Thursday, May 7, 2015

Fake to the Left

 (* and **Updated below, 5/8 and 9)

What kind of mellow skunk spliffs are the corporate Democrats smoking these days?

Hint: beware of fake populists bearing gifts. It's all about maintaining the oligarchs in the lifestyles to which they are accustomed while throwing a few crumbs at the rest of us. The propaganda is busting out all over like a field of giant boils.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D-Wall Street) has penned a totally out-of-character editorial demanding a living wage for fast food workers.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel (D-One Percent) has announced an awesome  $5.5 million in reparations for victims of police brutality and institutionalized torture.

Hillary Clinton (D-Empire) has finally broken up with hubby (ideologically speaking) and embraced criminal justice reform. She's also in semi-breakup mode with her paramour, Barack Obama: no deep-throated endorsement of his Trans-Pacific Partnership corporate legacy pillar for her! She is even going him one one better on relief for undocumented immigrants.

What is going on here? Need we even ask?

 It's campaign season, and  therefore it is time for some serious triangulation which the media are pretending to take seriously. Those heretofore fiscally conservative Democrats are delivering promises to the Left in order for their party to stay viable. They are also dog-whistling to the Right. To wit:


Andrew Cuomo is still running TV commercials shilling for charter schools, for the benefit of the hedge-fund billionaires who stand to profit handsomely off poor minority students. To accomplish the destruction of public education, he needs the electoral support of parents working in Walmart and McDonalds. He is the last man standing/sitting of the Three Men in a Room. Two-thirds of the people who decide things in New York State have already been indicted, and Cuomo is still not out of the woods. So what better time for him to throw a placatory bone to the electorate?

Rahm Emanuel just survived an embarrassing challenge from slightly to his left in the mayoral race. He must pretend to be chastened after being called out on his cronyism and allegiance to the One Percent. Therefore, each person tortured into making false confessions to the Chicago PD over the past several decades will get an average of $100,000, plus such perks as free community college tuition to make up for the ruination of their lives. To many people, this signals that Rahm has been rehabbed. But not so fast: at the same time he's offering free psychological counseling to the victims of the police state, the state has ordered the city's largest mental health system to be shut down. This is called robbing from the poor to give to the poor. If a few hundred men are to receive reparations, then hundreds of thousands more must suffer. It's the neoliberal way. It pits poor people against one another so that the oligarchy can stay entrenched.

Hillary, Hillary, Hillary: the woman of the people will say whatever it takes to appeal to the regular folk, even as she becomes the first Democratic candidate in the age of Citizens United to blatantly court SuperPac dark money. She is raking in the bucks while claiming to want to overturn Citizens United. However, since she never gave us a time frame for campaign finance reform, we can assume that she wants to overturn the Money is Speech doctrine sometime after her granddaughter wins her first dynastic presidency, perhaps 40 or 50 years hence. Wall Street has already signaled that they know her campaign rhetoric is so much B.S. Needless to say, however, her latest craven actions are being dubbed "bold and risky" by the passive-aggressive New York Times.

While she bathetically bloviates about keeping immigrant families together, she remains mysteriously silent on her demand last year that child migrants be returned, without legal recourse, to the Central American violence they had fled. Some families just have to be "sent a message" that they are not welcome in Hillary Clinton's America. Humanitarianism is relative, and coldly calculated. Some asylum-seekers are more important and equal than others. Plus, children do not vote or donate to political campaigns. 

These three Wall Street Democratic players are flimsily faking Left so that Barack Obama can catch their deflated ball and run with it down the right field line to score a touchdown. He is openly teaming up with his Republican friends to push through the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and he is going out of his way to gleefully rub his supporters' noses in it. What better way to signal his disdain than traveling to the Oregon HQ of Nike this Friday to hype NAFTA-on-steroids?

Nike is the poster child for the off-shoring of labor to sweatshop countries.  Although the company has refused to say how much it pays the workers at its factories in Vietnam (one of the 12 countries negotiating the TPP) the average hourly wage in that country is only 30 cents. Nike sneakers retail in the US for well over $100 a pair. Mark Parker, the CEO of Nike, is not only allowed to see the TPP details being kept from the public -- he is dictating the details.

