Trump is the Living Embodiment of Plato’s ‘Republic’

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I was watching the latest episode of “Trump-splaining” on TV last week (where people from both sides of the aisle are trying to tell me what Trump “really” meant when he said XYZ) when it suddenly dawned on me that Trump himself is a microcosm of everything the GOP has been evolving into over the past two decades. All the bigotry, xenophobia, quick tempered anti-intellectualism that defines the modern GOP rolled into one ridiculously immature man-child. “Where have I seen that before?” An entire society reduced to a single entity sounded awfully familiar. Then it dawned on me: Plato’s ‘Republic’!” College was a long time ago, and archaic Greek fiction doesn’t exactly stick with you, but I remembered the concept.

A little over 2,300 years ago, Greek philosopher Plato wrote a book called “Republic” where he attempted to explain different aspects of life using a series of “thought-experiments”. In chapter (“Book”) two, his main character (Socrates) was challenged to prove that “justice” is its own virtue using an ingenious technique: Pointing out that things are easier to see when magnified, he applied all the characteristics of an single individual to an entire society (“kallipolis”) where a flaw in one man was present in EVERY man, and what impact… positive or negative… that would have on society as a whole. So, for example, if you want to know if it’s okay for a hungry man to steal a loaf of bread, what would be the consequences if EVERY man stole a loaf of bread when hungry? It’s much easier to see the impact is negative when it is multiplied by thousands. And that is Donald Trump. A magnification of everything The Republican Party has become over the past 20 years. To paraphrase the 2012 RNC platform: “You built this!”

Donald Trump IS Plato’s “kallipolis”. In “Republic”, the antagonist believes the selfish crook would be happier than the honest man because he can do/say/take whatever he wants, whenever he wants, while the honest man feels constrained by the rules and must make sacrifices. And indeed, that is how most of Trump’s supporters describe him. “No filter”, saying what he wants, when he wants, without regard for the consequences or what the “politically correct” police think is appropriate. With all the impulsiveness & self-assuredness of a 14-year old boy, Trump is the epitome of the modern GOP… as much as they refuse to believe it. Conservatives all believe that “greed” is a virtue and “poverty” is a sign of some moral failing.

But Plato/Socrates demonstrated how the chaos that results from every man, woman & child impetuously doing their own thing, taking unnecessary risks that endanger those around them, committing crimes, lying, cheating and stealing… would quickly make life miserable for everyone, and how justice creates rules that bring order to society that make obtaining happiness possible. The problem is the Trumptonions think one can achieve order & prosperity through greed & belligerence. Plato proved them wrong over two-millenia ago, yet they persist.

During the 2012 presidential campaign, “Mitt Romney” was the GOP nominee because: “He’s incredibly rich, so he MUST know what he’s doing!” Didn’t matter HOW he made his money. “Wealth = Intelligence/Superiority” in GOP Land. And it’s how I knew way back in December before the race ever began that Trump would be the GOP nominee. The majority didn’t love him, but there is a “floor” of support for wealthy Republicans that ensures they’ll always just tread water. Romney was briefly topped by Herman Cain; Trump was briefly topped by Ben Carson. Romney had his apocryphal religious nut rival Rick Santorum, and Trump had his apocryphal religious nut rival Ted Cruz. We had seen this movie before. And I had read this book before.

Trump is a bigot. But he doesn’t think he’s a bigot. “Black people love me!” he declares, and to prove it, he points to once awarding “Arsenio Hall” the winner of an episode of “The Apprentice”. Trump is a misogynist, and to prove he isn’t, he points to the Beauty Pageant he’s owned/promoted for the last 20 years. He has the same grasp of foreign policy as the kid who sat in the back row of your High School geography class (remember when schools taught “geography”?) playing games of “paper-football” with his buddy in the desk next to him, then blames his failing grade on “the teacher didn’t like me!”. He has all the patience of a toddler wondering why he can’t touch the hot stove. He doesn’t pause before blurting whatever crosses his mind. He is totally unfazed by the magnitude of the role bestowed upon him by becoming the GOP presidential nominee, and how 7-BILLION people analyze his every utterance for clues as to what it might mean for global economic/militaristic/environmental security. And like any other moody ‘Tween, he picks fights on Twitter over things someone said about him on Facebook. He’s immature, has a depth of understanding of the issues that wouldn’t soak a frog’s kneecaps, he’s rude, impulsive, obnoxious, childish, more than a trifle racist, dishonest, reckless, and clueless about just out of touch he truly is. Today’s Republican Party. He is them. They are him.

And that is why Donald J. Trump is the GOP nominee. Plato proved it over 2,000 years ago.
 



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August 22, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Election, General, mystery, Politics, Right-Wing Insanity, Seems Obvious to Me

Lack of Quid Pro Quo Doesn’t Make Soliciting Donations to Clinton Foundation Ethical or Legal

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Hillary’s supporters Senator Claire McCaskill and former DefSec Leon Panetta were on the Sunday Talk Shows yesterday defending her in light of revelations she may have solicited donations to The Clinton Foundation while she was Secretary of State… at the minimum, an ethics violation, and at worst, a crime… citing a “lack of evidence” that she did anything in exchange for these donations. As the old detective saying goes: “The absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.” But their argument completely misses the point (and they know it). It is entirely improper for someone so high up in any administration to be asking for support of a pet cause when they are in a position of power. Rarely is political “quid pro quo” in exchange for donations as obvious as when the (Bill) Clinton White House was accused of gifting stays in “The Lincoln Bedroom” to donors to his re-election campaign. And in 2004, it was discovered that “104 of 246 ‘Pioneers’ (largest contributors to the Bush campaign) ended up with either a job or appointment in the Bush Administration. But another reason such fundraising is taboo is the concern that White House officials soliciting donations puts our political friends/allies in the awkward position of feeling obligated to donate to stay in the good graces of the powerful person soliciting them… OR… every bit as worrisome… the potential problem that WH officials themselves might feel “obligated” towards the donor in some way.

It’s like The Boss asking if you’d like to buy some of his/her daughter’s Girl Scout Cookies. No pressure, right? But who’s going to say “No” to someone you’d like to please? Buying the Boss’ daughters cookies may not result in anything so obvious as a prime parking space or a pay raise, but simply not being excluded from principal meetings, being invited to play golf with The Brass, or not being fired the next time you show up late to work, are ALSO possible perks that might sway you to purchase 30 boxes of over-priced cookies you neither want nor need. But short of contacting every donor to The Clinton Foundation between the years of 2009-2013 to ask if they felt pressured to donate (and expect an honest answer), or auditing the Secretary’s phone logs to see if donors calls were put through or returned more quickly/frequently than those of people whom refused to donate, how exactly does one “prove” such donations had no influence?

Back in 2008, there was a minor “scandal” when it was discovered Bush Administration officials had used government resources to engage in partisan political activity (using government resources to get Republicans elected in the 2006 midterms)… a violation of the 1939 “Hatch Act”. And in 2004 it was revealed:
 

[D]eputy director of political affairs Scott Jennings gave a PowerPoint presentation that included slides listing Democratic and Republican seats the White House viewed as vulnerable in 2008, a map of contested Senate seats and other information on 2008 election strategy, GSA Administrator Lurita Doan asked how GSA could help “our candidates.”

 

Since Hillary is not accused of fundraising for her own political campaign, soliciting donations for her Foundation would not likely be a violation of the Hatch Act specifically, but the ethics of using one’s political position to fund-raise is no less unethical. Ethics rules are clear: “The Code of Federal Regulations says government employees should not participate in matters in which they have a personal financial interest.” The problem is, The House Ethics Committee has only defined “personal financial interest” as “campaign activity”, so whether or not any laws were broken might be a matter for the Supreme Court… of which Clinton is likely to have at least one (the current) vacancy to fill (if not more.)

In 2008, when Clinton was picked to be Obama’s Secretary of State, she pledged to provide him with an annual list of donors to The Clinton Foundation “to ease concerns that… as secretary of state… she could be vulnerable to accusations of foreign influence.” But after just one year, in 2010, donations to the “Clinton Health Access Initiative” (CHAI)… which accounts for more than 50% of the Foundation’s donations… were excluded from that list. No explanation for the exclusion has ever been given despite requests. [Ibid]

Last week, the NY Post published an article accusing the former Secretary of State of running “a shocking pay-to-play scheme” out of the State Department, where “fat cat donors” were granted “favors and access to Clinton’s inner-circle.”

Last April, the GOP posted a video of ABC’s Jon Karl asking White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest if he could “categorically deny” that donors to the Clinton Foundation or paid Bill Clinton speaking fees received “favorable treatment from this administration or the State Department [while Hillary was in charge]?” Earnest seemingly dodges the question, citing a “memorandum” that was drafted to outline “all of the existing ethical guidelines” to ensure Hillary’s State Department was not in violation of those guidelines. But when a second reporter notes that “The Clinton Foundation” was specifically exempted from that memorandum, Earnest dismisses “accusations [that] have not been accompanied by much evidence.” Feel better now?

I’m reminded of the fact Debbie Wasserman Schultz was “rewarded” with role in the Clinton campaign after being ousted when it was revealed she used the DNC to aide the Clinton Campaign to defeat Bernie Sanders… another serious breach of ethics. Such an act would make Schultz political poison anywhere else. To the Clinton campaign, ethics violations in the name of loyalty is what it’s all about.

When Hillary’s defenders demand her critics provide “proof” of quid pro quo in exchange for donations, they are setting up a straw man argument… something you thought only Conservatives did… you know, like skirting the rules then making excuses.
 

I'm voting Democrat but don't know who

 



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August 15, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Election, mystery, Politics, Scandals

Someone at the DNC needs to go to jail. If the Clinton campaign wants Sanders voters, they must.

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There has been a lot of discussion lately over just WHO hacked into the DNC’s email server to expose the fact that the DNC subverted democracy, actively aiding the Clinton campaign and deliberately sabotaging the Sanders campaign to ensure Hillary Clinton would be the Democratic nominee (despite polling worse against all the GOP candidates), but NO discussion whatsoever about the revelations themselves and what (if anything) should be done about it.

When news of these hacked emails broke last June, I agonized over “How does one support Hillary without rewarding the DNC for subverting democracy?” I’m even more ambivalent today about the idea. In one of my first Op/Ed’s this primary season (last February), I stated how if Clinton were to win the nomination, I would vote for her despite the fact I know her to be a closet-Conservative, a hawk, and an opportunist whose positions on the issues shift like the desert sands because the alternative… no matter whom it was going to be… would be far worse.

