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Thursday, May 9, 2019

Ron Paul: Tulsi Gabbard Needs Your Support

Tulsi Gabbard's campaign is the mirror image of what this blog advocated for Ron Paul's in 2012. Libertarians and libertarian leaning Republicans and independents ought to support her campaign. Even with Bill Weld in the race, Ron Paul apparently agrees:


Friday, October 12, 2018

Macroning the American Body Politic

Almost election day... here we go again. Democrats think they have the momentum.  Given it's a midterm, it should be so. However, the anti-Trump party has little imagination, so I predict little change.

Regardless of what happens next month,  the 2020 political vision of the status quo is clear: Americans are angry and tired of being angry; convince voters that extremism is the problem and repackage imperial corporatism as the moderate, sensible, centrist, bipartisan voice of independent American leadership in the world.

This strategy gets played out in one of two ways. First a "moderate" take over of the Democratic Party facilitated by the migration of disaffected Bush/ McCain/ Romney pragmatists from the GOP, resulting in the nomination of a Harris/ Warner type ticket.

A more likely scenario is to allow the Sanders/ Warren/ Gabbard progressives to have their day but form a bipartisan, "centrist ticket" led by No Labels/ Americans Elect/ Change the Rule to steer America away from the extremists who want to take us over the cliffs of insanity.

Of course, the policy platform of this Macronesque messiah will differ zero in actuality from the current duopoly's austerity, empire-building and maintenance program.

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss, except in tone and at much lower decibels.  All that remains to ask: will it be Haley/Warner or McCaskill/Corker?

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Why Populist Poser is Prez and Dems Are Playing Russian Roulette

As far as I know the general election exit polls never asked the questions: "If you voted for Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primaries and caucuses, who did you vote for today?" Had the sophisticates of the mainstream media and the unbiased analysts  of the polling agencies asked that question, you and the Russian Roulette press would know why Donald Trump is now our president. 

One year ago Michael Moore wrote these prescient words:

The Jesse Ventura Effect. Finally, do not discount the electorate’s ability to be mischievous or underestimate how any millions fancy themselves as closet anarchists once they draw the curtain and are all alone in the voting booth. It’s one of the few places left in society where there are no security cameras, no listening devices, no spouses, no kids, no boss, no cops, there’s not even a friggin’ time limit. You can take as long as you need in there and no one can make you do anything. You can push the button and vote a straight party line, or you can write in Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. There are no rules. And because of that, and the anger that so many have toward a broken political system, millions are going to vote for Trump not because they agree with him, not because they like his bigotry or ego, but just because they can. Just because it will upset the apple cart and make mommy and daddy mad. And in the same way like when you’re standing on the edge of Niagara Falls and your mind wonders for a moment what would that feel like to go over that thing, a lot of people are going to love being in the position of puppetmaster and plunking down for Trump just to see what that might look like. Remember back in the ‘90s when the people of Minnesota elected a professional wrestler as their governor? They didn’t do this because they’re stupid or thought that Jesse Ventura was some sort of statesman or political intellectual. They did so just because they could. Minnesota is one of the smartest states in the country. It is also filled with people who have a dark sense of humor — and voting for Ventura was their version of a good practical joke on a sick political system. This is going to happen again with Trump.

Here and elsewhere I tried to talk folks into a different strategy. Rather than kamikaze the nation by voting for Trump or staying at home because there's nothing better to do or voting for a war-mongering, say-anything-to-get-elected candidate, I advised vote for Jill Stein. 

And now we have Donald Trump. Of course the play on this is "Nader!" But had all those Sanders voters who went kamikaze in those key midwestern states instead gone tacticallyand/or principled Green, Hillary Clinton would now be our president.

And across America... 
had the despairing bothered to check in and vote with their hearts,  
had the headless Sanderistas who voted for the guy who told them to vote for Clinton instead voted for the Jewish woman, 
President Clinton would have a Green thorn in her Democratic side. 
And this Green thorn might even be getting federal matching funds in 2020.

And the Democratic party and their MSM pigeons would not be playing Russian Roulette. 

