aggrandizement.

He is rabble-rousing elements of the broad, discontented, white working class and anxious "middle" classes which the establishment power system seeks to keep passive as the system of corporate oligarchy slowly and relentlessly grinds them down economically. In classic fascist/reactionary fashion, he diverts attention from understanding the actual structure and nature of society and instead scapegoats "outsiders," in his case "illegal" immigrants and would-be refugees seeking asylum from war zones. He has also identified the various trade treaties as a cause of the economic squeeze on workers, which is valid as a factor.

Trump has made a frontal assault on these so-called "free trade" deals, violating an establishment ideological taboo observed by Democrats and other Republicans alike. Trump has done more to incite opposition to these treaties than labor unions, which supposedly represent the interests of workers, and certainly more than the Democratic Party, whose dominant figures largely support these corporate-power-enhancing treaties.

And while pressing the same hot button "culture war" issues that "respectable" "conservatives" do, being a political vulgarian he doesn't do it in a muted fashion as standard-issue reactionary Republicans do but does it very sharply, as was on display in the third and last "presidential debate" last night between him and Hillary Clinton, the Democrat. (This sort of crudeness is referred to by Republican operatives themselves as tossing "red meat" to "the base." Apparently GOP voters are like pet ocelots. Trump threatens to take them off their leashes.) These issues are guns, abortion, and immigrants. (The immigrant issue of course is tied to the economic insecurity felt by millions, with racism and xenophobia in the mix.)

Trump laid down his marker on immigrants early on when he branded virtually all Mexican immigrants as rapists and murderers- a trope others have picked up, some implying that all murders in the U.S. are the work of illegal immigrants, an absurdity that goes unchallenged. Instead we get from Democrats and "liberals" heartstring-plucking stories of hardworking immigrant families (it always has to be families) and children caught in a legal bind not of their own making. Which is fine, but insufficient, as it leaves the murderer-immigrant theme unrefuted.

Trump lately has also been destabilizing the legitimacy of U.S. elections by claiming they are "rigged," to cheat him of his victory. He continued this tact last night. This is very cynical on his part, as he is doing it because he is apparently going to lose. [1]

But the irony is, U.S. elections ARE corrupt, only not in the ways Trump means. [2] For example, the last two times a Republican "won" the presidency, it was by stealing it. Bush  the Younger stole Florida in  2000, aided and abetted by his brother Jeb, the then-governor of Florida, Jeb's GOP (Gang Of Plunderers) minions there who disenfranchised thousands of eligible voters, and most importantly by five Republican Supreme Court justices, who illegally blocked a recount in Florida. In 2004 Ohio was stolen, with the connivance of GOP officials there, led by Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell.  Since 2000, the Republican-owned corporations that make the crooked voting machines have connived to steal numerous elections by programming them to switch votes from Democrats to Republicans. (The Democrats refuse to make an issue out of any of this. As for 2000, they blame it all on Ralph Nader. Talk about scapegoating!)

But the Republicans (or elements of the secret police state acting on their behalf) are more ruthless than that.
Both Paul Wellstone and Mel Carnahan were murdered by plane sabotage to help the GOP control the U.S. Senate. And a devout Christian computer programmer, who helped the Republicans steal elections, had an attack of conscience and spoke out. While flying to testify in a civil case against Karl Rove, the top Republican electoral operative, his plane too was downed, and the evidence he was carrying to the trial was removed from the crash site, never to be seen again.

We can add mass disenfranchisement by various chicanery of Democratic voters, which the Democratic Party barely objected to until very recently.

Nor does it help that the Republicans who constituted a majority on the Supreme Court before the death of arch-reactionary Antonin Scalia last year gutted the Voting Rights Act, opening the door to even more ruthless disenfranchisement of "black" citizens in the erstwhile Confederacy.

Trump has even damaged the Republican Party, which he has hijacked for his ego trip. Contrary to universal handwringing by the establishment blatherariat, this is a good thing. It is to be fervently desired to see that evil, noxious weed break up into two or more parties. (That would also have the salutary effect of weakening the extortionist power of the Democratic Party to force people to vote for them as "the lesser of two evils" to avoid a Republican victory.)

You would think that progressives would welcome things that weakens the stability of the current oppressive, imperialist, and incorrigible U.S. structure. That assumes that they understand the problems they complain about are structural in nature and deeply rooted in the nature of U.S. society. Many apparently don't understand that, but they should.

But instead, as happens every time there is the one-day-every-two-years when some actual democracy has to be allowed- democracy to the very limited extent that some people (not millions of disenfranchised people, mostly blacks) are allowed to vote from a menu of two choices presented to them- Democratic Party politicians or Republican Party politicians- what progressives and special interest "leftists"* virtually all do is line up like obedient ducklings behind the Democrats. [3] Because "the Republicans are worse." They are exhorted by Democratic Party political auxiliaries like Robert Reich (a Bill Clinton cabinet member) that "now is not the time" to seek an alternative, not even a Senator Bernard Sanders, who ran as a Democrat for president against Hillary Clinton in the Democratic Party primaries and then supported her when he was blocked from victory. But there will never be a "right time" as long as the Republican Party exists.

Preserving the faux "unity" of the American populace under the current political and economic power structure is precisely what those in power want! Why would anyone who struggles against this system want to help do that?

The media created Donald Trump, making news stories out of even his random idiotic tweets. Now they are trying desperately to destroy his drive to the White House with sex scandalizing. To be sure, he is loathsome, and a probable rapist, as I will explain in a separate essay. (Bill Clinton is a confirmed rapist- cf. Juanita Broaddrick- and that IS relevant because he will have immense power if/when his wife achieve her goal of the presidency, her compensation for setting aside her own ambitions in Arkansas and when her husband got to be president. It's a family affair, you see.  Now it's her turn. The other relevance is that Hillary was a driving force in the character assassinations of her husband's various paramours. And it went into actual terrorism. When Kathleen Willey reported a rebuffed sexual advance on her by Bill C. in the White House, her cat was killed, after which a man jogged up to her outside when she was along and mentioned the dead cat. A scary threat indeed, the implication being that he could kill her right then and there.)

Here's a good reason to look forward to the end of the election: the media obsession with Donald Trump will abate. (If we're very lucky, it will even end.) But the barbaric soul of the Republican Party has had its genteel veil torn off by Donald Trump.

1] Trump also has broken new ground, at least in the past century, by openly attacking the legitimacy of his two-party opponent. Trump at the previous debate said he would jail Hillary Clinton if elected. Last night he said she shouldn't even be allowed to run because of her "many crimes." If he had meant crimes against humanity, he would have been onto something. He just meant her private email server, destroying 30,000 emails, an allegedly lying to the FBI.

This attack on the legitimacy of the official opposition can be seen as rooted in the GOP attacks on Obama's legitimacy, including the claims that he was born in Kenya and thus Constitutionally ineligible to be president. The GOP didn't overtly push that line, but its auxiliaries in "talk" radio promoted it. Trump took that "issue" and ran with it in the years when he was preparing the ground for his attempt to grab the presidency.
Nor are fraudulent claims of election-stealing by the Democrats new. The myth has long been nurtured that JFK stole the 1960 election from Nixon by stealing Illinois. That myth is easily refuted by simple arithmetic. Just subtract the Illinois electoral votes from Kennedy's total and add them to Nixon's. Kennedy still wins. But as Reagan said, "facts are stupid things."

In fact, the Republican Party, by pushing relentlessly to the right (with the help of almost the entire U.S. media) over the last almost 50 years, a campaign of reaction and rollback that was a response to the upsurges of the 1960s, has really opened the door to a demagogue like Trump. The years of rightwing extremism have validated the derangement and inculcated the rightwing segment of the populace in irrational beliefs an animosities.

2] Trump claims illegal immigrants are voting, "dead people" are voting, illegal immigrants are not just voting once, but "fifteen times," etc. etc. This is of a piece with his general cynical demagoguery designed to rabble-rouse the racists and xenophobes, who number in the millions.

3] I use "leftists" for want of a better single word, and also because that is how the power structure thinks of them, especially the secret police agencies, "talk" radio, hard-rightwing media, and rightists generally, even though that is a stupid way to think of them. I am referring to single-issue people such as those categorized as environmentalists, gay rights activists, "civil" i.e. black rights people, and so on, dozens of such splinter groups with no unity, each applying a modicum of pressure on the system to achieve its own ends within the current system without changing its basic imperialist, corporate oligarchic nature one whit.

