The latest from the Republican Convention floor (from DailyKos) on the Trumpiness ramifications:
- Republicans are in full-on panic mode. Donald Trump is officially the Republican Party's nominee for president. The Republican National Convention has been a disaster for them. Hillary Clinton is leading in the polls.
- The Koch brothers have started abandoning at-risk GOP senators. Koch-funded Freedom Partners just canceled a whopping $2.2 million ad buy in Wisconsin, where incumbent GOP Sen. Ron Johnson has struggled in the polls. The Kochs abandoning Wisconsin suggests they think the race is unwinnable and that their money would be better-used elsewhere.
- This could be the beginning of a full-scale GOP retreat. Trump is toxic and he could sink the entire GOP ticket this fall — Democrats could run the table. We need to respond to the Kochs' retrenchment with a surge of support for Democrats running in must-win Senate seats for that to happen.
Don't forget to ask President Obama's half-brother Malik for whom he's voting now though.
I'm guessing all's right in the neolib/con world what with both VP candidates chosen due to being anti-abortion religious nut cases who seem really normal to the unobservant (they dress-up well). Both sides seem to still be in love with that famous line attributed to either Lincoln or P.T. Barnum (imagine that) about fooling all of the people some of the time. Because that may be enough.
Earlier this week, Bernie Sanders warned that Hillary Clinton’s eventual vice presidential pick must not be someone from the milieu of Wall Street and Corporate America. And while Sanders is still fighting to win the Democratic Party nomination in what many have argued is a rigged system with a foregone conclusion, it appears that Sanders is also intent on influencing the course of the Clinton campaign and the party itself.
Yeah. I'm worried about Trump.
But not this worried.
. . . Mrs. Clinton’s stubborn refusal to disclose the text of her three speeches to Goldman Sachs executives in the fall of 2013 fits this self-destructive pattern of greed and guilt. She was fortunate that Bernie Sanders proved too feeble a candidate to seize the advantage. Each time Sanders was asked to show a nexus between the $675,000 she was paid and any political favors to the financial vultures at Goldman, the senator froze, proving strangely incapable of driving a stake into the heart of her campaign.
A less paranoid politician would have simply released the tedious transcripts of the speeches on a Friday evening to bore insomniac readers to sleep. The real question, of course, was never about the content of the speeches, but about why Goldman was paying her $225,000 an hour to give them.
Goldman executives weren’t huddling around Mrs. Clinton to listen to her recite the obscurantist mish-mash ghost-dictated by her top economic advisor Alan Blinder. Blinder, a well-known Wall Street commodity himself, is a former vice-chair of the Federal Reserve and co-founder of Promontory Interfinancial Network, a regulatory arbitrage outfit whose top executives pocket $30 million a year. Blinder has publicly assured his Wall Street pals that Clinton will not under any circumstances break up the big banks and neither will she seek to reanimate Glass-Steagall, the Depression-era regulatory measure whose exsanguination by her husband enabled the financial looting by firms like Goldman and Lehman Brothers that spurred the global economic collapse of 2008.
The lavish fee from Goldman for Hillary’s speeches was both a gratuity for past loyalty and a down payment on future services. Goldman’s ties to the Clintons date back at least to 1985, when Goldman executives began pumping money into the newly formed Democratic Leadership Council, a kind of proto-SuperPac for the advancement of neoliberalism. Behind its “third-way” politics smokescreen, the DLC was shaking down corporations and Wall Street financiers to fund the campaigns of business-friendly “New” Democrats such as Al Gore and Bill Clinton.
The DLC served as the political launching pad for the Clintons, boosting them out of the obscurity of the Arkansas dog-patch into the rarified orbit of the Georgetown cocktail circuit and the Wall Street money movers. By the time Bill rambled through his interminable keynote speech at the 1988 Democratic Convention in Atlanta, the Clintons’ Faustian pact with Goldman had already been inked, their political souls cleansed of any vestiges of the primitive southern populism Clinton had exploited so effortlessly during his first term as governor.
