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Total number of comments: 1971 (since 2013-11-28 14:42:37)

super390

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  • No, GOP, biblical Marriage was not between one man and one woman
    • Will this be the first time that a major-party nominee has publicly committed to violating a Supreme Court ruling? This could get to a Constitutional crisis in a hurry.

  • In first, Court orders Dutch gov't to protect citizens from climate change
    • Financial liability is the nightmare scenario of the fossil-fuel barons and those whose industries are tied to fossil energy. They manipulated a minority of Americans knowing this country could single-handedly behave as King Log and stop action for a while. In the next phase, they will have their pet politicians demanding that the US abrogate all treaties and recognition of international law, which will invite retaliation against our commercial and even military hegemony. They must transition our public to a war mentality against the entire rest of the world. The phase after that? Either isolation, or Fourth Reich on the march.

      Ironically, the resulting collapse of the global economy may do more to stop the burning of fossil fuels than anything rational people would have done, because this collapse will lead to the deaths of hundreds of millions of people and the extinction of the American Way of Life.

  • Lone Wolves and Soft Targets: Or how our Press, Politicians are being Played by ISIL
    • It depends on the significance of their money trail to the oil sheikhs. In the same way that Dylann Storm Roof depends on the money trail that finances a broad spectrum of hate media from CCC to Fox News. The sheikhs and the families who bankrolled the American Right have end games that differ from their patsies, but the patsies must be creating the conditions that they consider favorable.

  • As Love wins out at Supreme Court, did Justices in Minority encourage States, Fundamentalists to Defy Ruling?
    • The combination of the Charleston shootings and the decisions on marriage and healthcare have put the American Right at a critical point. Will they obey their oligarchs who have manipulated them all along to move the Overton Window rightward to rape the economy and intend to keep things quiet? Or will Frankenstein's monster strike down his master and go on a terrorist rampage?

    • The right-wing definition of "people" has always meant "those defined by State governments as people". The rich have always controlled America via State and non-urban local governments. In truth, the theorists among Tea Partiers do not recognize the validity of the 13th & 14th Amendments, but they know better than to say that in front of a news camera.

  • Why Boycotting Israel will Backfire, just as Netanyahu's Blockade of Gaza Has
    • We must use the boycott to build up the public acceptance for a need for sanctions, as was done with South Africa. The boycott did not bring down apartheid, but it taught a generation of Westerners what their colonial cousins were still doing to people of color. South Africa was not starved, but its businessmen were deprived of their own greedy global ambitions, so they were more willing to sue for peace as the ANC's power grew.

      And the first sanctions we must demand are an end to Israeli military exports, which are the heart of the whole machinery of permanent war on Palestinians.

  • As Kobane comes under ISIL attack, Kurds Encircle, cut off "caliphate"
    • There's no way to grant the Kurds their ambitions without screwing non-Kurdish communities that are in the way in four countries. Those communities will not recognize the world's right to reward the Kurds, and will fight. If we punish them, they will find covert allies in the governments whose land we are redistributing. You will get a larger war that will drag in the state sponsors. But then, that's already happening between Saudi Arabia and Iran, and those wars will become entangled like the disputes that preceded World War One. See how that works?

  • If Southerners want a Symbol, Why not the Moultrie Liberty Flag?
    • There's always been something dark hidden in the word "liberty". The Romans did not view liberty as something everyone had or should have. It was a status one group possessed at the expense of another. That was exactly how America's early slavery apologists described liberty.

    • People are looking at the arc of American racism in the wrong way. White supremacy was manufactured by the joint-stock corporations who financed Southern colonies and plantations to create cultural support for the legal imposition of slavery. The economy was being built by keeping the workers in absolute destitution, and giving the whites absurd privileges over the blacks made them unpaid volunteers in enforcing economic injustice.

      But if that's true of an economy on the way up, why not an economy on the way down? The rich have been strip-mining the society they once built up, destroying its jobs, infrastructure and public institutions, and making obscene profits. At some point, they will drive wages down so low that once again one group of workers must be pitted against others to stave off rebellion. How do we know that some of the rich didn't recognize that decades ago and begin preparations?

      The libertarians refuse to acknowledge that there is a market for sadism, which makes it a commodity that can be exchanged for the right to decent wages and living conditions. This is the secret history of American capitalism.

