16
   

Monitoring Biden and other Contemporary Events

 
 
hightor
 
  2  
Reply Sun 5 Jun, 2022 05:46 am
What Is Going On In The United States?

A right-wing minority prevails — not only in regards to gun laws

Quote:
The answer, as horrifying as it sounds, is this: Maintaining white supremacy.
A minority, a white, conservative to far-right minority, wants to turn back the clock. To maintain white supremacy in the ethnic-sociologically changing USA. The fact that this — strong — minority succeeds in asserting itself in this way is due to the following two critical factors:

the US electoral system

2. the determination of right-wing conservatives.

Political scientists Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt, authors of the bestseller How Democracies Die, said this in 2020:

Today the American parties are starkly divided along urban-rural lines: the Democrats are concentrated in the metropolitan centers, while the Republicans are increasingly concentrated in sparsely populated areas that have their base. That gives Republicans an advantage in the Electoral College (which favors sparsely populated states in presidential elections), the Senate, and the Supreme Court (which Trump was able to fill with three ultra-conservatives during his presidency).

The two authors state that there is a “minority rule” in the USA. Although a majority of Americans support abortion and stricter gun laws, a right-wing and motivated minority continues to prevail. Moderate conservatives currently have little to say, while important observers now regard the Republicans as a whole as authoritarian and anti-democratic. And what are the left and liberals doing? The Democratic Party? Joe Biden? Too little and sometimes the wrong thing.

Coming to the conclusion about the minority rule of diehard white supremacists, the electoral college, the right-wing fervor — that’s nothing new. There really is no excuse this has continued and manifested itself to such a degree. The thing is: now and going forward, everyone outside this group of radicals must come up with a plan to bring the United States back into the 21st century as a functioning democracy. Because as it stands now? Not so good and pretty much doomed. Fall of the empire scenario — doomed.
Meanwhile...

Death from guns was and still is the leading cause of death among children and adolescents in the United States. In 2020 it was 4,386 deaths. The umpteenth school massacre, this time in Uvalde, Texas, will have little impact on America’s absurd gun laws. The Supreme Court will soon rule on whether to lift the ban on concealed carry in New York. With possible consequences for the whole country.

And of course, it is expected that the Supreme Court will soon open the door for draconian bans on abortion. As well as possibly lifting the ban on minority protection measures (“affirmative action”). Gay rights, including same-sex marriage, are also on the line. Ultra-conservative forces are going about this with fervor.

The congressional investigation into the Jan. 6, 2021 storming of the Capitol by far-right groups is uncovering more and more details about Donald Trump’s role as the instigator. But Republicans have labeled the de facto attempted coup, designed to prevent Congress from confirming Joe Biden’s election victory, as “legitimate political discourse.”

Trump continues to tell the Big Lie that the election was stolen from him. His party and too many Americans largely follow him. A year ago, around 53 percent of Republicans and thus 25 percent of Americans believed in the Big Lie. Trump supporters seem onboard with civil war.

What’s wrong with the US? Has the world’s most important democracy gone insane? Transatlantic has become a dirty word in Europe, but anyone with a shred of realism knows that without a truly democratic US, Europe stands little chance against Vladimir Putin’s war and dominance plans.

Stay tuned.

A noteworthy remark I heard from Trevor Noah: He explained the difference between South African Racism and US racism: South African racists are openly racist, proclaiming it for all to see, giving the opposition a clearly defined enemy. In the United States, these ultra-right-wing assholes all pretend they’re not racist, that they see everyone as equals. Watch. It’s awesome.

medium
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Sun 5 Jun, 2022 06:16 am
@hightor,
hightor wrote:

Coming to the conclusion about the minority rule of diehard white supremacists, the electoral college, the right-wing fervor — that’s nothing new. There really is no excuse this has continued and manifested itself to such a degree. The thing is: now and going forward, everyone outside this group of radicals must come up with a plan to bring the United States back into the 21st century as a functioning democracy. Because as it stands now? Not so good and pretty much doomed. Fall of the empire scenario — doomed.


It is all well and good to call what Biden and the Democrats have done "...(t)oo little and sometimes the wrong thing"...but what Kaufmann does not do...is to give some hint of what would be "the right thing" and "enough." I suspect that this is because the finest minds in the United States cannot come up with anything that would be "enough" to correct these grievous wrongs that are now making our nation into a farce.

The American right...the Republican Party as now constituted...has our nation by the balls. The electoral system and the Senate are totally broken...and CANNOT be repaired at this time. They were implemented in the late 18th century to deal with 18th century problems (mostly to allow a tiny minority the right to own slaves)...and do not fit 21st century realities.

