CRIMINAL ASSET FORFEITURE

 

Last night I came across a recent report generated by the US Inspector General documenting the controversial policy of “civil asset seizure.” The conclusions, though unsurprising to me, should outrage ordinary American’s. Do most people even realize the power our government has to legally forfeit anyone’s property, should the agency –DEA, FBI, DOJ, Local Sheriff, etc– have reason to suspect the owner be a part to a crime? I can say that most of the people I’ve discussed the issue with hardly believe such practices are lawful, let alone common.

Here are some of the statistics found within the IG report: DEA has seized since 2008 over 4 billion in cash, not including cars, electronics, property, homes, clothing, etc. 81% of the cash was seized despite no civil or criminal charges ever being filed. Since 2007 the Department of Justice criminal seizure fund has ballooned to more than 28 billion in cash, 5 billion of which was stolen taken in 2014 alone. 

Summarizing the findings, the IG makes a strong case for patterns of clear misuse and abuse stating, “a perverse profit motive is at play.” Essentially the program funds the budgets of many entities, providing overtime, even high end electronics and sports cars reportedly allocated for “investigatory purposes.” 

My interest stems from an incident that occurred traveling with my uncle in western Texas in 2010. Stopped at a checkpoint run by the local Sheriff, we were removed from the vehicle and separated for questioning without any probable cause. The Mexican border was about 60 miles west and we were not coming from, or traveling to Mexico. Not that it matters.

The truth was, as tourists from California visiting a friend in the area, we were simply fish caught in their “lawful” net. I was asked where we were headed and where we came from, my uncles name and address, about the two firearms in the vehicle and “where” the narcotics were. After affirming my uncles name, I refused to answer further questions without legal representation. Over the course of the following two hours I was threatened with arrest and my uncle’s supposed confessions. Even as a former soldier, the ordeal was frightening. In my mind I kept telling myself, “stay firm, keep story straight and eventually I will be released.” 

After two hours we were released. But not without consequence. They had seized my uncle’s two firearms and $2,300 in cash, implying we were drug mules. It took my family 4 years to retrieve the property and cash, but only after spending $3,500 on legal fees, plus two more trips to the Sheriff’s facility. It almost defy’s believe that this can happening America, it’s outrageous that it is not uncommon. 

It made no difference that we were both veteran’s or that we had no criminal records. It made no difference that we knew the neighboring county judge, that we were white or that we told the truth. Truth is, it shouldn’t matter had those things not been true. The government taking peoples property for any reason is wrong and shortsighted. The people stealing from the people. What does matter is that there seems to be a large group of people in our country that can justify this behavior perpetrated upon fellow countrymen and women. Who are the real criminals? Yes, I’ll say it: these fuckers hiding behind nefarious laws and dime store badges are far worse than most criminals. At least regular criminals don’t pretend to be Range Rover driving Robin Hood’s.  

There is a limit to what “the people” will take from their government before changes are necessary by any means. Maybe reports like this are the answer? Maybe not? 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quit Knee-Jerking us Around @realDonaldTrump #flagburning

Eating breakfast this morning I happened to catch a report on CNN about some University in Massachusetts where a group of students had burned an American flag in response to the election of Donald Trump. It wasn’t clear -or I missed- whether more than a single flag had been destroyed, or several. My immediate reaction was “big deal, who cares?” And then the story progressed….

The local Mayor city was interviewed. His opinion was something like, and I am paraphrasing: many veteran’s attend this college and this act was tantamount to treason. That it was totally disrespecting their sacrifice….blah-babaty-blah-blah. It wasn’t clear if the Mayor is a veteran himself though, nevertheless, as I see it, in this case, it makes zero difference.

And of course -disturbingly- our Prez-Elect Trump already tweeted about the situation. Something like: people who burn the flag should go to prison, or, lose their citizenship? Yikes! Albeit, most of what Trump says erupts from a sense complete ignorance, in my humble opinion, as it were. Tomorrow he might completely reverse this position -after speaking to some attorney he respects- similar to his about-face on torture….or not, who fucking knows? Point being, a POTUS so utterly reactionary, one prone to such knee-jerk impulse, will be -and is- unprecedented, in modern times.

Okay. many veteran’s might believe burning the flag is disrespectful, sure. That does not mean it is, or should be illegal. Especially since the very 1st amendment in the Bill of Rights, in the US Constitution, grants all men -women too, much later- the right of free speech, including the right to peacefully protest the government ones grievances.

