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Boardman writes: "Donald Trump is the greatest threat to America today, or so the conventional wisdom left and right would have you believe. More realistically, the greatest threat to America today is actually believing that Trump is the greatest threat to America today."

Kiara Jacobs, 8, hugs her brother Quentin Stamen, 13, at a memorial in the Cleveland park where Tamir Rice was fatally shot by police officers. (photo: Ty Wright/NYT)
Kiara Jacobs, 8, hugs her brother Quentin Stamen, 13, at a memorial in the Cleveland park where Tamir Rice was fatally shot by police officers. (photo: Ty Wright/NYT)


National Mindlessness, Police to POTUS, Threatens Nation

By William Boardman, Reader Supported News

10 May 16

 

“We are in serious times, and this is a really serious job. This is not entertainment; this is not a reality show. This is a contest for the presidency of the United States.” – President Obama, May 6, 2016

onald Trump is the greatest threat to America today, or so the conventional wisdom left and right would have you believe. More realistically, the greatest threat to America today is actually believing that Trump is the greatest threat to America today.

To believe that Donald Trump is the greatest threat to America today, one needs to be a little hysterical or dishonest (or both). Actually believing in the mortal Trump threat requires believing that the Congress, the Supreme Court, the military, the security state, and all the other the other agencies of government, as well as all the states and most of the populace will suddenly become helpless to oppose the White House. That is an imaginary helplessness with no basis in reality, as viciously demonstrated by the Republican Congress of the past six years. For better or worse, the Constitution is designed to enable gridlock.

Advanced Trump-phobia is mostly political posturing, as in the president’s quote above. The country is drowning in bad faith like this and worse, because the country isn’t ready to look itself honestly in the mirror. When your political system produces bad results, it’s all too easy, cynical, and dishonest to blame the results. That’s just politics. Intellectual integrity is quite a different orientation, one that is in short supply in a country in the near death-grip of decades of national mindlessness. Examples are plentiful.

“We’ll pay $6 million, but we don’t admit doing anything wrong”

On November 22, 2014, Cleveland police officers drove into a playground and executed a 12-year-old boy less than one second after they arrived. The cop who did the killing had had violence problems when he was with another police department. The prosecutor, who failed to get an indictment from a grand jury, later lost a bid for re-election. The family of the boy, Tamir Rice, sued the city in federal court under the civil rights statute. In April 2016, Cleveland agreed to pay Tamir Rice’s estate $6 million, perhaps the largest Cleveland settlement in a police-shooting case. Under the settlement, the Rice family will drop its complaint against officers Frank Garmback and Timothy Loehmann, the shooter, who are both still city employees. While paying $6 million, the city admits no wrongdoing, even though the event was rife with wrongdoing.

Failure to admit wrongdoing despite committing wrongdoing has long been an acceptable corrupt practice in the American legal system. Instead of accountability for killing or maiming people, the perpetrators are allowed to lie legally as one means of limiting their damages in a fair trial. Corporations that create Love Canal or Gulf Coast oil spills are the most common beneficiaries of this class-based double jeopardy against the victims. So common is this blatant injustice that it is rarely challenged politically, or denounced, or more than mentioned. But it is a soul-destroying practice embedded in American culture that enriches the rich and protects the guilty. Voters know this viscerally, so when Trump says the system is rigged, they know he’s right, and they know almost no one else is telling them that truth.

“Honoring slavers is our way of showing that slavery was wrong”

On April 28, 2016, Yale University president Peter Salovey tried to explain the Yale Corporation’s decision to retain the name of the residential hall Calhoun College, named for South Carolinian John C. Calhoun, Yale 1804. A lawyer, Calhoun owned dozens of slaves and defended slavery as “a positive good.” He fought for the expansion of slavery into new territories. He argued that the federal government should defend minority rights, meaning the minority comprising southern slave owners. He defended states’ rights in general and in particular the right of the South to secede, either peacefully or by force:

If you who represent the stronger portion [the North], cannot agree to settle them on the broad principle of justice and duty, say so; and let the States we both represent agree to separate and part in peace. If you are unwilling we should part in peace, tell us so; and we shall know what to do, when you reduce the question to submission or resistance.

In other words, Calhoun was a significant historical figure who was also a slave-owning bigot and traitor, lacking only the opportunity to betray his country because he died in 1850. Yale named Calhoun College after him in 1931, largely on the basis of his achievements – serving as vice president, congressman, and senator (as almost no other Yalies had) – not on the basis of his character. After months of public dialogue within the Yale community and private consideration within the Yale Corporation, Salovey explained the decision to continue honoring Calhoun this way:

We are a university whose motto is “light and truth.” Our core mission is to educate and discover. These ideals guided our decisions. Through teaching and learning about the most troubling aspects of our past, our community will be better prepared to challenge their legacies. More than a decision about a name, we must focus on understanding the past and present, and preparing our students for the future.