But now, I’m not entirely certain I can keep that promise as a result of these revelations regarding the DNC. My ambivalence having more to do with ensuring the DNC is held to account for undermining the election of the next president of the United States than any dislike/mistrust I have for Hillary Clinton. Electing a political wind-sock would not be the worst thing so long as that wind-sock tends to drift Left when pushed. But “rewarding” the DNC by actively supporting their hand-picked candidate only encourages them to do so again in the future. Someone needs to be held CRIMINALLY responsible. The simple resignation of DNC Chairperson Debbie Wasserman Schultz is not enough. A self-inflicted slap on the wrist is meaningless. Nothing so toxic that the Clinton campaign wasn’t willing to appoint her “honorary chair of [the Clinton] campaign’s 50-state program”. Schultz’s career in Washington is anything but over.

No, someone needs to GO TO JAIL over what happened if we are to ensure this never happens again. If I’m to cast my vote for Hillary next November rather than vote 3rd Party or leave that space blank on my ballot, someone in the Clinton campaign needs to step up and say, “That’s not right what they did! People need to know they can trust our elections and that their own Party does not actively sabotage the candidacy of fellow Democrats to promote one candidate over another!”

But instead, the Clinton Campaign is leading the charge in misdirecting the media to focus on the leakers rather than the revelations themselves. Their charge is that “this is Russia attempting to aide Donald Trump.” We actually have little-to-no evidence that that is the case. What if the “leaker” turned out to be Edward Snowden? Plenty of Democrats love Snowden. He IS after-all living in Russia. But you never hear anyone from the Clinton camp blaming Snowden for the leaks. Why? You know why as well as I do. Because it would make things very difficult for both the Clinton campaign AND supporters of Edward Snowden now supporting Hillary.

The silence and misdirection surrounding this story feels every bit as orchestrated as the primaries themselves. Meet the Press yesterday conducted an interview with Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, who mentions how skillfully the Clinton campaign has changed the subject from “how the DNC subverted the Sanders campaign” (“pushing fake stories that Sanders supporters were violent, etc.”) to instead get everyone to focus on the leakers themselves instead. MtP host Chuck Todd spends the entire 10 minute interview trying to get Assange to reveal the identity of the leaker while Assange keeps trying to bring the focus back to the revelations themselves… that “the DNC actively sabotaged the Sanders campaign and disenfranchised millions of Sanders voters” by undermining his campaign and nullifying their vote:
 


 

Not once during the interview did Todd discuss the revelations inside those leaked emails. Instead, he begins the interview with the false claim Assange was being being detained pending being tried for “child rape” (he has long been cleared) and ends the interview with the false charge that a Wikileaks revelation was responsible for the failed deadly Turkish coup last month… both obvious attempts to impugn the integrity or Assange and the value of Wikileaks itself.

Lately, I’ve been seeing these memes from Hillary supporters trying to “pre-blame” a potential “Trump victory” on Sanders voters who are threatening to vote for Trump. Total nonsense. The number of Bernie supporters that will vote for Trump would probably fill a phone booth with room left over to hold another convention. If Hillary loses to Trump, it won’t be because Sanders voters gave him the win. It will be because the DNC hand-picked the weakest candidate in the race to go up against him despite the fact she never polled beyond the single digits against ANY GOP candidate since the race began in mid-2015.

Some have tried to argue that the DNC was only promoting Hillary over Sanders because “Hillary was a Democrat and Sanders was not”. Even if that were true (it’s not. Sanders changed his Party affiliation before running), Maryland governor Martin O’Malley was ALSO in the race, so now, justify the DNC taking sides to push Clinton over O’Malley before a single vote had been cast. If anyone has a case against the DNC, it would be Governor O’Malley (whom has said nothing other than his lack of surprise that Russia may have been the ones who hacked the DNC.)

Hillary supporters don’t GET (and likely don’t care) that the DNC *undermined our Democracy* by actively promoting one candidate over another, while simultaneously actively *suppressing* the others. If they were REAL Democrats, that should raise serious concerns in them. But it doesn’t so long as their candidate is the one who benefited. But just imagine if Hillary had decided NOT to run again and Donald Trump… who once said he would be more likely to run as a Democrat, had in fact done so, and the DNC decided to ensure “The Donald” was the Democratic nominee? It could have happened. How would all these blase’ Hillary supporters feel about DNC malfeasance THEN? The neo-Democratic Party of today has become indistinguishable from the GOP of 40 years ago, where manipulating elections was once the exclusive purview of Republicans. But now, as long as it is THEIR candidate benefiting from this anti-Democratic misbehavior, they are just fine with it.

They undermined the Sanders campaign. They made sure Sanders would lose and then get Hillary to adopt his most popular positions in an attempt to assuage his supporters into supporting her. Am I supposed to just accept that because the alternative is worse?

I’m also repeatedly annoyed by the (false) claim that this Democratic platform is “the most Progressive platform in history” to try and mollify me. FDR had a FAR more progressive platform than what Hillary is proposing this election. Arguably, even Nixon’s platform of ending the war in Vietnam, creating the EPA and promising a National Health Insurance program was every bit as Progressive.

But far worse is the nonsense claim Hillary is the “most experienced candidate in history!” Even President Obama said it in his Convention speech last Wednesday, and we KNOW he knows better. Hillary was a Senator for 8 years and Secretary of State for 4. Thomas Jefferson… who wrote the Declaration of Independence, served as Governor of Virginia, was appointed both Vice President AND our first Ambassador to France… was FAR more experienced than Hillary… as was every other Founding Father who went on to become president. Every former governor or senator that went on to become VP and then president had more “experience” than Hillary Clinton does now. Hell, even Al Gore… who was also a Senator for 8 years, then VP for 8 years, and in the House of Representatives for 5 years before that had more “experience” than Hillary. She’s not even “the most experienced candidate of the last TWELVE years” let alone “in history.”

But I digress.

The DNC hand-picked the most vulnerable Democratic candidate, and now tries to guilt Sanders voters into supporting Hillary with the threat of a Trump victory. The only option left available to us is to make good on that threat.

It was only the threat of a “contested convention” that got the DNC to incorporate much of the Sanders platform into the official Party platform. And it is only the need of Sanders voters to vote for Hillary in November that will ensure she doesn’t lose in a razor-thin election defeat to Donald Trump. If they believe this race is going to be close, they are going to need the support of every Sanders voter. And right now, they think they have enough of us “locked up” that they don’t have to court our votes anymore. In a PBS interview from the floor of the DNC Convention, Senator Barbara Boxer said, “We have about 95% of Sanders voters, so I think we’ll be okay.” Translation: “We don’t need to worry about that last five percent. We’ll win without them.”

It’s a giant game of chicken, and the DNC is betting that Sanders voters will blink first. But Sanders voters have more leverage. We know a Democratic Congress will block every insane thing Trump might try to do (and block his SCotUS picks). The Generals have publicly stated they would “refuse” any unconstitutional order (such as ordering them to resume using “torture”.) And a Trump victory makes winning the all-important 2020 election ever more likely (“2020” will be a HUGE deal because it’s a Census year when redistricting takes place. And the Party in charge of Congress draws those maps. Before Obama, this country had never had more than two presidents serve two 8-year terms back to back. Now we’ve had three (Clinton-I, Bush-II, Obama). The likelihood of Hillary being re-elected to a second term to be the fourth straight two-term president are incredibly unlikely, making 2020 likely to be a big Republican year. So there is a small argument to be made that a Trump victory now might actually help Democrats in 2020 (and beyond.) That gives us leverage.

So, to the Clinton Campaign I say: The ball is in your court. Do you hold the DNC accountable (calling for a criminal prosecution?), or do we hold you accountable for doing nothing?

It’s hard not to think of Pastor Niemöller’s famed “first they came for the…” poem. Hillary supporters be warned. Ignore the DNC’s crimes now, and you have no recourse next time when the candidate they undermine is yours.
 

Silverman-ridiculous

 



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August 1, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · One Comment - Add
Posted in: Crime, Election, myth busting, Partisanship, Politics, Scandals, voting

Media FINALLY concedes DNC pro-Clinton bias ten months after Sanders supporters pointed it out.

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When the Democratic National Committee announced in Late August of last year that there would only be FOUR debates between the Democratic candidates (later increased to six under pressure from voters), scheduled for Friday & Saturday nights (including one opposite an NFL Playoff game) to ensure the smallest possible audience, there wasn’t a doubt in any Sanders’ supporters minds that this was deliberately done to protect Hillary Clinton and keep her opponents obscure while protecting her from looking bad in the days prior to the 2016 Primaries. And we said so. Loudly. But our protests fell on deaf ears. In the last few months of 2015, the blogosphere was replete with stories questioning the perceived coordination between the DNC and the Clinton Campaign and their obvious attempts to protect her. So how this is suddenly “news” to the Media following a WikiLeak of 19,252 stolen emails from the DNC but not released until the eve of the DNC Convention, is a mystery unto itself. Last September, the Huffington Post was already asking: “Why Is DNC Chairwoman Wasserman Schultz Afraid of Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley Debating Hillary Clinton?“. The hashtag “#AllowDebate” exploded on Twitter late last year as Sanders supporters posted graphics like:
 

DWS rigging primary for Clinton

 
Someone I have learned to loath in recent months is a blogger named Brad Bannon of the famed “Brad Blog”. Brad is a lawyer whose claim to fame is reporting GOP election fraud and voter suppression… a major issue for me, and Brad’s reports were must-read reading for anyone following election fraud closely. However, on June 3rd, Bannon… a frequent guest of talk radio… made the point on “The Leslie Marshal Show” that “Even if Bernie Sanders received more [of the popular] votes than Clinton, Sanders STILL would not win the nomination because (quote) “The Super Delegates are all Hillary’s friends and will NEVER vote for him” (end quote.) He did NOT say this in defense of Sanders or even in critique of Clinton. He said it in DEFENSE of Clinton as a Hillary supporter following a lengthy trashing of Bernie Sanders, urging him to concede the race prior to the California primary while criticizing “unrealistic” Sanders supporters. This long time fighter against GOP election theft, just admitted live on the air that he fully supported theft of the Democratic nomination by the “Super Delegates” so long as HIS candidate emerged victorious. That makes Bannon a raging hypocrite in my book and anything he reports on “election fraud” from here on out to be disingenuous & suspect. Marshall… also a Clinton supporter… was genuinely surprised when I admonished her for not taking Bannon to task for advocating “election theft” live on the air with her, clueless how anything Bannon said could be (mis)interpreted as unfair to Bernie Sanders or an insult to his supporters.