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Ho Hum, Let's All Be Dumb

I did not vote for Donald Trump. His racist, sexist, and xenophobic rhetoric, his southern strategy on steroids may or may not reflect his heart but if it doesn't, his opportunistic methods make him, in my opinion, unfit to serve in any public office, let alone the presidency.

The hypocritical support he won from fundamentalists and right wing evangelical leaders is also immensely disheartening to me as a Christian and a pastor. His impulsivity worries me greatly and I fear that he will do something extremely foolish.

All this said, the new red scare tactics of the Democrats troubles me even more. I assume the Russian government is capable of hacking  the DNC and I take for granted that our discredited intelligence services got it right this time.

Even if the Russians hacked the DNC for the purpose of undermining Clinton, it is ludicrous to believe that the American people were any more influenced by Russian subterfuge than they were by the corporate propaganda that has determined every election for the last 40 plus years.

Of course I expect the Democratic party to make Trump into an evil monster the same way the Republican party did Obama. This is the same old smoke and mirrors, bait and switch game that successfully distracts Americans with cultural issues that are never going to make a difference in their economic lives.

For all the hysteria about our deeply divided government, the evidence shows that on all major economic and foreign policy issues, the two parties are in agreement. We serve the interest of transnational corporations, and any claim to the contrary is a bump to pick your pocket.

So please when someone starts going bonkers about Russia influence, remind them of how we hacked Angela Merkel's email and tell them to google Stuxnet. Gore Vidal was right. We are the United States of Amnesia.

And no... I don't think that inauguration day demonstrations are going to change anyone's mind about anything. What we need to do is ask our Democratic senators and representatives to do the right thing and offer this deal to the Donald:

Deeply cut or completely eliminate all payroll taxes and double or triple the COLA for seniors each of the next 8 years. Tell him we want to block grant $2 trillion in new infrastructure spending. Grant him the low ball compromise of  $1 trillion, but if he wants to simply flatten corporate income taxes and subsidize the purchase of public infrastructure, filibuster him the rest of his time in office.

Of course there is no way the bi-partisan austerity fetish is going to be replaced with simple,clear policy that would put money in every American's  pocket. We are more likely to get a bogus loophole-closing, fair share everywhere tax reform package that brings the top rate back down to 36%, or maybe so the Democrat's can claim victory, 37%.

Yeah... we will likely get an $8 an hour minimum wage that covers everyone making less than $25K with a promise to raise it to $10 by 2021 if inflation rises above 5% annually.
An infrastructure stimulus that privatizes large chunks of new toll roads will keep unemployment from soaring and provide just enough consumer confidence to allow interest rates to climb and credit card purchases to soar. We might see the unemployment rate rise to 6 percent by 2018 but be back down to 5.6 percent by 2020.

Trump will boast that he has created 12 million new jobs and the Democrats will argue that it was only 10 million and real wages have fallen. Half of America will say they are better off  than they were 4 years ago and we will get Trump back in office while Democrats retake Senate and House by a slim margins.

Abortion rates will remain the same and gay people will still get married and divorced just like straight people. A few more people will be able to buy guns. The death penalty will be less popular but African-American and Hispanic men will get the needle at the same rate they are now, more often than white guys. Trump will be on his way to breaking Obama's deportation record, Raul Castro will die, and Mormons will build a hotel in Havana.

Does anybody want any more no-brainer predictions? The honeymoon with Putin will be over in less than 2 years. Drone and cyber warfare will increase on all fronts. Ok... enough.

As cynical as I sound, I still think there is hope but it is going to take some out-of-the-box effort and a huge amount of patience. Next time... a strategy. And if enough Trump populists figure out they've been had, it just might work.

Stay tuned.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Saving Bernie Busters from Themselves and the World from Clintonian Plutocracy

There will be denial for days and maybe weeks to come, but in the end Hillary Clinton will be the Democratic nominee. Could things have been different with all open primaries, more polling  places and less voter suppression? Certainly!

Sadly, none of that matters now. Yes, we need to reform the process of future nominations but right now we need to deal with the reality that Hillary  Clinton will be our next president.

Yes, you heard that right, my Bernie or Bust friends. Every time you make claims to the contrary, hundreds of Sanders supporters decide to keep Trump out by voting for Clinton.

It is time to stop the futile call to defeat Hillary Clinton as punishment for all the dirty political chicanery she has used to deny Sanders the nomination.

