Monday, January 11, 2021

Links — 11 Jan 2021

Zero Hedge
"Very Incriminating": Hacker Archives Every Deleted Parler Post
Tyler Durden

Axios
Secret Service is locking down D.C. for Biden's inauguration six days earlier than planned
Mike Allen

The Week
FBI reportedly warns of planned armed protests at all 50 state capitols
Brendan Morrow

Real Currencies (tinfoil hat required)
Too Early To Entirely Write Off A Trump Counter Coup Yet
Anthony Migchels

The Constitutionalist
Mark Graber is Regent Professor at the University of Maryland

Balkinization
More Questions About Section Three
Gerard N. Magliocca | Samuel R. Rosen Professor at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Crooks and Liars
US Capitol Insurrection: The More We Know, Worse It Gets
RedStateRachel

Politico
Yes, it was a coup. Here’s why.
Fiona Hill |  deputy assistant to the president and senior director for European and Russian affairs on the National Security Council from 2017 to 2019, currently a senior fellow in the Center on the United States and Europe at the Brookings Institution

The Hill
Hundreds of historians call for Trump removal
Zack Budryk

Politico
Pentagon authorizes up to 15,000 National Guardsmen to support inauguration
Lara Seligman

Fast Company
Can you fire an employee who was a U.S. Capitol rioter? In a word, yes
Zlati Meyer

The Week
Congresswoman tests positive for COVID-19 after sheltering in place with mask-less colleagues during Capitol riot
Tim O'Donnell

Amy Goodman interviews Ruth Ben-Ghiat, professor of history and Italian studies at New York University

Jacobin
We Should Know Exactly Who Funded Last Week’s Right-Wing Riot
Andrew Perez

The Week
National Guard didn't arrive at Capitol until 3 hours after Capitol Police chief's urgent request
Peter Weber

AlterNet
Is the Republican Party fascist? An expert explains the 7 themes that dominate fascism movements
Kevin Matthews

BRICS Information Portal
Riots at the Capitol are reflection of fragmentation of the U.S.’ social fabric
Paul Antonopoulos

49 comments:

lastgreek said...

Wow, lots of articles and all interesting.

Peter Pan said...

A generous helping of mainstream articles. Is Tom trying to save MNE from the purge?

Tom Hickey said...

A generous helping of mainstream articles. Is Tom trying to save MNE from the purge

Actually, I looked at a whole bunch of posts from the other side. All bonkers. From deep denial to tinfoil hat stuff. The opposing"realities" are so different now that there is no sense talking about reconciliation. There is no common ground on which to meet.

There has been a huge amount of material to sift through over the past few days. I've tried to aggregate some of most interesting and relevant stuff.

Tom Hickey said...

BTW, I am disappointed. At least some on the other side were correct about the trend toward neoliberal globalization leading to totalitarian technocracy, presently most visibly in Europe The UK was wise to withdraw from that.

However, even those that appeared sober in their analysis of this growing trend seems to have been caught up in events and shelved their critical skills. They are not necessarily pro-Trump as much as anti-globalist, but their commitment to that seems to have overshadowed good sense and the ability to see facts as they are instead of how one wishes they were. These are the people in deep denial.

On the other hand, a lot of the hardline Trump supporters are wearing tinfoil hats, and that is not so surprising.

Peter Pan said...

Are Caitlyn Johnstone and Glenn Greenwald in the bonkers category?

The coup narrative is reckless. It's one thing for left sites to cater to their audience; but it's outrageous that the MSM are doing it. The onus is on them to tone it down for the sake of unity. Instead, they appear to want war, via censorship or worse.

Tom Hickey said...

I think it is reckless to minimize what happened, especially now that quite a bit more has come out than at first. This was part of a plan being executed to subvert the US Constitution and US law.

In my view, this incident was actually far worse that anyone is admitting and that is part of the problem.

The right is minimizing it and the left is trying to find ways to talk about it politically rather than telling it like it was blow by blow and following the trail back to the origins of this debacle.

The reality is that in many countries the attempt to breach the seat of the national legislature while it is in session would be met by a barrage of bullets. I was surprised it was not in this case. In the future the Capitol will be much better defended, I am quite sure. This exposed a huge security flaw.

For example, if one tries to drive through the gate of US military base without being check in, they will likely be shot by the guards, no questions asked. That was a standing order. There are machine guns guarding the White House and an attempt to breach it while the president is there is likely to be lethal.

I can't believe that the US Capitol and a sitting legislature was essentially undefended, especially when the lead up to the confrontation was public over weeks.

Treating this as a protest march, political theatre, or a joke is just bonkers. A major pillar of US soft power has been orderly transfer of power. This is part of an attempt to abort that. It would be a mistake to focus on this incident out of context. It is part of plan that is quite simple to trace just based on what is public. There is little doubt that this more it, and that should be exposed.

This conflict is far from over and not nipping it in the bud would be a grave mistake.

