As the Venezuelan crisis worsens, and the country’s failing socialism system continues to demonstrate why the likes of Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are foolish, we are seeing the illegitimate president Trump’s new strategy at work. Now the long game becomes clear. Using no less a mouthpiece than the 2019 State of the Union Address, Trump both charted his 2020 strategy and scored big points by taking the time to score a shot on socialism, vowing that America will never be a socialist country.
It’s a little late to stand on that now, Donald, but we don’t kid ourselves that will stop you from trying.
This is what we’ve been warning against all along. The fake left is just as anti-Democrat as the right; why? How is it that their interests always manage to coincide? What were they playing at? Why has Trump been so soft on socialism until now? Why not during the election, when America really needed to hear all of our leaders saying it?
Because then it would have been too early.
In Ocasio-Cortez, in the few very loud members of our generation that have been hoodwinked into supporting this truly evil and invasive form of government, the Republicans now have a walking personification of all they have been fighting with their money to create: a just accusation that Democrats are socialists, and that to support us is to personally become the vector of socialism. It’s George McGovern all over again.
Meanwhile, the Venezuelan situation provides a vivid example of how big disaster socialism can be. At the end of the SOTU speech, Trump did what he’s going to be doing a lot- pointing to Bernie Sanders in silence, looking horrified, waiting for the people to become so disgusted they can’t take it and vote against their interests. Policy be damned, they will say. Look at that blue clown suit. I would rather burn than have that guy as my president.
The claim that we Democrats are going to turn America into a Venezuelan socialist hellscape looks like something new, but as every reader of this blog will be aware, they’ve been laying the groundwork for it for the last several years. Contrary to Trump’s new narrative, the Democratic Party has never embraced Bernie Sanders. We do share some policies, but he goes too far with them and makes them look ridiculous. Now he’s got AOC there with him, screaming for seventy percent income tax rates on the rich and protesting Nancy Pelosi over climate change.
In the meantime, Tulsi Gabbard got involved as well, protesting Trump’s decision to condemn Maduro, which is about the one thing he has ever done right.
On both extremes of the political spectrum, everyone and everything they have is engaged in making the Democratic Party appear to be tilting left, at just the right moment for Trump.
“It seems to me that DJT has zero interest in expanding his coalition, and is going all-in on making the Democratic alternative unpalatable, hence the focus on opposing ‘socialism,’ ” the Republican strategist Michael Steel, a former senior adviser to the House G.O.P. leadership, told the New Yorker’s Susan B. Glasser in an e-mail the morning after the speech.
The entire Trump era, in many ways, feels like a return to the days of Richard Nixon. Parallels abound in terms of personnel, power, and politics. Perhaps above all else, a feeling that a growing extremity is pervading our country and reaching a dangerous level is strongly troubling American consciousness. It feels like chaos is everywhere. In such circumstances, history has shown that just about anything can happen.
One wonders if that isn’t the socialistic schemers’ whole point.
Cold War-era divisions have emerged along the same old lines as always. Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro is backed by Russia, China, and Cuba, which don’t want to lose an ally in the region. He has accepted billions in Russian and Chinese aid as his country’s economy has exploded, and is now deeply indebted to some guys that are even worse than him. The Russian government has said it is considering installing an airbase in Venezuela, and there’s no doubt at all he’d let them do it. One wonders how Trump’s tough talk on Venezuela will jive with this desire of his boss. It’s one thing to stand up to a pack of screaming wingnuts, Donald. Try standing up to Putin for a change, why don’t you.
The Venezuelan situation, complete with right-wing exiles now involved in the political scene of Miami, brings us back to the good old days of international rancor over Latin American populist revolutions. One of the standard tropes of the Nixon era was the constant trouble over the Cuban Revolution, an event which saw its sixty-year anniversary pass by last month.
In that troubled time, revolutionary leader Fidel Castro managed with the help of the famous Che Guevara to overthrow the unpopular strongman Fulgencio Batista. Having done it, he went on to construct what he promised would be a more egalitarian Cuban regime. Soon after, he made sure to announce formally what U.S. military leaders and top officials had long known anyway- that this regime would be a communist one.
In a televised address not long after, Castro declared, “I am a Marxist-Leninist and shall be one until the end of my life.” He went on to state that, “Marxism or scientific socialism has become the revolutionary movement of the working class.”
The American right was empowered by that enough to justify decades worth of grotesque savagery. Shadows of doubt will always loom over the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
It’s important to note what Castro said there about socialism, “scientific” or otherwise. True communism, as envisioned conceptually by Karl Marx, is very different from the centralized socialism that grew into fruition in places like Cuba and the Soviet Union. The idea was to give over national resources to the working class, to be administered in some unknown way, at which point these completely unprepared and unsuspecting people are sent off to go to town creating a utopia (the Greek word for “nowhere”).
No one knows what that utopia might have looked like since it never happened.
What did happen was socialism, meaning that the State took ownership of absolutely everything and set about instantly setting itself up as the sole power in the land, choosing for everyone what they would have and not have, and creating a new type of elite based on party loyalty and bureaucratic efficiency. One tiny central hub, e.g. Moscow, controls every scrap of land and enjoys total autonomy within it. Every evidence shows this practice to have caused an unreal amount of human misery everywhere it has been tried; for example, China locked an entire ethnic population, the Uighurs, more than a million deep into labor camps last fall. This is not a dream.
