The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

AOC Is Actually Serious About Building Progressive Power

This matters. This is putting your money where your mouth is and refusing to play nice with your enemies.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has already topped the fundraising charts in her short time in Congress, but the liberal darling won’t donate a cent of her millions to Democrats’ House campaign organization — a position that has rankled some of her colleagues, Fox News has learned.

Instead, Ocasio-Cortez is building her own fundraising operation for fellow progressive candidates to bypass the official Democratic Party infrastructure. Already, she’s actively funding primary challengers to oust certain Democratic colleagues.

Refusing to playing nice with your enemies? Yes. For as long as I’ve watched us politics, the DCCC has been hostile to progressives, usually underfunding them or refusing to fund them, and has pushed conservative Democratic candidates.

AOC mentioned this in March:

The Democratic party is a conservative centrist party (centrist in American terms, conservative in its ideology.) Independents are more left-wing than Democrats are, which is why Sanders did better with them than with Democrats in 2016. Those Democrats who whined about this are right: Sanders isn’t a Democrat, because he’s a left-winger and Democrats aren’t.

So for years, Democrats have constantly put their muscle and money behind centrist candidates and attacked left-wingers. The cry of the old Netroots was “More and better Democrats!” By this we meant, “more left-wing Democrats,” but the party was fanatically hostile to that and eventually crushed the insurgency–with a great deal of help from Obama.

Now another generation is taking their shot, and I’m glad to see they aren’t playing nice. The fight for the Democratic party is a fight, and to the victors goes the policy. People like Pelosi want to sell that policy to Wall Street and so on, people like Sanders and AOC want to use it to help ordinary people. It isn’t more complicated than that, and while tactical alliances can be made against Republicans, Pelosi and Biden have nothing in common with AOC or Sanders. They aren’t friends, they’re enemies. It’s just that in America’s two-party system, they cohabit.

But too many left-wingers have continued to think that Democrats like them, are friendly to them, or want the same things as they do.

They don’t. Democrats want the rich to get richer, they want to have slightly “smarter” wars than the Republicans (Libya rather than Iraq), and they want to not be cruel quite as openly as Republicans. Democratic policy is epitomized by Obama pretending to help home owners, but actually pushing them into bankruptcy to help banks.

Obama was a REAL Democrat. People like AOC and Sanders harken back to the politics championed by FDR and ended by Bill Clinton, husband of Hilary Clinton.

Don’t give money to your enemies.

AOC gets it.

Money would be rather useful, as I don’t get paid by the piece. If you want to support my writing, please DONATE or SUBSCRIBE.



Week-end Wrap – Political Economy – January 12, 2020


Dozens of Extinctions from the Australia Wildfires, But That’s Not the Worst


  1. Joan

    Exactly. I am a registered Independent voter who ended up caucusing for the Democrats so I could throw in my support for Bernie. After the party decided on Hillary, I was done.

    It was strange when people would tell me “Now you *have* to vote for Hillary because she’s *our* candidate.” I was like uh, who are you talking about? I’m Independent. You actually have to convince me to vote for you. Have fun losing.


    AOC is not a “liberal darling.” Maybe to conservatives she is, but to the establishment, and establishment Dems more specifically and especially, she is a necessary nuisance. They tolerate her and a few token others of her ilk because they need to pretend progressivism is not dead and actually has a place and potential under the umbrella of the Democratic party.

  3. Hugh

    Standard Democratic operating procedure has been to run the most conservative Democrats possible even if they lose rather than run progressive candidates who A) better reflect the party’s supposed values and B) actually have a good chance of winning. For the Democratic Establishment, conservative candidates reflect them, not their voters. And if they win, provide the perfect excuse for not pursuing a progressive agenda. The conservatives won’t let them and, if anyone tries anything progressive, it will put the seats of those same conservatives at risk. So on the one hand, conservative Democrats are completely useless and on the other, they must be defended at all costs. How convenient.

    As Ian says, ” They want the rich to get richer,” because coincidentally the Democratic leadership already is rich or intends to get rich. As I have said before, Sanders is a New Dealer and should invoke the New Deal at every turn. He should wrap his policies up in the rhetoric of the New Deal and dare Establishment Democrats to come after him on what still is for Democratic voters and most of the country hallowed ground.

