American Fascism

Hundreds Of Migrant Children Are Being Held At Remote, Substandard Desert Tent Camp

  The government announced its plan to withdraw from a court settlement that requires youth shelters to meet minimum safety standards. By Angelina Chapin The HuffPost (10/2/18) Over the past two weeks, hundreds of migrant children have been sent to a tent city in Tornillo, Texas, according to The New York Times, in what experts are calling a humanitarian crisis of the U.S. government’s own making. Although the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) claims the tent camp is a necessary response to filled shelters, experts say that overcrowding is a result of the Trump administration’s recent decision to more thoroughly scrutinize…

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‘Is Democracy Dying?’

  Fresh Air / WHYY (8/27/18) ‘Atlantic’ journalist Anne Applebaum says the changes taking place in Poland — including a rise of conspiracy theories and attacks on the free press — mirror similar shifts happening in the U.S. Link to 48-Minute Audio


How To Recognize Plutocracy: The Dead Giveaway

  By Sam Pizzigati OurFuture.org (9/5/18) How can we tell when a democracy, or rule by the people, evolves into a plutocracy, the reign of the rich? Easy. We have a democracy when a political system can and does make a good-faith effort to address the problems average people face. In a plutocracy, on the other hand, the political system pays no more than lip service to average people’s problems and works diligently instead at protecting — and growing — the wealth of the already wealthy. By this simple standard, we Americans today unquestionably live in a plutocracy. Our latest slam-dunk…


As A Young Reporter, I Went Undercover To Expose The Ku Klux Klan

  By Dick Lehr The Conversation (8/15/18) Spike Lee’s powerful new film, “BlacKkKlansman,” tells the true story of Ron Stallworth, an African-American police officer who infiltrates a local branch the Ku Klux Klan in 1979. That same year, I also signed up to join the Klan. And at a secret meeting I even met the Grand Wizard himself, David Duke, the same Klan leader featured in Lee’s film. I was a rookie Klansman at the time, and I’d been recruited to join the cause. Sort of. Like Stallworth, I wasn’t a true believer and had a very different agenda from…


David Glosser: “Stephen Miller Is An Immigration Hypocrite. I Know Because I’m His Uncle”

  Democracy Now! (9/26/18) White House senior adviser Stephen Miller is the mastermind behind many of the Trump administration’s widely condemned immigration policies, including family separation, the Muslim ban and slashing the number of refugees admitted to the United States. Now he’s behind a proposal that will make it harder for immigrants to become citizens or get green cards if they have ever used a range of public benefit programs, including Obamacare, children’s health insurance and food stamps. Stephen Miller’s anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies are leading some in his own family to speak out against him. We speak with Dr….


Michael Moore’s “Fahrenheit 11/9” Lays Bare The Dangerous Crossroads We Are At And What We Need To Understand From Steve Bannon

  Tyrant. Liar. Racist. And a hole in one.   By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (9/24/18) This past weekend I saw Michael Moore’s new documentary film Fahrenheit: 11/9. You will find a detailed review of the film below, so I won’t go into a lot of detail here other than to say it is an extraordinary film — in my opinion, his best — that lays out the path of how this nation has come to the dangerous crossroads with fascist totalitarianism we now confront. As Moore explains, it is not hyperbole to talk in such terms and his…


Police State Updates: Evil On The Loose As ICE Arrests Dozens Of Family Or Guardians Attempting To Retrieve Children From Detention

  By Julia Conley Common Dreams (9/20/18) Confirming the fears of many immigrant families who have declined to step forward and claim children who are being held in detention facilities, a new report shows that more than 40 people have been arrested by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after doing just that. CNN reported Thursday that between July and early September, at least 41 people have been detained after attempting to retrieve their young family members from government-run detention facilities, which are now at 92 percent capacity with more than 13,000 children in custody. Just 12 of the arrests were of people…


Has America Crossed Into The Realm Of Fascism? A Look At The Ten Pillars of Fascist Politics

