Thursday, May 26, 2016

The Day The World Ended

It's the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine ~ Lyric from the REM 1987 song with the same title.

You probably aren't aware of it, but the end of the world has come and gone. The world ended on 3/6/1982. It was a Sunday. The significance of this day is that this is date on which a mentally ill lunatic named Alisa Zinov'yevna Rosenbaum (AKA Ayn Rand) died.

Tom Snyder: I kind of think of this as ongoing, that there is an eternity, and that we are going to be a part of that eternity, that we aren't just corpses in graves when we die.

Ayn Rand: But we are not corpses in graves. We are not there. Don't you understand that when this life is finished, you're not there to say "Oh how terrible that I'm a corpse". What I've always thought is a sentence from a Greek philosopher, I don't remember, unfortunately, who it was, that I read at 16, and it's affected me all my life. "I will not die. It's the world that will end". (Interview is from the 7/02/1979 broadcast of Tomorrow with Tom Snyder. As per Wikipedia, "unique one-on-one exchanges were common to the program").

Rand is clearly talking about the END of the world and not just the end of the world "as she knows it" (to paraphrase REM). And, I don't know about you, but I'm pretty sure the world continued on after 3/6/1982. 34 years (plus 2 months and 21 days) have passed since Rand kicked the bucket. Longer since the day her most loyal acolyte Alan Greenspan (one of the primary architects of the bush recession) placed a "floral arrangement in the shape of a dollar sign" near her casket [1]. Which was strange, given the fact that Rand wasn't there. Seeing as she WASN'T a corpse in a box buried under the earth, it surely was a pointless gesture.

Also pointless was the fact that Rand left a will. Wikipedia says Rand's will "named Leonard Peikoff the heir to her estate", but I'm thinking this info must be erroneous and she did NOT leave a will. Given the fact that Leonard Peikoff ceased to exist the second Rand bit it. Why the hell would Rand leave a will if she knew the world was going to end when she died?

Obviously Rand was nuts. One of the manifestations of her mental illness being her sociopathic belief that the universe revolved around her and that when she died that was the end. Not just for her, but for everybody. A fact Liberal Talker Thom Hartmann commented on during the 5/24/2016 broadcast of his program.

Thom Hartmann: This [Snyder/Rand interview] gives you a glimpse into the mind of a sociopath. Sociopaths genuinely believe that when they die the world ends. That the only life that matters in the world is their life. [The sociopath believes that] in my life, I have no obligation to future generations.

This is why Objectivism, the philosophy devised by Rand, is (as George Monbiot put it) "a manifesto for psychopaths". Under this brain-diseased ideology greed and selfishness are virtues, and poor people are parasites and moochers that should be exterminated. Or, as Rand put it, "nature will take it's course". By which she meant that the parasites will die when the social safety net is completely eliminated (as Rand strongly believed it should be).

George Monbiot, a British writer, known for his environmental and political activism, expressed his thoughts on Objectivism in a 2012 article.

[Objectivism] has a fair claim to be the ugliest philosophy the post-war world has produced. Selfishness, it contends, is good, altruism evil, empathy and compassion are irrational and destructive. The poor deserve to die; the rich deserve unmediated power. ... Objectivism... holds that the only moral course is pure self-interest. We owe nothing, she insists, to anyone, even to members of our own families. She described the poor and weak as "refuse" and "parasites", and excoriated anyone seeking to assist them.

Apart from the police, the courts and the armed forces, there should be no role for government: no social security, no public health or education, no public infrastructure or transport, no fire service, no regulations, no income tax. ... Rand's is the philosophy of the psychopath, a misanthropic fantasy of cruelty, revenge and greed. (A Manifesto for Psychopaths by George Monbiot. 3/5/2012).

Obviously the world would end for a LOT of people if Rand's philosophy were instituted at a governmental level. In that they would die. Alan Greenspan, when he instituted Randian ideology in his capacity as chairman of the Fed (laissez faire capitalism/deregulation), almost killed our economy. Although what he did afterward (going along with bailouts) is where he parted with Randian ideology (or Libertarians will tell you, at least). Rand would have said our economy should be allowed to crash and burn.

Not that I agree with how the bailout were constructed. Instead of rescuing the fatcat banksters, I believe the banks should have been nationalized and the homeowners bailed out. But the way it was done benefited the rich and powerful while many others (members of the middle and lower classes) suffered. Which is one aspect of this crisis that surely would have made Rand smile.

According to the British Journal of Psychiatry "a dramatic spike in suicides between 2008 and 2010 can be linked with the economic crisis" (More Than 10,000 Suicides Tied To Economic Crisis, Study Says). So maybe Rand wouldn't have smiled. Not because people died, but because NOT ENOUGH people died (given how much she hated poor people and wished them dead).

In any case, the world clearly goes on, despite Ayn Rand's departure. Although the world is surely a worse place due to the fact that her sociopathic ideology is "sorely needed right now"... or so Republican politicians like Speaker Paul Ryan believe.

And the Randian goal of maximizing income inequality would surely lead to the world ending for a LOT more people. As, in addition to the 2008 economic crisis driving 10k people to take their own lives, Republican economic policies in general have this effect (Conservative Policies are Driving Americans to Suicide).

Unfortunately for us all Ayn Rand, while she did die and most assuredly is a corpse in the grave, the sociopathic Objectivism lives on. Given that it spawned the political ideology Libertarianism [2], as well as infecting the Republican Party (OST #61).

Which is why I say it's time to make Objectivism/Libertarianism a figurative corpse in the grave. By sending it to the the trash heap of history where it belongs.

Footnotes
[1] Once in government, Greenspan applied his guru's philosophy to the letter, lobbying to cut taxes for the rich and repeal the laws constraining the banks, refusing to regulate the predatory lending and the derivatives trading which eventually brought the system down. ...as Adam Curtis's documentary showed last year, the most devoted member of her inner circle was Alan Greenspan. Among the essays he wrote for Ayn Rand were those published in a book he co-edited with her called Capitalism: the Unknown Ideal. Here, starkly explained, you'll find the philosophy he brought into government. There is no need for the regulation of business... as the greed of the businessman or, more appropriately, his profit-seeking ..."is the unexcelled protector of the consumer". (A Manifesto for Psychopaths by George Monbiot).
[2] Even though "Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism has been and continues to be a major influence on the libertarian movement, particularly in the United States and many libertarians justify their political views using aspects of Objectivism", Ayn Rand said (of Libertarianism) "I do not join or endorse any political group or movement. More specifically, I disapprove of, disagree with and have no connection with, the latest aberration of some conservatives". (Libertarianism and Objectivism & The Ayn Rand Lexicon: What was Ayn Rand's view of the libertarian movement?).