This explains nothing, and students were unhappy. What in this somewhat lofty rhetoric makes it an educational necessity to honor a slave-owning secessionist? Nothing. These are experiences that are not illuminated by having students live in a place named for a horrible exemplar of a horrific past. Calhoun and the legacy he represents will not be hidden if the place is called by any other, benign name, Salovey’s rationalizing notwithstanding:

Ours is a nation that often refuses to face its own history of slavery and racism. Yale is part of that history. We cannot erase American history but we can confront it, teach it, and learn from it. The decision to retain Calhoun College’s name reflects the importance of this vital educational imperative.

The decision to retain Calhoun College’s name demonstrates a muddy-mindedness that can’t or won’t distinguish between changing a name and erasing history. By Yale’s form of reasoning, Calhoun may as well fly the Confederate flag. Surely people as smart as those at Yale can figure out how to confront the history of slavery and racism without honoring slavers and racists.

Making the Calhoun decision even more indefensible, Yale has also announced the names of two new colleges it plans to build. One will be Benjamin Franklin College, in honor of the recipient of a Yale honorary degree in 1753. While the choice is ambiguous (and was greeted by laughter from students at a town hall meeting), Franklin’s brilliance and contributions to learning are undeniable. And the fact that he was a slave owner has real, potential educational value in tracing how Franklin came to be an abolitionist. Calhoun died unreconstructed and apparently unreflective.

Yale’s other new college will be named for Anna Pauline (Pauli) Murray, a 1965 Yale Law School graduate and 1979 recipient of an honorary Doctor of Divinity. Born into a poor black family in 1910, Pauli Murray grew up to spend most of her 75 years fighting for positive social change that should make Calhoun roll over in his grave. As Salovey put it, without subterfuge this time:

Pauli Murray represents the best of Yale: a pre-eminent intellectual inspired to lead and prepared to serve her community and her country. She was at the intellectual forefront of the battles that defined 20th-century America and continue to be part of our discourse today: civil rights, women’s rights, and the role of spirituality in modern society.

Yale, like most of America, is having trouble dealing fairly with minority students and faculty. Yale, like most of America, is still part of the national mindlessness about race and ethnicity. Of that, at least, Calhoun would be proud. Trump, on the other hand, might note that at Yale’s going rate, $250 million could create a Trump College at Yale.

“Hey, be grateful, drones kill fewer civilians than carpet bombing!”

For almost pure psychic numbing, let’s turn to the White House, where it’s needed most (except possibly at the Pentagon). What the Germans did to London and Coventry in World War II constituted war crimes, unlike what our side did to Dresden and Hiroshima. Killing civilians (at least deliberately) violates the law of war, or at least it used to. Having done a lot of saturation bombing in Afghanistan and Iraq, to little military or political avail, the US decided to use the cheaper, more “precise” drone attack tactic, also to little military or political avail. The more meaningful accomplishment of drone warfare has been to turn the president (first Bush, and now Obama, more so) from the chief executive into the chief executioner.

There was a time when having the president of the United States start his day by picking the names of people to kill from a list would have been repugnant. Drone killing is, on the face of it, a war crime. And drone warfare is waged largely in secret (except from the victims). No wonder it goes unchallenged by Congress and presidential candidates alike.

Even Bernie Sanders as president would continue to send drones to kill people on a list, people with no due process rights, no rights of appeal, nothing but the right to be imperial sacrifices in the name of imperial security. In March, Sanders defended his non-pacifist cred, citing the wars he’s supported and defending the party line on drone warfare:

Drones are a big issue, and drones have done some good things. They've been selective; they've taken out people who should be taken out…. [Drones have also done] some terrible things, which have been counterproductive to the United States. But would I rule them out completely? No, I would not. But I am aware that they have in some cases, you know, you use a drone and you end up killing 40 people in a wedding in Afghanistan; that is not a terribly humane thing to do or productive thing to do.

In the past, Sanders said he would continue to wage drone warfare, but would use drones “very, very selectively and effectively.” This is American politics today. The good guys want to do as little evil as possible, the bad guys are ok with as much evil as seems necessary. In April, “Obama put the lesser-evil argument this way:

There’s no doubt that some innocent people have been killed by drone strikes. It is not true that it has been this sort of willy-nilly, you know, “Let’s bomb a village.” That is not how it’s—folks have operated. And what I can say with great certainty is that the rate of civilian casualties in any drone operation are far lower than the rate of civilian casualties that occur in conventional war.

Never mind that the rate of civilian casualties in conventional war was driven to new highs with the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. So the president is using an obscene level of carnage to make his personal assassination program seem reasonable. Presidential assassination by autocratic fiat was new in American life when President Bush first crossed that line. Presidential assassination, aka executive action, used to be against even American law. A decade after the first drone strike, the country in its muddled mindlessness pretends we’re not all proxy assassins. That’s too hard to swallow, to admit, to address, to stop, to prosecute. That’s reality. It’s much easier, and less dangerous, to pit illusion against illusion, to pretend that Donald Trump is a freak-out lethal threat to an America that hasn’t existed for a long time. That’s a reality show for real. The president and the people collude in the same unconscionable charade: he doesn’t want to tell the truth and the people don’t want to hear it.

