History They Don’t Want You To Know

AMERICAN MADE: How The U.S. Created The Central American Immigration Crisis

What happens in El Norte, doesn’t stay in El Norte. By Rebecca Gordon TomDispatch (8/15/19) It’s hard to believe that more than four years have passed since the police shot Amílcar Pérez-López a few blocks from my house in San Francisco’s Mission District. He was an immigrant, 20 years old, and his remittances were the sole support for his mother and siblings in Guatemala. On February 26, 2015, two undercover police officers shot him six times in the back, although they would claim he’d been running toward them with an upraised butcher knife. For two years, members of my little Episcopal church…

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‘Maus’ Creator Art Spiegelman’s Marvel Essay ‘refused publication for Orange Skull Trump dig’

Maus author says he was told the comics giant – whose chairman is a prominent Trump supporter – was trying to remain apolitical. By Alison Flood The Guardian (8/16/19) Art Spiegelman, the legendary graphic novelist behind Maus, has claimed that he was asked to remove criticism of Donald Trump from his introduction to a forthcoming Marvel book, because the comics publisher – whose chairman has donated to Trump’s campaign – is trying to stay “apolitical”. Spiegelman, who won a Pulitzer prize for Maus, his story of the Holocaust, has written for Saturday’s Guardian that he was approached by publisher the…


Canadian Broadcasting Archives: Pete Seeger On Being Blacklisted In 1950’s America

CBC (7/10/13) In this clip from 1965, folk singer and activist Pete Seeger talks about being black listed for “un-American activities” and his refusal to answer questions that violated his Constitutional Rights. Link to 4+-Minute Video Here’s The Song Seeger Offered To Sing At His Trail — “Wasn’t That A Time”: Link to 3+-Minute Video ***** The Story Behind “Forever Young” By Pete Seeger   Amnesty International USA (3/14/12) Mini-documentary about the recording of the song “Forever Young” by Pete Seeger featured on the album “Chimes of Freedom: The Songs of Bob Dylan Honoring 50 Years of Amnesty International”.  Link…


Former FBI Agent Reveals The Agency Could Fight Far-Right Violence But Chooses Not To

  By Mike German The Guardian (8/16/19) Federal law enforcement officials have all the tools necessary to address far-right violence proactively – as my own successful investigations as an FBI undercover agent in the 1990s indicate. They have simply chosen as a matter of policy not to prioritize these cases. What role racism, latent or overt, plays in these decisions has yet to be explored. There are currently 52 federal terrorism laws available to address entirely domestic acts of political violence. Congress has also passed five federal hate crimes statutes specifically designed to punish the types of violence white supremacists and other far-right militants…


Koch Brothers EXPOSED • FULL DOCUMENTARY

The Koch Brothers Grab $16.4 Million Every Day. [Editor’s Note: Given the impact of the surreptitious Koch brothers’ machinations in Wisconsin a review of their role in American politics is in order. There pernicious influence on universities is especially dangerous. This is a good, concise review. Be sure to watch all the way through the credits at the end. — Mark L. Taylor]  Brave New Films (1/21/15) The last time we exposed the Koch Brothers’ dealings to the world we here at Brave New Films wound up in their crosshairs. They produced online ad campaigns attacking us, but, it takes more…


Civil Rights Lawyer Shows 20 Ways Trump Is Following Hitler’s Early Rhetoric & Policies

“From the leading constitutional lawyer who has sued every president since LBJ, a masterful explication of the ‘pillars of our democracy’.” — Amazon review By Steven Rosenfeld Independent Media Institute (8/9/19) A new book by one of the nation’s foremost civil liberties lawyers powerfully describes how America’s constitutional checks and balances are being pushed to the brink by a president who is consciously following Adolf Hitler’s extremist propaganda and policy template from the early 1930s—when the Nazis took power in Germany. In When at Times the Mob Is Swayed: A Citizen’s Guide to Defending Our Republic, Burt Neuborne mostly focuses on…


Yes, It Could Happen Here: When 20,000 American Nazis Rallied In New York In 1939