The fact “the fix was in” for Hillary from the very beginning is news to NO ONE… not even the Media now breathlessly reporting this “damning revelation”. And Senator Sanders… the clear victim in this travesty… has remained as magnanimous as ever, continuing to endorse Clinton (as he should) and calling for her support to ensure the defeat of Donald Trump. If anyone had reason to be bitter and threaten to pull a “Ted Cruz” at the Convention (refusing to endorse the Party frontrunner and eschew unity), it would be Sanders following this news, but he has not… and will not. Because this race was NEVER about Bernie, his “ego”, or “personal ambition”. The Media STILL does not get that. It’s one more thing we Sanders supporters have known all along. There’s a reason Bernie remains the only candidate in this race rated MORE honest & trustworthy than “dishonest” by voters on BOTH sides of the aisle:
 

Poll: Honest and Trustworthy

 
69% say Hillary dishonestTrump rated more honest than Clinton

 
And yet, Bernie will remain true to his word and endorse Hillary on the first night of the Convention. Any hopes that the Super Delegates will apologize to Sanders for their role in torpedoing a good man and nominate him instead of Clinton are still zero. As Bannon bragged: “They are all Hillary’s friends” and no scandal or trust-deficit is going to convince them to do the right thing and nominate Sanders. (I tweeted during the RNC Convention that “After courting Sanders voters & 4 days of trashing Hillary, Trump would be SO screwed if DNC nominated Bernie.” #RNCinCLE)

I‘ve been looking for a clear example of the benefits of IRV (“Instant Runoff Voting”) for years, and I don’t think I could find a better example than this election season. If I could pass ONE law tomorrow, it would be to make IRV the law of the land. No other single change we could make to our democracy would have as much a positive impact on our nation as “Instant Runoff Voting”. (For those unfamiliar with IRV, watch this short video on YouTube. No more spoilers. No more “two-party system”. Mitigates much of the influence of Big Money in politics, and would actually help increase voter turnout as people once again begin to feel like their vote actually counts.

If we had IRV, Sanders supporters could vote for Bernie without fear of him being a spoiler that could potentially help Trump win. Why? Because with IRV, no one wins with less than 50% of the vote. If your first choice doesn’t win 50%, your vote goes to your second choice… and so on until there are only two candidates left in the race. So you could vote for who you REALLY wanted without fear of helping someone like Trump win with as little as 30% of the vote. You could vote for Bernie, Jill Stein, and even Gary Johnson before voting for Hillary and still defeat Trump. And Bernie wouldn’t feel the need to swallow his pride and endorse the benefactor of DNC election fraud just to prevent a Trump victory.

But that’s another story for another day.

The news that “the DNC took sides and aided Hillary over her rivals” is about as Earth-shattering as last weeks’ weather report. We said it. A number of mainstream news sources reported on it. CNN’s Wolff Blitzer pushed a visibly frustrated Debbie Wasserman Schults to explain why they would not agree to more Democratic debates last December. The Right-wing Washington Times reported on Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley accusing the DNC of “trying to preordain the outcome” LAST AUGUST.

Several weeks ago, I advocated for Hillary to “call for the resignation of DWS”. She didn’t. And it took this “shocking revelation” for Schultz to do so on her own. Meanwhile, Clinton campaign surrogates were out yesterday trying to shift attention to just WHO released this information and blaming THEM for exposing what the DNC did on their behalf (“sure they rigged the election and we were the direct beneficiary of their thwarting of democracy, but the REAL criminals here are the ones revealing their crime!”)

This was news to no one. The Media is “shocked! shocked!” by this “revelation”? “Your winnings, Madam Secretary.”
 



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July 25, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Election, Partisanship, Politics, Scandals

Why Sanders Endorsement of Hillary is Smart, maybe even brilliant

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Last week, Senator Bernie Sanders “finally” endorsed Hillary Clinton, much to the dismay of millions of Sanders supporters, but it was the smart… possibly even brilliant… thing to do, and my advice to him (as a Sanders supporter) is to do more of it. If I were Bernie, I’d be out there every day in support of Hillary as her biggest cheerleader. What he gets in return is FAR greater than anything he could hope to achieve by continuing to challenge her for the nomination.

This is NOT a prescription for Bernie being selected as Hillary’s running mate. I don’t want that. HE doesn’t want that. This is not about trying to get in Clinton’s good graces.

First, a cold splash of reality: the “Super Delegates” are not going to suddenly come to their senses and nominate Bernie over Hillary in a Contested Convention. The DNC didn’t lie, cheat & steal for 15 months to make sure the candidate who polled worse against Trump would be the Party nominee, just to throw her under the bus at the Convention. I think nothing short of Hillary being down by 20 points could make the Super Delegates suddenly worry more about winning than making sure Hillary is the nominee, and presently, even in her worst polls, the two candidates (Clinton & Trump) are tied just two weeks out. Short of an indictment (with nothing on the horizon) or catastrophic injury, Hillary will be the Democratic nominee (much to my dismay.) Personally, I’m more focused now on ensuring strong Progressives retake Congress, pushing for Progressive legislation and even keeping Hillary in check.

But coming out in support of Hillary has already aided Bernie in achieving a few major victories. The big wake-up call two weeks ago was when Democratic members of the Senate (ALL Super Delegates and 90% for Hillary) openly “booed” Bernie upon entering Congress for having not yet endorsed Hillary. This told us a couple of things: 1) If Bernie is to become a leader in the Senate, he needs the support of the very people that booed him, and 2) There is no way those Clinton supporters were going to cast their vote for Bernie in a Contested Convention if they are already booing him.

By endorsing Hillary, he makes those members of Congress happy. If for some reason Hillary did not have a lock on the nomination come the Convention, you don’t want 400 angry Democrats in the House & Senate voting against you out of spite. This way, they could vote for a candidate they have good feelings towards. And THAT is why, if I were Sanders, I’d be praising Hillary 24/7 between now and the end of the Convention (even if I had to paint a smile on my face to do it.)

Endorsing Hillary has already earned his campaign some historic concessions from the Clinton Campaign. Some of Bernie’s signature policy goals were adopted as part of the official Democratic Party Platform… something no other losing candidate has accomplished in the last 100 years (if ever.) First, where Bernie proposed “every public college & university be tuition free” and Hillary only went so far as to call for making college “affordable” (asking, “Do you want to pay for Donald Trump’s kids to go to college?”), the two sides brokered a compromise, promising a goal of tuition-free public college to “any family earning less than $125,000/year.” That’s a huge victory.

The second Sanders policy integrated into the Party Platform was a call to move towards a “$15/hr Minimum Wage”. Hillary was only willing to go as far as $12 nationally during the campaign… a position that proved both inconvenient and embarrassing when she was repeatedly caught embracing the idea of a $15 Minimum Wage (once when the SEIU was caught distributing fliers claiming she supported it, and again when she was invited to appear with the governors of New York & California to praise the passing of $15 MinWage legislation in those states despite being on the record as supporting only $12 “Nationally”. Clinton danced madly to deflect criticism, saying she “ALWAYS supported a $15 Minimum Wage… just not ‘nationally’.” But now, a promise to move towards “$15 Nationally” was made a part of the Party platform (basically a “gimme” for Bernie since the country would have to move towards $15 nationally “eventually”… but with no specific timeline AFAIK.)

The Clinton campaign did agree to investigate “the fossil fuel industry for misleading the public about the causes & dangers of climate change” and a call for “a massive investment in renewable energy” that sets the ambitious goal of “obtaining all U.S. energy from renewable fuels by 2050.” BUT they refused to call for a ban on “fracking” or for a “carbon tax”. Because, after all, this neo-Democratic Party is Nixon’s GOP of 50 years ago.
 

Nixon/Clinton

 

With the Hillary supporters in Congress now on his side, Bernie will become a leader in the Senate. And as a high-profile leader with the voters on his side, he can push for the very legislation he has already called for, making sure it ends up on Clinton’s desk to sign (like the “college tuition” bill, a “$15 minimum wage” bill, or “climate change” legislation)… possibly even rallying enough support to override a Clinton veto should it ever come to that (highly unlikely.)

“The Powers That Be” want Hillary to be the Democratic nominee. That’s not going to change. And we can complain about it being “a rigged system”, but it’s of little use complaining to the people who did the rigging. “The Pied Piper” didn’t have to “like” rats to get them to follow him out of Hamelin (Germany), he just needed to convince them to follow him. Like I said, “If I were Bernie, I’d be out there like Elizabeth Warren defending Hillary from the likes of Trump & Pence. The more Good Will he earns among her supporters, the more it helps him achieve his goals… and that is what we want after all, right?
 

NOTE: This week is the Republican Convention. Don’t bother looking for a Party coup to reject Trump and nominate someone else. They have already resigned themselves to the idea Trump will be their nominee this election and are praying Congress would keep a “President Trump” in check. Ditto for the Democratic Convention next week. Short of a catastrophe, Hillary’s supporters are every bit as married to the idea of her being “the first woman president” that not even the threat of being behind by “double-digits” would convince them to abandon her at this late stage. And while most pundits are doubting it, I do think Hillary is likely to pick Elizabeth Warren as her running mate. And while I think that would be a huge mistake (opening up a secure Democratic Senate seat and turning a Senate leader into someone who attends State funerals for a living), if Warren were to leave, that would make Bernie’s new role as THE Progressive Leader in the Senate all the more powerful.)
 



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July 18, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Election, Politics

Dallas and The Slippery Slope of Allowing Police to Play Executioner

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Last week was another tragic week following the deaths of two black men at the hands of police under dubious circumstances and five police officers in Dallas by a disturbed black man using a #BlackLivesMatter protest as cover. But just as disturbing was the method used to “stop” the Dallas shooter… not “capture”, “arrest” or “subdue”, but the outright “execution” of the gunman… former military and possibly suffering from PTSD. After shooting and killing FIVE of Dallas’ finest, the man HAD to be stopped. There is no question of that. But the “final solution” (pun intended) was to bypass DUE PROCESS and simply execute the gunman by sending in a robot to plant a bomb and detonate it with him inside.