In 1991, the Clintons traveled to Manhattan, where they tested the waters for Bill’s then rather improbable presidential bid. At a dinner meeting with Goldman’s co-chair Robert Rubin, Clinton made his case as a more pliant political vessel than George H.W. Bush, who many of the younger Wall Street raiders had soured on. Rubin emerged from the dinner so impressed that he agreed to serve as one of the campaign’s top economic advisors. More crucially, Rubin soon began orchestrating a riptide of Wall Street money into Clinton’s campaign war chest, not only from Goldman but also from other banking and investment titans, such as Lehman Brothers and Citibank, who were eager to see the loosening of federal financial regulations. With Rubin priming the pump, Clinton’s campaign coffers soon dwarfed his rivals and enabled him to survive the sex scandals that detonated on the eve of the New Hampshire primary.
After his election, Clinton swiftly returned the favor checking off one item after another on Rubin’s wish list, often at the expense of the few morsels he’d tossed to the progressive base of the party. In a rare fit of pique, Clinton erupted during one meeting of his National Economic Council, which Rubin chaired, in the first fraught year of his presidency by yelling: “You mean my entire agenda has been turned over to the fucking bond market?” Surely, Bill meant this as a rhetorical question.
When the time came to do the serious business of deregulating the financial sector, Rubin migrated from the shadows of the NEC to become Treasury Secretary, where he oversaw the implementation of NAFTA, the immiseration of the Mexican economy, imposed shock therapy on the struggling Russian economy, blocked the regulation of credit derivatives and gutted Glass-Steagall.
When Rubin left the Treasury to cash in on his work at Citigroup, Clinton called him “the greatest secretary of the Treasury since Alexander Hamilton.” Nine years later, following the greatest upward transfer of wealth in history, the global economy was in ruins, with Clinton, Rubin and Goldman Sachs’ fingerprints all over the carnage.
In mid-May, Hillary announced her intention to make Bill the “economic czar” for her administration. This served to quell any anxiety that she might have been infected during the primary campaign by the Sanders virus. For Wall Street, the Clintons are still as good as Goldman. Quid pro quo.
And on the world scene (just awaiting Hillary's re-arrival?):
Another incredible familiar 9/11 scenario?
Nice Attacks, Destroying Evidence at Crime Scene: French Government Orders Destruction of CCTV Video Footage
Gearóid Ó Colmáin 21 July 2016
A report in 21st of July edition of Le Figaro newspaper states that France’s anti-terrorist executive (sous-direction anti-terroriste- SDAT) has ordered Nice’s urban surveillance authorities to destroy all CCTV footage of the Nice Attacks on Bastille Day that rocked the city on the 14th of July 2016.
Although SDAT have cited articles 53 and L706-24 of the prosecution procedure and article R642-1 of the penal code, authorities in Nice interviewed by Le Figaro say that it is the first time they have ever been asked to destroy evidence at a crime scene – something they point out is illegal.
The explanation given by the French Ministry of Justice is that they don’t want ‘uncontrolled’ and ‘non-authorised (non maîtrisée) diffusion of the images of the terrorist attacks. The Judicial Police have noted that 140 videos of the attacks in their possession show ‘important pieces of the inquiry’ (éléments d’enquête intéressants). The French government claims it wants to prevent ISIS from gaining access to videos of the attacks for the purposes of propaganda. They also claim that the destruction of evidence is intended to protect the families of the victims. The comments section of the Le Figaro article is replete with outrage and disgust by the fact that the French government, instead of preserving evidence for the purposes of a thorough, independent investigation, is in fact behaving rather more like the chief suspect in the attack – ordering the destruction of vital evidence.
There is something rotten in France’s Judicial Police. Shortly after the Charlie Hebdo attacks on the 7th of January 2015, the judicial police behaved suspiciously before and as they did after the ‘suicide’ of Limoge’s deputy Police Commissioner Helric Fredou. Fredou was found dead shortly after the arrival of the French Judicial Police to his office in Limoges shortly after the Charlie Hebdo massacre. His family were not allowed see his body for 24 hours after his death; they suspect foul play. The Judicial Police claimed he had shot himself in the head, though his mother said she did not see evidence of this. The police commissioner was said to be suffering from depression, a claim denied by the family doctor. Fredou was found dead in his office before the publication of a report on the relationship between Jeanette Bougrab, a former press secretary of Nicolas Sarkozy, and one of the deceased in the attack, Stéphane Charbonnier
He was found dead in his office before the publication of a report on the relationship between Jeanette Bougrab, a former press secretary of Nicolas Sarkozy, and one of the deceased in the attack, Stéphane Charbonnier known as ‘Charb’. The relationship between Bougrab, who is close to all the leaders of the French Zionist movement, and Charb, was one of the most controversial aspects of the Charlie Hebdo massacre story. Fredou was also investigating the background of the Kouachi brothers who were accused of the massacre. They had lived in the town of Limoges.