The Nike-Obama Partnership is nothing new. In 2013, Parker traveled to Chicago to join the first lady in selling his brand as a cure-all for America's so-called obesity epidemic. While Rahm Emanuel was closing a record number of schools in the name of austerity for the masses and prosperity for the asses, Michelle Obama and Parker lectured the proles on the necessity of exercise. What better, "value-added" way for kids suffering bipartisan food stamp cuts to lose even more weight: they should sprint across town to their faraway new schools in Air Jordans manufactured by kids even poorer than themselves. Never mind that the parents of these kids can't afford the Nike brand. Nothing gets in the way of Public-Private Predation, euphemized as free market solutions to social problems caused and perpetuated by the free market.

Nike gets away with paying child laborers pennies per hour by ostentatiously "investing" $50 million in order to shame slightly less hungry American kids into getting off their lazy butts in order to become active consumers of brand name couture. The Nike Brand and the Obama Brand feed off one another.


Michelle and Mark (Invisible Free Market God Is Shown at Your Right)

The Family That Brands Together Stands Together

So Obama is no longer trying to pretend to be on the side of the people who elected him. Like a corporate logo, he's just doin' us. He's in The Zone: the Twilight of His Presidency Zone. His visit to Nike is not only his dog-whistle to Wall Street -- it's his bullhorn to Wall Street. He is cynically signalling to his past, present and future paymasters that even should the TPP go down in defeat, he tried. He really, really tried.

These truly are the times that try our soles.


Nike's Obama Brand (Odor Eaters Recommended, But Not Included)

*Update (5/8): Odor-Eater alert! Get ready for the next Big Lie, once again brought to you by Obama's favorite steno, Peter Baker of the New York Times. The headline makes no effort to hide its shameless mendacity: Nike To Create Jobs If Trans-Pacific Partnership Is Approved.

The article then goes on to claim, without a shred of evidence or a shred of investigation, that the Sweatshop of the Pacific will create 10,000 new American jobs -- if and only if Nike and the rest of the global corporacracy are allowed take over more sovereign legislatures and court systems. The Times should be sued for journalistic malpractice, and Baker should go to work for Fox News. 

**Update (5/9): As of this morning, Peter Baker had revised his article a pretty amazing eight times. The invaluable NYteXaminer has the Diffs, allowing us to watch the frantic propaganda spin out in real time. The narrative morphs from Nike's job creation being uncritically reported as fact by the newspaper, followed several hours later by a smarmy Nike "linking" of the trade pact to job creation, then on to both Obama and Nike using the passive-aggressive "linking" word, then Baker rewriting the lede into the usual lazy he said/she said battle of the partisans (Obama accuses Democrats of lying and he is usually mean, according to Peter Baker, only to the Republicans!) and finally, modifying the presidential temper tantrum into a more righteous "scolding" of Democrats. I wrote two comments, the first addressing the initial sneaky changes to the article,  and the other remarking Obama's public hissy fit:

At least the editors now have the decency to change the headline of this piece to Nike merely "linking" passage of the TPP to 10,000 new American jobs. When it first appeared early today, this is what the Times slavishly and unquestioningly announced: "Nike To Create Jobs If Trans-Pacific Partnership Is Approved." The piece was online for hours before its more "balanced" revision was posted, and it was opened up for reader comments.

Readers giving the homepage a quick glance this morning would have been under the (desired) mistaken impression that the creation of 10,000 new jobs was engraved in stone and was a fact, not just an "aspiration."

I'm wondering if the 10,000 figure is simply the monetary equivalent of how many jobs COULD be created, should the CEO and board and investors choose not to pocket the windfall profits from this corporate coup. If their claim or promise is further revised to read it would "support" 10,000 jobs, then there's your proof of the bait and switch. Obama has already been awarded the maximum four Pinocchios by Glenn Kessler for using similar phony jobs numbers to push this deal from hell.

This article does not attempt to verify Nike's claim that its Vietnamese wage slaves are being treated any better. What salary are they paid? The Nike CEO, himself worth a cool $23 billion, has refused to say. I wish this newspaper would do a little more investigating. Coverage thus far of the TPP by all of the mainstream media has been, to be blunt, abysmal.