And what could be more peaceful than burning some fabric on the sidewalk, or a college square, as it were? Disrespectful does not reach the criminal level of injurious or illegal. The Supreme Court has already ruled on this very thing, indemnifying the act as legal and protected under the 1st, 5th, & 13th amendment’s of the Constitution…the United States Constitution…to include ignorant kids that may wear pleather sandals and live in mom’s basement.

Donald Trump’s reactionary positions actually leads me to worry less about his ability to become a true tyrant. He’s not intelligent or cunning enough to cause wide-spread lasting damage. Yes, I could be wrong? So what? What should be feared more are the true lunatics out there suddenly feeling empowered to act out in destructive, truly abhorrent ways.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EARN MY VOTE: AMERICAN RADICAL

The older I get, the less ideological my positions become. I suppose this is the case with many American’s, I just never believed the rule would include me? Of course, it’s not 100% true. Gay marriage for example, was beyond my scope of liberal thinking 20 years ago. An ex-girlfriend who I still have immense respect for, argued the point with me. I was all for “civil unions,” but marriage, that seemed more in the realm of the Church. I was wrong, of course, and can only laugh at my innocent ignorance and unconscious bigotry. I thought at the time, I’m cool with gay, civil unions proves my progressive cred, right? And so it goes; at least I’m able to modify my core beliefs when they are in direct conflict with my sense of morality.

If I have a pet peeve associated with Presidential Election cycles it has to be this knee-jerk argument: “A vote for a 3rd party candidate is a vote for….X. Usually a Republican it seems? The reason being, the GOP has an entirely different, more in your face strategy, for influencing elections. Liberals use shame; Conservatives use the law. Get over it Liberal’s, I’m not voting for Hillary Clinton…and I’m sure as fuck not voting for Donald Trump. I might not vote at all, so there. My so-called “protest vote” is exactly that, whether I file a 2016 ballot or not. If Donald Trump gets elected, it won’t be because of me, or fellow voters like me. It will be because Hillary Clinton was a terrible candidate that didn’t earn our votes. Period.

The same failed logic is used to blame Ralph Nader voters in Florida for the George W. Bush disaster. Of all the data points you could reference to make a case for Al Gore’s loss, the Ralph Nader is the laziest, least democratic and poorly thought out. Another words, the perfect excuse for Liberal pundits like Bill Maher and Joan Walsh. I’d start out with Al Gore’s shitty campaign that ran away from the most popular Democratic President in a generation for one. Or how about the fact that if Gore would have won his home State of Tennessee, Bush would have lost, even with Florida? Or how about the fact that the one State that became a controversy, Florida, just happened to have as Governor, Jeb Bush, the President Elect’s brother, as well as his Florida campaign chairperson, who just happened to be in charge of elections in the State? Combine any or all of these factors with the fact that Democrats are whiny weaklings, and sure…let’s blame Ralph Nader.

I say; if you are stupid, please don’t vote. If you are voting just because some celebrity urged you to do your duty, please stay home. If Donald Trump gets elected because a plurality of our fellow citizens actually believe he has their best interest at heart, will fix Washington DC or will “Make America McGreat Again,” maybe we deserve the thump on the head? Maybe the shock of a Trump Administration -I cannot believe it’s actually even possible- is just the sort of sour milk we need to clean out the intestinal crud that is our current system of governing? Maybe a Clinton Administration simply continues this drip, drip, drip of increasingly out of touch, Aristocratic, beltway governing, that is becoming more and more based on legalized bribery and out of control Executive power based on the theory of Constitutional War Power’s, despite the fact that Congress hasn’t declared War since December 11th, 1941.

Okay, that was a lot of commentary for one single sentence. I could be completely wrong and Hillary Clinton might end up in the same conversation as an FDR or JFK? And maybe a Trump win could end in more of a fatal blow than a severe concussion? Or it might be that the Presidency is more rhetorical power than it is transformational power, and little will change no matter the outcome November 9th? What do I mean? I look at President Obama and I have to wonder: Is it possible that he actually does want to close GITMO and reduce nuclear arms and simply cannot, despite being the POTUS? Maybe there is an underlying power structure, -The Deep State- that limits certain policy goals? Or at least there are forces so strong only the boldest and brashest of President could effectively overcome their resistance? It’s possible, maybe even likely?

