The Evening Blues - 4-27-16



eb1pt12

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features jazz pianist Jelly Roll Morton. Enjoy!

Jelly Roll Morton - Dr. Jazz

“There is nothing more agreeable in life than to make peace with the Establishment - and nothing more corrupting.”

-- A.J.P. Taylor


News and Opinion

An interesting analysis by Gaius Publius, worth a full read. Here's a taste to get you started:

A Look Ahead – Coming to the Philadelphia Crossroad

1. If Clinton is the nominee, she must win Sanders supporters or risk losing to the Republican, whoever that is.

1a. “Independents” aren’t “moderate Republicans.” Independents are pretty radical these days.

In my view and the view of many, Clinton’s success in the general election depends on appealing to the voters she’s currently disrespecting — Sanders supporters, first-time younger voters (those who only want “free this and free that” and don’t do their own research), and non-party-affiliated independents (the ones who can’t vote for Sanders because they are locked out of closed primaries like New York’s).

The corollary (point 1a) describes today’s independent voter, not as some imagined between-the-parties “Reagan Democrat,” but as modern radical independents, people in both parties who (1) reject the bipartisan money-washed system, and (2) are suffering personally because of it. Modern independents now comprise 42% of the country.

Frankly, the future of the country, at least until the climate overtakes us, hinges on the two points above. It seems clear that the national rebellion against big-money rule by both parties, which is well underway, will either find an electoral expression (Sanders or initially, Trump) or will fail in its attempt to find an electoral solution. (Trump will eventually fail to satisfy this revolt, as discussed briefly here and in this Michael Parenti comment: “Fascism is a false revolution. It makes a revolutionary appeal without making an actual revolution. It propagates the widely proclaimed New Order while serving the same old moneyed interests.” But that discussion is for later.)

As I see it, in all cases but a Sanders nomination, the next phase of the revolt will occur outside the electoral process and outside the rules of Establishment authority. This doesn’t necessarily mean pitchforks and torches. It can range from something as mild (but effective) as Occupy and Nuit Debout (“up all night” protests) in France, to angry, active Ferguson-style street events. ...

Clinton can certainly wrap up the nomination (or not), but if she does, she will have done it with a jiggered, Debbie Wasserman Schultzed process; by winning states no Democrat will win in November; by winning mainly in contests in which only Democrats could vote.

... This is not about the rightness or wrongness of what the Democrats do on arrival in Philadelphia. It’s about how what they do will look to people who will vote in November.

This could all be a problem — for Democrats, not for Sanders. What’s a “hardwired for Clinton” political party to do? Stay tuned. Philadelphia may be the site of the most important crossroad in post-FDR American history.

US Sends Advanced Warplanes to Russian Frontier

With US officials continuing to talk up “Russian aggression,” the Pentagon has sent a pair of F-22 Raptors to Romania, in what is being described as a “show of force” to prove US capabilities to deploy such planes anywhere in NATO territory.

The F-22s have been seldom-used by the Pentagon, annd repeatedly grounded by technical problems. Despite this, the program has cost an estimated $66 billion, well more than Russia spends on its entire military in a given year.

The Cost of the War Against ISIS: $7 Billion and Counting

The war against the Islamic State has now cost American taxpayers more than $7 billion, a figure that could increase dramatically as the U.S. prepares to send 200 more troops to Iraq to help fight the extremist network. ...

Given the Obama administration’s airpower-first approach to battling ISIS it’s not surprising that daily flight operations accounted for 48 percent of the war’s cost, or about $3.2 billion.

Mission support – including personnel, logistics, surveillance and reconnaissance – accounted for 28 percent of the cost, or $1.8 billion, and munitions made up 24 percent, or just under $1.6 billion.

Broken down by military branch, the Air Force has spent the most by far on the anti-ISIS fight, roughly $4.6 billion. The Army has spent $918 million, the Navy $734 million and special operations forces account for $503 million, according to the Pentagon.

US must explain Afghan anti-terror failure - ex-president Karzai

Scores of Civilians Killed In Aleppo as Syria Violence Intensifies

Syrian government airstrikes and shelling by armed groups have killed dozens of civilians in Aleppo over the past few days, rescue workers and monitoring groups say, as the city suffers a marked escalation in violence.

The increase in fighting has left a cessation of hostilities agreement in tatters and comes after the virtual collapse of United Nations-brokered peace talks in Geneva last week.

Aleppo's branch of the Syrian Civil Defense, a volunteer search and rescue group known as the White Helmets, said bombings had left at least 89 civilians dead and injured another 135 in the city since April 22, Human Rights Watch reported on Wednesday. ...

It is unclear whether the strikes are being carried out by government forces or allied Russian aircraft, which began an extensive bombing campaign on rebel-held areas in September. Rebel groups and Islamic factions are also shelling regime-held neighborhoods. ...

Armed opposition groups have killed at least 20 civilians since April 22, according to the government run SANA news agency, with 16 dead on Monday alone. Rebels have also bombarded Aleppo's Kurdish-controlled neighborhood of Sheikh Maqsoud, according to local activists and Kurdish forces.

Turkish minister says U.S. to deploy rocket launchers near Syrian border

The United States will deploy a rocket launcher system in Turkey near the border with a part of Syria held by Islamic State, Turkey's foreign minister was quoted as saying on Tuesday.

Mevlut Cavusoglu was quoted by the Haberturk newspaper as saying that the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) would arrive in May near a part of southeastern Turkey that has repeatedly been hit by rocket fire from Syria.

A senior U.S. military official confirmed the matter was under discussion but declined to comment further.

The deployment is part of a strategy to seal off an area around the Syrian town of Manbij, which could deprive Islamic State fighters of a logistical route they have used to bring in supplies and foreign recruits.

UN Security Council: Golan Heights Doesn’t Belong to Israel

The UN Security Council has today issued a statement blasting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for recent comments on the Golan Heights, reiterating that “the status of the Golan remains unchanged,” and that it doesn’t belong to Israel despite being occupied by them since 1967, and being illegally annexed by Israel in the 1980s.

Officials noted UN Security Council resolution 497, way back in 1981, made it clear the UN considers Israel’s annexation to have no legal effect internationally. In today’s comments, officials also expressed concern about Israel’s establishment of cities and towns in what is effectively occupied territory.

Last week, Netanyahu declared that Golan was “forever” Israeli, and demanded the international community formally recognize the annexation, saying the Syrian Civil War proved the land could never be returned to the Syrians.

US Tries, Fails to Mimic Israeli ‘Roof-Knock’ Bomb Warning in Iraq

According to Maj. Gen. Peter Gersten, the US is said to have attmepted to copy Israel’s “roof-knocking” strategy, dropping smaller bombs on civilian homes first to chase them out before dropping the bigger bombs. Even though it clearly didn’t work well for Israel, US officials tried, and say it “failed” for them.

US officials are also said to be “copying Israel” by dropping leaflets into populated areas demanding the civilians flee, even though by and large they have nowhere to go, a tactic Israel similarly used to warn Gazans out of Gaza, despite all borders being closed.