***

To paraphrase Elizabeth Warren, Barack Obama should put up or shut up.

After he'd previously accused Warren and other Democrats of lying about the TPP, she and a group of fellow Democrats had challenged him to make the terms and conditions of the deal public, so that the public and the reps they elect can make an informed decision without being subject to what can now only be called presidential badgering, even attempted extortion. (if you don't do what he wants, it just naturally follows that you love unemployment, hate the middle class, and are not "patriotic.")

To date, Obama hasn't had the decency to reply to the Democrats he smarmily professes to love. He resorts to throwing a public temper tantrum the day after shamelessly raking in even more millions from the wealthy donors he serves.


Obama might not have a political agenda, but he is definitely campaigning for what promises to be a long and lucrative post-presidential career. He is fully embracing his lame duck (or should I say golden goose) status and thumbing his nose at the people who elected him.

The man just squandered a huge chunk of whatever public support he still had left. And he doesn't seem to care. He is resorting to the lowest form of sophistry.

 

20 comments:

Meredith NYC said...

Karen you really pulled together a lot of points there. Obama’s real talent—acting—should point him to a Hollywood career.
He can do a reverse Reagan.

Sanders and Hillary debating will air issues like nothing else nationally for some time. The media will have to come to grips with Sanders’ facts, instead of sidelining them as leftish.

In the Times article on Cuomo/min wage, the NY State Business Council VP said,
”Artificially inflated wages will not promote job creation.....we need “policies that enable us to produce real private sector growth.”

Sorry, VP, the trickle down hoax has long been discredited. You mean policies that enable growth to your bank accounts.

What is really ‘artificially inflated’ is the personal profits of CEOs of fast food companies. What’s artificially DEflated is the subsistence wages of their employees.

Per article----on average, the comparison is $23. 8 million/year for each CEO in 2013, vs $16, 920/ year for entry level workers. Any math whizzes out there to figure the ratio?

That’s called hogging resources --legalized and normalized by economic Might Makes Right power over congress. And we are all paying taxes to sustain these low wage workers. Just like Walmart is making huge profits, in effect, from our tax money contributing to its workers’ support. Walmart is the richest corporation in the WORLD, and our tax money is helping it reach that pinnacle.

This is an artificially created money- accumulation machine for big business, with our elected representatives taking part in the spoils. With big money in campaigns, the recipients get lifetime security, really on the backs of the lower classes they create. This is a definition of TAKERS.

Meredith NYC said...

Adults with families, not teens in school are in fast food jobs since the mfg union jobs have been shipped out, Union workers had the dignity of negotiating with bosses at the bargaining table, instead of having to march in street protests for the TV cameras hoping for some attention.

By contrast, Germany and other countries kept more mfg at home, with more acceptance of unions, they’re on corporate boards, and are able to set decent wage standards. US jobs need taxpayers to chip in so the workers can buy food and shelter.

Cuomo should compare us to some states and other countries where min wage is higher, with no damage to business. Denmark 20/hr. Cuomo should use practical examples out there, instead of same arguments back and forth.

Karen Garcia said...

Meredith,

I agree that Sanders is already forcing discussions which the mainstream media would prefer not to touch with a ten-foot pole. He is even succeeding in de-mystifying the word "socialist" and depriving the right wing of using it as a laughable pejorative against Obama, who is as conservative and free-market as they come.

Speaking of laughter, I chuckled sardonically when I got one of those "breaking NEWS!!!" emails from the Times the other night, and the blockbuster scoop turned out to be results of a poll showing that despite reality, Hillary is more popular than ever, corruption or no corruption. I felt like the Ralphie character in "A Christmas Story" when he finally deciphers the message from his Little Orphan Annie decoder ring: "Be sure to drink your Ovaltine."

A lousy commercial? Sonovabitch!

Denis Neville said...

Can Hillary Clinton pass herself off as a Sanders-Warren look-alike, the “champion” for the American people? Wall Street Democrats faking left before pivoting right is another pure scam. Follow the money!