  • Is the Confederate flag unconstitutional?
    • If the White race was merely a socio/legal construct whipped up to unite European colonist-laborers with their masters in carrying out the importation and oppression of millions of African slaves, then the problem is inherent in White pride. That construct was used to brainwash poor English, Scottish and Irish indentured servants into thinking of the plantation owners as their tribal rulers in a war of conquest against all other "races". Everything that was built on that construct is contaminated by evil, no matter how much liberals like Thomas Jefferson tried to revise it. Including American identity itself.

      Problem is, right-wingers have already cut us off at the pass. They're the ones lying about a "color-blind" society - meaning the people on the bottom must not complain. They're the ones who claim a complete embrace of capitalism will instantly create meritocracy because that's the only way to achieve efficient markets. No one in America dares say that (a) our society is founded upon sadism, and (b) that sadism is a resource, a privilege that the oligarchy grants poor Whites in lieu of decent wages, producing greater surplus capital that has advantaged American economics.

      Now if we taught our kids about all that, the Confederate flag would disappear... after a second civil war.

  • Dear GOP: Play the Angry White Man card Enough & you might attract Racist Donors
    • One of the things you are no longer allowed to say in America is that White people, having inherited favorable financial positions from their racist forebears, will naturally hire, promote and contract with those who look and act most like themselves. Our notion of private property rights guarantees that inequality can only get worse.

    • Well, Rand Paul's family business has been playing the neo-Confederate game for decades. I don't know why the media never asks him about his father calling Lincoln a tyrant.

      link to talk2action.org

      Look around that site, and you will see the larger White Christian supremacist context of every movement to take America back to its past "liberty".

  • What South Carolina needs to do for Racial equality (taking down the flag is just symbolic)
    • It would help if "equality" wasn't a dirty word now.

    • According to the book "Nixon's Piano", the GOP leadership always wanted to ditch Southern blacks and go after the white conservative vote, but they were hampered by an organizational peculiarity: as a "national" party, the GOP had to have all states represented as delegates at the once-important national convention. Even though Southern blacks couldn't vote in real elections, as delegates they still were needed to win nominations. The GOP was trapped unless the Democrats did something so offensive to Southern whites that they defected en masse and took over their own state parties overnight.

      Which happened, finally.

  • Patterns of Racial Violence in the US: Charleston Shooting wasn't a "One-Off" Event
    • Holt is small fry. He's part of a much bigger network of inequality-worshippers assembled by wealthy extremists via so many fronts that those rich pigs can claim not to know that the "Ludwig von Mises Institute" was not just a libertarian propaganda mill but was actually run by R. J. Rushdoony, a tyrannical theocrat who set the direction of the Christian Right. This game is going on everywhere, producing and reinforcing the "common knowledge" that Mr. Storm Roof acted upon.

  • How Lindsey Graham & GOP lost the Chance to be Presidential over Charleston
    • Mr. Storm Roof's manifesto apparently was found on his website, lastrhodesian.com.

      link to rawstory.com

      It's an amazing body of self-serving lies. Like he accomplished the feat of using the fewest possible brain cells to justify slavery and genocide via self-pity, Internet myths and cut & paste "facts". Without the carefully lawyered provisos that Overton-sliding Fox racists use to say they only want to discipline blacks, not oppress them, Mr. Storm Roof follows the logic of his hatred to where he really intends to end up: that blacks can only live among us as slaves or not at all.

      Too bad he's just a cowardly as Anders Breivik, who also chickened out after writing a manifesto for his glorious "suicide" mission.

    • Pose this question to each and every Republican candidate:

      Do blacks, Latinos, gays, Moslems, and Socialists have the exact same right to form and operate armed militias as white Christian conservatives?

      Any answer to this question will cost you delegates, or destroy you in the general election. Make the bastards own the logical basis of the racist past they romanticize.

  • Rhodesian Flag, Confederate Flag: Roof & the Legacies of Racial Hate
  • Our reply to Dylann Roof's Hate: Donate to "Mother Emanuel" AME Church
    • The media swept Anders Breivik under the rug after his unprecedented massacre in Norway, instead of subjecting his Internet heroes to the same scrutiny that they would a Moslem terrorist. The Right is already forming ranks behind the lie that he was anti-Christian, not a right-wing white supremacist. It will not matter how much he expounds upon his motives at his trial, the rest of the mob that spawned him will claim it's all liberal lies.

