Archive for the ‘general’ Category
Andrew Cockburn, Harper's:
Ask anyone who was present at Hillary Clinton’s presumptive victory celebration on November 8 and they will tell you of the stunned silence, broken only by sobs, that settled across the vast glass enclosure of the Javits Center in Manhattan. Upstairs, in the suite where the candidate was closeted with her family and associates, the trauma was even more intense. As one attendee later reported to me, it featured the “full range of human emotions: screams, shock, fainting. Bill moved immediately to blame.” The former president, I was told, singled out campaign manager Robby Mook: “ ‘We should have fired that asshole months ago!’ It was awful.”
All those million dollar speeches couldn't buy Bill a second shot at the presidency. Boo hoo.
Meanwhile, the blame express rolls on. These two headlines tell you who is a Clintonite and who isn't:
Continuing to receive emails from Clintonite friends about the Russian bugbear; today it was a dense, minutiae-filled CNN editorial about some contradictory statements from Team Trump regarding Michael Flynn's contacts with Russians during the transition. It was written in a sort of "aha!", Fox News style.
The sender of the email added, "So maybe *now* you will admit you were wrong." Muah ha ha.
With all the things we could criticize about Trump, the Manchurian candidate allegation is the weakest of beer, but it appears to be the media's (or at least, CNN's) attempt at a Benghazi or Whitewater, aimed at bringing him down.
Calmer relations between the US and Russia would be a plus -- it's ironic it's the nurturing candidate and her disappointed supporters in the government and media, not the hotheaded Trumpians, who are the ones trying to get us into a nuclear war here. They don't care who fries, as long as they can "gotcha" Trump.
Update: Flynn resigned shortly after the above was posted. He was a creep, good riddance, but the reason -- the media thinks the US should be "tough on Russia" -- is pitiful when you consider all his other negatives. Moon of Alabama, the website of ex-blogger Billmon's former commenters, had a good analysis of this putsch by the so-called deep state and its willing journalist helpers (and let's add, unhappy Clinton voters who spam their friends).
The Democratic party, meanwhile, is mostly rolling over for Trump's picks -- his "Homeland" security choice was approved by the Senate in an 88 to 11 vote.
Still arguing with Clinton corporate Democrats. Steve Bannon, internet troll turned White House honcho, is the new lightning rod for the HuffPo set. On a private page, am talking with someone who feels we must put our trust in the "intelligence community" to protect us from... the alt-right.
Am sick of this discussion so here's the reply I would have made if I wanted to continue it:
Alt-right is a Clinton term -- you seem to be using it to mean Ultimate Badness but to me it just means "Breitbart."
Bannon seems to have become the new Dr Evil superbrain to the suddenly-invigorated left. But he can't be that smart if he thought Obama was an ACORN person, rather than a Finance-Insurance-Real Estate person.
Clearly the Trump/Bannon "strategy" is to throw out a lot of stuff in the first week that makes libruls' heads explode.
Pick an issue -- am waiting to see if they try to slip anything by on net neutrality.
Worrying about which warmongers are going to be on the NSC can be your issue.
Tomorrow's link rot, but here goes:
Algorithmically recommended to me by the world-straddling soul destroyers at GoogleYouTube, who are sucking every fiber of attention away from the rest of the internet [/exculpatory rant], this amusing demo shows "Barry Beats" chopping up some '70s and '80s vinyl to make new tunes: [YouTube]
Cornwall's answer to DJ Premier, Barry Beats, takes on the legendary Rhythm roulette challenge and quite literally smashes it to microbes. Watch as Barry rummages sightless through the racks of Camborne Record (and smoking paraphernalia) shop 'Lost in music'.
Then follow him back to his tiny studio where his blind finds are revealed.
Marvel as Barry chops and snips his way through a whole heap of hair, keeping it super funky at all times, finally to reveal a stone cold Barry Banga, not to mention some dubious dance moves!!!!
Sorry about the ads.
Naked Capitalism's Lambert Strether goes into depth on the Trump "Russian dossier" issue, which I'm not that interested in. Lambert's conclusions are worth quoting at length, though:
It would be nice, wouldn’t it, if our famously free press was actually covering the Trump transition, instead of acting like their newsrooms are mountain redoubts for an irrendentist Clinton campaign. It would be nice, for example, to know:
1) The content and impact of Trump’s Executive Orders.
2) Ditto, regulations.
3) Personnel decisions below the Cabinet level. Who are the Flexians?
4) Obama policies that will remain in place, because both party establishments support them. Charters, for example.
5) Republican inroads in Silicon Valley.
6) The future of the IRS, since Republicans have an axe to grind with it.
