Closing Thought–16Feb21

Now this is rich!

I seems that one of Trump’ sycophants has turned on him…..her name is Nikki Haley.

She has had an epiphany……

 

Nikki Haley refused to criticize Donald Trump for months while he claimed the election had been stolen, but her stance shifted dramatically after the Capitol riot, according to a lengthy Politico profile published Friday. On the day after the Jan. 6 attack, Haley, who served as UN ambassador in the Trump administration for two years, told a Republican National Committee meeting in Florida that Trump had gotten his words “badly wrong.” “And it wasn’t just his words,” she added. “His actions since Election Day will be judged harshly by history.” On Jan. 12, she told Politico chief political correspondent Tim Alberta that she was angered and disappointed by Trump’s treatment of Mike Pence after “the loyalty and friendship” the vice president had shown. “I’m disgusted by it,” she said.

“We need to acknowledge he let us down,” she said. “He went down a path he shouldn’t have, and we shouldn’t have followed him, and we shouldn’t have listened to him. And we can’t let that ever happen again.” Haley told Alberta that she was “deeply disturbed” by Trump’s behavior since losing the election. “Never did I think he would spiral out like this.” Haley, seen as a possible 2024 White House contender, said she considers impeachment a “waste of time,” but she doesn’t think Trump will run for office again. “I don’t think he’s going to be in the picture,” she said. “I don’t think he can. He’s fallen so far.” Alberta notes, however, that 13 days after the interview, Haley told Fox News that people should “give the man a break.” With a likely presidential campaign launch still two years away, Haley still has time to rekindle her “warm relationship” with Trump,” he writes.

Seriously?

After 4 years of carry water for Donald the Orange and she just now learned what he was all about?

Image

The reality is that she has eyes on a run for the presidency in 2024 and she is trying to save what little dignity she has left after being a toadie for Trump.

She is transparent….at least to anyone with an IQ about 50…..which does not include Haley.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Confronting Tribalism

I have written about the US version of tribalism in the past……read for yourself……https://lobotero.com/2018/05/11/tribes/

I have recently read a paper written by a service person about the way to confront tribalism in the near future……a “what if” if you will……

The article is written from the point of view of the United States in 2035 towards New Tribalism adherent groups imposing dangerous cultures on others.

Culture overrides ideological, political, or economic distinctions among peoples, driving global conflict in 2035[1]. While tremors of conventional conflict occur along fault lines between civilizations, localized conflicts erupt within civilizations as ethnicities and tribes seek to impose their ways of life upon others[2]. Governments struggle to meet societies’ demands for political and economic stability, leading them to turn inward and adopt protectionist policies, which erodes international coalitions that historically managed localized conflicts through small wars[3]. Cultural conflicts and weak multilateral cooperation accelerate the transition of predominant terrorism ideologies from a religious wave (1979 – late 2020s) to a wave known as New Tribalism, characterized by terrorist groups promulgating violent cultures based on ethnic, racial, or tribal mysticism[4]. Children are the vanguard of New Tribalism; child soldiers and child brides are cultural norms[5]. Rape and ethnic cleansing are integral in establishing a new human race[6]. New Tribalism thus “disrupts traditional cultures [by violating] even the most traditional elements of a society” by imposing its apocalyptic vision of how society should function[7]. In 2035, the U.S. faces the wicked problem of combating dangerous cultures of New Tribalism adherents before they topple governments, beget genocide, prompt mass migrations, and trigger regional instability.

https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2020/07/06/a_wicked_cultural_problem_options_for_combating_new_tribalism_in_2035_115444.html

Tribalism is a voting option in the US……as long as we have the mentality of “us against them”….we will never find the unity that we as a nation desperately needs.

My thoughts on this political movement…..https://lobotero.com/2018/11/02/the-country-of-the-five-tribes/

I know a ‘what if’ is just conjecture……but this problem is already making problems for the nation and left unchecked it will eventually destroy this experiment began by the Founders.