What does all this mean for me? Maybe I’m not a Liberal or Progressive? Maybe these counter current positions I gravitate towards make me a Radical? Does that make me dangerous? I’d like to think it represents an open-minded, historically adept, position? Maybe though, in this climate, it’ll simply get me put on a “watch list?”

Then I’ll know for sure that I’m right.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#MoreElectableThanTrump?

The shock and awe; is it different this time? Please don’t try to tell us you didn’t already know Donald Trump spoke of women like this. Your indignation is pathetic, really. It seems this errant comment was the proverbial straw that broke the otherwise robotic support of our elected leaders in Congress? Not the vulgarity recorded in heaps on the Howard Stern Show? Not the phoning in to act as his own publicist under the cover of “John Barron,” trumpeting his alter ego’s prowess when it comes to random models or specific celebrities who, in his own words, “cannot resist the huge celebrity of Mr. Trump?” Give me a break! This all feels scripted in the way a so-called “reality” show or professional wrestling match actually isn’t, fake pretending to be real rather than real acting to be fake. And like the worst genre of B-roll horror films, there’s no surprise on what’s in the closet or hiding under the bed. Anyone paying attention could have predicted this a year ago: The Donald thrown out of the ring, hit over the head with a folding chair by Hillary Clinton, leaving the “true conservative” standing within the ropes, on the mat, to tussle with Clinton, or at least her alter ego…. The Inevitable vs. The Establishment.

The worst part of it all is the way the American people are treated, as if they are all stupid. There will be a fallout, a reckoning I suppose for all these theatrics. Whatever it is, or will be, is beyond my ability to forecast accurately. Politics in America is due for a massive shakeup. The question today is, in what form will change take hold? It would be simple to say a Revolution, however, I find this prediction out of date and lacking specificity. The problem with the theory is the Deep State and the firm grip these agencies have upon modern society. The tactics of Revolution as we’ve seen it historically can be utterly upended by a system that has the ability to exercise complete dominance over people’s movement, finances, communication, even the tactical ability to forecast trends with powerful analytics using data compiled in heaps till now.

Back to the point though. The media that has finally turned on Trump, along with the members of Congress dropping like flies today, do not have much effect on those out in America bitterly supporting the man. It’s the establishment in Washington DC, New York and LA that are the perceived enemy and their position on Donald is irrelevant, if not further reason to support him? And of course he cannot win. He never stood a chance to begin with looking at the electoral math and map. For the GOP to win the Presidency, the stars would need to align. In opposition you’d need an unpopular candidate, check Hillary Clinton, but you’d also need a candidate on your side that can appeal cross culturally with Hispanics and black voter’s. Unchecked, Trump!

It’s gotta be irritating to the ordinary American who is actually looking for a candidate they can wholeheartedly get behind? I think the younger voters unwilling to line up behind Clinton are the most honest, realistic, well-informed out there in the country. We all know Hillary is putting on a mask to win their votes, a little like Obama, just with about 5% of the charisma and 2% of the marketing strategy. “Stronger together?” Sounds like a corporate logo inspired by the healthcare industry which is appropriate considering her logo looks like a sign directing you to the Emergency Department?

Can’t wait for Meet the Press tomorrow morning. My chance to finally throw a television set off a hotel balcony. I’ve always wanted to do that.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WELCOME TO THE SHOW

The 2016 Election just went from Plum, to Batshit cRAZY. Fresh audio of Donald Trump circa 2005 speaking with Access Hollywood’s Billy Bush bragging, “being a celebrity you can do anything….anything; grab a girls pussy..anything.” There’s some kind of humorous irony in the fact that it was with a Bush…Billy “Bush,” but yeah, so what? It’s not a religious test to qualify for citizenship that’ll supposedly sink The Donald, but some off the record banter that could’ve been hurled from the mouth of almost any dickhead, reality TV douche. But seriously, the shocked indignation from NPR to CNN -who actually bleeps out “pussy,” describing the word as “between a woman’s legs starting with a, I shit you not: P” after playing the clip. It’s the sort of wimpy, cringe-worthy reporting that only tends to buttress my belief in the doom of our Democracy. I would never vote for Donald Trump as President of the United States, nevertheless, his candidacy has done more to expose the corrupt, incestuous, media/government marriage than anyone or anything since the invasion of Iraq in 2003.