Most humans have dark passions inside us, waiting to be stirred up. [Editor’s Note: Keep in mind there was a sizable number of German American Bund Nazis in Milwaukee in the years right before WWII. It happened here then and can happen here now. resist! — Mark L. Taylor]  By Abby Zimet Common Dreams (8/12/19) With Trump’s latest crime against the poor, the brown, the other – wherein immigrants may have to choose between food or housing and a green card – it’s a good time to consider a new book detailing the threat of a “21st-century master of divisive rhetoric” whose toxic mix of fear,…


At A Time Of Fascism, Concentration Camps, White Nationalism, Venality & Domestic Terrorism, Words To Remember

“Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.” ― Frederick Douglass ***** And Just How Evil Are Our Tyrants? SUICIDE? Jeffrey Epstein’s Neck Was Broken In Multiple Places: Updated Autopsy Finds By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call…


‘Blood on their hands’: The Intelligence Officer Whose Warning Over White Supremacy Was Dismissed

[Editor’s Note: And let’s be clear, here: it was the Obama administration that caved to Republican pressure and buried the report on the rise of the threat of white nationalism. It is another example of corporate dems not standing fast in the face of opposition. They helped create the metastasizing fascist threat. No more. The time for such corporate dem spinelessness is done. — Mark L. Taylor] By Lois Beckett The Guardian (8/8/19) Ten years ago, the Department of Homeland Security sent American law enforcement agencies an intelligence briefing warning of a rising threat of domestic rightwing extremism, including white supremacist terrorism. The…


Greed Unbound: New Study Shows CEO Pay Has Grown More Than 1,000% Since 1978

“An obscene concentration of profit at the top levels of companies.” By Julia Conell Common Dreams (8/14/19) As even some of the wealthiest Americans have begun to call for major reforms to the U.S. economic system to narrow the wealth gap, a new study released Wednesday revealed that over the past four decades, salaries for the top executives in the U.S. have gone up by more than 1,000 percent. CEOs at the 350 largest companies now take home salaries that are 278 times higher than those of the average worker, according to the new Economic Policy Institute (EPI) analysis. With an average compensation…


John Steinbeck’s ‘Grapes Of Wrath’ Documented Another Time Of American Cruelty, Greed & Oppression

“I want to put a tag of shame on the greedy bastards who are responsible for this.” By Sam Jordison The Guardian (8/13/19) In March 1938, shortly before he began working on The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck wrote to his agent Elizabeth Otis to turn down a commission to write about migrant workers. “The suffering is too great for me to cash in on it … it is the most heartbreaking thing in the world,” he wrote. “I break myself every time I go out because the argument that one person’s effort can’t really do anything doesn’t seem to apply when you come…


The Latest Massacre Shows The Second Amendment Model Of ‘Slave Patrols’ Is Still In Effect

The slave patrols never really went away. And the slave patrollers are finding in Trump the president they’ve been missing since Andrew Jackson passed away. By Thom Hartmann Common Dreams (8/5/19) While, in the wake of the El Paso murders, the media and most of our politicians are acting shocked—“shocked, I tell you!”—that there are armed racists in America who are trying to terrify people of color, the reality is that it’s pretty much always been that way here in the United States. And until white Americans and the media they control acknowledge that simple history, we won’t be able…


One Of The Best Interviews You Can Watch This Year: Joe Rogan & Dr. Cornel West

Joe Rogan Experience (7/24/19) Dr. Cornel West is a philosopher, political activist, social critic, author, and public intellectual. He is Professor of the Practice of Public Philosophy at Harvard University and holds the title of Professor Emeritus at Princeton University. He has also taught at Union Theological Seminary, Yale, Harvard, and the University of Paris. Link to 2-Hour Video    


Three ‘Ole Miss’ Frat Boys Who Posed With Guns In Front Of Bullet-Riddled Emmett Till Memorial Face Potential Civil Rights Violation

One of the students posted a photo to his private Instagram account in March showing the trio in front of a roadside plaque commemorating the site where Till’s body was recovered from the Tallahatchie River. By Jerry Mitchell Mississippi Center for Investigative Reporting / ProPublica (7/25/19) OXFORD, Miss. — Three University of Mississippi students have been suspended from their fraternity house and face possible investigation by the Department of Justice after posing with guns in front of a bullet-riddled sign honoring slain civil rights icon Emmett Till. One of the students posted a photo to his private Instagram account in March showing…