      You cannot negotiate with people whose minimum demand is a monopoly of power. Nor can you reason with people who think you are an inferior race.

  • Another White non-Terrorist Kills 9, Makes Bomb Threats
    • When the Birmingham church bombing occurred in 1964, no one was stupid enough to believe that the bomber was an atheist. It was no secret who the murderers in the South were, and how they were the agents of a ideology that permeated the socioeconomic power structure. Now everyone has learned to lie to themselves.

    • The right wing has organized a circle-jerk where its followers try to terrrorize each other with lies about blacks. The leaders do this to ensure that they will all march together and swamp state and midterm elections and gain the means to disenfranchise everyone different than themselves. But the understood risk is that one or two of the followers will actually take the dare to go on a violent offensive against the un-Americans. So the corporate media brands them as lone wolves to keep the game going, the rest of the circle lies about their own responsibility for creating this environment, and the country keeps lurching further rightward. As long as the ratio of evil voters to evil shooters is high enough, the former will get far more black people starved to death, shot by cops, or given cancer by polluters than all the lone wolves ever could.

      Hey, it worked on abortion.

    • When Homeland Security's experts issue warnings about white right-wing terror, they are immediately attacked by the GOP in Congress. The GOP is the Sinn Fein of white terror.

  • Why Conservatives fear Pope's Climate Letter: A Radical Attack on the Logic of the Market
    • And if those programs interfere with his business, he will be obligated by his investors to undermine those social programs and any elected government that attempts them, right? Like the corporations have done all over the world to push down wages. Like the manufacturing of an ideology that says that all redistribution of wealth is Communism and its supporters must be terrorized and executed.

      Power-sharing with billionaires is impossible.

    • Francis has whiplashed the extreme US Catholic Right, which under his predecessor openly embraced the worst aspects of Protestant greed-worship via liars like Tim Pawlenty and Paul Ryan. But as usual with the Right, there was far worse brewing under the media's gatekeeping. Catholic demagogues calling for secession from the USA to overturn abortion and gay rights - certainly in conjunction with the evangelical Protestant crazies and Tea Partiers. Examples in this list of articles at talk2action.com:

      link to talk2action.org

      My guess? They will switch from seceding from the US to seceding from Rome, especially once they regain the White House. Catholic and Protestant jihadis will unite in a new heresy, Americanism, disguised as patriotic ecumenism. The religious right to discriminate will quickly be restricted to those who adhere to this self-serving faith, and used against all the rest of us.

    • Pope Francis is not a radical. He's a reversion to what conservatism was before the Reagan/Thatcher/neoliberal revolution. He's Paul VI. He's Dwight Eisenhower. The corporate media have brainwashed us into forgetting.

  • Can Big Coal, Oil be Put on Trial for Global Warming Damage by Victims?
    • The title of this hits exactly on what I think was the entire point of Wall Street organizing the climate-denial conspiracy, with tentacles reaching to every faction of the right wing, to the media, to the ordinary angry white man in your neighborhood. Liability.

      They knew the lawsuits were coming. They knew demands for reparations would be made. They realized the more paranoid and racist ordinary Americans could be made, the much more likely it would be that they would react to those demands with violent anger. Which would buy our oligarchs more time to commit more crimes. Until one day climate catastrophes could no longer be denied and the oligarchs could afford to come clean: "Yes, we fooled you, but now you're facing reparations demands so vast that the country will be bankrupted like Germany in 1919 - so you have no choice but to follow us as we declare war on the world and use the threat of nuclear attack to order everyone but us to bear the costs of climate change for as long as we can hang onto power."

  • Can the GOP live down Donald Trump's Middle East "Policy"?
    • My God. He can't even understand that China props up the US $ by buying our questionable securities and bonds! He can't understand that Saudi Arabia has been doing the same since 1971, aided later by Japan.

      He talks about stealing jobs, but how can the US stop that without "Big Government" interfering with "Free Enterprise"? And how can it do that without shutting down "Free Trade" - which must include labor? Where's his opposition to to the TPP?

      And why would we send military equipment at all if it was no good? What purpose would that serve?

      Gaaah!

    • You're right, but I'm going to say it again; the bad guys get away with it until someone hurts them badly enough to teach them a lesson. When is the rest of the world ready to make real sacrifices to punish America?

