Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Two Americas


 


 

 

Two Americas

by C.A. Matthews

There are, in reality, two Americas. One for those who have justice. One for those who seek it and receive it not.

Many Americans believe they have not received justice when, in fact, they have received  justice at the expense of many others. When they get angry enough about what they perceive as a lack of justice, they're apt to form large groups or mobs and seek revenge against those they feel have thwarted it. They, of course, will not see themselves as vengeance seekers but rather as "patriots" or "revolutionaries."


What would you say is the main difference between an "Angry Mob" and "True Revolutionaries"? I'll venture to say it's one of simple motivation.

An Angry Mob is out for their own selfish gain and holds to a twisted sense of justice. True Revolutionaries want to see things change for the better for all people, so that all may enjoy the fruits of a just and fair world.

An Angry Mob in America will more than likely be made up of white supremacists, because white supremacists may want things to change--but only for the people who make up their group. They take their anger out on others who aren't in their group. They will not have any qualms about destroying public property or threatening violence against those in authority as long as they get their way. 

One way to look at an Angry Mob is to think of them as cranky toddlers who don't get their way and throw a hissy fit when you tell them it's time for bed. Or a cranky toddler with the nuclear codes in his possession.


So, on January 6, 2021, the Feast of the Epiphany--the celebration of the Magi (Brown skinned immigrants) who traveled from the East (Iran?) to visit the infant Jesus (another Brown person)--the Angry Mob, containing openly defiant white supremacists, decided to trash our Capitol building and threaten violence on the people therein, killing a police officer in the process. Do these self-centered, homicidal, domestic terrorists think of themselves today as "True Revolutionaries" and "patriots"?  You bet your bottom dollar they do!

This irrational contradiction sums up the legacy of Trump's America. Correction--this has always been America's legacy. No matter what anyone says to the contrary, since America's inception we have worshiped violence. We throw temper tantrums whenever we don't get our way in the world and start coups d'├ętat against governments that don't bend to our will. We've enslaved millions both in the past (forced immigrants from Africa) and in the present (underpaid wage slaves, both foreign born and domestic).


This is America, lady. You're not a patriot. You're a patsy for the oligarchy who couldn't care less about you or your friends.

There's been no great change to make life better, more just, for all Americans during the Trump years. Or the Obama years. Or the Bush years. Or the Clinton years. Or the Reagan years. Or probably even in the Biden years to come.

And that is perhaps America's saddest legacy of all.

Until we become united as a people into One America, a genuine democracy of the people and for the people, America will never be truly great--again or for the first time.

 

Related Articles:

The US Has Entered a Frightening Weimar Era
https://www.commondreams.org/views/2021/01/07/united-states-has-entered-frightening-weimar-era

MAGA vs. BLM: How Police Handled Capitol Mob and George Floyd Activists in Pictures
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/jan/06/capitol-mob-police-trump-george-floyd-protests-photos

On Far Right Websites Plans To Storm Capitol Were Made in Plain Sight
https://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/318-66/67178-on-far-right-websites-plans-to-storm-capitol-were-made-in-plain-sight

What We Know About the 5 People Who Died   

https://ktla.com/news/nationworld/what-we-know-about-the-5-people-who-died-during-riot-at-u-s-capitol/

Thirteen Charged in Federal Court Following Riot at US Capitol (Approximately 40 charged in Superior Court)
https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/thirteen-charged-federal-court-following-riot-united-states-capitol

Police Confirm Death of Officer Injured During Attack On Capitol
https://www.npr.org/sections/congress-electoral-college-tally-live-updates/2021/01/07/954333542/police-confirm-death-of-officer-injured-during-attack-on-capitol

Trump Resisted Sending National Guard to Capitol
https://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/318-66/67162-trump-resisted-sending-national-guard-to-capitol

Man Who Posed for Photos Sitting At Pelosi's Desk Arrested
https://www.npr.org/sections/congress-electoral-college-tally-live-updates/2021/01/08/954940681/man-who-posed-for-photos-sitting-at-desk-in-pelosis-office-has-been-arrested

