Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Monday, August 14, 2017

It is happening here

The BS debate about how Democrats can win back Trump voters through economic populism needs to end now. Donald Trump appeals to Republican voters because he articulates and enables racism. That's what they mean when they call him a "straight shooter" and says he "tells it like it is" even though he lies ever time he moves his lips. He refuses to condemn Nazis and Klansmen because a) they are his base and b) they are among his closest advisers. (Bannon, Gorka and Miller, to get specific. His Attorney General is also a racist.)

Here's an interview with historian Timothy Snyder. I'll give you a pull quote:

What's most striking, if you want to try to link what happened yesterday to our own history, is that we now have a president who doesn't regard Nazis as a symbol of evil. . . .  His reaction to this event is to say that everyone is at fault, and we should all hold together. That's not the reaction that one would expect from the president of the United States. But it is consistent with what I've been trying to get across for the past few months. It's consistent with Trump and Steven Bannon's attempt to do away with the part of the American story that celebrates entering and winning the Second World War. It's consistent with their attempt to do away with the part of the American identity that has to do with being anti-fascist, or anti-Nazi. It's consistent with their botching the Holocaust Remembrance Day in January. It's consistent with the utterly bizarre way that Sean Spicer talked about the Holocaust, when he said Hitler didn't kill his own people. It's consistent with Trump being the first major American politician in recent memory to skip visiting the Ghetto Memorial when he came to Warsaw in August.
And above all, it's consistent with his “America First” slogan. This is what America First means. America First means an America where a Nazi Germany was not the enemy. So that's the broad historical circle. We have an administration which has "America First." What "America First" meant when it was used during the WWII era was that we should not resist Nazi Germany. Mr. Trump's remarks on Saturday are totally consistent with that. This is who and what the administration has been from the very beginning.
And believe me, the white supremacists are getting the message loud and clear.

This must end. This racist, malignant, demented psychopath must be removed from office. If we can't get that done, our century of progress has ended.


Anonymous said...

The president should impanel an investigation, find out what happened according to the evidence and prosecute any and all who engaged in violence to the fullest extent of the law. There's plenty of video to identify the perpetrators.

That being said, the left and the left wing media such as ThinkProgress and Vox that you cite (and others) are salivating over the opportunity to tie these white racist morons to the president to further their political agenda. I believe Trump detractors are more interested in the political opportunity than discussing and solving the issue. While the president surely could have been more explicit, I don't think Timothy Snyder and other left wing operatives would have been dissatisfied with any statement the president could have made.

And there are some unpleasant realities you should consider:

The price of liberty means groups like the KKK, communists, Black Lives Matter and those of any other extreme ideology have a constitutional right to assemble and protest. As I'm reminded by my liberal friends and colleagues time and time again, protest *is* a right and a part of our democracy.

The group protesting the removal of the statue had a permit from the local government to be there and the ACLU defended that right when the city tried to revoke it. The counter protestors did not have a permit. They just showed up.

Both sides came prepared with sticks, helmets and chemical weapons and both engaged in violence as demonstrated on numerous videos.

I don't know what the answer is, but it's not taking away the right to protest from groups you don't like. Perhaps the police could have done a better job? Dunno

Smith said...

Okay, Anonymous, good point. To which I say, check this out:

No rights in the Constitution are absolutely guaranteed, as I'm sure you are aware. They are all considered within the context of injury to others. It's what Cervantes is talking about when he discusses insurance pools, etc.--how motorcyclists not wearing helmets, for instance, cost us all.

Anonymous said...

It's great that you and the NYT have an opinion on the Constitution but it is simply wrong on its face.

We have a judiciary to make these calls and they have recently ruled on this matter in the "slants" case and also in the Washington Redskins logo case.

There is no such thing as "hate speech" that you can ban.

That's why the city had to issue these morons a permit. That's why the ACLU defended these groups' right to march and protest.

Unless you are putting lives immediately at risk, such as screaming "fire" in a crowded theater when there is none, your speech is protected under the constitution regardless of what others may think of it. That's the court's opinion and the law of the land.

I'm expecting the NYT, you and all others to do the right thing and accept and honor the court's decision on this issue just as I'm asked to accept decisions from the courts that *I* may not like.

Smith said...

I see your point. But in fact, the marchers DID put lives immediately at risk. I do not believe there is carte blanche for unlimited hate speech. And as you know, the Alien and Sedition Acts overrode the First Amendment. Civil rights are violated all the time by those in power. What's happening now is that regular people--like you and I--are saying, "ENOUGH!" This is how the wall came down in Germany. This is how democracy--something we've never had in our representative republic--is hopefully going to come to the United States of America.

Democracy! Imagine that. What a concept. Real elections...civil rights that are backed up by the's coming. You can feel it in the air, from caucasians like myself to Taylor Swift inspiring young women to say NO to all the Trumps of the world (read: pussy-grabbers. That also isn't "free speech"). What those "morons," as you so accurately called them, did in Virginia was to incite violence. That can't be legal and, if it is, we need to change the laws. The right to free speech is NOT unlimited, as you agree.

Anonymous said...

Did Black Lives Matter also "put lives immediately at risk" when they marched through the streets at night screaming for dead cops?

Granted, they should have gotten a permit and obeyed the law, but their speech is also protected. *AND* I didn't hear the calls from the left to squelch their speech.