Video: Part 2 (on YouTube) of the 7/02/1979 Tom Snyder interview with Ayn Rand (9:55). Quote above begins at 2:53. See all 3 parts here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

SWTD #335

Monday, May 02, 2016

On Larry Wilmore "Offending" Rush Limbaugh With His #WHCD2016 Speech

...the formerly drug-addled host was just rambling, which is his job. It's nice work if you can get it! ~ Gawker author describing how Rush Limbaugh entertains the "bitter white dudes" who listen to his program. Excerpted from a 8/21/2008 article "Should We Bother Getting Offended by Rush Limbaugh?".

World Net Daily (AKA Black Mob Central) reports that "Limbaugh peeved by use of N-word for Obama" (re Larry Wilmore's speech at the 2016 White House Correspondents' Dinner). To which I say BULLSHIT! Limbaugh is is feigning outrage because it presents him an opportunity to attack the Obama administration.

The White House is apparently not offended by the use of the N-word for President Obama, at least not when it comes from a black comedian, but radio titan Rush Limbaugh is. Comic Larry Wilmore uncorked a slang version of the racial slur at the White House Correspondents’ dinner Saturday night, when he told Obama: "Yo Barry, you did it my n**ga. You did it".

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said he had talked to Obama about Wilmore's use of the word and said the president told him "he appreciated the spirit of Mr. Wilmore's expression Saturday night", the Washington Examiner reported. (Limbaugh Peeved by Use of N-word For Obama by Joe Kovacs. WND 5/2/2016).

Who Limbaugh is actually "peeved" at is revealed with the article's first sentence. I mean, has Limbaugh EVER expressed any offense before when the N-word was used to refer to Obama (the actual N-word and not the version of it ending with an "a")? According to Limbaugh a Black comedian (Larry Wilmore at the date correspondent's dinner) referring to Obama using the term "ni**a" is "indicative that there isn't much respect for the office of the presidency" - but apparently when Limbaugh referred to Obama as "Barack the magic negro" that was... respectful?

In March 2007, American critic David Ehrenstein used the title "Obama the Magic Negro" for an editorial he wrote for the Los Angeles Times, in which he described Barack Obama's image in white American culture: "He's there to assuage white "guilt"...

Rush Limbaugh began discussing Ehrenstein's op ed on the day it was published. He cast Ehrenstein's column as criticizing Obama himself for not being authentic or black enough: "The problem, Ehrenstein says, is he's not real. Al Sharpton's real, Snoop Dogg is real, but Barack Obama is not real. He's just there to assuage white guilt. In other words, the only reason Obama is anywhere is because whites are willing to support him because they feel so guilty over slavery". He described the column as an example of the "racism of the left". He said "The term Magic Negro has been thrown into the political presidential race in the mix for 2008" and said he would "own" the term by the end of the week. He [Limbaugh] briefly sang the words "Barack the magic negro" to the tune of "Puff, the Magic Dragon". (Wikipedia/Magical Negro/Barack Obama).

Regardless of the fact that it was David Ehrenstein (exhibiting "racism of the left") Limbaugh took the "magic negro" application to Obama and ran with it.

Limbaugh later [in the broadcast] asserted: "I'm going to keep referring to him as that because I want to make a bet that by the end of this week I will own that term", adding, "If I refer to Obama the rest of the day as the Magic Negro, there will be a number of people in the drive-by media and on left-wing blogs who will credit me for coming up with it and ignore the L.A. Times did it, simply because they can't be critical of the L.A. Times, but they can, obviously, be critical of talk radio". (Latching onto L.A. Times op-ed, Limbaugh sings "Barack, The Magic Negro" by Adam Serwer. Media Matters 3/20/2007).

Why use it at all (and in song form)? Because Rush is cloaking his racism with faux outrage. Because someone on "the left" used the term, Limbaugh saw that as license for him to use it (27 times during the same broadcast, according to Media Matters). And blame "racism of the left". But it's Rush's own racism that explains his actions.

He jumps at these opportunities. Previously it was David Ehrenstein who provided Rush the opportunity to express his true racist feelings (and have someone "on the left" to blame). This time it was Larry Wilmore (and there are likely many examples between these two that I'm not aware of).

And further proof that this is indeed is what is occurring is that this story was written up for the notoriously racist World Net Daily (their "religion is apeshit racist ring-wingnut douchery with a side of tabloid pablum" says a 2/18/2014 Gawker article).

WND author writes "racism is an illusion, and Black Lives Matter lies". And yes, Jesse Lee Peterson is an African American. But that's how WND "proves" it isn't racist - it has African American best friends (authors). But for even more proof check out the (more overtly racist) comments. These are the kinds of racist Whites that WND panders to (Trump voters).

As for Wilmore's use of the word being offensive? I'll leave that to the Black community to hash out. Although I will say that I agree that it's not the same when a Black person uses the term compared to a White person using it. Regarding the "controversy" within the Black community, I've heard comments both ways. From "get over it" to "yes, it was offensive".

Me, I'm more offended by Limbaugh. Not regarding what he says. The Gawker blogger I quoted at the top of this article has a point... THIS is what Limbaugh does. And he's been doing it for a long time. But that his last contract awarded him with $38 million a year for 8 years plus a $100 million signing bonus. That Conservative commentators like Limbaugh get Brinks trucks backing up to their homes with hourly deliveries of cash while Liberal commentators make significantly less? It makes me want to puke!

I'm talking about true Progressives commentators, btw (people like Stephanie Miller and Thom Hartmann). I think the talking heads at msnbc probably do OK. Those who weren't fired by Andy Lack who decided that, to fix the problem of msnbc's ratings being bad, decided the solution would be to go more Insider (Washington More About Insiders V Outsiders Than Democrats V Republicans).