All this history lessoning aside, we can all see what’s going on here. Trump is making a big show out of his sudden anti-socialism posture, but actually, it’s disingenuous in the extreme for him to do so. He has subscribed all along to the usual American far-right strategy, which is to consider liberals the true enemy, not communists or socialists.
This is why Trump sided with Bernie Sanders in 2016. Instead of saying at that time, Socialism is a disaster and we should all come together on this, he chose to court a bromance with the Bern and reviled us for “stealing” the election from the man Hillary Clinton beat by nearly four million votes. His base has oft-repeated this slanderous claim.
Trump waited until Nancy Pelosi gave him permission to give the 2019 SOTU before he would finally go after the fake left. We’ve been here cleaning house the whole time, and he wants to co-opt all the hard work we Democrats have done. He thinks it’s the right time to cash in. But long before the day this started, the right has done all it can to empower and incite the socialists because they know it will make things harder for us. They want Ocasio-Cortez to be the face of our Party more than anything.
Now they’ve got their Goldstein, in the 1984 scenario.
The far right uses the far left to manipulate the public all the time. That’s what agent provocateurs are for. That’s what the Nixon era taught us, and it’s why we need to be so careful now.
It’s important to realize that this could have deep implications for us. Florida is one of the most key of all the swing states, as anyone who remembers the 2000 presidential race was stolen from Al Gore can tell you. The political scale there is so evenly weighted that percentages involving tenths of a percent are often what decide its elections.
For Trump to gain support from the Venezuelan emigre community of Miami at this time would be extremely bad for our chances in 2020. He is hitting a lick off posturing as anti-socialist, but he did the opposite in 2016. Going forward, it will be incumbent upon us to raise awareness on this. Trump is a Johnny-come-lately at this game. He’s really just a poser.
In the last analysis, the thing to remember is this: Trump has not stood for democracy or its institutions at all. The World Economic Forum no longer considers America to be a full democracy, because of him. MAGA hats have become like armbands worn by Nazis, and Trump is the white power symbol successor of Hitler. It’s worth reminding the world that fascism came from socialism. It was the branch of it designed by Mussolini. The alt left and the far right is exactly the same entity.
“The best way to control the opposition is to lead it ourselves,” said Vladimir Lenin a hundred years ago.
Here at Millennial Democrats, we refuse to accept a false equivalency. We equally reject the totalitarian nightmares that arise both from fascism and socialism, and from that posture, we call not only for the resignation of the disgraced dictator Nicholas Maduro.
We call with equal lungpower for the resignation of the disgraced dictator Donald Trump.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee is at it again. For the first time in this cycle, they have launched ads attempting to tie Senate Democrats to the woman they most love to hate- Hillary Clinton.
A number of new digital ads released Monday are to run in the 10 states won by President Donald Trump in 2016 where Democratic senators are seeking re-election.
The videos will be seen on Facebook, which has joined Russia and the Republicans in unjustly treating Democrats time and again these last few years. What a surprise.
At any rate, while Fox News has been focusing on kicking around a private citizen, Stormy Daniels broke records on Sunday night on CNN. Twenty-two million people tuned in to hear her tell the awful story of what it was like to have an affair with America’s sleaziest man- its president.
It was a powerful story that made for a powerful retelling, and it highlighted the growing trend of awareness of women’s rights and women’s issues. In that awareness, Hillary Clinton’s name has been pulled back into the newspapers, as Fox News turns to the one strategy that has never failed it- attacking her.
They also highlight her saying during the 2016 race that half of Trump’s supporters could be put into a “basket of deplorables”, another undoubted fact.
For someone who they call crooked, she sure seems to make them awfully mad for telling the truth. This is what has led to Fox News giving Hillary Clinton and Stormy Daniels equal airtime this whole last week and weekend, although one was making television records while the other was living a private life.
Former State Department spokesperson Marie Harf, who is now a Fox News Contributor, made a number of nasty remarks on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace on March 18, while the Daniels interview was going on, about how she ought to “go away”.
Sometimes it is hard to understand people.
Hillary Clinton gave every day of her life to the people of this country. She subordinated her own needs and pride and self-interest to act for the good of her country and her party. Why is it so hard for them to just say thank you?
The 2016 election proved to us that institutionalized sexism is still very powerful, and the thirty years worth of hit jobs and slander that the right wing conspiracy machine cooked up over the years is still a potent brew.
We would have been making strides toward the future, doing good for as many people as we could have, for as long as we could have.
There will come a time when we get to try again. America is an empire of magnificent strength. It was built to survive a great deal worse than Donald Trump. In the meantime, however, in our hearts, we know that she was robbed. That single fact alone has done more to disrespect this country than anything that has happened since Bush vs Gore.
Hillary Clinton is one of the most competent living Americans, and the fact of her exclusion from the halls of power in Washington is to the detriment of every man, woman, and child who calls this country home. She would have brought the country honor at all the same junctures that Trump has debased it. She is missed and she is needed more sorely than ever.
Furthermore, it is the opinion of Millennial Democrats that it’s only right to stick up for someone who is being slandered unfairly, and all the more so when they have spent a lifetime sticking up for you.
