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January 12, 2021

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Writer Indi Samarajiva published a trilogy on Medium, drawing on his experiences of living in Sri Lanka during its 26-year civil war.

His stark words are summed up in Part I's title, "I Lived Through Collapse. America Is Already There."

https://gen.medium.com/i-lived-through-collapse-america-is-already-there-ba1e4b54c5fc

This is what the GOP has been pumping itself up for quite some time; it took a Donald Trump to personify and energize this subliminal drive, of Thanatos vs. Eros. Their "wars on terror" (overseas & at home) have only made us less safe & free; they have over-funded the military (except for vet's health care) at the expense of the civilian sector (hence our infrastructure issues/health care issues/and the pandemic's spread)--so a new Civil War is their only response to the complete, utter failure of their policies on all fronts. They have reduced themselves to an organized movement in favor of a mass Freudian Death Wish, because they cannot bear to admit how totally wrong they have been.

I read that article Dugnutt. It was spot on. Gosar and Biggs need to be recalled or jailed.

The rabid Hawley and foaming supporters.

"Christianity has sole legitimate authority over all aspects of human life.
Mr. Hawley denounced Pelagius for teaching that human beings have the freedom to choose how they live their lives and that grace comes to those who do good things, as opposed to those who believe the right doctrines."
From Talton's The Front Page.
A good read.
https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/11/opinion/josh-hawley-religion-democracy.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage good read.

Liz Cheney has come out for impeachment, which given her parentage is either a shock or a demonstration of how truly awful Trump is. What's inescapable and dispiriting here is how sharply polarized our nation remains about someone who on his best day can barely muster enough human concern to do something - or anything - passably decent. Half this nation is so angry that reality itself is disputed if only to "own the libs". It hardly matters to them that a few of them died so a lifelong con artist could argue that he isn't a loser. Yet some are so invested in his fragile ego that even more are willing to martyr themselves for his dubious cause.

You might think there were real issues here separating Americans. The trouble, however, is those issues are mostly beyond the scope of politics to address, much less solve. You're not going to reindustrialize the nation or bring back breadwinner jobs or make the nation overwhelmingly white. That's over and no amount of wishful thinking will unring all those tolling bells. Yet so powerful is the lure of this impossible dream that its merchandisers from Rush to Tucker to Laura to Sean continue to force them into thought cells that are already crowded with rage and unhappiness. There is no cure for a disease that is as unreal as ours.

Manias, panics, and chronic hysteria are bellwethers of a lethal storm. People are going to die for a chimera of righteous anger and unholy hatred. If it could change America for the better, we would have seen some evidence by now. History itself can't be consciously created so much as served honorably. For every inspirational figure, there are countless soldiers who lie in unmarked graves. Trump, by contrast, is a transient nightmare haunting our collective sleep but he will never serve anyone or anything more than himself. His passion is both volcanic and self-consuming. Its curse will only be lifted in death, preferably his alone.

Way to call it Lee! Great to see you on this site. I just love when Republicans say that Trump's actions since the election have taken focus off his "policy successes". What a pathetic joke. The first President since Herbert Hoover to lose jobs in his first term. Record job losses, record budget deficits, record trade deficits, and more than 375,000 Covid deaths due to patent incompetence, among other disasters. Any more successes like this and we won't have a country left.

@Soleri, we must be vigilant about the curse of Trump. A very real threat is a more capable Trump, which the GOP has in spades.

The second-most popular figure in the GOP, beside Trump, is Q. The other gravitational force is a meme that has spellbound Americans with an an imaginary pedophilia ring of imaginary child victims in an imaginary conspiracy of very real people.

We're battling a 75 million-headed monster.

Does anyone else feel like they're living the prequel to "The Handmaid's Tale"?

I wrote this to a lifelong friend who lives in Mesa. We've sparred over Trump for several years, and it has come close to wrecking what remains of our friendship.