Bombing civilian locations is flat out illegal under international law, though Israel has mostly gotten a pass for repeatedly doing so, because the US vetoes all the resolutions criticizing them for that.

Iraqi Parliament Chaos as Thousands Protest Outside

Thousands of demonstrators took to the area outside Iraq’s parliament, demanding reform as the legislative body attempted, and failed, to have an orderly session regarding the proposed new technocrat cabinet.

Prime Minister Hayder Abadi’s arrival caused a considerable ruckus, as MPs opposed to his cabinet threw water bottles at him and hollered “treachery” for nearly two hours, until the early session was ended. This also saw the removal of all reporters, for “security,” amid reports that the protesters had entered the Green Zone. ...

Abadi is a member of the State of Law faction, the larger of two Shi’ite Arab blocs. Ironically, the opposition to his cabinet is overwhelmingly from his own bloc, along with the Kurds, while he is supported by the rival Shi’ite bloc, Moqtada al-Sadr’s, which dominates the public protests, along with the Sunni Arabs, including parliament’ss speaker.

Warrantless Surveillance in Terror Case Raises Constitutional Challenge

Prosecutors have told an Iraqi refugee who is accused of traveling to Syria to help a terrorist organization that he faces evidence derived from the government’s warrantless surveillance program, a disclosure that elevates the significance of the case by making the constitutionality of that program a central dispute.

With the rare notice this month, the case joins a small number of others in which the constitutionality of the surveillance program and its legal basis — the FISA Amendments Act — are at issue. Among them is an Ohio case in which three defendants accused of giving money to Al Qaeda’s Yemen branch received similar notices in December.

Thomas A. Durkin, a defense lawyer who represents the Iraqi refugee, Aws Mohammed Younis Al-Jayab, who was arrested after returning to the United States, and one of the Ohio men, Yahya Farooq Mohammad, said he would ask the judges in both cases to suppress the evidence. ...

At least 10 defendants in eight cases — all terrorism-related — have now received such a notice. They include three cases in Colorado, Oregon and Brooklyn in which defendants have challenged the surveillance and lost at the district court level; no appeals court has yet weighed in. (The defendants previously notified in three other cases did not contest the surveillance.)

Brazilian Cybercrime Bills Threaten Open Internet for 200 Million People

Brazilian internet freedom activists are nervous. On Wednesday, a committee in the lower house of Congress, the Câmera dos Deputados, will vote on seven proposals ostensibly created to combat cybercrime. Critics argue the combined effect will be to substantially restrict open internet in the country by peeling back the right to anonymity, and providing law enforcement with draconian powers to censor online discourse and examine citizens’ personal data without judicial oversight.

The bills are ripped straight from what has become a standard international playbook: Propose legislation to combat cybercrime; invoke child pornography, hackers, organized crime, and even terrorism; then slip in measures that also make it easier to identify critical voices online (often without judicial oversight) and either mute them or throw them in jail for defamation — direct threats to free speech. ...

The Brazilian press has not dedicated much coverage to this story — reporters have their hands full with the monthslong political crisis currently enveloping the nation — but the Folha de São Paulo, a major national newspaper, published an editorial on Saturday arguing that the proposals use the “pretext of increasing security” online to “increase the power to censor the web and diminish users’ privacy.” According to Folha, the “provisions attack the pillars of the Marco Civil da Internet, a statute enacted in 2014 which put Brazil at the vanguard of the issue” of internet rights. The paper concluded that “this is the type of control used by countries such as China and Iran.”

One particularly controversial proposal would have required social networks to remove content deemed “offensive to the honor” of politicians within 48 hours of receiving official notification. After public outcry, that section was removed from the second version of the report, but other proposals remain that would force companies to take down prohibited user-generated content, including those deemed to be “crimes against honor and other injuries,” without a unique judicial order.

Means, motive and opportunity. Yep.

Washington Launches Its Attack Against BRICS

Having removed the reformist President of Argentina, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, Washington is now disposing of the reformist President of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff. ...

In Brazil, Washington has used corruption insinuations to get President Rousseff impeached by the lower house. Evidence is not necessary, just allegations. It is no different from “Iranian nukes,” Saddam Hussein’s “weapons of mass destruction,” Assad’s “use of chemical weapons,” or in Rousseff’s case merely insinuations. The Secretary General of the Organization of American States, Luis Almagro, notes that Rousseff “hasn’t been accused of anything.” The American-backed elites are simply using impeachment to remove a president who they cannot defeat electorally.

In short, this is Washington’s move against the BRICS. Washington is moving to put into political power a rightwing party that Washington controls in order to terminate Brazil’s growing relationships with China and Russia. ...

Kirchner and Rousseff’s “crimes” are their efforts to have the governments of Argentina and Brazil represent the Argentine and Brazilian peoples rather than the elites and Wall Street. In Washington these are serious offenses as Washington uses the elites to control South American countries. Whenever Latin Americans elect a government that represents them, Washington overthrows the government or assassinates the president. ...

Washington has always blocked reform in Latin America. Latin American peoples will remain American serfs until they elect governments by such large majorities that the governments can exile the traitorous elites, close the US embassies, and expel all US corporations. Every Latin American country that has an American presence has no future other than serfdom.

And on the seventh day Americans rested – but pass on religion, poll finds

The proportion of Americans who say a religious day of rest is personally important to them has dropped to 50%, reflecting growing secularism over recent decades, according to a new poll.

A similar question asked in a 1978 survey showed 74% of respondents saying the Sabbath had personal religious significance.

The new poll also showed a big fall in those saying they attended weekly religious services, from 55% in 1978 to 27% now. Jews were least likely to attend services and Mormons were most likely.

The survey was carried out by YouGov on behalf of the Deseret News, a “family-oriented” news site based in Salt Lake City. It questioned 1,691 Americans across religious, racial, gender and age groups.

Venezuela crisis: Authorities reduce workweek to save energy

Venezuela announces two-day work week as it battles energy crisis

Venezuela’s public employees will work only on Monday and Tuesday as the country grapples with an electricity crisis.

President Nicolás Maduro announced on Tuesday that the government was slashing working hours for at least two weeks in an attempt to save energy.

He said the water level behind the nation’s largest dam had fallen to near its minimum operating level thanks to a severe drought. Experts say lack of planning and maintenance is also to blame.

The country’s socialist administration gave nearly 3 million public workers Fridays off earlier this month, and on Monday initiated daily four-hour blackouts around the country.

The government is now extending the Friday holidays to primary school teachers, though it appears employees of public hospitals and state-run supermarkets will still have to work.

The development came as the elections council agreed to give opposition leaders a document allowing them to begin the process of seeking a referendum to remove Maduro.

Tell the Negroes to Wait: Obama, Black Lives Matter, and Compromising with White Supremacy

Many are quick to echo Steve Harvey and tell those that push President Obama to be more responsive to the needs of black folks that he is not just President of Black America, but, in fact, he is the President of the United States of America. The point they attempt to make is that the President cannot just cater to the needs of one constituency. He must, being president of all, cater to all perspectives. His recent comments should appease the All Lives Matter vote.