Unfortunately the minority is strong enough to resist any attempts to restructure for a 21st century reality...and the destruction of the Great Experiment looms more formidably than ever before.

hightor
 
  2  
Reply Sun 5 Jun, 2022 06:50 am
@Frank Apisa,
The Republicans are basically treading water in expectation of sweeping both houses in the midterms and getting a MAGAtard elected president in 2024. It's our institutions which are failing us – having assumed that, with our vaunted Constitution, we had achieved political perfection, we've been loath to take the steps necessary to modernize the document and its interpretation. The 2nd Amendment is a great example. It was obsolete following the War of 1812! The Electoral College is another example, as is the "two senators for each state" provision. I feel there's very little we can do to turn it around at the national level.
Frank Apisa
 
  2  
Reply Sun 5 Jun, 2022 07:55 am
@hightor,
hightor wrote:

The Republicans are basically treading water in expectation of sweeping both houses in the midterms and getting a MAGAtard elected president in 2024. It's our institutions which are failing us – having assumed that, with our vaunted Constitution, we had achieved political perfection, we've been loath to take the steps necessary to modernize the document and its interpretation. The 2nd Amendment is a great example. It was obsolete following the War of 1812! The Electoral College is another example, as is the "two senators for each state" provision. I feel there's very little we can do to turn it around at the national level.


Agreed, Hightor.

Fixing the composition of the Electoral College...and the make-up of the Senate is ESSENTIAL to decent, democratic style government. And the notion of bringing those two things up to 21st century standards is loathed by American conservatives...who will use the composition of the EC and the make-up of the Senate to stymie any hope of making the correction.

America is screwed.

The only solution I see that could work would be secession by the Northeast states...and the West Coast states...turning the US of A into three separate nations.
0 Replies
 
snood
 
  2  
Reply Mon 6 Jun, 2022 03:03 pm
44% of republicans say that mass shootings are just something we have to accept in a free society

https://www.insider.com/poll-4-in-10-gop-accept-mass-shootings-free-society-2022-6
Mame
 
  2  
Reply Mon 6 Jun, 2022 03:04 pm
@snood,
What do the other 56% say?

That's just nuts.
0 Replies
 
BillW
 
  2  
Reply Mon 6 Jun, 2022 08:40 pm
Justice Department has today charged with Seditious Conspiracy. The dominos are beginning to be laid on the table ahead of the HofR committee being to lay out their evidence.
snood
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Jun, 2022 09:40 pm
@BillW,
I bet that Proud Boys leader is as high up the ladder as any accountability goes.
BillW
 
  2  
Reply Mon 6 Jun, 2022 10:09 pm
@snood,
I really, really hope not. The top of the ladder is Trump.

I really do wish I could make a stronger belief than "hope", but, the house hearings and possible evidence and oral admissions from other defendants pointing to Trump is a must. It is obvious the President committed seditious acts, but hard, direct evidence is a.must to charge a President!
0 Replies
 
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jun, 2022 01:26 am
Huge row in India right now, government spokesperson Nupur Sharma insulted the prophet Mohammed live on TV.

Gulf states are talking of a boycott of Indian goods and services and there have been riots in India.

Her words are so offensive that nobody is prepared to print them, just that it was v offensive.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  2  
Reply Tue 7 Jun, 2022 06:31 am
As noted at TPM
Quote:
Fox News announced on Monday that Fox News Channel won’t be airing the House Jan. 6 Committee’s public hearing during primetime on Thursday. The primetime programs will only cover the hearings “as news warrants,” according to the press release.

That means when the hearing starts at 8 p.m. ET, Fox News viewers can instead watch Tucker Carlson rant about how fake the hearing is and how the Jan. 6 panel’s out to get red-blooded patriots and was it really that big a deal that Trump’s supporters violently stormed the Capitol?
Fox News anchors Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum will be shifted over to Fox Business Network to cover the hearing live over there, per Fox’s press release. FBN has fewer than 100,000 viewers tuning in at 8 p.m. ET on average, while Fox News has more than three million viewers, CNN media analyst Brian Stelter notes.
hightor
 
  3  
Reply Tue 7 Jun, 2022 07:25 am
@blatham,
All part of the plan, isn't it – here's the piece you put up the other day by Margaret Sullivan in case anyone missed it:

Why the press will never have another Watergate moment

Fifty years ago, the nation was gripped by media coverage of Nixon’s crimes — and there was no Fox News to tell it to look away

Quote:
You’ll be hearing a lot about Watergate in the next several weeks, as the 50th anniversary of the infamous June 17, 1972, burglary at the Democratic National Committee headquarters approaches. There will be documentaries, cable-news debates, the finale of that Julia Roberts miniseries (“Gaslit”) based on the popular Watergate podcast (“Slow Burn”). I’ll be moderating a panel discussion at the Library of Congress on the anniversary itself — and you can certainly count on a few retrospectives in this very newspaper.

