Wednesday, July 17, 2019

THE STAGES OF BIGOTED AUTHORITARIANISM ... AND, YES, IT'S HAPPENED IN AMERICA TOO

Incredible, but not surprising. It appears that the GOP's support for Donald Trump actually rose after he issued "racially charge tweets" that told four members of Congress to go home. Among Republicans, support for Trump rose 5 percentage points, to 72 percent.


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Apart from the pervasive bigotry, if you're wondering why Republicans continue to support Donald Trump and how Hitler's rise to power may be linked togetherclick hereSpoiler alert. The Germans didn't see Hitler as the Hitler we know today. They initially saw him as the Trump of their era; an incompetent buffoon, who would not go far. 

The Germans foolishly believed the responsibility of governing would "tame" Hitler's worst instincts. It didn't. 

Ordinary Germans believed that parliamentary checks and balances would snuff out Hitler's worst tendencies. They didn't. 

Finally, social conservatives believed Hitler would make Germany "great again" and that responsible social conservatives would reign him in. They didn't. 

Naked greed, genuine bigotry and self-serving politicians won the day, as did general ignorance. The feeble-minded and apathetic fell in line, hoping they wouldn't be singled out or that the crumbs of power would fall their way. Cruel authoritarianism would follow as retribution for past political slights, simple bigotry and pure evil were splashed all over Germany.

The slow drip of evil and authoritarianism is there for all of us to see in America today. Last weekend's ICE raids were a trial run. I don't think I have to explain for what.

For those of you who need a history lesson on humanity's comfort with bigotry, and it's taste for authoritarianism, we have this from Stephen King ...
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From history, we have the steps of hate and state-supported genocide ...


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Then we have American history. The original sin of slavery in the colonies and at the birth of our nation ...


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From America's Genocide, we get our nation's indigenous policies, and the Trail of Tears ...

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Following the Civil War, to maintain "their way of life" in the south, we got the Black Codes and the legacies of Jim Crow ...



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From America's not so distant past, we also have the experience of the Japanese internment camps, when U.S.-born citizens were forced to comply with nativism and fear during WWII (which one American mayor still thinks is a good idea) ...




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Children held at the Manzanar, California internment camp.
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Then we have the largest deportation in American history; the repatriation of well over 1 million Mexicans during the Eisenhower administration, including U.S. citizens ...


Illegal immigrants being escorted back across the border to Mexico.  (Photo by Loomis Dean/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)

So, yes, what's happening in America today can get worse. It's happened before. 

For those of you who have undocumented friends, and want to know what to do if ICE arrives on your door, click here.

- Mark

IT'S NO LONGER CONVENIENCE ... REPUBLICANS NOW SUCKLE AT THE FEET OF TRUMP'S CAPE

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The Charlotte Observer's Kevin Siers' cartoon makes so much more sense after reading this ... 

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So, did we just cross the Rubicon?

- Mark

Monday, July 15, 2019

HERE'S HOW YOU LOSE AN EMPIRE IN REAL TIME


I posted the following from the NY Times on my FB page ...


A FB friend of mine, who fancies himself a foreign policy expert, tried to make the claim that Russia getting a missile system shipment from Russia had nothing to do with Trump. I'm not sure if he believes these developments aren't a big deal, but since he believes Trump didn't have anything to do with emboldening Russia he's probably convinced himself that Russia sending missiles to Turkey is nothing to worry about. New Alert: Yes, it's a big deal ... let makes that "bigly".

In any case, I responded to his post, making sure to fill in the blanks that help explain why Russia sending missiles sending missiles to Turkey has Donald Trump's fingerprints all over the story. Enjoy ...

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Turkish President Erdogan is pretty sure that he can do what he wants with [Donald} Trump. Why? Because Trump's a freaking moron, and the entire global community knows he can be swayed our bought off by flattery and empty promises ([Vladimir] Putin, Kim Jong Un and [MBS] Bonesaw in Saudi Arabia have no respect for him).

To be sure, both the State and Defense departments support imposing the harshest sanctions on Turkey (both defense [related] and economic). We also need to recognize that relations with Turkey have been sliding since we went into Iraq, and the Turks began viewing the U.S. as a destabilizing element in the region (especially with our support for Kurdish militias in Syria).

But the reality is Trump, whose "personal" (read, "gullibility") relationship with Turkish President Erdogan leads Erdogan to believe that Trump might agree to sanction, and then simply "delay" implementing them like he's done with Russian sanctions. Or, and this is more probable, Trump might simply just ignore implementing them, or waive them completely when no one's looking. The fact that he's already waffled and shifted positions with Turkey is one of the reasons Russia's become so emboldened, while Erdogan has no respect for Trump. 

What all of this means is that U.S. military jets, and NATO's defensive positions, get further compromised; something Putin's been after for years. Trump's simply handing U.S. leadership in the region to Putin (or Putin's taking it and telling Trump to back off) because everyone knows Trump has no clue about international relations or, quite simply, doesn't know what the hell he's doing on any complex matter.

Describing the debate within the administration, one U.S. official said while the nation's national security apparatus will push for full sanctions “Erdogan believes he can talk Trump out of anything.” 

MAGA in action, and it's dragging the nation and our security networks down with it.

*******, you might have already read these but if not, they're a good primer on what's happening. 

https://foreignpolicy.com/.../in-debate-over-turkey.../

https://www.foreignaffairs.com/.../why-turkey-turned-its...

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Here's the point: The world order is starting to come apart, one thread at a time, and Donald Trump has no idea how his ignorance and gullibility is accelerating the process. He literally is selling American foreign policy out to the highest bidder ... and the gushiest flatter.


American hegemony lies in the balance ... which is something else Team Trump has no clue about.

- Mark

FOR MY FAKE CHRISTIAN FRIENDS ... WWJD? HE'D PROBABLY BE SITTING IN A CAGE, LIKE EVERY OTHER "ILLEGAL" SEEKING REFUGE

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And, if you're wondering, here are 10 reasons why you can't be both a Christian and a Trump supporter ... and it's straight from the Bible (the article is two years old, but more pertinent today than ever). My Fake Christian friends won't get it. Don't worry, neither did Pontius Pilate, who was brought up on charges of cruelty and oppression, and eventually charged with executing people without a proper trial.

- Mark

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

HEADLINE OF THE DAY (... MONTH)

Even if it's just satire, this is still the headline of the day ...


Click here for the discussion, which is hilarious.

- Mark

For those of you buried in your work (or living under a rock), click here for the details behind the Borowitz piece.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT ON ASYLUM SEEKING AND IMMIGRATION

Image may contain: text that says 'Myth: Crossing a border without proper and documentation is an illegal act. Reality: The Geneva Convention, established after WWII, gives migrants fleeing violence the right to enter legally.'

For those of you interested in the conventions relating to the status on refugees, click here.

One last point ...

Image may contain: text that says 'Seeking asylum is not a crime, and if you cross the border illegally, it's a misdemeanor. So unless you want to start taking away the children of people charged with reckless driving, public intoxication, petty theft and disorderly conduct then stop saying immigrants deserve this.'

And they definitely don't deserve this, this, this or this ...

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- Mark