Recently, the Movement for Black Lives was discussed while President Barack Obama spoke at a London town hall. He praised Black Lives Matter for its ability to highlight issues, but criticized what he felt were lackluster efforts to create solutions. He said that “they yell too much” and that “yelling is not what will get the job done.” ...

The implication that Black Lives Matter is not doing its job correctly because they are not being polite in their dealings with lawmakers and politicians reeks of respectability politics. Somehow, the President has placed the responsibility of implementing socially just policy on private citizens, not the elected officials. He has shifted the burden onto BLM, but none of the support or benefits. ... Also, to refer to the movement’s actions strictly as “yelling” distracts from their accomplishments and is a thinly-veiled attempt to silence them, or at the very least, make dealing with them more convenient. ...

For the past seven years, many Black folks have been less critical of President Obama because we finally had someone who looked like us in the country’s highest office. As valuable that imagery is, we cannot forget that, as our grandmothers said, all your skinfolk ain’t your kinfolk—meaning, people that look like us are still capable of perpetuating anti-Blackness. President Obama has lectured us on respectability for the last time. We must hold Black leaders to the standards they inspire. Oppressed people need more than rhetoric. They need policy. He spent the first two years in office trying to build bridges with those who maintain white supremacy and now he wants to lecture those engaged in a movement to that was formed under his watch. What oppressed people need is neither always convenient nor expressed according to the expectations of those who need to hear them. If we were politely asking for our needs to be met, we would die before we attracted the attention of those in power. In fact, many already have.

Newly released bigoted texts from San Francisco police call cases into question

Widening a scandal that has marred San Francisco’s reputation as one of America’s most liberal cities, the city’s public defender said Tuesday that a newly released series of text messages exchanged by three police officers in 2014 and 2015 will force city officials to take a second look at more than 200 criminal cases, including three murders.

In the more than 100 new text messages made public on Tuesday, one of the former officers, Jason Lai, repeatedly used racist, homophobic and transphobic slurs like “nigga”, “fag” and “tranny” to refer to San Francisco residents. He also makes offensive remarks about president Barack Obama and NBA player LeBron James. ...

In addition to Lai, two other officers, Curtis Liu and Keith Ybarreta, are also named in the scandal, which will now force officials to reevaluate the evidence presented in a total of 207 criminal cases, ranging from misdemeanor drug possession to murder.

The revelation of the contents of the text messages is just the latest blow for the embattled police department, which has faced ongoing protests since the fatal police shooting of Mario Woods last winter. ...

“It would be naive to believe these officers’ bigotry was reserved solely for text messages,” Jeff Adachi, San Francisco’s public defender, said in a statement. “It is a window into the biases they harbored. It likely influenced who they stopped, who they searched, who they arrested, and how they testified in criminal trials.”

Jobless Economy and Citizenless Democracy

BlackRock's Fink Urges Fiscal Stimulus to Avoid ‘Grim’ Outlook

Laurence D. Fink, the head of the world’s largest asset manager, said governments need to embark on fiscal stimulus to boost the economy, joining a growing chorus of investors who say the world has relied on monetary policy for too long.

Monetary policy has “run out of runway,” with some central banks pushing interest rates into negative territory, Fink said Wednesday in an interview with Erik Schatzker on Bloomberg Television. He called the Bank of Japan’s negative rate policy an “outright mistake” and warned that without fiscal measures, the outlook would be “grim.”

“If we continue to have a dependency on monetary policy worldwide, I think it’s very grim,” said Fink, whose firm BlackRock Inc. oversees $4.7 trillion for clients. “We’re harming savers worldwide with low and negative interest rates.”

Fink’s comments echo those of top investors including Ray Dalio, head of the world’s largest hedge fund, and Bill Gross, the co-founder of Pacific Investment Management Co. Dalio said in February that the next step in policy would have to target spenders, rather than investors and savers, through measures that may include sending money to people directly. Gross has said for some time that fiscal measures were needed to supplement monetary policy.

New York Times Finds Verizon Strike Beneath Notice

The New York Times actually mentioned the ongoing strike against Verizon on Tuesday.

David Wacker, a service technician with Verizon who is one of around 39,000 landline and cable employees participating in the largest U.S. strike action in four years, was quoted in an article about Bernie Sanders supporters, which noted, in a subordinate clause, that he was on strike.

That brief reference was the first mention of the Verizon labor action on the news pages of the New York Times in a week.

The most recent references before that also had to do with Sanders, when he visited a Verizon picket line in midtown Manhattan on April 18. Outside of those Sanders-focused stories, the New York Times hasn’t run a story on this major labor battle since its second day of action, nearly two weeks ago.



the horse race



Half of Americans think presidential nominating system 'rigged' - poll

More than half of American voters believe that the system U.S. political parties use to pick their candidates for the White House is "rigged" and more than two-thirds want to see the process changed, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll.

The results echo complaints from Republican front-runner Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Bernie Sanders that the system is stacked against them in favor of candidates with close ties to their parties – a critique that has triggered a nationwide debate over whether the process is fair. ...

Some 51 percent of likely voters who responded to the April 21-26 online survey said they believed the primary system was "rigged" against some candidates. Some 71 percent of respondents said they would prefer to pick their party’s nominee with a direct vote, cutting out the use of delegates as intermediaries.

Overall, nearly half said they would also prefer a single primary day in which all states held their nominating contests together - as opposed to the current system of spreading them out for months.

Notching One More Win, Sanders Vows to Fight 'Until Last Vote is Cast'

Less than two hours after the polls closed on Tuesday, major networks declared Hillary Clinton the winner in Maryland, Delaware, and delegate-rich Pennsylvania. ...

Speaking in Huntington, West Virginia shortly after polls closed, Sanders reminded the crowd how far the campaign had come and how, originally, the media dismissed him as a "fringe" candidate.

"And in the middle of all of that," Sanders continued, "we were taking on the most powerful political organization in America. An organization that elected a president, President [Bill] Clinton, on two occasions and an organization that ran a very strong campaign for Secretary Clinton in 2008." 

Similarly, in an email to supporters Tuesday evening, the Senator expanded on this idea, writing: 

Our path to the nomination was never narrower than the day I announced my candidacy. I will not stop fighting for an America where no one who works 40 hours a week lives in poverty, where health care is a right for all Americans, where kids of all backgrounds can go to college without crushing debt, where there is no bank too big to fail, no banker too powerful to jail, and we've reclaimed our democracy from the billionaire class.

He added that "any victories and any votes" are a repudiation of the status quo and are "a public declaration of support for the values we share."

"The political establishment wants us to go away so they can begin their march to the center," he continued, vowing to keep up the fight next week in Indiana, "and in each state moving forward."

Speaking from Philadelphia, Clinton made a direct appeal to Sanders supporters, pledging to "unify" the party and saying, "Whether you support Senator Sanders or you support me, there's much more that unites us than divides us."


After Bitter Tuesday, Progressives Ask Democratic Party What It Stands For

A disappointing election night for progressives ended Tuesday with two establishment Democrats, Katie McGinty and Rep. Chris Van Hollen, winning their respective U.S. Senate primary races in Pennsylvania and Maryland.