  “There is no question we are witnessing its successes here.” By Jeff Schechtman Who.What.Why (9/21/18) A country does not have to be fascist or have a fascist government in order to be riddled with fascist politics. This is the scary premise Jason Stanley argues in his recent book How Fascism Works: The Politics of Us and Them. Stanley, professor of philosophy at Yale University, is Jeff Schechtman’s guest on this week’s WhoWhatWhy podcast. Stanley reminds us that while 63 million Americans voted for President Donald Trump, a man who taps into America’s worst impulses, historically there is nothing new about the kind…


Call For A New International Movement To Fight Rising Fascism & Corporate Globalists

  By Yanis Varoufakis The Guardian (9/13/18) Our era will be remembered for the triumphant march of a globally unifying rightwing – a Nationalist International – that sprang out of the cesspool of financialised capitalism. Whether it will also be remembered for a successful humanist challenge to this menace depends on the willingness of progressives in the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom as well as countries like Mexico, India and South Africa, to forge a coherent Progressive International. Our task is not unprecedented. Fascists did not come to power in the mid-war period by promising violence, war or…


American Fascism: Trump Is The Symptom, Not The Problem

Concern regarding ascendant fascism isn’t necessarily misguided— the question back is: where have you been for the last fifty years? [Editor’s Note: This is an especially insightful column that peels away to “the” problem we are facing in our political and tilted economic system. — Mark L. Taylor] By Rob Urie CounterPunch (9/17/18) From Whence ‘We’ Came Fascism is a loaded topic for Americans. The term is usually put forward as oppositional, as the flip side of representative democracy, e.g. authoritarian. Left unaddressed is whose interests’ American representative democracy represents. Twenty years of research by political scientist Thomas Ferguson strongly supports the…


Escaping Auschwitz: ‘I Have A Message For You’

‘Hells Gate’ at the Auschwitz Nazi concentration death camp.  [Editor’s Note: At a time of our own official governmental concentration camps and the cruel separation of families this story is a powerful warning of where we may be heading in this nation. Beware. Resist. — Mark L. Taylor] The  New York Times (8/3/18) This week’s Op-Doc is Matan Rochlitz’s powerful film “I Have a Message for You,” about a woman’s extraordinary journey of survival and redemption. It’s a remarkable piece, both for the creativity of its visual approach and for its unusual combination of tragedy, beauty and catharsis. Link to…


Bernie Sanders: A Growing International Authoritarian Axis Demands An International Progressive Front

  The Tip Of The Problem By Bernie Sanders The Guardian (9/13/18) There is a global struggle taking place of enormous consequence. Nothing less than the future of the planet – economically, socially and environmentally – is at stake. At a time of massive wealth and income inequality, when the world’s top 1% now owns more wealth than the bottom 99%, we are seeing the rise of a new authoritarian axis. While these regimes may differ in some respects, they share key attributes: hostility toward democratic norms, antagonism toward a free press, intolerance toward ethnic and religious minorities, and a…


Massachusetts Police Tweet Lets Slip Scale Of Routine Surveillance Of Left Wing Groups

  By Sarah Betancourt The Guardian (9/15/18) At the height of Thursday night’s gas emergency that affected 8,000 people and in which one person was killed, Massachusetts state police posted to Twitter a map of responses to fires and explosions. It was an image of a computer monitor, showing locations of 39 incidents as confirmed “by MSP Watch Center”, and it included a vital message: “Reminder: all residents of Lawrence/Andover/N[orth] Andover who have Columbia Gas must evacuate, as should anyone else who smells gas.” But the image also showed something else: a bookmarks bar at the top of the browser window which listed…


I Thought Democracy In Chile Was Safe. Now I See America Slipping Into The Same Trap

  By Ariel Dorfman The Guardian (9/11/18) It can’t happen here. That’s an avowal I have been hearing from Americans ever since my family and I, fleeing a dictatorship in our native Chile, finally came to settle in the United States in 1980. What happened to you in Chile can’t happen here. Democracy in the US is too stable, the institutions too deeply rooted, the people too much in love with liberty. Weary of wandering, desperate for refuge, I wanted to believe that the American experiment would not abide tyranny. And yet I remained sceptical, stubbornly wary. I had pronounced similar words…