7) Mismatch between State expectations for infrastructure and Trump’s implementation
And that’s before we get to ObamaCare, financial regulation, gutting or owning the CIA (which Trump needs to do, and fast), trade policy, NATO, China, and a myriad of other stories, all rich with human interest, powerful narratives, and plenty of potential for scandal. Any one of them worthy of A1 coverage, just like the Inaugural crowd size dogpile that’s been going on for days.
Instead, the press seems to be reproducing the last gasps of the Clinton campaign, which were all about the evils of Trump, the man. That tactic failed the Clinton campaign, again because volatility voters weren’t concerned with the niceties. And the same tactic is failing the press now. Failing unless, of course, you’re the sort of sleaze merchant who downsizes the newsroom because, hey, it’s all about the clicks.
Walking across lower Manhattan, I passed a man with a loud, mellifluous speaking voice and a microphone, addressing people on the street: "I told you not to vote for Donald Duck, and you didn't listen to me, and now he's taking away your health care."
So far it's just the hated individual mandate but "Donald Duck" -- that's a good one.
From the RSS reader, three reactions to the Trump inauguration speech, two worthless and one fairly insightful:
Village Voice journalist-turned-Clinton-zombie Joe Conason thinks Trump is still fighting the campaign and is shocked, shocked by Trump's appeal to "anger." Lefty bloggers used to call this "pearl-clutching" or "fainting couch" behavior, where a comfortable Washington insider can't understand how someone could hate his guts.
Juan Cole calls the speech "a chain of falsehoods, saber-rattling and scary Neofascist uber-nationalism" and oh-so-cleverly translates it from the "original German" of the 1930s to the America of 2017. This all seems a tad ... overwrought ... if you actually saw the speech.
Corey Robin compares Trump's inaugural address with Reagan's 1980 equivalent. Now we're getting somewhere!
[T]here’s an interesting contrast to be drawn in how Reagan and Trump summon the people. Both men make much of the people as against the government. But where Reagan is very clear that government needs to get out of the way so that the people’s native talents and genius and initiative can flourish [speech excerpt] Trump construes the people differently. They are either the objects and beneficiaries of government action -- specifically, Trump’s actions -- or they are partners with the government [speech excerpt]
That sounds more like FDR or JFK than Hitler but the angry, fascist talk is more fun and soothes our woes at the loss of the noble, misunderstood Clintons. *sob*
It continues to amaze that so-called progressives are comfortable aligning themselves with the worst so-called Deep State elements fighting the incoming administration. Consider Trump's recent interview where he spoke about Europe, Russia, and the "obsolete" NATO. Depending on who you read, this was the kid pointing out the emperor's nakedness (Antiwar.com) or a kid, period (LobeLog). How aggressive will Trump be about altering US security priorities (if at all)? Quite a few well paid defense contractors seem nervous about #J20 -- it's not just the angry art galleries and websites who are "going dark" today.
Apropos of #J20 and #J20ArtStrike, this Archdruid essay (hat tip m.po) roots some of the Trump angst in pure class snobbery. A president who wears a ball-cap must be "illegitimate." Regarding indiscriminate use of the I-word, see Benjamin Studebaker.
Matt Stoller, a blogger for the now-disappeared sites MyDD and Open Left, became a Congressional staffer (for Alan Grayson) and joined the DC establishment. :( He can still write a fiery screed, such as this one for the Amazon Washington Post, titled "Democrats can’t win until they recognize how bad Obama’s financial policies were."
While the Hillary Left moans about Russia and Trump's supposed "illegitimacy," Stoller gets at the heart of why the Dems lost.
Q. Tom, what's in your Kindle?
A. Uh, Jeff Bezos is an *ssh*le monopolist who owns the Washington Post (fake news dispenser) and seems bent on hooking consumers into addictive rent-extraction schemes, so I use the Kobo reader for ebooks now.
Q. (Sigh) OK, Mr. Man of Principle, what's in your Kobo ebook reader?
A. Joseph Conrad, Nostromo, Chance, Under Western Eyes, Lord Jim, The Secret Agent, Victory (all good, all available DRM-free from Feedbooks.com)
Mark Olden's Poe Must Die and Kevin Baker's Paradise Alley both take place in the slummy, scary New York of the mid-1800s. Pigs running wild in the streets, Hot Corn Girls, Croton hydrants...
Ross McDonald's books pre-Lew Archer: The Dark Tunnel, Trouble Follows Me, Blue City, The Three Roads
George V. Higgins, The Friends of Eddie Coyle, The Digger's Game, Cogan's Trade
James M. Cain, Double Indemnity (the movie version turns claims analyst Edward G. Robinson into a sympathetic character and friend to the main heel, making it less bleak than Cain's cold-blooded book), The Postman Always Rings Twice
Philip Pilkington, The Reformation in Economics (just purchased -- DRM-free epub -- looking forward to this book by an erstwhile Naked Capitalism contributor)