The scandal has great resonance at The Washington Post, which won a Pulitzer Prize for public service in 1973 for its intrepid reporting and the courage it took to publish it. And it has particular meaning for me, because, like many others of my generation, I was first drawn into journalism by the televised Senate hearings in 1973, and I was enthralled by the 1976 movie “All the President’s Men,” based on the book by Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein.

Yet thinking about Watergate saddens me these days. The nation that came together to force a corrupt president from office and send many of his co-conspirator aides to prison is a nation that no longer exists.

It’s not just our politics that have changed. It’s also our radically transformed media environment.

“The national newspapers mattered in a way that is unimaginable to us today, and even the regional newspapers were incredibly strong,” Garrett Graff, author of “Watergate: A New History,” told me last week. I have been immersed in his nearly 800-page history — a “remarkably rich narrative,” former Post executive editor Leonard Downie Jr. called it in a review — which sets out to retell the story.

Graff depicts Watergate not as a singular event but as the entire mind-set of the Nixon presidency — “a shaggy umbrella of a dozen distinct scandals,” as he told me. By the time the break-in captured the attention of most Americans, they were essentially “walking into the second or third act of a play.”

Woodward and Bernstein were almost alone on the story for months. But eventually, the leading newspapers of the nation started to cover the hell out of the burgeoning scandal and the percolating questions of what — and when — the president knew about the burglary plot.

Americans read this coverage in their local papers; many cities still had two or more dailies at that point. Later, they were riveted by the proceedings of the Senate Watergate Committee, whose hearings were aired live on the three big television networks during the summer of 1973. Graff reports that the average American household watched 30 hours of the hearings, which were also rebroadcast at night by PBS. (“The best thing that has happened to public television since ‘Sesame Street,’ ” one Los Angeles Times TV critic noted.)

Still, “we forget how close Nixon came to surviving Watergate,” Graff told me. “Even at the end of the hearings, there was no guarantee that Nixon was out of office.”

What changed that? The increasing public awareness of the president’s wrongdoing and the coverup. “The sheer accumulation of the lies,” he said, “at a time when the idea that a president could lie to America was unthinkable.”

Fast-forward to today. The House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection will hold hearings beginning early next month, some of which will be televised during prime-time hours. Rep. Jamie B. Raskin (D-Md.), a prominent member, predicts that the revelations will “blow the roof off the House” — offering evidence, he promises, of an organized coup attempt involving Donald Trump, his closest allies and the supporters who attacked the Capitol as they tried to overturn the 2020 presidential election results.

I’m willing to believe that the hearings will be dramatic. They might even change some people’s minds. But the amount of public attention they get will be minuscule compared with what happened when the folksy Sen. Sam Ervin (D-N.C.) presided over the Senate Watergate Committee.

Our media environment is far more fractured, and news organizations are far less trusted.

And, in part, we can blame the rise of a right-wing media system. At its heart is Fox News, which was founded in 1996, nearly a quarter-century after the break-in, with a purported mission to provide a “fair and balanced” counterpoint to the mainstream media. Of course, that message often manifested in relentless and damaging criticism of its news rivals. Meanwhile, Fox News and company have served as a highly effective laundry service for Trump’s lies. With that network’s help, his tens of thousands of false or misleading claims have found fertile ground among his fervent supporters — oblivious to the skillful reporting elsewhere that has called out and debunked those lies.

As Graff sees it, the growth of right-wing media has enabled many Republican members of Congress to turn a blind eye to the malfeasance of Team Trump. Not so during the Watergate investigation; after all, it was Sen. Howard Baker (R-Tenn.) who posed the immortal question: “What did the president know, and when did he know it?” Even the stalwart conservative Sen. Barry Goldwater (Ariz.) was among those who, at the end, managed to convince Nixon that he must resign.

“Republican members of Congress understood that they had a unique and important role as the legislative branch to hold the abuses of the executive branch in check,” Graff said. “That freedom of action was made possible because there was no right-wing media ecosystem.”

Not everything was good about the media world of the 1970s. It was almost entirely White and male, barely open to other views or voices. This was long before the democratizing effect of the Internet, which has elevated the ideas of people of color, women and other marginalized groups.