The possibility of healing America continues to recede in the rearview mirror. A nation that creates a torture concentration camp like Guantanamo is not a healthy nation. A nation that maintains a torture concentration camp like Guantanamo is not a healthy nation. A nation that cannot come to terms with a torture concentration camp like Guantanamo and close it down and hold those responsible to account is not a healthy nation. Guantanamo has nothing to do with Donald Trump beyond being another visible symptom of the same metastasizing spiritual cancer.



William M. Boardman has over 40 years experience in theatre, radio, TV, print journalism, and non-fiction, including 20 years in the Vermont judiciary. He has received honors from Writers Guild of America, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Vermont Life magazine, and an Emmy Award nomination from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News.

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+45 # Radscal 2016-05-10 18:01
Let's Bring Back the Department of Homeland Security Threat Alerts, only for actual Existential Threats.

I) TPP, TTIP, TISA (added to NAFTA, GATT, WTO, IMF, Privately Owned Central Banks)
Global Fascist World Order after which resistance and progress on anything else will become close to futile.

II) Environmental Degradation/Glo bal Warming.
6th Great Extinction, 1/2 of all large animals have died in past few decades (!), Droughts, Storms, Sea Level Rise = Mass Migrations, Food and Water Scarcity.

III) War! Huh! What Is It Good For?

Absolutely Everything... Everything Evil and Profitable. As if slaughtering millions of mostly brown-skinned civilians wasn't a broad enough agenda, we have a Surveillance/Po lice State at war with US, and now we're splitting Europe into hostile factions and our "progressive front runner" is threatening War with Russia(!)

The Rent Is Too Damn High, et al.
The way I see it, all other human and planetary problems issue forth from the above.

Thoughts?
 
 
+4 # rocback 2016-05-11 11:13
The author forgets that Trump would control the FBI and CIA. He has veto power, the bully pulpit and will nominate 3 or 4 Sup Ct nominees. He can sign treaties that congress can't stop. He controls the Justice Dept, the consumer affairs dept, the EPA, the FDA, etc.

And worst of all he will make all three branches of Govt Republican with no checks by Democrats.
 
 
+6 # WBoardman 2016-05-11 17:57
rocback is wrong.
The author did not forget any of that.
The author rather has more faith in the people in our
government remembering that the President is not a king:

"To believe that Donald Trump is the greatest threat to America today, one needs to be a little hysterical or dishonest (or both). Actually believing in the mortal Trump threat requires believing that the Congress, the Supreme Court, the military, the security state, and all the other the other agencies of government, as well as all the states and most of the populace will suddenly become helpless to oppose the White House. That is an imaginary helplessness with no basis in reality, as viciously demonstrated by the Republican Congress of the past six years. For better or worse, the Constitution is designed to enable gridlock."
 
 
+39 # lorenbliss 2016-05-10 23:32
Actually, all human and environmental problems issue forth from the continuum of evils spawned by patriarchy: male supremacy>patri archal religion>subjug ation of women>subjugati on of nature>Abrahami c religion>capita lism>fascism>Na zism, thence -- unless we recognize that to make war on femaleness and nature is to make war against existence -- extinction.
 
 
+23 # Majikman 2016-05-11 00:39
Funny you should bring that up, loren. I just pulled out my copy of "The Chalice and the Blade" by Riane Eisler to reread. Yes, a paradigm shift is definitely in order.
 
 
+17 # lorenbliss 2016-05-11 03:44
Two substantially more in-depth books are Barbara Mor's "The Great Cosmic Mother" and the wellspring of the entire anti-patriarcha l revolution: Robert Graves' "The White Goddess."
 
 
+14 # Helga Fellay 2016-05-11 10:12
Thank you lorenbliss and Majikman. Very few people are able to understand the real, actual source of the mess we are in. It all goes back ultimately to the concept of the monotheistic religions which elevated the male principle to a divine status, but denied the existence of the divine in the female principle. The ying without the yang, the Apollonian without the Dionysian, any way you want to frame it, is not viable and is ultimately doomed to self-destructio n.
 
 
+8 # lorenbliss 2016-05-11 19:39
@Helga Fellay: Thank you. Well said. Moreover, especially in terms of human society, it hardly matters whether the female principle -- the Goddess -- is agnostically recognized as our most ancient symbol for the infinite powers of Nature and womankind (as in the Gaia Hypothesis) or is devoutly embraced as objectively real. What does matter is her resurrection, her readmission to human awareness. For by rejecting her presence, we have amputated the birthing, nurturing, healing and most creative half of our consciousness; we have become true half-wits and so damned ourselves to extinction.
 