Van Hollen won against Rep. Donna Edwards, both of whom were running to replace Sen. Barbara Mikulski, in a contest that highlighted racial, gender, and class divides in the Maryland Democratic Party. ...

At a union hall in Prince George's County Tuesday night, Edwards gave a passionate concession speech that criticized the Democratic Party's faux-progressive mantle.

"To my Democratic Party, you cannot show up in churches before election day, you cannot sing the first and last verse of 'Lift Every Voice and Sing,' you cannot join hands and walk across the Edmund Pettus Bridge, and call that post-racial and inclusion," she said to cheers and applause.

"To my Democratic Party, let me say that today Maryland is on the verge of having an all-male delegation in a so-called progressive state. So what I want to know from my Democratic Party, is when will the voices of people of color, when will the voices of women, when will the voices of labor, when will the voices of black women, when will our voices be effective, legitimate, equal leaders in a big-tent party?" she said.

Meanwhile, in Pennsylvania, progressives saw McGinty's win over Joe Sestak as another example of establishment game-playing.

The Democratic Party's anointment of McGinty, a former chief of staff for Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf, came as an explicit response to Sestak's candidacy. The former congressman burned bridges with the party in 2010 after beating Sen. Arlen Specter for the Senate nomination, then losing to Republican Pat Toomey by two points, a race he says Democrat officials never forgave him for.


Hillary Clinton also won the presidential primaries in Maryland and Pennsylvania on Tuesday, rounding out both states' establishment lineups.

How Trump Became the GOP's "Presumptive Nominee" with Hate-Fueled Rhetoric & Attacks on Immigrants

Bernie Sanders still has some work to do on his foreign policy positions.

Bernie Sanders Says US 'Kill List' Legal, Backs Troops in Syria

People in the United States have "a lot of right to defend ourselves," presidential contender Bernie Sanders said at a town hall meeting Monday when asked if he too would have an extrajudicial "kill list" like President Barack Obama. The senator from Vermont also endorsed Obama's recent deployment of another 250 soldiers to Syria as part of the war against the Islamic State group.

"Look. Terrorism is a very serious issue," Sanders told MSNBC's Chris Hayes. "There are people out there who want to kill Americans, who want to attack this country, and I think we have a lot of right to defend ourselves." However, the senator added, "it has to be done in a constitutional, legal way."

The New York Times revealed in 2012 that President Obama hosts a meeting every Tuesday at the White House where he decides which suspected terrorists will be added to a so-called "kill list." Those on the list can then be targeted for killing, typically with an unmanned drone.

"Do you think what's being done now is constitutional and legal?" Hayes asked Sanders, noting the existence of "a list of people that the U.S. government wants to kill."

"In general I do, yes," Sanders replied.

Facebook temporarily suspends Bernie Sanders groups owing to 'glitch'

On Monday night, six pro-Bernie Sanders groups were temporarily suspended by Facebook. ...

On social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, false reports for spam or abusive behaviour can sometimes be enough to trigger automatic bans, if submitted in large enough quantities. ... Sanders supporters [...] blamed astroturfing by pro-Clinton political action committees.

But Facebook told technology site Recode that the outages were actually due to a glitch in its systems. “A number of groups were inaccessible for a brief period after one of our automated policies was applied incorrectly. We corrected the problem within hours and are working to improve our tools.”

Leading Advocates of “Dark Money” Previously Supported Disclosure

The campaign to allow money to be spent in the political system without a hint of its origin — the growing phenomenon known as dark money — racked up a major victory last week when a federal judge in Los Angeles issued a permanent injunction ending California Attorney General Kamala Harris’s attempt to obtain the donor list for Americans for Prosperity, the primary campaign and elections arm of the Koch brothers’ $889 million advocacy network.

The legal pushback against the attorney general’s inquiry was led by Americans for Prosperity and other advocates for undisclosed campaign cash. The Center for Competitive Politics, which litigates against restrictions on money in politics, joined the fray by filing a lawsuit against the attorney general’s request for donor information.

These days, those groups argue that guarding the identity of big political contributors is a First Amendment issue and a way to guard against “harassment” of donors — as Koch Industries’ general counsel claimed in a court filing.

But Americans for Prosperity and others now demanding campaign donor secrecy made the very opposite argument in the years before the Citizens United Supreme Court decision — supporting “full” campaign finance disclosure as a reasonable accompaniment to raising contribution limits. Now that contribution limits have been effectively eliminated, the calls for transparency have disappeared.



the evening greens

Michigan official suggested gaming water tests to 'bump out' lead results

State environmental analyst in a 2008 email asked a technician collecting samples of a water system in Fenton to collect more to avert a ‘lead public notice’

A Michigan environmental official suggested a technician collecting samples for a suburban Detroit private water system “bump ... out” a test result that found very high levels of lead by testing more homes, according to a 2008 email reviewed by the Guardian. Doing so could avert a “lead public notice”, the email reasoned, which would alert residents of dangerously high levels in their water.

“Oh my gosh, I’ve never heard [it] more black and white,” said Marc Edwards, a Virginia Tech professor and lead expert who helped uncover the Flint water crisis. “In the Flint emails, if you recall, it was a little bit implied … this is like telling the strategy, which is: ‘you failed, but if you go out and get a whole bunch more samples that are low, then you can game it lower.

“It just shows that this culture of corruption and unethical, uncaring behavior predated Flint by at least six years.”

Crude L.A.: California's Urban Oil Fields

Rejection of Montana Coal Train a 'Big Win' for Ranchers and Environmentalists

Driving one more nail into the coal industry's coffin, a federal board on Tuesday officially rejected a proposal to build a coal-hauling railroad through farm and ranch land in southeastern Montana.

Ranchers and environmentalists, who aggressively opposed the project, celebrated the Surface Transportation Board ruling.

"It’s a historic day when a federal agency recognizes there’s no foreseeable future for coal," stated Ken Rumelt, an attorney at the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic at the Vermont Law School, who represented the grassroots conservation group Northern Plains Resource Council (NPRC) before the Board. ...

The railroad was intended to carry coal from Arch Coal's proposed Otter Creek mine, but that project was suspended last month after the fossil fuel giant declared bankruptcy in January. The Tongue River Railroad Company (TRRC)—which is jointly owned by Arch Coal, Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway, and confection king Forrest Mars Jr.—applied for the power to use federal eminent domain to construct the rail line on privately owned land.

India's drought migrants head to cities in desperate search for water

No one in the slum of Murtinagar wants to play with Temri and Chinna. The brother and sister don’t speak the local Hindi or Marathi languages – they came here, to Mumbai, India’s financial capital, 10 days ago from their village, Andhra, and grew up speaking the regional language of Telegu. Jaya Kummari, their mother, brought Chinna and Temri to Mumbai because of a drought that has left Andhra without water. ...

The Kummaris are rice farmers. Rice is a water-intensive crop; it takes more than 2,500 litres of water to produce one kilo (pdf). Usually the Kummaris can harvest their crop twice a year but, since the drought, they’ve suffered enormous financial losses. “No one in the village had water,” Kummari says. “We had no choice but to come here.”