Dear David,

When people on the political fringes allege a massive conspiracy against them, they need actual evidence and not just paranoid speculation or "data" from dubious sources. You have none. The far right today lives in a nether world of victimhood and deranged conspiracy theories. It's why your tribe loves Trump since he does as well. It's almost as if he were conjured out of the ethers to embody all the insanity of your tribe. That said, there were more than 60 separate judicial rulings, many from Trump-appointed judges who looked at the arguments the Trump side brought to the table and dismissed them. I'm sorry if your understanding of the Constitution is so limited that you think your vacuous suspicions should be grounds for overthrowing the will of the people but that banana republic you referred to above is also a fortress between your own ears.

As I often protest, I've got one foot firmly planted in the center and the other one is just slightly to the left of it. I despise Antifa and all those various, mostly younger defenders of their "actions". But there is a world of difference between thugs breaking windows in a city like Portland and a mob of anti-American mouthbreathers breaking down the doors of the Capitol to stop a ceremonial yet crucial exercise of democracy. Mike Pence, hardly a dingbat lefty, understood this and held firm. So did Mitch McConnell in probably the finest speech of his career. Trump himself incited this vile mob and was delighting in the mayhem until his remaining advisors cautioned him and he began issuing milquetoast pleas for order (while blowing them kisses at the same time). Trump is, of course, an utter ignoramus and fraud, which is why so many Republicans have excused him since they know how childlike yet implacable he is. It can't be excused, however. The saner members of the GOP, including Newt Gingrich (!!!) denounced the action but what is missing is any kind of soul-searching from those who claim to be sober defenders of our Constitution. Since you are not a serious reader or student of history, you will parrot opinions that come from the most deluded and unhinged parts of your caucus. I will not excuse your callow defense of treason, however. It is utterly beyond the pale and unworthy of any respect.

People who belong to cults have no cognitive guardrails that keep them from straying into delusional group-think. You will protest that you are not crazy because your beliefs are so absolute that they cannot be wrong! Anyone such as myself or Arnold Schwarzenegger or even Mike Pence is now the "enemy" since your tribe believes so fervently that it can no longer self-critique. There are no debates on your side, which is a clue how insular and cultish it has become. When you join hands with the batshit insane QAnon or fascists like the Proud Boys, you will also discredit yourself as a serious adult capable of soberly reflecting on national events. You have crossed over to very dangerous terrain. it saddens me to say all this because I know that 45% of America probably agrees with you. As a nation, we cannot survive such a deep chasm between our two halves. But if it comes to civil war, it will be predicated not on any substantial political differences but entirely on feelings and cultural preferences. Even there, what unites is deeper than what divides us. We still eat the same food, watch the same movies, listen to the same music, etc. What our side doesn't do is treat disinformation the same as "news". Your side has given up on journalism with its more rigorous standards of proof. Instead, if it sounds good, or if it advances your interests somehow, it might as well be true. The far left does the same thing and it drives me nuts when I have occasion to speak to them (my sister Mary is one such lefty). I get really tetchy because I know that there is no narcotic in the world stronger than belief. David, you are a believer first and last. It's emotionally appropriate in religion but deadly to our civic and political order. I'd beg you to wake up or see a deprogrammer, but I know it's too late. As always, the best to you.

In a hot war, there will be casualties. Law enforcement must be prepared to shoot the lunatics who are one suicide vest or car bomb short (Although I wouldn't be surprised if that happened next week) of full-on terrorism. If the Capitol police had taken that action (with the one exception) there would have been a few second thoughts in the mob.

The true lunatics will only respond to force (witness Malheur, etc.) and the rest of the wannabe boy scouts dressed in their tough guy costumes will turn tail and run like rabbits.

What a truly sick, sad time for this country.

We missed a 5 YR family reunion this year due to COVID. In the meantime, a cousin has become entranced by Q-anon. My latest reply to his Facebook post was "May God save the world from BELIEVERS!" So I agree with Soleri's comments but I would also not exempt religious beliefs in the unbelievable, that are used to affect other parties.

The latest in the thawing of the cold civil war: The impeachment.

Below the fold of the historic "repeachment" of Donald Trump, there's a lesser impeachment afoot in Kentucky targeting Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear.

https://www.wvlt.tv/2021/01/13/petition-seeks-impeachment-of-kentuckys-governor/

Trump got impeached again because of an insurrection he blessed with the evidence of the high crime played out before the world.