Impunity For American War Criminals: Why John Bolton Really Hates The International Criminal Court

  By Brett Wilkins Common Dreams (9/13/18) On February 12, 2010, US Army Rangers conducted a nighttime raid on a home in the village of Khataba, outside Gardez, Afghanistan. Dozens of men, women and children, including the district prosecutor and local police chief, had gathered at the house to celebrate the naming of a newborn baby just before the raid occurred. The Rangers stormed the home with guns blazing, killing the prosecutor, police chief, two pregnant women and a teenage girl. The US military lied about the Khataba raid, initially making the outrageous claim that the women and girl had been killed…


Chris Hedges Lays Out Our Risks, Challenges & Thin Opportunities: The Collapse Of The American Empire?

  The Agenda With Steve Paikin (9/12/18) The Agenda welcomes Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Chris Hedges, who over the past decade and a half has made his name as a columnist, activist and author. He’s been a vociferous public critic of presidents on both sides of the American political spectrum, and his latest book, ‘America, the Farewell Tour,’ is nothing short of a full-throated throttling of the political, social, and cultural state of his country. Link to 28-Minute Video


Taking Down Trump Is Not Enough. Corporate Owned Neoliberal Democrats Need To Be Booted As Well

  By David Sirota The Guardian (9/10/18) After a scorching summer of discontent, Donald Trump’s endless tweets and scandals have given Democrats their best chance to retake Congress since George W Bush’s second term. And yet, insurgent progressives are not limiting themselves to dethroning Republicans: they are taking aim at corporate-friendly Democrats within their own party, too. Amid an upsurge of populist energy that has alarmed the Democratic establishment, a new wave of left-leaning insurgents have been using Democratic primaries to wage a fierce war on the party’s corporate wing. And, as in past presidential primary battles, many Democratic consultants, politicians and pundits…


Reinforcing US Status As World ‘Bully and Hegemon,’ Bolton Threatens ICC Over Probes Into America’s War Crimes

John “Bones” Bolton   By Owen Bowcott, Oliver Holmes & Erin Durkin The Guardian (9/10/18) John Bolton, the hawkish US national security adviser, has threatened the international criminal court (ICC) with sanctions and made an excoriating attack on the institution in a speech in Washington. Bolton pushed for sanctions over an ICC investigation into alleged American war crimes in Afghanistan. He also announced on Monday the closure of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) office in Washington because of its calls for an ICC inquiry into Israel. “The United States will use any means necessary to protect our citizens and those of our allies from…


Police State America: Trump Administration Reveals ‘Gitmo For Children’ Plan To Indefinitely Imprison Families With Children

  By Julia Conley Common Dreams (9/6/18) Attempting to change two decades of precedent, the Trump administration announced its intention Thursday to lift court-ordered limits on how long migrant children can be detained—a proposal multiple critics promptly denounced as “Gitmo for children.” The administration said Thursday it intends to enter into the Federal Register new regulations that would allow it to hold families who have crossed the U.S.-Mexico border indefinitely, for the duration of their immigration proceedings—a period that could last years. “Locking up children indefinitely is cruel and heartless, even for the Trump administration,” CREDO Action campaign manager Nicole Regalado…


A Message To Young Trump Supporters: “You have been duped.”