The drought has affected 330 million people in India this year, according to government figures. About 15% of India’s gross domestic product comes from agriculture and 68% of the 1.3 billion population are farmers. With no water for irrigation, the drought has been devastating for farmers. Like the Kummaris, hundreds of families have had to leave their lands in search of water. ...

In the western state of Maharashtra, one of the worst-hit regions, 9 million farmers have little or no access to water. This year, at least 216 farmers have committed suicide in the state.

The government’s response has been slow and inefficient. After weeks of waiting, trains carrying thousands of litres of water reached the region of Marathwada this week, where rivers have dried up and dams are holding about 3% of their capacity. Many other drought-hit regions are still waiting for deliveries. ...

The drought migrants have no homes in the city; some have made makeshift shelters on construction sites, footpaths and park benches. The villagers have no work and no cash, and many are forced to beg. The rural exodus is becoming a burden for authorities in Mumbai, who say they need help to provide food, shelter and jobs to the displaced people.


Also of Interest

Here are some articles of interest, some which defied fair-use abstraction.

A Year After the Baltimore Uprising, the Real Work Is Just Beginning

Baltimore's uprising: rival gangs push for peace after Freddie Gray's death

Snowden Debates CNN’s Fareed Zakaria on Encryption

Why the Vampire Squid Wants Small Depositors’ Money in 1 Frightening Chart


A Little Night Music

Jelly Roll Morton - Wolverine Blues

Jelly Roll Morton - Hesitation Blues

Jelly Roll Morton - The Crave

Jelly Roll Morton And His Red Hot Peppers - Black Bottom Stomp

Jelly Roll Morton & The Red Hot Peppers - Dead Man Blues

Jelly Roll Morton - Winin' Boy Blues

Jelly Roll Morton - Finger Breaker


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detroitmechworks's picture

The Kill list and everything president Obomber has done since he got into office is "technically Legal".

And I know you still have a primary to win. But seriously, start thinking about calling out REAL freaking wrongdoing. The MIC and PIC already hate your guts, and a quick kick in their nuts is exactly what this country needs to get a conversation going.

For a while there, I really hoped you would be saying no more war. I'm hoping to GOD this is a badly edited, taken out of context quote.

War sucks, warmongers suck, and if you're supporting them, I am just voting for Jill Stein THAT much sooner.

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16 users have voted.

I do not pretend I know what I do not know.

Shahryar's picture

the ironic thing is that it's Bernie who's the lesser of two evils.

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joe shikspack's picture

bernie has said some good things, particularly in his remarks skewering clinton for her regime change hawkishness - which is a step up from being against "dumb wars." on the other hand, he has been kind of hawkish about the need to eliminate isis and wanting the saudis and the gulf coast states to get busy with the slaughter.

bernie is not the anti-war candidate that we would hope for. on the other hand, an active movement (which he would need to get anything done) could just as well stymie war plans as it could provide an irresistible force in support for others. (whether it would do so is an open question. obama demobilized his movement, for what now seem like obvious reasons. it seems that the key is to have a leadership outside of official politics.)

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Lookout's picture

He suggested working with Assad, Putin, and Iran on dealing with ISIS. That's a good idea from my view.

Joe, I love the Jelly Roll stuff. Lots of fun. Thanks for the news summary and music!

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7 users have voted.

“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

joe shikspack's picture

yes, his statements have been a mixed bag, though most of them imply that he is not eager to make war, unlike his opponents. after hearing obama repeatedly make statements that would lead one to believe that he was not going to find out that he was "really good at killing people" while in office, though, i am considerably more reticent to take candidates statements at face value anymore.

if bernie gets past the nomination process and becomes a candidate in the general, i will want him to make some simple, declarative statements about his foreign policy, outlining things that he will and will not do.

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..."obama demobilized his movement..." Did he ever! Used and discarded!

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And IF there is a "collaboration" between Greens and Bernie-I would insist on the more moral candidate as Prez-and that's Jill.

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joe shikspack's picture

i would prefer jill to top the ticket as well, based upon her superior platform. it will be interesting to see what works out.

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shaharazade's picture

think that Bernie will go for running under a Green banner. Hope I'm wrong but he seems really locked into 'caucusing with the Democrat's'. He really is a moderate Democratic candidate with the exception of his 'foreign policy' which is as far as I can see is full blown neocon and Western Empirical. Has Bernie expressed any interest in coalescing with the Greens?

My reservations about Bernie when he announced he was running are still there. If he sheep dogs his flock into supporting the Democratic party I will not be surprised. Perhaps he's right and there is no way to affect our fascistic ship of state other then mitigating their nasty agenda so that we at least have some regulations to keep the Visigoths at bay.

I guess my problem is not with Bernie as a person he's a decent guy. My problem is with the global grip of these fuckers who proclaim they are inevitable. Nasty empire's and the violent hoards who come screaming out of the woodwork periodically throughout history always say they are inevitable and no one can stop them. Yet they are stopped by ordinary people. They want to rule the world and they will by god.

This battle is as old as the hills regardless of technology, 'ism's' or all that jazz. There is no reasoning with these monsters, no caucusing, 'victories for compromise' or any accommodations to their sick world view. They have no redeeming value for humanity or the planet.

They have gone too far as they always do and they all need to go. Sure its a hard road to hoe but the time has come to once again take it back. Bernie is a good start but I'm certainly not pinning my hopes on him. Violent war or revolution is not the answer but I not going to vote for anyone who advocates accepting this madness as reality.

So yeah, Bernie pisses me off too. Then again I'm just a soul whose intentions are good (I hope). How are people of good spirit globally ever going to pry this blood sucking squid off humanities face by democratic means when it 's a farce that no contender other then the Hairball calls out? Including Bernie and his adherence to the rules of engagement in a rigged violent nasty global system that holds us all globally captive. This is not what democracy looks like so why does Bernie abide by it's absurd rules of engagement? Why not take it on from outside the gates of Hades?

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joe shikspack's picture

i have little expectation that bernie will run as a green or collaborate with jill stein unless it is under very unusual conditions.

at this point, the whole argument over whether bernie should have run as an independent or a democrat, is settled for me. i am glad that he ran as a democrat.

regardless of his intentions, it has turned out to be a good thing. he has gotten attention that he would never have been able to receive as an independent, he has been able to confront the inevitable establishment candidate in debate and make a serious dent in her support. he has been able to walk into the democrat's camp and raise the expectations of a significant portion of the base, mobilizing them towards action on an agenda that before sanders started running, would not have seemed possible for organized democrats.

win or lose, it doesn't matter. what matters is keeping that movement alive and keeping the occupy agenda alive.

that's our job, not bernie's.

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shaharazade's picture

"what matters is keeping that movement alive and keeping the occupy agenda alive. that's our job, not bernie's" Let's do it. We can you know. your a wise man and a tempered one at that. I'm a hot head and yet I see that Bernie is the hand writing on the wall that will come down one way or anther.

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snoopydawg's picture

Everyone in congress knows that both Saudi Arabia and Israel along with other NATO allies are supporting Isis. I have seen a photo of the UK dropping supplies to Isis, so what's really going on?
If the US was serious about defeating Isis it would tell SA and other countries to quit funding them. It's kabuki theater and a clusterfuck circle jerk over there. Unfortunately, there are innocent civilians being caught up with it and no one seems to give a damn about them. Look at how they treat the refugees.
Here is what Bernie also said, and just like people here have written, the commenters are saying that they will vote for Stein.

