On Nancy Pelosi, Impeachment, The Breaking Of Norms And Places In History

 The choice is hers. More than her reputation rests on it. [Editor’s Note: This commentary makes an excellent case of the need for impeachment, drawing lessons that should have been learned from the Nixon and Clinton impeachments. As the author explains, what is at stake is far more than political reputation or passing poll numbers. — Mark L. Taylor]  By Sean Wilentz The New Yorker (7/11/19) Crises make and break historical reputations. In our current constitutional emergency, a few unlikely figures, above all the former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, have upheld the rule of law, possibly redeeming their places in history….

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‘Visit the Camps Yet?’ Campaign Urges Pelosi To See For Herself The Horrific Conditions At Trump’s Concentration Camps

Poster by street artist Absurdly Well. By Jake Johnson Common Dreams (7/12/19) Instead of attacking members of Congress who are fighting to end the appalling conditions inside President Donald Trump’s immigrant detention facilities, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi should visit the camps to see firsthand the abuse taking place at the southern border. That’s the message of a new pressure campaign by the Progressive Change Campaign Committee (PCCC), which slammed Pelosi for agreeing last month to pass a $4.6 billion border funding bill with no safeguards for immigrant children. PCCC said in a petition circulated Thursday that Pelosi and other supporters of the legislation—including members of the conservative Blue…


Dem Rep. Adam Schiff Accused Of ‘Criminalizing Routine Reporting,’ Groups Call For Stripping CIA-Backed Provision From Intelligence Legislation

“Schiff is clearly the resistance to the resistance, and he should drop this provision from his bill.” By Eoin Higgins Common Dreams (7/11/190 A CIA-backed provision for a bill that could have dire effects on the freedom of the press is quietly making its way through Congress, despite the protestations of civil rights groups to Rep. Adam Schiff, the powerful California Democrat who chairs the House Intelligence Committee, to strip the rule. “Adam Schiff is once again putting the interests of the intelligence agencies in concealing their misdeeds ahead of protecting the rights of ordinary Americans,” said Daniel Schuman, policy director…


Trump’s Gift For Storytelling Is Why He May Well Win Again

“Loyalty and obedience to Trump provides life and salvation to his followers.” By Chauncey Devega Salon (7/13/19) Donald Trump is one of the best storytellers in recent political memory because of his skill in manipulating the emotions of the audience. Trump enraptures and titillates his fans, true believers, and other followers. Trump terrifies, upsets and enrages his detractors, critics and people of conscience. Trump’s Fourth of July event was a great example of these gifts. “As Trump’s polling numbers continue to improve and the likelihood of his winning in 2020 increases daily, the Democrats must empower a master storyteller of their…


The Creepy Epstein Scandal Reveals The Deep Bipartisan Rot Of The Nation’s Supposed ‘Elites’

  By Frank Rich New York Magazine (7/12/19) In the wake of Jeffrey Epstein’s indictment in New York, a number of powerful people formerly in Epstein’s orbit — Labor Secretary Alex Acosta, Bill Clinton, lawyer Alan Dershowitz, and Donald Trump — have been scrambling in the face of renewed scrutiny. What will Acosta’s exit and the new Epstein prosecution shake up, and what might they not be able to change? Perhaps at long last a serial rapist and pedophile may be brought to justice, more than a dozen years after he was first charged with crimes that have brutalized countless girls and women. But…


Russia Monitor: America In The Barrel

  “Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.” — Trump tweet aimed at Progressive Democrat Freshman Congresswomen (7/14/19) By Dan Peak The Commoner Call (7/15/19) Dear Fellow Readers, What happened to Republicans? You can say Trump happened to Republicans, but Trump is the culmination of a steep downhill descent marked by nonsensical Republican expressions starting from “the shining city upon a hill”, through, “ten thousand points of life”, the empty manipulation of “compassionate conservative” ending, at least at this point, Trump’s 2015 pronouncement that Mexican immigrants were “rapists”…


Border Patrol Agents Are Passing Around A Commemorative Coin Mocking Compassion For Migrant Kids

