Thank the Lord God above, thought I, upon seeing these polls. At least people have finally woken up about one of the many vile former residents of the neo-Pandora’s Box that is the Trump era. Seeing Bern crash, the one man without whom none of this could have been possible has been the one really good thing on our entire political spectrum. Everything else is just tragedy and chaos, the whole miserable world is on the brink, it’s far from only here. In France, Marine Le Pen is leading Macron in the polls. This is a complete disgrace.
It’s been a long couple of years and no mistake. There’s not a single person in my life doing any kind of well in the slightest way. More than one of these, I am exceedingly sorry to say- like, really, sorry in the absolute extreme- are people I went to school with that bought into Bernie or Bust. They haven’t learned, either. One girl I know who voted Stein in the end just got fired from the Dollar Tree. Prettiest girl in the school, back in the day. God, how depressing.
I remember how hard I tried three years ago to tell people how it would be. Every front will be one on which we’re going to get assaulted, every day will be a fresh indignity, every right we have will be up for libertarian grabs, and every person in the country will soon be broke. They just didn’t care. You couldn’t speak to them. And when they were done, they did all they could to just blend right back in among the real anti-Trump Resistance.
Now, look at us.
Being right is one lousy consolation prize, but it is what it is. How do you like Bust, Bernie fans? Bust is here! We are living and wallowing in Bust, like pigs in slop! Are you really still naive enough to think Bernie Sanders can fix it? He hardly makes sense when he talks! This whole thing would be funny if it wasn’t so tragic. “Curse God and die,” said the wife of Job, who refused.
It’s clear to me Job must have been a Democrat.
They’re saying the 2020 recession‘s going to come next year, but it really seems to me it’s here already. The stock market is showing signs of crashing.Gas prices are up by a dollar a gallon. Productivity is not terrible but the people never see it. The economists can run around with all the fancy words like “macroeconomics” they can find, but they can’t make it so people aren’t broke. When they say the economy is good, they just mean that most people have jobs. This standard terminology ignores the question of how much those jobs pay, or which classes of society reap the gains.
Wages are rising too slowly compared to the cost of living, which means the monopolists and not the workers are to capture the gains from productivity growth. Lower productivity also means less wealth available for the government to redistribute.
In other words, economists and commentators are calling the economy “great” because that’s what they’re used to doing. They just mean that most people have jobs. In fact, it’s a very real problem faced by people in America today, a serious problem that requires a serious solution.
How in the heck is it possible for anyone to conclude the shambling wreck we saw blathering about Franklin Roosevelt on TV Wednesday night is the man to handle it?
The point of having a State of any kind is to protect and administer well the resources possessed by the nation. Bernie doesn’t understand this, which is why his whole speech was so depressing to watch. Some of his ideas are similar to ours, some are blatant thefts, all are ill-explained and murkily conceived of. It’s just a disgrace.
We’ve spent a lot of time since then vetting Bernie, and helping people to understand how insincere and ugly his whole crusade really was. People are listening, too. Bernie is now not only behind Joe Biden in the polls, either. Sincere progressives, serious ones, have begun to coalesce behind Elizabeth Warren, which is fine. Will they end up winning some liberals over to their plans?
If they make sense, of course, they will!
Traditionally, we’ve taken the side of the moderates when writing of Democratic politics. But progressive ideas are a big part of our time-honored Warren was not an enemy back in 2016. She did not fall for the “Run Warren Run” scam the year before, an attempt on the part of Bern’s eventual financers to hamstring Hillary Clinton using another female candidate- they chose Bernie instead! He wasn’t even their first choice. Warren was, and if it ends up being her in the end, she can sure count on my wholehearted support against Trump.
Why? Among many other reasons, I believe she’d do a better job handling economy and infrastructure. So would Joe Biden, obviously. Kamala Harris is a Senator, Pete Buttigieg speaks seven languages, and so on. These are people who could perform the tasks this country needs better than Donald Trump could. All of them are acceptable.
On the other hand, look at Bernie. Just look at him! That blue clown suit! “To me, democratic socialism means democracy, basically,” he said once, hilariously enough. He has got to know what he’s doing, by conflating our system constantly with one of left-wing dictatorship, but what of it? Taking a dump on the lawn is what he does.
The other night’s speech was all about hearing Bernie out while he finally finished giving a coherent definition of the “democratic” socialism he’s been telling us about for all these years.
His supporters do not know what socialism is, and their habit of using the term imprecisely has caused a tremendous confusion on the topic, and everyone has been very excited to hear what he was going to say to clarify.
Those who were expecting something new was to be disappointed entirely. It was the same tired stump speech from one rally after another back then.
We’ve covered this before, on this blog, but thanks to the good old Bern, here we go again.
One of these recommends upkeeping and protecting it, the other wants to light it all on fire.
The former advocates a tempering of capitalism’s harshness with a social safety net. The latter consider it broken already and intends to make sure it’s broke some more. Darn broke, in fact. Wielding the hammer is Bernie’s plan.
The progressive section of the community has two halves, like any other. There’s the rational and serious half, and there’s the Bernie or Busters.
The former knows that social democracy is the term in Europe used to describe adherents of a governmental system designed to augment and improve market-based, democratic societies using techniques derived from socialist theories, e.g the social safety net that gives American citizens the right to basic health care.
Bernie Sanders was lucky to be able to get to the Soviet Union in 1988 and praise all its stunning socialist achievements before the entire system and empire collapsed under the weight of its own spectacular failures. pic.twitter.com/bENmwVKi0g
Left-wing socialist countries like Venezuela, the Soviet Union, and North Korea use the markets as well, but they treat their citizens like captives and place bureaucrats in the places of businessmen. They create captive markets that monopoly capitalists can exploit. Capitalism per se is not the problem. It’s just a power source. The problem is the cancerous appendix it’s developed, the branch we call monopoly capitalism.
It isn’t like the left never has any good ideas or makes any good observations, and this excellent term is one of them. It was Vladimir Lenin, founder of the Soviet Union, who first argued that laissez-faire capitalism had mutated into monopoly capitalism after World War One, and that the free market was now an illusion. Our answer is that this goes too far, the free market does exist, and the limits of human power often manifest in our inability to control it. But it certainly has gotten sick. We’ve been seeing this more and more in the last few decades.
So make no mistake- Bernie Sanders is one hundred percent right to be talking about economic inequality in the United States. It’s a HUGE problem, and we will figure something out about it. The first step is to know just what we’re dealing with. In that aspect, Bernie is in some ways a bigger hindrance than Trump himself. Confusion swirls after every word he says.
Sanders has made a contribution to humanity by getting people worried about this. It’s just that in refusing to talk about the role the left wing has played in the degenerating of our global order, he is deliberately blinding himself and his people to a critical half of how the whole thing has come to work. Left-wing and right-wing aren’t that important to guys like Putin and the Koch Brothers. They will finance any ideology if it helps them achieve their goals of world domination; a critical component of fascism. The threat is two-pronged, and one head is not less dangerous than the other, big talk from one about helping the “masses” notwithstanding.
The socialist powerbrokers, like Raul Castro or Nicolas Maduro, eat like kings themselves off the deals they do with the capitalists they despise. Left-wing dictatorship is no less loathsome than right-wing dictatorship, and all dictatorships today are totalitarian, meaning Stalin and not the Tsar, for example. But Sanders didn’t talk about them.
We’re in trouble here.
It certainly is true that right-wing type dictatorships are badly on the rise. Sanders was right to bring up Hungary’s Viktor Orban, for example. That’s the guy who came up with the model they all want to use, to get rid of democracy using democratic means. It was disgusting when Trump invited him to speak over here last month.
But why not Nicolas Maduro? Wouldn’t the Venezuelan example have been worth mentioning, as a way for the Bern to establish himself as a thoughtful, generous-minded future crafter of American policy? Would that not have been a good time for a concession statement? The display he made the other night was disgracefully unserious. My English 1A teacher would have failed him. The rubric we use would have done him like a chainsaw.
Sanders didn’t want to talk about Maduro because he calls himself a “democratic” socialist, which suits his agenda. That is unforgivably misleading and deceptive. Bernie owed it to the people to show us he understands that dictatorship of any flavor is equally horrible and wrong. In the timeless accusation of the Big Lebowski, he completely failed to achieve. Sure, Jair Bolsonaro’s presidential victory in Brazil was and is troubling in the utmost. But Venezuela also is collapsing! The crisis on the southern border is largely due to the failure of socialism!
The Trump administration can and should be justly reviled for the methods they have used to deal with the problem, as locking little children in dog cages cannot be considered right no matter what the circumstances are, but they didn’t cause it. This willingness to ignore the other side of the problem was the primary fallacy of his blind-in-one-eye argument, as presented on CNN the other night. It has been all along.
Going forward, look for Bernie’s name recognition and past enthusiasm to fade in comparison to the plans and viable paths to solutions offered by other candidates.
You can’t even squeeze blood from a turnip, let alone a viable political theory we can build a working system from. St. Bernard is not Karl Marx.
If we ever need a President of Post Office Renamers, Bern, we’ll give you a call.
The name of Bernie Sanders did not appear on the ballot in a single state during the 2016 general election. But a large share of the blame for this disaster that is the current administration lies squarely on his shoulders.