By Ed Weathers Memphis Flyer (9/6/18) Recently some younger Trump supporters I know — folks in their 20s and 30s — have expressed disdain toward fast-food workers who are asking for higher wages. They claim that such low-skilled jobs don’t deserve higher wages and that a higher minimum wage for them would just devalue the work of more skilled folks like themselves — first responders, welders, mechanics, construction workers, and the like. These young Trump folks also resent anyone on welfare and, of course, most immigrants. They see all these folks as somehow damaging their own economic prospects or undermining…


John W. Whitehead Delivers Chilling Message On Threats To Freedom Posed By Government: ‘Battlefield America: The War On The American People’

“The future of the country is up to you.” By John W, Whitehead The Rutherford Institute (8/30/18) WASHINGTON, DC — “What’s the greatest threat we face today? Our own government!” warned constitutional attorney John W. Whitehead, president of The Rutherford Institute, in a chilling message delivered at the third annual Ron Paul Institute’s Peace and Prosperity Conference. Whitehead spoke on the far-reaching ramifications of domestic militarization and the transformation of America into a war zone. Whitehead’s speech can be viewed at www.rutherford.org. “Our founding fathers warned us not to have a standing army on American soil. We did not heed that…



Ghouls: Grieving Father Denounces Right-Wing Pundits & Politicians Exploiting His Daughter’s Death To Push ‘Profoundly Racist’ Agenda

Twitter By Jake Johnson Common Drems (9/2/18) Responding to continued efforts by President Donald Trump and right-wing media outlets to exploit the horrific murder of 20-year-old Iowa student Mollie Tibbetts to push their racist, anti-immigrant agenda, Tibbetts’ father penned an op-ed on Saturday denouncing those who have “chosen to callously distort and corrupt Mollie’s tragic death to advance a cause she vehemently opposed.” “At the outset, politicians and pundits used Mollie’s death to promote various political agendas. We appealed to them and they graciously stopped. For that, we are grateful. Sadly, others have ignored our request,” Rob Tibbetts wrote in the local Des Moines Register….


After Months Of Separation, Parents Reunite With Their Kidnapped Child: ‘What’s wrong with my son?’

  By First Amendment The Daily Kos (8/25/18) How do you feel watching this reunion of a mother and father with their now very distant child, after months of separation? It makes me feel ill and so empty inside. The ACLU is spot on here. Trump jailing and separating children from their families has caused real human destruction. The consequences of this heinous act by Donald Trump and his cronies will last a lifetime for many and devastate families. Decades of research have concluded that child separation is connected to long term trauma. According to Johanna Bick, a psychology professor who studies this subject, there is no greater threat to a child’s emotional…


IMPORTANT INTERVIEW: Ralph Nader Interviews Chris Hedges On His New Book “America: The Farewell Tour”

Ralph Nader Radio Hour (8/18/18) Ralph spends the whole hour with Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author, Chris Hedges, discussing his book “America: The Farewell Tour.” Link to 63-Minute Audio ***** Resistance Radio With Chris Hedges Deep Green Resistance (8/26/18) Chris Hedges is a New York Times Pulitzer-prize winning war correspondent who for two decades covered conflicts in Central America, the Middle East, Africa and the Balkans. He returned to the United States to become a powerful social critic and critic of capitalism, and is the author of a dozen books, including War is a Force that Gives us Meaning;…


Far Right Extremist ‘Oath Keepers’ Announce National ‘Spartan’ Training Program Aimed At Supposedly ‘Violent Left’

  By David Neiwert Southern Poverty Law Center (8/23/18) Claiming that the “violent left” is preparing an insurrection designed to grab “illegitimate power,” the Oath Keepers’ president and founder Stewart Rhodes this week announced on their website that his group is organizing training sessions around the United States aimed at helping militiamen and “Patriots” prepare for “lethal force” at far-right events in cities targeted for right-wing protests. Appearing on Infowars with host Owen Shroyer on Monday, Rhodes explained that Oath Keepers is organizing “Spartan Training Groups” in every state with the aim of bolstering efforts to combat “antifa and the far…


The Crawlies On Underside Of The Rock: Cenk Uygur Interviews Ex-KKK Grand Wizard David Duke

  The Young Turks (12/17/15) David Duke first rose to prominence in the ‘70s and ‘80s as a modern, more photogenic representative of the white supremacist movement, abandoning the Ku Klux Klan’s robe and hood in favor of business suits and trading overt racist appeals in exchange for more “acceptable” coded language that involved disparaging “welfare queens” and “racial set-asides.” Duke eventually left the Klan to found the “National Association for the Advancement of White People,” served one term as a Republican in the Louisiana state house, published two books, one on “Racial Understanding” and the other on “Jewish Supremacism,”…