What point do we as Americans allow this destruction to go on?

Any thoughts abut the world to come?

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Never Has So Few…

… Done so much to destroy America.

The few I refer to are those minions of Trump that run the government….these toads are sucking the life out of our democracy….

Trump still compares himself to Lincoln from time to time, albeit usually to whine about how he thinks he’s been treated so much more badly than the 16th president—you know, the one who endured a great civil war and was assassinated. But in the past, he also has tried to manufacture heroic comparisons of himself with a true wartime leader, British prime minister Winston Churchill.

Such foolish aspirations were encouraged by former UK PM Theresa May, who even engineered a 2018 dinner honoring Trump at Blenheim Palace, Churchill’s ancestral home. And according to a 2017 New York Times article, “[E]very self-selected snapshot [of Trump]— down to the squinty-eyed scowl attached to his Twitter account—features a tough-guy sourpuss. ‘Like Churchill,’ is what Mr. Trump would tell staffers when asked what look he was going for.”

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/05/19/never-have-so-few-done-so-much-destroy-america

The pandemic brings into light the non-voters of this nation….those that have lost all confidence in our democracy…..and 2020 could be the final nail in that coffin…..

If voter turnout is indicative of a democracy’s health, then the US is clearly ailing. Only slightly more than half of all eligible voters cast their ballots in presidential elections, which is far below the turnout seen in peer countries. While systematic voter suppression certainly plays a role in this anemic performance, millions of Americans don’t vote because they have lost faith in the system or believe that elections are rigged. 

That is the disturbing finding of “The 100 Million Project: The Untold Story of American Non-Voters,” a recent John S. and James L. Knight Foundation report on research conducted to determine why so few Americans engage in the political process. Other reasons identified in the report include a real or perceived lack of knowledge about the candidates and issues, disappointment in choices, and a belief that their votes do not matter.

America Abstains: Millions of Voters Have Lost Faith in US Democracy

The election is just a mere 6 months away….the decision will be monumental….not for the changes to come but the mere fact of who the two posers will be.

The older I get the more disappointed I am in the voters and their idiotic choices……

Please!

Learn Stuff!

“lego ergo scribo”

Politics Of Covid-19

We here in the US have been scrambling to decide just who is telling the truth about this virus……the president or the health professionals.

I know who I believe but that is just me.

I read a piece written by a South Korean professor that sheds some light on the situation as it pertains to politics.

The author is a political science and international relations professor at Seoul National University.

I am teaching my political theory course remotely this semester due to the new coronavirus outbreak. For the midterms, I told my students to submit essays discussing “the politics of Covid-19.” Using the basic concepts of politics they will learn in the first half of the course, my students will analyze the political situation surrounding the Covid-19 crisis. For reference, I uploaded about 50 news articles — including editorials and columns I found in the local and foreign press — onto our online bulletin board. The news clips have provocative headlines such as “corona-politics,” “self-serving politics,” “the political offensive of a contagion” and “the government’s self-praise.”


In real life, politics is not so negative. From a realist point of view, politics is about clashing with one another over self interest and competing to take and maintain their power. The American political scientist Harold Lasswell famously defined politics as a science of “who gets what, when and how.” When we look up the word “political” in the dictionary, we come across such words like “crafty” and “scheming.” That is what we mean when we say someone is “too political.”

Covid-19 has definitely laid bare the dark side of politics. With less than a month to go until the April 15 parliamentary elections, we see political groups bashing and fighting against one another to pursue their factional interests and gain power. Attention from the media tends to amplify such political strife, and they demonstrated conflicting views on whether the Korean government is doing a good job in tackling the virus. In that sense, media outlets are also engaged in the politics of the coronavirus. The Journalists Association of Korea even published an official column criticizing a conservative newspaper’s “political and biased” news coverage.

http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/news/article/article.aspx

Fascinating look……but all that aside the South Korean model of dealing with this virus should be held up as the only way to deal with it.

Have not hears this before now?

