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Declaration Of Independence: Progressives Can’t Divide A Party We Don’t Belong To

As an Independent, I’m far more interested in policy than party. Whoever presents the most Progressive candidate will get my vote. Simple stuff. By Kathy Copeland Padden The Ghion Journal (9/23/19) l don’t think I know a single Progressive and/or Independent who isn’t accused on a daily basis of “splitting the party” or “being divisive” by centrist Democrats. The self-centered assumption that anyone who’s not a member of the GOP owes the other half of the oligarchy allegiance is beyond mind-boggling. I’ve been an Independent since 1983. I’m not dividing any party, as I don’t belong to any party. That’s the whole point of being an Independent….

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A Note To Activists: How To Outlive The Bastards

“One final paragraph of advice: do not burn yourselves out. Be as I am – a reluctant enthusiast….a part-time crusader, a half-hearted fanatic. Save the other half of yourselves and your lives for pleasure and adventure. It is not enough to fight for the land; it is even more important to enjoy it. While you can. While it’s still here. So get out there and hunt and fish and mess around with your friends, ramble out yonder and explore the forests, climb the mountains, bag the peaks, run the rivers, breathe deep of that yet sweet and lucid air, sit…


The History Of American Political & Social Reform Has Always Begun By People Speaking Out

Americans change politics first by changing minds. By Heather Cox Richardson Letters From An American (2/22/20) A lot of folks have been asking me lately if America has ever been in such a crisis before and, if so, what people in the past did to save democracy. The answer to the first question is yes, it has, three times, although only once was this bad. In the 1850s, the 1890s, and the 1920s, oligarchs took over the nation’s government, controlling the White House, Congress, and the courts. In the 1850s, elite southern slaveholders took over the Democratic Party and insisted…


Historian Timothy Snyder Evaluates Whether Or Not The U.S. Is Sliding Towards Tyranny

  Amanpour & Company (2/18/20) President Trump has just announced the sentence commutation of former Illinois Governor Rob Blagojevich, a move that arrives just days after the DOJ overruled a harsher prison sentence for Roger Stone. Given the increased White House involvement in judicial matters, Yale University’s Timothy Snyder, a historian and author who has devoted much of his career to understanding the rise of tyranny in different parts of the world, sits down with Ana Cabrera to discuss his concerns about a worrying trend taking root in the U.S. Link To 20-Minute Video


Joe Rogan & Bernie Sanders: One Of The Best, Most Indepth Interviews You Will Find

By Mark L. Taylor Commoner Call (2/24/20) In today’s hyped up, hurly-burly BS pace of mass media there are precious few opportunities to see a calm, detailed discussion with a candidate, but his hour-plus interview of Bernie Sanders by Joe Rogan is unique. The interview was done on the Joe Rogan Experience August 6, 2019. This is a great opportunity to hear Bernie’s thoughts, concerns and proposals. The comment below was one of the online reactions to the interview. The highlighted sentence is spot-on. No doubt, the owners of the corporate media understand the point, but the friction of right-left…


A New Book From Mike McCabe: Unscrewing America: Hints & Hopes From The Heartland

Little Creek Press Anyone puzzled by the state of the union had better carefully study places like Mike McCabe’s home state of Wisconsin. Clues to solving the riddle are hidden there. Unscrewing America explores how and why American politics has taken a turn toward madness, and describes how and why so many Americans have come to believe the nation’s best days are in the rear-view mirror. But the book doesn’t dwell on diagnosis. It emphasizes cure. Unscrewing America is part travelogue, part case study, part manifesto, part how-to guide. At the book’s core is the belief that the best solutions…


Martin Luther King Jr’s (Democratic Socialist) Dream

  Featuring audio clips and quotes from King that will not be featured & celebrated on the evening news or taught in schools. By Michael Moore Rumble (2/20/20) Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy has been sanitized by mainstream American society, erasing his fierce anti-capitalist and anti-war advocacy. Before he was assassinated, King was forcefully denouncing the “three evils” in America — racism, militarism and a corrupt economic system — and arguing that these three evils were all tied together. For this MLK Day episode, Michael Moore shares audio clips and quotes from King that will not be celebrated on the…