No matter how much mud they sling at her, we will never turn our backs on Hillary Clinton.
It’s hard to believe anyone can doubt it. We’ve been subjected to every indignity conceivable over the course of this last year. Remember when Trump was too old and fat to walk with the other leaders at the Paris Summit earlier this year, and had to ride along behind the rest in a golf cart?
Respect. They say you have to give it to get it. Donald Trump doesn’t respect anybody but himself.
We had a chance last year. We had one of the most competent politicians this country has ever seen, ready to take the reins from one of the most beloved politicians the country has ever seen.
It took Barack Obama eight years to get us pointed in the right direction again after the eight years of unending nightmare that was George Bush’s tenure in office, but he did it! Health care was resolved, we were out of Iraq, and the economy had substantially recovered. All we had to do was walk forward together.
That did not happen, for a number of different reasons, and the scale of the missed opportunity is the worst.
Perhaps we should consider what might have been, the what-ifs of a Hillary win, what has been lost and what opportunities were squandered this year. But when we do, we must realize it will be painful.
She had a lifetime of working with Congress and was a Senator herself for eight years. Her technical skill and consummate mastery of her topic gave her an ideal skill set to fine-tune Obamacare with and place it on firm footing for the future. There was no one else on Earth so uniquely qualified.
It is wisely said that Barack Obama’s greatest gift to Donald Trump was the economy. By nearly every conceivable metric, we are significantly better off now than we were in 2008. We’re still feeling the effects of his wise policies, although Trump tries taking credit for them all he can. He’s selling himself a dream, though. The Center for American Progress put together a list called 100 Days, 100 Ways, that Trump Has Hurt Americans. That was back in April.
Perhaps the biggest difference comes from what they intended to do with American resources. Speaking of Trump’s new tax plan, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said that he thought the bill would go down in history as one of the worst budgets Congress has ever passed.
In direct contrast, Hillary Clinton’s 2016 economic platform focused on raising middle-class incomes to increase growth. It was lauded by economic experts around the world for its depth and its realism.
Clinton’s plan was well-thought out and detailed. She was the only 2008 candidate to advocate a balanced budget. The tax credit, health insurance, and retirement plans would have funnelled cash to consumers.
It wasn’t anything rational that led to such a self-destructive decision on the part of the American people last year. It was anger. People stopped listening to each other. The lines of communication broke down. In this highly polarized, explosive environment, the collective reason of America failed her, to the eternal detriment of at least the reputation of the country.
Would the United States have been more respected today, if Hillary Clinton was our President? As surely as the sun will rise in the East and set in the West.
Our national conduct would befit that of a superpower, instead of a bumbling infant. Our economy would have stayed strong. We would not be internationally reviled for pulling out of the Paris Accord. In short, we would have been making strides toward the future, doing good for as many people as we can, for as long as we can.
Hillary Clinton is one of the most competent living Americans, and the fact of her exclusion from the halls of power in Washington is to the detriment of every man, woman, and child who calls this country home.
There will come a time when we get to try again. America is an empire of magnificent strength. It was built to survive a great deal worse than Donald Trump. In the meantime, however, in our hearts, we know that she was robbed. That single fact alone has done more to disrespect this country than anything that has happened since Bush vs Gore.
To Hillary Clinton herself, Millennial Democrats would simply like to say, We miss you, Madam President. The Clintons will always be the First Family, to many of us. We were kids when you guys ran the country, and you took good care of us.
Hillary Clinton would have brought the country honour, at all the same junctures that Trump has debased it. She will be sorely missed.
In response to this claim, Nixon crafted and delivered his famous “Checkers speech,” in which he decried his opponents and stated that no matter what anyone said, he would not return his daughters’ dog, Checkers, which had been given to them as a gift. In Poisoning the Press: Richard Nixon, Jack Anderson and the Rise of Washington’s Scandal Culture, professional correspondent Mark Feldstein gives a useful analysis of how that went over with the people.
“That resonated emotionally with the public, and a huge base — particularly of hard-core Republican conservatives — swelled to his defense and pressured Eisenhower to keep Nixon on the ticket,” Feldstein explains. “Meanwhile, liberal Democrats were nauseated by it and thought it was a maudlin speech. And the polarization that Nixon’s career would have ever after was indelibly marked.”
Thus did Richard Nixon embark upon his road to the White House. Many books have been written as to how he spent his time there, and it is not our purpose to touch on it deeply. Our interest rather lies in what effect it had on our system, to have weathered an assault on its every parameter. The Nixon administration treated America like an old Commodore 64.
Nixon’s failings were tempered and intertwined with great political gifts and considerable vision. His judgement was uneven and delusional, but he had a keen and nimble mind. In penetrating to the core of our system, he was to lay bare the groundwork of it, and expose key vulnerabilities to the light. This paved the way for a systematic undermining and devaluing of truth and objectivity.
Nixon went down in something rather less than a blaze of glory. The affair that became known as the Watergate scandal was a major political fiasco that occurred in the United States in the early 1970’s. Several Nixon operatives were caught attempting a break-in at the Democratic National Committee (DNC) headquarters at the Watergate office complex in Washington, D.C., on June 17, 1972.