Storm the Capitol as a White Man and You'll Get a Selfie with Cops
https://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/318-66/67159-storm-the-capitol-as-a-white-man-and-youll-get-it-a-selfie-with-a-cop

FBI, Homeland Security, White House Advisors Foresaw Possible Riots
https://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/318-66/67160-fbi-homeland-security-white-house-advisers-foresaw-possible-riots-looked-the-other-way

Trump Only Agreed to Condemn Capitol Rioters After Realizing He could Face Legal Trouble for Inciting Them
https://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/318-66/67168-trump-only-agreed-to-condemn-the-capitol-rioters-after-realizing-he-could-face-legal-trouble-for-inciting-them

 ***

From Progressive Caucus Action Fund:

 

As white vigilantes attacked the US Capitol this week, the mayor of the District of Columbia had to ask the Trump administration for permission to deploy the National Guard to defend human life and preserve order on the streets of Washington.

It was denied, just one of the many injustices the diverse city of Washington faces without representation in Congress.

The Washington Post reports that “Democratic control of the Senate — and Capitol breach — put D.C. statehood front and center.”

Tell your members of Congress right now: DC needs statehood!

Statehood for the majority-minority District of Columbia is a racial justice imperative.

Over the summer, federal government police agencies used violent, draconian force against DC’s Black Lives Matter protests, over the objections of DC’s local government.

But when majority white pro-Trump rioters stormed the Capitol, the federal government dragged its feet and prevented the District from taking action.

It’s time to end taxation without representation, and stop treating DC’s 700,000 residents as second-class citizens.

PCAF supporters have written tens of thousands of letters demanding DC statehood, helping the Washington DC Admission Act pass the House for the first time ever last year. Now is the best chance we’ve ever had to make DC Statehood a reality.

Tell your members of Congress right now: DC needs statehood!

Thanks for taking action.

-- PCAF
 

***


The world recoiled in horror as a band of pro-Trump rioters stormed the US Capitol, demanding that the current regime stay in power.

Many said, "this isn't America." But it happened here, not in a distant foreign land on our TV screens. And it was fueled by the President of the United States

Donald Trump is so dangerous to our democracy that he must be removed from power now, whether it's through swift impeachment or the 25th Amendment.


We have learned from the Trump administration how thin the line is between a robust democracy and state failure.

We saw the worst coronavirus outbreak in the world as America fell behind other first world nations. We saw how one wannabe strongman could threaten basic principles of democracy.

And now, a ragtag bunch of maniacs was able to penetrate the US Capitol.

For immigrants that fled chaotic regimes, these were dark reminders.

But our belief in the American spirit is strong. We can do better. We must do better.

And that starts with removing Donald Trump. Now.


Thanks for taking action.

-- Progressive Reform Network

***

When a president incites violence, calls his followers to commit treason, and disregards democracy it is clear they cannot be allowed access to our nuclear codes. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has already called on the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, to prevent an unlawful nuclear strike but the reality is, not even Milley could lawfully stop President Trump.

Sign the petition: Congress must enact No First Use Now!

Congress must step up and enact No First Use now for the sake of people and the planet. Our representatives have experienced first hand the results of the president’s violent rhetoric and know better than anyone the damage he can cause. We cannot wait for the next Administration to pass No First Use, we must demand action now.

Sign now!

In solidarity,

Tristan and the Beyond the Bomb team



Tuesday, January 5, 2021

The Fraud Squad


The Dude knows the score in DC!

The Fraud Squad: 

Window Dressing for the DNC Store

by Coast Watcher
 
The Squad! It began with those wonderful, talented women who set out to challenge the Democratic Party’s centrist-right stance! How they were praised for their progressive values, their drive, their youthful vigor! How we hoped they would pick up the torch of socialism from Bernie Sanders and carry it forward into a bright Democratic Party future!

Well, guess what? It seems our idols have feet of clay.