She Defended Her Land Against A Mine In Guatemala Then Had To Flee For Her Life

The roots of the mining industry in Guatemala are soaked in the blood of its 36-year civil war. By Alleen Brown Video by Martyna Starosta The Intercept (6/23/19) TERESA MUÑOZ WAS riding her motorbike along her regular delivery route on a winding Guatemala road, carrying the homemade cheese she sold for a living, when she saw in her rearview mirror one of the white sedans that employees of the Escobal silver mine drove. Mining company cars had followed her before, but this time, the vehicle swerved. The driver rammed her motorbike, pitching her into the street, and then sped off. Muñoz was left…


Historian Finds Decree Kicking Trump’s Grandfather Out Of Germany

Donald Trump’s brothel-owning grandfather Friedrich Trump emigrated to the US from Germany in 1885. Photograph: Wikipedia By Kate Connolly The Guardian (11/21/16) A historian has discovered a royal decree issued to Donald Trump’s grandfather ordering him to leave Germany and never come back. Friedrich Trump, a German, was issued with the document in February 1905, and ordered to leave the kingdom of Bavaria within eight weeks as punishment for having failed to do mandatory military service and failing to give authorities notice of his departure to the US when he first emigrated in 1885. Roland Paul, a historian from Rhineland-Palatinate who found the…


There’s One Bipartisan Heresy That Really Sets Bernie Apart From All Other Dem Contenders To Unseat Trump

By Greg Grandin The Nation (7/16/19) Let’s be clear: Bernie Sanders’s heresy, what sets him apart from every Democrat running to unseat Donald Trump, is not simply that he calls himself a socialist in a country long proudly identified as capitalist. Those two labels, socialist and capitalist, are open to too many interpretations and represent too many historical examples (everything from Norway to the United States, Stalin’s Soviet Union to Hitler’s Nazi Germany) to pin down. Rather, a more precise way to define the historic nature of Sanders’s campaign would be to focus on his promotion of social or economic rights and how…


Famed CBS Journalist Edward R. Murrow Reminds Us Of What It Means To Be Americans: “We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty.”

“A Report On Sen. Joseph R. McCarthy” / “See It Now” on CBS – March 9, 1954. “Earlier the Senator asked, “Upon what meat does this, our Caesar, feed?” Had he looked three lines earlier in Shakespeare’s Caesar, he would have found this line, which is not altogether inappropriate: “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves.” “No one familiar with the history of this country can deny that congressional committees are useful. It is necessary to investigate before legislating, but the line between investigating and persecuting is a very fine one, and the junior senator from…


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…


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…


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…


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;…


Whitewashing History: America’s Racist Legacy From Slavery To Trump’s Brutal War On Immigrants

  Jeremy Scahill Intercepted (6/26/19) WHILE DONALD TRUMP is busy threatening millions with deportation, he takes a moment to weigh in on the debate over reparations and doesn’t “see it happening.” This week on Intercepted: The House Judiciary Committee holds a historic hearing discussing the lingering effects of slavery and what reparations might look like. Rutgers professor and “Uncivil” podcast co-host Chenjerai Kumanyika argues that demands for reparations should include challenging the driving forces behind slavery: capitalism and imperialism.   The Intercept’s Ryan Devereaux gives an update on the trial for humanitarian aid worker Scott Warren and discusses the dehumanization that…


Remembering Stonewall: On 50th Anniversary, Leaders Of Uprising Look Back On Sparking The LGBTQ Movement

  Democracy Now! (6/28/19) Fifty years ago today [6/28], just after midnight, at 1:30 in the morning on June 28, 1969, New York City police officers raided a gay- and trans-friendly bar called the Stonewall Inn on Christopher Street in Greenwich Village. As the police began dragging some of the patrons out, the community fought back, sparking three days of rioting. Their historic resistance launched the modern-day LGBTQ movement and became known as the Stonewall uprising. We hear the leaders of the Stonewall uprising in their own words, in a radio documentary produced by Dave Isay in 1989 called “Remembering Stonewall.” Link…


Salt Lake Tribune Editorial: Yes, We Do Have Concentration Camps

  Salt Lake Tribune, Editorial Board (6/23/19) Yes, we do have concentration camps. They are not work camps. They are not death camps. At least, not on purpose. Our government is not building massive gas chambers and industrial crematoria. It is not conducting sick medical experiments on members of an unfavored class. But that does not mean that the places into which we are herding tens of thousands of migrants, refugees and asylum-seekers are not properly called concentration camps. Because that is precisely what they are. When some in the public eye dare to tell that truth, as the media-savvy Rep….


Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates Makes A Strong Case For Reparations At Historic Congressional Hearing

Democracy Now! (6/20/19) On Wednesday, a subcommittee of the House Judiciary held a historic hearing on reparations for slavery—the first of its kind in over a decade. Wednesday’s hearing coincided with Juneteenth, a day that commemorates June 19, 1865, when slaves in Galveston, Texas, finally learned that the Emancipation Proclamation had abolished slavery. This year marks the 400th anniversary of the transatlantic slave trade. Lawmakers are considering a bill titled the “Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act.” It was introduced by Democratic Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Houston, after former Congressmember John Conyers had championed the…


June 15, 1918: The Speech That Made Eugene Debs Federal Prisoner NO. 9653

  “I would rather a thousand times be a free soul in jail than to be a sycophant and coward in the streets.” By Marlene Martin SocialistWorker.org (6/15/18) One hundred years ago [1918], Eugene V. Debs spoke out against the First World War in a speech in Canton, Ohio — and was given a 10-year prison sentence for it. Marlene Martin recounts one of the most famous moments in the history of socialism in the U.S. THE FIRST thing Eugene V. Debs did when he walked to the stage in Canton, Ohio, on the afternoon of June 16, 1918, was to gesture…


The Price Of Money: Political & Moral Defeat

“The Democrats have no power to change the system. Yet. So if they want to stay in the game and be competitive they’re going to have to match the Republican’s fundraising juggernaut, otherwise Trump will out-organize, out-advertise and flat out bury us in 2020.” — Facebook post (6/6/19) By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (6/13/19) So let’s take a look at that siren call of money… Two figures to consider from the 2016 presidential race: $1.2 billion and $217.5 million. The first is the amount of money raised by Hillary Clinton. The second is the amount of money raised…


Nobody Told Trump, No, The ‘D’ In D-Day Doesn’t Stand For Donald

  He called people names and disrespected the dead for Fox News at Normandy, just like we knew he would. By Lucian K. Truscott IV Salon (6/9/19) How do we adequately commemorate our war dead? The soldiers and sailors and airmen and women who gave their lives in places like Normandy, and Anzio, and Palermo, and Inchon, and Khe Sanh, and Ia Drang, and Fallujah, and Sangin? How do we pay homage to our fellow citizens who were ordered to a foreign land to fight for their country and lost their lives doing it? We have Memorial Day ceremonies every year…


Corporate Interests Have Bullied Wisconsin Family Farmers Straight Into Devastation

Now add President Donald Trump’s tariffs to the problems, and the situation is even more dire. By Dave Zweifel The Cap Times (6/5/19) My first job as a reporter when I joined The Capital Times’ staff back in 1962 was to cover the farm beat. Family farming was a huge deal in those days, fueling the economy of many small Wisconsin communities and well deserving of a newspaper beat all its own, just like the police, the courts, city hall, the UW and, yes, the state Capitol. But the cracks in the farm economy started to appear way back then….


In Just 3 Minutes Robert Reich Explains What Oligarchy Means & Why It Describes Our Current Political System

The typical American has no influence at all. [Editor’s Note: The following is the script for the wonderful 3-minute video linked to below. Words are powerful and it is an act of power and liberation to use the correct word to describe economic and political realities. Pass this on. — Mark L. Taylor] By Robert Reich Robert Reich’s Blog (5/2/19) “Oligarchy” means government of and by a few at the top, who exercise power for their own benefit. It comes from the Greek word oligarkhes, meaning “few to rule or command.” Even a system that calls itself a democracy can become…


Robert Mueller’s Statement Challenges House Dems To Do Their Duty, But Are They Up To It?

