Thursday, June 15, 2017

Put the Politeness Back in Predation

The political/media complex were making another spectacle of scratching their groupthink heads today. In one of those periodic discussions about why people are getting so damned irate and uncivil, they're appalled that "it" has now even escalated to the point of anti-VIP violence in a bipartisan baseball field. It's the tone, it's the divisiveness, it's the un-American way! The pat solution, once again, is for the millionaires of Congress to learn to get along. And then we proles would automatically follow our leaders' high moral example, and we could all get along too.

What they don't admit is that the Uniparty absolutely does already get along when it comes to funding the wars, rewarding the wealthy, and preying upon the vulnerable. The dreaded Gridlock they love to bitch about is mainly a scam for them to get donations and lobbying cash.

Meanwhile, there was this inconvenient spanner in their propaganda works from the New York Times' Gretchen Morgenson:
Even as Wells Fargo was reeling from a major scandal in its consumer bank last year, officials in the company’s mortgage business were putting through unauthorized changes to home loans held by customers in bankruptcy, a new class action and other lawsuits contend.
The changes, which surprised the customers, typically lowered their monthly loan payments, which would seem to benefit borrowers, particularly those in bankruptcy. But deep in the details was this fact: Wells Fargo’s changes would extend the terms of borrowers’ loans by decades, meaning they would have monthly payments for far longer and would ultimately owe the bank much more.
Just in case you were still wondering why Congress and the Security State are also so united and so hell-bent on fingering Donald Trump for "collusion with Russia to meddle in our elections," it's to deflect attention from the series of fresh hells they're creating for ordinary people at a near-constant clip. Politicians from both sides of the Uniparty have bent over backwards to protect Wells Fargo and other TBTFs. Because without the tycoons to fund their campaigns and write their laws, where would they be in the intervals not devoted to calling for unity and civility and solidarity among thieves? If they were to go after Trump for his real crimes and misdemeanors  - garden variety fraud and larceny going back for whole generations - then they would also have to implicate themselves. The unpleasant truth would definitely out.

Trump has been taking advantage of this protection racket for years. He and the political establishment have been partying hearty in a decades-long orgy of mutual greed. Their lobbyists write the tax and bankruptcy laws benefiting only the wealthy. Nobody has any qualms about preying on the most vulnerable people. As Jared Kushner bragged recently about his slumlord enterprise, the poor and the struggling and the bankrupt are considered a very lucrative "asset class" for the Predatory Industrial Complex.

The poor always have to pay their debts to the rich. It's the law. It's legal. It's desirable. It's painful, but there is no alternative. If you think otherwise, then you're a unicorn fetishist, or even worse, a Bernie Bro or a Deplorable. And you are definitely a convenient scapegoat.

In its latest guilt-by-association attack on the left, the New York Times tried to counterbalance the fact-based article by Morgenson with yet another smear job (h/t Jay-Ottawa) on Bernie Sanders supporters. Progressives allegedly face a day of reckoning because Wednesday's assault on the VIP ballers was committed by a former Sanders volunteer.

Nina Turner, the prominent Bernie campaign surrogate, quickly and unfortunately caved under this accusation, obsequiously telling the Times' Yamiche Alcindor: "Both sides need to look in the mirror. We have to decide what kind of language we are going to use in our political discourse."

So calm the hell down and look over there, TV audiences of America!  Stand politely united as we catch the Trump family canoodling with the Russian ambassador and the same Russian oligarchs who robbed their own country blind before they were permitted by the American ruling class to quasi-legally launder billions in stolen loot in American luxury real estate -- with much assistance from the TBTF banks. Donald Trump might well be considered a TBTF bank in his own right. He knows how to play the leverage game to the bombastic hilt. If his head ever rolled for the right, fact-based reasons, then so would a lot of other heads. This must not be permitted to happen.

And it probably explains why Senate Democratic leaders are acting so curiously sanguine about their GOP colleagues destroying Medicaid in a secret rampage of sadism. As long as the Republicans are agreeing to play along with their RussiaGate charade, it simply makes no sense for Democrats to "fight back against" the AHCA when they'd only succeed in delaying a vote by a couple of weeks anyway. This nefarious wheeling and dealing is criminal collusion - euphemised by them as collegiality and solidarity and unity - at the very highest levels.

And still, they pretend to marvel that ordinary people are becoming so irate and so uncivil. They still pretend to wonder why they get the occasional death threat on their Facebook pages.

Pretending is what they do. How else could they ever live with themselves?


Jay–Ottawa said...

I'll post my response here, since the previous set of comments is on its way to the archives.

"Hey, Jay-O, quit the snark and cut to the chase."