Then read and then tell me who has a better model….that idiot in the White House or South Korea?

“Test, test, test,” World Health Organisation director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus implored countries fighting the novel coronavirus at a press conference on March 16. “You cannot fight this fire blindfolded.” The UK seems finally to have heeded this advice, announcing plans on March 19 to up test for Covid-19 to 25,000 every day.

As of March 20, the UK had only tested 64,621 people – more than any other European country apart from Italy but still far below the level needed to truly track the extent of the outbreak. But if the UK needs a role model for implementing these tests, it could do worse than look towards South Korea.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would quickly announce that 9,300 people attended the two Shincheonji church services alongside patient 31 and 1,200 were now complaining of flu-like symptoms. Hundreds would test positive in the coming days. During a 10-day period in late February, cases leapt above 5,000.

Yet South Korea, where the outbreak total stands, as of March 19, at 8,652 cases and 94 deaths, now has a case rate in relative decline. Just 93 new cases were reported on March 18 (though numbers rose again on 19, to 152.) During the worst periods of February, Korean officials were recording more than 900 a day.

https://www.wired.co.uk/article/south-korea-coronavirus

Guess what?  Testing is the key….now someone needs to whisper that in the ear of Donald the Orange.

Learn Stuff!

Be Well!  Be Safe!

I Read, I Write, you know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

And No One Cares!

It is about time for the MSM to define what “our shared values” means.  What are these mythical “values” by which we live?

Think about that as I flesh out this post.

Let us not pretend that what Pres. Trump is doing is important or not……after all the Constitution is just a piece of paper that means all things to all people and NO one has any idea what the document actually says…other than guns are allowed and I have free speech and can go to church….beyond that it is a political prop that means little.

Then there is the lie the fantasy of bi-partisanship from our past….not happening people….once in awhile a couple of politicians get together and agree on a single issue and we are told that a new age of bi-partisanship could be on the horizon.

We are told that this age of division of our society is not us….that we are better than the vitriol that is spewed by politicians, journalist and people alike…..I say we are not. This is the nation we have made and it will take too much work for the population to really care.

38% of the public will support Trump and his issues blindly….it has nothing to do with party affiliation…..it has everything to do with the simmering resentments that have been allowed to boil over and create a country that some of us are ashamed of…..that racism has always been there just they were held up in the past and that kept them simmering and then in the 1990s the simmering became a boil and with Trump it boiled over into mainstream.

That 38% will never conform to the ideals that this country was founded on…..founded on?…there is a term that means NOTHING as well in these days of tribalism.

Trump’s lies have been brought to light and the campaign of BS has started to obfuscate the facts……his economic message is a lie, his foreign policies are based on flattery, immigration policies are based on racism….all his lies are golden as along as he keeps brown people out of the supermarkets.

Pundits are surprised at this turn in our attitudes……why?  Those attitudes have been there from the beginning and hidden now they have become acceptable and they came out of the shadows to mainstream.

STOP using “better angels”……those days are gone we now operate on our “Bitter Angels”.

Do you think with the defeat of Trump in 2020 things will change?

The political cowards have illustrated how to deal with DC and the Congress…the precedent has been set….the worms are out of that damn can……

Go ahead and impeach Trump!  What will that accomplish?

Without the Senate he will remain and spin the impeachment as a good thing for him and his 38% of the country will nod incessantly and the crap will continue…..another waste.

Pundits go on and on about the Repubs that are secretly embarrassed by Trump and his antics…..I disagree……the GOP will NEVER be embarrassed by Trump because his policies are their policies…..words are cheap, actions speak volumes and the GOP is but a murmur barely audible of its former self.

Better Angels My Ass!

WE can say one thing for sure…this country is truly in the middle of a Constitutional crisis……

President Donald Trump and his administration will not participate in the Congressional impeachment inquiry, the White House announced Tuesday, setting up a constitutional crisis in the conflict between two ostensibly co-equal branches of government.