In a distant 3rd place among the headlines today, behind the latest Trump gaff and the Hurricane threatening the Southeastern US, was the governments assertion that Russia has been meddling in our electoral system by hacking political organizations and then dumping the data by way of Wikileaks and Julian Assange. The latest of which reveals a trove of Clinton associate emails discussing, among many other things, the substance of her paid speeches to Goldman Sachs and Wall Street.

If Hillary Clinton were facing almost any other GOP candidate she’d be toast. I’d say, concerning these fresh leaks involving both candidates, that they only shed a kind of credibility to what we already know about them. Anyone acting truly surprised that The Donald used language like this concerning women is either lying or willfully ignorant. And likewise, if you believe Hillary Clinton truly intends on reigning in the corrupt practices of Wall Street and Corporate America, you’re just incredibly gullible or too young to have experienced the shady character of establishment Democrats.

The election is a month out now. There’s still time for the GOP to try to dump Trump for their authentic choice, Mike Pence. Count on the media to direct the narrative in this direction. They cannot wrap their heads around Donald Trump surviving the establishment until November and will begin pushing hard to have him step down. It’s a scenario like this playing out that excites me as a spectator. Imagine the blowback from Trump diehards throughout middle America? The GOP leadership might talk themselves into the notion that Pence is a “true” conservative, thus softening the blow from the anti-establishment, Trump crowd, but it wont. That’s the part of this that The Beltway cannot get their heads wrapped around. They see Mike Pence as just another Washington insider, which he actually is. Trump, above all other reasoning, is their “fuck you” to DC. If he is somehow convinced to step down, or even the impression is left that he is left out to dry, the GOP is probably finished?

As for Russia? I guess I was wrong back in June in making the case that the Russian State wouldn’t be behind these leaks? It could still be a red herring from the DCCC and the Obama Administration to lessen the damage, but that is becoming less likely. Still though, most of the media is focusing primarily on the Russian connection to the material, the substance of the leaks less importantly. In any other cycle, considering her penchant for security and her private server which exposed classified material in a grossly negligent -I say clearly illegal- manner, these tidbits revealing her true identity would be catastrophic. Luckily for her and unlucky for the country, her main opponent has disparaged parents of a Veteran killed in action, has called for a religious test to be American, hasn’t paid taxes for +/- 20 years, has called Mexican’s rapists, has called for punishing women choosing to have a legal abortion, on and on and on. Oh yeah, has a 65% dislikability score to her…eh hum, 55% unlikability.

So what does all this mean for the future? Probably very little besides excellent television ratings. As I’ve believed for years now, especially after serving in the US Army in both Afghanistan and Iraq, is that most Presidents are not strong enough in character to bend the will of established government bureaucrats in the Nation Security institutions and The Pentagon. Sure, Presidents have power, nevertheless, they typically modify their positions once sworn in to the preconceived paths of the Deep State. They talk about change, transparency and the rule of law, however, as best exemplified by Barack Obama, these positions are little more than “lip service.” Two examples off the top of my head are his intention to close Guantanamo Bay Cuba Detention Center and his wanting to clean up the so-called Enhanced Interrogation Techniques – Extraordinary Rendition – Black-sites programs. To say he didn’t have the authority to close GITMO within months as Commander-in-Chief is ridiculous. It’s exactly the sort of thing he could do as the Executive, but didn’t and wont because the Deep State opposes the action. To the torture regime, he could and should have directed his Attorney General to criminally prosecute those within the CIA and NSA that administrated that mess, but didn’t. Why? The simple fact that many of those involved continued to serve his administration, some even today, tells you almost everything you need to know. That the Deep State has power, if only implicitly, greater than that of a weak President.

Finally, the corruption endemic to Wall Street and high finance plays out even today without criminal ramifications of any kind. That is by choice, not by accident. Why? Weakness. Period. With Clinton and Trump you have two birds of the same feather, only myth and flock distinguish them from each other. In practice however, they both represent weakness and status quo. All the static we hear, all the sparks we see, they are little more than political showbiz. It’s all just one big game.

May the odds forever be in your favor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

@CBS #60MINUTES &DR STRANGELOVE

Isn’t it frustrating that the 2003 Iraq War has come down to petty squabbles over who did, or didn’t, support the initial invasion? It’s relevant sure, but more important to American’s is, what have you learned from what is quite possibly the worst foreign policy blunder in United States history? What did you learn Mrs. Clinton, from both the initial mistake of regime change to the disastrous policy of occupation? Same for Mr. Trump. Instead of speaking broadly with terms like “huge mistake,” and “failure,” tell us what you’ve learned from the debacle? But no, that’s not what Presidential politics is all about. It’s easy for me to picture both Clinton and Trump at their lecterns, with their thumbs in their ears, whaling, nananananananana.