 
+5 # Radscal 2016-05-11 14:39
I see patriarchy as just another tool of control.

I'm a guy. You're a guy.

Feeling like you're in control?

I've no doubt that as agriculture rose, bullies took control over resources, and therefore societies. The biggest, baddest bullies were guys, and they crushed ancient Mother Earth societies and replaced them with patriarchy.

But today, Power comes in both sexes. And Power is denied to both sexes.


It's the same with Racism.

I'm white. You're white.

Feeling Supreme?

Yeah, we enjoy White Privilege, and I'm quite certain I'd be dead already without it. But seriously. Is Jay Z packing his own books and relying on the kindness of loved ones to have a modicum of security?

Whatever system 0.01% Power develops to control resources has the same results.

Have you read "Democracy Incorporated?"

Everything evolves.
 
 
+4 # lorenbliss 2016-05-11 20:23
@Radscal: On this point -- "Whatever system 0.01% Power develops to control resources has the same results" -- we surely disagree.

Indeed it seems as if you are arguing from that nihilistic doctrine of anarchy that claims all forms of governance are equally tyrannical.

As Barbara Mor points out, the results differ widely -- nearly 180 degrees -- between the (literally) unnatural act of patriarchy (which requires an entire miasma of lies to sustain itself) and the matrifocal societies the patriarchal revolution exterminated and/or subjugated.

Mor's assertions are solidly based on the evidence of archaeology, anthropology, mythography and quantum physics.

Here -- discovered on YouTube by a genuine stroke of synchronistic good fortune -- is the late Ms. Mor reading from her own work, its passages ultimately more revolutionary (and therefore more terrifying to the One Percent) than anything penned by Marx, Engels, Lenin, Trotsky, Mao, or yet set forth by their successors:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oPtU2Rxbsjc
 
 
0 # Radscal 2016-05-12 12:17
I am stating that ALL forms of control of resources by the psychopathic 0.01% have the same results. Since all things evolve, the specific methodologies have changed over the ages, as have the forms of resistance, but the essence remains.

From ancient Mesopotamia to the "Glory That Was Rome", from Feudalism to Colonialism to Fascism to the current Anglo-American- Zionist "Inverted Totalitarianism ," the results for "the 99%" are the same.

Tyrannical control of resources by the 0.01% (and their consistent strategies of divisionism, manufactured scarcity and bribery of mid-level managers to do the dirty work necessary to keep us enslaved) remains.

The alternative is NOT anarchy, and frankly it's absurd to even suggest that's my solution. BTW: Marx's final-stage communism was intended to be stateless, so is closely related to real anarchy.

It is NOT the mid 19th century anymore. It is not the early 20th century anymore.

Karl Marx was a brilliant observer of history. As it turns out, he was not a very good prognosticator of the future. The 0.01% read Marx/Engels/et al and learned, too. Were Marx to be still writing today, I have no doubt that he'd be making brilliant observations of how the 0.01% evolved to prevent the formation of a communist system.

Sheldon Wolin picked up Marx's baton, and described the current system quite well with his "Democracy Incorporated."

http://press.princeton.edu/titles/9175.html
 
 
+27 # lfeuille 2016-05-10 23:54
Finally someone defies the general Trump hysteria in print. "Advanced Trump-phobia is mostly political posturing"

Thank you Mr. Boardman.
 
 
+13 # RLF 2016-05-11 05:58
The biggest thing with trump is that the right wing doesn't like him and so the right wing press (meaning almost all of it) is screaming like stuck pigs...the way they usually do about Hillary. Trump may just be the savior of Hillary because he takes the target off off her.
 
 
+4 # Radscal 2016-05-11 14:43
I have believed that was his purpose from the start.
 
 
+28 # Majikman 2016-05-11 00:28
During the race for the 2000 election when McCain was somewhat normal and the media darling, I commented to the wife of a powerful US GOP senator that I thought McCain was a better choice than Bush. She looked at me in horror and said, "Absolutely not. McCain can't be controlled". No wonder the GOP is having such hissy fits about Trump.
 
 
+4 # rocback 2016-05-11 11:03
I am not sure I want an erratic, dangerous and uncontrollable person with his finger on the button.
 
 
+8 # Radscal 2016-05-11 14:43
Or hers.
 
 
+32 # ChrisCurrie 2016-05-11 02:05
The greatest threats to the US citizens in general are Obama's outrageously destructive TPP/TTIP/TiSA "trade agreement" initiatives. Unlike Trump and Bernie, Hillary only says that she "opposes the TPP in its present form." This appears to mean that if Obama doesn’t succeed in getting the TPP passed during the upcoming “lame duck” session of congress, Hillary will make a few minor changes and then push the TPP through Congress next year with the support of "the best politicians money can buy." Either way, if that happens, the US Government (i.e. US taxpayers) will eventually be deluged with newly authorized lawsuits by multinational corporations and investors (in corporately run international tribunals) for hundred-million s or billions of taxpayer dollars for alleged "loses of expected future profits" attributable to laws passed by any of our three levels of government. They will force all three levels of our government to repeal their labor protecting, environment protecting, health protecting, and social safety net laws and regulations, and essentially TRASH the United States Constitution and "We the People" to further enrich the already wealthy.

