Articles by Mark Taylor

Dithering Dems: MSNBC Analyst Warns Party Is ‘losing’ On The Impeachment Question

By Bob Brigham The RawStory (5/20/19) The NBC news national affairs analyst blasted Congressional Democrats on Monday for losing the battle over impeachment. John Heilemann joined the panel on “Deadline: White House” with Nicolle Wallace, following Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) becoming the first Republican congressman to back impeachment. Former Republican Congressman David Jolly of Florida explained how he viewed the developments. “Justin Amash has gone further than Nancy Pelosi did. I think we need to have Nancy Pelosi explain to the American people how she understands the Mueller report and if she understands it doesn’t rise to the level of…


Think It Can’t It Happen Here? It Already Is

  By Laura Flanders Common Dreams (5/20/19) Can it happen here? Absolutely it can. Even in a liberal bastion. A few weeks ago, a handful of white supremacists marched into a bookstore in Washington D.C., temporarily disrupting a talk by Jonathan Metzl, the author of Dying of Whiteness: How the Politics of Racial Resentment is Killing America’s Heartland. To put this in context, this was in Politics and Prose, in hip DuPont Circle, during an Antiracist Book Festival, on the same day that a 19-year-old white supremacist shot up a California synagogue, killing one person and injuring three others. Around…


Why The Guardian Is Reforming The Language It Uses To Report On The Environmental Crisis

From now on, house style guide recommends terms such as ‘climate crisis’ and ‘global heating’. By Damian Carrington, Environment editor The Guardian (5/17/19) The Guardian has updated its style guide to introduce terms that more accurately describe the environmental crises facing the world. Instead of “climate change” the preferred terms are “climate emergency, crisis or breakdown” and “global heating” is favoured over “global warming”, although the original terms are not banned. “We want to ensure that we are being scientifically precise, while also communicating clearly with readers on this very important issue,” said the editor-in-chief, Katharine Viner. “The phrase ‘climate change’, for…


From Greta Thunberg To Parkland: Courageous Young Citizen Activists Rattle The Right-Wing Smear Machine

They are citizens with rights who deserve to be heard. By Christian Christensen Common Dreams (5/20/19) I recently hit the age of 50, but let me tell you one thing I don’t think as I enter the second half-century of my life: that younger citizens around me are lazy, apathetic, entitled snowflakes, ensconced in cocoons of political correctness. Younger citizens—and, yes, they are citizens even though they can’t vote—must navigate a social universe of public-ness, information overload and surveillance unthinkable to those of us who grew up in the pre-Internet, pre-social media era. And, they must do this while dealing with…


Wisconsin Republican Con Job: This Woman’s House Was About To Be Bulldozed For A FoxConn Factory

VICE News (5/21/19) When Foxconn — the Taiwanese tech giant best known for manufacturing iPhone components — struck a high-profile deal to open its first U.S. factory, the village of Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin, needed to make room. Local leaders rushed to convince 78 residents to sell their homes. Everyone gave in, except Kim Mahoney. She was at work when she learned that the dream home she and her husband built was in the middle of what would become a factory for LCD screens. 5-Minute Video


Over 200 Economists Send Letter To Congress Endorsing Medicare For All: ‘It’s A Sure Winner—Except For The Profiteers’

By Jake Johnson Common Dreams (5/21/19) Ahead of a historic single-payer hearing at the House Budget Committee on Wednesday, more than 200 economists sent a letter to Congress blasting America’s “exorbitant and wasteful” healthcare system and endorsing Medicare for All as the most humane and cost-effective solution. “America’s health system turns our survival over to greedy companies with the market power to set outrageously high prices,” Jeffrey Sachs, professor of economics at Columbia University and one of the letter’s 209 signatories, said in a statement on Tuesday. “Medicare for All will give us a system already proven in other countries: much lower costs with…


Bipartisan Rip-Off: How Congressional Republicans & Democrats Joined Claws To Screw The Poor (Again)