“There is no legal basis for Trump’s position,” tweeted NBC analyst Katie Phang. “Hard stop.”

“The Trump administration’s flat refusal to cooperate with congressional oversight is, itself, impeachable,” tweeted Vox‘s Ezra Klein.

The news sparked a call from Credo Action co-director Heidi Hess for immediate impeachment.

“It’s absolutely outrageous that Donald Trump sent a letter to Congress informing them that he is above the Constitution and every law in America,” said Hess. “House Democrats need to move immediately and use all the power at their disposal to compel testimony and delivery of documents, hold administration officials accountable for their contempt of Congress, and draft articles of impeachment that span all of Trump’s crimes.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/10/08/seriously-folks-actually-constitutional-crisis-trump-tells-congress-white-house-wont

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Character Assassination

This is a political tactic as old as politics…..It was used against Jefferson and it has continued unabated…….

In case you are not sure of the definition…..

Character Assassination refers to the slandering or vicious personal verbal attack on a person with the intention of destroying or damaging that person’s reputation or confidence. In other words it is malicious verbal assaults designed to damage or tarnish the reputation of a person. Once done, these acts are often difficult to reverse or rectify

It involves a deliberate attempt to destroy a person’s reputation, especially by criticizing them in an unfair and dishonest way when they are not present. It can also involve exaggeration or manipulation of facts to present an untrue picture of the targeted person, double speak, spreading of rumors, innuendo or deliberate misinformation on topics relating to the subject’s morals, integrity, and reputation. It is a form of defamation

Does any of that sound at all familiar?

This character assassination is kinda like the play by Shakespeare, “Othello”…..(Remember him from high school?)

Iago is an unexampled Shakespearean villain. From the outset of the play, he is after both his general Othello and lieutenant Michael Cassio. He resents Othello for promoting the younger Cassio above him; he says he suspects both of sleeping with his wife. He seeks revenge and self-empowerment. His acquaintance Roderigo is a suitor of Desdamona, a beauty whom he learns has married Othello. Iago convinces the distraught and dissolute paramour he can win Desdamona through an elaborate scheme that begins by Roderigo’s baiting of Cassio, causing his downfall and Iago’s elevation.

At a feast on the isle of Cypress, Iago tells dinner guests on the sly that although Cassio is great soldier, drink is his unappeasable vice. Iago helps get Cassio drunk. Roderigo baits him. A brawl ensues. Cassio injures Roderigo and a young soldier. Othello appears in a fury and ends the fighting. The general demands an explanation from his ensign. Iago acts stunned and distraught by the chaos he secretly engineered, and feigns concern that the disturbance might frighten the townsfolk (they are defending Cypress from the Turks). After Iago’s explanation, Othello fires Cassio. Once everyone else has gone, Iago affects concern for Cassio, who is disconsolate. He cries out to Iago,

Reputation, reputation, reputation! O, I have lost my reputation! I have lost the immortal part of myself, and what remains is bestial.–My reputation, Iago, my reputation! (2.3.216-19)

American Iago: On Washington’s Character Assassins

The Realty Star President is an expert of character assassination……”Little Marco”, “Lying Ted”, “Pocahontas”, “Crazy Joe”, Shifty Schiff and a wealth of other short lived insults.

It should get thicker the closer we get to the 2020 election…..I have never been a fan of negative campaigning or voted for a candidate that is filled with negativity.  My thought is if you cannot run on your issues then making wild accusations does not make you a better candidate.

Check out Propaganda 2.0……..https://lobotero.com/2014/01/06/propaganda-2-0/ or if you prefer a more academic approach……https://www.physics.smu.edu/pseudo/Propaganda/ipatypes.html ……..http://www.rbs0.com/propaganda.pdf

Why be truthful when a lie is more effective?

Ask Trump he should know.