American voters need to be made aware that for most practical purposes, if Obama's "fast track" legislation isn't REPEALED BY THIS NOVEMBER and Hillary get's elected President, then democracy in the United States may be effectively extinguished for most practical purposes BY THE END OF NEXT YEAR!
 
 
+18 # randrjwr 2016-05-11 08:13
A vote FOR TPP is TREASON--no other words for it (though "stupid" comes to mind as does "paid off").
 
 
+9 # Radscal 2016-05-11 14:46
Obama's role is spokesperson and salesman.

Since these final "Free Trade Agreements" are not likely to be signed before the election, a new spokeswoman and saleswoman has already been chosen.
 
 
+13 # tedrey 2016-05-11 03:03
As one who loves my country, I hate to mention it, but a few years of a completely incompetent and ineffective executive might give the world a rest from America. (But it's not worth voting for Trump to attain that.)
 
 
+14 # Majikman 2016-05-11 06:49
Really? Trump appears to be running for dictator. Ha! Just wait til he encounters a congress that is surpassed by none for its obstruction. I can picture Trump jumping up & down in a frenzied tantrum at being opposed.
 
 
0 # economagic 2016-05-11 14:51
And that might be a good thing, better by far than defying the obstructionist Congress and blowing stuff up anyway (which of course he might also do).
 
 
+15 # Hendrik Gideonse 2016-05-11 04:26
A sober piece.

I'm a subscriber and a monthly donor. Several times I have sent Mr. Ash a funding model that would solve theincreasingly annoying dunning problem. If you agree with it, you know what to do with your thumbs.

When someone subscribes to the feed they give their credit card. Every time a subscriber loads an article to read, the card is charged a nominal fee, $.09, $.12, $.15, whatever the cost of the service divided by the annual average of the number of monthly downloads, charged to subscribers cards' monthly.

That would REALLY be Reader Supported News. These lachrymose appeals means every article we read is with a bad taste in our mouths.

Are you in??

I'm posting this on every article I read as a comment. At this point I don't know what else I can do.
 
 
+9 # Radscal 2016-05-11 15:24
Like many on RSN, I make a small monthly contribution. Like some, it's often more than I would otherwise rationalize spending, but it's my choice to support it as best I can. So, there's my bias.

RSN is a business, and so is not required to meet First Amendment requirements like truly public enterprises. But I oppose exclusivity from a moral standpoint. RSN provides wonderful information that I do not believe should be restricted to people who have credit cards and can afford or have to budget their reading.

Although again, RSN is not required to allow civil comments to be posted by anyone, I've also read suggestions that there should be some minimum threshold of "contribution" to comment. And at that point, the term "contribution" becomes more of a euphemism.

There are certainly "firewall" paid-subscripti on sites. Can or should RSN change its business model to compete with them?

I hope readers will contribute all they can to keep RSN running, and to allow it to grow. Authoritarian exclusionism does not strike me as a good way to accomplish that.
 
 
0 # Painter 2016-05-14 22:05
I, too, tried to offer an idea for a different funding model, but for better or worse, it was turned down. The idea was to allow individuals to post little strip ads that they paid for monthly on a sidebar. I was particularly thinking of small businesses and website ads....
 
 
+28 # walt 2016-05-11 05:23
Well said by William Boardman: "A nation that creates a torture concentration camp like Guantanamo is not a healthy nation."

Guantanamo has long shamed all Americans and remains a leading cause of the hatred against the USA.

Closing Gitmo was a promise by Obama in 2008. Eight years later it remains open, we've increased drone killings, we increased troops to Afghanistan, we're now back in Iraq, we're intervening in many other countries, and more. So where was that "change we can believe in?" And why do we claim that the POTUS is the "Commander-in-C hief" when he doesn't even close Guantanamo to relive our national shame?

Right on, Mr. Boardman. Trump is not our greatest threat.
 
 
+7 # Radscal 2016-05-11 15:27
And we still have countless "black sites" across the globe.

In other news, we've just sent "boots on the ground" into Yemen.

Just "advisors," of course. And only a few, I'm sure. Will they room with our CIA contractors or our proxy army?
 