Take 2020 Very Seriously Because Your Life Depends On It

  By Mark L. Taylor Commoner Call (2/17/20) The arrival of the police state. Take note: In fascist states it always begins with harassing, tormenting and rounding up the minorities, marginalized and powerless. Then they move up the food chain. No one is safe now. The concentration camp system is already in place and being expanded. As the ranks of the Border Patrol and aptly-named ICE confirms, there are plenty of American thugs willing to carry out immoral and cowardly orders. Take 2020 very seriously. Like your life depends upon it. Because it does. ***** ‘These are the Bad Times’:…


Jimmy Dore: What The Corporate Dems Mean When They Spout ‘Party Unity’ Platitudes

“Isn’t it funny progressives are being ‘babies’ when they won’t support warmongering corporatists, but centrist corporatists are being ‘adults’ when they fuck over progressives. They don’t ever accommodate, don’t ever drop their values and come over and be progressives — we’re always supposed to go that way, they never go the other way. ‘Unity’ means, ‘hey, you guys, shut the fuck up and fall in line and become a corporatists’. That’s what they mean when they say ‘unity’.” — Jimmy Dore on the Joe Rogan Show, (2:10:50 mark),  (8/9/18)


Chris Hedges: What Is Happening To Julian Assange Will Happen To The Rest Of Us

This global security state is a terrifying melding of the corporate and the public. And what it has done to Assange it will soon do to the rest of us. By Chris Hedges Truthdig (2/10/20) David Morales, the indicted owner of the Spanish private security firm Undercover Global, is being investigated by Spain’s high court for allegedly providing the CIA with audio and video recordings of the meetings WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange had with his attorneys and other visitors when the publisher was in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. The security firm also reportedly photographed the passports of all of Assange’s visitors. It is…


“Our Very Existence Is The Resistance”: An Hour With AOC, Ayanna Pressley, Rashida Tlaib & Ilhan Omar

  Democracy Now! (2/10/20) On Friday, Democracy Now! co-host Nermeen Shaikh sat down for a rare joint interview with the Squad, the group of four freshmen Democratic congresswomen who have taken Capitol Hill by storm: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota. Omar and Tlaib are the first Muslim women elected to Congress. Omar is a former refugee from Somalia, and Tlaib is the first female Palestinian-American member of Congress. Ayanna Pressley is the first African-American woman elected to Congress from Massachusetts. Ocasio-Cortez was just 29 years old when…


Listen To This! Indiana Pastor’s Beautiful Song To Trump’s Evangelicals Calls Out Their Betrayal Of Christian Teachings

New Mexico carved angel. You said to love the lost So I’m loving you now You said to speak the truth So I’m calling you out Why don’t you live the words That you put in my mouth May love overcome and justice roll down “A poignant, unexpected protest has also come from one Daniel Deitrich, an Indiana pastor who grew up in an evangelical community and farm town in Michigan, was “taught to take the words of Jesus seriously – Love God, love your neighbor, feed the hungry, fight against injustice…love, peace, kindness, gentleness,” and is “deeply saddened” by the loyalty…


Now Is Not The Time To Stand Down: Impeachment Is Over, But Don’t Despair

The Senate failed to do their job—but ordinary citizens can’t fail to do ours. By Diallo Brooks Other Words (2/5/20) Hours before the House of Representatives impeached Donald Trump for using the power of his office to sabotage our elections, Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) gave a passionate speech on the House floor emphasizing that his colleagues’ duty with their pending votes was far more than political — it was a moral obligation. “Our nation is founded on the principle that we do not have kings. We have presidents. And the Constitution is our compass,” Lewis said. “When you see something that…


A Radical Message Of What REAL Resistance In This Nation Will Take If We Are To Survive

