American Democracy Is in Crisis Mode

The two “presumptive” nominees are all the rage now in the media…..and there are some of us trying to explain what has happened to our electoral process…..it is a bit difficult…..

The crisis that has made Trump’s victory a possibility isn’t about Trump. It’s about what’s happening to the American people.

The election news is all about Trump, 24/7, but the crisis that has made his victory a possibility and that would bring tyrannical folly in its wake it isn’t about Trump. It’s about what is happening to the American people.

What is happening to us is something that Trump embodies perfectly, in all his populist vulgarity. But no populist rhetoric of democracy can hide the truth that what’s happening to us is what’s being done to us.

Source: American Democracy Is in Crisis Mode and We’re All Complicit: Here’s What Needs to Happen | Alternet

Regardless who wins in November this country is in serious danger…..and the only ones that will pay the price for this ego trip are the American people.

The Danger of Demonization

Where do Americans get their news and views?  Most likely from their fave news outlet….FOX, NBC, ABC, CNN and the rest of the establishment called the “fourth estate”……

I have never been a fan of the MSM especially in the past decades….I lost any respect for “journalism” when corporate America started sucking up the outlets….I said then it was a bad idea and so far my opinion has not been altered.

But these days the media is more like a propaganda machine than a group of journalists….the media is owned wholly by corporate America and will do their reporting that benefits their owners not educate the public.

The government has its enemies and the media is used to demonize those enemies….whether it is Iran, Russia, ISIS, Syria on and on….granted some of them are truly evil in scope….but that is not the media’s concern…theirs should be reporting the events and situations and the people decide who they think is a demon….

As the West is sucked deeper into the Syrian conflict and starts a new Cold War with Russia, the mainstream news media has collapsed as a vehicle for reliable information, creating a danger for the world, writes Robert Parry.

Does any intelligent person look at a New York Times article about Russia or Vladimir Putin these days and expect to read an objective, balanced account? Or will it be laced with a predictable blend of contempt and ridicule? And is it any different at The Washington Post, NPR, MSNBC, CNN or almost any mainstream U.S. news outlet?

And it’s not just Russia. The same trend holds true for Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Nicaragua and other countries and movements that have fallen onto the U.S. government’s “enemies list.” We saw the same pattern with Saddam Hussein and Iraq before the 2003 U.S. invasion; with Muammar Gaddafi and Libya before the U.S.-orchestrated bombing campaign in 2011; and with President Viktor Yanukovych and Ukraine before the U.S.-backed coup in 2014.

Source: The Danger of Demonization – Consortiumnews

Do you, my readers, think the media is doing their job or are they just arms of the propaganda machine of the government and corporate America?

What Is Acceptable?

Finally, the weekend begins…..I am up to my ears in the speculation over flight 804…..like most trendy MSM topics it is 5 minutes of news and 55 minutes of speculation……I cannot wait for the next high speed chase in Lower Dipshit, MT……

My granddaughter dropped by the other day and we set about doing what we always do….talk and bitch…..Since school only has a couple of weeks left in session I asked her if there was anything new…..she thought awhile and told me of an incident where one of her classmates was catching Hell from the “in crowd” because he had some cheap knock-off sneakers…..she did not understand what the big deal was all about….

I told her that it was a never-ending thing….told her about the grief I got back in the day with my long hair and faded jeans….that it was always the way….the “leader of the pack” dictated the fashion….(and then I gave her a historical perspective)….(yeah she had the same response as everyone else)……

And now for that history lesson……you are welcome!

Peter the Great: Shave that Beard!

Tsar Peter the First of Russia was one of the first great sartorial modernizers. Strongly influenced by his journeys in Western Europe and determined to remake Russia in Europe’s image, he began with European aesthetics. Returning from a tour of the continent in 1698, he greeted members of his court, pulled out a razor, and began forcibly shaving them so they would look more like Europeans. His contemporaries took this as a sign of his godlessness, since many Russians saw beards as an essential sign of the Russian Orthodox faith. Peter didn’t stop there. Needing money for his military campaigns against the Swedish Empire, he imposed a hefty beard tax. Any member of the public who wanted to keep his beard had to buy and carry a special token that read, “money has been taken” on one side, and, in some cases, “the beard is a superfluous burden” on the other.

Mustafa Kemal Ataturk: No More Fezzes!