The coin declares “KEEP THE CARAVANS COMING” under an image of a parade of migrants crossing the border. By Dara Lind ProPublica (7/12/19) An unofficial commemorative coin has been circulating among Border Patrol agents at the U.S./Mexico border, mocking the task of caring for migrant children and other duties that have fallen to agents as families cross into the U.S. On the front, the coin declares “KEEP THE CARAVANS COMING” under an image of a massive parade of people carrying a Honduran flag — a caricature of the “caravan” from last fall, which started in Honduras and attracted thousands of people…


Refusing To Report On Church Rock: “The worst incident of radiation contamination in the history of the United States”

Now 40 years on, I know that the corporate media is still not to be trusted when it comes to covering the nuclear, or any other area of the energy industry.   Editor’s note: In New Mexico, the Church Rock Spill of July 16, 1979 has been called “the worst incident of radiation contamination in the history of the United States.” Catherine Caufield in “Multiple Exposures,” and Harvey Wasserman and Norman Solomon in “Killing Our Own,” reported that when the earthen dam holding radioactive uranium mine tailings burst, it released 93 million gallons of liquid wastes and more than 1,100…


African Swine Fever Leaping Past Borders & Devastating Herds

BBC (7/12/19) A deadly and highly contagious disease is spreading across Europe’s pig farms. African Swine Fever Virus doesn’t harm humans, but once it infects domestic and wild pigs almost all of them die through internal bleeding within days. More than a million pigs are thought to have died as a result of the latest outbreak, devastating hundreds of farms and damaging exports. It’s the first time the virus has ever hit Europe’s pig farming heartland. With a vaccine still years off, and amid fears the disease could reach as far as China, we ask if the virus can be…


Why Would They Hate Little Old Innocent Us? Confessions Of An Economic Hit Man

The Young Turks (6/14/19) What is an American economic hitman? Cenk Uygur and John Perkins, hosts of The Conversation, break it down. Link to 16-Minute Video ***** And Here Is How It Works…Ousted Honduran President Zelay Explains How The 2009 U.S.-Backed Coup Indebted His Nation & Fuels Today’s Migrant Crisis Democracy How! (7/12/19) Since the 2009 U.S.-backed military coup in Honduras, extreme poverty and violence has skyrocketed in the country, forcing tens of thousands of Hondurans to flee to the U.S. with the hope of receiving political asylum. We speak with ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya in the capital of…


I Hope Jeffrey Epstein Sings Like A Bird, Even If Some Democrats Go Down

  Wherever these questions lead prosecutors and reporters must follow. And the public must demand real accountability, no matter the answers. By Jill Filipovic The Guardian (7/10/19) I hope Jeffrey Epstein sings like a bird. The wealthy and well-connected financier and registered sex offender was arrested this week in New York on accusations of child sex trafficking. He just may bring a lot of bad men – and a few bad women – down with him. Epstein allegedly groomed and recruited dozens of underage girls, many of them vulnerable runaways, for sex with him and his friends. Despite being caught by…


Right Wing’s Religious Ways: OMG! A Biblical Book Of Trump? Really?

Miriam Adelson Longs For A ‘Book Of Trump’ In The Bible By Josefin Dolsten Jerusalem Post (6/29/19) It isn’t news that Sheldon and Miriam Adelson are big fans of President Donald Trump. The Republican mega-donors gave millions to Trump’s presidential campaign in 2016. But Miriam Adelson took it one step further on Thursday. The Israeli-American physician compared the president to biblical prophets in an article in which she asked why he has not enjoyed higher support among American Jews. “That this has not been the case (so far, the 2020 election still beckons) is an oddity that will long be pondered…


Bill Clinton Is Lying About Scandal … Again. But This Time Things Could Be Far More Serious

“I did not have sexual relations with that woman.” — President Bill Clinton (1/26/98) By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (7/11/19) While George W. Bush got tangled in its subtle logical intricacies, there is a folksy bit of advice citizens need to keep handy when dealing with politicians of all skunky stripes and varieties: “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me.” Present White House occupier aside, there is no politician where this is more true than Bill Clinton. Anyone conscious at the time can recall Clinton’s brash, self-righteous presentation when he sternly declared to…