Sadly, painfully, but undeniably, we are stuck with her. She is a war-mongering, corporate-pandering puppet for the status quo, but she will be our next president.

The strategy of trying to scare Democrats into voting for Sanders for fear of her not being able to defeat Donald Trump has clearly failed and further use of it is going to backfire in a landslide victory over the weakest camdidate the GOP has ever produced.

What Bernie or Busters need to focus on now is persuading as many Sanders supporters as possible to send her and the Democratic party a clear message: No more Libyas and no more Wall Street dominance over the treasury and treasures of our country.

The only way to make this happen is to threaten her with 8 million progressive votes for Jill Stein this year and the prospect of 20 million four years from now. She will not listen to reason or passion or to voters who stupidly write in votes for a candidate who supports her and does not want to be a write-in candidate.

She will, however listen to 10 million progressives breathing down her neck and the way to make that happen us to get Jill Stein above 5% this November.

The way to get the Green Party over the threshold for federal matching funds in the next presidential election is to persuade enough Sanders supporters that they can vote their consciences twice without spoiling the election and making Trump the president.

Let me be clear... this is not about promoting the Green Party; this about keeping the peaceful green economy at the forefront  of our national agenda. This is about agreeing with Bernie Sanders' assessment that nothing  short of a political revolution will bring about the democratic change that we need to establish justice and insure domestic tranquility.

Clinton must be radically transformed or at least sufficiently restrained if we are to have a chance of not being the permanent  victims of global corporate totalitarianism. 5 million uncounted votes for an undeclared and uncertified write-in candidate will only embolden the puppeteers who pull her strings.

Fortunately, all of the fuss about the danger of not voting for the lesser evil is made a moot point not only by the gift of Donald Drumpf but because the Libertarian Party,  in nominating two very popular former governors, will give both  establishment voters and  pissed off Paulians an option which will more than offset Green defections.  And if Gary Johnson and William Weld are not status quo enough, clandestine Clintonites or Romney write- ins will do the trick of denying Trump 10 million votes.

In short, the approach should be: let's  keep the pressure on by dismissing the barely remote possibility of a Trump White House and liberating Sanderistas from sheep dogging fears.

Let's  get it done now!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Support but Do Not Vote For Rand Paul in the Primary (unless you are a Libertarian or a Republican)

Now that Bernie Sanders has made it clear that he will run as a Democrat for the presidency, I want to make it clear to all liberals, progressives, populists, socialists, etc. that I will not vote for or encourage anyone to vote for Rand Paul in the Republican primaries and caucuses next year.

This may come as a disappointment for many of my libertarian friends but 2016 is very different from 2012. We do not have an incumbent President who is running unopposed. Just as it made absolutely no sense for most progressives to vote in the Democratic primary last time, it makes no sense to vote in the Republican primary this time.

I am not at this moment endorsing Sanders because I want  to see what other progressives do and say. I think it would be better  if only one progressive took on Hillary or if more than one, that they coalesce around one progressive alternative no later than February 21 ( the day after the SC primary).

This is not to say, give no support to Rand Paul. On the contrary, we ought  to be promoting his campaign and maybe trying to find a way to get him and Bernie to debate during the primary. Wouldn't that be a great way to kick the establishment?!! Better yet get presumptive 3rd party nominees, Virgil Goode, Gary Johnson and Jill Stein on the same stage along with whoever emerges as the Republican cultural conservative favorite.

What we want is Rand Paul and Bernie Sanders to be the nominees and if not them, then for Paul, Sanders and Ben Carson to endorse Johnson, Stein and Goode at 5pm the evenings of Jeb and Hillary's coronation speeches.

A political revolution to overthrow the corporate military industrial catastrophe remains the strategic goal but we must make this tactical change at this time for the revolution to have a fighting chance of success.

PS ... I use names here as possibilities. I do not think that Jeb Bush will be the GOP nominee. In fact I think the Republican ticket is going to be Susana Martinez and Ben Carson. Hopefully, Clinton takes a dive and we get a Sanders/Warren ticket to oppose them. If we do, I will be expecting Robin Koerner to tell Gary , "No!" and support the Red Democrat ticket instead. (Is red a classical liberal color?)