Moreover, this has finished the US as the "exceptional" nation. That means loss of natural leadership in the sense of being followed voluntarily, and also emulated as the ideal. That is over, although it was already gasping for air. From now on, US leadership such as it is will be based on the ability to dominate militarily, with all that implies.

Tom Hickey said...

The onus is on them to tone it down for the sake of unity.

That would be a show of weakness and embolden the people that fully committed to a position, which they regard as strength, and they are correct.

The facts of what took place need to be established, not limited to the incident at the Capitol, which is a step in plan. Once the facts are established, then the full force of law must be brought to bear.

Otherwise, this will fester and conditions are likely to develop that will favor takeover by an authoritarian regime.

For example, Obama made a huge error in deciding to just move on in the face of torture and war crimes that some of the participating officials publicly admitted. Similar with the malfeasance involved in the GFC. Not at all that this is where the rot began but it grew exponentially owing to it.

Tom Hickey said...

Are Caitlyn Johnstone and Glenn Greenwald in the bonkers category?

I would not say bonkers but blindsided enough that I chose not to give their views on this any air.

The danger now is distraction, which just plays into the hands of the those who are highly committed to not only to reverse the election but to take charge.

They are not going away after Biden is inaugurated. They will continue until they eventually win or are decisively prevented from continuing, or the movement just peters out, or events eclipse these issues (the big risk being world war).

Unfortunately, that leaves the actual issues with neoliberal globalism unaddressed. Butt their way is not only the wrong way, but also they are incompetent.

Anyway, these things get sorted out by the historical dialectic, to which we are spectators in the great reality show of history in the making.

Unknown said...

Tyler Durden got vanished.

Unknown said...

Here's Mary Trump inside Donald Trump's mind:-

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/mary-trump-says-president-trump-should-be-barred-from-ever-running-for-public-office-again/

Being a loser is worse than death for Donald!

Peter Pan said...

@Tom

It is sad to see someone as supposedly educated as you are, succumb to a narrative that is unsupported by the facts. There was no coup, there are no plans to subvert the transition to the next administration, nor will the status quo in terms of domestic policy be altered.

What occurred on January 6th was an expression of some people's anger at their economic disenfranchisement. It has taken decades to get to this point, and if these grievances are not addressed, they are a guarantor of violence in the future.

Trump the con man is a symptom of what is to come, and instead of recognizing this, the establishment intends to double down on policies that are destroying the US from within. They are ensuring that opposition to their rule will become better organized.

There is no democracy in America. The two major parties are in agreement on economic policy, immigration, and foreign policy. They are committed to a range of actions for which the American people were not consulted, nor have any say. The differences between Democrat and Republican are theater, EXCEPT in the areas where the Trump administration deviated from the establishment's script. Since Trump is a fraud, these are limited in scope to elements of foreign policy and international trade.

The reality is that in many countries the attempt to breach the seat of the national legislature while it is in session would be met by a barrage of bullets. I was surprised it was not in this case. In the future the Capitol will be much better defended, I am quite sure. This exposed a huge security flaw.

Would you have preferred that 500 people were gunned down in order to conclude that all is well?

We can speculate that elements of the police are sympathetic to Trumpism, yet the fact remains that the police did resist the mob, and members of congress were protected from harm. We can also speculate why there were security problems given who is in charge of the Capitol building police.

The danger now is distraction, which just plays into the hands of the those who are highly committed to not only to reverse the election but to take charge.

Where is the evidence that the US military is about to leave their barracks?
Because that is the only way the transition could be halted.

Peter Pan said...

They are not going away after Biden is inaugurated. They will continue until they eventually win or are decisively prevented from continuing, or the movement just peters out, or events eclipse these issues (the big risk being world war).

Well of course Trumpism is not going away, anymore than people's anger will be dispelled by a continuation of the corrupt status quo. No doubt increased censorship will do wonders to calm these voices down. If not, other forms of repression might do the trick.

What is unsustainable will have to be replaced. This could happen through the ballot box or through violent means. That it hasn't happened yet points to a lack of organization on the part of the people, or of opportunistic forces.

The establishment is on a course that will bring about what they claim they wish to avoid. Inventing imaginary threats to preserve a system in terminal decline avoids what needs to be done in the interim. Reforms to address American institutional rot should have been taken a decade ago, if not earlier. But such measures were not taken, and there is no indication that reforms are being considered for the future.

The coup narrative is intended to prepare the public for increased censorship. This will occur under Biden/Harris, and the fallout from it will be attributed to this administration. Maintaining business as usual ensures that opposition will grow; crushing it will lead to a lot of blood being spilled.

Without a change in course, foreign policy will likely be pushed along its unsustainable path. Climate change will continue to be addressed symbolically. Because there's plenty of time left, right?

If I were you, I wouldn't be concerned about preserving stability. It is leading towards a tragedy every bit as serious as an actual coup. It's unfortunate that what time remains to America to resolve her problems, will be wasted on hysteria.

Matt Franko said...