The truth is, the vast majority of progressives are frightened of pulling down the temple of power. That's why their distress at Trump's refusal to validate the fairness of the election has them in a tizzy as much as it has the establishment media the the Democrats. Even as I'm writing this, one Kristen Clarke is talking to Amy Goodman on Democracy Now! (the first segment of the day's show) and prattling on about U.S. "democracy" being the "model for the world" and how "distressing" it is that Trump would question the legitimacy of a U,S. election. Then she segued into a total non sequitur about voter suppression against blacks! Which would seem to undercut her boilerplate propaganda about legitimacy and a Model for the World. She keeps referring to "conspiracy theories," and brushes aside a question about Gore v. Bush in 2000 ("We're not going to relitigate [that]" i.e. not going to discuss, remember, or learn from) and denies U.S. elections can possibly be rigged. "Rigged elections, pure mythology, pure fiction..."! [What, 2000 wasn't? 2004 wasn't?]

Clarke is also bent out of shape that Obama's nominee for the "broken" Supreme Court, Merrick Garland, a conservative former prosecutor, hasn't been given a Senate confirmation hearing. "A Constitutional Crisis" she calls it. "I am deeply concerned about this era of political obstruction we are in," she says, parroting Democratic Party rhetoric.

Clarke is President and Executive Director of the "Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law," founded in 1963 at the request of president John F. Kennedy. That political pedigree maybe tells you all you need to know about where Clarke is coming from.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Architect of Israel's Nuclear Arsenal, Who Tried to Sell an A-Bomb to White Racist Apartheid Regime, Hailed As Man Of Peace

Shimon Peres, a lifelong member of that small clique that constitutes the top echelon of the Israeli political power elite, has died at 92, following a stroke. His death comes not long after that of Ariel Sharon, a lifelong killer of Palestinians who didn't long outlive a hated foe whose assassination  he ordered, Yasser Arafat.

The death of Peres has been marked in Western media by a thoroughly dishonest sendoff, hailing Peres as a "Man of Peace." His roles as the father of Israel's nuclear weapons program, a man who pushed for the "Judaification" and absorption of conquered West Bank territory, who offered to sell an atomic weapon to the apartheid South African regime, have been blotted out in the mendacious eulogizing by the English language propaganda systems of the U.S. and UK in particular.

In painting Peres as a tireless seeker of "peace," the misleadingly-titled "Oslo Peace Process" was placed front and center as evidence. Unmentioned was the key fact that exposes that process like a flash of lightning, illuminating its true nature. Namely that during the years of dilatory "negotiations," the Israelis doubled the "settler" population in the West Bank, while supposedly intending to hand it over for a Palestinian state.

A few years ago Israeli propagandists created a music-video featuring Peres asking others to join him for "peace." This was part of a strategy to present Israel as longing for "peace." So obviously if the Israelis found it necessary to continually mete out violence to the Palestinians (and occasionally the Lebanese) and every few years "mow the lawn" in their cynical phrase, in Gaza, meaning destroying the infrastructure (power plants, water and sewage facilities, industries and businesses and hospitals and schools and even such things as a chicken farm, while killing and wounding and maiming a few thousand more Palestinians of all ages),why, their victims must be forcing them to do it, since the Israelis only want peace.

Obviously this is errant nonsense, as Israel has been a mini-imperialist state beginning in 1948. One purpose of propaganda is to obscure the obvious and replace it with illusion. Previous Israeli propaganda themes, such as "A land without people for a people without land," and "they made the desert bloom" (so all those Palestinian farms and orchards never existed, nor did the Palestinians themselves, for as Golda Meir said, "there is no such thing as the Palestinian people") all have been assiduously repeated by Western media. That goes for the "Peres Man of Peace" propaganda trope also. So Western media is behaving true to form.

This isn't being "anti-Israel," certainly not "anti-Semitic," the go-to slur for people who speak inconvenient truths out loud. It is factual accuracy, something Western "news" media and "journalists" are mostly indifferent to.

Barack "The Drone Assassin" Obama and other "world leaders" (country bosses) rushed to Israel to deliver encomiums at Peres' funeral. Mahmoud Abbas, the fake puppet stooge "president" of All The Palestinians, running a Bantustan-style substatelet of Israel called the "Palestinian Authority," also showed up at Peres funeral to pay his respects to a lifelong dispossessor and oppressor of Palestinians. (Well, why not? He helps Israel assassinate Palestinian activists, after all. This became evident when the New York Times, in typically smarmy fashion, obliquely pointed to such a case when they buried a short paragraph two-thirds down deep in a lengthy article. The paragraph mentioned a Palestinian prisoner released from a "Palestinian Authority" prison. The very next day an Israeli death squad murdered him at his West Bank home. Wow, that's some great intel! Wonder where they got it from! Fact is, the PA connives with Israeli death squads. Keep in mind that the CIA trained those Palestinian "security forces." The PA is a U.S.-Israeli satrapy created as a subcontractor for the oppression of the Palestinian people. But even Abbas can't continue the 20-year charade of "negotiations" with Israel. That con job string is played out, except in dishonest Western "commentary.")

Peres got to live for over 9 decades. During those decades, several thousand Palestinian children had no such good fortune.

Shimon Peres, dead after only 92 years. Such a shame.

Sunday, October 09, 2016

Trump Adopts Obama Defense In Wake of Revelation of Crude Sexual Behavior and Attitude

"Anyone who knows me knows these words don't reflect who I am." -Donald "SuperEgo" Trump explaining why we should disregard his boasting about grabbing women by the "pussy," kissing women he doesn't even know, describing them as meat and himself acting like a beast of prey. [1]

"That's not who we are!" -Barack "The Drone Assassin" Obama, every time he has to explain away U.S. criminality or venality.

So, it doesn't matter if Americans torture people, assassinate people, bomb hospitals and journalists, imprison millions- since that's "Not who we are," it doesn't count as part of character and identity. Some doppelganger America did it. Perhaps an imposter America. Since America is really a Good Country, and Obama a Good Man, and Trump whatever he says he is, the actions to the contrary are not their responsibility. Thus the culprits dissociate themselves from their own crimes.

Hillary Clinton also trotted out the "That's not who we are" trope recently. Apparently this is now going to be an enduring part of U.S. propaganda and denial. [2]

Add that to Obama's Legacy.

1]  Trump and his supporters (including the loathsome Rudolph Giuliani making the rounds of the Sunday morning TV political propaganda show October 10, a man who openly carried on an affair while mayor and still married to another woman) have tried to play down the vulgar conversation between Trump and celebrity brownnoser Billy Bush, a member of the Bush clan and cousin of the most recent president Bush. Their spin is that it was a long time ago, and Trump apologized (grudgingly, reluctantly, and in a pro forma manner, while simultaneously attacking by saying Bill Clinton has said worse, and threatening to bring up at the next debate with Hillary Clinton the rape of Juanita Broaddrick and all the "bimbo eruptions"- to use the Clintons' campaign from 1992 when Bill's sexual affairs threatened his candidacy for President) and anyway he's not like that now.

But it wasn't just the words Trump used: Trump was describing his own habitual conduct. (The disgusting Billy Bush cackled gleefully at Trump's self-description, something there has been no comment on by "the" media. I guess those bastards cover each others' asses.)

Trump has a history of misogyny and stalking of women going back to his high school days. He has always felt entitled, being the son of a rich landlord. On the Bush tape, he says when you're a celebrity "you can do anything." Indeed, there are privileges reserved to some in this society. And in Trump's case, he didn't even have to be discreet! But now he discovers that when you run for a competitive political office, your life is put under scrutiny and your bad behavior no longer covered up for you.

CNN just dredged up radio clips spanning 23 years of Trump's banter with the vulgar Howard Stern. Remember, this stuff was broadcast over public airwaves, with nary a ding to Trump's reputation until now. Here are a few gems:

Trump said he would “have no problem” having sex with 24-year-olds, and he “couldn’t care less” if he satisfies the women he sleeps with. But they have to be young, since “it’s checkout time” once women reach age 35. He also boasted that he'd engaged in three-way sex. “Haven’t we all?” Trump told Stern on his SiriusXM satellite radio show in 2008, obviously aware that "we all" haven't. Notice the ploy to assert his own superiority and make others feel inferior.