Beshear is getting impeached because reasons.

A $700,000,000,000 defense budget and our Guardsmen have to sleep on the floor !!!!

NO COTS !!!

Soleri, you are a bigger man than I for attempting to explain yourself. When a couple of my long time friends joined the cult and pretty much wanted to make themselves right by constantly regurgitating Fox/Rush et al. talking points, I realized no amount of factual data would matter. I simply ghosted them as I was unwilling to listen to it any longer.

Reading through the commentary on the last couple posts has me wondering what parallels there are now to the lead up to the civil war. Were friends, like Soleri and his friend on the "other side", writing in an attempt to get the other to come to their senses? Was propaganda as powerful a driver of people's sense of reality (and the decision to go to war) back then as it seems to be now? I've never been more worried about the collapse of our society than I am now.

STAND BY!

"Political violence, especially around elections, has a long history in the United States. In the antebellum era, white nativist Protestants often rioted against Catholic immigrants because of the perceived threat of Irish voters and their “popery.”"

https://www.nybooks.com/articles/2020/11/19/wilmington-american-pogrom/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=NYR%20Demagogues%20authoritarians%20rioters%20and%20trolls&utm_content=NYR%20Demagogues%20authoritarians%20rioters%20and%20trolls+CID_255f12a960a0db815c6ee2a593639540&utm_source=Newsletter

How popular is Trump?
per Axios: "Its still Trumps Party!
https://www.axios.com/trump-republicans-impeachment-support-10c11b10-2149-406f-ab6a-4a94db8d1226.html

20 years of Civil War inside the Capitol Police: Over 250 Black cops have sued the department since 2001. Some of those former officers now say it’s no surprise white nationalists were able to storm the building.

https://www.propublica.org/article/no-one-took-us-seriously-black-cops-warned-about-racist-capitol-police-officers-for-years

My wife and I are having to deal with four family cases of worsening dementia. I am finding, and I say this without humor, that I find that I have to treat trumpers that I know in the same way that I deal with the dementia challenges in the family. It is not funny that a person who has brainwashed themselves with years of 24/7 fox news can no longer comprehend reality and deal with it's changing conditions.

Two trumper families I have come to know, were the first to utter to me, "Republicans don't wear masks". At this very moment, four of their members are in the hospital fighting for their lives. Only one sort of intelligent member said to me yesterday that maybe this mask thing is something to think about and I think I'll start wearing one. The rest of the family will not even consider wearing a mask. Our dementia family members are only getting worse. I don't expect much better for the trumpers.

Who should we blame, fox news or the persons who fried their own brains.

We're getting a clearer picture of who instigated the insurrection, where they came from and why.

The liberal blog Lawyers, Guns & Money post "Who are the seditionists?" recaps a study of the demographics of the 139 Republican House members who tried to overturn the vote.

The upshot: White grievance is the salient factor. The congress members represent suburban areas experiencing settlement by upwardly mobile people of color and exurban areas. The education, income and property ownership levels rule out economic anxiety.

https://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2021/01/who-are-the-seditionists

Ta-Nehisi Coates wrote in 2017 what may be the urtext of Trumpism, "Donald Trump is the First White President." Obviously the headline is ironic -- all but one US president is white. He argued that Donald Trump is pivoting conservatism toward an identity politics of white grievance.

About a year later, UPenn political scientist Diana Mutz published a paper concluding status threat was the animating force of Trump voters.

For Ex Phx Planner and Ruben

"And Spring herself, when she woke at dawn
Would scarcely know that we were gone."

https://www.btboces.org/Downloads/7_There%20Will%20Come%20Soft%20Rains%20by%20Ray%20Bradbury.pdf#:~:text=There%20Will%20Come%20Soft%20Rains%20By%3A%20Ray%20Bradbury,repeating%20and%20repeating%20its%20sounds%20into%20the%20emptiness.