Smith said...

You raise good points. While I fundamentally agree with the meaning behind "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it," I'm not willing to die for a neo-Nazi to spew hate speech!

Getting away from the purely philosophical, here is some practical food to chew on:



As for Trump, well...he's on his way out. Frank Rich predicts that he will resign because impeachment, as horribly as it's needed, probably will not happen soon enough due to lack of will on the part of Congress. Trump will probably end up rotting in jail. But Trump is merely the pus in the infection of the effect of racism in America on (primarily) the Republican party.

This primary problem--racism--is our biggest problem. We are starting to deal with it and, if we last long enough, a lot of other problems will fall into place as a result of dispensing with this cancer.

Smith said...

One other comment: I was just reading how Trump's father, Fred, was arrested at a Klan rally in 1927. Of course, Trump denied it...he really IS a racist piece of shit. And that's all he has going for him, besides his incredibly pronounced narcissistic personality disorder and an ego bigger than Manhattan. Just a sad, angry little boy with a no-doubt even littler penis that he's hellbent on compensating for. There. I said it. A very sick, sick little man who is unfit to be a human being, much less a politician, much less a president! But his election has exposed the sick state of our politics and I guess it had to happen.

Anonymous said...

@ Smith

What I see is selective outrage for political gain.

Look, all of these statues have been in place since the twenties and only now...just're all outraged.

I could point out many inconsistencies of your 'outrage' such as the Grand Klegal Robert Byrd, Hillary's stated inspiration elected as a Democrat Senator that has hundreds of buildings named after him or even the standing statue of mass murderer Vladimir Lenin in Seattle and many, many more.

I could show you video clips of the current president disavowing Neo-Nazi's for the last decade or so, President Lyndon B. Johnson using the N-word or the horrible racism of the darling of the progressives, President Woodrow Wilson. It won't matter to the left. The goal has always been to topple President Trump and this is just the latest attempt.

Last week it was Russia, Russia, Russia, then it was N. Korea and how he's going to start a nuclear was and now it's all racism, racism, racism. Tomorrow it will be something else. The liberal media and progressives that lost the election will never be satisfied no matter what President Trump does.

Let's all remember that about half of the voters voted for this president.

Half the country are not Nazis and half the country are not White Supremacists (whatever that means). They are people that voted for the only person that was not of the professional political class. And they were disturbed by the lurch to the left under the last administration.

These people didn't elect a Boy Scout, just as they didn't with President Clinton. They elected someone that they thought would roll back the massive deep-state government overreach, put the brakes on the move toward socialism and who might be better for the economy and jobs.

Shitting all over half the citizens of America is not in anyone's best interest.

Smith said...

I see your point but...what you're missing is this: No, many many Americans suffered for a long time because of these monuments and saw the unhealthy effects their continued existence had. Many people were outraged for years! These people were invisible. They were referred to as "black" people.

No one I know is black. Or white. There are people of various shades.

What we are seeing is a growing awareness of the ten-million-pound elephant in the middle of the country called "racism." If you can't spot the racism and sexism--and I don't think you can--in the following headline, then I can't reach you:

"Carol Mosely Braun elected first female black senator."

OMG! A woman that can think! A "black" that can talk!

I don't know that the election wasn't hacked, BTW...I don't know that Trump received half the votes cast. I do know, however, that people sat on their asses instead of voting.

Voting needs to be mandatory. Tie it to tax refunds or something!

You are also incorrect that "the left's" goal is to topple Trump. It is many, many people's goal to dispense with this loathsome creature, unfit to be a decent human (much less a president). As I say, he is just the pus in the pimple of American society...

Anonymous said...

Voting needs to be mandatory.

Be careful about what you wish.

Smith said...

Okay, I looked at 40% declare as conservatives, and 35%/21% as moderate/liberal...I'll take my chances, and good ones at that.

In addition, as the ethos of the country finally (finally!) swings back to the "left" (which I call "decency"), the awareness of the sheeple will adjust. While we're at it, let's institute paper ballots and direct representation/elections instead of the electoral college. I understand the bias towards states' representation, but...enough.

We seem to learn the wrong lessons from our mistakes. I like the expression, "When you lose, don't lose the lesson." That way you win, ultimately. What did our government learn from Vietnam? Not "Don't fight stupid, meaningless wars" but "Don't let the media take pictures--embed them!" What did we learn from the judicial right-wing fiat that installed Cheney and Bush? Not "have impartial elections and vote counting, and don't let the Supreme Court stop a recount" but "Let's have electronic voting machines (that can be hacked)."

As it's been said by someone wiser than I: Any "-ism"--Catholicism, Capitalism, Socialism, Communism, etc.--would work wonderfully if it were practiced by men with hearts of gold.

And while we're on "men"--I'm ready to give up the reins. Let women run things, for god's sake (and ours). They won't be so quick to send their sons off to war to settle petty differences. Testosterone--the most dangerous drug on the planet. Let 'em run things, and men can do what we're best at--standing around fixing things, shooting the bull and playing sports...

Anonymous said...

Testosterone--the most dangerous drug on the planet. Let 'em run things, and men can do what we're best at--standing around fixing things, shooting the bull and playing sports...

Does your vagina hurt when you type things like this?