    • American exceptionalism is founded on a sense of invulnerability - yet demagogues can juggle that with a sense that everyone is out to get us. Thus, THEY threaten us with destruction, but magically if we come up with a monstrous crime to exterminate them, our leaders must have a plan to get away with it.

      Whereas, even the worst people in Europe know how risky war is from their own history.

    • No, but Herbert Hoover got the GOP nomination and the presidency after this immortal utterance: "If you haven't made a million dollars by the time you're 30, you're not much of a man." I see a pattern here.

  • Climate Denial as a Corporate Criminal Conspiracy
    • Prof. Oreskes is still giving the right-wing movement too much of the benefit of a doubt.

      What she is not saying is that the movement intends not to stop the wheel of democracy, but to break it. As always, I point to the position the ideological high priests of every faction of the American Right share: "America is a republic, not a democracy." Most people cannot decode this statement because they do not understand what "restoring" the laws and culture of 200 years ago would mean. The Right means that the right to vote must be again restricted to large property owners. No other interests matter. Therefore the government only serves property owners - the more property, the better a citizen you are.

      Therefore, even if climate disasters destroy ever more lives, the government will not act to save the poor ones. The rich will protect themselves. In fact, it may be the intent to let these disasters reduce America and the world to a primitive state, in which the natural (racial) superiority of America's property owners will be unleashed to re-enslave vast lands and finally institute the right-wing idea of justice: near-infinite inequality between the Master Race and the subhumans. If the damage abroad is too great, then our new barons will seal up our borders and focus on exploiting us for a living. If the world's richest man got his billions selling tabloids to Mexicans, then the rich no longer need any of us to live well to get what they want, which is to grab all the money on a burning, collapsing table.

      This may be insane, but it is not inconsistent with the actions of the Founding Fathers and the economic barons of America's past. They think they can get away with it because none of the rest of the human race are willing to make real sacrifices to punish them for their crimes.

  • 5,000 Hanging Skirts: How Women Remember War Rape in Kosova
    • Yeah, because we've really done a great job finding the names of the Imperial Japanese soldiers who raped untold numbers of women in China, Korea, and Southeast Asia. Or Soviet soldiers who did the same to Germans. Or really any soldiers in any war to the present day.

      Rape is the norm in war. Prosecution is a facade.

  • Young Middle East Millennials' Digital Split From Fundamentalism (Cole Interview)
    • So future cultural historians might look back on our era and debate its most alarming feature: the explosion of reactionary religious fundamentalism in two places, the Middle East and the white United States. What did those places have in common? The language of extremists in both lands is full of grievance, birthrights, hatred of women's rights. Certainly a fear by the old of the young.

      Yet in the US experience it always seems that the minority of young who support reactionary fundamentalism inexorably grow into something bigger. That minority knows it, too; it's willing to curtail the voting rights and voices of other young people to protect that damn birthright that they expect to inherit when the old haters croak. It may even be the portion of the American right that is willing to take up arms and butcher gays and minorities while the elders cheer from their keyboards.

      But then, ISIS came along and we are seeing it worldwide. It does no good for a majority of the young to be progressives when the minority is willing to kill to defend patriarchy and seniority.

  • Wind Power rapidly bringing Clean Electricity to masses in Global South
    • The replies in that thread are terrifying. Even Tea Partiers would feel silly saying that wind turbines are mass murder. They claim that everyone who supports wind is a socialist who has been bribed by wind corporations - logically wouldn't right-wingers be just as happy to lie for the vastly wealthier coal corporations?

  • Jon Stewart on Iran, Israel and Directing Rosewater: "It Turns out the Middle East is Somewhat of a Hotbed"
    • I think that liberal Jews and their allies must break out of the mindset that the rulers of Israel ever intended to do anything but steal everything the Palestinians had. The Palestinians committed the thoughtcrime of realizing that even before 1948.

  • Did Jeb Bush's brother "Create ISIL" in Iraq?
    • Naomi Klein's "The Shock Doctrine" adds to the right-wing ideological context of Bremer's disastrous action: we must ban Baathism because it's socialism! Markets and entrepreneurs will arise to fill the power vacuum! And markets and entrepreneurs always love the USA!