After campaigning against the flagrant, unparalleled corruption of the Trump administration in 2018, the new House Democratic majority started 2019 by offering up a dose of milder, bipartisan corruption. It might be progress, but it isn’t pretty. By Zach Carter & Arthur Delaney The HuffPost (5/19/19) For most people, filing taxes is supposed to be free and easy. Instead, the vast majority of Americans pay a fee to a private tax preparer each year. We owe this annual ripoff to one of the most celebrated and misunderstood practices in American politics: bipartisanship. Despite all the talk about widening political divides, Congress…


Russia Monitor: In The Face Of Insanity & Inanity The Nation Bumbles Forward

  “It is simply not fathomable that a Constitution that grants Congress the power to remove a President for reasons including criminal behavior would deny Congress the power to investigate him for unlawful conduct — past or present — even without formally opening an impeachment inquiry. — U.S. District Judge Amit P. Mehta of the District of Columbia ruling against Trump’s attempt to withhold financial records (5/20/19)  ***** “High Crimes and Misdemeanors… does not require corresponding statutory charges…the context implies conduct that violates the public trust.” — Rep Justin Amash (R-MI) tweet explaining legal basis for supporting impeachment (5/20/19) By…


How Much Longer Will We Tolerate A Government By And For The Wealthy Few?

It is utterly farcical to call the United States government democratic. By Nathan Robinson The Guardian (5/20/19) The core democratic principle is that people should have a meaningful say in political decisions that affect their lives. In Alabama, we’ve just seen what the opposite of democracy looks like: 25 white male Republicans in the state senate were able to ban almost all abortion in the state. The consequences of that decision fall exclusively on women, who will be forced to carry all pregnancies to term if the law comes into effect. And, as has happened in other countries with abortion bans, poor women will…


The Abortion Debate Is Not About The Sanctity Of Life — It’s About Fodder For Corporate Capitalism

Tens of millions of young Americans who struggle financially and see little hope for the future. By Chris Hedges TruthDig (5/20/19) On Wednesday, the day it was announced that the U.S. birthrate fell for the fourth straight year, signaling the lowest number of births in 32 years, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey signed into law the most draconian anti-abortion lawin the country. That the two developments came at the same time could not have been more revelatory. The ruling elites are acutely aware that the steadily declining American birthrate is the result of a de facto “birth strike” by women who, unable to afford…


Whistleblower & Investigation Reveals Widespread Use Of Abusive Solitary Confinement In Refugee Detentions

“This is a practice that exposes detainees to real psychological and physiological harm.” By Spencer Woodman, Maryam Saleh, Hannah Rappleye & Karrie Kehoe International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (5/20/19) DULCE RIVERA LIVED for the one hour a day she was allowed outside, to pace alone on a patch of concrete encased in metal fencing. They called it “the yard,” but it was really a metal cage. Still, it was far better than the misery she endured the other 23 hours a day, locked alone in a cell with no one to talk to and nothing to distract her from her increasingly dark thoughts. Rivera, a 36-year-old transgender…


Notably Quotable: “I don’t know why…”

  “I don’t know why. They ‘trust me’. Dumb fucks.” — Mark Zuckerberg replying to a friend in the early days of Facebook on why people were signing up in droves. Business Insider (5/13/10) ***** “Ignore the religious rhetoric and moral posturing about abortion. This debate is not about the sanctity of life. It is about corporate capitalists who desperately need more bodies and intend to coerce women to produce them.” — Chris Hedges, “The Abortion Debate Is Not About The Sanctity Of Life — It’s About Corporate Capitalism” (5/20/19) ***** “There is always more misery among the lower classes than…


What Does A Post-Roe America Look Like? As Anti-Choice Laws Multiply, Many Already Are Living In It

Democracy Now! (5/17/19) Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer issued what many considered a dire warning from the bench this week, implying that Roe v. Wade — the landmark ruling that recognizes the constitutional right to an abortion — is in danger. He wrote the comments in a dissent for an unrelated case in which the court voted to overturn a 40 year-old precedent. Breyer wrote “Today’s decision can only cause one to wonder which cases the Court will overrule next.” We speak to journalist Robin Marty about what a post-Roe America would look like, and how many people are already…