Friday, April 17, 2015

Return to P4RP

A spike in visits which correspond with Rand Paul's recently announced presidential campaign compels me to return to P4RP. I don't intend to be back long but I do feel the need to let you know my thoughts about his candidacy.

To get right to the main question: Will I promote progressives support for Rand Paul? The answer is both yes and not yet.

Among likely GOP candidates, Rand Paul is the best. Sure, this is not saying much especially given his latest support of the anti-peace letter to Iranian leadership and his advocacy of a sharp increase in military spending paid for by cuts in foreign aid and domestic investments. This may not mean a neo-con turn but election time feints to the MIC will win him no friends among peace progressives even as it confirms doubts among purist libertarians.

Nevertheless, a strong showing in the Republican primaries and caucuses will be a significant blow to warmongering corporatists throughout the duopoly. A libertarian coup of the GOP remains a consummation devoutly to be wished by all principled progressives. A victory in this year's battle still seems unlikely for all the same reasons as last go around with his father but any damage done to the imperial oligarchy is not only desirable but necessary. Democrats who are already showing their cards for Queen Clinton  by trashing him deserve resistance from all real progressives.

But should support mean primary votes? While my friend, Robin Koerner, wants a resounding yes, we need to wait and see what challengers rise to confront the Queen. It is likely that there will be a progressive or two who step up. Bernie Sanders (now a socialist independent), Elizabeth Warren (the most populist and popular progressive) and Martin O'Malley (former Maryland Governor) are all possibilities.  I am hoping that Ron Paul's friend, Dennis Kucinich gets in the race as his NEED Act (HR 2990) is a definitive document that gets at the heart of our economic problems.

Progressives need to challenge Hillary by voting for one or more of these or other potential candidates who hopefully give voice to the disaffected base of the the Democratic Party. This is not the year for jumping ship during the primaries. If, in the unlikely circumstance Clinton faces no progressive opposition, then I will be back here or somewhere else encouraging progressives to vote for Rand Paul in the primaries.

Another unlikely scenario is Paul getting the nomination and facing Clinton in the general election. In that circumstance I am going to want to support Paul and if there is no viable Green or independent candidate from the left, I would most likely encourage progressives to vote for him. I would first like to see a reversal on his latest vows to make deeper domestic cuts to support more military spending. There may be a way around this by finding more cuts in MIC spending to fund pay and benefit increases for enlisted personnel. Or maybe he takes a cue from Koerner and stops worrying about government deficits and finds a way to increase government spending to bring down private sector debt.

Progressives need to take more radical stands against the Democratic Party's corporate captivity and be more creative about making alliances with other anti-corporate outsiders. We need leaders like Kucinich, Sanders and Warren to not only stand up to Hillary and her corporate puppeteers but to be extremely skeptical when her rhetoric shifts leftward. My idea continues to be... when the inevitable happens and coronation night arrives, go public at 5pm endorsing the Green Party nominee. The MSM would not be able to ignore a dozen progressive leaders with 3 or 4 of them being primary opponents of the Queen, defiling her party by endorsing Jill Stein, especially if one of them is her running mate.

I know...I know... totally unconventional...not going to happen. Of course, in all likelihood, we are not going to provoke politicians even at the periphery of their parties to chance backlash because of what will surely be seen as a kamikaze move. I understand the harsh realism as I have been ignored by anybody and everybody inside corporate fortress. But what else do we have other than handing a grenade to whoever's reaching out between the bars. This tactic would work even better if it were coordinated and Rand got his Dad, Justin Amash, Thomas Massie, etc. standing behind him and Gary Johnson as Paul endorses Johnson.

It will take something as dramatic as well timed defections by widely recognized anti-corporate politicians to force the moment to its crisis. Pulling that off requires that outsiders come together with a willingness to step outside the box they landed in when they stepped out of the corporate box. If we are to make a difference in the upcoming election, we have to get sympathetic candidates and voters to consider unconventional, mutual and cross party endorsements, vote swapping, etc. We are outgunned millions of times over and so we need guerrilla tactics and risk taking and realistic politicians and voters if we expect to make a real and significant difference.

I might come back again if you like.