 
+1 # Dred Pierce 2016-05-11 06:34
To listen to the Right/Left propaganda 'media' go on about Trump, one would think that their very lives as 'media' whores is under serious threat. What if Trump is truthful even half the time. This would throw the 'media's' sick, lying little world into total chaos since they only know how to lie 100% of the time. If their bosses like JEB! POS Bush are being left speechless after a lifetime of lying and cheating the public by the Donald, what might happen to them. After all they only SELL the policies of one evil politician or tyrant after the next. All the media hysteria about Donald Trump tells me loud and clear that if you want to completely dismantle the EVIL Establishment on both sides of the aisle then VOTE FOR DONALD TRUMP. Hillary Clinton doesn't deserve to walk the streets and a VOTE FOR DONALD TRUMP would send her back to licking Netanyahu's rear end for donations to her EVIL foundation. When has anyone ever seen the 'media' so beside themselves with fear and loathing? Donald Trump is doing something very RIGHT. If he were just a regular everyday evil 'christian' bigot like Cruz and the rest, the 'media' would not be worrying about being arrested for treason. The really weird part is how many fellow citizens have so little intelligence and are so lame that they believe the establishment 'media.' They are running around like headless chicken littles. What a bunch of stupid people in this brainwashed country. The 'media' in this country have a big surprise coming.
 
 
-4 # rocback 2016-05-11 11:06
I was wondering when the Trump Trojan Horses would drop all pretenses.
 
 
+28 # Blackjack 2016-05-11 07:09
Unfettered capitalism is making this once honorable country sicker and sicker, paranoid and self destructive.
 
 
+15 # randrjwr 2016-05-11 08:18
Quoting Blackjack:
Unfettered capitalism is making this once honorable country sicker and sicker, paranoid and self destructive.


That's it, right there!! Everything is for sale including and especially the government itself, and NO AMOUNT of money is EVER enough.
 
 
0 # Bruce Gruber 2016-05-12 07:54
"Unregulated" is the term of endearment poured into the upturned ears of the right-wing populace. The propaganda mill 'explains' the inefficiencies and bankrupting potential of government spending to the squeezed Middle class. For liberals, it is the structured, angry public servant 'attitude' portrayed as expectant, when it is actually dis-unionized, anti-authoritar ian, subservient rebellion.
 
 
+13 # Darthvadersmom 2016-05-11 07:51
No clue who is contributing or not. But this is not Corporate Entertainment News or you wouldn't be here reading this. Please do your part, even if it's minimal. If you are homeless or in dire straights, of course you cannot contribute, but if not, at least give the $ you would have paid for a latte or for a magazine. I'm an adjunct, and, if I can do it--I am convinced that the majority of readers can give something.
 
 
0 # Painter 2016-05-15 00:08
Dear Fellow Adjunct: I don't make enough to buy lattes or magazines. I did try to offer an idea for a different funding model, but for better or worse, it was turned down. The idea was to allow individuals to post little strip ads that they paid for monthly on a sidebar. I was particularly thinking of small businesses and website ads....
 
 
+6 # Darthvadersmom 2016-05-11 08:00
My comment was not directed to anyone posting in particular--it' s just a plea to the readership in general.
 
 
-3 # Shades of gray matter 2016-05-11 08:35
OK. Trump ALONE isn't so bad. It's the 300,000,000 who would fall in line, and his massive popularity with cops & military. Apparently Boredman doesn't worry about confrontation w/Mexico, MASS deportations, concentration camps for Latins, Muslims, & people who won't Salute. Doesn't care about tearing up a treaty that avoided WWIII. My guess is that Boredman is WHITE, feels safe when white mobs go crazy. Throw everyone else under the TRAIN.
 
 
+6 # Johnny 2016-05-11 09:16
Calhoun was wrong on slavery, but that does not mean he was wrong about everything, or any more evil than the population of his time, in the way the American working class soldiers who murdered 5 1/2 million Vietnamese probably were not particularly evil as individuals. The reason the founders put the 10th and 11th Amendments in the Constitution was not to protect slavery, but to allow the states to counterbalance the very tyranny of the central government that we see today, in bank bailouts, TPP, jailing whistleblowers, and endless wars and murders by presidential fiat. If we could blame individuals for accepting the evils of their times, we would have hanged Lyndon Johnson, Jimmy Carter, Richard Nixon, G Bush Sr., GW Bush, Bill Clinton, and Barrack Obomber, not to mention scumbag butchers like Henry Kissinger and Dick Cheney. Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign would be at a great disadvantage because she would be in prison.
 
 
+5 # economagic 2016-05-11 14:54
Sad but true, the human condition -- and also the reason that who we elect this year makes less difference than each of them would like us to believe.
 
 
-7 # Robbee 2016-05-11 09:37
i'm with gray on this! boardman is whistling in the dark!
 
 
-8 # Robbee 2016-05-11 09:56
does deporting 11 million illegals? - does building a wall clear across mexico? - does registering and grounding muslims? - not bother you? - okay, maybe you are white supremacist?

we live in bloodthirsty times! - among an onward christian soldiery-public dying to war on muslims!

rump plans to "rebuild our military"

when he builds his wall, the centerpiece of his campaign! he has no way to force mexico to pay for it! short of invading and occupying mexico!