There’s no denying the so-called Democratic Party detested them from the get-go for the very reasons I outlined above. The Squad became a burr under the saddle of business-as-usual and attracted brickbats and catcalls from those of a Democrat persuasion as much as they did from the GOP and Trumpanzees. Then the dirty Dems figured out how to tame the Squad and bend them to its will.
To take one member in particular, Alexandria Occasio-Cortez, she has progressed from a barkeep to Congresswoman and blazed a path into the headlines. Now she pulls in tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars in speaking fees per speech. AOC now can earn more in one night giving a speech than she possibly made in all those years of tending bar combined.

Has she forgotten what it’s like to scrimp and save, to worry about health care coverage or if she has enough money to cover rent and/or food this month? Possibly she has forgotten what it's like to be a struggling worker. Her new Congressional plan health care coverage is premium quality and for life, regardless if she continues in government or not. If she does depart her political career, there’s many a Big Business concern that would offer her a lucrative position on its board, complete with perks.

How does that old adage go? Oh yes, Power corrupts. I'm sure all that lobbyist money helps you sleep at night if your conscience bothers you, too.

So all the so-called Democratic Party had to do was wait until the delicious benefits of being a professional national level politician kicked in. Then the Squad would no longer have any desire to overthrow a system which works so well for them. Instead, their new job is to act as window dressing, something shiny to make it appear the Democratic administration-to-be of Joe Biden really is progressive in its values, when everyone admits that in stark reality "nothing will fundamentally change."

What the DNC store has to offer isn’t worth the time of anyone to the left of center. It’ll be the same old attack on civil liberties from Biden, a man who made a career out of formulating oppressive laws. It’ll be a program of austerity and tightened belts from a man who has wanted to cut Social Security for decades. Biden flat-out stated he’d never tolerate Medicare for All, and he would veto any such bill that reached his desk.

The #ForceTheVote movement, birthed by the new People's Party and other aligned groups, has pulled back the curtain and revealed who the real Wizard of DC truly is. Surprise--it's the health insurance industry! The Squad of brightly painted mannequins in the shop window has failed to fool anyone for long.

When AOC came under pressure from the public for not agitating and pressing for Medicare for All in the middle of this dreadful pandemic, she complained and whined like a child that people were acting "violent" toward her on Twitter for calling her out. 
 
So sorry, Alexandria! You chose to become a politician. That means you have to take the blows as well as the bouquets. And if you think you’re under pressure to provide health care and a decent stimulus package for your constituents now, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

In the recent vote for Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi gained re-election by the narrowest margin in modern history. Had even two of the Squad not voted for her then Pelosi, with all her neoliberal-centrist authoritarian attitude and praise for overthrowing democratically elected leaders of South American countries, would have been left high and dry. It seems the Squad’s main argument for following the Dem party line is that had they not voted for Pelosi then a Republican would have become Speaker of the House.

Like, there’s a difference? Since both parties receive funding and policy guidance from Big Business they are effectively one and the same. The so-called Democrats simply wear blue ties, the Republicans red.

Even a casual glance through social media shows a huge amount of anger at the way the Squad betrayed the working poor and the struggling across the country. The hashtag #FraudSquad has quickly trended. Has the window dressing failed to distract us? Are people sick of politics as usual? The rapid response of the American public via social media indicates this.

The United States seems to be at a crossroads. The neoliberals' happy fallacy that, "Things will be so much better once Trump is gone," is being shown for what it is. The divide between the rich and poor has never been so large and so clear to all.

Those bourgeoisie (who think nothing of spending their $600 stimulus check on a hair appointment before they go to brunch) keep telling us "Now isn’t the time to (insert urgent public need here)."  We're supposed to forget how the so-called Democratic Party screwed the Left—again—and move on, but they've underestimated the working classes. Soon they'll find a cold wind blowing through their lives, and the window dressing of the Squad won’t be able to save them.