“It is our job to make people in power feel fear. That’s our job. … You know why they are so scared? Because they know even better than we do how corrupt and fixed the system is. … They understand how hated they are and that makes them weak.“ This talk by Chris Hedges has been posted in the Commoner Call before, and is well worth the time, but it is being re-posted now specifically for Hedges’ call to resist. After the bumbling debacle of the Iowa caucus and the corrupting influence of oligarch Michael Bloomberg’s millions in the primary process,…


Real Time’s Bill Maher Urges Dems To Make An Issue Of Trump’s Mental State — And Hands Them The Brutal Ad To Make The Case

By Tom Boggioni Raw Story (2/1/20) HBO  “Real Time ” host Bill Maher handed Democrats a potent weapon on Friday night, unveiling a campaign ad produced by his staff that demonstrated that Donald Trump is in a state of mental decline by using clips of the president slurring and garbling his words. Introducing the ad he stated, “Trump is a neurological mess, but the Democrats are too scared to make an issue of it, when, actually, it would cut together really well as a campaign ad.” Following running the clip — which was greeted with laughter and wild applause from…


Southern Peace Activists Help Soldiers Become Conscientious Objectors

The South is arguably the engine of the U.S. war machine—but also a center for anti-war activism. By Olivia Paschal Facing South (1/17/20) The South is arguably the engine of the U.S. war machine. The region is home to Fort Bragg, the largest U.S. military base in the world. Southern states supply more soldiers than others; the region is home to three of the five states with the highest military recruitment numbers in 2016 – Florida, Georgia, and Texas. Its congressional delegations have historically been some of the most militaristic, and military contractors have long put many of their production facilities in Southern…



John Nichols: If Democrats Go Timid & Pull Their Punches, Trump Will Knock Them Out

  By John Nichols The Nation (6/3/19) Who said: “Socialism is a scare word (the corporate special-interest lobbies) have hurled at every advance the people have made in the last 20 years. Socialism is what they called public power. Socialism is what they called social security. Socialism is what they called farm price supports. Socialism is what they called bank deposit insurance. Socialism is what they called the growth of free and independent labor organizations. Socialism is their name for anything that helps all the people…”? Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders? Who said: “We are rightly proud of the high standards of medical care…


Millennials Are Looking To Socialism Because They Want To Make America Great — But For Everyone

How do you know whether you’re a socialist? Could you be one already without knowing it? By Nathan Robinson NBC (1/2/20) The word “socialism” is becoming more and more mainstream. When Democratic Sen. Bernie Sanders launched his 2016 presidential bid, only a fringe few dared to use the label. To call yourself a socialist was supposedly a political death sentence. Now, in part thanks to Sanders, many are wearing “socialism” as a badge of pride. Dozens of socialist candidates have won seats all over the country, including two members of Congress, and membership in the Democratic Socialists of America has exploded. According to a 2019…


DOCUMENTARY — Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky And The Media

  At yet another time of deceit and manipulation toward war, it is essential to understand how the corporate owners of the economy & government manufacture the consent of the population to send their children off to die in yet another useless war. Encore (11/16/17) Manufacturing Consent explores the political life and ideas of world-renowned linguist, intellectual and political activist Noam Chomsky. Through a collage of biography, archival material and various graphics and illustrations, Mark Achbar and Peter Wintonick’s 22-award-winning documentary highlights Chomsky’s probing analysis of mass media and his critique of the forces at work behind the daily news….