Ex Phoenix Planner,

I, too, am worried about the future of this nation, which is imperiled by the radically different world-views that dominate our political conversation. That said, there is no particular reason why we couldn't simply argue these differences in the political sphere except for the most obvious reason: the right has checked out completely from consensus reality. The far left may be rigidly ideological and unpragmatic, but I wouldn't say it is clinically insane like Trump and so many of his defenders.

Exactly Soleri, but even the moderate left bears some responsibility. But for the Lewinski scandal, Gore would have won and thousands of lives would have been saved and the TRUMP election would never have happened.

Getting together?
7.8 billion!

John Cote, I'm a little confused about the various ideological hues on the left. There are still some vintage lefties who yearn to topple the capitalism and install a worker's socialist commune in its place. Then there are the "woke" lefties who want to regulate people's very thoughts in order to eradicate "systemic racism" and other sins. We saw this division play out in 2016 between Hillary the pragmatic Realist and Bernie the unicorn-riding Revolutionary. It's fascinating how many working-class voters ended up voting against Hillary (and for an ex-hippie/radical) because they sensed in her a rejection of their values and preferences. They were alert to the judgment she would ultimately make about them as "deplorables".

Advance to 2020 and Biden cleaned Bernie's clock once the second-tier candidates dropped out. All those working-class voters abandoned Bernie when a conventional, non-shaming Democrat surfaced. Did they care about his fiscal or trade policies? No. Likewise, many of them loved Trump not for his various, mostly incoherent policies but for his validation of their flawed humanity. In the end, Trump almost closed the deal one more time with the "left behind". This was stunning if only because Trump's manifest incompetence and chaos mattered less than the need of a near-majority of Americans to flip off the moralistic hall monitors of our national junior high.

I consider myself a center-left voter with cosmopolitan values. I was very happy with Al Gore in 2000 as you might think. He should have won but Ralph Nader, a priggish anti-politician, peeled off just enough votes to hand Florida and New Hampshire to Bush. In 2016, another too-good-for-the-real-world lefty, Jill Stein, performed a similar service on behalf of Trump. So, who are these voters who screw up our politics with their narcissistic insistence on being pure? They're our side's evangelicals except it's not Jesus they're worshiping but his doppelgänger wafting through their hungry hearts. Left-wing Jesus reminds them daily that they are special because they care about the downtrodden, the marginalized, the abused, and the abandoned. When they vote, it's almost like they're singing in their church choir: you too can be pure! But first you must reject those pragmatists and neo-liberals who fail to inspire because they don't feel as deeply and sincerely as we do! It doesn't matter what left-wing Jesus advocates so much as that his spirit lives in the hearts and minds of the sanctified left. Karl Marx, needless to say, is not amused.

"But for the Lewinski scandal, Gore would have won and thousands of lives would have been saved and the TRUMP election would never have happened..."

Perhaps...but if not for Covid19, Trump would most likely have been re-elected. History is a funny MF.

While we’re airing out the past I’m going to put one in for Bernie. I was one of the early organizers for Bernie in Tucson where I had recently moved from Furnix. In those early days almost all of his cohorts were young professionals or graduate students. I was the old man and found my job was to disabuse them of the idea that setting up booths at the mall or student union was campaigning; it’s running a phone bank and getting signatures-real jobs.

As various issues to pursue were being debated and a campaign structure organized-there was no national leadership for the longest time- everything was always put to an open vote because the group was small. Into this leadership vacuum stepped the Progressive party, recognizing a movement that could be co opted. Because the lead Bernie organizers were only about a dozen in number and had not coalesced into a hierarchy the Progressives could and did send 6 or more to meetings and, voting ‘en blocke,’ dictate the agenda as well as the leadership cadre.

Bernie Bros were not opposed to mainstream Democratic ideas, it was Hillary’s perpetuation of the Republican lite orientation Bill had pursued that was questioned. Why not give them a chance, the last Democrat was Jimmy Carter and there had been over 30 years of Republican policies of various hues chipping away at socially beneficial policies to support increasing military expenditures-and for what good?