BIO: Coast Watcher possesses Superman's super vision--he can see through the distractions of the neoliberal establishment and figure their game out. They enjoy the lobbyists' money they receive for simply being in office. They're not worried about dying in the Covid-19 pandemic since they know they'll get to go to the front of line at the hospital and the vaccination queue. We the struggling workers will have to become our own heroes and force a vote to gain what we and our families deserve, Medicare For All. The Squad and anyone else who tries to hold us up should get the hell out of our way.


Related Articles:

Dems Move On After Stimulus Check Standoff Ends 

https://www.salon.com/2020/12/31/stimulus-standoff-ends-in-democratic-surrender-after-mcconnell-blocks-2000-checks-dems-move-on_partner/ 

In 2021, the Best Way to Fight Neofascist Republicans is to Fight Neoliberal Democrats

https://readersupportednews.org/opinion2/277-75/67103-rsn-in-2021-the-best-way-to-fight-neofascist-republicans-is-to-fight-neoliberal-democrats

*** 

All right! An actual Socialist is running for governor of Virginia--Lee Carter. Virginians may be the first to enjoy universal health care in the US if he gets into office. Good luck, Lee!

https://youtu.be/kyawBhkeQ68

***

From Roots Action:

Too many of Biden’s cabinet nominees have deep industry ties and alarming track records. The predictable results would be nothing more than the status quo that landed us with President Trump in the first place.

RootsAction.org is organizing now to oppose the most problematic of Biden’s appointments. We have a real chance to prevent them from being confirmed by the Senate in early January -- but we need your help.

Fill out this short Action Survey to join our team of volunteers and help challenge Biden’s nominees.



Who is President-elect Biden nominating?

TOM VILSACK
, also known as “Mr. Monsanto,” has (again) been nominated to head the USDA. During his first tenure as Agriculture Secretary, Vilsack racked up a grim record of protecting the interests of “Big Ag” over the needs of independent farmers, workers, consumers, and the environment. To top it all off, he’s currently serving as president and CEO for a major U.S. dairy lobby.

NEERA TANDEN
is widely known as one of the most anti-progressive voices of the neoliberal establishment. She has been tapped to head the Office of Management and Budget, the department tasked with formulating the Biden administration’s spending plans -- an especially critical endeavor amid the current economic crisis. It is concerning that Tanden has, in the past, expressed support for cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and has been a staunch opponent of Medicare for All and a $15 federal minimum wage.

We need your help to stop these confirmations in the Senate and ensure Biden’s appointees put the people’s interests over corporate interests. Sign up here to volunteer for the #NoHoneymoon campaign.

ANTONY BLINKEN has been nominated to serve as Secretary of State. He supported the war in Iraq, supported interventions in Libya and Syria, and co-founded WestExec Advisors -- a firm that provides “strategic consulting” for undisclosed clients in the tech and defense sectors, greasing the revolving door between industry and the federal government (i.e. the military-industrial complex).

AVRIL HAINES has been nominated to serve as Director of National Intelligence. She was the former deputy national security adviser and former deputy CIA director under Obama. Haines helped author the Presidential Policy Guidance that established the legal framework and normalization of the Obama administration’s use of drone strikes, and failed to discipline CIA officers who hacked Senate Intelligence Committee networks while the committee was compiling a report on CIA torture.

Given the records of these nominees, we can’t expect them to meet this political moment and do what needs doing for the American people. The push for better leadership in the Biden administration is a vital part of our #NoHoneymoon campaign. We invite you to join us in this effort.

In solidarity,

Norman Solomon and Jeff Cohen
Co-founders, RootsAction.org

P.S. Here are a few more actions you can take in under five minutes to amplify our campaign!