    I agree with Joan that many Democrats think they own our (Independent) votes. They seem to completely not understand the concept that if you want my vote, offer me a candidate that represents and will fight for at least some of my views. Instead we get if you don’t vote for our POS candidate, their POS candidate will win. They think that’s somehow a persuasive argument.

  4. bruce wilder

    I notice that Ian does not go out of his way here to distinguish the Democratic establishment from those Democratic voters identified with the Party. “Independents are more left wing.” Voters as well as Media pundits, politicians and operatives. When I was, in my mind, “a Democrat” (Obama’s first term put paid to that), I lived in hope that Democrats were good but frustrated, for the most part. I thought that Democratic politicians, to get elected in conservative places, had to be more conservative, more “third-way”. “Conservative” could mean more right-wing on God and guns and deficits. My thinking on politics was channelled by my identification with the Democratic Party and accepted that other people were also similarly channelled by their identifications, with Party or other social groupings. This was the legacy of New Deal coalition politics and the strategy for dismantling the same latched onto by Nixon and Reagan and their “third-way” counterparts and interlocutors among Democrats.

    In the present configuration of American politics, there really is no place among the mainstream Parties for those who think the U.S. should get out of the Middle East wars or enact a single-payer health care system. Those policy positions have no home, no rally point.

    Historically, policy positions only exceptionally became Party positions; usually Parties split with regard to any arguably popular policy position, as Parties tried to “align” interests on many dimensions. In the New Deal era, southern segregationists and northern liberals found themselves in the same Party, while conservative Republicans loyal to the Party of Lincoln opposed segregation on principle.

    The great realignments of American politics defined the Parties in ways that left the great “movements” for reforms orthogonal to the Parties or, more exceptionally, captured by one at least regionally.

    Lincoln found a formula that aligned western expansion and union with antislavery and held together a coalition thru civil war and profound constitutional change. McKinley married protectionist trade policy to gold as sound money, setting the stage for Teddy Roosevelt and the Progressive era of (largely conservative) institution-building. FDR leveraged the crisis of Depression and World War to form a coalition of outsiders in support of an era of liberal institution building.

    The current Party alignment excludes enactment of the Sanders policy agenda or really any policy agenda responsive to the manifest needs of the Times. This is an extraordinary circumstance.

    It is not a situation without some popular support among voters. Someone tells pollsters Biden is their man! Quite a few people cling to the status quo, certain any change will be for the worse; they are not wrong — any attack on financialization of the economy will be a relief to some but the evaporation of paper wealth and the realization of years of disinvestment will leave many wondering why they did not take the blue pill (again), for example. Tackling climate change seriously will require disabusing many of simplistic fantasies, even among the concerned and nominally willing.

  5. Dale

    Amen, Ian. Time to start a new, real progressive party.

  6. Ché Pasa

    Bravo, Ian. I’ve been saying for decades that the Democratic Party is the US version of a
    conservative party, not liberal in the left wing sense at all. Never has been. The Establishment of the Democratic Party (which overlaps with Republican Establishments) is a rich-people’s club to which the most of us don’t and can’t belong. Never will.

    Don’t forget, FDR wasn’t elected in 1932 on a progressive platform. To a great extent, he ran to the right of Hoover and lambasted him for his profligate spending. Obama in similar circumstances revived and implemented Hooverian economic policies, spending lots of money, but mostly at the top. That’s why I often referred to him — when he was in office — as Barack “Hoover” Obama.

    The Republican Party these days is a dangerous, radical, reactionary party, not conservative. One reason they win as often as they do, and one reason Trump is in office, is because they are radical, they take action, they force their opposition (such as it is) to submit. They’re bullies. They hurt people. They don’t (often) compromise. And enough Americans like that to keep them in office.

    It’s not a majority, but it doesn’t need to be to rule and keep on ruling.

    What would happen if Dems were to adopt some of the radical tactics of the Rs? Or contrary-wise, what would happen if the Rs were RICOed out of existence (as they should have been years ago) and the Ds could mellow in their conservatism and a genuine leftist/progressive party could emerge?

    I don’t see AOC or Bernie taking the new party path — not unless the Rs are terminated — and making the Dems over into a leftish party has long been known as a non-starter.

    So we’re stuck for the time being. But maybe not forever…

  7. One of the things I have noticed about Republicans historically is that elected Republicans have been required to adhere to Republican principles or they got voted out of office. Democrats, not so much. Democratic voters have cared only about keeping Democrats in power, and seldom even knew what those representatives were doing, much less cared.