I’m bored with them for now. The real heat under my collar these days stems from our eroding rule of law in America. My new favorite poster boy for the gilded court room award is billionaire Jeff Epstein. A man with powerful friends no doubt. From the British Royal’s to the American Royal’s, this pedophile travels the globe in his private jet; The Lolita. It seems President Clinton has earned plenty of mileage plan perks since 2001, some 30 times at minimum aboard the Lolita. What’s the chances that another creepy billionaire in the news is good pals with Pedophile Jeff who goes by The Donald? Oh yes, the cream certainly does congeal at the top of that evil circus troupe. It seems nothing touches old Jeffrey, especially not the pitiful local Sheriff who investigated him for a year, identifying scores of pre-teens inhabiting the scumbag palatial mansion, only to have the rug pulled out from under the investigation by the DA. For serial rape and trafficking children, 18 months in the local jail seems appropriate? Especially nice considering his spending a few days in the joint, a few at home, repeat. But we pretend that justice is blind. The truth is America has no rule of law. What we have is a police state that uses the threat of prison to control the less powerful. How else can you explain the fact that one of these young ladies ended up doing three years hard time for stealing a gold necklace from mister pedophile and friends, the same duckweed who repeatedly sexually abused her from age 13 to 15. Justice!

And if you thought it couldn’t get any more sleazy; consider the fact that both Donald Trump and Bill Clinton consider the douche a “good friend.” I wonder what kind of blackmail material Mr. Epstein has on these fine gentlemen?

In other news: Watching this weeks edition of 60 Minutes calmed my nerves a bit, not really. So apparently we are once again flying Nuclear armed B-52s around Russia’s borders like the good old days of the Cold War. Some Air Force General the likes of Curtis Le-may calmly described the fire power aboard each bomber: They carry four, six-cylinder cruise missile launchers, each armed with thermonuclear munitions some 25 times the power of the bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945. These missiles can travel 1500 miles -a handy map was provided clearly showing the flight paths to major Russian cities- so with aircraft flying missions from the North Pole to Southeast Asia, we got them Roosky’s covered. WTF!

Have these clowns ever watched Dr. Strangelove? If not, they have replicated much of the subplot with uncanny, terrifying accuracy. This ‘ol General assured the American public that these exercises are now necessary due to ultra-provocative Russian behavior. Anyone else sense something approaching Kafka in rationality and Orwellian logic? Right! ISIS is our biggest threat?

I am making jokes here, but seriously, this bullshit is approaching insanity. Our political leadership is going to sit idly by while the Pentagon and CIA provoke Russia into Cold War 2.0? The amount of hubris dripping from that 60 Minutes feature was stunning. It was propaganda worthy of our bloated, unruly, cooked Deep State, no doubt. I ask this: If we had State sponsored media here in a supposed Democracy, would it look any different from that 60 Minutes piece? Look, the so-called journalists at CBS let our military command speak ill will of Russia and Syria for bombing indiscriminately, including a hospital. That’s appropriate, true, and accurate as far as we know? But to not ask anyone at the Pentagon about the Doctor’s Without Borders Hospital we recently destroyed in Afghanistan by “accident,” or the “accidental” bombing of Syrian troops in their own country last week, is worse than malpractice; it’s subservient and destructive to our Democratic process that requires our citizens learning the truth, so they can act appropriately and agree with, or disagree with, the policies playing out in our names.

Someone asked me today, a fellow Vet; “are you even on our side brother?” The whimsical nature of the question, asked so nonchalantly, depressed me profoundly.  “Am I on your side?” Wow! “Yes, I am brother!” “It’s some of these fools in command, making the policy, cavalierly toying with a country that’s capable of wiping our nation literally off the map, that should be asked that question.” Beginning with our addiction to meddling in what should be Russia’s sphere of influence. Pushing NATO right up to their border after committing to the opposite policy upon a reunited Germany. Even going so far as to help overthrow the Russia friendly Ukrainian Government, a piece of geography analogous to the United States and Mexico. These crimped and pressed desk jockeys have calculated that the best policy in regards to Russia is “poke the bear.” So yea, I’d ask them whose side are you on? The American public or the Boards of corporate raiders the likes of Raytheon and General Atomics, who would profit quite handsomely supplying the tools of Cold War 2.0.