SWTD #334

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Ronald Kessler Tells Newsmax Hillary Clinton Indictment Likely B4 General Election

A virulent strain of Clinton Derangement Syndrome, which scientists and Republicans thought had been wiped out at the end of the last century, is now afflicting millions of conservative Americans. Some Republicans so detest Hillary Clinton they are badly underestimating how likely she is, at this point in the campaign, to be America's 45th president ~ Mark Halperin, from a 10/26/2015 Bloomberg Politics article.

According to Wikipedia "Kessler's writings have been criticized in publications such as the Washington Post and The Week for overt partisanship and a lack of journalistic rigor". This HRC "indictment likely" BS falls into that category, IMO. And, YES, I absolutely think the suggestion that HRC will be indicted is total bullshit. It will NOT happen (I predict).

As for Kessler's partisanship, I can think of one other example. (The 73yo) Kessler is the one who reported that when LBJ signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 he said the reason was to get "niggers voting Democratic for the next 100 years" (SWTD #228).

Although what he actually said (according to his press secretary, Bill Moyers) was "I think we just delivered the South to the Republican party for a long time to come". I think that worry (which has been proven correct) is proof that LBJ's motivations were NOT to trick Black people into voting Democratic (as Republicans contend) but because it was "to eliminate the last vestiges of injustice in our beloved country [and] to close the springs of racial poison". These were LBJ's words in an address to the nation upon his signing of the legislation (which was broadcast live on 7/2/1964).

Given the fact that Rightwingers love this "quote", as it "proves" that the racist LBJ's motivations were to trick African Americans into voting Democratic, HELL YES, I've got to wonder if Kessler "reported" this for partisan reasons.

And I've wondering if Mr. Kessler reported that Hillary is "likely" to be indicted (over her emails) for partisan reasons. Especially give which candidate he praised in his remarks (as reported by NewsMax).

Veteran journalist Ronald Kessler tells Newsmax TV that Hillary Clinton will likely be indicted before the general election for using a private email server to conduct classified government business as secretary of state — but will likely be pardoned by President Barack Obama.

"Definitely before November. Possibly in a month or two", Kessler said Friday [4/15/2016] on "The Steve Malzberg Show". "By definition, putting classified information on an unsecured server is gross negligence. You saw President Obama trying to make excuses for her. I think he's leading up to giving a pardon to Hillary, but there's no question. She will be indicted. ... Jim Comey, the FBI director, is a man of great integrity. I think [Attorney General] Loretta Lynch is as well ... not political in the way Eric Holder was. No question she will be indicted".

Kessler - a former Washington Post reporter... said that even if Clinton is pardoned, the damage will have been done.

"Either way, she's going to be besmirched and it's possible that [Vice President Joe] Biden might step in," he told Malzberg.

Kessler also praised Donald Trump as a candidate who would be very different operating in the White House than how he appears on the campaign trail.

"People don't understand about Donald that there are two Donald Trumps. One is the guy you see on TV who makes these provocative comments to get attention", Kessler said. (NewsMax 4/15/2016).

Kessler is a former reporter for WP, but (what the article above failed to disclose) is that "from 2006 to 2012, Kessler was chief Washington correspondent of Newsmax". This would be the "conservative website and magazine" that "has continued to stoke birther fantasies" and supports Donald Trump for president.

With stories such as "Pat Buchanan to GOP: Support Trump Now or Lose to Hillary" I don't know how anyone couldn't conclude that they are far, FAR Right. Up there with World Net Daily.

Steve Malzberg, btw, is a wingnut who said "the president [Barack Obama] can be perceived and has been perceived by many as being an Islamist sympathizer by his actions [and that] most of his Middle East policies favor the Muslim Brotherhood" (Newsmax's Steve Malzberg Uses CNN Appearance To Legitimize Questioning Obama's Faith, Citizenship, 9/20/2015).

So, regarding Kessler... "birds of a feather flock together" could apply here, I think (Rightwing nutjobs associate with others of the same ilk). Certainly this HRC indictment being "likely/definitely" is nutty. Which I say because it isn't f*cking going to happen.

Past cases suggest Hillary won't be indicted (article excerpt) A Politico review of dozens of recent federal investigations for mishandling of classified records suggests that it's highly unlikely — but not impossible. The examination, which included cases spanning the past two decades, found some with parallels to Clinton's use of a private server for her emails, but — in nearly all instances that were prosecuted — aggravating circumstances that don't appear to be present in Clinton's case.

The relatively few cases that drew prosecution almost always involved a deliberate intent to violate classification rules as well as some add-on element: An FBI agent who took home highly sensitive agency records while having an affair with a Chinese agent; a Boeing engineer who brought home 2000 classified documents and whose travel to Israel raised suspicions; a National Security Agency official who removed boxes of classified documents and also lied on a job application form.

A former senior FBI official told Politico that when it comes to mishandling of classified information the Justice Department has traditionally turned down prosecution of all but the most clear-cut cases. (4/11/2016 article by Josh Gerstein).

"There's no question" HRC will be indicted sez Kessler, but that definitive an assertion is total bullplop. "Highly unlikely" (as the Politico article says) is more like it. Oh, and that Kessler suggests Biden might be the Democratic nominee and praises Trump (dismissing Trump's racism as "provocative comments") is proof enough for me that he's a total wingnut. As opposed to a "veteran journalist".

Which explains why he lied about LBJ (although that is a qualified "lie"; see SWTD #273). Also, why he's lying about Hillary being indicted.

Although, if HRC were indicted, that would throw the nomination (and presidency) to Bernie Sanders. Given the fact that Biden is definitely NOT going to "step in" (to suggest he might is pure idiocy) and neither Trump nor Cruz have much of a chance against either Hillary or Bernie. So, given this, I (as a Sanders supporter) might be able to get behind this HRC indictment notion? Nah. Why even consider that, when the chances are next to nil? Not when it's more fun to make fun of those who suffer from insane delusions regarding the Clintons (SWTD #313).

Mark Halperin (the game changer who called president Obama a dick), BTW, is absolutely correct about how virulent this strain of Clinton derangement syndrome is. Ronald Kessler being but one among the millions of those who are afflicted. Although, Halperin is dead wrong about CDS having been "wiped out at the end of the last century". The last century ended on 12/31/2000 and Hillary Clinton ran her first presidential campaign in 2008 against Obama, then served as Obama's Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013 (and during ALL of this time CDS was alive and well).