There was Hillary’s stance on taxes, eliminating the means by which hedge fund managers and CEOs avoid taxes by claiming their income as capital gains using carried interest and pass-through schemes. Hillary was asked countless times about stopping this and deferred-she wanted that Wall St money-and got it and lost my vote and dozens more. Hillary never disavowed her stance on a strong (read inflated) military presence. It was already three times the size of the next two largest defense budgets combined and had so little to do it had to start wars everywhere to keep the troops from getting bored and shooting up whatever they were supposed to be defending. And what has it brought us: Are you feeling more secure?

Bernie agreed with all those positions I was for as well funding higher education after Reagan eliminated revenue sharing and states then eliminating tuition assistance to make up for revenue shortfalls. All those ideas never got much play given the amount of dollars the Hillary camp had from the beginning to demonize everything Bernie ever said. In spite of that and in spite of his campaign's almost nonexistent staff and takeover by the Progressives, he nearly won the primary. Enuf said.

Octane 100
"but if not for"
Murderous European kings and Queens the Americas might have a different complexion.

Dravo: thanks for your response.
I have insufficient intelligence to spar with Soleri, and have lot of agreement with his posts here.
However here, Soleri's Tone seems strident! Its not the first time he has expressed his anger with those who are far "left" of him. Surely from his "left" CENTRIST potion he is surely not suggesting the Gallows for Sanders, Nader and Stein??????

"HUDSON: A Centrist is somebody who looks at all problems as being marginal, not structural and so you can only have a little change."
https://theanalysis.news/interviews/polarization-then-a-crash-michael-hudson-on-the-rentier-economy/

Five days to go:
Asked whether he believes Democrat Joe Biden won the presidential election, Lindell said no.
"No, he didn't win the election, because I've seen it," Lindell said.
https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/15/politics/cia-kash-patel-mypillow-notes-lindell-trump/index.html
and
The General told us Months
https://twitter.com/mccaffreyr3/status/1326582432682766336?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1326582432682766336%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.huffpost.com%2Fentry%2Fsecretary-of-defense-chris-miller-likes-russia-wants-to-quit_n_600214e2c5b6df63a916bfc4

Bernie lost twice, once to a mainstream Democrat with a strong feminist persona and the next time to a mainstream Democrat whose presentation was inclusive without being shaming. America is not going to elect a socialist to high office partly because we're a socially and culturally fragmented nation. It's not going to radically reinvent itself as a true social democracy anytime soon. The high point for that aspiration came in the 1960's during LBJ's presidency and was quickly snuffed out by Vietnam, race riots, and the counterculture.

Today's left-wing ferment is less socialist than identitarian. It's here that the danger has evolved from scaring America's fretful burghers with thoughts of higher taxes and gulags to merely alienating a majority of citizens with politically correct language codes. I'm a lifelong Democrat who hears fingernails on the blackboard every time some earnest Millenial clocks me for my "privilege". Imagine how an independent feels. Democrats really need a reality check here because the woke culture will kill the party in 2022 and 2024 if true liberals don't defend their tradition. That Trump got 10 million more votes in 2020 than in 2016 is extraordinarily disturbing. The reason here should be as obvious as the incredibly dumb trope Defunding the Police.

The sanctimonious left is more problematic for our side than evangelicals are for Republicans. Both groups are faith and belief-based but evangelicals have been around for a long time and alarm few people. The woke culture, by contrast, possesses the zealotry of cultural revolutionaries intent on reordering not merely language but society as a whole. Guess what? Most people don't want to be reordered or told what to think or how to express themselves.

I said above that belief is the strongest narcotic anywhere outside a meth lab. That the illiberal left believes they are smarter and better than other people is their toxic article of faith. I don't want to bring anyone down with these comments but if you're on the definite left, you really need to remember who you're pleasing (all those people who agree with you) and who you're not (a majority of Americans). Trump came within 40,000 votes are winning a second term because you're letting your idealism cloud your reason. America is not Berkeley or Cambridge. It doesn't care how indisputably correct you imagine yourself to be. It's always telling you what it likes to hear. Hint: it's not wokeness or socialism.

Very well said, Soleri.