- go bernie! - then go dem!
 
 
+4 # dsepeczi 2016-05-12 13:27
Quoting Robbee:
does deporting 11 million illegals? - does building a wall clear across mexico? - does registering and grounding muslims? - not bother you? - okay, maybe you are white supremacist?

we live in bloodthirsty times! - among an onward christian soldiery-public dying to war on muslims!

rump plans to "rebuild our military"

when he builds his wall, the centerpiece of his campaign! he has no way to force mexico to pay for it! short of invading and occupying mexico!

- go bernie! - then go dem!


Why do you feel Hillary would be any different ? For all the words the dems toss around about immigrants, Obama has deported 2.5 million immigrants, 23% more than Bush. He also requested a trillion dollars towards "modernizing" our nuclear weapons program. While defending muslims, he continues to bomb them in their own homeland. When it comes to pols, including dems .... Don't listen to their words, take heed of their actions.
 
 
-7 # Robbee 2016-05-11 10:19
there is an aspect of the snake charmer about rump! that beguiles otherwise clear-headed folks like -
# lfeuille 2016-05-10 23:54
Finally someone defies the general Trump hysteria in print. "Advanced Trump-phobia is mostly political posturing"

Thank you Mr. Boardman.

- rump relies on a coalition of not-so-heavy-th inkers mis-trusting that he will do what he unwaveringly promises

will he build a wall? - what congress can stop him from doing what american voters "mandate"?

will he force mexico to pay for it? - what congress can stop our commander-in-ch ief from invading mexico?

will he torture prisoners? - who can stop him?

will he deport 11 million illegals - who can stop him?

will he order muslims grounded from international travel to and from america? - who can stop him?

will he order muslims to register as muslims? - who can stop him?
 
 
+9 # WBoardman 2016-05-11 18:17
Robbee neatly captures some of the irrationality
of hyper-Trump-pho bia.

Yes, Trump has said some of these things in various
forms and forums, but what reason is there to believe him?

What reason is there to believe Trump believes what
Trump says he believes?

As to specifics:
* Trump can't just order the wall built.
* Congress has done a great job blocking any Obama mandate.
* Even Trump hasn't yet threatened to invade Mexico.
* Congress and/or the Pentagon could/would stop him.
* We haven't stopped torturing prisoners.
* Obama is the record-holder on deportations.
* Biggest obstacle to deporting more is capability.
* What Trump might try to do to muslims is a danger,
but what a Pres CAN do is controlled by law and
the rest of government.

Trumpian panic requires a belief in his superhuman,
magical powers – and while Trump may well believe he has
such powers, there's no rational reason anyone else should
be so gulled, so fearful, so unresisting....
 
 
-2 # Buddha 2016-05-11 10:51
Quoting William Boardman:
Actually believing in the mortal Trump threat requires believing that the Congress, the Supreme Court, the military, the security state, and all the other the other agencies of government, as well as all the states and most of the populace will suddenly become helpless to oppose the White House.


Yes, because we've haven't seen in the last century any examples of constitutional democratic republics falling to fascist demagogues who inflamed their populous with racist ethno-nationali sm targeting ethnic and religious minorities to "make their countries great again", have we? Sorry Mr. Boardman, but another threat to our nation is the complacency of "it can't happen here because we are somehow more special than those other countries".
 
 
0 # economagic 2016-05-11 15:07
Quite true, but my take is that it has been happening since some time before I started saying it in 2002. I have little doubt that it will proceed under Trump or Clinton, and unfortunately at least to some degree with Sanders. Nevertheless I am still sending him money out of my modest pension, almost exclusively to him except for an occasional mite to couple of Senatorial candidates.

Regardless of who assumes the office and how, we will never know which of the available evils would have been better or worse, as we will only know how the one that got elected turned out. W was almost certainly worse than Gore would have been, regardless of how that came about, and despite the fact that he probably would not have been that great a president himself for all the standard reasons. But worrying about what might have been is always a losing game, as I'm sure you know.
 
 
+6 # WBoardman 2016-05-11 18:20
Other than Hitler's Germany or Mussolini's Italy,
neither of which was a stable "constitutional democratic republic,"
what examples does Buddha have in mind?
 
 
+6 # elkingo 2016-05-11 12:16
It's really all in Orwell, Bill. War=Peace, Love=Hate, doublethink, Newspeak etc. They say the first casualty of war is truth. So be it, but that is facilitated by an even earlier casualty: language. One can think that the capitalist/impe rialist warfare/fascist establishment uses Orwell as a primer.
 
 
+4 # elkingo 2016-05-11 12:22
Hey I think I like Hendrik Gideonse' solution! How 'bout posing it to the readership? I myself am a poet, poorer than shit, but I could do $0.9!
 