An article in France’s l’Est Républicain newspaper attempts to reassure the public of the French government’s bona fides with the title ‘No, the footage of the attack has not been deleted’. The report asserts that the Ministry of Justice have not ordered the destruction of evidence but just the deletion of the images from the cameras in Nice.
This reassurance might be enough to placate those who are loathe to question the narrative of the war on terror. But, as the recent booing of French Prime Minister Manuel Valls in Nice showed, the French people are waking up.
Now France’s Judicial Police and anti-terrorist authorities want to destroy evidence of the attacks. In most crime cases, those who destroy or seek to destroy evidence are usually trying to cover something up. I have already pointed out some of the inconsistencies in the story we have been told about the Nice massacre. I have not claimed nothing happened or no one was killed but rather that the video evidence so far presented does not match the story. Perhaps new video evidence proving the government’s story will emerge. Let’s hope so! If researchers and journalists with a proven record of peace advocacy and a passion for truth and honesty in reporting were to gain access to those videos, ISIS would be weakened not strengthened.
But we would be naive to believe the French government intends to weaken ISIS, given the incontrovertibly proven fact that they support the child-murdering head choppers in Syria. While some will find their comfort zones and systems justification syndrome perturbed by this information, many more will simply fall back to sleep.Falling asleep is easier in the short term but in time people will realise that the mattress is being pulled from under them, so that when they wake up in terrible discomfort, it will be too late. It’s time to wake up!
Global Research, July 22, 2016
Now that the French Secret Services and their foreign associates have read the accounts of ‘false flag’ suspicion in the non-mainstream media, the French Government had to resort immediately to all sorts of doubt deviating maneuvers.
- The truck driven through the Bastille Day celebrating masses on Boulevard des Anglais, suddenly did not break through the barricade protecting the strip as a pedestrian area for the celebration, but it entered through an unprotected side-street. The ‘drive’ was allegedly prepared days in advance, even with dry runs, according to street cameras and telephone conversations between Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel (MLB), the driver of the truck, and a bunch of friends, whom he also asked to supply him with weapons. Strangely, the videos and telephone conversations emerged just days later.
- Judging from the bullet holes in the truck’s cabin, it doesn’t look like the police was actually shooting at the driver. Has anybody seen him dead?
- About five or six of MLB’s sudden associates where in the meantime apprehended for questioning. The number of associates varies depending on the mainstream media you read or listen to.
- Mr. MLB’s psychiatrist in Tunisia has revealed that his patient had indeed a violent and unstable personality – hello! – did you know that MLB, a destitute man, the alleged perpetrator of the crime, had a psychiatrist in Tunisia? – Well, we can’t ask him anymore. He is dead – or is he?
- TeleSur reported that MLB’s brother in Tunisia was surprised having received a sudden transfer of € 100,000 from his brother, as compared to the former small transfers corresponding to MLB’s previously reported poverty and debt. Is this a hint to make us believe that he got paid a lot of money to carry out this mass-murder on behalf of Daesh?
France as a country and through NATO is supporting ISIS-Daesh with training, weapons and money, along with Washington and Washington’s other European and Mid-Eastern vassals. Why would Daesh attack France?
May this be a dual complot, Daesh cells in connivance with the highest French authorities, is ordered to attack France yet again, so as to incite France and other US vassals to keep funding more bombing campaigns in Syria, Iraq and Libya, knowing quite well that to the contrary of what the mainstream media (msm) wants us to believe, the bombs are not meant to subdue and eliminate Daesh, but rather to conquer Syria, Iraq, Libya and more to come – of course, on behalf of the empire. Daesh-IS-ISIS are in fact NATO’s foot soldiers.
After all, Mr. Hollande and his Minister of Defense have in the past boasted of supporting Al-Nusra on behalf of Washington, of course, since Washington declared them as ‘moderate rebels’ who have to be helped to oust the legitimate President Al Assad, no matter that Pentagon observers concluded that Al-Nusra was identical with the Islamic State.