The Bernie or Bust movement was a nightmare, the blatant racism and sexism shown by his campaign were a worse one. But in terms of national security, however, worst of all was the Russian support, particularly on social media, that kept his campaign alive long past the point of reason.
Using illegally acquired data from Wikileaks, emails that suggested little wrongdoing, the Russians successfully goaded Bernie, and his supporters showed his anger on the streets of Philadelphia, while inside the Democratic National Convention, Paul Simon played the first notes of “Bridge Over Troubled Waters”.
Bernie’s conduct, when questioned about this, has been defensive and rude, and this reaction has added to the number of raised questions that linger to this day about where the senator stands on the shadowy foreign figures who were once involved with his campaign.
The evidence is clear that Sanders became the Ralph Nader of 2016, peeling off just enough votes from the Democratic candidate to spoil the election. All the chaos he created on the left drained just as much support away from Hillary Clinton as it took for Donald Trump to win. By this point, the proof is huge and glaring that he, and to a less well-known and effective extent, Jill Stein, allowed themselves to be used as Putin’s other puppets.
We had hoped he would be smart enough not to split the whole left by running again, but that is not going to be the case. So now that Bernie Sanders has formally declared his candidacy, a bad but not unexpected move, we’re coming across a lot of different questions regarding what manner of man he is.
Is he a socialist? Yes. He’s been calling himself a “Democratic Socialist” since the 1960’s. The word “Democratic” is not a qualifier; it is better off deleted. He means he’s a socialist, plain and simple.
Is he less than one hundred years old? We’re not sure, but he claims to be. Birth records support this claim, technically, but not by much.
Is he an escaped Walking Dead extra? No one can say for certain, either way.
All of these are good questions, and the disturbing answers to them raise serious concerns about his viability to compete in a general election. But the big questions are these. How much damage did Bernie Sanders do in 2016, and how bad were the Russians infested in his campaign apparatus?
In the three states that put Trump in the Oval Office, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, a high number of voters who voted for Sanders in the Democratic primary in those states crossed over and voted for Trump in the general election.
One in ten, to be exact. We’re talking thousands of people here. Registered Democrats who went so far as to actually vote for Trump.
Is it true that he and his campaign were involved in the Russian plot to interfere with our 2016 presidential election? The one that Trump says was fake news, but was actually so real it’s truly awful?
The answer to that question is a resounding yes, and we’re going to make the case for it thoroughly.
Let’s start by taking a look at the Russian motive, means, and modus operandi for giving Bernie Sanders a hand against Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary.
Motive: Vladimir Putin wanted to cost Hillary Clinton the election, by any means necessary. The most effective, obvious, and accessible ways for him to do it was to give her opponents a hand.
One of these opponents was Donald Trump, the obvious recipient of most of Putin’s goodwill. Another, Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein, was physically present at the infamous December of 2015 dinner meeting with former National Security Adviser and Retired General Michael Flynn. The third, and the focus of this article was Bernie Sanders, her primary opponent.
Former U.S. officials who worked on Russia policy with Clinton have laid out the reasons for this in detail. Vladimir Putin, of course, is the multibillionaire dictator of Russia who paid for all this to take place.
Hillary Clinton strongly condemned the validity of Russia’s parliamentary elections in December of 2011. This made Putin very unhappy. He had his anger communicated directly to President Barack Obama.
“Former U.S. officials who worked on Russia policy with Clinton say that Putin was personally stung by Clinton’s December 2011 condemnation of Russia’s parliamentary elections, and had his anger communicated directly to President Barack Obama. They say Putin and his advisers are also keenly aware that, even as she executed Obama’s “reset” policy with Russia, Clinton took a harder line toward Moscow than others in the administration. And they say Putin sees Clinton as a forceful proponent of “regime change” policies that the Russian leader considers a grave threat to his own survival.”
“He was very upset [with Clinton] and continued to be for the rest of the time that I was in government,” said Michael McFaul, who served as the top Russia official in Obama’s national security council from 2009 to December 2011 and then was U.S. ambassador to Moscow until early 2014. “One could speculate that this is his moment for payback.”
He ended up getting it, but not without a lot of domestic help. It came from the far left, and it came from the alt-right, suggesting strongly what we strongly believe: The alt-right and the far left are one.
A spokesperson for the publication told Town and Country Magazine that was because they haven’t been able to figure it out. “While Forbes has been able to track money tied to Putin’s allies, we have not been able to come up with a defensible, provable estimate of his net worth.”
For a guy like this, throwing a few tens or even hundreds of millions into manipulating the elections of other countries to make them more amenable to Russian interests is nothing. It would almost be strange if he didn’t do it.
Putin has paid for “destability” campaigns worldwide. The far right is not alone among radicals in getting plenty of Russian assistance. The far left, which has shown just as strong a resurgence as its counterpart since the Great Recession happened, is also getting more than its fair share. Russia, it seems, is never short of rubles to spend on troublemaking.
Director of the Political Capital Institute Peter Kreko has been recently involved in research regarding this matter. He concluded two facts about the intentions of Putin. First, that he is becoming the frontman of a worldwide anti-human rights movement, and second, that he is investing in, stirring up, and inciting radicals on both ends of the spectrum that are trying to “sabotage democracy in Europe”.
Kreko describes Russian tactics focused on destabilizing the EU and advancing Moscow’s ideology. This includes supporting parties and candidates on the margins, such as Bernie Sanders, or Jill Stein and the Green Party.
In America, we are experiencing many problems with so-called progressives who are still insisting, in the face of the overwhelming evidence that keeps piling up, that “the Russia thing” is simply a distraction from the main issue, that in their view being how the DNC cheated Bernie Sanders (it didn’t). These people are doing the entire human race a grand disservice.
By turning a blind eye to the machinations of the most nakedly aggressive power to arise in the world since Hitler’s Third Reich, for the sake of stoking a petty grudge, they are in fact helping to make possible the same specific chaotic social conditions that in the past allowed far-right populist movements like Germany’s National Socialism to thrive.
They don’t understand that they are being duped by people who long ago grew cynical and full of boredom regarding the sorts of dreams and theories Bernie Sanders is espousing. After all, they invented most of it, and more a hundred years ago.
The left’s affiliation with the Kremlin can be explained better via the “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” principle. Marx long taught that Communists should make any such alliances as are helpful toward the ultimate goal of dissolving the State. Russia’s state-controlled economy, which promises to keep “big capital” in check, has proved attractive as a model for many anti-capitalists.
Democratic Socialists, such as Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, have clearly labeled themselves as anti-capitalist. This would have made them extremely valuable to Soviet propagandists working from inside the KGB. It still does.
Modus Operandi: Hiring hackers to spread dirt and lies around to influence elections is part of the Russian toolkit. The 2016 plan was not a new strategy, but rather a direct descendant of the original Cheka Disinformation Office, founded by “Iron” Felix Dzherzhinsky in 1923. Working both ends of the radical spectrum, left and right, to destabilize the interior of an enemy country. That is what they do.
Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs has a researcher named Ben Buchanan working for them, also a Global Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. The focus of his research lies in examining how nations use their capabilities for attack and espionage in cyberspace against one another and examining the strategies that drive this usage. His words in their unaltered form may help to shed some light.
“There is a demonstrated pattern of Russian cyber operations stretching back several decades. One major early case, dating from the late 1990s, is commonly referred to as Moonlight Maze. In that case, Russian hackers penetrated a wide range of American networks for espionage purposes. Since then, Russian cyber operations have continued to expand greatly, hacking into key military, political, and economic institutions.”
“These operations show adeptness in several ways. Perhaps most significant is that they demonstrate how the Russians have developed new digital methods to accomplish old tasks. A series of espionage cases show the Russian aptitude for gathering information using computer hacking. The 2007 attack on Estonia and 2008 attack on Georgia are an exhibit of how Russia uses cyber operations against democratic states. Though we have somewhat less information about it, the 2015 blackout in Ukraine—the first ever publicly known case of a power outage caused by cyber-attack—shows the potency of cyber-attacks that appear to be Russian in origin. And the 2016 election interference demonstrates that the Russians have married their longstanding history of influence operations with their more recently developed capacity for hacking.” -With thanks to the Wilson Center.
The particulars of how these political digital influence campaigns worked out in practice in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary will be only too memorial to any Democratic activist who was around in 2016. We’ve included an anecdote that sums up what they were trying for precisely.
Around September 14 in 2016, for example, one “account specialist” of a Russian-controlled Facebook group called “Secured Borders” was reprimanded for having a “low number of posts dedicated to criticizing Hillary Clinton.”
The specialist was also told, “it is imperative to intensify criticizing Hillary Clinton.”
Later on, Russian operatives used accounts they controlled — including an account called “Woke Blacks” and “Blacktivist” — to urge Americans to vote for third-party candidates or not to vote at all. “Choose peace and vote for Jill Stein,” one such message read. “Trust me, it’s not a wasted vote.”
Not for Russia, anyway.
No, indeed, Donald Trump was not the only candidate the Russians tried to help during the 2016 presidential campaign. One other name was mentioned specifically. Senator Bernard Sanders, I-VT. The Mueller indictments of a year ago offer solid confirmation of what we have been saying all along. The specific mention of Trump and Sanders shows that the Russian government decided early on to oppose Clinton.