US is a revolutionary culture and violent culture,,,, not an imperialist culture like you guys think.., US foreign policy is ideally to foment revolution not “take over”...

All the revolutionary things happen here.., technology.... rock n roll , punk, grunge..,

“ If I were you, I wouldn't be concerned about preserving stability.”

lol that’s good because we don’t like stability....

Andrew Anderson said...

All the revolutionary things happen here.., technology.... rock n roll , punk, grunge.., Franko

While some of the above is good, they are all a "mess of pottage" for legally stolen birthrights and serve to distract from systematic injustice.

And injustice being injustice, we should expect diminishing returns from it too as more and more human talent is wasted or ill-directed.

Andrew Anderson said...

Working link for Tyler Durden - https://www.zerohedge.com/political/hacktivist-archives-every-deleted-parler-post-future-cancel-crusades

Matt Franko said...

LOL if you want to read zero hedge just go to their website...

lastgreek said...

"Actually, I looked at a whole bunch of posts from the other side. All bonkers. From deep denial to tinfoil hat stuff. The opposing"realities" are so different now that there is no sense talking about reconciliation. There is no common ground on which to meet."

Not just bonkers, Tom, but antisemites and racists.

I looked at the twitter feed of the anti-Semite and idiot Ann Coulter, and she gives the impression that Antifa was behind the mob last Wednesday. And you know what? Her idiot followers are swallowing it :(

How stupid is the anti-Semite Ann Coulter? I am glad you asked. In an interview the idiot Ann Coulter gave in 2005 on the Canadian news documentary program The Fifth Estate, the idiot made the idiotic statement that the Canada had sent soldiers to Vietnam to fight alongside American soldiers. When the bewildered Canadian journalist who was conducting the interview told the idiot that that was not true, the idiot (a la Trump) refused to back down.

"Are Caitlyn Johnstone and Glenn Greenwald in the bonkers category?"

I don't know who CJ is, but as for Glenn Greenwald... yes, he's in the bonkers category:

Glenn Greenwald @ggreenwald · Jan 2

Trump’s not even gone yet and Dems are already unveiling this predictable tactic:
Trump was never a *real* fascist threat, just a joke. The real Hitler is the one coming next. So unless you want real concentration camps this time, stay in line behind Dems through at least 2024:


The above poorly aged tweet (and there are many of those) was in reply to Max Berger tweet warning about "strategic fascist" like Josh Hawley.

Btw, is Tucker Carlson Greenwald's new sugar daddy?

"US is a revolutionary culture and violent culture,,,, not an imperialist culture like you guys think.., US foreign policy is ideally to foment revolution not “take over”..."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_military_bases

Ravens 20
Titans 13

:))))))



Tom Hickey said...

Thanks, AA. Link fixed now.

Tom Hickey said...

@ Peter Pan

You fall into the blindsided category.

That's' OK since you are not American and don't face clear and present danger.

Calgacus said...

I don't really understand what Greenwald is saying in that tweet. However, what he Caitlin Johnstone, Diana Johnstone (no relation) and Joe Lauria have said - the last three at consortium news - is worth reading. Especially since it is hard to find counter-commentary that isn't simply insane like Trump's and his followers' electoral and all the other nonsense.

They are right about the speech suppression and its inevitable counterproductive effect. But as more has come out about the Beer Belly Putsch, it has become clear that their older pieces minimized it. As is saying that there was no effort to subvert the transition. No sane and reasonable and legitimately grounded effort, but what on earth could one call this rioting aimed at a legal electoral function, but an "attempt to subvert the transition" - that is most certainly what the Trump followers said and thought they were doing!

But naturally enough, there has been some excessive rhetoric - attack powerful people like legislators and you can expect them to fight back verbally. But attempts to penalize fellow legislators for "voting the wrong way" is suicidal and tyrannical. Saving his dubious assertion that this was in any way a revolt of downtrodden, that this was an economic protest - for these people just aren't those really economically suffering - Lauria's "Capitol Incident a Dress Rehearsal" makes some good points on the future. Congress does need a wake up call. Especially since the basic issues are pure nonsense, I doubt this is one they will hear though. They should beware of repeating reckless lunacy like Russiagate that only strengthened and radicalized Trump and empowered the far right.

Peter Pan said...

Tom has outed himself as a conspiracy theorist, and has joined the MSM in promoting what I suppose should be called Capitolgate. As with its namesake, there is no "there" there, as in a threat to the transfer of power. But it is a pretext for implementing another Patriot Act.

Trump's actions, tweets, etc. are a matter of public record. What he says behind the scenes doesn't remain private either. His presidency has been marked by numerous leaks.

The main issue is the drive for censorship, and the subsequent effects that this will have. The task of covering this rests with the alternative media.

Matt Franko said...

“Tom has outed himself as a conspiracy theorist,”

He’s the new Qanon...

Calgacus said...

No, of course Tom hasn't become a conspiracy theorist. His or the MSM's narrative may go to far in some respect - it's a matter of judgment. But the Trump / Right narrative that the election was stolen is insane and the violence based on this idiocy is insanity squared.