Someone might want to think twice about working for Trump enterprise. When he owned the Miss Universe pageant, he would barge in on nude contestants in their dressing room, calling it an "inspection."

With his connoisseur's eye, Trump pronounced of his daughter Ivanka, “She’s actually always been very voluptuous,”

Here's Trump's definition of "the perfect date:"

“You meet at 7 for drinks. You promise to take her to dinner, but you never get there.”

That's my definition of a lout.

2]  Far more substantive than Trump's sexism and misogyny is the expose of what Clinton said to all those finance capitalists in the speeches they so richly paid her for. It was the opposite of what she claims to stand for in her public pronouncements during this campaign. (No surprise, really.) Thanks to Russia and WikiLeaks for that. But "the" media is making a much bigger deal out of the Trump scandal du jour, since the establishment consensus is that Trump Must Not Be President. Why, he won't even demonize Official Enemy Vladimir Putin!

For the Trump recordings, see below.

Trump and Billy Bush discuss how to relate to women: "Trump recorded having extremely lewd conversation about women in 2005," Washington Post, October 8, 2016.

For Trump and Howard Stern: "Donald Trump to Howard Stern: It's okay to call my daughter a 'piece of ass'," CNN Politics, October 9, 2016.

I just gave the GREATEST APOLOGY you ever, heard. It was truly amazing. No one has ever been as contrite as I was. Trust Me on this.

Pretty women are like magnets. I just have to kiss them, okay?

U.S. Clears Throat After Saudi Clients Bomb Funeral, Slaughtering 140 Yemenis

The latest Saudi Arabian war crime in Yemen, the aerial bombing of a funeral which killed as of this writing 140 people and wounded hundreds more, has forced to U.S. to wag its finger at the Saudis. The Obama regime has greased the skids for the sale of billions of dollars of advanced U.S. armaments to the Saudis- warplanes and ordnance, including cluster bombs and white phosphorus- which the Saudis and their Gulf State lackeys have used to pummel Yemen, ostensibly to counter Iranian influence, and to restore to power a puppet Yemeni "president" who was overthrown by Houthi tribesmen.

U.S. arms sales to foreign powers are by U.S. law supposed to be used only in "self-defense." Naturally, this law has long been ignored in practice (see Israel, for example, which actually gets free weapons- the U.S. gives Israel the money to buy U.S. weapons). Saudi Arabia has been bombarding Yemen for over a year, and sent in ground forces as well. (It also sent military forces into Bahrain, to help crush protests there by the Shiite majority against the tyrannical Sunni "royal" rulers.) As usual, the U.S. is the Arrnorer of Reaction, a role it has filled with gusto since 1945.

The Obama regime's reaction to this latest Saudi outrage is to aver that it might cut back a bit on arms sales to the Saudis.

The Saudis have been systematically targeting civilian targets for over a year, including markets, homes, mosques, and hospital and clinics. This has been mostly ignored by the U.S. media, which prefers to focus on the crimes of enemy states- currently Russia's bombing campaign in Syria, marked by Saudi-style targeting of hospitals, schools, and civilian infrastructure necessary for life, (Of course the Russians have had plenty of practice in devastation of civilians, such as their razing of Grozny, in order to crush a Chechen insurrection.)

The U.S. has been providing critical cooperation in the Saudi war against the Yemeni populace. It's aerial refueling tankers aid and abet the war crimes. Its military officers sit next to the Saudis and provide targeting information for the warplanes the U.S. sold the Saudis. And of course it provides political cover and a diplomatic shield for the criminal Saudi regime. Aiding and abetting crime is a crime.

So after all that, the Obama regime hints that maybe it'll dawdle and selling more arms to the Saudis! That's a pure p.r. ploy, vintage Obama, one of the world's great con artists.

Obama has proven in many ways to be a very militaristic president. He has micromanaged a "war on terror" in seven countries, exceeding even Lyndon Johnson's obsession with the Vietnam war in this regard. (Johnson merely selected bombing targets; Obama picks actual individuals to kill.) He has put in motion a nuclear weapons buildup projected to cost one TRILLION dollars. He just gifted Israel an unprecedented 10-year gift of $38 billion in free weaponry to use in their periodic slaughters of Palestinians and Lebanese. And he has presided over the ever-increasing U.S. military budget. (The increases are smaller than originally desired, so these increases are called "cuts." What a gang of liars our rulers, especially the media accomplices, are!)

And yet, there are still idiots who cling to the illusion that Obama is "progressive."

I spotted him as a con man in 2004, when he burst onto the national stage with that phony, Mario Cuomoesque speech at that year's Democratic Party convention. Nor was I ever tricked into voting for him, as so many fools, entranced by this great Pied Piper, were.

It's amazing how long the Democratic Party has gotten away with this con of being a "progressive" party. It only pulls it off because it compares itself to the arch-reactionary Republicans, the Gang Of Plunderers.

But I digress....

Sharing a laugh, maybe over the impotence of human rights whiners.

Best of Friends!

Friday, October 07, 2016

Bourgeous Elitists of Nobel Committee Snub FARC, Award Prize to Colombian President ONLY

In an unprecedented move, the  Norwegian swells who decide who is worthy of High Acclaim and Prestige in the world, awarded the annual Nobel Peace Prize they control to only one side in a "peace process." The worthies gave the prize (funded by deceased explosives multi-millionaire Alfred Nobel) to Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos, omitting his negotiating partner, the rebel FARC organization and its leaders. [1]

Consider previous similar prizes: in 1994 the Peace Prize was bestowed upon the Israeli political bosses Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres, and the Palestinian "terrorist" Yasser Arafat, for initiating the deceptively misnamed "Oslo Peace Process." (It actually was a con job and long stalling process during which, over eight years, the Israelis, with their U.S. patrons running interference for them, doubled the "settler" population in the occupied territories while pretending to be "negotiating" for a future Palestinian state on the same land. This was yet another of Bill Clinton's deceptions and crimes against humanity.)

In 1993, the Big Prize went to the president of the racist apartheid South African regime, F. W. de Klerk, and the "terrorist" ANC head Nelson Mandela, for negotiating a transition to more democratic rule, ending a decades-long period of repression and insurgency.

And in 1978, the prize went to Egyptian president Anwar Satat and Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin (formerly head of the terrorist Irgun). This for negotiating a peace treaty between their two nations.
But apparently the FARC is beyond the pale to the international bourgeoisie.

Facts, history, and reality all have to be ignored in the "universal" demonization of FARC by the international bourgeoisie. Start with the estimated 250,000 who have "died in the 52 year conflict." Most were unarmed civilians murdered by the military, police, and fascist auxiliaries, the right-wing death squads euphemised as "paramilitaries" (never "terrorists," the label officially branded on FARC). Just a year ago or so mass graves were discovered outside a military base containing the corpses of civilians murdered by soldiers who claimed their victims were "guerrillas," to obtain  bounties and inflate their body count.

It is also misleading to refer to a "52 year long civil war." There was a previous cessation of war- but not of violence, as it turned out- when the FARC laid down their arms and ran candidates for office. This turned out to be a great opportunity for the rich of Colombia to try and exterminate people for progress. The Colombian bourgeoisie duly unleashed their fascist killers on the FARC candidates, supporters, and allies, to murder thousands of "leftists." This period of one-sided violence lasted from 1984-87. And according to Wikipedia: "In 1989 a single large landholder had over 400 UP members murdered. Over 70% of all Colombian presidential candidates in 1990—and 100% of those from center-left parties—were assassinated." [Sources at Wikipedia.] [2]

The fact of the previous three-year attempt by FARC and others to "participate in the political process," which was met by massive state terrorism, is virtually blacked out of bourgeois history and media commentary. This is ideologically and politically necessary in order to paint FARC as "the bad guys," ruthless killer terrorists who "take hostages" (capture prisoners to try and exchange for their own people held as prisoners by the government, which has always refused prisoner exchanges) and "traffic in drugs" (as if the Colombian goverment, the "paramilitaries," and the CIA DON'T do the same).