James Risen: Reality Winner’s Sentence Is One Of The Worst Miscarriages Of Justice In Recent History

  Democracy Now! (8/24/18) NSA whistleblower Reality Winner was handed the longest sentence ever imposed in federal court for leaking government information to the media Thursday [8/23]. She is the first person to be sentenced under the Espionage Act since President Trump took office. Winner was arrested by FBI agents at her home in Augusta, Georgia, on June 3, 2017, two days before The Intercept published an exposé revealing Russian military intelligence conducted a cyberattack on at least one U.S. voting software company just days before the U.S. presidential election. The exposé was based on a classified NSA report from May 5, 2017, that shows…


Don’t Trust Your Lying Eyes: The Path To Authoritarianism Begins With Creating A Fictitious World

  By Sen. Bernie Sanders YouTube (8/20/18) Historian Timothy Snyder explains how Trump’s world of fiction is undermining our democracy and how we can fight back. Link to 8+-Minute Video ***** 20 Lessons From The 20th Century On How To Survive Trump’s America By Timothy Snyder Facebook Americans are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to fascism, Nazism or communism. Our one advantage is that we might learn from their experience. Now is a good time to do so. Here are 20 lessons from across the fearful 20th century, adapted to the circumstances of today. 1. Do not obey in…


Stay Alert! Last Week’s Unite The Right Flop Isn’t The Whole Story About Status Of American Far Right Fascist White Supremacy Movement

    By Chauncey DeVega Salon (8/21/18) A week ago Sunday, white supremacists gathered in Washington to celebrate the one-year anniversary of the riot in Charlottesville, Virginia, where Heather Heyer was murdered and dozens of other people injured by a racist mob. There was no mass turnout for the “Unite the Right 2” rally. Instead only two dozen or so white supremacists and other members of the “alt-right” were present, vastly outnumbered by at least 1,000 counter-protesters. The racists rapidly skulked off, humiliated and defeated. Their opponents were jubilant. Given Donald Trump’s unrelenting and largely unabated assault on democracy and human rights…


Out Of Control: ICE Agents Have Become Little More Than Kidnappers & Sociopaths

ICE arrested someone before they knew who he was, they didn’t explain why they were arresting him, and then they changed their story about why he was arrested. That is fundamentally corrupt. By William Boardman Reader Supported News (8/21/18) In June of 2014, the ACLU and the International Human Rights Clinic at the University of Chicago Law School filed complaints with the Department of Homeland Security. And the complaints documented the cases of 116 unaccompanied children, ranging in age from 5 years old to 17. According to these organizations, a quarter of the children said they were physically or sexually abused….


Former Fox News Analyst Labels Former Colleagues ‘Prostitutes’ For Their Coverage Of Trump

The Commoner Call (8/20/18) During an intense interview with Brian Stelter on CNN’s Reliable Sources Sunday (8/19) morning retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel and former Fox News analyst Ralph Peters laid bare the danger and damage of both Donald Trump and his former employer to the United States. “He is not interested in understanding our government,” Peters said of Trump . “He believes the Constitution is a menu from which he can choose only the most electable items.” “The evil twin of that, I believe as a former Russia analyst for most of my career I’m convinced that the president…


A Video For Every American To Watch: Schoolchildren Just Moments Before Being Massacred By U.S.-Backed Saudi Bombing

  “If the American people can take back control of what is being done in our name, maybe we can finally begin washing away this spreading moral stain.” — Will Bunch, Philly.com [Editor’s Note: Once again, an atrocity in our name and on our dime. As Americans, we are all morally responsible. — Mark L. Taylor] By Jake Johnson Common Dreams (8/13/18) As funeral ceremonies for the 51 Yemenis—including 40 young children—massacred by the latest U.S.-backed Saudi bombing took place in the war-torn district of Saada on Monday, cellphone footage captured by one of the murdered children just moments before the coalition’s airstrike hit…


Freeloader, Deadbeat Nazi Slacker Dude Jason Kessler Gets Yelled At By His Dad: “Get out of my room!”