The Bernie Bros refuse to understand that Clinton's "Republican lite" or (confusingly labeled) "neoliberalism" was a result of hard-learned experience. Traditional liberal Democrats couldn't win a national election after the crackup of the late 1960s.

Ask Presidents McGovern, Mondale, and Dukakis.

This is why Bill Clinton — and Tony Blair in the UK — pursued the so-called Third Way. A centrist, pragmatism, it succeeded for Clinton as it had for Jimmy Carter. It mattered that both were Southerners.

This was the state of play even before Trump and the wokesters. A Bernie figure couldn't win the presidency.

Now, the extreme left, which cost House Democrats seats in 2020 with "defund the police" etc. risks taking down the party in 2022 and '24, as Soleri writes.

If the Democrats break into two parties, one traditional Democrats and other Social Democrats, prepare for a very long losing string.

Soleri

You need to quit hyperventilating. I’m hardly an idealist and I agree with you about 90% of the time. Bernie represented a more activist government invested in a domestic agenda, as he voted all of his life. Of all the Democratic candidates trumpers identify most with Bernie--recognizing he represents change that isn’t scripted by lobbyists, which is what people are wanting. Hardly a socialist, as if most voters can tell you what one is.

That Hillary was going to win the Democratic nomination was a foregone conclusion: the moneyed interests, the NGOs, the veteran politicians were all behind her from the get go. She was following one of the most admired presidents in history and running against one of the most vile—and yet she lost. Enuf said.

Ed, one reason why Hillary lost was the number Bernie did on her, all but calling her corrupt. Of course, the purity ponies who are so shocked by the art of politics did their part, either sitting out the election or voting for Jill Stein. Compromise is bad for the soul, apparently, but there's no other way forward in politics. Hillary understood that in her lawyerly bones. Bernie, OTOH, humped his unicorn, played the faux naif card, and snookered another generation of young voters into thinking everything is extremely simple once you abandon nuance and complexity for the moonshine of certitude.

Politics is many things but it can't be a religion if you're all serious about democracy. Americans disagree about virtually everything now, which means purity is not going to get you very far. The programmatic left is not a majority position in our political culture, so Democrats need to have one foot planted firmly in the center if they hope to a) win elections and b) govern effectively. Pragmatism is a virtue for this reason. Each time we lose an election because an Al Gore or Hillary Clinton is deemed insufficiently pure, Republicans tighten their stranglehold on our political institutions. Their 6-3 Supreme Court majority is the left's one significant accomplishment over the past generation.

Good stuff.

In total agreement Soleri! But Al Gore's loss to Bush was far more the result of the Lewinski affair than Nader! The BJ felt around the world killed millions!

The very centrist approach espoused by liberal Republican rogue and lifelong Arizona Democrat soleri was effective in the 2020 battle ground states of Arizona and Georgia. Ed’s approach is a better bet to win presidential elections in the perennial battleground states of Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania. If the goal is exclusively to win the presidential race, Democrats need to ask themselves which battleground group is more important. Biden would have had a difficult time winning the northern battleground states if a more skilled Republican candidate was running in 2020 and the pandemic hadn’t occurred. Contrary to soleri’s frequent criticism of Bernie, moderation does not motivate the Democratic voters in the northern battleground group and getting them to vote is the key to winning.

drifter, here are some 2020 primary election results:

Michigan Biden 52.9% Sanders 39.3%
Wisconsin Biden 62.9% Sanders 31.7%
Pennsylvania Biden 79.3% Sanders 18%

Question, since Biden thumped Sanders in the Democratic primary, why would Sanders be such a threat to win a general election where the voter pool is decidedly more conservative?

Personality cult politics play well in certain areas better than others. College campuses and towns come to mind where purity is such a vexing concern for our youthful citizens. There is no evidence that Bernie had inverted the political paradigm where older white working class voters are concerned, however.

Trump's appeal in 2020 rose among all the key Democratic constituencies vis a vis 2016. It fell among better-educated Republican white voters, however. A more skilled Republicans would not have that crossover appeal. Trump's catastrophic presidency was a hit among those voters who are not well-educated but do respond well to the politics of resentment and personal grievance.