The Book Corporate Dems Do NOT Want You Reading: Recent History Of Democratic Party Reveals Corrosive Influence Of Corporate Cash, Betrayal Of Workers & The Road To Reform

This is a book of real hope for progressives. In his new book Intercept journalist Ryan Grim lays out what exactly has happened to what used to be known as the party of the working people. Grim shows that when democrats truly stand for progressive ideas and values they win. As Grim documents in this fascinating book, over and over, tired old usual program of Democratic Party Wall Street obsequious corporate ‘centrism’ is the ticket to failure and ruin. If we — and the climate crisis stressed planet — hope to survive, we must wrest back control of the Democratic…


Rumble With Michael Moore Episode 10: Reconsidering The Important Legacy Of Ralph Nader

  Rumble With Michael Moore (12/29/19) Michael Moore and Ralph Nader have a complicated relationship. So during his trip to D.C. to witness the impeachment of Donald Trump, Michael was surprised when he bumped into Ralph while visiting the office of Flint’s representative in Congress. They ended up having their first real conversation in nearly 20 years. Ralph agreed to let Michael record it for this podcast. Rumble Reads: Ralph Nader and Mark Green’s new book “Fake President” is here. Read more about the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact here. Follow Ralph here. Send in a voice message to Michael….


Guide For The Coming Year: 15-Point Guide To Resisting Authoritarianism

Rule #1: Always think critically and fight ignorance with facts.   Kali Holloway & Martin Mycielski AlterNet (12/15/17) Nearly a year ago, intuitively recognizing the Trump administration’s authoritarian aspirations, Polish journalist and activist Martin Mycielski wrote “Year 1 Under Authoritarianism.” In those early, nerve-racking days following Trump’s inauguration, the piece was shared across social media, an ominous portent of what was to come. The document — helpfully subtitled, “What To Expect?” — offered a list of predictions and warnings about Trump’s first year in office, and exhortations to fight back at every turn. In his introduction, published just days after…


Ralph Nader: “To The Ramparts” And The Hunger For Justice

“If we don’t have time for democracy we don’t have time for ourselves.” [Editor’s Note: Progressive leader Ralph Nader shows how citizens have more power than they realize. Unused, that power atrophies. Nader shows the opening to regaining our rights and freedoms. The power is right before us. — Mark L. Taylor] Politics And Prose (10/1/18) Ralph Nader discusses his book, “To The Ramparts”, at Politics and Prose on 9/23/18. Since the release of Unsafe at Any Speed in 1965, Nader has led the charge against destructive and exploitative corporate power. The co-founder of public interest groups including Public Citizen,…


Knock, Knock, Knocking On Corrupt Capitalism’s Palace Doors

If you can squint past the smoke from the barricades, the commonalities start to stand out.  By Ben Ehrenreich The Nation (11/25/19) Something—someone—keeps knocking at the door. It’s cold out there and getting colder, but the people inside are cozy on the sofa with the TV on and a blanket on their laps. But there’s that knock again: at the front door now, then the side door, then the back. Maybe it’s the wind. Now there’s knocking at the windows and the roof and the walls of the house—who knew they were so thin? It’s hard to understand: How could so…


‘So If You’re Poor, You’re Dead’? Watch These Brits Gasp When They Find Out The Deadly, Crippling Cost Of Corporate Run Medical Profiting In The US

“Brits can’t fathom the barbarity of America’s healthcare system.” By Eoin Higgins Common Dreams Britons in a video released Tuesday expressed incredulity and shock at the high cost of healthcare in the United States and thanked the United Kingdom’s publicly-funded and administered National Health Service for sparing the country’s people such exorbitant prices. “So if you’re poor, you’re dead,” one young woman tells the interviewer from Joe Politics after hearing an asthma inhaler in the for-profit U.S. system costs between $250 and $300. Two different men appear shocked when told Americans can be charged $2,500 for an ambulance ride. “For real?” one…


Cornel West: Now Is Not The Time For Timid Centrism

By Mark L. Taylor The commoner Call (12/5/19) Cornel West is one of the best teachers in America. In this short video he provides a serious assessment of the positive role American socialism has played in national progress and the march to equality. He shows how timid half-measures are exactly the wrong response to moments of challenge and crisis. Given the fevered fascist threat growing in our nation and worldwide, West’s assessment and prescription for political redemption is a serious message to hear, take in and boldly act upon. As West would acknowledge, the ultimate teacher for our moment of…