By the way, the U.S. has sent its experts in state terrorism down to Colombia at least since 1959, five years before the FARC took up arms. This "Special Survey Team" of "counterinsurgency experts" recommended a sinister program of "intervention," and that "to shield the interests of both Colombian and US authorities against 'interventionist' charges any special aid given for internal security was to be sterile and covert in nature." In 1962 another group of U.S. Army covert terrorists, headed by a general this time, paid another visit to Colombia to conspire in repression with the Colombian "security forces"  by teaching them methods, equipping them, and over all institutionalizing "professional" methods of ubiquitous human rights atrocities and a permanent feature of this typical U.S. client state in its "own backyard."

The award to Santos comes days after a referendum presented to the Colombian public to ratify the peace agreement negotiated with FARC was rejected by a bare majority of 50.2% of the 40% of eligible voters who actually voted. Thus 20% of the electorate defeated the deal.

In the aftermath of the vote, the BBC among others has given play to the complaints of the fascist elements of the Colombian elite who opposed the agreement. They are outraged that FARC members won't be imprisoned as long as they confess. (No mention of the crimes and impunity afforded to their death squads and their military.) They are also outraged that FARC didn't have to turn over all their weapons before an agreement!!! And they find it unacceptable that a whole ten seats were to be reserved in the bicameral legislature for the FARC. (I guess they think the FARC's candidates should just be murdered, as happened during the last peace agreement.)

The previous president, Alvaro Uribe, a rich landowner who founded the death squads, has been a vociferous opponent of any peace agreement with FARC.  He led this opposition, preferring to press on with extermination. (Aided by U.S.-guided assassination of top FARC personnel.)

Enjoy your prize, Santos. I mean the 8 million Swedish Krona ( a bit less than one million U.S. dollars, $926,000 as of today.)

Maybe the Norwegians just didn't want the U.S. to indict them for providing "material support to terrorism"!

1] Alfred Nobel was a Swedish industrialist, trained in chemistry and engineering who is usually described as an inventor and "innovator," His big "innovation" was developing dynamite. During that process, there were glitches along the way, including an explosion that killed his brother and four others. By 1867 his efforts bore fruit. After dynamite, apparently obsessed with explosives, Nobel invented gelignite in 1875, which is even more  powerful than dynamite, and in 1887 he patented ballistite, a predecessor of cordite.

Another of his "innovations" was converting the iron and steel manufacturing company Bofors into a major weapons maker, especially of heavy armaments like cannons. 

Nobel grew rich from dynamite and from his trade in arms and ordnance. But he was stung in 1888 by an obituary about him which a French newspaper, mistaking Nobel's brother for Alfred himself (the brother had just died), published, which stated: "The merchant of death is dead" and "Dr. Alfred Nobel, who became rich by finding ways to kill more people faster than ever before, died yesterday." 

Nobel, desirous of having a good reputation "in perpetuity" as they say, that is, worried about what people would think of him after he was dead and no longer existed, hit upon what has proven to be one of the most brilliant, effective, and durable public relations moves of all time. He set up the Nobel Prizes, to be funded after his death through a trust fund in which he secretly put most of his wealth (the amount in the trust estimated at $265 million in current U.S. dollars), causing disappointment and surprise among his relatives and friends, who only discovered this after his death. (Rich people are almost invariably selfish creeps, and love to stick it to the fawners and sycophants who cravenly try to curry their favor in hopes of a big payoff in the future. The rich often secretly hold these wishful thinkers in contempt. Their wealth makes them chronically paranoid and distrustful that other people are only interested in them for their money. This is one reason the rich generally limit their friendships and socializing to other rich people, forming an insular and armored class of the rich.)

There are five Nobel Prizes, for Chemistry (natch, since he was a chemist), Peace (ironically), Literature, Physics, and Physiology or Medicine. They were first awarded in 1901. The "Economics Prize" was invented later by the Bank of Sweden, which attached it to Nobel's name to leech off the prestige of the real Nobels. The bank got the  Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, which awards the two science Nobels, to hand out the "Economics" prizes. Swedish institutions handle the awards other than the "Peace" prize, which is controlled by the Norwegian Nobel Committee. For some reason Nobel didn't want his fellow Swedes handling that one. Go figure.

Friday, September 02, 2016

That Trade Treaty Negotiation "Queue" that Obama Sent Britain To the Back Of, Just Got Shorter

Remember that threat Obama made before the UK vote on leaving the EU, the so-called "Brexit"? He said he'd sent Britain to the "back of the queue" (the line in U.S. English- guess Obama was Going Native when he spoke) for negotiating a trade treaty with the U.S. and vowed it would take ten years to reach an agreement. His threat wasn't scary enough to win the day for the global elites opposed to a renewal of British national independence and self-determination (portrayed as racism and xenophobia by the corporate propaganda systems of the UK and U.S.- and they're still at it! [1]).

Well, it looks like Britain just moved up two places in the "queue."

Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership negotiations have been declared a failure by top figures in the German and French governments.

As for Obama's secret Trans Pacific Partnership, it is hanging in limbo. Congress will not ratify it before Obama is finally out of the White House this coming January, and the two candidates the two-party dictatorship are offering us as his replacement, Donald "The Narcissist" Trump and Hillary "The Conniver" Clinton, claim to be against it. Trump of course is completely untrustworthy, as is Clinton, and Clinton had to do a complete reversal of her previous support for the malign deal. (All these "free trade" treaties are in fact global corporate hegemony treaties. They are all written to give supremacy of corporations over national governments and supercede national laws. They leave the populations of the countries sold out by their politicians at the mercy of pollutors, labor exploiters, etc.) [2]

Whatever happens, there will at least need to be some renegotiating to disguise the double-cross and betrayal of the campaign promise by the next president.

The Man With The Golden Tongue: The Magic Has Just About Worn Off. At Last.

1]  The Brexit referendum was on June 23, and here it is, over two months later, and the U.S. media are still running anti-Brexit propaganda, such as this op-ed by some limey (no American is named "Sebastian") in the Los Angeles Times, "Britain’s post-Brexit warning for Americans seduced by Trump," September 1, 2016.

2]  For a concise critique from a European Green of the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) which applies equally to the TPP and NAFTA, the notorious North American Free Trade Agreement foisted on people by Hillary's husband and partner in political crime, Bill Clinton, see
"To Free, Or Not To Free," The European, November 26, 2013.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Clinton's Media Allies Used Blatant Double Standard to Force Trump to Jettison Paul Manafort

Paul Manafort is one of those types referred to variously as a "lobbyist" or a "political strategist" or a "consultant." Whatever you call them, this class of creatures are parasitic leeches embedded in the corrupt U.S. political system of corporate oligarchic rule, a system manifested domestically in repression and exploitation, and abroad in imperialism, war, and various crimes against humanity, and recognizes no rights anywhere, just excessive privileges for those in the elite in-crowd. They basically function as fixers, shills, and influence-peddlers for clients, whether corporate or governmental, seeking advantages within the U.S. power structure. Sometimes they give political advice to foreign rulers about handling their affairs in their home country. This is what Manafort apparently did for the former president of Ukraine.

Manafort was attacked by much of the U.S. establishment media for selling his services in years past to the U.S.-ousted former president of Ukraine, Viktor Yauokovych, whom he helped elect. The fact that Yanukovych was the legal and democratically-elected president was irrelevant. The crime is he was "Russian-backed." (Not quite. The Russians had to pressure him to opt out of a trade pact with the EU that deliberately excluded Russia. And they didn't intervene to save him from having to flee for his life from the violent fascist rabble that the U.S. egged on to overthrow him, similarly to what they did in Iran in 1953.) [1]

Those of Manafort's ilk typically sell their services to various foreign governments, including despotic and tyrannical ones. No one raises an eyebrow over American shills promoting Saudi Arabia here, one of the most repressive and medieval regimes on earth. And Manafort couldn't gaze into the future to see that the U.S. would decide to overthrow his client and retroactively label that client an official Bad Guy. (We don't know if the U.S. was even then covertly moving against Yanukovych. Maybe someday WikiLeaks can tell us. The U.S. government certainly will never voluntarily tell. That's called "transparency" in the Orwellian language of U.S. political elites.)

But the successful assault on Manafort was more than just a case of singling out someone who is typically treated with discretion and respect by the establishment propaganda system. In fact it's the height of chutzpah. Because this was done on behalf of Hillary Clinton, and it just so happens that another member of Manafort's class of hustler, Lanny Davis, is a moral leper, propagandist for tyrants, P.R. man for the Honduran coup supported by Clinton and Obama, and a close associate of the Clintons, former special counsel to the last president Clinton. So where do the media allies of Clinton and those merely desperate to Stop Trump At All Costs get off with such a blatant double standard?