    Democrats have never really blocked the agenda for a Republican controlled Congress. They have complained, but never really took action to prevent the Republican Congress from moving forward. Democratically controlled Congresses, however, have had their agendas blocked by Republican minorities and then, having failed to do what they were elected to do, been overwhelmingly reelected.

    You can also see it in campaign rhetoric, even now. The candidates are talking about health care and such, but voters are talking only about beating Trump, and are basing their preference on whom they think can best win the election against Trump.

  8. Z

    Remember that AOC also came to Bernie’s support at what may turn out to be the most pivotal moment of his campaign: after he came up off the canvas from his heart attack to defy the “Bernie’s-gonna-fold-like-a-cheap-suit and don’t-criticize-Bill-Clinton’s-economic-policies-or-I’ll-cry-to-the-moderator-and-accuse-you-of-working-for-Pravda” crowd to resume taking up the fight for the people against our rulers. AOC didn’t diss Warren directly when she endorsed Bernie, but she did point out that he was only candidate that had been consistent for decades in his policy stances against our ruling class, a point that Warren further illuminated a few weeks later when she started qualifying her support of Medicare-for-all.

    It was then that Warren lost all of her momentum and I’m of the opinion that the dynamics at play there were that young women who had supported Warren primarily for identity reasons took a closer look at their choice and a substantial amount of them switched to supporting Bernie. And I’d imagine that it doesn’t need to be scientifically proven by lab tests and double blind studies that once you get a crowd of young women moving in one direction, you can be damn sure that a herd of young men will soon follow.

    Whether or not one wants to chalk it up to coincidence or not, that was the juncture in which Warren lost a lot of momentum and support and Bernie surged in those regards.


  9. bruce wilder

    Bill H: The candidates are talking about health care and such, but voters are talking only about beating Trump, and are basing their preference on whom they think can best win the election against Trump.

    That goes to a fine and critical point about the dynamics of the Democratic Party. It is the split in the Party that became a chasm in the 2016 primaries and continues in 2020. Voters on one side of that chasm are being argued and are arguing themselves into a cul de sac where they will vote for whoever they think enough others will vote for, to beat Trump. That person they think unnamed others will vote for in preference to Trump is . . . . ???

    This does seem like a setup for a rival billionaire candidate — Bloomberg or Steger — to step into. Those two are spending vast sums to build bandwagons for these idiots to march behind.

  10. bruce wilder


    I hate the way spell check is evolving. Self-driving cars will work just as good, I suppose.

  11. Adams

    AOC continues to amaze with her political courage, intelligence, integrity, and focus. And I’ll bet she makes a great margarita. My check is in the (e)mail.

  12. Z

    I don’t believe that the “Let’s just beat Trump” movement is organic, it’s manufactured by our rulers, the same clowns who were 99.9% sure that Hillary had the keys to the White House in her back pocket in 2016 with her inspirational “I’m not Trump, Trump, Trump” rallying cry.

    Sure, there are plenty of fools in a nation of over 300M that will follow any which way our rulers nudge them, but the amount of them is not enough to carry our rulers’ water any longer.

    The dynamics to this election are different obviously, but enough people voted for Trump in 2016 to put him in office just BECAUSE they knew it pissed off our ruling class.


  13. Z

    I’m a male and I realize that it would be a complicated ordeal, but if AOC asked me to have her baby, I’d probably consider it.

    There, I said it …



    The dynamics to this election are different obviously, but enough people voted for Trump in 2016 to put him in office just BECAUSE they knew it pissed off our ruling class.

    No way. Trump doesn’t piss off the ruling class. They tolerate him and his odious character because they know he will never turn on them hence his most important piece of legislation — the tax cut for the rich. The stock market is a wealth disparity indicator and under Trump, regardless of the specifics of the substantial gain, wealth disparity has increased by over 10,000 points for the DJIA. If the ruling class was pissed at Trump and felt threatened by his presidency in any way, he never would have ascended and instead would have been Six Feet Under by now.