The GOP Is On The Road To Mass Lockups Of Women Who Have Miscarriages

The Republican Party’s attack on women’s reproductive rights has put the nation on a terrifying path. By Thom Hartman Independent Media Institute (5/17/19) The GOP’s Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice is on its way. During Mike Pence’s first year as governor of Indiana, his state put a young woman in prison for having a miscarriage, alleging that she’d taken an abortion-causing drug. Purvi Patel didn’t have a trace of such a drug in her system, but Pence’s state sentenced her to 20 years in prison anyway. Just a few years earlier, Indiana had also held Bei Bei Shuai for 435…


80% Guns Are 100% Deadly: Ghost Guns Showing Up Everywhere In California (And Spreading Into Other States)

What happens in California doesn’t occur in a vacuum. Ghost guns are now spreading across the United States. By Alain Stephens The Trace (5/17/19) For the better part of a year, Kevin Savangsy allegedly sold caches of weapons to federal agents out of parking lots and garages in Sacramento. The 29-year-old told his customers that he could get “hella shit,” including guns that police would never trace. Court documents suggest he lived up to that promise. At first, Savangsy’s offerings were conventional: handguns, AK-47s, and AR-15s. Then, on the morning of October 23, 2018, he unveiled his newest product: a…


‘Bottle Of Lies’ — The Generic Drugs You’re Taking May Not Be As Safe Or Effective As You Think

  By Dave Davies Fresh Air (5/16/19) As the cost of prescription medication soars, consumers are increasingly taking generic drugs: low-cost alternatives to brand-name medicines. Often health insurance plans require patients to switch to generics as a way of controlling costs. But journalist Katherine Eban warns that some of these medications might not be as safe, or effective, as we think. Eban has covered the pharmaceutical industry for more than 10 years. She notes that most of the generic medicines being sold in the U.S. are manufactured overseas, mostly in India and China. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration states…


Young Democrats Are Furious Over The DCCC’s Blacklist Punishing Insurgents

“We shouldn’t be punishing people for bringing new ideas to the forefront.” By Branko Marcetic In These Times (5/16/19) NORMAL, ILL.— On May 5, newly elected Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) chair Cheri Bustos faced a surprisingly chilly reception at this year’s College Democrats of Illinois Convention, which is typically a chance for participants to hone organizing skills and hobnob with elected officials. Bustos’ appearance quickly turned into an interrogation. The College Democrats questioned her about the DCCC’s new policy of refusing to hire consultants and vendors who work with any challenger to a Democratic incumbent. The policy is widely…


‘Unfathomable Evil Recognizing Unfathomable Evil’ — Trump’s Possible Pardons Of American War Criminals Provoke Outrage

  “Who pardons war criminals? DICTATORS. What is the signal you give by doing this? No amount of violence whether at home or abroad will be punished; no one will be held accountable.” — Jodi Jacobson, New York Times [Editor’s Note: Make special note of the words “whether at home or abroad” in the above quote. Make no mistake, Trump is paving the ground for violent suppression of political opponents here at home. The fascists are elegraphing their plans openly. — Mark L. Taylor] By Jessica Corbett Common Dreams (5/18/19) Progressives, human rights advocates, and journalists responded with outrage on…


Progressive Talk Radio Returns To Madison With Longtime Co-Host Of ‘Devil’s Advocates Radio’

By Mark Sommorhauser Wisconsin State Journal (5/13/19) For the first time since 2016, Madison has a liberal talk-radio station on the local airwaves. TALK 92.7 FM went live Saturday, said longtime Wisconsin liberal radio host Mike Crute. Crute co-hosts the daily program that will anchor the new station’s lineup, “The Devil’s Advocates Radio Show.” He also runs the entity that will oversee its programming. In launching TALK 92.7, Crute is betting the left-leaning politics and high political engagement in the Madison area will make for a winning market for liberal talk radio, a format that — unlike its conservative counterpart…


Russia Monitor: The Growing War Within Our Walls

Here are my principal conclusions: 1. Attorney General Barr has deliberately misrepresented Mueller’s report. 2. President Trump has engaged in impeachable conduct. 3. Partisanship has eroded our system of checks and balances. 4. Few members of Congress have read the report. Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI), @justinamash Tweet (5/18/)19 ***** “There are always political elements to our choices, but those should be a matter of tactics, not objectives. Those who think that impeachment, or sending a subpoena to Trump Jr., or holding Attorney General William P. Barr in contempt, reduces to a set of political choices confuse two different elements of decision-making.” —…


