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Sunday, December 28, 2014

Crazy times

GQ put together a list of America's craziest politicians, but could not find any Dems to include. (Correction: They found three. And they were a stretch.) As a rejoinder, the New York Post put together a list of allegedly crazy Dems. The two articles offer an instructive comparison.

Here's an example from GQ. They point the finger at the vile Sheriff Joe Arpaio -- a man who has done more than any other individual to destroy Arizona tourism. (Seriously, would you chance a drive through that state?)
Has forced inmates to wear pink underwear; served them rotting food; housed them in a tent city, which he once described as a "concentration camp" and where inside temperatures have reached 145 degrees; allegedly denied Latina inmates sanitary products and forced them to sleep on sheets soiled with menstrual blood. Created an armed volunteer "posse" that has included Steven Seagal.
Now here's the NYP on the allegedly crazy Bernie Sanders:
Said that the VA provides “very high quality health care, period.” and that the shocking scandals surrounding it were traceable to “a concerted effort to undermine the VA” led by “Koch Brothers and others, who want to radically change the nature of society.” So that’s why the Kochs are funding all those hospitals! It’s really a roundabout way of making the VA look bad.
The Kochs don't want to restructure society?

If Sanders is nuts, he's my kind of nuts. This Republican attempt to construct a false equivalence is as bombastic as it is strained and pathetic.

Obama's rotten apple.
The Republican lie machine keeps keeps telling us that Obama is a liberal or a leftist. Do they actually believe this nonsense?

Consider the case of Antonio Weiss, nominated by Obama to take a top spot of Treasury, overlooking Wall Street reform. Weiss is an investment banker.

"Hie thee to the henhouse, Mr. Fox," sayeth the Prez. Seriously, what kind of liberal would choose a guy like that for a job like that?

Al Franken is spearheading an effort to deep-six the Weiss nomination. If you hit that last link, you'll encounter a petition which I strongly urge you to sign.
We fell into the last major economic crisis six years ago after we let Wall Street police itself. We can't let that happen again.

But President Obama recently nominated Antonio Weiss -- an investment banker responsible for mergers that help corporations avoid paying their fair share of taxes -- to one of the top positions in the Treasury Department.

Join Al Franken and thousands of members of Progressives United in telling President Obama to withdraw this nomination. Add your name to the letter below by filling out the form.
The cops, the cops, the goddamned cops! In case you missed it, Salon published an excellent story (based on this Reuters report) which shows that even black cops fear white cops.
“The black officers interviewed said they had been racially profiled by white officers exclusively, and about one third said they made some form of complaint to a supervisor.”
Remember when the NYPD turned its collective back on Mayor de Blasio? Here is the supposedly "damning" quote from the Mayor which prompted that mass display of insubordination:
This is profoundly personal for me. I was at the White House the other day, and the president of the United States turned to me, and he met Dante a few months ago, and he said that Dante reminded him of what he looked like as a teenager. And he said, I know you see this crisis through a very personal lens. I said to him I did. Because Chirlane and I have had to talk to Dante for years, about the dangers he may face. A good young man, a law-abiding young man, who would never think to do anything wrong, and yet, because of a history that still hangs over us, the dangers he may face—we’ve had to literally train him, as families have all over this city for decades, in how to take special care in any encounter he has with the police officers who are there to protect him.

And that painful sense of contradiction that our young people see first, that our police are here to protect us and we honor that and at the same there's a history that we have to overcome because, for so many of our young people there’s a fear and for so many of our families there’s a fear. So, I’ve had to worry over the years, Charlene’s had to worry: Was Dante safe each night? There’s so many families in this city who feel that each and every night. Is my child safe? And not just from some of the painful realities of crime and violence in some of our neighborhoods, but are they safe from the very people they want to have faith in, as their protectors? That’s the reality
And that is freakin' IT. Those are the words which the NYPD considers "dangerous and irresponsible."

Are they serious?

The type of person who would consider that statement "dangerous and irresponsible" is the same kind of person who would consider the New York Post's article on "crazy" Dems (as referenced above) to be an example of sound journalism.

This nation is filled with people who have spent so much time in the right-wing media bubble that they cannot comprehend how bizarre their thought patterns seem to normal people.

(Added note: At the request of a reader, I have included the second paragraph from the Mayor's statement. Only someone thoroughly brainwashed by Fox would consider those words inflammatory or unjustified.)