Now, NO ONE is defending the life of the gunman over the lives of the officers he killed. If you think that’s what this story is about, you’re sadly mistaken. No. This is about the “slippery slope” of granting an already overly-militarized police force the power to perform summary battlefield executions without benefit of trial.

Back in the 1976, an obscure British comic book anti-hero was created called Judge Dredd (you’re more likely to know the mediocre 1995 Stallone film of the same name [or its 2012 remake].) Dredd was a future police officer in the far-off year of 2000. Thanks to an over-burdened court system due to too many criminals thanks to the collapse of society, officers like Dredd were bestowed the power of “Judge, Jury & Executioner“. Don’t bother arresting a person if caught red-handed, simply sentence them to “death” and execute them on the spot based solely on the officers own judgement. No muss. No fuss.

Police officers in this country have the SOLE job of apprehending criminals to stand trial. Officers may carry guns to protect themselves and others. They may NOT simply execute a suspect, denying them “due process”, and certainly not by planting a bomb. to blow them up when they won’t surrender.

Again, I repeat my point about not defending the shooter nor his actions. That’s not the point. His crime is not the point. Whether he deserved what he got is not the point. This is about power we are ceding to an already over-militrized police force that is looking more and more like an occupying army with each passing year. Gone are the days of “Officer Bob” patrolling his beat… the same city-street day after day, getting to know the residents by name. Urban sprawl has made that all but impossible today. And with a Congress that is unwilling to deny the mentally impaired or even terrorist suspects from purchasing a firearm, no wonder our streets look more like warzones and our police like soldiers.

The late Pierre Salenger, former Press Secretary to President Kennedy (later reporter for ABC News) once told the following story: “Back in 1962 during The Cuban Missile Crisis, President Kennedy had to leave an event early to deal with an emergency. Rather than tell the Press he had matters to attend to without the inevitable Q&A, Kennedy instead lied to the Press about why he had to leave early. A little white lie. No big deal, and no one would think twice of it today. But it marked the first time a president willfully lied to the American people.” And so the “slippery slope” began. Soon it became totally accepted that a president may just lie to the country and no one thinks twice about it. We may even tell ourselves “they’re doing it for our own good.”

Following the scandalous Nixon presidency, Jimmy Carter ran for president vowing to “never lie to the American people”. No way to know if he kept that promise, but we KNOW no one else since has. Whether or not it is ever justified is not the question. It’s a power we surrendered to those who have proven they can’t be trusted with that kind of power.

Right now, there are several million paranoid white NRA members that are stockpiling guns & ammunition for the day “the gub’ment” is coming to “take their guns away”. How different are THEY from the “Black Lives Matter” people in fearing for their lives from the government? And how many of those white NRA members do you think sided with the government against the BLM protesters? (I reiterate that the Dallas shooter was NOT affiliated with BLM. Reports are that he had been planning an attack on police for months, well before the killings of Alton Sterling and Philandro Castile. The shooting may have triggered him to snap, or he may have simply used the protests as cover.)

In the Dallas Shooter case, WHAT IF police had instead pumped the building full of tear-gas or sleeping-gas, allowing them to take him alive? If that were an option, would you STILL have advocated the use of a BOMB sent in by robot to execute him? Would it matter to you if this were a former soldier suffering from PTSD? We’ve all seen police in riot gear with bullet-proof plexiglass shields. If the police could not go in after him, could a “hostage negotiator” have talked him into coming out with his hands up (don’t shoot)? Was the weaponry he was using too deadly to make that worth risking? And if so, whose fault is THAT? If you’re asking why an irrational man committing an irrational act didn’t rationally surrender to spare his own life, that in itself is not rational. And just how certain were they he didn’t have a hostage or that no one else was in that building before setting off that bomb?

I stress again that this is NOT about defending the man who killed five police officers. It is about deciding whether or not we want to confer the power to deny Due Process… a right established in our Constitution and reserved to the COURTS… to a police force that already behaves like an occupying army in the middle of a warzone (and further justifying the sale of military-grade hardware to the general public). It’s a slippery-slope… or so the gun nuts keep telling me.
 



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July 11, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Civil Rights, Crime, Guns & Violence, Racism, Unconstitutional

If Hillary Wants My Vote, here is what she must do.

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How many times have Hillary supporters (and Hillary herself) tried to guilt Bernie supporters into voting for her simply to “Stop Trump”? Following up on last weeks’ unanswered question of how Bernie supporters could possibly be expected to vote for Hillary without rewarding the questionable tactics of the DNC to suppress support for Senator Sanders… be it either by denying him debates so the he remained a relative unknown for as long as possible, or outright voter disenfranchisement (as seen in NY, AZ & PR to name only a few examples)… this week we take a look at just what Hillary herself can & must do to avoid being materially harmed for things the DNC did on her behalf.

At least once or twice a week now it seems, a Hillary supporter will tell me to “face reality”, that if I don’t vote for Clinton, I’m only “helping Trump win.” Sorry. Call me crazy, but I need a better reason than “not as bad as the other guy” to vote someone President of the United States. Why should I vote for someone whom they themselves can’t give me a good reason to vote FOR them better than “the other guy is worse”? Or that I would be “obstructing history” by not electing the “first woman president” (yet they didn’t “obstruct history” by not nominating the first Jewish candidate? But I digress.) Presently, my fall-back candidate is Jill Stein of the Green Party, so I’ve got the “first woman” thing covered.

So here is my brief (and undoubtedly incomplete) list of things Hillary Clinton should consider doing if she intends to draw any significant proportion of the 13 Million Sanders voters (whom she can’t defeat Trump without) over to her side:

  • Call for the resignation of Debbie Wasserman Schultz as head of the DNC. This is more of a symbolic gesture than anything else, but it would register the disapproval of Sanders voters with how the DNC conducted themselves and show that there are consequences for that misbehavior. A lack of ANY consequences demonstrates tacit approval of the DNC’s highly questionable (bordering on downright illegal) handling of the 2016 Primaries, giving them the green light to do the same in future elections. It will also demonstrate to Sanders voters that you acknowledge the nomination process was handled poorly, “unnecessarily” casting a cloud over your “victory”.
  •  

  • You claim to “support a $15 Minimum Wage, just not nationally by fiat. Only $12 Nationally” while supporting higher rates on “a state-by-state basis.” But the country MUST raise the minimum wage to $15 eventually, and as long as a person working full-time for “minimum wage” still qualifies for public assistance (food stamps, housing, child services, etc), all you are doing is subsidizing corporate-America by shifting the burden from businesses to the taxpayer. So, please tell us how quickly do you see us getting to a $15 national “Minimum Wage”?
  •  

  • What is your plan to invest in infrastructure? This country is still trying to squeeze out the last drops of value from our last investment in infrastructure during The Great Depression. Millions of Americans are driving across Depression-Era built bridges, children being educated in Depression-Era built schools, trains running on tracks that date back to the 19th century transporting people & deadly cargo (oil trains) at speeds that also date back to the 19th century, and trying to power a 21st century society using an electrical grid that dates back to the early 20th century.
  •  

  • What about promoting GREEN technology as both “business opportunity” and to fight “Climate Change”? Do you have a strategy?
  •  

  • Speaking of which, what IS your plan to fight Climate Change? Senator Sander made the point that Climate Change is a greater threat to humanity than gnat-like terrorist organizations like “ISIS”. Do you share his urgency?
  •  

  • You say you want to see the “Citizens United” Supreme Court decision overturned, noting in fact that it was a judgement AGAINST YOU personally and you therefore are motivated to see it overturned. Yet you took full advantage of the “SuperPAC” provisions and virtually unlimited cash flowing from Corporate America into our political campaigns made possible by “Citizens United”. You chose not to eschew SuperPAC money in THIS election, will you fight to overturn “Citizens United” before you have a chance to take advantage of it again in 2020?
  •  

  • RELEASE THE (BLEEPING) TRANSCRIPTS of (all 42) paid speeches given after resigning as Secretary of State. You claim there is nothing embarrassing or potentially harmful to your campaign in them, yet you keep finding new excuses not to release them. First it was, “I will when everyone else does” (when there was no evidence anyone else had), then it was “in exchange for Trump’s tax returns.” Trump not releasing his returns is TRUMP’S problem. Refusing to release your Transcripts only HELPS him by allowing him to point to YOUR OWN avoidance of transparency.
  •  

  • You say you are for “Universal Health Care”… just not “Universal SINGLE-PAYER Health Care”, going so far as to say it “will never ever happen.” You may be unaware that we ALREADY have a “Universal SINGLE-PAYER Health Care” system. It’s called “Medicare”, providing basic full coverage to Seniors and beloved by even 80% of Republicans. WHY NOT propose “Medicare for All?” How often have we all watched late night infomercials for “St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital” where tearful families call it a “miracle” to simply receive the same free medical care other industrialized nations take for granted? It’s pathetic.
  •  

  • You only propose making higher education “affordable”, while Senator Sanders campaigned on making “public colleges & universities free (again.)” Why are you against free public college? Presently, we have a system where tens of thousands of young people find their only way to afford college is to risk their lives by enlisting in the military to earn the money… once not a huge deal, but in this new age of Endless War, it is yet one more of this nation’s great shames that the poor must risk life & limb just to afford college while the wealthy do not.
  •  

  • Call to put an end to disgraceful private for-profit prisons. Your campaign cut ties with the private prison industry late last year, even criticizing the practice, yet you have not said you would do anything to abolish the industry (unlike Sanders, who introduced a bill to ban the Federal Government from using them [ibid]). The United States actually has MORE people in prison than China (which has quadruple our population plus political prisoners.) We spend more on prisons than we do on Education (yes, there’s a connection), and the corporations that run these prisons spend millions lobbying Congress for more & stricter laws to fill their prisons and their coffers. Even a majority of Republicans agree matters of “security” should not be privatized. It’s time for the industry to go.
  •  

  • You stated that you oppose “reinstating Glass-Steagall” (repealed by your husband) but instead call for a “21st century Glass-Steagall” (unlike Sanders who wants the old law reinstated.) Why? What “deficiencies” are you aware of in the old law that need updating? What changes do you believe are needed? And if Democrats don’t regain control of Congress, do you trust Republicans to help write that new regulation of all things financial without filling it full of loopholes & goodies for their friends in the financial industry? Assure us you’re not looking to do the same for YOUR friends in the financial industry.
  •  

  • You are squishy on the subject of “Free-Trade”… particularly the TPP. You tell critics you “oppose the TPP”, but in an interview last May, you added the caveat “in its current form”. What assurances can you give Sanders voters that you will oppose all destructive free-trade agreements? When Americans must compete with lower-wage workers in other countries with lower standards of living, there is no way we can compete, and the American worker ALWAYS loses.