In 1826, the Ottoman Sultan Mahmud made the red cylindrical felt fez part of Turkish national attire. But in the 1920s the modernizing secular nationalist Mustafa Kemal Ataturk set out to abolish it, and toured the country haranguing Turks with rhetorical questions like “Is our dress nationalistic?” and “Is our dress civilized and universal?” in 1925, Turkey passed a “hat law” requiring that all men wishing to wear hats should stick to western styles. In some parts of the country, this led to armed clashes, and penalties for violating the law could be severe, including imprisonment with hard labor and even death. Ataturk imposed other sartorial restrictions as well, requiring women to abandon the Islamic headscarf in state institutions like universities and government offices. That rule is no longer in force, but the hat law remains on the books.

Reza Shah: Take off that Veil!

Iran’s own secular nationalist strongman, Reza Shah, passed a uniform law in 1928 requiring all men to adopt western dress, although exceptions were made for recognized members of the Islamic clergy. An admirer of Ataturk, he also brought in a hat law in 1935 following a visit to Turkey. As in Turkey, the new dress laws led to violent clashes in Iran. Perhaps provoked by religious opposition, in 1936 Reza Shah became the first leader to abolish the Islamic headscarf. That year, he held celebrations around the country and ordered members of government and the military to appear in public with their unveiled wives. Many Iranian women resisted the ban, and in some cases had veils forcibly torn off by police. When Reza Shah was forced to abdicate following the Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran in 1941, some women went back to wearing the veil. Others did not don it again until 1979.

Hitler: No Slim Models! Aryan Birthing Hips!

Few regimes have taken greater interest in fashion than the Third Reich. In 1933, the year the Nazis took power, they established the Deutsches Modeamt, or German Fashion Institute. Adolf Hitler had strong personal opinions about fashion and beauty. He didn’t like makeup or fur since they came from dead animals, and found perfume disgusting. Nazi Germany prized German folk costume, which should ideally only ever have been touched by Aryan hands. Nazi fashion ideals were largely a reaction against French dominance of European fashion, and the preeminence of famous Jewish designers. Hitler regarded French fashion as decadent and didn’t care for the French fashion industry’s predilection for slim-hipped models, a feature he thought unsuited for child-bearing. “No more Paris models,” he announced. The fashion house Hugo Boss famously supplied military uniforms under the Third Reich.

Mao’s Red Guards: Everyone in Uniform!

In 1966, Mao Zedong, chairman of the Chinese Communist Party, feared his position within the party was vulnerable. In retaliation, he launched his “Cultural Revolution,” setting radical youths against the party elite, as well as wider Chinese society. Fanatical young men and women, answering his call, donned the androgynous military uniforms and red armbands of the Red Guards, and humiliated, tortured and murdered perceived “class enemies” en masse. “The underlying aim,” as one historian puts it, “was to subsume individual personality in order to allow the political ideals of the time to be carried out.” The cultural revolution ended with Mao’s death in 1976.

The Taliban: Nothing Goes–Except Beards!

These days, historic images of women donning western fashions in Afghanistan in the 1970s serve as a mind-blowing novelty. But according to Amnesty International, women in Afghanistan achieved a steady progression in rights during the 20th century, gaining the vote in 1919, and a degree of constitutional equality in the 1960s. Soviet occupation from 1979 to 1989, and the civil war it left in its wake, left women at the mercy of men of violence. When the Islamic fundamentalist Taliban took control of the country in 1996, they forbade women to study, work, speak publicly, leave home without a male chaperone, or show any skin at all. In practice, this meant wearing the all-encompassing burqa, which made them completely invisible. Men, by contrast, had only to show their commitment to Islam by growing beards.

I told her to not hurry herself…..it would all change to something new by next school session……

She looked bewildered and said….”now that is not very encouraging”.

We will enjoy our time together and so should you guys…..go enjoy the weekend and do something fun.

Bubba’s Toxic Economic Legacy

Yesterday I went on a bit of a rant when I heard the Hillary if president wants to use Bubba to revitalize the economy……after hearing that I felt as if my head would explode……Bubba?  Please not him again.

But after my rant I thought that maybe I should post something about his “record” of accomplishments as an economic guru…..

Hillary Clinton recently stated that her husband would be a key player on economic policy. That’s not good news.