    All this being said, the Dem establishment is extremely powerful and will not allow the progressive faction to gain any status and power in the party beyond tokenism. Bernie will fold when they do to him what they did in 2016. They’ll find a way to prevent AOC from being reelected more than twice if she continues to buck the Dem leadership. The only candidate who has a chance to beat Trump who can also beat the Dems at their own game is Bloomberg. There’s a reason Trump won’t mention his name let alone ridicule him. Bloomberg truly frightens Trump. He will undo Trump. And, Bloomberg is better for addressing climate disruption than any Dem, including Bernie, would ever be. Bloomberg has a plan for a way around Congress. In fact, it’s very much the same strategy Trump is using but Bloomberg will use the Blitzkrieg strategy for good versus bad, at least in regard to climate disruption.

    All that being said, Bloomberg still is too little, too late. We cannot vote our way out of this malaise. The only way is revolution by the outsiders against the insiders. Depending on how the insiders react, that revolution will be either non-violent or violent. If history is any indicator, the revolution will be massively violent. If there is no revolution, it’s game over. My bet? It’s game over and we know it and we’re too stubborn and proud to admit it. Don’t want to be perceived as defeatist, afterall.

  16. Z

    Hey 450,

    You’re a person of many theories in regards to Trump, how’s that one that Trump is Putin’s evil twin cousin coming along? Time to reassess?

    450 on December 6th:

    So, we have Manafort, who was on Putin’s payroll, running Trump’s campaign and we have Trump continually trying to put a stake through the heart of NATO. Putin’s hand is all over this. Putin’s hand is up Trump’s ass directing his every move. Trump is a traitor if ever there was one. He deserves the fate of a traitor and yet America’s deep state plays games with him like a cat plays with a mouse.

    Do you think Putin used his magic touch to tickle Trump’s prostate in just the right way to get him to kill Soleimani?


  17. Z

    And I just found this gem from the same Dec. 6th post from the lying bag of tricks Brennan:

    Just listen to Z, I supported Edwards and he Obama but, he’s the “reformer” because after his side won, I thought Hillary less dangerous than Obama. A view I still hold in spite of Z’s endless attacks/lies.

    No liar, I actually supported Edwards in 2008, never voted for Obama in any election and came out against him immediately and vociferously after his telecom immunity flip-flop, losing a lot of my liberal “friends” in the process who turned out to be nothing but posers in their opposition to Bush’s economic policies and wars.

    In fact Brennan, my initial introduction to you and your unhinged idiocy was your reply to a post I made pointing out that Obama was following the same deceitful path that Clinton paved in his sellouts to our rulers and you, foreshadowing the Clintonian tactic of trying to discredit all critics of them with claims of Russia Russia Russia, responding in the form of accusing me of working for Pravda for having the temerity to criticize Bill Clinton’s economic policies.



    I’m always willing to reassess and open to reassessment. I don’t think there is any doubt Putin has his hooks into Donald Trump. But many others do as well. The only thing I’d change about that comment is the assertion “Putin’s hand is up Trump’s ass directing his every move.” My reassessment is that it’s not “every” move but some moves. I will add, Trump is a like a wrecking ball for Putin. Putin helped roll him down the lane to the pins and Trump is knocking down the pins in his own manner.

    As far as Soleimani’s assassination, no, I don’t think this was Putin’s directive or wish specifically, but it does fit with Putin helping set Trump in motion as the wrecking ball to collapse and/or weaken America. Israel has its hooks in America too, just as Putin’s Russia does. As I’ve shown, there is a nexus between Russia, Israel and Trump and Pompeo is a pivot point for this evil axis designed to conquer from the inside out.


    Z, who did you vote for in the 2016 election? Trump or Hillary? Or did you vote for the candidate of another party? Or did you write in a candidate? Or did you not vote at all because “none of the above” sufficed? Please be honest about it.

    I did not vote in 2008 or 2012 or 2016 because of the latter reason. My non-vote was “none of the above.” I knew Obama was a fraud and he was. Hillary was just as bad as Obama if not worse. I thought Trump was a joke all along and when he was “elected,” I was flabbergasted and dumbfounded that the establishment would sit by and let this happen and that’s exactly what the establishment did. They too have their hooks in Trump as a useful foil but to this day Trump is getting the best of that equation.

    Trump’s an enigma. He’s predictable, yet unpredictable. He can be counted on to be egomaniacal and odious, but what he does specifically is a bit more difficult to direct or manage. He doesn’t just upset the apple cart which is what all those who have their hooks into him want, but he also has the potential to entirely destroy the farmers’ market and everyone patronizing it. Trump is a tremendous gambit for all those who are using him for their own devices. He’s the quintessential Judaic Golem.