Plastics Are A Massive Threat To Global Climate At Each Point Of Lifecycle, Report Finds

By Madison Dapcevich EcoWatch (5/17/19) Plastic pollution across the globe is suffocating our planet and driving Earth toward catastrophic climatic conditions if not curbed significantly and immediately, according to a new report by the Center for International Environmental Law (CEIL). As first reported by The Guardian, a review of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) at each stage of the plastic lifestyle finds that increasing plastic and petrochemical industries expected to accelerate in the next ten years are threatening the ability to keep global temperature rise below 1.5°C degrees if the world does not immediately act. This year alone, the production and incineration of plastic…


Author Bhaskar Sunkara Answers The Question: Why Socialism?

Real News Network (5/17/19) Most people know capitalism is unjust. Jacobin founder Bhaskar Sunkara says he wrote The Socialist Manifesto to lay out an alternative. Link to 13-Minute Video ***** Part 2: What Would US Socialism Look Like?  Real News Network (5/17/19) Bhaskar Sunkara, founder of Jacobin and author of The Socialist Manifesto, explains what socialism could actually look like in the United States. Link to 16-Minute Video


Chris Hedges “Fascism in the Age of Trump”

Empires in decay embrace an almost willful suicide blinded by their hubris and, unable to face the reality of their diminishing power, they retreat into a fantasy world where hard and unpleasant facts no longer intrude. Media Sanctuary (12/1/17) Journalist, author and war correspondent Chris Hedges spoke at The Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy NY on November 10, 2017 on fascism and empire in the age of Trump. Link to 1-Hour and 14-Minute Video


George Orwell & Why The Time To Stop Trump Is NOW!

“To see what is in front of one’s nose needs a constant struggle.” — George Orwell By David Goldfischer History News Network (5/21/19) As evidence of Hitler’s intentions crystalized in the 1930’s, many politicians who recognized the danger continued to vote against vital defense expenditures. George Orwell, reflecting on that and other cases of “ignoring facts which are obvious and unalterable,” concluded: “To see what is in front of one’s nose needs a constant struggle.” Until Germany invaded Poland in 1939, there was room for wishful thinking regarding Hitler’s plans. Current defenders of the American Republic, by contrast, confront the “obvious and…


The Republican Tax Lie: While Reaping $21 Billion Windfall From Trump Tax Cuts, AT&T Hiked Executive Pay While Slashing 23,000 Jobs

Members of the Communications Workers of America demonstrate outside of an AT&T building. (Photo: Communications Workers of America) By Jake Johnson Common Dreams (5/14/19) AT&T promised to create thousands of new jobs as President Donald Trump’s tax legislation moved through Congress in 2017—but the telecom giant has done precisely the opposite since the bill became law, while raking in over $20 billion in extra profits. That’s according to an analysis published Monday by the Communications Workers of America (CWA), which found that AT&T has slashed 23,328 jobs since Congress passed Trump’s tax bill in 2017, including nearly 6,000 in the first quarter of 2019…


Author Arundhati Roy: A U.S. Attack on Iran Would Be “Biggest Mistake It Has Ever Made”

Over these last few years, given the wars it has waged and the international treaties it has arbitrarily reneged on, the U.S. government perfectly fits its own definition of a rogue state.  Democracy Now! (5/13/19) [Editor’s Note: Author Arundhati Roy reads a portion of her recent Arthur Miller Freedom to Write Lecture, titled: “A Place for Literature.” — Mark L. Taylor] As the ice caps melt, as oceans heat up and water tables plunge, as we rip through the delicate web of interdependence that sustains life on earth, as our formidable intelligence leads us to breach the boundaries between humans and…


Just Another Now Routine Story About A Good Samaritan Getting Arrested For Aiding A Sick Migrant