What good is all that money sir, that paper currency and 1’s and zeros on a network after your freshman pranks cause the cold to boil?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#PRESIDENTIALDEBATE b.s.

So my last post was just all out word storm…and it felt good. Maybe I’ve discovered something vital to my mental health; unabridged political word vomit? Speaking of stomach and gut excrement, I just finished watching the 1st Presidential Debate of 2016. I was hoping to walk away from the 90 minutes with a better impression of Hillary Clinton, a hope that seemed within possibility considering the adjacent candidate sharing the stage with her. First thoughts are most important I think and the truth is, neither candidate said or acted in any way unexpected. My assessment of the two stands: I intensely dislike both Clinton and Trump as POTUS. Trump is simply a fool who might actually change Washington. The change might be for the worse, if that’s even possible? And Clinton represents the established “status quo.” Yes, I know both descriptors mean the same thing. Watching the show on my laptop I yearned for a West Wing President Bartlett smack down from Hillary that, despite the many moments of unguarded Trump, if you will, never materialized. Was that the strategy, to simply chuckle at his ranting madness? The one canned response I noticed was the “beauty queen” line that didn’t really emphasize the larger point..my opinion at least. But Lester Holt did a solid job. If anything, he leaned on The Donald with tough questions a couple more times than he did Clinton. Last thing I’ll mention: Clinton only addressed or referred to Trump as Donald the entire debate. Doubt he noticed.

The bigger theme is: From a Nation of 330 million, these two, somehow, have been lifted to such prominence, despite their flaws, despite their unlike-ability, despite their histories? What does this say about our democratic system? In my opinion, these national elections expose the truth, rather than perpetuate the myth, of our society. We like to prance around the world extolling our moral superiority and advanced justice systems. The nomination of Trump, a man connected both fundamentally and tangentially to bias and racism, exposes the entrenched social divides that continue to hound our culture. If social media could be attributed to a single benefit, I believe that would have to be the way in which these isolated, yet not infrequent acts of racial injustices, ie, unarmed black persons killed by law enforcement- are readily exposed to the masses, where as in past times only the most egregious acts like the Rodney King beatings went viral. This combination of ubiquitous recording and multi dimensional sharing is mainstreaming a social cause that’s been brewing for decades, yet heavily exposed today with the tools of modern technology.

Going back to these police killings for a minute. Just imagine how many unjustified homicides occurred prior to these technological advances? I mean look, many time today, even when captured on video, law enforcement will dance around the truth as in the case of Tamir Rice in Cleveland. A straight up murder by the way. Many of these incidents are buffeted with phrases like; “I saw a gun” or, “he looked like a madman on PCP.” Without video to contradict these accounts and the willingness of other police witnesses to falsify reports, the victims have been “up shit creek,” so to speak. Your word against theirs and you might be dead anyway right? So you can feel this storm brewing as regular citizens now have the opposing ammunition to contradict what otherwise would have likely been covered up with false reporting. Shit’s gotta change and the shock and confusion gripping police departments is palpable. Hopefully modern technology will help bridge this long running divide….but consider me skeptical.

No surprise Veteran’s issues of any kind were absent from the debate! After the forum last week I had many questions regarding both candidates comprehension of the wider issues. Actually, I don’t even want to know what these two think. Fuck ’em. They could say something sensible and be a lie or something outrageous that comes true. It’s all talk from them. It’s the moderator who asks the question…or doesn’t, as it were, that bears importance. Is that the correct “bears?” Or “bares?” At this point though, even I would be incredibly shocked if Trump even ends up winning more than 150 electoral votes. We are collectively a stupid nation, but not morons, right?

Hasn’t supply side -trickle down- economics been proven a sham? Isn’t it fucking obvious that Republicans spew this “voodoo” economic theory as a convenient way to slash taxes, most of all for the wealthy and corporate America? After all these years though it’s still trotted out by GOP candidates like some kind of paramnesia. Such bullshit. In fact, that’s a better metaphor than “trickle down.” It should be, “let the bull eat more so that even more shit trickles down on the rest of us.” The more gluttony, the more shit for all theory of economics. It’s about as believable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Presidential Town Hall?

