Saturday, December 24, 2016

"Driftglass": Evil or Stupid?

To hear him tell it, the blogger "Driftglass" is a precariously employed former managerial sort who has been fucked-over by corporate imbeciles and right-wing economic policies. Intelligent, aware, embittered, "Driftglass" spends a lot of his time exposing right-wing idiocy and perfidy.

I first encountered his blog in the dark days of the bush II regime when liberals and leftists were all on the same team; in that we knew who the enemy was and we all knew bullshit when we saw it. "Driftglass" (I'll drop the quotation marks from here on in.) is especially good at trashing the hypocrisies and absurdities of right-wing, mainstream pundits, especially the detestable David Brooks.

And this is one thing about liberals: They make sense. They criticize their right-wing opponents in ways that more thorough-going leftists can appreciate. Whereas with right-wing critics of liberal or leftist politicians, you get stuff like "He's a fag." "Kill the bitch." "Cuck!" or some variant of racism. And of course there's the colossal hypocrisy of right-wingers and scandals. A right-wing politician can be found standing over a recently murdered body with blood dripping from their hands and anyone who accuses them of murder is a "leftard conspiracy theorist." Just look at how these "lock 'em up or hang 'em high" "law and order" types stuck by massive hypocrite/buffoon Rob Ford: He of the infamous "zero tolerance for drugs and gangs" who ended up getting caught smoking crack with gangsters. And right-wingers will accuse leftist protesters of being angry to the point of derangement, five seconds before writing about how they'd like to lynch a liberal politician, execute their libtard supporters and then drop a nuclear bomb on Mecca.

Alas though! When one of their own is elected, too many liberals throw all their critical thinking and (worse) principles, out the window. Barack Obama hasn't expanded the war in Afghanistan! Paul Martin did not rob the unemployment insurance program to finance tax-cuts for the wealthy! Bill Cliinton did not throw millions of poor US-Americans into poverty and prisons! Jean Chretien did not slobber over Indonesian despot Suharto and decide that the UBC campus should be a "Charter-free zone" to neutralize protesters. Hillary Clinton didn't back jihaadist nut-bars against Libya's Qaddafi and destroy a country of six million people. Justin Trudeau hasn't pointedly ignored a legal order to provide adequate funding for First Nations youth services, even after cynically voting for an NDP motion that he obey said order and increase that funding. Obama and Hillary haven't backed more jihaadist monsters in Syria forcing millions to flee (thousands drowning in the Mediterranean Sea) while killing tens of thousands in Syria itself!

And on and on it goes. For liberal partisan hacks, anything can be overlooked, and, if people continue to complain, any pathetic, ridiculous rationalizations or excuses will do. "The IMF would have taken us over if Paul Martin hadn't robbed the UI fund!" "Obama is blocked by Republican obstructionists and 'Blue Dog' Democrats!" (Even though he's forever attempting "grand bargains" with the former and supporting the latter against progressive challengers.)

The long and the short of it is that even if liberals' overall beliefs are not idiotic and vile, their partisan behaviour is every bit as contemptible as their right-wing counterparts. (Obviously the NDP isn't immune from this sort of stupidity. Nor is any sort of faction. But the NDP hasn't enjoyed any sort of power in recent years and there's not a lot to talk about at the moment.)

But let's get back to Driftglass. Because he's become insufferable. You see, the Democratic Party coronated the detestable Hillary Clinton as their candidate in the 2016 presidential election. And as a result of the lack of enthusiasm for her, AND as a result of the Electoral College system undermining the results of the actual voting (a system the Democrats were aware of going in) AND as a result of Republican voter suppression laws (which the Democratic leadership has been strangely non-outraged by), Hillary Clinton was narrowly defeated by the quasi-fascist, obnoxious, ignorant buffoon, Donald Trump.

I'd always said that I wouldn't have voted for either of those monsters. Yes. Yes. Trump is a bad man. A horrible man. An ugly-minded racist, sexist, corrupt, greedy, ignorant scum-bag. But a victory for Hillary Clinton would have been seen as a vindication for the vile policies of herself, Barack Obama, and her disgusting husband and former president, Bill Clinton. Policies that have drenched the Middle East (and elsewhere) in blood; shredded human rights domestically' and contributed to global economic insecurity and inequality.

If Donald Trump is the racist maniac who will stab you to death on the sidewalk, Hillary Clinton is the psycho who will hang you buy your wrists in her basement, slit them, and leave you to bleed to death while she goes on about how she can now tolerate Blacks and Gays. (Trump would grab your wallet, whereas Clinton would get your pass-codes from you, as well as your cash and she'd sell your blood on the black market!)