 
+1 # elly105 2016-05-11 17:42
The fact that the media - especially on CNN -- painstakingly repeats and analyzes and poses adnauseum speculations on the 'outrageous' things Trump says, is an embarrassment as to what they believe will hold viewer's interest. Trump may or may not be clever enough to manipulate all that attention but he might as well be. He bullies through nasty twisted ad-hominum arguments and threat. If he gets into serious power I wouldn't be surprised at how many intelligent people would be intimidated and fearful of being humiliated and thus start toadying up to him and let him get away with atrocities. Look at his huge following -- is that comprised of people who want to side with the bullying style? He is so reactive and seems unable to respond with grace and wisdom to anything - it's all reactive and posturing, boastful drama... I want to say 'ho hum' but he's winning so I do encourage his supporters to look at the big picture and reconsider...
 
 
-1 # Shades of gray matter 2016-05-11 22:26
Boredman, Mr. White Privilege, thinks he can be dismissive of Nazi threat since it doesn't threaten HIM. I'd like to see him sell his nonsense to deportables, Muslims, blacks. Didn't he hear The Fuhrer threaten GOP with mega-riots in sleepy Cleveland if he didn't get the nomination? Klan for Trump. Bikers for Trump. Assault Weapons commando wannabes for Trump. Renegade cops & military for Trump. Almost ALL cowardly whites for Trump once the violence, massive oppression, mass arrests, etc., begin. Where will Boredman be? Defending Black Muslims with his life?
 
 
+3 # WBoardman 2016-05-12 09:56
Besides the ad hominem slurs,
which are not an argument,
Shades here pretty much expresses
Trump-hysteria well,
equating Trump bluster with Hitlerian violence.

Trump has no brown shirts,
however frightened one might be by
real and imagined Trump fellow-traveler s.

Be as afraid as you want,
it's generally better to have rational fears. ;-)))
 
 
-3 # Shades of gray matter 2016-05-12 11:56
So you are committing to defending Black Muslims with your life if Trumpism, whether or not he wins, threatens them?
RE fears: Better to err on the side of caution with fascism, particularly if you are in or identify with a target group. I understand the problem of Trump-Worry distracting from Wall Street based Imperialism Worry. It is a very legitimate concern. But I think the near and imminent threatS posed by Trump REQUIRE our focus for at least a few months. I don't think it is an ad hominem attack to suggest that members of TARGET groups may be more alarmed. Even political analysis is personal, emotional, and hopefully partly rational. I think it is rational for target groups to be on HIGH ALERT. I think it is irrational for those who identify with TARGER groups, here and abroad, to not be on HIGH ALERT. We could never forgive ourselves.
 
 
-3 # boomerjim 2016-05-12 14:11
Wrong. Trump IS the greatest threat, and the reason is something the "moderates" don't understand. The politics of serving, or of appeasing, the rich has hurt the rest of the country, and there is much anger. When populations get angry enough about what politics does to them, then is time for the left to stand up (yeah, Bernie). But if it doesn't or cannot, the door opens for Fascism. Thus, we have the real threat with Trump. Not that he has any defined ideology other than Trump; but he is enough of an opportunist to open the U.S. up to Fascism, as we have seen the way he operated in the primaries. And he is enough of a racist to do it. That is why he a the real danger -- for what he represents. And he IS that greatest threat for minorities, women, and Muslims.
 
 
+1 # dsepeczi 2016-05-13 08:00
Quoting boomerjim:
Wrong. Trump IS the greatest threat, and the reason is something the "moderates" don't understand. The politics of serving, or of appeasing, the rich has hurt the rest of the country, and there is much anger. When populations get angry enough about what politics does to them, then is time for the left to stand up (yeah, Bernie). But if it doesn't or cannot, the door opens for Fascism. Thus, we have the real threat with Trump. Not that he has any defined ideology other than Trump; but he is enough of an opportunist to open the U.S. up to Fascism, as we have seen the way he operated in the primaries. And he is enough of a racist to do it. That is why he a the real danger -- for what he represents. And he IS that greatest threat for minorities, women, and Muslims.


News Flash !!! Fascism already exists in many forms today ... brought on by the democrats you foolishly feel oppose it.
 
 
+1 # Phillybuster 2016-05-13 15:39
The scariest thing about Trump is the crowd of buffoons who support him. All the Repugs are closing ranks behind him. Rachel Maddow pointed out last night that only five Repug members of the House and Senate have unequivocally said they won't support Trump. The entire anti-Trump GOP crowd is as phony as a $3 bill. They hate Hillary so much they would vote for Al-Baghdadi if he was running against her.
 
 
+2 # Vardoz 2016-05-13 16:45
Yet the DNC knowing that Bernie can beat Trump are pushing HRC and risking a Trump presidency which would be a nightmare for our society! This is why Bernie supporters are so angry as HRC is sabotaging the vote against Bernie she is also expecting us to vote for her even though Bernie can easily beat Trump, They are playing a game of Russian Roulette. And either way the DNC will lose in the end because they have shown themselves to be traitors to their base, the 99%
 

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