SWTD #333

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Religious Nutjob Ted Cruz "Called & Anointed" By God To Be The Next President

The corporate right fires up the religious right against gay marriage and abortion and uses their votes to push their deregulation and tax cuts for the rich. It's an old trick. The House of Saud has the same arrangement with the Mullahs in Saudi Arabia ~ Adam McKay (dob 4/17/1968) a film director and screenwriter who has a creative partnership with actor Will Ferrell.

One of the most frightening things about the candidacy of the Canadian-born Ted Cruz is a what a Rightwing religious nut he is. Ted's father Rafael Bienvenido Cruz believes that his son was chosen by the Almighty to be our next president. Rightwing Watch notes that "earlier this year, Ted Cruz's father and primary presidential campaign surrogate... spoke at televangelist Kenneth Copeland's church in Texas".

Kenneth Copeland is a televangelist who preaches the prosperity gospel, which is a twisting a scripture under which good (Republican) Christians are rewarded by God with riches. Ignore that BS about what Jesus said about how hard it is for a rich man to get into Heaven. These prosperity gospel hucksters insist that God wants you to be rich. Fact is, you can tell that a person is right with God if he is wealthy (wealth being a blessing from above).

And according to Copeland and Rafael Bienvenido Cruz, Rafael Edward Cruz (AKA "Ted" Cruz) has been selected to be our next ruler (text below is a transcription from the video record of what took place at Copeland's TX church).

Rafael Bienvenido Cruz: The word from the Lord was "seek my face, not my hand". It was if the cloud of the Holy spirit descended upon the room. And all of a sudden, we were all worshipping. And the words that came out of Ted's mouth were "here am I Lord, use me. Let your will be done". I believe that the Lord has raised him up for such a time as this. (see video below).

There was a similar Mormon prophecy that some of Mittens' followers thought he was the one to fulfill. The White Horse Prophecy says that "the United States Constitution will one day hang like a thread and will be saved by the efforts of the White Horse". Some believe "Mormons expect the United States to eventually become a theocracy dominated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints". And some believed that Mittens was that "White Horse", although Mittens himself said it wasn't "official church doctrine" and that he didn't "put that at the heart of my religious belief".

But Ted Cruz apparently DOES believe he is anointed by God to bring theocracy to the United States. Unless his father is lying about what he thinks God told Ted. But Ted was there (at Copeland's church) where he spoke for an hour. It might be possible that Ted is just going with his father's delusions (that have him believing the cloud of the Holy Spirit descended and spoke to his son)? Perhaps Ted decided he could use his father's delusions to dupe religious nutjobs into voting for him?

Anyway, if Rafael Edward Cruz were somehow elected president, I'd suspect fraud. And, if President Cruz attempted to steer our nation toward theocracy (I have no idea HOW he'd accomplish this, but let's say, for the sake of argument that he found a way) I'd suspect he was the AntiChrist. I say this seriously, as someone who identifies as Christian.

But I doubt any of this will come to pass. It's far more likely, IMO, that Ted Cruz won't be the nominee, let alone elected president (and then attempt to be a theocrat). And it's far more likely that Ted and his father are total nutjobs. Or liars who think they can take advantage of Rightwing "Christians" who think Ted is "the chosen one".

Video: Televangelist Kenneth Copeland (introducing Rafael Bienvenido Cruz) says, "I believe, with all my heart, that his son is called and anointed to be the next president of the United States".

SWTD #332

Wednesday, March 09, 2016

Joe Scarborough Speaks Unspeakable Truth Re Fact That Republican Policies Benefit The Wealthy & Hurt Everyone Else

Kemp-Roth [Reagan's 1981 tax cut] was always a Trojan horse to bring down the top rate ~ David Stockman (dob 11/10/1946) former Director of the Office of Management and Budget (1981–1985) under preznit Ronny Raygun.

The following soundbite via the 3/6/2016 airing of the Thom Hartmann Program.

Morning Joe: The problem with the Republican Party over the past 30 years is they haven't (I'll say we haven't) developed a message that appeals to the working class economically in the way that Donald Trump has. We talk about cutting capital gains taxes - the 10k people who are in the crowd cheering for Trump - they're never going to get a capital gains cut, because it doesn't apply.

We talk about getting rid of the death tax [estate tax]. The death tax isn't going to impact these people. We talk about how great free trade deals are? Those free trade deals never trickle down to those 10k people.

Herein lies the problem with the Republican Party. It never trickles down. Those 10k in Trump's crowd, those are the people who lost jobs when they were moved to Mexico. The Republican donor class were the ones that got rich off it because their capital moved overseas and they made higher profits.

And the American people are finally figuring that out... according to Thom Hartmann. I'm not 100 percent sure of this. I think this realization explains why Bernie Sanders is doing so well. Yeah, it looks like Hillary will be the nominee, but the fact that a democratic socialist Jew is actually making a good showing against the establishment's choice? I think that says a LOT regarding the voters FINALLY waking up to the fact that Republican policies favor the wealthy and that the economic system that works so well in Europe (and worked so well under FDR) is something we should be doing more of (The 12 best reasons to be a democratic socialist).

That free trade benefits the "Republican donor class" is why Hillary Clinton was forced to backtrack on the TPP. Previously she referred to it as the "gold standard" and now she is saying she doesn't support it (45 times Secretary Clinton pushed the trade bill she now opposes).

Yet, Trump says he's a "free trader", he'd just negotiate better deals. But he is not for ANY of the other pro-rich policies that never "trickle down" to the non-wealthy. Trump is proposing MASSIVE tax cuts for the wealthy with a 15% max tax rate, no "death tax" and no corporate tax (Donald Trump's Tax Plan Would Make the Rich Richer, Uncle Sam Poorer).

Clearly the Trumpeteers are NOT figuring it out. And (imo) Hillary voters aren't figuring it out either. She's moved to the Left, but she's been pushed there by Sanders (and likely not stay there after elected). Hillary is not a Progressive, but a moderate. In her own words! (HRC 9/10/2015: "You know, I get accused of being kind of moderate and center. I plead guilty").

If people actually were figuring it out Donald Trump wouldn't be poised to claim the nomination on the Republican side and Hillary Clinton wouldn't be winning on the Democratic side. And primary voting turnout wouldn't be "massive" on the Republican side, it would be MASSIVE on the Democratic side (Here's Just How Massive Republicans' Super Tuesday Turnout Was).