There is only one state in the union that would send a left-wing purist to the US Senate. You guessed it: The People's Republic of Ben & Jerry where there are few blue-collar jobs but a lot of older hippies still pining for Aquarius. The idea that Bernie could have won a general election by leveraging this kind of appeal is an interesting fantasy.


BTW

When I said Hillary lost my vote I meant in the primary not the general. Like with Biden, it was whatever it takes.

Down in a fascinating NYT Magazine story about the 2016 transition, I found this:

"At a black-tie gala dinner in Moscow, (future Trump National Security Adviser Michael) Flynn was photographed sitting beside Putin and Jill Stein, who would go on to become the Green Party’s candidate for president in 2016; Stein would win 1.4 million votes, including totals in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin that were greater than Trump’s margin of victory in those states."

I didn't know this.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2021/01/11/magazine/trump-obama-presidential-transition.html

Jon, your a busy dude.
The photos i thought were pretty much public knowledge. I suspect the Feds will likey take up again about the Russian Oligarchs and Flynn, Stein, Kushner's and Trump.
To not would be derlictiin of duty.
Just ask Comey.

I'm surprised in Soleri's take down of 'socialist" Bernie Sanders he forgot to mention Bernies 1988 "honeymoon" visit to Moscow.

I need to mention
Regardless of political persuasions
I have great respect for four individuals I consider decent honorable human beings.
Dwight Eisenhower, James Jimmy Carter, Ralph Nader and Bernie Sanders.
I find it difficult to say much good about other modern day politicians.

and

Soleri, I have limited ability to respond to your flowing fountain of genius poetic licensed posts.
I find myself pined up against the ropes by your mighty intellectual pen.
And when your RWW tag team member, Jon jumps in, all comers are tossed out of the ring into the spectator seats.
Maybe down the road an interesting blog might be on a subject that you and Talton disagree about.
Regardless, I’ll keep coming back until my 80 year old wrecked body and wracked brain quit.
The Peregrine was there on my desert stroll today. He just flew in from his supper.

"A complete purge of this genuinely dangerous, culture-unraveling bullshit needs to roar into action somewhere between nine and twelve minutes after Joe Biden and Kamala Harris pull away from the Capitol steps on January 20th, spilling post-toast martinis as their limo driver guns over the speed bump that was not only Donald J. Trump, but the entirety of his pestilent era, before quietly merging into early evening traffic."
Sean Beaudoin

FWIW (For What It's Worth)

Bernie's 2016 was the performance; 2020 was just a reunion tour

Cal, politics isn't about how good you, or Bernie, or Ralph, or Jimmy might be. It's about how effective we are as a nation when it comes to our governance and the management of our collective welfare. Competence and knowledge help but what is crucial is humility because it reminds us how interdependent we all are. Sadly, what followed the elections in 2000 and 2016 was gross incompetence, insane wars, and a political culture so toxic that it elected an anti-American ally of Vladimir Putin to the presidency. In his valediction to that exalted office he encouraged insurrection against the very United States of America he was elected to preserve and protect.

Excuse me if my limited enthusiasm for Bernie Sanders and Ralph Nader has now curdled into contempt.

In 2000 and 2016, there were two mainstream candidates who were smart, competent, and even visionary. What they weren't, however, was insane with purity voguing. America has always flirted with the religious hysteria. We had periodic Great Awakenings in the 19th century and in the 20th century Christianity itself became a subsidiary of Team R. But ostentatious religiosity is not merely a feature on the right, it's become one on our side as well. The left seems to think it can levitate the human condition above venality and greed. That's impossible because human beings are much too complicated to plausibly pretend their public lives are an exercise in moral superiority. In fact even on our best days politics is still grubby, frustrating, exasperating, and necessary. No amount of playacting a set of virtues can replace the compromises and deal-making that define all open societies. Think about this: if you're lucky enough to live in a democracy, the only cost to your self-conceit is abandoning the delusion that people should be better or smarter than they really are. You don't need to be a cynic to arrive at this epiphany. You have a lifetime of experience in the theater of hard knocks also known as human life. Count your blessings because it will never get any better than this.