A personal anecdote, that I’ll admit to having shared before. The editor of Millennial Democrats was online alongside legions of others, out there for HRC from 2015 onward, every day, for many hours. Anyone who was there back then can tell you. It can be stated categorically that there was a tangible, palpable disinformation campaign going on against Hillary Clinton. It worked, too. The Bernie Bots truly hated us, and their viciousness knew no bounds at all.
It still doesn’t.
In my experience, this blog and its affiliate Millennial Democrats Facebook Pages and Millennial Democrats Twitter account, which is a fifty state plus nationwide apparatus, has been attacked by Trump trolls maybe one out of ten in the ratio of how often it has been attacked by Bernie trolls. This has little to do with what side of the country we are talking about. It goes right across the board.
I’ve written in a 3 to 1 ratio of pieces targeting the right rather than the far left, although it is my deeply-held conviction and the conclusion pointed to by evidence that they are the same entity. But even when the week of Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation is taken into account this remains true. Any moderate Democratic activist online will tell you the same.
You would go into groups and talk to people, who were steadfast in their refusal to listen far beyond the bounds of reason or even fanaticism. These guys were professionals.
It was like they were getting paid per response. They all seemed to be equipped with the same list of hit points about Hillary Clinton. This became clear after a while because the very same slanders would be laid out every time, in sequential order. In many cases the wording was actually identical, although most took the time to switch about at least a thing or two. And they were just as prevalent on the left as on the right.
It got especially bad during the last month of the Democratic primary, which was a very horrible time filled with chaos and division.
During this time, we were savagely attacked. Anything we posted would be Reported as Spam/Abuse by political adversaries from both the alt-right and radical left. We were barraged with nasty messages and threats; as a matter of fact, we continue to get them. They just keep rolling in, day after day, month piled on top of month. It’s called gaslighting; they want to wear you down so you give up.
One particularly rabid group of Bernie Sanders supporters told one of our contributors that they hoped she was gang-raped.
The list is long, sick, and sordid. Drop by drop, it has convinced us to take an unequivocal stance of #NeverBernie– and stick to it.
During the 2016 electoral cycle itself, nobody wanted to listen. Most Bernie supporters still will not listen; many today will actually go so far as to claim that Russia is participating in the campaign against Bernie.
This is the equivalent of a mugger calling for help as he snatches an old lady’s purse.
“Looks like we finally know for sure why Bernie would not vote to sanction Russia,” I wrote at the time, still in a state of shock at just how surreal it was for Bernie to reinforce all this by being one of two senators who refused to pass the bill for new sanctions in 2017.
He just called in sick for the vote to lift sanctions on close Putin ally Oleg Deripaska’s aluminum company recently. And this from a guy who very rarely misses work. Of the new crop of presidential candidates, only Elizabeth Warren has missed fewer votes than Bernie.
Bernie’s people have never wanted him to touch “the Russia thing”, and most even to this day will make claims about how “it’s not all about Russia” and we need to “Talk about the issues”. They want to laugh it off, even while when it comes time to talk about what Trump was doing. This is hypocritical. When Trump does it, it’s a big threat. But when Bernie does it, it’s as though it is just a little fun.
This gives you a look at how it was back then. It’s a Russian Twitter account called “Missouri News” (@MissouriNewsUS), which sent out pictures of Sanders and President Franklin Delano Roosevelt with the line “Bernie Sanders is basically a New Deal Democrat, #feeltheBern.”
Our entire intelligence community unanimously agrees that they’re targeting us. We know that they’ve been able to get malware into our power grids. We know also that they’re considered a complete menace in Europe, where they have demonstrated their ability to turn off the lights on huge swathes of Ukraine and take Estonia offline completely. But Bernie will not talk about it, so they simply will not look at it.
They will physically squirm in real life conversations. They remind me of Fox News devotees.
“A guy who was on my staff … checked it out and he went to the Clinton campaign, and he said, ‘You know what? I think these guys are Russians,’” Sanders said.
A former Clinton campaign staffer told Politico it was nonsense that Sanders’ campaign had reached out to Clinton’s about potential Russian interference. “No one from the Sanders campaign ever contacted us about this” — not in September, and not in “April and May.”
They never said or did a thing of that nature. Nothing of the sort ever happened. Not once. Not even after Bernie had offered his weak, half-throated endorsement of Hillary Clinton.
Guy on your staff, eh, Bernie? And just to think. All of this is before we’ve even mentioned Tad Devine.
Devine was Bernie’s chief campaign strategist, the most senior of advisers to the 2016 Sanders campaign. He was also the good friend and colleague of decades of Paul Manafort, who at the same time was running the Trump campaign. Devine was the first witness called at Manafort’s trial. Here is a picture of Tad Devine with Paul Manafort and the man suspected to be his contact within Russian intelligence, Konstantin Kilimnik, himself wanted by Mueller’s team for questioning and likely more.
The Washington Post’s Dana Milbank did a piece at the time, titled “The Deep Cynicism of Bernie Sanders’ Chief Strategist“. It pointed out how during his run as chief strategist for the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign, Devine was always the first to scream and howl about the corrupting influence of money in politics. He said “our economy is rigged,” that “special interests” buy politicians, that “all of the new wealth is going to the top of America,” that there is a “corrupt system of campaign finance” of which Hillary Clinton offered an “egregious” example.
Sanders, by contrast, “supported the little guy.”
But as we know by now, Devine had worked repeatedly to secure the election of one of the world’s most corrupt political figures and then his allies, Ukraine’s Viktor Yanukovych, a crooked pro-Putin autocrat.
Thanks to Mueller’s prosecution of Paul Manafort, who earlier this weekend saw a heavily redacted- to the tune of eight hundred pages- sentencing memo presented to the court on his behalf, the former Trump campaign chairman and business associate of Devine, we now have the glimpse of Devine’s possible role in organizing Russian help for Bernie.
Though he is hardly the first to grab cash from foreign leaders, the ease Devine had in making the switch from cold-blooded profiteer strategist to social reformer firebrand strategist seems reptilian to us in the very extreme. It’s exactly that type of bold callousness that the Russians would look for in an asset.
Tad Devine is a figure of great interest in the Russiagate investigation, in our opinion. We’ve been expecting the special counsel assigned by the Justice Department to look into Russian meddling in our 2016 election cycle, Robert Mueller, to get around to him sooner or later.
Put it this way: If Manafort is the key to understanding exactly what the Russians were doing for Trump, and Kilimnik is the key to understanding what Manafort did for the Russians, then Devine, their old friend, is the key to what the Russians were doing for Bernie. He is by far the most likely connection between the Russians and the Sanders campaign. It is our view that this connection has not been explored anywhere near thoroughly enough, and we encourage our readers to write in with what they know. We would make responsible use of it.
Radio Free Europe provides some light on the situation by providing a March 31, 2014 email from Tad Devine to Rick Gates, who in 2016 was the chief aide to Manafort, and later became a star witness against him.
There we find that Devine was the one to write Yanukovych’s 2010 victory speech. That detail was found attached to his email to Gates, in the form of a draft agreement for Manafort’s firm to work on another Ukrainian’s campaign.
That all these people know each other so well cannot be a coincidence. No wonder Trump the other day said “I like Bernie”, all atwinkle in his smiling eyes.
By the time the Fourth of July rolled around in 2016, the Federal Election Commission had repeatedly contacted the Sanders campaign with warnings that hundreds of his donors exceeded the $2,700 contribution limit. They further warned him that hundreds more may have been foreign nationals illegally giving Sanders money. The Sanders campaign, however, did not take any action.
It bears repeating that it’s a very convenient coincidence, that three of the top strategists who ran against Hillary Clinton has been doing Putin’s bidding in this capacity for longer than a decade.
Last Thursday afternoon there was a meeting of the Senate Intelligence Committee on the subject of Russian meddling into our 2016 election cycle.
During it, Retired Gen. Keith Alexander, former director of the National Security Agency, said that Russian operatives targeted both liberal and conservative voters in its disinformation campaigns during the 2016 election.
Democratic committee co-chair Sen. Mark Warner (VA) asked the panel if they had any doubt that Russia had attempted to interfere in some aspects of the 2016 election. Alexander said not only did he have no doubt, he could get very specific.
“Senator, I think what they were trying to do was drive a wedge within the Democratic Party between the Clinton group and the Sanders group,” said Alexander. This seems clear at this point to everyone but the willfully uninformed and the fanatically indoctrinated (and disingenuous Republican and other conservatives/libertarians).
The supporters of Bernie Sanders were ruthlessly taken advantage of by the Russians, who used their genuine zeal and idealism as a hammer for smashing Democratic unity to bits. They were duped by false information that came from within the Kremlin itself, and thus unwittingly became Putin’s other puppets.
The man who was in the best position to act as a conduit between the headquarters of the Sanders campaign and the Kremlin was Tad Devine.
This picture provides a vivid reminder of what Democratic activists on Facebook and Twitter have been warning everyone about in the direst of terms since 2015, namely, that the Bernie Sanders campaign was just as lousy with Russian entanglements as the Trump campaign was.