And the massive turnout would be for Bernie Sanders. He's a once in a lifetime candidate, IMO. The country NEEDS Bernie Sanders. Hillary might be OK and push some incremental change. Trump (or any other of the Republicans) would further harm our nation (Bernie Sanders Is a Once in a Lifetime Presidential Candidate. The Time Is Now).

Under a Sanders' presidency income and jobs would soar. This is according to Gerald Friedman, a University of Massachusetts Amherst economics professor. His analysis shows that, under Sanders, "median income would soar by more than $22k, nearly 26 million jobs would be created and the unemployment rate would fall to 3.8%".

BTW, that tool Chuck Todd says (when Scarborough is speaking) "you sound like Bernie Sanders". Clearly upChuck was taken off guard by Scarborough's honesty. Honesty Thom Hartmann found astounding. Yeah, me too.

Video: Joe Scarborough gives up the game: After 30 years, the GOP base realized "it never trickles down" by David Edwards. RawStory 3/8/2016 (6:55, 1:25-2:30 for Scarborough comments).

SWTD #331

Monday, March 07, 2016

Donald Trump Just Telling The Rubes What They Want To Hear

When he called Trump a charlatan and a fraud yesterday I thought that was an endorsement ~ David Feldman; Emmy award winning comedy writer and standup comedian calling in to the 3/4/2016 airing of the Stephanie Miller Show. A reference to a 3/3/2016 Mittens R-Money speech at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City.

Is Donald Trump just telling his supporters what they want to hear? In other words, is he lying about all the next-to-impossible promises he's making? All the other candidates on the stage at the 11th gop debate - Cruz, Rubio and Kasich - said they think he is.

In remarks made later in the debate (transcribed below), Cruz refered to a Trump "off the record" conversation that Donald had with the NYT that was apparently recorded. (The conversation with the editorial board wasn't an interview, but only to help the board decide who to endorse. Note that prior to the Cruz remarks Megyn Kelly asked Trump if he was willing to ask the NYT to release the tapes, and he said no).

Ted Cruz: Marco's dad started as a bartender. My dad started washing dishes. You know how many Americans wanted those jobs? [working in Trump's FL hotel]? Roughly 300 applied. Donald hired 17. That's why this New York Times tape is so troubling. What's been reported is that Donald told the editorial board of the New York Times, "what I'm saying on immigration, I don't believe. I'm not going to build a wall. I'm not going to deport people. This is all just rhetoric for the voters".

Now, if he didn't say that, he has an easy solution. Simply release the tape. (3/3/2016 at the Fox Theatre in downtown Detroit MI).

Cruz's info is coming from a 2/29/2016 BuzzFeed article titled "Donald Trump Secretly Told The New York Times What He Really Thinks About Immigration. In this article it is mentioned that one NYT columnist who attended the meeting, wrote the following...

Gail Collins: The most optimistic analysis of Trump as a presidential candidate is that he just doesn't believe in positions, except the ones you adopt for strategic purposes when you're making a deal.

The Opinion Page editor, Andrew Rosenthal, however, says "the Times is not covering up any information related to the presidential campaign that would be crucial to the public's knowledge".

Yeah, I don't know about that. Not that I think Trump would say "yeah, I'm lying" to anyone. But I do think he's only telling the rubes (his "Trumpeteers") what they want to hear. I think that is QUITE obvious. And there is the fact that Cruz asked again (after the remarks I excerpted above), for Donald to release those tapes, and Donald (referring to Cruz as "lying Ted") again said NO.

So maybe he did tell the NYT he's a huge liar. Not in those words, of course. What he might have said was likely (if he said anything of the sort) that he would "negotiate". Although Marco Rubio, in response to Trump insisting he was "flexible", said "there is a difference between flexibility, and telling telling people whatever you think you need to say to get them to do what you want them to do", afterwhich Kasich inserted "that's right".

Which is what he did with his "Trump University" scam, as Rubio also noted (Yes, Trump University Was a Massive Scam). Now he's attempting to scam the American people into voting for him. An observation of Marco's that I *do* agree with. Not that I agree with him (or any of the other Republican candidates) about anything else (except for Kasich taking the Medicaid expansion).

SWTD #330

Saturday, March 05, 2016

On Jeb Bush Dropping Out Of The 2016 potus Race (The Brother Of The War Criminal Who Failed To Keep Us Safe)

I congratulate my competitors that are remaining on the island ~ Jeb! remarks upon the "suspension" of his bid for the White House, 2/20/2016.

On 4/25/2013 Barbara Bush said "we've had enough Bushes". This was in regards to her other son John Ellis (AKA Jeb!) possibly running for the presidency. When Jeb decided he would run, Babs sent an email to prospective supporters asking for money (3/18/2015) that revised that past statement.

Instead of an emphatic NO (which is how I'd describe the "we've had enough Bushes") she says she was "hesitant". What made her change her mind was the "fact" that "our problems are so profound that America needs a leader who can renew the promise of this great nation". IMO the leader who can do that is Bernie Sanders. But, whether it's Bernie or Hillary on the Democratic side, it is now certain that the Republican the Democrat faces off against will NOT be Jeb.

Although, according to Late Late Show host James Cordon "George W bush was a little confused why Jeb quit because he was losing - because as far as George W bush is concerned, you still become president even when you don't get the most votes"... to which I say, good one. Ha ha. Al Gore was elected to the presidency by winning the most votes, but the Supreme Court stole his victory by anointing a man who would go on to ignore the warnings concerning an eminent terrorist attack (Bin Ladin Determined To Strike in US) then go on to start two illegal wars (Afghanistan: The Other Illegal War).

Regarding the "please clap" moment (see video below) Host of the Late Show, Stephen Colbert, remarked (on the 2/22/2016 airing of his program) that Jeb should have said "please vote for me". Actually, I think that if you watch the video it's clear that Jeb ended his speech abruptly and the audience simply did not know he was done. They might have clapped if they had.

Still, even if the media misrepresented this moment (the author of the Colbert article writes that Jeb "received no applause after a speech on national security") and mercilessly mocked him for something he didn't deserve to be mocked for, I surely do not care one iota re the "unfairness" of it.

Frankly, I'm thinking that *if* one of the Republicans were to be elected, a president Trump might be the least worst option. Out of those who could conceivably win the nomination, that is. Otherwise I guess I'd go with Kasich, even though he'd still be pretty bad (Myth of the "moderate" John Kasich).