  • US Air Force Absent as Daesh/ ISIL advances on North Aleppo against Sunni Rebels
    • The US Congress only knows what Israel tells it. So it wants our military to carry out Operation Passover: kill everyone in the Middle East who's not Jewish. Thank God that only He has that technology and He's not getting involved this time.

  • Are there Echoes of the old Anti-Semitism in today's Islam-Hatred?
    • My observation on this is that Europe's bigotry was in defense of its feudal form of conservatism, while America's bigotry is in defense of its capitalist form of conservatism. Thus anti-Semitism is marked by the prejudices of landowners and peasants towards "city folk", merchants, proletarians, and intellectuals. Fascism went further by distinguishing between "good" capitalists who were predominantly Gentile (landowners, heavy industrialists, weapons makers) and "bad" capitalists who were likely to be Jewish due to earlier anti-Semitic restrictions on Jewish property ownership: bankers, lawyers, even the entertainment industry. The old, Catholic-allied landowner elites were the sugar daddies of anti-Semitism and Fascism in most of Europe.

      In America, the class/racism game was more direct because nearly all rich people were white and nearly all blacks were poor. Defending economic inequality simply became implying that the "whiter" you act, the richer you deserve to be. Democracy was equally a threat to landowners and industrialists. Hatred of bankers among Midwestern farmers did devolve thru Populism into anti-Semitic movements (H. Ford, et al), but did not create deep enough roots before Hitler discredited their ilk.

      Basically, America's oligarchs still benefit from dividing poorer whites from blacks, and exploiting myths of "white" virtues like unquestioning hard work by indoctrinating hatred of blacks. Europe's oligarchs are enmeshed in the global capitalism America created - which in turn is allied with Israel. So anti-Semitic populism is an embarrassment that few of them support. Moslem immigrants have arrived to create a simple class/race hierarchy and a classic threat. But a fascist can easily convince himself that Moslems and Jews are both plotting against him, and the oligarchs can't stamp out such paranoia while trying to impose austerity, destroy the social safety net and push down wages.

    • That's a good observation.

  • Thank you, Edward Snowden: An End to General Warrants as so-called PATRIOT Act expires
    • While many individual conservatives support decriminalization, the traditions that conservatives swear to uphold paint an ugly picture:

      1865-1933: The rise of the Prohibition movement in the US was strikingly entangled with bigotry towards Catholics and Jews. Perhaps Protestants were even attracted to the cause as a way to claim moral superiority towards those whose immigration they wanted to restrict. Racist stereotypes of the Irish corresponded to stereotypes of drinkers. Federal Prohibition arrived and became like a war of rural/small town Republicans and Southern Democrats against big city ethnic Democrats. The collapse of the laissez-faire ideology of the former in the Depression thus heralded the acceptance of the ethnics as "real" Americans and the demise of Prohibition.

      1935-present: Yup, it took 2 years for "Irish" alcohol to be replaced by "Negro" marijuana as the country's new archvillain. Replace "black" for "ethnic" in the previous paragraph, and you've largely described the Drug War ever since.

      Which is why I think the Drug War will continue and loyal Republicans will keep supporting it even though they don't like it. It isn't the drug they're fighting, it's the invasion of their children by outside cultures that they stereotype as drug culture.

  • Why Rand Paul is right to Kill the So-Called PATRIOT Act: It was never about Terrorism
    • James Madison believed in a strong republic. He wrote that the oppressive power of state-level factions (clearly the rich in his context) could be overcome by the broader interests of a large republic. Many of Paul's supporters are claiming things about the Constitution that really apply to the Articles of Confederation, which Madison was criticizing.

      And Ron Paul said that Lincoln was a tyrant. Basically these bastards think the wrong side won the Civil War and want to go back to the legal system that existed before that. Because we all know that whites aren't racist anymore, right?

    • One does not have to be a communist to believe that a democratic society can have economic democracy and reasonable security - in fact, that this is the only way it can happen. Libertarians want us to go back to the Gilded Age, when lynchings, terrorist attacks, butchery of workers by Pinkerton mercenaries and National Guardsmen, workplace fatalities, as well as starvation and widespread suffering were all supported by "entrepreneurs". People like Paul spend climate-denier level amounts of time lying about all of that.

      I see Paul's agenda as restoring our old tyranny of culture and morality naturally controlled by the rich. I would rather burn this country to radioactive ashes, never to be rebuilt, rather than accept that as our future.