PP: The idea that there was no threat to the transfer of power is also absurd. Trump and the rioters certainly did make that threat. Taking people at their word is not a conspiracy theory.

Juan Cole has an interesting comparison I hadn't thought of, and a reasonable conclusion:

"It was a coup attempt of sorts. It reminds me of the much more successful 1953 CIA coup against Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh in Iran. CIA field officer Kermit Roosevelt bought mobs with millions of dollars in the capital to intimidate parliament and encourage anti-democratic forces to depose the prime minister.

Trump’s was a crackpot conspiracy-theory coup attempt, though. It was never plausible except in very fevered minds like those of Trump, Alex Jones and other exotic flora and fauna. But over 140 congressmen and 8 senators did join the attempt to overturn the election even after the mob tried to kill or kidnap them, which means it wasn’t as implausible as I wish it was. And the buy-in Trump has in the Republican Party for this coup attempt signals severe trouble ahead."

Yes, it Was a Coup Attempt, but one Just as Looney as Trump and his Wingnuts

A drive for censorship is certainly a concern. But so is the size of a violent, extreme right and the many more less active who thoughtlessly swallow Trump's crap about a stolen election - with no evidence or reason at all, calls for the same level of concern. As does the millions on the other side who swallowed the crap of Russiagate, which both empowered Trump and by lowering the bar, made it probable that Trump would act that much worse in response.

Tom Hickey said...

“Tom has outed himself as a conspiracy theorist,” He’s the new Qanon...

Some good folks have outed themselves as cranks. Hey, nothing wrong with being a crank. It's a choice. :)

Peter Pan said...

No, of course Tom hasn't become a conspiracy theorist. His or the MSM's narrative may go to far in some respect - it's a matter of judgment.

Russiagate went too far, which is a matter of judgement.
I suggest you replace what you attribute to Trumpists with Russiagate, and observe how your arguments stand up.

But the Trump / Right narrative that the election was stolen is insane and the violence based on this idiocy is insanity squared.

Do I need to remind you that millions of people believe the election was stolen?
Would it shock you to discover that such a belief may provoke violence under certain circumstances?

PP: The idea that there was no threat to the transfer of power is also absurd. Trump and the rioters certainly did make that threat. Taking people at their word is not a conspiracy theory.

--snip--

Trump’s was a crackpot conspiracy-theory coup attempt, though. It was never plausible except in very fevered minds like those of Trump, Alex Jones and other exotic flora and fauna.


It's absurd, yet never plausible. Which is it?

When people claim to have power, and it's obvious they don't, I don't take their claims at face value. The threat posed by a mob is no match for the power of the state.

But over 140 congressmen and 8 senators did join the attempt to overturn the election even after the mob tried to kill or kidnap them, which means it wasn’t as implausible as I wish it was."

According to experts, the outcome of that archaic yet legal process, would not have overturned the election.

And the buy-in Trump has in the Republican Party for this coup attempt signals severe trouble ahead.

Welcome to adversarial politics in a declining empire.

Peter Pan said...

Juan Cole has an interesting comparison I hadn't thought of, and a reasonable conclusion:

"It was a coup attempt of sorts. It reminds me of the much more successful 1953 CIA coup against Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh in Iran. CIA field officer Kermit Roosevelt bought mobs with millions of dollars in the capital to intimidate parliament and encourage anti-democratic forces to depose the prime minister.


Gee, too bad Trump was such a cheapskate.

A drive for censorship is certainly a concern. But so is the size of a violent, extreme right and the many more less active who thoughtlessly swallow Trump's crap about a stolen election - with no evidence or reason at all, calls for the same level of concern. As does the millions on the other side who swallowed the crap of Russiagate, which both empowered Trump and by lowering the bar, made it probable that Trump would act that much worse in response.

As Orwell wrote: Ignorance is strength.
Trump has admitted he likes uneducated people.
Unfortunately, what's good for the goose is good for the gander. Both sides can play this game. Buying into the propaganda that January 6th was a coup is more of the same.

If you believe that censorship is a good idea, I suggest you question that belief.

p.s. Are you pretending to be a Poe?

Peter Pan said...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/May_68

A template for what America needs. You'll have nothing to lose in the long run.

Peter Pan said...

Now that Tom has taken leave of his senses, the task of posting alternative media links falls to me. H/T Paul Craig Roberts for the link.

The Mob Did Not Win! by The Saker
https://www.unz.com/tsaker/the-mob-did-not-win/

Tom Hickey said...

I read that Saker post when it came up. As you probably have noticed, I have not been linking to him lately. His military analysis is excellent, which has been sparse of late. His political analysis shaped by rather eccentric views is not worth linking to, in my view, and lately he appears to have gone bonkers. PCR, too.

I read them now from the sociological POV rather than for the political commentary. As I see the facts and events, they are living in an alternative reality that doesn't conform to facts as I see them.