Davis charged a cool $100,000 a month to defend Ivory Coast dictator Laurent Gbagbo, who refused to leave office at the end of his term and murdered people to cling to power. (Unlike Yanukovych who offered to step down early to try and mollify the fascist mob that was setting cars, buildings, and policemen on fire in the streets. (Go watch the youtube videos- they literally lit policemen ablaze.) He also sold his services to the dictator of Equatorial Guinea. And there was his assiduous shilling for the Honduran coup. For pay, of course .[2]

One useful conclusion we can draw about Trump from his willingness to throw Manafort overboard is this: contrary to the image he tries to project as a fearless tough guy who never backs down, we see that he is indeed susceptible to pressure, and willing to reverse course. More evidence of that are his verbal about-faces and two-steps when he gets a certain amount of heat for his statements. I predict that if he becomes president, the very powerful "national security" state- that is, the military-secret police combine- will be able to twist him like to pretzel to serve their goals.

After all, Trump has no real interest in foreign policy, no principles, and no goals except his own increased self-aggrandizement. So no impediments will be placed in the way of the Pentagon or the massive, multi-tentacled secret police apparatus (euphemistically called "the intelligence community").

But then, there are barely any limits placed on them now. And with all the rich blackmail material the secret police must have on Hillary, there won't be limits under a restoration of the Clinton reign either.

  Paul Manafort gets tripped up.

 Lanny Davis. "Money is my God. You got a problem with that?"

1] Not that Manafort has democratic scruples. He also worked for U.S.-backed Filipino dictator Ferdinand Marcos, and CIA-supported Angolan terrorist leader Jonas Savimbi. But maybe his worst crime was working for Reagan. For background on Manafort from an establishment media viewpoint, see. "Paul Manafort has guided dictators and strongmen, but can he manage Donald Trump?," Los Angeles Times, August 15, 2016. Notice how precipitately was Manafort's fall, coming soon after this piece.

For Manafort defrauding a Russian businessman out of $19 million, plus more on Trump and links to articles, see Swindler Trump's Presidential Campaign Run By a Swindler- U.S. Media Acts As Accomplices
July 27, 2016.

2] You can watch Davis speciously justifying his propaganda work for Honduran anti-democrats on Democracy Now! For the charge sheet against Davis see" Loathsome Lanny Davis Has More Blood On His Hands," December 28, 2010.

Monday, August 29, 2016

The Last Time the FARC Disarmed, Thousands of its Members Were Slaughtered. Is That About To Happen Again?

Sometimes history doesn't repeat as farce, but as yet another tragedy. Of course, one person's tragedy can be another's cause for celebration. (The Nazis and the Jews- and hopefully now most of the rest of humanity- had very different feelings about the Holocaust, for example.)

You wouldn't know it from establishment media "reporting," but the just-announced ceasefire between the Colombian rulers ("government") and the rebel force FARC, under which FARC will disarm and become a political party and presumably participate in elections, is the second time we've been here.

The same agreement was made back in 1984, the so-called La Uribe Agreement, FARC disarmed and came out into the open. The following year, FARC got together with various leftist and communist groups to create a  new political party, the Union Patriótica (Patriotic Union, UP). The UP sought terribly evil political reforms, such as a revised constitution, democratic local elections, political decentralization, and most unforgivably, an end to the hegemony over Colombian politics by the Liberal and Conservative parties. They called for desperately needed health and education spending, favored nationalization of foreign businesses, Colombian banks, and transportation, and public access to the oligarchy's media. They even had the effrontery to pursue land redistribution! (Hundreds of thousands of rural families were rendered landless by people like Alvaro Uribe, father of the fascist death squads and the previous president of Colombia before the current one.)

Needless to say, all this was unacceptable, so the rulers unleashed their death squads, which dutifully murdered not just one, but two UP presidential candidates, numerous UP public office-holders and officials, and as many as 6,000 people all told between 1986 and 1990. In 1989 a single landholder had over 400 UP members murdered. (Notice that rich Colombians all have an individual license to kill.) And in 1990, every single presidential candidate from all the center-left parties were assassinated. Apparently merely stealing an election is too humdrum for the Colombian "elite." (Most of the UP ranks were not from FARC, but from socialist and labor groups.)

Will this time be any different? Given the bloodthirsty history of the Colombian ruling class and its military and auxiliary fascist death squads (euphemistically referred to in Western media as "right-wing paramilitaries," when they're mentioned at all), there is reason for grave concern. This new Colombian ceasefire may well  be a prelude to yet another ruling class extermination campaign against its class enemies.

You would think this very germane antecedent would bear at least a mention, but no. This part of history conflicts with the propaganda narrative of Western media, so it is simply ignored completely, as if it never happened. [1]

Instead, we are now being fed false and grossly misleading propaganda like this from the U.S. Government's NPR, and the British Government's BBC (every half hour around the clock from the BBC): "historic ceasefire," as if it's a first; the ceasefire is "to put an end to five decades of war..." (if you don't count the years 1984-1990- although I guess in a sense most of those years was a war, if a one-sided one, like the "war on drugs," or the Nazi "war against the Jews) "...and turn them [FARC] into a legal political movement;" FARC will become a party and "will try to gain political power in Colombia through democratic means," as if they never tried that before. As if the problem is violent leftists who don't believe in democracy, not a ruling class that doesn't allow the vast majority of people to participate except to rubber-stamp two ruling class parties!

And the same aforementioned propaganda outfits keep telling us that 220,000 or 260,000 people were "killed in the conflict." That neatly sidesteps the fact that the vast majority of those killed were unarmed civilians slaughtered by the government's military and the rulers' death squads. It also avoids mentioning the mass grave found outside at least one army base, of local civilians murdered for bounties. The government had the brilliant idea of paying bonuses for dead "guerrillas." So grab a poor peasant and murder him- easy money!

The BBC put on an American polemicist and unreconstructed imperialist named Steven Pinker, a hustler originally from Canada who now bills himself as a "cognitive scientist" and wrangled a perch for himself in the psychology department of Harvard University, a school that is sort of a Ground Zero for U.S. imperialist ideology. Pinker instructed that the Colombian civil war (bourgeois media never call it a civil war) "is the last remnant of the Cold War," which can only mean that FARC was a cat's paw of the Soviet Union, part of the "International Communist Conspiracy," the alibi U.S. imperialists long used to justify their coups, invasions, and imposition of fascistic military dictatorships and various repressive regimes designed to quash democracy and social progress in its sphere of influence- a sphere which they believe ultimately should rightly include the entire planet, the dream of every imperialist who ever lived.

Ask yourself this: in the quarter century since the Soviet Union ceased to exist in 1991, has U.S. behavior changed one bit? To the contrary, NATO, which was created, it was claimed, to defend against a Soviet invasion of western Europe, has since been expanded right up to Russia's borders, and assigned new missions helping fight the U.S.'s wars in far-flung lands. The U.S. is still aiding and abetting coups against democratically-elected governments, as in Honduras, Egypt, Venezuela, and Brazil. It is committed to a relentless expansion of its power. Through the NSA, it attempts to spy on all communications everywhere. It has put in train a trillion dollar buildup of nuclear weapons.

And what about the period before the Soviet Union came into existence in 1917? Over a century earlier, the U.S. invaded British Canada to try and annex those lands for itself. In 1846 it attacked Mexico, ultimately forcing Mexico to cede over half (55%) of its entire national territory to the U.S. (including Texas), with the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. In 1998 it started a war with the decrepit Spanish empire to seize Spain's colonies, even the Philippines, on theother side of the globe. (The Filipinos had the crazy notion that they were entitled to self-determination and independence, so the U.S. had to beat that notion out of them with the usual methods of torture and mass killing.) The U.S. invaded various Caribbean and Central American nations numerous times in the first decades of the twentieth century. And so on.

Cold War my eye.

Steven Pinker. Even a clown can spout imperialist propaganda.

Let's briefly review how FARC came into existence in the first place. It's not some inexplicable derangement of innately evil people.