    • Talk2action.org and exiledonline.com have been reporting ugly stories about Ron Paul for many years, with documentation going back to the early 1970s; the Paul Family's interpretation of libertarianism picked up the baton from the John Birch Society and fellow Texan R. J. Rushdoony.

  • Why ISIL's Attacks on Shiites of Saudi Arabia Threaten World Economy
    • They are trying to bankrupt their enemies, Iran and Russia. In the mid 1980s Reagan and the Saudi King made a secret deal to overproduce oil and collapse prices to ruin the USSR's export revenue - successfully.

  • Armed Bikers Protest at Arizona Mosque
    • The entire game plan is based on our double standards; if a white militia's crimes provoke Moslems into forming a militia, the latter will inevitably be perceived as far more of a threat than the former, and the resulting cycle of retaliation favors the reactionary appeal to "purify" America.

    • I think you're too optimistic. There are many Tea Party ties to the old militia movement of the 1990s that in turn grew out of the crushing of the old white supremacist movements of the 1980s. They're simply learning more sophisticated lies to hide their mechanism to restore Jim Crow and worse. They do not recognize the Constitutionality of the 13th and 14th Amendments. They basically tell their new fans that the Feds cannot give blacks the rights of citizenship, but we can trust them to take care of that at the state level.

      Of course people like that may WANT blacks to be seen as Muslims in order to more easily claim a threat to white Christian Americans that requires disenfranchisement.

  • Kaplan's Fantasies of Empire and the Myth of the Arab Strongman
    • A larger perspective than Kaplan's, taken by a few, is that governance is getting more and more impossible all over the world due to everyone's awareness of other cultures, both hostile and friendly, and the resulting breakdown of the concept of a "public" that can protect its members against the private power of wealth, which destroys communities while pandering to the lowest common appetites.

    • Idiots throw around the word "totalitarian" like confetti. A truly totalitarian state would truly have no dissent, no factions, no special interests, and no corruption, because everyone would be a true believer. It appears that some group of people in North Korea is making a lot of outside money out of the current state of affairs. That's a special interest. Hitler's regime was riddled with special interests.

      Totalitarianism is an aspiration, never achieved. No one is competent enough to get close. Tyranny is a more meaningful word, but it's less useful for scaring Americans. Totalitarianism carries implications of brainwashing (from Mao's time) that could somehow transform us against our will into Moslems, etc.

  • How Mainstream is Bernie Sanders?
    • I recently read a preview of the book "Don't Think About It: Why Our Brains Are Wired To Ignore Climate Change", by George Marshall. The part that got my attention was a description of it being "common knowledge" among conservatives that all liberal leaders were using Global Warming as a weapon to destroy conservatives and all they hold dear. Thus, even though they may be worried about AGW, they place a far higher priority on tribal loyalty and the war of their tribe against liberals/socialists/blacks/gays/Moslems. There's also been a study that shows that conservatives become bigger climate deniers after they see famous liberals warning about AGW.

      Pretty much their attitude is that in a vacuum, it would be fine to save lives from AGW, but if those lives must be sacrificed to defeat the greater evil (us) then it's worth it. And if they have to believe a lie or claim to do so to accomplish that, then it's worth it.

      I would argue that many, many things we find insane about American politics are due to exactly this zero-sum culture war mentality. What's the matter with Kansas? They're willing to be poor, polluted and backward if that's the price of defending their monopoly on Americanness from us evil usurpers. Somehow they will be rewarded after they eradicate us.

  • Hawks think the US alone can Still Garrison the Planet: How's that Working Out?
    • The key is the realization of conservatives that they could use war spending as an excuse to destroy the social and environmental programs they so despise - even better, making the supporters of those programs "traitors". One of Reagan's staffers wrote a book where he admitted that his people rigged the Federal budget to create a fiscal crisis that they expected would be used to slash social programs. That's exactly the spirit of what's happening now. But it's metastatized into an entire way of life - infinite tax dollars supporting a white welfare state of heavily-Southern defense corporations and right-wing veterans-turned-armed contractors and their sycophants. No matter how much they hate the outside world and want to isolate from it, they need the paranoia of global war to create an environment of racism to carry out their restoration of white patriarchy.