Enabler: Nancy Pelosi Has Chosen Her War, And It’s With Her Party’s Future

By Mehdi Hasan The Intercept (7/7/19) THEY CALL THEMSELVES the “Squad.” From climate changeto student debt to migrants in detention, progressive House Democrats Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, and Ayanna Pressley have been energetic and outspoken since getting elected last November — and, as a result, have become inured to constant attacks from congressional Republicans and, of course, Fox News. But how about from their own boss? In an interview with the New York Times’ Maureen Dowd, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi dismissed the Squad as “four people” who have their “public whatever and their Twitter world” but don’t “have any following.” It is time for liberals and leftists who lambast Senate…


Eugene Debs: “I am suspicious of leaders…”

“I am suspicious of leaders, and especially of the intellectual variety. Give me the rank and file every day in the week. “If you go to the city of Washington, and you examine the pages of the Congressional Directory, you will find that almost all of those corporation lawyers and cowardly politicians, members of Congress, and misrepresentatives of the masses — you will find that almost all of them claim, in glowing terms, that they have risen from the ranks to places of eminence and distinction. “I am very glad I cannot make that claim for myself. I would be…


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USA’s Women’s Soccer Team Is No Accident. It’s A Product Of Public Policy

The success story of women’s sports shows how marginalized groups can be given opportunities through policy interventions. By Moira Donegan The Guardian (7/7/19) On Sunday, USA will play the final of the Women’s World Cup against the Netherlands, and there’s a good chance the Americans will win. Victory would bring a fourth world title for the US women’s team – there have only been eight World Cup competitions in history. The talent pool for female soccer players in America appears bottomless. The American women are so talented that players who would be starters for other countries, such as the forward Christen Press,…


Russia Monitor: Collaborators, Hustlers & Fabricators Spin The Nation Far, Far Beyond The Law

  By Dan Peak The Commoner Call (7/11/19) Dear Fellow Readers, It is easy to get overwhelmed in the daily rain of Trump shit-show news. To demonstrate, the bill for the D.C. government to ‘host’ Trump’s 4th of July celebration of self is $1.7 million. The money needed to pay for this comes from a now bankrupted fund “used to protect the nation’s capital from terrorist threats and provide security at events such as rallies and state funerals”. In fact the fund is running a projected “$6 million deficit” while the mayor “also noted that the account was never reimbursed…


‘This Is a Scandal’: Documents Show ICE & FBI Using Facial Recognition To Mine Millions Of Driver’s License Photos

“ICE is running facial recognition searches against millions of photos. You. Your family. Your friends. This is a major violation of privacy.” By Jake Johnson Common Dreams (7/7/19) A trove of public records obtained by privacy experts at Georgetown Law revealed that ICE and the FBI have used facial recognition technology to mine state driver’s license databases for information on millions of Americans without consent, a practice critics condemned as a “disturbing” breach of civil liberties. According to the Washington Post, which first reported on the documents late Sunday, “Thousands of facial-recognition requests, internal documents, and emails over the past five years… reveal…


Rulings On Gerrymandering And The Census Will Redefine The Political Future & Gut Any Semblance Of Democracy

By Terry Gross Fresh Air / NPR (7/9/19) Mother Jones journalist Ari Berman says recent Supreme Court decisions on redistricting and the 2020 census citizenship question will help determine which party is in power in the next decade. 37-Minute Audio (Commoner Call cartoon by Mark L. Taylor, 2019. Open source and free for non-derivative use with link to www.thecommonercall.org )


Oh, He So Deserves This! Bernie Is Proud To Have Earned His 2020 Corporate Non-Endorsements!!

Oh, Go Ahead And Read What The Corporate Freeloaders Have To Say About Bernie! HERE “As we fight for an agenda that guarantees basic human rights for all Americans, we will be opposed by the most powerful forces in America,” Sanders wrote on his website. “I am proud to announce the modern-day oligarchs who oppose our movement. In the words of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt: ‘They are unanimous in their hate for me–and I welcome their hatred.’” He Has Earned Every Nasty Syllable!      