Each must make up their own mind based on facts, as they see them now that this is a domain of alternate realities. Some of us here apparently inhabit different worlds.

This is a consequence of gaslighting, with a many factors and parties involved.

The Swamp by Bertholt Brecht

The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats


Tom Hickey said...

If you believe that censorship is a good idea, I suggest you question that belief.

Let's deal with reality. There are always going to be lines because societies demand them. Somethings most people agree on like child pornography. But FB takes down pictures of families at the beach when toddlers are not fully clothed. Some people think that is over top.

As I have said previously, it's about criteria and their applications. These are, in the end, political and legal issues that are decided differently in different jurisdictions.

For example, trying to impose very liberal standards in traditional cultures results in conflict and vice versa.

So, it's complicated.

Calgacus said...

I suggest you replace what you attribute to Trumpists with Russiagate, and observe how your arguments stand up.

I more or less have, in everything I have written about Russiagate now and in past years- a hoax, a witchhunt. Trump, never to be exceeded in tit-for-tat insanity, responded to the false Democratic assertion that he stole 2016 with a false assertion that Biden stole 2020. Both assertions were entirely free of evidence.

Do I need to remind you that millions of people believe the election was stolen?
Would it shock you to discover that such a belief may provoke violence under certain circumstances?


As for the first, believing doesn't make things true. Either Russiagate or 2020 steal. Neither happened in the real world, way beyond reasonable doubt. There were some reports, CNN & Consortium News - that Trump had told a friend that of course he knew he lost, but that he was just getting back for the Russiagate nonsense. However he was not to be outdone in insane stupidity and he also fired up a mob to commit acts of deadly political violence. By now, he likely believes his own conscious lies.

Getting people to stop believing such lunacies is why I am trying to be very even-handed - something which even you implicitly acknowledge in the immediately next question.

It's absurd, yet never plausible. Which is it?

The statement '"There was no threat" is absurd' - i.e. "There was threat". AND that the threat was "never plausible" are consistent with each other. Both are true. This and saying that you don't take what people say at face value is just weird bias or a disinclination to understand and speak standard English.

If you believe that censorship is a good idea, I suggest you question that belief.

Nothing I wrote promotes censorship. Everything I wrote opposes it; I do not see how anyone could have misunderstood.

It is not propaganda to say it was a coup. It is a probably somewhat overstated position to use that word without qualification. But that is natural and expectable coming shortly after the event from politicians and journalists whose lives were threatened. "Beer Belly Putsch" is the best short description I've seen.

Just "coup" is like saying "he tried to kill me" - when investigations show that "he" was actually just trying to chop your hand off with a plastic knife, while uttering drunken threats "I'm going to kill you."

According to experts, the outcome of that archaic yet legal process, would not have overturned the election.

Some experts say that, some experts don't. Does it really matter? What matters is not what experts say, but what happens or could happen, which is never certain. The decision in Bush vs. Gore was legally absurd, so absurd that the majority said it should not serve as a precedent - since it amounted to "we rule for our guy because he's our guy". That overturned an election, taking it away from the probable victor.

Calgacus said...

Among the best analyses, and best discussion of language I've seen is from Zeynep Tufekci. The piece at alternet posted in a later link collection, Social scientist on failed pro-Trump coup: 'People are mistaking ridiculous with not serious'

And a couple of prescient pieces in The Atlantic, ‘This Must Be Your First’: Acting as if Trump is trying to stage a coup is the best way to ensure he won’t from December 7 and This Isn’t Just Political Theater: Trump’s threats aren’t performative—he’s pointing a loaded gun at democracy from January 5, the day before the riot.

"These are not normal hiccups of a transition," she added. "These are attempts to steal an election." Tufekci said there are a lot of ridiculous coup attempts around the world that fail "the first time or the second time, or the third time and then they succeed." GOP legislators voting to throw out legitimate votes even after an attempted coup, "that should scare us," Tufekci said.

Rioters crossed a line in storming the Capitol and so did 65% of Republican legislators who voted to throw out legitimate votes. "It's how we react to that line being crossed that will determine whether they'll try again," Tufekci said. "And there's no reason to assume the next time will be similarly ridiculous or incompetent because this time was very serious." (January 10)

"Our focus should not be a debate about the proper terminology. Instead, we should react to the frightening substance of what we’re facing, even if we also believe that the crassness and the incompetence of this attempt may well doom it this time. " from December 7.

"This time, there was a Raffensperger on the other end of the line. If next time a few less scrupulous individuals answer the phone, the attempt to steal an election might well succeed. And if the Republican Party’s base is convinced by its leaders that losing an election means it was stolen from them, those voters will go on to elect officials who are properly eager to help get the “correct” results—so that Republicans win regardless of the vote count." from January 5


Some of her points are close to the argument involving threat/absurd/plausible/face value above. Returning to that -

Peter Pan:When people claim to have power, and it's obvious they don't, I don't take their claims at face value. The threat posed by a mob is no match for the power of the state.