Devine may well hold an important piece of the puzzle here, which undoubtedly lies within the Sanders campaign. As Robert Mueller continues his journey to this discovery, our prayers will be with him.
By now this article has grown to prodigious length, and we applaud the reader who has followed the line all the way home. In his Rise of the Roman Empire, the ancient Greek Polybius said that the most important reason to learn history is so you have a chance to make good predictions about what may happen in the future. Russian interference is heating up for 2020 like never before, Trump has given no funding to the new national cyber-coordinator job, which basically leaves us on our own again, and we’ve got to be prepared for new forms of the same old tricks. Check out our article on Defense for Democrats.
Since this electoral cycle began, Sanders supporters have been joined and even overshadowed by the Tulsi Gabbard trolls.
One allied group of our friends recently created a Facebook page, Tulsi Gabbard Must Go. It’s been around all of a month, and yet, hundreds of trolls have fallen on it since then, like wild dogs. Some of them have shown up to troll the blog, also, like this charming lady.
Lisa Wolf Edit
This wasn’t written by a millennial. This was obviously written by a neo-liberal, 3rd Way Baby Boomer and stinks of David Brock. Reply
As for David Brock, we have good things to say about him and every other dedicated Democrat, but we don’t personally know the guy. What I will say, is that I like the smell of my hair pomade. The pleasing fragrance is half the point.
Getting back to Tulsi and Bernie and the rest of the fake left, none of this is very surprising. They’re collecting paychecks for it. Check out the amount of fake activity that accompanies everything she tweets. Keep in mind, Twitter is fighting this. Facebook is not. There are two billion people using Facebook. How incomparably worse must it be!
From this, we can see that the fake left has found a new stronghold in Bernie’s close ally.
Going forward, raising awareness on all this will become more and more important, and although the story is long and multifaceted, the narrative is clear throughout. Russia and Vladimir Putin were definitely feeling the Bern. Look for them to feel him some more as we head into the next presidential cycle.
Sometimes you run up against a situation that is very complicated, in this world of ours. There are many grey areas, many ambiguities, many matters that require clarification. By the time you get done explaining them all, you’ve practically written a book.
But there are also times when you run into something that is simple enough to explain with a single word, or perhaps two- like these words.
That could be the end of the article. It genuinely could. I strongly considered publishing then and there, so that no one misses our meaning, but at least a few words of explanation might be helpful. So let’s try this one again.
NEVER BERNIE. Not ever. No matter what, it’s too obvious a setup to plug into. Did you see how Trump’s eyes twinkled the other day? I like Bernie, he said, smiling as big and genuinely as I’ve ever seen. He looked like a man who sees a foregone conclusion looming above him. He looked like Richard Nixon, facing George McGovern.
Yesterday the Bern raised six million dollars fundraising, screamed the enthusiastic Bernie Bots, like young lambs that haven’t seen the knife yet. Isn’t that great?
Great for who?
Of course, he did, was my reply. The Kochs invested nearly nine hundred million dollars into building a political machine so big it consumed the Republican Party. This is how it’s reaping dividends. This is why they needed all their dark money. Now they can fund the opposition themselves without anyone seeing it. “The best way to control the opposition is to lead it ourselves,” said the hero of all socialists, Vladimir Lenin of Russia.
Best of all, they can come on here and demoralize us by throwing around those numbers.
Later Wednesday, Trump made his own fund-raising pitch. He sent around a text message to all of his supporters, telling them about the $6 million that “Socialist Bernie” had raised.
“Now I’m calling on you to CRUSH that number,” the message said. For the average political strategist, this may all be rather confusing, but to a pro wrestling fan like Donald Trump, it’s simple as can be. A simple game of Heel vs. Hero.
In professional wrestling, a heel is a wrestler who portrays a villain or a “bad guy” and acts as an antagonist to the heroes- the protagonists, or “good guy” characters. They get in each other’s faces, scream and point and gesticulate wildly, and make a big production out of being each other’s enemies. The adoring audience loves the show, even as their hearts tell them the truth.
It’s all fake.
Hero, heel, and audience. On television, those people look like they’re having fun. It is our opinion that Trump and Bernie supporters are loving this. It’s all about the attention they’re getting. This is all a big game, to them.
You know who it’s not a game to?
Him, and real Democrats.
While this whole zoo spins a tale that grows more ridiculous by the very hour, the professionals in the locker room of the center are stubbornly holding on to the idea of eventually restoring sanity to our country and stopping the wrestling match short of a full-on civil war, which like a World Championship, you can’t lose by way of disqualification.
You’ve got to get pinned.
My personal trouble with Bernie, from the very start, has been the sheer unrealisticness surrounding him. His supporters were a shrieking mob; they rioted in the streets when they lost. No way was the zombie apocalypse the Bernie Or Bust crew paid out in Philadelphia that night in July 2016 what the majority of America looks like. His socialist policies were a disaster; Medicare for All alone, as he conceived it, would have had the country $32 trillion dollars. Margaret Thatcher asked this question long ago about socialism- How do you pay for it?
He himself wore that blue clown suit around, like a shambling disaster, and was nearly eighty years old besides. Jesus God.
These were the things I noticed when it all first began. I had no feelings about the guy other than that in the beginning, he was just some random name, like Martin O’ Malley, the other also-ran from that year’s terrible primary. I had serious concerns about his ability to win in a general election, and I didn’t think he had a prayer against Hillary Clinton. But I had no reason to form a particular about him one way or the other until I saw how ugly his supporters were going to get in attacking our candidate, and how little he would do to put that in check.
Conservatives were overjoyed when Bernie entered the race. He gave them just what they’ve been wanting all this time- a just cause to say Democrats are socialists and cast all this as our brand. It was just like how overjoyed they were at this Green New Deal, which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell plans to allow a vote on!
He told Jeff Flake last year that he wouldn’t allow a vote on legislation being passed to protect Robert Mueller’s investigation last year on the grounds that it was a waste of time, even though it probably would have actually passed, because it wouldn’t pass the House. He knew for a fact there’s not going to be a Green New Deal getting out of a Republican Senate- and yet, the same guy who was so concerned about minutes on the clock last year allows a vote on it!
Why? Because he wants to see who might actually be dumb enough to sign on.
Whoever does has no political future, especially if Bernie does get his chance to pull a Walter Mondale. He might win Vermont. His movement resembles a bowel. People will never forget the beating he takes.
We at Millennial Democrats would like to say to all of you: Fear not, you guys. The worst that can happen to us politically short of Dachau USA already has. It happened when HRC was robbed. The worst thing now would only be for the neoprogs to get their chance to play McGovern. They’ll get whipped, Russiagate will either spare us part of Donald’s second term or it won’t, and we will go on doing the most good we can for the most people we can until the day when better times finally come.
Besides which, that will never happen anyway. Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, even Elizabeth Warren. Someone will beat him in the primary, even though we don’t know who yet. Our chance will come along, the right leader will arise, and we will have a candidate able to beat Donald Trump. The Blue Wave 2018 was only the prelude for 2020, especially in the Congress.
The most important thing in a good philosophy is the strength it gives you to hold fast to your principles regardless of the temporal situation. It’s like how clouds can’t cover stars for long. I believe we will find a way. We just have to remain determined and United. When it all goes to the dogs for them, they’ll be able to come to us, and we’ll take them back in without a single word of recrimination, save these two alone.
The process by which we look through the past records of our candidates is called vetting, and when it comes to Bernie Sanders the mainstream media has not been doing it. Please give us a hand! Write in to the New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN, and anyone else you can think of, and tell them you want to see Bernie Sanders vetted. They will know what you mean. Just earlier today it came out that he has picked Nina Turner to run his campaign. She went with Stein after him and urged her supporters to do either that or vote for Trump outright. Picking Turner is as clear a sign as you could ever want or ask for that he’s going to run the same old ugly race as he always has. NEVER BERNIE. No matter what.
Last Friday was a great day for America. The #TrumpShutdown ended with a pathetic cave on the part of our childish, illegitimate president, and Roger Stone went to jail for tampering with Russiagate witnesses, among other things. It was amazing. But it seems at times that nothing can escape the Trump era’s corrosive gloom, not even a single day. These glory-filled twenty-four hours did not come without at least one man doing his best to spoil it.
Predictably, that man was Bernie Sanders, who has paid off for Russia before.
Two sources with direct knowledge of his plans told Yahoo News on Friday that Sanders, an independent and self-described “democratic socialist,” plans to announce his presidential bid imminently.
This is the best possible news for Donald Trump. Bernie is not only a disaster for Democrats. He’s a disaster for our chances of getting rid of Trump, which means he’s a disaster for democracy. They’re drinking champagne in Moscow again.
Sometimes it feels like we’re all in a time warp, stuck forever in the Groundhog Day that was 2016, a struggle that will define all its participants for life. The one constant in that whole tremendous mess was the total disarray caused by two personality cults- the Trump campaign, and the Sanders campaign. United by hatred for Hillary Clinton, Russian entanglements, and a belief that sexism is a good thing, these people came together and made one of the most notorious messes in all of human history.