He said that? According to Bob Parry, George Friedman of Stratfor -- freakin' Stratfor -- actually has some reasonably reasonable things to say about the Ukraine coup:
Brushing aside the righteous indignation and self-serving propaganda, Stratfor’s Friedman recognized that both Russia and the United States were operating in what they perceived to be their own interests. “The bottom line is that the strategic interests of the United States are to prevent Russia from becoming a hegemon,” he said. “And the strategic interests of Russia are not to allow the U.S. close to its borders.”

Infiltration. Meanwhile, some rather obvious ratfuckers have been infiltrating American "peace" groups in an attempt to convert lefties to the neocon position on Syria.
More and more “peace and social justice” groups are even being twisted into “democracy promotion,” U.S. militarism style. But rarely do we get a window to see as clearly into how this Orwellian transformation occurs as with the “Committee in Solidarity with the People of Syria” (CISPOS) based in Minnesota’s Twin Cities, a spin-off of “Friends for a Nonviolent World” (FNVW), steering its Quaker-inspired founding in nonviolence to promote speakers and essayists with strong ties to the violent uprising to topple the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad, resulting in a war that has already taken some 200,000 lives.
Resources for information on Syria often come from “citizen journalists” with deep ties to neocons and U.S. government sources. From the State Department’s website , the $330 million in support for the Syrian opposition includes training for networks of citizen journalists, bloggers and cyber-activists to support their documentation and dissemination of information on developments in Syria.
In the lead-up to each intervention, “experts” emerged to explain that while anti-imperialism is good in general and in past scenarios, this time is different. Is it?

Isn’t it time for war-weary Americans to wise up and stop falling for these pretexts of bringing democracy and human rights to foreign countries through training and funding of “color (and umbrella) revolutions,” inciting of coups and regime changes and eventually, through U.S.-NATO military might?

I'll add this: In my opinion, Slate has become the go-to website whenever neocon propagandists want to seed neocon ideas into the liberal view-stream.

Not so long ago, that role was assigned to The New Republic. Hence the oft-heard phrase: "Even the liberal New Republic says..." Today, the operative phrase is: "Even the liberal Slate web magazine says..."
Actually, there were 3 Dems included on GQ's list...Sheila Jackson Lee, Hank Johnson, and Joe Biden and all of them are current or soon-to-be serving politicians. NYP's list, besides being extremely weak, consisted mostly of outgoing politicians and non-elected officials like Jonathan Gruber and Michelle Obama. Guess that's why the Post headed it as Democrats and not politicians like GQ did.
Thanks, Missy. I wrote too hurriedly.

Missy Vixen must be the best name I've encountered in ages. I don't suppose you've heard of a composer named Janacek...?
Lol--I had not. Now I need to find and listen to "The Cunning Little Vixen." Probably get a shirt printed up with Janacek's name on it, too. ;-)
You left out part of De Blasio's statement:

"Is Dante safe each night? And not just from some of the painful realities of crime and violence in some of our neighborhoods, but safe from the very people they want to have faith in as their protectors."

An off duty cop (like anyone else) is free to express contempt for a politician.

The NYPD has spent the last three weeks ensuring the safety of the people who are protesting against them. So far the only people who have gotten hurt (or killed) are cops.

The facts don't fit your narrative.

Thanks, Anon. I've included the next paragraph to point out the bizarre way you, and those like you, think. Only a thoroughly brainwashed individual would consider those words inflammatory or unjustified.

The cops have become thugs. They literally rob and murder with impunity. And the better conservatives (by which I mean the more ideologically pure libertarians) understand this.
From the Yahoo News article you linked to in your 12/27 post.

"Soon after taking office this year, de Blasio dropped the city's opposition to a judge's finding that the police department discriminated against minorities with its anti-crime stop-and-frisk tactics."

"Police union officials in contentious contract negotiations with the city have faulted de Blasio for showing sympathy to protesters angry over the police deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and Eric Garner on Staten Island."

Total us vs. them attitude. Guess de Basio simply isn't allowed to represent his constituencies. How can this be called anything other than "war"?
"This nation is filled with people who have spent so much time in the right-wing media bubble that they cannot comprehend how bizarre their thought patterns seem to normal people."

Normal people don't call for children to be spat upon because of who or what their parents are. That's the Cannon endorsed, right wing way that led to the murder of Abdulrahman al-Awlaki.
If you rob and kill with impunity, spit -- both real and metaphorical -- is what you can expect.

By the way, the estimable Douglas Valentine echoes your feelings on the police -
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