“Whatever her populist pitch may be in the 2016 campaign -- and she will have one -- Hillary Clinton is an undeniable component of the Clinton political-financial legacy that came to national fruition more than 23 years ago, which is why looking back at the history of the first Clinton presidency is likely to tell you so much about the shape and character of the possible second one…her path aligns with that of the country’s most powerful bankers. If she becomes president, that will remain the case.” - Nomi Prins, “The Clintons and Their Banker Friends, The Wall Street Connection (1992 to 2016),” http://www.tomdispatch.com/blog/175993/

Talking of shoes … The plural of anecdote Is not data…anticipating Obama’s biased collection of specific stories told from a specific vantage point, lacking in objectivity, filled with selective perception etc. today at Nike.

Thirty years ago, millions of US low-skilled jobs were outsourced to China. Today outsourcing jobs in China is no longer attractive. China itself is now outsourcing to cheaper offshore markets. Ethiopia has become the China of Africa and may become a new global hub for the shoe industry.

Anyone who has visited Ethiopia knows China is everywhere. The Chinese are welcomed to many African countries because they stay out of local politics. Has American exceptionalism lost Africa to China? What are the Chinese doing in their new wave of aid and economic cooperation across Africa? What will be the effects of this engagement on Africa’s poverty and development? What are the implications for our approach to development and aid?

“Ethiopia typically conjures up images of drought and starving children. The West sees Ethiopia as a country that needs to be saved. The Chinese see multiple business opportunities, with its fast growing economy and 90 million consumers and a way to 'do well by doing good.' While western official engagement is still largely limited to foreign aid, the Chinese offer multiple ways to make co-operation economically attractive. Africa had tremendous infrastructure needs after decades of regional wars. Western nations shifted their emphasis away from aid for infrastructure. China saw an opportunity. Most of China’s development assistance in Africa is not in the form of foreign aid, but lending from its Export-Import Bank. Building infrastructure, using Chinese engineering and construction companies, was paid by the increased production capacity of Ethiopia. When Chinese companies couldn't find enough local skilled workers, the Ethiopian government asked China to establish a college that would focus on construction and industrial skills. The Ethio-China Polytechnic College opened in late 2009, funded by Chinese aid. Chinese professors offer a two-year degree with Chinese language classes alongside engineering skills. Chinese companies hire its graduates. China's presence in Ethiopia is filling a huge gap." - Deborah Brautigam, The Dragon’s Gift: The Real Story of China in Africa

A man leaves his name behind wherever he stays, just as a goose utters its cry wherever it flies, according to the Chinese proverb. A person leaves a reputation, bad or good, behind wherever he works or stays. So one should make sure one preserves a good reputation.

Denis Neville said...

Karen, your old nemesis Jim Messina, Obama's 2012 campaign manager, is celebrating David Cameron's win in the British election, for which he worked. He tweets: “Things US & UK have in common: completely broken public polling & re-electing their strong leaders.”

Tosspot!

More like the power of propaganda and Labour's failure to connect.

The late J. K. Galbraith once described the 'Culture of Contentment', which was a state of political, economic and social stasis where the majority of the population believes that the status-quo is benign and unimprovable. The political wing of the elite makes sure the government supports them. The propaganda wing of the elite, the media, keeps enough people in the fear that any change may be for the worse.

Labour’s abject failures were denied and Labour lurched ever further to the right. Labour’s problem was that it was not right wing enough for English opinion! Bullocks!!

“Labour insistence on playing the rigged Westminster game, despite the waning enthusiasm for it from many of the party’s own supporters, shows how its incorporation into the establishment has enfeebled and constrained its imagination,” writes Irvine Welsh in the Guardian.

Sounds familiar.

Thomas Frank, “What’s the Matter with Kansas?” called it “the criminally stupid strategy that has dominated Democratic thinking off and on ever since the ‘New Politics’ days of the early seventies.” Could anyone think of a more ruinous strategy? Why did Kansas voters choose self-destruction? According to Frank, “liberalism ceased to be relevant to huge portions of its traditional constituency, and we can say that liberalism lost places like Shawnee and Wichita with as much accuracy as we can point out that conservatism won them over.”

Isn’t it about time the Tories and Labour, as well as the Republicans and Neo-liberals, stopped their pretense of being separate parties and went for a full-on merger?

Karen Garcia said...