In any other election year, a candidate such as yourself with an “Honest & Trustworthy” rating below that of Used Car Salesman wouldn’t have a prayer of winning the presidency if it were not for your “good fortune” (cough) to be running against an opponent “less popular than head lice”…
 

Hillary: Only 33% say she's trustworthy
 
Trump less popular than lice

 
I’ve noted previously on here that despite being an ardent Bernie supporter, I’m not “Bernie or Bust”. I don’t like giving myself ultimatums, boxing myself into a position I may be uncomfortable with later. I also happen to live in a state (Texas) with no “write-in vote” capability… not that I’d utilize it if we did because write-ins have a success rate just South of snowballs in Hell. I’m also a realist. I accept that it would likely take an Earth-shattering revelation to convince enough Super Delegates to back Bernie Sanders over Hillary Clinton this late in the game. A few examples of what those revelations might be come to mind:

  • Someone (“Anonymous”, “WikiLeaks”, Snowden) leaks damaging video from one of Hillary’s infamous “Wall Street speeches” (that she continues to refuse to release the transcripts of despite insisting there’s nothing damaging in them.)
  •  

  • It is revealed that she solicited donations to “The Clinton Foundation” WHILE Secretary of State, and evidence of that (criminal) act was among those 30,000 “personal, non-work related” emails she deleted.
  •  

  • A major health issue incapacitates her.

Madam Secretary, so far, I have yet to see you reach out to Sanders supporters in any way beyond simply fear-mongering over the need to “defeat Trump”. You have addressed NONE of our concerns and continue to couch your entire campaign in secrecy as you embolden the DNC to drift ever further to the Right as it fills the void left behind as Trump & his psychotics drag the GOP to the far FAR Right. I’m not on the Right. I’m not in the Middle either. And I’m not interested in voting for either. To date, you have yet to provide me with a compelling reason for me to give you my vote. There are 13 Million of us (yes, “13 Million”), and despite what so many of your foolish enthusiastic supporters believe, you won’t be able to defeat Trump without us. It’s time you started taking that seriously. Give us a reason other than “stopping Trump” to trust you with the presidency. As noted in the intro, we’ve already got the “first woman president” thing covered should we decide to vote for Jill Stein. Millions more may simply stay home on Election Day, unmoved by threats of what a Trump presidency might mean if the alternative is voting for someone they neither trust nor whose policies they support. Stop giving us reasons to NOT vote for “the other guy” and tell us why we should vote FOR you.

Because right now is your last chance.
 



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June 27, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Election, Partisanship, Politics, voting

How Does One Support Hillary without rewarding DNC misbehavior?

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It’s a question I’ve been asking myself for a while now: After everything the Democratic National Committee did to rig the primary in favor of Hillary Clinton, how do I, as a Bernie supporter, “reward” the DNC by voting for their hand-picked candidate? And will it even be necessary? Back in February, I wrote a long Op/Ed entitled “I’ll Support Hillary [if she becomes the nominee], but…”. Now I find myself wondering about the consequences of doing so.

There’s a not-so-old saying: “When you vote for the lesser of two evils, you’re still voting for ‘evil'”… not that I think Hillary is “evil” (though many might disagree). It’s like in the movies when the bad guy says, “You can arrest me or stop the bomb, but you can do both”, so the intrepid cop must let the mad bomber go KNOWING they’re going to do it again. And I just KNOW that if I reward the DNC by voting for the candidate they hand-picked, they’re going to do it again having learned they can thwart Democracy as well as any Republican without consequence.

You may be asking: What exactly did the DNC do that was so bad?

Well, starting from the beginning, scheduling only four debates last year between the Democratic nominees was bad enough when the front-runner is a household name (former First Lady for eight years, Senator from New York, ran for president in the 2008 election in a dead heat that stretched into June, then Secretary of State for four years, vs a relative unknown like Sanders (and O’Malley who was never even close), but ensuring those competitors STAYED unknown by scheduling those debates on Friday & Saturday nights… one even opposite an NFL Playoff game. The DNC even publicly criticized Sanders mid-campaign, taking Clinton’s side after she refused to say Sanders was “qualified” to be president, leading Sanders to react to an inaccurate newspaper headline by questioning Hillary’s own qualification to be president by questioning her judgement (not unheard of between competing candidates). When has the DNC ever taken sides in a debate between two Democratic candidates?

Then, during the Primaries themselves, we saw rampant voter disenfranchisement… not just by barring “Independents” from voting in Democratic primaries (which normally isn’t a bad idea except in this case where one of the candidates was a life-long Independent), but setting absurd deadlines for voters to change their Party affiliation from “Independent” to “Democrat” just so they could vote in this primary (In New York, the deadline to change your Party was ELEVEN MONTHS before the primary… long before many voters even knew of Bernie’s existence and they may want to vote for him.) In many states, we saw ballots without Sanders name on them (“Democrats only” even though he changed his Party to run), people being denied the right to vote in several states (126,000 in Bernie’s birthplace of Brooklyn), and the mass closure of polling places (over 1,100 in Puerto Rico where Sanders was FAR more popular than Clinton because he opposed the Wall Street controlled “bailout” of the Province while Hillary supported it… until she found out it was unpopular, then came out against it.)

But going back even before all that, someone posted the following disturbing graphic:
 
DNC backed Clinton AFTER Sanders declared
 

Apparently, even AFTER Senator Sanders announced his candidacy, nearly a month later, the DNC sent out a memo stating their “goal” was to help “HRC” (Hillary Rodham Clinton)… not “the eventual Democratic nominee”… defeat the eventual GOP nominee. Keep in mind that at the time, there were FIVE Democratic candidates (Clinton, Sanders, O’Malley, Webb & Chafee), but the DNC was ALREADY in the tank for Hillary. And why not? The head of the DNC… Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz… was a former spokesperson for the Clinton campaign in 2008.

So the fix was in from the beginning. Hillary was going to be the Democratic Party’s nominee come hell or high-water. It bugs the hell out of me when I hear people say, “Hillary won fair & square“. No she didn’t. On what planet is ANY of the things I mentioned above considered “winning fair & square“? I have no doubt the DNC was surprised as hell that a relative unknown like Sanders could pose such a formidable challenge to Hillary. We’ve all seen the photos of enormous crowds showing up to Sanders rallies: 20,000, 30,000, perhaps even 100,000 people flocking to support the Senator. I have challenged Hillary supporters for over a month now to produce a single verifiable photo of a Clinton rally that approaches the massive crowds that came out in support of Bernie (even offering a free BluRay player) to justify the idea that support & enthusiasm for her is just as great as it is for Bernie, thus explaining away her easy wins & delegate lead that has all but assured her of the nomination.

Nothing. Nada. Zip.

Searching on my own, the largest crowd of a Clinton rally that I could find was 5,000 people crammed onto tiny Roosevelt Island, NY. Nothing else even approached the numerous overflow crowds flocking to Sanders. Former Liberal Champion turned lobbyist & Clinton supporter Howard Dean tried to “explain away” Bernie’s huge crowds citing his own massive popularity from the 2004 race: “After a while, you start to see the same faces in the crowd over & over again.” The problem with that explanation is (among other things), it doesn’t explain why Clinton’s crowds were so much smaller. If she doesn’t have “enthusiastic fans following her from state to state” like Bernie supposedly does, wouldn’t that ALSO point to an enthusiasm gap? Somehow, I don’t think the same 20,000 fans are following Sanders from Kentucky to Michigan to California. Is Dean saying the polls that showed his own huge popularity prior to his implosion were all wrong and he was never really that popular to begin with? I’m sure that’s what he told himself every night for years afterwards rather than blame his failure on himself.

So now, we, as Bernie supporters, may be forced to chose between the candidate the DNC rigged the election for to ensure was our nominee, voting for a third-Party candidate and gamble that doing so doesn’t allow Donald Trump to win in an unnecessarily close contest that Clinton could potentially lose without Sanders voters, or (most distasteful of all), actually voting for Donald Trump for any number of reasons, not the least of which: payback for the DNC rigging the election against our preferred candidate. (Note: 2020 will be a MUCH bigger election than 2016 since it will be a census year… which means the Party in control of Congress will redraw the district maps for the whole damn country. The chances of a FOURTH 2-term presidency in a row is extremely slim. Before Obama, we had never had more than two in a row. The thought of giving the GOP time to get its act together to put forth a better candidate to defeat an unpopular Clinton presidency in 2020 is worrisome. Maybe letting an extremely unpopular GOP candidate win now so they are strapped with rallying behind him again in 2020 might not be the worst idea in the world. The fly in the ointment? It doesn’t take a Republican very long to create global chaos & economic disaster. George W. Bush had only been president eight months when his incompetence led to 9/11. Followed 18 months later by the invasion of Iraq (the consequences of which we are still dealing with today.) So there’s THAT.

The list of reasons why Bernie supporters just can’t see themselves voting for Hillary is long. It has become painfully clear that the rules just don’t apply to the Clinton’s. My qualms with Bill were mostly on a personal level (his minor infractions were rarely connected to him seeking political power), but Hillary is FAR different. Every “controversy” surrounding her leads to “ambition” & political power.

Now, I personally don’t think “Hillary’s email” is a big deal. Mostly because I don’t think anything of great significance was compromised. But what IS a big deal is the SECRECY, the PATTERN of ignoring the rules and circumventing them when they prove inconvenient. She KNEW her private email server was a security risk. Her own personal tech consultant hired to maintain the server (at quite some expense) had informed her of at least two failed hacking attempts. We know this because it came out in the State Department’s internal investigation. Yet she did not inform the State Department of the attempted hacking. Now remember, the State Department ALREADY provides their employees with FREE secure email hosting, and if anything goes wrong, it’s on THEM. Yet Hillary… at great personal expense (and inconvenience should the server go down)… chose to use a personal email server, which entailed hiring someone to build, secure, run & maintain. Why? The most obvious answer is “secrecy”. What she wanted to keep secret was anyone’s guess. Was she soliciting foreign donations to The Clinton Foundation in her capacity as Secretary of State? That would be illegal. But it also wouldn’t have fallen under “official business”, so when she says she “only deleted personal email”, “evidence” could very well have been destroyed forever.