The articles of impeachment drawn against him did not consider the break-in itself to be of primary importance in the reason why Nixon had to go. They focused rather on the tyrannical and power-hungry way he’d tried to cover it up. The first two of them read as follows.
(1) Making or causing to be made false or misleading statements to lawfully authorized investigative officers and employes of the United States.
(2) Withholding relevant and material evidence or information from lawfully authorized investigative officers and employes of the United States
He was convinced to resign by the four-star general sent in to be his chief of staff toward the end of his tenure in office, Alexander Haig, who played the role that his fellow four-star general John Kelly is playing in the Trump White House now. As Nixon became increasingly paranoid and miserable, Haig ran the daily affairs of the White House, and was instrumental in effecting the president’s resignation. It can only be hoped that Kelly will have similar luck.
The legacy of the deleterious effects of the Nixon era on our democracy cannot be overstated. He had his fingerprints all over the most fundamentally anti-democratic projects ever put together in America, such as the Enemies List. This was the roster of famous liberals targeted by Nixon for IRS audits and other forms of extralegal retaliation. His smear campaigns against his likely 1972 opponent, Senator Edward Kennedy, were reminiscent in many key regards to the fake news attacks on our people last year.
The elimination of the American people’s ability to think critically has had many an epoch. It is certain that a large one took place under Nixon, who in one famous speech toward the end, insisted to America that he was “not a crook.” That statement proved sadly untrue. Nixon was a crook, and his crookedness has reverberated clearly into our own times.
By now it should be getting pretty clear. This new GOP, the one that came to power after the death of John F. Kennedy, was not at all the same entity we’ve been looking at up until now. In the days of Eisenhower, much less in the days of Theodore Roosevelt, this kind of conduct would have been unthinkable. Even Warren Harding, corrupt as a Chinese eunuch, was a far more genial type of criminal. Nixon’s era was vicious.
That ferocity came directly from the fascist element that absorbed into America and Europe after World War Two. It values nothing, except the will to power. It values power as both the ends and the means. Ideology is unimportant to it, but is often employed as its tool.
G. Gordon Liddy, one of the Watergate burglars who went to prison for it, wrote an autobiography and named it WILL. It sings the praises of Hitler and the Nazis on every page. He presents an anecdote inside as to how he silenced an entire D.C. county jail pod, by standing around naked and singing the Horst Wessel song.
This is why they’re getting together with Russia. It’s the same group of guys. The Russia of the modern era is fascist in every regard. Like other fascists, they are intent on controlling the resources of the world. They have picked up and adapted these ratf*cking strategies, included them in their disinformation programs, and used them to destabilize us last year in the very same way the CIA once used to destabilize Third World countries like Haiti and Nicaragua. We have been systematically prepared for this, like Hansel and Gretel, by the dirty work done by Richard Nixon and others.
The Nixon era is also when the Republicans most directly involved in the 2016 Russian election hacking fiasco started crafting their modern mask in earnest. Guys like Roger Stone, the soon-to-be-indicted Paul Manafort, and Karl Rove all got their start during this time. Their mentors were the men who ran the Nixon administration, a place overflowing with competing monsters. All of these were deeply complicit in last year’s ongoings with the Trump campaign and Vladimir Putin.
Donald Segretti, the Nixon operative who coined the term “ratf*cking”, as in, “F*cking a DemocRAT”, played his role, did his prison time, and lived an unimportant life thereafter. However, Karl Rove, the GOP strategist whom George W. Bush referred to as “The Architect”, was a personal protege of his. Rove was already a deeply corrupt and ruthless person, even at nineteen.
In 1969, posing as a volunteer at the Chicago campaign headquarters of Alan Dixon, a Democrat running for state treasurer, Rove stole official campaign letterheads, and sent out 1,000 invitations to people in the city’s red-light district and soup kitchens, offering “free beer, free food, girls, and a good time for nothing” at Dixon headquarters. A bunch of crazed alcoholics showed up at this important fundraiser for Dixon.
Although Dixon still won the election, Rove succeeded in significantly disrupting it. Later, Rove said, “I got involved in a political prank.” Pranks of that nature made him useful to the Republicans all the way through the decades between Nixon and George W. Bush. The crimes and techniques of their generation were transmitted seamlessly to ours.
Policies such as the War on Drugs were developed and refined during these decades. Although this war on the American people is more commonly associated with Reagan, Nixon was the first to use the phrase. It was designed as a strategy to hamstring the lives of voters who Nixon saw as reliably Democratic, according to White House tapes.
Nixon domestic policy chief John Ehrlichman said, “We had two enemies- the antiwar left, and the blacks. We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black. But by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin, and then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities. We could arrest their leaders, raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs themselves? Of course we did.”
Reagan’s continuation of this so-called ‘war’ was meant to heighten racial tensions for the benefit of the Republican Party. This was a linchpin of the “Southern Strategy” conceived by Lee Atwater, whom most political observers of both parties rate as the dirtiest political strategist of the twentieth century. Voting rights, food stamps, and even madhouses were all taken away from the people. This was effective because the aforementioned white malcontents like to see other people get the shaft- at any cost. They’ve been taught to accept this as a substitute for a decent lot in life since before the Civil War.