I was in agreement with Bab's initial comment regarding American not needing another bush. Surely the electorate would reject another after the economy crashing war criminality of the last one. It isn't as if Jeb was honest with us instead of spinning a ridiculous and patently false narrative that his doofus brother "kept us safe", Donald Trump told the truth during the last debate about how gwb LIED about WMD.

Even if he's now walked back his "bush lied about WMD" truth-telling, saying, in an AC360 interview "I don't know what he did". Clearly he only confronted Jeb on the lies of his brother to destroy the bush brother's candidacy (SWTD #326). And Jeb dropped out shortly after the debate.

So perhaps the strategy worked? Now he can deny he ever said the bushies lied about WMD and his idiot "Trumpeteers" will go along with the Donald's revisionism. Because they're so gaga over his xenophobia and jingoism they really don't care if he lies to them. Apparently they don't realize that he might be lying about the wall, deporting illegals, the Muslim registry, banning Muslims from entering the country, etc, etc. Because he's promising a bunch of stuff he can't deliver, I think it's clear he's simply telling the rubes what the want to hear (Donald Trump Secretly Told The New York Times What He Really Thinks About Immigration).

Anyway, remember that Jeb did say he would rather lose the primary in order to win the general? Looks like he succeeded with phase 1 of his master plan. I wonder what phase 2 is going to entail? Obviously the end result will be that Jeb is elected president, but how's he going to do it?

Video1: Speaking at the Hanover Inn near the Vermont border on [2/2/2016], Mr. Bush finished a fiery riff about protecting the country - "I won't be out here blow-harding, talking a big game without backing it up", he said — and was met with total silence. "Please clap", he said, sounding defeated. The crowd laughed — and then, finally, clapped. (excerpted from a 2/3/2016 NYT article by Jonathan Martin and Ashley Parker) (0:33).

Video2: Jill Sobule reveals the truth about the Trumpeteers in song - when they say "Make America Great Again", they mean by getting rid of the black and brown people (4:49).

SWTD #329

Thursday, March 03, 2016

DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz Co-Sponsors Legislation To Protect Payday Loan Sharks

He lends at interest and takes a profit. Will such a man live? He will not! Because he has done all these detestable things, he is to be put to death; his blood will be on his own head ~ The Christian Bible, Ezekiel 18:13 (New International Version).

In another in a string of disappointing moves, Chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee and Rep for FL's 23rd district, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, has gotten into bed with the payday lending industry with legislation that she is co-sponsoring (!).

Payday lenders fearing modest federal regulations will cut into their vast profit margins have a new, high-profile ally in Washington: ...Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) is co-sponsoring legislation to delay and permanently muffle pending Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) rules to rein in small-dollar lenders that are currently able to levy triple-digit annual interest rates on the nation's poorest... The bill would force a 2-year delay of the CFPB's rules... the bill... would... permanently block [CFPB rules] in any state that enacts the sort of ineffectual, industry-crafted regulatory sham that FL adopted in 2001.

That bill featured "compromise language heavily influenced by industry players", the FL Alliance for Consumer Protection notes. Rather than a model for robust oversight that still allows low-income people to access emergency credit when they need it, the group describes the FL approach as a series of "well-disguised loopholes" that preserve the industry's abusive patterns. (The Official Head Of The Democratic Party Joins GOP Effort To Protect Payday Lenders by Alan Pyke. ThinkProgress 3/1/2016).

I call payday lenders "loan sharks" due to the interest rates they charge. Rates that fit the definition of usury.

Usury is the practice of making unethical or immoral monetary loans that unfairly enrich the lender. ... A loan may be considered usurious because of excessive or abusive interest rates or other factors. ... Someone who practices usury can be called a usurer, but a more common term in contemporary English is loan shark.

The term may be used in a moral sense - condemning taking advantage of others' misfortunes - or in a legal sense where interest rates may be regulated by law. Historically, some cultures (e.g., Christianity in much of Medieval Europe, and Islam in many parts of the world today) have regarded charging any interest for loans as sinful. (Wikipedia/Usury).

Yeah, I'd say it's sinful, in that it's morally reprehensible for "some of the worst predatory bastards in America" (according to Charlie Pierce), to be raking in so much profit via sky-high interest rates in regards to loans to those who can least afford this overcharging.

...22% of borrowers end up rolling their loan over seven or more times, loans in such misery cycles account for 62% of the industry's business. Trapping people in lengthy repay cycles is literally the primary source of industry income. About 76% of all FL payday borrowing is rollover loans within two weeks of a previous loan, and 85% of all loans are part of a reborrowing sequence of seven or more straight high-interest loans. The typical borrower there pays 300% annual interest. (excerpt from same ThinkProgress article quoted above).

Add to this the fact that DWS voted to fast track the TPP (The 28 Democrats Who Voted For Fast Track), vigorously opposed a 2014 medical marijuana amendment in FL", and has inappropriately used her position as the DNC chair to tip the scales in favor of Hillary.

...speaking of the debate, why did Wasserman Schultz schedule it for the Saturday night before Christmas, at one of the least-watched times on television, virtually guaranteeing low ratings? ...the DNC under Wasserman Schultz wants to guarantee that as few people as possible actually watch the Democrats' own debates! Hillary's campaign wanted as few debates as possible to prevent her lesser-known opponents from getting free television exposure. DNC limited debates to six, compared to 26 in the 2008 campaign... (Fire Debbie Wasserman Schultz by Miles Mogulescu. Huffpo 12/18/2015).

All proof that it's time for Debbie to go. The Progressive Left (the heart of the Democratic Party) should no longer tolerate an obvious corporate shill as DNC Chair. Heck, I'd say she needs to be primaried and booted out of the House as well. Which she is being, btw. Good luck to her challenger, Tim Canova (Meet Debbie Wasserman Schultz's First-Ever Primary Challenger: Tim Canova).

Image: HRC Campaign surrogate/shill Debbie Wasserman Schultz is inappropriately attempting to use her power as DNC Chair to anoint Hillary the Democratic nominee (5 Times Debbie Wasserman Schultz Violated DNC Rules and Stacked the Deck in Favor of Clinton).

RNUSA: Wasserman Schultz To Go? (12/20/2015).