Hi, Erik. OK, I'll try to be serious this once, but understand that hope always comes with an expiration date and most octogenarians spent––or wasted––their quota of hope long ago. As I argued on this site years ago, hope should be confined to discussions of the theological virtues. In this world's realities hope is a liability, a tool often used by frauds to forestall action. So, no longer able to campaign hard for justice, which I did try to do once upon a time, I have embraced mockery to get me through my twilight days. Without a resort to the absurd my spirit is defenseless. Even if I do irony badly, at least I'm doing it on a site whose name invites it.

What I wrote in my previous comment was in reaction to a NY Times headline of this morning (June 15). Reading the whole piece confirmed my disgust with the Times for pumping up the idea that it was Bernie and his followers who had an unwitting hand in yesterday's shooting of Scalise. Absurd.

Blaming Bernie and his followers for any part of the shooting of Scalise is another attempt to have critics STFU about Hillary and Trump and all the other conmen and conwomen.

There is no way to be calm and soft-spoken and bedside serious in the face of the corruption ruining millions of lives at home and abroad. The PTB keep blaming the fire on the people sounding the alarm. But wait … you don't want to push me into my sermon mode, do you? More converts to reason might come forward after we condemn the absurdities by praising them tongue in cheek.

At the same time, I trust Bernie about as far as I can throw him. As long as Bernie works within the Democratic Party he is a Democrat. Bill Clinton, Obama, Hillary Clinton, Bernie––how many Democrats have to betray average Americans before the latter get wise?

My annoyance with the blame shifting by the Times does not mean I am a fan of Bernie. I don't need yesterday's cheap shot by the Times to distrust him. I already hold a weighty charge sheet on Bernie for other matters. In fact, unless he breaks out of his willed straight jacket of the DNC to found a new party, I'm certain he'll break hearts all over again, like those of the good people in National Nurses United. Plus a few people around here.

Erik Roth said...

FYI --

To the editors and publisher of the New York Times:

In a piece dated June 14, 2017, headlined "Attack Tests Movement Sanders Founded,” your reporter Yamiche Alcindor made insufferably outrageous accusations against Bernie Sanders and his supporters.
As one of the snidely labeled “Bernie Bros,” I demand a formal, printed retraction, followed by summarily firing that so-called journalist.
Nothing less than that is respectable or acceptable.
Her repugnant accusatory innuendo is too boorish to debase and refute in detail, as every counsel from Proverbs to Mark Twain advises.

Alcindor's contemptible smear job was not fit to print, and by doing so, the NYTimes shows itself to be simply and stupidly a sycophant to the corporate elite status quo and the Clinton neocon cartel.
Alcindor clearly has no sense, and by printing her despicably defamatory drivel the NYTimes plainly has no shame.
Sickeningly, the "Gray Lady" has become a pompously smarmy, unabashedly corporate, Wall Street, Pentagon whore.
Elimination of the Public Editor further proves cowardice and complicity in support of the imperial oligarchy, forsaking all pretense to journalistic integrity.

So I repeat: Alcindor must be fired, and the NYTimes must make amends by sincere, contrite apology, with corrective, responsible reportage henceforth.
My response offered herewith is all the respect you have due.
If you have any shred of integrity whatsoever, you will recognize, acknowledge, confess, and address your offense.
By those fruits we shall know you.

Erik Roth

Zee said...

Wow! Enough!

It’s time to shift the full blame for political violence into the laps of those who commit it rather than onto the shoulders of those who make rash statements about their political “opponents.”

I didn’t much like Kathy Griffin’s image of herself holding a bloodied likeness of Donald Trump’s severed head in her hand, Nor do I like New York City’s “Shakespeare in the Park” production of “Julius Caesar” in which Caesar bears a striking likeness to Donald Trump.

These so-called “productions” claim to be “art,” though I think that it could be—and has been—fairly argued by some that they are more along the lines of “violent political incitement.”

I disagree. “Incitement” to political violence comes down to one thing: the violent actor.

Not the bit of artistic fluff that the violent actor will claim caused him/her to pull the trigger or set off the bomb. Just the ultimate choice of the individual.

Yes, the individual and her/his defender(s) will ultimately claim that he/she was mentally ill and “provoked” to an act of violence by whatever convenient bit of political “art” or newsprint it was that she/he/the therapist can point his/her finger at as a “cause.”

But if THIS charge can truly hold up in a court of law, then anything that any one of us might say—in or out of print—could be considered “provocation” by some nutcase for an act of violence against whomever/whatever.

In the end, mentally ill or completely sane, only one person makes the ultimate choice to execute that violent “act of protest.”

Neither “BernieBros” nor “Deplorables” (And I may be both) are/were responsible for what took place a couple of days ago at the Republican’s batting practice session.

Only one person held the rifle and pulled the trigger. And he/she was “provoked” only by her/himself.