The Republicans were able to use the McGovern-Fraser Commission ruling to their advantage, time and again. They became quite adept at handpicking their opponents. Jimmy Carter, Walter Mondale, and Michael Dukakis were all considered weak candidates by Republican National Committee officials. Although Carter did manage to unseat the incumbent, former vice president to Nixon Gerald Ford, Carter would not likely have been elected, had the GOP post-Nixon not been so hated that Christ himself could not have been elected on a Republican platform.
By 1980 they had significantly regrouped, behind Ronald Reagan, who handily won the presidential election. Many independents and a significant number of Democrats joined Republican voters in electing Ronald Reagan to be the fortieth president of the United States. He won the 1984 election in what was the biggest landslide victory since Cox-Harding, and his vice-president George H.W. Bush had little trouble succeeding him on the strength of that momentum. The very word “liberal” had become an epithet. The Republicans reigned supreme, and that showed every sign of continuing.
In that sentence, lies the motive of the “vast, right wing conspiracy” that Hillary Clinton has spoken of, out there for one purpose- to destroy her and her husband.
The campaign to destroy the Clintons was launched in 1989 by none other than the good old Lee Atwater, who was named head of the Republican National Committee. He was a natural choice, having recently put together President Bush’s winning campaign in 1988, personified accurately by the “Willie Horton” TV ad, which attempted to portray the Democratic candidate as a defender of black rapists and black murderers.
His job this time was to re-elect George H.W. Bush, and he was worried. Bill Clinton was young, charismatic, and eloquent. Most of all, he was likeable. The reptilian Bush hardly made for a winsome figure to begin with. Next to Clinton, he seemed like a cyborg.
In 1992, Republicans tried to make experience, character and trust the central issues. Voters indicated that the theme of change sounded by the Democrats was more important, but more important still was the personal power of Bill Clinton, and the amazingly effective duo that he and Hillary had made, ever since their college days.
This fear and insecurity on the part of the Republicans was the reason behind the launching of what became known as the “Arkansas Project”. Funded by billionaire Richard Mellon Scaife, this project was designed to damage and end the presidency of Bill Clinton. After wasting more than $25 million of taxpayer money to trump up charges against the Clintons on Whitewater, Troopergate, Travelgate and Filegate, the right had nothing better than to settle with the Monica Lewinsky affair, and the unjust vilification of Hillary Clinton.
Today it is not possible to determine how many millions have been spent by privately held companies like The Washington Free Beacon, America Rising, Burning Glass Consulting and Citizens United to discredit Hillary Clinton.
Back then, the Arkansas Project ended up a failure. In spite of innumerable attempts to force Bill Clinton out of office, he finished his term, and left office in a country that was in far better shape than it had been before his tenure.
Its legacy proved enduring, though. Last year, every one of those old slanders was unearthed and spread around with the greatest of zeal by the rabid supporters of Bernie Sanders, paving the way conveniently for Donald Trump’s Crooked Hillary attacks. The Arkansas Project cast its shadow over that entire chapter of last year’s debacle of an election. It has also provided a permanent and ever-growing repository of ammunition, used to effect by the revived partnership of mass media and fundamentalism, in the form of Rush Limbaugh and other celebrities of conservative talk radio in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s.
Those radio shows, which provide daily lessons in the art of propaganda, have done as much to eat away at the fabric of democracy as any other single factor within the last forty years. They gathered in strength and reach across the nation all through the Clinton presidency. Combined with the entering of Fox News and Rupert Murdoch into the game, the conservative media provided the Republicans with a potent weapon, one they would use to clear effect in 2000.
To an objective observer, two facts are clear: Clinton’s Vice-President Al Gore won the nationwide popular vote, and according to a recent Miami Herald analysis, he was also in all likelihood the favorite of Florida voters as well.
Jeb Bush, the brother of the Republican candidate for president, George W. Bush, was also the governor of Florida. He was a key component in the plot to steal the Florida election on behalf of his brother. If not for Jeb, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia would never have had the chance to cast that fateful vote on behalf of Bush.
The impropriety of that decision was obvious even to the members of the court. That is why they passed a second ruling, that the decision used in the process used to block Gore’s final recount could never be used again, as a legal precedent for any future cases.
The Bush era is when most of us millennials entered the story. Many of us remember the new heights of indecency and state-sanctioned lying reached on nearly a daily basis. The disinformation campaign that’s been used on us by the GOP since the Nixon era was taking a terrible toll by this point. The people didn’t know who to believe, and they didn’t know who to trust. It is the opinion of Millennial Democrats that this did a great deal to soften us up for the Russian disinformation machine.
The Republicans know that the only strength the people have is in their numbers. If they can make sure the left doesn’t work together, they can pick us off one by one. Karl Rove and the Republican Party know this very well. It has been a tactic of rulers since the days of Rome and before.
And so, both in 2000 and in 2004, the Republicans used a man named Ralph Nader, then the Green Party of the U.S.’s (G-PUS) candidate for president, to divide the left and hamstring the Democratic candidates.
We were to see those techniques again, as they were used to cheat Hillary Clinton from her rightful place in the White House. Jill Stein, the milkwater replacement of Nader in the G-PUS, and Paul Manafort were both attendees at that infamous meeting with Putin in Russia.