That's why sensible people didn't care who won. Sure, Trump would be terrible. (And he's turned out to be.) But a victory for Hillary Clinton would have meant enough liberals had turned off their brains and were pretending that the dismal economic policies and the horrible, murderous foreign policies, and all the authoritarian bullshit spying policies were acceptable to them. Slowly bleeding to death because the alternative is worse and they can't fucking think of anything different and they can't even pretend that something different is required.

And Driftglass has been among the most obnoxious of the liberals who simply can't fathom how repulsive a candidate Hillary was. During the primaries he feigned incomprehension at the anger of Bernie Sanders' supporters. The dunce couldn't even grasp Sanders' appeal as opposed to Clinton's. Now he's whining about the possibility that some "Bernie Bro's" (a ridiculous term used to describe all of Sanders' supporters as sexist males who simply didn't want the USA's Commander-in-Chief to have a vagina) may have voted for Jill Stein or even (out of spite) Donald Trump.

And, of course, actual Trump supporters could only have been motivated by racism and other dog-whistle politics. They didn't vote in the deluded hopes to get their factories back. They didn't vote out of anger over bail-outs to Wall Street criminals as provided by Obama (who was carrying on the policy originated by george dubya bush) and which would have been continued by the paid stooge Hillary Clinton. Nope. They're all racists. Every last one of them. They're all sexist, racist homophobes. THAT is why they ALL voted for the Donald against the Hillary! They are, all of them, not just most of them, racist, ignorant, sexist, cretins.

(That many are ignorant is obvious though. Anyone who watches knows that sucking the rancid dicks of Wall Street banksters is a bipartisan affair. Anyone who doesn't know that Trump is a con-artist, serial fraudster is obviously ignorant. But ignorance can be fixed. Which is important.)

Ignorance can also mean misinformed. That's where the "fake news" of the corporate media comes in. Not just FOX News, but local radio and television. The "national" news programs of ABC, MSNBC, CBS and CNN. It's all garbage that fails to give people an understanding of their world. If there's no sensible analysis in their lives at all, if all they see is the drivel provided by the mainstream, they're going to see that their living standards are stagnating or declining and that criminals are growing richer and that Barack Obama has presided over it all. They won't even hear the caterwauling of Democrats about Repug obstructionism. That's the grip of the corporate media.

But one thing these people in fly-over country are right about is that their living standards aren't what they were told they'd be in all those bromides about the wonders of the capitalist system and the free market and the American Way.  Much was made of the fact that the "average" Trump supporter had an income of over $70,000. But "average" is just dividing the combined incomes by the number of people. A few wealthy supporters could skew the averages.

Plus, we're also going to be talking about the people who couldn't be bothered with the poisoned choice of Hillary the corporate stooge and Trump the stooge. People who voted for Obama even in 2012 but after eight years of the guy still hadn't seen any rescue from their predicaments and knew that Hillary Clinton was only promising them more of the same.

In the face of the widespread disenchantment with the Democratic Party's bullshit, what does Driftglass do? He spends an entire post cutting and pasting White House press releases about how much Barack Obama did for manufacturing!

If only Driftglass had gone to work sooner! All of those people committing suicide might have reconsidered!

Kevin Lowney lies awake some nights wondering if he should kill himself.
“I am in such pain every night, suicide has on a regular basis crossed my mind just simply to ease the pain. If I did not have responsibilities, especially for my youngest daughter who has problems,” he said.
The 56-year-old former salesman’s struggle with chronic pain is bound up with an array of other issues – medical debts, impoverishment and the prospect of a bleak retirement – contributing to growing numbers of suicides in the US and helping drive a sharp and unusual increase in the mortality rate for middle-aged white Americans in recent years alongside premature deaths from alcohol and drugs.
A study released late last year by two Princeton academics, Anne Case and Angus Deaton, who won the 2014 Nobel prize for economics, revealed that the death rate for white Americans aged 45 to 54 has risen sharply since 1999 after declining for decades. The increase, by 20% over the 14 years to 2013, represents about half a million lives cut short.
Fucking ridiculous; but just the end point for all the Democrat-liberal partisans who tried to claim that the Obama years were good years in the face of all the evidence. (And liberal shills: Don't try to spew anything about the Affordable Care Act. I've already covered that.)

Back when I started this post, Driftglass was the first blogger to resort to what became a terrifyingly popular conspiracy theory, to whit; that Russia's Vladimir Putin stole the election for his puppet, Donald Trump. I say "terrifyingly popular" because this loopy, shit-for-brains notion spread like wild fire amongst liberals who you'd ordinarily credit as being sentient life-forms.

Here's how it goes: Wikileaks released the contents of Democratic National Committee emails and the emails of Clinton campaign head John Podesta. The DNC emails showed that they deliberately conspired with Clinton to side-line Bernie Sanders and render the whole primary process a farce in order to install Hillary Clinton as the Democratic nominee for president. Podesta's emails detailed more of the same as well as snippets of HRC telling Wall Street bankers that she had one story for them in private and another for the public.