In addition to the the use of drones in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, and troop deployments in Syria, Sanders also supports extending the presence of roughly 10,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan and continuing airstrikes in Iraq and Syria that have likely killed more than 1,000 civilians, according to the independent monitoring group Airwars.org.

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America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Lookout's picture

It explains a great deal, including Russian involvement.

Here's a couple of quick overviews.
http://sputniknews.com/middleeast/20160304/1035777990/kennedy-interview-...
http://www.veteranstoday.com/2016/02/24/rfk-jr-isis-created-by-washingto...

Full article
http://ecowatch.com/2016/02/25/robert-kennedy-jr-syria-pipeline-war/

11.5 min video interview of RFK jr about Syria

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5 users have voted.

“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

very heartwarming story - the Montana Coal train. We had CIA(Cowboy Indian Alliance) in Nebraska, Blockadia in the South (texas etc), anti-coal movements in the Appalachia and now this..... I am sure I have missed other post-partisan movements (I hate the highly abused work bipartisan thanks to the handiwork of the TPTB).

And once again, the USA-ians intuitively or otherwise sense that the Presidential election process is rigged. We only have to wait for few more years before some documents will surface to prove this right.

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joe shikspack's picture

post-partisan seems like a good direction for the environmental movement. the movement could take a page from blm, which has eschewed endorsements of partisans which seems to give them greater leverage. identifying yourself as an advocate for an issue and refusing to get tied up in partisan politics allows activists to put their energies into promoting their issues rather than politicians.

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shaharazade's picture

like a good direction globally. All issues are global at this point as it's a global screw.

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waiting for the video to become available. Fareed Zakaria is an a$$hole and no wonder he fits rightly with the elites. And he is the ruling class mascot for the liberal fantasy of multiculturalism. I like what Angry Arab said when he got caught for plagiarism :

To be honest with you: I much rather read the plagiarism of Fareed Zakaria than his actual work.

link :http://angryarab.blogspot.com/2012/08/fareed-zakaria.html

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joe shikspack's picture

in the intercept, it appears that snowden backed zakaria into a corner and didn't let up until the bell rang.

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6 users have voted.

Squid" to describe Goldman Sucks. It is demeaning & degrading of Vampire Squids. An insult of the highest degree.

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Redstella's picture

have we heard whether the Election Board will count the Brooklyn ballots? Will it change the NY outcome?

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Steven D's picture

or politicians grow wings, take your pick.

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"You can't just leave those who created the problem in charge of the solution."---Tyree Scott

joe shikspack's picture

jordan chariton at tyt is following the assorted actions pretty closely.

this article (not greatly familiar with the source, but they quote chariton) has some further info:

A week after a scandalous Democratic primary election in the State of New York, New York City’s Board of Elections Executive Director, Michael Ryan, said that he was sorry for the registration errors that resulted in well over 120,000 Democratic voters purged from voter rolls. PBS reported the estimate of New York City Board of Election’s purged registered Democrats in Brooklyn to be closer to 126,000 voters.

Tuesday, Ryan promised that every single eligible provisional ballot that was cast in New York City last Tuesday would be counted before the election was certified.

The Board of Elections also voted to uphold the unpaid suspension of Diane Haslett-Rudiano, the Chief Clerk of Brooklyn, where 37,214 people ended up voting by affidavit. Haslett-Rudiano was blamed for many of the voter registration problems on Election Day. Another 26,131 voters cast their votes by affidavit in the Bronx, and Staten Island saw 4,566 provisional ballots, the New York Daily News reported. Thousands of other voters who believed they were registered left their polling locations after being denied the opportunity to use a regular ballot.

so far, so good. but later in the article...

The New York Board of Elections, on the other hand, filed a motion pertaining to the Election Justice USA lawsuit that was filed on behalf of purged voters asking for a time extension. Chariton suspects the Board is hoping to delay the lawsuit past the deadline for certification of the New York results.

Still, Election Justice USA moves forward with the New York lawsuit, and the announcement that Brooklyn will count provisional ballots does not change the voter’s rights organizations plans. Election Justice continues to investigate reports of election fraud.

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Redstella's picture

thanks! Would be great if those ballots were counted, eh? You know, democracy...

I am wondering how bad things will get before we demand fair elections.

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snoopydawg's picture

Disappointed with what Bernie thinks about the kill list, but I have been saying that his foreign policy ideas needed to be looked into. I'm sure that this isn't a shock to Big Al. He's been saying this for a long time.

The Russian aggression is bullshit. Which countries has Russia invaded recently? Syria? Nope, he was invited by Assad to help defeat Isis.
Crimea? Nope, he had every right to protect the base Russia has had there for decades.
And I don't see Russian troops in Mexico or Canada, but I do see US and NATO troops surrounding Russia.
And Hillary has called Putin Hitler so I'm sure that if Obama can't get the war with Russia started before he leaves office, she will.
I wonder what her supporters will say when that happens? Or if they will notice.
Yesterday in Kos's diary, a person posted that Obama has been a great president because in addition to the ACA which saw many people's premiums and deductibles go way up, he ended two wars.
I reminded him that there are troops back in Iraq and the only reason why they left was because Obama couldn't get the Iraqi government to agree with his terms after Bush's SOFA timeline was up. And that the war in Afghanistan was still going strong and will continue to do so after on Obama leaves office.

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13 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

joe shikspack's picture

yep, i've been aware of bernie's shortcomings in the foreign policy department for quite a while, and i encourage people to do something about it. anybody who has been paying attention should be aware of this.

russian aggression is a joke. neocons like obama and hillary would like to turn it from a bad joke into a serious nightmare.

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Lookout's picture

I caught this today and couldn't believe how bad we've been had on Bin Laden.

There's also a nice interview with him on Democracy now.

http://www.democracynow.org/2016/4/25/horrified_seymour_hersh_reacts_to_...

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9 users have voted.

“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

Gerrit's picture

people slowly being squeezed out of their ancestral land by climate change. In water-scarce regions, traditional rice crops from the previously-reliable monsoon rains are becoming impossible. Wholesale changes to cash crops and traditional meals and generational livelihoods drying up and blowing away in the dusty wind.

A rising tide of climate refugees pushing into the poor slums of urban centres. And you know what that brings, right? Pressure for change and help buckling reluctant bureaucracies and state governments, steadily destroying the social fabric that holds together the British fiction that is India. Climate change will spin up the centrifugal forces that blow apart multinational states like India, Syria, Iraq, Libya, Lebanon, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and so on.

We'll see the numbers of climate refugees in India climb steadily every year now until India disintegrates. And when the cities become deathtraps, where do Indian climate refugees go? Massive mountain ranges stretch across the north and north-east cutting them off from central Asia. West lies the desertificating ME, south is the Indian ocean. There is only the east, through drowning Bangladesh into Burma and Laos.