This ignores the obvious - that this threat was not coming just from a mob. It was coming from the President of the US and backed by a number of other elected officials. (As well as opposed by all the relevant courts and a number of Republican elected officials, like Brad Raffensperger). The power of the state was divided, which is when mobs can and have made a difference, as they arguably did in the much closer election of 2000.

Peter Pan said...

I read that Saker post when it came up. As you probably have noticed, I have not been linking to him lately. His military analysis is excellent, which has been sparse of late. His political analysis shaped by rather eccentric views is not worth linking to, in my view, and lately he appears to have gone bonkers. PCR, too.

Until we have our old Tom back, I'll continue linking to him and related sites.
PCR is off the deep end, yet his analysis has merit.

Let's deal with reality. There are always going to be lines because societies demand them.

Limits to free speech are established by law. This is not a new concept.
Why do these lines need to be changed?

Peter Pan said...

As for the first, believing doesn't make things true. Either Russiagate or 2020 steal. Neither happened in the real world, way beyond reasonable doubt. There were some reports, CNN & Consortium News - that Trump had told a friend that of course he knew he lost, but that he was just getting back for the Russiagate nonsense. However he was not to be outdone in insane stupidity and he also fired up a mob to commit acts of deadly political violence. By now, he likely believes his own conscious lies.

Their belief informs their perception, so you will have to deal with that.
They don't believe the results because they don't trust the process.
To restore trust in the process, election fraud has to be ruled out.
Ruling out election fraud involves a full audit of the machinery and ballots.
November 2020 was not the time to do this.

Election integrity is an issue that needed to be addressed a long time ago. Americans are now paying the price for inaction.

Andrew Anderson said...

Why do these lines need to be changed? Peter Pan

Because increasing economic oppression requires increasing political oppression?

Btw, this applies to both fascism AND socialism since neither are just economic systems.

Peter Pan said...

The statement '"There was no threat" is absurd' - i.e. "There was threat". AND that the threat was "never plausible" are consistent with each other. Both are true. This and saying that you don't take what people say at face value is just weird bias or a disinclination to understand and speak standard English.

1. There was no threat to the transfer of power is a factual statement.
2. It is not plausible that a riot without planning or military support can overthrow the government of the United States.
3. People who believe they can do this or that, when in reality they can't, is sometimes referred to as bravado.

It is not propaganda to say it was a coup. It is a probably somewhat overstated position to use that word without qualification. But that is natural and expectable coming shortly after the event from politicians and journalists whose lives were threatened. "Beer Belly Putsch" is the best short description I've seen.

1. Use of the term coup is inaccurate.
2. It will be repeated by the MSM until it is accepted as fact. That makes it propaganda.

Some experts say that, some experts don't. Does it really matter? What matters is not what experts say, but what happens or could happen, which is never certain. The decision in Bush vs. Gore was legally absurd, so absurd that the majority said it should not serve as a precedent - since it amounted to "we rule for our guy because he's our guy". That overturned an election, taking it away from the probable victor.

It matters in the sense that it isn't extralegal. If you're worried that this archaic rule can overturn an election, might be best to get rid of it. I have no criticism for those Republican senators, they were using every means at their disposal. The riot nixed that.

Peter Pan said...

Because increasing economic oppression requires increasing political oppression?

That would be my answer, but I'm a cynical bastard.

Peter Pan said...

This ignores the obvious - that this threat was not coming just from a mob. It was coming from the President of the US and backed by a number of other elected officials. (As well as opposed by all the relevant courts and a number of Republican elected officials, like Brad Raffensperger). The power of the state was divided, which is when mobs can and have made a difference, as they arguably did in the much closer election of 2000.

These articles should state the obvious:

- Elections in the US are non-transparent.
- Archaic rules threaten the will of the electorate.

Fix your goddamn system instead of whining about those who would take advantage of it.

Peter Pan said...

Why didn't Trump declare a state of emergency last May when there were protests and riots in several cities?

The ubiquitous "state of emergency" can be found in virtually every country. As convenient a method of suspending people's rights as one may get.

Tom Hickey said...

1. There was no threat to the transfer of power is a factual statement.
2. It is not plausible that a riot without planning or military support can overthrow the government of the United States.
3. People who believe they can do this or that, when in reality they can't, is sometimes referred to as bravado.


This is all irrelevant under the circumstances. The demonstration was not to overthrow the government, rather it was to intimidate certain members of congress to use archaic rules to throw the vote into the House, where under those rules DJT would be president and not Joe Biden.

The record is clear. There was no unclarity about the vote and its legitimacy and many of the election officials that oversaw it and certified it were Repbulican. All courts case were either rejected or dismissed.

The entire "confusion" was created by DJT big lie that the vote was fixed and that he won in a landslide if proper procedure were followed. There is no evidence that support that claim other than a few minor irregularities that had no substantial influence on the outcome.

This was an orchestrated plan that was launched immediately upon DJT's realization that he lost. just like the the Democrats launched Russiagate when they lose. In fact, there is anecdotal evidence that DJT considered his plan payback for that.