“I Read, I Wrote now You Know”

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Somethings Never Change

Closing Thought–11Jul19

Back in my younger days I was at odds with the leadership of my party (It was not the Democratic Party, FYI)….it seems they did not appreciate my outspoken criticisms and told me to hold my tongue and keep any disagreement private…..I gave them the finger and resigned from the party for when dealing with the people there should never be any secrets after all we are their representatives (at least that is what I thought).

I read something that made me wax nostalgic…..

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Wednesday urged unity among fellow Democrats in the face of battles over the direction of the party and warned members to ditch Twitter and keep their disagreements private.

“You got a complaint? You come and talk to me about it. But do not tweet about our members and expect us to think that that is just OK,” Pelosi said during a closed meeting of House Democrats, according to a source who was in the room.

It was not clear if Pelosi, the top elected U.S. Democrat, was aiming her remarks at a specific lawmaker’s tweet or issuing a general warning about using social media, the favourite means of communication for Republican President Donald Trump.

https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-usa-congress-pelosi/u-s-house-speaker-pelosi-tells-her-democrats-to-kill-the-tweets-idUKKCN1U52N7

Looks like the corporations are winning again…..Pelosi is just protecting the collaborators not looking for a future for the country just the corporate profits….

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/07/09/aoc-wants-change-world-through-action-nancy-pelosi-wants-do-it-through-pithy

More on this …..

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/07/10/pelosi-after-railing-against-aoc-and-others-nyt-interview-tells-critics-caucus-not

Plus Pelosi knows how influential Twitter and social media can be and that is a stake in the heart of corporate America.

The more they champion change the more things remain the same.  Corporations want the status quo….for they are making obscene profits and any progress will lessen that and they will not stand for it…..ergo Pelosi’s dictum.

Let’s not pretend this is about unity….it is about control….and the corporations are in control.

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Defeated Ideology Isn’t Dead

On the day after the DDay celebrations I would like to point out a few things most notably the ideology of hate of the Nazis was soundly defeated by the forces of “good”……it was defeated but not eliminated…..

The threats that caused WW2, Facism and rabid nationalism, are only dormant……and as it awakes it MUST be confronted and put down in its place……When these threats to freedom do re-emerge; where this ideology becomes resurgent; let us be clear. It won’t be defeated by aping or appeasing it. We will defeat it only by confronting it.

75 years ago to this day, the Allied invasion of Nazi-occupied France was delayed one final time. Appropriately, it was in the face of the British weather that General Eisenhower pushed back the beginning of Operation Overlord – this time by just 24 hours – and on June 6, 1944, D-Day began.

Pilots and aircrew from 12 different nations led a 1200-plane airborne assault, preceding the largest seaborne invasion in history with nearly 7,000 vessels carrying 160,000 troops across the English Channel.

The historian Anthony Beevor records that General Eisenhower, without telling even his closest advisors, had prepared a brief statement to be made in the event of failure. It read: “the landings have failed to gain a satisfactory foothold, and I have withdrawn the troops. My decision to attack at this time and place was based on the best information available. The troops, the air and the navy did all that bravery and devotion to duty could do. If any blame or fault attaches to the attempt it was mine alone.”

https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/staggers/2019/06/75-years-after-d-day-ideology-we-defeated-isnt-dead-just-dormant

We see the ugliness of rabid nationalism once again…..and as we did in the past we must step up and put it in its place….in the dust bin of history.

This is not an ideology that can be totally defeated…..but sanity usually returns and this rabid hatred is once again in check….for another generation until we forget the devastation the hatred wrought….then the cycle will begin again….ad nauseum.

Dystopia

This is a word that is used liberally (small “L”) to describe the politics in the US these days……Dystopia.

A political dysfunction of “Brave New World” and a TV series “Dystopia”…but is it possible that it is something close to reality?

Can the United States continue to shape international politics as it has done for the past 70 years, or is the era of US dominance coming to an end? Most attempts to answer this question focus on America’s relative power – that is, the balance of material capabilities between the US and its geopolitical competitors. However, today the most pressing checks on US leadership come not from foreign competitors, but rather from America’s increasingly dysfunctional domestic politics.