“I understand what you guys are doing with these bills, and that’s great. But you can’t fix the roof if the house is on fire. So it’s not acceptable that we’re ignoring this.” — The Hill, Democrats Face Voters Clamoring For Impeachment ***** Republicans view Democrats as the political party that’s scared of its own shadow. Republicans aren’t preoccupied with decency or morality, they just want to win. By Kurt Bardella NBC Think (5/29/19) Last November, the American people overwhelmingly elected a new majority in the House of Representatives, giving Democrats the power to impeach President Donald J. Trump — if it was warranted. But…


‘Ask For Jane” — These Courageous Women Provided Illegal Abortions Before Roe v. Wade. Will Activists Have To Go Underground Again?

“Liberty will not descend to a people; a people must raise themselves to Liberty.” — Emma Goldman Democracy Now! (5/31/19) “Ask for Jane.” Those were the magic words that provided thousands of women access to safe abortions before the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling in 1973 that guaranteed the constitutional right to abortion. With abortion services outlawed in most of the country, women often had to risk their own lives in order to terminate pregnancy. So, in 1969, a group of women in Chicago decided to take matters into their own hands and set up a hotline, offering counseling and…


Over 200 Allegations Of Abuse Of Migrant Children; Only 1 Case Of Homeland Security Disciplining Someone

Children reported being punched, shocked with Tasers, and denied food and medicine. Many described being bludgeoned with flashlights. By A.C. Thompson ProPublica (5/31/19) From 2009 to 2014, at least 214 complaints were filed against federal agents for abusing or mistreating migrant children. According to the Department of Homeland Security’s records, only one employee was disciplined as a result of a complaint. The department’s records, which have alarmed advocates for migrants given the more aggressive approach to the treatment of minors at the border under the current administration, emerged as part of a federal lawsuit seeking the release of the names…


Review: Michael Wolff’s ‘Siege’ Is Fire And Fury II

   ‘…just another scumbag’ By Lloyd Green The Guardian (6/2/19) Michael Wolff is back and not with a whimper. The latest installment of his Trump chronicles picks up where Fire and Fury ended. Once again, it leaves the president bruised and readers shaking their heads. Jared Kushner, Mike Pence, Don McGahn. None escape unscathed. As Wolff describes it, Donald Trump calls Kushner “a girl”. As for his vice-president, he’s a “religious nut”. “Why does he look at me like that?” Trump asks about Pence’s beatific gaze. As for Pence’s wife, Karen? “She really gives me the creeps.” Steve Bannon supplies a running commentary for which Wolff…


A Stunning Parallel To The Fall Of Rome: How Our Tottering Republic Could Die In The Age Of Trump

He is our nation’s Augustus Caesar, the killer of a republic and the herald of a corrupt and collapsing empire.   By Thom Hartmann Independent Media Institute (5/20/19) The American republic could die, just like Rome. Wavering for some time on the verge of becoming a complete oligarchy, America is on the verge of flipping from a democratic republic to a strongman or autocratic form of government, something that’s happened to dozens of democracies in the past few decades, but never before here. It’s possible we won’t recover from it. The death of a republic is different from the death…


SUCKERED! Study Proves Trump Tax Cuts Led To Virtually No Wage Growth & More Proof They Were ‘Designed To Put A Big Windfall In Oligarch Pockets’

“It’s done nothing to raise wages and flown right into corporate execs’ pockets.” By Jake Johnson Common Dreams (5/29/19) Despite lofty promises from President Donald Trump and the Republican Party, the $1.5 trillion in tax cuts that went into effect last year have done little—if anything—to raise workers’ wages, boost economic growth, or spur business investment. That’s according to a new analysis by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS), which appeared to vindicate warnings from progressive critics that the GOP tax cuts were little more than a scam designed to put more money in the pockets of wealthy Americans. In its 23-page report (pdf), the independent…


Memorial Day Belongs To The Real Patriots — The Foes Of Domestic Fascism.

Memorial Day was born in struggle against the Klan By Art Shields Peoples World (5/24/19) We must not forget that Memorial Day, which we celebrate on Monday, belongs to the foes of racism. The day people place flowers on the graves of fallen veterans was founded by the enemies of the Ku Klux Klan. Memorial Day belongs to the democratic traditions of the American people. It sprang out of the war against the hooded terrorists of the South who sought to re-establish slavery on American soil. American right-wingers and false patriots try to hide the real story of the birth…