In short: Damaging, true intelligence about Hillary's campaign. From the beginning, the Clinton campaign screamed about Russian hackers trying to help Donald Trump. They had no proof, but Putin has been a useful bogeyman for both parties since forever, so why not? Besides, Trump once compared Obama unfavourably to Putin in one of his mindless tweets, and had spoken admiringly of Putin's actually fighting ISIS. (I deal with Trump's ignorance on the real nature of the GBSWOT here.)

But things really picked up steam when, .... get this, ... ANONYMOUS CIA AGENTS expressed their "STRONG CONFIDENCE" in their own "TOP-SECRET EVIDENCE" that Putin was personally involved in hacking the emails! Driftglass picked up this fresh, steaming heap of bullshit and fucking ran with it. Sadly, pretty much the entire liberal internet fell in love with this utter stupidity as well. Secret CIA evidence??? When has that ever led us astray???

I mean, the FACT that somebody else has admitted to getting the info from a DNC insider doesn't faze anyone. But let's look at it as if Putin was behind it. Is it possible he was? Well, the USA commits cyber-warfare on other countries (Iran comes to mind.) Was spying on Germany's Angela Merkel's cellphone and the entire United Nations. And it routinely meddles in other countries' elections (or just plain invades and deposes governments it doesn't like). Trump was saying nice things about Putin while Clinton was (INSANELY) talking about imposing a "no-fly zone" over Syria in opposition to the wishes of Putin and the Syrian dictatorship. So of course it's possible. Still, proof is nice, isn't it? Before you go running off screaming about "treason" and labelling every alternative media source that said anything critical of Clinton as Russian agents or "useful idiots."

But who honestly believes that this essentially negligible assistance from Putin would make Trump his puppet? Trump is a megalomaniac, narcissistic serial fraudster. He breaks promises as effortlessly as he breathes (stolen line from Rosie DiMoron describing the people of Afghanistan). Once you make someone like Trump the President of the United States of America (which is to say, arguably the most powerful man in the world) you can't control him. I mean, this should go without saying. But apparently the human race is so stupid and ignorant and deluded that one-quarter of US-Americans would vote for this fraudster and another quarter will believe he's Putin's puppet

You see, to hear Driftglass speak it, the Democrats can simply do no wrong. (Except, that is, fail to stand up to Repugnican hatred and bullying.) Is he a chump or a paid stooge? If he's the former, then he really should cut it out with the photoshopping and the blogging, because they don't appear to be paying for themselves and he's just cheer-leading for his own exploitation. But if he's a paid shill? Then that's evil. Doing stupid shit like posting White House press releases to fight against reality. Pushing that ridiculous "Putin stole the election" meme on gullible liberal fools. Perpetuating the Democratic policies of corruption, imperialism and betrayal, as if they're a genuine alternative to Repugnican atrocities.

You know that these Democratic party-shills are stupid, shitty people when they call Edward Snowden a traitor for having exposed the bipartisan mass-surveillance state that Obama expanded when he campaigned on reining it in. If McCain or Romney had been president when these programs were running, idiots like Driftglass and his fans would be apoplectic.Vile hypocrites. Imbeciles standing in the way of humanity finding a better path to survival.

I'll end this by saying that these repeated brain-farts of liberal failure make reading online even more pointless than ever. I really can't read Driftglass anymore. I don''t even care about his amusing take-downs of revolting, moronic puss-ball David Brooks. There's just too goddamned much whining and lying about the Democratic Party's loss to make it worthwhile. It's like listening to Eric Clapton after you've heard he's a racist.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Monday, December 5, 2016

Ted Rall on a Clinton Victory

Ted Rall writes about something I considered composing, and comes up with pretty much what I would have. (Just with more details.)

"Hillary's Lost: Should We Care?"

Here's some highlights:

The Cabinet: ... Hillary Clinton’s cabinet would have been composed of the neoliberal militarists who’ve been running things for Obama.
Taxes and the Economy: Clinton proposed a slightly more progressive tax structure during the campaign. She only wanted a $12/hour minimum wage — less than many states and cities. Even though NAFTA and trade were her Achilles’ heels, she didn’t propose a job retraining program or welfare plan for workers displaced by globalization. Largely, she pledged to continue the gradual Obama recovery, which has left most workers behind. 
Privacy and the NSA: Even in the wake of the Edward Snowden revelations (when she called the whistleblower a traitor), Clinton stridently defended the government’s illegal spying against every American.
Healthcare: Obamacare would have remained in place in its present form. A few vague promises to add a “public option” do not amount to a pledge to spend political capital to get it past Congressional Republicans. But premiums are skyrocketing, so Hillarian inaction might have led to wider calls for ACA repeal, a big step backward. (No one knows what Trump will do. Not even him.)
War and Peace: Hillary has a long history of hawkishness. She didn’t push through any peace deals as Secretary of State. During the campaign, she called for a no-fly zone over Syria, a tactic designed to provoke hostilities. And her hot rhetoric so freaked out the government of Russia that Kremlin military analysts worried about World War III if she won. Trump is a hothead. But Hillary might have been more likely to start a war.
And in 2020, we’d be right back where we are now. Four years into President Hillary, the anger that unleashed Trumpism would turn into boiling rage.