Thanks Soleri.

Feds are vetting military personnel.
Will there be a Manchurian Candidate in a military uniform?

Looks like the media didn't get the memo about "unity".

I'm guessing "unity" isn't good for ratings?

«For the first time since the foolish War of 1812, the U.S. Capitol was invaded.»

So there is a big difference between "their terrorists" that "invade" and "our freedom fighters" who merely "flood":

https://www.workers.org/2018/10/39345/
«At the vote confirming Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court on Oct. 6, woman after woman screamed out in protest from the Senate gallery and was carried away by guards. ... People were pounding in outrage on the closed entrance to the Senate floor. ... U.S. Capitol Police said a total of 164 people were arrested that day for “crowding, obstructing, or incommoding.” ... The depth of opposition to Kavanaugh was revealed when on Oct. 4 over a thousand people from throughout the country, mostly women, demonstrated on Capitol Hill. ... At the Senate Hart Office Building, crowds saying “NO” to sexual assault and to the reactionary agenda that Kavanaugh represents flooded the atrium and every floor. Over 300 chanting, militant protesters were arrested that day. ... There were too many acts of indignation and outrage at Kavanaugh’s nomination to list them all. ... Outrage against Kavanaugh broke out initially on July 9 at the Supreme Court on Capitol Hill ... During Senate Judiciary Committee hearings the first week in September, over 227 demonstrators were arrested.»

An exceptional example of whataboutism. Funny, I don't recall any murders, deaths, property damage, thefts, vandalism, attacks on media, federal felony charges, or aiding and abetting by elected officials. And, wow, "over a thousand people from throughout the country..." showed up. Capitol police can handle that in their sleep, and did.

«An exceptional example of whataboutism.»

Absolutely no: I quoted that piece to show that our blogger is absolutely right that it was the first time since 1812 that “the U.S. Capitol was invaded” because the 2018 violent and planned attack and occupation of Congress to prevent it from performing a constitutional duty was described as a flooding and not an invasion. I even added that the attackers in 2018 were "freedom fighters" rather than "terrorists", so obviously there is another reason why the two attacks and occupations of Congress are not identical.

«Funny, I don't recall»

I am sorry about your memory disability, but the celebratory report I mentioned lists quite a few of the things you can't remember, and other videos and reports of that 2018 attack and occupation of Congress confirm them. Among many others photos from CNN may help:

https://edition.cnn.com/2018/10/04/politics/kavanaugh-protests-us-capitol/index.html

«An exceptional example of whataboutism»
«the attackers in 2018 were "freedom fighters" rather than "terrorists"»

That is such a big difference between 2018 and 2021 that the group that "defiantly" organized and celebrated that violent attack and occupation of Congress have not had their twitter account closed, and obviously Twitter knows well that "freedom fighters" are not "terrorists":

https://twitter.com/womensmarch

Still don't see any murders, deaths, property damage, thefts, vandalism, attacks on media, federal felony charges, or aiding and abetting by elected officials in your so-called "evidence?" Those grannies really look threatening to me. Did you even look at the link you provided?

«federal felony charges»

It is clearly not a federal felony when it is "freedom fitghters" that attack a federal building for the purpose of intimidating an elected US senator or two into changing their vote:

https://www.democraticunderground.com/10142161696

“Protesters opposed to the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court targeted the offices of swing vote Republican senators Thursday to pressure them to vote against President Donald Trump's nominee [...] About two dozen people were arrested outside the office of Sen. Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican, according to a police officer on the scene. Defiantly blocking the hallway in front of Corker's office, [...] The senator was not there, his staff said. The protesters then moved down the hall to the office of Sen. Susan Collins“

After all it was just "flooding", "pressure" and all done "defiantly".

«Those grannies really look threatening to me.»

Women too can be "freedom fighters", just like the unarmed middle aged woman who was shot in the back by a policeman could be a "terrorist".

She wasn’t shot in the back. In the neck, from the front. You and your false agenda just got erased.

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