DJT made a big mistake getting in bed with extremists and then not cutting loose from them soon enough. As a result he pissed off a lot of powerful people and he is now suffering the consequences of losing that pissing match.

Yeah, the whole thing stinks on both sides but that is US politics at this point.

Here at MNE was were among the first to pick up on Russiagate as bogus and we stuck to that position all along down to the present. But that doesn't excuse the violence that occurred and there has to be accountability for that as there should have been for CIA-led torture when it was established in fact.

That, of course, is just tip of the iceberg of violence when the profusion of US war crimes and enlisting of terrorists as proxies is included.

Sorry day for America. The lights have gone out on the shining city on a hill, which burned bright after WWII and the defeat of the Axis powers, due in part to US actions.

Tom Hickey said...

BTW, the charge should have been seditious conspiracy rather than inciting to insurrection. DJT could be convicted in the Senate on the former, but it is highly doubtful that the later would stick.

But "inciting to insurrection" sounds better politically and removing him before his term expires was not a possibility anyway.

This was a political show, although something had to be done to enforce accountability and it would be a mistake to just move on as Obama did with torture. In fact, Obama bears some of the blame for this on that account.

There should have been several charges that more Republican representative could sign onto or would have to in good conscience. As it is most, saw this not as an accountability issue as much as a political ploy and the reacted as might be expected.

Tom Hickey said...

I wrote "The demonstration was not to overthrow the government, rather it was to intimidate certain members of congress to use archaic rules to throw the vote into the House, where under those rules DJT would be president and not Joe Biden."

Donald Trump's favorite m.o. has been exerting "pressure." This attempt at intimidation was part of a plan to exert pressure on GOP representatives and VP Pence to use the rules to overturn the election results and give the presidency to DJT.

I don't think that Trump foresaw the violence that would occur. I assume he believed that a large angry crowd on the Capitol steps would be enough create the pressure require to turn the tables his way on the floor.

If he thought otherwise about events, it was a huge strategic and tactical blunder. Violence ended up costing him mightily and it is not over yet. This is still unfolding. It also cost his party. And finally, the cost internationally fell on his country. A debacle all around based on a poor choice of who to get in bed with.

I feel sorry for a lot of people that got caught up in this, including DJT to some degree.

But there were also quite a few "bad apples" involved and now the law is after them and some of them are going to prison for a long time on federal offenses, as they should.

jrbarch said...

Every political tale is the story of the lust for power and revenge. The craziness is primed and on the current trajectory, can only get worse. It seems humanity has a demon in its midst; to confront and isolate. Thousands of years ago, part of the theme of the Mahabharata dealt with exactly the same folly. Most of human activity is all imagination, spinning off, trying to fulfil the dreams of the 'I' - but not the self.

Humans tend to act as though they will live forever; and the sum-total of all of their efforts (?) - who would dare multipy them by zero (although, of course for some Hindus, zero ≡ infinity)! Every Empire crumbles away. The engine that drives us is the desire to be content. But we never stop to question why this quest, is unattainable on the outside; and why we ignore what is well known - 'What you are looking for, is already inside of You'. We love the thought of Aladdin's Lamp to make all our dreams come true. One day this whole universe will be no more: let alone the Milky Way and the 'Sun and Moon and the Stars'. Individually, we get on average, just seventy laps around the sun. A little firefly, here and gone!
'You and You and You' are what is important. Not the dreams of Empire.

Meanwhile,"The genie is out of the bottle (not Aladdin's genie but the one that wrecks havoc) and no-one knows how to put it back..." [Prem Rawat: The genie and you]

Peter Pan said...

This is all irrelevant under the circumstances. The demonstration was not to overthrow the government, rather it was to intimidate certain members of congress to use archaic rules to throw the vote into the House, where under those rules DJT would be president and not Joe Biden.

Republican senators were doing just, but the break-in interrupted that plan.
I agree that if the protest had remained outside, the noise might have helped them win the vote. And that would have been a legal outcome.

The entire "confusion" was created by DJT big lie that the vote was fixed and that he won in a landslide if proper procedure were followed. There is no evidence that support that claim other than a few minor irregularities that had no substantial influence on the outcome.

The confusion was caused by an electoral process that is complex and opaque. A Canadian Trump could never have orchestrated such a powerplay.

DJT made a big mistake getting in bed with extremists and then not cutting loose from them soon enough. As a result he pissed off a lot of powerful people and he is now suffering the consequences of losing that pissing match.

I believe Trump's narcissism prevented him from working with anyone. He alienated the powerful and was incapable of following a coherent ideology. In that regard, America was lucky.

This was a political show, although something had to be done to enforce accountability and it would be a mistake to just move on as Obama did with torture. In fact, Obama bears some of the blame for this on that account.

Accountability = jail time. Until Trump does actual time, elites are 100% unaccountable. If Trump is imprisoned, that figure can be revised downward, to 99%.