Denis,

Did you know that "good cop" Dave Axelrod also "advised" Milliband? (another deficit hawk in liberal clothing, by the way.)

Krugman ever so gingerly criticized Obaman austerity in his column today, but mainly used the easy-peasy stupidity trope rather than directly address the greed/corruption truth of the matter. This, after he led off claiming that he likes to use words as weapons in his punditry. Here is my comment:

The demented ghosts of Reagan and Thatcher continue to haunt us.

It's no coincidence that Obama campaign operatives Jim Messina and David Axelroad traveled across the pond to also work for both major austerian British candidates.

As recently evidenced by Obama's push for the corporate coup known as the TPP, the world is ruled not by nations, but by billionaires and multinationals and banking cartels. You can't even call it fascism: it's more of a global oligarchy. Wall Street is the City of London, and the City of London is Wall Street. Keynes's "your spending is my income" approach got lost somewhere in a gaping maw of greed, the largest wealth gap of modern times.

At least in Great Britain, the campaign season is short. In the USA it never ends, thanks to the subsumption of democracy by big money. The needs of capital are placed above the needs of citizens.

Politicians are allegiant to the rich, becoming pretend-populists in order to gain office. Their boilerplate speeches and their ensuing deeds have little in common. And their serial mendacity is enabled by a media conglomerate owned by the same people who own the celebrity-politicians.

That's why it's so refreshing that Bernie Sanders is forcing himself on the national media stage to raise the curtain on all the corruption.

The media call it tilting at windmills. We call it speaking truth to power. It's making Ronnie and his paramour Maggie twitch in their graves.

annenigma said...

Interesting how the polls in various countries are becoming unanimously wrong and more frequently. After we hear that the race is too close to call, the election is suddenly won by the status quo candidate by a comfortable margin, almost as if there was some (in)vested interest working behind the scenes. Not that that would/could ever happen. Rigged elections happen only in third world countries - with the help of one of the many components of the Military-Industrial Complex.

Bibi was in a race too close to call right up until the votes were 'counted'. Now David Cameron's election ends up the same way. Maybe buying candidates is the gateway drug to buying election results (counters) themselves. Money can buy anything and anyone. The only ones they haven't managed to buy off yet appears to be the pollsters, but since it's only the votes that count, that would be a waste of money.

Either the voters are lying en masse to pollsters in various countries or something else is going on. How would we know if results were rigged except for the obvious mismatch? A race that's too close to call up until the count suddenly becomes a comfortable margin, if not a landslide.

The Market likes certainty and Democracy is a threat to that. The Market's partner and enforcer, the Military-Industrial Complex, has the most presence around the world and experience in putting people in office, the dirtier the better (my money's on Hillary). Or taking them out of office. The Pentagon's NSA, whose logo includes an octopus with tentacles surrounding the globe, also includes the motto 'Nothing Is Beyond Our Reach'. It's all considered National $ecurity after all, and that includes anyone who leads any nation, even ours. That's been true since President Kennedy.

Ste-vo said...

I was not going to follow anything related to the 2016 Presidential race other than periodically check out Karen's posts. However, that changed when Bernie announced. Here is a link to a column that will appear in VTDigger, our web-based "factual" newspaper here in bucolic VT, that announced today that it will post this on a weekly basis:

http://vtdigger.org/2015/05/07/bernies-bid-what-others-say-about-our-presidential-prospect/?utm_source=VTDigger+Subscribers+and+Donors&utm_campaign=1d3f181540-Weekly+Update&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_dc3c5486db-1d3f181540-333858225.

With our opiate addiction crises and a VT senator, arrested last night for human trafficking, VT is not the rural paradise the rest of the country thinks that it might be.

Meredith NYC said...

Despite Obama speech at Nike, a rather significant event, Krugman isn't blogging about it but sticking with UK and austerity.

I said...In his frequent posts on UK budget cutters, Krugman might at least mention once that their Natl health care has covered all for generations, while in 2015 ACA leaves out millions and wastes millions subsidizing the medical corporations. So just calling UK and EU austere is misleading to US voters, who suffer far more from inequality.