Resistance Radio: The Man Who Laughed At al-Qaeda

By Mike Thomson Assignment / BBC (11/28/19) Raed Fares, founder of Syria’s legendary Radio Fresh FM, was mowed down by unknown gunmen as he left his studios in rebel-held Idlib in November 2018. The death of the man who fought hatred with humour and laughed in the faces of President Assad, ISIS and al-Qaeda, sent shockwaves way beyond his troubled homeland. When ordered by Islamist extremists to stop broadcasting music he had replied with bird song and clucking chickens. On being told to take his female presenters off air, he put their voices through software to make them sound like…


Historian Timothy Snyder: Here’s How We Escape TrumpWorld, Where There’s “no future and no truth”

By Chauncey Devega Salon (11/23/19) There will come a time when Donald Trump is no longer president of the United States. The Democrats may defeat Trump in 2020, sending him back to one of his resort hotels to brood and plot further chaos. Trump could be impeached, convicted and forced from office, unlikely as that seems at this moment. A serious medical illness may mean that he is unable to fulfill his duties and is forced to resign. Because of his many scandals and likely illegal behavior, Trump could also choose to resign — if given assurances that Mike Pence, as the new…


‘The Empire Files’ — Chris Hedges & Abby Martin: No Way Out Of Fascism Through Elections

“These people will kill us. And they will, in the end, carry out crimes of humanity that make what the Nazis and Stalinists did look like like child’s play. They are now pushing us toward the complete extinction of the human species.” [Editor’s Note: This is one of the best summaries of the bipartisan crisis and anomie super-charging the death cult of our corporate-serving society. A tough but necessary message for us all. — Mark L. Taylor] The Empire Files (11/27/9) Abby Martin sits down with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Chris Hedges to discuss the ignored reality behind Trump,…


The ‘Audacity Of Nope’ — Actually, Barack, We Do Need To Tear Down The System

By John Atcheson Common Dreams (11/21/19) There are two ways to practice politics: you can either follow polls or shape them.  For four decades now, Democrats have been poll followers, and Republicans have been poll shapers. Recently, President Obama urged the Democrats to continue being poll followers, saying, “The average American doesn’t think we have to completely tear down the system and remake it.”  The evidence suggests he’s wrong about that, but even if he isn’t, Democrats need to change the mind of the average American, not be led by it. Here’s why. “The system” was designed by and for corporate America and…


Left Twitter Responds With Viral #TooFarLeft Hashtag After Obama Tells Wealthy Donors Democrats Need To Tamp Down Progressive Ambitions

“I launched the #TooFarLeft tag, because I’ve had it with Republicans, media elites, and corporate Dems enabling fascists while denigrating those who seek economic and social justice as ‘too far left.’  I’d like to ONCE hear them complain America is too far right.” By Jon Queally Common Dreams (11/16/19) If you want to see the hashtag #TooFarLeft go viral, just get a former world leader—perferably one who is a Democrat—to denounce Left Twitter. After it was reported Friday that former U.S. President Barack Obama told a room full of “wealthy liberal” Democratic Party donors that voters ultimately won’t go for candidates offering…


Musician Bobi Wine Taking Courageous Stand Against Brutal Ugandan Dictator Museveni

Morning Edition / WBUR (1/15/19) NPR’s Scott Simon reconnects with Ugandan musician and activist Bobi Wine, who continues to protest President Yoweri Museveni’s rule. Wine is now planning to run against him in 2021. Link To 6-Minute Audio Kasukali Keeko ? By H.E Bobi Wine: Link To 3+-Minute Video   UGANDA ZUKUKA BY HE.BOBI WINE & NUBIAN LI: 4+-Minute Video


Cornel West On Hope & Resistance In The Age Of Trump: We must “find joy in the struggle”