Al Gore was a highly principled and competent man, but he lacked the drive for victory that Bill Clinton had, and he lacked the necessary vigor to withstand the ferocity of Republican greed. Bush got into office, and spent his time there dragging his country so deeply through the mud that it still has yet to be seen whether or not we can recover.
The next four years changed everything for America.
The strange circumstances surrounding that cataclysmic and unlikely disaster will be debated for as long as people walk this earth, and it is not our purpose to look deeply into the mysteries surrounding. We will stick to what we know for sure. Regardless of its causes, George Bush used the biggest foreign assault our nation has ever been victimized by to pass some of the most invasive and insidious legislature ever conceived.
The War on Terror has mostly come and gone, but the domestic effects of the Patriot and Homeland Security Acts will be with us until the end. A war in Afghanistan was started, which we are still fighting. And then Bush used all the nation’s rage to finish a job that his father had started, the rousting of Saddam Hussein from the apex of the power structure of Iraq. By 2003, we were at war in Iraq. By 2004 it was clear we were in big trouble. Nothing else mattered in 2004, except getting George W. Bush out of office.
However, when the election finally came around, an election so crucial that a movie, Fahrenheit 9/11 was made about the slovenly evils committed by the Republican candidate Bush, an unbelievable amount of different things went wrong. Half of the six million people living abroad, for example, got their ballots too late to vote. Malfunctioning machines mysteriously failed to properly register a presidential vote on more than 20,000 ballots.
All in all, nationwide, according to the federal commission charged with implementing election reforms, as many as 1 million ballots were spoiled by faulty voting equipment – roughly one for every 100 cast. But what is most anomalous about the irregularities in 2004 was their decidedly partisan bent. Almost without exception they hurt John Kerry and benefited George Bush. Robert Kennedy Jr. wrote at the time, “After carefully examining the evidence, I’ve become convinced that the president’s party mounted a massive, coordinated campaign to subvert the will of the people in 2004.”
In 2008, the anti- Clinton machines to the right and the left geared back up for another battle. A lot of the same old smears were employed by the Obama campaign, as well as the new tactic of associating her with big business and Wall St. Hillary Clinton called at the time for higher regulations on Wall St. Their decision to side against her cost her the presidency.
As 2009 began, the same juggernaut of lies was employed consistently during her tenure as Secretary of State, most notably in the drumming up of unimportant nonsense like Benghazi and email servers. None of it did them much good with Obama in office. Romney was a joke in 2012. Obama’s reign, hateful as it was to the racist fascist network, was secure.
During the eight years of his tenure, the GOP was to reach heights of total desperation. Outlets like Breitbart and Fox News were a help, but on their own they would never have been enough. It’s only once you factor in RT and Sputnik and the Russians that you can see they had a chance, and this is what led to the devil’s bargain in 2016 that Robert Mueller is now closing in on.
The continuing radicalization of the GOP has now been amply documented for 120 years. Scholars, party insiders, and any human being who has ever set foot in Virginia can all bear witness to that.
The decent and moderate conservatives of the old school, who meant the word in the sense of conservation, who once played such a key role in the enactment of civil rights and environmental legislation, have gone the way of the dinosaur.
Republicans know perfectly well that when people vote for them, they are voting against their own interests. The day people realize that is the day the GOP stops winning elections. So they have developed an entire playbook of dirty tricks, with which to demoralize the Democratic base and suppress the vote as much as possible. Every time you hear someone say that they don’t vote, because their vote doesn’t matter, you have heard an example of their strategy working.
Republicans have fewer adherents every year, but they have two major factors on their side; a fanatical base willing to carry out the dirty tricks, and the greediest billionaires to finance them. They deceive good people by appealing to their worst instincts. raising the red flag of abortion and gay marriage to divert attention away from their arrogant and greedy policies which cause the poverty, war and pollution we are facing today.
2016 proved once and for all that there is no trick too dirty and nothing too low for the Republicans, who went so far as to collude with Russia, our biggest global rival, rather than see another Democrat in the White House.
In 2016, extremists on both ends of the political spectrum did a great deal to spread around the notion of a moral equivalency between the two parties. They say it doesn’t matter who you vote for, because the President doesn’t really run the country anyway. They say it doesn’t matter who you vote for, because all politicians are corrupt, They say the system is broken, that it can’t be fixed, and that the right thing to do is just stand back aloof from the whole mess until it collapses under its own weight.
Those ideas are paid for by the Republicans, who are only too happy to keep right along tightly controlling the “broken” system. Votes matter tremendously. They’re the only power we have. That’s why the Koch network and others spend so much money every year to keep us from being able to use them.
The new development is for the GOP to link hands with its ideological allies in Russia, who have developed the same sorts of ideas to their most logical conclusions. Former world chess champion Garry Kasparov, who is now an exile in London for the crime of having run against Putin in a supposedly democratic election, summed it up best by saying that comparing America’s approach to the management of its global affairs against modern-day Russia’s is like comparing the work a surgeon does to Jack the Ripper. Both of them cut people open, but that is where the similarity ends. Certainly that was true during Obama’s reign, but the future of everything has been thrown into uncertainty by the hacking of our election and the coming to power of Donald Trump.