Bernie’s name did not appear on the ballot as a presidential candidate in even a single state during the 2016 general election. But his legacy of sore losing and acrimony bear a large share of the blame for the disaster of the Trump administration. The blame lies squarely on his shoulders, on the Bernie or Bust movement, and on the foreign support that kept the Bern’s campaign alive for far too long. Taken as a whole, the evidence is clear that Sanders was the Ralph Nader of 2016, peeling off just enough votes from the Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton, to hand the presidency over to yet another Republican who lost the popular vote.
Wittingly or unknowingly, he allowed himself to become Vladimir Putin’s other puppet. His campaign’s chief strategist, Tad Devine, was the first witness called at the trial of Paul Manafort- Trump’s campaign manager. They were two sides of the same coin, but that did not make them equals.
Trump would have picked his teeth with Bernie then, and he would now. He spent his whole life beating up on guys like that, and the Russians would certainly have sided in the end with Trump. It would have been such a massacre that the Republicans will not even admit it, they are praying so hard for him to win. They know they’re sure to keep the White House if this grouchy socialist is the only one opposing them, especially considering his own past living on the fence of being a creepy pervert. Read his old rape fantasy essays from college sometime, if you’ve got the blood pressure for it. Just don’t do it before lunch.
Trump could point with dead accuracy to the Access Hollywood “Grab ’em by the p***y” tape and say hey, man, you know I’m not perfect, I’ve shot off my mouth more than once with locker room talk (as he absurdly calls it). But I never wrote anything that sick!”
Imagine the moniker ‘Rape Fantasy Bernie’ up there alongside Little Marco and Lyin’ Ted in the annals of the Trump era’s history.
This will not matter to the loud and extremely vocal few who have given his supporters their bad name, however. The insane and unpleasant remnant of Bernie or Bust will not be long in dusting off the banners they rioted under in 2016, out there in the streets outside at Philadelphia’s Democratic National Convention, as Paul Simon began to play ‘Bridge Over Troubled Waters’.
By now we have all seen the brick wall of a Bernie Bro up close and personal many times. When faced with hard facts and numbers, they will stonewall completely, sit back, and hurl slogans at you until you tire at last and have to ban them from your Facebook page. When confronted by a Bern-feeling devotee of this nature, nothing grounded in reality is going to enter the conversation.
We have seen this unfold like squares of toilet paper for three years. The vicious ugliness of Bernie Bros has become a cliche to the point where Bernie’s old campaign manager, Jeff Weaver, joined many other Sanders staffers in sending a letter of protest to his office, addressing the “Culture of Toxic Masculinity” that surrounded his campaign.” Shortly after it came out that his campaign had paid one molested staffer, forcibly kissed by one of her co-workers, $30,000 to keep her mouth shut about it. It’s enough to remind one of Stormy Daniels and Trump.
Bernie lost in 2016 in a race that was far from close. Although the Bros still blame the superdelegate system, the truth of the matter is that Hillary won by around four million votes. That’s a chunk of people the size of Chicago. She also won far more states and far more regular delegates. Superdelegates were never a factor in the race. Most people just did not feel the Bern, to paraphrase his horrible campaign slogan.
No one was buying in to a single-payer system that would have bankrupted the country to the tune of trillions of dollars, no one was buying in to the idea that a guy who has two renamed post offices to show for three decades in the Congress would one day wake up with the industriousness and creativity to be the President.
But that doesn’t stop us from being told constantly about how popular he is, even though the only demographic group of people he held Clinton to a draw among was white male voters. He also put his sexism on display using his mouth at every turn.
“It is not good enough for somebody to say, ‘I’m a woman, vote for me.’ That is not good enough,” Sanders told a crowd at the Berklee Performance Center in Boston, according to WBUR.
How unbelievably patronizing. Hillary Clinton had a stronger resume for the job of being the President than any other person in the history of our fair nation, that’s why she deserved to win the race. It was not merely because she is a woman, although of course, that would have been historical. How ugly of Bernie, to say a thing like that. How unfair, and how ugly.
Women nationwide nearly rioted-with utter and total justification- when he accepted that awful Linda Sarsour’s invitation to be the keynote speaker at the Women’s Convention in 2017. Bernie backed out of that one as fast as his legs could carry him. However, even a rejection of enormity like that one hasn’t stopped his supporters from continuing to claim his amazing popularity with women. Actually, though, Bernie’s record on women’s rights is abysmal for a lot more than those rape essays he wrote.
He campaigned vigorously in 2017 for the campaign of Heath Mello of Nebraska, known for his strong anti-abortion stance, and justified it on the grounds of red-state pragmatism, which coming from a self-avowed socialist was absurd in the very extreme. In a nutshell, American women are about as likely to get behind Bernie as they are to go ice-skating in Hades.
We note in passing that we’ve just seen the end of 2018, which was the Year of the Democratic Woman. Good luck winning a Democratic primary without them.
Another notorious characteristic of the Sanders campaign was racism, and this too makes him unacceptable as our presidential candidate. His supporters ran wild with unrestrained ugliness in this regard.
Medium.com’s Bianca Delarosa wrote a powerful piece the other day in response to the news regarding Bernie’s imminent announcement, titled simply, Black Democrats Have Plenty Of Reason to Be #NeverBernie. What his lunatic supporters have tried to do to Joy Reid over the years comes to mind. The whole uneasy history of Bernie Sanders and black America is laid out in a devastating array. Reading its entirety is something we highly recommend; it sheds a bright light on why Bernie is so wrong for the values of our party.
Bernie was once asked in a New Republic profile why he appears uncomfortable when talking about racial issues. His answer was revealing. “OK, see, this is an issue I’m not really — what I don’t want to do is get into me.” When told that it wasn’t about him per se, Sanders said, “It’s a complicated answer. It’s a good question, but I prefer not to get into it right now.”
This stems from something very basic, yet underestimated by his supporters- Bernie is not a Democrat. This is gigantic, and not for the same reasons cited by his supporters. They perceive our problem with this as being a misplaces loyalty issue, an undemocratic reversion to the days of Tammany Hall, but actually, that narrative is both fundamentally wrong and disingenuous. The real reason it matters is how much the Democratic Party has changed since then. Our base is multicultural. It’s not just white men who have their voices heard. That is highly troublesome to Bernie and has been for his whole career.
“What he’s doing in South Carolina points to what his strategy is in terms of he has to make inroads in the core Democratic constituency,” said J. Michael Bitzer, a professor of politics and history at Catawba College in Salisbury, North Carolina. Bitzer has studied racial politics extensively and is widely considered an expert on the subject. When it comes to race, his view is that “you cannot divorce race from politics in the South.” This lets us know clearly what his real motives are for being down there in those churches.
According to exit polls in the state, Sanders won roughly 14 percent of black voters in South Carolina. Hillary got the other eighty-six.
Black voters are exactly like all other voters, insofar as they are not, as Delarosa pointed out, interested in being props and mascots. Who on Earth would be. They are all adults who voted smarter than any other demographic group in 2016. It really ought to go without saying they deserve to be considered as more than political coin.
Here at Millennial Democrats, we consider anything less than total integration and equality for every human person, regardless of sex or race or gender, to be completely, absolutely unacceptable. The leader we choose to put our faith behind, in the end, will have to demonstrate clearly that they thoroughly share this view.
Bernie Sanders has spent nearly thirty years proving the opposite. He will never have the support of the Party’s base, and that will make it impossible for him to beat Trump. Those committed to the Resistance must look elsewhere for a champion.
On the cusp of the twentieth day of what has now become immortalized as the #TrumpShutdown, Trump himself headed to the border to disgracefully lie to America and did so. Other than that, there is not a whole lot going on. How could there be? Everything is closed down, and as one walks around as an observer, there is a very real sense of being in the eye of the tornado.
Even West Virginian senator Lindsey Graham, a guy who has become progressively worthless as the Trump circus atmosphere corrupts him, came up with a plan to try and end the shutdown. Trump shot holes in it. He told Senate Republicans that he believes he is winning the fight”, leaving Graham shaking his head in despair, saying he has “Never been more depressed“.
On that point, at least, we are agreed.
On Friday millions of people will not get paychecks; things like food stamp benefits are only guaranteed through February. One man was on CNN the other night sobbing because he was so afraid he’s going to lose his house. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) asked the illegitimate president frankly why he doesn’t stop hurting people. His answer was right out of the spoiled child brat Trump playbook.
There’s no need really to point out how disgusted a sane human is bound to be at the sound of that, it speaks for itself loud and clear. Trump is calling it a humanitarian crisis, which it is. But the only one causing it is he himself, and he will not stop. That is something in between blackmail and terrorism.
Moving on the subject of terrorism, the Pentagon- who, earlier in the week, was actually reduced to having to go to Fox News and beg for their help in getting the moron in the Oval Office to listen to them regarding Afghanistan- has warned that it is concerned about the risk of a terrorist attack striking home in these conditions.
However, our guess is that they’re not going to feel like they need to do much at all. The worst thing they could do to hurt America right now is to simply leave us alone.
Another 9/11 would unify us. The way things are going we may collapse under our own weight, which is not completely a jab at Trump’s obesity. The most effective punch is the one you don’t have to throw, at the end of the day, but to an extent, this is wishful, hopeful thinking. We are exposed, of course. We have not been opened up like this to an attack since 9/11 happened.