  1. Join our Facebook Volunteer Network for volunteer opportunities and campaign updates.
  2. Subscribe to our YouTube Channel for regular updates on Activism and Pressure Campaigns.
  3. Take Action at NoHoneymoon.org
Background
>>Vilsack
George Goehl, The Guardian: "Biden's pick for agriculture secretary raises serious red flags"
Claire Kelloway, The Intercept: "Tom Vilsack for USDA Secretary Is What’s Wrong With the Democratic Party"
>>Tanden
Walker Bragman, Daily Poster: "Biden Picks Budget Director Who Pushed Social Security Cuts"
>>Blinken
Stephen Zunes, Truthout: "Biden’s Pick for Secretary of State Has a Record of Militarism"
Bryan Bender and Theodoric Meyer, Politico: "The secretive consulting firm that’s become Biden’s Cabinet in waiting"
>>Haines
Sarah Lazare, In These Times: "Biden's Foreign Policy Picks Are From the Hawkish National Security Blob. That Is a Bad Sign."
Jerry Dunleavy, Washington Examiner: "Avril Haines, deputy of John Brennan and Susan Rice, named Biden’s future spy chief"

www.RootsAction.org

 ***

It's high time we turned around and started walking!  The Revolution Continues will be with you every step.

Five and a half years on, and we're still fighting the duopoly, and we're not ashamed to say that we need fellow revolutionaries like you to help us stay online and provide progressive insights. If you can spare some of your pocket change, please use the Paypal link below to donate to help fund our operations.

http://paypal.me/camatthews

Thanks for all you do in making the world a better place. Power to the people!

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

2020: The Year That Wasn't

 


2020: The Year That Wasn't

Most news programs/podcasts/web sites do a "news roundup" at this point in the year, and this year seems to really lend itself to this tried and true format. We started the year thinking 2020 would be one of "Perfect Vision" (https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2019/12/perfect-vision-2020.html ) and perhaps even the beginnings of a people's revolution, but within three months we found ourselves entangled in the beginnings of a worldwide pandemic instead.

Disease and certain death certainly wasn't on the menu originally for 2020. In spite of the challenges of mask wearing and social distancing, progressives soldiered on and accomplished more than one might think in a year that kept families and lovers apart and shut down whole economies. They even managed to demonstrate how racism still exists in the US, why Black Lives Matter (https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/06/the-long-flight-of-jim-crow.html ) and why we must #DefundThePolice (https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/09/why-cities-burn.html ) .

So, without any further ado, welcome to the year that wasn't as observed and documented by the writers of The Revolution Continues. (Click on the links to read the articles mentioned.)

January 2020: This will be the year we finally acknowledge and do something constructive about the climate crisis to prevent major wildfires and other ecological disasters worldwide. https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-whole-world-is-burning.html

February 2020: This will be the year the Democratic Party is completely reformed and recognizes the progressive wisdom and brave leadership of Senator Bernie Sanders, allowing him to win the presidential nomination and lead America into a golden age of Medicare For All and no more student loan debt. https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/02/2020-year-that-will-shape-future-of.html

March 2020: This will be the year we get our act together as a people and our elected leaders will respect medical experts and pass generous legislation to help every American suffering without access to health care or a job because of the Covid-19 pandemic. https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/03/life-down-rabbit-hole.html

April 2020: This will be the year we will free non-violent prisoners suffering under unhealthy conditions in for-profit prisons and overcrowded public ones, as well as openly acknowledge the multitude of sins of the "chosen" DNC nominee. https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/04/why-i-adore-joe-biden.html


May 2020: This will be the year we will acknowledge at last that capitalism kills and that those who have billions of dollars in the bank couldn't care less about those whose work they obtain obscene profits from.  https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/05/cannon-fodder-for-capitalism.html

This will also be the year we sit down and seriously contemplate why the rich are so afraid of the word "socialism."  https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/01/why-are-rich-so-scared-of-socialism.html

June 2020: This will be the year that Americans of all social classes will learn to live together in peace and racial harmony--and our policing agencies will demonstrate fair and restorative justice techniques. https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/06/this-is-revolution.html

July 2020: This will be the year that a person in uniform will earn the respect of the public by his/her actions. "Protect and serve" won't just always apply to the rich or the oligarchs and their sycophants: https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/07/the-only-difference-is-uniform.html