Democrats have found ourselves beset on many sides, with no control in any branch of government and facing the most terrible international and domestic threats through the disastrous medium of Trump. Knowing the extent of our domestic paralysis, and encouraged by the failure of the West to respond when they annexed the Crimea from Ukraine, it is all too likely the Russians may attempt another seizure of formerly Soviet-dominated areas, daring the West to respond once again.
Last month, they moved tens of thousands of troops, plus accompanying artillery and air support, unsettlingly close to Baltic borders, in what they have labeled “strategic war exercises”, and given the name of the Zapad War Games. In the same week, it came out that over one hundred United States power stations are infected with the very same Stuxnet virus used to turn the power off in Ukraine in 2014, just before Crimea was taken.
In the meantime, the Syrian Civil War is winding down. Assad and the Russians won, while the rebels we were supporting were left to their fate. North Korea is firing rockets over Japan, and instead of entering talks with them Trump is exchanging schoolyard insults with North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il on the floor of the United Nations. The rest of the world is watching. It’s become painfully clear that things with the Party of Trump have gone terribly awry.
The long road to tyranny is a slippery slope, and one without organized mile markers. None of this has happened overnight, and it won’t be fixed overnight either. It’s hard to dig your way back out of a hole, especially when that hole is 120 years deep. But it is incumbent upon us to undertake this task, nonetheless. This is our country, for better or worse, and stranger things have happened. Victories have been won against worse odds.
Recognizing the problem is the first step. The one positive of 2016 is that many people have awoken to the general plot. The Republican Party has become an impediment of colossal and vicious proportion. Ohio Governor and 2016 GOP Presidential candidate John Kasich said on Sunday that unless the Republican Party reforms, he can no longer continue to support it.
Hard as it may be for Mr. Kasich to accept, it’s too late to reform the GOP. But it’s not too late to learn from its example. We still have time to reform the country.
Over this series, we took a look at the hole the GOP has been digging for itself. We have learned why it is time to remove the Republican stumbling block from our path. Moving forward, we’ll be taking a closer look at the fascist network we’ve been making reference to, who they are, and where they came from.
By shining light on cockroaches, you make them skitter for cover. It’s the same with Nazis. We’re going to turn over the rocks they’ve been hiding under. By exposing their plots, networks, and strategies, we will truly #MakeNazisAfraidAgain. Fascism and democracy are incompatible, like mold and fungus. Democracy cannot live, where fascism is thriving. To save the America that our ancestors lived and died in, we have got to see this through to the very end.
It is a well-known fact that economic recessions give the forces of radicalism a shot in the arm. We have seen that as recently as 2016, as evinced by the popularity of both Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump. This is what made it so easy for Trump to knock aside and disregard the rank-and-file Republicans that have made our life a hell all these years.
We have also seen that the far right is the inevitable beneficiary of the consequences, when the far left loses control of themselves and does something stupid. The emails dumped by Wikileaks the day before the Democratic National Convention in 2016, that led to rioting in the streets and the forced resignation of Debbie Wassermann-Schultz illustrate a particularly grotesque example.
People don’t take it well, when they lose everything due to government incompetence. No one is as aware of that as people who came of age in the new millennium. If you grew up in the 1990’s, under the benign and prosperous reign of Bill Clinton, you just were not prepared, for the slaughterhouse reality of watching it all go to the dogs after 2001.
The turn of the millennium was a very hopeful time for our generation. We all grew up talking about it, watching movies about it, and dreaming of what the world would look like, when the big year finally came. The years just prior had been some of the best the country had ever seen.
The Soviet Union was gone, the Internet boom had created a whole new infinity of possible ways to spend your future, and the Stone Temple Pilots were actively touring. It is the opinion of Millennial Democrats that Purple was a superior album to Core.
It was the worst thing he ever could have done for the country. The resultant war, catastrophe, and repression has caused a terrible anger to start brewing in the hearts of our people. Failure to properly cope with that anger is why people voted for Trump.
It was the financial crisis known as the Great Recession that set the stage for the chaos we are living in now. In Teddy Roosevelt’s time, also, the stage was set by a terrible financial crisis. It was known as the Panic of 1893.
Employee unions had become an increasingly ubiquitous force in American life, during the last quarter of the nineteenth century. They sought to improve working conditions, and their methods were not always nonviolent.
Strikers had clashed violently with police and the military, in many places nationwide. In Chicago’s Haymarket Riot in 1886, a bomb was thrown at police, and seven were hanged in the aftermath. The European “doctrine” known as anarchism had showed up on the scene. Its presence was unwanted and so were the immigrants that brought it. These tensions exacerbated the situation further. Communication started breaking down between the people and the government, which barely stayed open.
The year before the Panic, the Carnegie Steel Trust cut the wages of its workers at the Homestead Works near Pittsburgh, sparking one of the greatest labor battles of the day, and bringing the name of Emma Goldman, the revolutionary socialist, to the forefront of American politics for the first time.
Goldman’s circle devised a plan to assassinate the plant manager, Henry Clay Frick, and her husband Alexander Berkman actually tried it. The plan did not work, Berkman went to prison, and it ruined the strike for the strikers. The law had their excuse to suppress the workers, and Goldman was soon forced into exile. The pressure on the streets began approaching critical mass.
In 1901, President William McKinley was interacting with a crowd at the Pan-American Exhibition in Buffalo, New York, shaking hands with someone, when a 28-year-old anarchist named Leon Czolgosz ran up and shot him in the chest. He died eight days later, and Vice President Theodore Roosevelt was immediately sworn in as president.