Currently, the defense of Hillary Clinton using a private email server seems to boil down to “no evidence of a crime”. Is that the standard by which Clinton intends to run her White House?

But the secrecy doesn’t end there. What about those Wall Street speech transcripts she keeps finding new & creative ways to avoid releasing? What did she say in those speeches she doesn’t want voters to hear? She says it’s nothing that might make her look bad, but we KNOW if those speeches made her look GOOD we would have seen them by now (as evidenced when she released a single 15 minute clip talking about equality for women in the workplace from one of 42 hour-long speeches.) Is she hiding something damaging?

Clinton has done more to reach out to Republicans than Sanders voters. Who are all those anti-Trump ads intended to sway? Democrats? The most she has said to supporters of Bernie is that “We must unite to defeat Trump”… which is NOT an argument to vote FOR Clinton or to drop support for Sanders.

“First woman president” & “defeating Trump” are not terribly convincing arguments to abandon one’s principles and rally behind a candidate you believe was “gifted” the nomination like a birthday present… pretty bow & all.

The DNC has become GOP-Lite. Their standard-bearer is a Closet Conservative that has done NOTHING to reach out to Sanders Supporters. Tell us again why we should support Hillary? Meanwhile, her supporters do nothing but attack THE most Liberal member of Congress (#1 Bernie vs #12 Hillary), call him (and his wife) juvenile names, and instead of welcoming him/us into the fold, they try to get him kicked out of the Democratic Party (numerous petitions). And when I/you point out all the open hostility towards both us and Bernie, their reaction isn’t one of contrition but “We don’t need you! We can win without you!” Their arrogance surpassed only by their ignorance if they think Hillary’s lead is so large & solid that she can simply dismiss (at least) 8.5 million voters.

So how do I vote for someone that is the beneficiary of “election chicanery”, a candidate with an almost Nixonian penchant for secrecy, a candidate that has done NOTHING to reach out to me and address my concerns, and whose supremely arrogant supporters have repeatedly told me “we don’t want you. We don’t need you”? Honestly, I’m not entirely sure I can.

In any other election year, Hillary would not stand a chance of victory with an unfavorability rating approaching 60% if she were not so lucky as to be running against a man with an unfavorability rating over SEVENTY percent. The ONLY candidate with a net favorable approval rating is Sanders. Right now there is talk of a possible coup during the GOP Convention to deny Trump the nomination. This chorus grows louder as the gap between him & Clinton grows. What happens at the DNC convention a week later if that coup succeeds? Say the delegates deny Trump the nomination and pick someone more electable to be their nominee like Romney or Ryan? (a possibility I discussed several weeks ago.) Coupled with another potential Hillary “scandal” should someone “leak sensitive information” uncovered in her emails or those transcripts just in time for the Convention, or even uncover misdeeds (illegal fundraising?) that she may have engaged in during her time as Secretary of State? Suddenly, the wisdom of nominating someone with an unfavorability rating in the high-50’s/low-60’s may not seem like such a good idea any more. So don’t be so quick to dismiss Bernie or his supporters.

Note to Hillary Supporters: She won’t win without Sanders voters. Start acting like it.
 



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June 20, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · 4 Comments - Add
Posted in: Election, General, myth busting, Partisanship, Politics, Rants, Seems Obvious to Me, voting

Pro-Gun Supporters ALREADY Told Us They Don’t Need an Assault Weapon to Stop One

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“If *I* had been in that (latest mass shooting location), *I* could have taken that guy out!” You heard them too I’ll bet. Those chest-beating low-brow far Right gun nuts telling us how if THEY had been there with THEIR pistol/Glock/etc when all those people were being shot, THEY could have taken out the mass shooter with all the procession of SEAL Team 6 and saved Lord knows how many lives. We heard it after the movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, we heard it after the school shootings in Newtown & Oregon, again after the after the attacks in Paris, and we are going to hear it again after this latest mass murder in Orlando, Florida yesterday… the largest mass shooting in American history with “50 dead and 53 wounded.”

How come no one has ever pointed out the fact that NOT ONCE did anyone hear one of these armchair heroes ever claim, “I would NOT have been able to stop the shooter UNLESS I too were wielding an assault rifle.” Never. Not once. Each and every one of them were confident that all they needed to take down a maniac firing 50 rounds/minute was “Old Blue”, their trusty Red Rider BB Gun semi-automatic side-arm. Hell, I never even heard anyone say they’d require even “an extended clip” to do it! Nope! Just one clear shot is all they needed. Am I right? Every damn one of them insisted all they needed to take down a lunatic with an assault riffle spitting out bullets like a Pez dispenser in a darkened auditorium as people ran around screaming is an ordinary unmodified handgun (and their rock-steady nerves.)

Well, if you don’t need an assault rifle to take down a nut with an assault rifle, WHY THEN DO WE NEED ASSAULT RIFLES???

It’s not rocket science. Such weapons are good for only two things… obliterating targets at a shooting range, and obliterating people… as many as quickly as possible.

It’s time to reinstate the “Assault Weapons Ban” from the ’90’s. And that includes the ban on extended magazines/clips. If you can’t hit your target in 10 shots, you probably have no business firing a gun in the first place. I’d also suggest imposing a stiff tax on cordite/gunpowder. Taxing bullets is no use when people can pack their own ammunition in their garage (many sports-shooters do so to save money). And home made pipe-bombs aren’t sold at your local gun store. I assure you, Mr. Maniac isn’t mixing gunpowder in his basement. Both bullets & bombs require purchasing gunpowder, and a heavy tax means fewer sold/made.

Now, the “No limits on the Second Amendment” crowd who decry limits on clip-size argue that “no one has the right to deny someone their right to fire 50 bullets without stopping to reload just because they’re a lousy shot!” (Note: There is NOTHING in the Second Amendment that says the “convenience” of a gun owner must be taken into consideration.) And while most Americans are not THAT unyielding to common-sense gun restrictions, those voices are the loudest thanks to the “Industrial sized” NRA-bullhorn they carry with them everywhere. It’s also why nothing ever gets done in Congress every time we have another mass murder.

The gun lobby & their Congressional puppets sold their souls when they decided the mass murder of twenty 7-yearold children & 6 faculty members was an acceptable price to pay for doing ABSOLUTELY NOTHING following the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, CT. They again did nothing following the mass shootings in Charleston & Chattanooga.

Snarky Right wingers joke about Democrats wanting to pass “more useless gun laws every time there’s a mass shooting”. “What good would it do?”, they ask. “Criminals don’t follow gun laws!” Their fallacy is that… while we demand new gun laws… typically targeting gun manufacturers not “criminals”… THEY NEVER GET PASSED! Dems call for them. Republicans block them. Nothing happens and no new common-sense restrictions are instituted. Worse! Existing gun laws are weakened, repealed or allowed to expire (eg: the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban). So when it happens again, the gun nuts decry, “Every time there’s a mass shooting, you demand more useless gun laws!” Yes! And one of these days, we’d actually like to see one of them PASSED!

If you ask a gun nut why anyone “needs” an assault rifle (once you get past the inevitable, “it’s not about need! It’s about my right to bear arms” nonsense), their justification usually comes down to: “fighting off the government when they come knocking on my door” (and why would they do that? To take away the gun I need to protect me from them taking away this gun!” The circular logic is mind-numbing.) The second most popular rationalization is the “in case my home is attacked by “a gang”, mob or “rioting hoards”. First off, if you live in a neighborhood where a street gang declares war on your home, you’re probably not one of those law abiding gun owners to begin with. The second/third excuses… the “desperate hoards looking to break into their Emergency Shelter when the Nuclear/Zombie Apocalypse comes” excuse only highlights their paranoia. Why are these crazy people setting our gun policy? None of these excuses are rational justifications for owning military-grade weaponry for use in civilian life. And I’ve already explained a multitude of times that THE SECOND AMENDMENT DOES NOT PERMIT YOU TO GO TO WAR WITH THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. Nowhere in the Second Amendment does it even HINT that you could conceivably turn your weapon on your own government. That’s called “TREASON”, and THAT word appears in the Constitution SEVEN TIMES. All those times you demanded we “Read the Constitution”, it’s your turn. It’s the FIRST Amendment that exists to protect you from your government, granting you the power to redress your grievances… via the Press, Protest (speech), and meetings (Assembly), NOT the Second. The Second Amendment does NOT protect your right to get into a gunfight with your neighbor, “Weekend-warrior Bob” serving in the National Guard, sitting atop an M1 tank as he threatens to knock down your door (or whatever your fevered imagination has dreamt up.)

At the Far Right end of the spectrum, there are the Libertarians who believe there should be no limits on Constitutional rights. If you want a shoulder-fired surface-to-air missile to shoot down those U.N. Black Helicopters coming to put you in a FEMA Camp, you should have that right. A paranoids paradise. Where the sane get caught up in an arms race with the INsane because no one is willing deny the delusional their right to any weapon they desire.

By Sunday afternoon, the news was reporting that the Orlando gunman called the police just prior to his rampage to tell them he had “pledged allegiance to the leader of ISIS.” But this was no ISIS-trained radical that traveled 10,000 miles and snuck into the U.S. with an AK-15 assault rifle in his knapsack. No, this yutz was a security guard for a gated community in South Florida who had a gun permit and purchased his weapons legally in a state with some of the most lax gun laws in the country. The ONLY link between the Orlando shooter & The War on Terror is that our 15 year long war is radicalizing domestic nuts with easy access to guns. We need to bring back the ban on Assault Weapons. Opponents say, “If you ban assault weapons, only the bad guys will have assault weapons!” Fine, but you’ve already BRAGGED to anyone willing to listen that you don’t NEED “an assault rifle” to stop a maniac with “an assault rifle”. Over time, as fewer assault rifles are produced, their numbers will eventually dwindle (as they stop functioning, become valuable collectors items, or are destroyed.) And with no new ones being made or sold, as they become more & more rare, so will the mass carnage they create. That will take time, which is why the more immediate step of taxing the explosive material (cordite/gunpowder) that makes such mass shootings possible will have more of an immediate impact until the weapons ban bears fruit 5/10/20 years down the line.
 