      As for all our country's other public goods needs, this movement rejects the idea that there ARE any public goods - National Security to them is a racial-tribal obligation; there is no public, just the Master race and the subhuman "takers". So why not strangle infrastructure spending until the voters finally throw up their hands and sell off all our public resources to the rich? Which will turn out to be the very guys financing the far right ideology. They will control our schools, our doctors, our roads, our water. They will be a new plantation elite, and the gun nuts will become their enforcers.

  • Kaplan: An Impish Desire for Imperial Déjà Vu
    • Well then, I'm sure Mr. Kaplan will have absolutely no problem with China extending its empire of bribery entirely across Eurasia and restoring order using a tiny fraction of its population of 1.5 billion as boots on the ground. Whom better to impose "the most suffocating forms of authoritarianism"? Especially since, unlike our Wall Street empire, China can actually create jobs for poor people.

      Oh wait, that's not who he really meant? Huh. Who else could it be?

  • Iranian-Americans demand apology from Lindsey Graham for "Liar" Racism
    • A horrifying number of Americans define reputation as terror. They want everyone different than themselves at home and abroad to cower at their feet. Their culture was manufactured over the last 350 years to produce this mindset, binding them to America's real masters. So they will absolutely celebrate if most foreign governments have the crap scared out of them.

  • US Kneejerk support for Israeli Nukes Torpedoes UN Disarmament Talks
    • See Richard Clarke's book, "Your Country Failed You", about his department's 1986 spy satellite discovery that an exact copy of a Chinese IRBM missile base was being built inside Saudi Arabia. Washington shut that down. But the intent has been there all along, waiting for a moment like this.

  • Daesh/ ISIL blows up Shiite Mosque in Saudi Arabia, seeking Sectarian Civil War
    • Supposedly, Chou En-Lai was asked, "Was the French Revolution a good thing or a bad thing?"

      His answer: "It is too soon to tell."

    • Yep. What they will do to themselves to maintain security will do far more damage than simply giving their citizens what they want. The problem is, before they give up they will try to repatriate all their US $ investments to pay for this war, which will flood the world economy with falling dollars. The chickens coming home to roost here have green backs.

    • It's more like blowback than intent. The key to your question is what happened at the end of the '70s in Iran and Saudi Arabia, both tyrannical monarchies backed by the US. Due perhaps to the Shia belief (I guess specific to the Twelvers) that they are only to be governed by the Imams, and none currently exist on Earth, they have rarely been rulers of their own countries. Thus the Shah was a Sunni descended from foreign conquerers. Khomeini's movement provided a theological breakthrough to make a Shia theocracy feasible, and it exploded to power alongside a coalition of anti-Shah forces in 1979. You can imagine from the above article how the Saudis felt about this, but at this same moment the Saudis chose to get involved in nearby Afghanistan alongside the CIA.

      Generally, this is the story of how anti-Soviet paranoia made the US leadership paralyzed in dealing with the Shah and his successor, who at least had the virtue of being anti-Marxist, while at the same time it chose whatever allies it could to win in Afghanistan.

      Thus Iran produced Shia militancy, and Afghanistan produced the jihadi network that turned like Frankenstein's monster on its creators... or at least that's what we are led to believe. The Arab and Persian oil giants might not have pitted their proxies against each other in "sectarian conflict" if Saddam Hussein had not gotten US/Saudi backing in his war of aggression on Iran the next year. Maybe that was the last moment when all of this could have been avoided.

  • Now Jeb Bush thinks Scientists are Arrogant for Discovering Climate Change
    • If it's necessary for him, again and again, to make a remark and then have to take it back because it either angers Tea Partiers or sane people, he's going to look like a piece of Swiss cheese by convention time.

  • ISIL beheaded Dozens in Palmyra, but how Strategic is the City?
    • I think the exile option would have been offered years ago. The problem is that the Baath's constituency would still be stuck in Syria getting slaughtered. The anti-Baath Sunnis would still be stuck in Syria getting slaughtered. You can't stop the fighting unless each ethnic group has its safety guaranteed against even a few bloodthirsty adventurers from one of the other groups. There are no honest brokers left willing to provide the troops necessary to do this.