It’s unreal how quickly we forget. Not even twenty years ago, terrorists smuggled boxcutters through airport security and took down the Twin Towers. Osama bin Laden believed that would be the end. Not all at once, of course, not that day. His belief was that once we had been hit that hard, we would not be able to take it. Our policies and justice would become undemocratic, and the idea of America freedom we espoused and intended to bring to the rest of the planet would be soiled irrevocably, a discarded relic like Soviet socialism.
I think a lot of people are waking up to what a bad situation we are in. And when you end up in a bad enough situation, one that makes you scared enough to forget about your pride or wants or ideas, you start to look around at how you got there.
At the end of the day, a day in which no one went to work and time to reflect has been forced upon us, one question keeps ringing in American minds- How did it come to this?
Why is that big orange disgrace stumbling around on our border, looking dumb and talking dumber? How did he get the power?
There are three simple words that say it all.
#BernieOrBust! We pray with all our hearts they have managed to learn from their mistakes, and we think there’s a good chance of it. They might have been watching the news.
From the eye of a tornado, you can see the sky, but you can’t see what’s going on around you. There’s no way of knowing how severe the devastation is, and the reality of the situation is that there’s not much use in worrying about it. You batten down the hatches, you keep yourself in the cellar, and you hope and pray for the best with all your heart.
Along with the neverending task of raising awareness, that is what we must do now.
We have received numerous requests for a focus piece regarding cyber-defense for Democrats, especially right now as we are going into the midterms. In it is an introduction to a number of the techniques we can use to defend ourselves going forward. Knowledge is power. Pass it on.
Regular readers of Millennial Democrats will not require a lot of explanation as to how and why the threat of Russian hacking is real. We have been up against it for years. The time has come to soberly and objectively assess Russia’s cyberwarfare capabilities, and examine how we plan to fight back.
In 2016, America was caught off guard and we got a bloody nose. Guys like Roger Stone’s buddy Guccifer 2.0, or the guys in Fancy Bear pulled a fast one, to be sure.
They had the element of surprise back then. Most people had no idea what they were doing(and rolled their eyes at those who were trying to warn them, but that’s another subject). These days things are very different.
Regardless of the lies of the great orange malignance, America knows the Russians are out to get us. Trump is sticking his head in the sand on this and will do nothing to help us, so we’re going to have to learn to help ourselves, and each other.
It’s too bad we’ve got no national leadership on this, but it is what it is. We’ll get by on our own.
In starting out, the most important thing to keep in mind is this: Hackers rely on our mistakes, and mistakes are most often made when we don’t know we are making them. They need to catch us off guard, and their job is to find creative ways to use their tools to get us to slip up.
The first place a smart hacker will look is outside the box, so to speak. They’re always looking for ways to burrow in that you wouldn’t think to look for.
Employing a given system, be it a human being or a PC, for a purpose it wasn’t designed for is what hacking means. However, if you’re careful, neither you nor your computer will end up thus employed. It’s all about being careful.
Hackers are clever, be they Russian or from elsewhere, but they are far from invincible. We’ve already stopped a number of Russian cyber-assaults directed at Democrats this year, such as the ones aimed at our Claire McCaskill.
Without the element of surprise, hackers have many limitations. It’s not that easy to brute-force open a website. Just ask these guys:
Basic cyber-hygiene techniques would cut down on more than 80 percent of cyber attacks and cyber thefts, according to Herbert Lin, senior research scholar for cyber policy and security at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. It will benefit us to learn a few.
There is a great deal of white-hat(ethical hacking) work that can be done to defend America in this realm, and most of it has to do with how careful we are.
We repeat- It’s all about being careful. This cannot be repeated too often.
In this piece, we’re going to talk about a few common mistakes made by end-users(that means us, the consumer) and how they are exploited by criminals. We’re also going to talk about some of these cyber-hygiene measures and assign them three rules of thumb.
Don’t open strange emails.
Don’t click on strange links.
Don’t accept chat messages from people you don’t know, particularly on Facebook.
Before we get started, think for a second about all your other social media accounts. Are they just as secure as your Facebook or Twitter? Make sure they are! That’s the first place a hacker will go to collect more data about you. You’re particularly vulnerable to having your account on the ones you don’t often use pried open.
As an aside, this is also why you don’t want to use the same passwords for everything. Passwords are obviously critical, as somebody who’s got them has got all your information at his fingertips. Be careful!!
A great deal of a hacker’s job revolves around getting the passwords of their victims. Their most popular tools are all various ways to apply “spear-phishing” hacks, designed to steal passwords and personal data. The unlucky “phish” who opens one has become a victim and is now open to all kinds of trouble.
There are all kinds of ways to go spear-phishing. A brand new one showed up not long ago when U.S. government agencies recently received letters via snail mail.
One example that all readers of this blog will vividly recall took place on March 10, 2016, when the first volley of malicious e-mail messages hit the inboxes of thirty people who were closely associated with the Hillary Clinton campaign. Inside them were links that were actually viruses, like worms on a hook.
Nearly all of them were failures. All but one, actually. But one was enough.
Within nine days, a horrendous amount of critical data had been stolen and passed along to Wikileaks, to be strategically released in a way they figured would hurt us. It did.
Those leaked e-mails, in which Debbie Wasserman-Schultz was seen to be fussing over Bernie’s lack of ability to fill out campaign finance forms correctly, were spun up into a narrative that Bernie(who lost by four million popular votes) had been cheated.
Bernie or Bust bought it, there were riots in the streets of Philadelphia, and a rift was torn in the Democratic Party that still has yet to heal.
All of that was made possible, with just a few phished passwords.
To combat phishing is to make sure everyone knows how common and damaging these attacks can be. Everyone should keep their guard up when checking emails, and they should report any email they find suspicious.
It’s necessary to point out here that Facebook phishing in particular is horrendously easy. They can hack you right through your chat box. We recommend in the strongest possible terms that you put as little of your personal information as possible on Facebook.
Facebook presents about a million added vulnerabilities to all of us that use it. When Edward Snowden was asked what to do to keep your data safe on that platform, his response was, “Delete your account.”
We can’t recommend that, as Facebook gives us access to 2 billion people, but we can recommend this much. If people you don’t know send you strange messages on Facebook, don’t accept them.
“We are looking at just some of the malicious material that already may be circulating or will be released before the midterms. It also bears repeating that we know the campaign of Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) was targeted.”
Cyber-intelligence experts see this as being major, and with clear reason.
Moving on, it isn’t only Facebook and social media you’ve got to be careful with. Websites too are vulnerable.
Anecdotally, the webmaster of this site has seen hackers from all over the world try to take us down, from Beijing, China to Lviv, Ukraine, from Adelaide, Australia to Beauharnois, Quebec. They use all kinds of tricks, but they’ve never gotten in and they never will.
This is not because I’m a cyber-genius who speaks binary code, but because WordPress is awesome.Sucuri, the plugin that keeps safe all of us Millennial Democrats, is likewise excellent. They care about their clients and they hold the same liberal values sacred that we do.
WordPress users should strongly consider using Sucuri, not least for the reverse IP trace it automatically performs. This has the benefit of letting you know a lot more about who’s trying to hack you. Sometimes it will tell you everything.
Once a flower store owner from Adelaide, Australia tried to hack us. By using a reverse IP trace, Sucuri let us know who she was as soon as she had done so. Then we went to a site called WhatismyIPaddress.com, put it in, and voila.
We were able to get the name of her business by looking at the name of her domain. We then used that to look her up, and jackpot. We found the store’s address, website, and owner. We also found far-right garbage smeared all over her life.
I could put her on blast right here with a screenshot like this one:
Luckily for her, I’m not that mean. But the next guy might be. It’s a dangerous game for newbies (noobs- learn your hacker-ese) to play. It’s easy to run into trouble.
Change your life, would-be hacker flower store owner! Mend your wicked ways, before it’s too late.
Speaking of WordPress, using the two-factor authentication feature they offer as part of their platform is another good idea. This is a highly effective security measure and is available for Facebook, Gmail, WordPress, and many other major platforms.
Using this feature means a second device’s input will be required to access email accounts or websites on new computers, usually by prompting you and sending an SMS code to your phone or whatever. This can prevent scammers from accessing compromised accounts.
In addition to good cyber-hygiene, which amounts to common sense, caution, and our three rules of thumb, there are some tools we can use to make our online experience safer still. You may find this necessary, from time to time.
Guccifer 2.0 recently made a mistake and forgot to turn his VPN on, and we connected him to an IP address connected to Russian intelligence. Now his whole identity is blown because he didn’t use his VPN.
We strongly recommend getting one of these, specifically IVPN. They take protecting their customers super seriously and they are located on the Rock of Gibraltar. That fortress strikes me as a good place to keep anything valuable.
HotspotShield is another good one, and also NordVPN. There’s a lot of them; shop around and find one that’s right for you. We feel it’s worth repeating that they are a very good investment.
Additional tools include TOR(The Onion Router), which offers a former naval encryption system that we can now all use. Tor takes all your internet traffic and routes it through its own network, providing total anonymity.