SWTD #328

Tuesday, March 01, 2016

CBS CEO Loves Money More Than His Country

We got the bubble-headed-bleach-blonde who comes on at five. She can tell you 'bout the plane crash with a gleam In her eye. It's interesting when people die ~ Don Henley (dob 7/22/1947). Lyric from the song Dirty Laundry from the 1982 album I Can't Stand Still.

In regards to the Trump candidacy, CBS CEO Leslie Moonves said "it may not be good for America, but it's damn good for CBS". This admission of a love of (advertising) money over country is surely not unique to CBS, as it seems as if even msnbc is a (free advertising for) Trump network.

As Progressive radio host Thom Hartmann pointed out on the 3/1/2016 broadcast of his program, it was the (WJC signed) telecommunications act (a deregulatory bill that lead to massive media consolidation) that caused "incredible damage". In that now what we have are "news" organizations where spectacle (drawing eyeballs/generating ad revenue) is more important than informing and educating the public.

"He is an invention of the media" said Hartmann. Trump would not be the frontrunner if all the potus candidates had received the same amount of coverage. But he has received significantly more. Because it's good for ratings and therefore good for Big Media's bottom line.

"I've never seen anything like this, and this going to be a very good year for us. Sorry. It's a terrible thing to say. But, bring it on, Donald. Keep going", said Moonves.

"Donald's place in this election is a good thing", he said Monday at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference in San Francisco.

"There's a lot of money in the marketplace", the exec said of political advertising so far this presidential season. (Leslie Moonves on Donald Trump: "It May Not Be Good for America, but It's Damn Good for CBS" by Paul Bond. The Hollywood Reporter 2/29/2016).

Sure, I bet he's really "sorry". The infotainment nooz channels have elevated Trump (with all the free air time they've devoted to him), and it's worked out really well for them. Drawing the eyeballs of both the misinformed Fox viewers - angry White racists (like David Duke) who support Trump - and those of us who can't believe that a racist misogynist bigoted blowhard reality TV star could win the GOP nomination. It's like a car accident that backs up traffic because every car passing by has to slow down to take a gander.

"If we had not changed the rules on media ownership back in 1996, I don't think Donald Trump would be where he is right now" Hartmann said at the close of this segment. A statement I've got to agree with. Reporting the news did not used to be a for profit venture (SWTD #94). Now that it is, the viewers aren't being informed, they're being entertained.

A predicament that has help Trump enormously. And also boosted Hillary Clinton, I think. IMO (and Thom Hartmann's) Bernie Sanders would be doing better if were being more fairly covered by Big Media (Hillary Clinton Gets 14 Times More Network News Coverage Than Bernie Sanders).

BTW, the Don Henley song, Dirty Laundry, was about how the news media exploits personal tradegy for financial gain. Now they're selling out the entire country... it may not be good for America, but it's damn good for CBS! A new low.

Audio: CBS Chairman Discusses Trump's Candidacy. Audio attached to a 2/19/2016 Intercept article by Lee Fang.

SWTD #327

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Only Reason Donald Trump Said gwb Lied About WMD In Debate Was BC He Thought It Would Harm Jeb's Candidacy

We won with poorly educated. I love the poorly educated ~ Donald Trump responding to the fact that (according to a national CNN/ORC poll) he "runs significantly stronger among less-educated, less-affluent voters".

*As determined by Yahoo which "broke down the results further". Trump's comments about the "poorly educated", made during his victory speech after winning the Nevada caucuses, received applause from the audience, btw.

"They lied. They said there were weapons of mass destruction – there were none. And they knew there were none. There were no weapons of mass destruction"... is what Donald Trump said at the 6th gop debate on 2/13/2016. (See Video1 below).

Pretty definitive, right? Trump said bush lied about WMD. They KNEW there were none. So you might find it hard to believe that Donald would attempt to walk this back now. I mean, how could he?

What follows is an excerpt from an interview of Donald Trump by Anderson Cooper that aired on 2/18/2016. The clip of this interview posted to YouTube (see Video2 below) picks up with a question from one of Trump's idiot supporters who confronts him on the "gwb lied about WMD" Trump accusation. The idiot first says that Trump's assertion "really stung me", then the idiot asks if Trump would be willing to "rethink that" (translation: Please tell me what I want to hear so I can vote for you).

Donald Trump: Well, a lot of people agreed with what I said. I'm not talking about lying, I'm not talking about not lying. Nobody really knows why we went into Iraq. It was not Saddam who knocked down the World Trade Center.

Anderson Cooper: What you said was "They lied. They said there were weapons of mass destruction, and there were none and they knew there were none. There were no weapons of mass destruction".

Donald Trump: Well, there were a lot of people who think that. Bottom line, there were no weapons of mass destruction. They said there were weapons of mass destruction - I was against the war when it started...

Idiot supporter: You think the president of the United States, george w bush, lied to the American people...

Donald Trump: Look, I'm not going to get your vote, but that's OK.

Idiot supporter: I'm just giving you another shot at it. [Translation: It's OK for you to lie to me. PLEASE tell me what I want to hear].

Donald Trump: Let me tell you something, I'll tell you very simply; it may have been the worst decision - going into Iraq - it may have been the worst decision any president has made in the history of this country. That's how bad it is, OK. The migration that you see today, the destruction of Europe, with Angela Merkel allowing millions of people [Syrian MUSLIM refugees into Germany]. I have people from Germany; they want to leave Germany. ... Everything that's happening started with stupidly going into the war in Iraq. Now, Iraq: We have - and people talk about me with the [nuclear] button, I'm the one that doesn't want to do this. I'm the one from 2000 to 2003 who said "you shouldn't be doing it".

...we have spent 2 trillion dollars in Iraq and fighting Iraq. 2 trillion. 2 trillion. Thousands of lives, right? We have wounded warriors, who I love... We got nothing. We have nothing...

Anderson Cooper: But to his question... do you believe he lied?

Donald Trump: Do I know? I can tell you this - I don't [know] whether he lied or not. ... I will say this... Saddam Hussein overplayed his hand. ...Frankly I think the son, being loyal to the father, really wanted to go into Iraq. Even if it wasn't the right thing to do. ... I said don't go in. Everything I said turned out to be true. [bashes Obama over the Iran nuclear disarmament deal]. ... Barack Obama, as bad as he is, and he's bad, got us out the wrong way. He should have left people there. ... he gave a specific date to get out, as you know. [Note: specific date set by bush re SOFA, see footnote below].