  • As Palmyra Falls, Who Supports Bashar al-Assad in Syria? (Charles Glass)
  • Washington asks, "Who lost Ramadi?" But Washington never had Ramadi
    • And then what will that President do when the Shiite regime we okayed in Baghdad decides to invite in ten divisions of Iranian Revolutionary Guards instead? That's an option that Diem did not have on the table in 1964.

    • Or maybe because there's a subtext in the GOP messaging that only bigots are meant to hear:

      "If we had stayed the world would have grown to accept it by the time we finally carried out systematic mass extermination... like we would have done in Vietnam if we could."

      They don't believe in rehabilitation, they don't believe in reform, they don't believe in persuasion, they don't believe in negotiation, they don't believe in assimilation. Here or abroad. They believe in punishment, specifically the death penalty. Worse, they believe they have a special right over all other peoples on earth to administer punishment - so that becomes the point of the exercise, even if compromise would more logically achieve some useful gain. Thus, the sort of police behavior they defend in our own cities.

    • Not their own. There's a composer and an orchestra; lobbying groups, think tanks and other propaganda organizations in Washington that consume vast sums and brainpower to come up with lies that they know will fit the media's agenda.

    • Thanks for giving us your experiences in the Occupation. I don't think many of its administrators will ever be willing to talk so frankly.

  • Why does the Iraqi Army Keep Running Away from ISIL?
    • But any arrangement in Iraq has effects on the Shia-Sunni rivalry that has grown all over the Middle East. Iran needs Iraq as a bridge to protect Syria and Lebanon. Saudi Arabia clearly does not respect the rights of non-Sunnis to have any self-government anywhere. It previously tried to seize control of Lebanon by using a corrupt Sunni billionaire as a puppet. Hezbollah made it clear that the Shia would never accept this.

      So how do you get a regional settlement protecting EVERY Sunni and non-Sunni enclave from their limitless willingness to oppress each other?

    • Okay, so now let's apply our same blowback criteria to the Kurds. How do we know our weapons won't be used by the Kurds to create a greater Kurdistan by seizing territory in Syria, Turkey and Iran? We can't really trust anyone.

    • And what if Iran refuses to accept the partition of Iraq and gets its prime minister to accept a massive intervention? Saudi Arabia will retaliate, and Saudi Arabia owns our asses in several ways - as we've seen in Yemen. Breaking with Saudi Arabia to stay out of the war will affect everything from the value of the US dollar to the global flow of energy supplies. I mean, I'm ready for those effects, but our citizens have a right to know what's coming.

    • But what if the strategy of the puppetmasters behind ISIS is to EXPECT that only the most vicious, murderous Shia militiamen will be able to dislodge ISIS from each city in turn? They know those militiamen will destroy everything and commit atrocities.

      Maybe the purpose of ISIS is to be sacrificed as part of a strategy to make it impossible to ever put Iraq back together again. It has been pointed out by others here that Saudi Arabia wants to break the land bridge between Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, and Iran wants to maintain it. So ISIS ruining Iraq fits Saudi Arabia's goal. If Iran retaliates too dramatically, Saudi Arabia will go to all-out war and ISIS will quickly be forgotten.

  • After fall of Ramadi to ISIL, does Iraq have a future?
    • If ideology motivated the decision, I think it was because these bastards see everything in the world as evil socialism vs good capitalism, and all Iraqi institutions fell into the former category. Since the neocons assumed Iraq faced no outside threats while under US occupation, they expected that all internal order would be automagically provided by free markets and thus the rise of a naturally superior entrepreneurial class - which we Americans are always told is the only kind of people who should be elected to office, run our roads and schools, etc. The religious thing was completely over their heads.

      After things went wrong, the Occupation was forced to allow elections, meaning it desperately had to turn to each Iraqi prime minister in turn to get cooperation with its schemes - which meant we had to arm his pet death squads and let them run wild until the rival faction replaced it and we started all over again. We could never find a faction leader that was crazy enough to give us what we wanted, and the voters have literally voted to see which of them will be next year's killers and next year's victims, back and forth, until the present crisis.

  • Obama: No Mideast NATO, but US committed to Security of Arab Gulf States
    • What's terrifying is the utter, total autism these princes display towards Western horror at the method they've used to preempt Iran and (really) the Arab Spring - the unleashing of groups like ISIS. They just don't get it. Which means that even if they don't personally prefer ISIS as a means of governance, its sick ideology resides within the realm of what they are willing to do to their own peoples to maintain power.

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