So, to summarize: A Cabinet full of right-wing, neo-liberal militarists. Continuance of the economic policies that have impoverished millions and grotesquely reward a tiny few. Expansion of the surveillance state.

About ObamaCare: As I understand it, the ACA denied blood-sucking insurance companies from denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions, ... BUT, ... being the pro-market piece-of-shit that it is, the ACA does nothing from allowing the capitalist scum to raise their premiums on everybody to compensate them for having to insure sick people. So, while Hillary-bot, Democratic die-hards are bloviating about how Trump is going to take away their insurance, Obamacare was going to make it unaffordable for a lot of people anyway.

So, I really have to stop and point out the obvious hypocrisy and derangement of Hillary supporters: She did not have ordinary people's best interests at heart. She, like Obama, was a servant of Wall Street. Both parties are. Both parties grovel before the plutocrats for donations.

All of a sudden, because of Donald Trump, progressives think the economy has been doing great under Barack Obama. It hasn't. Wages have stagnated for years. Wall Street engaged in criminal behaviour that almost tanked the global economy were it not for trillions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies, and yet Obama protected the banksters and illegally assisted in the destruction of the Occupy Movement that protested this criminality. As a result, 95% of the economic growth since 2008 has gone to the wealthiest 1%.

Democrats delude themselves that this is all the fault of Republican obstructionism. But time and time again, Obama has shown himself unwilling to press hard against them. When he isn't offering them "grand bargains" he's supporting "Blue Dog" Democrats against progressive challengers.

Stop fooling yourselves.

And listen: Yes, the Koch brothers funded the Tea Party. But they Tea Party members have minds (such as they are) of their own. That's why the were able to take down Eric Cantor. That's why the whole Repugnican establishment was shocked and appalled about Trump. Trump was promising to bring back factories by reversing free trade. He was going to force the pharmaceutical companies to bargain with the federal government, rather than just get the taxpayers to sign a blank cheque. He was going to get rid of Obamacare, which, however much liberals might like Obama, was making health care more expensive for people.

Now, I always thought Trump was a con-man. I never supported him. But he was saying things that ordinary US-Americans liked. Because they were and are hurting. And no matter how much deluded, simpering liberal fuck-faces want to believe it; Obama has not been their friend, he has not tried to help them; the capitalist system is still corrupt and inhuman and a failure. (I knew how extensive Trump derangement syndrome can get when I read Antonia Zerbisias praising NAFTA and getting a quote from elitist prick Mickey Cohen, just because Trump says he'll repudiate it.)

Listen: Hillary "won" the popular vote. But people knew the Electoral College existed before the 2016 election. Hillary's people encouraged the Trump candidacy because they thought she'd trounce him easily. Because (as they still refuse to admit) she's actually a really shitty person with a horrible record.

It turns out that Trump isn't going to pursue better relationships with nuclear powered Russia. But liberals wanted us to vote for a candidate who said straight-out that she'd pursue policies that could lead to goddamned fucking war with Russia. The depths of liberal insanity and delusion! Un-fuck you all you insane sons of bitches!

"Lesser evil"? I'm sure the degree of "lesser" is irrelevant to the dead and traumatized across the Middle East and in much of the rest of the Global South as well.

So Trump conned people. Some of them were salt-of-the-earth racists. Some of them just wanted job
opportunities and didn't care about the racism.


Yeah. Just like you fucking Hillary-bots don't care about her victims. The homeless refugees being attacked by neo-Nazis in Europe. The Libyans living under the nut-bar jihaadists Clinton backed in that country's uprising.

Just like we all type on lap-tops powered with raw materials mined by African child-slaves and assembled in Chinese hell-holes that have suicide nets around them to save the trouble of cleaning up the corpses of employees seeking an end to their miserable existences.

The Tea Party is angry. They lash out stupidly because they're stupid and they don't understand the system that's ensnared them. But more and more I have to ask if they're any more stupid that the liberals who delude themselves that Hillary Rodham Clinton was a brilliant humanitarian and not a racist, elitist, corrupt, mass-murderer.

And the people who stayed home? Who didn't vote? Well, maybe they looked at their miserable existences, the falseness of the "hope and change" that the cynical Obama campaign sold to them back in 2008 and decided it simply wasn't worth it. Things are going to suck under Trump and they sucked under Obama and they would have sucked under Clinton.