Warren and Sanders would not be labeled so left wing abroad. As a commenter from UK pointed out, Tories are not the equivalent of the Republican party here, on social issues they are far closer to Democrats. The entire political spectrum in Britain is much further to the left than in the USA, with their conservatives to the left of our Democrats on various issues.

The French right wing party said Obama was to their right on social issues of govt support.

Britain’s Natl Health Svc. entrenched since 1948, was even supported by Thatcher. Tories don’t aim to dismantle it even if they try to privatize some of it, but that’s being fought.

They’re raising tuition but not to the extent that it’s becoming a big profit center and a big burden on the lives of a generation of graduates.
When will we get some true compare and contrast?

Good quote above from Galbraith re " stasis where the majority of the population believes that the status-quo is benign and unimprovable." Or fear worse.
With no role models to wake them up, they stay stuck in stasis.

Here’s a role model.
Re practical spending, read Tom Friedman's column on Germany's intelligent Green policies to deal with climate change.

He says, their initial $$$ outlay serves to create demand and drive down costs to make green options mainstream and affordable. What a wise use of investments. So their austerity is actually not so extreme. Why don’t we hear about that?

Different political culture ---parties find some agreement, and they try to solve problems vs the US which lets our infrastructure rot and climate change be downplayed.

Meredith NYC said...

to Krugman column today:
The BBC televised the public questioning of the UK candidates, shown on Cspan. I was amazed at how rough the audience is to the candidates. Ordinary citizens interrupt them rudely in mid sentence with defiant disagreements and demands for a better answer. The candidates accepts it calmly as part of the show, and keep talking. Miliband asked a questioner, what’s your name again? And then kept trying to answer.

I’ve seen UK media interviewers treat politicians aggressively, such as Jeremy Paxman, I think, from BBC Newsnight. Our media treat our politicians with such comparative respectful deference, with hardly a challenge or a follow up. They never cut them off abruptly. And they accept the most absurd statements as just another point of view.

Also the UK House of Commons question time is so different from our congress. The MPs can interrupt the PM, and he’ll say, I’ll give way in a moment, let me finish this point. And the MPs often make so much noise during member questions that the Speaker has to call Order, Order!....and tell them to quiet down, that the member must be heard.

Our congress is decorous by contrast. In this, they submit to being well regulated

Denis Neville said...

Meredith NYC said... “The Tories are not the equivalent of the Republican Party here, on social issues they are far closer to Democrats.” [Cameron-Hillary fans?]

And, “Tories don’t aim to dismantle Britain’s National Health Service, they’re just trying to privatize some of it.” [LOL!]

The Health and Social Care Act passed by the Tories has been universally condemned by medical professionals and institutions, including the British Medical Association and the King's Fund:

“After five years of a government which pledged to protect the NHS, this election campaign makes it timely to assess its stewardship, since 2010, of England’s most precious institution. Our verdict, as doctors working in and for the NHS, is that history will judge that this administration’s record is characterised by broken promises, reductions in necessary funding, and destructive legislation, which leaves health services weaker, more fragmented, and less able to perform their vital role than at any time in the NHS’s history.'

The NHS will continue to be funded by British taxpayers, but the primary motivation of those supplying the medical services will no longer be care or public service but private shareholder or partner profit, and the percentage of the taxpayers’ money paid for the NHS which ends up as shareholder or partner profit will exponentially increase. NHS hospitals will be allowed to give 49% of their beds over to private patients.

As of May 2013, the following list represented the financial and vested interests of British MPs and Lords in private healthcare. Are they public servants or corporate servants?

http://socialinvestigations.blogspot.in/2012/02/nhs-privatisation-compilation-of.html

The new NHS chief executive, Simon Stevens, used to work for the large US private health provider, United Health. His inaugural speech about the “misplaced consensus within the health service” and the “innovation value of new providers” would suggest that the provision of services by private companies will only increase, creating competition rather than collaboration between parts of the NHS.

As a significant amount of the budget is spent on the administration of these contracts, the money available to spend directly on patient care is reduced. Although patients don’t have to turn up with their credit cards (yet), the NHS in England will be unrecognizable within five years.

Philipa Whitford, one of Scotland most respected surgeons, here talks about Labour Tories, Tory Tories and Liberal Tories combining to destroy the very principles of the NHS and negatively impact Scotland’s health care and well-being as a nation. You won’t hear this on the BBC:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esV6pGo8UTI

As H.L. Mencken once said, “Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.”