Anderson Cooper: Just to his question... one more chance. You either believe he [gwb] lied, or did not lie? Are you willing to say...

Donald Trump: I don't know what he did. I just know it was a terrible mistake.

Anderson Cooper: Was it a mistake for you to say in the debate that he lied?

Donald Trump: I'd have to see the exact word. Look, I don't know. I would probably say that something was going on. I don't know why he went in.

Anderson Cooper: So you would not say - again - that George W. Bush lied.

Donald Trump: I don't know. I can't tell you. I'd have to look at some documents [not sure about "documents" because the video ends mid-word].

Trump is pretending to not know what he said? How dumb does he think his supporters are? That's a rhetorical question, btw. Trump knows his "Trumpeteers" ARE that dumb. I'd be willing to bet that the idiot who was BEGGING to be lied to (with his question) will end up voting for Trump. Despite him being a duped loyal bush supporter (who was "stung" by Trump pointing out that bush lied about WMD).

I say the idiot will still vote for Trump because NOW Trump is saying he "doesn't know" if bush lied. It doesn't matter what he said before. In fact, Trump doesn't even remember, and neither should his "poorly educated" supporters.

My conclusion? Donald Trump is an opportunistic liar who will say whatever he thinks will benefit him at the time he says it. And his supporters are too dumb to realize that they're being played. So, while I might be "your average partisan stooge blogger whose entire existence is one mindless and gratuitous anti-Trump post after another" (according to this individual), I actually did give Trump credit for telling the truth about bush lying about Iraq having no WMD (in this post).

But I'm retracting my kudos. Because Trump retracted his "bush lied about WMD" comments (by pretending not to remember he made them). The ONLY reason the liar said what he did was to hurt the liar's brother (the first liar being Trump and the 2nd liar being gwb. And the liar's brother being Jeb!).

Although, as for Trump's supporters being solely "poorly educated", there is obviously more to it than that. Many of these people are White racists who see Trump as the only presidential candidate in their lifetime that speaks to them. As Chauncey DeVega points out in a 2/28/2016 Daily Kos article, Trump's appeal "has to do with white racism, xenophobia, and the fear of small minded people".

Even smart people can be small minded. Fact is, these crackers are so desperate to hear what Trump is telling them that they will overlook these inconsistencies. Like the idiot bush supporter who was "stung" when Trump said the former preznit bush lied about WMD. Now Trump says he doesn't know. And, if not good enough for the dude who asked the question, I'm positive that answer will be good enough for legions of Trumpeteers, many of whom are likely the kind of person who'd get offended by the suggestion that W got us into Iraq dishonestly.

And, in the General, they're likely be many Republicans who'll hold their nose and vote for Trump. Better than see Hillary or Bernie get elected. But I doubt it will be enough to get Trump to the White House. We'll see. Apparently Trump thinks he can do it, and so far he's been right. In regards to the tactics he's employing and the type of voter he's winning over using them. God help us if he's successful. But again, I doubt he can win. Maybe he'll get close?

Clearly Trump realizes that the American people are sick of war, and believe we should not have gotten mixed up in that quagmire to begin with. Which is why he's spinning this BS about him being opposed to the Iraq war from the get-go. However, back in 2002, during an interview with Howard Stern, when asked by the host "are you for invading Iraq", Trump said "yeah, I guess so".

So, Trump insists that he opposed the invasion before we went in on 3/20/2003, but the audio evidence (see Video3 below) says otherwise. Another inconsistency his supporters are willing to overlook, no doubt. He says he was against it then... now, and apparently that's good enough. Remember, Trump is the only candidate not the only candidate who is pandering to their anger. But Cruz and Rubio? They're Hispanic, for crying out loud! And, don't forget that Cruz was born in Canada to a Cuban father, and Rubio is an anchor baby (Marco Rubio Is An Anchor Baby and Not Eligible To Run For President).

Trump, on the other hand, is a REAL American (White guy) who promises he'll "make America great again"... by keeping out as many of the brown people as possible. With his wall (that Mexico will pay for) and with his ban on Muslims entering the country. Although, only until we can figure out "what's going on". Hmm... maybe the Trumpeteers think that what's going on is that those Muslims hate us and we should keep them out forever? And that's what The Donald is going to end up finding out?

Who knows. Trump has made it clear, however, that he's with them. More so than any candidate they've ever had the opportunity to vote for. Which is why he's getting endorsements from the likes of David Duke, who says that "voting against Trump is treason to your heritage".

So now Trump says that going into Iraq was just "terrible mistake". Which is a lie, even if many people believe it. I don't happen to be one of them, however. I am 100 percent convinced that when bush said Iraq had WMD he was lying and he knew it.

Which is what Trump originally said. But now it's a "mistake". So, kudos to Trump? Definitely withdrawn. The only purpose of him saying W lied was to hurt Jeb. And now that Jeb has dropped out? Well, it's time for a little revision that the bigoted Trumpeteers won't mind. Not too much or for too long, in any case (they'll still vote for him).

Footnote
[1] FactCheck.org: Question: Who's responsible for withdrawing all US combat troops from Iraq at the end of 2011? Answer: Bush signed an agreement, known as the Status of Forces Agreement, on 12/14/2008, that said: "All the US Forces shall withdraw from all Iraqi territory no later than 12/31/2011". However, some say that Obama should have renegotiated SOFA to allow the presence of some troops & that he failed in that respect. This doesn't make Trump correct, however. The date of withdrawal was set by bush, not Obama.

Video1: Trump "bitch slaps" Jeb at the 6th gop debate on 2/13/2016 by pointing out that his brother did NOT "keep us safe" (3:17).

Video2: Trump challenged on "Bush Lied" claim by idiot supporter and AC360. Trump refuses to acknowledge that he said gwb lied; now claims "I don't know". 2/18/2016 (5:56).

Video3: Donald Trump says he supports Iraq invasion in 2002 Howard Stern Interview (2:41).

See Also: Willis Hart Lies Re Trump Comments On Iraq War, Downplays, Spouts BS About Left Not Acknowledging Trump Truthtelling, Pats Self On Back (OST #113) 2/25/2016.

SWTD #326