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June 13, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Crime, Guns & Violence, myth busting, Right-Wing Insanity, Seems Obvious to Me, Terrorism

In Final Hours, DNC Election Misbehavior Runs Rampant

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As the final seven contests of this primary season draw to a close, it appears the DNC is pulling out all the stops to ensure Hillary Clinton does not limp into the Democratic National Convention next month by employing any number of questionable (historically Conservative) voter suppression tactics. Tactics once the stock & trade of the GOP have become commonplace tools of the DNC. If they still want to convince me Hillary Clinton is not a Closet Conservative and the DNC isn’t becoming “GOP-Lite”, I dare say they couldn’t do a worse job. Two weeks before the Puerto Rican Primary & Virgin Islands caucus, when everyone was focused on the then upcoming Oregon & Kentucky primaries, I tweeted Senator Sanders that he should bear in mind that “Puerto Rico (worth 60 delegates) is ripe for a Sanders Landslide with their current economic crisis there and having gone 90% for Obama in 2008.” I don’t know if my tweet reached him, but the day of the Kentucky Primary, he wasn’t in The Bluegrass State but in Puerto Rico giving a speech about their Debt Crisis. Election night pundits even questioned why Sanders was worried about a race that was still two weeks away when Kentucky & Oregon were voting that very same day. It was a brilliant move. No one (else) was even thinking about the island territory worth more delegates than Kentucky (55) in which an eminently possible huge win could conceivably provide a net pickup of some 20 even 30 delegates for the Senator, dramatically lightening the burden on California the following Tuesday.

I’ve noted repeatedly on Facebook that “Puerto Rico is an Open Primary, is furious with Wall Street for bankrupting their economy, and that in 2008, went 90% for Barack Obama”. Their former governor endorsed Sanders just prior to the New York State primary, and the Mayor of San Juan switched her support from Hillary to Sanders as well. Sanders opposes (and Clinton supported) the PR bailout bill being debated in Washington that seeks to impose Conservative austerity upon the Territory with no say in the matter. But the moment that plan proved unpopular, Clinton flip-flopped in her support declaring that she was now opposed to it as well (which was easy for her to do having previously declared she had “serious concerns” with the plan before she announced she supported it.) Hillary has a history of doing this… expressing disapproval for something unpopular before she supports it, so that later, when the people complain, she can point back and say, “Here! See where I suggested this might be a bad idea? Just before I okayed for it?”
 

Hillary wants it both ways

 

How are you supposed to know where a person stands when they issue a “disclaimer” before every decision? Then, rather than stand by that decision, says, “I had reservations from the beginning. Oops!” It’s called “trying to have your cake & eat it too.” It’s also called “It’s easier to get forgiveness than permission.” I call it “having no core principles.” She already did this with her Iraq vote. “Your kid died in an unnecessary war? Forgive me.” TPP: “Your job moved to Vietnam because of a free-trade agreement I wasn’t sure about but approved anyway? Sorry!” The Commander-in-Chief doesn’t get do-overs. Some decisions you just can’t take back.

So, back to Puerto Rico. Sanders starts campaigning down there early, receives a standing ovation for his criticism of Congress and their proposed austerity measures, and was picking up endorsements.

This can not stand.

The DNC, unwilling to take any chances, starts shutting down polling places in Puerto Rico just days after Sanders unexpectedly wins the West Virginia Primary. In 2008, the island had just over 2,300 polling locations. Three weeks ago, they had only 1,500, but as election day drew to a close, the DNC shut down over 1,100 of them till only 432 remained. Worse still, some voters had to vote for president at one location and for their local officials at another [ibid]! The fact polls there close at just 3pm certainly didn’t help matters any (“Not enough time to stand in line at TWO locations before the polls close? Too bad.”) And how much do you want to bet the majority of those closed polling stations were in “Bernie-friendly” districts?

But would it be enough?

Denying Sanders a landslide in Puerto Rico still doesn’t guarantee Hillary won’t arrive at the DNC Convention limping across the finish line, possibly suffering a string of late race loses and potentially more bad news stories dogging her campaign as she loses ground against Trump in the polls while Sanders supporters are energized, motivated & mobilized?

No, we need to throw a few kinks in the hose.

How about we print up millions of different ballots for the state of California depending upon your (lack of) Party affiliation, upon half of which Bernie Sanders’ name doesn’t even appear? And if you try “writing his name in”, your ballot is instantly disqualified and tossed in the trash. If you are registered in California as “NPP” (No Party Preference), this may very well be you. If so, take your ballot back and demand a new one with Sanders’ name on it.

We all saw the misbehavior in Nevada… and I’m not talking about the understandably outraged Bernie supporters. When I watched the video of the Chairwoman holding a platform vote 30 minutes early, hold a voice-vote with no clear winner, declare a winner anyway, then defiantly (and with obvious disdain) gavel the convention to a close and childishly march off stage as conventioneers scream in protest, it’s impossible not to think of Congress cheating on a voice vote and the outrage that sparks… not just on the floor of Congress, but nationwide (BOTH sides are guilty of this.) I’ve heard Clinton supporters give arguments like, “Hey, it was just two delegates!” Might as well tell me not to complain over a “tiny” stab-wound either. It’s “Death-by-a-thousand-cuts.”

Hillary was on CBS’s “Face the Nation” yesterday, and promised: “After Tuesday, I will begin reaching out [to Sanders supporters]”. I’ve been pointing out for a long time that no one from the Clinton campaign (nor her followers) have made ANY attempt to make Sanders supporters feel welcome, and this quote proves I was right. Nor have I heard anyone provide a substantive argument for supporting Clinton’s policies over Sanders, or assure Sanders supporters their concerns will be addressed. “Math” & “inevitability” are poor arguments for convincing someone to abandon their principles and vote for someone they don’t trust. And I don’t have a lot of respect for anyone who would WANT the support of anyone who would so sell out their values so easily. But then again, look who we’re talking about? As I pointed out above, I’m not entirely sure what Hillary Clinton’s core values are to begin with because there is no principle she hasn’t sold out for political expediency (IMHO).

What infuriates me most is how no one is calling the DNC out for their obvious anti-Democratic chicanery and acts of voter suppression. Voter purges, long lines, not having enough ballots on hand, to even closing literally thousands polling stations. A victor that doesn’t care how they win as long as they win, and there’s no incentive to change a broken system that allowed them to win.

Instead, I must listen to Clinton’s supporters defend these abuses of power in the name of “Democratic purity” (aka: “Sanders isn’t a REAL Democrat. How DARE he try to change OUR Party!”)

A Party this sick needs changing… like a three-week old diaper.
 



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June 6, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Election, Partisanship, Politics, Rants, Scandals, voting

Is Hillary a Closet Republican? Her record would suggest so.

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It’s a case I’ve been making since she ran against Obama in 2008: Hillary has this unfathomable, almost desperate, need to seek the approval of Republicans. Her first instinct on every issue is to align with Conservatives… especially on issues of National Defense… only to reverse course later when disapproval from Democrats proves inconvenient. Honestly, I believe it all started during her husband’s presidency when they hunted him like a dog for nine years (I’m including the year he was running for the nomination in 1992.) Kind of a mild “Stockholm Syndrome” where you begin to sympathize with your captors and see things from their point of view.

Whatever the reasoning may be for her Conservative tendencies, her history of doing so is well documented. These past few months, I’ve referenced repeatedly the notoriously nasty campaign she ran against Barack Obama in 2008. Her attacks on then Senator Obama’s “qualification” to be president (even running a multi-million dollar TV ad… the famed “3AM ad”… questioning his readiness to be Commander-in-Chief) was nothing compared to starting the “secret Muslim” whisper campaign against Obama by being the first to leak a photo of him in ceremonial garb during a visit to Kenya years before. A “scorched Earth”, “take-no-prisoners” style of campaigning more suited to the likes of Lee Atwater or Karl Rove than Democrats have traditionally waged against one another. Hillary’s 2008 campaign makes Bernie Sanders’ 2016 campaign look incredibly tame by comparison.

The polls weeded out two other admitted Conservative Democratic candidates early: Jim Webb & Lincoln Chafee. Webb likes to brag about his time as “Secretary of the Navy under Ronald Reagan”. Chafee was the last openly “Liberal Republican” in the GOP, turfed out by his own Party, first becoming the “Independent” Governor of Rhode Island, then switching to the Democratic Party to run for president this year only to drop out early because of low poll numbers.

These two men demonstrate the fact that the lines between the Democratic Party & the Republican Party have become blurred. What was once called “the Republican Party” has been moved to the extreme Right by the Tea Party and Conservative Christians. And as they have shifted Right, so has the Center, with Democrats lurching to the Right to fill in the void.

It wasn’t always this way. Richard Nixon… the poster boy for Republican abuse of power… created the EPA and proposed a national health insurance system, and despite being openly/virulently anti-Communist, visited China to open Trade Relations with them for the first time. Nixon would be deemed “too Liberal” by GOP standards today.

Also from the Nixon Administration, former Secretary of State (and war criminal) Henry Kissinger… probably best known for his secret war in Cambodia and famously saying things like: “Control oil and you control nations; control food and you control the people.” Hillary called Kissinger “a friend” in her 2014 biography, and bragged of his praise on the campaign trail this year, of him telling her she “ran the State Department better — better than anybody had run it in a long time.”

The Clinton’s have been a part of the Democratic Establishment for 25 years, and as the center has moved, so have they. President Bill Clinton was the first as he too desperately tried to win the approval of the Republicans that were dogging him, first with the passage of NAFTA… the grandfather of all disastrous Free-Trade deals to come, followed a few years later by the troublesome (almost cruel) “Welfare Reform Act” of 1996 that was supported by nearly twice as many Republicans than Democrats. Ditto for his repeal of “Glass-Stegall”… the FDR-era bill that made it a crime for banks to gamble with depositors money (and arguably led to the 2008 Crash.)

Hillary has continued her husbands’ bizarre need to seek the approval of Conservatives who hate her (though she has done little… if anything… to court Sanders supporters. Even going so far as to taunt them), uses Republican talking points to attack Sanders (just as she did against Obama in 2008), instinctively siding with Republicans first on issues like “Same Sex Marriage”, “Free Trade” (note at end of that video from four weeks ago, she confirms she only opposes the TPP “in it’s current form”), the Keystone XL Pipeline, but most notably when it comes to using military force, not only voting to give President Bush unilateral authority to declare war on his own (already disqualifying in my book), but also pushed for using American firepower to aide in the overthrow of Kadaffy (Libya) turning it into a new haven for ISIS, currently supports a “No Fly Zone” over Syria that could draw us into WWIII, and (as I’ve pointed out) famously criticized her former boss President Obama, for refusing to arm the Syrian rebels… Conservative positions all. Even her 2008 Health Care Reform Plan was (arguably) written by the Right-Wing “Heritage Foundation”.