  20. Z


    I voted for Jill Stein in 2016.

    The last time I voted for a candidate from any of the dance partner parties of the ruling class was in 2004 when I almost threw up on my ballot in the course of voting for Kerry because I deplored Bush so much and all the damage that he had done. I especially regret that vote for Kerry now that he is intellectually dishonestly defending Biden’s support of the Iraq War, but my stomach curdled about it then as well.

    If someone put a gun to my head in 2008 and said vote for either Obama or Hillary in the 2008 primary, I would have taken the chance that the gun would jam.

    If someone put a gun to my head in 2016 and said vote for either Trump or Hillary, I would have voted for Trump in the belief that his election would destabilize the political system in some ways, he’d only be a one-term president, and his election would be a pre-cursor to real change. If Hillary got in, the Clinton machine would have boxed out all democratic contenders in 2020 and we’d most likely end up with two terms of Clinton if not one term and then a republican in 2020. As it stands, I think we’re in a better position now to get someone into power, namely Bernie Sanders, who will represent the working class.



    Speaking of reassessment, Z, Bloomberg has reassessed his position on fracking and his position now is that there should be no more gas wells on our way to zero carbon emissions. I’m convinced Bloomberg can be brought to see the light on thorium reactors to bridge the gap.

  22. Mark Pontin

    Hugh wrote: ‘Standard Democratic operating procedure has been to run the most conservative Democrats possible even if they lose rather than run progressive candidates.”

    Just to amend this, because it’s not that I disagree but it’s literally _worse_ than that.

    The Democratic party contractually _requires_ sitting Democrat House members to spend the first 4-5 hours of their working days listening to the lobbyists for the big money donors that the party sends to their offices.

    I cite as source, forex, THE PAYOFF: WHY WALL STREET ALWAYS WINS, a book written by a lawyer called Jeff Connaughton, who went to work for Sen. Ted Kauffman in 2009-2010

  23. Mark Pontin

    The Democratic Party is currently organized on a fundamental level, in other words, so its sitting members must absolutely prioritize spending their time and effort first and foremost on serving the wants of the corporate and wealthy in order to take their money.

    I’m sure if any party functionary like Tom Perez on down were confronted with it, he’d give us the line about how for the Democrats to do good things for Americans they have to win first, and the first rule of politics is that who has the money wins.

  24. Hugh

    I wish AOC the best. We need to start somewhere.

    Ancient history for fdlers. In 2008, after Obama had backtracked or reneged on any progressive position he had ever taken, had done zero outreach to progressives, indeed his campaign took a my way or the highway approach to us, and also had included zero progressives in his campaign, I pushed for establishing the roots of a progressive party, something that fdl was in a unique position to do. It was a stopping place for many progressives around the country. But there was always a big split at fdl between its commentariat which was much more progressive and Jane Hamsher and many of her posters who were More and Better Democrat types. I got told that it wasn’t the time. We had to defeat McCain, end the Bush era, et cetera.

    Jane had ambitions of being a Democratic player. So after the election, she said that she and fdl would support a progressive party/movement maybe only after we had run progressive candidates in races and won with them. In other words, fdl would sign on board only after we had no need of them. This has been a recurring problem. Progressives need to organize to be effective. But the tools to organize haven’t been there and/or have been difficult to come by, or as in the case of the Occupy movement actively suppressed. And it’s not like progressives are easy to organize in the first place, which was a fatal weakness in the Occupy movement. So as I said at the top, more power to AOC.

  25. Adams

    @ Hugh “In other words, fdl would sign on board only after we had no need of them. This has been a recurring problem. Progressives need to organize to be effective. ”

    Yes. I had an acrimonious debate with one of the core FDL staffers over several months on this. He wouldn’t debate specific issues, but continually berated me as supporting Repubs because I refused to take the Dem loyalty oath. But it’s worse than that. Progressive websites spend the time between elections touting progressive positions on environmental, domestic social, civil rights, economic, and foreign/military policy. Then, as the election nears these so-called “progressive” websites bail on most progressive positions (except identity issues, about which the Powers that Be care not) and urge their readers to support whatever LOTE candidate is being served up by the DLC/DNC Dem establishment.

    Whatever happened to the term “veal pen?”