330M people becoming climate refugees in India is the worst of a bad news day. Not even the immense, collected news of today's U.S. deep state's global ratfuckery is equal to a force that can generate 330M climate refugees. But it is a close race between the two giant nemeses of the human race: climate change and the U.S. deep state, eh, to see who can destroy the most lives in one day. Eish.

Thank goodness for Jelly Roll Morton!

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Resilience: practical action to improve things we can control.
3D+: developing language for postmodern spirituality.

joe shikspack's picture

i see that you've grasped the implications of climate change in india - though you did forget that india and pakistan have nuclear weapons. that could be a pretty awful wild card. a world that cared and could organize in the face of adversity (as opposed to arming itself behind walls to protect the climate fortunates) might be able to find some means of charitably assisting a regime of resettlement and distribution of survival needs (and with any luck, birth control supplies).

i guess we'll see.

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snoopydawg's picture

the most important banking reforms since Glass Steagel. Of course we know that she's lying. Again.
From the Vampire Squid link

Students of Wall Street history may also recall that Goldman’s hubris leading up to the crash of 1929 played a role in why the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 banned casino-like investment banks from getting near insured deposits. Prior to the ’29 crash, Goldman ran the Goldman Sachs Trading Company, a closed end fund (called a trust in those days). Goldman Sachs also offered that deal to the little guy at $104 a share. The fund appeared to investigators as a dumping ground for Goldman while also paying it a hefty management fee. The little guy who bought the shares at $104 a share at the top of the bull market was left with about a buck and change after the ’29 crash.

So why this generous move now by Goldman Sachs Bank USA to offer above average returns to the little guy? It likely has a lot to do with the chart below from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency’s (OCC) December 31, 2015 report on the four largest banks based on derivatives exposure. According to the report, the credit exposure from derivatives versus the bank’s risk-based capital is as follows: JPMorgan Chase 209 percent; Bank of America 85 percent; Citibank 166 percent and Goldman Sachs (wait for it) – a whopping 516 percent.

Not to put too fine a point on it, but you might recall that one of the key promises of the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation was that after the largest bank bailout in financial history in 2008, these derivatives were going to be pushed out of the insured bank into bank affiliates that would not endanger the taxpayer-backstopped deposits and force another monster taxpayer bailout in the next crisis. This became known as the “push-out rule” which could never seem to materialize into a hard and fast law. Then, in December 2014, Citigroup simply used its muscle to legislate the rule out of existence.

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America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

I drop this here:

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featheredsprite's picture

referred to a woman whose job was cleaning a public bathroom. Is Hillary going to do that?

Also, has that audience really forgotten Donna Summer? Or are they just failing to respond to this guy?

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Life is strong. I'm weak, but Life is strong.

shaharazade's picture

Bejeesus I hated disco but I really liked Donna Summer. I'm sick en tired of hearing how hard the obscenely rich folks worked to break those glass corporate ceilings. Does success in this viscous 'free market' cappie world where we are either winners or losers mean that the poc or white people who win be they Donna Summer, Beyonce or other corporate big money successes including Obama are the measure we use to gauge what constitutes equality for both for poc or women or even men?

What does success mean in this modern world? Breaking corporate glass ceilings? Making more money for yourself and the whatever the fuck you call these vampire squids, be they entertainment giant's like Sony, weapon makers, or all the successful too big's who rule the world. I was really depressed when I found out Carol King a woman I admired was a Hillary supporter. When talented people get too much money they get freaking creepy even the Beatles. They are no longer part of the place they came from.

I digress as no matter how rich and weird these artists get their work speaks for itself.

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joe shikspack's picture

well, then again, hillary does get paid well for speeches. goodness only knows what makes an hour with her worth 225k to goldman sachs and other corporations - but i'm sure that she works hard for the money.

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featheredsprite's picture

Trump will shred Clinton like paper. He'll say that she can be bought and bring proof with him [she ain't cheap but she is for sale]. Somebody somewhere recorded at least one of her speeches to the Wall Street bigwigs and Donald would gladly pay good money for that. He will call her a liar and give example after example. He will suggest that she has been laundering money from overseas companies given to the Clinton Foundation and funneling it into her campaign fund.

And what can she say? He will gladly admit that he's a misogynist ass hole. And maybe racist too. Then what can she say?

If there is a Clinton-Trump contest for election, it will get very dirty very quickly.

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9 users have voted.

Life is strong. I'm weak, but Life is strong.

joe shikspack's picture

trump is certainly not afraid to be a clown - and to date there has been no price exacted for that. i presume that if he goes after hillary, the presstitutes will report it breathlessly and the corporate media owners will be delighted to catapult every insult in stunning detail out to a public that can't look away.

when the democratic establishment starts screaming about sexism, etc., it will probably only serve to energize the republican base.

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Crider's picture

Wasn't there a very recent poll that already showed Clinton and Trump neck and neck in the polls?

He has barely sent any tweets her way. Both have high negatives, but Trump plays the Alpha Monkey card in a way the media loves to cover.

I think she'll fold as badly as Dukakis did in 1988. And then we'll end up with that laughingstock Trump as president. Yikes!

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joe shikspack's picture

yep, i don't think that clinton has any armor that will protect her from trump's ridicule.

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riverlover's picture

There has been previous discussion that Clintons-friend Trump may have been a joint operation to destroy the Republican Party (for fun) and set up Hillary for a guaranteed win. What if that is still the operation? If so, Trump may NOT attack Hillary, at least not fatally and the entire grand kabuki theater may be so obvious that any rational human (so not everybody) would just surrender in horror at where the US has been dragged.

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Hey! my dear friends or soon-to-be's, JtC could use the donations to keep this site functioning for those of us who can still see the life preserver or flotsam in the water.

Raggedy Ann's picture

Great roundup. That first blast from Gaius blew me away! I've got to read the whole thing. I'm just so glad I got this loaded on my iPad and allowed to comment, too? I'm special, tonite!

I wonder if the horse race will really be H&D. It WILL be bloody if it is. We will witness the fall of the American Empire. So much is already exposed - you can't unhear it, you can't unread it, you can't unsee it. I'm fixin' ta keep low. heh.

Have a beautiful evening!

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Women are human beings, not prey.
(I forgot where I read it although it might have been in The Intercept)

Raggedy Ann's picture

I'm sure enjoying Jelly's piano playing. Thanks for exposing me to him. Smile

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5 users have voted.

Women are human beings, not prey.
(I forgot where I read it although it might have been in The Intercept)

joe shikspack's picture

glad that you're enjoying jelly roll morton. he's an american original - and a very important part of the early history of jazz.

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4 users have voted.
enhydra lutris's picture

refugee situation is a horrible tragedy, and a harbinger of a lot of bad news and destabilization to come. Any help from abroad will certainly be too little too late and probably with many strings attached.

It is funny to see somebody like G. Publius have to say that today's independents aren't Reagan Democrats. Of course they aren't, Reagan Democrats are the party mainstream, if not slightly left thereof. Hillary is a Reagan Democrat, and DWC, not the independents.

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7 users have voted.