And the latest scandal to hit the headlines is that Secretary Clinton did NOT in fact have approval from the State Department to set up a private email server in her home as she repeatedly claimed was not prohibited. She “never asked” for permission, simply assuming she had it. An independent report from the State Debt declared… not only was it not allowed, but her request would have been denied had she of bothered to seek permission first.

But you know the old saying, “It’s easier to get forgiveness than permission”… a mantra that perfectly describes the governing philosophy of The Bush Administration: No proof of WMD’s? Invade first and worry about producing the evidence later (which they couldn’t because it didn’t exist). No permission to indiscriminately secretly wiretap every American citizen? No problem. Just do it anyway and defend the practice later.

And Hillary’s defense for using a private email server? “Republicans did it too!” That’s an excuse I expect from someone like #ToddlerTrump. No wonder they’re the front-runners. Colin Powell & Condi Rice also used insecure email servers (Powell used “AOL” of all things), but there are two problems with that: 1) The rules changed after Powell & Rice, banning the practice, and 2) No one else went through the difficulty and EXPENSE of maintaining a private email server in their HOME… a highly unusual thing to do when the State Department was already providing a secure server FOR FREE.

But once again, the argument, “I only did what Republicans do!” is a troublesome rationalization. If you’re trying to make the case that you’re NOT “a Closet Conservative”, doing the same things Republicans do doesn’t exactly help your case.

Speaking of “Republicans do it too”, shall we talk about “SuperPACs” and money in politics? Hillary Clinton says she is “opposed to Citizens United”… the Supreme Court decision that lifted the cap on Big Money Donors to allow unlimited contributions to flow into a political campaign. “Citizens United” was actually the result of a case levied by the 2008 Clinton Campaign. A movie was released in 2008 attacking Clinton, backed by multimillionaires opposed to her run for president. Clinton argued this was a violation of campaign spending, allowing Big Money to spend unlimited amounts of cash on one giant attack ad.

Despite losing that case and being so badly harmed by it, it gave birth to “SuperPAC’s”, the bane of Democracy, which she now unashamedly takes full advantage of in her race for president, allowing her campaign to raise well over an additional $100 Million for her campaign (even Donald Trump, who claims to be self-funded, has SuperPAC’s and has stated he will reverse his policy of not accepting large corporate donations in the general.)

Hillary began her campaign this time around talking about how she got her start as a “Goldwater Girl”… supporting the Republican opponent of LBJ following the assassination of JFK months before. Martin Luther King Jr. himself wrote a statement that year begging “all good men of conscience to oppose the candidacy of Mr. Goldwater.” So from the very start, her ideology has leaned Conservative. And arguably, she is a “Democrat” today only because today’s Democratic Party is where the GOP was 50 years ago. It’s being dragged to the Right… and NOT because that’s where the public wants it.
 

Clinton/Trump unfavorables over 50%

 



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May 30, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Election, Money, mystery, Politics, Seems Obvious to Me

Stop Trying to Save Your Drug-Addicted Child, because: Math. Responding to Clinton supporters

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Supporters of Hillary Clinton trying to convince supporters of Bernie Sanders to just “give up” because the “math” is not in their favor don’t get it. Never did, and probably never will. It’s like telling the mother of a drug-addicted child to “just give up and stop trying to save them” because “odds are they’re going to die anyway.” No parent would accept that. You fight to the bitter end even when others are telling you it’s “a lost cause”. This isn’t about “numbers”, this is about saving a country (if not an entire planet) from disaster. This country is in serious trouble of becoming a nation that represents the interests of the rich & powerful first and everyone else second (or perhaps third after the Religious Right). And as Donald Trump’s brand of pseudo-fascistic politics drags the GOP to the far FAR Right, they are simultaneously dragging the Democratic Party right along with them as it too lurches to the Right to fill the void (the old “Far Right”). There is only one candidate left in this race espousing the principles of FDR trying to drag this country back to the Progressive left, and it ain’t Hillary Clinton. To the contrary, her supporters are rabidly in opposition to Sanders’ style of Progressivism.

It has already started in Europe. Donald Trump’s brand of Far Right anti-migrant populism is sweeping across Europe as our endless War-for-Profit in the Middle-East, now halfway into its second decade, throws that region of the world into chaos.
 

Trump-style anti-immigrant fascism spreading across Europe (160521)


 
I hear a lot of people… even supporters of Senator Sanders now… criticizing the “Bernie or Bust” movement. I’m not “Bernie or Bust”, but I understand it. Let me explain “Bernie or Bust” to Hillary supporters:
 

  • The Democratic Party has been slowly drifting to the Right for decades now, and the pressure the DNC is putting on Democrats to coronate a multimillionaire Closet Conservative that keeps finding creative new ways to avoid revealing what she told her masters on Wall Street is seen as further proof how far the Democratic Party has strayed from the principles of FDR.
     
    The election of Barack Obama raised hopes among millions of loyal Democrats that maybe we’d finally see a “real” Progressive in the Oval Office. And while he has been a “good Democrat”, true Progressives were dismayed the way he abandoned his call for a “Public Option” to reform health care in favor of the Clinton Plan (written by the uber-Conservative Heritage Foundation btw) that he himself ridiculed during the 2008 campaign, coupled with his failure to prosecute a single Banker, Credit Rating Agency or Hedge Fund Manager following the 2008 crash only further drives home the point that the Democratic Party is becoming “Republican Lite”.
     
    Sanders supporters aren’t about to “surrender” to the 1% just because the “math doesn’t add up”… especially when we’ve seen so much game playing and vote-manipulation going on. Arizona, Brooklyn, Nevada… the Primary process has gotten incredibly ugly this year… and not because of false claims of “violence” & “chair throwing” (never happened) at the NV Convention last week. No, this nonsense has been growing for YEARS and only now are people starting to notice.
     
    The Democratic Party is in serious need of course correction, and when Hillary supporters trash the most Liberal Democratic candidate in 70 years, it only further proves our point.

 

I now hear Clinton supporters adopting the rhetoric of the Right, making snide remarks about Sanders being “a Commie” that thinks he can “buy votes” by giving away “free stuff”. I’m in my forties with no children. Do you think I give a tinkers damn about “free college” for myself? It won’t be that long before I’m eligible for Medicare, so “universal healthcare” only gets me there a little sooner. Personally, I don’t give a rats ass if Bernie is unable to pass a single one of his proposed programs. I trust his consistency, honesty, integrity & judgement more than I do Hillary Clinton… who has a history of being on the wrong side of history.

By contrast, we hear Republicans adopting the rhetoric of Sanders, talking about “income inequality” now. They didn’t get that from Hillary. The person in this race that made that an issue BOTH sides are trying to adopt is Bernie Sanders.

When Hillary “needed time” to decide whether or not she was against the “Keystone XL” pipeline, I already knew there was no way I could possibly support her. That’s like someone telling you they “need time” to decide whether or not to drop a nuclear bomb on Pittsburgh to make way for a new shopping center. “No!” This is not a complicated question! The answer is “No!” What do you need “time” to figure out? Whether or not our need for oil is more important than turning the planet into an Easy Bake Oven??? We’re talking about unleashing an environmental catastrophe in the name of producing a few more years of toxic sludge masquerading as “oil”. That’s a decision only a 1%’er with the interests of Big Oil at heart would have trouble making.

Hillary supporters frequently repeat the false claim that Hillary Clinton “opposes the TPP” (Trans Pacific Partnership free trade agreement), but listen closely. She only opposes it “in its current form”. A little tweaking, and you can consider yet another disastrous “free trade” agreement as good as passed if she becomes president:
 

“I oppose the TPP… in its current form.” (1:05)

 

Almost snuck that one past you, didn’t she? Another big wet kiss for Corporate America at the expense of the poor & middle-class. Clinton’s natural instinct is always to fall on the Conservative side of every issue, only to flip-flop after being shamed out of it. She likes to have it both ways. “I oppose the war in Iraq! But here, let me give you the authority to do it anyway.” “I oppose Same Sex Marriage!” Hmm, Democratic voters don’t like that position. Okay, “I’ve evolved on the issue.” Ditto for Keystone. The “TPP” is but the latest example.
 

For the math lovers…

For those of you who still think “math” is important, here are some numbers for you:

Three: Number of states decided by LESS than 0.5% of the vote (Iowa, Missouri, Kentucky), and all three were awarded to Clinton. Those states easily could have gone the other way (bad weather, traffic, etc), and if they had, Clinton & Sanders would have won EXACTLY THE SAME number of races: 24.

Twenty-nine: Number of races (to date) that were “Closed” or “Semi-closed” primaries or caucuses. That means Independents were shut out and only registered Democrats were allowed to vote. Sixteen of those races went to Clinton. In November, there will be no “Closed” races to assist the DNC in excluding Independents from voting.

149: The number of Super Delegates that have yet to commit to either Clinton OR Sanders. If we go into the convention with Sanders having won the same number of races (or more) than Clinton, and she continues to lag in the polls behind Donald Trump, those Super Delegates could easily decide to side with Bernie.

930: The number of Delegates (including “Super Delegates”) yet to be awarded.

274: The size of Clinton’s pledged delegate lead (6.7%).

54%: Percentage of Hillary’s wins that were in Deep Red states she’ll never win in November (vs 45% for Bernie.)

51% vs 44% vs 37%: The favorability ratings of Sanders, Hillary & Trump respectively according to the latest ABC News poll. Columnist Matt Dowd described the 2016 race as an “UN-popularity contest”, and George Stephanopoulos stated that this would be “the first time in history the nominees of BOTH parties had higher UN-favorable ratings than favorable.”
 

“It’s a big club… and you ain’t in it!” – George Carlin
Trump's party with Clinton's

 
The first time I saw the above photo, my stomach tightened in a knot. It was like finding a photo of FDR with his arm around Hitler. What a bunch of suckers we must be. Your choices in the next election are either “Kang or Kodos”. If you ever had any doubt that our government is becoming a plaything for the “1-percent”, wonder no more. This election isn’t about “who has the most delegates”. It’s about saving Democracy itself.
 

 



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May 23, 2016 · Admin Mugsy · No Comments - Add
Posted in: Election, Money, Partisanship, Politics