This BS of only punishing non-elites isn't fooling anyone.

Peter Pan said...

I don't think that Trump foresaw the violence that would occur. I assume he believed that a large angry crowd on the Capitol steps would be enough create the pressure require to turn the tables his way on the floor.

That could have been the plan, had the Capitol police not allowed protesters into the building. Who could have foreseen that plot twist?

Peter Pan said...

Humans tend to act as though they will live forever;

Dear Joe Biden,

As you are nearing the end of your life, I want you to know that America needs you. The American people need you to become far more than the sum of your 50 years in the DC swamp.

The politics of business as usual will destroy your country. Another round of "hope and change" won't cut it. Do you want the destruction of America to be your legacy?

Sincerely,

A concerned Canadian.

Calgacus said...

There was no threat to the transfer of power is a factual statement.
It is also false. (A) Do you know what "threat" means?
(B) In my estimation, and perhaps in yours - your statements are confused and confusing - there was a small but nonzero probability that this would succeed. It has happened before. Many have argued that the Miami recount disturbance decisively pushed a much, much closer election to Bush. This refutes "It is not plausible that a riot without planning or military support can overthrow the government of the United States."


- Elections in the US are non-transparent.
- Archaic rules threaten the will of the electorate.

Fix your goddamn system instead of whining about those who would take advantage of it.


Nobody is whining. Trump and the capitol protesters are not trying to take advantage of the system. They are trying to change it to attain and retain power. The idea that this is not extralegal, or that Bush v Gore was not extralegal - when the court itself said it was! - is nonsense.

Hard to break it to a "cynic" - but powerful people distort laws to the point of breaking them - and always will - under any system. The only security against it is "the people" defending themselves. It could even take the form of something vaguely like the capitol riot. The difference is that this was a pro-slavery rebellion, a group defending its "right" to break laws, to live in an insane alternate reality.

To restore trust in the process, election fraud has to be ruled out.
Ruling out election fraud involves a full audit of the machinery and ballots.
November 2020 was not the time to do this.


Trump had his day in court. Probably more days than Gore. He lost, because his claims are insane. Bald faced, ridiculous lies. The basic system is not opaque, and no archaic rules threatened the will of the electorate. He who gets more votes wins. Nobody sane disagrees that Biden got more votes. So he won. This was not a close call. There is no US precedent for Trump's behavior in such a not-close election, where there would have had to have been massive fraud to change the outcome. And all sane observers agree there was not.

To restore trust, people who think this election was conspicuously bad, disfavoring Republicans and plutocrats - need to learn what evidence and logic is. It was bad as usual, because of the Republican / plutocrat rigging - for themselves. These idiots are rioting because they want elections to be more opaque and rigged and fraudulent, not less.

That could have been the plan, had the Capitol police not allowed protesters into the building. Who could have foreseen that plot twist?

Anybody? Many people did. Taking people who loudly threaten violence at their word is common sense. Lame.

A Canadian Trump could never have orchestrated such a powerplay.

Hmm. Really? Don't remember when martial law was declared in Canada, using your archaic legal rules? I know a professor who had to flee Canada to the USA because of that. Of course every nation is different. But the Canadian system is not so different. The electoral college is just a second legislature for one purpose. Minorities benefitting from gerrymandering and rotten boroughs can and do elect PMs in most Westminster system countries.

but I'm a cynical bastard.
People who think that and say that of themselves - are usually extremely gullible and just asking for a con man to deceive them. Based on your statements here, you aren't the exception.

Again, I suggest people read Zeynep Tufekci.

Calgacus said...

As for who could have foreseen what happened:

Some members of Congress did see something might be brewing and reported it on January 5:

Dems demand details of ‘suspicious’ Capitol visitors day before attack

Peter Pan said...

Again, I will restate the facts:

- There was no threat to the transfer of power. That means the probability was zero.
- The vote being held on January 6th was a formality.
- The process of certification was not being changed in any way.
- Laws were not being distorted; rules were not being bent.
- The system was/is working as designed.

Influencing the vote via noisy protests, taking advantage of flaws in the system, is par for the course. Such activities are rarely punished, even when they're considered abusive. Nor are they extralegal... unless laws are changed, systems are reformed, or when a court renders its conclusion, long after the fact.

You seem to want to blame the actors for ruining a movie that was badly written and directed.

Don't remember when martial law was declared in Canada, using your archaic legal rules?

Sure I remember. And it isn't archaic, it's a key feature of most jurisdictions. An escape clause that can be used legitimately or abused. Trump, the so-called "fascist", never abused it.

You have no arguments Calgacus. You're defending a piss-poor system that is designed to distract the public, while elites take turns trading power for money. The flaws have been exposed by Trump, mainly because he's a vulgar narcissist. He's obsessed about "winning" and receiving adulation. In reality, politicians always win, laughing all the way to the bank.

Without pressure from below, the direction the country takes is up to the elites. I'm not hopeful. Your corrupt leadership and institutions are taking you to a place far worse than the events of January 6th.