August 2020: This will be the year that "lesser evil" voting becomes a thing of the past, allowing for a more diverse and responsive political system. Also, Americans will come to see who their true adversaries are (and how they make more money in less than one second than the average worker makes in one year). https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/08/winners-and-losers.html

September 2020: This is the year that Americans recognize the signs of fascism in time so we won't be doomed to repeat history endlessly--especially the scary bits modeled by Hitler's Germany. https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/09/a-history-of-fascism-in-america.html

October 2020: This will be the year that true democracy will be supported and a diversity of opinion and approaches (vocalized primarily by smaller political parties) will be praised and respected by the American electorate. Everyone will be able to vote and feel proud of their vote--not pressured! https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/10/the-only-wasted-vote.html

November 2020: This will be the year Americans realize that we must fundamentally change of systems of governance and economics in order to provide a safe and healthy life for all people--and this will be reflected in our voting preferences, not our base fears. https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/11/we-have-to-fundamentally-change.html


December 2020: This will be the year that the destructive path of neoliberalism will at last be outed and shunned for the horror that it is, allowing Medicare For All to finally pass among other programs so desperately needed. The "brunch crowd" will be no more in this new America free from classism, racism, sexism and "bubble bias." https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2020/12/brunch-has-been-suspended-indefinitely.html

There you go--here's the "2020 perfect vision" we all hoped for a bare twelve months ago. At least we know for certain now what we all need to be working toward building in 2021, right?

Until we meet again, we wish a healthy and happy New Year to you and yours from all of us here at The Revolution Continues. Keep your masks on and keep fighting!

***

From Friends of the Earth:

The Southern Beaufort Sea polar bear population is dwindling. Less than 900 bears remain. Now, their habitat is at risk from the oil and gas industries. Take action to protect polar bears from Big Oil.

The Arctic Refuge is one of the most important onshore denning habitats for polar bears in the United States. Mother polar bears with their cubs have become increasingly reliant on denning in this area as sea ice melts due to climate change.

Now, oil and gas seismic testing in the coast plan could irreversibly damage this essential habitat. But the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has downplayed the impacts of seismic exploration and is moving forward with the permitting process. We need your help to stop it.

Take action to protect polar bears from the fossil fuel industry.

Sign Now

Polar bears are listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. The Arctic Refuge is vital to their survival.

Seismic exploration in their habitat could crush bears in their dens or force mother bears to abandon their cubs, leaving the little ones to perish.

Oil drilling in the last remnants of undeveloped coastal habitats in an increasingly warming Arctic could eradicate polar bears from the United States. We need your help to demand the BLM puts the lives of polar bears ahead of Big Oil profits.

Demand the Bureau of Land Management stop seismic testing in the Arctic.

Sign Now

Seismic testing utilizes acoustic waves that search for formations of oil deposits below the surface.

The delicate Arctic ecosystem still carries scars from testing conducted in the area thirty years ago. Modern seismic testing will only be worse. The testing will fill a space the size of South Carolina with a dense grid of crisscrossing tracks -- the equivalent of almost a full trip around the Earth. Thumper trucks, convoys, bulldozers, and tractors will roll over this fragile ecosystem 24 hours a day, 7 days a week -- for months on end!

The only reason for the BLM to go forward with this plan is to benefit the fossil fuel industry. It would harm polar bears, disrupt sensitive ecosystems, and impact local communities. We need your help to stop this plan before the December 30th deadline to comment.

Use your voice. Demand the BLM protect the Arctic’s vulnerable ecosystem.

Sign Now
Standing with you,

Nicole Ghio,
Senior fossil fuels program manager,
Friends of the Earth

  ***

This coming year will be a big one and you can help The Revolution Continues.

Five and a half years on, and we're still fighting, but it's tough. You as a fellow revolutionary can make it easier for the faithful editors/writers to stay on the job by simply sharing some of your pocket change now and then. Use the Paypal link below to donate.


Thanks for all you do in making the world a better place. Power to the people!