The DuckDuckGo browser, which Tor employs, is good to know about also. It has a number of different features that keep you safe, including a “Flame” feature that burns up all your cookies in a second. Pretty cool.
Now, just as then, there is a need for deterrence, to defend the nation and hopefully prevent a further escalation of tensions. There is more at stake than we can even put into words. We need to be ready.
There are bigger dangers here than the usual America vs. Russia, liberal world order vs the new world order that the extremist crazies keep screaming that they want kind of thing. This is different completely.
One superpower actively destroying the democratic process of another is new and very dangerous, especially since Russian destability tactics rely heavily on disinformation and a systematic devaluing of the truth.
One of the chief strategists of Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign, Tad Devine, has finally gotten a phone call from Robert Mueller.
He has been listed as one of 35 witnesses who will be called to the stand in the upcoming trial of Paul Manafort to provide information about their lobbying activities in Ukraine, where he was Manafort’s right-hand man for many years.
It’s so similar to what happened in 2016 that it’s eerie. The only difference was that in 2004, Manafort and Devine were working together directly, whereas in 2016 they were ostensibly opposed to one another.
That is very convenient for the enemy.
In the end, Bernie lost by four million votes, although you will still hear the embittered remnants of Bernie or Bust complaining about superdelegates having cost Bernie the election.
The Russians did all they could to encourage that narrative.
Those very same sad sack Busters were juicy prey for the Russians, who seem to have known they would be, right from Day One. They couldn’t have planned it better.
The primary medium they used to reach our people was Facebook, which in many ways is a world unto itself. Back then it was overrun with accounts who had convinced themselves fanatically that Bernie was a shoo-in to win.
They were deeply hurt and angry when he did not, so much so that they turned the last few months of the primary into an absolutely miserable time, filled with acrimony and division.
Why? Because Wikileaks dumped hacked DNC emails showing Debbie Wasserman-Schultz fussing over Bernie’s inability to fill out campaign forms.
On a side note, it is our extreme pleasure to report that Julian Assange, that foul organization’s leader, is facing imminent expulsion from Ecuadorian embassy he’s been hiding in like a rat these past few years.
The question is, to whose benefit? Who stirred them up so much, and why was it so effective? How could they have been so convinced he would win a completely lost battle? It didn’t add up, and at the time it really felt wrong. On every level.
Once the reports on the Russian cyber-tactics used in 2016 started coming out, and we started seeing them describe the things we had all experienced, it all fell right into place.
Around September 14 in 2016, for example, one “account specialist” of a Russian-controlled Facebook group called “Secured Borders” was reprimanded for having a “low number of posts dedicated to criticizing Hillary Clinton.”
A personal anecdote. The editor of Millennial Democrats was online alongside legions of others, out there for HRC from 2015 onward, every day, for many hours. Anyone who was there back then can tell you.
It can be stated categorically that there was a tangible, palpable disinformation campaign going on, particularly on Facebook.
The time has come for America to look objectively at this whole situation, through the eyes of Robert Mueller, and to do what it takes to remedy it. That means traveling across party lines, and going wherever the trail leads.
It has been our opinion for a long time that trail will eventually highlight Tad Devine as the Russians’ man inside the campaign of Bernie Sanders. Now that his role has been revealed, many an important piece of this puzzle is about to start falling into place.
As this story continues to develop, we’ll be keeping you posted on all of it.
It had been looking like a rough month for the Russiagate investigation. Trump has seemed panicked and disjointed, and his slanders have grown desperate and shrill. The Nunes memo, the attacks against the FBI, the talk of firing Robert Mueller, the accusal of bias toward Trump on the part of investigators involved with the case.
All of it pointed a giant red arrow toward something big coming down in their direction. And on Friday, we found out what.
Three defendants were charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud, and five defendants with aggravated identity theft. They were also charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States, the Department of Justice announced Friday.
“The defendants allegedly conducted what they called information warfare against the United States, with the stated goal of spreading distrust towards the candidates and the political system in general,” Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said.
Trump was quick in taking to Twitter to point out that this hasn’t proved collusion yet, but come on. As Bob Dylan once said, you don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.
The indictment is sweeping and describes in detail an unprecedented campaign by Russia to influence the 2016 presidential election. The longstanding conclusions of the US intelligence community have now been fully vindicated.
Trump is always talking up how he knows everything about everything. It is the opinion of Millennial Democrats that he knows everything about this topic, at least.
The indictment gave us many new details, of communications between unnamed Trump campaign officials and the Russian defendants.
A personal anecdote. The editor of Millennial Democrats was online alongside legions of others, out there for HRC from 2015 onward, every day, for many hours. Anyone who was there back then can tell you. It can be stated categorically that there was a tangible, palpable disinformation campaign going on.
You would go into groups and talk to people, who were steadfast in their refusal to listen far beyond the bounds of reason or even fanaticism. These guys were professionals.
It was like they were getting paid per response. They all seemed to be equipped with the same list of hit points about Hillary Clinton. This became clear after a while because the very same slanders would be laid out every time, in sequential order. In many cases the wording was actually identical, although most took the time to switch about at least a thing or two. And they were just as prevalent on the left as on the right.
It got especially bad during the last month of the Democratic primary, which was a very horrible time filled with chaos and division. During this time, we were savagely attacked. Anything we posted would be Reported as Spam/Abuse by political adversaries from both the far right and left. We were barraged with nasty messages and threats. One particularly rabid group of Bernie Sanders supporters told one of our contributors that they hoped she was gang-raped. The list is very long, and very sordid.
At the time, nobody wanted to listen. We were treated like we were crazy. But it became clear before long that we were not paranoid, although it was difficult not to come off that way in real life conversations. We expected a certain amount of eye-rolling, and we got it.
We didn’t blame the people, though. The whole thing was unprecedented, not to mention pretty implausible. Even our intelligence agencies were not fully aware of what was going on. This kind of thing has never happened here before. This sort of attack has in the past been used only by superpowers against small, Third World countries. We were never considered so vulnerable.
The anger and despair caused by the 2016 election opened a door. The smear job on Hillary Clinton represented a quarter- century’s work and God only knows how many millions of dollars on the part of the GOP. They had long ago ensured there was no end of mud to sling. And trusty Wikileaks was always around to make sure there was no shortage of new indecencies. We were all online for this, every single day.
They bought ads and communicated with people tied to the Trump campaign and others in order to coordinate political activities. They even went so far as to coordinate their activities on our soil.
The indictment also mentions a February 2016 memo to Internet Research Agency staff. The instructions given were to post political content on US social media sites and “use any opportunity to criticize Hillary and the rest (except Sanders and Trump — we support them).” No wonder his people don’t want him to touch “the Russia thing”.
This is solid confirmation of what we have been saying all along. The specific mention of Trump and Sanders shows that the Russian government decided early on to oppose Clinton. Looks like we finally know for sure why Bernie would not vote to sanction Russia.
Being involved as a Democratic activist has often been really scary because of the constant Russian harassment. It was a violation of everything we are entitled to as American citizens. Russia used their disinformation machine against us with tremendous effect, just as they have done in Ukraine or Syria. We were actively being targeted, by foreign agents, for participating in our own electoral process.
We had wanted to make our voices heard, and to make a difference in our own futures. Instead, we found ourselves on the front lines of a virtual battlefield, fighting the first skirmishes in this new kind of proxy war we were to be fighting with the Russians.
It is to be hoped, now that our American leaders know, that they will do something to give us a hand. We are still here, and ready to be of service, and as warriors of the information age, we are the ones best placed to do it.
The best defence against Russian trolls is a well-educated public and a lot of tech-savvy Democrats beating them back. No amount of disinformation can ultimately prevail against facts. The key is to get our message out there as far as we can, to as many people as we can. Raising awareness constitutes the one sure path to an ultimate victory.
Since Trump took over, we’ve been beset on all sides. Every aspect of our rights, needs, and value systems is being systematically discarded and trampled underfoot. Far from getting all the cool free stuff that Bernie Sanders was promising back then- $30 trillion dollars worth– we’re fighting a losing battle on every front, just desperately trying to hold on to what we’ve got.
Things are not improving, and will not improve until the Democrats are back in power. There has never been a time when this wasn’t so during our lifetimes, but it has never been truer than now.
An analysis of the events leading up to these events is provided in the form of this anecdote from one of our contributors, as well as a warning, from a Millennial Democrat who cares. The opinions thus expressed are the views of this contributor, and are not necessarily the views of the organization by and large(although they’re pretty close.)
I never wanted to get involved in politics.
Politics were boring. Plans, charts, talking heads- I couldn’t stand a bit of it. Made my head hurt. I figured that America the Great could take care of itself and did not really need my help.
One day, though, around the year 2000, a filthy animal named Ralph Nader crawled out of a toilet somewhere and burned all that to the ground, at the behest of his Republican masters. Soon after, just when I’d started to think the world wasn’t as bad as I’d thought, that the days of Bush and Reagan were behind us, that maybe we at last were close to making some kind of progress, it was all smashed to bloody bits by 9/11.
After that, everything was different.
Bill Clinton had worked hard for eight years to balance the budget and had even added a surplus to it. That was all squandered in ten months. The feeling of progress and decency that had been growing since the Berlin Wall collapsed was gone. Soon it was the Patriot Act and war with Afghanistan. A completely pointless and random war with Iraq was to follow.