In 1948, the ruling classes inaugurated a decade of mass murder with the assassination of popular politician  Jorge Eliécer Gaitán. Over the next ten years, a period called La Violencia, (The Violence,), over 300,000 people were murdered, overwhelmingly peasants and poor laborers. Then in 1958, the bourgeois elites of the "Liberal" and "Conservative" Parties, in cahoots with the ever-reactionary Catholic Church and big businessmen, set up a two-party dictatorship they christened the National Front. The two parties would take turns ruling, irrespective of actual election results. "Radical" were frozen out of political life. This oligarchic arrangement, a political monopoly of the upper classes enforced by state repression and violence, lasted until 1990.

In 1959, the U.S. sent a crew of its state terrorists ("counterinsurgency experts") down to Colombia to assess the situation and craft a state terror campaign to crush any reaction to the slaughter of the preceding decade.. The U.S. Army "Special Forces" (aka Green Berets) recommended that  "in order to shield the interests of both Colombian and US authorities against 'interventionist' charges any special aid given for internal security was to be sterile and covert in nature," which beneath the jargon is quite sinister. Then in 1962 another "Special Warfare" [i.e. state terrorism] team from Fort Bragg  paid a return visit, led by the Special Warfare Center commander himself, one General William P. Yarborough. He recommended to the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff (notice the high level this conspiracy is operating on) the formation of a "paramilitary" force to carry out sabotage and terrorism against "communists." This plan was duly implemented. The criminal conspiracy was dubbed Plan Lazo.

Under this plot, the U.S. goaded the Colombian government to attack villages that tried to arm themselves for self-defense. In one such operation, 16,000 Colombian troops, backed by U.S. might, attacked the village of Marquetalia, a community of 1,000 souls, 48 of whom were armed. These armed men managed to escape, and led by Manuel Marulanda Vélez, one of their number, founded FARC, which grew from that beginning.

If Colombia had ever been a democracy, if the rulers of Colombia weren't murderous thugs, if they didn't systematically assassinate popular leaders and slaughter hundreds of thousands of people, would the FARC even exist in the first place? No.

The propaganda systems of "Western" nations like to paint FARC as evil and the source of all violence in Colombia. This is a grotesque distortion of the actual history of Colombia, which makes clear that FARC was formed in response to the hyper-violence of the "upper" classes in Colombia against the "lower" classes. Members of the victim classes in fact were forced to take up arms.

Western propagandists also enjoy portraying FARC as a gang of degenerate kidnappers and drug lords. What's rarely mentioned is that they aren't the only ones using drugs as a source of funds. The corrupt Colombian government has plenty of officials involved in protecting the drug trade. The "paramilitaries" partake of cocaine money. And the CIA has profited from drug trafficking almost from its inception. So the high moral dudgeon of Western media rings a tad hollow to an objective person's ear.

The FARC was basically forced into accepting the current dangerous deal, even though it may well be walking into the same deadly trap as it was lured into in 1984, again, thanks to the U.S. Because of massive U.S. military and "intelligence" aid to the Colombian regime, FARC has been crippled and diminished. Under two Democratic Party presidents, Bill "Golden Tongue" Clinton and Barack "The Drone Assassin" Obama, sinister U.S. operatives from the CIA and military, and large amounts of weapons, were sent in to fight on the side of the regime against the rebellious sectors of its populace. Under Obama, FARC leaders were located and then assassinated. FARC was strategically trapped in a downward spiral of the U.S.' design. So now tell me again, all you "progressive" fellow-travelers, why we should vote for the Democrats!

So under Obama, U.S. "policy" in Latin America has consisted of: a coup attempt in Venezuela, then the probable murder of Hugo Chavez by the CIA; a coup in Honduras; imprisoning women and children fleeing U.S.-created violent hellholes in Central America; approval of a coup by corrupt legislators in Brazil; and a vicious "counterinsurgency" campaign in Colombia that has killed thousands. Oh, but he reestablished relations with Cuba, the better to subvert the established order there. (Cuba does need changes, by the way. Say, that "naval base" in Guantanamo Bay, you ever gonna get the hell out of there, U.S.?)

None dare call them imperialists!

The very respectable Alvaro Uribe, Godfather of Death Squads, President of Colombia 2002-2010

1]  I've only ever come across one mention of the 1985-90 extermination campaign in the establishment's media that I can remember. It was buried about two-thirds of the way down in a lengthy New York Times article, consisting of a short paragraph or two, very matter-of-fact, and then the article returned to FARC-demonization, as all NY Times articles dealing with FARC do. So is it not correct to call the NY Times imperialist propaganda? That's not a polemical statement, it's a factual one.

"History of FARC," Wikipedia, August 29, 2016.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Trump Hires Christie Hatchetman/Fall Guy For His Presidential Campaign

Former henchman to New Jersey Republican Governor and corrupt bully Chris Christie, Bill Stepien, who became one of Christie's fall guys when it was revealed that the Christie regime vindictively caused massive traffic jams in the town of Fort Lee, NJ, has been hired by demagogic narcissist Donald Trump to a top position in Trump's campaign for president.

Stepien is to be the Trump campaign's national field director.

Stepien was one of the Christie soldiers who ordered traffic lanes leading from Fort Lee onto the George Washington Bridge to New York City blocked for several days, causing traffic blockages and a possible death due to a delayed ambulance response to an emergency. This was done because the Democratic mayor of the town declined to endorse Republican Christie for reelection as Governor. (Talk about a totalitarian mindset! Even the rival party has to endorse the Emperor of New Jersey.) Christie scapegoated his underlings to save his own political hide when the conspiracy was revealed. A criminal trial is pending, but Stepien has not been indicted, oddly. Nor are the two defendants, Bill Baroni and Bridget Anne Kelly, being threatened with long prison sentences in order to move up the chain to Christie, a common practice in the U.S. when dealing with the non-elite. [1]

Stepien is the latest in a series of recent unsavory hires by Trump to his campaign, including the editor/executive chairman of the racist, dementedly reactionary, and libelous website, Stephen Bannon, as chief executive of the campaign. [2]

And the New York Times reported that sex fiend and arch reactionary propaganda czar Roger Ailes would help Trump prepare for debating Hillary Clinton, the Democratic Party nominee for president. Ailes is a master of demagogically attacking opponents "weak points." He and Trump should make a good fit. (The Trump campaign denied the Times' report, but he and his campaign have a history of issuing false denials.) Rupert Murdoch just paid his former Fox "News" boss Ailes $40 million to go away after Ailes' despicable history as a grotesque sexual extortionist finally exploded into public view after decades hidden under the rug. (You can do an Internet search if you want the details.)

 One important note about the U.S. broadcast media especially has hidden the nature of this "news" site, by never accurately describing its content and employing deceptive euphemisms like "conservative" or the anodyne, meaningless "alt-right." The purpose is to make it seem legitimate and respectable. This is vile. As most Americans are too lazy to make an effort to get information from written sources and instead merely absorb what they see and hear from broadcast media, this practice of camouflaging the actual nature of various dementedly reactionary and even fascist organizations and individuals is particularly malign. Whereas they take the reverse attitude toward "leftists" who actually challenge the power system politically or ideologically, smearing them as "radical," "extremist," "pro-communist" or sympathetic to/supportive of "terrorism."

The Utterly Loathsome Stephen K. Bannon

 Hard core GOP (Gang Of Plunderers) Apparatchik Bill Stepien

Sex fiend Roger Ailes in photomontage with serial rapist and cloyingly unfunny ex-comedian Bill Cosby. 

1]  See "Key Player in Bridgegate Scandal Hired by Donald Trump Campaign," WNYC radio (New York City), August 26, 2016.

2]  "Trump Campaign Hires Breitbart Chief Stephen Bannon," Slate, August 17, 2016. A former Breitbart editor-at-large describes Bannon as a bully and a totalitarian type. For more detail on the tawdry behavior of Bannon and staff defections his abusive ways have caused, see "The G.O.P.’s Civil War Comes to Breitbart: A staff rebellion at Breitbart suggests all is not well in Trumpworld," Vanity Fair, .March 14, 2016. Bannon infamously abandoned one of his own female reporters who was assaulted by Trump minion Cory Lewandowski (subsequently hired by the execrable, ethics-free CNN as a "commentator" and "analyst" of the presidential race!).


Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Taboo Ironies In Clinton's VP Choice

Hillary Clinton bestowed the Democratic Party's vice presidential nomination on Tim Kaine, a Democratic U.S. Senator from Virginia. This political product launch had three themes, which campaign operatives put on their communications transmission belt to "the" media in the form of talking points. These were duly pointed out to the public by said media. The themes were Kaine's alleged devotion to what in the U.S. are called "civil rights," meaning equal "rights" for citizens designated as "black;" his "missionary" work in Honduras in 1980 (less than a year), and the fact that he speaks fluent Spanish. (All Hispanics must now vote for him, I suppose.)

I say "black" because I don't like classifying people by color. People aren't jellybeans or M & M's.

I say "the" media, because it is not the one-and-only media, nor is it this objective thing, like the earth or sun, that just exists and has immutable properties. It is a particular media. In the U.S. that media called "the" media are the megaphones and mouthpieces of a corporate oligarchy that indoctrinates the populace with the values and ideology of corporate capitalism (misleadingly called "free enterprise"). It is completely a bourgeois class interest (although it masquerades in some instances as working class or "middle" class, the better to gain the trust of and to dupe "target audiences," a very telling term in itself).

Now, as to Kaine being presented as some great civil rights activist years ago. Of course he never was. But that is a good distraction from Hillary's anti-civil rights activities at the same time. She was a Goldwater Girl in college, head of the campus GOP (Gang Of Plunderers) students' group at Wesleyan University. Senator Barry Goldwater, the Republican presidential candidate in 1964, was an ardent foe of civil rights, opposed legislation to allow blacks to vote in the South, and so on.

Then there's that "missionary work" by Kaine in Honduras. Honduras. The country where a U.S.-backed coup destroyed democracy and has instituted a regime of chaotic death-squads, murdering hundreds of activists. Clinton boasted in her most recent book, a sort of autohagiography, about how she protected and legitimized the coup, running interference against objections by other nations.

The third Honduran grassroots environmental activist opposing a hydroelectric project murdered in the last few months, Lesbia Janeth Urquia, was savagely hacked to death with a machete at the beginning of August. She was a 49-year old mother of three.

Another mother, Berta Cáceres, the first of those victims, avowed that Clinton and the U.S. bore responsibility for the existence of the current Honduran state terrorist regime, The regime has cynically tried to pin the murders on family members and fellow activists.

The three activists, extremely brave, poor people, were all members of the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras, indicating a systematic, murderous targeting of the group.

This is the regime, and policy of gangster-style repression, that Obama-Clinton-Democratic Party imposes on Honduras.

"Lesser evil" my ass.

Kaine, apparently a very clever politician, uses the scant nine months he spent in Honduras 36 years
ago as a three-way political bank shot. In the words of The Nation magazine, "Kaine, who has been talking about his time in Honduras at least since the early 2000s, when he was mayor of Richmond, uses his nine-month stay as a kind of platitudinous catch-all, to prove he is a true Christian to Virginia conservatives, to court the Latino vote, and, now, to convince rank-and-file Democrats he’s a progressive." [1]

Religious "missionaries" have for centuries been the pilot fish and advance guard of European and U.S. Imperialists. Starting with the Spanish empire, and right through to the current use of religious front men and women by the CIA, the missionary is the recon scout of imperialism.

As it turns out, the Selfless Missionary Timothy Michael Kaine, a Good Catholic, isn't as pure as the driven snow. When he was Governor of the state of Virginia, he took a number of bribes (called "gifts" in U.S. political parlance) from corporations in return for his official acts on their behalf. But in yet another example of the extremely arbitrary and capricious nature of U.S. "justice," he hasn't been prosecuted, while other politicians have been prosecuted and even convicted in much more attenuated cases of alleged bribery (U.S. Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey, who is being prosecuted for vacationing with a longtime friend he helped out, and whose case is currently in process; and former Virginia Governor Robert McDonnell and his wife, whose convictions were just overturned by the Supreme Court on the grounds that the actions McDonnell took in return for gifts were not official acts and thus did not come under bribery laws- why his wife got convicted in the first place is a mystery- as an accessory?) or outright frame-ups, like the case of former Democratic Alabama Governor Don Siegelman, outrageously railroaded by the local GOP (Gang Of Plunderers) power establishment and sentenced to a draconian seven years in prison, for appointing a contributor to a ballot initiative to an unpaid post on some planning board. (So why isn't every U.S. president guilty of bribery for appointing their campaign contributors to plum ambassadorships, which are paid, prestigious jobs and should go to experience State Department veterans? [2]

And Kaine speaks Spanish. He speaks Spanish. He proved it in his convention speech. Kaine speaks Spanish.

He speaks Spanish.

The Kaines were happy in Honduras. Too bad Hondurans can't be.

Berta Cáceres

Lesbia Janeth Urquia

Just two more victims (of millions) of U.S. "policies."

1]  "Eat, Pray, Starve: What Tim Kaine Didn’t Learn During His Time in Honduras," The Nation, July 27, 2016. A must-read article summarizing the situation Kaine was immersed in in Honduras, with an overview of the Reagan-Bush atrocities in the region. Although keep in mind that their predecessor Carter initiated the "policy" of multi-state terrorism, and their successor Clinton transferred it to Colombia.

The Nation is the left boundary of Establishment media. It's the border between being part of the system and resistance/opposition to the power structure. The Nation is reformist, but not too reformist. Its idea of reform is jawboning the Democratic Party to do things that Party has proven it will never do. And every four years, the magazine puts on its cowboy hats and rounds up progressives to herd them into the Democratic Party corral. Their assaults on Ralph Nader for daring to run for president (and "stealing" Democratic votes) was relentless, nasty, and revealing of the bankruptcy of their politics. Anyone who really wants pro-human change has to realize that the two-party corporate capitalist imperialist dictatorship is the enemy, Instead The Nation and its ilk aids and abets the Democratic Party's politics of extortion, forcing people to vote for the allegedly "lesser evil." 

Which has brought us to our current state of greater repression and greater grotesque concentration of wealth in the hands of a tiny minority (euphemised as "inequality,") with institutionalized global assassinations and a Perfect Surveillance State brought to you by Barack Obama, Democrat.

Expect more of the same poison under a second Clinton reign.

2]  "As Pick for No. 2, Tim Kaine Sees Gifts Come Under Scrutiny," New York Times, July 24, 2016.

On Don Siegelman, a concise summary of the outrageous facts of the case is at "Why Obama Should Pardon Don Siegelman," New Yorker, January 14, 2015, by former Federal prosecutor and Edward Snowden hater Jeffrey Toobin. (Even reactionary establishment barnacle George Will thinks Siegelman got a raw deal.)

In another example of what a coward Barack Obama is, that even after over 100 former state attorneys general [!] sent a letter to Obama seeking a pardon for Siegelman, Obama ignored them. 
["Former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman seeks pardon from President Obama," Alabama Media Group website of Alabama newspapers, April 13, 2016.]

In fact, after the Washington Post quoted Siegelman in an article on the Supreme Court exoneration of Bob McDonnell, Obama's Bureau of Prisons transferred Siegelman to solitary confinement in a Louisiana Federal prison, obviously to silence him and as punishment. It's the second time Siegelman has been thrown into the hole after giving a media interview. ["Former Alabama governor Don Siegelman sent to solitary confinement," Washington Post, April 29, 2016.]

To be "fair" and "balanced," I'll mention that the Bureau of Prisons denied that they threw Siegelman into solitary as a punishment. (I hear solitary is actually great fun.) The 70-year-old Siegelman, a Kung Fu Master and trained ninja, has escaped from some of the world's most escape-proof prisons, and thus is a high-security-risk prisoner.... Um, well, that's partly true. He is 70.

This is a Democratic president doing this to a framed-up Democrat. What kind of amoral creeps are Democrats that they accept this kind of party "leadership"? 

The big puzzle is why even the Democrats in the power structure are insistent on heaping injustice upon Siegelman. The Federal appeals court has upheld his conviction, and the Supreme Court refused to even allow him a hearing, completely blowing off a brief signed by 116 former attorneys general in support of Siegelman's exoneration.. ["More than 100 former attorneys general ask US Supreme Court to review Siegelman sentence," Alabama Media Group website of Alabama newspapers, October 22, 2015.

(One of Obama's Supreme Court appointees, Elena Kagan, was Obama's solicitor general, in which role she participated in the persecution of Siegelman. ["Former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman seeks pardon from President Obama," Alabama Media Group, op cit.])