The Most Dangerous Kind Of Climate Crisis Denial

“The most dangerous form of climate denial is no longer Senator Jim Inhofe throwing a snowball on the Senate floor to prove that global warming isn’t real, or Trump calling climate change a Chinese hoax. It’s liberal and centrist politicians who should know better appealing to “bipartisan consensus,” immediately shifting the blame to other countries when the U.S. has among the highest per-capita emissions in the world, or asking, “How will we pay for it?”” — Thea N. Riofrancos, The Democratic Debates Showcased the Most Dangerous Form of Climate Denial (In These Times, 6/28/19) ***** ‘Completely Terrifying’ — Study Warns Carbon-Saturated Oceans Headed Toward…


Notably Quotable: “There’s a direct relationship between the ballot box and the bread box, and…”

  “There’s a direct relationship between the ballot box and the bread box, and what the union fights for and wins at the bargaining table can be taken away in the legislative halls.” — Walter Reuther, President of the UAW ***** “Pity the nation whose people are sheep/And whose shepherds mislead them/Pity the nation whose leaders are liars/Whose sages are silenced/And whose bigots haunt the airwaves/Pity the nation that raises not its voice/Except to praise conquerers/And acclaim the bully as hero.” — Lawrence Ferlinghetti ***** “Our nation is operating concentration camps for refugee children. We need to stop denying that and…


“Welcome back to the USA” — Though I’m A Journalist I Didn’t Fully Realize The Abusive Power Of U.S. Border Officials Until They Trounced On My Rights & Privacy

  “Regardless of whether you have embarrassing information on your device, it’s about personal autonomy and living in a free society and not a police state.”   By Seth Harp The Intercept (6/22/19) I SHOULD HAVE kept my mouth shut about the guacamole; that made things worse for me. Otherwise, what I’m about to describe could happen to any American who travels internationally. It happened 33,295 times last year. My work as a journalist has taken me to many foreign countries, including frequent trips to Mexico. On May 13, I was returning to the U.S. from Mexico City when, passing through immigration at…


Ousted Honduran President Zelaya: U.S.-Backed Coup Destabilized My Nation Forcing Migrants To Flee

The United States should learn to live with democracy and not be creating repressive policies against us. We have the same right that they do to be able to make a living and live in freedom. [Editor’s Note: The tragedy of modern Honduras is a long-term truly bipartisan US creation, most recently beginning with the coup orchestrated by the Obama administration. A brutal push for privatization and debt has devastated the economy and impoverished the people and led to the rise of drug gangs. Migration is a logical, tragic byproduct of US policy toward Honduras and the rest of Central America….


‘A Brutal Violation Of Press Freedom’ — Journalist Glenn Greenwald Targeted With Investigation By Brazilian Government After Reporting On Corruption

The fallout from Greenwald’s reporting is having a major affect on Brazilian politics. By Eoin Higgins Common Dreams (7/4/19) The Brazilian government is targeting one of its biggest critics, journalist Glenn Greenwald, in a move that has been decried by observers as an intimidation tactic designed to stifle opposition to right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro. The government’s finance ministry’s money laundering unit was asked by federal police to investigate Greenwald’s finances, O Antagonista reported Tuesday. The right-wing Brazilian news site said that the investigation would focus on whether Greenwald paid for access to leaked records he used in reporting on the Bolsonaro government’s “Operation Car…


Interviews With Madison Native & Liberation Theologian Matthew Fox, Target Of Corrupt Papal Forces

  By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (7/8/19) Below are six interviews conducted by Paul Jay for Reality Asserts Itself on the Real News Network of Madison native and liberation theologian Matthew Fox. When Fox and other courageous priests continued preaching the liberation theology of justice for the poor in Central America he was kicked out of the church by the the fascist supporting Pope John Paul II and Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the future Pope Benedict XVI. While targeting priests advocating for the poor, Ratzinger was one of the key…