In the meantime, even the illustrious, neoliberal mouth piece of Washington, the New York Times, pits some doubts against the official story. In an article on 18 July, the paper concludes
“governments also see a benefit in linking the Islamic State to what are sometimes random and unconnected acts of violence. It is a way to project order amid chaos, and to try to assure jittery citizens that there is a strategy to end the violence. For example, in the days since the Nice attack, French officials have pledged to increase the resources that the country is devoting to the bombing campaign against the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.”“after Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel slaughtered dozens of people when he drove a 19-ton refrigerated truck through a Bastille Day celebration on Thursday in Nice, France, the authorities did not hesitate to call it an act of Islamic terrorism. The attacker had a record of petty crime but no obvious ties to a terrorist group, yet the French prime minister swiftly said Mr. Lahouaiej Bouhlel was “a terrorist probably linked to radical Islam one way or another.”Quoting Daniel Benjamin, a former State Department coordinator for counterterrorism and a professor at Dartmouth College, the NYT article concludes, “If there is a mass killing and there is a Muslim involved, all of a sudden it is by definition terrorism.”
This definition of terrorism serves the purpose. It allows building up more hatred against Muslims, more public support to go to war against them, more profit for the war industry – and, foremost, allows the elite and real perpetrators of such crimes and wars moving ever a step closer to Full Spectrum Dominance. And, We, the People, remain oblivious to this Bigger Picture.
This, like the previous two French massacres – and also the one in Brussels earlier this year – are botched cases of the security agencies in charge of organizing them. As in the previous cases, the media will now be told to shut up. The case will be forgotten fast; until the next massacre, when innocent people are being murdered to steadily advance the cause of a small elite to whom our western governments are enslaved.
Since the ascent of neoliberalism in the 1980s, our western world’s leaders have gradually turned to criminals and associates of an industry of legalized thieves, killers, drug-traffickers and liars. Hard to believe? Just look at the FED (Federal Reserve), ECB (European Central Bank), BIS (Bank for International Settlement), Wall Street; the war industry, DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration), and the six giant Anglo-Zionist media corporations that control 90% of the western news.
Take Obama, he prides himself to personally approve every drone killing, extra-judiciary killings are assassinations. We, the People, have become numb to these events.
The president of the United States of America, the head of the self-proclaimed empire, is effectively a murderer, has become the new normal. The fact that Hollande, Cameron, Merkel and many other peons of his empire are also murderers cumleaders (sic) of western countries around the globe – of billions of people – is swallowed without a whimper by the masses.
Where have we gone? What have we become?
Where is our self-esteem, our respect for the life of our fellow human-beings – our deep-rooted original sense of ethics and solidarity?
(Peter Koenig is an economist and geopolitical analyst. He is also a former World Bank staff and worked extensively around the world in the fields of environment and water resources. He writes regularly for Global Research, ICH, RT, Sputnik, PressTV, Chinese 4th Media, TeleSUR, The Vineyard of The Saker Blog, and other internet sites. He is the author of Implosion – An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed – fiction based on facts and on 30 years of World Bank experience around the globe. He is also a co-author of The World Order and Revolution! – Essays from the Resistance.)
With the Republican convention just concluded, and the Democrat party nominating convention around the corner, it has now become clear that the 2016 U.S. presidential election is unlike preceding elections in recent decades. Large percentages of those who consider themselves members of either party do not approve of their presidential candidates, for one thing. That includes more than a third of both Republican and Democrat voters.
For another, both candidates have assumed positions on issues that in previous elections would have been considered anathema to the dominant ruling economic and political elites. For example, both candidates have been highly critical of U.S. trade and free trade policies — especially Trump.
Trump’s more vehement criticism of U.S. trade policies in particular has U.S. elites concerned, to put it lightly. Almost hysterical might more accurately express their emotional state when the subject of Trump and trade is raised.
Wall Street and its neolib/con masters do not like Hedges.
Bet on it.
Take a few minutes and listen to the video below during your lunch break or relaxation break or nap break. I guarantee you'll learn a little bit about economics, history and sociology as well as get about 80% tear-inducing bathos (if you're in need of a good cry) in the anecdotes about his grandson and the disappearing forests.
Really. It's more than worth your time.
Oh yes. Buy the books! Hoodwinked (as well as John's latest New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man) is full of named corporations with their misdeeds highlighted for your further edification.
Also more than worthwhile of your time is the following movie.