Oh, God, this is rich. I’m guessing this morning little Jason got yelled at for not putting his dirty undies in the hamper and forgetting to rinse out his “My Little Hitler” sippy mug after breakfast. Sad! 2-Minute Video ***** And This Is Probably Who Jason Has A Play Date With This Afternoon WARNING: Vile, ignorant white dude rant. — Ed. 1+-Minute Video (Commoner Call cartoon by Mark L. Taylor, 2018. Open source and free for non-derivative use with ink to www,thecommonercall.org )


Though “Too Late” Now, Cables From Secret CIA Black Site Read Like Gina Haspel’s “Torture Journaling”

[Editor’s Note: Keep in mind that through the infamous support of six democratic senators for CIA director Gina Haspel and the absolute silence of the Democratic Party to those votes, the democrats have made support of immoral US torture programs bipartisan; they aligned themselves with Trump and his flying monkey republicans in support of torture. When it comes to torture, the dems are now  just another part of the furry flock. — Mark L. Taylor] By Jessica Corbett Common Dreams (8/10/18) Government cables reported in the New York Times on Friday [10/9] “read like torture journaling,” critics said after reviewing the “loud noise, sleep deprivation, forced nudity,…


Behind The Scenes Of ‘Documenting Hate’ — How We Identified White Supremacists After Charlottesville

By Leila Miller Frontline (8/7/18) The Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia in August 2017 was the largest public gathering of white supremacists in a generation. Dozens were injured, and it ended in the death of 32-year-old Heather Heyer, a counter-protester who was killed after a car crashed into demonstrators. The violence did not come out of nowhere. It followed a series of increasingly bloody rallies in California, New York City, and even Charlottesville. While city and state officials in Virginia had prepared by mobilizing 1,000 first responders, law enforcement largely stayed back while chaos unfolded. In Documenting Hate: Charlottesville, FRONTLINE and ProPublica investigate…


DOCUMENTARY — This Is No Practice Run: A Year After Charlottesville And The Nazi Threat Across America Has Grown

    “Nazism was cruel because Nazis were cruel; and the Nazis were cruel because cruel people tended to become Nazis.” — Zygmunt Bauman By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (8/9/18) If you haven’t already seen it, set aside an hour to watch the PBS Frontline/ProPublica “Documenting Hate” documentary to get up to speed on just how deeply the Nazi movement has embedded itself into modern America. Under the ever fascist-friendly leadership of Donald Trump, the nation that defeated Nazism in Europe 70 years ago now has the virus of fascism running freely in it’s veins. And that virus is…


Portland Police Aligned With Fascists In Recent Protest Melee

  Lesson 17. Watch out for the paramilitaries. When the men with guns who have always claimed to be against the system start wearing uniforms and marching around with torches and pictures of a Leader, the end is nigh. When the pro-Leader paramilitary and the official police and military intermingle, the game is over. — Timothy Snyder, ‘On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons From The Twentieth Century’ ***** ACLU Of Oregon Comment On The Portland Police Bureau’s Response To Protests ACLU of Oregon (8/5/18) PORTLAND, Ore. — After the violence against protesters and observers yesterday [8/4] in Portland, David Rogers, executive director of the…


Hush-Up! When Intolerance Is Institutionalized Bullies Win, Freedom Suffers & We Can No Longer Agree To Disagree

  “Free speech for me but not for thee.” — Nate Hentoff By John Whitehead The  Rutherford Institute (8/6/8) “Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freeness of speech.” ― Benjamin Franklin What a mess. As America has become ever more polarized, and those polarized factions have become more militant and less inclined to listen to—or even allow for the existence of—other viewpoints, we are fast becoming a nation of people who just can’t get along. Here’s the thing: if Americans don’t learn how to get along—at the very least, agreeing to disagree and…