America is suffering from a shortage of functional or ‘usable power.’ While relative power as measured by its military arsenal vis-à-vis those of its rivals has held steady, the domestic political ability of US presidents to turn the country’s tremendous power and wealth into international influence is declining. This has been the case for some time now. America’s deficit of usable power did not begin with Donald Trump, but it has grown measurably on his watch as president.

https://www.chathamhouse.org/expert/comment/will-dysfunctional-politics-finally-end-american-century#

There is so much that is going wrong in this country…..but can all this partisan b/sh*t bring about the end of the republic?

The American republic could die, just like Rome.

Wavering for some time on the verge of becoming a complete oligarchy, America is on the verge of flipping from a democratic republic to a strongman or autocratic form of government, something that’s happened to dozens of democracies in the past few decades, but never before here. It’s possible we won’t recover from it.

The death of a republic is different from the death of a nation; Rome was a nation for nearly 2,000 years, but its period of being a republic was only around 300 years long. For the rest, it was a brutal empire with a small but wealthy and corrupt ruling class and a thin patina of democracy-for-show.

Trump is openly defying the norms and laws of our republic, while calling for the imprisonment of both his political enemies and members of the very law enforcement agencies that might hold him to account. And he’s only able to do it because billionaires like Rupert Murdoch, with Fox News, and the billionaires Republicans depend on to fund their re-elections are providing him with cover.

 
This republic is under attack….and many Americans could care less as long as their fav celebrity wins the election…..
 
If that is your voting style…then I thank you for helping destroy our republic…l.and I look forward to the crappy country this style will bring…if it has not already hit rock bottom.
 
This next election will show us just how much damage cult worshiping can do to this country….so far it has been pathetic.

Little Fascist Came To Town

Our Beloved Supreme Leader seems to have this unnatural love for authoritarian little toads….PDRK’s Kim, Putin, the Saudi killers and now Hungary’s little fascist, Orban….

Viktor came to town to meet another demagogue in waiting……Trump welcomes a leader that is having a war on democracy….something Trump seems to be trying here in the good old US of A……

President Donald Trump will welcome Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán to the White House on Monday, in what sounds like a routine reception for a foreign head of state. In reality, it’s something else: a meeting between two like-minded illiberal leaders, men at the forefront of the campaign to undermine Western democracy from within.

Hungary today looks like a democracy — there are still elections, and dissidents aren’t jailed. But since winning the country’s 2010 election, Orbán has subtly consolidated power and rendered elections almost impossibly unfair. He and allies of his political party, Fidesz, control nearly all of Hungary’s media; he manipulates the state’s economic powers to weaken potential rivals and empower his cronies. Widespread anti-immigrant sentiment, kicked off by the 2015 refugee crisis, has become a key propaganda tool Orbán uses to legitimize his power grabs.

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2019/5/13/18564378/donald-trump-viktor-orban-white-house-visit-2019

Or maybe this look at the dictator-in-waiting……

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/05/13/cozy-visit-far-right-autocrat-denounced-trump-praises-tremendous-job-hungarys-viktor

This is an interesting piece and food for thought……

What characterizes American government today is not so much dysfunctional politics as it is ruthlessly contrived governance carried out behind the entertaining, distracting and disingenuous curtain of political theater. And what political theater it is, diabolically Shakespearean at times, full of sound and fury, yet in the end, signifying nothing.

Played out on the national stage and eagerly broadcast to a captive audience by media sponsors, this farcical exercise in political theater can, at times, seem riveting, life-changing and suspenseful, even for those who know better.

Week after week, the script changes (Donald Trump’s Tweets, Congress’ hearings on Robert Mueller’s Russia probe, the military’s endless war drums, the ever-widening field of candidates for the 2020 presidential race, etc.) with each new script following on the heels of the last, never any let-up, never any relief from the constant melodrama.

D Is for a Dictatorship Disguised as a Democracy

Birds of a feather crap together!