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

joe shikspack's picture

heh, there was no reason for the reagan democrats to leave the party then and even less now as the dlc/new democrats/third wayers have seized control of the party.

independents are people who left the party in disgust.

which reminds me, does anybody know if there's a planned date for folks who changed their registrations to vote for bernie and those others who don't want to be associated with the party establishment to switch their affiliation en masse?

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People's Summit convocation. Might be a good idea to at least have some framework in place-like register/join the Greens?

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Bisbonian's picture

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4 users have voted.

"I’m a human being, first and foremost, and as such I’m for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.” —Malcolm X

A coordinated mass registration change would be a good thing.

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4 users have voted.

excellent comments at Naked Capitalism's this morning's links-gaming out the election strategeries of both Rs and Ds-some scenarios are very plausible and made my hair stand on end (like Rs actively working behind the scenes to get La Clinton elected, since she will deliver every item in their wet dreams)
http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2016/04/links-42716.html

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joe shikspack's picture

imagine that, republicans working to get a goldwater girl elected. what'll they think of next. Smile

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mimi's picture

to become the "moral" Democrats... and will do all sorts of acrobacy and kabuki talk to make it look like they are the good guys.

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Crider's picture

What a weird gambit. Cruz pulls stunts that always seem to backfire, and putting Fiorina out there in time for the California primary — where she is reviled — will greatly reduce his chances of denying Trump the nomination.

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joe shikspack's picture

was possessed of great people skills. Smile

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Unabashed Liberal's picture

regarding 'why' Cruz would announce that Fiorina will be his running mate--I certainly don't know California politics, but from watching all the Republican debates, I'm 'guessing' that Cruz may have recruited her for two reasons:

1) It's a 'Hail Mary' move--Cruz is cooked, so what's he got to lose?

Wink

and,

2) for however long the two of them manage to masquerade as viable Republican candidates, Fiorina, who is very well-spoken, never mind her totally off-the-wall conservative views, can rip into FSC with abandon (since she's a woman), and get away with it--in a manner that the male Republican candidates could never pull off.

BTW, thanks for tonight's excellent edition of News & Blues, Joe!

Have a good evening, Everyone!

ByeMollie


"Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare."--Japanese Proverb
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Everyone thinks they have the best dog, and none of them are wrong.

Big Al's picture

Lavrov Calls to Stop Using Terrorists to Get Rid of Unwanted Regimes

http://sputniknews.com/world/20160427/1038688876/terrorists-coup-regimes...

The plain talk is what gets me, about something many of us have been saying since the "Arab Spring" started in Libya. Yet still few people know what's really happening because the propaganda and lies remain so consistent in western media.

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sole sane actors in the ME and have repeatedly pulled Obombers nuts out of the fire.

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joe shikspack's picture

yep, well, our embedded media aren't going to tell the american people what's going on. perhaps one of the first tasks of a revolutionary is to create an effective and credible media institution.

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Big Al's picture

media. It was well known in the alternative media what was going on in Libya right from the beginning. The truth is always out there. Exposing the lies and bringing the criminals to justice has to be up there too. But there can be no compromise like there is playing around with the Democratic party, i.e., with Bernie who supported the regime change in Libya. Not for the kind of revolution we need.

But you know that joe, I'm just typing on a keyboard before I go back out and grow tomatoes. Love tomatoes.

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mimi's picture

I always wondered how many of the Americans know and watch videos and read articles we find here on the EB? My neighbor has no TV and no computer.

Yes, Sanders has definitely not said enough about what he will do in his upcoming own foreign policy agenda. If he wants real allies in Europe, he better rethink the role of NATO and what the so-called allies and friends in Europe (who popped out of nowhere during the Bush administration, because, heh, if we the US say you are our allies and friends you better are or else...) I remember how puzzled I was about that attitude directly after 2001.

I liked the idea to simply boycott the student loan situation by refusing to pay. I think that would be a great resistance movement for this specific problem. I think one should boycott there where it hurts.

If we could just get more soldiers to refuse to enlist.

I was hoping Sanders and Stein could work together, but I guess that's not likely. All in all I am pretty confused right now, despite pretty good articles on the list today which try to clarify things.

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mimi's picture

is so consistent for the most part in US media and most of the Western European media are just too coward to stand up against that propaganda, but use themselves on their own less of it. Well, may be I am wrong. I haven't been followed them over there on the ground. Times have changed. May be it's just me.

I think Lavrov was extremely patient with HRC and very diplomatic, without falling "for the restart" button to be anything but show business. That video clip was melked by the German media over and over. I think a lot of people were relieved and happy with Lavrov's attitudes.

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6 users have voted.

This is good - naming names, dredging up declassified State Department archives, even delving into Imperial Britain's mistreatment of Obama's (Dreams of My Father) Kenyan grandfather. Are the wheels really falling off Empire this quickly, or not?

Brexiteers should have been prepared for the shattering intervention of the US. The European Union always was an American project.

It was Washington that drove European integration in the late 1940s, and funded it.covertly under the Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon administrations. [...]

Like it or not, this is at least is strategically coherent. The Schuman Declaration that set the tone of Franco-German reconciliation - and would lead by stages to the European Community - was cooked up by the US Secretary of State Dean Acheson at a meeting in Foggy Bottom. "It all began in Washington," said Robert Schuman's chief of staff.

It was the Truman administration that browbeat the French to reach a modus vivendi with Germany in the early post-War years, even threatening to cut off US Marshall aid at a furious meeting with recalcitrant French leaders they resisted in September 1950.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2016/04/27/the-european-union-always...

The author is Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, International Business Editor of The Daily Telegraph. An interesting read for those who like to follow geopolitics and the history behind today's.current events.

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Only connect. - E.M. Forster

mimi's picture

that about the EU historical beginnings. Thanks, I will certainly study this more. So good to be able to learn something here, always.

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lotlizard's picture

It may be democratically elected, but has zero real power, the media don’t cover it, and it never stands up to the Brussels Eurocrats.

The E.U. Council of Ministers is unelected and have all the power, making deals in smoke-filled rooms.

The “American project” angle rings true, because that very lack of democracy and transparency is pretty much the hallmark of anything the U.S. Deep State promotes.

Start with FISA courts and the NSA, and go downhill from there.

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I found this interesting because I've never heard it spoken in those words before though I've heard the meaning expressed, differently, by every black friend I've had beyond my young childhood. It's a grandma type saying huh? It's totally unsurprising of course. White folk don't have that kind of inherited saying, with the same meaning I don't think. It's interesting.
I'd like to point out that I think it's meaning encompasses more than just what the author states.
I once befuddled a friend, for a while, by arguing that black folk should be called brown folk because, just as there are all kinds of black folk, there are all kinds of shades of brown and even the darkest skinned was still a shade of brown, whereas there are no shades of black. I was told "No 'there ARE some black n***as'. In the end we concluded that black folks get to decide.
Still I can personally attest that 'What's a FBB like you doing here, FBB? Fine Brown Babe' can be a reasonable successful way to meet a new friend.
Wink

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With their hearts they turned to each others heart for refuge
In troubled years that came before the deluge
*Jackson Browne, 1974, Before the Deluge https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7SX-HFcSIoU

Miep's picture

It's really quite movimg. Thank you.

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Stay on track. Stay in lane. Don't throw rocks.