    Iran has said Trump bares responsibility for the downed Ukrainian plane. I disagree. The Dems are responsible for it per that logic. They ran Hillary in 2016 and froze out Bernie come hook or crook. Bernie would have beaten Trump. Hillary never had a chance and they knew it and ran her anyway and political consultants made huge bank off of her loss to the tune of a billion dollars. Ralph Nader has correctly indicated how tepid and narrow the Dems impeachment has been of Trump. They clearly don’t want him removed from office. Why? Because he’s useful. He allows them to look good and moral in comparison. They can use him as a foil and play off of him regardless of the danger he poses to the living planet. I truly believe the Dems are this cynical and this malevolent. They’re adept at hiding it unlike Trump who wears his malevolence on his sleeve like so-called “liberals” wear their hearts.

    Z, thanks for being honest. I too voted for Kerry and I’m ashamed I did for the very same sentiment you’re emabarassed you did.


    Although, I will add Z, I do not agree we are in a better position now than in 2016. In fact, it’s worse. Trump is moving the goal posts precipitously closer to outright, in-your-face fascism. The Dems are at fault for Trump, not the Russians. The solution to this predicament cannot and will not emanate from the auspices of the Democratic party and this younger generation doesn’t have the right stuff for revolution. Simply put, we’re mince meat.

  28. Back before the oh-sixteen election I made the observation that good, bad or indifferent Trump would be the more effective catalyst for change. I was right.

    The more effective catalyst for change. I said that: “Good, bad or indifferent, Trump would be the more effective catalyst for change,” in comments somewhere. Frustrated with Clinton Derangement, Bernie-Bashing and the Republican Lite belittling, condescending, denigrating, mewling finger-pointing of the mainstream corporate democrat stooges – rubes – I dared disagree with.

    Only days after the ‘election’ I wrote ~the democrats are as responsible for the mess we are in as the republicans. The democrats, in spite of tens of millions of voices yelling from the top of their lungs DON’T DO IT! chose to run a candidate because “it’s her turn” that couldn’t beat the celebrity clown friend of the family candidate who was actively campaigning to get her elected. Had the dems not chosen to ignore the tens of millions of voices yelling from the top of their lungs DON’T DO IT! and ran a candidate because “it’s her turn” Trump would not have made it past the first debate, if he were in the debate at all. And no amount of blame-game finger-pointing belittling, condescending denigrating Republican-Lite behavior will change that.

    Like some kind of Gregorian chant, history is both rhyming and repeating.

    Would do well to remember while the Ruskies have the biggest face on the matter, the larger footprint, there are others as technologically sophisticated and far more adept at both keeping a low profile and herding stupid fucking ‘Muirkkkans to do their bidding. Those who by deception practice the art of war.

  29. different clue

    AOC legitimately appears to be sincere and also instinctively knowledgeable about how to begin supporting a “reconquest” against the Pelosian Cheney-Democrats who own and run the DemParty. Her TOC ( Theory Of Change) deserves support.

    ” Must . . . defeat . . . Trump . . . ” is the brain-binding psychic-driver trigger-phrase of choice by all Clintonite Operatives everywhere.

    ” Must . . . defeat . . . Trump. . . ” is not my Prime Directive. “Exterminate all Clintonites” is my Prime Directive. If semi-exterminating the Clintonites enough to beat them into submission for nominating a New Deal Revivalist could also lead to defeating Trump, the “defeating Trump” part would be tasty gravy, to be sure. But advancing the “Exterminate all Clintonites” goal-of-goals far enough to even be ABLE to torture the Cheney-Pelosi DemParty into surrendering to the nomination of a New Deal Revivalist would be a victory to build on in the ongoing effort to declintaminate and debamafy the Not-Democratic-Anymore Party and make it Democratic again.

  30. different clue

    I just realized that “disobamafy” might be a better word for purging the vile filth of Obama from out of the Not-Democratic-Anymore Party than that other word I used . . . ” debamafy”. Disobamafy makes it even more clear. So that is the word I will use for purging and burning every last filthy political bacteria cell of Yersiniobama pestis from out of the DemParty.

  31. Sid Finster

    Trump is too incompetent and unfocused to be a puppet.