Over the past several months, Hillary Clinton has been somewhat hesitant to bring up her husband’s legacy as president, which, for many progressives, is a vexing reminder of how the Democratic Party embraced neoliberal policies towards the end of the 20th century, under the leadership of the the triangulating Bill Clinton. Faced with the insurgent campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders, Clinton has tried to hype her progressive bona fides, which has meant avoiding some of Bill’s more despicable policies — from the 1994 crime bill and expansion of the war on drugs, to welfare reform and the Defense of Marriage Act. Almost two decades removed from the Clinton administration, there is a lot to find distasteful, and Hillary clearly wants to avoid discussing the worst of her husband’s presidency (which, like or not, she played a major role in).

Source: Bubba’s Toxic Economic Legacy: When Hillary Brags About the First Clinton Presidency Legacy, She Doesn’t Want You to Remember This | Alternet

If she is elected (I pray for our souls) she and her hubby will be just a repeat of the Bubba years…..only people that will benefit are their wealthy friends….both foreign and domestic…..

This country deserves better than the Clintons!

Malcolm X Predicted the Progression of Racism

Today we celebrate the birth of Malcolm X…..a very astute observer of society and human nature…..he made many predictions that few heeded but the one that he was spot on was the progression of racism in the US even after the Civil Rights Act…..

This excerpt revisits a landmark law that was supposed to end racism and the outspoken activist who predicted it would not.

In celebration of Malcolm X’s birthday, we present this exclusive excerpt from Ibram X. Kendi’s new book, Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America. As racism endures, this excerpt revisits the landmark law that was supposed to end racism and the outspoken activist who predicted it would not. Malcolm X is closely bonded in history with the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Historians have rightfully hailed the myriad of ways in which this law brought on racial progress. But this excerpt reveals the reasons why this law did not stop (or even affected) the progression of racism — a progression that Black Lives Matter activists are currently fighting. No wonder Black Lives Matter activists look to Malcolm X for inspiration as much as any leader in US history. No wonder his speeches and insights remain relevant to progressives today on his birthday.

Source: Malcolm X Predicted the Progression of Racism in the United States – Linkis.com

A book worth reading……

Healthcare Is Healthcare

What a marvelous topic…it has been the butt of jokes and the stuff of rants for years….not to mention all the wasted time Congress has spent on the issue…..is the ACA a bad idea or is it just a bad idea because it came from a president that some dislike?

With all the back and forth over Obamacare does any one have any thing positive to say about it that is more along the facts and not a rant…..

I do!  I do! (he said waving his hand in the air like a crazed primate)…..

For the first time ever, fewer than 10% of Americans lack health insurance, according to data released Tuesday by the CDC. And CNBC calls that “a clear sign of ObamaCare’s impact.” In 2015, only 9.1% of Americans—about 28.6 million people—were uninsured. That’s down from 14.2% in 2013 when ObamaCare really started to go into effect, the Hill reports. That drop amounts to another 16.2 million Americans who now have health insurance. “Today’s report is further proof that our country has made undeniable and historic strides thanks to the Affordable Care Act.” Sylvia Burwell, secretary of health and human services, tells CNBC. “Our country ought to be proud of how far we’ve come and where we’re going.”

But regardless of ObamaCare’s success in reducing the ranks of the uninsured—the Obama administration estimates more than 20 million Americans have gained insurance since the ACA passed in 2010—the Hill reports that Republicans still plan to use it as a wedge issue in November. Donald Trump and Senate Republicans believe hitting Hillary Clinton over ObamaCare will propel them to victories. “This healthcare law has been devastating to the Democratic Party,” John Barrasso, a Wyoming Republican, tells the Hill.

Is there any other facts that pertain to our health care?

Oh so much more…..since Bernie entered into the race for the Dem nomination there has been a new call for a single payer health care system…..and surprisingly enough a good portion of the populace agree with Bernie……

A majority of Americans support the single-payer, “Medicare-for-all” style health care system proposed by presidential candidate Bernie Sanders.

A new Gallup poll found that almost six in 10 U.S. adults would prefer a federally funded health care system that provides insurance for all Americans

Gallup presented the three leading presidential candidates’ proposed health care policies, without naming the candidates, and asked participants what they thought of them. A majority of Americans agreed with Sanders’ proposal, without knowing that it was his.  (read one…..)

Source: They agree with Bernie: Majority of Americans support single-payer, “Medicare-for-all” health care system – Salon.com