This Past Weekend’s National Socialism Conference Featured US-Bankrolled Right Wing-Friendy Regime Change Activists

  [Editor’s Note: This article came out the day before this past weekend’s 2019 Socialism Conference in Chicago. There are important questions raised, which DSA members need to be asking. If the growing DSA is to be a much-needed force for political change in the nation any cover, soft-pedaling of or collaboration with US corporate empire building and support of right wing dictators and criminal regimes within the DSA needs to be challenged. — Mark L. Taylor] By Ben Norton & Max Blumenthal The Grayzone (7/6/19) Socialism is now apparently brought to you by the US State Department. From July 4…


Russia Monitor: The Polls All Agree –Things Are Getting Weird

  By Dan Peak The Commoner Call (7/8/19) Dear Fellow Readers, Let’s be optimistic and call the news and polls a mixed bag. You likely heard that Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) has announced he is now (I-MI) after leaving the GOP. Here he is announcing in a Washington Post Opinion piece:  “I’m asking you to join me in rejecting the partisan loyalties and rhetoric that divide and dehumanize us. I’m asking you to believe that we can do better than this two-party system — and to work toward it. If we continue to take America for granted, we will lose it.”…


Caddy Shaft: Trump Plays Another Long Golf Weekend, Leaving Taxpayers Stuck In The Sand Trap Shelling Out $108 Million

The candidate who used to hammer Barack Obama for golfing too much is on track to play two and a half times as much as his predecessor and at three times the cost to taxpayers. By S.V. Date Huffpost (7/5/19) President Donald Trump began a three-day golf weekend Friday, making his 16th visit to his New Jersey golf club since entering office and pushing his total travel and security costs for his hobby to $108.1 million. The president’s Marine One helicopter touched down at Trump National Golf Club, Bedminster around 12:45 p.m. Trump is not scheduled to return to the…


‘Dark Money’ Facebook Ads Are The Right’s Weapon For 2020

Having a huge impact by spending very little. By Tom Perkins The Guardian (7/5/19) In the weeks leading up to a tightly contested 2018 midterm election in Virginia, a Facebook page called “Wacky Wexton Not” ran an ad that pictured Democratic congressional candidate Jennifer Wexton next to Nazi troops. Another labeled her an “evil socialist”. Yet another referenced Nazi uniforms, stating, “Wexton and her modern day brown shirts. They Are Evil. They Hate America. They Hate You.” Who spent $211 launching 24 anti-Wexton ads? It’s unclear. The ads state they were “Paid for by a freedom loving American Citizen exercising my natural…


Getting A Birds-Eye, True View Of The Devastation Being Done To Wisconsin By Frac Sand Corporations

By Patricia Popple The Frac Sand Sentinel (7/7/19) Over the duration of several years, Henry Boschen from Chippewa Falls has been involved in photographing pictures of a developing mine, processing plant and trans-load station in the Town of Alma in Jackson County using drone technology. He has also photographed many other facilities in the industry to show the impact of destruction on land and water. What you will see is his final product—–the idle Wisconsin Proppants Plant in the Town of Alma. Link to 3-minute video here. Please take a look at Boschen’s LookDownPictures.com to see his work and also take a bit of…


Trump & Republicans Desecrate July 4th National Holiday

Investigation Of Secret Border Patrol Group Launched As New Degrading Facebook Posts Surface A ProPublica story revealing demeaning posts directed at Latina lawmakers prompted widespread revulsion. By A.C. Thompson & Dara Lind ProPublica (7/1/19) The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency has opened an investigation into vulgar and misogynistic social media posts made by members of a secret Facebook group for current and former Border Patrol agents. On Monday, “U.S. Customs and Border Protection was made aware of disturbing social media activity hosted on a private Facebook group that may include a number of CBP employees,” said Matthew Klein, head…


Forget Trump’s Carnival Show Fourth: A Lincoln Remembrance Appropriate To July 4th