  Truly, in Trump’s nasty America, no good deed goes unpunished.    By Samantha Grasso Splinter (5/10/19) The Trump administration is doing everything in its power to hurt immigrants, both citizens and undocumented, leaving even the most well-intentioned of volunteers at risk for retribution. One of those Good Samaritans, Teresa Todd, was arrested in February when she attempted to aid a Salvadoran family fleeing gang violence, the New York Times reported on Friday. Todd, the city attorney of Marfa, TX, and the county attorney of Jeff Davis County, was driving home when a young man flagged her down off the side of the highway to…


Life, Fate & Active Collaborators

“And it was not merely tens of thousands, or hundreds of thousands, but hundreds of millions of people who were the obedient witnesses of this slaughter of the innocent. Nor were they merely obedient witnesses: when ordered to, they gave their support to this slaughter, voting in favour of it amid a hubbub of voices. There was something unexpected in their degree of obedience… The extreme violence of the totalitarian social systems proved able to paralyse the human spirit throughout whole continents.”  — Vasily Grossman, Life and Fate (1960)


Looking For Some Hope & Inspiration? Check Out Netflix Film ‘Knock Down The House’

By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (5/16/19) I just finished watching the movie “Knock Down The House” on the 2018 House races of several courageous progressive women, including Alexandria Ocasio Cortez. The movie is on Netflix. It is a great and inspiring movie with wonderful insights on mounting races against corrupt, entitled, entrenched incumbents. While AOC is the main focus of the movie the other women and their supporters are just as inspiring. I strongly encourage you to watch and study what these brave women did. I guarantee you will have tears of joy and inspiration in the last…


Russia Monitor: Autocratic Eroticism Leads Trump To Orbanism

“You have been great with respect to Christian communities. You have really put a block up and we appreciate that very much. [He’s] respected all over Europe. Probably like me, [he’s] a little bit controversial but that’s OK. He’s a tough man but he’s done the right thing on immigration.” — Trump to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and assembled press at the White House (5/13/19) ***** ‘Ukraine if you’re listening.’ — Rudi Giuliani’s message to Ukraine with his announced and cancelled trip. By Dan Peak The Commoner Call (5/16/19) Dear Fellow Readers, Trump met autocratic Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor…


A Guide To Every Known Investigation Of The NRA

  Here are the facts about all eight active inquiries into the gun rights group. By Daniel Nass The Trace (5/13/19) The National Rifle Association is caught up in a rapidly expanding tangle of investigations — six launched in the first five months of 2019 alone. Investigators in Congress are probing the gun group’s ties to Kremlin-linked Russians and to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, as well as several potential campaign finance violations exposed by The Trace, while the New York Attorney General and the Senate Finance Committee are scrutinizing its nonprofit status. Because it’s challenging to keep track of these probes, we’ve rounded…


Biden’s Climate Adviser Earned $1 Million From Natural Gas Company

By Alex Kotch Sludge (5/10/19) News broke on Friday morning that Democratic presidential contender Joe Biden is crafting a “middle ground” climate policy that will seek to restore Obama-era environmental protections, focusing on rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement, increasing fuel efficiency, boosting natural gas, and deploying carbon-capture technology. But there’s already a potential conflict of interest: Former Obama adviser Heather Zichal, who recently occupied a lucrative seat on the board of the Texas-based liquified natural gas (LNG) company Cheniere Energy, is now an “informal adviser” on climate change policy to the Biden campaign. The company has profited in recent years as the U.S. has increased…


Arsonists Torched Highlander’s Main Office. But You Can’t Burn Down An Idea

(Facebook photo) By Gary Stevensn In These Times (5/6/19) The main office building of the historic Highlander Research and Education Center in New Market, Tenn., burned to the ground March 29. Later that day, white supremacist graffiti was found in the parking lot. Thankfully, no one was harmed in the fire. But as one of countless organizers and activists who have passed through this center for popular education, I felt its loss deeply. Founded in 1932, Highlander (originally called the Highlander Folk School) connected democratic education with labor, community organizing and civic engagement. It was a meeting place and training grounds for generations of labor,…


Happy News! Leaked NRA Documents Reveal Gun Group Drowning In Legal Fees

By Sebastian Murdock The HuffPost (5/11/19) A week before former National Rifle Association President Oliver North said he would not seek reelection after a failed attempt to oust CEO Wayne LaPierre, he warned the group that extraordinary legal fees threaten the future of the NRA. A series of documents posted anonymously online and verified by both The Daily Beast and The Wall Street Journal show the inner machinations of a group plagued by deep financial troubles to the tune of $24 million. In a letter North and NRA official Richard Childress sent to top NRA officials last month, North said he…


Whiny Libtard Article Misses The Good News. SAD!