When the far-left lost their collective temper, it expressed itself in the shooting of the President. This event worsened their lot tremendously. The press associated the assassination with “crazed” anarchists in the public mind, costing it whatever public sympathy it had.
Whatever else is going on, Democrats remain lawful and nonviolent. We don’t poison our own waters with crap like this.
As a result of all this disorder, the immigration question suddenly took on a paramount importance. It was perceived in terms very similar to what we see today, although no one on our political scene back then was stupid enough to think this could be fixed by building a wall.
It was under these conditions that Teddy Roosevelt became the first president in office to explicitly link immigration with the security of the country, and put the immigration issue high on his political agenda. Although he considered immigrants to be a key building block of the nation’s success in the future, his predecessor had been murdered by one, and he never stopped considering them a threat.
TR suspected the public’s mood would darken in this direction, and he moved to take advantage of their outrage. Thanks to the excesses of anarchists, the executive branch was able to set the basic course of immigration debate and policy for decades to come, with the ultimate goal being for the federal government to gain the ability to pick and choose at the gate.
Our Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients have a unique perspective on this issue, and particular focus should be paid going forward on hearing their stories and receiving their input.
Under Republican guidance, the problem has gotten steadily worse, and the government responses more extreme. Most recently, the 45th President of the United States, Republican Donald Trump, ordered immigration checkpoints to remain open in Texas during the evacuation process from Hurricane Harvey.
Although Millennial Democrats opines that Theodore Roosevelt is rolling over in his grave, to see what today’s GOP has been doing with his ideas, the fact remains that he can legitimately be held responsible for setting in motion an immigration policy that revolved around a selection process that included stereotyping, racial profiling, and immigration.
TR’s views on race and people of color are repugnant by the standards of today. But it’s important to remember that he came to office at a time when racism was all-pervasive. Jim Crow laws had recently begun taking effect down South.
The famous scientist Sir Francis Galton coined the term “eugenics”, a set of beliefs and practices designed to improve the genetic quality of a human population. Eugenicists were universal in declaring for the inferiority of the black man. This theory remained popular until the Nazis applied it to its logical conclusions. These days, Republicans do not like to talk about it.
Although Galton himself ridiculed it, part of the so-called scientific racism eugenics evolved from included another “science” called phrenology, attempting to measure one’s intelligence, ability, and personal characteristics by the shape of one’s skull. The conclusions drawn by that pack of louts were, to say the least, ungenerous in their assessments of African- Americans.
But TR did not pay any of it much mind. The great Booker T. Washington served as his close adviser on racial relations, and at his invitation, became the first African-American to eat dinner in the White House. This was one of the things that inflamed the conservative wing of the Republican party against him, and this is of the highest significance.
In that inflammation, was the seed of the modern deplorable.
It was a very horrible time to be in America for anyone except white males, as we moved into the 20th century. These were free to murder a black man, or rape a black woman, with all but complete impunity in most of the nation. Discrimination against minorities and women was a part of the American bedrock, and perfectly legal, and this manifested in acts of murderous violence all the time. In 1915, a Jewish man named Leo Frank was dragged out of prison by a mob and lynched.
This event caused a great deal of controversy, so much so that two famous and familiar institutions were born and reborn from it- the Anti-Defamation League, and the Ku Klux Klan. The merest mention of the latter’s sickening name, let alone its history, should be enough to make anyone understand why we can’t equivocate when it comes to philosophies of hatred. When it comes time to call a foul abomination like Charlottesville by name, you have got to make a choice. Either you do, or you don’t. Inside that choice, lies the key to what manner of person you are.
Between racial issues and economics, the beginnings of the ideological schism in the Republican Party had become quite clear already. In 1908 TR decided not to run for a full second term, and went hunting in Africa instead. He came home displeased at the direction things were going, and opposed his former Secretary of War, William Howard Taft, in the 2012 primaries.
Taft used his control of the party machinery to gain a bare majority of delegates, and kept control of the nomination by dubious means. Roosevelt left the party at once, and formed the Progressive Party.
The remainder of the Republican Party was now to be solely comprised of the reactionary Conservative faction represented by Taft, his successor. Here we find the nucleus of the Party of Hate that the GOP is today.
But the Democrats still had plenty of racists, too. It wasn’t to be until the decline of the conservative wing of the Democratic Party was complete after 1960 that we managed to mostly rid ourselves of this pernicious and unworthy influence.
Woodrow Wilson, who defeated both Taft and Roosevelt in 1916, was a Democrat. He was also a Southerner, who did great harm to the cause of black people, far more than either Taft or Roosevelt would have. But with the two old friends now at each other’s throats in a third-party disaster, like what we have gone through with the Green Party, his victory in 1912 was a fait accompli.
The Republicans got beat that year, and their party split in two, because of their inability to come to terms and see eye to eye. The same thing happened to us on the left wing in 2000, and again in 2016. When decent people fail to work together, it is always the villains who profit.
World events were about to shake things up. The two World Wars were right around the corner, and they would prove capable of drawing many new boundaries, both geographical and ideological. For the Republican Party and the rest of the world, many changes were on the horizon.