    With this in mind, to believe the russiagate conspiracy theories, one must simultaneously believe that not only did Trump or his campaign “collude” with Russia, they also didn’t take it very seriously. At least not seriously enough to think that they’d win. I suppose the pat response is that Trump is a lazy idiot who surrounds himself with other idiots. This last sentence is hard to refute, at least using evidence.

    But that’s not all. To believe the conspiracy theory, one must also simultaneously believe that the Russians have these svengali-like abilities that border on psychic mind control powers, but at the same time, these same evil geniuses cannot be bothered to plan what to do if their nefarious schemes actually worked out.

    James Jesus Angleton wept.

    One can easily accept that Trump is a roaring moron, but one also has to believe that his alleged puppetmaster, an evil genius who supposedly understands the American political system better than the best consultants and data scientists that money can buy, this same brainiac cannot take the time to consult an attorney or a peruse a copy of the United States Code, available for free on the internet to anyone who bothers to take a peek. And that’s just the legal requirements. Then there’s the clownshow that was Trump’s appointments and staffing.

    An actual evil genius would have his appointments squared away and compromised, right from the beginning. Not waiting months to get basic nominations in place. He’d also have a puppet who looks and sounds too good to be true but who also can be blackmailed, not a mumbling doofus who can’t keep his yap shut.

    So now we are apparently supposed to believe that Putin was doing this, you know, starting a new Cold War and all, he was doing this just for pranks?

  32. Willy

    I’ve never met a Dark Triad who was very good at anything except for the human-manipulative arts. Google “Billionaires Row” to find out how being fabulously successful can often involve a bit of money laundering.

    But the positives of Trump, from a workers perspective, would be his very ‘loud’ pronouncements against free trade and for illegal alien enforcement, which could change the prevailing conservative culture enough so they begin to honestly debate with progressives again.

    On the other hand, Trump sure does lie a lot. And so flagrantly. And if/when he does eventually screw up in a really big way, instead of all the dozens of smaller ways which his supplicants can forgive him for, PTBs might have an opportunity to try and discard trade and aliens along with all of the sociopathic incompetency.

  33. Hugh

    Re wars and smarter wars, this was Hillary Clinton’s chief criticism of Bush’s prosecution of the war and occupation in Iraq. Her contention was she would have done it “smarter.”

    In one of the funnier and more telling of our political moments Hillary did eventually apologize for Iraq war vote in her book Hard Choices which came out on June 10, 2014:

    “[M]any Senators came to wish they had voted against the resolution. I was one of them. As the war dragged on, with every letter I sent to a family in New York who had lost a son or daughter, a father or mother, my mistake become more painful. I thought I had acted in good faith and made the best decision I could with the information I had. And I wasn’t alone in getting it wrong. But I still got it wrong. Plain and simple.”

    Note that her apology was anything but “plain and simple.” She claims that she made the best choice possible at the time (in a book called Hard Choices, not Obvious Mistakes), oh yes, and lots of other people made the same mistake. What is painfully missing from this apology is any acknowledgement of or apology to all those she slammed for years who actually got it right. Or why it took her nearly 12 years (11 years and 8 months from the October 2002 AUMF on Iraq to the June 10, 2014 book launch) to apologize for a sort of mistake. Anyway, Obama ordered US troops back into Iraq on June 19, 2014 in the fight against ISIS, a decision which Clinton supported. So Clinton was against US involvement in Iraq for a grand total of 9 days.

    It has been equally funny that Biden would have John “I voted for it before I voted against it” Kerry defend Biden’s Iraq vote, essentially that yes, Biden voted for the Iraq war but he didn’t mean it. It all goes to show that no matter how dumb and self-serving these people are, they are always being “smart” while they are doing it.

  34. Hugh

    Willy, if Trump was against free trade, he would not have re-upped NAFTA with only cosmetic changes. He would not be caving in the China negotiations. No jobs, and certainly no good jobs, have returned to the US under Trump. Any that left China went to places like Vietnam. Meanwhile even US jobs Trump showcased as having saved, in fact, got shipped to Mexico anyway.

    I am against immigration on the grounds that I think a sustainable population for the US is 200 million or less and that is what we should be working toward. We will know politicians are serious about immigration when they pass punitive laws against the employers who employ them, which in Trump’s case would mean going after himself. Political refugees are another matter. We should take some but we should be working with their home countries to stabilize sufficiently so they can go back.

  35. Stirling S Newberry

    I will vote for AOC when she runs for the Presidency.

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