Ever seen the HBO series, Generation Kill? With the American soldiers in Iraq just riding around the country, randomly blowing things up? That is how it was. We had no objective and no clear purpose. We knew perfectly well that democracy was not really threatened by Saddam Hussein. But Bush had sent us over, so there we were. It was really stupid. It messed up a lot of my friends.
After that, nothing was the same. Everyone hated Bush, but he was a Bush, after all, and we were at war. People felt like he would be a good wartime president because his father had resembled The Terminator on a number of different levels. Remember the old legends about the leaders of men being giant lizards, loose under the earth? The alien theorist guys always show a clip of the good old H.W. licking his lips in support of their theory. There can be no doubt he looked reptilian.
Unfortunately, W. was not the equal of his father, who in turn had not been the equal of Ronald Reagan. He bungled it at every turn. No weapons of mass destruction, no Middle Eastern democracy in Iraq, no launching pad for us to slowly take over everything else from. It was all for a great big nothing.
By the time the second Bush was gone, we had a mess to clean up on every corner of the globe. And even though his historical successor Barack Obama proved to be a genius, he couldn’t do more than get the country pointed back in the right direction. No one could have, in eight years. It’s much easier to destroy than create.
At length, Obama succeeded in his Herculean task and reoriented the country toward something decent. ALL WE HAD TO DO, WAS WALK FORWARD TOGETHER.
Telling this part of the story is where I always start to get mad.
There is no way to throw eight years of effort into a few sentences. Suffice it to say, what Obama had achieved was worthwhile, and it should have been stood up for. And of course, those of us who fought hard for Hillary Clinton did do our best to stand up for them. I’m here to tell you, it was not easy.
To you who reads these words- Did you ever try to have a rational debate about policy or legislature with a member of Bernie or Bust? Because I have, and I am here to tell you. It was impossible.
By the time 2015 was drawing to a close, I had a really bad feeling about what the left was up to. Signs of an impending communication breakdown were everywhere.
People who didn’t know a thing about any of it were of a sudden fervently expert in the field. All the mountebanks and pseudo-intellectual theorists in the country crawled out from under the rocks of their coffeehouses. And the moronic faces of either Trump or Bernie were everywhere you looked.
By the time 2016 came around, it had become frightfully obvious to me that things were NOT going to simply continue to take care of themselves.
People were going nuts. Free college, free healthcare, free everything. To listen to these guys tell the story, money itself would soon be obsolete in the brave new Bernieverse. In fact, previous success in the financial world was enough to disqualify your entry.
Within these circles, reality became more and more distant from the discourse as the year went by. And by the time I realized that having started out fresh after New Year’s of ’16 was not going to be able to do much more than scratch the surface, that I had started out too late, it was too late everywhere. The schism in the Democratic Party was a fait accompli, and Trump went on to win because of it.
Jill Stein, the leader of the Green Party for that election cycle, proved a worthy successor to the legacy of Nader. Once again, the loony left stole just enough crucial swing state votes to cost us the election.
The Libertarian Party won out big, taking more third-party votes than any candidate has since 1996.
And the Republicans took control of every part of the government.
Nor was that the end. Even the ultimate disaster of Trump being elected was not enough to bring those people around. They’re out there even now, knives in their teeth, savaging people at the local level. They go by lofty-sounding names like Our Revolution and the Justice Democrats, but they’re just as noisy and insolent as when they were Bernie or Bust. They’re not fooling anybody.
Thanks in large part to them, every American on every side of the conflict got screwed. Putin was victorious. The way things are now, we can’t even agree to keep the air clean, since Trump pulled us out of the Paris Accord.
We’ve got a babbling baboon, strutting around like an obese rooster, with people calling him Mr. President. They will never get the stink out of the showers.
Every bathroom in the White House will have to be redone, at the taxpayers’ expense.
They’re all running wild in there, beating their wives and molesting one another like chimpanzees. And me? The guy who wanted nothing to do with politics? It looks like I’m in it for the long haul. Because until the day comes when things calm down again, and politics go back to being boring, I don’t have a choice.
The cause of leftist unity suffered a disappointment on Tuesday, when Senator Bernard Sanders(I-VT) announced that contrary to earlier statements, he will not be running as a Democrat in future elections.
Sanders introduced the “Health Care as a Right for All” bill on March 4, 1993, in the middle of Clinton’s push for health care reform, because after painstaking research she decided that his single-payer option was not feasible. It was an unfortunate diversion, at a time when we needed total focus. This plan of Bernie’s has failed many times.
As a result, when the Clinton administration-backed Health Security Act, was introduced in the House on Nov. 20, 1993, it had 103 cosponsors. Sanders was not among them. At a time when every vote was needed, he abstained for all-or nothing reasons. And so, America was to need nearly another quarter of a century to start filling this basic human need of the people.
In 2016, it was more of the same. We held out a hand to Bernie Sanders and his followers time and again, only to be rebuffed. It was tiring and it was frustrating. 1 in 10 Sanders voters ended up voting for Trump anyway. It was hard to resent the time we’d wasted trying to convince people who did not want to be convinced. This is the truth. Rebuilding trust has to start with an acceptance of truth.
The anger and despair caused by the 2016 election opened a door. The smear job on Hillary Clinton represented a quarter- century’s work and God only knows how many millions of dollars on the part of the GOP. They had long ago ensured there was no end of mud to sling. And trusty Wikileaks was always around to make sure there was no shortage of new ammunition, straight from the Russians like Kalashnikov rifles.
The last month of the Democratic primary was a very horrible time filled with chaos and division. That acrimony caused a schism in the Democratic Party that ended up not being fixable. It cost us the election.
That schism has been terribly visible over the last few days, when many Bernie supporters regarded an invitation to Bernie to join the Democratic Party as an attempt to force him out of the Democratic Party. It is not clear how to correct these sorts of misconceptions.
Since then, the gap between the Democratic Party and the rogue Sanders element has widened continuously. The 2017 Democratic National Committee chairmanship election between Labor Secretary Tom Perez and Representative Keith Ellison of Minnesota was the first contested DNC chair election since 1985. It gave us a solid look at the discord brewing in the party.
The Unity tour that Bernie and the DNC undertook together was a disaster as well. Many Sanders supporters even went so far as to boo and curse our party chairman, Tom Perez, while on the tour. One reporter asked at the time, if Bernie considered himself a Democrat.
The pattern is clear, and it is widening all the time. The natural response on the part of most Democrats, who after all have been lied to for years by Senator Sanders, is outrage. This is only to be expected, but we have to keep in mind that more fighting will get us the opposite of what we all are after.
The author of this article struggles with this personally and is honest enough to admit it. Just the same, Millennial Democrats realizes the necessity of coming together. The only thing that matters, for as long as he’s in office, is getting rid of the maniac Donald Trump. We will therefore make a sincere attempt to put that behind us and offer a handshake. That is what the situation requires. That is what the lot of us owe our country.
The Sanders camp started a number of rather insolent and aggressive political organizations in the aftermath of the country’s heartbreak over the disastrous result of last year’s election. This is inexcusable, but also understandable. Everyone was really angry at the time, and pointing fingers is always easy. Everyone makes mistakes.
But even among these heavily radicalized organizations, there is one that stands out particularly for the sheer ugly brazenness of its slogan, a hashtag called #WeWillReplaceYou. This is another supposedly liberal or progressive group looking to take out sitting Democrats from Congress in 2018.
Instead of focusing their attention on the Republicans who are ravaging our federal government, they are instead choosing to pose a threat to elected Democrats.
This kind of idea goes beyond obnoxious. It’s actively dangerous. The last hope of the nation is that most people, on both sides of the fence, will somehow come to realize this. Acrimony on the left is exactly what Donald Trump and the Koch network are really after. We have got to perceive their strike, and pull back before it is too late.
Both sides have now had ample chance to air grievances and get them out on the table. It is now time for us to move past it. Honesty is the only way to meaningful unity between the Sanders camp and real Democrats. We hear you out, you hear us out, and then we all shake hands and get back to work.
It is for that reason that we’ve decided to promote a counter-hashtag, #WeWillEmbraceYou. We don’t want to fight. One way or the other, this internecine war has got to end. It does nothing but rip us all up. The discord between our two camps still amounts to a quarrel between brothers.
So when they shriek at us, “We will replace you!”, we will respond calmly and say “Well, we will embrace you.” This is easy for us, because we are Democrats. The Democratic Party is strong. And the strong are always kind. It will come naturally to be magnanimous.
What it means to be a Democrat, is to be on the side of the people. All the people. Even the ones you don’t always agree with. In order to call yourself a progressive, you have got to show you can make progress. That takes cooperation and communication. All or nothing will not suffice.
At the end of the day, our message to our natural allies to the left of us is simply this- Even if you insist on wanting to be our enemies, we are still your friends.
We will not give up, on attempting to open dialogue with you. We will always be willing to work with you. Should you ever decide to return to the fold, you will hear no I-told-you-sos or recriminations. What you will find, is a dignified welcome, and a place on the bench. Please keep this in mind.