The important thing that this whiny article completely ignores is that American billionaires and corporations are enjoying the biggest tax cuts they have ever had amidst the highest profits they have ever scammed. Sure, kids have it tough in America, but damnit we have a tiny band of entitled super rich to support and engorge.  Downer libtard pity party articles like this take the giddiness away from all the good news about our oligarchy. Sad! Kids In America Are Missing School Because They Can’t Afford Soap, Toothpaste & Tampons By Liza Ramrayka The HuffPost (5/9/19) The locked metal cabinet doesn’t look…


Georgia’s Six-Week Abortion Ban Reveals The Intentional Cruelty Of The Anti-Choice Movement

  By Moira Donegan The Guardian (5/9/19) The anti-choice movement has taken a sadistic turn in Georgia, where a new abortion ban, called HB 481, has just been signed by Governor Brian Kemp. Signed into law this Tuesday and due to take effect in 2020, the bill effectively bans abortion outright, declares fetuses to be persons with full legal rights and protections, and imposes prison sentences for women found guilty of aborting or attempting to abort their pregnancies. The bill is misleadingly termed a “heartbeat” bill, and it bans abortions at any stage of pregnancy after the detection of “embryonic or…


Should 11-Year-Old Girls Have To Bear Their Rapists’ Babies? Ohio Republican Legislator Say Yes

The efforts to deny even the most vulnerable victims of sex crimes the right not to bear their rapists’ babies are real. [Editor’s Note: The article also notes republican efforts to make many forms of birth control illegal. And meanwhile republicans do everything to deny children and families the health care, schools and other support young families need. Pro Life? Bullshit.– Mark L. Taylor] By Eric Zorn Chicago Tribune (5/9/19) An 11-year-old rape victim in northwestern Ohio is pregnant, according to news reports, and a highly restrictive state law on abortion signed last month says a girl in her position must carry…


Big Money Lobbyists Working To Defeat Medicare For All Host Congressional Staffers At Cushy Resort

The group spent as much as $560 per congressional aide for transportation, food, and lodging. [Editor’s Note: Now keep in mind, these congressional staffers — and the reps they work for — all get excellent taxpayer-paid health care for their families paid for by citizens who too often don’t have health care or many with horrible policies. Why, we must ask these congressional freeloaders, are their children more precious than ours? The thought of people like this being involved in health care policy is revolting. Time to revolt. — Mark L. Taylor] By Lee Fang The Intercept (5/10/19) AT A LUXURY RESORT just outside…


Everywhere War: The American Threat To Iran, Venezuela, Women & The Constitution

  By Jeremy Scahill Intercepted (5/8/19) JOHN BOLTON THREATENS Iran with “unrelenting force” as Benjamin Netanyahu unleashes a new assault on Gaza. This week on Intercepted: As the U.S. moves a strike group and bombers near Iran, The Intercept’s Murtaza Hussain discusses Trump’s motley crew of regime-change warriors, what war with Iran would look like, and the strategy behind the economic sanctions. At nearly 88 years old, former Sen. Mike Gravel may be the oldest candidate for president, but he also has the dankest social media memes. Gravel discusses his insurgent run for the Democratic nomination led by his campaign volunteers…


Russia Monitor: And The Judicial Mugging Goes On

“…But he is a state-of-the-art autocrat; he understands that he need not resort to the truncheon or the midnight knock at the door. His assault on civil society arrives in the guise of legalisms subverting the institutions that might challenge his authority.” — Franklin Foer, Viktor Orban’s War On Intellect By Dan Peak The Commoner Call (5/13/19) Dear Fellow Readers, Legal mugging. Politics with Trump in the White House, as with a global plethora of autocrats, is like a daily mugging of law and order … and us. Our checks and balances are dependent on some regard for oath of office and…