What would Malcolm say? What would Martin say? What would Fannie Lou Hamer say? What would Ida B. Wells say? What would Toni Morrison say? All of these warriors who have passed away, we have to be true to them. By Chauncey Devega Salon (11/3/19) Donald Trump’s presidency is a stress test for American democracy, the rule of law and the U.S. Constitution. The enduring strength of American democracy has long been prefaced on the assumption that the country’s leaders — especially the president — had some basic respect for democracy. Moreover, the president was assumed by both elites and the…


Henry David Thoreau: “If I repent of anything, it is very likely to be my good behavior…”

“The greater part of what my neighbors call good I believe in my soul to be bad, and if I repent of anything, it is very likely to be my good behavior. What demon possessed me that I behaved so well? You may say the wisest thing you can old man — you who have lived seventy years, not without honor of a kind — I hear an irresistible voice which invites me away from all of that. One generation abandons the enterprises of another like stranded vessels.” — Henry David Thoreau, Walden, 1854 (p.5).


The Revolution Is Here Democrats: Ignore It At Your Peril

By John Atcheson Common Dreams (10/29/19) Despite the yammering by the mainstream media and the neoliberals running the Democratic Party—not to mention Republicans and Fox News—the overwhelming majority of voters support progressive issues on a case-by-case basis, and the majority support the candidates who espouse them. Doubt that? See here, or here, or here, or any poll based the issues, not on political labels that—as a result of a four decades long branding effort funded by the oligarchy—have ceased to represent any real political perspective. As for the majority supporting the progressive candidates, Sanders’ and Warren’s combined share of the voters exceeds Biden’s by a factor of two,…


What True Leadership Looks Like: ‘Walking With The Wind’ By Rep. John Lewis

“I had problems with the church. On the one hand, I was absolutely committed to my faith , to the Lord, to the stories and lessons I read in the Bible — beautiful stories and deep, deep lessons. On the other hand, I was torn and confused, full of questions about why so many people treated one another so cruelly sometimes, often in the name of the same Bible I was reading. That kind f question didn’t curb my desire to become a minister. In fact, it increased it. Seeing what the Reverend King was doing showed me there were…


Umbrellas Up! Hong Kong Youth Can Teach A Thing Or Two To Timid, Passive America About How To Confront Corrupted Power

  By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (10/ 24/19) The National Public Radio show This American Life recently traveled to Hong Kong to join protesters on the streets and in their living rooms to learn about what it is like to participate in risky mass protests against corrupted power. The massive weekend protests began several months ago over a now withdrawn extradition law that could have made Hong Kong residents subject to disappearance in mainland Chinese prison camps. Hong Kong police have grown increasingly aggressive with one protester recently being shot. In response some demonstrators have become increasingly aggressive…


Marianne Williamson Lays Out The Structural Moral Dysfunction Of The 2020 Presidential Race & Our Hollowed Out Nation

“If we think just talking about a policy shift here and a policy shift there is going to prevail we are in such denial.” [Editor’s Note: While many are quick to dismiss her, Marianne Williamson gives an excellent assessment of what has led to the dysfunction, abuse and crushing inequality of the current system and — more importantly — the kind of true revolution of awareness that we need for a better, more humane — and survivable — future. The old system will not do it. — Mark L. Taylor] The Young Turks (10/16/19) Presidential candidate Marianne Williamson goes in…


The Story Behind ‘Catch 22’ Was About Far More Than The Insanity Of War

  Outlook /BBC (6/25/19) Joseph Heller’s funny, tragic satirical anti-war novel was published in 1961 and sold millions. For many it epitomised the growing anti-establishment mood of the 1960s. Heller had served in a bomber squadron during World War Two. Though his experiences provide the setting for the book, its target was actually the America of the 1950s. Using interviews with the author from the BBC archive, Alex Last tells the story behind Catch-22. Link to 9-Minute Audio ***** Kurt Vonnegut’s ‘Slaughterhouse-Five’ At 50 Morning Edition Saturday / NPR (7/6/19) Fifty years ago Kurt Vonnegut published his anti-war novel Slaughterhouse-Five. NPR’s…