But it was a time when we had a news media that commanded the trust of the general public, a necessity in helping bring Nixon to justice. That, at least during his presidency, was never possible with Trump.

As we remember Watergate, we ought to remember how very unlikely its righteous conclusion would be today.

Richard M. Nixon’s presidency would have survived.

wp
bulmabriefs144
 
  -2  
Reply Tue 7 Jun, 2022 07:31 am
@blatham,
First of all, there wasn't a "violent storming of the capital" . It was a nonviolent protest with the the exception of about four people dying.
Quote:
Ashli Babbitt, an Air Force veteran, was fatally shot by a Capitol Police officer as rioters tried to breach the House chamber.

Kevin D. Greeson died of a heart attack, collapsing on the sidewalk west of the Capitol on Jan. 6.

Rosanne Boyland appeared to have been crushed in a stampede of fellow rioters as they surged against the police.

Benjamin Philips, the founder of a pro-Trump website called Trumparoo, died of a stroke.


Btw, Boyland was already dead from a drug overdose, according to later report from the medical examiner. So, heart attack, stroke, and drug overdose. The only person who died was one of the crowd, who was fired on by cops.

Here is what a violent protest looks like...

Quote:
The Reign of Terror resulted in an estimated 40,000 executions, primarily landed nobility, courtiers and clergy.


During the French Revolution, the attack on the nobility resulted in the slaughter of thousands. Hmmmm, slaughter of thousands... one person in the crowd shot, people arrested as political prisoners, and the entire thing called "the most violent event in history."

Nope, it's a nonviolent event, turned violent by a despot unwilling to give up power. He later put up a wall around the White House and filled the place with his own private army. The White House is now a fortress at war with the American people.

Read about the Civil War or even the Boston Massacre. Tell me again why this is such a violent event that we need to carry on about it even a year later.

bulmabriefs144
 
  -2  
Reply Tue 7 Jun, 2022 07:37 am
@hightor,
"Modernize the document."

Right.

Because giving people freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of the press, right to defend themselves against their own government, right to not have soldiers in their own homes, right to not be searched or have items seized without a warrant and reasonable cause, right to not be forced to testify against yourself or pay excessive fines, these are such backwards ideas that they really need to get with the times!

We need to be more hip and accept new documents like this Sharia law code that Ilhan Omar has recently drawn up for us. It's the latest thing, and not at all a regressive document that was regressive even in 600-800 AD when Islam was codified, centuries after Christianity made it no longer cool to stone people to death.
hightor
 
  3  
Reply Tue 7 Jun, 2022 08:06 am
@bulmabriefs144,
What are you talking about? You obviously didn't understand the discussion but felt you had to interrupt anyway, right? Not getting enough attention in the biblical threads? You might not know this, being a flat-earther, but the U.S. Constitution was actually designed to be amended, as the founders knew some of the provisions would need to be changed over time.
0 Replies
 
hightor
 
  6  
Reply Tue 7 Jun, 2022 08:07 am
@bulmabriefs144,
Quote:
First of all, there wasn't a "violent storming of the capital" .

So the only criterion for violence is a body count? Okay. About what I'd expect from you.
0 Replies
 
revelette1
 
  2  
Reply Tue 7 Jun, 2022 08:19 am
@blatham,
Hi Blatham, good to see you.

Apparently they have a whole counter-attack planned with orders from Trump.

Trump mobilizing his MAGA allies to defend him ahead of January 6 hearings

Region Philbis
 
  3  
Reply Tue 7 Jun, 2022 05:44 pm

https://iili.io/hTC8R1.jpg
blatham
 
  2  
Reply Thu 9 Jun, 2022 08:05 am
@hightor,
Quote:
All part of the plan, isn't it

I'm afraid so. As most of us understand, the problem has two main facets - the rise of a right wing media universe which is both propagandist and profoundly cynical along with the emergence of the internet which has wreaked economic havoc on print media of the prior era and which has led, in ways too numerous to detail, to our present situation of information chaos. Avoiding authoritarianism (and the consequences that will birth) seems unlikely.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  2  
Reply Thu 9 Jun, 2022 08:18 am
@revelette1,
Hi rev. Nice to see you too.

Yes. The GOP has no other means of dealing with the hearings than what we all know they are about to do and which your link describes. They have no other strategy than ad hominems, distractions and lies. That is their operating communications norm now.

Relevant to all the above is a great piece (sound file available) at the Atlantic on Steve Bannon. Highly recommended.
 

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