Pearl said...

Congratulations Meredith on two excellent comments to Krugman's column about U.K. politics I was not aware of. And Karen, despite your very critical truth to power comment you were at the top on readers' picks again. There was also an excellent comment by a Canadian reader at the top as well about the NDP win in Alberta by a woman no less, which shocked everyone.
This should encourage us to keep on writing, speaking, questioning everything hoping the messages will become effective.
Unfortunately, Bernie has the support of various progressive groups without questioning him too much about his alliance with the excuse for a democratic party and we cannot criticize him at this point in time. He should start running and then when he is recognized, shift alliances to an independent party.

Valerie Long Tweedie said...

Brilliant comments over at the Times, including yours, Karen and good on you for calling out the Times for publishing such tripe . I swear the commenters at the Times seem more well informed the writers. Maybe its time for a rollover of the writing staff.

annenigma said...

I wanted to add one thing about polling and elections.

If the polling data is becoming so frequently wrong in these important races, why is it that the opposite seems never to happen? I've yet to hear about polling that predicts a landslide which then turns out at the last minute to be too close to call and shocking everyone. Has that ever happened?

Rather it seems that when the pollsters raise the terror alert, so to speak, among the oligarchs by suggesting a possible tie that jeopardizes their puppet, only then is the hand suddenly pressed on the scale, producing the shocking victory.

If anyone knows of the opposite 'surprise', I'd sure like to hear about it. If it's the pollsters who are truly wrong, they should err both ways before being blamed for bogus polling results.

Karen Garcia said...

Anne,

Since politics are now globally corrupted by big money, it naturally follows that polling is also corrupted. It was always a falsely revered method of gauging "public opinion" anyway, and now even more so. Depending upon ownership of the polling company, the questions are definitely skewed toward eliciting some very narrow answers from the defenseless questioned.

I got into an argument with a pollster who called me during the 2012 campaign over why there was no way for me to endorse the Green Party other than responding "none of the above" to questions on my preference for Obama or Romney. These polling people are not open to being "chatted up" either. And it's all multiple choice. Do you strongly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree, strongly disagree, or have no opinion/don't give a shit about thus-and-so. They ask these repetitive questions in such a droning tone of voice, that after awhile you just tune out and tend to pick your answer out of thin air, just so that the call can be over sooner. Oh, and I remember being asked how would I identify myself: strongly conservative, somewhat conservative, strongly liberal or somewhat liberal. You were not allowed to say you tended toward democratic socialism or anything like that.

It's all rigged, I tells ya! So it was good to see these outfits getting egg on their face after the British debacle. Focus groups and the like also deserve to be flushed right down the toilet.

The End.

Pearl said...

Hillary Clinton and the Super Trough http://nyti.ms/1Iqe5gA

A good editorial in the NYTimes. Too bad they didn't allow comments.

annenigma said...

Obama is again hammering Elizabeth Warren over TPP. I'm surprised he doesn't accuse her of insubordination. How dare she defy him on the TPP! Have you ever heard Obama criticize anyone like he does her? I mean other than all of us Sanctimonious Purists.

He says she's just a politician like everybody else, she just wants to get her voice out there. Her arguments don't stand the test of fact and scrutiny. She's absolutely wrong. Her objections are illogical and based on fear.

What a JERK! I wish I could tell him that to his face.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/10/us/politics/obama-calls-elizabeth-warren-absolutely-wrong-on-trans-pacific-trade-deal.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=first-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

Karen Garcia said...

Anne,

I always thought Obama was a male chauvinist pig, if not a misogynist. Notice how he calls Warren "emotional" -- in a cozy tete-a-tete with a male reporter Tarnation, she is just like a woman! Not to mention demented by all that chalk dust she inhaled during her schoolmarm career. She makes his balls shrivel and ache and break just thinking about her. And greedy! A gold-digger only out for the money, fumes the marketing pro of the Billionaire Boys' Club.

Meanwhile, he so very carefully absolves his male critics from the dread disease of emotionalism. Women are crazy, men are merely mistaken.

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