Have you watched any of the documentaries exposing the media’s neglect in the run up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq? What seems to be clear is that much of the mainstream media has difficulty in telling the American people what they need to hear, rather than what they want to hear. Anyone questioning the government was labeled “terrorist sympathizer” and quickly escorted off stage right. See, for example, Phil Donohue, who had MSNBC’s highest rated program, yet was promptly cancelled as he dared to entertain opposing opinions, suggesting the Iraq War would be a colloseul mistake. There’s no prize for being correct anymore when it comes to American foreign policy. More importantly, there is no punishment for being wrong, for even outright lying to your customers even.

I say all this in light of the so-called town hall held tonight on NBC featuring Trump and Clinton. To be most succinct: if the United States had an official State News such as that of the former Soviet Union, how little difference would there be between it and what we present as journalism today? Would an event like this be MC’d by a morning celebrity talk show host rather than an expert in the field of Veteran’s affairs and national security? Would the State run program limit the event to no more than 50 minutes total, despite the enormity of the issues being discussed?

It’s unnecessary for me to dig any deeper into an analysis of this production I witnessed tonight. The content speaks for itself. That is to say; the content was as shallow as it was Jingoistic. If we learned anything new after this hour I’ll never get back it’s this: the media treats us as if we’re stupid. The candidates treat us like we are stupid. How much further can we travel along this dodgy path before perception does indeed become reality and we are all lost?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Conflict of Interest[ed]?

So. Mrs. Clinton’s campaign seems to have really stepped into the muck this time, an unforced error so typical of those completely ensconced in the DC beltway echo chamber, far beyond the worries of most swing voter’s, specifically, those voters still undecided for whom they will cast a vote for, if they vote at all, in this November’s Presidential race. It’s funny the lengths these operations will go just to fall in front of themselves. Apparently, the Clinton’s will suspend their foundation’s financial collection operation upon Hillary winning the election? A move that obviously -but possibly beyond the grasp of Clinton secret decoder rings in Brooklyn- will create more uncomfortable questions than it’s intended to answer, right?

For example: If appropriate to suspend as POTUS, why not as Secretary of State? Why suspend? Is it because donations are given with an implied expectation of future quid pro quo? If that can be inferred from donors perspective, how can you claim the opposite in the case of Wall Street -Goldman Sachs- paid speeches? Do you expect the electorate to believe rich hedge fund managers find what you have to say so valuable as to reflect the enormous fees? If so, as an example, why didn’t these same money managers skip Obama’s FREE speech in 2009? Do you really want to treat your constituents like they are stupid?

Beyond all this trivial incompetence, the most troubling aspect of this campaign for Liberal’s in general should be, is the left’s grooming and showcasing of lifelong Republican’s who are coming out in support of Hillary Clinton. More than anything the campaign packages and presents to the public, the idea that Clinton is courting GOP voters is a flashing red warning of things to come.

We might end up with three parties on the National level: a far right Tea Party, a leftist Social Democrat Party, and a so-called center Clinton Party that governs in the past, avoiding significant change to the ruling class, the elite and big business in the foreseeable future.

Let’s call it the Establishment Party?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s Not Kid Yourself

The self-righteous indignation spewing from the lips of Democratic Party loyalists over the Donald’s comments regarding the Khan family makes me laugh. Of course Trump is a disgrace to the country, to Vets and their families, but let’s not confuse political showmanship with actual empathy. You do not need to travel far back in time -2005-06 in fact- to dredge up a similarly offensive position espoused by the so-called liberals. I’ll get to that public shaming in a second. First let’s consider the chanting battles at this years convention in Philadelphia. While some in the crowd chanted “no more war” during some speakers time on stage, -a pretty standard liberal position going back 100 years at least- an even larger, louder group of democrats drowned the chant out with “USA, USA, USA!” Not exactly the sort of chant that brings the idea of peace to the world, a position most effective in preventing even more combat veteran’s joining the community henceforth.

Have we already forgotten the Cindy Sheehan story? For the brave, yet simple act of protest in the wake of her son losing his life serving in Iraq, she was roundly flogged by heavy hitters in both parties. So this idea that George Bush treated her with respect, while letting the hounds loose behind the scenes, is utter and complete bullshit. For her troubles, standing vigil outside of the Bush compound in Texas, she was dismissed in politics, as well as in the media, as a nut-job, narcissistic wife and follower of Bin Laden. Sure, some Democrat’s used her for political purposes, -i.e., to get elected- yet she was never treated with empathy. Sounds familiar?

Just a thought on a hot Sunday night.