  “In March 1864, a decade after Alvan Bovay founded the Republican Party in Ripon [WI], a delegation from the New York Workingman’s Democratic Republican Association came to the White House to offer the country’s first Republican president an honorary membership  in their labor organization, “None are so deeply interested to resist the present rebellion as the working people,” Abraham Lincoln told them, after accepting the honor. “Let them beware of prejudice, working division, and hostility among themselves. The most notable feature of a disturbance in your city last summer was the hanging of some working people by other working…


Russia Monitor: The Best Way To Observe Trump’s Perversion Of July 4th

  “There is one policy that emerges from the chaos — the kind we would expect from an egotistical con man who has one principle: Me!” — Noam Chomsky from a Truthout interview with C.J. Polychroniou.   By Dan Peak The Commoner Call (7/4/19) Dear Fellow Readers, Happy Fourth of July! Celebrate as you see fit and for your reasons for celebrating. Personally that includes giving no attention to an authoritarian hijacking of a national holiday to advantage the ego of a man with a serious personality disorder. Fourth of July is our holiday. Trump’s twisted Fourth of July is…


Corporate America’s Fascist Hustle: Marketing Hitler’s Mien Kampf With Clever Nazi Coding

Normalizing the abnormal By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (7/4/19) In the early years leading to Adolph Hitler’s rise to power 1930’s corporate Germany looked upon the odd, babbling little man from Austria with dismissive shrugs or disdainful amusement. Surely, no one would ever take the man seriously. But as Hitler’s following of street thugs, unemployed, racists and social misfits grew and torch lit marauding street marches turned into more regimented affairs the German capitalists began to think perhaps Hitler could be massaged and manipulated to their ends. Corporate support, loans, gifts and larger and larger donations turned from…


Kamala Harris Claims She Was A Progressive Prosecutor, But Her Record Tells A Very Different Story

  Democracy Now! (7/2/19) As Senator Kamala Harris rises in the early presidential polls, she is facing increasing scrutiny over her record as a prosecutor in California. In 2004, Harris became district attorney of San Francisco. She held the post until 2011, when she became the attorney general of California. We speak with Lara Bazelon, a professor at the University of San Francisco School of Law. In January, she wrote a piece in The New York Times titled “Kamala Harris Was Not a ‘Progressive Prosecutor.’” In it, Bazelon writes, “Time after time, when progressives urged her to embrace criminal justice…


Stuck On The Bus: Joe Biden’s Questionable Record On Civil Rights & Crime

  The Daily / New York Times (7/3/19) As a senator he opposed busing and championed laws that transformed the criminal justice system. Now as a presdiental candidate, he faces renewed scrutiny over the legacy of those decisions. Link to 31-Minute Video ***** Could Hunter Biden Jeopardize His Father’s Campaign? By Adam Entous The New Yorker (7/1/19) In today’s political culture, people running for President may announce their candidacy on the steps of their home-town city hall or on “The View,” but the full introduction comes with their book. Some candidates’ memoirs tell stories of humble beginnings and of obstacles overcome;…


Should We Abolish Billionaires? Oh, Hell, Yeah! The Sooner The Better.

  About 60 percent of all the wealth in America today is inherited. By Robert Reich Robert Reich’s Blog (7/2/19) America now has more billionaires than at any time in history, while most Americans are struggling to make ends meet. With such staggering inequality, it’s fair to ask: should we abolish billionaires? There are basically only four ways to accumulate a billion dollars – and none of them is a product of so-called free market capitalism. Billionaires themselves aren’t the problem. The real failure is in how our economy is organized. One way to make a billion is to exploit…


Tax Boycott: While You Pay Yours, The Wealthy — Like Trump — Get By With Paying Little Or No Taxes

On Contact: A Tax System Rigged for the Rich with David Cay Johnston. [Editor’s Note: And then when the wealthy get into financial trouble — as they inevitably do — the government rescues them with cash pay-outs, like 2008, that we pay for. The discussion also shows how economic disparity eventually leads to fascism. — Mark L. Taylor] By Chris Hedges On Contact / RT (10/15/16) On this week’s episode of On Contact, Chris Hedges sits down with David Cay Johnson, author of “The Making of Donald Trump” to examine how the Republican presidential nominee and the rich are benefiting…