The Obama regime has been playing a shell game with Siegelman, moving him from prison to prison in states far away from his family and friends,such as Oklahoma, to try and isolate him, break his spirit, and punish his supporters by stealing their time and money when they attempt to visit him in prison. Obama has repeatedly demonstrated his streak of cruelty, as in the murder of 16 year old Abdulrahman al-Awlaki, his teenage cousin, and five other civilians while they were dining, blown up by an Obama drone; arranging the breaking of Medea Benjamin's arm by Egyptian secret police goons to punish her for heckling him during one of his unctuous, oleaginous, sanctimonious, speeches; and the persecution of whistleblowers, activists and dissidents under his rule. A coward and a bully- not an attractive combination. One thing you can say about the likes of Putin and Erdogan: they're bullies but no cowards. Somehow that makes them less contemptible than Obama.

The treatment of Siegelman reminds one that the U.S. power establishment is a deadly nest of vipers, a collection of scorpions that are even dangerous to one another, not just to all the rest of us on this planet. There is no guarantee of personal security as a member of a criminal gang.

Of course, Siegelman got off easy compared to two of the Kennedys.

The perfect VP pick: Doglike Kaine trots closely behind his political master.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Swindler Trump's Presidential Campaign Run By a Swindler- U.S. Media Acts As Accomplices

Donald Trump's campaign manager, Paul Manafort, is a known swindler who stole $19 million from a Russian businessman. The businessman has been trying to get his money back for eight years now. He had to hire a private investigator just to try and find out where Manafort was hiding.

This is not some crazy "Internet rumor" or "conspiracy theory" from "a blogger sitting in his parents' basement in his underwear," as establishment propagandists like to sneer when they want to discredit (as distinct from disproving) some inconvenient information. This is from the Washington Post, an organ that sits at the apex of the U.S. bourgeois propaganda system. [1]

According to an article in the Post, Manafort and an accomplice, Richard Gates, swindled the Russian businessman, Oleg Deripaska, by tricking him into "investing" with them. Manafort's mark has been futilely trying to get is money back. In fact, the victim can't even get an explanation of where his money is from the thief Manafort. [2]

Manafort has long been involved with state criminals such as Reagan, Bush the Elder, U.S.-backed Philippine tyrant Ferdinand Marcos, and the recently-ousted pro-Russian Ukrainian president, Viktor Yanukovych. You would have thought that this last bit of unsavory business would have occasioned loud denunciations in U.S. media, but naaah. What coverage there is is quizzical and faintly admiring. (Tells you something abut the moral and ethical sewer the U.S. elites inhabit.) Manafort was also a helpmate to Jonas Savimbi's terrorist UNITA, a U.S.- favored Angolan group trying to overthrow the government there until Savimbi finally met his maker. [3]

The curious- and damning- thing is, that despite the prominence and "respectability" of the Washington Post, the rest of the propaganda system has virtually ignored the story. This despite all the hand-wringing about what a disaster a Trump presidency would be. (One must wonder, given how the corporate propaganda system, which likes to call itself "the media," has been doing a bit of hand-wringing over the prospect of a Trump presidency, mainly over his unpredictability, and his failure to get on board the Hate Russia bandwagon. To the contrary, he apparently is quite favorably inclined towards Putin, and is suspected of having prospective business dealings in Russia. The leaking of Democratic National Committee emails to WikiLeaks, proving that Hillary Clinton's handpicked hit-woman, DNC chair and Florida Congresswoman Deborah Wasserman-Schultz, deliberately orchestrated a campaign of sabotage against Senator Bernard Sanders' campaign for the party's presidential nomination, has been blamed, so far without any evidence presented- unless you consider the opinions of unnamed "experts" to be evidence, the few identified ones hedging their identification of Russia as the "culprit,"- this outing of information we are all entitled to, as it affects our lives, by being blamed on Russia, is adduced as more proof that Trump is somehow in Putin's pocket. [4]

It's quite natural that Manafort should wind up at Trump's side. Manafort is a scoundrel with a history of service to corrupt reactionaries, and Trump, even with his idiosyncracies, certainly qualifies as one of those. And both Manafort and Trump are rip-off artists, although from what we currently know, Trump is much more accomplished as one.

There's Trump "University," There's using Polish immigrant construction workers at a fraction of the normal pay, without even providing them hard hats. There's cheating his casino workers out of overtime pay. He didn't pay contractors who built his casinos, causing some of them to go out of business. (Great job creator you are, Trump!) There's fleecing banks by taking out loans and not repaying them.

Trump brags about his numerous bankruptcies. He presents this as a savvy business practice, gaming the system. In other words, he plotted in advance to go heavily into debt and declare bankruptcy,

That means he planned to rip people off by "legally" stiffing them for what they were owed. Contractors, workers, banks, and business "partners."

Trump almost never uses his own money. He started out using his father's money, then went on to using the money of saps who "invest" with him, and of dumb bankers. Conniving, corrupt politicians grant him favorable tax "abatements" (exemptions from what by law he would otherwise pay) and various regulatory preferences.

Trump doesn't even make his own charitable contributions. Others fund his "foundation," and his own "donations" over the years have consisted of letting people use his golf courses gratis for charity events, which he then takes a tax write-off on! He had the chutzpah a few months ago to loudly bray about a million dollar donation to veterans' organizations which he then didn't make, until the Washington Post forced his hand by exposing him. (Naturally he excoriated the Post for this terrible terrible deed they did!)

What I always found most stunning over the decades was how the New York City media relentlessly promoted this obvious egomaniacal hustler. The only exception was the weekly paper the Village Voice, which consistently practiced actual journalism and reported on his scams. [5]

There have long been creeps, immoral con men (Clinton, Obama), and reactionaries feigning a human face (Reagan, Nixon, the Bushes) in U.S. politics, but Trump is new in that he doesn't even wear a mask. The fact that millions of people are drinking his obviously rancid, poisonous Kool-Aid forces one to the conclusion that there are far too many imbeciles in America for comfort.

And America is a nation that threatens the whole world.

Slipping in and out of the shadows: Election manipulator 
and swindler Paul Manafort.

Paul is the PERFECT guy for me! 

1]  I am writing this from my very own home, and I'm not wearing underwear, I'm BUCK NAKED! Take THAT, bourgie propagandists!

The Washington Post has long been in a permanent rivalry with the New York Times to be at the very top of the media pecking order in terms of status and influence. As it is based in the capital city of the U.S. empire, Washington, D.C. (District of Columbia), it is also a sort of hometown paper for the the imperialist nomenklatura and national political elite.

Its editorial stance is consistently quite reactionary, unlike the New York Times, which is "liberal" mostly and reactionary partly. Its reporting is frequently quite ideological. The people who write it would probably be too self-conscious to do so naked, especially if they knew there were hidden cameras observing them.

2]  "Inside Trump adviser Manafort’s world of politics and global financial dealmaking," Washington Post, April 26, 2016.

3]  "Mystery man: Ukraine's U.S. fixer," Politico, March 5, 2014. The article bemusedly describes Manafort's disappearance, apparently to avoid Deripaska's lawyers, process servers, and investigator.

4]  An ideologue/apparatchik by the name of Anne Applebaum pushed this line very hard yesterday on "The Takeaway," a "public" radio show on government network NPR, hosted by John Hockenberry. Applebaum was miffed that people were paying any attention at all to the content of the emails instead of piling on Putin and leaving the Clinton machine out of it. How unfair that Wasserman-Schultz should be targeted. To Applebaum, the only story here is Russian subversion of a U.S. election.

Applebaum is an unreconstructed, career Cold Warrior, as her official bio on the Washington Post website makes clear. The way people like her have dealt with the disappearance of the organizing principle of their lives, the Evil Soviet Union, is by substituting Russia for the SU. Problem solved!

For an example of Hockenberry's journalistic ethics, see "John Hockenberry Illustrates Lying By Omission." To be fair, Hockenberry isn't all bad. He's more of a mixed bag. He "balances" normal, even humane journalism with reactionary crap and power-sycophancy.

5]  There are hundreds of articles on the Village Voice website exposing Donald Trump. And Wayne Barrett, who reported for the Voice for many years, wrote an important book about Trump, as have a few other authors. David Cay Johnston has also been on Trump's tail.